Wednesday, December 31, 2008

The state of Texas is harboring terrorists

You folks down there in Galveston don't seem to get it. There is corruption down there. What part of "they threatened to kill me" did you not understand?

I'm not giving this up until someone other than me pretends this is important.

The Galveston Daily News could quite possibly be the worst excuse for a newspaper on plant Earth. Have you started working on this story yet?

I haven't been interviewed yet, and I'm the main source for information, so I doubt it. They are so backwards and inept at that paper, they probably still think this is a story about whether or not I was a party guy prior to Christ, as opposed to a story about state employees and leaders breaking the law to intimidate someone they wanted to control.

I know you all read this blog. Don't pretend you don't. Do you all realize that I haven't received any type of contact from your paper regarding what I have blogged about here? Are you people awake? I have accused leaders at UTMB of threatening me verbally and with handguns, and that didn't even warrant an email to find out more? (Don't bother sending me an email now, you're not going to get an interview with me now.)

What a joke. I think any student in Journalism 101 would call that a hard news story. And I stand by every word of it. Being a journalist isn't just the ability to string words together well. Being a journalist is a responsibility. Remember?

Why am I still going through this? Because no one wants to act like they're a journalist and cover this story, or press the university on it. They'd rather let these folks get away with this simply because they don't want to see me vindicated. Pure and simple. They realize that I'm probably telling the truth (which I am) and they realize how damaging this will be to the county's largest employer, so they'd rather this go away.

Sorry. This is about principle. It's about right and wrong. You're not going to treat someone like this anymore.

In fact, there's more to this story I didn't talk about already. I was kind enough not to go into at least one other incident, in which one of those Busch-league terrorists looked me in the eye and told me that they would carry out their threats.

After months and months of incidents of gunfire and verbal threats, one of these people actually looked me in the eye at an event and said, "We'll do it. (Slapping her hands together making a loud clap). Whatever it takes."

These people are serious. And they are being protected by the state of Texas and the local media.

I've been told on numerous times in numerous ways by these people that they would kill me if they had to, and you all want me to forget about it? Just let it go? Let maggots force me out of my hometown? Forget it.

What kind of country do you want to live in?

If we let people in power get away with this kind of garbage, we are giving our country to the scumbags. Is that really what you want? You really want me to go away, after everything I've been through, and let people of this quality stay in power or at least not be held accountable in some way?

I wouldn't trust a couple of these creeps to manage a group of 17-year-olds at a Del Taco. And somehow they talked their way into management positions in the University of Texas System. Amazing.

Forget it! We're going to wait until this is resolved. Get to work fixing it! Now.

"Let integrity and uprightness preserve me; for I wait on thee" (Psalm 25:21).

I stand by every word that I have typed into this computer regarding what happened while I was there, and what has happened since.

I told the truth. All that manure we talked about in those ridiculous Professionalism Board meetings about accountability and integrity was a joke unless something is done about this. You put me on that board to be an example on that campus...to stand up for values you'd prefer to flush down the toilet than have to practice yourselves?

I don't care if I have to go alone on this. These people are criminals, and I'm not going to let them get away with doing this to someone.

You people should be ashamed of yourselves.

The irony is, I ended up being the one in the bunch with integrity, who stood up for what was right, and what was my reward? Public embarrassment? Humiliation? The loss of my career? Should I go on? I could.

Until this is fixed, UTMB is an embarrassment to that community and a stain on health care in this country. I'm sorry I have to shoot straight with you all. That's just the way it is.

You want me to move on? Then take care of this situation...fairly. Now. Or lets let a jury sort all this out.

The spirit of the living God within me won't let me move on until this is resolved.

Thursday, December 25, 2008

For immediate release: New BarlowGirl video confusing, says Tyler

HOUSTON -- (Dec. 25, 2008) -- The latest BarlowGirl video, while cute and entertaining, unfortunately doesn't provide adequate information to justify a trip to Chicago next month, said John Tyler Christmas morning.

Wishing the girls and everyone else a Merry Christmas, he said he wasn't sure what they are trying to say.

"I don't think I'm alone in believing the video might send conflicting messages," he said. "If I've already seen Chicago in the winter, should I bother?"

Not wanting to be critical of their creative effort, he wondered if Alyssa's remark that the band would be in the studio in January meant that the week of Jan. 11 was a bad time, or that they weren't interested at all.

"In the studio in Chicago, or in the studio in Nashville?" he asked. "After listening to that, I'm not even sure if they're going to be in town. There were actually several remarks in the video that were open to interpretation, and I'm not sure I'm interpreting them correctly."

Tyler said he's not kidding around, and this is not a publicity stunt.

"Absolutely not," he said. "If fact, I would prefer we meet quickly and find a more personal and private means of communicating and building friendships, because if we don't define this thing ourselves, others are going to define it for us.

"And let me guarantee you something," he said. "Those 'others' have no concern for us, our well-being, or really want us to succeed. If we're serious about building relationships, we can't do it in press releases and video blogs. There's too much left open for misinterpretation."

Tyler said he didn't want the fact that the video left him a bit confused take away from its artistic beauty, or discourage the girls from continuing in their efforts.

"As the great minister of the Gospel, Guy Mofley, always says: 'keep going,'" Tyler said. "You girls looked adorable and I always enjoy watching you on the Internet machine."

Tyler said he'll continue watching the girls YouTube channel to determine if they can carve out some time in their schedule the week of Jan. 11.

-- 30 --

Monday, December 22, 2008

For immediate release: Tyler just about ready for that cup of coffee with the Barlow sisters

HOUSTON -- (Dec. 22, 2008) -- After spending a few minutes on the band's YouTube channel last week, John Tyler wondered if the sisters in BarlowGirl would enjoy sharing a cup of coffee with him in Chicago early in 2009.

"Heck, I might even be willing to buy them dinner," he thought to himself, listening to their pretty Christmas music and looking at their pretty Christmas pictures. "They're lovely, and we could have a great time together talking about Jesus."

Tyler said he had a mental picture of himself sitting at a table with them in their hometown, drinking coffee, grinning ear to ear. This was a pleasant thought, and according to Philippians 4:8, he thought about it some more.

When asked why he felt the Barlow sisters, three young ladies he's never met, would be interested in coffee with him, he seemed adamant they were sending secret messages through their videos, much like rock bands used to embed backward messages in their music.

"I'm not nuts," he said. "For example, play their video entitled 'All good tours must come to an end', and pause it at precisely the 2:58 point. I interpret that as I want at least one cup of coffee with John."

Checking over his schedule and looking for good deals on flights, Tyler found that he could fly in and out Chicago, one of his favorite American cities, for relatively low cost early in January. Tentative plans are for a visit to Chicago the week of Jan. 11.

"Maybe I could find a some jobs to apply for while I'm in town," he said. "Wouldn't that be cool if I found a job in Chicago? I wonder if the president-elect knows of any good job openings."

Tyler's plan to move to Los Angeles has been put on hold as several resumes sent to that city have strangely produced no results, as of close of business Friday.

"Maybe they are waiting until after the holidays to make hiring decisions," he thought quietly to himself.

Tyler also felt it was too early to count on a role in a Clint Eastwood film, since Eastwood was most likely taking a break with a new film already in theaters.

"Hey, why not Chicago?" he said, smiling. "We could at least talk about it over coffee, or having dinner with chopsticks."

Tyler figured that if the girls were interested in a get together, they could find a creative way to let him know on their YouTube channel. He called them "masterful communicators," and felt they could probably let him know one way or another if he needed to jump on an airplane.

He theorized how it might work. "If the answer was 'yes,' I could contact them through their post office box with a secret meeting place and time there in Chicago. If we announce it here, the Sun-Times or the Tribune will probably send spies."

Tyler said he sat in a chair for nearly 30 minutes silently, amazed at himself for such a great idea.

-- 30 --

Sunday, December 7, 2008

For immediate release: Film director invites Tyler to rock concert

HOUSTON -- (Dec. 8, 2008) -- Only weeks after the film's rerelease on YouTube, the famed director of 1986's classic film "The Red Limo" has invited John Tyler to attend a Dec. 20 performance of the rock band King's X at The Meridian.

Guy Mofley, "Red Limo" director, minister of the Gospel and an all around nice guy, has decided it's time for him and Tyler to "rock out" and let their light shine at a rock and roll event.

Mofley will travel to Houston from out-of-state for the event.

King's X has recently made it clear they want people praying for them. Mofley and Tyler said they were more than happy to oblige. In fact, Tyler said he would be praying in the Holy Ghost during much of the show.

The meeting between Tyler and Mofley was birthed Saturday. In an e-mail, Mofley indicated his wife had bought him tickets to the concert, and that he would like Tyler to attend with him.

"I was honored to be invited, and of course I'm going," said Tyler, excited about the opportunity to see a friend responsible for sharing Christ with him during high school. "Like rubbing the Princess' feet or going to professional baseball games, rock shows are an important staple of American life and should not be neglected, especially with long-time friends."

Mofley and Tyler's film works, including the now legendary "Red Limo," were a huge hit with family members and friends in the 1980s and earned Tyler the title, "The VCR Movie Star," for many years.

"It's fantastic that this quickly after the rerealese of the film, an opportunity to spend time with Guy at a rock concert has emerged," said Tyler. "I'm now expecting my powerful performance as Stud to be the catalyst to open up even more film opportunities in the future."

