.......... .. .. ........... "Once In A While You Get Shown The Light In The Strangest Of Places If You Look At It Right" :Robert Hunter

All of the music recordings on this site are recordings of independent origin (ROIOs) Music that has not been officially released. If you are an artist or a legal representative of an artist and you do not want your ROIO shared on my site for free among your fans (and creating new fans), just tell me in the comment area and I will remove them. By the way these recordings exist. They won't go away. All of them can be found at various places on line. Sharing just keeps the fans that support the artists from having to get ripped off by purchasing them on auction sites, and it also introduces music to people who would never have known the artist, creating a stronger fan base.

Monday, September 26, 2011

Strange how things happen sometimes

I was over at Grateful Breed blog and he had posted about a significant illness he is going through. And because of this people have commented to show their concern, and several have said they will pray for him.

Well the strange thing is he is a self proclaimed atheist, but beacause his blog has google adds, this interesting add showed up on the post about his illness. It's called "Grace Prayer". It's an online site that links you up with a group of Christians who pray for your needs.

Kind of cool if you ask me and somewhat ironic that it showed up on an Atheists blog, while he is going through a serious illness. Anyway, I sure hope he gets better, and if you could go over there and offer some prayers it couldn't hurt.

Wednesday, September 14, 2011

What is the value of human life? or In Whos Hands Are You?

What is the value of human life?
People place a high value on human life. In fact most of us when asked we would say there is not much that is worth more. We would say that a murderer or some terrorist does not “value” human life and that is our way of showing how great a wrong it is. But what is the true value of a human life? In the world today there are, at last estimate, close to 7 billion humans on the earth. We often see things that are rare as having great value but human life is not rare at all, but instead there is an over abundance. But something in us (at least most of us) tells us that human life is precious. People that believe in evolution believe we are just an evolved life form, or just an animal, and that would make a human of no greater value than a cow, pig, dog, lizard, bug, or even a plant. They may argue that the thing in us that tells us that human life is precious is just a survival mechanism that has evolved in us and that animals without this have ceased to exist due to natural selection. Well that is another debate and one that I would choose to take the side of we have more value than just to “survive” as a species.
So back to the question “What is the value of life?” Some would say all people are created equal, and therefore they all have the same value. I would say we actually are all created unequal, because we are not all the same, and each of our lives will have a different value bases on how we use it. We may all have equally potential value, but it has no value as potential, it has to be put to use. In many cases this life we value so much is not used in a way that maximizes its value. So let me put it to you this way.
I have a basketball in my hands, and I am going to ask you “what is the value of this basketball?” If it is an NBA game ball it is around $90.00. If it is a Spalding T1000 it lists for about $55.00. And in my hands, even though I’m a decent basketball player, that’s all it is worth, about the cost of the ball at the local store. But if you put that same ball in Kobe Bryant’s hands or in the hands of Dirk Norwitzki it has a different value all together.

That is the same with my life. If left in my hands it has value for sure, but is it the most value that my life can be worth? You see I feel that we were each made for a purpose, and each of us has a different purpose and that’s why we are all different. And when we are used for that unique purpose we maximize our value. But when we are used for the wrong purpose our value is diminished greatly. It is like a tool that is used for the wrong job. A hammer or a saw both have great value as tools but a hammer has little value when used as a saw. Our lives are much the same as this. It is also who is in control of the tool that is important. A carpenter knows which tool to use for what purpose, but another might not know and put the tools to use for the wrong jobs and thus diminish their value. So how do place my life in the hands of someone that knows my purpose to maximize the value of my life?

Bertrand Russell a self proclaimed atheist once said “unless you assume there is a God, the question of life’s purpose is meaningless.” So I guess all you atheists can just stop reading right here. But really I don’t think that, I think atheist or God believing we all can sense that life is valuable and that there is a deeper meaning than just selfish self fulfillment. It is just hard for an Atheist to come up with the answer to the question, but the question is not meaningless. We can discover what something was made for or be used for (its purpose) by asking the one that made it. Take for example a car part. If you know nothing about cars, and you saw a piston or a valve or cam shaft it would be hard for you to determine their purpose. But if you talked to the designer of the car he could tell you how each one has value and purpose and are important when they are working together , but of little value when not used for their purpose. We are a lot like that, we have all been made for a special reason that fits into a bigger thing and when we are all operating in our purpose it will run smoothly but that has never been realized because so many of us are parts that are in rebellion to the plan and purpose of the designer.

