I need to confess something (even knowing that some people who I know and live near, actually read this). I do not read my Bible enough. I do not pray enough. I do not study enough. And I am a poorer man, a poorer Christian, a poorer disciple for it.
The picture of the samurai of old have been blurred by time, distance, and my American cultural bias and influence. I know they were not perfect, and for the most part, not men who followed Christ and his teachings (even after the Portugese missionaries arrived). But, to reuse a bit of scripture from yesterday for an anology: "Finally, brothers, whatever is true, whatever is honorable, whatever is just, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is commendable, if there is any excellence, if there is anything worthy of praise, think about these things." (Philippeans 4:8, esv)
The first image that comes to mind of a samurai is the katana, or long sword. We (Americans at least) think of these men as masters of the sword. From a very young age they train to master it. As a Christian what is my sword? The Bible tells me that it is the very Word of God. If I am not in His word, if I am not studying His word, if I am not making His very word a part of me, then I am not learning how to use His word. Not for my own purposes, because if I am truly following Christ than I have laid down my life, but for His purposes and glory.
A samurai lived to serve his lord. He was about his lord's business, and in everything he did, it was an effort to not dishonor his master. I don't know if the Daimyo actually knew his samurai personally, and with them still being human, this is probably not the best example. But my Lord, Christ, desires to know me personally. He wants to spend time with me. How do I get to know my Master? It is done in spending time in prayer, in thinking and meditating about what His word is showing me. About looking around and weighing it against what He has revealed to me.
In my opinion, I am a rather weak 'samurai' in the service the Lord Jesus Christ. But even the weakest samurai was to be of use to his lord to the Daimyo. And I further can benefit in that in my weakness, He is revealed to be strong. But that can only be possible when I yield myself to Him.
Verse for today:
2 Timothy 2:15-19, ESV
Do your best to present yourself to God as one approved,  a worker who has no need to be ashamed, rightly handling the word of truth. But avoid irreverent babble, for it will lead people into more and more ungodliness, and their talk will spread like gangrene. Among them are Hymenaeus and Philetus, who have swerved from the truth, saying that the resurrection has already happened. They are upsetting the faith of some. But God's firm foundation stands, bearing this seal: “The Lord knows those who are his,” and, “Let everyone who names the name of the Lord depart from iniquity.”
The first one is regarding our tree. If you note, the picture on the left is a fine example of symetry. A good amount of lights, pretty decorations. Not our tree! We have a lot of home made orniments that were assembled by our children. We also have home made garland made of red yarn. The amount of lights varies from year to year because it depends a lot on which strings I can get to work. For example, this year we are strictly a white light household. LOL. DS1 even makes new Lego ornaments every year.
My beloved's family has a tradition of eating Fondue at Christmas. I mean, there's turkey at Thanksgiving, and a big meal for New Year's, Easter, St. Patrick's day, but it just feels like it's too soon to eat another big bird. Although we have not made it a tradition in our home yet, I think we will starting this year. My beloved was actually suprised when I suggested it for our dinner.
Here's one that I have brought in from my own childhood. When I would wake up on Christmas morning, my mother would lay out our stockings on our beds. This, I later learned, was to encourage my brother and me to stay in our beds a little bit longer. ha ha ha One Christmas eve, I can't remember how old we were, my brother and I were told that we could not open ANY presents until the morning. That night we dozed off anxiously expected the next day. Well, my brother woke up a three in the morning! And he new what time of day it was! He starts walking around the house yelling, "It's the morning!"
I know one tradition that did indeed start with our first child, especially once he knew what Christmas was and all that. We open one present on Christmas eve now, and have done so since he was born (this being the eleventh year).
Some traditions I would like to start, but haven't yet...
* I would like to start reading the account of Christ's birth from Luke.
* Waiting until after breakfast to open presents.
* Having my children pick out a present (either new, or from a working part of their 'horde') to give away to a family in need each year.
May the spirit of the Lord fill each of you with the joy of what this season truly represents.
Verse for today:
He who dwells in the shelter of the Most Highwill abide in the shadow of the Almighty. I will say  to the Lord, “My refuge and my fortress,my God, in whom I trust.”
