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Everything posted by Ragamuffin_John

  1. Amosathar ~ this is a wonderful poem. It has a the feel of David sitting and writing a psalm, in which there is tension, confession and realistic resolution. We are not left dangling. We are left with the idea of light. More than at the end of the tunnel. Encouragement and warning to be wise. Wisdom to be desired. The promise of life.
  2. I was looking at my Baylor University alumni association magazine and noticed that an alumna manages a small press that publishes young adult, fantasy and science fiction novels. This might interest some of you: Aionios Books
  3. Isaiah 51:3 (NIV) “The Lord will surely comfort Zion and will look with compassion on all her ruins he will make her deserts like Eden, her wastelands like the garden of the Lord. Joy and gladness will be found in her, thanksgiving and the sound of singing.” ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ God's healing for His children is as all-encompassing as salvation itself. This healing is for the whole remnant of believing Israel, the Church, the believer. This can have a life-long, calming effect on the believer, for every life has had ruins. Many lives experience ruins. Some are headed to ruin, unless they fall back on the grace of God for mercy and protection. In the Lord, all ruins can be removed, rebuilt, or left as monuments to a greater grace. The latter being an endowment of blessed vision.+ Whichever way, newness endures. New structure for "new creations"* The most improbable candidates for restoration (wastelands) find their renovation in our Compassionate God. When one happily sings, the vibrations of celebration affect the whole body. This is a healing effect. The joy of the Lord is meant to be like that. It is our strength.** Let the people rejoice.*** All her ruins come under the gaze and grace of God's loving care. ________ + Hebrews 11:1 * 2 Corinthians 5:17 ** Nehemiah 8:10 *** Psalm 68:3 The opening Scripture is taken from the HOLY BIBLE, NEW INTERNATIONAL VERSION ®. Copyright © 1973, 1978, 1984 by International Bible Society. Used by Permission of Zondervan. All rights reserved.
  4. I greatly appreciate your feedback and encouragement, dumasfils. What’s more, exhortation. Should you teach on this venue, I would look forward to joining. We’re glad you joined CW. Be blessed.
  5. (The title I make by borrowing from dumasfils' words in a Poetry Club post. I recommend reading Psalm 8:4-8 first. Well, my South Carolinian accent showed when I wrote it "divine". I was mentally pronouncing it DE-vine) What is man, the “I” in “Me”? That mindful massing of dignity Sprung on earth, in angels’ care To serve creation off the chair. Up! Grab the works of divine hands! What is written still commands A tending by the human heart of fish, fowl, sheep, foals—out of the Ark But most of all thy fellow man, Each gifted “I” from Great I Am.
  6. dumasfils: Brother, your words "exalt the I in me. Beauty=that which exalts"--well, those leapt off the page as I read them. Made me think of Psalms 8:4-8 and I felt prompted to write a poem, borrowing from your verbiage. I share that in another Poetry Club post. Be blessed.
  7. Ky_GirlatHeart, your poem is inspiring and motivates the heart. Wow.
  8. I'm travelling from Deep South to Michigan for some deep dish. May take turkey jerky for grandkids.
  9. Hi dumasfils. I find "Consider Well" very moving. In another way, I barely move as I consider. To be genuine, to give a sound with meaning to another, there are things about myself I must take care of. There are a few "beams" in the mix.
  10. After reading John 1:1-34 Look, the Lamb, look! He is like none other. A speck of His light Heals the eye, blinds accusers. Lift up your heads For the remnants of Heaven Prepare in wonder A coming New Jerusalem. Unlimited Unction Fell on the Lamb, Replaced royal robes That Glory gave back Once Jesus went up, Teth’ring God’s heart to man, When the Son left a chalice Of grace in our hands.
  11. (after reading Luke 23:44-56* and Matthew 27:19**) Sabbath was coming, Christ’s work was done. An Arimathean Bore witness, placed the Witness in rock. His secret devotion Was unmasked in a vote, He would say “No” Before Pilate’s “Yes” groaned. The Roman’s wife Had warned how a dream About Yeshua Upset her world scheme. But the world would view A washing of hands, A giving way To a coup in Graceland. The Galilee ladies Went home to rest In obedience to the Father Whose Son lay wrapped in death. Little did they know (Though the prophets said much) A new day would usher In Life after the hush. __________ * https://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=Luke+23%3A44-56&version=EHV ** https://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=Matthew+27%3A19&version=EHV
  12. Probably starts with the patient taking a calming tea after watching TV media pundits for the first time
  13. All I can say is, I have been quietly consolidating a paper trail (contacts, lists of assets with suggestions, etc) in case I take the Gospel train first. This thinking is creeping into everything I do, like “If I buy this, of what use would it be to her?”, “would she care to live by herself in that neighborhood if we got that house now?” Running on that assumption, why, I’ve learned to take better care of myself. The longer face time, the better, I figure.
