Tuesday, December 04, 2007

Stocking Up on Christmas Fruit Cake.


















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No, I'm not necessarily talking about your lower intestinal tract. What a glorious day here in the pending kingdom; with a little help from a big piece of home-made fruitcake. There's almost nothing better. The fruit and spices and the tangy rinds and things, wow. I got a reprieve from riding along with an installer today because he's not working. It's a Tuesday and the guy's not working, and I heard a very small child in the background. These are good signs. This guy may have a life going on beyond marriage to his job. Maybe I too can have one. I have to admit, I panicked when I saw "mandatory 6 days a week" on the satellite dish installer job description. That's what you would call a family eliminator.

Making Christmas Fruitcake is one of my traditions. Listening to much contemporary and traditional celtic Christmas music is another.












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Holiday Tip:Don't leave your camera in the car overnight in freezing weather because the lithium batteries will freeze and be ruined.
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Not just one batch but two!
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This is good medication for the hurry and stress of the busy holiday season! It's the recipe from Betty Crocker's Encyclodepia of Cooking. Didn't your mom give you one of those? There is no bad recipe from there.
Gals: Look for a man to marry who has his own chef's table in the kitchen.

Those who have been to my house, if they look closely will see that the piano is no longer in the kitchen.
Let's pray the holiday season quickly passes after leaving a few fond rememberances of celebrating the Lord's birth together.

Monday, December 03, 2007

Times Up.

My winter is now going to look completely different than it did a week ago.

I'm going to add 'satellite dish' installer to my resume. Directv. I have to. For the past year or so I've been racking my mind trying to figure out what else I would do if I weren't doing farrier/horse dentistry work. On top of that I've spent too much money in the last seveal years on upgrading broken down large appliances, washer, dryer, refrigerator, and buying digital musical and recording equipment to take my passion for hymns and playing music a step or two further. But for the two reasons stated above, I need to temporarily take steps now to get caught up financially.

There is great money in satellite intalling. For this company anyway. They want you to work 6 days a week, which is a family killer, but they agreed with me on five. So I'll go into work mode, knock out this debt I have accumulated, and then get back to these long luxurious off-season winter days of studying the bible and crafting around with the piano playing. Actually trying to work my way into doing it full-time one day. I think it would be neat to work into a full-time preaching/teaching stage gig. Earnest study and inspirational song writing. There are five tunes of mine I am hoping to run past the general public a.s.a.p. The digital age has made these things much more possible. When all is said and done, just to grow in the Lord will suffice.

I love shoeing horses, and will continue indefinately, but this is the wrong time of year to add customers and so I need a back-up. Both farriering and satellite installing are very well-paying specialties and that's how a guy, a single father with full custody of the daughter, homemaker, etc. finds 2-6 hours a day to study the bible and improve on the piano(ohhhh...what I could do with 8 hours everyday). You go out and hustle your butt off and come home and get very efficient.

I was a little bit leary, in my compromised financial condition, what I was going to do in the case of a medical emergency or other surprise. I didn't like the idea of waiting to find out. So this supplementary means of employment is a gift from God. One of many continuously.

So one week from today I drive down 2 1/2 hours to Chippewa Falls WI and do two five-day weeks of training. I applied three weeks ago and they just called back last Friday and said my background check cleared and were wondering if I was still interested.

So that leaves me 6 days to wrap up all my commitments, and reschedule everything I can't wrap up. Everything I reschedule is going to have to be scheduled into my precious weekend time that I owe my daughter and so everything now becomes completely scheduled in.

I can continue to study taped scripture as I do the considerable driving I'll be doing between satellite installations. And thankfully, I'll be able to work on and continue to train my voice while driving. I just sort of obscure my mouth with my hand to passing motorists and train the voice. Very rural up here too, with fewer cars to worry about than most places.

So on the one hand I'm fortunate to be blessed with gainful employment, and on the other, I'm faced with having to organize more than ever in my growth and progress toward spiritual goals.

Hey, I'm only 48 years old---phfffllahhhhh*%+#!!%# yiye yiye. Other than that, I'm really not that phased.

So farewell for now to those long luxurious 2-3 winter days a week of study and practice when the daughter's in school; only rest assured, I will return to them. Stronger-let's just never mind older.

So I took a few spare moments today and added some effects and some other ideas to the hymn The Love of God. Just to generate and begin to develope some more ideas toward a final recording of it. I would liked to have given it a few more hours today but can't. Still very rough. Plus I ramped it up to the highest possible stereo setting (320 kbps stereo, 148 MB) just to see how accessible it is at that level. So it will be a for an extra high speed connection but probably not sound much better than the low-speed connection. It would truly be gratifying to have the time to learn how to use this recording equipment to it's fuller potential, but that too, is still to happen sometime in the future. One of these days, there will be a Christian music producer, and he/she and I, are going to have some fun. At least soon I will be better able to afford one.

Tomorrow I start my ten required ride-alongs, even before I start the training next week, to qualify to do the job solo, a.s.a.p. So my time is awegone.

Love in the faith!

Wednesday, November 28, 2007

Hymn: The Love of God is Greater Far.

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The Love of God

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Well... here's a rough draft.

It sounds much better on my computer than it does on a piece of high-fidelity digital equipment. I think eventually, with all the work I've been putting in on my voice, and the work I will continue to do, I may eventually be able to fool people into thinking I can sing. But as of right now, the verdict is still out.


The Love of God


To be honest, I wish I didn't have to sing it. But without the words it wouldn't be complete. I think if I knew I was wanting to be singing hymns for other people at this point in my life that I would have started working on the voice sooner.

I was directed to this hymn by ~Rose Cole, listened to it here at this website, and then tried to do an honorable job reproducing it above. In the process I really came to like it. Here's a beginning.

The Love of God

The love of God is greater far
Than tongue or pen can ever tell;
It goes beyond the highest star,
And reaches to the lowest hell.
The guilty pair, bowed down with care,
God gave His Son to win;
His erring child he reconciled,
And pardoned from his sin.
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When hoary time shall pass away,
And earthly thrones and kingdoms fall;
When men who here refuse to pray,
On rocks and hill and mountains call;
God's love, so sure, shall still endure,
All measureless and strong;
Redeeming grace to Adam's race
The saints' and angels' song.
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Could we with ink the ocean fill,
And were the skies of parchment made;
Were ev'ry stalk on earth a quill,
And ev'ry man a scribe by trade;
To write the love of God above
Would drain the ocean dry;
Nor could the scroll contain the whole,
Tho' stretched from sky to sky.
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Chorus:
O, love of God, how rich and pure!
How measureless and strong!
It shall forevermore endure
The saints and angels song.

Monday, October 01, 2007

Milestone.

