Pictures, postcards and Vitamin E

A picture beautiful enough to be a postcard.  I have never been to California or seen this scenery in person, but its beauty shines through.  Its wonderful to visit new places, to see magnificent vistas that take the breath away and leave one with a memory that lasts for years.  As I was thinking about how wonderful this picture was, I thought of this passage from the book of 2nd Corinthians.

2 Corinthians 4:2-6 (WEB)

2) But we have renounced the hidden things of shame, not walking in craftiness, nor handling the word of God deceitfully; but by the manifestation of the truth commending ourselves to every man’s conscience in the sight of God.
3) Even if our Good News is veiled, it is veiled in those who perish;
4) in whom the god of this world has blinded the minds of the unbelieving, that the light of the Good News of the glory of Christ, who is the image of God, should not dawn on them.
5) For we don’t preach ourselves, but Christ Jesus as Lord, and ourselves as your servants for Jesus’ sake;
6) seeing it is God who said, “Light will shine out of darkness,” who has shone in our hearts, to give the light of the knowledge of the glory of God in the face of Jesus Christ.

You can tell a lot about people by just looking at their face. Lines on it show stress, happiness, grief and joy.  But what I like most is to see the look of love; I was taken aback yesterday, when my wife put vitamin E on my incision scar and then gently massaged the surrounding muscles.  I can't explain it, but I have never felt more loved in my whole life.  The only way I can explain it was that it was more beautiful than the picture, but even that doesn't really do it justice.  Perhaps when I see Jesus face to face I might really be able to capture the feeling.  Until then, I will keep looking at pictures, postcards and sunsets and look for love.



Turkey day has come and gone.  Millions upon millions of us ate way too much and then fell asleep.  I enjoyed this cartoon because the turkeys were clever enough to make like they were cows and of course, everyone knows you don't have beef for Thanksgiving.  By their cleverness they probably made it through their most dangerous time of year, but sooner or later...  Then I thought of these verses from the Bible.

Hebrews 9:27-28 (WEB)

27) Inasmuch as it is appointed for men to die once, and after this, judgment,
28) so Christ also, having been offered once to bear the sins of many, will appear a second time, without sin, to those who are eagerly waiting for him for salvation.

Sooner or later we all come to grips with the fact that we will not live forever.  Those who follow Christ have a blessing after death and that is worth waiting for.  In the meantime.... moooo!


Too much of a good thing

Yesterday, I went to the surgeon and the news was all good; I reached all my targets and had my 20 staples removed.  Even though the scar is about 10 inches long, I think it should heal ok.  The real surprise in this knee replacement thing is the amount of hard work required to get any results at all.  Ok, when I was in my 20's I lifted weights for a few years, but I never even came close to looking like any of these guys.  But I wonder, how much is too much?  Which reminded me of a verse in the New Testament.

1 Timothy 4:8 (WEB)
8) For bodily exercise has some value, but godliness has value in all things, having the promise of the life which is now, and of that which is to come.

I remember how great I felt when I lifted weights, but that is nothing compared to the knowledge of what waits for me in heaven.  When it comes to godliness, there is no such thing as too much; you just get better and better on the inside.  As far as the body builders in the picture is concerned, too much muscle is just that ... TOO MUCH.


Dogs and the exhibition of goodness

Over the past couple of years I have begun to re-think what I really like as a result of picking pictures for this blog.  Animals like this dog seem to be at the top of the list.  I especially like pencil drawings because somehow they seem to reflect the inner beauty of the artist.  Now, I freely admit I don't know any of them personally but the beauty that each picture exhibits says something for them all.  How nice they really are undoubtedly varies with the artist, but each a every one shows at least some goodness. Lets take this concept to its absurdity and consider a person whom most people would say is not a nice man; Pontius Pilate.

