Strict//EN" "http://www.w3.org/TR/xhtml1/DTD/xhtml1-strict.dtd"> EAGLES' REST: April 2007

Tuesday, April 24, 2007

I'M OFF.........................

As if you didn't know that already, right?

I'm getting on a jet plane Thursday morning, sweetheart in tow, headed for the Conference on the Holy Spirit in Arlington, Texas. It's my fervent hope that the Holy Spirit has it on His schedule, too.

I want to hear some real stuff. After all these years, I've heard about the invisible work of the Holy Ghost in regeneration and all that sort of thing. And I agree with it all. But, for several years I have asked candidates in deacon elections how they know they are filled with the Holy Spirit, and I have yet to get an answer that I deemed reflective of the awesome power of the Holy Ghost. Once He's landed that stuff in your life, your experience goes way beyond keeping a stiff upper lip when your dog gets run over by a car.

I said something that made a member of my SS class sit up and say something like "wow" last Sunday. I asked him what I'd said, and he responded "Is the Holy Spirit living in you if He's not alive in you.....". That, needless to say, opened a little discussion.

It does, though, bring up a good point. What good is it to have Him "living in you" if He's not doing anything? It'd be like having Luciano Pavarotti attend your church but never sing, or having Bill Gates there but never have him write a huge check. Their presence might not mean anything unless they manifest their abilities. And so it is, IMO, with the Holy Spirit. What good is He, living in you, if He never does anything that cannot be done by anyone else?

He's already sealed us for the day of redemption. Thanks. Now, let's see some other stuff to glorify God. Some stuff we cannot do, ourselves.

That's why we're off to Texas.

Bring it on, guys.

Saturday, April 14, 2007

Hey ... I'm LIVING in here!

Wow. That was strange.

I got up last Wednesday morning at 3am and went to that small room (you know .. the one with all the porcelain things in it) and then went to the computer room I'm in now, and went to sleep in my favorite recliner. I then got up at 6:45, put on some clothes, and went to the kitchen. After downing my morning pills, I sat down with Peg at the table and said something like "I doan fee qui rye".

I'd known something was odd at 3am, as I was a bit unsteady on my feet, but I chalked it up to age, and being wakened by Momma Nature out of a sound sleep. But when I tried to talk, I knew something was out of whack.

Our son Brian is a Paramedic with our fire department here, so Peg called him. After talking it over for a minute, he said to call 911 and let them check me right then and there, and then go to the hospital in ambulance.

That's just what I did.

As was mentioned on Wade Burleson's blog, it was a TIA. That's easier to say than Transient Ischemic Attack, which most folks refer to as a "Mini-Stroke". It's mini because there are no lasting effects, as I understand it, and there's no identifiable cause. Most strokes are caused by a burst blood vessel, or a blood clot, which causes damage to that area of the brain. I had an MRI, an MRA (MRI on the neck) and a CAT scan, and all were normal. So I guess that's what it was.

I'd always speculated about how it would be, to have this malady or that disease. What I didn't think of, was how it would be to have something run amok in the brain. I mean, that's where we LIVE, and what affects that, affects everything.

The big after-effect: I think about everything now. "Did I used to pronounce that word that way?", "Did I get hung up on THAT word before?", "Was I always this slow typing?", etc. I guess I'll just have to get used to it, but it's a little strange for today, at least.

The cognitive stuff was always OK. I always knew when, where, who was president, all that stuff. I was just a little out of touch, and the mouth didn't work just right.

Typical for TIA's, the symptoms were pretty much gone in 5 or 6 hours, and there doesn't seem to be any after-effects other than that pesky thought thing.

To all the folks who prayed: Thanks. Something's got me back to the computer, posting stuff. And had me alert enough last night to spot the picture of our church on the 20/20 bit about the SBC not having a system to detect and eject sexual predators. And, Spiritually speaking, this whole thing never was upsetting, to me. What God allows, God allows, and the thought of what it might be was never frightening at all.

