Sunday, May 26, 2013

Sunday: The Mystery of God's Plan


 "NO ONE CAN EVER SEEM to secure a life of sustained success, joy, and blessing. As hard as we try, no matter what precautions we take, no matter how well things are going, something comes in to ruin it. Even the most talented, diligent, and savvy people can’t escape the undulations of life. ‘Ah,’ you may say, ‘but what if we did our part better?

 What if we lived good lives and obeyed God and prayed every day, asking him to protect us from all suffering and difficulty?’ The answer is, fine— go there. What if you actually could overcome all of your faults and flaws? What if you could become perfectly wise and understand God’s ways, the human heart, and the times and seasons— such that you always made wise decisions? What if you could have faith in God without wavering? What if your life were perfectly pleasing to God? Then – surely! God would protect you, and your own holiness and wisdom would guard you as well, and your life would always go well. Right?

Wrong. Because here stands the one who did it. God the Father has just said that Jesus’ life is perfectly pleasing to him. And the Spirit of God has descended on him to guide him. And look what happens. He is loved and affirmed and empowered by God, and then . . . then! He is ushered into the clutches of the devil.

 So here’s the order: God’s love and power, then evil, temptation, wilderness, terrible hunger and thirst. That little word ‘then’ is an amazing word. It is almost like Matthew is trying to tell us, ‘Read my lips: No one is exempt from trials and tribulations. In fact, this is often what happens to people God loves very much, for it is part of God’s often mysterious and good plan for turning us into something great.’”

- Tim Keller From Keller Quotes

Friday, May 24, 2013

All About (Worldly) Beauty Redux



Image is superficial.  It's about how  mostly pretty white women win the genetic lottery and succeed in a crushing industry. In the end, it means absolutely nothing.  Her magazine spreads are nothing more than 'image constructions' and have nothing to do with who this woman named Cameron really is.  Good for her for being  truthful and talking about how basing her career on beauty really is:  about being insecure all the time about her looks.

Wednesday, May 22, 2013

How To Help EF-5 Survivors in Moore, OK


Then through donations to the Salvation Army. The link gives us everythng we need in whatever form we prefer to make it. Again, here's the link.

Those wishing to donate money to the effort can do so online at or by calling 800-725-2769. Contributions can also be made by texting the word “STORM” to 80888 to make a $10 donation. To confirm the gift, respond with the word “Yes.” Checks can be sent to Oklahoma Tornado Relief, Salvation Army, P.O. Box 12600, Oklahoma City, OK 73157.

Donations can also be made to The Red Cross. A $200 donation provides a full day of food and shelter to a family of four. To make your donation, call 414-586-2100. To make an online pledge click here (link to or text the word REDCROSS to 90999 to make a $10 donation (the charge will be added to your next cell phone bill, and the cellular company credits the full $10 to the Red Cross). Your generous gift enables the Red Cross to provide shelter, food, emotional support and other vital assistance to those affected by this disaster.

Don't just think about it.  Please do now, today.

Monday, May 20, 2013

How to Cook Seriously Delicious Southern Cicadas


MY ONLY REGRET GOING INTO SUMMER is that I may already be in Wyoming when the massive storm of cicadas hatch and take over the land. But if I'm still here in early June, you can bet I'll experiment with sauting them in olive oil (or butter, but never deep-fat frying or using lesser oils), sea salt and garlic to a crisp and serving them accompanied with chilled greens.  And maybe a Bearnaise sauce on the side.....

 Can't think of any more interesting way to add to my favorite recipes and, I promise you, cicadas are a delicacy to be reckoned with.  And just think,  I wouldn't have to go to the  grocery for fresh, free-range protein nearly as much.

PS Chocolate cicadas are not as appealing to me however.

Sunday, May 19, 2013

Sunday---Faith-Filled Living in Fear-Filled Times @ River Crossing

WONDERFUL SERMON BY MY PASTOR IN JACKSON HOLE, MIKE ATKINS, ON THE ROOT OF FEAR AND SIN--- and each of our resulting self-inspired narratives that leave God out of our stories and make us feel like exiles in our own lives--- and we can't figure out why. Sermon from the Apostle Paul's book of  2 Timothy  1. God is more interested in changing the inside of me, rather than  the circumstances on the outside of me.         