As for King's X, Tyler said he loves their music and hopes they finally find what they are looking for spiritually.

"Sure, we'll pray for them, but at the end of the day it comes down to making the right decisions," he said. "Many of us have got off course spiritually at one point of our lives, but they've got to decide to return to what they've known and lived in the past, assuming they've strayed from the straight and narrow.

"With that said, let's rock, gentlemen."

Tickets are available at The Meridian Web site.

--30--

Wednesday, November 26, 2008

Linkpost | 11.26.2008

Do you like Web sites about gladiators? -- Then you'll really like this site. How we promote online today...will echo for eternity. I don't know what that means either, but free traffic is certainly cool. Dan Davis has really outdone himself. I mean, a traffic exchange about gladiators?

This monkey sure loved "Expelled" -- I saw "Expelled: No Intelligence Allowed" the other day, and I am one monkey who had a really good time. It's available on DVD right now. If the intelligent design/Darwinism debate is something you're interested in, this is a film you shouldn't miss. Keep standing up for the cause, Mr. Stein.

It must have got lost in the mail -- My friend Rebecca St. James is currently working on a new film with Stephen Baldwin, and I didn't receive a script. I guess I'll just keep coasting. Rebecca, I can't wait to see you and "Ted" when this one comes out next year. Let's all plan on seeing "To The Wall." I'm sure I'll remind us again as opening night arrives.

Possibility that "heads will roll" in Cleveland as a result of Sunday's loss? -- The World-famous Houston Texans snapped an eight-game road losing streak with a win over the Browns this past weekend. Walter caught a touchdown pass. I'm so proud of Walter. I hope no one loses a job in Cleveland over this. Great town. Great people. You know what we're waiting for now? For the Texans to win a Monday night game...

Featured video:
The Red Limo: In Pursuit of Butch and Homeboy


Thursday, November 20, 2008

Patience (thanks Kareem Abdul-Jabbar)

"But if we hope for what we do not see, we eagerly wait for it with perseverance" (Romans 8:25).

First off, let me thank NBA Hall of Famer Kareem Abdul-Jabbar for giving me the idea for this blog post.

Like Kareem explains to Andrew Bynum of the Los Angeles Lakers, sometimes we have to persevere. It takes some patience. It may even take longer than a week.

You see, we're all waiting on something in life, aren't we? We're waiting for the economy to get better. We're waiting for the Texans to win a road game. We're waiting for our business to take off. We're waiting, like Andrew Bynum, for the right opportunities. We're waiting for our Princess. We're waiting for John to post something new on his blog.

And we're all waiting on God. Rest!

Everyone waits. The Apostle Paul and Kareem seem to have it figured out -- we've got to have some patience along with our perseverance. We've got to work through it when it seems like nothing is happening.

Just remember, we're cooking chili. And chili apparently takes a long time to cook. But chili tastes good when it's finished. I like chili.

It's been said, God is often working in our life the most when we see it the least. Knowing that, maybe you feel like he must be working overtime right now.

You might say, "But you've got to do something, John. You can't just sit there. You went a couple weeks without posting anything online."

Waiting is doing something, my friend. There are times in life, and situations in life, in which the best thing to do is wait patiently (Lamentations 3:26). After you've done all to stand, you've gotta just keep standing.

The good thing is, there are also some things in life we don't have to pray about. I don't have to pray about whether to breathe or not. I don't have to pray about going to the bathroom. And I don't have to pray about waiting. You know why? Read the scripture at the top of this post. I don't have to pray about scriptures in the Bible. I like that.

I wonder if you are struggling with something today you feel isn't happening fast enough? Let's be patient and let God do what he wants to do in our lives.

Saturday, November 8, 2008

Perseverance (thanks Sunny Suggs)

"Consider it pure joy, my brothers, whenever you face trials of many kinds, because you know that the testing of your faith develops perseverance. Perseverance must finish its work so that you may be mature and complete, not lacking anything" (James 1: 2-4).

First off, let me thank Sunny Suggs of the world-famous BootScootinTraffic.com for giving me the idea for today's blog post.

I don't want to lack anything. Either should you. That's why we look into God's word frequently on this blog, because we know that what we see everywhere around us is temporary and subject to change, but the words in that book...well, you know.

Consider it pure joy, the Apostle Paul writes. That means we should replace moments of discouragement or testing with the joy of knowing God is in control and he will get his way in the end. I like that. We don't have anything left to worry about, because we rest in his arms like a baby and he takes care of our every need.

I saw Plumb singing that song last night on the television machine, and I said "Amen."

You know why so many Christians are unhappy? Because they are stressed out and worried, doing all sorts of things God never told them to do. People pleasing. Kissing the feet of the people who kick us. You can rest assured, like the song says, I won't be kissing the feet of anyone who wants to kick me. Neither should you. You can be anything that you want to. Persevere silly!

One of the other things we do that God never asked us to do is listen to the negative, accusing voices around us.

You're not good enough. You blew it. God can't use you. He's not going to turn your situation around. Your life is swirling around like a turd in a toilet. Your house is on fire. You're going to have to ride a bicycle to your dead-end job in a cubicle when this is all over.

These are the devil's messages, and I tune out the devil's messages like I tune out a two-dollar radio. And so should you. God's got a fantastic job for you and me. We're going to live in a beautiful home we can be proud of. We're going to see all our dreams fulfilled and we are even going to touch the world in major motion pictures. We're going to write books, too. We're good enough, We're smart enough. We're talented enough. We're attractive enough. And gosh darn it, people like us.

However, let me point out, that even if someone doesn't happen to like us, it doesn't matter. You know why? You and I are a friend of God. It's in the Bible, and its in a pretty song, too. In times of trial and testing, who are you going to believe? Jesus. That is the correct answer.

Perseverance. It really is a choice that we must make every day. If you're having a difficult time being consistent in that decision, can I ask you a personal question? Are you spending the time you should in his word? Are you starting every day off getting quiet for a few minutes, concentrating on what his words say, or are you just getting on some goofy Internet Web site and believing what the unregenerated minds of this world would have you believe?

Thank the Lord, you are a person of faith. Thank the Lord, you have made the choice, with me, and you will persevere in whatever God has led you to today. No matter where you are in life, or what you are facing, God has the answers and has already plotted out your victory.

Wednesday, November 5, 2008

Congratulations, Mr. President

It truly is a great day for America, with the election of Barack Obama as our next president.

The day we elected an African-American to the highest office in the land needed to come soon in this country. Beyond the history of this moment and healing I hope it brings our nation, it also puts a man I believe to be a class-act, with a true love for this country, in office.

No matter who you voted for or what your political views are, the historical significance and what this means for the promise of America for all its citizens cannot be denied.

Hopefully this is a major stepping stone into a future where racial issues won't be a consideration like they have been in our past. This election is one giant leap into that better America where one can truly be judged by the content of his or her character, and not the color of their skin.

Character, and that hope of an America better than the one we inherited, is why he was elected president yesterday. I certainly don't mean to take anything from John McCain, a true American hero, who I believe would have made a great president as well. The fact is, Barack Obama represents a change in America that was a long time in coming -- and it's time has come.

I'm happy today that President elect Obama has been given the opportunity to bring his vision for America to the world. He deserves our support and upmost respect.

Godspeed, Mr. President. Our prayers are with you and your family.

Monday, November 3, 2008

Linkpost | 11.3.2008

Please keep searching. Maybe I'm Angelina Jolie's missing son -- Changeling is a very good film, minus the misuses of our Lord's name. I saw it Friday night. We should encourage Mr. Clint Eastwood, not only a fabulous director but a leader as well, to try his hand at a remake of the Academy Award winner for best picture in 1934. That would be another great movie. Good job, sir. I want to compliment you. This film and Jolie's performance are Oscar-worthy.

That's very thoughtful. They're not raising ticket prices -- The Houston Astros are being very considerate in this tough economy, and keeping ticket prices at the same level next year as last season. I had thoughts about a better plan: Raise the ticket prices, and get the Astros into the playoffs.

It's as easy as getting a flu shot -- Lance Trammell voted early without even getting out of his car in Orange County. Orange County seems like an exceptional, outside-the-box-thinking place to do this for residents. Make sure you do get out of your car, if necessary, and vote Tuesday. It's important. I wonder if Lance is a Obama guy or a McCain guy? It looks like he's really thinking about it...

Go vote! Free coffee! -- Starbucks will give you a free cup of coffee on Nov. 4 if you vote. Thank you, Starbucks. Our world is better because you're in it.

Tuesday, October 21, 2008

Fantastic commercial, and Richard Justice needs Jesus

Outstanding new TV commercial

This new commercial might be divinely inspired.



Man, Richard, you need Jesus

We're going to start a new, reoccurring series here on the blog entitled, "Man, you need Jesus."

From time to time, I'm sure you've heard someone say something, or read something somewhere, and thought to yourself, "Man, you need Jesus." I have, too.

I'm going to occasionally share with you who I think needs Jesus. Now, please don't take this the wrong way if you appear here. The truth is, we all need Jesus. But consider it a badge of honor...then get right with God.

Our first recipient:

Please take a look at Richard Justice's blog entry from today, featuring his thoughts on what the Houston Astros can learn from the two World Series teams this year, the Rays and the Phillies. Richard is a sports writer for the Houston Chronicle.

