Wednesday, April 25, 2007

Might be quiet for a while...

You'll have to forgive me if I'm quite around here, and online in general, over the next few... well, however long it takes. What started out as just looking around at the possibility of getting a new house, has rather rapidly become actually listing our house tonight, because we're going to meet with a seller tomorrow about signing an offer contract! We are very likely going to be buying a house before we sell our old house, which is a little bit stressful. We have alot to do around here, and alot to think about, in order to get this done. So, you may or may not hear from me for a while.

Yes, we actually found a house we can fit in, in our price range, in a great neighborhood, so we need to get this done ASAP.

We thank God for all of this, and ask for your prayers too!

Saturday, April 21, 2007

Gun Free Zone

I didn't mention anything about the VA Tech massacre on this blog until now. I hesitate to mention anything for a few reasons, not the least of which is that when something tragic happens, it seems that just staying quiet a while is the wise thing to do. Too many people who think they can figure everything out tend to mouth off as soon as something happens. I chose to wait until I mouth off!

Two things make me sick. First, where have all the cowboys gone? How many tragedies have to happen before sissified America learns to get up from your cowarding crouch and FIGHT? So a punk with two PLINKING GUNS (.22 and 9mm!!!!) walks up and down the aisles and hallways popping people (3x per dead person, I read somewhere), having to stop and reload after his ten clip ran out each time, AND NO ONE BUM RUSHES HIM? I understand initial shock, I understand that it's easy to pretend that I would be the brave one in such an awful situation like that, but COME ON!

The other day my kids were playing sword fight at a playground, and a lady told my wife that her grandson is not allowed to play that (in a tone implying that my kids ought not to be playing such a violent game either). Yeah... WELL THEY GOTTA LEARN HOW TO SWORD FIGHT SOMEWHERE, LADY! What would she think about me taking the kids in the basement for target practice? Quit raising sissies, because this is a dangerous world, and I may need to count on my neighbors' help someday. Which leads me to the second issue on my mind...

"Gun Free Zones" -- rather, "Fish in a Barrel Zones."

I would hope that this would be a wake-up call, but I know my country sleeps deeply. The VA TECH case is amazing to me in that 1). The punk waited the legal time period to purchase his weapons. 2). The punk did not buy any illegal "assault weapons," just two plinking guns. 3). He had no "high capacity magazines," just a whole bunch of smaller ones. 4). He ignored the "Gun Free Zone" signs, and that little law against murder. 5). He proceeded to pick off helpless victims who obeyed the "Gun Free Zone" law. NO LAW AGAINST MURDER, NO LAW AGAINST GUNS, STOPPED THIS PURPOSEFUL RAMPAGE. And no law could have. "Gun Free Zones" only assure the assailant that there will be limited to no resistance during his murder spree. Nice, really nice. Well, you can take your "Gun Free Zones" and roll them up nice and tight because I ain't having it. Disarming innocent people does not protect innocent people. I'm taking steps to assure that I will not be "Gun Free" much at all from now on. One or two law abiding citizens with their handguns could have stopped this murderous punk in his tracks. But alas, Larry Hincker, a VA Tech representative, just about one year ago, commenting on a House Bill that was "shot down" which would allow concealed carry on college campuses, told us, "I'm sure the university community is appreciative of the General Assembly's actions because this will help parents, students, faculty and visitors feel safe on our campus." Those words sound like cruel mockery now. "Gun Free" laws which prohibit law abiding citizens from capably defending themselves are essentially saying:

I leave you with a link to a rant by Ted "Got you in a Strangle Hold" Nugent, on Gun Free Zones.

Monday, April 16, 2007

Kids Done Us Proud

There was a locally hosted Karate Tournament this past Saturday, and the kids had some good results in their first taste of a big tournament (there were folks from New York, Delaware, Maryland, and different parts of Pennsylvania). Daniel won first place for sparring (thanks to his sidekick), and third place for demonstrating his basic techniques. Conner and Calle took first and second place respectively in sparring, facing each other in the final match (Calle was the only one of Conner's opponents to score even one point on him, the final score was 3-2). And Cole took fourth place for his Wansu Kata, in one of the biggest divisions in the whole tournament!

Good job, kids!

Friday, April 13, 2007

Christian Communion Extended to All Christians

To all, to whom, in the judgment of charity, we may apply the name of Christian, we ought to extend our Christian communion.