So what did God your creator design and make you for? Colossians 1:16 says, For by Him (God) all things were created that are in heaven and that are on earth, visible and invisible, whether thrones or dominions or principalities or powers. All things were created through Him and for Him. So for starters you were made FOR Him, not for you. The bible says God thinks about you in this way, (Jeremiah 29:11) For I know the thoughts that I think toward you, says the LORD, thoughts of peace and not of evil, to give you a future and a hope. So God created with peace not evil in mind and has a hopeful future for you if you follow his plan and purpose for your life.

So what was Gods original plan for humans? In the Garden when man was created he had fellowship with God, so one of the main reason God created us is for relationship for God's own PLEASURE (for Him).

Psa 149:4 For the LORD takes pleasure in his people: he will beautify the meek with salvation.

Phl 2:13 For it is God which works in you both to will and to do of [his] good pleasure.

Rev 4:11 You are worthy, O Lord, to receive glory and honour and power: for you have created all things, and for your pleasure they are and were created.

Eze 18:32 For I have no pleasure in the death of him that dies, says the Lord GOD: therefore turn [yourselves], and live.

Luk 12:32 Fear not, little flock; for it is your Father's good pleasure to give you the kingdom.

He created us to share His creation (His kingdom) with us and It brings him pleasure to do so.  But He does not force us to be with Him.  We have to want it and choose to.   

Ephesians 2:10 says, For we are His workmanship, created in Christ Jesus for good works, which God prepared beforehand that we should walk in them. So this is part of God's purpose is for us to do the good works that he places in front of us. Realization of this is the beginning of maximizing the value of your life on earth. But in the end God values our eternal life. He is concerned with if we are going to choose to spend our eternal lives with Him of without Him. Spending your life with him in the end is how to maximize your life, and we get this short physical life to make that choice.

My life in My hands has some value, but my life in GODS HANDS is priceless. The price is God's only Son. For God so loved the world He gave His only begotten Son. So that whoever believes in Him shall have everlasting life. God must see great value in each of us to give up so much to save us from ourselves.  Just so we can spend forever with Him.

Sunday, September 11, 2011

Why Does God Allow Evil like 9/11?

Why Does God Allow Evil like 9/11?
By Rick Warren

The horrific mass murder of innocent Americans on 9/11 left all rational people shocked, angry, grief-stricken and numb. Our tears flowed freely and our hearts carried a deep ache.

With pain that is so heartfelt and so personal, it’s only natural to ask, Why does God allow such evil to happen? If God is so great and so good, why does he allow human beings to hurt each other?

The answer lies in what is both our greatest blessing and our worst curse: our capacity to make choices. God has given us a free will. Made in God's image, he has given us the freedom to decide how we will act and the ability to make moral choices. This is one asset that sets us apart from animals, but it also is the source of so much pain in our world. Every one of us is capable of making selfish, self-centered or even evil choices. Whenever that happens, people get hurt.

Sin ultimately is selfishness. I want to do what I want, not what God tells me to do. Unfortunately, sin always hurts others, not just ourselves.

God could have eliminated all evil from our world by simply removing our ability to choose. He could have made us puppets -- marionettes on strings that he pulls. By taking away our ability to choose, evil would vanish.

But God doesn't want us to be puppets. He wants to be loved and obeyed by people who freely, voluntarily choose to love him and each other. Love is not genuine if there is no other option.

Yes, God could have kept the terrorists from completing their suicidal missions. He could have short-circuited their ability to choose their own will instead of his. But, to be fair, God also would have to do that to all of us. While you and I aren't terrorists, we do hurt others with our own selfish decisions and actions.

In a world of free choices, God's will is rarely done! Doing our own will is much more common -- much easier. Don't blame God for the tragedy of 9/11. Blame people who ignored what God says to do: "Love your neighbor as yourself."