A very thoughtful, well-written blog post.

Scroll down, however, to the comments. You'll find one long response of his in italics, responding to a comment made by "will."

What happened here, Mr. Calm, Cool and Collected? I'm not sure how Barack Obama, Fox News, the Washington Times and Sean Hannity got tied in with the Phillies draft picks. And that's not a nice word you called Mr. Hannity.

That's not the kind respect for others our future president asks us to have. I believe in Jon Heyman, he's part of America and I believe in America. I believe in Sean Hannity, he's an American with feelings and deserves better than this.

I believe in you, too, Richard, but I've got the facts: You need Jesus.

Stick to sports.

Blogs are not obsolete

As of 11:42 p.m. today, this blog has received 690 unique visitors.

That's not even close to the Huffington Post. Can I ask you for a favor? Please let one other person you know about this exciting blog. Just tell them, "You need to read John's blog." Then forward this address to them: ThePrincessBlog.net

See how easy that is. We can continue to get the word out about the exciting things happening here in the U.S. But we have to work together to make it happen.

Scripture for the day

Why not meditate on this one today:

"The Lord will perfect that which concerns me..." (Psalm 138:8a).

Has the Lord started something in your life? I'd count on him finishing it. Just read the scripture above. If you don't remember anything else I've said today, remember those words. They're the words of the Living God, and they never come back void.

Thursday, October 16, 2008

Inglewood, Inglewood, always up to much good

Defying the advice of a knowledgeable taxi driver and a rapper who once declared that Inglewood is always up to no good, I stayed in Inglewood my last few nights in Los Angeles.

Turns out, Inglewood was up to much good. Providing me with a cheap motel qualifies as very good. And, I got to rub shoulders with lots of interesting people.

If you're ever looking for a great time, take the 117 bus east through Inglewood. Then, transfer on Central heading toward downtown.

You might not find this bus route touted on any Los Angeles travel brochures, but you'll enjoy the pleasant drive and it only costs a total of $2.50. You can't beat that.

I made room for an elderly woman to sit next to me on one bus trip, because that's what kind young men do on the bus. She didn't speak English (at least she didn't speak it to me), but she often put her Big Lots sale brochure from the newspaper in front of me, pointing out excellent products she apparently felt I needed to know about.

One was a lock-box of some sort. It looked like a box you would store important papers or documents in. The other was a very inexpensive package of t-shirts.

She would put the paper nearly in my lap, point at the product and say something to me I couldn't understand. I would just smile at her and those seated around us say something like, "That's an excellent price for that," or "I've gotta get over there and get me one of those."

I also met this really cool guy at the bus stop on West Century Avenue one day. We got to talking about Los Angeles. He told how after he got out of prison he knew he couldn't go back to San Diego, because he was getting in too much trouble there, so Los Angeles seemed like a great place to start over, since that's where he was born.

He'd found a good job there in L.A., and things were going well for him.

I told him I was from Texas, and he said he liked Texas okay but shared how "Chicanos from California don't really get along with Chicanos from Texas."

I wanted to ask him how Chicanos from California felt about Caucasians from Texas, but the conversation was going so well I didn't really want to go there.

When he told me about the tension between Chicanos in different parts of the country, I asked him, "Can't we all just get along?" He apparently thought that was pretty funny, letting out a little chuckle.

I was thinking, "Why wouldn't the Chicanos from California and Chicanos from Texas get along?" They should unite. That's a lot of Chicanos. Politically they could pretty much do whatever they wanted to do if they put away their differences and banded together.

I took the bus through Inglewood, then transferred and went over to to Hollywood Boulevard also. I bought a t-shirt that says "Los Angeles, California" on it, which I wore proudly on my Greyhound trip back to Texas.

Hollywood Boulevard is a place everyone needs to see at least once in their lifetime. I like to go there every time I'm in Los Angeles. There are lots of tourists there. A nice lady asked me twice on the street if I'd like to take a tour of Hollywood that included movie stars homes, but that seemed a bit strange to me so I turned her down. Frankly, I'd be embarrassed to admit I'd taken part in something like that even if I had. Can you imagine someone paying money to drive out in front of your house and gawk at it?

I really wanted to talk to this guy. A man stood at the corner of Hollywood and Highland with a huge sign that read, "Believe Jesus. Be ready." I was working my way over to talk with him and let him know I did believe Jesus and I was already ready, when the return bus came down Hollywood so I never got a chance to speak with him.

The economy is doing pretty well in Hollywood. The line for the Beverly Hills Chihuahua was practically out onto Hollywood Blvd. To people in the movie business, cutting back means switching from a latte to drip coffee, probably. Yeah, I read David Carr's article in the New York Times about L.A. following its own script...that was pretty well-written. David, you think flying out of Newark is interesting? Take the Greyhound. Trust me on this one.

I enjoy L.A. and never like to leave once I'm there. It's rather strange, actually, because only a few years ago, I never would have considered L.A. as a possible place to settle down someday. But for whatever reason, my attitudes toward the city have changed. I find it exciting, exhilarating.

In just a couple of years, I've encountered a complete turnaround in my mind.

Is that the Lord? The Word teaches that if we delight ourselves in the Lord, he will give us the desires of our heart. One of the things I find myself praying often lately is "Lord, please make your desires for my life my desires." In other words, I want to always make sure the things that feel exciting to me, or the things that are motivating me, are desires put there by him.

In the end, I want what he wants for me. I know there's no other way to feel truly fulfilled. If L.A. isn't the eventual place, I pray he changes what I currently feel inside of me.

But I hope he doesn't.

I arrived back in Houston early yesterday morning and thought you might like to hear about some of the highlights of another wonderful visit out west.

Until next time, goodbye L.A. Hope to see you again soon!

Friday, October 10, 2008

I'm writing to you from the great city of L.A.

Super 8 Motels, another fantastic contribution to American life, offers free coffee with a night's stay. And it's good coffee. I'm lit up like a Christmas tree trying to decide what I'm going to do today.

Super 8 is great, but other places are cheaper, so I'm moving on tomorrow I think. There's some places down the road that are less expensive, but the nicest taxi driver in the world I met at the L.A. bus station told me some places to avoid. I might be drawn in by the power of a $39.95 place to sleep, but they may not be as safe.

I think I'm going to need to balance my life in the very near future between cheap and safe.

We need to make food that is good for you less expensive. If you eat cheap, you don't eat well, in general. I don't want to eat garbage because then I'll look ugly and out of shape and apparently as fantastic as this city is, many here put a premium on how someone looks. If you even have a bad haircut here, they'll pick on you.

Now don't worry. I think I'm doing okay. The females at the Burger King and on the bus appeared to be flirting with me, so maybe I'm still semi-attractive enough to not be laughed out of town. Don't worry, Princess, you're the only girl for me. Besides, I'm sure a hottie like you is getting all the attention you can handle right now. By the way, please go see this movie if you haven't already. http://fireproofthemovie.com/

Before I start eating well, I do need to catch an In and Out Burger, of course. Those things are incredible. I already did the Del Taco thing yesterday. Some fellow Texans who hadn't been to California in a while ran off the bus and into that place like it was Cafe Annie yesterday because they'd been waiting so long to put one of those burritos in their mouth.

Out of respect for my arrival here, I put on a tie and some slacks today. I may even wear a jacket for a while. I don't know if I needed to, but when you're unemployed and down to your last dollars it just feels good not to wear the pair of shorts and sandals you wore on the bus for days.

I'll pretend I have a job today. Today, my job is to post something on the Internet. Someone told me once that you shouldn't dress for the job you have, you should dress for the job you want. If I dressed for the job I had, I'd be in my skivies and a pair of shower shoes, so today I'll wear something else.

The economy in God's kingdom is doing fantastic today. I'm going to look for a place to sow a seed. Hey, I'm in need, so it's time to sow a seed. Maybe there is a homeless person in this town who could use some extra cash.

I'm always a little apprehensive when someone asks me for some money, not because I don't want to help someone, but I certainly don't want to buy someone MD 20/20. At times I feel like that's what I'm doing. Let's see who God brings across my path.

OK, I need to let you go for now because the commercial said that you can't just have goals, you have to have plans. I have no plan for today. So I need to stop typing and plan. Talk to you later.

Wednesday, October 8, 2008

Bus stations are fascinating

I'm just sitting here at the Greyhound Bus Station in downtown Houston. What a fascinating cross-section of America. If those candidates for president want to do something unique and show they are in step with the citizens of this great country, they should bring some media folks along and take a bus ride for a couple thousand miles or so. I'm not talking about their bus. I'm talking about one of these powerful machines.

I'm heading out to L.A., a great American city that I'm sure is eagerly awaiting my arrival. Give me a couple days, folks, I'm doing it by bus. Have you ever taken the bus? You've got to try this. I feel like this is a part of American life I have been denied to this point.

The bus to New Orleans was running a bit behind, but it looks like it just pulled up. That's a big group of people and its tough to see them go.

My only complaint at this point is that the soda machine is out of diet Coke, so I'm having to drink a regular Coke. Have you ever drank a regular Coke after switching to diet Coke for a few years. Don't try it. I doubt I'll finish it.

We're watching the Situation Room here in the bus station, waiting to board. From what I gather from their discussion, there seems to be something wrong with the economy. I'll have to pay closer attention and I'll get back to you with the details.

