October 28, 2013

We've Moved Our Stuff!

Dear subscriber,

We're kinda embarrassed that you've not gotten the message yet. This blog has been decommissioned at this address, and moved over here. You should go there to check out the new post we just put up. You can subscribe to the blog at that new address with an RSS reader or via email.

February 15, 2013

Free Will: Only Somewhat Free

The heart is deceitful above all things, and desperately sick; who can understand it? (Jer 17:9) 

The natural person does not accept the things of the Spirit of God, for they are folly to him, and he is not able to understand them because they are spiritually discerned. (1Co 2:14)

I believe in will, and I probably believe in free will, but I'm a little uneasy saying so. It isn't that I want to strip man of his power to choose, but I don't like the way we use free will as a lever against scripture.

January 22, 2013

Herb Kenwood: A Model Man

This is another shot at fiction writing. I write this primarily because I enjoy it and it relaxes my mind in a way I feel is productive. If you like it, great. If not, I'm sorry I've wasted your time.
Herb Kenwood is the only man I've ever known that has a doll collection. His wife died in '94, and he has changed the dolls' dresses every season since, just like she used to.  Herb really misses his wife, Mary Mae. They were sweethearts, and got married right out of  high school. They tried to get married right in high school, but I guess Mary Mae's parents caught wind of it and managed to get the whole thing shut down before it started. By summer, things were settled down enough to tie the knot. 

November 17, 2012

Sin's Boundary

Then the LORD answered Job out of the whirlwind and said: "...Who shut in the sea with doors when it burst out from the womb, when I made clouds its garment and thick darkness its swaddling band, and prescribed limits for it and set bars and doors, and said, 'Thus far shall you come, and no farther, and here shall your proud waves be stayed'?"  (Job 38:1,8-11, ESV all)
Bound - C. Hoblit
This is one of God's declarations of his authority. It is easy for us to understand the power of the sea. Just recently, hurricane Sandy  poured out her force against the Northeast, and we have all seen the evidence of her destruction. Yet, God shows us that he draws the line in sand, and says to the ocean, "don't cross this line." And the ocean listens to him.

Jesus told his disciples, "All authority in heaven and on earth has been given to me." (Mat 28:18). The Father has given him the power to draw the line in the sand. Let's see how important this is.

A passage from Romans:
Now the law came in to increase the trespass, but where sin increased, grace abounded all the more, so that, as sin reigned in death, grace also might reign through righteousness leading to eternal life through Jesus Christ our Lord.
(Rom 5:20-21)

November 5, 2012

The Legend of Danny Foula

I used to not care much for fiction. Somehow, though, I've taken a strange liking to it. I haven't written much of it, and I'm not sure how much I like it when I have. But, here's a go.

Danny was the kind of man that drew attention, one way or another. He was handsome and strong, and charming to boot. He had more than enough money to care for himself, and he was not afraid to show the evidence. He never drove the same car longer than six or eight months, and it was always an fancy  sports car with some kind of custom trim or paint job. He usually had a woman or two in trail, and wherever he showed up there were always rich or famous people. Folks fell over themselves to be seen around him. The funny thing about Danny was that he was a rascal and everyone knew it. While he was charming at first, anyone who had dealt with Danny Foula very long knew to play their cards close, or Danny would take them.

October 22, 2012

Concerning Christian Communion

What does the scripture say regarding the service of communion? Here are a few excerpted thoughts.
The cup of blessing that we bless, is it not a participation in the blood of Christ? The bread that we break, is it not a participation in the body of Christ? (1Co 10:16 ESV, all)

This is not an instruction given directly at the practice of the Lord's communion, but an example given in the context of an admonition to abstain from idolatry. The emphasis in this verse is "of Christ". Paul points out that our taking of the cup and bread is a willful participation, or communion, with Christ himself. Likewise, he reasons, participation in services of idolatry is willful, deliberate and personal. These two cannot be friends, and a Christian must choose one or the other. While this verse does not instruct us in communion, it offers insight to Christ's purpose and desire for its institution.

In the next chapter, we find a passage that does instruct us. Paul rebukes the Corinthian church for their ill-treating of the sacredness of Christ's bread and cup by gobbling it for bodily sustenance. He then offers the correct view, of which this verse is part:

September 14, 2012

My Poem

This is a poem
Because I said so.

“It can’t be,” you say, “with no poetic foot!”
That doesn’t stop the snail from going places, does it?

“And no rhythm?” you query, with confident scowl.
Well, have you ever sat and listened to the wind howling
In the trees? “It’s a dumb poem anyhow
Because it doesn’t rhyme.”

Yes it does,
Some of the time.

August 6, 2012

What Is The Noblest Cause?

How high is the price on everything you have? Every right earned, every privilege inherited, every pleasure known?  (Not just your material possessions. Your family; every friendship you have known; your good reputation; your craft; your ear for the music you love; your eyesight. Everything. The things that make you. The things you hope for. All of it.) What would be the cost of throwing it away?

June 28, 2012

Worship is not about self-expression.

[I want to make clear that this is strictly an opinion post, and one that I don’t hold near and dear to my heart. Just some thoughts I had this evening that I thought I would flesh out.]

Not: “Self-expression is impertinent to worship.”
Not: “Worship should be stoic.”
Just: Worship is not (primarily) about self-expression. That’s all.

May 14, 2012

Follow By Forging

I want to be in pursuit of God's will. I do not want to sit idle, until I'm slapped on the side of the head with it. I think we make a crutch out of, "I don't want to get ahead of God's lead," finding therein a cowardly excuse to avoid strange things. I ask (somewhat tongue-in-cheek) "Who cares?" Is it so terrible to get a step or two ahead of God? Oh, sure, it could be, but by what order of magnitude is it worse than stubbornly refusing to forge ahead in faith?! So we spend all our life 15 steps behind God, entrenched in stubborn disobedience, because we are afraid we might get a couple steps too far ahead in fleshly exuberance. How much better off are we that way? Is our fleshly exuberance too big a problem for God to solve? Is He not able to rein us back if we get carried away? Can we not trust Him for that? I hear your caution, and agree: there are serous dangers of going ahead without God's guidance. But I'm not suggesting forging a new path without praying to the Lord for guidance. I'm talking about going ahead and whacking a few bushes on the path to see if that's the direction I should go. But, I guess we've decided it's better to sit in a lawn chair in the middle of the path until God paints a yellow line through the forest, so we can be sure we don't cut down too many bushes. I'm learning that God doesn't show His will with a yellow line. He shows it one bush at a time. You've got to cut it down, brother. God is able to steer you, even if you take a few swings in the wrong direction. O Lord, forgive the crude simplicity of my understanding. I really do want to stay in step with you. I need to be guided constantly. But too often I balk, being a citizen of the kingdom of faith but paying loyalty to fear. Help me to be courageous in seeking you, even if I don't know exactly where I'm going.