Thursday, August 13, 2009

Wednesday, August 12, 2009

Inspiring people

I have had the privilege over this last year to make the acquaintances of a few artists that inspire me toward greater excellence in my own work. Each of the three Dallas artists that I will highlight in this post are people of faith who know all too well the no-man's-land of being a Christian visual artist (being too artsy for the church and too churchy for the arts community). And yet they persist and continue to create thought provoking work that is of the highest artistic merit. As an act of faithfulness they create and utilize the tools God has granted to them. May their tribe increase and may the church do well and support these artists who are laboring among us.

James Michael Starr

As a poignant demonstration of recreation and redemption, James Michael Starr takes throw away objects and refashions them into hauntingly beautiful sculptures and 2 dimensional images. Below are his works "Dad" and "Going to Heaven".

You can see more of James Michael Starr's work at

Billy Keen

Billy Keen is a prolific artist who employs painting, sculpture and woodworking in his large and impressive works. Themes of creation, redemption, renewal, spiritual rebirth, and the mysteries of being human are all close to Keen's heart. Below are "Lone Rider" and "Cactus Wren".

You can find out more about Billy Keen at

Kimberly Alexander
Kim's art is directly influenced by her full-time "day job" as a teacher of international high school students. Her work is filled with both the heart breaking as well as the inspirational stories of these immigrant teens. Her large scale works are carefully planned out and meticulously executed. Below are "Self portrait as a teacher" and "Two Bullets".

It is artists like these that encourage me to keep painting and to tell the stories God has given me to tell.

Tuesday, August 11, 2009

One of those times

Ever had one of those moments when you are in a conversation with someone and you don't know their name, but somehow you think you are supposed to know their name? They know your name but you don't know theirs. And then you reach that point in the conversation when the window of opportunity closes to ask their name. It would have been ok at the beginning of the conversation - one of those "tell me your name again" statements. But then you wait too long - and the moment passes.

Too slow and now you're stuck.

If you had only been quicker - more free - more honest from the very beginning - you wouldn't be having this dilemma. But you weren't quick, you were slow and you didn't speak up with the question you really needed to ask. You let the moment slip away. You chose the safer path - to not speak up - to not risk awkwardness. Now you have missed the opportunity. Your timing was all wrong.

Now it's just easier to stay quiet. Don't ask the question. Hope it never comes up. When you stay quiet long enough, continued silence becomes the most preferable ongoing solution. To speak up now - to ask the question now - after so much silence - just seems weird.

That's kind of how I feel about this blog. I've got lots to say that I should have said already. Now it just seems weird.

It's easier to just let another day pass.

Friday, May 22, 2009


Today is my anniversary. Well, not just mine. It's Kelly's anniversary too. 16 years ago we said "I do" to each other - having very little idea of what would be in store for us.

Very little idea.

Kelly is an amazing woman. She has been through an awful lot being married to me. Being a pastor's wife for 10 years is a difficult thing to do. She filled that role with grace and humor and humility. Now - we get to experience the joys of starting a new business... together. And while it is great to be working together, it's stressful too. Communication becomes quite delicate - finding the line between business and personal - the important and the vitally important. It's not all easy. We are both being stretched in new areas - growing - learning. God continues to teach us thing that we didn't know we needed to learn.

She has been through a lot being married to me.

And I love her dearly.

It's probably best that we didn't know what was coming 16 ago. It's probably best that way.

Much has not turned out the way we planned. But, as my journey has twisted and turned, God has not seen fit to leave me alone. He gave me a teammate - someone to complete me, sustain me, thrill me, encourage me, make me laugh, and make me feel loved. I hope she doesn't feel too jipped. I made out a lot better in this deal that she did.

16 years of the unexpected. The adventure continues.

16 years... and counting.

LOST prediction - amended

Ok - I change my mind.

Jacob is not the smoke - the other dude at the beginning of the season finale is the smoke. He is also the manifestation of every other dead person who appears to be alive on the Island - including Clair, Christian, Ben's daughter, Locke, etc. That dude has been manipulating everyone and everything in a grand attempt to get someone other than himself to kill Jacob.

That's my story and I am sticking to it.

Actually, I need to thank Ed Clark (the video guy at Chase Oaks church) for helping me see the light concerning the above theory. Although, I don't think he reads my blog, so I might as well take credit for it.

He'll never know.

Wednesday, May 20, 2009

LOST predictions

I just watched the session finale of LOST last night. Here are my predictions:

If you are not up on Lost - and/or have not yet seen this season's finale, don't read.

1. Next season will begin with the original Oceanic flight taking off from Australia and safely landing in L.A. Everyone will then find themselves back on the Island through some other means. It's fate after all.

2. The Island will turn out to be a modern version of Mount Olympus - where real versions of Greek Mythological gods live (Jacob being one). Like Greek gods, these characters are quite fallible, powerful but not supreme, and quite willing to put on disguises and interact with humans. Also - like Greek gods there are different characters with different attributes and degrees of specialness.

(I am not sure why Jacob has been drawing people to the Island for so many years - at least back to the time of the Black Rock. He wants the Island to be found by certain people. Don't know why.)

3. Richard will turn out to be one of the crew of the Black Rock. He was given some divine attributes by Jacob (which is why he doesn't age).

4. When those on the island face ultimate judgement, they stand before Jacob as he takes the form of black smoke.

5. All the characters, all the players who have had a role on that Island at any time will turn out to be pawns in a divine "chess match" between those two dudes at the beginning of the season finale. Ultimately, the entire story of LOST - all six seasons (or however many seasons it is) will all be about those 2 men. Everyone else is simply doing their bidding.

Once the "pawns" realize what's going on they will rise up and kill their "gods". It appears that Jacob may already be dead. One down, one to go.