Tuesday, August 24, 2010

Cain, Esau, Saul...

Lately, I have been feeling more like Cain than Abel, Esau than Jacob, Saul than David...basically, I have been feeling more like the villain and the worst is that as hard as I try, I can seem to get out of my own way.

I have been conversing with God or at least, I have been trying to and the scripture that came to my spirit was
- Luke 11:4- Forgive us our sins; for we also forgive every one that is indebted to us. And lead us not into temptation; but deliver us from evil.

And really that's where my head is...I don't want to be stuck in place like Cain, Esau and Saul were and so I asked God- "Please deliver me from evil!" And this was the response I got back- Gen :4v 6-7
So the LORD said to Cain, “Why are you angry? And why has your countenance fallen? If you do well, will you not be accepted? And if you do not do well, sin lies at the door. And its desire is for you, but you should rule over it.”

"Lord, I am trying but this is the part I suck at. The part where I have to lay down my pride and admit that there is even a problem."

Now, that sounds crazy, right? Well, not if you know me. You see, I am not good at very many things but one thing I am good at is ignoring anything or anyone I don't like. It's not really the best way to live life but I have used it to successful (in my mind at least) get through problems, issues. If there is a problem, I ignore it. In fact, when I was a kid, I ignored a fractured leg for almost a week...a whole week till I couldn't walk any more...because of that decision, I spent 26 days on a hospital bed because I made it worse and a cast wouldn't do.

So this is me admitting where I've been the last few days.

"Lord, I am going to try my best to fix...no, to let you lay hold of me and have your way. But please in the mean time, lead me not into temptation and deliver me from evil especially while it's staring at me every time I look in the mirror."

Wednesday, May 26, 2010

46 Days and Counting...Counting Up, that is...

According to my records, Amy and I have been married for 46 days and so far, it's been great (not like I would say otherwise if it wasn't but it really has been). My thoughts are probably not much more different than too many newly weds. However, I guess I can just list a few observations of the last 50 days...

- My whole family being here was enough to make me uber emotional but I am not the teary eyed type. However, God through the whole process blew every expectation I had away.

- I may be bias but I'd have to say that we had the hottest wedding party EVER...yeah, I said it.

- We couldn't have asked for better weather. In fact, The Weather Channel rated it a 10/10

- I miss Hawaii

- I loved being single but I don't miss it

- Wedding Gifts fall into one of four categories...cash/gift cards (best), gifts off registry (hopefully duplicates to convert into the aforementioned cash, non-registered gifts that are a pleasant surprise, non-registered gifts that are regiftables...all are appreciated.

- Did I mention that I miss Hawaii

- I am adjusting to sharing a bed...going a lot better than I expected

- I have found out many things that I like that I didn't know I liked until Amy told me just how much I liked i.e. Chef Salad

- Toilet seat cover/lid down EVERY TIME...got it. Oops.

- It's going to be a while before I figure out this whole wearing a ring thing. I am trying.

- God's grace + God's face = Rocking Marriage.

To be honest, I really still don't know much about this whole marriage thing but I am working to learn as best as I can. There have been many experiences in these 46 days that I am glad I married someone who is a great friend and someone I have known for that long and most importantly, someone who loves God more than she loves me.

Monday, March 29, 2010

Everyone needs a little chaos so they can have a story to tell

It's hard to really get beneath the surface with anyone and get into a deep conversation without finding out just how much struggle there is through this life. It just seems like the harder the try to do right, the tougher the roads are. But that makes sense, right? I mean, there is more friction when you walk on a rough surface.

Sometimes, the questions is why...why do we have to keep struggling through all of it? We ask God..."Why can't it just be easy for me this once? Just one time, God?" And sometimes I hear back..."It's because I want you to testify". In other words, He wants me to have a story to tell.

I was reminded of this talking to Aeriole this morning. I am sure it can't be easy carving out a new life and all the uncertainties that come with it. But it is with all of us regardless of the stage of lives...struggles. Now we can blame Adam and Eve for sinning or we can do what Joy reminds us to do...Find God in the midst of it. And I bet He'll say something along this lines to you while He graces you with His love and presence - "Everyone needs a little chaos so they can have a story to tell."