  14. Perseverance must finish its work so that you may be mature and complete, not lacking anything. If any of you lacks wisdom, he should ask God, who gives generously to all without finding fault, and it will be given to him (NIV – James 1:4-5)* Come let us ask God for more wisdom; We are assured He does not find fault. Each time, it is like a clean slate petition, There’s a generous response whenever we call. How can we doubt God’s tender mercies? Perseverance comes from quiet confidence In Abba’s kind, compassionate choosing Enabling weak knees to worship and bend… …and touch the ground, where we began, Dust of the earth, formed by God’s breath. When Spirit came, the change was profound Within simple shapes where Love made a home. He finds no fault, oh how direct! The Lamb of God by His own righteousness Covers His sheep, in wisdom protects. We cheer as we walk in no-fault Righteousness! It is no default, this is His Being, The Great I Am, far from ever changing. As east from west on a plane shall not meet, Favor's dimension is full liberty. ____________ * Scripture taken from the HOLY BIBLE, NEW INTERNATIONAL VERSION (registered). Copyright 1973, 1978, 1984 by International Bible Society. Used by permission of Zondervan. All rights reserved.
  15. Remember your leaders, who spoke the word of God to you. Carefully consider the outcome of their way of life and imitate their faith. Jesus Christ is the same yesterday and today and forever (Hebrews 13:7-8 ~ EHV - bold is mine) There are many revealing and truth-stamped Scriptures for us to learn from and follow. Verses which follow each other consecutively are particularly cementing in their emphases. Concerning the Scripture passage above, the bolded part is by far and away the most well-known, embraced, and practiced portion. The bolded can certainly stand alone for edification and teaching about the power and nature of God. It is that powerful. Yet and still, there is so much more about verse 8 to consider when it is read in its full context, that is, looked at in relation to the previous verse 7. The early Church placed a lot of emphasis on the importance of local church members modelling their lifestyles and piety based on the example set by their leaders. Clearly, this has to do with considering the lives and ministry of pastors, elders, deacons, and so on. Now, we need to ask ourselves, "How is this done?" Certainly, no modelling can be accomplished unless the object, the person of our scrutiny, is in our midst. And so, the importance of fellowship--in the church building and outside of it. Leaders need our support, and this is most highly accomplished when we surround them with our company, our attention, when we apply the principles that they teach us from the Word of God, and through our sincere adaptation of the Godly virtues displayed by our leaders. The primary blessing that followers get from imitating leaders, who themselves are obedient servants of Christ, is that the witness of leaders proves the faithfulness of God: it has in the past (yesterday), it will prove God's faithfulness now (today), and this God-given tool will always be true, just as true as God is eternal (forever). We need to daily pray for our leaders. We should get to know them so that their faith in Christ and reflection of His goodness can be imitated as well. Getting to know them is probably easier in cultures where respect for elders has been maintained as a cultural norm. Nevertheless, the Church itself is a new society that was created at Pentecost.* The mandate in the NT to respect church leaders, along with the energizing power of the Holy Spirit, gives the Church actual and enticing possibilities for living out the Faith. Following our leaders is not an abandonment or diluting of our focus on the one God and one mediator between God and man, the man Christ Jesus (1 Timothy 2:5). Spirit-led imitation of the faith demonstrated by our leaders is a failsafe in itself, for as the Apostle Paul wrote, Be imitators of me, just as I am of Christ (EHV ~ 1 Corinthians 11:1) __________ * But you are a chosen people, a royal priesthood, a holy nation, the people who are God’s own possession, so that you may proclaim the praises of him who called you out of darkness into his marvelous light (EHV ~ 1 Peter 2:9) Scripture quotations marked EHV are from the Holy Bible, Evangelical Heritage Version® (EHV®) © 2019 Wartburg Project, Inc. All rights reserved. Used by permission.
  16. Thank you, Lynn. I've been trying to find one of those old "Phillips 66" gas station signs to pose for a pic. Guess I'll need to do that at Cracker Barrel
  17. Why thank you! My favorite kind actually
  18. After reading Hebrews Hebrews 10:5-39 Jesus was the curtain, Incarnation torn From His soul to open His Holy Place by Blood. The One, the Holy Sacrifice Once, for all has died. The One God is now One for all, Has completed the being-made holy. Draw near to the sprinkling, Provisioned to be sincere, Minds released from guilt, Bodies baptized to be pure. Spur on one another Toward love and all goodness, Since the Day approaches, Encouraged when we've met. Better, lasting things* We have if we confess,** Therefore we do not throw Away our confidence. So richly rewarded, This persevering band, We are not ones who shrink back, We believe, are saved, are glad! _____________ * Hebrews 10:34 ** That is, a confessing/witnessing trust (Matthew 10:32)
  19. Thank you, Joshua. This very much speaks to the heart and challenges.
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