Creative Minds: Week 9 / BBQ and Basketball Week 8
These two small groups have changed my life. I’ll write more about why when the semester is over (about 4-5 more weeks), but for now, I just want to thank everyone who came out this weekend. Each one of you are incredible, and every personality is a blast to hang out with.
Creative Minds: Week 9
BBQ and Basketball: Week 8
Binary Life, by Stu Babin
I’ll be starting something new on my site: a series of guest posts. I know a lot of creative people. I also know a lot of people with powerful stories and testimonies. I’d like to give these people a platform to share something, as well as add more value to my site.
- John LeBeouf
- Devin Wright
- Gilbert Marcel
- Ashley Samanie
- Rocky Angelette
- Chelsea Breaux
- Chip Autin
- Hayden Nicholson
- Adrian Craft
- Stu Babin
This is week 10 of my guest posts series (wow, 10 weeks already!), and today Stu Babin will be writing about code. The nerd in me will tell you that this is my favorite guest post so far. What makes his post fascinating though, is the way he breaks down God being the programmer of our code, and how God determines our value—and how a lot of times in our life, we want to interfere with God’s job, take control, as we try to attempt to program and find value on our own.
Lately I’ve been fascinated with code. Not specifically in programming/coding realm per se, as much as the theory of it. I’ve been a coder (hacker) most of my life, for non-malicious purposes like pirating software, music, tweaking programs to work as I want them to. Surely anyone reading this has never done such a thing…?!! It seems these days most applications/software allows users less and less in freedom of customization, or perhaps they allow you to do some, but only by their limiting choices (a program that designs another without use of manual coding). Gone are the days of messing up code entirely and having to start from scratch. These days everything is “idiot-proof” or “user-friendly.” No pun intended.
I recently wrote a blog called View Source and enjoyed exploring theory of how we try to represent this artificial version of ourselves. It’s all pretty silly if you think about it, we represent these robot profiles as humans and then we can add “emotion”… But something still gets lost in the process. As you’ve heard or experienced, when texting or posting, sometimes it can be misconstrued (for example, my sense of humor certainly gets lost between lines of emojis and LOLs, as I’m sure you do too).
So in reference to my title of “Binary Life,” if you’re not a computer nerd or up with such lingo, binary is defined as relating to, composed of, or involving two things. In computer language, it’s a system of number strings represented as 0 or 1. So let’s look at that closer: where we assign a ‘value’ to ‘1’ and ‘none’ to ‘0.’ What is a value? Well, what would you consider to be a ‘value’? A person might explain a value is something of importance or worth, perhaps value is happiness within your life. Or maybe, for example, someone considers ‘value’ to be sitting on the beach, staring at the ocean while on vacation—but what if value was only defined as ‘1’: either you have it or otherwise you’re ‘0.’
Binary Life can be regarded as something so simple, yet it’s way too complicated for our human mind to comprehend—thus a computer program is the better tool for the job. We know the difference of when we have value or not, but we cannot explain exactly what ‘value’ is or what or how the ‘value’ is coded for. What if I offered this idea: we all are nothing but binary code. There is one programmer who strings our binary code into commands along terminals of networks and the outcome or decision then becomes a ‘value.’
That theory would make things somewhat much easier, wouldn’t it? In fact, I’m offering that theory is actually the case, God, IS the Programmer. God decides if we’re ‘0’ or ‘1’ and he decides if there is ‘value’ or not. The most interesting thing about this theory is that you knew it already. Well, truth be known, some of us try to pretend we are a programmer and take over the computer. And let’s be honest, the computer has come a long way and can definitely compute some complex stuff; however, without God, the Programmer, it’s all just 01000110 01100001 01101001 01110100 01101000 1 without ‘value’.
Isaiah 44:18 (NIV) They know nothing, they understand nothing; their eyes are plastered over so they cannot see, and their minds closed so they cannot understand.
