Friday, March 28, 2008

Amazing Grace for Grace

When I read of the grace being given to Andrew's wife, Grace, in the middle of the suffering, I cannot help but weep and repent of my discontent, my unthankfulness, my lack of patience, my greed, and my stubborn and rebellious heart. Be blown away by reading her amazing testimony this morning.

Tuesday, March 25, 2008

Great Suffering

Back at Redeemer Bible Church in Minnesota there are a couple of dear families going through incredible suffering right now. One in particular has really been at the forefront as the husband, Andrew Mark, has been going through multiple surgeries to remove tongue cancer. He is currently in ICU and not "out of the woods" yet. Would you please pray for he and his family that God would bring him through this very difficult time?

Andrew has had an amazing testimony going into this surgery. The way that God has brought glory to Himself through this trial is truly worthy of the adjective--awesome:

Yet, in the middle of this trial, hiw wife, Grace, wrote in her blog that it seems like she is in the middle of the eye of the storm. Please pray that God would continue sustaining her with His grace. Please especially pray that her health would be protected in the middle of the physically draining process.

I have appreciated their godly response to this trial. They have demonstrated through actions and words John Piper's description of why suffering exists:
The Ultimate Reason Why Suffering Exists
The ultimate purpose of the universe is to display the greatness of the glory of the grace of God. The highest, clearest, surest display of that glory is in the suffering of the best Person in the universe for millions of undeserving sinners. Therefore, the ultimate reason that suffering exists in the universe is so that Christ might display the greatness of the glory of the grace of God by suffering in himself to overcome our suffering and bring about the praise of the glory of the grace of God.
John Piper, "The Suffering of Christ and the Sovereignty of God" in Suffering and the Sovereignty of God, ed. John Piper and Justin Taylor (Wheaton: Crossway Books, 2006), 89.

Friday, March 21, 2008

Beautiful Scandalous Night

Words by Steve Hindalong, Music by Derri Daugherty
(Originally from "At the Foot of the Cross", Glasshouse Records, 1992)

Listen to this song, Sheet music, p1, Sheet music, p2

Go on up to the mountain of mercy
To the crimson perpetual tide
Kneel down on the shore
Be thirsty no more
Go under and be purified

Follow Christ to the Holy mountian
Sinner, sorry and wrecked by the fall
Cleanse your heart and your soul
In the fountain that flows
For you and for me and for all

At the wonderful tragic mysterious tree
On that beautiful scandalous night you and me
Were atoned by His blood and forever washed white
On that beautiful scandalous night

On the hillside you will be delivered
At the foot of the cross, justified
And your spirit restored
By the river that pours
From our blessed Saviour’s side

At the wonderful tragic mysterious tree
On that beautiful scandalous night you and me
Were atoned by His blood and forever washed white
On that beautiful scandalous night

Go on up to the mountain of mercy
To the crimson perpetual tide
Kneel down on the shore
Be thirsty no more
Go under and be purified

Wednesday, March 19, 2008

Fun Times

It's been awhile since I've posted family pictures...

'Bina has taken up smoking while washing the dishes...

Okay, not really!

Boy is crawling now...

Elayna has a new found friend!
This picture is begging for a caption contest! Give us your best shot...
So it begins... the plight of being the little boy brother of three older sisters:
The day we got 10" of snow in Louisville:
Swinging at the park...
Elayna sliding forwards and backwards! How does she do that?

And finally, the smallness and the cuteness...

Tuesday, March 18, 2008

J.C. Ryle on the Emerging Church

Though written over 130 years ago, this paragraph from the introduction of J.C. Ryle's Holiness seems to be describing the days we live in:

There is an amazing ignorance of Scriptures among many, and a consequent want of established, solid religion. In no other way can I account for the ease with which people are, like children, "tossed to and fro, and carried about by every wind of doctrine." ( Ephesians 4:14.) There is an Athenian love of novelty abroad, and a morbid distaste for anything old and regular, and in the beaten path of our forefathers. Thousands will crowd to hear a new voice and a new doctrine, without considering for a moment whether what they hear is true.--There is an incessant craving after any teaching which is sensational, and exciting, and rousing to the feelings.--There is an unhealthy appetite for a sort of spasmodic and hysterical Christianity. The religious life of many is little better then spiritual dram-drinking, and the "meek and quiet spirit" which St. Peter commends is clean forgotten. ( 1 Peter 3:4.) Crowds, and crying, and hot rooms, and high-flown singing, and an incessant rousing of the emotions, are the only things which many care for.--Inability to distinguish differences in doctrine is spreading far and wide, and so long as the preacher is "clever" and "earnest," hundreds seem to think it must be all right, and call you dreadfully "narrow and uncharitable" if you hint that he is unsound!

May we be people full of grace and truth--showing love and upholding doctrine.

