Monday, April 30, 2012

A Pigeon Pair

Every now and again a pigeon pair will sit outside the window by my chair (rhymed!). They’ll sit there cooing softly to one another, preening each other, or just being around each other.

I like those pigeons.

It’d be cool if I had something to tie that little tid-bit to, but I don’t. It’s just a very small happening – very rare one – for the pigeons to be there.

We’re an analytical bunch aren’t we?

Tying webs from that to this and there to here. Making the world smaller while building it infinitely larger. Sure webs are beautiful and they help us understand more fully the nuances of science, history, psychology, etc…

But do we always need to add to the web?

Maybe cause finals are just in the upswing and I know my mind will be a wasteland in a couple weeks, but is there no reason to see to pigeons sitting in a window and simply think, “Ahhh, that’s cute.” And leave it there?

(Sure it’ll affect some sort of worship, hopefully, but that should be pre-tied into all things.)

(The picture is of art done by Hannah Scott.)

Thursday, April 26, 2012

The Story of a Friend

A friend of mine (a friend I’d consider close) told me a story the other day. The story is true, and it’s beautiful. It’s been running through my head since he told me it. So, I’ll do my best to re-tell it here:

She’s a mother, not married and therefore cast off by the church. Because her sin is so visible: it runs and jumps and plays and laughs and sings (but to call a child a sin is a travesty, she’s no sin, she’s a joy, but the church see the scarlet 'A' not the beauty of a little life).

Sure the act was wrong, but a thousand times over the heart of the woman had repented and wept for the forgiveness, which is so freely hers in Jesus. But to see that forgiveness played out in tangible ways was something she didn’t know (aside from family).

He was a band man. Playing, singing, rocking.

How they met I can’t tell you. How they fell in love, I’d assume it was gradual and both hearts were hesitant. But nonetheless love came.

Then it came, a time for a ring. But not just one ring, no there are two rings in this story. One for both of this man’s loves. One for his future wife and one for his future daughter.

I can imagine the scene now, “My little love?”

“Yes.” Comes the small girl’s voice.

The man kneels to one knee, “Will you be my daughter? And my dear, will you be my wife?”

Forgiven. Not just forgiven, but loved. Not just loved, but loved to the point of sacrifice. Not just sacrificed for but taken wholly into the loving embrace of a man.

This is a perfectly clear picture of Jesus and how he redeems us broken.

Tuesday, April 24, 2012

Sunday School Answers

            Remember those answers that you’d give in Sunday school? The really simple ones, the ones, which we sometimes think, are shortchanging the question.

            Last night a group of folks and I worked backwards to this answer: Jesus is Lord.

            That was it. It was the climax of the discussion: three simple words we learned in kindergarten.

            There’s nothing fancy about that, but it’s revolutionary.

            Revolutionary because a child can understand this and then spend his whole life trying to learn it.

            Revolutionary because this simple answer will impact life in a profound way.

            Revolutionary because we discount it as a kid’s answer, when it is the answer.

            The legalist won’t like it cause it’s not rigorous enough. The super spiritual won’t like it cause it’s not detailed enough. But a sinner should love it.

(Read this for a laugh)

Thursday, April 19, 2012

Weeklong Thoughts

1) What am I doing?

2) Any sentence that begins with, “if only…” is a stupid sentence. Or at least too whimsical to spend more time thinking about.

3) I had 10 people in my basement for a tornado last week. It was the best song singing time I’ve been apart of in a while.

4) Birthday dinner!

5) I like nice shoes. My reasoning is that they’ll last me until I’m dead, and then my kids can wear them. Really I just have a thing for shoes.

6) Finals are coming up… crap.

7) Drove to Salina and back - for nothing - but it was relaxing and good sunflower seed time.

8) To become a GTA or not. That’s a questions. Not THE questions, just one.

9) I walked out my front porch and some friends had taken the liberty to decorate my front yard. There was a package of bacon in the decorations. My friends love me.

10) Quiet times are few and far between. (By quiet time is I don’t mean the Sunday School version, I mean just chill times.)

Wednesday, April 18, 2012

Foolishness and Weakness

(My post from

We are the foolishness and the weak spoken of in 1 Corinthians 1:27-29. But what does that mean?
Does it mean we are ignorant of the realities of science and therefore when we accused of trying to scare children into morality with stories of hell are true?

Or does it mean we are foolish because we see the treasures of life as worthless when compared to knowing Christ Jesus our Lord?

To know for certain we must look at the reason God calls us the foolish, the weak, the low, and the despised.

