Friday, April 29, 2011

Our Hearts Melt!


WHAT BRIDE (AND WOMAN) DOESN'T WANT TO HEAR, YOU LOOK BEAUTIFUL! And she did and does and always will in our hearts!

Thursday, April 28, 2011

On Wedding Watch

I ADMIT IT! I'M TOTALLY ENTHRALLED WITH THE UPCOMING, IMMINENT ROYAL WEDDING. Any woman who tells you otherwise is simply out-of-touch with her inner feminine. What can spark our imaginations more than a darling prince who's found his beautiful, seemingly lovely princess?

Kate's a knock-out as my father used to say. She's every bit as wonderful and beautiful as my own British daughter. And that's saying a lot!

None of us thinks for a moment their lives will always be a bed of roses and many unknowns lurk, still who among us doesn't wish them well and every happiness and Godspeed? Above, Kate with her soon-to-be brother-in-law leaving the final rehearsal for Friday's big wedding which will be telecast in the middle of the night in America.

My British in laws are keeping me posted! All royal watchers are a-twitter with excitement! I'm there! as I was outside Edinburgh almost exactly three years ago!

Staggering Tornado Damage in the South Low On President Obama's Priority List

WHEN IT COMES TO CHOOSING THE KIND OF MASSIVE DISASTER YOU'D rather confront if you must and pray to live through---hurricane, earthquake, horrendous flooding like the ones we had in Nashville May 1 of last year--- few devastation's can compare to a killer tornado. When a swarm of killer Ts strike, it's even more frightening, devastating as it moves through the land seemingly randomly.

Just ask the City of Tuscaloosa which has suffered a gargantuan event they will be long in completely recovering from. These people need our prayers and kindest generous thoughts and actions in the wake of this.

Now for the political part: There was a time when presidents clearly struggled to feel a community's pain and suffering in the aftermath of these kind of events, would call an impromptu press conference, drop everything and plan a personal visit to assess the damage. If the president was too busy with another crisis, he would send someone in his stead. For better or worse we've come to expect these kind of gestures.

So far it's not the case here. Conveying sympathy---which President Obama did briefly yesterday however sincerely---is clearly low on his to do list. Higher priorities call.

It's unfortunate. It's a scandal of shameless self-promotion. And while, there's nothing wrong with a degree of self-promotion, it's definitely has it's time and place. Yesterday, the president flew off to Chicago to appear on Oprah, then went full tilt with three fund raisers back in Manhattan for his re-election campaign. According to WSJ:

The night began with the smallest event and the biggest donors, and ended with Mr. Obama’s most partisan and most passionate call to action, delivered to a larger, younger crowd that paid less to get in the door.

He argued that the budget debate ongoing in Washington was fundamentally a clash of values, implying that Republicans have a “vision of a small America.” The Democratic vision is an America where citizens care for one another, he said.

What can be said here is that, while conservatives in Washington struggle to cut back on federal spending because they don't want a vision of a bankrupt America, Mr. Obama characterizes the GOP vision as small.

What a terrible shame and myth of the grandest proportion.

Let me get to the point: Mr. Obama is running very fast and hard for a second term in an office he has very little time and interest assuming. He knows his strengths lie more in running and self-promotion than leading and governing in the office to which he's been elected. So that's what he's doing---come hell or killing tornados.

Mr. Obama is on a roll running as The Tooth Fairy and Santa Claus.

As such, in my book, he doesn't deserve another term in office using his position to non-stop self-promote a year-and-a-half before his re-election bid.

Wednesday, April 27, 2011

The Donald Trumps


OK, SO WE ALL KNOW IT'S UNLIKELY HE'LL EVER BE PRESIDENT. Among many other things, he's a political opportunist/charlatan with an ego the size of Texas, yet with true and strong leadership tendencies---positive and negative---that make us want to overlook his myriad shortcomings and as yet undisclosed financial statements.

