Wednesday, September 19, 2007

Tevye was Right

In the final scene of "Fiddler On The Roof" - the Anatevkans are gathered as they mourn the necessity to depart their cherished town.

As is true to form with the dark comedic format this tragic story tells, the town's spiritual leader (No name given other than "Our Beloved Rabbi") remarks: "Our forefathers have been forced out of many, many places at a moment's notice." Tevye has a typical dichotomous simple/profound response: "Maybe that's why we always wear our hats."

As we face the Abrahamic dilemma of "going to a place we do not know" we trust and take comfort in God's promises. They are not mere poetry - rather revelation to rely on with a proven track record for multiple generations of followers.

Among the promises are the words found in Isaiah 45:2 &3

I will go before you
and will level the mountains;
I will break down gates of bronze
and cut through bars of iron.

I will give you the treasures of darkness,
riches stored in secret places,
so that you may know that I am the LORD,
the God of Israel, who summons you by name.



Tuesday, September 11, 2007

Java Connection Blog

We've set up a site where people can get updates on our progress and support.

We're trying to set it up where people can subscribe and it will tell them when new posts are -- well, posted (I had a friend inform me he "doesn't do blogs" because it requires going to it and just seeing what has already been seen).

You can link to it with the URL -

Friday, September 7, 2007

The God of Peace

We are soothed, Lord. You have such a perfect parental way of letting go and then intervening. How is it that you accomplish your perfect ways through fallible creatures made in your image?

Hallel lu YHWH Shalom

Wednesday, September 5, 2007

Leah and Rachel?

More options seem to be popping up in the near horizon. The franchise approach will put what seems to be an attainable time frame on everything. But other considerations are being presented before us that will necessitate the Godly virtue of patience (something I keep asking God to give me and without delay ;-D )

I think about the Hebrews characterization of faith and it puts in mind part of Jacob's story. I guess he thought he was being extremely patient when he worked for Laban for 7 years in order to marry Rachel. He ends up with a "not so fast" experience that would certainly tend to derail a few and create a nasty litigation situation in our Western society. But he perseveres - marries Leah and then works another 7 years until he can marry Rachel (ix-nay the igamy-bay).

Let's see what unfolds. I thought we were on a distinct path - but I should know better. Surprises wouldn't be surprises if they didn't surprise us.

Skano en ego,


Tuesday, September 4, 2007

Provocative Pistos

The writer of Hebrews begins what human beings have structured into "chapter 11" (hope there's no correlation - yikes!) with "Now faith is being sure of what we hope for and certain of what we do not see. This is what the ancients were commended for."

The writer goes on to list examples - but there is no final resolution in the context to life in the mode of taking in oxygen and giving off carbon dioxide (might as well be monoxide ;-D ). There is always a sojourning aspect.(v 13 And they admitted that they were aliens and strangers on earth... v 16 Instead, they were longing for a better country—a heavenly one. Therefore God is not ashamed to be called their God, for he has prepared a city for them.")

TWICE - it says that none of them received what has been promised (vv 13 & 39).

So what good is our stepping out in faith and going from a mostly conventional and convenient context to a destiny full of uncertainties and what appears as instability??? - the LONGING. And God is not ashamed to be called "their" God.

It has dawned on me recently that God's greatest Kingdom (reigning) moments were achieved with and through those who were mobile and a bit uncertain. A look back at the Story reveals that all the trouble took place when people were settled and surrounded by secure edifices.

Now we're at a point where faith/believe ("pistos") is provoking us. We are all over the map emotionally (excited, angry and trusting). We thought we communicated our vision with integrity. We discussed the option of selling our house (telling people that we were downsizing) and then making known the direction we sensed to venture out. No. That would not be just.

So we inform the church that we are pursing our vision and that we will be conscientious to make every effort to provide a smooth transition - and when we depart will be contingent on the sale of our house. Lord - what happened? Did we do this wrong??? Some have said so. What other way could we have done this? You're in control (I think). Why would a leadership cluster decide that 90 days is long enough? I'm still trying to figure out - who's the "hoser" and who is the "hosee?"

I thought I knew what faith was as I have taught and encouraged people for 30 years. Now I'm pondering what it really is. I know what I hope for and I have a pretty good idea of what I want to see. The "sure" and the "certain" part are evading me now.