Tuesday, September 23, 2014

John Mayall - Parchman Farm

The Real Jesus

A January 1959 letter from C. S. Lewis to Edward Lofstrom. At one point Lewis responds to something Lofstrom had asked him about by saying--

'Gentle Jesus', my elbow! The most striking thing about Our Lord is the union of great ferocity with extreme tenderness. (Remember Pascal? 'I do not admire the extreme of one virtue unless you show me at the same time the extreme of the opposite virtue. One shows one's greatness not by being at an extremity but by being simultaneously at two extremities and filling all the space between')
Add to this that He is also a supreme ironist, dialectician, and (occasionally) humorist. So go on! You are on the right track now: getting to the real Man behind all the plaster dolls that have been substituted for Him. This is the appearance in Human form of the God who made the Tiger and the Lamb, the avalanche and the rose. He'll frighten and puzzle you: but the real Christ can be loved and admired as the doll can't.

--Collected Letters of C. S. Lewis, 3:1011

This is the real Jesus not the religious Jesus, not the fake Jesus or the weak Jesus. I will worship the real Jesus.

Mose Allison Trio 1962 ~ I Don't Worry About A Thing

Charlie Parker - I've Got Rhythm

Friday, September 19, 2014

The Real Hillary According To Bill

What Wisdom! This Is Why I Love Luther

"If there is anything in us, it is not our own; it is a gift of God. But if it is a gift of God, then it is entirely a debt one owes to love, that is, to the law of Christ. And if it is a debt owed to love, then I must serve others with it, not myself.
Thus my learning is not my own; it belongs to the unlearned and is the debt I owe them...My wisdom belongs to the foolish, my power to the oppressed. Thus my wealth belongs to the poor, my righteousness to the sinners...
It is with all these qualities that we must stand before God and intervene on behalf of those who do not have them, as though clothed with someone else's garment...But even before men we must, with the same love, render them service against their detractors and those who are violent toward them; for this is what Christ did for us.” 

― Martin Luther, Luther's Works Lectures on Galatians/Chapters 5-6 Chapters 1-6

Here is how grace is manifest in the Christian's life, this is true freedom. This is what the church needs to teach and live. I must say this refreshed my weary soul and I hope it does for your soul also.

Stevie Ray Vaughan - Superstition - Live In New Orleans in 1987

Bob Dylan's The Bootleg Series Vol. 10 Another Self Portrait (1969 - 1971)

Thursday, September 18, 2014

God Uses The Weak

J. R. R. Tolkien, The Fellowship of the Ring--

'I do really wish to destroy it!' cried Frodo. 'Or, well, to have it destroyed. I am not made for perilous quests. I wish I had never seen the Ring! Why did it come to me? Why was I chosen?'
'Such questions cannot be answered,' said Gandalf. 'You may be sure that it was not for any merit that others do not possess: not for power or wisdom, at any rate. But you have been chosen, and you must therefore use such strength and heart and wits as you have.'

'But I have so little of any of those things!'

God choose what is foolish in the world to shame the wise, God chose what Is weak in the world to shame the strong (1 Cor 1:27)
God uses the foolish and the weak, the low and the despised even things that are not to bring to nothing things that are. Why does God do this? "So that no human being might boast in the presence of God" (1 Cor 1:29)

Have you ever felt like Frodo? That's actually a good place to be its the place where God can use you.

U2- "The Miracle (Of Joey Ramone)"

Otis Rush - Please Love Me

Otis Rush - Hold That Train

Friday, September 12, 2014

Miles Davis - So What

Layla - Derek and the Dominos

Released in 1970, Layla is one of the most known and loved rock songs of all time. Originally a ballad composed by Clapton with an added piano coda by Jim Gordon, Duane Allman signed on to the project, turning the ballad into the riff-driven rocker that it is today. It was released on the album "Layla and Other Assorted Love Songs," Derek and the Dominos' sole album

Dietrich Bonhoeffer on What a Christian Under the Cross Can Offer that a Secular Therapist Cannot