It's 12 days to my wedding and I ask Amy almost everyday if she understands what she's getting into with me and she asks me the same question. It's been an interesting journey to say the least...a few vehicle problems, ran out of gas once and almost killed each other when we got lost (or em...misplaced). But there has also been many exits filled with friends and family along the way that helped us stay on track. For that, I am eternally grateful to all of you.

Monday, February 08, 2010

A couple of more pictures that didn't make the cut...

Kerri Butler, an amazing upstart photographer (book her early and often) took our engagement pictures. She didn't an amazing job and for the record, I ruined most of the pictures. Here are a couple of other that didn't make it past the cutting room floor.

I like the second one a lot...but Amy wasn't crazy about what her fingers were doing. I am not sure too many people would have noticed them but since I again ruined the rest of them, I gave in.

Anyway, there are a few more somewhere...if I can get past the embarrassing faces I was making, I will post them. One more thing...in my defense, it was like 45 below zero when we were taking the pictures and keeping a straight face was just not that easy.

Thursday, February 04, 2010

Marriage Counseling - 65 Days to Go

So if you are killing time reading this, you might want to find a new hobby. I'd say job but the job market is really lousy right now so I'll stick to hobby. If you know me, you probably already know that I will be taking the "plunge" pretty soon. What you probably don't know if that I actually have an app on my iPhone that is helping me count down.

Every so often, someone says to me, "April 10, that's coming up" or some variation of that. And my reply either vocally or internally is...not soon enough. That said, Amy and I began marriage counseling a week ago and I just wanted to blab about that for a bit.

I don't know much about marriage because unlike riding a bicycle, I have never done it before. Now, I understand that at the every least my life is going to change. However, this is one of those times that I wish I could document a season or the changing of the season with a little more artistic fortitude. I would love to get out a video camera and travel the world asking people for their advice on marriage. Now, I have a wealth of people to look up to and no doubt that there will be an abundance of resources to pool from thanks to God, his word and the people He placed in my life.

Since I can't do that, I think God that what He has provided in the likes of the Lotterer's, Parish's and Kreighbaum's is more than sufficient. Why 3 couples you ask? Well, I am sure there are things they want to learn from us. That last part was a joke.

Have any advice or preliminary words of wisdom you'd like to share, I am all ears. By the way, ladies and singles, feel free to give me your thoughts as well.

Wednesday, January 13, 2010

Terror Squad

Sometimes, I like to get lost in the meaningless things in life like Converse...Here's the updated look of the "Terror Squad".

Yes, you can say I have a problem. No, I don't. It's not like I have names for each of them individually. That would be ridiculous, right? Haha...who would do such a thing.

Thursday, January 07, 2010

The 5th Annual Predictions Sure to go Wrong....2010 Edition

It is back...the often imitated but never duplicated Annual Predictions Sure to go Wrong. This will be the fifth edition. If you are keeping score, over the first four years, I have managed to go 45.5/71 for a 64.08% clip. I'd say that's pretty good. That doesn't include the predictions that came through the subsequent years but I digressed.

So before I get with this year's list, I just want to go through the rules again. This is in large part light hearted. I am not a prophet or psychic or something crazy. I just like to em...take a peak at a few things and make calls. Many of these are sports related while others personal. So here are your predictions...

1. We'll start with the economy. The Unemployment rate is stop rising and in fact start falling and by the time this year is over, it will be under 10%.

2. Apple (shockingly) comes out with yet another version of the iPhone as they continue to maintain their role as most popular smart phone and I will sit this one out.

3. Ndamukong Suh will be the first pick of the NFL Draft beating out the temptation for the St. Louis Rams to pick Jimmy Clausen. Bonus pick...Tim Tebow gets drafted in the Top 2 rounds.

4. I will take the GMAT (maybe twice) and I will score over 600 points! This is actually a prayer

5. Facebook goes Public so Mark Zuckerberg can reap the profits of his hard work.

6. The Kansas Jayhawks will win the 2010 NCAA Tournament! Book it!

7. The San Diego Chargers win the Superbowl! I make this pick every year and I figure that it is bound to happen in my lifetime...right? Wow...crickets.

