I.C.E. | Installment 3

Inspiring … Challenging … Encouraging 

Blessings to you on this day. Here are my picks for this week. Again, no explanations or commentary. Not always things I agree with either, but mostly that’s the case. Just things I find that are ICE. Questions? Comment!

 


 

“some memories are a haze
no recollection of the first kiss
nor school graduations
it was like a tasteless fog” (Ms. Cassa Bassa)

 

“A person caught in a firestorm praying for supernatural rescue will be heard. If they live or die, they live, but they may have been taken out of the earth before their time is due because of the chaos of evil set in motion by a corporate lack of obedient watchful response to a rising unmet situation. But many people praying for peace and righteousness to be flourishing in a given area can possibly see a total transformation in the circumstances.” (McLean, Clay.  “The Mystery of Prayer.” McLean Ministries. Nightlight 308.)

 

[Christianity on racism and sexuality] — “The reason we believe that discrimination ethnically is wrong is because the race and ethnicity of a person is sacred. You do not violate a person’s ethnicity and race. It is a sacred gift. And the reason we believe in an absolute nest of sexuality is because we believe sexuality is sacred as well, and that’s why we make our choice that same way. I said, ‘You would help me if you would tell me why you treat race as sacred and de-sacrelize sexuality.’ … Marriage, as God has given it to us, and if you take the whole corpus of the world view, is the most sacred relationship into which you will enter.” – (Zacharias, Ravi   “Christian View on Homosexuality” [video])

 

“Here’s what I mean: This is God’s world, and he is present and active in it. He is setting everything right through his Son Jesus Christ, and we are his church, filled and empowered by his Holy Spirit to be about our Father’s business. Our Bishop Todd Hunter often quotes Dallas Willard to us priests: ‘Humanity remains God’s project, not ours, and his initiatives are always at work among us.’ This week a friend sent me a quote from Wendell Berry, who said that the big problems we have now won’t be solved with “big solutions,” but rather “by hundreds of people accepting local responsibilities for small problems.” It’s hard to argue with Wendell Berry. So we have a part to play. There are actions we can take as faithful witnesses to the beautiful Good News that has been unleashed on the world.” – (Sternke, Ben, “Responding to the Shootings in El Paso and Dayton.” http://www.thetableindy.org)

 

“…The world, knowing how all our real investments are beyond the grave, might expect us to be less concerned than other people who go in for what is called Higher Thought and tell us that ‘death doesn’t matter’; but we ‘are not high minded’, and we follow One who stood and wept at the grave of Lazarus – not surely, because He was grieved that Mary and Martha wept, and sorrowed for their lack of faith (though some thus interpret) but because death, the punishment of sin, is even more horrible in His eyes than in ours. The nature which He had created as God, the nature which He had assumed as Man, lay there before Him in its ignominy; a foul smell, food for worms. Though He was to revive it a moment later, He wept at the shame; if I may here quote a writer of my own communion, ‘I am not so much afraid of death as ashamed of it.’ And that brings us again to the paradox. Of all men, we hope most of death; yet nothing will reconcile us to – well, its unnaturalness. We know that we were not made for it; we know how it crept into our destiny as an intruder; and we know Who has defeated it. Because Our Lord is risen we know that on one level it is an enemy already disarmed; but because we know that the natural level also is God’s creation we cannot cease to fight against the death which mars it, as against all those other blemishes upon it, against pain and poverty, barbarism and ignorance. Because we love something else more than this world we love even this world better than those who know no other.” (Lewis, C.S. “Some Thoughts”, God in the Dock. Cambridge: William B. Eerdmans Publishing Company. 1970. pgs. 159-160)

© Joshua Curtis, 2019

Published in: on 7 AMpSat, 10 Aug 2019 09:30:00 -040030Saturday 2016 at 9:30 am  Comments (2)  
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I.C.E. | Installment 2

“We know Kari Jobe more than the God that carried Job. … They changing sports out here like they’re Scottie Pippen’s homie. Bruce Banner, Bruce Jenner, they all been switching on me.” – from J. Monty, “Testify, Part 6

 

Whether you’re running a race or dealing with life things, everyday is a struggle. It’s easy to wonder why I put my trust in God after life elbows me in the gut. But whenever I have doubts, when I keep praying, I know I’m doing the right thing. – Mama X

 

From TwitterAnd here are 5 things I’ve achieved in my 40’s.

