29 March 2007

Short break

A few hours ago, I received The Call that I had been dreading. My mother has entered into the Presence of her Lord and has left this life of pain and sickness behind. While a large part of me grieves the loss of her presence, I know full well that she is in a far better place and that I will, someday, see her again.

In the morning, we will set off on a l-o-n-g car trip to gather with my brothers and sisters and father, to mourn her passing and to celebrate her life and faith. And it was a living, vital faith.

Please keep us in prayer.

God is good, always, even when the circumstances aren't.

Posting is going to be light for the next few days.
Sunday is Palm Sunday, the day we remember the triumphal entry of Jesus into Jerusalem, an event that led, only a few days later to cries of ''Crucify him!''. And yet, because of the events of that week, we can have confidence and hope today, even when, as today, we see the realities of this broken world. Jesus could see past the events of the moment, good and bad, and see the outcome. So must we.

Prepping for the journey, I found a little bit of writing that my dad put together for their 50th Wedding anniversary, back in 1998. It's probably not great writing, but it has great personal meaning for me. Read it at your own risk.

Though we were born in humble homes
Of noble birth are we;
To claim the King as Father
Grants us nobility.

Once we walked our paths alone
Then God brought us together;
And so we formed a loving home
That only death can sever.

Fifty years ago we chose
No more to walk alone;
Through all these years He blessed us well
How quickly the years have flown.

Still our home was not complete
Till children came to birth;
And here were formed the warmest ties
That can be found on earth.

Our family of faith has done its best
To give us loving care;
While friends and neighbors lend a hand
We find them everywhere.

The sunset comes before the dark,
So soon the day is done;
But darkness must give way to light
Soon comes eternal dawn.

I thank God humbly for having given parents such as that.

Today's Reading March 29

Good morning. The Easter celebration is fast approaching. It is something that we should be keeping in mind during the course of this through-the-Bible journey. The Bible readings, the Bible itself, are not useful simply to gain familiarity over a book, even a very special book. The Bible is a record of the Lord's love for us over a very long time, and it all points to Jesus. The Promised Land to which He led the Israelites during the Exodus and, during the time of Joshua, to the occupation, is only a glimpse of the real Promise that we have through Christ Jesus. And, just as in the division of the land shown in Joshua, no detail escapes His attention and no name is unimportant.
This morning's reading, from the Old Testament, is Joshua 23 and 24. This completes the book of Joshua.
This evening's reading, from the New Testament, is from the Gospel of Luke, chapter 6, verses 27 through 49. Some of the most memorable parts of all the New Testament (which is saying quite a lot!).
On a personal note, I am waiting for The Call to let me know that my mother has passed over into the presence of the Lord and has left her sickness and pain behind. That will set me off on a journey of 2000 miles or so and I will likely be absent a few days. Pray for us.

28 March 2007

Today's Reading March 28

Short shrift today.
Please keep my mother in your prayers. She is still with us on this side, physically at least. And my dad - seeing his wife of 58 years in extremis is wrenching, to say the least.

Morning reading, from the Old Testament, is Joshua, chapters 21 and 22. Having completed the division of the land, he sends the tribes whose inheritance is on the EAST side of the Jordan (something conveniently forgotten by many who should know better) to their lands.
Evening from the New Testament, continues in the Gospel of Luke, chapter 6, verses 1 through 26.

27 March 2007

Today's Reading March 27

Good morning
Posting is going to be very light for the next few days. I received word an hour ago that my mother is in the process of entering the presence of the Lord. I will, probably, set out later today on a thousand-mile journey from Lower Alabama up to the far northeast corner of Ohio and will be considerably out of pocket for the next week.
Please keep my father in prayer - they were married in June of 1948 and that's a long companionship whose break is a terrible blow.

This mornings portion of the Old Testament is taken from Joshua, chapters 19 and 20. This is the final of the apportioning of the Promised Land to the Israelites. It makes a lot more sense if you have access to a good topographical map. Every tribe, and every family within that tribe, had its own assigned region and land.

The evening's reading, from the New Testament, is taken from the Gospel of Luke, chapter 5, verses 17 through 39. There's a lot in this passage, but I particularly love the image of the men, desperate to bring their friend to Jesus, went up on the rooftop of the house and let him down, on a litter (suspended by ropes I imagine). They would do extraordinary things to bring their friend to Jesus.
Question: what are we willing to do to bring the lost to Christ? How many obstacles are we willing to overcome?

26 March 2007

Today's reading March 26

I regret the lateness of the posting - it's been a trying day.
Morning reading, from the Old Testament
Joshua, chapters 16 through 18
this makes more sense if you have a good, topographical map of the area
Evening reading, from the New Testament
the Gospel of Luke, chapter 5, verses 1 through 16

25 March 2007

Today's Reading March 25

Good Sunday morning to you.
This morning's reading, out of the Old Testament, continues in the book of Joshua, chapters 14 and 15. This includes the record of Caleb. Caleb was, you may recall, one of the 12 scouts sent by Moses, some 40 years previously, to spy out the land. Ten of those scouts brought back an evil report, a message of discouragement, that resulted in the people wandering around the wilderness for 40 more years as the faithless died off. Only Joshua and Caleb were still around. Joshua was leading the whole people, while Caleb was a leader within his own tribe, 85 years old now but reportedly just as strong and vigorous and enthusiastic as he had been 40 years before. Now he came forward to request a hard assignment, one he was granted and which was carried out fully.
Much of the rest of this passage seems dry and of no interest. Do not make that mistake. Get a map and hunt down the place name references. There are fights going on over that very same territory today. The Muslims claim suzerainty over it. Like virtually everything else that the Muslims say, they're wrong on that as well.
The afternoon/evening reading continues in the Gospel of Luke, chapter 4, verses 33 through 44. More of the miracles of Jesus.