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Showing posts from February, 2007

A New Age

It has become a cliche phrase that beauty queens mutter from the stages at Miss America pageants, but yearning for "peace on earth" isn't a new adage. And it certainly isn't a desire to be dismissed, thinking it's some "pie in the sky" wish. Who doesn't want "peace on earth?" Some--very few--may deny it, wanting instead a power to rule the earth in their own power.
Heaven on Earth, we need it now
I'm sick of all of this hanging around
Sick of sorrow, sick of the pain
I'm sick of hearing again and again
That there's gonna be peace on Earth"
-Peace on Earth, U2In our gut, sitting on the throne of the seat of all of our desires, is the two-headed yearning for Peace and Love. From the day man rebelled against God, we've been reaching for it. We've failed and at times, in little ways, we've succeeded. But it doesn't last. We want it, though.

The ancient writings of a prophet named Daniel foretold of the fall of four …

art

I'm reading "The Heart of the Artist" by Noland and I wanted to share a couple quotes from the book. Thankfully, there has been a resurgence of the arts within the Church, but we are far from realizing the potential of the whole realm of the arts to capture our wonder as is expressed in this reflection by John Fischer:

“When artists reach into their colors or to the notes of a musical score, into the developing solution in a darkroom tray or to the flow of words on a page, they are interacting with the eternity God has placed in their hearts…Because their minds cannot fathom what their hearts know, they feel the weight of the God-placed burden.Art often seems irrational, because the heart is reaching beyond the mind…trying to find the meaning of its existence.”Francis Schaeffer had these sentiments in regard to the mediocrity and resistance to the pursuit of excellence in the arts with regard to the Christian:
“Of all people Christians should be addicted to quality and in…

Building friendships

If you live on or near a college campus or in an urban area where international students live, consider this quote from an Indonesian student who came to study at USC:

"Before coming to the United States, I loved the music, films, freedoms, and I thought, the people. Now I'm not so sure. It's hard to make friends here. Everyone is so busy, into their appearance, and clueless about the rest of the world. I long for friendships where people can talk intelligently about world issues, travel, art, and life outside of our little worlds on campus. To be honest," she says, "I feel lonely a lot of the time. I don't get to see much of American life other than on TV or the area surrounding my university."

Certainly, this isn't true across the board, but over 500,000 international students are studying at American universities right now and over 70% of them never enter an American home! So, in other words, on average, we pretty much suck at inviting in &quo…

Wind

There's a winter storm today.

I'm sitting at my desk, peering through my oversized bedroom windows, watching a snow covered evergreen tree bend its knees at the force of the wind. The wind is really howling today fiercely.

This morning, as I hear the wind and see the wind's force, I am reminded of God's power.

As I watch the snow fall on the pre-existing white blanket from last week, I am reminded of how God can still bring beauty out of brokenness.

But man, it sure sounds cold out there....I'll be doing work from the home office this morning. :)

Feeling International

The last few days have been very international.

On Thursday, I went to the Cosmo Club on campus. Each week a different nation is highlighted, and this week it was Iran. The stew was savory, the music enchanting and the historical and cultural presentation quite eye-opening. I live for these types of things. Two weeks ago it was Lebanese night and last week it was an international trivia night (our team took a close second place...we just missed out on some huge Toblerone bars!). I try to make a point of having at least one conversation with someone new and I hit the jackpot this week. I found myself in a very long conversation with a guy from Saudi Arabia. Cool guy. Very curious. Lots of questions.

The next day, after spending some time with one of my friends from Singapore, I got a call from my new Saudi friend. He wanted to hang out and grab some tea. He another Saudi friend and I spent the next two hours in deep discussion about American politics, oil, my faith, their faith…

The Power (or lack thereof) of Words

Do you think words have been cheapened in postmodern society? In an overstimulated world, where we receive thousands of messages each day, I wonder if we've lost the ability to communicate with words only in a way that truly pulls at our heart strings or delivers a message of unfiltered truth that can be coherent and understood. Perhaps that is why we rely so much on the fusion of words, images, sounds and constant movement. Certainly that combination packs a powerful punch. How often do you encounter a brilliantly, but succintly written speech or sermon or letter that cuts you to the core? Maybe it happens more often that I think it does. I guess I am just thinking of time when I've gotten lost in others' wordiness or how often I've come to the table with presuppositions that distort the potential impact of anothers' words. Does our society have too many false messages and too many skepticisms? Or has this always been? Maybe this isn't all so bad, I…