Preview: Sinner, Saint, Light and Paint
Sinner, Saint, Light and Paint
Love can never be portrayed,
the same way as a tree,
or the sea,
or any other mystery.
It's the eyes with which we see,
It's the sinner in the saint,
It's the light in the paint.
God Bless the USA: A lesson in patriotism and humility
After realizing that the government paid muslim ferry driver was lying to us and was not going to take us back across the lake, we had to come up with our own plan of action. His story seemed to change so much, there was no way it could be true. With a sick girl and a strong desire not to spend the weekend on the tiny island, we initiated plan B; we called the US Embasy. We told them that we were being held against our will, mentioning the combination of a team of stranded Americans, a sick girl and one highly patriotic veteran, not only got us a call to the local police, and the Ministry of Transportation, we were informed that the US Marines were on their way out to get us as well. This seem to motivate the driver of the tiny barge, as our translator told him that he may lose his job. All of a sudden he was not so insistant on the state of the broken boat... We did not call the Marines off until we were on our way.
So what would be the chances that the boat was actually broken and we would find ourselves stranded on a barge with less than an hour of daylight on the second largest lake in the world without any help whatsoever?
And so came my lesson in humility once more. I had just stated how humiliated the boat driver looked to my teamate Johnny when I receieved my own lesson in humility.
It was not until I had confessed my sin to God, realized my own sinful and unable state and God's ability that any resolve came. We began to worship with guitar on the front of the barge when the engine finally started and we were on our way.
"Lord, let me know my end and what is the extent of my days; Let me know how transient I am." Psalm 39:4
Dark Children with Bright Smiles
Her name was not Ugandan, but represented a small town in Italy. Her face shone as she danced and praised the Lord, her story only glorifies God more... One day, while at church, she returned home to find that her parents were killed by rebels. I have never seen the love of God more tangibly shown through worship than through Florence.
This is only one story of hundreds that I have heard. Stories that make your eyes water and your heart hurt. They are stories that remind all of us how fortunate we are, even in hardship because we serve a God bigger than Africa and bigger than America.
The first part of my journey here has been just short of a miracle. The thousands of children I have met only serve to encourage me. I come to minister, yet I am the one who is ministered too. This is a rough land filled with resiliant, God fearing men, women and children.
Please take the time as you read this to pray for my team, the believers in the Masindi Dioce, Lugazi and the Orphans in Mukono. My heart will never be the same again after meeting these dark children with the bright smiles.
Uganda or BUST!
Jeremy asked me (Caleb) to update his blog after he left for Uganda. Well, here goes ...
Uganda, what a place! I can't believe it. He's going to be gone for a while, like over a month. I'll miss him pretty bad and I'm sure the rest of you will miss him as well. But, if it ever gets really bad (the empty feeling when you miss someone) just try to close your eyes and imagine that Jeremy is right there with you. And the thing is, if he's in here (pointing to my heart) than he really isn't so far away at all.
Jeremy sends his love to all his bloggees. He said to say that, he's right here next to me ... well, he's right here next to me when I have my eyes closed and my hand over my chest. GO UGANDA!
well were all dying anyway...
[ Please turn up your volume for optimal amusement. ]
Being that school is officially out for the summer, I would like to send a message
to all our students.
Just in case you were scheduling a vacation this summer, check to make sure you don't overbook!
Forecasters are predicting a hot
summer this year!
By the way I DO NOT endorse this site!
With less than two weeks to go, Africa seems a distant reality. God has blessed me incredibly over these past several months, providing my immunizations and a large percentage of the financing for the trip.
My deepest gratitude goes out to all who have sacrificed their time and precious resources for this mission.
This is not my trip, but yours. Every orphan that I touch will be with your hands, every African I share the Gospel with will be through your efforts. I am but a tool that will be present physically, it is you who are the missionaries. May God bless you for your love of His children and your obedience to His commandments.
To my great amusement, my friends at The Bridge Ventura
have far exceeded all creative boundaries in mission fundraising. Please visit the World Charity Poker Association
for details. Thanks guys, you continue to be my family.
blessings to you, jeremy
of philosphy (and knowledge)
Philosophy, being of some value, is not meant to be discussed endlessly without certainty. It is an incessant journey when one never arrives.
