Friday, April 9, 2010
Thursday, January 28, 2010
Bear patiently the cross of grief or pain;
Leave to thy God to order and provide;
In every change He faithful will remain.
Be still, my soul; thy best, thy heavenly, Friend
Through thorny ways leads to a joyful end.
Be still, my soul; thy God doth undertake
To guide the future as He has the past.
Thy hope, thy confidence, let nothing shake;
All now mysterious shall be bright at last.
Be still, my soul; the waves and winds still know
His voice who ruled them while He dwelt below.
Be still, my soul, though dearest friends depart
And all is darkened in the vale of tears;
Then shalt thou better know His love, His heart,
Who comes to soothe thy sorrows and thy fears.
Be still, my soul; thy Jesus can repay
From His own fulness all He takes away.
Be still, my soul; the hour is hastening on
When we shall be forever with the Lord,
When disappointment, grief, and fear are gone,
Sorrow forgot, love's purest joys restored.
Be still, my soul; when change and tears are past,
All safe and blessed we shall meet at last.
Take a minute and soak in these words. If you know the tune, play it in your mind(God I wish I had written that). The waves and winds still know.
Tuesday, January 5, 2010
America is the last great hope for freedom in a world of barbarism. If liberty dies here, then liberty dies. There is nowhere else for freedom-loving people to go. Once social dependence has taken root in the form of over-reaching governance, only extreme sacrifice can tip the scales back toward personal freedom. It is becoming exceedingly clear that more and more of my countrymen are content to jettison the freedom protected in the Constitution for the shadow of some socialist utopia that has neither been effective anywhere it has been tried nor does it make any pragmatic sense.
There is a country I want my daughter to know. I want her America to be that last great beacon of hope where merit and tenacity dictate success. I want her America to be the one place on the planet where her religious conviction is respected by her government and not shown disdain at every turn. I want her America to be free of the financial shackles of her grandparents' and parents' generations. I want her America to be a place where a man is not demonized for the fruits of his hardwork. I want her America to be known for her generosity; not begrudging forced aid but real compassion driven help for those in dire need. I want her America to be the nation that fights battles with revolutionary fury; when she must fight, she fights to win. I want her America to be hopelessly infatuated with the joy of the concept of freedom. I want her America to be that nation which encourages and cultivates the family unit instead of continually tearing it down. I want her America to herald the virtues of capitalism instead of undercutting the principles of free markets. I want her America to, first and foremost, before any domestic social programs are funded, completely and extravagantly provide for the dead and wounded servicemen who fought their country's enemies.
It is my hope that my generation will pave the road for her generation.
Saturday, December 19, 2009
Throughout the better part of 3/4 of the New Testament, Paul writes logically, methodically, precisely in language that is indicative of the combination of his stout academic background and his own personal brilliance. Like a great lawyer, Paul leads his reader into certain truths. "If this is true, then this must be true". Step by step, we are convinced to take Jesus seriously. Most of what Paul writes is with a ruthless logical pen.
However, sometimes Paul cuts loose into this beautiful language that reveals a heart that is completely in love with his savior. Occasionally Paul, Phariseeic Hebrew of Hebrews Paul, will unleash captivating poetry that communicates some powerful and provocative claims.
He is the image of the invisible God, the firstborn over all creation. For by him all things were created: things in heaven and on earth, visible and invisible, whether thrones or powers or rulers or authorities; all things were created by him and for him. Col 1:15-16
Where is the man that lives as if he actually believes that claim? Even as Christians, don't most of us live our lives as if things were created for us? But Paul claims that all things were made by Him and for Him. In the next verse he talks about all things are held together in Him. So why aren't we floored by this? How do we read this and remain on our feet? Either Paul is crazy, or our belief in Jesus fundamentally alters everything we think and say and do. This is the kind of idea that transforms people. My question remains: Where is the man that lives as if he actually believes that claim?
I wrestle with this idea. And my life, more often than not, reveals a basic rejection of this claim. My actions tell people that I think the things around me were made for me to terminate on myself because I am just that important. What would it look like if my actions and decisions were dictated by the belief that all things serve the purpose of the Christ?
Friday, November 13, 2009
Thursday, October 15, 2009
The most prevalent form (and there are several) of idolatry in my life is my tendency to take all the credit for the things that work as they should and shed all the blame on God for things that get all jacked up. It's like this. Avery is this awesome kid. She doesn't cry. She doesn't fight sleep. She let's anyone and everyone hold her. She's not afraid of dogs. She likes to cuddle with Daddy. She's just a good kid. How ridiculous is it of me to say that this is the result of superior parenting on my part? Or how about this. My legs move pretty much wherever I tell them to move. And, I woke up today without any pain. And, I can see and hear and move my hands. Yet I cannot remember a time when I have awakened to the thought that the fact that I can breath means God has once again showered His mercy on me. Conversely, when things go south. Like when my kid has to spend 3 weeks in the hospital or I blow a tire and I wag my finger in God's face saying "where were you on that one?". What kind of a fool does that? How messed up is that guy? What a complete tool I can be sometimes. (most of the time)
God, have mercy on me, a sinner.
Post Script: Matt Chandler at the Village Church is a modern prophet. Get on Itunes and subscride to the Village podcast. The current series called "The Path" is walking through progressive sanctification. Consistant excellence.
Monday, October 5, 2009
The thing about this situation is that my instincts were always wrong. As a Gable, I am a nurturing father. The one gut reaction to her crying or her pain was to talk to her and pick her up and hold her close. The thing about Preemies is that too much of this type of reaction can cause them to freak out at the very least and can be detrimental to their development at worst. They just aren't ready. Too much noise or light or touch can cause them to be overstimulated which can lead to more setbacks and complications and end up making everything worse. For Avery, all she needed was rest. She needed time for her own natural processes to grow and heal and for her own natural defenses to correct what was going wrong.
The American fiscal future is in a similar boat. Our economic development has been stunted by multiple factors. Alarms are sounding as each of our major economic indicators redlines into levels that cause distress and fear and panic. Our President's agenda driven idea of governing pushes him to round upon round of "stimulus" funds. This agenda is nothing short of destructive. Just like Avery in her incubator needed low-key, quiet, dimly lit surroundings, so this economy needs an environment where it can relax, shut down the engines and get back to neutral. The current MO is to inject taxpayer money into a financial system that is already overstimulated. This has the same effect on the country as shining a flashlight in a preemie's face. This overstimulation can cause irreversible damage. Stop. Let her heal. Remove the impediments in her way and allow her the time to heal herself. Any more stimulus may cause severe destructive problems
Monday, August 31, 2009
Friday, February 6, 2009
We stayed in the hospital until Friday afternoon. During that time, we spent several hours in Avery's room in the NICU. We were afraid and tired and emotionally drained. Tough. Slowly, the doctors and nurses weened her from the oxygen until she was breathing on her own. By the time we left, she had lost a little weight (which I'm told happens with all babies). I'll tell you: Leaving the hospital without your kid is like leaving the dentist without your teeth. It sucks. But, Gables don't complain. In fact, after spending time in the NICU, we are painfully aware of just how many bullets Avery dodged and just how bad it could have been.
Over the next 3 weeks, Krisi spent her days in the NICU while I went to work and I joined them for a few hours every evening until we had to go home for the night. Avery consistantly gained weight and gradually began oral feeds. We were able to bring her home when she was a little over 4 and a half pounds. For the next few months, Avery is on prescription caffeine and hooked up to a portable monitor at home.
This is where we are now. Avery is home and healthy(relatively). We have a new appreciation for some of the stresses of the world of premature babies and a pretty firm understanding of life in the NICU.