Friday, February 23, 2007

Confusion, outrage, mission money

Here we go again with another post about school, don't you all just love these. I horribly offended one of my former teachers today. I know everybody just loves this part but I feel the need for details and background information.

To start with, as I have mentioned in previous posts, I am the official runner at my school first period. Among my other responsibilities, I collect mission money from the Junior High and one of my old religion teachers who doesn't really want to take the money up first period.

The junior high kids love to try to beat each other with which class can raise the most money. Some people feel like this shouldn't be the attitude behind giving, but the really have a lot of fun and enjoy doing it. Because I go around and get the envelopes with the money the kids will often ask me who "won" this week. Often if the totals are close then the kids will pull out there spare change and try to top the other classes total.

Today was a rather unusual day. The mission collection was to help the family of one of the students in the elementary school who has cancer. The money is going to help them with traveling expenses between here and Cleveland. Because of this everybody pulled out all the stops this week and gave a lot of money.

The junior high kids in one of the classes tried there best and came up with $75 total. This in and of itself was pretty amazing. They thought that they had a really good total and they did. However, when I got the envelope from the one teacher in the high school they had over $102 collected. I remembered at this point that I had $20 dollars in my pocket that I hadn't spent and didn't have a specific plan for. I decided that I would help the junior high out since they wanted to beat the record.

They managed to scrounge up some more money and got a total of over $104! This was exciting for everyone. They thought that it was great and I felt that was good that we were able to bless the family. Side note, that verse in the Bible about a cheerful giver, these junior high kids were doing their "conga line". It was pretty funny.

The high school teacher who ended up with the second highest amount found out what had happened. I was astonished to find out that she was furious with me. Apparently she felt that I had betrayed my position collecting the envelopes and I should have never told the other class what her classes total was. With all the hard work they put in I shouldn't be upstaging them, etc...

I was very surprised by this entire thing. The highschool doesn't really have any rewards for giving the most or anything like that. I didn't disobey any rules at all, and I thought that the fact that we were able to raise more money for the family was a good thing. I was rather upset by the whole thing because I saw this teacher right before she left for the day and she was still upset.

So, I'm fine now, I just needed to get that out. I don't understand the entire affair at all, but this is how it turned out. I guess I will just have to see what happens.

P.S. this teacher has decided that I am no longer to be trusted to carry her money envelope. Oh well, less work for me I guess.

Makeing a differance, or not

Well, this week has been crazy. I was talking to Super-K and my sister earlier this week and we agree that it has been crazy. Also, it's pretty easy to lose your focus on life. What is our true purpose in life? We know that God wants us to make an impact in our schools, but we really don't. It seems like every month or so we end up talking about how we need to make a differance. Then we go back to life and forget about it. Thats about all we discussed, but we agree that something needs to change and that most likely that something will be us.

Thats all for now here, on to other things

Tuesday, February 20, 2007


updated to add pictures
I promised a while back that I would tell everyone about the meaning behind the name of my blog. Well, here goes. The name obviously comes from the Bible verse beneath it. I have a very good group of friends (you know who you are) that I have known for at least for years now. We play together on the church worship team and have taken missons trips together as well as other such things throughout the years.

We play together and pray together, and we have also had other people pray over us. One of the things that has come up over the last couple of years is this verse. We all have to deal with day to day life and the struggles and frustrations that come with it. Many times we are under intense pressure to compromise on our beliefs. That is where this verse comes in.

Therefore take up the whole armor of God, that you may be able to withstand in the evil day, and having done all, to stand. Eph. 6:13. Many times in our lives we get to the point when we can't really see the light at the end of the tunnel. We know that God wants us to stand for righteousness and purity. We know what we need to do but it is so hard. Eventually we will all reach a point were we can't do anything more. When we reach this point we must stand.

When we have given our all and can't do anything more, we stand. We wait and trust in God with the belief that his ways are higher than ours, and we stand. We do not back down, we do not give in, we stand. There is a point were we can't do anything even if we want to, and at this point we stand.

We stand by refusing to give in on our values and beliefs. A good example of this is the recent controversy with the school board. There may come a time when we have given all the information that we can and done all that we can do. When this time comes we will not back down, neither will we try to cause a scene or start a fight. We will stand.