This binary code is coded to the word “faith.” Read this sentence again with Faith instead of code.↩
‘Just Ask’ Series (Cross Church Notes)
I’ll be starting a new series on my site, titled Cross Church Notes. Every month, Pastor Brandon has a new series that covers a specific topic. I’ll have one post each month, covering that topic, and I’ll update it after each service. Above the notes, I’ll try my best to share my thoughts on what I’ve learned from it, and how it relates to my life. This will help me think through what I’ve learned.
Podcast From Each Week
Thoughts On This Series
10/02/16: Pastor Brandon told us a story about his biggest fear: he’s scared that when his life is over, all of his life’s work will have been for nothing. A mentor of his pointed out to him that he kept using the words me and I and mine. That’s when he realized that his biggest fear comes with pride. This realization helped him get to the source of his stress and fear.
I dealt with stress and anxiety for the past decade, but I’m thankful to say that 90% of that stress vanished when these new habits and practical ways (mentioned in notes below) entered into my life. Preparing for the best, and no longer fighting battles that I was never intended to fight, are two of the biggest ways that I removed that stress from my life. Going into the day with peace and anticipation for the best outcomes have really transformed my outlook on daily living.
About 10/9 and 10/16 (written 10/23): It’s been bothering me that I haven’t been able to build upon these notes in the last two weeks. I can easily say that I’ve been too busy to do so, but I make time for a hundred other things, so these notes for church should be a priority over everything else. I’ll be very intentional about focusing in on these notes going forward.
10/24/16: The ending to the Just Ask series was really good. It was about finding your purpose. Pastor Brandon discussed how sometimes, instead of looking elsewhere, if we just dig deeper into our current situation, we can find that purpose. He then told a story of a man that sold everything he had to find this treasure, and the land he sold ended up being the exact place where that treasure was buried. We can relate this to our own life, because we assume the grass is greener elsewhere (careers, relationships, etc.).
Table of Contents for Notes
Notes on Just Ask: Stress - 1 of 4 (10/2/16)
- James 1:12
- 2 Tim 1:7
- 1 Peter 5:7
- 1 John 4:18
- 2 Corinthians 5:17
- 1 Corinthians 2:16
- 2 Corinthians 2:10
- Philippians 4:8
- Matthew 6:26
Stress is not caused by something on the outside. It is only a response to things that are on the outside. Stress is an internal issue.
It’s always there. Always trying to come in. I make the decision to let it in or not.
Gods given you a disciplined mind. I need to discipline the way that I think.
What are our biggest stressors?
- Family issues
- Relationship issues
- Tramatic Stress
Stress is a temptation. Temptation is not wrong. It’s only wrong when I give into the temptation.
Stress is the temptation to take control and tell God that your worry is more powerful than His provision.
When we’re stressed out, take a step back and get God’s outcome.
How do I deal with my stress?
- Find the source of your stress (What you think is the source is usually not the source, it’s only the symptom.)
- Renew my mind.
- Look for the triggers. That feed the source. Then don’t feed it.
How do I deal with my stress?
- Mature spiritually
- Let God fill you with love.
- Put on the mind of Christ.
- Change the way you think.
- Change the way you talk. (The power of life and death is through the tongue. Speak life into yourself.)
- Change your atmosphere.
- Capture your thoughts.
- Discipline your mind.
You stand as the bouncer of your own mind.
How do I get rid of stress?
- Talk to someone
- Get a hobby
Practical ways to deal with your stress:
- Get into the word
- Invite the Holy Spirit into your life, after all he is the comforter.
- Stop fighting battles that you are not intended to fight
- Prepare for the best (the worst that could happen is not that bad)
- Start living by faith and not by sight.
Three rhetorical questions
- Am I only happy when things are going good?
- Am I always worried about things that might happen?
- Are my prayers based out of a place of fear?
When a bill comes in: Hey God, you’ve got mail.
I serve the same God that David served. That slayed a giant. So every giant in my life better start getting scared.
