“Once you label me you negate me.”~~Soren Kierkegaard
Today’s word of the day, from the Oxford English Dictionary, is aeronef, “A flying machine, an aircraft; spec. (a) a lighter-than-air flying machine, a balloon, esp. a dirigible balloon, an airship; (b) a heavier-than-air flying machine, esp. an aeroplane.”
Today is Marzipan Day. So I give you this:
(For those who don’t know, the singer’s name in this clip is Marzipan.)
Last night’s band practice went well, I think. We played through “Original Suite,” by Gordon Jacobs, “Old Home Day,” by Charles Ives, and “The Thunderer,” a nice little march by Sousa. We have now at least played through all of the music for the spring concert, so next week, I expect some hardcore rehearsal of Lincolnshire Posy.
On the way to practice, I stopped at Pie Five Pizza for the first time. I love it! What a great concept! It’s kind of like Freebird’s for pizza. For $6.99, you can either order one of their signature pizzas, or have one made however you want it, with a variety of crust and topping choices. For my first time, I ordered the “High Five” pizza, which consists of a pan crust with Tuscan marinara, cheddar cheese, pepperoni, Italian sausage, bacon, Canadian bacon, and beef. I’m pretty sure I saw her put Mozzarella on there, as well. Anyway, the pizza is a perfect size, somewhere around 8 or 10 inches. I also got a side salad and drink, which put my total cost at just over $10, which isn’t horrible. It was a delicious dinner, and the perfect size, as I wasn’t overly stuffed for band practice.
It’s Tuesday, and there’s nothing really “on the plate” for this evening. It appears that the ordeal with Christi’s new car is finally over. So she has a nice red Elantra, with push button start and a few other features that her old one didn’t have.
(From Praying With the Psalms)
Why, O LORD, do you stand far away? Why do you hide yourself in times of trouble?
In arrogance the wicked hotly pursue the poor; let them be caught in the schemes that they have devised.
For the wicked boasts of the desires of his soul, and the one greedy for gain curses and renounces the LORD.
In the pride of his face the wicked does not seek him; all his thoughts are, “There is no God.”
His ways prosper at all times; your judgments are on high, out of his sight; as for all his foes, he puffs at them.
He says in his heart, “I shall not be moved; throughout all generations I shall not meet adversity.”
His mouth is filled with cursing and deceit and oppression; under his tongue are mischief and iniquity.
He sits in ambush in the villages; in hiding places he murders the innocent. His eyes stealthily watch for the helpless;
he lurks in ambush like a lion in his thicket; he lurks that he may seize the poor; he seizes the poor when he draws him into his net.
The helpless are crushed, sink down, and fall by his might.
He says in his heart, “God has forgotten, he has hidden his face, he will never see it.”
Arise, O LORD; O God, lift up your hand; forget not the afflicted.
Why does the wicked renounce God and say in his heart, “You will not call to account”?
Sometimes it is difficult to sit back and observe as “wicked” people enjoy such great success in this world. Want to ask God why they are “getting away” with so much? Why does he not intervene? These questions are what brings about the Psalmist’s cry of “Arise, O LORD!” But this also eventually leads to “the deeper trust that God is listening to his afflicted and is arranging his justice for all men.”
“Father, I pray for all who feel that they have been forgotten by you, who feel rejected and alone. Reveal yourself to them as the one who will ‘bring good news to the oppressed’ and ‘bind up the brokenhearted,’ even in Jesus Christ (Isaiah 61:1). Amen.”
(From My Utmost For His Highest)
Today’s reading is “Have You Ever Been Alone with God?”
He did not speak to them without a parable, but privately to his own disciples he explained everything.
This is a rather deep and profound reading, with some parts that are difficult to understand. Chambers begins, “Jesus does not take us alone and expound things to us all the time; He expounds things to us as we can understand them.” Then he says this, which I am still struggling to understand: “Other lives are parables.” This almost seems like a solipsistic kind of statement. Is God arranging other lives around me as “parables,” that I might see myself better?
“God is making us spell out our own souls.” We need to understand ourselves as he understands us. This is slow work. “The only way we can be of use to God is to let Him take us through the crooks and crannies of our own character.” We are terribly ignorant about ourselves! Do we recognize envy, laziness, and pride in our own lives? These are things that our nature harbored before the grace of Christ began to work on us.
The idea that we understand ourselves is one of the last walls to fall. “The only One Who understands us is God.” If we truly saw how we appear in the eyes of God, we would no longer say, “Oh, I am so unworthy,” because we would understand this fact “beyond the possibility of stating it.” If I am unsure of my unworthiness, God will chisel away at me until I know it. And this is because, as long as I harbor any conceit, any thought that I understand myself, “Jesus cannot expound a thing.”
Father, get me alone with you. The older I get, the less I understand myself. I was so arrogant as a youth and young man. There are still times when that arrogance creeps back in and I begin judging other people. Remove this from me! Get me alone! Narrow me down until I know that I don’t understand myself, and that I know, “beyond the possibility of stating it.” that I am completely unworthy. Then Jesus will be able to expound things to me.
Come, Lord Jesus!
Grace and peace, friends.