Much Ado About Something

The strife between our church and the presbytery continues, with harsh words and hurt feelings on both sides, I am sure. Although we stand firmly (and thankfully) with the Kirk, I cannot help but rue the ugliness of the entire ordeal. If you have no idea what I'm talking about, here's my synopsis: In response to the denomination's decision to allow individual presbyteries the freedom to overrule ordination requirements they might deem "non-essential" and its further plans to quash any disagreement through fear and heavy-handed control tactics, our session voted to separate from the PCUSA. Our former presbytery has sent letters to congregation members requesting us to meet with them at another church in town, where they, ostensibly, will tell "their side." They then made plans, since thwarted, to send another pastor to take over the worship services that took place this morning. We are not going to the presbytery-called meeting tomorrow. I cannot fathom that they could say anything that would interest me, the more so since my one hesitation in joining the Kirk was its affiliation with the liberal PCUSA. We are, however, going to the congregation meeting on Wednesday, when the membership will vote on a new affiliation with the Evangelical Presbyterian Church denomination.
That's my summary. I've been keeping up with events on Pastor Tom's blog (see links), but many of the comments and criticisms there are disheartening, even though many of them are not from within our congregation. When I read the poem below on the "Wittingshire" blog today, it seemed very relevant.
His Savior's Words, Going to the Cross

Have, have ye no regard, all ye
Who pass this way, to pity me,
Who am a man of misery!

A man both bruised, and broke, and one
Who suffers not here for mine own,
But for my friends' transgression!

Ah! Sion's Daughters, do not fear
The Cross, the Cords, the Nails, the Spear,
The Myrrh, the Gall, the Vinegar:

For Christ, your loving Savior, hath
Drunk up the wine of God's fierce wrath;
Only, there's left a little froth,

Less for to taste, than for to show,
What bitter cups had been your due,
Had He not drank them up for you.

--Robert Herrick (1591-1674)



I have FINALLY reconvened reading Chesterton's Heretics, to be followed by Orthodoxy, after a. . .3 year?. . .hiatus caused by too much homework. I'm very excited. Please forgive me, kind giver of this book.
Now, I am going to regale you with quotes.

On Oscar Wilde. . .
"In the fifteenth century men cross-examined and tormented a man because he preached some immoral attitude; in the nineteenth century we feted and flattered Oscar Wilde because he preached such an attitude, and then broke his heart in penal servitude because he carried it out. It may be a question which of the two methods was the more cruel; there can be no kind of question which was the more ludicrous. The age of the Inquisition has not at least the disgrace of having produced a society which made an idol of the very same man for preaching the very same things which it made him a convict for practising."
On the failure of modern "free-spirited" artists to powerfully effect anything, good or bad, compared to those of "less free" and more devout times. . .
"Milton does not merely beat [the modern artistic classes] at his piety, he beats them at their own irreverence. In all their little books of verse you will not find a finer defiance of God than Satan's [in Paradise Lost]. Now will you find the grandeur of paganism felt as taht fiery Christian felt it who described Faranata lifting his head as in disdain of hell. And the reason is very obvious. Blasphemy is an artistic effect, because blasphemy depends upon a philosophical conviction. Blasphemy depends upon belief and is fading with it. If any one doubts this, let him sit down seriously and try to tink blasphemous thoughts about Thor. I think his family will find him at the end of the day in a state of some exhaustion."
(Note: By Thor, he means the Norse god, not the Asgard star on Stargate. . . .Oh, I'm such a nerd.)

And,finally, on honesty. . .
"I wish to deal with my most distinguished contemporaries,not personally or in a merely literary manner, but in relation to the real body of doctrine which they teach. I am not concerned with Mr. Rudyard Kipling as a vivid artist or a vigorous personality; I am concerned with him as a Heretic--that is to say, man whose view of things has the hardihood to differ from mine."
That will be all for now.



Speaking of the Koran, Ravi Zacharias says, "What one does need to grant is that the poetry and the style are beautiful. The postmodern, visually controlled mind has much to learn about the place of beauty in speech." (Jesus Among Other Gods)
I could not help but notice this catchy sentence in P.G. Wodehouse's Mulliner Nights: "This was the snag that protruded jaggedly from the middle of the primrose path of their happiness, and for quite a while it seemed as if Cupid must inevitably stub his toe on it."
Language is fun. And beautiful, at times. Mostly fun.

Berry Basket, Peaches and Cream

If I were going to name my cakes, that would be these (these would be that? those would be these? these would be those?). These are the cakes I did for K's roommate's wedding in July. . .a little late on the posting. Nevertheless, now you can see.



A kind--and not at all scary--gentleman customer just told me my height and weight. Apparently I'm about the size of his wife. Still, rather odd. . . .

Nope, Not Dead, Missing, Lost, or Escaped

I admit to some reticence regarding returning to this world of posting. . .it’s the overwhelmed feeling of being so far behind that it is useless to attempt anything like catching up. This past month has been so very busy; it’s hard to know where to begin. I think I will allow a few pictures to suffice for my thousand words. . .although those will have to wait, as I am currently filling in at the library and have no access to my picture files.
Yes, I’ve been working on an as-needed basis at the Tulsa library, sitting at the tall Reader’s Library desk and answering various customer questions. It’s been enjoyable, for the most part, and interesting. I always have felt a sort of “homeness” in a library. There’s something about rows and rows of shelves and shelves of friendly books that soothes me.
I have also accepted a part-time position at a law firm, where I will be filing, copying, and generally performing office support duties in the morning, beginning next week. I hope that my position there and an occasional afternoon at the library will allow me the freedom to pursue and attain a thriving Arbonne business before long.
That’s all for now. One hour and 10 minutes until my lunch break. . . .