The foolish were chosen to shame the wise; the weak were chosen to shame the strong; the low and the despised even the things that aren’t to show as nothing the things that are.

Yet more than these, “So that no human being might boast in the presence of God. And because of him you are in Christ Jesus, who became to us wisdom from God, righteousness and sanctification and redemption, so that, as it is written, ‘Let the on who boasts, boast in the Lord.” (1Cor 1:29-31)

So, yes, we are chosen to show that surpassing power belongs to Christ and not to us. The things, which are in the eyes of most worthy of life and death to a believer, are not. What was once wisdom is now foolishness to a Christian.

The world, or the view of the world is radically changed. Turned right side up, if you will, to where what was once normal is now backwards. What was once our culture is now foreign to us.

It isn’t that we don’t understand science and are ignorant of the world, that’s not it all (most of the world largest advancements in science were made by believing men pursuing God), it’s that science is fuel for worship not what we worship.

The wise are shamed, because a child can understand the gospel. The strong are shamed, because their strength has no barring on salvation. Things that don’t exist are made to exist to shame what is (i.e. a redeemed heart is made within a lost heart).

This is what it means to be foolishness and weakness, it means to see the world as naught and Jesus as all; to fall headlong in love with our saving God rather than money, sex, and power. This is what it means to be Christian.

Monday, April 16, 2012

Eyes Wide Open

Keep our eyes open.

Sometimes the way things were wanted is the way things weren’t meant to be.

Sometimes you’re talked to in a way, which never was before.

Sometimes you just begin to wonder what really might be the plan.

All in all the plan is still there and God is still King and you are just his creation used to shine forth his beauty. But if we walk with our eyes, spiritual and physical, closed then we miss the gorgeous reality of what’s all around us and supplant it with the faux reality of imagination.

But imagination will never be able to replace that which is real. The gaseous will never reform the solid.

No asymptote will intersect and no tornado is without trace.

But far too often we cling to the fake. We pine for the Hollywood effect rather than the wonder of what’s real. We want the asymptote to meet and the tornado to be clean. But it never will be.

So, to keeping our eyes open. Not to what we want, but to what is. That by grace we are saved and by mercy we are redeemed, while in the face of death there is salvation.

In work we are there for a purpose. In fun we are there for a purpose.

Not that every situation’s purpose must be sought out and journaled about, but rather we are to be where we are with the same boldness, which took Jesus to the cross.

Calmly we accept what is before us. Prayerfully we walk into where we are. Trustingly we look to the sovereign nature of our God. Boldly we know that Jesus is our only hope. Gently we lead those who follow. Courageously we see our own faults. Forcibly (and graciously) we keep our eyes wide open to soak in every smallest portion of the trip.

Friday, April 13, 2012

Friday Thoughts:

1) I don’t remember anything that happened this week cause all my attentions been in my thoughts…

2) Focusing on something does 2 things 1) makes it worse, 2) gives you dumb ideas

3) I had bacon once this week – therein lies my problems

4) Barrowed a book

5) In semesters past I took “mental health days” I can’t do that this semester.

6) In Christ Alone…

7) Ever feel like you have no idea what you’re doing, like at all?

8) Rain, rain, you can stay. Forever.

9) If I don’t write it down don’t expect me to remember it.

10) I’m a journal-er, I journal. It’s therapy.

Wednesday, April 11, 2012

Papers & Professor

He sat across from me at my hiding place (the spot I go to rest while working). The table, admittedly, can accommodate more than one person, but I often times like to spread out and use it all, so when he asked if he could use it as well, the internal struggle began.

Quickly it was overcome.

He got his papers out, his pencils out, after setting his coffee down, and then came out the grade book. This white-haired, mustached teacher, or maybe professor, began diligently grading.

So naturally I had to change the music in my headphones to opera (don’t judge).

Business Communication class. Cover letters. Resumes.

The collar of his shirt was worn and discolored, the ring on his left hand once deeply engraved now dulled and scratched following every word written on every paper graded with the well sharpened pencil scribbling learned notes.

Having our papers graded is never fun. It’s a nervous business. We don’t want to fail, but we, in some way, want to learn (otherwise we wouldn’t have turned the paper in, in the first place).

This is how I feel about prayer.

I want to ask for help, but I’m scared of the reproving. Do you know what I mean?

When you know God is sufficient but you’re nervous of being answered? ‘Cause sometimes how could the answer be good? Yet we ask anyway. Trusting what’s to be done will be for our good.

Monday, April 9, 2012

The Foggy End

I walked out my back door this morning to take out the trash. The alley behind my house, which leads to the park, and the whole of my neighborhood, lay hidden in fog.

