Tuesday, May 21, 2019

Almond Trees

Almond trees are among the earliest to bloom and the latest to bear fruit.

A friend of mine was applying the latter to me and a situation of mine today, but in looking up the analogy, and also in seeing the reference to almonds in Jeremiah 1:11-12, I'm wondering if the former isn't more applicable to how I should consider next steps for pursuing my purpose.

Monday, May 20, 2019

How do you measure success?

Do you measure success by…

• how much money you make?

• how content you are?

• how effectively you can do things?

Sunday, May 19, 2019

Rejoicing in Routine

There is nothing that tells more of Christ than to see a Christian rejoicing and cheerful in the humdrum and routine of commonplace work, like the sailors that stand on the dock loading the vessel and singing as they swing their loads, keeping time with the spirit of praise to the footsteps and movements of labor and duty. No one has a sweeter or higher ministry for Christ than a business man or a serving woman who can carry the light of heaven in their faces all day long.

Thursday, May 16, 2019

Abortion's ‘hard cases’

This is a reprint of one of the most compelling things I've ever read about the difficult question of rape and abortion. Links added.

Abortion’s House of Cards
Victims of rape and incest speak out
By Pamela Pearson Wong
January/February 2001

They’re called the “hard cases”: those situations that may cause even “pro-life” people to waffle on their opposition to abortion. A 12-year-old is the victim of incest by her brother. A 16-year-old, the only child of a hard-working single parent, is brutally raped by a stranger. A man overpowers a recent high school graduate on their first date.

Abortion supporters abuse tragic circumstances like these to gain sympathy for abortion-on-demand. When a woman or girl is the victim of sexual abuse, they say abortion is a way of escape. They claim that “forcing her” to give birth in these situations will cause more trauma than she can handle. What could be crueler, they ask, than insisting a girl or woman must bear the child of her rapist or abuser?

Pro-life supporters counter that, while they are tragedies, rape and incest should not be automatic grounds for abortion. A child conceived in abuse is still an innocent bystander who does not deserve to suffer for her father’s sins. Further, they say, abortion harms rather than helps women.

Wednesday, May 15, 2019

Plans and Steps

Tragedy recently hit the Appalachian Trail in southwest Virginia.

This hits a bit close to home for me because I've met some hikers from the Trail before. Four of them in Virginia had once gone into town to get supplies for a couple weeks, and we're heading back to the trail.

Trail names are a thing. I never knew about that until these people introduced themselves with names that sounded like they were characters out of Peter Pan. I don't remember them all now because they were so far out of the normal names I was expecting during introductions.

Tuesday, May 14, 2019

The presence of God is not a practice

The Practice of the Presence of God, by Brother Lawrence, is an old book about which there is renewed popularity and consternation. It's good to read something for oneself, and it's short.

Here are some quotes (in bold) from the book I found noteworthy. I also include Scripture references for comparison.

Monday, May 13, 2019

The Rise of Vanity

Key cultural transformations in the nineteenth and early twentieth centuries, including the rise of letter writing, the development of photography, the mass production of mirrors, and the repudiation of religious teachings that portrayed humans as inherently flawed, slowly accustomed individuals to public self-presentation and self-promotion.

Before these psychological labels emerged, Americans thought of high self-regard as a sin, and they used the words “vanity,” “pride,” and occasionally “egotism” to describe the trait.

Sunday, May 12, 2019

A mother story to cherish from the Bible

One of the most beautiful stories portraying motherhood in all the Scriptures is the story of Hannah.

At first she could not have children. She sought the Lord diligently about this, and He answered her request. In expressing her thanks for the child, Samuel, she dedicated him to the Lord and, as he was growing up, saw him once a year.

The part of the story that gets me the most each time is 1 Samuel 2:19: “his mother used to make him a little robe, and bring it to him year by year when she came up with her husband to offer the yearly sacrifice.”

Children grow up fast, and I imagine she would be surprised at how much he had grown. I’m sure she took that into account for calculations on his new size the next year.

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You don't launch a popular blog,
you build one.
Seth Godin