  1. Published a poetry book all by myself
  2. Discovered Slimming World… And lost it too
  3. Survived an awful car crash
  4. Won Best Overall Blogger award
  5. Finally learned how to tame my curls…

And I still have 5 40’s years left! – Ritu

 

This is a long one, but really good!

There is an activity of God displayed throughout creation, a wholesale activity let us say which men refuse to recognize. The miracles done by God incarnate, living as a man in Palestine, performed the very same things as of this wholesale activity, but at a different speed and on a smaller scale. One of their chief purposes is that men, having seen a thing done by personal power on the small scale, may recognize, when they see the same thing done on the large scale, that the power behind it is also personal – is indeed the very same person who lived among us two thousand years ago. The miracles in fact are a retelling in small letters of the very same story which is written across the whole world in letters too large for some of us to see. Of that larger script part is already visible, part is still unsolved. In other words, some of the miracles do locally what God has already done in universally: others do locally what He has not yet done, but will do. In that sense, and from our human point of view, some are reminders and others prophecies.

God creates the vine and teaches it to draw water up by its roots and, with the aid of the sun, to turn that water into juice which will ferment and take on certain qualities. Thus every year, from Noah’s time till ours, God turns water into wine. That, men fail to see. Either like the Pagans they refer the process to some finite Spirit, Bacchus or Dionysus: or else, like the moderns, they attribute real in ultimate causality to the chemical and other material phenomena what you’re all that I sent his can discover in it. But when Christ at Cana makes water into wine, the mask is off. The miracle has only half its effect if it only convinces us that Christ is God: it will have its full effect if whenever we see a vineyard or drink a glass of wine we remember that here works He who sat at the wedding party in Cana. Every year God makes a little corn into much corn: the seed is sown and there is an increase, and men, according to the fashion of their age, say ‘It is Ceres, it is Adonis, it is the Corn-King,’ or else ‘It is the laws of Nature.’ The close-up, the translation, of this annual wonder is the feeding of the five thousand. Bread is not made there of nothing. Bread is not made of stones, as the Devil once suggested to Our Lord in vain. A little bread is made into much bread. The Son will do nothing but what He sees the Father do. There is, so to speak, a family style. The miracles of healing fall into the same pattern. This is sometimes obscured for us by the somewhat magical view we tend to take of ordinary medicine. The doctors themselves do not take this view. The magic is not in the medicine but in the patient’s body. What the doctor does is to stimulate Nature’s functions in the body, or to remove hindrances. In a sense, though we speak for convenience of healing a cut, every cut heals itself; no dressing will make a make skin grow over a cut on a corpse. That same mysterious energy which we call gravitational when it steers the planets and biochemical when it heals a body is the efficient cause of all recoveries, and if God exists, that energy, directly or indirectly, is His. And who are cured are cured by Him, the healer within. But once He did it visibly, a Man meeting a man. Where He does not work within in this mode, the organism dies. Hence Christ’s one miracle of destruction is also in harmony with God’s wholesale activity. His bodily hand held out in symbolic wrath blasted a single fig tree; but no tree died that year in Palestine, or any year, or in any land, or even ever will, save because he has done something, or (more likely) ceased to do something, to it.

