Showing posts from April, 2006

The Raven

by Edgar Allan Poe

Once upon a midnight dreary, while I pondered, weak and weary,
Over many a quaint and curious volume of forgotten lore,
While I nodded, nearly napping, suddenly there came a tapping,
As of someone gently rapping, rapping at my chamber door.
" 'Tis some visitor," I muttered, "tapping at my chamber door;
Only this, and nothing more."

Ah, distinctly I remember, it was in the bleak December,
And each separate dying ember wrought its ghost upon the floor.
Eagerly I wished the morrow; vainly I had sought to borrow
From my books surcease of sorrow, sorrow for the lost Lenore,.
For the rare and radiant maiden whom the angels name Lenore,
Nameless here forevermore.

And the silken sad uncertain rustling of each purple curtain
Thrilled me---filled me with fantastic terrors never felt before;
So that now, to still the beating of my heart, I stood repeating,
" 'Tis some visitor entreating entrance at my chamber door,
Some late visitor entreating entrance at my ch…

I hear of Jack everywhere...

I am Jack’s confused sense of being misunderstood.

I am writing today to extol the virtues of one of the most widely praised and universally misunderstood Christian writers. Those who know me well know I refer to C.S. Lewis.

Lewis has been seized upon by many in the protestant branch as the answer to Catholic academia. We can now look smugly at our Catholic brethren and say “see, we protestants have a thinker too.” But when it comes down to it, we tend to shrug him off as “just the guy who wrote Screwtape Letters and the Chronicles of Narnia. And he had some wacky ideas.” You will find this theory postulated by those who are the least familiar with Lewis’ corpus of work. Instead they rely on objections such as these: “I hear Lewis became a Catholic before he died,” “Didn’t he lose his faith after his wife died,” “He had ‘Beer and Beowulf’ evenings with his grad students.” “Wasn’t he good friends with that Catholic Tolkien, (to which I reply, Tolkien led him to faith),” “Lewis was…

Four Years in the Face of Eternity

Just a candle in the wind
A spark in the night
Only one grain of sand
in the whirlwind of time

Just a word in the Book
Quiet cry in the wild
One moment in time
Only a glint in His eye

And yet why do we think
That our time is our own
His work a budget line
In the ledger of life

We're just
a candle in the wind
A spark in the night
Only one grain of sand
In the whirlwind of time

Tiny seed in the field
Only a word of Truth
Life lasts a moment then
We whither as a grass

When you owe your all
how can you offer less
When forever's on the table
How can we hedge our bets

Four years is a scene
On the Author's stage
We play our tiny part
and exit in the dark

A life full of love
passes like a breath
In deaths lonely rattle
But Love walks on

So let me place the bet
And play my hand
Just live my part
Played to the heart

What are four years
when the stake is a soul
When so many harvests
Takes ten times more

So I'll give the years
Which look long to one
who can't fully read
the Script He penned

If I budget You a minute

Not Disqualified: "I cultivate my flowers and burn my weeds."

The following is not prompted by any one incident or by being called to accountability. It is also not an invitation to an open public debate on the merits of arguments against the "vice" in question. It is rather the culmination of a long growing intent to set forth a public defense of something I enjoy. Like Spurgeon, I feel I can no longer quietly participate in something that does not grieve my conscience without either accepting I am committing an unclean act, or that I believe that I am acting outside of God's will. I am a Christian who smokes (and reads "heathen" books, enjoys the occasional drink, listens to "secular" music, watches R rated movies, and fellowships in an Anglican church, but all these are neither here nor there, though the application is similar). Read it in that light.

"Well, dear friends, you know that some men can do to the glory of God what to other men would be sin. And notwithstanding what brother Pentecost has sa…

New Armor for a New Church

And they devoted themselves to the pastor's teaching, to fellowship dinners, to the breaking of bread (once a quarter) and to the skits. (Acts 2, Revised Modern Church Version)

The Spiritual Armor of a Christian in the Modern Church

The Backplate of Unity:
We already have a breastplate of righteousness, I want a backplate to protect myself from "loving" sniping from behind. Or maybe I'll just sit in the back row.

The Shin Guards of Accountability:
So that you don't bark your shins when kicking a fellow believer when he's down.

The Bib of Fellowship:
For potlucks, fellowship dinners, ladies missionary brunches, men's prayer breakfasts (where the most substantial prayer is before the breakfast), love banquets, dessert nights, and snack time. When you're breaking bread, you don't want to get any on you.

The Mouth Guard of Love:
Like a TV Guardian for your mouth, keeps your language clean. Also waters down all criticism to an "encouragement opportunit…