Tuesday, September 11, 2012

Eleven Years Ago



It's hard to believe it's been eleven years. As it is this year, September 11, 2001 was a Tuesday that year. It's one of the odd details that I remember. Who knows why. It's a morning that began much like this morning, a crisp, fall morning. The sky was a brilliant, cloudless blue. We were excited to have just moved into our house. There were boxes all over. It would be a several weeks before we finally got settled. It seemed like the world stopped for a while.

I remember. 

It helps to slow down and take the time to reflect. I "grasp an empowering hope for the future."
http://sermons2.redeemer.com/sermons/truth-tears-anger-and-grace
http://discover.redeemer.com/Questions/62/read

Also see Closing a Chapter, Remembering TodayRemembering 9-11I RememberEleven Tears and In Remembrance

Saturday, November 12, 2011

Outraged

Upon hearing the news out of Penn State this week, I was horrified, disgusted and outraged. As I heard news reports about it, I couldn't get over what strong emotions it evoked and then it finally struck me. It puts a spotlight on my own sins. I realized that my sins are just as much of an outrage to God.

So, I pray for forgiveness. I pray that I feel as much outrage toward my own sin that I seem to minimize as I feel at those who wronged so many in the Penn State situation.

“Why do you see the speck that is in your brother's eye, but do not notice the log that is in your own eye? Or how can you say to your brother, ‘Let me take the speck out of your eye,’ when there is the log in your own eye?" (Matthew 7:3-4 ESV)

Friday, September 09, 2011

Send the Ark

I guess I asked too soon! It wasn't plagues and locusts, it was a flood!

Sadly, there was loss of life and property damage to many.

Monday, August 29, 2011

What next, plagues and locusts?

Two natural phenomenon in one week. If it's okay, I could take a calmer week.

This past Tuesday, August 23, we had a 5.8 earthquake whose epicenter was in Mineral, VA, which is about 90 miles from the Washington, DC area. I was actually walking outside back to the office and didn't feel the tremor. However, people running out of buildings was a big clue. Although no major damage, it was a bit unnerving.

Then, this past weekend, Hurricane Irene decided to swirl up the east coast. She provided lots of rain and a downed tree a block away from our house. It did damage the back of a car, but did not hit a house. Lots of leaves and a few branches, but nothing major at our house.

What you don't see in this picture are their neighbors sitting in lawn chairs watching the clean up. Just a little odd, in my opinion.


Here's the trunk and roots from the remaining portion of the tree.


Thursday, August 25, 2011

I am the nail in Your wrist ... But You love me anyway

I subject you to songs every now and then.

You Love Me Anyway

The question was raised
As my conscience fell
A silly, little lie
It didn’t mean much
But it lingers still
In the corners of my mind

Still you call me to walk
On the edge of this world
To spread my dreams and fly
But the future’s so far
My heart is so frail
I think I’d rather stay inside

But You love me anyway
It’s like nothing in life that I’ve ever known
You love me anyway
Oh Lord, how You love me
How You love me

It took more than my strength
To simply be still
To seek but never find
All the reasons we change
The reasons I doubt
And why do loved ones have to die?

But You love me anyway
It’s like nothing in life that I’ve ever known
You love me anyway
Oh Lord, how You love me

I am the thorn in Your crown
But You love me anyway
I am the sweat from Your brow
But You love me anyway
I am the nail in Your wrist
But You love me anyway
I am Judas’ kiss
But You love me anyway

See now, I am the man that called out from the crowd
For Your blood to be spilled on this earth shaking ground
Yes then, I turned away with this smile on my face
With this sin in my heart tried to bury Your grace
And then alone in the night, I still called out for You
So ashamed of my life, my life, my life

But You love me anyway
Oh, God… how you love me

You love me anyway
It’s like nothing in life that I’ve ever known
You love me anyway
Oh Lord, how You love me

You love me, You love me
You love me, You love me
How You love me
How You love me
How You love me

~Sidewalk Prophets

Blog Slacker!

