1. Paul tells Timothy that prayers are to be made for all people, even for kings and everyone who is in a high position, “that we may lead a peaceful and quiet life, godly and dignified in every way.” I keep reading these words and walking away with the idea that we should shut up about our leaders unless we are praying for them, so we can lead dignified lives.
2. I don’t want to finish the Wendell Berry novel I’m reading.
3. When grace overtakes, we look for reasons to love and admire others, even when their sins are glaring and offensive. One, because we know our own sin. And two, because we were and are loved despite our sins against God.
4. I think Paul made a mistake when he said, “But if we have food and clothing, with these we will be content.” He forgot “records.”
5. It is no irony that I will start a study about “fear and worry”with the Sunday School class I teach and I find myself having to deal with fears about the study and the class itself.
6. The humidity has been so thick the last couple of days you could cut it with a knife, which is good because because I can have a slice of humidity on this diet.
7. A Christianity without a God who is angry at sin and sending people to hell, is of no use at all. It empties churches. It hollows out souls. And is easily replaced by temporary cares.
8. Miles Davis’ Porgy and Bess on a Saturday Morning.
9. I’ve been wondering if sin can be loved. Not it’s benefits or the pleasure it brings but the sin itself. Is our or anyone’s affection for sin ever “love?” I cannot help but think it cannot be loved. Sin can be pursued with great passion, but true love is reserved for whatever conforms to the glory of God, himself. So, even when those who do not believe in God, when they love they are living out the reality of their being created in his image. And I assume this, even when they are sinning.
10. I have begun to have weird dreams while on this diet. And the other night I had a powerful dream about reaching our for beauty. Beauty, not as the world sees it in photoshopped, liposuctioned, starving models on the cover of magazines, but beauty like Wendell Berry’s descriptions of the woods and Paul Desmond’s alto sax. Billie Holiday’s aching voice. Seamus Heaney’s lines. I couldn’t get over it in the dream. It has held over in my waking hours.