Looking down a road and not seeing the end really hit me in a funny way this time.

Sure the weekend was Easter weekend, sure Good Friday was sobering, sure things didn’t go how I hoped they would, and sure I wish they would’ve.

But still looking down an alley and fog obscuring the view made me think, “Huh, nice picture of life,” but more so, nice picture of the Christian’s life.

We know where we’re going, that way; we know it’s not going to be easy; but we know it’s well worth it.

In the end will we look back over our lives and be able to see the beginning? Or will it just be covered in fog too? I bet it is, cause when two weeks feels like forever there’s no way to, “look back over life,” cause I’d cheapen it by having forgotten most of it.

Looking to the end, that Reward all covered in fog. That’s an adventure worth living.

Friday, April 6, 2012

Altar of Propitiation

Today is the day we celebrate and remember a death.

Today is the day we fight to see clearly.

Today is the day we remember blood and gore.

Today we look at brutality and murder.

Today we look at lying and slander.

Today we look at our own hands covered in blood.

Today our hearts are pure.

Flogged, to the point of unrecognizable. Nailed to a piece of wood like a hunk of meat. Left to die in agony. This is the scene of salvation.

It’s not beautiful. It’s dirty.

It’s not cute. It’s hideous.

You don’t want to hug it.

You don’t want it on your carpet.

Yet it is the supreme center of all of our reality. Hope of all our lives. The salvation of our souls.

It’s more important than our clothes, and more impactful than our friends. It’s more gorgeous than the stars, and more empowering than positive thinking.

While breaking it makes whole.

While turning upside down it turns us right side up.

While making us weep it makes us laugh.

While showing our failure it shows us our righteousness.

Here, on the Alter of Propitiation, the Lamb is slaughtered. All his blood is poured out until his veins run dry. Everything he ever was, all his perfection and goodness is extravagantly spilled to assuage the right wrath against sin.

Messiah, the longed for Deliverer.

Christ, the coming King.

Jesus, the Son of God.

Today, he is publically portrayed as crucified.

Wednesday, April 4, 2012


So here and there I’ve written about (like all other writers and artists) the loss of innocence, i.e growing up and forgetting what it was to be young and to be carefree.

We used to imagine everything, right?

I don’t think we’ve stopped.

Sure we still imagine everything, what it would be like if ________ were true.

We haven’t grown up, we’re still kids in our minds. We haven’t matured we’ve just continued.

Sure we’ve lost innocence, clouds and fireflies don’t enchant us anymore. But we’ve not grown up our minds are still blank.

Until we look at reality and are enthralled by the what-is we’re still children in our thinking. Because any kid can imagine himself greater than he is or better than his friends, but it’ll take a mature mind to understand his own limitations and live right up to those limits.

Do we not strive for more? Honestly, I think we’re all capable of more than we think we are; we’re just lazy. Can anyone do what I do? Yes.

It’s not a positive thinking deal, not at all, no it’s a thinking deal.

It’s not telling yourself everything’s gonna be alright when the crap is hitting the fan, no, it’s a sucking it up and in spite of the crap fighting to continue.

So what is it to grow up? It’s to boldly face reality and understand in spite of yourself you are not capable of changing the world, but you are capable of being a friend, a parent, a sibling, a worker, a ___________ to the glory of God and the benefit of whoever.

Monday, April 2, 2012

Atheist Paper

I’ve been working on a paper for a class quite a bit.

We were allowed to pick any topic (one we cared about) and use what we’ve learned in class to analyze a piece of rhetoric.

I picked Christopher Hitchens’ last public address from the Texas Free Thought Convention.

Little odd, I suppose.

But honestly we, as Christians, fail to reach most true atheists effectively. Sure there are some atheists who are just angry at God, the Church, and their parents, but there are others, ones who are, “free Thinkers,” in the, “Community of Reason.” Those ones are written off as lost.

And they may be, but someone, some believer, should try to befriend them, right?

I mean that’s the point of mission.

But more so they’re written off because we don’t know what we believe. More often than not we’re bickering over some menial issue, which doesn’t do or promote anything.

Christians are great at locking up in a convent all alone and leaving the world, those dirty sinners, to die… (Irony)

Yes, speaking freely is scary. Yes, not all are called to be evangelists. Yes, the mission still remains the exact same as it did 2000 years ago, but I’ll re-word it for us: Get to know some folks, make some friends in hope of one day telling them more about Jesus.

But on a completely different note: I saw two guys get arrested last night.