Friday, August 22, 2008

Soaking Music

Good music for soaking in the presence of the Lord. Take some time to marinate in His glory and goodness. For more information about the artists, got to and click on "Artists Pages" or "Ministrils."

Thursday, August 21, 2008

The Passion of Christ in Sand Art

Artist and narrator Joe Castillo presents the message of the Cross in sand art. Amazing presentation.

Sunday, August 17, 2008

Review >> Smart People

Watched Smart People last night. Cute movie about an intellectually smart but emotionally obtuse and socially stunted English professor at Carnegie-Mellon, in Pittsburgh, who has recently been widowed. It is a light and hopeful piece that traces the gentle arc of how he and his daughter, who is very much like him, learn to get out of their head and more into the lives of others. No big brush strokes here, no grand revelations, no emotional crescendos. Just nuances of the heart.

Strong cast. Well-acted. Smart but simple soundtrack consisting mostly of sensitive acoustic guitar work. It all works well together. Enjoyed it very much.

From the Amazon review:
Much in the manner of Curtis Hanson’s Wonder Boys, the very funny and bracingly intelligent Smart People concerns a college instructor meandering through life until unexpected developments force a cascade of personal changes. Lawrence Wetherhold (Dennis Quaid), a recently widowed literature professor, is a numb and chilly intellectual who rebuffs his students, ignores his all-but-emancipated teen kids (Ashton Holmes and Junos Ellen Page), and spurns cries for financial assistance from his ne’er-do-well but rather soulful adopted brother, Chuck (Thomas Haden Church).

After an accident lands Lawrence in the hospital and deprives him of the right to drive, someone else falls into his bleak sphere: Janet (Sarah Jessica Parker), a physician and former student of Lawrence who remembers her disappointment in him as a teacher and role model. Against all logic, Janet and Lawrence become a romantic item, a choice for which neither of them is entirely prepared. Meanwhile, Chuck and Vanessa (Page) enter an awkward phase in their relationship as niece and uncle, just another sign that the Wetherhold clan has become too insular and self-referential.

Screenwriter Mark Poirier’s inspired and literate story sets up lots of chaos, attitude, and cross-conflict, then hangs back and lets the characters verbally spar, much to our great amusement. What's happening, however, are deep changes in relationships and destinies that Lawrence and the others naturally resist, until they can’t. Director Noam Murro knows one of his most important contributions to the film is to stay out of the characters’ way and provide Poirier’s barbed humor a supportive setting. Quaid is outstanding as the pivotal figure in this tale, a man who looks creaky and washed up beyond his years, but who is not entirely past redemption.
—Tom Keogh

Thursday, August 14, 2008

Partakers of the Divine Nature

Currently, I am reading Partakers of the Divine Nature: The History and Development of Deificiation in the Christian Tradition. It is about how the Church historically has understood 2 Peter 1:4, concerning the promises of God through which we have been made “partakers of the divine nature.” In it, I have located a few intriguing quotes from early Church Fathers.

From Irenaeus (2nd Century):
Our Lord Jesus Christ, who did, through His transcendent love, become what we are, that He might bring us to be even what He is Himself. (Against Heresies, Book 5, Preface)
From Athanasius (4th Century):
For He was made man that we might be made God. (On the Incarnation, chapter 54)
Therefore He was not man, and then became God, but He was God, and then became man, and that to deify us. (Against the Arians, Discourse 1, Chapter 11)
For He has become Man, that He might deify us in Himself, and He has been born of a woman, and begotten of a Virgin, in order to transfer to Himself our erring generation, and that we may become henceforth a holy race, and ‘partakers of the Divine Nature,’ as blessed Peter wrote. (Personal Letter 60:4)

Godfrey Birtill >> Outrageous Grace

Godfrey Birtill >> Just One Touch from the King

Godfrey Birtill >> Lord, Turn Your Footsteps

Saturday, August 9, 2008

Looking Forward to Reunion

Suzanne and I are looking forward to the upcoming reunion of the alumni and former students of Florida Bible College, our old alma mater (over 30 year ago). It will be in Marietta, GA over the Labor Day weekend. It will be a time of looking back, but we hope it will also be a time of looking forward.

The Bible says, in Joel 2 and Acts 2, that when the Spirit comes, the young men see visions and the old men dream dreams. It is good to remember, but it is striking that He did not say that the old men would reminisce, but that they would dream. Memories speak of what was. Visions speak of what is now. Dreams are about what will be. They look beyond the present generation.

When we were young, we had engaging visions. But now that we are ... um ... not so young, what are the dreams? When we gather, I will greatly enjoy hearing the memories of what once was and catching up on what now is. But what I really want to know are the dreams, what will be, because there is yet more to be told.