Wednesday, March 12, 2008

"Be With God"

The link to this wonderful post below is from my friend Charity's blog. There truly is no better reason to want salvation than to want to be with God. He is the Supreme Treasure worth having and there is no other Ultimate Satisfier. What a testimony to the shepherding that is going on in the Harmless's home!

"Be With God"
via In Her Hemisphere by Charity on 3/10/08

Friday, March 07, 2008

Petition for California Homeschoolers

Please read these 2 articles which describe a California Court of Appeals recently published opinion which baldly states that parents do not have a constitutional right to teach their children at home: San Francisco Chronicle Article Los Angeles Times Article

After reading that, please consider signing this petition which is requesting that "the Supreme Court of California depublish the Court of Appeal opinion".

More information on this ruling can be found at the Focus on the Family website.

Dying Daily

Read today in A Gospel Primer by Milton Vincent (pp.40-41):

... My love affair with the world was crucified [on the cross] (Galatians 6:14 But may it never be that I would boast, except in the cross of our Lord Jesus Christ, through which the world has been crucified to me, and I to the world.") The cross is also the place where I crucify my flesh and all its sinful desires. (Galatians 5:24 Now those who belong to Christ Jesus have crucified the flesh with its passions and desires.) Truly, Christ's death and my death are so intertwined as to be inseparable.

God is committed to my dying every day, and He calls me to that commitment. (Luke 9:23 And He was saying to them all, 'If anyone wishes to come after Me, he must deny himself, and take up his cross daily and follow Me.') He insists that every hour be my dying hour, and He wants my death [with Him] on the cross to be as central to my own life story as is Christ's death to the gospel story. "Let this same attitude be in you," He says, "which was also in Christ Jesus . . . who became obedient unto death, even death on a cross." (Philippians 2)

. . . When called to do something I don't want to do, I must die. When I wish to be selfish and serve no one, I must die. When shattered by hardships that I despise, I must die. ... When enticed by allurements of the world, I must die. ... When dreams that are good seem shoved aside, I must die.

"Not my will, but Yours be done," Christ trustingly prayed on the eve of His crucifixion; and preaching His story to myself each day puts me in a frame of mind to trust God and embrace the cross of my own dying also.

This book is life-changing--definitely paradigm-shifting for most of you growing up in the same background as myself. Please consider buying this book for yourself and someone you love:

When a Trailer Park is Just Right

This post from the CBMW blog is particularly convicting to me in light of expectations not met in our new home (We have much to be thankful for in it, but it is not all that we had hoped for. Regardless, we are here, we are close to the school, we are in a very nice neighborhood, and I have a great job to help me provide for my family.): When a Trailer Park is Just Right

Wednesday, March 05, 2008

Ruckman Declares Himself to be "DOS 6.11-Only", Riplinger Writes Book on Subject

via Tominthebox News Network on 3/5/08

Pensacola, Fl - Dr. Peter S. Ruckman, the outspoken defender of the exclusivity of the King James Version of the Bible, declared in a recent article that DOS version 6.11 is "the only true and perfect operating system." In the article, which appeared in the March edition The Sword of Truth magazine, Dr. Ruckman was asked about which software he uses when he writes his books. Ruckman responded by saying,

"I exclusively use Word Star for DOS 6.11. The 6.11 version of DOS is pure and undefiled in every way. Take a look at today's new modern operating systems, and you'll clearly see that they are filled with errors and take away entire functions."

Ruckman, during the interview went on to say that all modern versions of operating systems are inventions of the "Alexandrian Cult," and utilize faulty programming languages.

"There's no need to reference all of these different programming languages" stated Ruckman. "Languages such as C, C+, Java, ABCL/1 and Agora, these are all tricks of Satan to deceive people about the truth and purity of DOS 6.11.

In a related story, TBNN discovered that upon the publication of the article, the controversial author of New Age Bible Versions, Gail A. Riplinger had already written a book on the subject of computer operating systems entitled New Age Operating System Versions. In Riplinger's 914 page book she claims to provide "indisputable proof" that modern operating systems are part of a New Age plot to destroy the purity of DOS 6.11. In the book Riplinger quotes from an interview with Microsoft founder Bill Gates where he says,

"Windows take over...the world. We at Microsoft believe that...if people...will...just use...our...operating system...that we...will be to...the...dark...side."

Riplinger also goes on to demonstrate in her book through the use of multiple charts numerous "proofs of conspiracy" that she claims were "revealed by God" when she was writing the book. In one chart she uses something called "Acrostic Algebra" to show that modern operating systems are evil.

Ruckman went on to state that he also plans to write a book on the subject of operating system versions due out next week.

Note: Listen to this debate between Dr. James White and Gail Riplinger if you want more of a background on this post.

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Monday, March 03, 2008

Young Bibliophiles

Will really loves books, especially of late. After reading about Gretchen's March Reading Challenge, Will couldn't decide which book would be best for him to get into. Instead he decided he would just get into them all: Closeup and Perspective