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O Love that wilt Not Let Me Go

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I came across a post at Brian's site on Saturday that included a hymn with some outstanding lyrics in it. It's called, O Love That Wilt Not Let Me Go. The words got to me. That's what hymns are supposed to be about. Making a joyful noise to the Lord with words filled with praise and gratitude and the understanding of what He's done for us. Not necessarily "praise", "praise", "praise", but words and ideas that evoke praise and that remind Him we've been in His book and understand who He is and what He's done for us. Those are the kind of words that are in this hymn. And it's beautiful musically as well. Hope I haven't wrecked it for ya.

So I thought, well shoot, I can't sing, but I play around with this thing and turn the congregation lose with it some Sunday Morning. On top of that, I can't keep from singing, so I have to just dive into it and make the most of it.

Here's where the milestone comes in. I got the tune all memorized and sort of crafted around with and roughly drafted and recorded all in mostly one day. I played it a couple times Saturday night and a couple times on Sunday but it quickly came to life today. And, wait a minute, just like most days, today I had to go do a few horses, get a bucket full of beets I had cut up pickled. Even now, it was just 8:45 and I realized I had about 10 scheduling calls to make that I had intended to but neglected to make. And it really looks like the dog blew up all over the floor of our house because I still haven't run the vacumn cleaner like I've been needing to. That will have to wait for another day.

But yikes, did I play the music today. The reason it's a musical milestone for me today is because I got this tune all arranged today and then finally played through once for the recorder all in one take. Yes, that's the good part----one time through. One time near the end I had to redo one part, but that was it. That's good news. I've been needing to get to this point musically. And this is a new style progression for me too. I'm finally coming to know this instrument better as well as coming to know how to manage my mind and my memory more effectively.

So give it a listen. It's very raw and rough but the general idea is there now for me to listen to and develope. By the end of the winter this should be one that I can make a finished recording of.

The voice needs so much work. I'm starting to gain control over the thing. It never dawned on me until it was too late that I was going to have to sing these things myself. I did have a scratchy voice week this week for some reason if that's any consolation. My voice is saying "you gotta be kidding", but I'm not taking no for an answer. It's been in emergency training now for about a year so I'm going to try and stay optimistic. All your complaints are surely justified.

So this is a milestone moment. Well, It's a rushed, rough milestone moment, but I had to tell someone.

Listen and hope. Thanks!

-Here's a link to the tune.-

O Love That Wilt Not Let Me Go


O Love that wilt not let me go,

I rest my weary soul in thee;
I give thee back the life I owe,
That in thine ocean depths its flow
May richer, fuller be.



O light that followest all my way,

I yield my flickering torch to thee;
My heart restores its borrowed ray,
That in thy sunshine’s blaze its day
May brighter, fairer be.



O Joy that seekest me through pain,

I cannot close my heart to thee;
I trace the rainbow through the rain,
And feel the promise is not vain,
That morn shall tearless be.



O Cross that liftest up my head,

I dare not ask to fly from thee;
I lay in dust life’s glory dead,
And from the ground there blossoms red
Life that shall endless be.
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I'll try to update this version in month or two. It's pretty rough.

Monday, September 17, 2007

The "communion" in Communion.

The last supper of Jesus with His disciples was a moment when Jesus chose to hand down a tradition. A ceremony of sorts. A memorial service to Him proclaiming His death until returns. The question as to 'how often' seems to be answered in the instruction 'as often as you do it'. And 'with whom' seems to range from the choice of doing it alone at home by oneself, to doing it with care and respect at any time or with any gathering of believers.

Paul says we are proclaming the Lord's death until He comes. Paul stressed that there is a worthy manner in which to eat and drink to Christ and that each man examine himself to that end. I believe Paul warns against coming together to eat and drink and to socialize to the Lord without the perspective of having your complete heart, mind, and soul set in the Spirit and on the memory of Jesus here on earth and everything His presence entailed.

And lastly Paul seems to say that when folks come together to eat and drink to the Lord, then wait for one another, and do it together.

Here are a few side notes before I go on:

Christ doesn't open the door to examining each other. Only Christ can do the examining. We all will stand individually before the judgement seat of Christ..."so that each one may be recompensed for his deeds in the body". There's no way we can truly know one another's hearts. A man's heart can only truly be known by God.

If you don't judge the body rightly then you'll bring judgement upon yourself. If you are not in Christ proclaiming His death in remembrance when you eat and drink then you'll be judged-or condemned, "For God did not send the Son into the world to judge the world, but that the world might be saved through Him. He who believes in Him is not judged;"
At the last supper Jesus gave thanks, gave us bread and vinefruitjuice(so not to have to call it wine or juice, or fruit of the vine) representing His body and His blood of the covenant poured out for many, and told us to eat and drink of it in remembrance of Him until He comes back, when we will drink it with Him again.

So going on then...I struggle with the lack of meaning that there has been in the many so-named communion experiences I've had during church and am now trying to consider ways of having Communion with other believers in ways that would give it more of the meaning and the spirit for which it was intended. Afterall, Christian Communion is one of the greatest opportunities there is for sharing in the memory and instruction of our Lord from the last supper together with other believers, and we should make the most of it. Least of all, when necessary, we could perhaps spare it from becoming a dry ritual that no longer pleases us or God.

I like the phrase Lord's Supper, but does how we celebrate it resemble what is prescribed as we watch the last supper with the Lord here on earth in scripture? Probably close enough for most Christians. In letter yes, certainly close enough, but in spirit, or intent, I think we may tend to short-change it some of the time.

Most Communion ceremonies I've experienced, that is, the sharing of bread and vinefruitjuice in the remembrance of Jesus, have seemed lackluster and mechanical. A repetitious and dry ritual by our design most of the time.

Well of course, compared to when it was first turned into a sacrament by some of the early church, it's doing pretty well now. But in its popular present day form, isn't it just terribly dumbed down, almost to the point of having most of its biblical value taken out of it. Don't most of us just sit their to ourselves, staring straight ahead, usually the same mechanical prayers recited for us, even the same predictable cup holders passed around. Usually music to preoccupy us or even to manufacture cheap emotion. Or, for effect, no music. It sure is a stark contrast to the dynamic fellowship of the first Lord's Supper.

The account given in Matthew tells of how Jesus, while they were eating, said to take the drink, the fruit of the vine, not blood, but grape juice or wine, most likely wine, and drink it, for it represents His 'blood of the covenant' being pured out for many, and He'll not drink with us again until He drinks it with us anew in the kingdom someday. A truly joyful promise. And He says, as recorded in 1 Corinthians, to do it often and each time in remembrance of Him. The bread and the drink. Afterall, He had been teaching them that He was the Bread of God, the Bread of Life, the true Bread coming down out of heaven and He was now instituting a symbolic ceremony of memorial. Symbolic presumably because He could have easily given everyone there an actual piece of His body, or even called down little Spiritual pieces of His body just as He did at the Christian meeting during Pentecost just following His being sacrificed on the cross. The Bread of Life gave thanks, gave us a token of his new covenant with us of forgiveness, and told us we'll be with Him in the Kingdom one day. He gave us a lot to remember.