Dietrich Bonhoeffer from Life Together:
Whoever lives beneath the cross of Jesus, and has discerned in the cross of Jesus the utter ungodliness of all people and of their own hearts, will find there is no sin that can ever be unfamiliar.
Whoever has once been appalled by the horror of their own sin, which nailed Jesus to the cross, will no longer be appalled by even the most serious sin of another Christian; rather they know the human heart from the cross of Jesus.
Such persons know how totally lost is the human heart in sin and weakness, how it goes astray in the ways of sin—and know too that this same heart is accepted in grace and mercy.
Only another Christian who is under the cross can hear my confession. It is not experience with life but experience of the cross that makes one suited to hear confession. The most experienced judge of character knows infinitely less of the human heart than the simplest Christian who lives beneath the cross of Jesus.
The greatest psychological insight, ability, and experience cannot comprehend this one thing: what sin is. Psychological wisdom knows what need and weakness and failure are, but it does not know the ugliness of the human being. And so it also does not know that human beings are ruined only by their sin and are healed only by forgiveness. The Christian alone knows this. In the presence of a psychologist I can only be sick; in the presence of another Christian I can be a sinner.
The psychologist must first search my heart, and yet can never probe its innermost recesses. Another Christian recognizes just this: here comes a sinner like myself, a godless person who wants to confess and longs for God’s forgiveness.
The psychologist views me as if there were no God. Another believer views me as I am before the judging and merciful God in the cross of Jesus Christ.
When we are so pitiful and incapable of hearing the confession of one another, it is not due to a lack of psychological knowledge, but a lack of love for the crucified Jesus Christ.

—Dietrich Bonhoeffer, Life Together and Prayerbook of the Bible, Dietrich Bonhoeffer Works, vol. 5 (Minneapolis: Fortress Press, 1996), 114-16.

Are you living beneath the Cross of Jesus? Have you been appalled by your own sin?

Thursday, September 11, 2014

Remembering 9/11

Sunday night around 10 pm on 9/9/01 I was standing on Queens Blvd in Queens NYC admiring the twin towers as I looked into Manhattan. What a sight! I had no earthly idea what was about to happen on 9/11. I flew home to Detroit late that night and remember coming to the office Tuesday morning listening to the radio around 9 am. A breaking news report came on saying a plane had flown into one of the towers. When I arrived at the office I told Sally to turn on the TV and we sat there and watched as a second plane flew into the second tower. We were stunned
As soon as the ban on flying was lifted Mike Osminski and I flew back to NYC. Wilson Caimares Pastor of The Iglesia Misionera de Jesucristo Mike and I went down to ground zero and walked around the entire site. I remember how quiet everyone was walking around with a dazed look. At every corner a makeshift memorial was set up with signs "Have you seen this person?" We saw the beams that fell and stuck into the ground in the form of a cross. Lines of dump trucks were single file going into the site to remove rubble. The dust the destruction the sadness the grief hung in the air there was nothing to say but walk silently and pray. I will never forget those days and I pray that people will never forget them either.

Penalty Calls On Ray Rice And The NFL

Herbie Hancock - When Love Comes To Town (feat. Jonny Lang & Joss Stone) Fantastic U2 Cover

Jonny Lang - Blew Up (The House) (Lyric Video)

Only Two Options

If you desire to be justified before God, you must either bring to him a perfect righteousness of your own, and wholly renounce Christ; or else you must bring the perfect righteousness of Christ, and wholly renounce your own.
Edward Fisher, The Marrow of Modern Divinity (Christian Focus, 2009), 111

This is clear and simple

Wednesday, September 3, 2014

Star Wars Seven New Character - Yoda T

The Despair of Overcoming Chronic Temptations.

C. S. Lewis, letter to Mary Neylan, January 20, 1942:
I know all about the despair of overcoming chronic temptations.
It is not serious provided self-offended petulance, annoyance at breaking records, impatience etc doesn't get the upper hand. No amount of falls will really undo us if we keep on picking ourselves up each time. We shall of course be very muddy and tattered children by the time we reach home. But the bathrooms are all ready, the towels put out, and the clean clothes are airing in the cupboard.
The only fatal thing is to lose one's temper and give it up. It is when we notice the dirt that God is most present to us: it is the very sign of His presence.
--The Collected Letters of C. S. Lewis, Volume 2 (Cambridge University Press, 2004), 507; emphasis original

I find this extremely encouraging. Have you noticed the dirt on you? Or do you just pretend its not there. We all have "chronic temptations" that lead us to despair but we need to take hope in the fact that "no amount of falls will really undo us" God will completely clean us up once we leave this earth "the bathrooms are all ready, the towels put out and the clean clothes are airing in the cupboard" Thank you Jesus for your amazing grace.

Ships On the Ocean - Junior Wells & Buddy Guy - Hoodoo Man Blues

The Sky Is Crying- Stevie Ray Vaughan

Stevie Ray Vaughan and Double Trouble: Texas Flood