Friday, October 29, 2010

Weigh-In 59


The last 36 hours have been rough. First, my wife came down with some sort of stomach bug overnight and was pretty much laid up all day Thursday. I ran the kids around to some activities they had that evening. Once we got home, my middle daughter started complaining about her stomach hurting.

We got everyone to bed and then I started feeling pretty bad - aches, fever, shivering, stomach pain. Then is started...

We had 3 sick kids all needing help from mom and dad between 2:00 - 6:00am. Not pretty.

Needless to say, it makes for a rough morning to be sick and have to take care of the kids. Fortunately, my wife is feeling much better and the girls are too. Looks like it's just me still feeling bad.

But I did weigh in this morning (once I finally got up). The scale said...


That leaves me with 13lbs in the next 8 or so weeks to hit the 210 goal by the end of the year. Might be a whole lot easier if I stay sick for a few more days...

Photo credit to lynch.

Friday, October 22, 2010

Weigh-in 58

It's almost here.

I turn 40 years old next week. There. I said it. I'm not 39 again. I'm not "in the later part of my early 30's" or anything like that.

40. Hmmm, I guess it doesn't seem so bad after all. Considering there was a time I wondered if I would make it this far, I'd say it is pretty daggum good.

I am grateful for every one of those years and would like to ask you to help me make a birthday wish come true.

As those of you who know me or have read this blog before already know, I have been raising support for an organization called Love146. The vision of Love146 is, quite simply:

The abolition of child sex slavery and exploitation. Nothing less.

The mission of Love146 is also very simple:

Abolition and Restoration! We combat child sex slavery & exploitation with the unexpected and restore survivors with excellence.
(quotes from the official Love146 web site)

So, I close my eyes, blow out the candles, and make this birthday wish:

No one should be in bondage or in slavery, least of all children. When I look at my wonderful kids and think that there are boys and girls in the world TODAY that are in chains, being exploited, bought and sold, used and abused... I can't stand it. It breaks my heart and makes me angry.

But it doesn't have to be this way. Thanks to folks like the Love146 staff, people are becoming aware of the problem. And not just aware, but empowered to act. There is education, there is activism, and most importantly, there is action to find and free these children.

It doesn't stop there, either. Love146 has created programs (like the Round Home) to help restore love and life to the victims of sex slavery and exploitation.

It is my birthday wish that the abolition of slavery and the restoration of the victims is a reality in our lifetime. That the modern day slave trade is destroyed. That hearts and spirits are released from bondage along with bodies.

Please help if you can.

The weigh in....

All I can say is "ugh!" I didn't feel good about this week going in to it. Not really sure why. But I stepped on the scale this morning and...


Yup. Gained a pound this week. No idea how or why. I ran over 8 miles this week. I stayed under the 1650 calorie goal each day. Even on the days I ran.

I'll have to chalk it up to stress and lack of sleep this week. Life with a startup company, a family of 6, and an approaching 40th birthday can do that to you, I guess.

Onward to the future!

Photo credit to sergis blog

Friday, October 15, 2010

Weigh-In 57

You ever feel like you are right on the edge of something? You're looking over and seeing all of it laid out before you but you are still standing up there. Too far forward to just go back but not quite off the ledge yet.

There's this tension between letting go and falling into the new and holding on and staying safe with the old. It's almost like defying gravity, even if for only a second, and being in between the bonds of physical law and the freedom of flight.

I find myself in this tension on a regular basis lately. Sometimes it's a good thing to be "grounded" and only see over the edge. Temptation to sin or compromise my character are like this. There is that "gravity defying" moment where you have a last chance to decide to stand or fall. Ideally, you have some guardrails that can keep you safe before you get to the edge, but I think we've all been there before.

Other times, looking over the edge is as far as you get when something new comes along. How many times have you felt the draw, the calling, to move to something new but stayed in your comfort zone. Happy with the old or scared of changing, we stand on the edge - unable to really resist the pull on our hearts but unwilling to give up what we have or what we know to be familiar.

I think that tension is present in all of us. We are called to help others, to love people in all of their messed up and broken nature. We are caught between that pull and the desire to stay simple, to not get tied up in other people's mess or drama.

But when we just stand on the edge and look over, we miss out. We miss out on the opportunity to be a blessing and to be blessed. Every time I have felt called to help someone, I've had this tension. And every time I've decided to stay safe and comfortable I've had some level of regret.

Now, not every time that I decided to get involved did things turn out all nice and pretty. But I don't think it was the wrong choice to try to help. At a minimum, I learned things about myself and others. And generally, the experience has been good for all involved (even though the good sometimes takes years to be seen).

So, think about that next time you find your self defying gravity on the edge of a situation or decision. Discern what is holding you back and what is calling you forward. Don't let comfort and familiarity dictate your decisions. You just might find something pleasantly surprising when you let go....

Now for this week's 210 in 2010 update:

Getting back to running has been great and looks to be paying dividends. I weighed this morning and saw


Good to see some of the old progress this week. Now to keep that pace as I have 13lbs to go in the 10 or so weeks left in the year...

Remember, we still need your help in raising funds for Love146. You can leave me a comment here, email me, hit me up on twitter or facebook, and now you can even help through a "birthday wish" thanks to the folks at Thanks in advance for your support.

Photo credit to tuppus.

Friday, October 8, 2010

Weigh-in 56

I had breakfast this week with a good friend that I hadn't really connected with in over a month. When we get together, it's usually a good time. A couple of old boys shooting the breeze, talking about the families, moaning and groaning about work and all that.

We also usually carry the conversation into our spiritual lives as well. He and I have some of the same struggles and some of the same talents. We are also very different in several areas. But it makes for a good combination and some really good conversation.

