Tuesday, March 23, 2010

“Then God Said, ‘Let there be…and there was…’”

"Every season runs into the last, blotting over the faint shades of its forbear that yet linger in the earth. Yet even in the midst of winter, one can put one’s face close to a patriarchal oak and trace the delicate strokes of fresh living green that last year’s moss painted into the gray bark before frost nipped off the bloom of summer and covered the bareness of autumn with a glittering veil. The flashing, regal splendor of winter, it’s pure lines and austere bearing, dissolve dying into the dead ground, fade into the canvas of latent earth, and thus feed a birth. The infantile mouth of spring opens wide and drinks in the wells preserved so long for its hungry advent. Silent waters break out in a reformation and wash away the frigid barriers in a thrill brimming with promise.

Laud another season if you dare, but in Spring the world is made all over again.

The Six Arrows took our annual adventure to the river again. I was reminded of the quote below for that reason.
“… And in that silence Edmund could at last listen to the other noise properly. A strange, sweet rustling, chattering noise - and yet not so strange, for he’d heard it before - if only he could remember where! Then all at once he did remember. It was the noise of running water. All round them though out of sight, there were streams, chattering, murmuring, bubbling, splashing and even (in the distance) roaring. And his heart gave a great leap (though he hardly new why) when he realized that the frost was over. And much nearer there was a drip-drip-drip from the branches of all the trees. And then, as he looked at one tree he saw a great load of snow slide off it…”
~ C. S. Lewis, The Lion the Witch and the Wardrobe
All winter long, we are not even reminded that we have forgotten the sound of running water. We forget to miss it until it breaks its bonds in the warm hearty breath of Spring. Water chortling is Spring laughing in the face of the frost. If you live near enough to hear it, the sound calls you out to come and exult with it. Perhaps we are all far too old to “play,” but that doesn’t prevent us from exploring every inch of the water-ways within half a mile of our house every snow-melt.

Of course there is little spice to adventures such as ours unless someone “goes in.” This year both Charlie and Yours Truly fell in “the drink.” Since we never get anything worse than a good dipping and a boot full of water, nobody minds more than to have a good laugh. Laughing is about the only thing you can do when you are breathing air that smells and feels electric with life. We found a pair of beautiful little ruddy gray water rats in a temporary brook. The way they caper around and navigate the water with their little paws and tails is comical. They just quiver with excitement to their very whiskers. The birds are ecstatic and warble for the mere delight of singing...the higher, brighter and more trilling, the better.
“He thought his happiness was complete when, as he meandered aimlessly along, suddenly he stood by the edge of a full-fed river. Never in his life had he seen a river before – this sleek, sinuous, full-bodied animal, chasing and chuckling, gripping things with a gurgle and leaving them with a laugh, to fling itself on fresh playmates that shook themselves free, and were caught and held again. All was a-shake and a-shiver – glints and gleams and sparkles, rustle and swirl, chatter and bubble. The Mole was bewitched, entranced, fascinated. By the side of the river he trotted as one trots, when very small, by the side of a man who holds one spellbound by exciting stories; and when tired at last, he sat on the bank, while the river still chattered on to him, a babbling procession of the best stories in the world, sent from the heart of the earth to be told at last to the insatiable sea.”

~ Kenneth Grahame - The Wind in the Willows

Tuesday, March 9, 2010

God doesn't need my vote in the next opinion poll...

We just posted a video on our family blog that brewed some thought in the family circle.  Mr. Glen Beck demonstrates powerfully in this show the incredible advance of the socialist, communist march in our nation through the minds and hearts of children specifically.
There is a generation that curses its father, and does not bless its mother. There is a generation that is pure in its own eyes, yet is not washed from its filthiness. There is a generation—oh, how lofty are their eyes! And their eyelids are lifted up. There is a generation whose teeth are like swords, and whose fangs are like knives, to devour the poor from off the earth, and the needy from among men. The leech has two daughters— Give and Give!  Proverbs 30:11-15
This issue has come to life in a few small ways for me during the past few years.  I have not been the only one observing growing trend among young people...my peers.  When observing popular opinion among Christians, I often receive the impression that someone decided to have an election or poll and God just happened to come out on top; or God won the popularity contest and now He's "cool".  "'My God' loves everyone and accepts everyone just the way they are" probably sounds familiar and eerily close to the truth.

Somehow, more and more, the God, not of scripture but our own imagination, takes on the likeness of the god we are all urged by modern culture to worship...the State.  In exchange for your soul, you get...
happiness, security, love, acceptance, tolerance, peace, change...
Throw a few extra words in and you have the promise of current politicians or the "gospel" of modern "Christianity," ...whichever you prefer.  And, yes, the statists want your soul.  We are demanded to be accepting, tolerant, peaceable, loving servants in the manner that is dictated by "everyone".  This involves being intolerant of the intolerant, religiously resisting all bigoted religion, accept nothing but everything, deciding "truth" for yourself as long as its subjective, violently demanding peace, and denying the existence of any God in the interests of a new god.  Anyone who objects to the war for progressivism is a warmonger, and anyone who desires any reform but the "right" left reform is an unforgiving, judgmental, legalistic bigot.

The words and catch-phrases are made familiar to us.  They sound good, and feel good, and are accepted as goodness by those who should know them for what they are...evil.  They are the outcry of rebellion from the hearts of lost men.

Our family has done some research recently on these evil agendas that had birth from men like Charles Darwin and continue to come to fruition through the citizens of the "City of Men."  Georg Wilhelm Friedrich Hegel aptly expressed the external expression of this internal heart attitude when he said that
"We must worship the state as the manifestation of the divine on earth, and consider that the state is the march of God through the world."
This morning, during family devotions, we discussed the real nature of this ideology as it was manifested at the tower of Babel in Genesis 11.  Men, having fallen, continually seek to uplift themselves, so that man becomes the ultimate god of the universe, rising up in defiance of the Kingdom of God.  This "pride of life" remains, throughout history, the mark of man's plight...the brand of his curse.  It expresses his filthiness and calls out his depravity, and leaves its horrific scars on the pages of history.

Contrary to popular opinion :), God doesn't need our approval to "deserve" sovereignty.  His merits are not scaled according to the number of assets and privileges He provides, nor the quantity of prayers answered "correctly", the tolerance He shows, the grace He extends, or the peace and happiness He grants to His "constituents."  Those measures would merely negate His divinity.  In other words, if He were measured, He wouldn't be God.  God defines Himself.  He doesn't need us to introduce Him or endorse Him.  Moses already asked that question "...what shall I say to them?"  God's answer clarified whether the question need be asked at all. "I AM THAT I AM"
Oh, the depth of the riches both of the wisdom and knowledge of God! How unsearchable are His judgments and His ways past finding out! “ For who has known the mind of the LORD?  Or who has become His counselor?  Or who has first given to Him and it shall be repaid to him?”  For of Him and through Him and to Him are all things, to whom be glory forever. Amen.  Romans 11:33-36
As we watch the world around us crumbles on itself, I pray that as believers, we will not forget that "sin lies at the door" and use discernment as we "cling to that which is good."

"Therefore let him who thinks he stands take heed lest he fall."