I don't worry about the economy very much. My Heavenly Father owns the cattle on a thousand hills, and I have money for a bus ticket. These are the best of times. In times of famine, we enjoy plenty. I think I read that somewhere. I'm just crazy enough to believe it.

I better. With the amount of money I'm taking with me on this trip, I'd say the likelihood of me sleeping outdoors within a couple weeks is hovering at around 100 percent. Exciting! You want to talk about walking by faith? I hear a lot of folks talk about it, but I have the distinct pleasure of being able to do it! A new hallelujah!!

I'm sure I'll find work. You can shower at YMCAs, right? While I'm waiting to move into whatever place God has for me there, I can get online at the library with Ted. I may seriously try to find him.

I'm sure everything will be fine. I'm doing the right thing, right? I'm walking in love. I'm letting go of all the past offenses and pressing forward to my new beginning! What an amazing feeling.

Houston, you are a fantastic city. The city of my birth. The city of my rebirth. And the city of an unbelievable Greyhound bus station. The battery needs to be recharged on this computer -- let me take a little break from all this difficult typing and try to find a place to recharge. I need to give one of these kind attendants my luggage and get ready to board. Chat with you later on the journey.

Tuesday, October 7, 2008

I'm on board!

Liz over at KSBJ doesn't realize what a powerful tool she is in the hands of our God.

I was on the Internet machine just a few minutes ago looking at bus ticket prices for Los Angeles (my new home someday soon I hope), wondering if I should get on board. Liz, right after playing East to West (ironically the direction I'm looking), said that we all needed to get on board! Praise God! Confirmation. Powerful. Amazing. That KSBJ crew is out of this world with their sensitivity to God's Holy Spirit. I'm on board! I'm going East to West!!! YES!!!

She said "I'm sorry if that sounded bossy." Don't apologize. You put my rear end where it belongs...on that bus. Going east to west. Never, ever apologize for doing what God asks you to do, Liz.

She followed that powerful display of God's direction by playing the new Michael W. Smith song, A New Hallelujah. Oh my goodness that's weird! It's a new hallelujah. She pointed out that the song was recorded here in Houston...ironically the place I'm getting on board to go east to west. Friends, this is amazing. It's a new hallelujah! I'm on board a bus to California!!

You tell that silly weather guy Anthony that Houstonians are looking at several days of beautiful weather around here...with very, very low humidity. A fine looking day it is outside. Perfect weather tomorrow while we're listening to the morning show with Mike and Susan. Heck, I might be to Fort Stockton by then.

Sunday, August 24, 2008

The L.A. Public Library is persecuting Ted again

Ted believes he is Jesus Christ, and he is currently headquartered out of a branch of the Los Angeles Public Library.

According to Ted, Satan and the demons have convinced workers in the library to cut off his wi-fi connection, making it difficult for him to post videos on YouTube. As you can see in the video, he's pretty worked up about it.

Now we discover that spies are following him around, while local and state government, the FBI and Homeland Security have hacked into his computer. This is only the beginning. It turns out the secret Roman empire and the World War II alignment are giving him fits as well.

Ted presents a problem for me (beyond my temporary loss of faith in the L.A. Public Library System).

How do we, as born-again people, convince Ted he needs Jesus when he is convinced he is Jesus?

Ted's latest video, in which he asserts his full diplomatic immunity, has given me the strange suspicion that it is truly time for us to make a concerted effort to pray for him.

Will you join me today? Whatever you are doing today, just take a moment to ask God to bless Ted. Ask God to open his eyes to spiritual truth. While we wait on God to do this, make sure you enjoy his videos. They are something else.

I especially like the one where he explains how his "squeeky chair" (sic) is one way God and the heavenly hosts will punish mankind for thousands of years.

Or how about the one where he discusses how the mafia and the secret Roman empire sent gangs to attack and vandalize the library, specifically with the intent to target Ted, causing him to risk his own safety to make a citizen's arrest?

Classic!

A note to the L.A. Public Library System: Please go ahead and let him have a connection to the Internet. Remember, Ted is head of state. Ted is the "King of all places."

Considering this, why is he having such problems at your library?

No matter how unusual it may seem at the check-out counter when he asks for Internet access insistently, know there are people out here in the cosmos watching and hoping for the very best.

I look forward to getting out there again someday soon, Los Angeles.

To those of us who follow the God of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob, I guess Ted is more encouragement that we should look up and be watchful, for our redemption draws near.

Saturday, August 2, 2008

In case anyone was wondering how this all ends...

"The blessing of the Lord brings wealth, and he adds no trouble to it" (Proverbs 10:22).

I know some of you might be wondering how my situation ends.

Read the above scripture. You can bet on it.

Saturday, July 19, 2008

I've put a silencer on my gun of praise

"Accept our praise, O Lord, for all Your glorious power. We will write songs to celebrate Your mighty acts!" (Psalm 21:13).

I'm just sitting around quietly praising today. Not being really loud. Just quietly praising.

It's sort of like putting a silencer on my gun of praise, so to speak. I heard a minister use that terminology recently and I really liked that. It made me giggle.

What are you doing today? Praising? Making good choices? Choosing happiness?

Here's my new song I've written to celebrate His mighty acts. It's called, "Put a Silencer on Your Gun of Praise."

I've placed a silencer, on my gun of praise
We're gonna sing this song to the Ancient of Days
Quietly and boldly thank Him for His ways
But place a silencer, on your gun of praise


Chorus
Bang! Bang! Bang! To the Lord of Hosts
Praise Him in the understanding and the Holy Ghost
Fire in the air, send the devil a memo
The praises of God are the ultimate ammo

Is the devil in your life not behaving right?
Get some Holy Ghost thugs praisin' in the middle of the night
Bang! Bang! Bang! God's still on the throne
He inhabits our praises so unload your gun

Quietly! Don't wake the neighbors
Reverently! Surrounded by His favor
He's got your back with his firepower of love
It's like an arsenal of power raining from above


Not too bad. I just came up with that in a few minutes sitting here. Israel you can use that without any royalties or anything like that. That would be great on the next Lakewood CD.

Don't look now but KSBJ is queuing up "Undo" this very moment. And I'm changing the station. I really do need to change what I've been listening to.

Have any of you ordered your Personal Fart Package yet? I really need a miracle and I'm starting to think this might be exactly what I need. Please see this video for more information.

If anyone has already ordered it an had good results, please let me know. I'd go ahead and call and get mine today but I want to know it works before I get on this guy's mailing list. You know how annoying it can be when one of these folks starts sending you mail all the time.

Saturday, July 12, 2008

Goodbye to Dr. Michael DeBakey

I was saddened to hear of the passing of Dr. Michael E. DeBakey last night.

As someone who has worked at both Baylor College of Medicine and the Methodist Hospital, I can tell you that I've never known a figure in my lifetime that was more revered in a workplace.

He really was loved. At both institutions, there was a level of respect and admiration not only for the incredible history he brought to those places and the Texas Medical Center, but also the fact that well, well into his 90s he was still coming to work and contributing whenever needed.

I've been around famous people before, but I was never as nervous as I was when I was around Dr. DeBakey. You realized you were in the presence of greatness, someone who had literally saved the lives of so many people around the world by his contributions to medicine.

Some said he could be tough at times. I never saw that. Every time I was around him and saw him interact with others, he was gracious, kind and humble.

Once I remember I was working in the PR office at Baylor, when I got a call from NPR, requesting an on-air interview with him. They offered to send him a limousine, and he turned it down. Through his sister, Lois, he instead asked if he could ride over to the radio station with me in my car.

I remember being petrified wondering how I was going to maintain a conversation for that long with someone so legendary, but was relieved to find a man who loved to talk about Houston and how he had literally watched the city and the medical center grow up over the years.

I never got to see him in the OR. I was usually ushering a member of the press up to his office for an interview when I spent time with him, but it was always a distinct and special pleasure to be able to work with on the occasions I did.

My thoughts and prayers are with his family today.

Wednesday, July 9, 2008

You need to let Jesus sleep

Have you ever wanted to wake Jesus up?

I mean, just yell and scream and end his nap?

My mind is drawn to the story in Mark 4, when the disciples are in the boat and a furious storm ensues.

They are being tossed and turned by the violent sea, water flying into the small vessel. And where is God? He's asleep on a comfy cushion, of course.

You can just imagine them yelling:

"Jesus!! We are going to die a miserable death!"

"We will surely perish when these huge waves cover us!"

You know, it's easy for us to marvel at their lack of faith when we are reading the story safe and dry on the shore. However, it can be much more difficult not to give in to the temptation to wake him ourselves when our faith is being tested.

Can I get a better "amen?"

We can learn a lot from this story. It's interesting that Jesus seems more disappointed by a lack of trust than anything else. Throughout the gospels, Christ continually makes remarks like, "Do you still have no faith?" or "Don't be afraid. Just believe."

My friends, it is very apparent: "Without faith it is impossible to please God." (Heb. 11:6)

He is not pleased with doubt. He is not pleased with fear. Fear indicates a lack of trust, and Jesus is obviously offended by a lack of trust.

Faith moves God. There is nothing wrong with trusting your Heavenly Father to do exactly what his word says he will do.