When He fed the thousands he multiplied fish as well as bread. Look in every bay and almost every river. This swarming, pulsating fecundity shows He is still at work. The ancients had a god called Genius – the god of animal and human fertility, the presiding spirit of gynecology, embryology, or the marriage bed – the ‘genial bed’ as they called it after its god Genius. As the miracles of wine and bread and healing showed who Bacchus really was, who Ceres, who Apollo, and that all were one, so this miraculous multiplication of fish reveals the real Genius. And with that we stand at the threshold of the miracle which for some reason most offends modern ears. I can understand the man who denies the miraculous altogether; but what is one to make of the people who admit some miracles but deny the Virgin Birth? Is it that for all their lip service to the laws of Nature there is only one law of Nature that they really believe? Or is it that they see in this miracle a slur upon sexual intercourse which is rapidly becoming the one thing venerated in a world without veneration? No miracle is in fact more significant. What happens in ordinary generation? What is a father’s function in the act of begetting? A microscopic particle of matter from his body fertilizes the female: and with that microscopic particle passes, it may be, the colour of his hair and his great grandfather’s hanging lip, and the human form in all its complexity of bones, liver, sinews, heart, and limbs, and pre-human form which the embryo will recapitulate in the whom. Behind every spermatozoon lies the whole history of the universe: locked within it is no small part of the world’s future. That is God’s normal way of making a man – a process that takes centuries, beginning with the creation of matter itself, and narrowing to one second and one particle at the moment of begetting. And once again men will mistake the sense impressions which this creative act throws off for the act itself or else refer it to some infinite being such as Genius. Once, therefore, God does it directly, instantaneously: without a spermatozoon, without the millenniums of organic history behind the spermatozoon. There was of course another reason. This time He was creating no simply a man, but the man who was to be Himself: the only true Man. The process which leads to the spermatozoon has carried down with it through the centuries much undesirable silt: the life which reaches us by that normal route is tainted. To avoid that taint, to give humanity a fresh start, He once short-circuited the process. There is a vulgar anti-God paper which some anonymous donor sends me every week. In it recently I saw the taunt that we Christians believe in a God who committed adultery with the wife of a Jewish carpenter.. The answer to that is that if you describe the action of God in fertilizing Mary as ‘adultery’ then, in that sense, God would have committed adultery with every woman who ever had a baby. For what He did once without a human father, He does always even when He uses a human father as His instrument. For the human father in ordinary generation is only a carrier, sometimes an unwilling carrier, always the last in a long line of carriers, of life that comes from the supreme life. Thus the filth that our poor, muddled, sincere, resentful enemies fling at the Holy One, either does not stick, or, sticking, turns into glory.” – from “Miracles” in God in the Dock, C.S. Lewis

Published in: on 7 AMpSat, 01 Jun 2019 10:00:12 -040000Saturday 2016 at 10:00 am  Comments (5)  
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I.C.E. | Installment #1

Thank you for reading this first installment of I.C.E. (Inspiring, Challenging & Encouraging) where I simply share quotes from things that I have engaged with from this past week that struck my attention. No commentary or explanations of any kind. If you wish to know why something made it on the list, please feel free to engage in the comments or send me an email. Blessings!

 


 


 

From: The Great Divorce, C.S. Lewis

There is but one good; that is God. Everything else is good when it looks to Him and bad when it turns from Him. And the higher and mightier it is a natural order, the more demoniac it will be if it rebels. It’s not out of bad mice or bad fleas you make demons, but out of bad archangels. The false religion of lust is baser than the false religion of mother-love or patriotism or art: but lust is less likely to be made into a religion. (pg. 106)

 

Every beast and bird that came near her had its place in her love. In her they became themselves. And now the abundance of life she has in Christ from the Father flows over into them.’ I looked at my Teacher in amazement. ‘Yes,’ he said. ‘It is like when you throw a stone into a pool, and the concentric waves spread out further and further. Who knows where it will end? Redeemed humanity is still young, it has hardly come to its full strength. But already there was joy enough in the little finger of a great saint such as yonder lady to waken all the dead things of the universe into life. (pg. 120)

 


 

From: “Distorted Reality” by Dr. Suchie

Men, they don’t love the way they’re meant to

 

 


 

From: “That Would Be Enough”, from the Hamilton Soundtrack

Alexander: ‘Will you relish being a poor man’s wife, unable to provide for your life?’

Eliza: ‘I relish being your wife.’

Published in: on 7 PMpSat, 25 May 2019 19:29:11 -040029Saturday 2016 at 7:29 pm  Leave a Comment  
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