Guess I'd best be counting myself ... in the immortal words of John Calvin ... lucky.

Friday, April 06, 2007

THE NEATEST TIME ON EARTH


For some time, I've thought that the neatest time on earth, ever, would have been the time between Jesus' burial (in a short-term rental storage facility, courtesy of landlord Joseph of Arimethea), and Sunday morning when Jesus was nowhere to be found (but somewhere to be revealed). The reason is, it was all on the line.

All of it. Everything.

See ... one of two things happens. Jesus comes out of the tomb, alive, or He doesn't. If He doesn't, then His remarks about coming back, somewhat "veiled" though they were, would have been lies. If so, He would not have been Who He said He was. And if not, then He would have been no Savior at all.

BUT ... if He comes back, then it validates everything He said He was. Personally, I don't think He was "idling" over in a corner, just waiting for the alarm clock to go off so He could jump back in. On the cross, He said He was committing His Spirit to His heavenly Father, and that made the next move God's. Not the Man, Jesus'. Thus, when Jesus shows up alive, again, it was God the Father Who did it, and thus it is God's affirmation that Jesus was exactly Who God says He was, and Who Jesus represented Himself to be.

In our lives, we seldom put ourselves in a position like that. Where God has to come through or else we're sunk. We normally want to control our destiny. The strangeness of that is that we have to do just that in order to be saved, but we seldom want to do that with any other aspects of our lives. What makes for further irony is that, when God comes through for us when we're helpless on our own, it's a Spiritual high that will change our lives.

Consider the apostles in the boat when Jesus calmed the storm. He'd sent them into the storm, subsequently invited Peter to go for a walk with him, and then climbed in and shut down the wind and the waves. The guys then worshiped him, the first time they ever did that! At least I've never seen any reports of of their worshiping Him prior to that; not even when He turned water into that "forbidden libation" at Cana.

If He didn't rise again as He said He would, then He's not alive today. And He didn't ascend as He said He would, and the promise to send the Holy Spirit didn't happen either. And Pentecost didn't happen.

And on and on.

Proof? You want proof? I've always heard that, if a prophecy is fulfilled by someone who stands only to lose by its fulfillment, that's pretty convincing evidence. Like ... if I prophesy your house will burn down and then I set fire to it, that's not prophecy. But if YOU accidentally set it afire, then that's another matter.

Well, the big hunkies in the state religion bribed the guards to say the Body had been stolen. You don't bribe people to tell the truth! The guards and the pharisees themselves testify to the fact that Jesus was, indeed, resurrected.

I'd love to have been alive back then. In addition to witnessing the greatest time ever, I'd now be a couple centuries old, and I'd be in the Guinness Book of World Records.

I wish you a wonderful, blessed, and meaningful Easter.

Thursday, April 05, 2007

LOVE TIMES TWO

Our older son and his wife (Brian and Natalin) have a son and a daughter, Matthew and Meredith. They're both twenty something, and we love them a whole lot.

Our younger son and his wife, Brad and Connie, never had children. Then, owing to a set of unfortunate (but I think providential) circumstances, they became guardians of a set of 4-year-old twins, a couple of weeks ago. That's them (the twins, not Brad & Connie) in the picture.

We're blessed to have both our sons, and their families, living within about 10 miles of us. So they come over for dinner every Sunday noon. Peg went out and bought one of those lightweight folding tables to put at the end of the dining room set, to accommodate the extra appetites on Sunday.

Wow! This is neat! We went to their house last evening to take care of them, since Connie had to work late and Brad was out of town. It's been a while since I had to use my kid-handling skills, but it all came back to me in short order, as we took care of the twins.

It can be trying on 68-year-old nerves, moreso when one's gift never was dealing with kids. But that all goes out the window when a 4-year-old hugs you and says "I love you".

And calls me Pappaw.

Ooooooooo-WEEEEEE!!!!!