Tuesday, July 31, 2007

The sign of the Holy Spirit

Not only so, but we also rejoice in our sufferings, because we know that suffering produces perseverance, perseverance produces character, and character produces hope. and hope does not disappoint us because God has poured out His love into our heart by the Holy Spirit whom He has given us. Romans 3:3-5

We are given a sign of the Holy Spirit to be with us in our daily lives. I am amazed at His power to change lives.

Two of our major project managers in the office (like they manage 80% of all the projects here) are gone. Guess who's taking over?


Today was so harrowing. People need things now, but yesterday would have been better. And I'm coordinating the efforts of people, trying to find out who lost this drawing and can we recover it? and generally putting out fires without letting them burn TOO long.

It's fun.

But I've noticed that there is a certain calm that is here with me that prevents me from spewing forth evil in my frustrated state. You know how it is, you just want to give a solid tongue lashing to that guy who deleted your drawing without even asking you what it was, you need the other guy to act faster, and you want to return (in kind) to the developer -- who doesn't understand the stress you're under and offers biting sarcastic comments about getting things done right the first time -- equally cynical and jaded effluence.

And even as the phone rings just now (had to clarify a print order) I reflect on GOD'S work by the grace of Jesus Christ on my attitude. I was actually pleasant (though visibly concerned) with the people who brought on the stress. I didn't brush off the situations as unimportant, but I found the strength to treat the people involved in them with love and charity and mercy.

Connie at Practicing Theology makes a great point in a cute way about understanding everything according to sound doctrine. I know more of the mysteries of the spiritual blessings, and I praise Him more for the changes He makes in my life.

Yes, that crazy charismatic Apostolic hoopla may be fun for a time, but I can say beyond a doubt that the Holy Spirit was in my cubicle today...

...and there wasn't any shouting at all. *grin*

Monday, July 30, 2007

Art and Christianity

I've been mulling recently the relationship of my artistic pursuits with my faith, my beliefs, my doctrine.

Doctrine really does matter. It has helped me align my perspectives in a way that permits pursuit of all things as unto the Lord. Where His Word ends, so do I. I learned in college that I could "make truth" and probably could have earned a very comfortable living writing manifestos on architecture and photography that garnered a cult following.

But God's Word is clear. And that provides relief, and a place to start searching.

This post is a good conversation about the subject at hand. Where does art become idol worship?

Truthfully, we live in a sinful fallen world, so the notion of finding a "perfect" use for art is nonsense at best. There was even greater beauty, I believe, on this planet at one time, created by God and existing before the Fall of man. But this was not a problem while the relationship with God was unbroken, and the fellowship with and adoration of Him was pure and undefiled. But now place us in an environment where our creativity is pursued apart from Who God is, from sound doctrine, and in a sinful world, and we begin to think "I, too, can be like the Most High."

Seriously, create something that takes even your own breath away and see what I mean. If the honor and glory is not directed straight back to God, our pride will suffocate us, and even the art will become empty and meaningless. We'll continue to create, and search for that next "high" we get from creating beautiful things (in the order established by the God who determines beauty) without acknowledging God, and we'll take a step further down the road of self-exultation and idolatry.

Bless the Lord for His wisdom in all things.


I want to live in a double-wide on the prairie.

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Wednesday, July 25, 2007


On all eight cylinders...


(I feel better now)

Sunday, July 22, 2007

Off to DC

Bear with me...

Gayla, I still owe you that meme!!!

Friday, July 20, 2007

the Globe is taking the story!

and they want PHOTOS!!!

I will get paid!

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Thursday, July 19, 2007


Uber-drafting-frustration Day.


Friday, July 13, 2007

"Does Not Play Well With Reality"

Martin is submitting my Macho photo to Optima Batteries for a testimonial from Tempest Tours.

Wow. I turned all school-girlish and couldn't stop giggling.

And to think I wanted to get out of photography for a while...

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Thursday, July 12, 2007

I want to see it!!!

Have you seen the movie Twister? Well, I know you probably never thought to question whether or not I've seen it, if you've been a regular reader on r&r at least.

Do you remember the scene where Bill and Jo are under the bridge, right as her truck is getting sucked up by this possibly F2 tornado (moving at 65+ mph, and certainly inaccurate, but we won't go there for now)?

Do you remember when she turns around to the frustration of Bill, shouting "I want to see it!" and strains to get a glimpse of this powerful phenomenon she has dedicated her whole life to pursuing? To studying?

I feel that way when I think about getting to heaven and His love and patience with me is finally revealed in its fullest state. To see my depravity and selfishness lined up with His patience with me in everything. I hear those five words ringing in my ears with that same sense of desperation... "I want to see it!"

I want to see the depth of that love that I cannot grasp right now, that I can only sense, and that being because of my sin. I have a sense of entitlement that cannot be completely wiped away until I get to glory. I am humbled, but only as much as a depraved person can be by the grace of God. My own humility is still steeped in the rotting flesh that continues to die day after day after day.