Perhaps the best picture of this that I can think of is when I went on a trip to Washington D.C. this last summer. The trip was an amazing time as we went around our capitol praying. The most rewarding experience of all though was going to the Supreme Court and praying silently with the life tape over our mouths. We didn't react to the jeers and heckling from passerby. We didn't back down to the intense heat and fatigue. We simply stood.

That is my challenge to all of you now. God has given each of us a battlefield. The time may come when you don't know what to do. Maybe there won't be anything that you can do. When that time comes, Stand.

Maybe Change is Good.

I've been thinking again. I know, scary. Change is sad, scary, and sometimes painful. In spite of all these things change is also good. We grow and develop new ideas that we would have never imagined before. We sometimes lose friendships but we develop new ones that are often just as important to us.

As we grow God is able to use us in ways that we never thought possible before. I am now able to speak into the lives of some of my friends from school. Three years ago I wouldn't have even thought that these friendships would be possible. My church is much deeper in worship and prayer than it was five years ago. God uses change to help us grow.

If we don't change we become stagnant and start smelling funny. But really, change allows us to grow as individuals and helps us to continue to grow into the person that good has destined for us to be. Just my quick thoughts for the moment.

Keep your eyes on God, even though life seems to swirl around you like a mighty storm. He alone will keep you safe and preserve your life.

Saturday, February 17, 2007

What I Believe

Like everyone else I think that it is time to do a post on this random drug testing issue. I am in favor of the idea of random drug testing on the high school level. I know that this is a very divisive issue, but this is the main reason I am in favor of it. I am also totally in favor of an abstinence based sex education program.

This is an excellent tool to help my peers say no. It is very easy for the school to say that all they need to do is educate us on this issue, but in reality it's more than that. There is immense peer pressure in our schools today. Even if you are a "good kid" who normally wouldn't even think of doing something like drugs, the desire to fit in and be accepted can overrule all at times.

So many kids in the school system today are searching for acceptance in one way ore another. I am fortunate to come from a family who has always loved me and supported me. Many of my peers for one reason or another do not have this unconditional love and acceptance. Even if you do have a strong family, there is so much emphasis placed on fitting in at school. It is so easy to feel alienated. I can tell you from personal experience that going to school everyday and feeling like you have no friends and like you don't fit in at all can drive people to do things that they would not normally do.

It is very easy to start hanging out with the wrong people simply because they accept you. For some people the need to be accepted will cause them to allow themselves to be pressured into drugs as well as sex. I feel like this is a very important tool to help these people to say no. It is currently not extremely hard for a student to become involved with drugs and for nobody to find out. This gives the students who aren't necessarily strong enough to stand on their own a tool to help them stand.

I also feel that an abstinence based sex-ed program is definitely the right thing to do. This will teach students that they can say no. This is contrary to the system we have right now which teaches what to do when you have sex. This is not something that you have to do and I feel that my peers need to be taught this.

I hope that all this makes sense because it is rather late. I definitely don't think that this is a closed issue. My dear Uncle has raised some questions about whether or not the random drug testing is constitutional. For right now the Supreme Court has ruled that it is constitutional, however, this is also the Supreme Court that continues to allow legalized murder.

I don't have any answers really, but I think that this is something that we all need to continue praying about.

Thursday, February 15, 2007

Snow Snow snow snow snooooooooooowwwww........

In case you didn't get the title, we have recently had a lot of snow. While the good folks up in New York will probably laugh at us, oh well. I don't think we could really handle the 11 1/2 feet of snow that they recently had. My back is a little sore still from shoveling yesterday, but it was worth it. I have one specific friend who hates snow. I have to agree that it is rather uncomfortable sometimes, but it is still definitely worth it. The following are some of the good things about snow.

I first of all like the entire not being in school thing. No offense intended to any of my dearly beloved classmates, but I don't hate not seeing you very much at all. I have enjoyed spending some time with mainly my family and a some of my friends I don't see as much of during school. I also like the entire aspect of driving in snow (although I think my father feels differently!!) I enjoy the challenge and I am careful about it,unlike some relatives who shall not be named (Senor B).

Also, for some reason I think that it looks pretty cool.

In other totally unrelated news, I discovered that a stray cat is living in our basement. Normally our cat Fuzzy would NEVER have allowed something like this. However, he is not with us right now. Check out my mothers blog to see why. The perpetrator is a rather plump cat with a round face, one small ear and the other ear missing. It is a he. This is all I know about the intruder. Any other information will be posted upon its release.