OK, so let's not pretend anyone really follows or cares about my blog. I haven't actually posted since May. Travesty! Honestly, I've shifted a little more toward Facebook and Twitter.

So, why do I keep it? Because, as I periodically look back at some of the posts, I find that they are a little time capsule, the pre-Facebook and pre-Twitter, and I suppose I'm not quite ready to scrap the whole thing.

Monday, May 02, 2011

Closing a Chapter

Yesterday, Osama bin Laden was killed.

My first thought was not to "celebrate." It was not "cheer." I could only think of the 2,977 victims of 9-11. The emotions flooded back. I remembered the fear of the day in DC. When I was finally able to get out of the city, we spent the rest of the day with friends in shock with the rest of the nation.

Last night, I think I felt a little sense of relief. Not in a "there will never be any terrorism again," but that a chapter has been closed. Not the book.

Thank you to the U.S. military. You are true heros.

Sunday, April 24, 2011

Christ Is Risen Indeed!

Oh to see the dawn of the darkest day,
Christ on the road to Calvary.
Tried by sinful men, torn and beaten then
Nailed to a cross of wood.

This the pow'r of the cross.
Christ became sin for us,
Took the blame, bore the wrath.
We stand forgiven at the cross.

Oh to see my name written in the wounds,
For through your suff'ring, I am free.
Death is crushed to death, life is mine to live,
Won through your selfless love!

This the pow'r of the cross.
Christ became sin for us,
Took the blame, bore the wrath.
We stand forgiven at the cross.

Words and Music by Keith Getty and Stuart Townend

Friday, April 22, 2011

Good Friday

I will glory in my Redeemer
Whose priceless blood has ransomed me
Mine was the sin that drove the bitter nails
And hung Him on that judgment tree

I will glory in my Redeemer
Who crushed the power of sin and death
My only Savior before the Holy Judge
The Lamb Who is my righteousness
The Lamb Who is my righteousness

I will glory in my Redeemer
My life He bought, my love He owns
I have no longings for another
I’m satisfied in Him alone

I will glory in my Redeemer
His faithfulness my standing place
Though foes are mighty and rush upon me
My feet are firm, held by His grace
My feet are firm, held by His grace

I will glory in my Redeemer
Who carries me on eagle's wings
He crowns my life with lovingkindness
His triumph song I'll ever sing

I will glory in my Redeemer
Who waits for me at gates of gold
And when He calls me it will be paradise
His face forever to behold
His face forever to behold
His face forever to behold

"I Will Glory in My Redeemer", by Steve and Vikki Cook.

Monday, March 28, 2011

Our Hearts Are with the Japanese

These are just mind-blogging. All of that devastation in less than six minutes. There just doesn't seem like there's anything you can do against a tsunami.

Charitable organizations responding in Japan:
http://www.usaid.gov/japanquake/index.html#help
Mission to the World www.mtw.org



Monday, February 07, 2011

Super Bowl XLV Champions

Mom sent some pictures from the grocery store in Wisconsin




My awesome brother sent me the long-sleeve t-shirt and the Green Bay Gazette Extra special edition from the NFC championship win against the Chicago Bears.


Super Bowl XLV Champions
February 6, 2011

Milwaukee Sentinel Journal
Green Bay Press Gazette website

Green Bay Press Gazette special edition

Packers Pro Shop




The Lombardi Trophy is coming home to Lambeau

The Vince Lombardi Trophy is hoisted as the Green Bay Packers celebrate winning Super Bowl XLV over the Pittsburgh Steelers 31-25 at Cowboys Stadium in Arlington, Texas on February 6, 2011. (Gary A. Vasquez/NFL)

Tuesday, February 01, 2011

GO PACK GO!


Your Tax Dollars Hard at Work

I interrupt this blog silence with breaking news. The government released new dietary guidelines yesterday, and their advice:

"Government’s Dietary Advice: Eat Less"
Read more

Yep, that's it, folks. How many tax dollars do you think went into that finding?

