Thursday, October 27, 2016

Something in the water

Today, I feel like I need some distraction from the unrelenting election coverage.  Next week, Carrie Underwood is co-hosting the CMA Awards with Brad Paisley, and I will watch.  I became a country music fan late in life, and I credit much of my interest to Carrie Underwood winning American Idol.  Carrie is an amazing example of a celebrity that can remain popular while holding on to a strong Christian witness.  I posted this fantastic version of "Amazing Grace" previously, and for something a little more current, "There Must be Something in the Water" is on her 2016 tour.

Thursday, October 20, 2016

Debate Winner

After enduring the third presidential debate last night, I feel a since of sadness over our political system.   I am not excited about voting for either major party candidate and am uneasy about how things will proceed for our country over the next four years.  I was introduced to a third alternative this week in Evan McMullin.   I know very little about him except for the media coverage since he joined the race in August as an independent.  All I can say is he seems intelligent, well-spoken and rational.  I have not seen him under pressure, so I don't know how he might respond in a debate situation, but my instincts say he would do very well.  My son, Michael, had to explain to me how it would be possible for him to actually win the election.  He wins his home state of Utah, the other two candidates split the remaining electoral votes evenly, neither has a majority, and the house of representatives appoints McMullin as president.   That would be a God-size miracle that only He could perform.  That may or may not be His will for now.  However, I know that no matter what happens, He is in charge and His agenda is the one that will become front and center one day.

Thursday, October 13, 2016

Antiphonal trumpets

Church looks different for a lot of us these days.  I grew up in a traditional Presbyterian church complete with 6-figure pipe organ.  Now my church has a 6 figure A/V booth with two cameras with operators and three remote cameras - one with joy stick.  I'm not making fun.  I love my church.  But I remember the day at 1st Pres when they added the antiphonal trumpets in the rear of the sanctuary.  The "trumpets" were driven by the pipe organ and were debuted with "God of Our Fathers Whose Almighty Hand".  But every service included The Doxology (Old 100).  I have been thinking of the Doxology recently as The Georgia Wind Symphony, which Caroline and I play in, is preparing a composition based on that hymn.  The Doxology begins with "Praise God from who all blessings flow."   As my current church is in the midst of a month of prayer, I want to recognize that every good thing is a gift from God.  That doesn't change, no matter how we worship.  And God hasn't changed either.

Thursday, October 6, 2016

Tall Order

We just started a new sermon series at The Vine titled "Kingdom Come". We are looking at how Jesus taught us to pray using The Lord's Prayer as a model.  This week we are focused on praise, adoration and God's love.  John reports Jesus' words to us in John 17:23.  "I in them and you in me.  May they be brought to complete unity to let the world know that you sent me and have loved them even as you have loved me." God loves us like he loves his own son - and that's how we are to love others.  Tall order.