Nevertheless, Trump is now fulfilling a major purpose---read that vacuum--- in our country, and doing it with aplomb: The Donald has commandeered the the national conversation and set the tone in a way I haven't seen in a very long time. Whatever else you say about this brazen egomaniac, Trump is making things much more interesting and fun around here right now. I like it and him, such as he is, in spite of myself.

Having said that, I deeply disagree with him on the cause of sky-high oil prices. He blames OPEC and wants to rough those crazy shieks up for it.

I believe oil and all commodites prices have soared because of the scandalous plunge of the dollar causing investors to flee into hard assets (as well as the stock market and currency markets) thus pushing up the cost of oil and gas, as well as silver, gold, copper and food prices.

You can bet that before the next presidential election, Obama---with the help of his feckless Treasury Secretary Tim Geithner---will temporarily talk up King Dollar (it's already happening)---thus causing a temporary, TEMPORARY---downward correction in gasoline, silver, gold and food so that the American people are lulled into thinking everything is okay and heading in the right direction so Obama gets re-elected. Then we can take it to the bank that prices will rise again after 2012 as the dollars continues its fall into further disgrace and commodity prices blast off again.

But enough about that. This is one of Donald Trump's greatest moments. Let's all give him a round of applause! He's right, if this is truly Obama's real birth certificate, then why in heaven's name didn't Obama release it a long, long, long time ago? It's a fair question that also needs an answer.

Tuesday, April 26, 2011

Arranging Fresh Flowers In the District

A TRUMP PRESIDENCY WOULD BE AN ENTERTAINING DISAPPOINTMENT EVEN THOUGH I LOVE DOING LOTS OF OTHER THINGS including writing, blogging, hiking, fly fishing, trading stocks and cooking, I have to admit given my druthers, I'd rather be arranging freshly cut flowers than just about anything else I know. It's extra fun when most of the blossoms are cut from the yard where you're arranging them. Throw in a few extra roses from Costco, tulips from Whole Foods and you have a wonderful spring melange. Washington D.C. is resplendent this time of year, so when I visit and get pressed into flower arranging service before a dinner party, I jump at the chance. Today, I think I did eight---one big centerpiece, and numerous other side ones for different tables all over the house.

Southern belles of my ilk and generation were born and bred to cook, arrange flowers, swill the toilets and do yard work. We love it too. Unfortunately, most career women in the younger generations barely know where the kitchen is. I'm thrilled I have the best of all worlds and like getting my fingernails dirty as well as getting them sparkly clean.

Sunday, April 24, 2011

Easter Sunday

WE NEED NOT WONDER that so much importance is attached to our Lord’s resurrection. It is the seal and memorial stone of the great work of redemption, which He came to do. It is the crowning proof that He has paid the debt He undertook to pay on our behalf, won the battle He fought to deliver us from hell, and is accepted as our guarantee and our substitute by our Father in heaven. Had He never come forth from the prison of the grave, how could we ever have been sure that our ransom had been fully paid (1 Corinthians 15:17)? Had He never risen from His conflict with the last enemy, how could we have felt confident that He has overcome death – and him that had the power of death, that is the devil (Hebrews 2:14)? But thanks be unto God, we are not left in doubt. The Lord Jesus really rose again for our justification.

---J.C. Ryle, Christ Is Risen, He Is Risen Indeed

Christ's Finished Work On the Cross

THE FIRST PROPHECY IN SCRIPTURE OF A SAVIOR FOR MANKIND AFTER ITS FALL CAME EARLY in Genesis 3:15, foretelling the first advent of Christ Jesus:

And I will put enmity between you and the woman, and between your offspring and hers; he will crush your head, and you will strike his heel."

After this, dozens more throughout the Old Testament pertaining to Christ's first humble, supernatural birth, sacrificial death on The Cross and resurrection were written, then fulfilled. He died so that we might live and one day live with Him forever. He humbled Himself so that we might be lifted and exalted from the bondage of our fallen sin nature. He forever slayed the serpent. It was finished on the Cross of Calvary, and there's nothing any of us can do to add or subtract even one jot or tittle to this Supernatural Work of Salvation.