On Wednesday my beloved called me from the Chyropractor's office - which is one town east. She was having difficulty seeing (blurry peripheral vision), and feelins light headed. I drove out to get her and then to the Family Practitioner's office. The doctor ordered a CT scan that night, which praise God \o/, came back normal. There are a lot of possibilities, but nothing for certain. Since then she's still had episodes where she is light headed, and there are some minor spikes in her blood preasure (low-mid 130's over mid to upper 80's). She is on some 'good' pain relievers, but that just leaves her semi out of commision. Anyway... that's all for now.
When I started thinking about "Musical Mondays", I also had the idea of starting a "Theologial Thursdays" thread of blog posts. This way, I know I am at least attempting to visit something resembling a Christian post once a week. LOL. Not really knowing where to start I decided to read, and review "Living the Cross Centered Life" by CJ Mahaney. I will not pretend to know, or have as much passion, about this subject as Mr. Mahaney, but in many ways I hope to draw close to his firey passion on this subject, in the hope that "sparks" may fall on me, and that perhaps God would use it to ignite a flame in my own heart as well.
This book is first is a follow on to the 'original' titled, "The Cross Centered Life: Keeping the Main Thing, the Main Thing", but where the original was an fresh start, this book helps delve into the practical. There are 14 Chapters, and I hope to review one a week.
The Forward in "Living the Cross Centered Life: Keeping the Main the Thing, the Main Thing" is written by Dr. Albert Mohler, in there he writes, "...reading this book will not be a safe and static experience."(1) How can it be? As we get ready to celebrate the arrival of Christ is the form of a human baby, I feel that it is of utmost importance to remember why it was that He came. The journey began when He was concieved by the Holy Spirit in Mary's womb, and the history began when he lay in that manager... but it ends with the culmiation of of God's plan of redemption, and payment for my (our) sins on the cross, and his resurection three days later. Through the history of the Lord Jesus we see a the plan and provision for a perfect Mediator to represent us before the throne of God.
As Dr. Mohler writes, "...this book is a manifesto for turning your world upside down." (2) I truly hope that this is the result in my own life... may God use these meager efforts to do the same with others.
Verse for today:
Romans 3:21-28, ESV:
But now the righteousness of God has been manifested apart from the law, although the Law and the Prophets bear witness to it— the righteousness of God through faith in Jesus Christ for all who believe. For there is no distinction: for all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God, and are justified by his grace as a gift, through the redemption that is in Christ Jesus, whom God put forward as a propitiation by his blood, to be received by faith. This was to show God's righteousness, because in his divine forbearance he had passed over former sins. It was to show his righteousness at the present time, so that he might be just and the justifier of the one who has faith in Jesus.
Then what becomes of our boasting? It is excluded. By what kind of law? By a law of works? No, but by the law of faith. For we hold that one is justified by faith apart from works of the law.
(1) Mahaney, CJ (2006), Living the Cross Centered Life. Multinomah Books, 9 p.
(2) Mahaney, CJ (2006), Living the Cross Centered Life. Multinomah Books, 11 p.
Music is a powerful thing. It is not merely entertainment. It has power to shape your mood. It has power to affect your thoughts. It is my belief, that it can even penetrate to your very soul. I believe that because I can notice changes in my emotions, and thought patterns that deviate from (what I consider) my norm. Sometimes right away, sometimes not for days. While many of you may, or may not, agree with me on this last point - it is the primary motivator for me to begin what I will call 'Musical Mondays'. While my blogging skills are not very well developed, I am always willing to learn and grow, so I am also hoping that this will help in that regards. For now, I am limited to jsut text. In the future... who knows. (One things for sure, it will never include me singing... that would just drive you all away ;-) )
The very first song I wanted to blog about has got to be my all time favorite, Amazing Grace. Since I do not have to worry too much about copyright on this classic hymn here they are:
As a born again, evangelical, reformed, charismatic Christian these words stop me in my tracks pretty much every time I hear them, no matter what form I hear them in. I remember as a very 'young' Christian "hearing" these words for the first time (you know when you actualy feel the words, and not just listen to them...) I actually cried. Although, I still don't cry at this song, it does still bring me to a point of meditation and reflection.
