Tuesday, January 30, 2007

Had some fun tonight...

Making whiskey sours, eating some steak, and running barefoot in the snow.

In other news:

DON'T watch this video if guys getting punched make you faint or anything. I train in Karate because I HATE violence, and so I'm not posting this in order to glory in violence. I post this as a lesson for those of us who are conscious about keeping ourselves safe from violence.

The video below shows two thugs standing in a path in some sort of park. An apparent third thug is supposed to capture the thuggery on video for the amusement of idiots and creeps. What he instead captures is an impressive display of skill, and some amazing restraint near the end. One of the thugs swings his arm and smacks a woman right in the face. Her male partner responds by quickly dispatching both of the punks quicker than you can say, "Wow, that guy really knows how to throw down when he needs to!"

I notice three things from this video:

1. The man who defends himself and his neighbor acts so quickly, and so decisively, that he surely was aware of his surroundings, and was prepared to act should trouble arise. So, our first lesson, is to be aware of your surroundings -- especially when guys are just lingering around with seemingly nothing to do.

2. The man defending himself and his neighbor is clearly trained in what I would guess to be boxing. He fights like he's done this 1000 times before. Our second lesson then, is be prepared to defend yourself. You may have to use it someday.

3. At the very end, the man shows great restraint once it appears the threat is over. He does not "ground and pound" anyone, no kicks to a downed opponent, nothing like that. He just stops them, drops them, and walks away. It seems to me that the vigor in which he goes to town on them can be explained by the fact that he is out numbered, and must overwhelm two opponents in order to be safe -- fending off one guy is hard enough without having to keep your head on a swivel so that other guy doesn't get you from behind. Our third lesson is, in a self defense situation, do enough to stop the immediate threat and no more. "If your temper rises, withdraw your hand. If your hand rises, withdraw your temper."

With this long preface, I offer this for those who choose to watch it:

Sunday, January 28, 2007

A Way of Arguing with God in Prayer

I am consumed away with sickness, all my bones are vexed, and my soul is in horrible fear. But, Lord, how long wilt thou thus entreat me? I am wearied for sobbing; I water my bed with tears.
Psalm 6:2, 6.
Let us imagine that David thus speaketh: O Lord, mayest thou, who ever hast taken care of me from my mother’s womb, now forget me, the workmanship of thine own hands? Mayest thou, that hast declared thyself so merciful unto me in all my tribulations, now, in the end, take thy mercies clean from me? Hast thou no pity, O Lord? Dost thou not behold that I am pined and consumed by this grievous torment, wherein not only is my tender flesh, but also my very bones, (the strongest part of the body,) so vexed, that neither is there beauty nor strength left unto me? If these anguishes occupied the body only, yet were the pain almost insufferable; but, O Lord, so horribly is my soul tormented, that albeit it be immortal, yet it so quaketh and trembleth, as if very death should devour it. And thus I sustain most grievous torments both in body and soul of so long continuance, that it appeareth unto me, thou hast forgotten to be merciful. O Lord, how long wilt thou entreat me in this manner. Hast thou forgotten thy loving mercies; or hast thou lost thy fatherly pity? I have no longer strength to cry, yea, and for sobs and groans I am so weary, that my breath faileth me; the tears of mine eyes wherewith nightly I have wet my bed, have borne witness of my unfeigned dolor; but now, my eyes are waxen dim, and my whole strength is dried up.

In all these lamentable complaints, David speaketh unto God, as he would speak to a man who was ignorant what another man suffered; whereof it may be understood how the most prudent and the most spiritual man judgeth of God in the time of trouble. Assuredly he thought that God taketh no care for him; and therefore doth he, as it were, accuse God of unmindfulness, and that he looketh not upon him with the eyes of his accustomed mercy, as clearly by these words may be espied. And yet are David’s troubles the first ground and cause why he maketh his prayers, and claimeth to be heard: not that troubles, as before is noted, are sufficient by themselves for God’s deliverance; but in recounting his dolor, David hath a secret access to God’s mercy, which he challengeth and claimeth of duty to appertain to all His, who in the time of trouble call for his support, help, and aid. And it is the same ground that Job taketh, where he saith,

“Is it profitable unto thee, that thou violently oppress me? Wilt thou despise the work of thine own hands? Thou hast formed and made me altogether; and wilt thou now devour me? Remember, I beseech thee, that thou hast fashioned me as a mould, and that thou shalt bring me to dust: thou hast covered me with skin and flesh; with
sinews and bones hast thou joined me, with life and gentleness hast thou beautified me, and thy prudence hath kept my spirit.” (Job 10).

Here may be espied upon what ground these two stood in their most grievous pains. Their trouble moved them to complain, and to appeal to the great mercy of God, which, as they allege, even so is it most sure, he may deny to none that ask it: for as the trouble of his creatures is no advantage unto God, so, to deny mercy when it is asked, were to deny himself. And herein, dearly beloved, I heartily wish you to rejoice. For I can be witness, how constantly you have called for grace, in your anguishes; and your own conscience must testify, that oftentimes you have found release and comfort in such measure, that you have been bold to triumph against your adversaries, in Christ Jesus our Savior. Be nothing afraid, albeit presently you feel not your accustomed consolation. That shall hurt you no more, than the troubles of David and Job did hurt them, who in the time that they spake these former words, found no more consolation than you do now, in the most extremity of your trouble. Neither yet did they hastily obtain comfort: for David saith, “O Lord, how long wilt thou so cruelly punish me?” And yet, we know most assuredly, that they were heard, and that they obtained their own heart’s desire; as no doubt every man shall, who in time of trouble, be it spiritual or corporal, appealeth to God’s mercy alone.
-- John Knox, from "A Fort for the Afflicted in an Exposition upon the Sixth Psalm of David," etc., ( a version of which, though not the one quoted above, can be found here).

Friday, January 26, 2007

Take Comfort....

Your government is working hard to protect you! Relax, the ray gun that makes you feel like you're on fire is in good hands, and will never be used for evil purposes. Remain calm. Resistance if futile. Your compliance will be greatly rewarded. You have nothing to worry about. Go back to sleep, unconcerned citizens. Go back to sleep.

Saturday, January 20, 2007


If thee, Jerus'lem, I forget,
skill part from my right hand.

My tongue to my mouth's roof let cleave,
if I do thee forget,
Jerusalem, and thee above
my chief joy do not set.

Thursday, January 11, 2007

Hey Jasper!

See http://tinyurl.com/t77y8

Or, check the comments for

I wanted to make sure you see my response.

Sunday, January 07, 2007

A Sabbath Day Meditation: Of Making Right Use of the Scripture

Though a man had a precious jewel and a rich, yet if he wist not the value
thereof, nor wherefore it served, he were neither the better nor richer of a
straw. Even so, though we read the scripture, and babble of it never so
much, yet if we know not the use of it, and wherefore it was given, and
what is therein to be sought, it profiteth us nothing at all. It is not enough,
therefore, to read and talk of it only, but we must also desire God, day and
night instantly, to open our eyes, and to make us understand and feel
wherefore the scripture was given, that we, may apply the medicine of the
scripture, every man to his own sores; unless that we intend to be idle
disputers, and brawlers about vain words, ever gnawing upon the bitter
bark without, and never attaining unto the sweet pith within, and
persecuting one another in defending of lewd imaginations and fantasies of
our own invention.
-- William Tyndale, Prologue to the Five Books of Moses.

Thursday, January 04, 2007

Brothers and friends

Gideon and Jesse, coloring.