Now each of us is given the choice to accept Christ's finished work on the Cross. As we spread the Good News of the Gospel, we await His Second Coming to judge and separate the quick and the dead, the spiritual sheep from the goats.

Saturday, April 23, 2011

Easter By NorthEast

DRIVING INTO D.C. late yesterday on Good Friday--- via the beautiful-in-spring I-81, I-66 and 495 Beltway, The Terrible---in unrelenting rain and traffic that would make LA envious, I'm reminded again of my ongoing love-hate relationship with our nation's capital. As I prepared emotionally to morph myself from country mouse into city mouse--complete with sheath dresses, pearls, death-defying heels and my Easter Sunday best, I thought of how one of the most beautiful cities and capitals in the world has become over the last few decades everything my small-town upbringing frowned and still frowns upon: spending wildly beyond one's means, printing and debasing our monetary system, living a lifestyle of credit, debt and opulent unaccountability and saying one thing but doing another. Today, I consider D.C. completely out-of-control.

If that's not bad enough, as I inched my way through Tyson Corner traffic and crossed the Potomac, I heard on the radio that D.C. authorities had given Charlie Sheen---are you ready for this?!---a high-speed, police escort into the Capitol this week, a privilege provided and reserved only for visiting heads-of-state and other high-level dignitaries. My jaw dropped in speechlessness. But don't worry, his handlers paid $455 for it. AND D.C. authorities are looking into how this happened.....What a relief!

It was a bribe no doubt, but only highlights the depths of our depravity both in culture and our nation's Capitol. The end must be near.

Still, making my final approach into western Washington via the absolutely resplendant Clara Barton Parkway momentarily made me forget even our debasement. Dogwoods, redbuds and greening trees along the Potomac overshadowed the darkening political and fiscal times here. With emphasis on momentary.

It's great to be here at this time of year with family, friends and one of my favorite churches--McLean Bible Church. Even though it's still raining here this Saturday morning, it's scheduled to clear, making the gorgeous pink dogwood outside my window here in a beautiful neighborhood, just around the corner from fellow conservative, Karl, even more lovely.

Wednesday, April 20, 2011

Of Friends and Little Foxes

A FRIEND SENT ME THIS PHOTO his wife took yesterday of three little red foxes living in a den under a shed in their back yard. Is this cute or what! Jack---who sent the pics----told me so far their mother has killed squirrels, rabbits, birds, small rodents and maybe a hawk to feed the kits who are now looking like a healthy pre-teen pack.

Jack's family is having great fun every afternoon and evening watching these little critters grow and play as the mother goes out and hunts food.

Monday, April 18, 2011

Government Gone Wild Video

ALL OF US SHOULD BE DEEPLY, DEEPLY CONCERNED even as our president and liberal Congress want to up the debt limit ante even more, under threat of disaster, so future interest payments will be even greater, creating an even more humongous disaster. If we don't get this freight train stopped and soon, it will precipitate a global crisis/collapse the likes we've never known. No matter what we do now, there's no way to avoid pain and suffering.

Saturday, April 16, 2011

Sunday, Tim Keller: What Is the Gospel?



Another similar answer:

According to Jesus, no man is too sinful to be saved, only too righteous. The Pharisee not only does not want God’s grace, He disdains it. The reason, in his mind, is that he does not need it, for his righteousness (in law-keeping as he defines it) is sufficient, indeed, more than enough. The penitent sinner goes away justified, by grace, while the Pharisee goes away condemned, by his own works and words.

The worst misconception is thinking we're too good to need a Savior. The best is to know we're a sinner in need of a Savior.

Thursday, April 14, 2011

Debtors Prison For Our Children


DR. MICHAEL BURRY, a graduate of Vanderbilt Medical School,
decided after the fact, he wasn't cut out for his chosen profession. While doing a residency later at Stanford University, he began focusing on his passionate hobby of investing in his spare time.