Wednesday, December 01, 2010

Monday, October 04, 2010

Grand Canyon

Another trip! Here are a few pictures from our Grand Canyon adventure!



Grand Canyon - day 1
South Rim Entrance - Visitor Center - Hopi Point

Grand Canyon - day 2
South Rim Entrance - Yaki Point - Desert View - Lipan Point - Tusayan Ruin and Museum - Moran Point - Grandview Point - Yavapai Point - Hopi Point

Grand Canyon - day 3
South Rim Entrance - Yavapai Point - Grandview Point - rained out!

Saturday, September 11, 2010

Remembering Today

Today is a day to remember the Moms, Dad, Wives, Husbands, Sisters, Brothers, Aunts, Uncles, Nieces, Nephews. The list just seems endless. We remember all that were lost that day nine years ago.

We also remember all that have put themselves in harms way to protect us. Thank you.

Also see I Remember, Eleven Tears and In Remembrance

Wednesday, September 08, 2010

Yellowstone - Grand Teton

We'll update throughout our trip!



Yellowstone - day 1
Yellowstone West Entrance - Madison - Old Faithful

Yellowstone - day 2
Yellowstone West Entrance - Madison - Norris - Canyon Village - Tower Roosevelt - (Pebble Creek) - Mammoth Hot Springs

Yellowstone - day 3
Yellowstone West Entrance - Madison - Norris - Canyon Village - Fishing Bridge / Lake Village

Yellowstone / Grand Teton - day 4
Yellowstone West Entrance - Madison - Old Faithful - West Thumb - Grant Village - Yellowstone South Entrance - Grand Teton National Park


Sunday, August 29, 2010

Grace Is a Story and Grace Is a Gift

This is an amazing blog post!

Do you understand the majesty and practicality of the grace you have been given? If you don't, in subtle and not so subtle ways, you are looking to other things to get you through. You don't need to go out searching for hope and help, because they are already yours in the resources of grace that you have been given as God's child.

Grace is the most transformational word in the Bible. The entire content of the Bible is a narrative of God's grace, a story of undeserved redemption. By the transformational power of his grace, God unilaterally reaches his hands into the muck of this fallen world, through the presence of his Son, and radically transforms his children from what we are (sinners) into what we are becoming by his power (Christ-like). The famous Newton hymn uses the best word possible, maybe the only word big enough, for that grace—amazing.

So grace is a story and grace is a gift. It is God's character and it is your only hope. Grace is a transforming tool and a state of relationship. Grace is a beautiful theology and a wonderful invitation. Grace is a life-long experience and a life-changing calling. Grace will turn your life upside down while giving you a rest you have never known. Grace will require you to face your unworthiness without ever making you feel unloved.

Grace will make you finally acknowledge that you cannot earn God's favor, and it will once and for all remove your fear of not measuring up to his standards. Grace will humble you with the fact that you are much less than you thought you were, even as it assures you that you can be far more than you had ever imagined. You can be sure that grace will put you in your place without ever putting you down.

Grace will enable you to face shocking truths about yourself that you have hesitated to consider, while freeing you from being self-consciously introspective. Grace will confront you with profound weaknesses, and at the same time bless you with new-found strength. Grace will tell you again and again what you aren't, while welcoming you again and again to what you can now be. Grace will make you as uncomfortable as you have ever been, while offering you a more lasting comfort than you have never before known .

Grace will work to drive you to the end of yourself, while it invites you to fresh starts and new beginnings. Grace will dash your ill-founded hopes, but never walk away and leave you hopeless. Grace will decimate your little kingdom of one as it introduces you to a much, much better King. Grace will expose to you the extent of your blindness as it gives you eyes to see what you so desperately need to see. Grace will make you sadder than you have ever been, while it gives you greater cause for celebration than you have ever known.

