From One Scarred Hand to the Other

Good morning. It is Saturday, September 12, 2015. 30 days until our 30-year anniversary. 28 days to Playa del Carmen.

Today’s word of the day, from dictionary.com, is blarney. This noun means, “flattering or wheedling talk; cajolery; deceptive or misleading talk; nonsense; hooey.” Hopefully, you won’t find any blarney on this blog.

Today is Chocolate Milkshake Day. That sounds yummy! I wonder if it counts if I have a chocolate malt, instead . . .

We had a great trip up to Thackerville, OK, last night. We stopped in Denton to pick up Rachel and Justin, and went to a local Italian restaurant for dinner. After a great time at dinner, we hit the road, arriving at the Winstar Hotel, around 10:00 PM, or so. We got checked in with no issues, took our stuff up to the rooms, and then went down to the casino for a little play. After a little over an hour, playing with y $50 dollar bonus money (for some reason, I only got $50, while Christi and Rachel got $100), I was just over $10 down. Not bad, eh? We also learned an important lesson. If you get “bonus” money at Winstar, you don’t want to put it all into play on one machine, because you can’t cash it out or put it back on your club passport card.

We got to bed around midnight and woke up shortly after 8:00, this morning. I seem to be having trouble sleeping past 8:00 any more. 😦 But I’m fine. Around 11:00, we plan to head down to the restaurant, where we get our free buffets. We plan to have lunch today, and brunch tomorrow. After that, we’ll probably play some more, and then just relax until the Jim Gaffigan show tonight at 8:00.

On this date in 1609, Henry Hudson began exploring the Hudson River. I’m guessing it wasn’t called that, yet? In 1846, Elizabeth Barrett eloped with Robert Browning. In 1910, the premier performance of Gustav Mahler’s Symphony No. 8 occurred. On this date in 1940, cave paintings were discovered in Lascaux, France. And, in 1959, Bonanza premiered on TV, the first regularly-scheduled TV program presented in color.

Today’s birthdays include Henry Hudson (English explorer), Richard Gatling (American firearms inventor), H.L. Mencken (American journalist/author), Maurice Chevalier (French singer/actor), Alfred A. Knopf (American publisher), Jesse Owens (American athlete), George Jones (American country singer), Sir Ian Holm (English actor), Linda Gray (American actress), Maria Muldaur (American singer), Barry White (American singer), Neil Peart (Canadian drummer, Rush), Gerry Beckley (American musician, America), Hans Zimmer (German composer), Rachel Ward (English actress), Ben Folds (American musician), Louis C.K. (American comedian), Paul Walker (American actor), Joe Loeffler (American musician, Chevelle), and Jennifer Hudson (American musician/actress).

Neil Peart is the drummer and primary lyric writer for the Canadian band, Rush. He is regarded by many to be the greatest living drummer. He turns 63 years old today. Here is a video of the band playing “YYZ.”

Jean-Philippe Rameau, Steve Biko, Anthony Perkins, Raymond Burr, and Johnny Cash are among notable deaths on this date.

TODAY’S DEVOTIONAL

Today’s Psalm, from Heart Aflame, is Psalm 103:9-13.

He will not always chide, nor will he keep his anger forever.
He does not deal with us according to our sins, nor repay us according to our iniquities.
For as high as the heavens are above the earth, so great is his steadfast love toward those who fear him;
as far as the east is from the west, so far does he remove our transgressions from us.
As a father shows compassion to his children, so the LORD shows compassion to those who fear him.

“There is one kind of mercy by which he restores us from death to life, while as yet we are strangers to him, and another by which he sustains this restored life; for that blessing would forthwith be lost did he not confirm it in us by daily pardoning our sins.” (p 256)

These are some of the most beautiful words in the Psalms, providing such wonderful imagery of how God deals with our sin, and how much he loves us. How high are the heavens above the earth? That’s how much God loves us. How far is the east from the west? That’s how far my sins have been removed from me (I perceive that to be in a straight line, not around the circumference of the earth). Or, in the words of Casting Crowns, “From one scarred hand to the other.”

Father, I am moved by the reminder that you have cast my sins as far as the east is from the west. I forget this too often. Because of Jesus, I stand before you, fully clean, as if I had never sinned at all. I also forget that this projects infinitely into the future. May this truth drive me to live a life more worthy of the Gospel of Jesus Christ. May your Spirit remind me daily of your great love for us, and your great sacrifice for us.

I pray for this day, that we might be safe and have a good time as we relax here. May we find peace as we take some time to be away from the normalness of life. May we not stray from your path, in doing so, though, and ever be mindful of whose we are.

Come, Lord Jesus.

Grace and peace, friends.

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