He introduced a memorial ceremony that evening encouraging us to partake in the representing of His blood and His body in the object of the juice and the bread, to honor His memory and service to us and His Father in being sacrificed at the altar of the cross in place of us. And then they sang a hymn.

So how did the communion memorial of breaking bread together at a special mealtime become a time of staring straight ahead together, each alone, and nibbling quietly, drinking out of a phony little glass, remembering? I'm sure the answer is: structure, formalization, predictability. Striving for a display during which very few people are offended and which no one can be accused of being like what the Corinthians were convicted of which was gluttony, insincerity, or of missing the point of the remembrance. All of these reasons for restraint and efforts to formalize the service of Communion would be honorable if they included other equally honorable elements included in the first model of the Lord's supper which are left out. And in such a fashion most types of communion services which I've been a part of have taken an exciting and honorable service prescribed in the bible toward the remembrance of Jesus having been here among us in the flesh and blood, and turned it into a mechanical and sterile dissappointment which barely meats or sometimes even misses it's rich provision.

We do remember Him at times other than during a food based communion. Afterall, we remember Him in one sense every day as we read and prosper spiritually from the counsel of His word in the bible. We're left with peace and joy, and above all, thanksgiving. For the end of His mortal life for us meant that He rose from the dead and turned our grief to joy. That is the best of all possible outcomes for us. He's left us with joy. And now he who sows and he who reaps may rejoice together. He is a light on our dark soul everyday and tells us we may rejoice in that. No one can take away the fact that we will see Him again one day and that in fact is one of our most immediate and intense sources of joy.

Of course everything is not joy. There is still sin in us and around us. But the sin no longer has any power over us because His death robbed sin of it's power and left us with a great hope.

But still all is not joy. God's wrath, once directed at our own souls outside of the Body of Christ, continues to be directed at many good people we care about. Their peril tends to evoke sorrow on one hand, yet for us, gives God's love real meaning. God's love is the main power player with His justice. "Behold the kindness and severity of God". We see that the only and true God who's revealed Himself to mankind, our God, who revealed Himself in His Son Jesus, is both a God of love and a God of judgement. Our God of love can't be just a one dimensional God of love only or His love would mean nothing. It would have a very flat dynamic. But, having shown us in His word how He has now satisfied His just hatred and punishment of sin by sacrificing His Son in our place, for those who would obey His gospel, then ours, who would look upon and obey the gospel, is a relationship with God of great joy and thanksgiving. He's shown us what godly love is. And in the end, therefore, sin gets the destruction it deserves and God proves His love through His justice. No one can deprive us believers of that assurance and the attending joy except our own pride. That assurance of grace through our faith in Jesus' sacrifice is the undescribable gift of God. Communion is the time to remember God was here, in Jesus, walking among us, doing His work of grace for our benefit. His sacrifice was symbolic yet real. Most of all it's purpose is virtually incomprehensible, yet true, and therefore, worth remembering, together, the body and the blood of God that was here on this earth for us. A memory faithfully passed on to us by His apostles and prophets.

The time of remembering together is not when we go in our closets. There is a time for going in your closet, being alone with God, honoring God in your own personal way, having..."The faith which you have, have as your own conviction before God. Happy is he who does not condemn himself in what he approves", being careful not to cause others to stumble, believing things unto our Lord on your own accord, that bring you comfort, things that, while others are not required to believe, cannot be regarded with contempt by anyone else as they are done as your own conviction before the Lord. That is not to say, in my opinion, that you cannot hold the last supper remembrance alone by yourself. But Paul seems to express his understanding of how it was meant to be indulged in when together in his address to the Corinthians(as included at the bottom of this page).

It seems to me remembering Jesus' would be one of joy and awe. I think guilt would be an inappropriate intruder. Guilt may be a necessary thing for some to keep their flesh in line but Jesus teaches Spiritual things. We're to be lead by the Spirit not by the flesh. It would have to be important for feelings of guilt and then shame to resolve themselves into feelings of joyful thanksgiving in accordance with Christ having paid for our guilt, atoned, made amends for our guilt. Guilt is of sin and not faith. Not a fruit of the Spirit but of sin. I suppose for some guilt is hard to resolve into gratitude but I don't see where scripture encourages guilt. Scripture does indicate we are capable of having a good conscience before the Lord. The remembrance of Jesus Christ is one of the Lamb of sacrifice that finally reconciled us with the kindness and blessings of God. In a sense, guilt and sadness by themselves, indeed may deny the true memory of the finished work of Jesus here on earth. Perhaps grieving is appropriate and indeed natural at times, but not as others do who have no hope. We've entered into the joy of our Master. Isn't the only meaningful response one of thanksgiving. I have seen guilt encouraged to it's own end during communion and think that it's misguided emotional indulgence to do so.

Shouldn't we be dipping our hands in the bowl together, so to speak, at Communion time, together, pouring each other's drinks of the fruit of the vine, and remembering His visit as well as the meaning to us of His temporary absence? And then remembering some more, and then more, knowing that we've been invited to do so by God when He was on earth, and remembering that He said we'll do it again with Him one day. And then they even sang a hymn. Do it with a flute and a cymbal for a change? Not really, just kidding. But it's the last supper memorial celebration, give it the uniqueness that befits it.

They ate while reclined at the table. They talked as they ate(perhaps even with mouth's partly full).

When Jesus said, "to eat with unwashed hands does not defile the man", he did not say it's proper physical hygeine to not wash your hands before eating. He did say that eating with dirty hands will not defile a man's heart but what comes out of a man's mouth will. So we would naturally need to wash our hands before Communion, and we surely wouldn't want to touch each others bread. But do we already?

Frankly, at last communion I could not help but to touch at least two or three of the other pieces of cracker while dipping for mine. It was physically impossible not to. So we already dip our hands into the bowl together-well, those of us who don't cut our wonderbread into neat little squares. Now if we could just recline and partake together(instead of staring straight ahead alone in silence), remembering, feeling the sorrow of our flesh surpassed and pushed aside by the joy of our spirit having been joined with His, and the joy of our Spirits from Him knit together with each others. That would be communion. Communing together in close rapport, remembering, thinking, pondering, while we ate, talking...like the model itself. Acting like one Body.

If we run out of things to remember then we could also remember those things He told us He will leave here with us until He returns. Remembering His words "let not your heart be troubled", "Peace I leave with you", "My peace I give you".
Remembering the Comforter He sent.

