Monday, January 21, 2013

Comforted by Conundrums

Not philosophical argument, nor intellectual persuasion, but by HIS SPIRIT!!!   Amen.

"There is one central conception of the book of Job, which literally makes it immortal. That is the conception that the universe, if it is to be admired, is to be admired for its strangeness and not for its rationality, for its splendid unreason and not for reason. Job's friends attempt to comfort him with philosophical optimism. Job tries to comfort himself with philosophical pessimism. But God comforts Job with indecipherable mystery, and for the first time, Job is comforted. God simply refuses to answer, and somehow the question is answered. Job flings at God one riddle, God flings back at Job a hundred riddles, and Job is at peace."

 He is comforted with conundrums.

"...if we are to be reconciled to this great cosmic experience it must be as something divinely strange and divinely violent, a quest, or a conspiracy, or some sacred joke."
G.K. Chesterton

 "Going mad is the slowest and dullest business in the world. I have very nearly done it more than once in my boyhood, and so have nearly all my friends, born under the general doom of mortals...The doom that makes a man come almost to the end of thinking before he comes to the first chance of living."
G. K. Chesterton

Knowest thou the ordinances of heaven?
Canst thou set the dominion thereof in the earth?
--Job 38:33

Not by might nor by power,
but by my spirit,
sayth the LORD Almighty.
Zech 4:6

A Year with G.K. Chesterton, 365 DAYS OF WISDOM, WIT, AND WONDER.

Saturday, January 19, 2013

The Shadow of the Branch

Every man has a different idea of what's beautiful,
and it is best to take the gesture, 
the shadow of the branch, 
and let the mind create the tree.
William Faulkner

Tuesday, January 15, 2013

Shattered Shards

Shattered shards
of virtue lost
immeasurable cost.
Begging for mercy
deliverance send
Oh obstinate will
thou unwelcome friend.
Breath of God
northeastern wind;
the crest of the hill of my sin.
With roaring, roll
push into my soul
blowing it clean
of debris unseen
lying cluttered on the floor of my faith.

'Return to me,'  declares the Lord Almighty,
'and I will return to you.'
Zechariah 1:3

Monday, January 14, 2013

Woodland Soul--Setting for Two

I leaned into the trees' massive body and willed myself invisible. Fading into the variegated bark, I felt its arms embrace me as the wind cupped my face with the cold of a wooded winters breath. The brittle twigs and parched leaves under my feet seemed to welcome me as kin instead of the intruder I was.

Motionless, I took in the macrocosm before me.
I heard the faint call of a barn owl in the distance, its diurnal opus possibly triggered by the gloominess of a dreary day. A brief glimpse of a whitetail deer disappeared over a near hill. A woodpecker's hollow rhythm echoed in a glen. Winter wheat, on a far away hill, bowed in undulating obeisance to the soft thermals.
Eventually, silence as only a forest can fashion, settled as an eery hush over the land and I sank deeper into the woodland soul, assuming my niche.

This is my setting for two.
My seat with the sacred.
My bench of blessing.

Then, I did what I came to do; to be still, experience The Lord and pray.
"May all those that come after me, that walk this land as I have, hear a thousand tongues of truth among the trees and words of wisdom in the whispers of the wind.  May they sense your presence as they walk the fields, hear songs of praise from the beaks of birds and behold your majesty in the deep starry sky of night. May the fullness of this land beckon and waken the eternity within them and may they know that you and you alone, are God. May they find this place a sanctuary of peace and prayer."  Amen

The land you have taken possession of is a land of mountains and valleys that drinks rain from heaven. It is a land the LORD your God cares for; the eyes of the LORD your God are continually on it from the beginning of the year to its end.
Deuteronomy 11:11-12

He has set eternity in the hearts of men.
Ecclesiastes 3:11

Saturday, January 5, 2013

Walls of Lapis and Lazuli


*Eden had a wall, protected by an angel with a flaming sword.
*The Old Testament Tabernacle had a portable wall.
*Jerusalem and the Temple had a wall.
*There will be a beautiful wall around the New Jerusalem.
*But Ezekiel's wall is especially disturbing;
    "I saw all over the walls all kinds of crawling things, detestable animals and all the wicked idols of   the world".