John 18:28-31 (WEB)

28) They led Jesus therefore from Caiaphas into the Praetorium. It was early, and they themselves didn’t enter into the Praetorium, that they might not be defiled, but might eat the Passover.
29) Pilate therefore went out to them, and said, “What accusation do you bring against this man?”
30) They answered him, “If this man weren’t an evildoer, we wouldn’t have delivered him up to you.”
31) Pilate therefore said to them, “Take him yourselves, and judge him according to your law.” Therefore the Jews said to him, “It is not lawful for us to put anyone to death,”

John 19:1-22 (WEB)

1) So Pilate then took Jesus, and flogged him.
2) The soldiers twisted thorns into a crown, and put it on his head, and dressed him in a purple garment.
3) They kept saying, “Hail, King of the Jews!” and they kept slapping him.
4) Then Pilate went out again, and said to them, “Behold, I bring him out to you, that you may know that I find no basis for a charge against him.”
5) Jesus therefore came out, wearing the crown of thorns and the purple garment. Pilate said to them, “Behold, the man!”
6) When therefore the chief priests and the officers saw him, they shouted, saying, “Crucify! Crucify!” Pilate said to them, “Take him yourselves, and crucify him, for I find no basis for a charge against him.”
7) The Jews answered him, “We have a law, and by our law he ought to die, because he made himself the Son of God.”
8) When therefore Pilate heard this saying, he was more afraid.
9) He entered into the Praetorium again, and said to Jesus, “Where are you from?” But Jesus gave him no answer.
10) Pilate therefore said to him, “Aren’t you speaking to me? Don’t you know that I have power to release you, and have power to crucify you?”
11) Jesus answered, “You would have no power at all against me, unless it were given to you from above. Therefore he who delivered me to you has greater sin.”
12) At this, Pilate was seeking to release him, but the Jews cried out, saying, “If you release this man, you aren’t Caesar’s friend! Everyone who makes himself a king speaks against Caesar!”
13) When Pilate therefore heard these words, he brought Jesus out, and sat down on the judgment seat at a place called “The Pavement,” but in Hebrew, “Gabbatha.”
14) Now it was the Preparation Day of the Passover, at about the sixth hour. He said to the Jews, “Behold, your King!”
15) They cried out, “Away with him! Away with him! Crucify him!” Pilate said to them, “Shall I crucify your King?” The chief priests answered, “We have no king but Caesar!”
16) So then he delivered him to them to be crucified. So they took Jesus and led him away.
17) He went out, bearing his cross, to the place called “The Place of a Skull,” which is called in Hebrew, “Golgotha,”
18) where they crucified him, and with him two others, on either side one, and Jesus in the middle.
19) Pilate wrote a title also, and put it on the cross. There was written, “JESUS OF NAZARETH, THE KING OF THE JEWS.”
20) Therefore many of the Jews read this title, for the place where Jesus was crucified was near the city; and it was written in Hebrew, in Latin, and in Greek.
21) The chief priests of the Jews therefore said to Pilate, “Don’t write, ‘The King of the Jews,’ but, ‘he said, I am King of the Jews.’”
22) Pilate answered, “What I have written, I have written.”

Pilate was a Roman Governor, and as such had a duty to act in the best interest of the Roman Emperor.  He did what he had to do to keep the peace and collect taxes.  His callousness towards the life of Jesus shows the brutality of the empire and the immorality of acting according to the rules of expediency.  However, even this person was used by God, for his sign says it all: "JESUS OF NAZARETH, THE KING OF THE JEWS".  And his testimony confirms the fact: "What I have written, I have written".  So, even bad people can show goodness, if God desires to work through them.  I just wonder what God had in mind by the picture of the dog, for its architech was Adolph Hitler???


The wrong answer

I had a very busy day getting ready for my surgery Friday, went to bed very early and then woke up in the wee hours of the morning.  Its been awhile since I did a post, so I started looking though my pictures.  Then, I came across this little jewel.  Its an answer found on a high school exam and frankly, I laughed when I saw it.  It was seemed especially funny, being the day after our elections, when everyone is trying to put a "spin" on what happened Tuesday.  However you put it though, the Democrats didn't do so well and the Republicans did.  Which reminded me of this verse from the New Testament.

John 8:32 (WEB)

32) You will know the truth, and the truth will make you free.”

Lies try to bend and shape the truth into a new reality, something more palatable to those who don't like the face value of reality.  The truth is just that, the truth.  If you want truth that matters, listen to Jesus, otherwise believe what you want fibula's and all.