Now when I listen to it I think of me... "...that saved a wretch like me...", lost then found, sight, fear, hope, protection, promise, hope. When I hear this song it moves me like no other song has. God's grace... even now I am distracted as I try and write this.
When I respond to the question, "How are you", and I respond like my old pastor and modern day example of a man I would aspire to be like CJ Mahaney - "better than I deserve" - too often (in my opinion) I will get some kind of response like I am being too hard on myself. That I deserve only the best things in life. But if one is completely honest with oneself do we really deserve anything?
From God's point of view what am I on my best day, apart from Christ's work on the cross, what am I? A sinner. Uterly contemptable in God's sight. It was only by His grace that the plan of Christ coming to the earth, and the revelation of God to my heart and mind. It is God's grace that even helps me in the daily struggles that I experience when I stumble and sin. This song reminds me that it is not only God's grace that saved me, but that it is His grace that sees me through the daily struggles of life. And that is not all. There is the grace that will see me through to spend all of eternity in His presence, enjoying Him, and being given to continually enjoy the gift of music, singing His praise.
Verse for today:
Revelation 5:11-14, ESV
Then I looked, and I heard around the throne and the living creatures and the elders the voice of many angels, numbering myriads of myriads and thousands of thousands, saying with a loud voice, “Worthy is the Lamb who was slain, to receive power and wealth and wisdom and might and honor and glory and blessing!” And I heard every creature in heaven and on earth and under the earth and in the sea, and all that is in them, saying, “To him who sits on the throne and to the Lamb be blessing and honor and glory and might forever and ever!” And the four living creatures said, “Amen!” and the elders fell down and worshiped.
I finally have some new story ideas so I've been taking notes (but I left my notebook at the Chyropractor's office last night) and I hope to begin outlining what I hope to be abother 10,000 words or so for my continuing charecters (see my writing blog if interested). It will mostly revolve around action and sci-fi adventure - not much romance despite my own affinity for those kinds of movies. Speaking of which...
I've seen a trailer for the movie "Atonement". This movie shows a lot of promise, but with it being in limited release, and having learned a few things about it... I am not sure I will want to make the extra effort to go see it. I will not try an bias anyone's opinion...
I've been thinking about starting a pin collection of sorts. You know, like people sometimes do on hats and the like. These are the pins I think I would put on it...
US Army pin - because it sort of represents my school of 'higher learning'
Air Assult - because this was one of my 'high marks'
Honorary Order of St Barbara - because it is another 'high mark'
The Tron Pin I reference on Wednesday - because I am a geek like that
I was thinking about some kind of Huricane Katrina pin, because that meant something to me as well. There are others, but my mind is failing me right now... no surprise there.
Well, I want to treat my beloved to some kind of date night, but our budget is pretty tight... I may have to settle for NetFlix... :)
Tha Panthers travel to Jacksonville on Sunday... although I will not be able to watch it, I really-really-really want the Panthers to win this one. If they have no more upsets the rest of the year this would make my year. :) Jacksonville is the better team this year, and although the Panthers beat the 49ers last week - I am not going to get my hopes up.
Oh, before I forget... I am 'keeping track of' a few movies that are rumored to be coming out...
And the next Tron movie
That's all I have for now... hope you all have a blessed weekend...
Verse for today:
Psalm 31:3-5, ESV
For you are my rock and my fortress;
and for your name's sake you lead me and guide me;
you take me out of the net they have hidden for me,
for you are my refuge.
Into your hand I commit my spirit;
you have redeemed me, O Lord, faithful God.