And though I may not be perfect here, striving to attain holiness and righteousness is the least I can do for my Master, my Lord, the thongs of whose sandals I am not worthy to even gaze upon, much less untie. And through it all, I pray that one day I will get to fully grasp the depth and height of the love of God that is behind the patience with me, even when I think I'm "doing all right."

I want to see it!!!

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Cling to what is good


This brings to mind a picture of grasping, holding, like a child to its mother when a stranger wants to hold him. Do everything in your power to stay away from evil.

Pursue righteousness.

And furthermore:

The heart of the wise is in the house of mourning,
but the heart of fools is in the house of pleasure.
Ecc. 7:4

Tuesday, July 10, 2007

I had a dream about this once...

I really did. I was taking off in my lawn chair from the side of the house. I didn't go 193 miles, though, nor did I use balloons.

This man is so lucky. He floated through clouds!!!!!

I feel absolutely silly to admit the pangs of jealousy that hit me when I read this article.

Monday, July 09, 2007

I have so much to tell you, and right now blogger won't let me create a title.

First, I want to congratulate my pastor in succeeding to begin changing my position from Amillennialism to PreMillennialism. I need to go back through all the scripture, though. He's got a pretty convincing argument.

Second, there's the Sabbath. Oddly enough, I've been giving much thought to how to treat it, and then Old Truth puts up this post about it. I remember keeping the Sabbath when I was a kid, and there were certain things we didn't do. But it wasn't about worshipping God, it was about legalism. Fast-forward to today when there is such indifference about how I spend my time. The Sabbath is maybe a once-per-month thing, though I'm more convicted that it ought not to be. I'm still considering what is called "rest". I do enjoy riding my bike on Sunday afternoons, does that count? It feels so indulgent. It's probably not a good idea. Thoughts?

Third, we all live such short lives. We ought to be giving greater consideration to them, and to every word spoken, every thought, every action.

Are we?

Sunday, July 08, 2007

Dear God,

I really enjoyed the afternoon drive from church. The loud thunder as the morning convection spun off uninhibited over our church, the rain dampened ground on the drive home, the distant thunder to the north, sounding like shots fired from far off. Then there was the airplane that flew so low over the buildings, it looked like a red and while killer whale swimming through the air mere feet above the buildings and ground. All the while listening to WA Mozart's Piano Concerto in D minor, K. 466; 2nd movement. The rain cooled air wafting through the vents and the windows. My broken air conditioning hasn't mattered yet and it's July in Texas.

Now I'm off to enjoy the rain-cooled air and possibility of more thunderstorms as I ride my bike at the park and see the so-far undisturbed creation...

No, I'm not chasing today. You know the first rule of chasing: THOU SHALT NOT CHASE MORNING CONVECTION. Yessir, You wrote that rule.

See You tonight,


Saturday, July 07, 2007

Come on now... seriously.

What if all Christians actually did this:

You have heard that it was said, "an eye for an eye, and a tooth for a tooth." But I say to you, do not resist an evil person; but whoever slaps you on your right cheek, turn the other to him also. If anyone wants to sue you and take your shirt, let him have your coat also. Whoever forces you to go one mile, go with him two. Give to him who asks of you, and do not turn away from him who wants to borrow from you. --Matthew 5:38-42

In everything, therefore, treat people the same way you want them to treat you, for this is the law and the prophets. --Matthew 7:12

What then?

Aren't these supposed to be commands and not mere suggestions to give lip service to? Otherwise, do we not also betray Him with a kiss, as Judas did?