"...how much more will your heavenly Father give the Holy Spirit to those who ask Him?"
If we are going to pretend to commune together during Communion, remembering the body and blood of His new covenant of life with us, His absence, and then, while not being unmindful of His living presence inside of each of us, remembering that He will finally return for us when we will enjoy, anew, another drink, or toast with Him, in honor of the covenant of His blood and the reign of His grace over those of us who act in faith towards Him according to His visit to earth.

I think it would be nice that if we are going to manufacture a name like Communion for the Lord's last supper, then we should somehow, where it's lacking that is, get the communing together into Communion.

And then secondly, if we are going to go through the motions of following the scriptural invitation to partake and remember together then why not give it the opportunity to be a befitting Spiritual exercise of the church body that reflects the memory of Christ's life past, present and future as was so graciously expressed during that last supper.

Matthew 26:26-30
While they were eating, Jesus took some bread, and after a blessing, He broke it and gave it to the disciples, and said, "Take, eat; this is My body." And when He had taken a cup and given thanks, He gave it to them, saying, "Drink from it, all of you; for this is My blood of the covenant, which is poured out for many for forgiveness of sins. "But I say to you, I will not drink of this fruit of the vine from now on until that day when I drink it new with you in My Father's kingdom." After singing a hymn, they went out to the Mount of Olives.


Mark 14:12-31
On the first day of Unleavened Bread, when the Passover lamb was being sacrificed, His disciples said to Him, "Where do You want us to go and prepare for You to eat the Passover?" And He sent two of His disciples and said to them, "Go into the city, and a man will meet you carrying a pitcher of water; follow him; and wherever he enters, say to the owner of the house, `The Teacher says, "Where is My guest room in which I may eat the Passover with My disciples?"' "And he himself will show you a large upper room furnished and ready; prepare for us there." The disciples went out and came to the city, and found it just as He had told them; and they prepared the Passover. When it was evening He came with the twelve. As they were reclining at the table and eating, Jesus said, "Truly I say to you that one of you will betray Me--one who is eating with Me." They began to be grieved and to say to Him one by one, "Surely not I?" And He said to them, "It is one of the twelve, one who dips with Me in the bowl. "For the Son of Man is to go just as it is written of Him; but woe to that man by whom the Son of Man is betrayed! It would have been good for that man if he had not been born." While they were eating, He took some bread, and after a blessing He broke it, and gave it to them, and said, "Take it; this is My body." And when He had taken a cup and given thanks, He gave it to them, and they all drank from it. And He said to them, "This is My blood of the covenant, which is poured out for many. "Truly I say to you, I will never again drink of the fruit of the vine until that day when I drink it new in the kingdom of God." After singing a hymn, they went out to the Mount of Olives.


1 Corinthians 11:23-34
For I received from the Lord that which I also delivered to you, that the Lord Jesus in the night in which He was betrayed took bread; and when He had given thanks, He broke it and said, "This is My body, which is for you; do this in remembrance of Me." In the same way He took the cup also after supper, saying, "This cup is the new covenant in My blood; do this, as often as you drink it, in remembrance of Me." For as often as you eat this bread and drink the cup, you proclaim the Lord's death until He comes. Therefore whoever eats the bread or drinks the cup of the Lord in an unworthy manner, shall be guilty of the body and the blood of the Lord. 28 But a man must examine himself, and in so doing he is to eat of the bread and drink of the cup. For he who eats and drinks, eats and drinks judgment to himself if he does not judge the body rightly. For this reason many among you are weak and sick, and a number sleep. But if we judged ourselves rightly, we would not be judged. But when we are judged, we are disciplined by the Lord so that we will not be condemned along with the world. So then, my brethren, when you come together to eat, wait for one another. If anyone is hungry, let him eat at home, so that you will not come together for judgment. The remaining matters I will arrange when I come.

Monday, August 06, 2007

Thursday, July 26, 2007

Glorying In Our Divisions?

That's it. It's happened in my own bible study group and again, almost ad nauseum, I find myself discussing one of the most cancerous problems in the body of Christ; that is, following men instead of Christ. Whether it be the pope, Mennon, Arminius, Calvin, Luther or on and on and on. Paul warns against that by the name of our Lord Jesus Christ, and most of christendom is instead happily and proudly mired in the very error.

1 Corinthians 1:10-25 (New American Standard Bible)

"Now I exhort you, brethren, by the name of our Lord Jesus Christ, that you all agree and that there be no divisions among you, but that you be made complete in the same mind and in the same judgment. For I have been informed concerning you, my brethren, by Chloe's people, that there are quarrels among you. Now I mean this, that each one of you is saying, "I am of Paul," and "I of Apollos," and "I of Cephas," and "I of Christ." Has Christ been divided? Paul was not crucified for you, was he? Or were you baptized in the name of Paul?"


"For Christ did not send me to baptize, but to preach the gospel, not in cleverness of speech, so that the cross of Christ would not be made void."

Preach the cross like Paul, not the man-made doctrine that the brightest christian minds in the world can't even nearly agree on.

Jesus Christ became to us wisdom from God, righteousness, sanctification and redemption. What else matters? Hundreds in the bible who witnessed Christs birth, death, resurrection and ascension, and the hundreds of thousands who testify of them, simply point to the cross. Anything that ushers in division or quarreling about doctrine is not from God but from the flesh. Paul says anything of that sort can ultimately make the cross void. And today we see christians and their clever speech not only being unable to hold their own and know scripture as well as their athiest adversaries in public forum but even amongst themselves as they wrangle together over highly coveted doctrine. We've made a public sport of it.

"For consider your calling, brethren, that there are not many wise according to the flesh."

Does he say that he whom men deem to be the wisest theologian is really the power of God? Or that, therefore, that theologian and his adherents may then boast before God? No, he says the opposite. And secondly, men can't agree on who they would deem the wisest theologian to be anyway.

The power of God and the wisdom of God is Christ. "Christ the power of God and the wisdom of God. "
So where do all of the numerous, quarrelsome, man-made doctrines which men untenably lord over one another as being the real truth fit into all of this wise counsel from Christ through Paul; apart from giving the destroyer satan the advantage in dividing God's (self-satisfied) household?
I'd like to suggest that it's out of a disrespectful disregard to plain scripture.

"Has Christ been divided?"

Yes, Christ has been divided.

But as members of the Body of Christ we could be mindful of Paul's words and begin to correct this damage.

"until we all attain to the unity of the faith, and of the knowledge of the Son of God, to a mature man, to the measure of the stature which belongs to the fullness of Christ. " "Built together into a dwelling of God in the Spirit."

Or simply ignore Pauls exhortations as most of our church fathers have grievously chosen to on their watch.