The show is distinctly devoid of reference to God, or any religion for that matter. But I understand the intention. Although these shows were not exactly the message I would like to see/hear, and they can easily be interpreted from a distinctly humanistic point of view. Mickey winning the day by over coming evil with his own imagination. The world uniting under the prospect of peace and goodwill towards one another. I worry about these messages only because it is devoid of Christ in being the source of these solutions. We can use our imaginations to overcome evil, both in our minds (dreams) and in our surroundings. We can extend goodwill, and peace to the world. But in and of our own efforts, this will not be enough. The sin in the world cannot be overcome just by our good intentions, it must include God. Someday these things will be accomplished, and we - as Christians - need to do our part. I had more, but I am out of time for today... Verse for today: Romans 12:14-21, ESV Bless those who persecute you; bless and do not curse them. Rejoice with those who rejoice, weep with those who weep. Live in harmony with one another. Do not be haughty, but associate with the lowly.  Never be wise in your own sight. Repay no one evil for evil, but give thought to do what is honorable in the sight of all. If possible, so far as it depends on you, live peaceably with all. Beloved, never avenge yourselves, but leave it  to the wrath of God, for it is written, “Vengeance is mine, I will repay, says the Lord.” To the contrary, “if your enemy is hungry, feed him; if he is thirsty, give him something to drink; for by so doing you will heap burning coals on his head.” Do not be overcome by evil, but overcome evil with good.
And there were in the same country shepherds abiding in the field, keeping watch over their flock by night. And, lo, the angel of the Lord came upon them, and the glory of the Lord shone round about them: and they were sore afraid. And the angel said unto them, Fear not: for, behold, I bring you good tidings of great joy, which shall be to all people. For unto you is born this day in the city of David a Saviour, which is Christ the Lord. And this shall be a sign unto you; Ye shall find the babe wrapped in swaddling clothes, lying in a manger. And suddenly there was with the angel a multitude of the heavenly host praising God, and saying,
Glory to God in the highest, and on earth peace, good will toward men. (Luke 2:8-14, KJV)
1) Pay close attention to the times of all parades in each of the parks. I don't care how (not) crowded it is, these always draw crowds - and they make it very hard to move around. On the flip side... the wait times on most rides drops WAY off! ;-)
2) I highly encourage everyone to plan, plan, plan. Even though we had to rearrange our plans, knowing which rides were maybe a little scary (especially for DS2 - my Aspergers, or Aspie) was very helpful. Also knowing what rides might be closed. Also, unless you abszolutely have to... don't go to the sit down resteraunts all the time. A lot of the 'counter services' had about 75% of what the sit downs did, for a pretty good bargin. Also, my beloved and I split most of our meals. We saved a LOT of money this way.
3) One of our friends had warned me about the pin trading thing (as he and his family went about 18 months ago), but I was not fully prepared for what it was all about. For the most part I kept my kids away from this 'experience', but one can hold back the tide only so long. :) One day we all went to the Indiana Jones "Stunt Spectacular", but for some reason this freaked out my little darling, so being the dutiful father I am, I took her with me to wait outside until the show was over. She was crying so hard (and this was only five minutes into the show), that I walked over to a nearby vending area (these are all over the park BTW) to just try and distract her. Well, she saw the Princess 'starter' lanyard and four pins, so I bought it for her (I also bought her a 'Belle' pin because she is her favorite princess - and she had a Princess breakfast with her the day before). Well, DS1 kind of caught on and he asked for one too. He was a little more genaric in his choices, opting for one that showed all four of the theme parks, and a pin of his favorite ride - The "Twilight Zone Tower of Terror". (I later bought him one for "Expidition Everest" because we rode that together - twice). Finally I caught some interest in it, but my desires were a little more specific. I wanted a "Tron Pin". Unfortunately, we travelled to Disney about 6 weeks too late. :*( That has not stopped me though... As soon as I got home I went to eBay and sought out what might be available. Since then I have purchased this beauty -->
What can I say... I am a geek. I also bought a pin lanyard, not to display pins on (although the Tron one might find it's way), but to use for my ID badge at work.
4) Make sure you try and see it all, or at the very least know that it may be impossible to see it all - slow down, enjoy what you can. It really is an amazing place. The details they put into everything. The building exteriors. The decorations that adorn the wait lines for the various rides... we deliberately went during a 'non-peak' week, and there is a (very) small part of me that regrets that we did not have longer waits for some of the rides. I am one who likes to look and read things, but there just wasn't enough time.
5) There is something at Disney for pretty much everyone. From the Dumbo ride, to a Carousel, to live shows, to interactive features (the Laugh Floor was great!), to roller coasters, to just scenery. And they do a great job of keeping it clean. I saw families with little babies and toddlers having a great time, and I even rode a bus with three elderly people (a husband and wife, and a mother of one of the two) - they were all there having a good time.