We all know the storms in life will come, don't we? The Word teaches us that the rain falls on the just and the unjust. If you're not in a storm right now, you've either just come out of one or look out, your heading straight into one. I'm in one right now, and I'm actually starting to enjoy it.

The storms are important. They teach us to trust. They teach us to take God at his word. The thing to keep in mind is that we shouldn't be swayed by circumstances, no matter how uncomfortable or daunting they may seem.

He's going to work everything out for your good. He may use a storm to push you into doing something he's asked you to do for Him. Wouldn't that be exciting.

No matter how bad the trial gets, our God ensures us that He is with us through it all:

"So do not fear, for I am with you, do not be dismayed, for I am your God. I will strengthen you and help you; I will uphold you with my righteous right hand." (Isaiah 41:10)

Stay calm and know God is God. I think I've heard someone say it like this: "It's okay to find yourself inside a storm, just make sure the storm doesn't get inside of you." I like that.

What storm are you facing today?

You may think he's asleep, but he is very aware of what you are going through. Maintain your faith, find promises in his word that apply to you and your situation, and speak directly to the wind and the waves in all the authority God has given to you as a believer.

Let God, the enemy and yourself hear those words coming out of your mouth! Remember, faith comes by hearing, and hearing by the word of God (Rom. 10:17). All the faith you need to conquer your circumstances is in his word.

Let me ask you a question today: What wave has got your eyes off Jesus? Don't look at the waves! Look at the funny picture of Jesus laughing if you have to.

Come on, rest. Let Jesus take his nap. Remember, no matter what adversity we face today, the son of the Living God is still on our boat.

Tuesday, July 8, 2008

Special thanks to Franscisca Kruissink

Today wouldn't be complete without sending out a special "thank you" to Franscisca Kruissink, owner and operator of the Dutch Web site, Hit2Hit.com.

As you probably know, increasing readership of this blog, all over planet Earth, is important for a number of reasons. One of which is we want everyone to know the fantastic things God is doing (and will continue to do) here in the United States.

Franscisca recently awarded me 15,000 free visitors to my site, insuring that more and more and more wonderful people will look at my blog. A good woman with a good heart. And deserving of our "thanks."

Hit2Hit is an online community and advertising portal that provides traffic worldwide for Web site owners, either free or at a very low cost. I use a YouTube video as an outlet to promote this blog, and I say with a great deal of humility today, that it is working pleasantly well to bring readers.

(This is despite the fact that I am convinced that the YouTube hit counters don't work. That video is getting two to three times the visits than actually show on the counter, and I have the stats to prove it. Since 12:01 a.m. I have personally sent more than 1,200 unique visitors to that page. Where are they at, YouTube?).

If you have a business, Web site, church, ministry, radio station or rock bank, and you'd like to brand yourself for free worldwide, click right here and get started today.

And again, thank you, Franscisca and Hit2Hit, for being a true warrior overseas in our mission to get the word out about all the great things happening here in the United States. May God continue to bless your business and Web endeavors.


Blogger's note: I love to thank people publically for doing the right thing. It's a passion of mine. If you have an online community, a traffic exchange, or any other ad portal and would like to get a free plug and thanks here, simply follow Franscisca's lead.

A nice haircut for a youngster


My mom always made sure I had cute haircuts as a kid, but I'm not convinced that letting your five-year old go to school on picture day wearing a polka dotted bow tie is really a good idea.

I look like a young Heber Taylor. Not that there's anything wrong with Heber's bow ties, I'm just not sure five- and six-year olds quite understand the fashion statement. With the wrong classmates, it could have been catastrophic.

Alas, I survived it to share that photo with you all today.

Are we all resting today in God's sufficiency? That's what I like to hear.

Friday, July 4, 2008

Rest!

"'Not by might nor power, but by my Spirit,' says the Lord Almighty." (Zech. 4:6).

If you're anything like me, there is a tendency when things get hectic or I'm in the middle of a battle to forget that I am resting in God's strength and sufficiency alone. We get tempted to do things in our own strength, and when we carry that out we often don't see God's intended outcomes for our life in any situation.

I read that familiar scripture today and it reminded me of His incredible strength and ability, and our lack of it when we rely on our human limitations.

Anything worthwhile is accomplished soley through the spirit of God operating within us and around us, and we can rest today knowing that He is at work in our lives -- leveling the mountains and making our crooked places straight before us.

I would encouage each of you who read this today to be consistent in the daily disciplines that allow you to see God's power and strength in your life. Read your Bible. Keep your mind renewed. Don't neglect your prayer time and those moments of the day specifically set aside for hearing His voice and following after His direction.

God does want to do great things in and through our lives, but it truly is not by might or power, but by His Spirit.

Part of this is just resting in Him, and surrendering our will completely to Him. The picture that some have used to describe this would be a baby resting in the arms of its mother.

Lately, that's the way I've had to imagine it. When my thoughts try to return to worry or the struggle, I simply have to picture myself resting in His arms like a baby, knowing that He is supremely concerned with my life and my needs, knowing that He is truly working all things out for good and that His ways are higher than ours.

Even in those times when we when we don't understand everything going on around us, we can rest knowing it's all in His plan and He will ultimately get glory out of our particular situations and lives.

So today you can rest. Know that no matter what you're facing, God is for you and nothing can throw off the great plan He has for your life (Prov. 21:30). When we realize that we can do nothing apart from His love and power operating in our lives, it's actually very freeing. And it's the 4th of July, so let's be free. We don't have to worry or struggle, but we can know that His power is made perfect in whatever weakness we may have and we can rest in the knowledge that He's at work getting everything prepared in our lives.

Wednesday, June 25, 2008

If you're thirsty and dry, look up to the sky...

How about a chance to listen to three of my favorite songs? Would you enjoy that this morning?

I enjoy lots of music, but I've really been enjoying three songs in particular lately, and thought you might like some great music to brighten your day.

TobyMac -- Lose My Soul -- His music keeps getting better and better, doesn't it? I don't know what I like about this one in particular except it sounds great, it's catchy, and it's true. This is my favorite TobyMac song. I'm glad you like it, too.



Flyleaf -- Something I Can Never Have -- There's a unwritten rule. If you're going to cover a Nine Inch Nails song, you better know what you're doing. You might say I listened to NIN quite a bit back in the day, and it was refreshing to hear a group of born-again folks tackle it so well. Here's yet another group of believers making their mark in the mainstream. This song sounds great. Turn it up!



Jimmy Swaggart -- It's Beginning to Rain -- At the first drop of rain, by all means, throw open the windows! Still my very favorite track from Brother Jimmy. A tape exists somewhere around here of a buddy and myself doing a mock radio show in the 1980s in which we followed this song up with Stryper's "To Hell With the Devil." Can you think of a radio station today that would be cool enough to play those two tracks one after another? Keep rocking for the King, Brother Swaggart. And Stan Blazyk, this one if for you, sir. Has it been a little dry lately? Look up to the sky, it's beginning to rain.



Now wasn't it pleasant to enjoy some special music first thing in the morning? You thought I'd forgot I had a blog.

One of the best things about having your own blog is being able to post as often (or as infrequently) as you like. There's a freedom in that I thoroughly enjoy. It's liberating to know that I don't have to post again for six weeks if I don't feel like it.

I probably won't wait six weeks, though. Have a fantastic day.

Wednesday, May 21, 2008

Open Letter to the Princess

Hey Princess,

I'm not sure what's going on here in Houston, but it doesn't matter anymore.

I want you to know I care about you...and I do think about you often. I'm sorry that circumstances in my life have postponed us getting together before this, but if you hang in there a little longer, I'm doing what I can to get some resources together to get where you are.

The intensity of the war against me here is amazing, and I want you to know that I truly believe as I write this tonight that the answer is for me to move.

Basically, here's why this is happening. I have found myself right in the middle of a situation that is incredibly political, and there are people who benefit from propagating an idea that I'm not sold-out to God. It's a lie from the pit of hell.

Now, it's been a journey getting here. It's been hard work, and it took time, but I'm all His. For years. You need to know that.

If these people can make others believe that I'm not truly serving Him, or that I'm wishy washy, or I'm living with one foot in the world, it forwards their cause.

Unfortunately, their cause is, and has always been, built on lies and untruths.

I'm just like you, sweetheart. Working this salvation out with fear and trembling. And what God has done in me is amazing, and I submit to you that is exactly why I'm going through the war I'm going through.

The enemy preferred having a hold on me. He doesn't have that anymore, and he's furious.

I'm closer to God today than I ever have been, and I've got a piece of news for everyone: I believe God is proud of me today.

I am moving. Moving, however, takes resources. I will get there, and I believe wholeheartedly that with that act of obedience a door will open for me there as well professionally.

I have to reiterate this point:

You are undoubtedly waiting for a man of God who is serious about his walk with God. I promise you that you have nothing to worry about in that department. I am dedicated to Him and walking after Him. Any voice that tells you (or insinuates) that I'm not, is not speaking by the spirit of God.

I have sat here all this time waiting primary because of some prophetic words that I obviously misinterpreted. When coupled with scriptures in God's word that promise victory, I have believed something was going to happen here that for whatever reason seems more and more unlikely the closer I draw to God. It's bizarre.

Sometimes, it seems, the victory God presents to us comes not how we believe it is going to come. I'm not crazy enough to argue with God about what is best for me. I'm just thankful he has a plan and it includes you.

