Monthly Archives: January 2006

Clementines and modern psalms

I have really begun to appreciate Clementines, ‘cuz while in Korea we ate them a lot… now we buy these handy little cases of them, and this morning I enjoyed them at the top of the hill above the “village” I live in… it was the hightest point of this morning’s hike, so I sat on a fallen treee and enjoyed not one, but two (!) clementines… and as I sat, enjoying the view through the forest from the top of the hill to the mountains beyond… listening to some great music… I was struck by a thought about the music I listen to on these walks, the music is like a modern Psalm, drawing me to walk with Him, this is what the Psalmists did some of the time, write music which would draw the followers of God to Him…
…so stop for a while, listen to some music that draws you to Him, and enjoy a clementine!

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ok, I have a lot to talk about… but first: my walking stick

I love to go for long walks in the woods near my house:

here is my walking stick… I fashioned it from a fallen branch last week…

I found it very helpful… like last Saturday when I lost the trail because of all the leaves and had to plod though the woods and use my excellent built in compass and sence of direction (no kidding) I discovered that I had to carefully work my way down a steep ravive that was covered in leaves… it was my walking stick that stabilized me through that ordeal…

like I said, I had lost the trail and knew that eventually the ridge I was walking would end up in another part of the “village” I live in and there would be no way out, other than walking through someone’s back yard, then I remembered a creek that ran under the road on community property… to get to this creek and back home (with out backtracking- – I HATE BACKTRACKING), I had to go down the hill… I was grateful for my walking stick, it saved the day!

Life is like a hike, there are times when we have to stop, evaluate if we are going in the right direction, look at the obstacles, and sometimes the best thing we can do is to turn around… even if it means going in a direction that we believe is right, yet has some very unknown aspects to it… sometimes we need to turn around and make a new path… and when the path is slippery, it is good to have a walking stick to give us stability… when our legs are tired, it is good to be able to use the walking stick to help us up a hill, or slow us down when we are going too fast down a ravine… Scripture is a great walking stick… but a walking stick will not help if you don’t use it… neither will Scripture…

Long live walking sticks!

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it’s been a tough week

… and that, fellow bloggers is why I’ve been woefully absent from blogdom: where I think aloud, write ideas and misspell words… this week I wanted to write about 20th century “classical” (-NOT) music, my walking stick, working too hard, the meaning of life, writing interims (few people who read this blog will understand this one… but those who do will shake their head in disbelief at the torture we go through, or at least nod knowingly at the pain and travail that this, which some call the bane of their existence, and I call proof of The Fall… oh – – I am going on aren’t I?) and clemintines… but alas, I had to write interims… but, I’m back… next up: my walking stick and thoughts on my weekly hike!

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travelin’ as a window to understanding…

this morning during some reading time i was struck by a greater understanding of a text because i could really see what i was reading… because of my recent trip to Korea… some of the places i visited were a window into a strong and deep culture that is thousands of years old…

had I not seen, felt, smelled, heard and tasted that culture, i would not have experienced the text as i did today, how can you picture a medieval battle if you’ve not stood on a castle rampart? travel… ‘cuz it’s a window to understandin’

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leadership…

My friend J.R. has a some very interesting on leadership, I suggest you check it out

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following him now, looking forward to looking at Him later

Looking forward to seeing Him? see and live it NOW, HERE!

In class today I was asked about heaven and hell. I try to keep things boiled down to that which I can be pretty sure sometimes. (There are times where its okay to speculate, as long as one clarifies that they are indeed doing so, and for the sake of delving into deeper understanding). Anyway, I made the comment that one should be careful in relegating a person to the bad place (as well as sending them to the pearly gates) and one of my sharp students asked why. I replied that we only know the heart of one person, us. And that, while we cannot look into the heart of another, we can look at life and words and get the idea of where they are with God… but I added we can’t know, so its best to play it safe… then I said what I’ve said in many funerals, where ever they are, I believe they want you to know the truth. One student pointed out the Jesus told a parable to that effect, and she was right, He did… but then the question of what these people are experiencing came up… and I stumbled into this idea… those in the presence of God have a single focus… God, as they are “face to face” (whatever that means) they are not in the least thinking about anyone or anything but God, for finally, they are engaged in that for which they were created… worship of Him! And for those other folks? I suppose the converse is true… And isn’t that a very similar comparison to now…

here on this planet, in the now, the here, we who are privileged enough to be followers of Him, should have our focus less on us and our stuff and more on Him… because we have a joyous life to live here!!

…Yancey said ‘Some of us seem so anxious about avoiding hell that we forget to celebrate our journey toward heaven. Others of us, rightly concerned about issues in a modern ‘culture war,’ neglect the church’s mission as a haven of grace in this world of ungrace. (What’s so Amazing about Grace? p. 14) and that is so true… this journey we are on is awesome, the blessing we have, this life which I called the second kind of Grace is so incomparably better than the alternative… and serving Him is too!

Looking forward to seeing Him? see and live it NOW, HERE!

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Willard states… “We automatically remember what makes a real difference in our life. The secret of the great teacher is to speak words, to foster experiences, that impact the active flow of the hearers’s life.”

… “By showing to others the presence of the kingdom in the concrete details of our shared existence, we impact the lives and hearts of our hearers, not just their heads. And they won’t have to write it down to hold on to it.” (p. 114)

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