6) If God so provides (the only reason we went this year was because it looked like I was going to be deployed, and my beloved really wanted to make sure she had a trip to remember for the kids - in case I was not at home), I would love to take the family back down. I'd really like to take just a time for just me and my beloved (probably when the kids are grown). It is very expensive (although there are some great deals to be had so shop around), and there are a lot of better ways to use the resources God has provided... but it was a highly memorable journey.
And in other news...
I was able to catch about half of this weeks Heroes episode. Hiro suprised me... I have had nightmares (as a kid) about what he did to 'Kensei'... I still like the Hiro charecter... but what he did disturbed me.
I am about 75% of the way through last weeks 'The Unit' episode and I must say... I am liking Bob (aka "Cool Breeze") more and more as this show goes on. I am interested in seeing how he deals with his troubles. Although the Chaplin (CPT Lantz) has only made two appearences - but I am liking him as well.
The WV Mountaineers really embaressed me while I was on vacation... *sigh*, but then again, they seem to choke when on the national stage. They had two bowl appearences where they choked both times... it will be interesting to see what they do this year.
Well, I am going to wrap this up before it takes until tomorrow to complete. I'll probably have more to say about my trip in the coming days.... but I will leave you all with the one pin I was most desperate to find for my own collection - even more than the Tron pin... God bless...
Verse for today:
1 Thessalonians 5:16-18, ESV
Rejoice always, pray without ceasing, give thanks in all circumstances; for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus for you.
1) I am thankful for my beloved wife. I still remember the day we met at the home coming football game for her college. I had been set up on a blind date with one of her roomates (long story there), and the three of us spent the entire game talking about the Soveriegnty of God! I don't think I saw three plays the whole game. She captured my heart the very first day we met. I still am not sure why she puts up with me... and I really mean that.
2) I am thankful for three kids. It just amazes me that God used me and my beloved to create three other human beings. Each one of them is amazing to me. And does God ever use them in my life! Joy, frustration, humility, love... and they are like mirrors into my soul and mind. God uses them to reveal sin in my life, to help me to better conform into the image of His Son, and there by - I hope - make me a better father and husband.
3) I am thankful for my career. When I met my beloved I was a carpenter's apprentice. Although I owned a little Ford Escort station wagon (a 'gift' from a church member I had never met), which was totaled a week later. She was always having to come down and meet me (we lived over 50 miles from each other), or I was having to catch a ride. When I moved to another state (actually closer to her) in order to pursue a college education and get married, I had no real job. Long story short, I have the job I have today, not because I knew what I wanted and went after it, but because God continually opened doors in my path.
4) I am thankful for my past. Specifically for my experiences. I grew up with divorced parents. I lived with my mother who struggled with depression and had attempted suicide several times. I never lived in any one place for more than two years. At one point, I lived in four different homes, and went to three different schools - all in one school year. I look back and I am just amazed at what God did and how He shaped me through those things. It is all by grace that I can say that my Lord is Jesus Christ, that He died for my sins, and that I can call Him friend/Lord/Savior. It is nothing done by my hand, or anyone elses.
5) I am thankful - and this really should be #1 on the list - for my salvaton. That God humbled Himself, came into the world to reveal the Father, and then paid the price of my sin so that I could know the Father.
6) I am thankful for the National Guard. God has used it to really shape me into a man who is responsible for his actions, and a man who takes service seriously. I have had the opportunity to serve my fellow man when they are most in need... and it is something I have really, really enjoyed. I have had the chance to travel (Honduras, Panama, Louisiana, Arkansas, California, Virginia, Maryland, New York, Florida, Mississippi, Oklahoma, Pennsilvania, West Virginia, Georgia). I have had the chance to meet Governors; fly in helicopters; repel off towers, helicoptors, mountains. I have had the chance to experience so many things that otherwise I would not have had the opportunity.
7) I am thankful for music. I really love music. Especially 'praise and worship' music. but I have found that i enjoy a lot of different kinds. Rock and Roll, Blues, Soul or Jazz, Irish and Scottish folk music. I especially enjoy the flute and piccilo.