Thats all for now since I still have a little bit of homework that I should have been doing the last couple of days. Have a great day!

Monday, February 12, 2007

I Have a Name!!

For those of you who are not extremely keen and observant, let it now be known that my blog has a name. It's great isn't it. I will write a post on why the name is what it is later. I have homework to do now. Amazing isn't it, I have time to post in school, but out of school I have to much homework. See the oxymoronicness (spelling???) of it and stare Super-K.

I promise to post with all due speed to use a government term.

More School Outrage

Many of you who read my last post realize that I know everything that should be changed at my school. After all, I am me. Well, today has been an interesting day so far to say the least. We had a meeting at lunch for everybody who is interested in joining National Honor Society this year. Over two thirds of my class of 67 kids is eligible this year. Because of this they are trying to thin the ranks a little bit.

The latest scheme is a little over the top personally. We were told that we are pretty much required to attend the coming home dance this year if we want to join NHS. The exact wording was something along the lines of, "If you are not there then we will know that you really aren't commit ed to being a part of NHS." I was rather irate. I have several things going on this weekend including Doon's birthday party, and now I have to go to this silly dance?

I am deeply pained, greatly saddened, etc, etc, etc.....

Oh well, what can you do. I will update on the specifics of this grievous situation as soon as I figure out what I am going to do.

P.S. my school does not have any rules against blogging during school hours so this is legal.

Wednesday, February 7, 2007

Two Hour Delay

Two hour delays are supposed to be a good thing right? You get to stay home, sleep in (supposedly) and take care of anything you forgot to do the night before. Well all these things are true, however, they seem to lose relevance as soon as I get to school.

There is a new principal at my school this year, and like most new leaders he has been changing things around a little bit here and there. There are some good changes and some changes that most people don't like, (although these kids complain about everything). There is one change that I do not like at all though. This is the schedule for two hour delays.

Instead of spreading the changes out over all the period, or rotating which periods are shortened, everything comes out of the morning periods each day. This causes problems for me most of all. You see, I am the office runner first period each day. I am in charge of getting the attendance slips from all of the teachers first period, taking a hard copy of the announcements to each room and anything else that needs done. I am normally done near the end of first period or the first few minutes of second period.

However, when the periods are shortened, everything that has to get done still has to get done. Because of this I miss all of 2nd period as well as most of 3rd period. This becomes very annoying, and in fact can make it difficult to make up work in these classes. Because of this I am going to talk to my principal tomorrow and see if maybe things might be able to be changed.

On a slight side note. This schedule also hurts many of the teachers and makes it difficult for them. Hopefully this great crisis will be resolved and peace will once again reign in Daniels world.

Tuesday, February 6, 2007

Go'in Courtin

This is in response to several questions that I have received on my no dating policy. First of all-I do not believe in dating. This has raised many questions, but here are my basic reasons.

First of all, the American idea of dating is not really based on true love and respect. To often it is more about the physical aspect of the relationship rather than anything else. Another reason is that more good friendships are ruined when people decide to date than I would care to think of. I see so many people hurt everyday because something went wrong with their relationship. The whole concept that dating teaches is that "we'll try this relationship, but if things don't work out, or if one of us gets uncomfortable for any reason, it's done." This fail and bail mentality just sets you up for failure in the future, because you never really learn to work through things.

Also, on high school dating, what is the point of dating when you almost for sure will not end up marrying the other person. To those who say that you need experience in relationships, I say that the hormone and emotion laden high school years aren't exactly the best time in the world to learn.

The other thing which I really wish I didn't have to mention is the physical/sexual side of many dating relationships. So many people who never intended to lose their virginity do in dating relationships today.

So you may ask, how will you find a wife. Well, in comes the concept of courting. This is something that I heard several years ago and I have never forgotten.

The entire concept is based not on who you think is the best person for you, but who is the person who will fulfill God's destiny for you. If you think that you may have found the person that God wants you to marry, then you pray about it. You then go to the girl and ask her to pray about it. If it is something that you both feel like God wants you to pursue, then you go to the girls father, or spiritual leader if her father is not saved and ask him to pray about it.