Wednesday, July 11, 2007

Nicodemus/"Reborn of the Spirit"

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A remarkable christian brother of mine prompted me to think about, among many other things, how many of the most learned and esteemed theologians of our time simply cannot get the rest of the body of Christ to buy into their personal proclamations of the true meaning of Christ's own words. On and on some of them persist even to the point of effectually wrangling, quarreling, showing a "morbid interest in controversial questions". Luckily, to help understand this, I thought of Nicodemus.

Nicodemus, a teacher of Israel, who could not even accept Christ's own testimony at first due to it seems his own eyes being clogged with poorly rendered Jewish theology, finally had the reluctant wisdom to come by night and ask Jesus some awkwardly simple questions, and had them answered fully with what was to be an offer to himself as well, through Jesus, to enter into the kingdom of God. Hopefully Nicodemus left satisfied, went back and studied his scriptures further, and then did not let any man tell him differently.

We see Nicodemus again further on in the storyline, not denying Jesus, and soon to recieve the news of His resurrection, His ascension, and amazingly even recieve his own rebirth, with his new heart and mind now beholding the revealed King and Kingdom.

What an lesson in taking Christ's words for what they say.

Moreover, Nicodemus' recorded encounter with Christ is a passage from which, about a year and a half ago, I was moved through the love from God contained in that passage to try and form a lyric that would fit with a tune I had recently made up, wherby the rich passage could dwell in me also now in song form, and continue to instruct me as well as allow me to sing with thanksgiving to the Lord. Oh...it needs a little fine tuning, but give it a try.


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There was a time, it’s written to see
The Maker of all, made our hearts to be free
Made them much like His own, in His image He’d sown.
And He fashioned a temple out of flesh and bone.

He told it one day, His word to obey.
But He already knew, that heart was drifting away.
So He sent forth His Spirit, Who to make the way clear,
The path of redemption, down which our hearts He would steer.

To believe in His Son. For behold He has come.
To be placed on the altar, that His justice be done.
To turn the hearts of His children, from their own earthly ways,
To the things of the promise, for whom the Son he obeys.

(Chorus)
The wind it does blow, right where it wishes, we’re told.
And you may hear the sound, but know not wherefrom it goes.
Such is the one, who’s been reborn of the Spirit,
And just as the wind, unto the Kingdom, you’ll draw near it.

Then His beautiful son, said He just could not stay.
Said the world that we live in, is just passing away.
But let your heart be not troubled, when I’m gone from here,
Cause the gift from the Father, of the Spirit will be here.

Because the Spirit will come, and dwell in each one,
Who asks of the Father, for His will to be done.
He’ll be a Light to your pathway, and teach you to see,
That My Word is Truth, and My Truth sets you free.
(Chorus)

What the eye has not seen, nor the ear not yet heard.
What’s been shielded in mystery, within God’s holy word.
What has never before, to the heart entered in,
Has now been prepared, for all of those who love Him.

(3rd part-choral)


In through the eyes of your heart you will see,
The Light of the world who wants all men to recieve,
The Spirit of Truth Whom the Father did say
Will know the way home, and will help show you the way.
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The music I cannot play yet. It's done, I simply can't get through it respectably yet. It's a little complicated and a little bigger musically than I am right now. Thankfully, the Lord provides for us to grow up in all aspects into Him. So I should have a completed rough version of it late this Fall.
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2-4-2008
I've since learned it and updated with a link to the playing of the song here.

Wednesday, June 06, 2007

Summer Hymn Festival Time Again.

It's that time of year again when I go half an hour north to Minoqua each Monday night and participate in a seven week rehearsal as a member of a 140 person choir which they call the Northwoods Hymn Festival Choir. This is it's sixth year and my third year of being involved in it. It's a powerful musical experience for me as well as a challenging one.

Hark, I Hear the Harps Eternal was a new song to me last year and musically left a nice impression on me. You can't quite capture the huge sound these 140 people make on your average computer speaker, but maybe it will come close.


Hark, I Hear the Harps Eternal.



We had a guest composer/conductor of some renown from out east named Gilbert Martin who was commissioned to write a piece to celebrate the 5th anniversary and wrote for us Laudate Dominum.


Laudate Dominum


I just bought four of the last few cds. they had left of The Gift of Alleluia, 2006 Northwoods Hymn Festival, to give to friends, so I don't think they'll mind if I post some songs here.










Friday, June 01, 2007

Take My Life and Let It Be.

Here is a hymn I've been working on in a style that is beginning to come together. I thought I'd post it here, on the page with the others, for the distraction and entertainment of a few other of you hymn lovers. Hope you enjoy it.

Take My Life and Let It Be
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Sunday, May 06, 2007

Dear Daughter: A Faithfilled Mother Teaching Her Daughter.

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Php 3:17 , "Brethren, join in following my example, and observe those who walk according to the pattern you have in us".

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From: Martyrs Mirror, T. J. van Braght, 1660

Through a certain good friend a very affectionate and consolatory testament of Janneken Munstdorp, the wife of Hans van Munstdorp, has been put into our hands, which she wrote in prison at Antwerp, after the offering up of her husband, when she was in daily expectation of death, to her dear little daughter-to whom she had given birth in prison, and who was now only about a month old-for a perpetual remembrance, farewell, and adieu from this evil world. It reads as follows,

WRITTEN TO JANNEKEN MY OWN DEAREST DAUGHTER, WHILE I WAS (UNWORTHILY) CONFINED FOR THE LORD'S SAKE, IN PRISON, AT ANTWERP, A. D. 1573