In heaven, God's will is done perfectly. That's why there is no sorrow, pain or evil there. But this is earth, a fallen, imperfect place. We must choose to do God's will every day. It isn't automatic. That is why Jesus told us to pray, "Thy will be done on earth, as it is in heaven."

The Bible explains the root of evil: "This is the crisis we're in: God's light streamed into the world, but men and women everywhere ran for the darkness ... because they were not really interested in pleasing God" (John 3:19, Message). We're far more interested in pleasing ourselves than we are in pleasing the one who made us.

Many other questions race through our minds during dark days, but the answers will not come from pollsters, pundits or politicians. We must look to God and his Word for comfort and direction, for answers to our questions. We must humble ourselves and admit that each of us often chooses to ignore what God wants us to do.

I suspect houses of worship across America have been packed this weekend, as they were the weekend after 9/11. In times of crisis we cry out to connect with our Creator. The urge is deep-seated and universal. The first words uttered by millions on Sept. 11, 2001, were, "Oh, God!"

We were made for a relationship with God, but he waits for us to choose him. He is ready to comfort, guide and direct us through our grief. But the choice is ours.

Well said Pastor Warren.

Wednesday, September 7, 2011

Palatki and Honanki Ruins, near Sedona Arizona

About twelve miles west of Sedona (as the crow flies) there are two Sinagua cliff dwellings or ruins called Palatki and Honanki. The Sinagua, are thought by the archaeologists who study this stuff to be ancestors of the Hopi, and lived at these sites from about AD 1100 to 1300. These sites not only have some impressive ruins to view but also have many examples of Native American rock art.
Palatki is the site closer to Sedona and it has a short 1/4 mile trail from the parking lot to the ruins. The ruins are up against the base of a large red rock cliff in a curved alcove with and overhang that gives the structures some natural protection from weather. At Palatki there are two main sections of the ruins, leading to speculation by the "smart guys" of there being two clans that lived side by side here.
 But who really knows, and I would guess that no one ever will. The largest of the two main structures here is two stories tall with some rock art farther up on the cliff wall indicating it may have even been three stories at one time. But there are some other small partial structures as well, in between the two main areas.
There is also another short path that leads to some impressive rock art that is well worth seeing while you are there that has this round shield or circle design and many other animal type images.
After seeing this site you will want to see Honanki that is a bit farther west. Honanki was apparently the larger of the two dwellings when it was inhabited. Again it is situated along the base of a large red rock cliff.  At a place called Loy Butte, right next to Loy Canyon. 
Loy Butte and Loy Canyon is named after the Loy family that homesteaded the area back in the old days.  I have met a man named Robert Loy who was born up in Oak creek Canyon more than 80 years ago.  He told me his father was offered land in Sedona at a nickle and acre and did not buy it because he did not think it was good to graze cattle on.  Little did he know how the prices would be today, and so it goes.
 Anyway Honanki ruins is really one main alcove of structures with several more structures scattered along the bottom of a large cliff. 
Along with that there is some very impressive rock art all around the surrounding area.  One thing of note, is that in summer I have seen rattlesnakes in this area, more than once and heard of others seeing them too, so watch your step!
     When you go to Honanki ruins it is just past a parking area for the Loy Canyon Trail.  If you have time Loy Canyon is a beautiful and remote area with fantastic red rock scenery, and also has several undeveloped ruins and sites.
  Some of my favorites that I have found are hidden in this canyon, and I will let them stay that way. 
You will have to find them the same way I did through exploration.  But I highly recommend you hike up this beautiful canyon.  The trail is long and takes you all the way up the rim to the pine forest above, but I tend to just stay down in the canyon myself. 
Currently managed by the U.S. Forest Service under the Red Rock Pass Program and there is a fee to park, in other words you must purchase a Red Rock Pass.  I believe you can buy them at the parking areas.  Remember these sites are protected by the Archaeological Resources Protection Act. These laws prohibit digging, removing artifacts, damage and defacement of archaeological resources on public lands, and provide felony and/or misdemeanor prosecution with imprisonment up to ten years and fines up to $100,000.