8. I hate this call but I'll make it anyway...The New York Yankees repeat as World Series Champs

9. Finally, I break my 4+ year streak and leave the borders...overseas baby! Please, happen, please! PLEASE!

10. Another of my many friends that I have stood by during their nuptials will be an expecting parent (excluding those currently expecting). Trust me, there is something in the water...that is as soon as this snow crap dissipates.

11. Republicans won't like me for this one...it's not really a political statement but it has political implications...Another Supreme Court seat opens up.

12. Brett "Grandpa" Favre comes to the NFL for the 2010 NFL Season and remains a Viking

13. LeBron James defies conventional wisdom and rather than bolt for a bigger media market, re-ups with your Cleveland Cavs for lots of cash!

14. I will finally stop shuffling my feet and apply to get into a PhD program...maybe Arkansas, North Carolina, somewhere in Texas...but I will take that next step.

15. Now...this bold prediction is concerning the BCS Championship tonight. Now, I am 4/4 in my predictions on this game since I started. I have a saying...when in doubt, go with the team bigger, stronger and faster. That team will be Alabama. They are to good, too fast and too complete not to dominate the line of scrimmage from start to finish.

Perhaps the only position Texas is better is the QB position. There is just no way Texas wins this game. *Sigh* That said, you know where this is going. You know who I am going to pick and you know it is not Alabama. My head says the Crimson Tide but the intangibles tell me pick Texas. The #2 team has won 6/7 BCS Championships. The last Heisman winner to win a BCS Championship in the same year was 2005 USC Trojans with Matt Leinart. The last 3 have whiffed. So, I am going to defy all things reasonable and go with the Longhorns.

So...there you have it. 15 predictions sure to go wrong. Am I crazy...insane, on the money? Let me have it...

Tuesday, January 05, 2010

An Ode to Facebook- My Favorite Status Updates of the Year

Pardon me while I indulge myself. I recently read Kerri's Blog as she chronicled a year's worth of information written in her planner and I thought I should take a peak back myself. Now, I do have a planner but I am not that dedicated to it. However, Facebook allows us the chance to look back at our status updates and I thought to go through them and find out the more intriguing one chronologically. First I must warn...my stuff isn't going to be as meaningful and as deep as Kerri's. So here we go...

Jan 01 2009 - Ugo Alexander Nwagwu (UAN) is happily at work!
Jan 09 2009 -
UAN is predicting a Gator repeat for next year!
Jan 12 2009 -
UAN had an amazing God Weekend in Omaha
Jan 20 2009 -
UAN is trying to weigh his "can do" with God's "should do"

Feb 10 2009 - UAN just got done screaming around the block with his nephew! Best lunch break in a long while!
Feb 12 2009 - UAN wants to be in good hands
Feb 12 2009 - UAN thinks being in good hands is too expensive
Feb 25 2009 - UAN with a cold stare and ice running through his veins slew the 4 Headed Dragon. Let 02/24/09 live in infamy as the day he conquered the CPA!

Mar 5 2009 - UAN is going to bed before 12.30am for the third straight day...if you text him, he'll hurt you!
Mar 16 2009 -
UAN is going fishing. Yeah...say what?
March 30 2009 - UAN is having a fiesta of previously unfelt emotions after his nephew called him Uncle today! What is this salty liquid discharge coming from his eyes?

April 2 2009 -
UAN is wondering why life's giving him the finger today
April 8 2009 -
UAN traded in the Celica. Goodbye Celica...as far as cars go, you were his first true love :'(

May 5 2009 -
UAN loves the IRS
May 15 2009 -
UAN won two tickets to a Rascal Flatts concert playing Bingo last night. Hey, doesn't matter the game, he plays to win.
May 27 2009 -
UAN can't help but smile as the Red Devils burn in hell...sorry, Rome.

June 5 2009 -
UAN just had two doughnuts; one to celebrate National Doughnut Day and the other to help heal his ailing ego.
June 16 2009 -
UAN wants to keep reading Isaiah 40:12-31 over and over and over again...
June 23 2009 -
UAN got his nightly beatdown from Zyrtec and now he is paying the price. Good thing he has nasty Folgers to dull the pain.