I have nothing but the best thoughts about you, and nothing but the deepest respect for you. You are beautiful and prefect just how you are! Don't ever believe anything different, no matter what anyone tries to make you believe.

Always, and I mean always, consider the source. Ask yourself: Do they have an agenda?

I'll be wherever you are as soon as I can get there.

Love. John

Wednesday, May 14, 2008

Lance Berkman is changing

This is in response to Richard Justice's excellent column, dated 5/14/08, in the Houston Chronicle. Read it here:
http://www.chron.com/disp/story.mpl/sports/5777955.html

He may still be the same good ol', down to Earth guy that in many ways defies what normally comes to mind when we think of professional athletes, but Lance Berkman is changing.

He may still wear boots, and not cuss or drink, and he may still have his problems with them "dad-gum liberals."

He may even say he's not changing, but press him a little harder, Richard. Ask him if he's truly the same man he was five or ten years ago.

Lance Berkman is changing, and I am one fan (and there are many others) that is excited to see it happening.

"And we, who with unveiled faces all reflect the Lord's glory, are being transformed into his likeness with ever-increasing glory, which comes from the Lord, who is the Spirit" (2 Corinthians 3:18).

From glory to glory, year after year, this man is changing. That's one of the reasons I like him so much.

He's becoming more and more like his Lord. Being transformed, as the Bible says, into the image of the man who 2000 years ago gave his life for Lance (and Richard and John).

Lance is one of the King's kids.

Lance, why you ate those Twinkies at Wrigley Field I'll never know. Would you eat a hot dog at Minute Maid Park if a fan threw one on the field? I'd like to think you'd do the same in Houston, but who knows.

He's changing, and that's why he's the powerful role model he is. In my opinion, that's one of the reasons he's such a fantastic baseball player. Everything he puts his hands to, ultimately, is going to succeed and prosper.

That's why he's made it a point in the past to meet with local young men in the organization he heads, that I've seen featured in the Houston Chronicle.

He's changing, and he wants youngsters that look up to him to know that through God's power they can change to.

Thank you, Lance. Thank you for changing, and being committed to that process. Thank you for being an example not only for people in this town, but all over the league.

Keep changing, brother. We need more like you.

Bloggers note: If I was the editor of a faith-based publication or television program looking for great story ideas, I'd certainly look into doing one on the transformation of Lance Berkman, one of the best players in Major League Baseball today and a powerful testimony of God's changing power.

Tuesday, May 13, 2008

You'd seriously never been to Wrigley Field before?

You can put this one in the "truly amazing" file.

The girls of BarlowGirl, who grew up in the city of Chicago, Illinois, didn't get out to Wrigley Field to catch a Cubs game until they were in their mid- to late-20s.

Isn't Wrigley Field a staple of Chicago life? It would be for me if I lived there. That is a gem in your community, and you should cherish it.

Anyway, great to see you girls finally got out there. What did I tell you about baseball?

Friday, May 9, 2008

Taking a few moments to honor everyone

I thought I'd drop a note today to honor you, my readers, and let you know how much I love you.

Pastor Joel says I should recognize the greatness of the people God has put in my life. If I had a spouse today, she'd be the best! If I had kids, they'd be the envy of everyone around.

Some of my friends and family are having a difficult time (or so it seems) with my present set of circumstances, so they are often honored and loved greatly from a distance. I believe this is with God's approval, I might add. This has been a good season for me to wait on the Lord, mostly by myself.

However, if anyone in my life doesn't feel honored, it would always be my hope and prayer that you would let me know so I could correct it quickly.

I honor and respect you so much, dear reader, that I thought I'd let you know that the posts of the last month or so are very real. I wasn't kidding, or trying to be silly. Was some of it a little hard to swallow? Well, hard to swallow or not, it's true.

From where I'm sitting, this is a serious situation, and I will wait until I hear from someone I trust to tell me that it isn't a serious situation anymore before moving on.

Lord willing, Los Angeles is the eventual destination, in case you are wondering (unless, of course, an opportunity opens up somewhere else that I feel the Lord wants me to take). Got a job offer for me? This would be a great time to let me know.

I really like the prayer section of Pastor Joel's devotional today.

"Show me how to love others the way You love me so that faith will grow stronger in my heart."

You know, quite honestly, as I examine myself today, I don't think love or faith are my problems. Joseph didn't have a love or faith problem either, and he still sat in a pit.

Paul didn't have a love or faith problem, and he sat in prison.

In that desert, Moses didn't have a love or faith problem; his problem was the people God had put in his life (I wonder how easy it was to honor them while they grumbled and wandered around in the wilderness).

David didn't have a love or faith problem, but when you read the Psalms he sure seemed like he wanted some people to fry.

I think when things seemingly don't go our way in life, we tend to look for a reason. Unconfessed sin. A bad attitude. Not honoring people. A lack of faith. Not showing the love we should.

Of course, we can always improve in any of these areas, but I think there are times we are in a situation for one reason only, and Pastor Joel mentions it: building character.

During a quiet time the other day, I asked God this very question. Is there something I'm not doing that I should be doing? I promise you, I'll do it.

I asked Him, Lord, what do you want me to do? Almost instantly, this dropped into my spirit: "I want you to trust me."

Doesn't sound too complicated, does it? Many are the afflictions of the righteous, the Word says, but the Lord delivers us from them all.

In that scripture, it doesn't sound like that's up for negotiation or argument. He's asking us for trust in His word, which never fails.

Here's something important for us all to remember: I didn't wait all this time for God's hand of healing and deliverance to be turned away without it. I will stand until this thing is resolved.

Again, if you're in my life and don't feel loved or honored, let's fix it. Drop me an email, and I promise with humility and repentance I'll make it right.

God bless you all.

Now, on to something else I noticed online the other day...

You all should check out my friend Rebecca St. James' Web site from time to time. Man, I want to honor her. She often has something encouraging to say about life in God.

She's apparently re-releasing her book, "Wait for Me," in the near future. Is everyone else asking the same question I'm asking?

How in the world is this girl still single? Here is a committed, consistent, successful, bright, beautiful, romantic woman of God. Are all the single men around her completely lost? Either that, or their standards are way to high.

I guess we could chalk it up to everything else in the kingdom...it's a timing issue.

I like what she said about God's people using their creative skills. I agree with her. We serve a creative God. Just read the first sentence of the Bible.

I believe God wants (and plans) to move mightily in the arts, bringing true believers into the arena of the arts and film like we've never seen before.

After reading the 5/1/08 entry on her site, my main thought on this is that sometimes the problem isn't vision or desire, it's provision and open doors.

You see, I'm not a coasting type of guy. No one likes coasting. However, one of the many things God has taught me over the past few years is that no matter how hard my head is, I cannot break open a door with it if God has chosen to keep the door shut right now.

I have a great sense that God wants to move in the arts/film in a big way, and I would be honored and privileged to have any part in that move that I could. But quite simply, we never know at the outset if we are just one of the many voices to help prepare the way or if we are ones that He will ultimately use.

In many ways Rebecca has always been a trailblazer, and I'm sure God will keep her on that path. I look forward to seeing the many ways God will continue to use her creative talents and gifts in the future.

I'm not silly enough to believe Rebecca reads this blog, but if someone who knows her does, I hope they will encourage her to keep praying for this mighty move of God in the arts, and to fan the gift He's put within her.

I like how she stated that we should we should link arms and walk together into our creative destiny.

Did I ever tell you about the dream I had? Check out my blog post from January 30, 2006. I actually went on that journey I mention there.

What I didn't tell you is that I had bought a ticket to opening night of the Rebecca St. James "If I Had One Chance to Tell You Something" tour, somewhere in Mississippi, I think.

My plan was to drive to Mississippi, catch the show and then go camping for a few days by myself to get alone with the Lord.

Why would I drive to Mississippi to catch a Rebecca St. James show? Well, at the time I thought I was going to marry her, and that's how you honor the person you believe is your spouse, right? You show up, unannounced, at the opening date of her tour several states away and smile at her from the audience.

Well, that will either get you engaged or you may have to put up with a inconvenient restraining order.

Luckily for all of us, I was in my office at the legendary Methodist Hospital in Houston about to run out to go home and pack, when the phone rang. I picked up the phone and was told by iTickets that the show in Mississippi had been canceled.

However, I still had asked for several days off from work, so I decided to go ahead and go camping at a Texas state park. I got out there and nothing went right. There was a burn ban, so I couldn't start a fire. And it was cold out there!

Lord, speak to me. I broke out my Bible and a flashlight, determined to hear from God. I remember thinking, I drove all the way out here to hear from you and I'm cold, it's dark, and the concert got canceled.

Then I fell asleep in the tent. I had a dream I was backstage at an event. I think it was a concert. I was talking to a group of people and I noticed that Rebecca St. James was across the room from me. We made eye contact, and as she moved around the room we kept making eye contact.

She walked passed me at one point, and I stopped her.

"Sorry to stare," I said. "You're just the rock star I've been wanting to meet."

She laughed. "Oh, it's because I'm a rock star, huh? And all this time I've thought it was because of my mind."

I'm not sure what she meant by that. It's a dream. It's not supposed to make perfect sense. But that's what she said.

We both laughed. "Let's get out of here and go talk about it," I said.

We put our arms around each other and walked out of the building together arm in arm.