Ultimately he became more and more enthralled with investing, quit medicine and started a hedge fund. From Wikipedia:

Michael Burry (born ca. 1972) is founder of the Scion Capital LLC hedge fund, which he ran from 2000 until 2008, when he closed the fund to focus on his own personal investments. Burry was one of the first investors in the world to recognize and invest in the impending sub prime mortgage crisis.[1] Author Michael Lewis profiled him in his 2010 book The Big Short: Inside the Doomsday Machine, and he was featured in Gregory Zuckerman's 2009 book The Greatest Trade Ever: How John Paulson Bet Against The Markets and Made $20 Billion

Burry was back at Vanderbilt recently speaking at the Chancellor's Lecture Series about his phenomenal and prescient success of the past decade and also about his views on the economy. While he's not the smoothest speaker I've ever heard, he's certainly one of the wisest. With an inside view of Wall Street and a 10,000' view of the economy, this half-hour talk at Vanderbilt is well-worth listening to and heeding.

There are several take-homes from Burry's life and recent talk, but three stand out more than any others to me:

First, you don't always end up working in the field you were trained for, even when you have an advanced degree. To wit: A medical doctor who put on one of the most brilliant (short) trades in the history of civilization?

Second, we can't fix our financial problems---or any problems---until and unless we admit to having them. He's talking about toxic money printing and out-of-control spending in the federal government. As long as there's nothing but finger pointing, like this (which accomplishes nothing since we're all to blame), we will continue to draw nearer and nearer to the abyss, until one day, we will go over into it. I pray it's not too late and our leaders will come to their senses in all branches of government. But Burry says it's not going to happen. I happen to agree.

Third,there's no free lunch (2nd law of thermo). Teaser rates caused unnatural growth. What this means is that unnaturally low rates---as in anything in life that's too easy---caused lots of takers. Then, the tide turned to reality and, guess what?, all these people who took the bait were trapped with the very high consequences of their actions. And they're paying, and we will pay, the price for decades to come. So will taxpayers. Remember: teases are only that: A device to get you in, trap you by the illusion before the true bill is present. It's a suckers game for people who want to believe there's a free lunch.

H/T Jack

Wednesday, April 13, 2011

Going Home For the Day

DON'T KNOW WHAT IT IS AT THIS TIME OF YEAR, but as the sap rises, so too the pace of everything seems to speed up. I've been busy on so many fronts this week that I've barely had time to be on the computer. The days ahead with Easter and traveling don't look any better.

Part-time blogging will be the rule for the foreseeable future.

Nevertheless, Wednesday I had the good fortune and perfect excuse to go home where I grew up in the heart of Middle Tennessee, a small, once wealthy, country town which many know as the nursery capital of the world.

Always wonderful getting back to my roots and oldest friends and associations I have in the world. I never miss a reason to return. Spring with dogwoods and redbuds blooming is beautiful beyond description. The occasion for my visit yesterday was to attend the annual shareholders meeting of the community bank of which I'm a stockholder of this closely-held company. It's a highlight because it's the fastest, surest way to reconnect with my conservative political and economic roots. And boy are they conservative.

Plan to be back on a later post to talk about the banking industry from a small-town, conservative America perspective. Right now, I'm dead-dog tired, about to fall into bed. Tomorrow I'm going with a friend to Shiloh National Battlefield outside Chattanooga for the day while the sun shines and before the rain sets back in. Hopefully I'll be back with several more posts then.

Sunday, April 10, 2011

Finding and Teaching Christ in The Old Testament

SO MANY, MANY PEOPLE BELIEVE CHRIST IS FOUND ONLY IN THE NEW TESTAMENT and while He may have been prophesized about long before His birth, He was never to be seen. I know I did once.

But nothing could be further from the truth.

