Triggers - A Moment with the President, January 2008
Triggers, we all have them. Like the trigger of a gun, (where the small action of one finger causes a large reaction, to occur) we all have reactive defense mechanisms that are activated by a certain word, action or tone of voice. Our reaction may be to get louder and more aggressive, or it may be to get very quiet and run away. Either way, we are headed down a path that will result in bad things happening if they go too far. Fortunately, we also have limiters, that kick in to help keep us from going too far down a destructive path. A limiter can be internal, where we tell ourselves to calm down, or it can be external, where a trusted friend whose voice we can still hear, even in the middle of a reactive situation, leads us away from disaster. Either way, limiters are important, they help keep us from doing things that (in a clearer moment), we know we don't want to do. Of course we do have to listen to them, if they are to be effective. The third kind of limiter, is God. When you have a relationship with God, He speaks to you, and you hear His voice. In my case, it is not an audible voice, but a voice inside me that speaks with a clear head, helping me to see how to recover from a reactive situation. A voice that I can listen to, or choose to ignore. A voice that speaks the truth. I know it is the truth, because He speaks words that are consistent with His Word the Bible. Finally, there is a fourth limiter, well, an anti-limiter really. When I listen to that voice, it tells me to keep going the way I already am, becoming more and more reactive, which can ultimately lead to destruction. That is the voice I don't want to listen to, a voice I can silence only by diverting my attention to God's calm and clear voice of truth. You see, limiters work by changing my focus, from all about me, to all about Christ, and the amazing gift he has given us.
We bikers like to talk about POWER, powerful engines, powering through the curves, powering away from the cars. We like to increase the power of our bikes by installing custom exhaust pipes, and adjusting the carbs or fuel injections computers. Power makes us feel great, when we are in control. There is another kind of power, where we are not in control, like the power of a roller coaster. Big motors crank the train up the hill, and release it in a controlled fall back to the origin. All we can do on a roller coaster is hang on, and pray the workmen who maintain it have been doing a good job. God's power on earth, called the Holy Spirit, is a lot like a roller coaster. He kicks in to pull us up the hills, as we wait patiently. He lets us coast down, seemingly out of control, but yet always still in control. The ride has lots of ups and down, but the Holy Spirit is always there to make sure we don't stray too far off the track. I may not always be in control, but I am glad the one who designed this roller coster we call LIFE, knows what He is doing.
Ken on Hammered Dulcimer (click for video)
Our CMA Christmas party this year was lots of fun, and was significantly enhanced by one of our members, Ken, who brought and played his Hammered Dulcimer. It is a very interesting instrument, that sound a bit like a harpsichord. You can click the title, to link to a video with some very nice music. Enjoy!
And of course, no party is complete without food:
And we don't want to forget shenanigans and party hats:
And of course gifts a nice too. Can you say Chicken?:
luminaries in Wells Branch (click for video)
Debbie and I made our annual Christmas time trek, two blocks away to the local community center, just after dark, to see the Luminaries setup for the communities viewing enjoyment. The display is very simple, consisting of hundreds of lunch sized paper bags lining the sidewalks. A bit of sand is placed in the bottom of each bag to keep them from blowing away, and then a candle is lighted just at sunset. After dark, the display is very beautiful for a couple of hours, until the candles burn finally burn out. You can click the title above to link to the video. Then it was off to see some of the local Christmas light displays, some are shown here:
I am a Christian, Debbie is my wonderful wife. She is also a Christian, and my perfect helpmate. I have two adult children Pam & Chip, I have four wonderful grandchildren, granddaughters Chloe & Claire, and grandsons Ezra and Corbin. I am a Biker, I ride a 1999 Harley Davidson Road King, I am a member of the New Life Riders (Austin, TX) chapter of the Christian Motorcyclists Association (CMA), I am Chaplain of the United Clubs Of Austin (UCOA), I am the Author or Co-Author of several Forth computer language development systems including VIC-Forth, ColorForth (for the Radio Shack Color Computer), 64Forth (for the Commodore 64), F-PC (for DOS), Win32Forth (for Windows) and TCOM (a native DOS compiler), I am a Software Engineer for Thermo Fisher Scientific in Austin, TX, where I develop Windows C# applications for analytical instrument data processing and reporting.