With all such, we ought, as we may have opportunity, to pray and converse about religious things. Joint craving of Heaven’s blessing on the food of our table — praising God in company — united thanksgiving for the mercies of the bountiful Giver of all good, is the indispensable duty of all who name the name of Jesus, when in the course of Providence and opportunity is afforded, for such private and Christian communion. All real Christians love one another. They all love Christ, and cannot but love all who bear his image. And this is the characteristic mark of all who love him—they have his Father’s name written in their foreheads. All such will delight to mingle their voices, their hearts and affections, in religious exercises. They will speak of Christ—of the wonders of his love, and the wonders of his grace, with pleasure and delight. They will join in his praises. They will talk together in recommending him more and more. The theme is inexhaustible. They will unite in addressing him, for they love prayer, and they have one heart. One spirit actuates them.
--John Black (from a Sermon on Church Fellowship preached at the Opening of the Synod of the Reformed Presbyterian Church, May 16th 1816.

As someone who identifies with the Reformed Presbyterian Church, and who believes in and endeavors to uphold her principles, I must confess that I have not seen a whole lot of good stuff on this subject of Christian Communion from Covenanter camps around today. Much is produced in defense of maintaining a separate ecclesiastical standing -- which is indeed important too -- but given that so many today perceive Reformed Presbyterians as being overly condemning of believers in other denominations, unloving towards Christians in other churches, unwilling to have "familiar fellowship" with the brethren associated with other branches of the Visible Church, it sure would be nice to see some emphasis on the love and brotherhood we share will all who credibly profess the Name of Jesus Christ.

Let me say this as simply as I can: I LOVE ALL THE BRETHREN (Lord, enlarge my heart for thy people, and help thou my want of love)!

Wednesday, April 11, 2007

Just between you and me...

I'm going to let you in on a little secret. I have an experiment going on. You might think I'm weird, or strange, or even dirty!

I stopped washing my hair... two weeks ago! I've been thoroughly rinsing my hair in the shower, but no soap or shampoo has touched my hair in about two weeks now. I don't plan on ever using shampoo again!

I read an article by a guy who says he stopped using shampoo 10 years ago, and his theory is that if stop stripping your hair of your natural oils, you will stop making excess oils. I'm only two weeks in, but I think this guy is on to something. The first couple days were a little greasy, but ever since my hair has been soft, workable, pleasant smelling, and the chicks really dig it.

So, are you up to taking the no shampoo challenge?

Sunday, April 08, 2007

Building air-castle upon air-castle!

He who goes about whining all day long about some
imaginary drawbacks in the sphere which Providence
has assigned him—when all the while he is situated
so much better than thousands around—is a suicide
of his own happiness! He is also impeaching the
faithfulness of the Supreme Ordainer and Disposer.

One half of life's enjoyment is eaten out by this sinful
craving after what cannot be obtained—the desire for
something supposed to be better. Yes, but when "the
better" is reached, there is the yearning for an imagined
"better" still. This is building air-castle upon air-castle!

If in these days there be one household demon more
than another which needs to be exorcised —it is the
demon of discontent!

Oh, for the spirit of Paul—poor and lonely prisoner in
Rome as he was—an apparent bankrupt in all that the
world deems wealth and affluence—yet who could make
this entry in his letter to his Philippian friends—"I have
learned to be content whatever the circumstances.
At the moment I have all I need—more than I need!"
--John MacDuff. Thoughts for the Quiet Hour, 1895.

Sunday, April 01, 2007

A Kiss this Sabbath Morning, of April 1st.

“Let him kiss me with the kisses of his mouth.” Song of Solomon 1:2

For several days we have been dwelling upon the Saviour’s passion, and for some little time to come we shall linger there. In beginning a new month, let us seek the same desires after our Lord as those which glowed in the heart of the elect spouse. See how she leaps at once to him; there are no prefatory words; she does not even mention his name; she is in the heart of her theme at once, for she speaks of him who was the only him in the world to her. How bold is her love! it was much condescension which permitted the weeping penitent to anoint his feet with spikenard—it was rich love which allowed the gentle Mary to sit at his feet and learn of him—but here, love, strong, fervent love, aspires to higher tokens of regard, and closer signs of fellowship. Esther trembled in the presence of Ahasuerus, but the spouse in joyful liberty of perfect love knows no fear. If we have received the same free spirit, we also may ask the like. By kisses we suppose to be intended those varied manifestations of affection by which the believer is made to enjoy the love of Jesus. The kiss of reconciliation we enjoyed at our conversion, and it was sweet as honey dropping from the comb. The kiss of acceptance is still warm on our brow, as we know that he hath accepted our persons and our works through rich grace. The kiss of daily, present communion, is that which we pant after to be repeated day after day, till it is changed into the kiss of reception, which removes the soul from earth, and the kiss of consummation which fills it with the joy of heaven. Faith is our walk, but fellowship sensibly felt is our rest. Faith is the road, but communion with Jesus is the well from which the pilgrim drinks. O lover of our souls, be not strange to us; let the lips of thy blessing meet the lips of our asking; let the lips of thy fulness touch the lips of our need, and straightway the kiss will be effected.
--Charles H. Spurgeon, the morning reading for April 1st, from Morning and Evening: Daily Readings.