Tuesday, April 26, 2016

Horsing Around


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My youngest daughter has taken up horseback riding lessons. I decided to take the opportunity to use the hour lesson time to work on some quick-draw plein air painting of the other horses in the field.  

I totally underestimated the intelligence of the beautiful animals. As I set up next to the fence, all of the horses came over to watch me construct my french easel. But once I was ready to paint, all of the horses went far down the field to graze out of range from my painting efforts. “No matter.” I thought. “I'll just paint the field and when they come back around, I'll paint the horses in.” But when the time came to paint in the horses, their dinner bell rang and they all galloped out of the field to eat. Fortunately, they soon returned. But instead of grazing in my view, they went to the OTHER far side of the field to graze. I did my best to capture shapes and colors from far away. Once time was up and I packed everything up to leave, I looked up and they were all back in the middle to graze. Touché.

So today's post is the result of my efforts from that day.

Hopefully, next time they will be a little less shy. We shall see.




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Monday, April 11, 2016

Psalm 30: You Have Turned My Mourning Into Dancing




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I will extol you, O Lord, for you have drawn me up,
    and did not let my foes rejoice over me.
 Lord my God, I cried to you for help,
    and you have healed me.
 Lord, you brought up my soul from Sheol,
    restored me to life from among those gone down to the Pit.
 Sing praises to the Lord, O you his faithful ones,
    and give thanks to his holy name.
 For his anger is but for a moment;
    his favor is for a lifetime.
Weeping may linger for the night,
    but joy comes with the morning.
 As for me, I said in my prosperity,
    “I shall never be moved.”
 By your favor, O Lord,
    you had established me as a strong mountain;
you hid your face;
    I was dismayed.
 To you, O Lord, I cried,
    and to the Lord I made supplication:
 “What profit is there in my death,
    if I go down to the Pit?
Will the dust praise you?
    Will it tell of your faithfulness?
 Hear, O Lord, and be gracious to me!
    Lord, be my helper!”
 You have turned my mourning into dancing;
    you have taken off my sackcloth
    and clothed me with joy,
 so that my soul may praise you and not be silent.
    Lord my God, I will give thanks to you forever.





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Sunday, March 27, 2016

Worthy Is the Lamb



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Then I looked, and I heard the voice of many angels surrounding the throne and the living creatures and the elders; they numbered myriads of myriads and thousands of thousands, singing with full voice,
“Worthy is the Lamb that was slain
to receive power and wealth and wisdom and might
and honor and glory and blessing!”
Then I heard every creature in heaven and on earth and under the earth and in the sea, and all that is in them, singing,
“To the one seated on the throne and to the Lamb
be blessing and honor and glory and might
forever and ever!”
And the four living creatures said, “Amen!” And the elders fell down and worshiped.

Revelation 5:11-14


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Saturday, March 26, 2016

40 Days: Day 40: Torn



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At that moment the curtain of the temple was torn in two, from top to bottom. 

Matthew 27:51



Friday, March 25, 2016

40 Days: Day 39: Psalm 22



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My God, my God, why have you forsaken me?
    Why are you so far from helping me, from the words of my groaning?

O my God, I cry by day, but you do not answer;

    and by night, but find no rest.
 Yet you are holy,
    enthroned on the praises of Israel.
 In you our ancestors trusted;
    they trusted, and you delivered them.
 To you they cried, and were saved;
    in you they trusted, and were not put to shame.
 But I am a worm, and not human;
    scorned by others, and despised by the people.
 All who see me mock at me;
    they make mouths at me, they shake their heads;
 “Commit your cause to the Lord; let him deliver—
    let him rescue the one in whom he delights!”
Yet it was you who took me from the womb;
    you kept me safe on my mother’s breast.
 On you I was cast from my birth,
    and since my mother bore me you have been my God.
 Do not be far from me,
    for trouble is near
    and there is no one to help.
 Many bulls encircle me,
    strong bulls of Bashan surround me;
 they open wide their mouths at me,
    like a ravening and roaring lion.
 I am poured out like water,
    and all my bones are out of joint;
my heart is like wax;
    it is melted within my breast;
 my mouth[a] is dried up like a potsherd,
    and my tongue sticks to my jaws;
    you lay me in the dust of death.
 For dogs are all around me;
    a company of evildoers encircles me.
My hands and feet have shriveled;
 I can count all my bones.
They stare and gloat over me;
 they divide my clothes among themselves,
    and for my clothing they cast lots.
But you, O Lord, do not be far away!
    O my help, come quickly to my aid!
 Deliver my soul from the sword,
    my life[c] from the power of the dog!
     Save me from the mouth of the lion!
From the horns of the wild oxen you have rescuedme.
 I will tell of your name to my brothers and sisters;
    in the midst of the congregation I will praise you:
You who fear the Lord, praise him!
    All you offspring of Jacob, glorify him;
    stand in awe of him, all you offspring of Israel!
 For he did not despise or abhor
    the affliction of the afflicted;
he did not hide his face from me,
    but heard when I[g] cried to him.
 From you comes my praise in the great congregation;
    my vows I will pay before those who fear him.
 The poor[h] shall eat and be satisfied;
    those who seek him shall praise the Lord.
    May your hearts live forever!
 All the ends of the earth shall remember
    and turn to the Lord;
and all the families of the nations
    shall worship before him.
 For dominion belongs to the Lord,
    and he rules over the nations.
To him,[j] indeed, shall all who sleep in[k] the earth bow down;
    before him shall bow all who go down to the dust,
    and I shall live for him.
Posterity will serve him;

    future generations will be told about the Lord,
 and proclaim his deliverance to a people yet unborn,
    saying that he has done it.

Psalm 22

Thursday, March 24, 2016

40 Days: Day 38: Stay with Me



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Then Jesus went with them to a place called Gethsemane; and he said to his disciples, “Sit here while I go over there and pray.” He took with him Peter and the two sons of Zebedee, and began to be grieved and agitated. Then he said to them, “I am deeply grieved, even to death; remain here, and stay awake with me.” And going a little farther, he threw himself on the ground and prayed, “My Father, if it is possible, let this cup pass from me; yet not what I want but what you want.” Then he came to the disciples and found them sleeping; and he said to Peter, “So, could you not stay awake with me one hour? Stay awake and pray that you may not come into the time of trial; the spirit indeed is willing, but the flesh is weak.” Again he went away for the second time and prayed, “My Father, if this cannot pass unless I drink it, your will be done.” Again he came and found them sleeping, for their eyes were heavy. So leaving them again, he went away and prayed for the third time, saying the same words. Then he came to the disciples and said to them, “Are you still sleeping and taking your rest? See, the hour is at hand, and the Son of Man is betrayed into the hands of sinners. Get up, let us be going. See, my betrayer is at hand.”

Matthew 26:36-46




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Wednesday, March 23, 2016

40 Days: Day 37: The Basin and the Towel



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And the call is to community

In an upstairs room, a parable
Is just about to come alive
And while they bicker about who's best
With a painful glance, He'll silently rise

Their Savior Servant must show them how
Through the will of the water
And the tenderness of the towel

And the call is to community
The impoverished power that sets the soul free
In humility, to take the vow
That day after day we must take up the basin and the towel

In any ordinary place
On any ordinary day
The parable can live again
When one will kneel and one will yield

Our Saviour Servant must show us how
Through the will of the water
And the tenderness of the towel

The space between ourselves sometimes
Is more than the distance between the stars
By the fragile bridge of the Servant's bow
We take up the basin and the towel

And the call is to community
The impoverished power that sets the soul free
In humility, to take the vow
That day after day we must take up the basin and the towel

-Michael Card
John 13:1-17