December 12th, 2004


The bright side

God is deliberate in drawing near to me. This morning the mountains overhadowed everything else with beauty and majesty and strength. He was there, and He is here.

A woman told her story to the congregation at church today, the first time we've done this in years. Jesus is so clear in her life, engaging counterfeits and ugly, broken realities with truth, grace, hope, and love. You can listen here; it's only five minutes long and is one of the most simply powerful testimonies I've ever heard. Brings me to tears, the good kind.

John spoke about Mary today, about how God shows us what it means to be His through her life. I don't think many people would expect to hear that in a Presbyterian sermon, but it's there and it's the truth. The MP3 can be found here (approximately 30 minutes) and is a great picture of what the gospel is and means.

Burning some bridges on some places I go for comfort other than Him. This matters. Sooner or later (and often much, much sooner), it's sin. I don't often think of it as contempt for Christ, but it is. And I've been freed from that. There was no life in it. There still isn't. And life is what I want: real, unadulterated, worshipful, rough-and-tumble, authentic, abundant life.
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    touched touched

The dark side

So I know what's disturbing me now, and it's not going to go away. I want it to, but I am who I am, things are what they are, and I'm just going to have to deal with it. And I hate that. Not just a little. A lot.

Time is tricky. Ever wonder what it'd be like to peek ahead a bit? If you could see it all, no doubt you'd go mad. That's true whether you could control it or not, because either way, we'd all look at things we can't handle. If you could see just a little, you might be OK under one condition: you can't care about anyone but yourself.

See, if you only care about yourself, you can be prepared and manage the things that might affect you. But if you care about someone else, anyone else, then you'll have a knot in your stomach much of the time, because you're going to see things that will hurt those you love. Everyone chooses. Since it's not your life, there isn't a whole lot you can do about it.

Except pray.

God is the only one who has the authority to make the future certain; for the rest of us, it's all just possibilities. He's the one who reveals truth, who guides to places of light, who turns evil to good, who defines love and gives it freely. Because He is good, He prizes His glory above all else. And somehow, He wants to listen. And He acts.

I wonder why I don't pray more.
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    gloomy gloomy


Jane Monheit was amazing, as always. I have a particular weakness for when she sings in Portugese. Like a big sticka manteiga.
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    enthralled enthralled