Good afternoon! Quick hits on a Wednesday afternoon while I work on finishing up the last of the Dunkin Donuts coffee beans Rita received for donating blood a couple of weeks ago and wistfully look forward to a return to good, old-fashioned, dark and strong Starbucks…
- Spent much of yesterday tuning in and out of the Inauguration ceremonies. I was impressed positively by some, and negatively by others (those booing President Bush for instance). I loved the musical interlude featuring Yo-Yo Ma, Yitzak Perlman. It was a stirring, beautiful performance, fitting for such a day of pageantry. The poem however? What was that about? I heard someone on the radio this morning say it was an example of postmodern poetry. Now look, I know better than to think that all poetry has to rhyme, but at the same time, when I hear a poet is going to read for the Inauguration of our President, I'd like to think I'll be inspired and have my breath taken away by the words spoken. Instead I was left scratching my head, thinking, "That's the best they could do?"
- I've been pleased to hear President Obama's recent emphasis on the reality that the American people will be the ones to pull us out of our crisis. I thought the best moment of the speech yesterday was this: "Our workers are no less productive than when this crisis began. Our
minds are no less inventive, our goods and services no less needed than
they were last week or last month or last year. Our capacity remains
undiminished. But our time of standing pat, of protecting narrow
interests and putting off unpleasant decisions – that time has surely
passed. Starting today, we must pick ourselves up, dust ourselves off,
and begin again the work of remaking America." I can only hope that when the time comes, we will realize that the government will not solve our problems, but that its best role is to allow the freedom and ingenuity of the American people to work towards our remaking.
- Very excited to start this week our once-a-month focus on a major theme of Scripture. We're going to start looking at redemption this week, and so we'll be on a bit of a whirlwind tour of Scripture leading up to the first mention of redemption in the Hebrew Scriptures found in Exodus 6. It'll be a slightly different mode of teaching, but still with the goal of challenging us to embrace the story of Scripture as our own and allowing it to shape how we see the world and ourselves in it.
- Working this week on the series starting in February on renovating our hearts. Really looking forward to that series, as I think it will remind us that our hearts are a battleground, and that God is looking to shape our lives from the inside out.
- My son, Jacob, turned seven on Sunday. I am honored and humbled that God has given me the privilege of helping to shape the life of this extraordinary child into the young man that God desires him to be. I thought last night as I prayed for him and then kissed him good night that there will come a day soon that he won't want a kiss from his father – he'll grow out of that phase. And so I kissed him again, embraced him again, and let my heart fill up with the joy of his unrestrained, unashamed love for me. I love that boy. I'm so proud of him. I cannot wait to see how the world is going to be affected by his presence in it.