Sunday, May 11, 2008


The very first movie I remember seeing, is Fiddler on the Roof. We lived in Messina, close to the border to Zimbabwe. It would've been 1971 or early '72. I was three.* If my memory serves me right, we saw the movie in Messina's drive-in theather. What I remember best is Tevye singing in his deep voice, "If I were a rich man..."

I've watched the DVD many time since then. In fact, it's one of my all-time favorite movies due to the themes of culture and change.

Tonight, I saw it on stage for the first time. Theater Cedar Rapids did an incredible job! Some of the lines that get lost in the movie were even funnier on stage. The guy who played Tevye did almost as good a job as Topol in the original musical. It was a thoroughly enjoyable and memorable event.

As was this morning's. I got to go to a women's event at a local church and hear Lenchen Raeside speak. I've heard Lenchen speak many times. I'm always inspired by her passion and the way God speaks through her. And amazed that she can bounce around the stage so elegantly in stilettos. That's Lenchen for you. Very chic. Yet a very powerful speaker. I love that!

Tomorrow, I get to share at several classes at church. I'm looking forward to that. But since I'll be on all day, I'd better get some sleep. The songs from tonight's musical are still playing in my mind, though. Not a bad thing. It's a blessing to get to catch up on some cultural events.

* I know this isn't a memory that I have because of stories being told. In fact, I can't remember talking about this movie as a family, or about us having seen it or any other movies in Messina. So my folks will have to let me know if it actually is a true memory.


  1. I’m writing this to inform you about a project I am working on something that will help missionaries like you raise awareness and support. I am in the planning and design stages of launching a missionary news website (GodWitness News) and I would like you to be part of it. The purpose of the website will be to increase awareness about what missionaries are doing around the world. It will be missionary related news, by missionaries. The design I’m working on will be similar to the Yahoo News or to the BBC News websites.

    I’m a professional Internet marketer, SEO expert and web designer. I have been thinking for some time that there must be a way I can use my skills to further God’s kingdom. After doing some analysis, I discovered that although there are many missionary blogs and websites, there are not many that have been optimized correctly to get a lot of readership traffic. You are probably aware of this, but a couple of the most important ways to get a lot of traffic is by having a high Google (Google, because it gets the most search traffic) PageRank and by having new content – A LOT of new content.

    That is were you come in, with the content. Before I launch the news website, I would like to get 100 (eventually, I hope to have even more than this number, but this would be a good start) missionaries around the world to agree to be “news journalists.” If you are interested, I would like you to be one of the 100. If successful, there would be thousands of hits a day on the website. You would benefit by having many thousands of people around the world read about how God is using you, the work you are doing, and the people you are working with. Hopefully, some of the people visiting the website would support you with prayers and/or finances. Maybe some of them would want to volunteer to help with some of the projects you are working on. You could also benefit from having increased traffic to your website (each article you write could have a link to your website).

    If you choose to participate, I would like you to agree to provide at least 12 articles in a year’s time. If you don’t want to write that many, you don’t have to feel obligated to do so though. The topic choice would pretty much be up to you. You could write about events in the country, challenges you are facing, tips for new missionaries, how God provided for your needs, and more. The articles don’t even have to be all that long. If you want to write more detailed articles, that’s fine, but if you want to write short ones(minimum should probably about 300 words), that’s fine too. You can also submit videos and photos. I just ask that everything submitted is good quality (you know, dot the i’s and cross the t’s, spelled checked, etc.) and original. It’s fine if it’s been published in print before, but if the content is already on the internet, the news websites PageRank will be reduced if the content has a copy somewhere out there on the web (yeah, the search bots are picky like that). Search engines don’t care about copies of videos and photos, so no worries there. The reason I say a year is because that is the time period through which I will evaluate how well the idea is accepted and whether I should continue the project. Call it beta testing if you want But that is about the necessary time needed to make the website a success.

    If you are interested, please contact me by sending an e-mail to Please let me know your name, the country you are working in, your missions name, your website, your contact information, your website, and any questions you have. Please provide as much of that information as possible as it will be hard to keep track of everyone if I have so many participants. Sometime after I get your e-mail and once I get the site going, I will send you a user name and password for your publisher account. I may also send updates or more detailed article criteria (good titles, photo sizes, etc.). I will also send a statement of faith that will have to be agreed to. Pretty much Jesus is the only way, the truth and the light and no one comes to the Father but through him.

    I think that’s about it for now. Oh, yeah one more thing, I would like participants to add a link from their website (if they have one) or blog to the news website. In-links is another way that Google uses to establish PageRank. Also, I have had some people respond saying that they were uncomfortable with having the articles link to there blogs, if you don’t want to do that, it’s fine. And if you feel uncomfortable giving me some info, then that’s fine, I understand. I won’t sell it of course, but you don’t know me, so I can see why there would some level of distrust.

    Along with the news website, I’m thinking of launching a social networking website (maybe part of the news website) for missionaries and those interested in getting connected with missionaries. It would be very similar to myspace’s set-up, but would be geared towards the specific audience that I just mentioned. Before I launch that though, we’ll have to see how successful the news website is. It would take considerable resources to get the social networking site up and running.

    If you don’t want to write articles, adding a link on your site directed to the news site would help increase it’s PageRank. If you only can do that, email me and let me know and I will let you know when the site is ready.

    So think about it, and most importantly, pray about it! Thanks in advance!

    If you have any ideas that would help with the website, let me know!

    God Bless You!!


    PS. A little introduction to myself: I’m Joe Kolb and I’m from Britton, Michigan. I go to a church called Hope Christian Fellowship and North Ridge Church on weekdays. I’m currently working as a web/graphic design and finishing my second degree. I am engaged to an awesome girl and Lord willing, I will be getting married January 2, 2009.

  2. Ooh I love Fiddler! How fun to see it in person. :) Hope things went well today with your speaking!