Listening to this video is only a teaser of how the pre-incarnate Christ pervades the Old Testament from beginning to end with numerous sightings. The Angel of the Lord of the OT is He who was later in linear time born in a manger, died on the Cross for us and resurrected to Eternal Life, leading the way for our own salvation and eternal life. He actually appears in the Old Testament.

Very good news indeed---in both Testaments.

H/T The Gospel Coalition

CrossReference+ Episode 2 from HeadHeartHand Media on Vimeo.

Saturday, April 9, 2011

Elections Have Consequences

GOOD SATURDAY MORNING ROUNDUP AT White House Dossier. Or, be careful what you vote for, you just might get it.

Roger Kimball at Pajamas disagrees, calling the compromise Pathetic.

Meanwhile, I say for now, Where are my hiking boots?!

Friday, April 8, 2011

Whew! Looks Like the Obamas Can Go To Williamsburg After All


JUST IN THE NICK OF TIME, a deal to avert government shutdown has been reached. I wonder what the Republicans gave for this to happen. Only time will tell, but it appears the deal falls short of GOP pledge. Paul Ryan's response will be telling, for sure.

Meanwhile, Bryan Preston at Pajamas Tatler posts: Open Secret, Planned Parenthood Turns (Our) Federal Tax Dollars Into Donations To Democrats.

No wonder Chuck Schumer declared with such fierce urgency Democrats will never, never, never vote to defund Planned Parenthood. It's almost as outrageous as federal funding for ACORN to elect liberals, who funded ACORN again to elect liberal Democrats....the beat goes on.

So taxpayers are not only forced to pay for an organization which provides abortion on demand, we have to watch it use its discretionary slush funds to reward the hand that feeds it.

Thursday, April 7, 2011

INTRADE On Chances For A Government Shutdown



IF YOU WANT TO BYPASS talking heads and headlines with endless predictions as to the chances of a government shutdown then go where people are actually putting their money where their mouths are: INTRADE. Of course the situation is fluid and can change on a dime. Still, these betting markets---with thousands of people participating---often cut to the chase and can be quite accurate. At the moment, INTRADE gives a 68% chance the federal government will shut down by June 30, with the bid price for that happening rising a whopping 70 cents today. The odds are high, but clearly it's not a done deal. Will be fun seeing how markets in this current fiscal event work out. One thing's for sure, we won't have to wait much longer to see the accuracy and most certainly not until the end of June.

Wednesday, April 6, 2011

President Obama Back From Soft Campaigning and Lecturing Us On Energy


ACCORDING TO WHITE HOUSE DOSSIER, AS OF THIS EVENING, 8:30 Central, President Obama has returned from his afternoon roam to Philadelphia to promote his soft energy agenda and New York City to smooze with Al Sharpton and company. Mr. Obama has decided to apply his kumbaya leadership style tonight to his obviously less pressing priority of facilitating passage of the 2012 federal budget before the government shuts down Friday.

Evidently he will meet with leadership from the Senate and House to referee their childish behaviors with his political prowess and constant campaign rhetoric---why can't we all just be friends?---.

I'm more and more underwhelmed with this cardboard cutout figure who is style over substance, and politics over principled leadership.

Meanwhile, look who's making headway in all the polls. A formidable GOP contender who might just trump the president next year. Couldn't happen to a better light-weight. I would vote for him any day over Mitt Romney, Barack Obama, Sarah Palin, Haley Barbour, Hillary Clinton and the former governor of Arkansas. Wouldn't it be fun if he ran?!

The Libertarian Case Against Gay Marriage

JUSTIN RAIMONDO WRITING AT THE AMERICAN CONSERVATIVE makes a completely secular and compelling case against gay marriage. But he goes further by asking why gays would want/need to marry in the first place. In perhaps the most interesting part of the piece, Raimondo traces the history of the gay rights movement, from its inception to its transformation over the past few decades. Very interesting.