Notes on Just Ask: Praying From A Place Of Authority - 2 of 4 (10/09/16)
- 2 Corinthians 5:7
- 1 John 3:1 * - Matthew 7:11
- Numbers 21:21
- Romans 8:14-17
- Jeremiah 29:11
- John 14:30
- Proverbs 28:21
- Genesis 3:15
- Matthew 18:18
- 1 Peter 5:8
- John 10:10
- 1 Thessalonians 2:18
- Mark 16:15
If we know how to give good gifts to our kids, how much does our father know how to give gifts.
- If it’s in their best interest.
- If it’s for our good.
- If its in his ability.
Sometimes it’s not our season. A baby with a razor.
As our father, god has given us:
- Authority (authority is the ability to call for backup.)
In usage, to bind and to loose simply means to forbid by an indisputable authority, and to permit by an indisputable authority.
- God’s authority is given through the name of Jesus.
- Elevating our life to pray from a place of authority.
- God has made us heirs and joint heirs with Jesus.
- Pray as if you are an heir.
- As our father,we have to recognize that “daddy knows best.”
We relinquish our authority when:
- Our lives become about our business, not our father’s business.
- We make the choice not to submit to God’s authority.
- We speak death instead of claiming life.
He’s not asking for your perfection; he is just asking for your obedience.
Authority only works when you’re under authority.
Notes on Just Ask: Finding Strength In Life’s Greatest Disappointments - 3 of 4 (10/16/16)
- Hebrews 6
- 1 Samuel 27
- 1 Samuel 30:1
- Romans 8:28 Expectations: People and circumstances
Two things we all have in common:
- we have all been disappointment
- we all need encouragement in our disappointments.
Anytime we place an expectation on something or someone, we have the potential to be disappointed.
An unmet expectation is the birthplace of disappointment.
We can’t expect what we don’t express.
Disappointment - “to fail to stadium the hope, desire, or expectation of”
Three types of disappointment:
- Daily disappointment - this is the stuff that just gets under our skin.
- Difficult disappointments - these hurt.
- Disastrous disappointment - these make us feel like our world is literally crashing down around us.
God is with us to give us hope in the moments when what was unexpected hits.
Hebrews 6 describes the hope we have in Christ as the anchor.
Hope is not built on something but someone.
The source of your strength is that which is unseen.
“What are you calling for in life’s greatest disappointments? David said, “Bring me the ephod.”
“I’m with you, King.”
What you put on and what you wear will determine where you go.
God uses our disappointment to strengthen us more than we can imagine. In David’s greatest disappointment, God had planned a deliverance and destination.
If something goes up in flames in our life, it’s not God trying to take something from us, but to bring something to us.
It may not be all good, but God promises He can turn it around for good.
Notes On Just Ask Series - Part 4: Purpose (10/23/16)
- Jeremiah 1:5-8
- Ephesians 2:10
- Haggai 2:12-13
- Matthew 13:44-46
- Exodus 4:2 (!)
- 1 Corinthians 7:8 (!) (“enjoy the fruit of this season”)
God’s Plan For Us:
- I formed you.
- I knew you.
- I consecrated you.
- I appointed you.
Things that kill our purpose:
- Focus on comfort. (Be bold. Don’t be lazy.)
- Not being active. (Purpose is never found sitting still. It is found by searching.)
- Focusing on the present.
- Focusing on our situations. (Walk by faith and not by sight. You’ve already got acres of diamonds.)
- Focusing on people.
Be ok without validation. It’s ok if I don’t get it. Ephesians 4: “I’m your equipper, not your supplier.”
Too many people spend money they haven’t earned to buy things they don’t want to impress people they don’t like. — Will Rogers
This game looks great. Here’s a review of it.
What makes the iOS version of Mini Metro special is how you interact with it. The premise of the game is simple. You are in charge of building a transit system for your citizens. Mini Metro starts by tasking you with building London’s Tube from a few initial train stops that you connect with rail lines by dragging your finger between them. It’s the direct manipulation of the transit system — building parts up and tearing others down — that makes Mini Metro so engrossing.
