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Friday, September 13, 2002
- Atlantic Monthly with Philip Jenkins -
I am supposed to read
this article which I have not read as of yet. This post is mainly for my person benefit. Apologies.

posted by Jamie 9:14 AM

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- - -
- From "Jesus, With Thy Church Abide" -
Keep her life and doctrine pure,
Help her, patient, to endure,
Trusting in Thy promise sure:
We beseech Thee, hear us.

All her fettered powers release
Bid our strife and envy cease,
Grant the heav’nly gift of peace:
We beseech Thee, hear us.

May she guide the poor and blind,
Seek the lost until she find,
And the broken hearted bind:
We beseech Thee, hear us.

link ]

posted by Jamie 9:07 AM

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- - -
- Sacraments -
In the PCA BCO, it states that the church cannot suspend someone from the sacraments for a definite length of time - it must always be indefinitely. Seeing as the Lord's table is one for wretched sinners and not the righteous, this makes a lot of sense.

posted by Jamie 9:02 AM

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Thursday, September 12, 2002
- By George, she's got it! -
I finally can answer the question "So, how long have you played guitar?" I've played guitar for nine years. I just felt like I had to work that out right now, but feel free to check my math since it is definitely NOT my forte. I started in August of 1993. My first guitar only had three strings because the tuning pegs were broken, but it was a good deal at $25.

posted by Jamie 3:13 PM

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- - -
- Please report to room one sixty nine -
The best part of working at a university is that all the doors are labeled. Hence the women's bathroom is room #167. That just strikes me as strange.

posted by Jamie 3:10 PM

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- - -
- Charlie Peacock on Great Sinners -
"They are more afraid of not knowing the truth than having been found in error . They regret naming anything false that is in reality true, or anything true that is in reality false. The really great sinners in the church are like that." [At The Crossroads, 22]

posted by Jamie 1:15 PM

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- - -
- Let us love the Lord who bought us, pitied us when enemies -
I had the best disaster ever on Tuesday. The building next to the park & ride lot I normally use posted guards around the parking lot to prevent commuters from using their space. Since this is the only park & ride lot on my side of town, it is usually overflowing - almost at double occupancy. So Tuesday, I had to drive across town to another lot. Fortunately my boss is pretty understanding - especially since I was an hour and a half late for work that day.

Since, I refuse to drive across town every day in rush hour traffic, I checked up on other options. Turns out there is an intercity bus that goes from my neighborhood straight to the university where I work, so today I poured my coffee into my newest Bruegger's travel mug and walked 8 minutes or so to the bus stop where I sat, drank my coffee, and read Charlie Peacock. Recently, I have been lamenting how I have no time. I had starting walking in the evenings earlier this year, but quit once the Carolina's 90-degrees-and-muggy weather began. Now that it's cooling off, I've had no idea how to start it back up again. Those walks were really precious, because they gave me time to process everything else going on as well as just giving me time to notice the world around me.

This is just great! Now, instead of starting and ending every day fighting rush hour traffic, I can curl up on my own bench in a sparsely populated bus and daydream, marvel at how you can see all the leaves on a tree even if it's far away, or read one of the many books I'm always in the middle of. Then I track through our neighborhood trails on my way home singing hymns under my breath (only because I don't want to draw too much attention to myself).

Let us praise, and join the chorus
Of the saints enthroned on high;
Here they trusted him before us,
Now their praises fill the sky:
"Thou hast washed us with thy blood;
Thou art worthy, Lamb of God!"

posted by Jamie 8:57 AM

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- - -
Tuesday, September 10, 2002
- Let us sing, though fierce temptation threaten hard to bear us down -
So I may like the town of Nashville, but still have major problems with the industry there and how is an idealistic girl from North Carolina going to do anything to promote reform in a place where it's all about who you know. I know the best of them and I refuse to play the game of who knows who. They could become goat herders for all I care and I would then help them sell milk and cheese.

I must remember that it's God who calls me into his own works. It is his church and his ways are not mine. So I only say "Appear desire of nations, Prince and Savior come!" and remind myself that this world is not all that there can be. One day we will not have to wrestle with sin any longer.

posted by Jamie 7:04 PM

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- - -
- Sometimes a light surprises -
I think I'm ready to parse my Nashville/Indelible Grace Conference experience. I have more or less a bunch of interconnected thoughts, but I'm not going to try to connect them here. I feel like I will miss something if I do. Apologies, for this will be long.
  1. I like Nashville - at least the part around Belmont & Vanderbilt. The architecture is pretty. The buildings are short enough that you don't feel swallowed. There are trees, flowers, and shrubs. The coffee shops are unique - not of the Starbucks lineage. The folks on the street are normal and quirky. There is scope for the imagination. Unless there is an unforeseen bend in the road, I will not be moving there - however I will visit more than willingly.

  2. In his lecture (which I am paraphrasing - quite terribly, in fact), Charlie Peacock exhorted us not to gripe about the Christian arts if we are not willing to pursue change. I have heard him say this before, but it hit home once again. I have a portable soapbox that I often stand on and I am so willing to just let the entire industry burn and or to just merely disown it. However, this is not an option. They are just as much of the Christ's Church as I am and I do not have access to the keys that lock the kingdom's gates - nor should I for, if I am to be honest, my hands are just as stained as theirs. I took a vow to study the purity and peace of the church and though taken before a local congregation, I believe this vow is universal in scope. In the same way that many have taken pains to help reform my thinking (and I don't mean this as a form of theology, but more along the lines of sanctification), so I should take the same pains with others in the church. Unless critique has a foundation of love, it is useless.