Several highlights:

The gay-rights movement took its cues from the civil rights movement, modeling its grievances on those advanced by the moderate wing led by Dr. Martin Luther King and crafting a legislative agenda borrowed from the NAACP and allied organizations: the passage of anti-discrimination laws—covering housing, employment, and public accommodations—at the local and national level. Efforts to institutionalize gay marriage have followed this course, with “equality” as the goal. But the civil rights paradigm never really fit: unlike most African-Americans, lesbians and gay men can render their minority status invisible. Furthermore, their economic status is not analogous—indeed, there are studies that show gay men, at least, are economically better off on average than heterosexuals. They tend to be better educated, have better jobs, and these days are not at all what one could call an oppressed minority. According to, “studies show that [gay] Americans are twice as likely to have graduated from college, twice as likely to have an individual income over $60,000 and twice as likely to have a household income of $250,000 or more.” Gays an oppressed minority group? I don’t think so....

....But the legislative agenda of the modern gay-rights movement is not meant to be useful to the gay person in the street: it is meant to garner support from heterosexual liberals and others with access to power. It is meant to assure the careers of aspiring gay politicos and boost the fortunes of the left wing of the Democratic Party. The gay-marriage campaign is the culmination of this distancing trend, the reductio ad absurdum of the civil rights paradigm. The modern gay-rights movement is all about securing the symbols of societal acceptance. It is a defensive strategy, one that attempts to define homosexuals as an officially sanctioned victim group afflicted with an inherent disability, a disadvantage that must be compensated for legislatively.

A compelling, well-done piece worth reading to the end and one I happen to agree with. Gay rights activists have had to manufacture a strident victim status which doesn't fly very well with the majority of the American people.

Tuesday, April 5, 2011

Rushing Fast To Fiscal Oblivion


A HALLMARK OF Democratic lawmakers during the Obama presidency has been to rush like crazy---with a sense of impending disaster---to get things settled, cast in concrete before any of us taxpayers have a clue what's going on. So it is with the 2012 budget, yet to be passed. While President Obama chides Congress to get the job done and stop acting like children, there are plenty of recalcitrant senators and representatives on both sides of the aisle holding out on particular issues. Many will gladly close down government for their pet causes. A good example of this is the threatened filibuster of the budget if Planned Parenthood is not funded, as if it's a core issue facing Americans today. As if it's an enumerated power of the federal government in the first place.

Rep. Paul Ryan is front-and-center taking a courageous lead--- the real hero---in the fiscal responsibility department and conservatives can only hope and pray he and Boehner can hold out and prevail over the insanity now griping the federal process with the need to rush, rush, rush so we can find out what's in it at some later date. In doing this, none of the deeper fiscal issues are being addressed. Budgetary gridlock threatening to close down much of the federal government is hardly a bad thing. Much good can come from it, if there's no other way.

No matter what the threats, intimidation or sense of dire emergency, Republicans need to hang tough and do major budget cutting for next year and far beyond. They must continue talking cuts in the trillions rather than in paltry billions. If we don't, our nations' fiscal condition will deteriorate beyond the point of no return. America will truly be on the road to ruin. There are no quick fixes here. No matter what the president says, this budget needs to be done right, no matter how long it takes.

NOW is the time, no matter how much the president, Reid and Pelosi want to sweep it under the rug for another time.

Monday, April 4, 2011

Wild Weather Day In Middle Tennessee

41 SENATORS PUT FEDERAL ABORTION FUNDING AHEAD OF NATIONAL FISCAL HEALTH.......TWO TORNADOES HERE NO KIDDING. Been a memorable weather day in Middle Tennessee. Lots of wind, lightning and thunder causing mini-flash flooding, fallen trees, massive traffic confusion and power outages. Tuesday to be a full day of sun. Heaven knows we need it. Going to bed to sleep off a wonderful, long family weekend. Will be ready to get back to work on all fronts tomorrow.

