His Grace is Sufficient

“Gideon tested God. Never test a teacher because the teacher has the answers. He will supply what you need.” Jamese Evans

“[God] is able to do immeasurably more than all we ask or imagine, according to his power that is at work within us.” (Ephesians 3:20)

That power working in us is the Spirit of Jesus, alive and mighty to save and to transform us. He knows what we need (and don’t), when we need it, and he wants us to live in victory. Then why aren’t we? Perhaps we haven’t humbled ourselves and haven’t asked.

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We Don’t Belong to the Earth

“We belong to a spiritual order; we don’t belong to the earth. And not only that, but our minds and our bodies-our whole position, through the eternal Spirit, always has to be one that’s constantly ascending.” Smith Wigglesworth

“Since, then, you have been raised with Christ, set your hearts on things above, where Christ is, seated at the right hand of God.” (Colossians 3:1)

You no longer belong to the earth, condemned by evil and entropy to death and decay. You belong to Christ; your future–no, your present goal should be to ascend to him. To slip the surly bonds of earth and soar with him.

Book Review: A Soldier’s Duty by Jean Johnson (Three Stars)

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Book Review: A Soldier’s Duty (Theirs is Not to Reason Why #1) by Jean Johnson

(Three Stars)

“… is to place his or her skills, weapons, body and life between all that can harm and all that could be harmed.”

A space opera centered on a superhuman heavy-world half-breed of a super race. Think: all the Avengers in one body, and she’s a Jedi who sees the future. And most of the book she’s still a teen. Good fun, if you ignore the blood and guts, but too easy.

“You are a pawn, little half-child. You are a Game piece we have set in motion.” “Sometimes the pieces direct where the players must play.”

Her prescience is acknowledged to be fuzzy many times, yet she manipulates the actions of others as if she has precise knowledge of Continue reading

Experiencing God

“If education clogs your spiritual sight, it’s a problem. You’re studying someone else’s stuff. It has to be first hand, or it’s just religion. The same information, but the light of God isn’t in it.” Gary Garner

“You say, ‘I am rich; I have acquired wealth and do not need a thing.’ But you do not realize that you are wretched, pitiful, poor, blind and naked. I counsel you to buy from me gold refined in the fire, so you can become rich; and white clothes to wear, so you can cover your shameful nakedness; and salve to put on your eyes, so you can see.” (Revelation 3:17-18)

We confuse knowing facts with experiencing. We can read, listen, visualize, copy the actions of others, but experiencing it gives us new insight into it and ourselves. “Be still, and know that I am God.”

Movie Review: Unbroken: Path to Redemption, directed by Harold Cronk (Five Stars)

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Movie Review: Unbroken: Path to Redemption, directed by Harold Cronk

(Five Stars)

“The war’s over.”

The rest of the story. The 2014 film Unbroken relates the World War Two service and prisoner of war experiences of Louis Zamperini. This movie tells of his struggles after the war. Both are based on Laura Hillenbrand’s book: Unbroken: A World War Two Story of Survival, Resilience, and Redemption.

“In the prison camps they tried to take your humanity, and you wouldn’t let them.”

Over 85% of World War Two prisoners of war in the Pacific theater suffered from Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder, which was not then recognized as a specific disorder until 1980.

“God often uses difficulties in our lives to prepare us for a greater future.”

The movie, like the true story, is unabashedly Christian, but it is not Continue reading

Book Review: Peace on Earth by Stanisław Lem (Four Stars)

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Book Review: Peace on Earth (Ijon Tchy #4) by Stanisław Lem

(Four Stars)

“Sadistics: the algebra of conflicts that end fatally for all parties.”

Wish I read this fifty years ago. A cynical, naive but hopeful inquiry into how to end the arms race. Well written with a folded timeline which will leave the inattentive reader confused. Good understanding that man’s most basic urge in any situation is to cheat. Stand alone story.

“Politicians continued business as usual, more concerned about voters than the future.”

Extra star because this story reads so well fifty years after written. Lem nailed nano-technology though he wrote at a time when the first integrated circuits were huge and slow. Correctly posited Continue reading

God Supplies

“When you pray, don’t ask for things, just worship. He is the supplier of all good and perfect gifts. He has given us himself in the form of the Holy Spirit.” Gerri Dickens

“I baptize you with water for repentance. But after me comes one who is more powerful than I, whose sandals I am not worthy to carry. He will baptize you with the Holy Spirit and fire.” (Matthew 3:11)

God knows what you really need. Every good and perfect gift comes from him. He chose you through Jesus to be the first fruits of his creation. He poured himself out upon you; his Spirit is his presence with you.

The Way, the Truth, and the Life

“Faith embraces many truths which seem to contradict each other. The source of all heresies is the exclusion of some of these truths.” Blaise Pascal

Jesus answered, “I am the way and the truth and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me.” (John 14:6)

Many make either-or dichotomies of faith, but Jesus is more often both-and. Man-and-God, savior-and-brother, gentle-and-demanding, easy-and-impossible. What you believe is important; whom you believe is vital.

 

Wait for the Lord

“What God does in us as we wait is as important as what it is we are waiting for.” John Ortberg

“I wait for the LORD, my soul waits, and in his word I hope; my soul waits for the Lord more than watchmen for the morning.” (Psalm 130:5-6)

God’s timing is always right; by waiting we participate in his work. More than patience, we to learn trust and hope. We learn anticipation. Waiting is a disciplines our spirit.

Book Review: Lincoln’s Last Trial by Dan Abrams and David Fisher (Three Stars)

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Book Review: Lincoln’s Last Trial: The Murder Case That Propelled Him to the Presidency by Dan Abrams and David Fisher

(Three Stars)

“Ask yourself: what is the justice in this case?” A. Lincoln

Exhaustive review of a trial transcript with explanatory amplifications. By the authors’ own admission, Lincoln was already headed toward the presidency, and their work gives no indication how it “propelled him to the presidency,” rather how he dodged a bullet that could have killed his dark horse bid at the Republican nomination.

“I must say I do not think myself fit for the presidency.” A. Lincoln (1959)

Based on the recently recovered transcript of Robert Roberts Hitt. Telling the story from Hitt’s point of view saved the author’s from Continue reading