beautiful things

Sunday morning started what I like to call the parade of palms. They hang out of windows, attach to cars, frame doors, and suffocate in the fingers of the scurrying crowd of church-goers. The triumphal and humble entry began without much pomp and circumstance here, though I did relish the louder-than-normal worship songs drifting from the streets. As I read, write, and listen to these messages from the Gospel Coalition conference, I am making note of beautiful things. If you have a chance, take a peek or a listen and see what you think.

  • This is an artist I really admire and a song that has roots than run deep to the very character of God and our refuge in Him. Also check out the hymns of Isaac Watts, remade.
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  • This sermon hit me HARD today. We are either true disciples of Christ or not disciples at all. It's not about becoming a disciple or helping people on the way to becoming disciples. We either are or we're not. We are either encouraging someone who is truly a disciple or we are encouraging someone is not yet a disciple at all. And how can we know if we truly are or truly are not? If we abide in the Word. I need to hear this Truth this morning! I can divide my time with books and sermons and journals and still not abide in the Word - in Christ Himself. Anyway, take a listen and treasure the invitations to abide! If You Abide In My Word, You Are Truly My Disciples.
  • Recently (I have no idea how... it's a social networking story, I'm sure), I found Here's Life ministry - an organization that is mobilizing the Church to live out God's heart for the poor in US inner cities. You should DEFINITELY check out what they are about and what they are doing for Easter! www.hlic.org
  • Check out this new book... AH! So many new books to read! Here's a book trailer for The Greener Grass Conspiracy. Sidenote: I love that books have trailers now. Why should films get all the screen love? http://vimeo.com/21402348
  • This article is interesting, from the Wall Street Journal on Gandhi. Might surprise you what story history tells.
  • We must pray for our brothers and sisters in Yemen! Read up on the news here.
  • Okay, this is awesome to me because I am not necessarily a  "Steve Green" fan, but I can wholeheartedly agree with what he's all about!
  • I just saw a few movies I would totally suggest: Walkout - a refresher in history and specifically education in the States. It's worth a view. Also, Empire of the Sun - the Japanese occupation of China through the eyes of an English boy. I really can't believe I hadn't seen this classic before! Away we Go - okay, so it's more than a bit unconventional. But, I think the film communicated how deep brokenness can be and how strong a desire to mend it through relationship. I also laughed a lot :)
  • I haven't made mention of this during the Lenten season, but now may be the right time. Please check out LIVING WATER INTERNATIONAL - an organization that is daily drilling wells all around the world in an effort to bring physical, clean water to people who have none. In the process, they offer the Living Water of the Gospel. Being a part of this special H2O project for Lent has been one where I've realized my tendency for things I don't need that confuse my heart for the things I want most.
Okay. I'm back to reading. I finished a book today and hope to finish another one tonight, before or after I chase down some students. Rest is truly a gift I cannot measure. I can only hope that in this time God would fill me up to be sent and poured out once again.
Lastly, I am praying for this kind of Holy Week (Blog post taken from the Desiring God blog).

The week between Palm Sunday and Easter is not intrinsically holy, except that all time is holy, since it belongs to God. But we can make it holy by setting it apart for sacred focus.

May I encourage you to do that, for the sake of seeing more of the greatness of Christ. He reveals himself through his word. Take up his word and focus your attention on him in his last hours. Set aside some time this week to fix your gaze steadily on him as he loves you to the uttermost (John 13:1).

The passages in the Gospels that record his final hours are:

You may find that a volcano erupts in your soul. Like it did for me 28 years ago.

let LOVE fly like cRaZy!