“Words? Who gives a hoot about words?”

“Words? Who gives a hoot about words?”

Words. Who gives a hoot about words? Like Job asking God, “Why do things happen to a man like me, these terrible things, my children dead, my cattle gone?” Supposing God had said, “Look Job, I’ll tell you, here’s why it happened. . .” So, what? Would that have helped Job? Of course not. What Job needed was what he got, which was the vision of God himself. “I had heard of you be the hearing of my ears; now mine eyes have beheld thee.” That was the answer that was without words. So in a funny way I didn’t get the answer, but I got silence, the sense of mystery, the sense of holiness. Nobody talked to me at all, except at the end I went to see the father who had the stroke, and he was able to say to me, “Do you go to church regularly now? Do you confess your sins?” I said, “No.” “would you like to confess them?” I said I guessed I would, and I said a few little things I could think of. And then he said, “Well, you know you have a long way to go,” and he was right, and I still do.

But I remember that, “You have a long way to go.”

 

 

Frederick Buechner, The Remarkable Ordinary, p.81

An Ordinary Kind of Love. Most Extraordinary.

An Ordinary Kind of Love. Most Extraordinary.

I’ve listened to this sermon twice now, and the Word is rattling around my heart like a bingo ball in the spin cycle.

Zack Eswine walking through 1 Cor 13, talking about what significance really looks like.

Do yourself the favor. Listen.

I’m probably going to listen again, because I want to be marked by and revel in this love.

It’s the imprint I want to leave in my home, on my children, and with those I serve.

The love of God changing impatient people like me, like you.

Bringing significance to the moments of our lives.

Bringing Jesus near.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

(note: there are 5 sermons in this series, it’s on the Seven Rivers Presbyterian Church Podcast feed from a conference in July)

a prayer from weakness.

a prayer from weakness.

This prayer. This hope. Thankful for Scott Sauls who articulates it so well.

Father in heaven, 
Always grant me character
that is greater than my gifts
and humility
that is greater than my influence. 
Amen. 

 

 

 

 

(p.64, From Weakness to STRENGTH, Scott Sauls)

Herbert: A Conversation with Death.

Herbert: A Conversation with Death.

A DIALOGUE-ANTHEM

CHRISTIAN,  DEATH.
Chr.
ALAS, poor Death !  where is thy glory ?
Where is thy famous force, thy ancient sting ?

Dea.
Alas, poor mortal, void of story !
Go spell and read how I have killed thy King.

Chr.
Poor Death ! and who was hurt thereby ?
Thy curse being laid on Him makes thee accurst.

Dea.
Let losers talk, yet thou shalt die ;
These arms shall crush thee.

Chr.
Spare not, do thy worst.
I shall be one day better than before ;
Thou so much worse, that thou shalt be no more.

 

 

(George Herbert)

however long it takes.

however long it takes.

“The source of freedom for today’s ministers in located at the very heart of their vocation. The source lies not in their professional status or their current location along the trajectory of a career. It lies in the fact that they serve the living God, who is no respecter of persons, in the fact that they are the servants of his Word and Son, before whom all will be judged. It is this understanding that gives ministers the freedom to remain in one location however long it takes to make theological truth a central and effective part of their ministry, regardless of whether their careers pass them by in the meantime.”

David F. Wells, No Place For Truth: Or Whatever Happened to Evangelical Theology
He Bought for Us Our Bibles and Our Sabbaths.

He Bought for Us Our Bibles and Our Sabbaths.

Last week I was stuck in an airport waiting to see my family, and was given a sweet gift: I got to read a sermon on John 15:5 from Jonathan Edwards. It is entitled, Christ Jesus the Original and Fountain of All Spiritual Life and Nourishment, written in 1726.

An Edwards sermon on Jesus is one of my favorite things to read. Few things do more to lift my eyes, expand my imagination (as well as my vocabulary), and point to the beauty of Jesus like Edwards’ words.  I am grateful for them. They take my travel-wearied heart strings and make them sing again.

Enjoy this paragraph from Edwards sermon on John 15:5 :

 

Christ is the author of spiritual blessings, these two ways:

(1) As he procures it by his mediation. All that we receive of spiritual good, he has bought and paid down his blood for. These blessings which he distributes amongst men, are not what he has for nothing, but what he has given an infinite price for. All are the fruits of his obedience and his death. He has bought for us our Bibles and our sabbaths; the ministers of his Word and the ordinances of worship are his purchase. He has bought for us sanctification and the knowledge of God, and faith in himself and divine love; he has bought for us peace of conscience, spiritual joy and consolation, and a hope of glory, and likewise the actual enjoyment and possession of a crown of glory.

He not only bought them by his obedience and death, but he now procures them by his daily intercession. John 14:16–17, “And I will pray the Father, and he shall give you another Comforter, that he may abide with you forever: even the Spirit of truth; whom the world cannot receive, because it seeth him not, neither knoweth him.”

Edwards, J. (1726). Christ Jesus the Original and Fountain of All Spritual Life and Nourishment. In W. H. Kimnach (Ed.), Jonathan Edwards Sermons (Jn 15:5). New Haven, CT: The Jonathan Edwards Center at Yale University.