Wednesday, March 24, 2010

Evidence-based Practice?

Isaiah 11:2-4
The Spirit of the Lord will rest on Him,
The spirit of wisdom and understanding
The spirit of counsel and strength,
The spirit of knowledge and the fear of the Lord.
And He will not judge by what His eyes see,
Nor make a decision by what His ears hear;
But with righteousness He will judge the poor,
And decide with fairness for the afflicted of the earth

In our 21st century world, judging by what we see is actually quite an established and verified practice.  It means you've actually experienced something, not just heard about it through the grapevine.  In a more familiar sense, when we actually see someone do something, we're much more likely to cast judgment on their character then if we just hear about it.

But God is far different.  He doesn't hold to our standards of human reason.  He not only refuses to judge by what He hears, but He also refuses to judge by what He sees.

Instead, God judges using a completely different scale - His own righteousness.  So what if He's seen me, the worst of all sinners, betray Him time and time again?  So what if He's heard of my failings?  When the world would quickly cast their judgment as "GUILTY", Christ holds up His hand to stop the court case.  And at His movement, Satan flees.  Because on Christ's hands are the marks of His righteousness - the righteousness that judges me and finds me holy, just as He is holy.

Evidence-based practice?  I think not.  Based on the evidence, I am toast.  I have nothing on my side to speak for me - my good works are faulty, my attempts at holiness are failures.  But I have a God who is on my side, and He scatters all the evidence against me and replaces it with the evidence of His perfect character.

Sunday, March 07, 2010

Rhetorical Question

It's no secret that I'm very much in love with my future husband.  Is it also as much public knowledge that I am madly in love with my God?


I have a brother.  His name is Joel.  He's been my best friend ever since day one.

I used to pull his long blond curls when I was a baby.  I think that began my fascination with curls.  It also was the beginning of a great friendship. We were always either boiling mad at each other or best friends.  There was rarely an in-between.  And usually the boiling mad would give out to the best friends; that's just the way it worked.

All of my favorite childhood memories involve Joel.  We moved around a lot but he was always my guaranteed friend.  The world could be crashing down around us and you'd find us fighting it out for each other.

My best memories are of Joel.

There was the day at our little cabin in Idaho; we had always wanted to go fishing and this was the day to make it happen.  Worms weren't very easy to obtain but centipedes were.  We gathered a whole bread bag full of them.  Unfortunately, we ran out of time.  (Not that we had the other necessary equipment anyway.  I don't think we had thought ahead far enough to realize we needed a hook.)  I remember mournfully dumping the bag over the bridge rail and looking down at the water with Joel.  We hoped that the fish would have a good meal with the centipedes we had found.

I remember long road trips in the back of the camper.  We'd read for hours and then, when it got dark, stare out at the passing cars, talking about anything and everything.  I wonder what we talked about for so long.

We'd go to the library every music-lesson day.  We'd quietly compete to see who was getting the most books.  And by books, I mean piles and piles of books.  I got mad when Joel started reading books from the adult section.  He would justify his smaller number of books by pointing out the number of pages or their reading difficulty.  Twasn't fair.  I would try to act like I was interested.  I remember one time when I stole his book on quantum physics.  I tried to "pretend" I was reading it.  I think I made it to page four before becoming completely lost and bored.  I'm sure he had me figured out but he was nice about it anyway.

Joel and I always rate weddings on the quality of their mints.  We've played in so many, we have quite the accurate rating system.  I think I'll let Joel pick out the mints for my wedding. ;)

Joel led the way when it came to taking God seriously.  I watched him begin to read his Bible for himself, go on mission trips, and share his testimony.  It made me want to do the same.

I remember friday nights after the parents had gone to bed.  We'd sit in the living room and talk or do something fun - like toss green grapes across the room and catch them in our mouths.

I've always been fiercely protective of my brother.  I'll defend him until the day I die.  And I usually end up crying a lot too.  He means the world to me and I can't imagine life without him.

Friendships are dynamic.  They change; they grow.  It's a bit weird to be getting married; It's just been the two of us for so long.  As excited as I am to be getting married, I don't want things with my best friend to change.  All I know is that Joel is my brother and he will be for the rest of my life, and after that, and in heaven. Nothing will ever change that.

Rube Goldberg Machine

I remember seeing part of this on some newscast show on a TV at the hotel where some of our group stayed in Haiti over Spring Break.  I thought it looked interesting but didn't give it a second thought until I saw it today on one of the design/invention blogs that I follow.

I'm not a fan of the music, but seriously, you should mute it and check it out! This Rube Goldberg Machine was filmed in ONE SHOT! Crazy!

Found via {thedonutproject}