July 4 2009 -
UAN holds these truths to be self evident; that all men were created equally and endowed by their creator with certain inalienable rights...
July 7 2009 -
UAN is about to go under but unlike Sarah Palin's political career, he'll be back up better than ever...Seriously, thanks for all your prayers.
July 28 2009 - UAN is jumping off the Vikings sinking ship!

Aug 3 2009 -
UAN decided to try one session of P90x...now he's not sure that program was ever intended for humans.
Aug 7 2009 -
UAN had the best jambalaya ever at Mother's! Wow..next up is Cafe du Monde. Oh, yeah it was great to see his sister again!
Aug 11 2009 -
UAN just played his first game of basketball since his knee surgery...knee hurts like a mother...hit the game winner which makes it worth it.
Aug 18 2009 -
UAN is re-booking his seat on the Minnesota Vikings Bandwagon as sources are strongly indicating FAVRE COULD BE SIGNING!

Sep 9 2009 -
UAN is watching the clock at 09:09 on 09/09/09
Sep 21 2009 -
UAN "The summer days are gone too soon, you shoot the moon, and miss completely...Now the fall is here again, you can't begin to give in..."
Sep 30 2009 -
UAN wonders why raw tomatoes taste like laundry detergent to him.

Oct 12 2009 -
UAN would like to lay his hands on the punk that stole his iPhone!
Oct 13 2009 -
UAN has a schedule for a deep tissue massage at noon today...hopefully "Gretchen" can pound out the knots in his back.
Oct 15 2009 -
UAN has a suggestion for all the billing companies that want me to go paperless...make it worth my time i.e. deduct the cost of mailing my bill (you know the 44cents) from my bill and we will be in business.
Oct 22 2009 -
UAN is installing the new Windows 7. So geeked up right now!
Oct 31 2009 - UAN is a P90x graduate with a 70 consecutive days workout streak.

Nov 4 2009 - UAN
loves the perks of working at a fresh produce company! Honey Crisp? Don't mind if I do!
Nov 6 2009 - UAN
loves the Black Jack Taco from Taco Bell!
Nov 19 2009 - UAN
has Facebook Status Update Writers Block
Nov 23 2009 - UAN
woke up this morning to three little birds outside his door step singing sweet songs of melody pure and true - "Don't worry about a thing; Cause every little thing is gonna be alright."

Dec 1 2009 - UAN
had a dream last night about giving his grandmother a hug. It was actually quite moving.
Dec 10 2009 - UAN "
Alea iacta est"
Dec 21 2009 - UAN
"Knowing you Jesus; there is no greater thing."
Dec 28 2009 - UAN
is looking foward to Brunch with Phil, Jake and Jon

Wow...what a year...what a life. If you are reading this, you are probably a part of that life and I thank you.

Deperate People

You cross the great divide, You took our place
You offered up Your life, for we have failed
The veil was torn and love remained
You are holy Lord

Distraction costs us, how we seek Your face
We offer up our lives to bring You praise
A love the walls cannot contain
You are holy Lord

We're rising up in spirit and in truth
A living sacrifice we worship You
People undivided Lord hear us sing
We are Yours and You are our King

This is our love
Hearts joined as one
Desperate for all You are
Lord break down these walls
And see how we love
Desperate for all You are
We chase Your heart

We didn't come to leave here entertained
Or worship under any other name
We're crying out for You alone
You are holy Lord

We're rising up in spirit and in truth
A living sacrifice we worship You
People undivided Lord hear us sing
We are Yours and You are our king

This is our love
Hearts joined as one
Desperate for all You are
Lord break down these walls
And see how we love
Desperate for all You are
We chase Your heart

Show us the way to Your heart

We found our voice
We found our cause
We're on our knees, the carpet's worn
We join our hearts
With distant shores sing to You Lord

This is our love
Hearts joined as one
Desperate for all You are
Lord break down these walls
And see how we love
Desperate for all You are
This is our love
Hearts joined as one
Desperate for all You are
Lord break down these walls
And see how we love
Desperate for all You are
We chase your heart
We chase your heart

Hillsong United. "Desperate People"