Archive for April, 2012

April 26, 2012

Life is pain, Highness. Anyone who says differently is selling something.

– Westley, The Princess Bride

Not true, but some days it feels like it is.

April 18, 2012

Linky Love

This is a reallllly random mix.

April 13, 2012

We may all be, by nature, like blind men touching the elephant without knowing whether what we are feeling is at trunk, tail, or ear. But what if the elephant spoke and said, ‘Quit calling me crocodile, or peacock, or paradox. I’m an elephant, for crying out loud! That long thing is my trunk. That little frayed thing is my tail. That big floppy thing is my ear.’ And what if the elephant gave us hears to hear his voice and a mind to understand his message (cf. I Cor. 2:14-15)? Would our professed ignorance about the elephant and our unwillingness to make any confident assertions about his nature mean we were especially humble, or just dumb?

Kevin De Young, from one of his chapters in Why We’re Not Emergent (By Two Guys Who Should Be) by him and Ted Kluck, p. 37

April 11, 2012

Various and Sundry Notes

  1. I have a fancy header! I’m excited! It’s very bright!
  2. I went to Forever21 over the weekend and actually bought something for the first time, and OH MY STARS. The line. It was absurd. And I waited and waited and waited to spend… less than $6? For two pairs of earrings? I suppose that’s some sort of cost/benefit thing?
  3. Allergies are killing me, man. I am so new to this I don’t even know what I’m allergic to. 
  4. I know Jesus didn’t rise from the dead so I could wear springy clothes, but… there’s a pretty cool correlation there all the same. Yay for silly southern fashion rules!
  5. 2 Peter 1:16-21: 

“For we did not follow clearly devised myths when we made known to you the power and coming of our Lord Jesus Christ, but we were eyewitnesses of his majesty. For when he received honor and glory from God the Father, and the voice was borne to him by the Majestic Glory, ‘This is my beloved Son, with whom I am well pleased,’ we ourselves heard this very voice borne from heaven, for we were with him on the holy mountain. And we have something more sure, the prophetic word, to which you will do well to pay attention as to a lamp shining in a dark place, until the day dawns and the morning star rises in your hearts, knowing this first of all, that no prophecy of Scripture comes from someone’s own interpretation. For no prophecy was ever produced by the will of man, but men spoke from God as they were carried along by the Holy Spirit. (emphasis added)

      Um, something more sure than Peter’s experience on the Mount of Transfiguration? SWEET. 

April 9, 2012

Jesus wins!

From the prayer of adoration at the first Easter service I went to this morning:

O God of my exodus, great was the joy of Israel’s sons when Egypt died upon the shore, far greater the joy when my Redeemer’s foe lay crushed in the dust. Jesus strides forth as the Victor, Conqueror of death, hell and all opposing might. You burst the bands of death, trampled the powers of darkness down and live forever. You, my gracious Redeemer, apprehended for payment of my debt, came forth from the prison house of the grave, free and triumphant over sin, Satan and death. In You I died, in You I rose, in Your life I live, in Your victory I triumph, in Your ascension I shall  be glorified for Your Name’s sake. Amen!

And now I can read novels again!

April 8, 2012

No mysterious monarch, hidden in his starry pavilion at the base of the cosmic campaign, is in the least like that celestial chivalry of the Captain who carries his five wounds in front of the battle.

– G.K. Chesterton, The Everlasting Man, 243.

April 7, 2012

If there was any other way, love, don’t you think I’ve tried to find it…

(Never in a million years would I have predicted that my 2012 Good Friday post would relate to/steal a title from the chorus of a Celine Dion song, but… it totally does.)

Last Sunday I heard a great sermon that I have been mulling over ever since. Rob Hamby honed in on this part of Matthew 26 (i.e., the first Maundy Thursday):

Then he said to them, “My soul is very sorrowful, even to death; remain here, and watch with me.” And going a little farther he fell on his face and prayed, saying, “My Father, if it be possible, let this cup pass from me; nevertheless, not as I will, but as you will.”  (Matthew 26:38-39 ESV)

We always think about Jesus dreading the passion, but the Father had to be dreading it too – separation from His beloved Son, with Whom He’d been eternally in perfect harmony, would be very painful for Him, too; pouring out His wrath against sin on Him would be almost unthinkable. If there was another way, do we really think GOD could not have found it? Dude. “There just ain’t any other way” to save sinners.

I went tonight to a Good Friday choir concert at my parents’ church tonight, and they sang the original version of one of my favorite RUF’d hymns, “O Come and Mourn.” The chorus is killer: “O love of God! O sin of man! In this dread act your strength is tried! And victory remains with love; Jesus our Lord is crucified!” I have loved this song for maybe 8 years, but most of that time I had not really pieced together what is going on in that chorus. The love of God and human sin are going into the boxing ring to have it out, once and for all – who will win? Who is stronger? “Victory remains with love” – so Jesus dies!! The love of God necessitates the crucifixion of the incarnate Christ.

