Nov 282014
 

IMG_0027I thought I had almost drained the “cat/Christian” analogy well dry…until this morning.

As is her custom, Miss Kitty woke me early to feed her ,then she opened the door and went outside for her morning “constitutional”.

That’s what one of my childhood friends father called it when he disappeared into the bathroom every morning for an hour.

I’m not sure it’s a real word, but I always liked the sound of it.

I digress…

For Miss Kitty this means going to her preferred place in the yard, digging a hole, then securing the premises after her business is complete.

Then, she opens my door and bounds into my lap as I work at the computer, bathes ,and goes back to sleep.

The problem this morning is that it’s been raining all night and all morning.

The site of her morning constitutional is now a muddy cat sewer.

She is a wet, dirty, disgusting, mess.

She knows this somehow and just sat and stared at me for a moment in her shame.

She jumped in my lap anyway.

She’s not afraid to to show me the dirt.

In fact, her kneading and rubbing against me insures that I’ll be covered in it.

I was about to toss her on the floor when I realized I had both a revelation and an article for this morning.

Instead of dumping her off I took her in the bathroom, retrieved a towel, and helped her clean up and dry off.

She purred and chirped all through the process, finished her own bath, and went to sleep.

You’d never know she had ever been outside.

A good parent of pets or children is never afraid of the dirt…they just don’t want either to stay dirty.

If it keeps raining I suspect I’ll have to repeat the process again…and again.

My cat lives in a muddy world and I’m the keeper of the towels.

Love has lots of towels, the loved know who has them.

Make your own application…

 

Nov 272014
 

The_First_Thanksgiving_cph.3g04961

O My God,

Thou fairest, greatest, first of all objects, my heart admires, adores, loves thee, for my little vessel is as full as it can be, and I would pour out all that fullness before thee in ceaseless flow.

When I think upon and converse with thee ten thousand delightful thoughts spring up, ten thousand sources of pleasure are unsealed, ten thousand refreshing joys spread over my heart, crowding into every moment of happiness.

I bless thee for the soul thou hast created, for adorning it, for sanctifying it, though it is fixed in barren soil;

I bless thee for body thou hast given me, for preserving its strength and vigour, for providing senses to enjoy delights, for the ease and freedom of my limbs, for hands, eyes, ears that do thy bidding;

I bless thee for thy royal bounty providing my daily support, for a full table and overflowing cup, for appetite, taste, sweetness;

I bless thee for social joys of relatives and friends, for ability to serve others, for a heart that feels sorrows and necessities, for a mind to care for my fellow-men, for opportunities of spreading happiness around, for loved ones in the joys of heaven, for my own expectation of seeing thee clearly.

I love thee above the powers of language to express, for what thou art to thy creatures. Increase my love, O my God, through time and eternity.

“Valley of Vision”

Nov 262014
 

1426163_10152538970789156_1955504315_aToday, like every Wednesday, we will remember Saeed Abedini.

We do more than just remember, however…we stand with him by using our social media to advocate for his release.

We ask that you change your Facebook profile picture to his and that you “like”  the “Free Saeed” Facebook page and participate in some of the activities that promote his cause.

We ask…that you remember him and his family in prayer…and that you refuse to give up on efforts to secure his release.

Nov 252014
 

timthumb.phpFerguson and the cross…

The crucified God in Ferguson…

Reclaim the spirit of Thanksgiving…

Church gives members 500.00 to do something good…

Immigration an issue in Europe too…

The Marriage Pledge…a way to sustain church marriages outside the civil authorities.

Will we be completely sanctified in this life?

Holiday expectation management…

Sarah with some light and inspiration…

Wenatchee has a lot more on Mars Hill and Mark Driscoll’s appeal to men…

A prayer of lament…

Why we say grace…

Waiting on thankfulness…

The “dead raising team”…

Was Paul “trendy”?…

Why congregations are leaving the mainlines…

My obligatory thoughts on Ferguson…because I’m a blogger and have to comment on everything, even when I don’t know jack about the situation.