1 Paul, an apostle of Christ Jesus by the command of God our Savior and of Christ Jesus our hope, 2 To Timothy my true son in the faith: Grace, mercy and peace from God the Father and Christ Jesus our Lord. Timothy Charged to Oppose False Teachers 3 As I urged you when I went into Macedonia, stay there in Ephesus so that you may command certain people not to teach false doctrines any longer 4 or to devote themselves to myths and endless genealogies. Such things promote controversial speculations rather than advancing God’s work—which is by faith. 5 The goal of this command is love, which comes from a pure heart and a good conscience and a sincere faith. 6 Some have departed from these and have turned to meaningless talk. 7 They want to be teachers of the law, but they do not know what they are talking about or what they so confidently affirm. 8 We know that the law is good if one uses it properly. 9 We also know that the law is made not for the righteous but for lawbreakers and rebels, the ungodly and sinful, the unholy and irreligious, for those who kill their fathers or mothers, for murderers, 10 for the sexually immoral, for those practicing homosexuality, for slave traders and liars and perjurers—and for whatever else is contrary to the sound doctrine 11 that conforms to the gospel concerning the glory of the blessed God, which he entrusted to me. The Lord’s Grace to Paul 12 I thank Christ Jesus our Lord, who has given me strength, that he considered me trustworthy, appointing me to his service. 13 Even though I was once a blasphemer and a persecutor and a violent man, I was shown mercy because I acted in ignorance and unbelief. 14 The grace of our Lord was poured out on me abundantly, along with the faith and love that are in Christ Jesus. 15 Here is a trustworthy saying that deserves full acceptance: Christ Jesus came into the world to save sinners—of whom I am the worst. 16 But for that very reason I was shown mercy so that in me, the worst of sinners, Christ Jesus might display his immense patience as an example for those who would believe in him and receive eternal life. 17 Now to the King eternal, immortal, invisible, the only God, be honor and glory for ever and ever. Amen. The Charge to Timothy Renewed 18 Timothy, my son, I am giving you this command in keeping with the prophecies once made about you, so that by recalling them you may fight the battle well, 19 holding on to faith and a good conscience, which some have rejected and so have suffered shipwreck with regard to the faith. 20 Among them are Hymenaeus and Alexander, whom I have handed over to Satan to be taught not to blaspheme.

Saturday, May 18, 2013

Real IRS Scandal Is That It Exists At All



I'M TOTALLY WITH JOHN TAMNY ON THIS ONE: Bad, reprehensible and obnoxious as the current IRS snooping scandal on conservatives and Tea Partiers is, partisan harassment by the party that's in power has often led to audits and investigations of the other side of the political aisle---its political enemies---for decades. Decades.

This is nothing new. Come on, you know it's true....That doesn't make it right though.
So what's the real scandal here?

It's that the IRS exists at all in a free country like the United States and that it--the IRS---makes us cower every year in fear of its ever-growing big-brother taxing authority and unenumerated, seized powers to snoop into every aspect of our lives. And it's only going to get worse with Obamacare implementation soon.

While some might call it a scandal,  Tamny calls it business-as-usual. He further adds that we need to abolish the IRS and instigate a national sales tax to pare down government:

Thinking about the IRS non-scandal, it would only be a real story if the partisan IRS weren't investigating its presumed enemies.

As James Bovard put it in a Wall Street Journal op-ed earlier this week, a politicized IRS has been the norm since at least the 1930s. To presume otherwise is naïve, so while it's perhaps good politics for President Obama's opponents to be political about the IRS's revolting doings, any righteous indignation seems overdone. Any government entity is going to be political, and because the latter is true, it's hard to assign scandal to what the IRS was doing.

It seems the better answer is to acknowledge what's more of a certainty, that the IRS itself is the scandal. Not asked enough before and after the news about our tax authority is how a nation uniquely founded on skepticism about politicians and government could have ever created something like the IRS.

The Founders created the federal government, then proceeded to grant it very few rights; most of those related to our allowing the feds to protect our right as individuals to live as we want. And while its meaning has been totally perverted in modern times, even the General Welfare clause was written to ensure not an expansive government, but to rein in the political class any time its use of the limited powers granted to it weighed on our rights as individuals.

Back to the IRS, the brilliant concept that is the United States, one founded on the belief that governments by nature are not to be trusted, has allowed for the rise of an entity that allots for itself an obnoxious portion of our paychecks. More hurl inducing is the sad reality that we must prove our income to this unelected tax authority.

