Saturday, January 17, 2009

In Memory ...

Certianly one of the most profound and beautiful of human experiences is the way in which we experience the death of someone we love deeply. It's no cliche to say that we die with them, for we are never quite the same for having lost them.  

Nor is it inaccurate to say that they live on in us. At their memory we are compelled to laugh and to cry, to smile and to ache. They inhabit our waking thoughts and they visit our dreams. By sharing their life, they have shaped who we are, and they shape us further by their passing.

This, it would seem to me, is one of the most profound things that a human being can experience, and yet is experience by nearly everyone. It's something we feel because of our interconnectedness and deep loving bonds, and yet it is something we experience in an isolation and deep spiritual loneliness - this in spite of well wishers who would seek to give us comfort.

This post is long overdue, I suppose. God has, in the last 18 months, called home several people for whom I cared deeply. Some I called "friend". All of their passings came as a surprise, as all had seemignly a great deal of life stretched before them.  

To Chad, my boyhood friend. Throughout the span of my 35 years, God has blessed me with first-rate friends, and you were the first of those. I treasure the many memories I have of us. You've no idea what I would give for another day to be your friend.

To Frank, I could never have made it without you, man. You showed me kindness in ways you may not even realize. You were fond of saying that church was for girls 'cause they like to play dress-up and have social hour. It might surprise you to realize that you embodied the values that Jesus taught like few I've ever met. At a critical time in my life you were just the friend I needed - very literally a gift from God. I look forward to seeing you again.

Orval, as Tom said, you really were the best of us all in so many ways. I toiled and worshipped and ate my way through many a weekend with you. You were so important to so many of us, and had so much of life before you. May God receive you into his rest.

Finally, there was one of God's perfect creatures. Katie, I don't know what to say. I've never met someone your age so selfless and Godly. I miss your smile, and your help, and the real-life example that you set for my girls. The world is certainly dimmer without your light.

Chad, Orval, Frank, and Katie - God go with you and speed you on your journey... you are missed.

Sunday, January 11, 2009

Joe's New Years resolutsion

NOTE: These were swiped from Matt Hayes' news letter, "Hayes Days", with slight re-wording by me. That guys makes me LAUGH! the rest was plagiarized from Scott and Douglass Adams.

As God is my witness, in 2009 I vow to:
1 - Grow a totally sweet beard.
2 - come up with a computer password that isn't "password goes here"
3 - Learn to juggle chainsaws ... flaiming chainsaws...
4- Become 30% more awesome
5 - Quit creeping myself out at night by thinking about how the grain on the window blind looks like a guy in a tuxedo glaring at me
6 - Quit filling our money jar with "hope"
7 - Finally Purchase a workplace-appropriate replacement for my beloved"bikini mishaps" calendar
8 - eat more oreos
9 - observe "talk like a pirate day" no matter WHAT.
10 - learn to enjoy the "whoosh"-ing sounds that deadlines make as they fly by
11 - dance like it hurts
12 - love like I need the money
13 - Work when people are watching

Hope everyone's 2009 is off to a wonderful start.

No one expects the Spanish Inquisition!

I recently read the following comment in facebook:
fb x: is laughing that people are trying to sue so there won't be a prayer at Obama's cerimony.
fb y=:You know that our faith is real when people make such a huge issue out of prayer in the name of Jesus. I do not think that people would care if it was in the name of Buddha or any other false God.

I didn't want to hammer-head in on the thread (barely know the commenter), but I had to respond, so here it is:
The truth is that Christians wouldn't even let WalMart get away with "Happy Holidays". Obama is forced by tradition to have a prayer. He will be forced by popular opinion that it be Christian. Christians have this bizarre perspective that they are oppressed by secular law and culture. I think that it would be closer to the truth to say that popular culture is railing against oppression by Christians, and law is attempting painfully extricate itself from the views of Christian Fundamentalists.

While I believe in prayer and in Jesus, I reject the notion of the US as a "Christian Nation" as I would reject Afghanistan as a "Muslim" nation. I believe in secular government, and feel very strongly that the USA should be a place where all faiths can flourish under law, guided by laws based on common sense analysis of actions and consequences with a healthy sprinkling of "Do unto others ..." intermixed. But THAT'S CHRISTIAN!, you protest. Actually not. The notion of the golden rule is a common thread in many religions, and seems like the best way to make a civilization work, no?

Scripting out existing database mail configuration

SQL Server Central Artical on Scripting out Existing database mail configuration I wanted to save this here so I can easily find it. Sorry ...