Wednesday, May 23, 2012

Having Joy

It is really easy to see where people's true joy comes from. If they are believers, then you will certainly see Jesus living in them and giving them the joy that makes a room brighter. Today, I found my joy in my wife, in her love, in her companionship and her love of life. I am writing this post and she is listening to a ton of oldies on that "SPOTIFY" app. I love how she gets me excited to come home each day, that's pure joy. The joy that only the Lord can give us. Don't let anyone steal your joy from you, because you certainly won't have much to live for otherwise. Joy is worth defending, worth fighting for. Life is worth living always. Don't doubt your life, don't ever put yourself into a place where you want to take your life. I have heard stories this week about people taking their lives and I wonder why they'd want to be so selfish to take their lives. Suicide really is an example of selfishness and despair because people have to be really low to want to take their own lives, I pray for the person I know whose family member committed suicide this weekend. REJOICE IN THE LORD ALWAYS, AND AGAIN I SAY REJOICE! GRACE AND PEACE! -Joel Psalm 37:4

Saturday, May 19, 2012

Food for Thought...

It is one of those times where I have to think about the way that God hss blessed me. It's just a thing that i have to get out of my head this morning, so bear with me. Last night was the first "Movie Night" of the summer that Donna and I planned to have at our house. My friend Rob was having us over at his house a few times during the Fall 2011/Spring 2012 semesters, so we sort of decided to reciprocate. He had come up with the plan to watch the Lord of the Rings trilogy, so what did I come up with? The Batman movies. I mean really, we didn't have any inclination to do any sort of superhero movie series before, so it was a good thing that we had come up with the plan to host people at our house, watch movies, play games, do all sorts of things that rejoice in our freedom from the chains of seminary (so to speak) We had about 7 people (including myself) come over and we watched BATMAN BEGINS, and I cooked dinner. I had made my famous Lemon stuffed Chicken with croutons. Well, not necessarily my famous, but Ina Garten made famous. I had watched her cook this dish before on Barefoot Contessa through a YouTube video actually and came up with the idea to try it, and lo and behold, this dish was an absolute success. I think in a way, my greatest talent, my greatest ability and spiritual gift to grow the kingdom is Hospitality. I think my love of food has helped me get to where I am now in ministry. I have built more relationships here in seminary because of the ability and passion I have for cooking. I mean how many people can say that they met their wife or husband because of something they cooked. I cooked that Chicken dish for my wife before we had even started dating and because of it, our relationship got off the ground. I will do cooking for the both of us from time to time, and I want to keep it that way for the rest of my life if at all possible. Even when we finally get sent to the Mission Field, I will be having people over at our home to share the gospel with them, and to cook for them. It will just be one of those great things. I really have to get into better habits of blogging. I have that "Lone Star State Summer" sheet I have to live up to and I honestly feel it needs to be better. I will of course have to start studying Hebrew pretty soon. for now... GRACE AND PEACE -Joel Psalm 37:4

Sunday, May 13, 2012

1st Week of Summr has already passed

Yeah, yeah, I know i haven't posted, but what do you expect with me being at work 40 hours the entire week and then coming home at 5, and being in bed by like 11 or 12, it's just not as easy to blog as I thought it would be, but somehow I still manage to do it. So everyday this past week, I worked 8-5, and then there were some days that things were out of the ordinary. I mean I was with a different person for lunch everyday. I also didn't work out, which I am disappointed about because I really should have been in the gym this week, so I will do better this week trying to get in the gym. I was able to actually go out to lunch on Saturday with my former roommate Mark, to that sushi place near Baylor Saints Hospital off McCart... I didn't get any sushi rolls, but I did get a hand roll. They really should have used the Nori seaweed to make those, but I couldn't have asked for a better lunch. I really don't get to eat anything esquite. My tastes in food basically revolve around 3 groups if I eat out: Chinese, Pizza, or burgers...that's if I am trying to be extravagent and go out with my wifey. I am also playing through Skyrim...Still trying to beat the main quest, getting through that and play through the game so I can beat it. I still would like to completely replay through the Halo series, and maybe even start playing Assassin's Creed, since my cousin Ben gave it to me to borrow. Anyway, I had promised myself and everyone else I would start doing this since I have been able to have the time on my hands to do it, so here are some FLASHDEVOS (Going through the book of Job) Who are we to complain? There is so much good going in our lives, no matter if some circumstances change and turn out to be a horrible situation, we can do all we can to get things in order, but only constant devotion to God can help us get to where we need to be. We have to cry out to God everyday to help us. So what do we do then, when everything we have in life gets taken away from us. Job was a wealthy man, a man of influence, and he trusted God with everything he had, and yet he got it taken away from him to prove that he would curse God to his face (at least that's what Satan tried to do). I look at what it means to be content, and I learn I have a lot to be thankful for, I also have to go through my life and examine every facet, every detail in a positive sense, and take everything as a victory. Grace and Peace, I will write more again this week, at least I hope so... Joel (Psalm 37:4)

Friday, May 4, 2012

The Life of a Gardener

My grandfather, Jerome DeBellis. (1923-2012) I was really waiting for a good time to sit down and blog about him. Well now that the semester is over with and I am up waiting to put some clothes into the dryer, I have the time to sit here and blog.
I was with my family in the final moments of my grandfather's life this past weekend in Austin, TX. It wasn't exactly pleasant (I mean the circumstances anyway), but it's the way I have always known my family to be. My grandfather sat at the head of the table with his hands crossed over his chest (muttering under his breath in Italian) for people to come over to the table to eat. My family (my mom's side) revolves around food. I can remember being with my family that entire weekend doing nothing but eating. To give you an idea of how serious of a matter food is to an Italian family, I will tell you this story. We had ordered pizza on Sunday afternoon (the day my grandfather died), and I later learned from my mom that the pizzeria owner had become friends with my Nonno (that's Italian for Grandpa), so my mom went inside the pizza place the following day to tell the man that he had died. How incredible is that.
I talk about food in this post because I received something special. I had told my family I would try to grow vegetables. My grandfather was a PASSIONATE gardener, and had a love for vegetables, especially tomatoes. So I took a tomato plant from the garden. It's actually 2 different ones. One is yellow cherry and the other is Roma. I am so overwhelmed by this joy of honoring him, I find myself choking up every time I see the plant sitting on my back porch as I leave and come into my house each day. I plan to grow those tomatoes and eventually give the seeds to anyone who wants to grow them. It is a legacy I hope to honor my grandfather with. I would love to be able to do that. Remember the ones that love you...looking back on his life, I wish there could have been more time, to try to get to know my grandfather better. He wasn't always the kindest of people, but he is still my grandfather and still loved me. That's what matters the most. He lived 88 years...he fathered 4 children, those children produced 7 grandchildren, 4 of those grandchildren (including myself) are married, and of those 4 married grandchildren, 2 of them had children, and he had 5 great-grandchildren as a result. Death is a part of who we are, it is inevitable, and we will face the judgment seat of God one of these days. Christ is our Savior, but he is also the great judge. I remember reading for the final I just had over the theology of John, and in this final, we talked about "The Lamb", well the Lamb has been slain and we can rejoice in him. Think on that in the days ahead. I promise more "positive" and "happy" things are coming soon. GRACE AND PEACE! -Joel Psalm 37:4