Grace enters your life in a moment and will occupy you for eternity. You simply cannot live a productive life in this broken-down world unless you have a practical grasp of the grace you have been given.

Are you living out of this amazing grace? Does it shape the way you respond to your personal struggles, your relationships, and your work? Does your trust in this grace form how you live with your husband or wife? Does it propel the way you parent your children? Does it give you comfort when friends have disappointed you? Does it give you rest when life is unpredictable and hard? Does it make you bold and give you courage in places where you would have once been timid? Does it make the idols that tempt you less attractive and less powerful? Do you wake up and say, "I don't know what I will face today, but this I do know: I have been given amazing grace to face it right here, right now."

May God help you to understand and rest in the grace that you have been given!

Paul David Tripp is the president of Paul Tripp Ministries, a nonprofit organization, whose mission statement is "Connecting the transforming power of Jesus Christ to everyday life." Paul is an international conference speaker, Pastor (Tenth Presbyterian Church, Philadelphia, PA), seminary professor (Redeemer Seminary, Dallas, TX), Executive Director of the Center for Pastoral Life and Care, and the author of many books.

Read more

Forsaking All Other ... Social Media

Oh blog, do you feel forsaken for Facebook, Twitter and Foursquare?

Wednesday, June 16, 2010

Farewell Flight of the Concorde

So after more than a year of the Chrysler Concorde needing continuous repair for some cable-munching rodent and other unrelated repairs, it was time. In addition, I'm not even sure how long the heat and the air conditioning haven't been working.

So this is the new used vehicle that has come to live with Brian & Ellie. We hope it will treat us as well as the Chrysler Concorde has that we just donated to 2C8 today!

Sunday, April 04, 2010

Christ is Risen! Christ is Risen Indeed!

Oh to see the dawn of the darkest day,
Christ on the road to Calvary.
Tried by sinful men, torn and beaten then
Nailed to a cross of wood.

This the pow'r of the cross.
Christ became sin for us,
Took the blame, bore the wrath.
We stand forgiven at the cross.

Oh to see my name written in the wounds,
For through your suff'ring, I am free.
Death is crushed to death, life is mine to live,
Won through your selfless love!

This the pow'r of the cross.
Christ became sin for us,
Took the blame, bore the wrath.
We stand forgiven at the cross.

Words and Music by Keith Getty and Stuart Townend

Thursday, April 01, 2010

Do This in Remembrance of Me

And he took bread, and when he had given thanks, he broke it and gave it to them, saying, “This is my body, which is given for you. Do this in remembrance of me.” And likewise the cup after they had eaten, saying, “This cup that is poured out for you is the new covenant in my blood.

Luke 22:19-20

This Takes Cow Tipping to a Whole New Level

Wednesday, March 17, 2010

Saturday, February 27, 2010

The Gospel is For Christians

Of course Christians, more than any other, should realize how much we need continually the gospel. Although, I think we are sometimes the first to forget that.

There is nothing in us or done by us, at any stage of our earthly development, because of which we are acceptable to God. We must always be accepted for Christ’s sake, or we cannot ever be accepted at all. This is not true of us only when we believe. It is just as true after we have believed. It will continue to be trust as long as we live. Our need of Christ does not cease with our believing; nor does the nature of our relation to Him or to God through Him ever alter, no matter what our attainments in Christian graces or our achievements in behavior may be. It is always on His “blood and righteousness” alone that we can rest. ~B.B. Warfield
Read more

Friday, February 12, 2010

We Aren't in the Mid-Atlantic Anymore, Toto!

How I would love to report that this equipment was clearing out our street, and along the curb and driveway. Alas, I had to come to the upper Midwest to see scenes likes this. I believe it's just taunting us now.

Thursday, February 11, 2010

If You're Reading This Post, Please Send a Plow!

This truck has been stuck in the snow on the street up from our house for at least an hour. Why? BECAUSE WE STILL HAVEN'T SEEN A PLOW ON OUR STREET! Yes, six days from the first storm, and counting.