I have two thoughts, maybe three.

My first thought on this matter has always been that if you rob a store and assault a police officer who tries to stop you after said robbery, your chances of getting shot go up exponentially.

I haven’t written about this because that thought alone was insufficient information to base an article on.

That brings me to my second thought.

The prosecutor making the announcement said that the grand jury investigation would be released to the public at the end of his news conference.

Therefore everyone waited to carefully read all that information before coming to a conclusion and taking action on the conclusion reached.

Not…

People responded as they had already decided to respond long ago and the evidence be damned.

That is the way we deal with all things political and theological these days.

We are not better for doing so…

My third thought is that the divisions among us are deep and evil…and the church can and should take the lead in fostering dialog and seeking solutions.

We can do that as soon as we learn to talk to each other…

 

 

Nov 242014
 

thinking_man_ape_wood_3d_sculpture_thinker_think-480x325I think I’m not going to insult your intelligence today with less than thoughtful things to think about.

For various sundry reasons, it’s tough sledding for me from now until the end of the year.

I’m not going to see how tough I can make it on my readers because of that.

Some days, it’s going to have to be about what you think…and today’s one of those days.

Tell us what’s on your mind today…thoughts of Ferguson, the holiday season, Thanksgiving…whatever you’re thinking about that you want others to think through with you.

Don’t try to do ten though…that’s for professionals only. :-)

Nov 232014
 

thumbnail.aspxAs we come to the text, we are mindful that we have not come first – for others have been there before us.

We do not come alone – for a cloud of witnesses await us.

We give you thanks for the brave people of the text, “prophets and apostles, saints and martyrs.”

These cadences come easy to us and are familiar.

 

But if we pray slow, we acknowledge before you that there hover around this text:

prophets – ancient and contemporary – who have been truth-tellers at risk.

apostles – ancient and contemporary – sent with passion and courage undaunted.

saints – ancient and contemporary – who have been single-minded for the vision of this text.

martyrs – ancient and contemporary who have witnessed and suffered and died for this particular truth.

And we are their heirs, children, continuers. Give us freedom to be in their presence.

Give us their innocence before the text.

Most of all, give us the grace to he haunted by them, haunted as they were by the text, haunted to newness.

We pray in the haunting name of Jesus.

Amen.
Walter Brueggemann. Awed to Heaven, Rooted in Earth: The Prayers of Walter Brueggemann (p. 57). Kindle Edition.

Nov 212014
 

IMG_0027“Enter his gates with thanksgiving, and his courts with praise! Give thanks to him; bless his name!” (Psalms 100:4 ESV)

Every morning about 6:00 AM, Miss Kitty wakes me up.

She does so by standing on me kneading like a locomotive and purring very loudly.

 

Should I decide to not rise immediately she will begin to groom me and if I still do not get up she curls up as closely as possible and rests until I do.

Every day.

Without fail.

Now, obviously, she wants something and that something is breakfast.

I’m her provider and if I don’t ever get up and feed her she will be a very hungry cat.

She knows who has her food.

What I finally noticed was how she goes about getting what she needs.

There are other ways the cat could get my attention in the morning…loud yowls, a quick scratch across the face,or a bite to the head would all do the trick.

She does none of the above, she always  acts as if she’s genuinely grateful and very happy to be here at all.

The cat loves me, not just my provisions.

The purring, the kneading, and the waiting are all ways that cats show both trust and affection.

Especially…the waiting.

When I come home at night. she’s waiting in my computer chair and the purring and kneading begin again.

She needs dinner, too.

She gets it.

I’m faithful to feed her as long as she’s faithful to ask.

Sometimes, I give her treats she doesn’t even ask for.

The way she asks makes it a joy to feed her.

Sometimes, she just wants to sleep in my lap…

I wish it were that simple for people to get what they need…

Make your own application…

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