Thursday, July 05, 2007

Consider this

Proverbs 3

1My son, do not forget my teaching,
But let your heart keep my commandments;
2For length of days and years of life
And peace they will add to you.
3Do not let kindness and truth leave you;
Bind them around your neck,
Write them on the tablet of your heart.
4So you will find favor and good repute
In the sight of God and man.
5Trust in the LORD with all your heart
And do not lean on your own understanding.
6In all your ways acknowledge Him,
And He will make your paths straight.
7Do not be wise in your own eyes;
Fear the LORD and turn away from evil.
8It will be healing to your body
And refreshment to your bones.
9Honor the LORD from your wealth
And from the first of all your produce;
10So your barns will be filled with plenty
And your vats will overflow with new wine.
11My son, do not reject the discipline of the LORD
Or loathe His reproof,
12For whom the LORD loves He reproves,
Even as a father corrects the son in whom he delights.
13How blessed is the man who finds wisdom
And the man who gains understanding.
14For her profit is better than the profit of silver
And her gain better than fine gold.
15She is more precious than jewels;
And nothing you desire compares with her.
16Long life is in her right hand;
In her left hand are riches and honor.
17Her ways are pleasant ways
And all her paths are peace.
18She is a tree of life to those who take hold of her,
And happy are all who hold her fast.
19The LORD by wisdom founded the earth,
By understanding He established the heavens.
20By His knowledge the deeps were broken up
And the skies drip with dew.
21My son, let them not vanish from your sight;
Keep sound wisdom and discretion,
22So they will be life to your soul
And adornment to your neck.
23Then you will walk in your way securely
And your foot will not stumble.
24When you lie down, you will not be afraid;
When you lie down, your sleep will be sweet.
25Do not be afraid of sudden fear
Nor of the onslaught of the wicked when it comes;
26For the LORD will be your confidence
And will keep your foot from being caught.
27Do not withhold good from those to whom it is due,
When it is in your power to do it.
28Do not say to your neighbor, "Go, and come back,
And tomorrow I will give it,"
When you have it with you.
29Do not devise harm against your neighbor,
While he lives securely beside you.
30Do not contend with a man without cause,
If he has done you no harm.
31Do not envy a man of violence
And do not choose any of his ways.
32For the devious are an abomination to the LORD;
But He is intimate with the upright.
33The curse of the LORD is on the house of the wicked,
But He blesses the dwelling of the righteous.
34Though He scoffs at the scoffers,
Yet He gives grace to the afflicted.
35The wise will inherit honor,
But fools display dishonor.

And for the record, this isn't just a "good suggestion". This is a command for those who call themselves believers.

Tuesday, July 03, 2007

Vanity of vanities, all is vanity!

1Remember also your Creator in the days of your youth, before the evil days come and the years draw near when you will say, "I have no delight in them";
2before the sun and the light, the moon and the stars are darkened, and clouds return after the rain;
3in the day that the watchmen of the house tremble, and mighty men stoop, the grinding ones stand idle because they are few, and those who look through windows grow dim;
4and the doors on the street are shut as the sound of the grinding mill is low, and one will arise at the sound of the bird, and all the daughters of song will sing softly.
5Furthermore, men are afraid of a high place and of terrors on the road; the almond tree blossoms, the grasshopper drags himself along, and the caperberry is ineffective. For man goes to his eternal home while mourners go about in the street.
6Remember Him before the silver cord is broken and the golden bowl is crushed, the pitcher by the well is shattered and the wheel at the cistern is crushed;
7then the dust will return to the earth as it was, and the spirit will return to God who gave it.
8"Vanity of vanities," says the Preacher, "all is vanity!"

--Ecclesiastes 12:1-8

All we humans grow. We either grow in the Lord, or outside of Him. I know many people who are not believers, and I see them mature and grow, and some I see go about in circles. For those who go about talking in circles, living in circles, cycling through again and never maturing, but always talking... those I wish could see that it is all vanity. The sum of the matter is to remember your Creator, the One Who gave you breath. Put off vanity and empty things. Put off pursuing joyless vanity. But do EVERYTHING your hands finds to do as though working for the Lord. THIS is purpose. Throwing off selfishness and sin, the evil that is prevalent, and soaking yourself in the Word of the Lord.

I need to stop talking, to stop making excuses, and start putting my mind in charge of my body, not the other way around.

Monday, July 02, 2007

I can't believe I saw this

Have you ever worked at something for years and never quite "got it?" And then one day it all comes together and you're sailing away? That's how I feel about digital photography right now. See, I understood film, and I felt much more comfortable with film. But now I have mastered a new skill, the art of digital photography, which is so much different than film. It's a different animal altogether. I stuck with it only because it's so cheap... simply the cost of electricity to charge the battery, and run my desktop PC. (My last developing/printing bill was over $100.) But I never turned out any of those digital images that make one stop and look again. Not like I could with film. And now I feel like I've finally achieved that with digital. I feel like I have mastered an art, AND a science. I still have my reservations about photography, and one's ethical and moral uses of it, where to draw the line with images. I could stare at this all day, though, occasionally blinking and wiping the drool from my chin (I HEART STORMS). I have gained a skill I never thought I'd acquire. I've forgotten how it feels to accomplish something like this...

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Immediately we begin thus to study Jesus, so to say, at first hand in these gospel portraits, one characteristic most strikes us. As a leader He is quite sure of what He has to say. There is a ring of certainty in all His words. Never was there a teacher more positive, if you like to put it so, more dogmatic. We have our views, we cherish our opinions, we balance arguments and measure probabilities. You never find Jesus doing anything of the kind. You never hear Him talking of His views or His opinions; you never hear Him speaking in our hazy style; "On the whole, considering all the facts of the case, I am inclined to venture the assertion that this or that may turn out to be the explanation of it"... For the style of Jesus, even when dealing with the most profound mysteries of existence, is thus: "Verily, verily, I say unto you."
-- Walter F. Adeney Truth in Jesus

Sunday, July 01, 2007

More Postcards From the Edge

I've actually been pretty busy lately.

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