The true love of God and wisdom of the Father strengthen you in virtue, my dearest child; the Lord of heaven and earth, the God of Abraham, the God of Isaac, and the God of Jacob, the Lord in Israel, keep you in His virtue, and strengthen and confirm your understanding in His truth. My dear little child, I commend you to the Almighty, great and terrible God, who only is wise, that He will keep you, and let you grow up in His fear, or that He will take you home in your youth, this is my heart's request of the Lord: you who are yet so young, and whom I must leave here in this wicked, evil, perverse world.Since, then, the Lord has so ordered and foreordained it, that I must leave you here, and you are here deprived of father and mother, I will commend you to the Lord; let Him do with you according to His holy will. He will govern you and be a Father to you, so that you shall have no lack here, if you only fear God; for He will be the Father of the orphans and the Protector of the widows.Hence, my dear lamb, I who am imprisoned and bound here for the Lord's sake, can help you in no other way; I had to leave your father for the Lord's sake, and could keep him only a short time. We were permitted to live together only half a year, after which we were apprehended, because we sought the salvation of our souls. They took him from me, not knowing my condition, and I had to remain in imprisonment, and see him go before me; and it was a great grief to him that I had to remain here in prison. And now that I have abided the time, and borne you under my heart with great sorrow for nine months, and given birth to you here in prison, in great pain, they have taken you from me. Here I lie, expecting death every morning, and shall now soon follow your dear father. And I, your dear mother, write you, my dearest child, something for a remembrance, that you will thereby remember your dear father and your dear mother.Since I am now delivered up to death, and must leave you here alone, I must through these lines cause you to remember, that when you have attained your understanding, you endeavor to fear God, and see and examine why and for whose name we both died; and be not ashamed to confess us before the world, for you must know that it is not for the sake of any evil. Hence be not ashamed of us; it is the way which the prophets and the apostles went, and the narrow way which leads into eternal life, for there shall no other way be found by which to be saved.Hence, my young lamb, for whose sake I still have, and have had, great sorrow, seek, when you have attained your understanding, this narrow way, though there is sometimes much danger in it according to the flesh, as we may see and read, if we diligently examine and read the Scriptures, that much is said concerning the cross of Christ. And there are many in this world who are enemies of the cross, who seek to be free from it among the world, and to escape it. But, my dear child, if we would with Christ seek and inherit salvation, we must also help bear His cross; and this is the cross which He would have us bear: to follow His footsteps, and to help bear His reproach; for Christ Himself says, "Ye shall be persecuted, killed, and dispersed for my name's sake." Yea, He Himself went before us in this way of reproach, and left us an example, that we should follow His steps; for His sake all must be forsaken, father, mother, sister, brother, husband, child, yea, one's own life.I must now also forsake all this for the Lord's sake, which the world is not worthy to suffer; for if we had continued in the world, we would have had no trouble. For when we were one with the world and practiced idolatry, and loved all manner of unrighteousness, we could live at peace with the world; but when we desired to fear God, and to shun such improper ways, well knowing that this could not please God, wherefore we sought to shun all this, and turned from idolatry to the worship of the living God, and sought here in quietness and gentleness to practice our faith, then they did not leave us in peace; then our blood was sought; then we had to be a prey to everyone, and become a spectacle to all the world. They seek here to murder and to burn us; we are placed at posts and stakes, and our flesh is given as food to the worms.Thus, my dear child, it is now fulfilled in your dear father and mother. It was indeed prophesied to us beforehand, that this was awaiting us; but not everyone is chosen hereunto, nor expects it; the Lord has chosen us hereunto. Hence, when you have attained your understanding, follow this example of your father and mother. And, my dear child, this is my request of you, since you are still very little and young; I wrote this when you were but one month old. As I am soon now to offer up my sacrifice, by the help of the Lord, I leave you this, "That you fulfill my request, always uniting with them that fear God; and do not regard the pomp and boasting of the world, nor the great multitude, whose way leads to the abyss of hell, but look at the little flock of Israelites, who have no freedom anywhere, and must always flee from one land to the other, as Abraham did; that you may hereafter obtain your fatherland; for if you seek your salvation, it is easy to perceive which is the way that leads to life, or the way that leads into hell. Above all things, seek the kingdom of heaven and His righteousness; and whatever you need besides shall be added unto you. Matt. 6:33."Further, my dear child, I pray you, that wherever you live when you are grown up, and begin to have understanding, you conduct yourself well and honestly, so that no one need have cause to complain of you. And always be faithful, taking good heed not to wrong any one. Learn to carry your hands always uprightly, and see that you like to work, for Paul says, "If any will not work, neither shall he eat." II Thess. 3:10. And Peter says, "He that will love life, and see good days, let him refrain his tongue from evil." I Pet. 3:10.Hence, my dear Janneken, do not accustom your mouth to filthy talk, nor to ugly words that are not proper, nor to lies; for a liar has no part in the kingdom of heaven; for it is written, "The mouth that lieth slayeth the soul." Hence beware of this, and run not in the street as other bad children do; rather take up a book, and learn to seek there that which concerns your salvation.And where you have your home, obey those whose bread you eat. If they speak evil, do you speak well. And learn always to love to be doing something; and do not think yourself too good for any thing, nor exalt yourself, but condescend to the lowly, and always honor the aged wherever you are.I leave you here; Oh, that it had pleased the Lord, that I might have brought you up; I should so gladly have done my best with respect to it; but it seems that it is not the Lord's will. And though it had not come thus, and I had remained with you for a time, the Lord could still take me from you, and then, too, you should have to be without me, even as it has now gone with your father and myself, that we could live together but so short a time, when we were so well joined since the Lord had so well mated us, that we would not have forsaken each other for the whole world, and yet we had to leave each other for the Lord's sake. So I must also leave you here, my dearest lamb; the Lord that created and made you now takes me from you, it is His holy will. I must now pass through this narrow way which the prophets and martyrs of Christ passed through, and many thousands who put off the mortal clothing; who died here for Christ, and now they wait under the altar till their number shall be fulfilled, of which number your dear father is one. And I am now on the point of following him, for I am delivered up to death, as it appears in the eyes of- man; but if it were not the will of the Lord (though it seems that I am delivered up to death), He could yet easily; deliver me out of their hands and give me back to, you, my child. Even as the Lord returned to -Abraham his son Isaac, so He could still easily do it; He is still the same God that delivered Daniel out of the lion's, den, and the three young men out of the fiery furnace; He could still easily deliver me out of the hands of man.Now, my child, if this be not so, I know, that He is faithful and faithfully keeps His promise. Thus, my poor orphan child, always be resigned; though I and your father are now taken from you; know that you have a Father in heaven, who will doubtless well provide for you: And when you are old enough, give diligence to learn to read and write, since it is very convenient, and most profitable in this distress, for him that fears God, that you may sometimes read this letter; also the other letters, which your father left you; do read them, and remember us both thereby. Dear Janneken, we have not left you much of this world's goods, and I have now not much to give you, but what I have I give you. However, we leave you a good example to fear God, which is better than much of the temporal goods