Wednesday, June 27, 2012

There's a Monster in the Mirror: Introduction to Series

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For if anyone is a hearer of the word and not a doer, he is like a man who looks intently at his natural face in a mirror. For he looks at himself and goes away and at once forgets what he was like. But the one who looks into the perfect law, the law of liberty, and perseveres, being no hearer who forgets but a doer who acts, he will be blessed in his doing. (James 1:23-25)

I'm going to begin a series of posts about the monsters we often see in the mirror. Reading God's Word reveals so much in our hearts--whether an attitude, thought, or desire--that is hideous and ugly, especially in the sight of God. While we can easily put a mask over these problems and pretend everything is okay, I want to encourage us to throw our masks away and strive toward honesty, humility, and diligence in getting rid of sinful attitudes. May we be "blessed in our doing" as James says!  

Stay tuned. First up: jealousy.

Tuesday, June 19, 2012

Summer Update

Things are going well here, and God continues to take good care of us. Our lives lately seem like a blur of bagels, bus rides, and Bible studies! 

We've had a busy summer so far: visits from our dear friends Nathan Quinn and Micah and Kathryn Bingham, time spent with Tom and Joy Hamilton while they were here for our weekend lecture series, a trip to Kentucky for my brother's graduation, a trip upstate to celebrate our two year anniversary, and soon a trip to Alabama for a family wedding. Plus another wedding just across the Hudson River in New Jersey!

Jady and I will both be counselors and teachers at the FC Northeast Camp during July. We're also looking forward to visits from our friends Ryan and Staci Lanning, Jady's parents, and Jady's sister Leanne and her sweet family. July is also the month of Tim Broadwell and Miriam Works' wedding, which we are awaiting with much excitement!

August includes hosting more friends, being a counselor for a girls camp in the area (FAR Camp), and then Jady attending and helping out at the guys leadership camp (SOL Camp).

So in the meantime, we are enjoying being home and savoring simple city moments: riding the subway to visit other Christians, taking evening walks before it gets too hot, cooking in my kitchen-- where I can take something out of the fridge, turn on the stove, and wash the dishes without taking a single step! I love my cozy kitchen. :) 

And speaking of close proximity, it continues to amaze me how so much life is lived and shared in such a dense, messy, crazy way. What happens privately in most people's backyards, cars, and homes in the suburbs becomes a public display in parks, trains, and the street. A dad teaching his daughter to ride her bike, a baby sitting in the grass for the first time, a first kiss, a bad break-up, adults throwing temper tantrums, reading the morning paper, rushing to soccer practice, etc. Last night on our walk we passed an elderly lady riding a scooter, a clown, and a Jewish dinner party straight out of Fiddler. It's usually pretty fascinating to observe how so many other people across cultures and socioeconomic levels live and work and play. And yet, deep down, everyone seems to be basically the same: hearts with a God-sized hole that nothing on earth can ever fill.

You have made us for yourself, oh Lord, and our hearts are restless until they rest in you. (Augustine)

Monday, June 4, 2012

In the News

A touching news story, don't you think?

And yet I can't help but think of the verse...

For scarcely for a righteous man will one die; yet perhaps for a good man someone would even dare to die. But God demonstrates His own love toward us, in that while we were still sinners, Christ died for us.

(Romans 5:7-8)