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Showing posts from January, 2011

individual responsibility

Saw this on a friends email, under the "thought for the day".  Attributed to former Senator Bill Bradley:  A worker who doesn't give an honest day's work for a day's wage forfeits the moral claim he has on the company's management to treat him with respect.   A manager who fires workers at the first hint of recession can't expect loyalty from those who remain.   A television-network executive who exercises no judgment about the violence or hedonism of the network's programs can't escape the charge that he or she is contributing to national self-destruction.   The newspaper publisher whose only concern is to print whatever sells loses the right to criticize politicians who pander to voters.   Too many Americans abdicate their individual responsibility.


Working on two pens, a 1946 Parker Vacumatic Major (top), golden pearl (brown), converted to eyedropper fill because of blind cap problem.  Fine nib.  And below it I'm re-tuning a late 1930s Vacumatic, with medium nib.   These golden pearls are made of striated celluloid (layered dark brown and clear amber).  One of the pens has excellent transparency.  Beautiful and sweet-writing pens.

goals in serving

"For I tell you that Christ became a servant to the circumcised to show God's truthfulness, in order to confirm the promises given to the patriarchs, and in order that the Gentiles might glorify God for his mercy. As it is written, 'Therefore I will praise you among the Gentiles, and sing to your name.'" (Romans 15:8-9 ESV) What are our goals when we serve others ?  It may be to bear burdens, be a listening ear or helping hand, or to bring comfort and encouragement.  All of these are worthy aims as we minister to others.  I was struck in reading this passage this morning how Christ came as a servant with some specific purposes.  Three are listed here: 1) He came to " show God's truthfulness " (literally, "on behalf of God's truth").  This could be truth as in reality, but also more likely, with the connotation of God's truthfulness, i.e., his dependability and trustworthiness. See John 18:37..."for this purpose I have come
Here's a great quote from Fred Smith, Sr.: "Pray that God does not reveal your stupidity to you until you understand his grace."

plumer on faith

William S. Plumer (1802—1880), Presbyterian pastor and evangelist, on faith... Faith gazes upon the cross until the course of the new nature is set on fire with heavenly love! Saving faith . . .   unites to Christ,   lays hold of salvation,   conquers every foe,   brings every blessing into the soul,   pronounces death abolished,   always begets humility,   is self-renouncing,   consents to be nothing, that God may be all and in all,   excludes boasting,   is jealous for God's honor,   brings forth forgiveness to enemies,   begets repentance,   nourishes other graces,   ever clings to the fullness of Christ,   kindles love to an unseen Savior,   is ever laying its crown at the feet of Immanuel,   puts things in their proper place,   abases the sinner in the dust,   sets God on the throne of universal dominion,   pronounces all God's ways just and right,   counts all things as loss, for the excellency     of the knowledge of God's dear Son!

won't turn back

I like the song by Needtobreathe, "Won't Turn Back".  Here are the lyrics: Lonely like a sailor Who's left his girl at home No storm could overtake the love he knows So tell me why I should run for cover At the sound of the coming thunder All I hear is the cry of my lover So take your shot I won't turn back I won't turn back Faithful like a soldier Who's answered to the call Even when his back's against the wall So tell me why I should run for cover At the sound of the coming thunder All I hear is the cry of my lover Yeah take your shot I won't turn back No I won't turn back

whether we live or die

"For none of us lives to himself, and none of us dies to himself.  For if we live, we live to the Lord, and if we die, we die to the Lord. So then, whether we live or whether we die, we are the Lord's.  For to this end Christ died and lived again, that he might be Lord both of the dead and of the living."  (Romans 14:7-9 ESV) If I have entrusted myself to the Lord in faith and repentance, then I am his.  If I am his in this life, I will be his in the next.  This is a tremendous peace-bringing truth!  I need fear nothing in life or death, because Jesus is Lord over all the living and the dead.  People who live only for this life will see traumatic discontinuity as they face death.  People who live for Jesus will see great continuity between this life and the next, for they belong to him who is Lord over both realms.  This is also one of the keys to being gracious, gentle and encouraging to our fellow believers who may differ with us on non-essential points of doctrine

pray for sudan

This in from Mission Aviation Fellowship (MAF): "The time is drawing near for the most important day in the history of Sudan. On Sunday 9th January the people will be voting for the Referendum. This is to decide whether Sudan is to remain as one country, or to divide into North and South Sudan. Tensions are extremely high and there is already a lot of conflict in the border areas. So Christians round the world have been asked to pray every day for the situation."  Pray for a fair, peaceful and representative referendum, and for Christians in north Sudan who may see reprisals if the south votes for independence.   Here is a prayer from Sudan: Father God, Lead the citizens of Sudan to become well informed as they prepare to make critical choices that will have a far-reaching impact. Fill their hearts anew with your Holy Spirit so that they may turn from all forms of violence. Inspire them to honor, respect and care for one another. As they exercise their vote, may they do so

the first commandment

"I am the LORD your God, who brought you out of the land of Egypt, out of the house of slavery.  You shall have no other gods before me."  (Exodus 20:2-3 ESV) I have been meditating on this great truth. Martin Luther's commentary on this commandment in The Large Catechism is most insightful in applying what this means.  Here are a few excerpts... "Thou shalt have no other gods before Me."  That is: "Thou shalt have [and worship] Me alone as thy God." What is the force of this, and how is it to be understood? What does it mean to have a god? or, what is God? Answer: A god means that from which we are to expect all good and to which we are to take refuge in all distress, so that to have a God is nothing else than to trust and believe Him from the whole heart; as I have often said that the confidence and faith of the heart alone make both God and an idol. If your faith and trust be right, then is your god also true; and, on the other hand, if your tr


Andy Crouch has listed, and commented on, what he calls "the ten most significant trends of the last decade."  He lists...    1. Connection    2. Place    3. Cities    4. The End of the Majority    5. Polarity    6. The Self Shot    7. Pornography    8. Informality    9. Liquidity   10. Complexity He gives an interesting analysis of each one here . 

in search of herod's tomb

"Rising above the surrounding Judean hills, the artificially conical mountain of Herodium still bears witness to the building prowess of its namesake, King Herod the Great. At this barren site southeast of Jerusalem, Herod constructed a spectacular palace/fortress atop the mountain and a lavish palatial resort in the valley below. According to Josephus, the king had chosen this desert retreat as his final resting place, but the burial location eluded archaeologists for decades—until now." Read Ehud Netzer's article here .