Access:   From Sedona: You take Hwy. 89A south from West Sedona and continue past the last traffic light for five miles. Just past mile marker 365, turn right onto Forest Road 525. Go north for 5 miles and when F.R. 525 bears left, continue straight ahead onto Forest Road 795 for two miles. This road will lead directly into the Palatki parking lot.

An alternative way to access Palatki it to take Dry Creek Rd. out west from Sedona. There are signs at every intersection that will direct you towards Palatki. At the end of Dry Creek Rd, turn left onto Boynton Pass Road (FR 152C). At the next stop sign, turn left again. In a couple of miles, the pavement will end and you should continue on the rough gravel road for three miles until you reach another T intersection where you should turn right. It is 2 miles to Palatki from this intersection. These roads are generally passable to passenger cars when dry, but it is not regularly maintained by the County and has some rough and rocky stretches.

From Cottonwood: Take 89A north from Cottonwood. About 1/2 mile north of mile marker 364, turn left onto a dirt road (Forest Road 525 to Forest Road 795; passable for passenger cars when dry), and drive 7 miles to Palatki Heritage Site and the parking lot.  To get to Honanki you just continue on FR 525 past the FR 795 turn off another 4.5 miles.  This is all dirt roads and can be rough in some seasons.  But it is some very beautiful country to drive through!

For more information http://www.fs.fed.us/r3/coconino/recreation/red_rock/palatki-ruins.shtml

Tuesday, September 6, 2011

Mountain Bike Gooseberry Mesa, Utah

One of the great mountain bike destinations of sourthern Utah is a place called Gooseberry Mesa. Gooseberry mesa ia a table top mesa located southwest of Zion National Park. It has a well defined trail system that was invented by and for mountain bikers. Gooseberry mesa has a mix of slickrock and single track trails in a pinion and juniper forest enviroment.
The mesa has large patches of exposed sandstone, that is white, gray, and some pink in color. Some areas are large flat and smooth and some are more divided lumps that you have to go over and around to navigate the trail. The trails are pretty easy to stay on for the most part because someone has painted dots on the stone to keep you on the right path.  One notable area is called "Gods Skateboard Park" where there is some large sections of flact rock and plenty of areas to freelance off the marked trails.
Here is a little video of my brother in law, my nephew, and myself to give you an idea of what it looks like.
Some of the trail has some technical sections. But in most cases I found it to be very rideable, but if you have problems just walk the tuff parts. The trail takes you out to the south edge of the mesa where you can see across a valley over to Little Creek Mesa another great mountain bike desination, that I covered already in this blog http://arizjones.blogspot.com/2010/07/mountain-bike-adventures-in-utah.html
Once you get to the rim the trail heads west along the rim and leads you out to a narrow exposed place called "The Point". At The Point you will have unblocked view in all directions.
Here is a picture of me riding along the rim near The Point. It's a long way down from here to be sure.
If you head back down the dirt road you can catch a trail thet then takes you northeast along the northwest rim of the mesa. This section has some great views as well.
This section might be my favorite due to the great views.  It is just one amazing spot after another, over looking the Virgin River Valley, with the massive cliffs of the Zion region in the background. 
Honestly photos just can't capture the way thsi looks because it is just so big and vast of a panorama. 
As you can see in some places you are just right on the edge of this huge cliff that drops of what seems like thousands of feet.  And the scenery is enough to distract you so be careful. 
Here is a trail map that can be handy. I have always gone out on the South Rim Trail and then come back on the North Rim Trail (used to be called "That Dam Trail") and then go out on what used to be called Steves Rim Job. Since I have often camped I would also ride around on the Slick Rock 101 and the Bowls and Ledges and then link that with the Hidden trail for a second ride.
From Springdale - drive 4 miles west on UT-9 to the east end of Rockville turning left on Bridge Road. This can be easy to pass so keep your eyes open. Go 1.6 miles, crossing over the Virgin River, the turning left at a T-intersection onto the Smithsonian Butte Scenic Backway. Follow maintained dirt road 4.9 miles turning right on Gooseberry Mesa Road. Sections of this road can be very very rough. After 3.6 miles, turn left onto an unsigned double track and go 1 mile to the trailhead at a cattle gate.