of this world. Only follow us, and you shall have wealth enough; true, you are poor here, but you shall possess much wealth, if you only fear God and shun sin. As the apostle says to the Hebrews, "My son despise not thou the chastening of the Lord for they that would be without chastisement are bastards, and not sons or heirs." Heb. 12:5. Hence, my dear lamb, cease not, because of the cross, to fear God, for a Christian is not made meet except by much tribulation and persecution upon this world, and we must through much tribulation enter into the kingdom of God; for Paul says, "All that will live godly in Christ Jesus shall suffer persecution." II Tim. 3:12. And Christ says, "He that taketh not his cross, and followeth after me; As not worthy of me; for the servant is not better than his lord, nor the disciple above his master. If they have called the master of the house Beelzebub, how much more shall they call them of his household." Matt. 10:38, 24, 25: If they have persecuted' the Lord, they will also persecute us; if they have hated Him, they will also hate us; and this they do ,because they have not known my Father, nor me, says the Almighty Lord. For His kingdom was not of this world; had His kingdom been of this, world, the world would have loved Him; but because His kingdom was not of this world; therefore the world hated Him.' So it also is now, since our kingdom is not of this world, the world will hate us; but it is better for us to be despised here by the world, than that we should hereafter have to mourn forever. But they that will not taste the bitter here; can hereafter not expect eternal life; for we know that Paul says, that all that will live godly in Christ Jesus shall be persecuted and be a prey to everyone.Thus, my dear child, this way the prophets and apostles and many thousands of other God-fearing persons went before us, for an example unto us; and Christ Himself did not spare Himself for us, but delivered up Himself unto death for our sakes -how then should He not give us all things? Hence, my dearest lamb, seek to follow this way, this I pray you, as much as you value your salvation; for this is the only way which leads to eternal life, yea, there is no other way by which we can be saved than only through Jesus Christ, as Paul says, "Other foundation can no man lay than that is laid, which is Jesus Christ" (I Cor. 3:11); by whose, stripes we are healed, and through whose blood we have been dearly purchased; for we have not been bought with gold or silver, but through His bitter death, and His precious blood which He shed for us. And we were as erring sheep in this world, but now are we redeemed through His precious and dear blood, and He has now: called us to be heirs and first-fruits of Christ. All those that have died unto sin, and amended their lives, and are thus risen with Christ into newness of life, these no- longer desire to live to themselves, but their life belongs to the Lord; if they live, they live to the Lord; if they die, they die unto the Lord; they are so resigned that whether they live or die, they belong to the Lord. For, my dear lamb, what shall it avail them that Christ died, who still continue in their sins, and do not turn from this improper life in which they are still sunk as drunkards, murderers, adulterers, idolaters, liars, backbiters, or railers who cannot please God, whose works proceed only from the devil, all of which the Lord prohibits and says that except they amend their lives, they shall not inherit the kingdom of God? And it shall avail them nothing that He died, if they will not repent. They would sin upon the grace of God, but they say not that He is just; He is indeed merciful, but He is also just; we may not sin upon His grace. Though we do our best to fear the Lord, and to renounce ourselves according to our ability, yea, though we did all that He commands us, which we are far from doing, we should only do that which is commanded us; we must yet confess that we are unprofitable servants and have not merited anything but are guilty of eternal death. If He were -not merciful, we could not be saved; hence we may not sin upon His grace, but always strive according to our ability to follow that which he commands us.My dear lamb; we can merit nothing, but must through grace inherit salvation; hence always endeayor to fear God, for the fear of the Lord is the beginning of wisdom, and he that fears the Lord will do good, and it will be well with him in this world and in that which is to come. And always join those that seek to fear the Lord from the heart, and be not conformed to the world, to do as she does, nor walk in any improper course of life; for the world shall pass away, and all the nations that serve her shall perish with her. Nor have fellowship with the unfruitful works of darkness, but rather reprove them; and be transformed by the renewing of your life, that you may show forth the virtues in which God has called you.O my dearest lamb, that you might know the truth when you have attained your understanding, and that you might follow your dear father and mother, who went before you; for your dear father demonstrated with his blood that it is the genuine truth, and I also hope to attest the same with my blood, though flesh and blood must remain on the posts and on the stake, well knowing that we shall meet hereafter. Do you also follow us my dear lamb, that you too may come where we shall be, and that we may find one another there, where the Lord shall say, "Come, ye blessed of my Father, inherit the kingdom prepared for you from the beginning."Then our joy shall not be taken from us. Though they have separated us here, so that we are taken from you, and must go before you, know that it was the Lord's will; if it had been His pleasure, He could easily have ordered it otherwise.Hence, my dear child, be content; He knows what He has determined concerning you, that I must leave you here. Always be honorable and courteous toward all men, and let your modesty be manifest to all men when you have attained to your understanding.I leave you here among my friends; I hope that my father, and my step-mother, and my brothers, and my sisters will do the best with you as long as they live. Be subject and obedient to them in every thing, so far as it is not contrary to God. I leave you what comes from my mother's death, namely, thirty guilders and over; I do not know how much it is, since I have been long imprisoned here, and do not know what it has all cost. But I hope that Grietge, my dear sister, who has shown me so much friendship, will do her best to give you what belongs to you. And as to what may come to you from your father, I do not know, since I can learn nothing about his parents, because it is so far from here; if they should inquire after you, my friends may do the best in the matter.And now, Janneken, my dear lamb, who are yet very little and young, I leave you this letter, together with a gold real, which I had with me in prison, and this I leave you for a perpetual adieu, and for a testament; that you may remember me by it, as also by this letter. Read it, when you have understanding, and keep it as long as you live in remembrance of me and of your father, if peradventure you might be edified by it. And I herewith bid you adieu, my dear Janneken Munstdorp,and kiss you heartily, my dear lamb, with a perpetual kiss of peace. Follow me and your father, and be not ashamed to confess us before the world, for we were not ashamed to confess our faith before the world, and this adulterous generation; hence I pray you, that you be not ashamed to confess our faith, since it is the true evangelical faith, an other than which shall never be found.Let it be your glory that we did not die for any evil doing, and strive to do likewise, though they should also seek to kill you. And on no account cease to love God above all, for no one can prevent you from fearing God. If you follow that which is good, and seek peace, and ensue it, you shall receive the crown of eternal life; this crown I wish you and the crucified, bleeding, naked, despised, rejected and slain Jesus Christ for your bridegroom.This I wish you for a perpetual testament, and for a perpetual adieu and farewell my dearest lamb.Remember thereby your dear father, and me, your dear mother, who have written this with my own hand, for your edification; and always keep this gold real with you, with this letter, for a perpetual testament: I herewith bid you adieu and farewell; I hope to seal this letter with my blood at the stake.I herewith commend you to the Lord, and to the comforting Word of His grace, and bid you adieu once more. I hope to wait for you; follow me, my dearest child.Once more, adieu, my dearest upon earth; adieu, and nothing more; adieu, follow me; adieu and farewell. Written on the 10th of August, A. D. 1573, at Antwerp. This is the testament which I wrote in prison for my daughter Janneken, whom I bore and gave birth to here in my bonds.By me your dearest mother, imprisoned for the Lord's sake.

