Saturday, March 16, 2019
Last evening our local church hosted the Spring dinner for the district Senior Adult Ministries. We were privileged to have Gary Varvel as our speaker. Gary recently retired from his forty year gig as an editorial cartoonist. His last twenty-four years were with the Indianapolis Star and his work was syndicated in newspapers and magazines nationwide.
Varvel told the story of his journey to living his dream, giving full credit to the leadership of God in his life. He shared three dozen or so cartoons on the "big screen" and showed the trailers for three of the films that he is involved in through House of Grace Films.
This cartoon demonstrates the dream that Gary plans to live in his retirement from the pressure cooker of the newspaper world. His intent is to spend his life sowing the seed of the gospel as the cartoon illustrates.
It was a very entertaining and worth-while evening.
Thursday, March 14, 2019
Sunday, March 10, 2019
And be not conformed to this world: but be ye transformed by the renewing of your mind,
that ye may prove what is that good, and acceptable, and perfect, will of God. Romans 12:2
A Canadian blogger, a life-long Seventh Day Adventist, told of two older people who were brought up in the church, one who was still faithful to the denomination, one who left. The latter said, We are happy with our decision to leave; we find great blessing in attending the Anglican Church. The other responded, You are happy belonging to the Anglican Church because it doesn't demand anything of you-- it's a comfortable pew.
The phrase "a comfortable pew" suggests that some people want the benefits of belonging to a church body, but do not want to be inconvenienced with any requirements, any restrictions that might become onerous in any way.
I grew up in a church that imposed rules for living on its membership. Some of those regulations perhaps more restrictive than even Jesus himself would have asked. (Or perhaps not: He asks our all.) But the point is that in following the guidelines we were reminded that sailing too close to the world entailed the danger of capsizing in the sea of sin and degradation, resulting ultimately in the loss of our souls.
I believe that in its attempt to reach out to the lost the church today in its effort to be "seeker friendly" is in danger of capsizing herself, for we are taught in scripture that we are to come out of the world and be separate from it (2 Corinthians 6:17); to be not conformed to the world but to be transformed (Romans 12:2)
To seek salvation is a good thing. Jesus himself said, "Seek ye first the kingdom of heaven, and all these things shall be added unto you." (Matthew 6:33) This suggests that it is not a comfortable pew we should seek, but rather the Kingdom of heaven and all that that entails. A comfortable pew does not give spiritual rest, Jesus does. "Come unto me all ye that labor and are heavy laden and I will give you rest." (Matthew 11:28) It's in The Book.
Besides, Jesus said all who labor, not all who sit in a comfortable pew.
Wednesday, March 6, 2019
My sister has a cat, a very pretty cat, long slender neck and graceful moves. Cookie is a refugee from Hurricane Maria which devastated Puerto Rico in September 2017. It is reported that the cat seems grateful for the largess bestowed upon her, but she does not reciprocate with any kind of overt demonstration of affection. The following is a middle-of-the night creation I "dreamed up" and sent to Ilene a few weeks ago.
I dreamed last night about a cat named Cookie.
I was visiting my sister in the Garden State
Resting peacefully in her guest room
The door a bit ajar; I don't want to fumble with knobs
In the middle of the night.
Somewhere in the wee hours I heard a gentle tap on my door
"David," Ilene whispered, "I can't find my cat."
"Don't panic," I replied. "Flip on the night light."
"The cat's been sleeping with me for the past three nights."
"NO!" the glare of the overhead light hit my sleepy eyes.
Ilene stood, amazed, appalled, moved toward the bed.
Cat like a flash crawled deep down next to my feet.
"Let her be," I said. But I could see that Sis was crushed.
"She's okay. We'll talk in the morning.
"Nice Cookie." I crooned. " La Gata, Senora Gata, duerme ahora."
Monday, March 4, 2019
Lin and Joe gave us a puzzle for Christmas. For them, as it is with us, a puzzle is sometimes winter entertainment. As it happens, we received eight puzzles at Christmas and we did not put off doing this one because we weren't excited about it but rather because the people who gave us the other puzzles were often here and "helping" with the selection and construction. We did theirs first. Now, on February 28 we have
and Sunday, March 3 at 10 a.m. we have
Thanks Lin and Joe! It was fun.
And yes, it is still winter. Snowed Sunday afternoon and it is colder than bears.