From St. George, drive north about 7 miles on I-15 then go east on UT-9 to Hurricane, UT. In Hurricane, turn right on UT-59 heading west for 14.4 miles. Look for Smithsonian Butte Scenic Backway signs, you'll make a left onto a maintained dirt road. This is an unmarked road located between mile markers 8 and 9. Head north 2.9 miles then left at the fence signed Gooseberry Mesa Road. Drive 3.6 miles on dirt road taking a left onto an unsigned double track and go 1 mile to the trailhead at a cattle gate.

Here is a link to my Little Creek Mesa page.  It is just across the valley south of Gooseberry Mesa. 

Monday, September 5, 2011

Mountain Biking, Red Canyon, Utah

One of my favorite mountain biking destinations that I have been to is Red Canyon, in southern Utah. This place has great scenery and nice trails. The scenery is a lot like Bryce Canyon but they let you ride a mountain bike through it.

Here is a little video of my brother in law, nephew, and me at some places along the Thunder Mountain trail.

It has around 34 miles of single track and there are some jeep trail opportunities near by that are not in the park. There is also a paved bike trail along the highway that makes for safe transit to trail heads.

The trails are very well maintained and go through a wonderland of red rock formations. The Thunder Mountain trail alone is worth the trip.

One of the best things about Red Canyon is the campgrounds with hot showers. It is pretty sweet to be able to ride right out of camp to fantastic trails and then end back at you camp and get a nice shower. This is a must do if you love mountain biking and are in southern Utah in the summer.

Here are the trails.
Losee Canyon Trail: This 2.9 mile moderate trail begins at the bottom of Losee Canyon off Castro Canyon Road. This trail heads east and connects with the middle section of the Cassidy trail.
Cassidy Trail: This 8.9 mile strenuous trail is named for the infamous Butch Cassidy, who used sections of the trail. This is an out and back. so if you go out and back it's almost 18 miles.
Thunder Mountain Trail: This is a 7.8 mile moderate to strenuous trail. The red rocks on the lower section of the trail are outstanding. This can be a strenuous out and back totaling 15.5 miles. Or you can do a loop by riding up the highway to the top of the mountain and then down Thunder Mountain Trail. This loop is around 15 to 16 miles but is much easier. And I think you gain at least 1000 ft elevation if not more. The decent on Thunder Mountain is real "Big" fun!
Casto Canyon Trail: This 5.5 mile trail offers spectacular scenery. And runs east from Castro Canyon Road and links up with the upper northern end of Cassidy trail
You could also do some epic loops by linking Cassidy and Castro Canyon or Losee Canyon.
There are also ATV trails off Tom Best Road and some others.

The elevations in this area are between 7000 and 8500. So this is a summer destination
Red Canyon Camping
The Red Canyon Campground is shaded by ponderosa pines, junipers and Douglas firs. The 35 site campground usually closes the first day of October and opens again May first. The charge for camping is $11 per day. There are tables, grills, group sites, flush toilets, showers and a few RV pull throughs.
Directions to Red CanyonFrom Salt Lake City travel south on Interstate 15 past Beaver to UT 20. Exit on UT 20. Turn south on UT 89 and travel past Panguitch. Follow UT 89 to UT 12. Travel along UT 12 to Red Canyon.
From Las Vegas: Travel Interstate 15 past St. George to Exit 16. Drive through Hurricane, Utah. Follow Hwy 9 through Hurricane and to the only stop light in LaVerkin. Turn right at the stop light. Continue on Hwy 9 to the south entrance of Zion Park. Drive through Zion to the junction of UT 9 and UT 89 at Mt. Carmel Jct. Turn north on UT 89, then exit on UT 12. Follow UT 12 to Red Canyon.
Red canyon is just a bit west of Bryce Canyon on UT 12.
Here is a link to a trail map Of Red Canyon

Saturday, September 3, 2011

Parable Of The Krispy Kreme

Here is a funny but enlightening video by Louie Giglio.  It's called "The Gospel According to Krispy Kreme".
You see that Louie could tell you all day facts and figures and information about Krispy Kreme.  He could tell you the history of the company, and the mission statement of the company, and describe what their product is.  He could tell you how it tastes, and how they are made.  But until you actually eat one, and experience for yourself you don't really know what a Krispy Kreme is.

