Saturday, November 16, 2013


"The mystery of lawlessness" was in the reading recently from 2 Thessalonians 2. 

It seemed an odd phrase.

So how does it compare with "the mystery of godliness" (1 Timothy 3)

Wait a cotton-pickin' minute.
Paul says the mystery of GODLINESS is what Jesus did? 

We tend to think godliness is what I think and what I say and what I do and how I feel.  And Paul has this notion that godliness is Jesus' incarnation, suffering, death, resurrection, ascension, and that these events in the Creed are preached.

Happy Things

Wooden knitting needles.

The sound and feel is just luscious in comparison to metal ones.


Friday, November 15, 2013

Hold the Traditions

After Paul talks about the falling away of many in the church, he says, "God from the beginning chose you for salvation through sanctification by the Spirit and belief in the truth, to which He called you by our gospel, for the obtaining of the glory of our Lord Jesus Christ.  Therefore, brethren, stand fast and hold the traditions which you were taught, whether by word or our epistle" (2 Thessalonian 2).

Through the Church, the Holy Spirit gave the catechism.  And the divine service with the liturgy.  And solid, Christ-centered hymns preaching the forgiveness of sins.  And the sacraments.  And ministers to speak on behalf of Jesus to us.

Do we fiercely hang onto it, as if our lives depended on it?  (For of course, they do.)  Or do we hold cheap the traditions we were taught?

When the Israelites were leaving Egypt, Moses said, "Stand still and see the salvation which the Lord shall accomplish for you this day....  The Lord will fight for you, and you shall hold your peace."

Happy Things

Good brakes.

I did NOT hit the deer tonight.  And the guy behind me reacted quickly enough that he didn't hit me.

I'm sure I left some doozy black tire-marks on the road, though.

A safe car.  With good brakes.  And an honest mechanic I trust. 

It makes me happy that I can rely on Chuck!

And on the subject of deer:
I need to use my brights more often.
And tell the kids to use theirs.
And at this time of year I need to follow people further back than usual.

Thursday, November 14, 2013

Happy Things

This is the weirdest picture, ...
but how do you show a picture of somebody not using a hymnal??

It makes me happy to see people singing in church without needing a hymnal. 

My brother-in-law during the processional at his wedding.

The acolytes while they're extinguishing candles.

The elders who are carrying the pall to the coffin during the opening hymn of a funeral.

The 4-year-old who can't read yet.

The 20-something young lady from Indiana who transferred to our church, and several people asked me when they saw her singing on the way back from the communion rail, "Where did she learn all those hymns?"

I suspect the saints and angels in heaven do not use hymnbooks.  The books are necessary on earth.  But it's sweet when the words are so deep within us that we can freely sing from the heart.

Wednesday, November 13, 2013

Happy Things

A letter.

A real letter!

A few days before Jane started her blogging of HappyThings, Elva wrote me a letter.  I can't even describe how delightful it was to find a letter in the mail!

And yesterday, I came home from work to find a letter from my goddaughter.  Joy, oh joy!

(Idea:  I could write more letters, and pass along the joy!  Wouldn't that be fun?)

Tuesday, November 12, 2013

Happy Things

How can a simple fried egg be SO good?!

Egg.  From a happy chicken.  Cooked in a cast-iron skillet.  With a touch of sea salt and black pepper. 

Mmmm.  Hot, runny-yolked egg!