Thursday, August 31

time marches on, and off again

Herbie finds it highly entertaining these days to nip a leg accompanied by an ear busting contata of woofs. Nearing a year old, he's feeling his new age with assertive demands for attention; yes, me now, please. And then he tries to eat the ant bait. One goes to bed in mortal fear of waking to a deadly deflated Herbs. I would then miss his air shattering barks.

Music Makes the World Go 'Round

I really do not have a good ear for music, which is a bit hard to believe due to the size of my ears. I can't carry a tune with a wheelbarrow, and I am so uneducated that I can still not tell you the difference between Mozart and Bach. My gracious wife is working with me on the above, I won't be dumb forever.

However, I love music, especially good music. Music inspires me, it relaxes me, helps me study, and helps me focus on things loftier than things here on terra firma. I have found that I enjoy different music during different parts of the day, and even different music on different days of the week.

Mornings and mid-days find me enjoying Jack Johnson or G-Love. Their folksy, relaxing rythms keep me in a "Chilled out" state and help me remain laid back when my mind is trying to do anything but be laid back. Evenings/ Early Mornings find me enjoying H.E.M. or Over The Rhine. The smooth, beautiful, artisitic sounds of these two groups wrap me up in a big hug of sound as I try to unwind and soothe the adrenaline flowing through my veins after a late night flight. (I have found a little help from Uncle Jack helps as well, you know, the one from Lynchburg, TN) Weekends find me enjoying all of the above, but I have to have my fill of Johnny Cash and Willie Nelson as well. These two keep me humble and focused on what really matters...they sing about life.

I am so thankful for music, for just as it soothed King Saul, it does me also.

Friday, August 18

I Am Charlotte Simmons

Is amazing. What a good book. Tom Wolfe, while not my favorite author of all time, is very good at cultural satire and tends to be very frank when addressing the issues at hand. In this particular novel, Mr. Wolfe is up front and very "in your face" about the U.S. College scene. He makes no bones about the joke our "places of higher learning" are, nor does he let the more recent generations of Americans off the hook for their behavior.

Though humanistic in his approach, and ultimately setting up Ms. Simmons up for failure due to the premise of the in "I AM Charlotte more and no less...Mr. Wolfe does give us a strong character who stands for what she knows is right. It is only too unfortunate that her ultra conservative parents did not give her more weapons in her cultural arsenal except that drugs, alchohol, sex, and parties are bad and are never to be discussed. That belief does nothing for Charlotte except make her a somewhat disgusted, semi-interested recluse in the goings on around her.

What happens to Charlotte? Well, you will have to read for yourself. But, I would suggest this book to everyone...especially 18 year old girls and their a guide to America's modern college scene.

Tuesday, August 15

I'm back

St Louis is a nice city, full of university people and homeless people and coffee shops and artfully old houses. Huggins and Caulk are actually wedded with troths plighted and bestowed. On Sunday, Kermit awaited me with beach towels in hand to lay out at the beach with our McConnell friends, which is the best way to live in Corpus, a fish in the waves.

Friday, August 11

Whatever Happened To Peace....

The old fashioned way? Well, it seems that the United Nations, a body of diplomats who know very little about martial matters, seems to have found the solution to the current battle between Israel and their terrorist neighbors. It is utterly amazing to see far we post-modern, relativist, humanists have gone in our faith in humanity. Warfare is no longer a clash between good and evil, oppressor and liberator. It is now a clash between two equal groups who have equally valid claims. Much like two quarreling toddlers.

Unfortunately the enemy does not feel this way. The enemy sees Israel, the west, heck, all infidels as the enemy and in need of extermination. However, the U. N. in its infinite wisdom, backed up by their impressive peacekeeping track record feels that they can settle this dispute. Well, good on them. One of these days America, and indeed all of the west, is going to have to wake up and actually realize that we have an enemy to fight. At least I hope we do!

Wednesday, August 9

And Another One Bites The Dust

For those of you who read World Magazine, do you ever look at the letters to the editor? I would say that a slight majority are apt responses and have something interesting to say. But there seems to be a somewhat large number of folks who decry the magazine and proclaim that they wish their subscription to be cancelled because of some sort of cultural reflection or Theological thought.

This is rather upsetting because it seems to point out more and more Christians who do not wish to engage the culture in any form. One imagines the Church poking its head into the sand like an Ostrich. Now, I am not sure if these folks actually read other news publications, but if they do, do they cancel all their other subscriptions if they do not write exactly what agrees with them? I can hardly see how they could read any other publications since World is about the only reasonable voice out there in the vast liberal slop called news.

The point being that as Christians we can not cast off a person, a Church, a community because they may have said something that we do not 100% agree with. We as the Church need to actively engage not only the culture but each other as well. So in effect, I am issuing a challenge to the Church... Grow a pair...Now.

I Will Trust in His Unfailing Love

One of the unfortunate affects of looking back on your life is the reminder of all the areas that you have fallen short. As Christians we understand that we are fallen and that is only by God's Grace through the death of His Son that "greases our hinges" as it were.

I am always sobered by the ways I have demonstrated time and time again that I am nothing more than a depraved sinner. Though I have been convicted over the years on certain shortcomings and by the Grace of God have been able to overcome a very few of them, there is no shortage of new shortcomings that always crop up.

Thankfully, every few weeks, and yes, it does seem to happen on a cycle, I am driven back to the Cross. This is a good thing. Sure, there is some pain(usually self inflicted) associated with the driving, but the end result is utter peace. I recently ran across an editorial written by Andre'e Seu in the July World Magazine that was expressing this very sentiment. Seems that this dilemma effects more people than just me. Andre'e stated that if we focus on our weakness, our failings, and our losses, we are doomed. Instead we must trust in His unfailing love. What a thought. Though we may fail in most of our endeavors His love is still there and unfailing, even though we are not.

Monday, August 7

Jeremy Huggins, You Are My Hero

Last week I had two days where I did not fly. In fact, my name was not to be found anywhere on the schedule. Now, it is not that I do not appreciate a day off, I love them! But I enjoy just one, not multiple. Just before Electra kicked me out of the house and told me to stop bugging her she came up with one of her customarily brilliant ideas; "You need to find a time consuming hobby."

Now, it is not like I do not already have hobbies. I can never get my hands on enough books, I run, I have used my spare time to this point tilling up every available bit of space in our postage stamp yard in order to plant things, and whenever I am home I am involved in our Church and community Bible study.

What else can I do? I do NEED to learn how to play an instrument, I also need to work on other languages. I enjoy good art and good music. I love beer. "No," she said. You need to find something that takes out some more energy. I am convinced that Electra thinks I have A.D.D.

But then I ran across Jeremy Huggins' current project. Wow. Talk about inspiration. Now if I only had some creative ability..... But no matter...I now know what I am doing in my spare time.

Wednesday, August 2

ferial vs. festal eating

Have you read The Supper of the Lamb? You haven't tasted or eaten a book this good.

Tuesday, August 1

hot summertime

It's another great sunny day in south Texas, with partial cloud cover and possibility of late afternoon thunderstorms. Meanwhile, Herbie is politely anxious to play and we both need a workout. Kermit flies this afternoon, after a leisurely morning of running and sunning himself at the pool. Finally, dinner must be made and Herbie walked into the sunset, with his parents enjoying adult beverages before bed.