The ‘revelation' of a politicized IRS brings new meaning to ‘blinding glimpse of the obvious.' The bigger scandal is that once a year we do our taxes fearful that an accounting error could have us in serious trouble with our nation's tax authority, and more broadly, with the law. That's why we must scrap the income tax code altogether and institute a national sales tax.

Though our federal government's role should be naturally limited so that we as individuals can choose large or small government based on the state we live in, the federal government is empowered to protect us from foreign intruders, coin a currency, and required to protect....

Imagine if we could get rid of the IRS gargantuan bureaucracy AND  Obamacare all at the same time! What a coup that would be....and is it really so far-fetched?  Maybe not.

Read Tamny's entire piece.  Amen brother.

Again, our country was founded on the basic abhorrence and skeptism of Big Government and now we are living in a country where the government is increasingly suspicious of us, private citizens.  This is the real scandal---that we've let this government over-reach happen.  And it's of heroic proportions.

Peggy Noonan: No Ordinary Scandal

Monday, May 13, 2013

Karl Rove Takes Aim At Hillary Clinton's Coverup of Benghazi Terrorist Attack---Launcing First Salvo in 2016 Presidential Election


THIS WHOLE BENGHAZI COVER-UP JUST GETS MORE SHOCKING and former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton---what difference does it make?!---should be truly ashamed. Hopefully she will be disqualified from ever running for high office again as a result of the fallout of this major controversy. This woman doesn't have the principles and integrity to ever be trusted  by the American public again.  What ever was she thinking?

It does make a difference, Mrs. Clinton.

Sunday, May 12, 2013

Watch Bonhoeffer Discussion---Resisting Hitler & Racism--Then See the Amazing Jackie Robinson Movie---'42'


It helps to remember how far we've come in the past 60 years. In 42,  Harrison Ford as Branch Rickey gives  the performance of his life. And if you think racism was only endemic to the south in 1945, then see this movie and think again. And again. My only criticism is 42 plays down Robinson's strong faith in Jesus Christ, taught  him first by his sharecropper mother living in South Carolina.

Jackie Robinson was a real American hero who took tremendous racial heat to become one of the icons of pro baseball in the 1940s and the Civil Rights Movement beyond. Below, Rachel Robinson, 90,  his  widow discusses their story and lives together and his real faith and dependence on prayer and going forward on his knees.

Sunday, May 5, 2013

Angels' Endless Fascination With Christ's Good News for Mankind On Earth


One of the most startling passages in the Bible connects the magnificence of angels with the mystery of the gospel. Concerning this salvation, the prophets, who spoke of the grace that was to come to you, searched intently and with the greatest care….It was revealed to them that they were not serving themselves but you, when they spoke of the things that have now been told you by those who have preached the gospel to you by the Holy Spirit sent from heaven. Even angels long to look into these things. - 1 Peter 1:10-12

Although angels are incredibly majestic and powerful beings living in God’s eternal presence, there’s something that has happened on earth which is so stupendous that even these immortal beings experience the persistent longing “to look into these things.” What are “these things” that could possibly and consistently consume the attention of God-fixated creatures? The Gospel. The angels never get tired of looking into the gospel.

This means there is no end to gospel exploration. There are depths in the gospel that are always there to be discovered and applied, not only to our ministry and daily Christian life, but above all, to the worship of the God of the gospel with renewed vision and humility.”


I've just linked this week to Daily Keller on my sidebar for daily inspiration and refection. 

Saturday, May 4, 2013

Whatta Finish! It's Rosario On Orb For Shug @ K-Derb

WHAT A TERRIFIC, FUN, MUDDY, MESSY DERBY! Is anything more fun than seeing the winner come from behind and take the purse? 


Wednesday, May 1, 2013

Queen Beatrix Abdicates Her Throne To Son Willem-Alexander With Princess Maxima In Attandance


MAKING A INTERESTING PHOTO OP though not much else, it's always fun to see royalty doing its thing in Europe.

Still it's better any day than seeing another photo of American's obsession---the ever publicity-seeking Kardis.

Seems altogether appropos that the erstwhile queen has abdicated---rather than hanging on till the end---to let her capable son and his lovely-looking princess wife take charge in the Netherlands while she can  enjoy her retirement with family and friends.

Wonder what Queen Elizabeth is thinking about all this and whether she will ever abdicate to Charles and Camilla?  Not likely, in my opinion.