Ewwwww.   I really,  REALLY don't like crawly things. Especially things associated with the number eight--as in legs.   But worse, are the teeming minions of evil that squirm and prowl about on the walls of our life  day and night, seeking whom they may devour and delude. Selfishness, silently stalking.   Lust, lurking in darkness.  Greed, watching from the shadows.  Pride, peering through holes. Sexual infidelity, slithering in slots.  All these and more have taken up residence between the stones of our borders, swarming the wall...preparing to advance and attack.  
 The personification of sins depravity is alive and well in the world and scaling your wall.  Micah indicates It has even reached the very gate...of your wall.  

So, how strong is your wall?  According to Isaiah, if we reject the gospel, our walls will bulge, crack and collapse. ( I can picture the breech,  collapse, and subsequent release of all that is vile to flow like magma as it slithers across the ground in methodical and unrestrained pursuit toward us.)

Here's the good news, though, God wants to wall you off from all the deceptions and danger of this world. He wants you to dwell in peace and safety.
*God will turn back the battle at the gate..............Isaiah 28:6
*God will set watchmen upon your walls.............Isaiah 62:6
*God will grant peace to your borders..................Psalm 147:13-14
*God himself will be a wall around you...............Psalm 125:2
*The bars of your gates will be iron and bronze...Deut. 33:25
*With God's help we can scale the wall................2 Samuel 22:30
*The gates of hell will not prevail against us........Matthew 16:18
*God himself will be a wall of fire around us.......Zechariah 2:5
*He will be the glory within.................................Zechariah 2:5

I will build you with stones of turquoise,
your windows of agate, your foundations with sapphires.
I will make your towers of rubies, 
your gates of sparkling jewels, 
and all your walls of precious lapis and lazuli.
I will be your glory within.


Ezekiel 8:10 Revelation 21:12 Psalm 55:10  Micah 1:9  Isaiah 30:12-13, 54:12-13

Tuesday, January 1, 2013

A Sermon and a Song.

"And the word became flesh"
John 1:14

The Song; They played this song during worship on Sunday. It is one of my favorites.
The sermon; There didn't seem to be a sermon, in the traditional sense.  Honestly, I'm not really sure I know what the message emphasis was even supposed to be, the pastor just enumerated highlights of 2012. But one thing I do know, this song and a random verse (above) from the message, were paired by God to speak to me.
I have witnessed the prophetic phenomena of the truth of Isaiah 55:11 (My word will not return to me void) many times in my life.
Man can prepare a message, yet in the final delivery, God takes the proffered point, converts the context  and customizes the oration to fit his divinely designated recipient(s).
We can plan and prepare all we want, but God is in the heavens, he does as he please [with the words of men].
We may have an agenda, But God has the intendment. We may seek to reach masses, but God leaves the hills for one.
Silly people.

The morning take-away for me was a re-cap of Christmas-- the word became flesh.
Christ became flesh on Christmas morning indeed, but He becomes flesh every time a christian presents himself/herself to the unbelieving world.

The Word has become flesh:  
He is good, when there is nothing good in me.  He is love on display for all the world to see.

The Word has become flesh:
I don't have any New Years resolutions, I consider them vain and paltry promises that typically don't pan out.
I just simply want each new day of 2013 to be; Christ in me, the hope of glory to the world.
I want my internal spiritual reality to be the outward expression of a will fully sold out to God.
The Word has become flesh:
I'm running to your arms.
I will sing no other name...... JESUS.  Ya Hus' Hua
I will seek no other God.

To man belong the plans of the heart,
but from the Lord 
comes the reply of the tongue.
Proverbs 16:1

*Psalm 115:3     Our God is in heaven; he does whatever pleases him.
*Isaiah 55:11 my word that goes out from my mouth; will not return to  me empty, but achieve the purpose for which I sent it.
*Colossians 1:27  Christ in me, the hope of glory.