Wednesday, February 10, 2010

Blizzard Encore

With today's white-out, comes a a century old record!

AS OF 2 PM TODAY...WITH THE 9.8 INCH TWO-DAY SNOWFALL TOTAL MEASUREDAT RONALD REAGAN WASHINGTON NATIONAL AIRPORT...THE SEASONAL SNOWFALLTOTAL IN WASHINGTON DC STANDS AT 54.9 INCHES. THIS WOULD BREAK THEPREVIOUS ALL-TIME SEASONAL SNOWFALL RECORD FOR WASHINGTON DC OF 54.4INCHES SET IN THE WINTER OF 1898-99. OFFICIAL SNOWFALL RECORDS FORWASHINGTON DC DATE BACK 126 YEARS TO 1884.

It's great to have a husband who likes to drive in the snow!

Flag at the Navy Memorial
View from my office
View down Pennsylvania Ave toward the Capitol Constitution Avenue
Pennsylvania Avenue
Dump trucks waiting to haul snow on Pennsylvania Ave

Sunday, February 07, 2010

Lovin' the Snow!

The official snow totals reported at Reagan National Airport: the top 10 snowstorms:

1. 28.0", Jan 27-28, 1922
2. 20.5", Feb 11-13, 1899
3. 18.7", Feb 18-19, 1979
4. 17.8" Feb 5-6, 2010 (Snowmageddon)
5. 17.1", Jan 6-8, 1996
6. 16.7", Feb 15-18, 2003
7. 16.6", Feb 11-12, 1983
8. 16.4", Dec 19-20, 2009 (Snowpocalypse)
9. 14.4", Feb 15-16, 1958
10. 14.4", Feb 7, 1936

Here are the snow totals at the airports for the storm, with their seasonal snowfall totals:

DCA: 17.8"/45.1"
BWI: 24.8"/60.4"
IAD: 32.4"/63.5"

Two storms in one season in the top ten, that's pretty impressive. Also, National Airport is almost always on the low-end for snow reports in our area. In both of this year's storms, the totals were closer to 24 inches where we live.

Digging out the fire truck that got stuck right in front of our house.
Minimal melting so far.Walk in the neighborhood.
Sunny with more snow on Tuesday.

Saturday, February 06, 2010

"Snowmaggedon"

Snow has ended: 23 inches (View out the front door)
Front of the House: 22.5 inches Shoveling #4: 22.5 inches Shoveling #4: 22.5 inches
Backyard at 22.5 inches:

Backyard at 22 inches:Backyard at 19.5 inches: 19 inches: Backyard at 7 inches:

"Snowpocalypse"

Sunday, January 10, 2010

Point Of Know Return

I love this commercial

Saturday, January 09, 2010

Sunday, November 29, 2009

A Season of Transformation

Christmas is my favorite time of the year. However, every year, I let the busyness of the season overtake my time to reflect. This year, I'm determined to take more time to reflect on Advent.

Our church has provided some great resources for reflecting during this time. There is a printed guide and also a daily interactive guide that will provide a unique vantage point on weekly themes. As we meditate on the transformations that Christ’s birth brought to our world as well as the transformations that are promised upon Christ’s return, I hope you will have the opportunity to reflect on the season too.

By Rev. Scott Seaton on Emmanuel's blog:
Today marks the first Sunday of Advent, a time of preparation for Christ's coming (the Latin word adventus means "to come"). On one level, the Church prepares for Jesus' "Second Coming." His sudden and dramatic return will be a time of sweeping transformation, ushering in the new heavens and the new earth. So it's altogether appropriate that Emmanuel's Advent devotions will center on the theme of transformation. This week, we consider the change from light into darkness. Step into a darkened room, turn on the light switch, and the place is suddenly transformed. How you walk in it, what you see, even how you feel--everything is suddenly and dramatically different.
Read more

Thursday, November 26, 2009

Happy Thanksgiving!

