Saturday, July 28, 2012

Lions of Kandahar

I just finished this book by Major Rusty Bradley who was a Green Beret fighting in Afghanistan. The way the book ended moved me greatly and I wanted to share:

“If in fact it is your time to be called before God, you typically won’t know it. Sometimes you will, and these are the hardest of times. When the blood pours from your nose and down your throat, clogging it, causing you to spit and gag. You heave for breath in the smoke and dust. Your equipment seems to suffocate you. You wipe the salty sweat and grime from your eyes, only to realize it is blood, either yours or that of the enemy. You would stand but you can’t move your legs. You grasp the open, gaping wounds in your body, trying not to pass out from the pain. You feel the anger thinking of the loved ones you will never see again, and losing your life infuriates your soul. You rage to get to your feet and grab for a weapon, any weapon. Regardless of your race, culture, or religion, you want to die standing. Fighting like a warrior, an American, so others won’t have to. For those looking for a definition, this is the price of freedom.” (274).

Sunday, July 22, 2012

Reasons to Drag Myself to Church Today

Though I’d rather stare blankly at a TV screen for 12 hours straight after a long day of travel back from Oregon yesterday, I’m going to be with God’s people, if for nothing else to stare blankly at them.

Here are the reasons I came up with in my “conversation with myself” this morning:

1) I’m really messed up and need every opportunity to experience grace I can get. My sinful self is old and crotchety (what a great word that is – crotch with an “ety” on the end), and I need an infusion of grace to become youthful and playful again.

2) I need God’s people in order to experience God.

3) God’s people need me in order to experience God (this is the hardest for me to believe).

Off I go, in faith.

Monday, July 02, 2012

To My Beloved

Today marks 18 years with Cheri, my beloved wife and partner in the grace of life! I just wanted to share my thoughts and feelings on this important day (please indulge me!).


As I reflect on the last 18 years it is more and more striking how naïve we were about life and about marriage! We are nowhere near the same people who said “I do” in that church in Burnaby, British Columbia on July 2, 1994.

Words really fail to describe how I feel about your faithful partnership, your consistent and fierce love through these years (you are truly a warrior not to be trifled with!). As God took me through many crushings and obscure arid landscapes, you faithfully followed, knowing (with tears) that you would also be crushed. In light of your covenant commitment, my marginalization meant your marginalization. Many lesser women would have abandoned me many times over! But you have stayed by my side and I thank you.

When we first wed, marriage was mostly about fun, love and hope. It has become instead about death and rebirth, many times over. Our marriage has been defined and marked forever by the cross of Christ. Darkness and shattered dreams have forced us to cling to the cross if we would survive. We both faced a million choices along the way to either embrace the cross or the easier path of superficial relationship and by God’s grace, we have chosen the cross (for the most part). Had we chosen the easier path, the destruction of our relationship would have been sure.

We have seen other marriages come and go, and I know no one is immune to the poison of an unfaithful heart; but I have hope that after 18 years we have learned something about ourselves, about our God and his faithfulness, things we can carry into today and tomorrow (for all we have is “now”). The only reason we’re still together is Jesus. So my closing thoughts are thanks to Him and love to you. May we be blessed with another 50 years together.

Love forever,