Monday, May 17, 2010

Packing My Trailer

Guilty. I am blogging when I should be packing my trailer. The rain is threatening today. I knew yesterday that the rain was coming. Yesterday the sun was shining. Did I pack my trailer then? NO. Why not? I dunno. Packing is the part I hate about vacation.

Now that I have my confession out of the way, let me move on to other things.

I am starting a Happiness Project. I haven’t started yet. I bought the book by Gretchen Rubin. I have so many other MUST READS right now, I just couldn’t bring myself to start it when it came. That’s okay. I give myself permission to wait until I come home from our trip. Anyone want to join me? I’d love to share via my blog or email..... My friend, Robin, is doing it too.

On our trip I plan to read the Kreutzer Sonata by Leo Tolstoy. This came as a recommendation of my 15 year old who said, “Mom! You have to read this book!” Okay, then. How can I not?

I am also reading Nehemiah and maybe sometime today, I can finish the sermon series I have been listening to from Alistair Begg. He is listed on the right side of my blog if you want to check “Al” out. He’s got a cool Scottish accent, so in addition to good Bible teaching, he’s easy on the ears.

Bold Love by Dr. Dan B. Allender. Heavy. That’s all I can say about that. Major heart/journal/prayer material in that book. MAYBE I’ll read more on vacation. I’m bringing Bold Love with me, just in case I need a shovel to dig a little deeper.

Then of course, there is the music. Road Trip routine involves new music. My kids listen to mostly Christian stuff and lots of classical music during the school year. But on Road Trips they listen to Elvis, the Beach Boys, Country (including John Denver) and musical movie soundtracks like Fiddler on the Roof. This year is the year of Latin Rock and Jazz, like Santana and Celia Cruz AND some 60’s hits like Wooly Bully. Wooly Bully and other songs in the mix are influenced by latin rhythms of the time, so it makes sense to put them together. I was going to give you the whole mix, but I’ll spare you. CD 2 - Soundtrack from Into the Woods. If you don’t know Into the Woods you should. FUN! Rent it on Netflix!

For my knitting friends, I have slouch hat, fingering weight, bright fuschia on no. 5’s. It’s slippery. I have a self-striping yarn on no. 10 circs. It’ll be hat but I don’t know yet if I want to slouch it. I am working on a purple crocheted hat with a bernat satin. Smooth! We’ll see how much yarning I do.

I’m sparing my readers the gushing. We are going to CO to see Catey graduate from homeschool highschool. Uncle Joe will pray. I will read scripture. I can hardly wait. We are also doing a blessing. Oh. Sweet. Sweet. Sweet. If I type anymore, I’ll probably start to cry for the joy of it. Then there’s Carli. I’ll have to tell you all about her after I spend 2 weeks with her. She’s coming back to CA with us. Can you think of anything more delightful than having Carli with you? Of course you can’t. That’s okay. Did I start gushing? Oh, I hope not. I’m just SO EXCITED! Maybe I should start packing my trailer......

Wednesday, May 5, 2010

Truth and Grace

Have I blogged about this before? I don’t know. Maybe I have. I’m not good with details... not even the details that come out of my own brain. I forget. Remembering. Now I know I have blogged about that before. But here we go. Back to truth and grace.

When I moved to Oakhurst 3 years ago...... You know you live in a weird place when everyone you know can tell you how long they lived here. It’s like some weird countdown we are all making so we have a frame of reference. Personally, I think it’s a contest to see who can remain sane the longest living in this quirky mountain town. Back again, to my schizophrenic blog. When I moved here, I had a heart-to-heart discussion with my mother-in-law. She can be really good for that sort of thing. Virginia, if you are reading, I love you!

Me: I feel like God is teaching me about truth and grace and I wrestle with them. I feel like I have to choose between them somehow. They both vie for my attention and I can’t seem to figure out on whose side I fall.

Mother-in-law: Aren’t they the same thing?

Whoa. Leave it to the wisdom of the wise to send you reeling for 3 years trying to figure out if she’s right.

Another mother-in-law favorite: God is the perfect parent and look how His kids turned out!

But I’ll try not to digress anymore.
Truth and grace. Bedfellows? Anyone?

This is what I know, or at least what I think I know.

Truth is found in God’s Word alone. Christians, for the most part, acknowledge that. If you want to get technical, Sola Scriptura (by scripture alone) is the infant of the Protestant Reformation and isn’t as old as we like to pretend that is. But again, for the most part, Truth is God’s and He communicates truth from His Word, the Bible.

Grace. Christians, generally speaking, cling to the Old Rugged Cross while using more infants of the Protestant Reformation to make the point. Sola Fide (by faith alone) or Sola Gratia (by grace alone). We don’t deserve the free pass to Heaven that we get when we come to Christ. That’s grace. Otherwise known as “unmerited favor” in evangelical circles. True theologians, however, understand that grace came before the Cross. Noah received grace. So did Abraham. The list goes on. God has been giving free passes since the dawn of time.

Okay. So where does one go with this, assuming I am right that truth and grace are twin sisters?

They don’t stand alone. They can’t. They aren’t just twin sisters they are conjoined twins! That’s what my mother-in-law meant! They DIE if they are separated because they share a heart!

Think about it. Truth lacking grace is condemnation. Grace lacking truth is chaos. Neither are safe places to live. They are bedfellows. They are syncretic. (Did I use that word correctly? Catey? You reading my blog or getting ready for graduation?)

So what happens in our lives when we err on EITHER side?

We are not safe people when we don’t tell the truth or live the truth. We are not safe people because we condemn ourselves or others. We are not safe people when we bask in the favoritism of God because we inevitably shirk responsibility or take on everyone else’s. We are not safe people because we create chaos.

WE are not safe people because we become KILLERS. We separate 2 things that are meant to live together. When we err on either side, we kill the heart of God.

1 John says: Grace and truth came through Jesus Christ. Both.

Search me oh God...and give me your heart.