So in the bible we see In Luke 10:38-42, two women, Mary and Martha.  Martha has welcomed Jesus into her home in Bethany and she is busy working, and it says in Luke 10:40 "she was distracted with much serving".  At the same time Martha's sister Mary is sitting at the feet of Jesus, and Martha tells Jesus "Lord, do you not care that my sister has left me to serve alone?  Therefore tell her to help me."  Jesus responds with "Martha, Martha, you are worried and troubled about many things.  But ONE THING is needed and Mary has chosen that good part.  Which will not be taken from her." 

You see in this that Martha does invite Jesus into her life, but there is a disconnect.  She is missing the ONE THING.  She is distracted by her work and being busy.  And she as Jesus tells us is worried and troubled about many things, even when Jesus is in her life, just like the disciples worried about the storm when Jesus was in the boat with them.  You see we might invite Him in but we don't get to know Him.  We get busy reading the bible and memorizing scripture, and we can tell everyone all the facts, about Jesus, and God.  We know the mission statement.  We know the history.  But until we sit at His feet.  Until we place Him on the thrown of our lives.  Until we finally get to a place where we realize that all the busy work we do to try to control the things we worry about, just don't quite get it done.  Until we see that the storms of life, no matter how hard we work, cannot be controlled by us.  Until we finally get to that point where we decide to surrender our lives, our problems, and worries to Jesus we are just like the guy who never tasted a Krispy Kreme. 

    Martha latter has a brother Lazarus who dies.  And no amount of work, no amount of worry, nothing in her own power could fix the problem.  At that moment she had an encounter that changes everything.  In John 11 Martha sees Jesus coming and goes out while her sister waits in the home.  Martha confronts Jesus and says "If you had been here, my brother would not have died."  At this point she has "head knowledge" of who Jesus is.  In fact she says "I believe that you are the Christ, the Son of the Living God.".  But when Jesus says to roll away the stone of the tomb where Lazarus is laying dead, Martha is reluctant because she thinks the body will smell.  You see she still does not fully trust, an have faith that Jesus can handle it.  She is still trying to take control of the problem.  And she does not any one to smell the stench.  We all tend to do this.  We want to keep our smelly problem under wraps, and we don't trust that Jesus can and will take care of it for us.  It is because we have never really sat at His feet.  We have never really encountered Jesus.  We are missing that ONE THING that once we have it like Mary will never be taken from us. We have never really "tasted" the Krispy Kreme.   Give it a try, once you do you will finally really KNOW what those who have experienced an encounter are talking about.

Friday, September 2, 2011

Burnett Family Bluegrass Band, Flagstaff, 2007 (Broadcast)

I just saw these guys for free at the little town park in Clarkdale AZ. And they are going to be playing on Sunday 9-18-2011 up in Flagstaff at the Pickin In The Pines festival. The Sunday line up also has David Grisman along with many others. Anyway this band is a Northern Arizona product from Flagstaff and has been playing together since around 1993. The band members are all from one family, with mom dad and the three kids. Some of the kids strated playing as early as age three. The recording is from a local Flagstaff AM radio station called KJACK.  I have seen them many time at local events like the Camp Verde Corn Festival and they all stand around one mic and somehow get a great sound.  I think Rachel's voice is pretty darn great, and one of the highlights of this fine local bluegrass band. 

Burnett Family Bluegrass Band
KJACK Studios
Flagstaff AZ

01 Big Black Train
02 DJ Chatter
03 If I Lose
04 Bye Bye Blues
05 DJ Chatter
06 Foolish Heart
07 DJ Chatter
08 Macedonia
09 DJ Chatter
10 Canyon Rose
11 Smugglers Run
12 Uncle Pen
13 DJ Chatter
14 Clear The Tracks
15 Train Train
16 DJ Chatter
17 Lady Muleskinner Blues
18 Foggy Mountain Breakdown
19 Rise And Shine
20 Free Born Man
21 Outro

Total Time 57:08