On the Yellow Brick Road

Don't Take Your Dreams to the Grave by Jimmie Bratcher

A Book Review

I received Don't Take Your Dreams to the Grave from Jimmie as a gift after a short conversation I had with him during the 2008 Christmas season.  The book mixes Jimmie Bratcher's testimony, Bible Stories and inspirational guidance to encourage the reader to discover and follow their God given dreams.  Jimmie's basic premise is that everyone has a dream and that God put those dreams into us.  Sometimes our dreams are twisted by our sinful selves.  But when we allow God to guide us in our dreams we will live a life of fulfillment and an exciting adventure.

I found the theme that Jesus calls his followers to be "wild".  The idea of "wildness" is not what we normally think of as a Christian characteristic.  The wildness Jimmie is talking about is not a person out of control but a person in complete control and able to radically love and show mercy and grace to the world.  A good example is the one Jimmie uses when he refers to CS Lewis' work The Chronicles of Narnia:

    "The character Aslan, the great lion, represents Christ in the stories and the reader as well as the characters are informed early on that while Aslan is benevolent, he is not a 'tame' lion.  Despite his gentleness and benevolence, Aslan is still wild."

After reading this book I am left wondering:  "What is my God given dream?  What does God really want me to be doing?"  I don't have any answers yet.  I am prayerfully awaiting the re-awakening of my dream.

What are you?

There is an old American Express commercial where the tag line was "Membership has its privileges."  For many people who are in the church today that is exactly what they think.  The think goes something like this. 

Project Management at Payless

Last Wed. I started a new position at Payless Shoes, here in Topeka, Kansas.  For the next three months I am a contract-for-hire contractor to DSoft-Technologies out of Colorado.  DSoft has a contract with Payless to provide project managers to the IT Department at Payless.

I work for the Retail Operations Application Development group.  This group develops and delivers software which runs at the Payless stores around the world.  The projects I am working on I actually understand and can explain to other people.

Yes this is a prayer that was answered.


Life of leisure is about to end

Well today I found out that I will be starting on Wed.  YEAH!  I have been getting bored and frustrated while looking for a new job.  As anyone who has ever been unemployed or underemployed knows, no one lives a life of leisure while looking for a new job.

It would be different if I wasn't working because I didn't have to work.  I would have created a new schedule of things to do everyday.  But since I was looking for a job I had a schedule that operated around looking for a job.

Anyway the waiting and looking are over and I am about to go back to work.

An observation

Yesterday I decided to watch the Akira Kurosawa movie The Hidden Fortress.  If you have never seen this movie and you are a fan of Star Wars Episode IV - A New Hope then The Hidden Fortress is a must see film.  George Lucas has stated A New Hope is based on The Hidden Fortress with himself & his dog (as Chewbacca) written into the movie.

The main reason I am writing about
The Hidden Fortress has to do with something that I observed while watching the movie.  Akira Kurosawa always did a wonderful job staging the samura fights.  The fights had long moments of tension with a few moments of quick attacks.  The fights had a rrealism which was rare in his time and even rarer today. 

In those days no one used 'wire work' to enhance the fighting sequences.  Today's "martial arts" style fights are all about flying through the air, bouncing off of walls, large pieces of rock being crushed by the fighter's feet or hands.  I can't remember any fights in say the The Matrix where the same level of tension is built into the fight.

Akira Kurosawa's staged fights are deliberate and seem very slow compared to what we see on the screen today.  But there also seems to be more at risk when I watch one of the fights in one of Akira Kurasowa's films.  The tension is in the air.  Its as if the fighters know one wrong move and they are dead.

Anyway... Just an observation of mine.