You then get to know one another not by spending time on quiet, you and me only dates, but by spending time with each others families. You spend time in groups and get to know how you each act around those you know closest, and found out what they think of you.

This entire process is about finding God's person for you and establishing a life long relationship.

I know this is probably not the best of explanations, but this is how I see it. If you have any questions or clarifications, let me know.

Monday, February 5, 2007

Cold Day

Today we get a cold day!! I've never even heard of one of these before, but apparently, if it gets cold enough the schools close. I love this! Maybe the whole wind chill down to -30 helps but whatever it takes. I don't have a lot of time today because I have piano lessons in an hour and I need to get ready. I will think of something to write about soon.


Saturday, February 3, 2007


Today I sent in my application for AOSFYC. For those of you who don't know what this stands for it is the All Ohio State Fair Youth Choir. I am very excited about this opportunity. AOSFYC is essentially living at the state fair for three weeks and singing the entire time. For anyone who knows me you now that this is totally up my ally. There is a slight conflict with scheduling though. My parents are planning on celebrating there twentieth wedding anniversary during the same time period. You are not normally supposed to leave at all during the fair. However, I sent in a letter with my application stating the circumstances and hopefully they will be willing to work with me. I am praying that everything works out because I would absolutely love to be able to do this. I did pray about it before I sent in the application and I felt a peace about it so, we will see what happens. I'm putting the website for AOSFYC under my links in case anyone is interested in more information. I will also update whenever I find out anything. In case anyone was wondering I found out about AOSFYC through District Choir. That is a different post for a different day.

Friday, February 2, 2007

I've been thinking today (Uh Oh they all say), no really, I have. The subject of today's deep thought is CHANGE. Life around me seems to be changing so fast. I'm already a Junior in High School and they want me to start thinking about what I want to do for the rest of my life. I am personally not really sure at this point. I have a couple of ideas such as music and politics, but I don't know for sure on anything.

It seems weird though because when I started High School two and a half years ago this stuff was nowhere near my mind. I was worried about the fact that I didn't seem to have any friends and I didn't fit in at all. Now I seem to have quite a few decently good friends and the majority of people I know will at least talk to and get along with me. Changes like this aren't bad at all. It just seems like it all happened overnight and tomorrow it will be gone and my life will be in a totally different place.

Speaking of friendships and change, have you ever noticed the way that your friendships seem to constantly change? For the first ten to twelve years of my life I didn't really have a "good friend" my own age who I got along with and was my friend. I had my siblings who I wouldn't trade for the world, but not another guy my age I could really relate to. I guess what I really wanted was the type of friendship that you read about in books, or at least I read about in books. When I was I think about thirteen I met that good friend that I had always wanted and prayed for. For the next couple of years things seemed to go along great. We got along relatively well with each others siblings and we even all played together quite a bit.

That changed though. As we both started to go to different schools we started to grow apart to an extent. Although there was never really one defining moment of separation we did end up getting in several fights over the years. I didn't want things to change because my philosophy had somehow ended up being if we are friends now then we need to be friends for life. I guess that is just more of the book reading part of me again, but the changes really did hurt.

Gradually things continued to grow apart, and today even though I still wouldn't mind being good friends it just doesn't seem to happen. It's not like we dislike each other, but we really don't seem to be the I can share my heart with you kind of friends anymore.

Over the last couple of years I have made some other good friends. Some of them are mainly my friends and some of them are friends that I share as it where with my siblings. The relationships are always changing though. While I realize that not all change is bad, the change that hurts usually tends to be in the back of your mind. Relationships will change over the years and some will end while others will strengthen and grow. I do wish that things didn't have to change, that I didn't have to keep doing new and sometimes painful things, but where would I be if nothing ever changed in my life.

I would never be the person God has destined for me to be if it wasn't for the changes in my life. I have also started to develop new friendships with many different kinds of people and I think that I can give and take something different in each of them. Yes change is painful, and sometimes it seems unnecessary, but God is in control ultimately and we can trust that he will work things out in the end. I am glad for the path that my life has taken and for the experiences I have had. Some of them may even lead to that whole career thing.

God you are in control and I trust you totally.

Sorry if not all of this makes great sense, but sometimes you just need to "vent" as my family calls it and get things off your chest.

P.S. to all my friends, don't think that I think any less of you, each and every person that God has put in my life is important to me.