Saturday, December 22, 2012

I've had a question lodged; its presence has been subtle and strong. I've found, as water quickly rots a once sturdy standard floor -- so too this doubt has kept on creeping and separated what's like my floorboards from my tile. And so finally I spoke this out, and have arrived now to construct a sturdier than standard foundation upon which I'm hoping now to stand.

From Adam hence has man been found with sin. It was known that through indulgence he was to imbibe and pass to us all the odious flavor of a soul soaked with this. No man thereafter was birthed to contain a soul without need of restoration. So it has been; God has beautifully made a way for man to reach Him -- a well-pleasing fact to my soul, but this precursor has now been laid upon me, and I have since writhed in an unrest that has found no relief.

Be it in sin that man is conceived, it is strange that God would create all within this knowledge. His plan, while glorious in redemption, has baffled as I've thought, why this creation at all -- if it be known that man will despise, turn from, and fail all marks defining greatness -- if a humming perfection of fellowship existed, light was undiminished, holiness undisturbed, why was man thus ever created? -- why was wrath amassed, judgment enacted, standards established, when all before was swirled up in delight in the perfect sustaining of His word? So, I spoke this -- and in fear, with a tremulous mind and forgetting my dignity, I questioned His kind; He arrived with words I could know, and changed my perspective of my wandering here below.

I realized that Beauty is to be shared. Mere possessors may pet and guard a beautiful thing, but when one properly beholds beauty, he is compelled far out of himself and must share what he has seen or created. Here is the crux: God did not create man for some pleasure He found in seeing his insufficiency, his dire need of Himself, or any other contrived analysis -- HE created US because of the immensity of His glory, and the unremitting effulgence of His radiance -- He created us broken, battered, sin-loving critics because there was so much beauty and glory swallowed up in the Godhead that it simply had to be shared. Adam's sin was neither a surprise, a deterrent or forfeiture of the otherwise preserved splendor that radiated before sin was hatched -- His beauty has only ever been consummately welded fast with Sovereign wisdom, not only in continually procuring His glory in Himself, but that He might also order events and acts to receive more adoration through the intricate weaving's and workings in the hearts and lives of sinful man. Regardless of the how and the why, our God contains such a burgeoning store of superabundant goodness and splendor that He simply had to breach time to enter humanity and birth Himself out of eternity as a dust-made man like myself. This has He done -- this entrance of Light, transforming darkness, restoring our sight. For as the old hymn says: No more will sin and sorrow grow, Nor thorns infest the ground; He'll come and make the blessings flow far as the curse was found. And this, my friends -- He -- was birthed thus, in a cradle, all laden with straw, the Light of the world penetrating darkness, for as it is written "4 In Him was life, and the life was the Light of men. 5 The Light shines in the darkness, and the darkness did not overwhelm (comprehend) it."

Monday, December 10, 2012

More need of endurance

And so I found that the inhabitants of the far reaches were generally there by choice. Their decision to bear up under the varied conditions was propelled by a love which seemed evident always, as if never denoting a choice was made at all. This doggedness magnified a greater zeal, their zeal prompted purpose, and their purpose splayed a magnified joy and dignity in the simplest of tasks. I remember feeling crazily alive when I first carved out a path to my wooden shack in a six-foot snow drift, where I lived on a blustery hilltop with a few other committed folks -- the immense task of living finally seemed to take on meaning, and the tenacity required in my days burgeoned into conclusions I am only realizing now.
Comparatively, I've been struck by the pilgrimage the believer is to make in this life, and how much is needed in this similar strand of endurance. I've chosen to run in a race that finds victory or failure at the end, and while secured in a covenant which He will keep, I must stay with Him and continue in this trial as my love for Him is tested, purified, and won. Truly, the content of my days are stacking and building to make one compound existence known as a life; I am protected by the power of God as much as I am confounded daily by the choices I face, the seemingly inconsequential moments I waste, and the reality that all that is present is soon to be passed.

I speak here in simplicity for the profundity of past days leaves me always a promise of recollection, and diminishes as I step back to view it. I recognize today, as in all others that I have "need of endurance so that when you have done the will of God you may receive what was promised." Heb. 10:36. On this humdrum day of rain, disappointment, and failure -- I have need of endurance; to press in to receive forgiveness, and to grab a hold of the grace I need to move forward. I think of the journey of Christian in Pilgrim's Progress as he makes his way to Celestial City. All along his path he is met with obstacles; he flees the City of Destruction only to slide into the Slough of Despond, helping him out is Worldly Wiseman, Mr. Legality and his son Civility; he meets many others along the way as he encounters Giant Despair, Vanity Fair, and Doubting Castle. I am encouraged just to think that so many others have both encountered and termed these skulking foes that plague my walk. I am strengthened as was Christian by Faithful, and ask you also to pick up your pallet this day and walk.

Monday, December 3, 2012


I am currently combing through a great braid of nostalgia. I've been peering at mountains and reciting analogies all day in my little mind. A dear saint celebrates his 69th birthday, and little, connected themes have beaded and linked all throughout my mind's eye this evening. Glistening lights blur out my right, the mandolin is howling in my heart, my first Christmas tree stands at attention (not yet lit), and my mind is marching through some themes recently cemented and now celebrated.

Some weeks ago I verbally delivered my conclusions on the people I've encountered in the far northern mountains; they've smoothed my own ripples, and intimated to me the perseverance of the saints. I've thought of the whipping winds, far off gully's, and all that those northern regions boast. I've attempted to sort out my love for the mountains, and have concluded 1.) that it's true love 2.) that they are very instructive to me.

I relish effort. I like wildness, intensity, beauty, rawness, and the bleak mid-winter which presents itself always in the far north. These features innately appeal to me, and drew me long before I could understand the why. I have always preferred first the ore, and find delight then in the shavings from it presenting that purposeful product. Weather is secondary to living, but in it we find so many analogies and so very much truth.
The mountains grant the sweetest of repose, for the gift comes with toil. Clouds part and the sun shines to truly grant life and peace after much ado about many things. You find there a respite which lasts but a shake -- its presentation bringing spring, summer, and fall at once and pounds the earth with a plenty no storehouse can contain. The amenities offer now a shield, but sustain no man from the rapping torment of the tumult and wind.

To be continued... Soon...