8) I enjoy the internet. I have a been able to meet a lot of people, a chance to learn. A chance to 'see' a lot more than I otherwise might not have.
Well, I could probably go on, and on, but I need to wrap up for today... may God grant each of you a peaceful, and blessed Thanksgiving!
Verse for today:
Psalm 9:1-2, ESV
I will give thanks to the Lord with my whole heart;
I will recount all of your wonderful deeds.
I will be glad and exult in you;
I will sing praise to your name, O Most High.
For those who don't know, the show is based off of the book "Inside Delta Force" by Eric Haney. The episodes cover a team of Delta Force operators and their wives.
Last night I finally was able to watch last weeks episode "Play 16", which was the follow up to "Five Brothers" the week before that. In Five Brothers the writers and producers did something that not many other shows are willing to do... they killed off an integral charecter - they killed Hector "Hammerhead" Williams. Although he was not one of the 'front three' (as I might call them), but he was a team member - and I really liked his charecter. Then in last weeks episode I really liked how the brough him back home.
This show does not have a large budget (I think), but they do a lot with what they do have. The story lines are interesting to me, even the home front side where they sort of talk about what the spouses go through is compelling. The one thing I do not like, and often skip over, is the extra marital affair of one of the main charecter's wife - and their commanding officer of all things!
The Unit kind of speaks to me. It's probably because I 'bleed Army green', and I have a deep respect for the kind of training and drive it takes to do such things. I have come to accept that I am not now, nor have I ever been, that skilled in - well anything. I have not been willing to discipline myself to that level of training and focus. I once began a work out regimine to attempt a tryout for the Special Forces group, but I quit early on because I was tired of being so tired.
Right now I suffer from some guilt. Earlier this year most of my unit was called to active duty, I was only one of four who weren't. I am now a REMF (please don't ask me to spell it out). Grant it, it's an important assignment - and it needs to be done, but when most of the men you trained with are called up - and possibly in harms way, but you are not...
Anyway... if anyone who reads this, who is either a member of the Army, Navy, Marines, Air Force - or a family member (epecially a spouse of a member) you have my deepest respect.
Verse for today:
John 15:12-17, ESV
"This is my commandment, that you love one another as I have loved you. Greater love has no one than this, that someone lay down his life for his friends. You are my friends if you do what I command you. No longer do I call you servants,  for the servant  does not know what his master is doing; but I have called you friends, for all that I have heard from my Father I have made known to you. You did not choose me, but I chose you and appointed you that you should go and bear fruit and that your fruit should abide, so that whatever you ask the Father in my name, he may give it to you. These things I command you, so that you will love one another.
We should not be surprised buy such things. The 'world' hates Christ (John 7:7), and as a result it is only natural for it to hate those of us who follows Christ (John 15:9). The enemy of our souls is a master at his craft (Genesis, Job, 2 Corinthians), and as a result he has managed to turn some to hate, and I do mean hate, those who seek after Christ. And sometimes the best way to attack something, is by deception and disguise.
Now, I have watched The Lord of the Rings and Narnia with my two sons, and there are definetly things that I need to talk over some things with them in those movies as well. But, isn't that the role of a parent? We can never completely protect them from the world (when I use this term it is in reference to the part of the world in opposition to God). Our actual role is to teach and to train (Proverbs 22). I guess what I am trying to say is this, whatever you do with your children, wherever you go, whatever you see, talk to them about it - and ultimately pray for them. God can, and does, use all things to teach and to train them. Our ultimate peace and joy will be at our destination, and not during the journey. But that doesn't mean that we can't stop and appreciate the view from time to time. Look for those little nuggets. :)
Verse for today:
Deuteronomy 11:18-21, ESV
“You shall therefore lay up these words of mine in your heart and in your soul, and you shall bind them as a sign on your hand, and they shall be as frontlets between your eyes. You shall teach them to your children, talking of them when you are sitting in your house, and when you are walking by the way, and when you lie down, and when you rise. You shall write them on the doorposts of your house and on your gates, that your days and the days of your children may be multiplied in the land that the Lord swore to your fathers to give them, as long as the heavens are above the earth.
Today has been a whirlwind, but here are some random thoughts...