Who knows, maybe we were walking out of that building into the creative destiny God has called us to?

Listen girl, if that's a script you're reading in this photograph, please have your people Xerox it and mark the part I'm supposed to read for. I'm like you. I'm not a coasting kind of guy.

By the way, how was your parking experience at Lakewood last weekend? I know there were probably some clowns out there with stop watches Sunday to see if I had made that up or exaggerated, but I assure you I did neither.

That's where I started parking shortly after the move to the former Compaq Center. When you drive nearly 45 minutes both ways to church, you find yourself trying to get creative in the parking garage. Hey, maybe that's part of my creative destiny.

No one should be angry about that post. Pastor Joel always said the favor of God includes good parking spots. Amen.

Wednesday, April 30, 2008

How to park at Lakewood Church

It was nice to see a rather favorable review of a Lakewood Church service on a blog at Chron.com today.

As a negative, the parking was mentioned at least three times. Could I possibly give a tip to anyone planning to visit?

I found a place to park that literally I could be out of the parking garage and onto Buffalo Speedway within two minutes after a short walk.

Here's a secret: you will save yourself at least 15-20 minutes in the parking lot if you are willing to park near the garage exit and walk to the church.

It's covered, so even if it happens to be raining you're OK.

Pull into the parking entrance off Buffalo Speedway. There is usually a police officer directing you into the garage.

Right after you get into the parking garage, take a left as soon as you can, and loop around and park as close to the exit of the garage as you can. There are usually lots of empty spots right around that exit.

Walk to church. Walking is good for you, and it will only take about five minutes.

I understand some people can't walk for medical reasons, and there are places they can be dropped off at the door if needed.

After church, simply go back to your car and pull out of the garage onto Buffalo Speedway (usually within a couple minutes). While almost everyone else is waiting in the parking garage for 20 or 30 minutes, you'll be on 59 heading home.

Sunday, April 27, 2008

I don't have to take the bus

"Every good gift and every perfect gift is from above, and comes down from the Father of lights, with whom there is no variation or shadow of turning" (James 1:17).

I have been given the title to an automobile. It's a used automobile, but it is in pretty good condition.

I'll be home as soon as I can get there.

Friday, April 18, 2008

I'm blessed and cannot be cursed

You know what the main problem is, Pastor Joel?

I've been spending so much time looking back at all the nausea in the past lately, that I've neglected to look at the excitement ahead.

Make sure you've seen today's devotional by Pastor Joel.

Now don't get me wrong, sometimes we have to address the past. I'm learning that. And I do need to finish what I've started.

Having said that, I think it's important to remember, as Pastor Joel points out, that God can make something even when it appears there's nothing left.

My future is not in this town. This is a city that will always be tied to my pre-Christ days. If I felt like people were as interested in the amazing way God has changed me, instead of focusing on the John that is long gone (and I mean long gone), maybe I'd consider hanging around.

Even Jesus had to leave his own hometown for anything amazing to happen.

Hey, God didn't lead me out into this desert to die or just sit around for the rest of my life. No way! He's given us the power to create wealth, friends. And it only costs about $100 to pick up a bus ticket, so I don't have to be very wealthy to pull that off, bless God.

"The earth was formless and void...and God said, Let there be light"(Genesis 1: 2-3).

Pastor Joel says God can speak light into my darkest hour, and thank goodness we're not in that hour. But I am in an hour where I'm looking for God to open a door for me. Let's look expectantly and see where the door is.

We're willing and obedient, so we're going to eat the good of the land. That's a given.

It doesn't matter if it hairlips the governor, as my mom used to say, we're going to walk victoriously out of this thing and right into our God-ordained destiny.

Is that what God says about my situation? Certainly. There's power in my words.

In due season, I'm going to reap a harvest, but for now, it is my destiny and God's plan for me to finish the project I've started. I like this short video. I think this video perfectly illustrates the intensity of the battle we're in. Here's the guy you want in the fox hole with you. A warrior.

Hey Pastor Joel...question for you. Is the Earth only 6,000 years old? Are dinosaur bones real or were they created by the devil to throw off the scientists? Did I come from monkeys?

I probably should honor my father and mother better than that, but what I mean is did we evolve from apes. Since we're talking about Genesis I thought I'd ask.

Anyway, I'm getting off topic. My dreams are not broken. My dreams are very alive. God simply closed the doors here so I can get to the place I can start my future.

I might need to break out The Bucket List again and see which ones I'm close to accomplishing. I've got to be pretty close to a breakthrough, now that I'm on YouTube.

Speaking of YouTube, who's watching the presidential election coverage? Have we decided who we are voting for yet? John McCain is quite a story. This is the guy that used to sit at the end of the platform during the debates and barely say anything, and now he's the lone Republican candidate.

And why do some people on the right dislike Hillary Clinton so much? I like her. I'm sorry if that gets me voted out of any club, but I'm just telling you what I feel. I think she's a good person, and I like to watch her speak.

And Obama. Hey brother, don't worry about Pastor Wright, when I get up to Chicago again, I've got to visit that church! That guy is something else. He can preach, but I bet you wish he'd vacation between now and November.

I like watching Wolf Blitzer on CNN. You ever watch this guy? It's a pretty good show, too. The best political team on television, and you know it is, because they said so. They call it the Situation Room. He always makes me feel like I'm part of the show. He'll say something like, "I'm Wolf Blitzer, and you're in the Situation Room."

I always feel like he's talking right to me. I know that's silly, but that's how I think sometimes.

It's sort of like Pastor Joel's devotionals. Some days it seems like they perfectly apply to exactly what I'm thinking or facing that day. It's weird. We Holy Ghost folks used to call it "reading my mail." You're pretty good like that.

Speaking of seeing someone on TV and thinking they are speaking directly to me, I was flipping channels the other day. I came across the Trinity Broadcasting Network (TBN), and Matt Crouch was standing next to his wife and he was looking directly into the camera. He said this: "If God decides he needs your talents, it's going to happen."

He was talking directly to me. I feel it. Matt, the answer is yes, I would be more than happy to appear in one of your upcoming films. I'll blog daily on the set. It'll be fun. Let's make a movie.

Now, I tell you this hoping you can keep a secret, because Jack Nicholson and Morgan Freeman may have been expecting to be in my first film, but they'll just have to wait in line, right? We're going to doing something for the kingdom. If God decides he needs my talent, it's going to happen. Can I get a better amen?

I love it when people tell me something isn't going to happen, or they roll their eyes when I speak faith. I love it because in that moment God gives me permission to avoid that person. I'm kidding, I'm not anti-social, but I'm looking for dreamers to hook up with in my life right now. If you think big, and believe anything is possible with God, let's get together and do something.

So, today we're big-thinking people. Let's get in agreement with God today, agreed?

I'll be home as soon as I can get there.

Thursday, April 17, 2008

BANG! BANG! BANG! BANG! BANG!

I've asked this question here previously, but it was before I let you in on all this new information:

How many episodes of gunfire would it take, outside your home or apartment at night, for you to start to think someone was trying to send you or a neighbor a message?

What if you encountered the same thing at your next residence, and you didn't move any of your neighbors with you?

How much gunfire are we talking about? Roughly eight incidents over about three years. Could have been a little more, could have been a little less. We're not talking about shots off in the distance either.

One of the incidents was during the Christmas/New Year's holiday described in the last post. There was one incident in which I remember the date, because it coincidentally happened on my sister's birthday. The final one was the last night I spent in Galveston before I moved to my mom's place temporarily, waiting to move into my new apartment in Southwest Houston.

At that apartment, I can remember precisely where I was in the apartment and what I was doing on two of the occasions. Both were late a night, and the gunfire seemed to come from behind a fence that was near my bedroom window.

"BANG! BANG! BANG! BANG! BANG!"

Not an inadvertent shot like someone firing their gun accidentally. Each incident (both in Houston and in Galveston) sounded similar. Multiple shots squeezed off relatively quickly with a handgun (although our Christmas/New Year's shot in Galveston sounded like a shotgun).

Could it have been firecrackers? Or a cap gun?

No. I have personally fired both rifles and 9mm handguns in the Marine Corps. I know a gun when I hear it.

Needless to say, this period in my life was a time I prayed often for God's hand of protection on myself and my family. Truly believing that the people threatening me had to go through my Heavenly Father to actually harm me was what I held on to, as well as that prophetic word on the beach I talked about earlier.

In my mind, I have two trains of thought during this period. First, who is doing this, and why? And secondly, how serious are they?

Obviously I don't care how serious they are anymore. It's all in God's hands now. The apostle Paul wrote that "to live is Christ and to die is gain," so what can man do to me? Absolutely nothing, frankly.

I wouldn't call my situation then living in fear necessarily, because of God's word and His promises over my life. But I always wondered how serious they were, and if they were serious, when my appointed time would come.

Then I checked the mail one day and discovered a small, blue postcard from a Galveston funeral home.

Let me explain why I found this strange (other than the fact that it accompanied everything else I've explained here).

My apartment in Houston, near Westheimer and Voss, was about 59 miles from the center of Galveston.

Galveston is a small island, more than an hour drive from my home. I have no family in Galveston. I've never had family in Galveston. I've never been to a funeral in Galveston. I've never even known anybody personally that died in Galveston. Galveston funeral homes are for people who live and die in Galveston. That's not me.

