Jesus, the Great Dumping Ground

junk_yard

I recently returned from a week-long visit to see my brother who lives in Carson City, Nevada. He needed help with some major house-hold chores and projects. One of our tasks took us to the local land fill off of Highway 50, where we deposited over 450 lbs. of yard waste, metal, plastic, rotten wood, and an old car seat.

While there I could not help but notice the sky, which is always beautiful in Carson City. However, above the mountains of waste and refuse it’s beauty was even more striking. There it was, heaven looming above the garbage piles below. The metaphor became strikingly evident: the pile of garbage was our sin, the land-fill was Christ Jesus, the sky was heaven where we will one day go, free from sin. As I looked at the piles of garbage I was loathed to realize that whenever I sin more gets added to the piles of waste. Ugh! We all owe a debt to Jesus who took on all of our sin. Every evil deed and thought was laid on him, and by His stripes we were all healed.

I resolved anew to live by the power and grace of the Lord, Jesus. I was reminded of Psalm 19:13 that says, “Keep back thy servant also from presumptuous (willful, on-purpose) sins; Let them not have dominion over me: Then shall I be upright, And I shall be clear from great transgression.”

This really struck home to me, for my brother is suffering mightily because of some very wrong choices he made in the past. I pray he will come out cleansed and renewed through his ordeal. We vowed to not pile more of our own garbage onto Christ and to keep our hearts and eyes fixed on the blue sky of heaven above, where Christ has gone to prepare a place for us.

What a glorious day when there will be no more piles of refuse. Amen! Come, Lord Jesus!

Happy Father’s Day

Hi, Guys! Wow, I had a great Father’s Day today. The message in church was awesome. My son called me and shared the latest. He is having a blast on his new job – getting paid and having fun!

I completed an easy 12-mile ride on the trusty TRIcon. A young man named James pulled me over with tons of questions, which I was very happy to answer. When I got home Mama had prepared a great dinner. I’m happy and full and very thankful to God for all of my blessings. Happy Father’s Day; blessings to you and yours.

Bible Reading

Millicent and I made only a few New Year’s Resolutions this go around. One of them was to read the Bible together from cover to cover in one year. We found a schedule on the Internet, and so far, have actually stuck to it. We are having big fun.

It had been a while since I had read the Word of God from cover to cover; Millicent never had. So away we went. We will be reading Chapters 12 and 13 of Joshua tonight. The story of Israel is astounding. At this point the people have just subdued all the kings of the realm and possessed almost all the land promised to their fore-fathers, Abraham Jacob, and Issac.

In an attempt to deepen our understanding of those ancient sites, we have been searching on the Internet for pictures and additional information. I came across a truly great web site. It’s called Different Spirit. Here’s the link:

http://www.differentspirit.org/index.php.

This site is packed full of great information. It is very well laid out and organized. It explains much about Israel, faith in Christ and His kingdom which is on the way. If you are interested in such things, this is a great resource. I just thought I’d share.

Take care. God bless you and yours.

David

TRIcon Upgrades and Maintenance

Hi, Guys!

Haven’t checked in for a while; just wanted to say hello and tell you about some minor upgrades and maintenance on the AZUB TRIcon.

I switched out my front two headlights. I now have two “Metro” units by Cygolite. Man, are they bright. One of the six possible modes called “Daylightening” flashes or pulses with 500 lumens of light. It truly is like lightening. The manufacturer recommends this mode only for daytime riding. I can see why; it’s impossible to miss those strobes. Another mode called “Steady Pulse” is also a flashing type mode, but the lights do not go completely out during the cycle, they only dim slightly. Even that mode is 360 lumens bright.

Even on the lowest possible setting, night time riding is a breeze. I have to make sure I don’t point them too high into the eyes of oncoming motorist. The mounting system is familiar and allows me to literally point each light in any direction. Plus, the locking device guarantees the lights will never come off until you want them to. I had a problem with that when using the previous lights.

Bottom line: I love them. The best part is that they are USB rechargeable. I can attach them to any regular USB charger for a few hours or even to my USB computer port and they are good to go. On low setting they can shine for 12 hours. If I use only one that means I can have light for 24 hours before recharging. On the dimmest setting with two lights shining, I can’t believe the amount of light they make. Awesome!

Cygolite Metro bicycle lights.

New lights and pedals.

I also switched the pedals to Shimano M530 SPD units. These are clipped on both sides instead of only one like the previous M324 SPD units were. I figured that I’m never really going to ride the TRIcon without being clipped in, so why not just switch to pedals with clips on both sides. That way I won’t have to fumble, turning the pedals before I can get locked in. I’m not sure why but the new pedals seem to support the bottom of my biking shoes better. I have not had any hot spots on my feet, even after hours of fairly heavy pedaling.

Maybe it’s because there is an extension on the forward side of the clip, which the M324s don’t have. I’m not sure; it just seems like more the bottom of my shoe is engaged. Anyway, I like them. I moved the older units to my TREK 700 hybrid, which I ride to work several times a week.

Also I did a bit of maintenance today. I purchased a Park Tool Hyperglide Lockring Tool (FR-5), a chain whip, and a gear cleaning brush to remove and scrub/polish up the rear cluster and derailleur. The lock-ring that holds the chain rings in place has a grooved surface that bites into the matching surface on the smallest gear. You can see the grooves on the top surface of the smallest gear in the picture. It made an unnerving grinding sound when I loosened it. It sounded as if I had broken something, but all was well.

Rear cluster.

Disassembled rear cluster

Back of rear cluster unit.

Cleaning the back of the cluster unit was a bit tedious.

I was very surprised to find that the first eight gears of the cluster were all riveted together into one unit. Only gears one and two were separate. I was a bit disappointed not to get the chance to ticker with separate gears and spacers. Also cleaning the eight gears as a unit was tedious. Removing the cluster was straight forward. There are plenty of excellent videos on YouTube that show you exactly what to do. Anyway, she’s back together and ready for my next ride.

Reassembled rear cluster.

All back together and shiny.

Take care! Go Seahawks!

Jade Plants

Was walking by the cactus garden the other day and noticed that both my smaller Jade plants are in full bloom. The first photograph is of a species commonly called Finger Jade. I’ve also seen it called “Gollum” on the Internet. I believe the Latin name for both is crassula ovata.

It’s one my many attempts to create a Bonsai tree. I think it’s actually going to make it.

Finger Jade - crassula ovate, 'Gollum'

Finger Jade – crassula ovate, ‘Gollum’

This second photograph is also a thriving sample of jade that was borrowed from the tip of a large plant in the neighborhood. I’m glad we got it, because they are about the totally mow down that property to replace it with condos. It’s in full bloom also and is ready for some serious pruning. Beautiful!

crassula ovata

Jade Plant