In he context of our talking this week, I mentioned that I felt something I was missing was a tight knit band of men that would take an interest in each others lives and form a community of encouragement, support, and accountability.

He shared with me a ministry at Seacoast church here in Charleston that had the goal of establishing these communities for men. So next week I'm planning to attend my first Men's Wednesday at Seacoast. I'm really excited about it and am very interested to see what all it has in store.

I strongly encourage you to find a small group of people that you can be very open and honest with. A band of folks that you don't worry much about when it comes to judging, hurtful criticism, and back stabbing. Easier said than done, right?

Now, don't get me wrong, I'm not saying you are out there looking for some perfect people to get in a club with. You need to find some people that are messed up (like you and me are). That are scared (like we are). That mess things up and screw up at times (like you and I do).

Then you gotta love 'em. And give them the grace and compassion and respect that we all want. It's hard to do. And it just might hurt at times. But when you get there... it is so worth it.

One key thing to note - you can't do this as a hobby or just when it's convenient or easy. You are going to need to put in the time (abide, if you will) and, yes, some effort as well. This is where I've been failing with respect to this. Time to make some changes....

Speaking of changes, let's get to the numbers and see what changed.

First of all, the donation number has changed. We're up another $50 over last week's $224. That brings our current number to $274 on the way to at least $420 (to get all the matching funds).

Now, I hear you asking (or at least I hear the 2 people that read this each week asking): "What about the weigh in number?" Well....


Slowly but surely moving down. That leaves 15lbs to go by Dec 31, 2010. I have to get moving at more than one pound per week to hit the goal. I've started running again with the Couch To 5K program again. It's tough getting back in the habit but I'm still committed to doing the Bridge Run (10K) next year...

As always, please help out where you can. Even a couple of dollars can go a long way in helping Love146 and the fight to end human trafficking and modern day slavery. To learn more about giving, you can check this out.


Photo credit to barto.

Friday, October 1, 2010

Weigh-in 55

I had to have some work done on my car this week. And not just an oil change either. In the month of September I've put about $1200 into maintenance, routine and otherwise, on the car.

The key thing for this week, and the biggest chunk of that total amount, was that the car would just about not run at times. For those of you in Charleston you'll understand when I say that I almost didn't make it up the Ravanel bridge from Mount Pleasant Monday afternoon. I was a real popular guy on that up-slope at 25 mph, let me tell you.

So, after that little automotive incident I decided I had to do something about it. Up until then, it had seemed like a minor annoyance that the car rode a little rougher than before and didn't really have the same pep when you hit the gas. But this isn't a high performance machine we're talking about here. It's a Buick Century. You know, an "Old Man Car" as my kids like to say.

So, I took it in to get an O2 sensor replaced. That was what I figured it needed since the last shop said the computer had a code come up for a bad one. And I had already had the transmission serviced so that couldn't be the issue.

Well, during the diagnostic, the guys at the garage (different from the previous shop - that's a whole nuther story) came back with more news than I wanted to hear. The catalytic converter (part of the exhaust system for you non-car folks) was damaged and had stuff clogging it up. That explained the loss of power (severe back pressure on the engine) for sure. The O2 sensor did need to be replaced, and they put a new one in, but the catalytic converter was definitely THE thing causing problems.

Left alone, that problem could have led to severe engine damage that would have, along with possibly stranding me somewhere, cost me a pretty penny or two.

So this week I got to thinking about how often people (meaning ME) get themselves into situations like this with areas of their lives. You know, things were real good at one point but over time there was a gradual decline in power/happiness/intimacy/security/etc. The slight change isn't really enough to notice from day to day so it basically goes un-noticed until it gets pointed out - by someone outside who sees the big difference and not the little changes or, like my car, some thing catastrophic (or almost) happens to wake you up.

Unlike cars, people's lives can't always make a stop at the garage and have the bad stuff patched up in a few hours. No, the things that are usually damaged with people are relationships. And trust me, those are very hard to fix and they typically take a while.

I've been called out a couple of times in the last few weeks (even in the comments on this blog) about how I've let a few relationships gradual decline. And here I'm thinking I can just pop in a new O2 sensor to make it better when, in reality, it's closer to an engine failure than I would like to think...

I don't have any magic I can use or any super profound words for you on this. I just keep going back to John 15 where Jesus talks about "Abiding".

I have loved you even as the Father has loved me. Remain in my love. When you obey my commandments, you remain in my love, just as I obey my Father’s commandments and remain in his love. I have told you these things so that you will be filled with my joy. Yes, your joy will overflow! This is my commandment: Love each other in the same way I have loved you. There is no greater love than to lay down one’s life for one’s friends. You are my friends if you do what I command. I no longer call you slaves, because a master doesn’t confide in his slaves. Now you are my friends, since I have told you everything the Father told me. You didn’t choose me. I chose you. I appointed you to go and produce lasting fruit, so that the Father will give you whatever you ask for, using my name. This is my command: Love each other. (John 15:9-17, NLT)

That is, spend the time and put in the effort and the relationship will be rewarding. It is about the quantity of time and not just "quality time." You don't create long term, deep relationships an hour a week or with a couple of posts on Facebook.

Nobody said it would be easy. But it is worth it in the end....

The numbers for this week:

The scale stared back at me this morning with


It feels good to have some measurable movement downward again.

And with some new pledges this week the total for "210 in 2010" is now at $224. That kicks in the first set of matching funds so we are at an overall amount of $434.

Just gotta get another $196 in pledges to unlock the next $210 in matches to get us headed toward $1000 for and their great work.

If you want to join the cause, drop me a line in the comments below, send me an email (address is at the top of the sidebar on the right), or find me on facebook or twitter.

Keep those engines running smooth until next time...

Thanks to the morgueFile for cool (and free) photos like the one up at the top...