Andrew Peterson give us a good picture of this in “Rise and Shine” – “I remember how the sunlight turned to thunder; the people ran for shelter from the rain. The curtain tore, and the saints awoke, and the whole earth seemed to tremble from the fury of God’s anger – or was it the fury of His love?” The truth is, it was both! Because of the death of Christ on the behalf of sinners, the “curtain” in the temple that symbolized the separation between God and man was ripped apart. God and man could commune without man getting blasted by the wrath of God. Why? Because all that (totally called for) wrath was spent on Christ. So while the Father pours out His righteous anger on the Son, they both are loving the wrecked sinners they are saving. The Maker dies – of course the sun hid its face! Of course the earth quaked! The Father was meting out the full punishment on the Son for the sins He carried – of course people hid their faces! Of course they ran! But it was total love and total justice – those sins had to be paid for. There was no other way for us to be rescued.

Tonight I wore a black dress because, after all, it is appropriate to mourn today. But I wore a big, crazy, turquoise ring, and my freshly-painted coral toenails peeked out of my peep-toe pumps, because, after all, Sunday’s a’comin’.

April 5, 2012

Think of what Paul tells us in Philippians 2:12: ‘Work out your own salvation with fear and trembling.’ We’ve got work to do – but what exactly is it? Get better? Try harder? Pray more? Get more involved in church? Read the Bible longer? What precisely is Paul exhorting us to do? He goes on to explain: ‘For it is God who works in you, both to will and to work according to his pleasure’ (v. 13). God works his work in you, which is the work already accomplished by Christ. Our hard work, therefore, means coming to a greater understanding of his work.

Tullian Tchiavidjian, Jesus + Nothing = Everything, Kindle location 1182ff

April 3, 2012

Linky Love

A few things I thought I’d share with the class…

– For those of you who have been thus far deprived, I’d like to introduce you to Criggo. It’s a collection of quite dreadful (read: hilarious) newspaper errors and human stupidities of various kinds, from ads to articles. Here are a few gems to get you started. Good Trade. railroad. Do the math. Yep, I need those teeth NOW!  Unfortunate juxtaposition. Didn’t study for the final.

– As if college admissions wasn’t crazy and pressure-filled enough…

– Just found this fantastic online magazine called Darling: The Art of Being a Woman, and I’m rather enamored of it. Here’s my favorite article so far: Watching Not Searching: Giving Up Fill-in-Maybe-Men.

April 2, 2012

Who is this King of glory?

As [Jesus] was drawing near—already on the way down the Mount of Olives—the whole multitude of his disciples began to rejoice and praise God with a loud voice for all the mighty works that they had seen, saying, “Blessed is the King who comes in the name of the Lord! Peace in heaven and glory in the highest!” And some of the Pharisees in the crowd said to him, “Teacher, rebuke your disciples.” He answered, “I tell you, if these were silent, the very stones would cry out.” (Luke 19:37-40 ESV)

Today was Palm Sunday. I have to say that I’ve always found Palm Sunday to be a little odd – after all, Jesus shows up to throngs of people very pleased to hail Him as King… and 5 days later they crucify Him. Seems like quite the dramatic shift, you know? I think the strangest part of it all is that Jesus does not seem particularly jazzed. I mean, most people get pretty excited about “triumphal entries” – when the Mavs won the NBA title last year, there was this huge parade through downtown Dallas. People went nuts, and nobody was more excited than the team being celebrated. But Jesus does not seem to be in a particularly celebratory mood to me.Of course, Jesus knows what the crowds do not – He is coming to Jerusalem to die.

In Psalm 24, we see the first glimpses of Palm Sunday being prophesied:

Lift up your heads, O gates!
And be lifted up, O ancient doors,
that the King of glory may come in.
Who is this King of glory?
The LORD, strong and mighty,
the LORD, mighty in battle!
(Psalm 24:7-8 ESV)

It’s true – the Lord is mighty in battle. As He sits on that little donkey, He is gearing up to conquer death by absorbing the full measure of God’s wrath against the sin of His people.

He is no normal King. Surely by now those following Him should have seen this. But they thought they were welcoming a king to Jerusalem who would meet their expectations, who would fit nicely into the role they imagined a king should. When you are dealing with a normal dude, that is fine – wise, in fact. But in Jesus, the crowds were welcoming the King of a kingdom that reaches far beyond the scope they had imagined. Jesus isn’t coming just to save Israel; He is coming to save the WORLD. He isn’t coming to overthrow the Romans; He’s coming to overthrow sin and death, to rescue people from a bondage far more devastating and deep than what even the worst tyrant could cook up.

Jesus is not going to match our expectations either. He is about much bigger business than we tend to think. Instead of wanting Him to come hop on the throne in my “kingdom,” I need to catch sight of the big picture and see that He has made a place and role for me in His kingdom – His rule is over everything in creation.

Ordinary kings don’t have issues with inanimate objects trying to cry out praises to them. After all, a stone is a stone, and a man is a man. But Jesus – He is the Maker of stones and men alike. He is their Sustainer. And while it is certainly true that Jesus came to save sinners, He came also to restore ALL that broke when we fell. In that way, He is the Redeemer even of the rocks!