Here’s some screenshots of my last three games.
Friday Recap (10/21/16)
My new favorite writing space.
To continue the theme of building some type of schedule for my site, I’m going to try something new: every Friday, I’ll do a recap of a variety of things: from that week’s posts, to events and moments in my life that I want to share.
Discussion list for this week:
- Book, Band, and Pilot
- Creative Minds: Week 8
- Adrian’s Guest Post
- October 29th’s Performance
- Writing and Planning
Wow. What a week. I’m thankful that I’ve committed to these recaps, because it’s become a way for me to reflect on my life from a week to week basis. Some weeks are busier than others, but each one should carry some kind of significance. A lot can happen in seven days, and these recaps are proving that.
I’ve found a new place to enjoy my mornings. I’ve been parking my car at the library that’s close to my house, and then running a few miles around the huge parking lot: I run around the Civic Center, Library, skate park, hotel, and repeat this route until I fill up the exercise ring on my Watch.
But the reward comes after filling that ring. That’s when I get to treat myself to the bench on the side of the library, under the trees, where the birds are chirping, and it’s quiet enough that I can focus on any writing or reading I had planned for that morning.
Book, Band, and Pilot
This morning I announced three things: my album coming November 1st, a month-long challenge of writing a book (that also starts November 1st), and the first public acknowledgement of my band. This post scares me, simply because it’s three big things that I’m publicly committing to—but I’m also confident in each one of these project, and I know it’s the right direction for my career.
Creative Minds: Week 8
Saturday night was the best Creative Minds yet. We had the most people show up so far. They were sharing poetry and stories, we had a touring spoken word artist perform a long set, and before that, I performed a song from The Mask.
Adrian’s Guest Post
For this week’s guest post, My friend, Adrian Craft, shared a love letter he wrote. I appreciate how short and simple the letter is. It’ll be a great example for those who want to be a guest, but don’t have anything that long to share.
October 29th’s Performance
Writing and Planning
This is my second week of Writing and Planning, and it has become my new favorite thing to create. I study productivity constantly, so I’m excited to have finally found a way to implement it into my writing.
Netflix’s shares jumped as much as 20 percent thanks to original shows, Eminem surprised us with a 7-minute long freestyle, titled Campaign Speech, Wolverine returns in the Logan trailer, what was known before as the NX, is now officially named the Nintendo Switch, and this trailer has me really excited for it. Rockstar never fails with their games, and this Red Dead Redemption 2 Trailer proves just that. Kendrick Lamar and Rick Rubin sat down for GQ and had a 50-minute conversation, and The New York Times released a beginners guide to running
Keep your eyes open. Record everything you see, process it, and then spit it back out in your own very personal way. — Olimpia Zagnoli
Writing a Book, Starting a Band, and Countdown to Pilot (new album November 1st)
Album: I’m releasing Pilot sooner than I expected to. Not because it’s finished, but because I have two bigger projects to focus on, and instead of putting the album on hold, I’m freeing myself from it entirely. I’ll release it November 1st, allowing me to completely focus on the next two things I mention.
Book: November 1st is Day One for me with my book writing project. Why November 1st? NaNoWriMo (National Novel Writing Month): 30 days of writing, a little over 1,600 words per day, getting me to that 50,000 word count at the end of the month. Wish me luck.
Band: Besides the album and the book (and my performance on October 29th), there’s something else that I’ve been working on: I’m starting a band. I’ll write all the details in a future post.
Publicly announcing something is the best way to hold yourself accountable, but this post makes me uncomfortable, because now, the world is expecting these things from me. It’s much easier to create when the project doesn’t exist to the world yet. Thankfully though, I’m announcing these projects because I’m very confident in each one of them: every blog post I’ve ever written has prepared me for this book, and every album I’ve recorded has prepared me for this band. They’re both natural progressions.