Why would I get a mailer from them? The place I got my oil changed in Galveston didn't have my new address and didn't send me notices in the mail. Or any other business I actually frequented while I lived there.

I dismissed it as a strange coincidence and went on with life.

Until the second mailer came from a different Galveston funeral home...

This time it weirded me out, because it not only was addressed to me, but inside had a note printed with words to the effect of: "Dear Mr. Tyler, We're so sorry to hear about the death of your family member..."

I nearly dismissed this one as well, but instead decided to take it to work and show it to a co-worker to see if this was as strange as it seemed to me.

Keep in mind, I didn't tell him about the gunfire I'd been encountering, but I did tell him this was the second similar notice I'd received from the island in recent memory.

My co-worker's advice: If he got a letter (or two) in the mail talking about the death of his family members that were all very much alive, he'd call and find out where these people are getting their information.

I did call, and the gentleman on the other end of the phone was very nice and apologized, but couldn't really tell me how my name would get on such a list.

I'm sure it's just a coincidence. Or is it?

If it is, Galveston funeral homes could be considered the worst marketers on planet Earth. Here's a tip: no one living at Westheimer and Voss is going to plan their funeral there, so save yourself the postage and printing costs.

In our next post, I finally go talk to someone about the things I'd been encountering.

Monday, April 14, 2008

Still Alive at Christmastime?

As you can probably imagine, the events I've detailed over the last two posts have made enjoying office life a tad bit more difficult, but I'm trudging forward.

Sometime after the move, I received the promotion to President's Writer. Despite everything I've described so far, I did feel like I was on a good path at the institution.

You might wonder, Why didn't you talk to anyone about this stuff? Well, I did finally at one point, and we'll get to that soon.

After all, it's Christmastime right now. Lights and presents and cookies and Jesus' birthday. A fantastic time to forget about death, hell, the grave and all the other garbage and focus on the good stuff.

Then, I ran into Susan Coulter in the hallway one day. Susan was the vice president for university advancement, which included both public affairs and development for UTMB.

Possibly Susan would have been someone good for me to talk to about my problems in the office? A vice president in one of the institutions of the UT system would surely be a great place to run for help in your time of need. They probably only hire and promote the very best to upper-management positions.

I was actually about to run into the restroom, when Susan came around the corner.

We greeted each other and briefly exchanged small talk about the holidays. I think she asked me what my plans for Christmas and New Year's were, that kind of thing.

Everything seemed pretty normal until the very end of the conversation.

"Hope you have a good holiday," she said, or words to that effect.

"You too," I responded, turning toward the restroom.

Then her tone changed. I wouldn't call it angry, but it was certainly more stern, as the final remark came out of her mouth:

"If we're all still alive then."

I think this was the moment I truly started wondering if my life hadn't become a bad episode of The Outer Limits.

I turned back toward her and looked her straight in face. She stared right back at me, expressionless.

After a moment, I turned and went in the bathroom to potty.

It turned out to be a quite stressful holiday season. Over that holiday time (sometime around Christmas and New Year's) was when I first encountered gunfire at night outside my condo. Multiple incidents of gunfire, late at night, marked the remainder of my time in Galveston -- including the very last night I stayed on the island.

These incidents of gunfire followed me to my next residence.

I will talk about all that in more detail in my next blog entry, entitled "BANG! BANG! BANG! BANG! BANG!"

Saturday, April 12, 2008

No, Matt, I won't give your baby a bath

So, a few days later, I'm walking past Matt's desk, and he stops me.

"Hey, John," he said quietly. "How would you like to come over to my place this weekend and give my baby a bath?"

I couldn't believe what I had just heard.

"What?" I said.

"I bet you'd like that, wouldn't you?" he said, laughing like a demonic spirit as I walked off.

It's amazing, isn't it? Someone can say whatever they want about you...make something up if they want to out of thin air, and it can impact your life for years.

This was the environment I worked in.

I wish I could remember every comment I encountered (often I wasn't sure if I was supposed to be into little boys or little girls), but my absolute favorite was when Matt printed out a photo a what looked like a 3- or 4-year old boy and hung it on the outside wall of his cubicle.

It was a weird picture. It was an 8 1/2 X 11 piece of paper with a picture of a little kid nude from the waist up, arms behind his head in a pose that probably would have appeared sexual if it was an adult.

I've often wondered what a mother or father of a child who had been abducted or hurt by a sicko would think of Matt's sense of humor.

Think about it for a second. The thousands of kids around the world who have been hurt and permanently scarred by predators, while Matt Havard claims he has the goods on someone, and decides he'd rather use it to oppress them than call the police.

Give that guy a GEM card for sure.

I know, shake it off. Don't hold an offense. It's all about love.

Uh, I think I'll love Matt (and the rest of this bunch) a whole lot easier when the truth is out. I haven't heard many voices defending me in all this, so God has given me a voice.

I love you, Matt.

Now back to our story...

Oh, yes. And Mary.

Mary Havard, a fellow employee in the office, is Matt's wife.

Certainly, in those personal times at home, he's shared with her the horrible things he knows about me. Right?

Mary, who had a new baby at one point (for the record, I really didn't want to bathe that baby). She would certainly be sensitive to a disgusting child predator walking around in the office.

I worked with her quite often as a result of her role as associate publications director. Certainly it was a strain on our working relationship. Certainly she was disgusted with me.

Here's an example of how disgusted she was (read from the bottom of the email trail):

===============================================

-----Original Message-----
From: Havard, Mary G.
Sent: Tuesday, May 22, 2001 9:54 AM
To: Tyler, John C.
Cc: White, Doris H.
Subject: RE: URGENT: UT System Annual Report

You're wonderful! Thanks. mgh

P.S. What was the correction, by the way? I'd like to include it in my file, just in case we use the copy again.

-----Original Message-----
From: Tyler, John C.
Sent: Tuesday, May 22, 2001 9:48 AM
To: Havard, Mary G.
Subject: RE: URGENT: UT System Annual Report

I just emailed her with the correction. Thanks. JT

-----Original Message-----
From: Havard, Mary G.
Sent: Tuesday, May 22, 2001 9:37 AM
To: Tyler, John C.
Cc: White, Doris H.
Subject: URGENT: UT System Annual Report
Importance: High

Just got a call from Julie Kniseley at UT System. She must verify afigure in our feature for the UT System Annual Report. She's got the blueline proof and it has to go back to the printer today, so time is of the essence. Sorry for the short notice, but I just now got the call. It was something they didn't notice until this morning.

===============================================

This email pretty much typifies the working relationship I had with Matt's wife.

I think I've adequately addressed this silliness. He claimed that stuff was on that laptop to either protect himself from being held accountable for violating my privacy or simply to destroy my reputation.

At some point during my time at UTMB, public affairs moved from the Sealy and Smith Professional Building to the Administration Building.

Once we got everything moved over to the new office, I went back over to the old office space to check one last time for anything I might have left over there.

The room had been completely gutted, no longer were desks and chairs and partitions breaking up the large space. In the huge open area, I walked to the very back of the room where my desk once sat.

Here's the final touch on all my memories from that time in the Sealy and Smith Building:

Someone had taken insulated phone wire, or some type of wire that had been pulled up in the move and now was littering the room. Right where my desk had sat days before, someone had made a perfect circle with thick bunches of that wire on the floor.

In the middle of that circle they had set a box of rat poison.

------------------------------------------------------

I'm thinking I might share the rest of this story over the next couple weeks, scrape up the bus fare I need to get to my new city of residence, and get on down the road. Nothing against you, Houston, you know I love you, but it's obvious after all this time doors of opportunity are not opening for me here.

I'm going to make a fantastic construction worker! I'm going to try that out and see how I like it. I'll be the best, most dedicated construction guy you've ever known. Or maybe a barista. You know, one of those people serving coffee at a coffee shop? Those folks look like they have a pretty good life.

But I'm going to do it somewhere where I can start fresh and new. A change of scenery is what I need. Yeah, I've picked the place but I'm not going to tell you where I'm heading yet. Here's a hint: they have a professional baseball team there. I like pro baseball a lot and you have to be able to catch a ballgame occasionally.

Goodness and mercy follow me all the days of my life. And they will follow me to my new home city. Never fear, I will continue blogging so you can keep up with me.

By the way, the new P.O.D. record dropped in the last week or so. It sounds awesome if you're looking for something to rock out to. I'm going to see how much I can pull together in quarters and dimes and possibly go pick it up. I know a lot of rockers read this blog so I just thought I'd mention it.

To P.O.D.: I'll catch you guys out on the road if there's enough money in the tip jar to pick up a ticket.

Readership is up here, I might mention. Thanks to all of you. I feel warm inside knowing I have something to say that might interest you.

We're going to skip one of the posts I had planned, simply because I truly suspect one of the people involved in this circus has (or had) a medical issue. I don't want to openly embarrass someone who I feel probably did what they did because they needed medical help. If they still want to talk crazy, however, I'll simply digitize the 20 or 30 minutes worth of answering machine messages they left on my phone at 2 a.m.

Those are so ridiculous that if I was to post them here, it would be more popular than that viral video being passed around a year or so ago online of that chubby kid dancing around with a light saber. We'll just leave it at that.

The next person you meet in our story may not need medical help, but they sure could use some leadership training in what not to say to someone in their department.

I like to call this next entry, "Still Alive at Christmastime?"