March 16, 2012

I am Going to Kenya: A Blogovized Support Letter

Hey Friends and Family,

My professor, Dan Stewart, is leading a trip of Life Pacific College students, me included, to Kenya in Africa in the month of May. Admittedly, I was a little late in joining the trip (I was only able to join because someone dropped and decided not to go!), but because my friend Chantal convinced me it was not too late, I asked and whala, by the hairs of my chiny-chin-chin, I'm in! As my last summer as a student—I'm graduating in May—I wanted to take advantage and travel with some amazing people all the while discovering Christ in the people of Kenya.

But I need your help! I need prayer and money ($3,200). If you would like to support me by prayer, by all means please do so. I would be honored if you prayed for my team and I as we go. We need love, faith, wisdom, protection and guidance (for starters). Also, if you would like to support financially as well, I would be honored just the same! I wanted to make donating as easy as possible so I put a donate button below that is linked directly to my Wells Fargo Bank account through paypal.

If you, like me, don't have anything to give, you can check back here to my blog occasionally. I am attempting to write updates during trip preparation about how things are going. Also, upon returning, I will be posting and sharing about the lives and stories that we experience and encounter in Kenya as well. I appreciate any and all who have read this and are considering supporting me in any way. Love, Grace and Peace!

May God continue to open us up to His beautiful world through the partaking and sharing of our adventures in Christ.


Nick R. Pack

P.S. If you make a donation, please let me know by writing a comment below or message through facebook. Thank you!

March 11, 2012

Share a Meal, Share Your Life: Eating as Bridging

What is it about eating? Eating with others around a table?

During the practice of meal-sharing, eating a common meal, there is something in us that folds down; it's that barrier that's placed aside making *real* community (not merely "being together") more accessible. A meal brings real community (i.e. laughter, honesty and vulnerability, empathetic listening, etc.) within reach. It truly is odd in a sacred way.

I have often heard people talk about this phenomenon. People say that a common meal "brings people together." Brings people together? Does it really? I mean, it makes sense. I've experienced it.

If this is true, a common meal, than, is like a bridge to another person. It gives you a kind of accessibility that is hard to come by, a peculiar proximity. I'm not sure what it is. Maybe sharing good food acts as an appetizer for the main course: sharing your life. Food is (hopefully) packed with nutrients and other good things and is an experience of (again hopefully) tantalizing delight. A life, on the other hand, as vague as that is, is stuffed full of stories, laughable and cryable moments, wisdom and perspectives with the potential to nourish the soul. Think about how you feel after an inspiring conversation with someone you highly respect or an intimate exchange with a growing friend. These are truly transformative moments; the types of experiences branded into the memory.

Today in service, the Martzs were officially given pastorship of Lifehouse Foursquare Church. Rad indeed. After, we had a potluck. I was 30 minutes late to service and the potluck was the big-time motivator for me to get out of bed (not sure whether I should have admitted that). Are there other groups or communities that have potlucks that actually called them "potlucks"?

Anyways, the point to all this is I had a great time fellowshipping with those around my table (and a "great time" at church service, for me anyways, is a little strange). Chantal and I talked awhile about graduation, the summer and the future's future. I always want to connect with people like this, but often don't know how to. I get shy. I often need something to bring me to people. I need a meal!

Afterwards, Leighah Darnell and I were chatting about how every Sunday would benefit from such eating-experiences, not just special days. Isn't every Sunday special? Potlucks, being the people-briders they are, should be conducted weekly, no? And if not, then why? Isn't church (service) for Church and isn't Church a community and if something "works" for the sake of the community then why stop? Why postpone it? Plus, if it was every week I would probably remember to actually buy/make (probably buy) something. Just sayin'.

Since I'm not the most inviting and welcoming person, especially in the morning, it would be nice to have something, a potluck or whatever else might work, to bridge me to the lives within my own community.

March 10, 2012

I Don’t Wanna Wait, I Wanna Read!

I have been waiting for an opportune time (most likely summer…) to sit down and start chipping away at four books I've recently purchased. They have been, sadly, buried in my trunk under heaps of dirty clothes for weeks now. I bought them with an Amazon gift card I got for Christmas. Mothers sure know best, don't they? Thank you Sweet Lord (for mothers… and Amazon gift cards)! In no special order, they are:

Metaphors We Live By by George Lakoff and Mark Johnson

Dostoevsky: Language, Faith and Fiction by Rowan Williams

The Evolution of Adam: What the Bible Does and Doesn't Say about Human Origins by Peter Enns


Silence by Shusaku Endo

Soon, very soon, I will properly devour each one; probably something like this:

March 8, 2012


Caveman "Great Life" is from Yours Truly on Vimeo.

There is something good, something mesmerizing about the slow, steady brew of Caveman's "Great Life." Fluid vocal harmonies laid over light-picking and a catchy bass line all embedded in the booms and clicks of a sea of percussion. Ah, yes. Just take it all in, maybe with a good pair of headphones.

I can't help but think, this is surely how good theology sounds. Easy to take in. Smooth, not rough or forceful. Simple yet hard to pull off because of the chemistry with all its members. Yes, mmm, do enjoy.