  3. My greatest passion is the possibility of helping reform the Christian arts. I'm willing to be in either forefront or background - this part doesn't matter. Also, it's not so much that I want to destroy the bad as much as I want to widen the vision of what art could encompass if the church were to "rediscover" Christian liberty and the joy creation. It seems the church is always reacting to cultural trends - either condemning them or copying them. I want to see the arts restored and respected by both the church and the world. It may not bring any worldly, practical good, but it shows another side of God's character. This is justification enough!

  4. I don't wonder enough. I am always doing something so I miss the beauty of water poured on coffee grains, the cool morning breeze, the kind remarks of a stranger, etc. I need to take time to just be instead of constantly filling my head with information. There was a time where I could sit for an hour doing nothing - no company, no music, no books - I just sat and enjoyed being alive. Sometimes I prayed. Sometimes I wondered. Sometimes I just noticed. I want to recover this.

  5. I am a musician and my calling lies here - though still somewhat embryonic. Ironically, I’m just beginning to see myself as so. What may not be apparent to others is that I don't want to be so musically driven, but so I was created and so I will labor and joyful labor. It is hard enough to create after a full days work - mainly because I need a lot of time to be still and process before the creative juices start flowing. This also means I'm chronically tired which affects my day job at times. Creating is not always fun – it means pulling yourself out of bed when half-asleep because you had an incredible idea, skipping meals because you can’t stop, and sometimes offending others because you are just to darn distracted. However, though I would not choose this, neither would I trade it. It weighs heavy, yet is not a burden.

    The hardest part is making myself take time to pull away from the world and withdraw into myself which means I must forgo thing I see as my duty. There is a sort of unbalanced-balancing act that is necessary to this sort of life. Something is always left undone, but I believe this is more or less part of living in a fallen world. Maybe one day I will have the time I crave, but for now I don't need to have to feel guilty for the sacrifices I make for a couple of hours with my guitar or dulcimer. Only when music or creating becomes I idol, do I need to feel guilty.

    Finally, in saying that I am called to be a musician, I don't necessarily mean that I will earn my bread and butter through song, but it is nonetheless important that I pursue this as a necessary task. Our Lord has reasons that we cannot comprehend and if he sees it necessary that my time must be splintered among many unrelated tasks, then I can trust that it is what is best for me and he sees that this is what will most prepare me for glory. There I will worship God with my best skills without interruption. Until then, I trust that I will be sustained.

  6. I'm tired of fighting or being a team of one. This weekend it was impressed upon me that there are other with visions similar to my own. Also, that we don't always have to run out and defend goodness from mediocrity with sword and shield. We do not command the fight to maintain purity - this is our Lord's battle and we follow him. It is important that we understand that his ways will not always make sense to us. Though there is a time for defense, there is also a time to be proactive. We can pursue goodness and excellence putting aside what saddens us and hopefully we will soon be followed - or better yet we will find companions for the way.

  7. I need to stop expecting others to remind me that the world is in a constant drought. I need to remember that what sustains my soul is Christ and Christ alone and I need to go to him with all my longing. I need to release my heart and let it rest before the empty Cross. God forbid that I try to guide myself. I need to learn stop thinking in terms of duty and instead think in terms of feasting. I am my Beloved and he is mine. He has brought me to his banqueting table and into his house of wine. Although all I see around me day-by-day will disappear one day very soon, this is secure. There will be a mighty shout and we will then feast - with clean feet and without tears.

I think that is all I have to say. I don't have much to say about hymns - I've been a convert of that particular movement for close to a decade. And though it's sometimes nice to be the choir that is preached to, I don't have any new thoughts there. I feel different though. Maybe it's just that I had time to think and I've been so muddled of late. However, I feel clear-headed right now - tired and secure.

posted by Jamie 10:58 AM

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- - -
Monday, September 09, 2002
- And scarce know how to pray or speak -
Speaking of Katy, she introduced me to a great hymn this weekend. Here it is (but to hear the melody, you must buy an
RUF Hymnal. However, take hope! It's a worthy investment!)

A Sinner's Cry
Hear gracious God, a sinner's cry,
For I have nowhere else to fly
My hope, my only hope's in thee
O God, be merciful to me

To thee I come, a sinner poor
And wait for mercy at thy door
Indeed I've nowhere else to flee
O God, be merciful to me.

To Thee I come, a sinner weak
And scarce know how to pray or speak
From fear and weakness set me free
O God, be merciful to me!

To Thee I come, a sinner vile
Upon me, Lord, vouchsafe to smile;
Mercy, through blood, I make my plea
O God be merciful to me

To thee I come, a sinner great
And well Thou knowest all my state
Yet full forgiveness is with Thee
O God, be merciful to me

To Thee I come, a sinner lost
Nor have I aught wherein to trust
But where Thou art, Lord, I would be
O God, be merciful to me

To glory bring me, Lord, at last
And there, when all my fears are past
With all Thy saints, then, I'll agree
God has been merciful to me

Words - Samuel Medley / Music - Katy Bowser

posted by Jamie 1:16 PM

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- - -
- Strong Bad -
On the recommendation of my friend, Katy, I have now discovered hours of enjoyment in
Strong Bad. I've have been crying over this one. It's so funny that it's painful.

"Do you stand for good or for awesome?"

posted by Jamie 11:10 AM

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