For some reason the song "Juke Box Hero" (by Foreigner) has been playing in mind over, and over, and over again... I really have no idea why. So, I've played it a few times from a You Tube video. I don't get it... but it's like being unable to scratch an itch or something!
For the past week or so, I have really been turning over the subject of knowing, and being known by, God. The verses "“Not everyone who says to me, ‘Lord, Lord,’ will enter the kingdom of heaven, but the one who does the will of my Father who is in heaven. On that day many will say to me, ‘Lord, Lord, did we not prophesy in your name, and cast out demons in your name, and do many mighty works in your name?’ And then will I declare to them, ‘I never knew you; depart from me, you workers of lawlessness.’" (Matthew 7:21-23, ESV), has been something I dwell on from time to time. Not just for my own edification, but so that I can (hopefully) explain it others if asked. One particular sub-theme of this as been (for me) the act of repentence. Over at Steve Camp's blog (yes the contemporary Christian musician) there is an excellent post regarding this very subject. I highly recommend it to anyone wanting to ponder such things.
I enjoy writing the occasional short story, but I have been 'dry' for about 3 months now. I have ideas and concepts... continuations of several story lines I've started, but it's just not coming out. At least not in a cohesive form. I'm itching to write... I've just not had the time to sit and plug (i.e. bang) away at it until I clear that hurdle. I've been trying to carry a notebook around to jot notes in... but I've not been disciplined enough to follow through on that. gotta get off my duff!
Speaking of discipline... I need to get out and start running again. I know this is not the normal time a year to start such things, but my back has sidelined me from doing any serious exercise since late April. I've already missed two APFT test times, and I don't want to go out (retire) on a profile - unable to complete my expected check marks. My back still has some aches, and I am still seeing a chyropractor once aq month, but he feels it should be ok to start light running, and even some sit-ups (the later filling me with dread even thinking about it).
Coming back to music before I close things out for today, if you are one who enjoys praise and worship music I can cannot recommend the blog Worship Matters enough. It is written by a man who leads worship in church every Sunday. For me it has been very insightful.
Well, that's all I have for today... God bless...
Verse for today:
Phillipians 4:8-9, ESV
Finally, brothers, whatever is true, whatever is honorable, whatever is just, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is commendable, if there is any excellence, if there is anything worthy of praise, think about these things. What you have learned and received and heard and seen in me—practice these things, and the God of peace will be with you.
What I failed to do was save a copy of the old HTML code. Blogger is great at moving all of the original content from the old to new, but what was not moved were some of the 'bells and whistles' that I'd added over time. Things like my little 'blogthings' (yes there are non-girly teeny-bopper ones), and the blog award that I'd been given, so I will be working on sprucing the place up some. I really want to add a graphic for the Japanese charecters for "Christian Samurai" (クリスチャン侍 - or 'Kurisuchan') - after doing a little research I am told that this is the 'most correct' way of expressing this concept. I had learn of two different ways of saying it, one was sort of diragatory (which was kind of an eye opener to the gaijin), but this one is 'more correct' in that it is basically a term that is used to describe someone who 'has the mind of a Christian' (or perhaps the mind of Christ?), with the last charecter referring to the term 'samurai'.
Oh, and before I forget... I saw a NOVA episode titled, "The Secrets of the Samurai Sword" - facinating stuff. For example, I had been unaware that the reason the samurai sword has the characteristic arc in the blade is because that it is made with two different levels of carbon in the steel. When the blade is cooled during the process of making it, the inner core cools faster than the outer shell and thus pulls it up into its distinctive shape.
Ok, well, I've rambled on long enough about nothing particularly important so I will just say this... remember to back up your work! :)
Verse for today:
Hebrews 4:9-13, ESV
So then, there remains a Sabbath rest for the people of God, for whoever has entered God's rest has also rested from his works as God did from his.
Let us therefore strive to enter that rest, so that no one may fall by the same sort of disobedience. For the word of God is living and active, sharper than any katana*, piercing to the division of soul and of spirit, of joints and of marrow, and discerning the thoughts and intentions of the heart. And no creature is hidden from his sight, but all are naked and exposed to the eyes of him to whom we must give account.
* Note: the text is actually, "...sharper than any two-edged sword, ..."