JANNEKEN MUNSTDORP.(Martyrs Mirror (http://www.homecomers.org/mirror/contents.htm), T. J. van Braght, 1660, p. 984-988,
emphasis added).
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Heb 6:12 ...so that you will not be sluggish, but imitators of those who through faith and patience inherit the promises.


A jarring and wonderful demonstration of one mother's strength from the Lord, and her faithfilled love and obedience.

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Ro 8:18 For I consider that the sufferings of this present time are not worthy to be compared with the glory that is to be revealed to us.


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Saturday, May 05, 2007

This Is Another Post I Found Great Truth And Encouragment In.

A very good analysis of a very serious problem amongst all the interdependent parts of the body of Christ.

This Post, To Me, Is Wisdom In Progress.

Bobby Grow seems to be blossoming towards being an even more critical thinker. Very encouraging. I just wanted this one for the record. At least until he changes blog addresses again.

Sunday, April 29, 2007

Wisconsin River Hike.

Please let me tell you about my Wisconsin Rver Hike the other day just a remote mile downstream of the Camp Ten Ski Hill where I lived when my daughter was born.

So off we went four-wheeling it back to the so-named Whirlpool Rapid. It's actually on the map in the Delorme Wisconsin Road Atlas. I knew it was a pretty spot but had never yet seen it with a log jam that enabled us to get 3/4 of the way across the river. Nice surprise.


Here is a view looking upstream from below the rapid.






















Deanta had just followed my reading glasses tube downstream for a hundred yards, after it had fallen out of my pocket, until she was able to snatch it from an eddy. So she was feeling pretty good about herself after I proclaimed her the hero.


































Now she was going to survey things until the quest for adventure would overtake her and her dad and they would walk the log bridge to get to the center island.

















Here's a view looking downstream from atop the log bridge.

















Dad was the first one over while Deanta held the camera very steady finally for a nice clear picture.

















Here's the Head guide with tummy protruding from too many chocolate Easter eggs.

















Almost there.

















Now here's the log between the first and second island. Pretty tame.

















And then we ran out of logs and could just peer across at the opposite shore.

















Here's the island.

















The view upstream from center.

















Upstream looking back at the log bridge.


















Fun hike.

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Just practicing for the next log jam over Bond Falls.

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A very scenic little falls 45 minutes north of Eagle River WI.
































































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Tuesday, April 10, 2007

Awana Grand Prix Time.


One gravity hungry block of wood. I just went at it with the bench grinder and finished it with some old spray paint I had. I even had a can of enamel. I'm hooked now.

Google doesn't remember the password to my daughter's blog right now so I'll post it here. Isn't Awana grand Prix time fun? I was dreading all the time I was going to have to come up with to get a car made but it wasn't so bad afterall.
Now I have to make another one and try and get her to let me race this one in the leaders race. Otherwise I might be racing the prettiest little girly looking car in the group.





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Saturday, March 17, 2007

Just A Short Note: Theology Is Not Always Our Friend.

For my own personal growth in the word, and to fend off the clever and self-important messengers of historic and contemporary christian theology, I need to once in a while remember certain important things.

You have those who say that to study scripture and even merely read the bible is to engage in theology. Theology is an inescapable part of looking to and understanding God's word.

The truth be reconciled that, yes, theology is a study of things religious. Is there any disagreement with that definition? We have Christian theologians, Hindu theologians, Islamic theologians and even Greek Mythologogical theologians. This man-made science of theology has to be applied with the uttmost care when using it to clarify the words of God's revealed self, Jesus, in Christianity, for Jesus said already that His words are Truth which came from the Father. We have to recieve them that way, all of them, together, purely and plainly.

Yes, and then you have spiritually guided Christian theology, in which you have wild disagreement and spiritual disharmony that is in reckless opposition to the clear scriptural counsel to agree and be of the same mind in scripture. When the theological tools are applied to God's word discretely and with measured restraint it can lead to reinforcement and support for Christ's own words. When it's used selfishly or superficially it can leave brethren splintered and scattered and left apart from each other in slightly different gospels.

The world of Christian theology, has long ago taken on a life of it's own, apart from sound workmanship in and under Christ's counsel. It's become virtually a man-made science trying to prove those things which God ordained for us only to know in part for now.

This makes it clear to me that Christian theology is not always our friend and cannot be said to be a part and parcel of studying God's word.

I need protection from the fleshly biting and devouring forces thriving within the Body of Christ in the form of self-proclaimed christian theology. And that very reassuredly comes in the form of a good literal rendering of scripture in the NASV bible, a Greek/English NASV interlinear bible in Greek and English, a good scriptural dictionary, a concordance to bolster the memory, along with the promised indwelling Spiritual help that Christ came through with for us. A good teacher is invaluable as well. One that's always learning. One that you can be sure you have when he uses the entire bible to teach itself, so to speak. And it's a big book and is very helpful to have someone around with a love and a respect for it that's been through it a few more times than I have.

Very few people share my fascination and admiration for christian theological thinking from just after Christ and until now. In my own mind, that may be why I can see it, not only for what it is, but more importantly, for what it is not. And then get back to studying the pure milk of the word right from the book. As it was intended. Oooo...can I say that? As it was intended? Yes, most definately.

It was a more comforting day when I came to that realization. Hope it works for a few others as well.

Comfort and joy, spiritually, from Him to us, as promised. Together in Christ(ripped asunder in theology, ohhpppssttt...sorry). And it is well with our soul.



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Wednesday, March 14, 2007

Regrets, Minor Regrets and Blessings.

A day very well blessed. I get to practice piano for a couple of hours. Then go about 20 minutes away and make a pretty good worthwhile time of getting out in the mud and trimming up some Morgans that I had put some shoes on for the Christmas parade last November. Come home to about 2 more hours of practice after when my kiddo will get home and we'll skate off to girl scouts. I'll get some reading time in while I wait, come home, and after dinner she can practice her piano briefly, do a little Awana, and then it's either computer games with dad or watch a little tv while dad goes of to practice or study some more. Nice well rounded day.

I'm trying to finish My Jesus, I Love Thee and Since I Have Been Redeemed. My playing is growing in leaps and bounds-at the cost of a huge time investment-which I thank God continously that I have, and owe to Him. I will work at filling out the four tunes I have on my website, or the two instrumentals that is. I won't be posting hymns and songs I'm going to formally record. There is no hurry for them, as I see it. There are, however, many great hymns that are left for the meantime to have some fun with and to share with friends and aquantainces here.

I also intend to press on and explore as many fascinating scripturally relevant questions as time permits. Such as the one in the last post that I still have to answer. A minor regret is that I don't have the time to debate away alot of the divisive Christian theology that has crept into the Church, from right about the time Jesus, probably reluctantly, left us to our own devices down here and went off hoping we would listen and testify to what He said. But people have always and always will listen and be tickled by every wind of doctrine that comes along, and so all a person can do is make sure that they're grounded in what Christ has done for them, and leave it at that. And let's not forbid, even make some use of what He has done for them. Given the opportunity, I would love to host a 'Theological detox' blog to give some of these hard core, hard label, theologically opposed and encamped Christians a new look at going 'theology free', so to speak, and uniting in scripture, and scripture alone. And there have been worse dreams. But for now I slog on in the vast sufficiency of the present.