24 December 2013

silent night

Father, thank you for the ultimate gift of love. For your steadfastness to always pursue us. To rescue us from ourselves. May we come to better understand this love in the year that lies ahead. Amen.

22 December 2013

Shepherd of Israel, 
may Jesus, Emmanuel and son of Mary, 
be more than just a dream in our hearts. 
With the apostles, prophets, and saints, 
save us, restore us, 
and lead us in the way of grace and peace, 
that we may bear your promise into the world. Amen.
[Revised Common Lectionary]

Illustration Credit: Roger Johnston

15 December 2013

O God of Isaiah and John the Baptist, 
through all such faithful ones 
you proclaim the unfolding of future joy 
and renewed life. 
Strengthen our hearts to believe your advent promise 
that one day we will walk in the holy way of Christ, 
where sorrow and sighing will be no more 
and the journey of God's people will be joy. Amen.
[Revised Common Lectionary]

08 December 2013

Laboring God, 
with axe and winnowing fork 
you clear a holy space 
where hurt and destruction have no place, 
and a little child holds sway. 
Clear our lives of hatred and despair, 
sow seeds of joy and peace, 
that shoots of hope may spring forth 
and we may live in harmony 
with one another. Amen.
[Revised Common Lectionary]

Photo Credit: Go.70°North

01 December 2013

Unexpected God, 
your advent alarms us. 
Wake us from drowsy worship, 
from the sleep that neglects love, 
and the sedative of misdirected frenzy. 
Awaken us now to your coming, 
and bend our angers into your peace. Amen.
[Revised Common Lectionary]


12 July 2013

my prayer

I've prayed this before, and do so again today.
For dear friends and their family, in this time of distress.
May the Lord keep you all.

it does not mean to be in a place
where there is no noise, trouble
or hard work. it means to be in
the midst of those things and still
be calm in your heart.

11 June 2013

Lily & Madeleine

Lily & Madeleine's debut EP, The Weight of the Globe, is out today.
Album of the year?

31 May 2013


When we soak ourselves in the water of God's Word, we nourish and strengthen our ability to see, hear, respond and obey the promptings of the Holy Spirit.
Bob Mumford, Mysterious Seed

08 April 2013


Extremely late this year, but for prosperity's sake, I wanted to get this out there...a few of the sounds that captured my ear, heart and mind in 2013:

David Crowder*Band . Sometimes
A comtemplative worship ballad that builds and builds....perfect.

David Crowder*Band . After All (Holy)
Phew...This is a Top 5 All Time Crowder*Band track for me! Meant to be enjoyed in community. From the album, Give Us Rest, which happens to be the Crowder*Band's final album as all parties have decided it's time to move on to other projects. So there's little question this double-album is also my album of the year -- it is musically rich and varied. Not simply an album, but a worship experience in its truest, more traditional sense.

Future of Forestry . Things That We Should Say
One of my new favorite bands. Hard to pick just one track from their standout Young Man Follow album, but I guess this is it. Vocally delicate and simple from its message to its instrumentation.

Mr Little Jeans . Runaway
Perfect production. Dreamy vocals and instrumentation.

On An On . Ghosts
Droning vocals accompanied by a strangely uplifting score makes for one of the most unique tracks of 2012.

Previously: 11 IN SOUND . twenty-ten in sound . 08 IN SOUND . 2007 In Song . Six for '06

30 March 2013

birth [the second time]

Tessa Soleil
March 2, 2013 @ 10:03pm
9lb. 9oz.  21 1/2 in.

I'm a bit late on this one, as our baby girl is now a month old!
Tessa's pregnancy was like the polar opposite of Tian's, at least from my perspective:
Very few pictures of Angie's growing belly.
Very little preparation, although I did go through my Bradley workbook with a fine tooth comb because I am the [birth] coach, after all.
No counting protein (so how was Tessa almost 1lb. heavier than Tian?)
No major baby items to research or purchase.
We didn't record, and I can't now recall, any of Angie's funny cravings.
And there are others I won't take the time to elaborate on in this forum.

I point all of this out not because I feel we were deficient in any way, but because I'm slowly learning that its simply just the natural progression of life. I sometimes get stuck in wanting to repeat those patterns, from my past. This has been a major hurdle to overcome in my spiritual life. Because my relationship with Christ looks different now with a wife and two kids than it did when I was single, I tend to dwell on all the ways its not the same, instead of focusing on deepening my relationship in the here and now. Father, keep my eyes focused on the here and now. May my past not be a stumbling block any longer.

And in some ways, my time with Tessa in this first month of her life has been about learning that. One of my favorite things to do is lay down on the couch beside her when she's napping -- face to face -- and just look into her face. I see her little lips move and quiver, her eye lids flutter and I hear her tiny breaths and little coos. They are simple reminders of another amazing design by our Creator God. She is a tangible reminder of God's goodness, His light, innocence and purity. To which Spirit then directs my thoughts to prayers for her life. For His protection over her. For purity. For a heart that is close to His. Tessa means harvester, and her mother and I have this sense she will come to harvest more than the veggies from our backyard garden. We declare that over her now. That she will truly reflect His light to others, just as the sun (soleil) shines light on the Earth. I love you, baby girl!

As an aside, there was at least one major similarity between the pregnancies...and it looked like me scooping (and cleaning) the cats' litter box for 9+ months! And somehow, this has now become my regular job?!?! The thing is, I don't mind one bit. I may grumble for the show of it, but really, it's okay with me. And my wife would happily take it back over. But I see it as a little way to serve her (at least until Tian is old enough to do it!). Sorry, Tessa, for hijacking your birth post to discuss kitty litter. But I suspect you won't mind -- I have a hunch you'll grow to love animals just like your mother. 

28 March 2013

"Repentance is primarily the recovery of the spirit of love."

14 February 2013

Because of the work of Christ, we owe no debt,
except the debt of love.

-Paraphrasing Pastor Dave Martin who was
speaking with regard to
Colossians 2:13–15