Make a joyful noise to the LORD, all the earth!

Serve the LORD with gladness!

Come into his presence with singing!

Know that the LORD, he is God! It is he who made us, and we are his; we are his people, and the sheep of his pasture.

Enter his gates with thanksgiving, and his courts with praise! Give thanks to him; bless his name!

For the LORD is good; his steadfast love endures forever, and his faithfulness to all generations.
Psalm 100

Saturday, November 14, 2009

Beauty Will Rise

This is probably the most honest 12 songs I have ever heard from a Christian artist. All I can say is WOW!

From Steven Curtis Chapman's website:
The result is "Beauty Will Rise," a stunning body of work inspired by a circumstance no father should ever have to endure. Steven is unflinchingly honest in his exploration of grief and loss. He asks the questions we all ask when horrible things happen to the innocent, yet throughout the album hope shimmers, faith becomes more real and even more precious, and the peace that surpasses understanding leaps from the page and becomes palpable.

Who are You God?
Cause You are turning out to be so much different than I imagined
And where are You God?
Cause I am finding life to be so much harder than I had planned
You know that I"m afraid to ask these questions
But You know they are there
And if You know my heart the way that I believe You do
You know that I believe in You
But still I have these questions
... from "Questions"

And, yet, he sings about how God is in control and how He is faithful.

I will proclaim it to the world
I will declare it to my heart
I will sing it when the sun is shining
I will scream it in the dark
You are faithful, You are faithful
When You give and when You take away
Even then still Your name is faithful
You are faithful
...from "Faithful"

I Am Thankful for...

I'm sure you've seen this, but I really like it.

I AM THANKFUL FOR ...

THE TEENAGER WHO IS NOT DOING DISHES
BUT IS WATCHING TV, BECAUSE THAT MEANS
HE/SHE IS AT HOME AND NOT ON THE STREETS.

FOR THE TAXES THAT I PAY, BECAUSE IT
MEANS THAT I, AM EMPLOYED.

FOR THE MESS TO CLEAN AFTER A PARTY,
BECAUSE IT MEANS THAT I HAVE BEEN
SURROUNDED BY FRIENDS.

FOR THE CLOTHES THAT FIT A LITTLE TOO
SNUG, BECAUSE IT MEANS
I HAVE ENOUGH TO EAT.

FOR MY SHADOW THAT WATCHES ME
WORK, BECAUSE IT MEANS I,
AM IN THE SUNSHINE.

FOR A LAWN THAT NEEDS MOWING,
WINDOWS THAT NEED CLEANING, AND
GUTTERS THAT NEED FIXING, BECAUSE
IT MEANS I HAVE A HOME.

FOR ALL THE COMPLAINING I HEAR ABOUT
THE GOVERNMENT, BECAUSE IT MEANS
THAT WE HAVE FREEDOM OF SPEECH.

FOR THE PARKING SPOT I FIND AT THE FAR
END OF THE PARKING LOT, BECAUSE IT
MEANS I AM CAPABLE OF WALKING AND
THAT I HAVE BEEN BLESSED WITH TRANSPORTATION.

FOR MY HUGE HEATING BILL,
BECAUSE IT MEANS I, AM WARM.

FOR THE LADY BEHIND ME IN CHURCH
THAT SINGS OFF KEY, BECAUSE IT MEANS
THAT I CAN HEAR.

FOR THE PILE OF LAUNDRY AND IRONING,
BECAUSE IT MEANS I HAVE CLOTHES TO WEAR.

FOR WEARINESS AND ACHING MUSCLES
AT THE END OF THE DAY, BECAUSE IT
MEANS I HAVE BEEN CAPABLE OF WORKING HARD.

FOR THE ALARM THAT GOES OFF IN THE
EARLY MORNING HOURS, BECAUSE IT
MEANS THAT I AM ALIVE.