Two CNN WomenFolk Interview CIA-Guy And Don't Like What They Hear


former CIA analyst Michael Scheuer who tries to realistically connect the dots on U.S. intervention in Libya at a time when our country has no vital interests at stake there and as we teeter on edge of national bankruptcy (And YES, Ladies, these two topics are indeed related). In the end, neither of these women are the least bit interested in, or savvy enough, to understand Mr. Scheuer's take on this situation. The interview ends up a testy the bitter end.

Let's be painfully clear and brief: All Libyan oil goes to Europe with none of it going to the U.S. So why, why, why is Obama digging us in a hole here? (To promote a One World U.N. government with the U.S. the best friend of everyone?) (Or to push us towards solar powered or nuclear fuels pick-up trucks off in the distant future?)

On the other hand, our U.S. vital, VITAL, interests in a non-one world sphere, continues to remain in the Persian Gulf, bordered on the west by Saudi Arabia (Sunni) and on the east by Iran (Shia). All the little island states, like Bahrain and the United Arab Emirates are just little, filthy rich pawns in the middle... U.S. interests also are vitally linked---in every way---to Israel. End of the real story.

Source of video, Zero Hedge

Sunday, April 3, 2011

Sunday, Continuing One Woman's Journey From Atheism to Faith

ALL THAT YEAR, JOSH HAD PREACHED THE GOSPEL BY LIVING IT. By being the best fencing coach I ever had, by caring about me---not as a potential convert, but as me, a unique individual---and treating me always, always with respect. You can't fake respect when you train with someone three hours at a stretch, two evenings a week, plus weekend tournaments, for a whole year. If your honesty, patience and compassion are a mask, it is sure to come off at some point when you're dealing with an argumentative, stubborn, hot-tempered fencer. (That would be me, in case you're wondering.)

That's why the idea of building relationships so that you can share the Gospel rings false to me. If the relationship doesn't come first, it becomes salesmanship, with Jesus as the product. Ugh. If that had been what my coach was doing, I would have noticed---and felt betrayed. But it wasn't. Josh wasn't trying to sell me anything; he just carried on being the person Christ called him to be, and I couldn't help notice.

I didn't respect Christians. I respected Josh and Heidi...who were Christians. Something didn't track. Might some of my ideas about Christianity be wrong?

By itself, the discovery that my coach was a Christian was something I could have shrugged off. But something had woken up in me as I was reading those poems that spoke so powerfully about the experience of knowing God. For the first time in my life, I wanted to think and talk about questions of faith. My inclination to talk about these issues---half-embarrassed as I was by my own interest---took coherent shape: coach was a person I thought I could talk to.

I began tentatively edging around the subject in casual conversation. I recognized even then that it was out of character for me to want to discuss anything related to religion, and yet I did want to. I just didn't have the slightest clue how to begin.

Little did I know the icebreaker would take the form of one of my worst fencing performances ever.

---Holly Ordway, Not God's Type, A Rational Academic Finds a Radical Faith

Sunday Reflection

WHEN CHRISTIANITY SAYS THAT GOD LOVES MAN, it means that God loves man: not that He has some ‘disinterested' concern... but that, in awful and surprising truth, we are the objects of His love. You asked for a loving God: you have one. The great spirit you so lightly invoked, the ‘lord of terrible aspect,’ is present: not a senile benevolence that drowsily wishes you to be happy in your own way, not the cold philanthropy of a conscientious magistrate, nor the care of a host who feels responsible for the comfort of his guests, but the consuming fire Himself, the Love that made the worlds, persistent as the artist’s love for his work…provident and venerable as a father’s love for a child, jealous,
inexorable, exacting as love between the sexes. How this should be, I do not know. It surpasses reason to explain why any creatures, not to say creatures such as we, should have a value so prodigious in their Creator’s eyes. It is certainly a burden of glory not only beyond our deserts but also, except in rare moments of grace, beyond our desiring. We are inclined, like the maidens in the old play, to deprecate the love of Zeus.

— C. S.Lewis, The Problem of PainHope to be back with more book excepts later today.

H/T Redeemer Presbyterian, Manhattan