A Reflection on Good Friday

•Friday, April 6, 2012 • Leave a Comment

Note: Reading forward and backward has to do with how we read the Bible. When we read biblical stories, we often bring all the knowledge we have to the reading. However we often forget that the people in the bible stories often did not have access to all the information that we now have. For example, the disciples did not know that Jesus was going to be killed on a cross and had different expectations; they also did not know he was going to be resurrected. We are reading backward when we read bible stories and consider all the information we now know. We are reading forward when we place ourselves in the shoes of the people in the stories, pretending we were there then and only know what they know. This changes what we see and understand when we read scripture. Both adding forward and backward are important tools for considering the bible.

Tonight is about a tear in the fabric of the universe ripping open and consuming our God, snuffing out his light, and leaving us enshrouded in darkness and mourning and hopelessness. This is the ultimate consequence of our sin–our death and separation from God, and now his. He has died and been separated from us, and perhaps even from himself. Reading forward, this may have been one of the worst days of his followers’ lives. Heck, one of them even committed suicide.

This was real darkness. Having the best person you know who actually brought some life into a cruel world tortured and killed publicly, slowly. He was your hope.

Reading backward, we today have the privilege of anticipation. We anticipate Sunday. Sure, this hurts and is sad and brings us some deep reflection. But we always now have the ability to see the light of the resurrection soaking through the heavy, black shroud of death, ready to burst through very soon. This is not the death of hope. This is the incubation of hope. Hope grows stronger by the second in the grave, and it will rise up on the horizon the stronger victor, able to destroy our oldest foe.

Perhaps we are reliving this today in a different way. After all, we in the present are still reading forward. We are still waiting. We still don’t know how things will unfold. Jesus ascended and was gone. This is much like being put away behind a heavy, rolled stone only now going away beyond the clouds. We are not left hopeless as at the crucifixion, but we are left without the immediately tangible access to Jesus that we crave.

When will Sunday come again where he appears in our midst and takes our hopes into the stratosphere beyond which we ever believed we could hope? We long for a second Sunday, another advent that brings finality to the restoration of all things. Has hope yet incubated long enough? How much longer will we wait? Yet, this time, because we read backward even as we read forward, we wait not in desperation but instead in anticipation. Our hope is coming.

RE: Is Singleness Better?

•Wednesday, September 30, 2009 • Leave a Comment

In response to Is Singleness Better?

Nope.

Is it worse?

Nope.

I only occasionally read articles online at Relevant, and I have never entered any discussion. For whatever reason though, this touched a nerve enough for me to make an account and respond.

…click here to read the rest of the post…

Black Eye Tour

•Friday, September 18, 2009 • 2 Comments

Last night, Gina and I had the pleasure of going to the first show in Derek Webb‘s Black Eye Tour following the release of his new album Stockholm Syndrome. The best part is that it was free since I won the first artifact in Louisville during the game leading up to the pre-release of the album.

The show was really different from any previous DW concert I have seen. I haven’t ever seen him with any accompaniment other than his wife on a few songs in the past. This time, however, he brought a drummer and Josh Moore of Caedmon’s Call and a whole new sound. Besides hardly using his characteristic acoustic guitar, Derek often didn’t use any instrument besides his microphone.

…click here for the rest of the post…

Not Much

•Friday, September 11, 2009 • Leave a Comment


The above image has little to do with my post; it’s just that I really enjoy
Saturday Morning Breakfast Cereal

It’s been a long time, and it’s about time to start posting again.

A couple of nights ago, I was thinking again about the church during my drive home. I have never felt so distant from the institutional, western church as now. I feel like the last ten years of my life, church has been at the center, and this is the first year the chain has snapped and I’ve drifted out into the wild blue yonder. Anyway, I wrote down my feelings about the church in my journal, and this is what is hidden away in those pages:

The church is no mere harlot; it is a brothel.
It is 1,000 gongs and 10,000 cymbals.
It is as much set apart as a rectum, which expels crap into the world daily.
It is shockingly profane.
The church loves its neighbors the way a bullet loves flesh.
The church is one catatonic body, many malignant parts.
The church is an alien in a strange land, though the planet of origin is certainly questionable.
The church consists of a priesthood that is royal in terms of height, distance, and peculiarity.
The gates of hell do not prevail against it for they do so often protect it.
The church is Chernobyl on a hill, radiating its message to all people.
Simply put, the church is not much.
Though often a thousand times more militant, we are lesser than Gideon’s army.
Thus it is a very good thing that God can do so much with so little.
We have given as little as possible, so perhaps he will give as much as possible.
And perhaps he already did.



Oh, and here’s the bonus panel!

note: just in case you go check out SMBC, sometimes he can be a bit raunchy

The Gall, The Chains

•Friday, February 20, 2009 • Leave a Comment

…nothing fancy, just a recent entry from my journal as I grapple…

The Gall, The Chains

I am Simon.
The gall.
The chains.
The silver.
And all.
I am Simon.
…click here for the end of the poem…

Alexi Murdoch

•Friday, February 20, 2009 • 1 Comment

I’m really feeling this today.

Dead Man Waking

•Tuesday, February 17, 2009 • 3 Comments

 

I know you're thinking I'm going to make it big time as a Bible illustrator some day...

Well, Jimmy, grandma’s dead.

I was in a small group the other day. We read how Stephen had rocks chucked at his head until he “fell asleep”. Real pleasant. (see Acts 6-7ish if you like unpleasantries)

Someone asked why the text says he fell asleep rather than just saying Stephen died. Good question. I did a little research and some remembering of past things, so I wrote out some basic notes on this whole sleeping thing. The following are my notes as well as a brief excursus regarding a wonderful legend about the beloved Apostle John.
…click here for the rest o’ the post…