It is even more disconcerting when one knows the truth but still insists on flaunting such knowledge as if it were more portentous then Christ's humble submission, not negating knowledge, but remaining silent in possession of it. To boast of such knowledge is paradoxically asinine.
For all His tedious talk is but vain boast,
or subtle shifts conviction to evade.-John Milton Paradise Lost 4.307-8
Dedicated to my friends who indulge themsleves in infinite reductionism.
My dreams are tramatic. I wake up every morning feeling like I need to speak with a therapist. I experience Post Tramatic Stress Disorder
every morning. I wish that my dreams meant something, but I am afraid that they do not.
One of these pleasent dreamy evenings about two months ago, Satan and Jesus were both trying to get me to do drugs. I just said 'no.'
Last night, I saw Miki, Gavin, Frank and Lynn. Miki was on a plane going somewhere and Frank and Lynn were walking down the runway. I too was walking down the runway to see my bother (for some reason on the same plane.) Thats when I walked up the back of the jet and found myself talking to Miki.
This dream was traumatic because I miss Tim, not so much through my own eyes, but through Miki's eyes. I grieve her loss
and the trauma she must experience every morning over and over again.
I awoke this morning in prayer for this beautiful woman and her son that God would allow Miki to rise this morning in the comfort of His peace.
may we all do the same, jeremy
Cyber space, or Cyber waste?
For those of you who have not yet figured it out, run your mouse over my face and be amazed!
Well, I feel like I am on a roll with the funny stuff, so here are a few things I found in cyberspace.
is not recommended for children under 13. I think I go to school with some of these guys!
Ever think about where all of our rainforests go?
If Satan invented a rollercoaster,
would you give it a whirl? For the wages used to build this thing lead to death.
Speaking of Satan, what has this world
Guess the Google
keep smiling, jeremy
the effects of gravity on laughter
I have been told that my blog is serious, so let's take a break from some heavy topics and think how lucky we are that God didn't create us to look like this!
opposition, deposition, repossession pt II
After many solicitous comments; allow me to clarify...
I have an inexpressible love for the church. I am speaking critically towards all, only in defense of all believers; especially those who communicate their dissatisfaction as I once did (and unfortunatly still continue to do.) I write for myself as much as I write for them. Cynicism
towards others has no place in our faith. Its roots stem from bitterness and pride. There is no humility in cynicism and therefore no virtue. It is an enemy that steals, kills and destroys and does so from the fiery word. I do not despise those that speak with these detrimental articulations, but desire to set straight a crooked path; a path that I once walked and continue to stray towards on my journey to this day.
It is not from my own cynicism that I write, but in obedience to the One that demands my entire life, including my words.
May God bless each of you as you follow our Lord in unabashed humility, jeremy
opposition, deposition, repossession
Cynicism. It is a growing phenomenon within the western church. With it we bring our pride, opinions and disillusionment. To what end? Is this glorifying to God?
About a year ago I found I was dissatisfied with the church and Christians altogether. I pressed onward towards re-formission, emergance and post-modernity. Whatever you want to call it, it was still just a label for trendy dissatisfaction.
It is the 'liberals' vs. 'conservatives.' I hear it just the same from both sides. Complaining, arguing, and prideful arrogance should never take the place of genuine humility towards one another in Christian love.
We must remember that this is still HIS church. It is the BODY of CHRIST. And we better think again before we speak ill of Christ's Bride.
Do You Know Me?
On April 22, 2005 I had my first fiction workshop. The story, 'Do You Know Me?'
caused quite a disturbance in my writing class. See why this short story raises so many angry voices, questions and convictions. Here's to hoping that words can change minds, jeremy
Call me Ishmael
If I was a book, I would be Moby Dick! What would you be?
Moby Dick: by Herman Melville
You've spent your whole life seeking something grand and elusive. What this is seems clear to you, but is hopelessly confusing to everyone else. You see it as a simple hunt, but others have called it a metaphor for just about everything in the world. Weary of metaphors, you are quite concerned that this quest will be your undoing. Make sure any ship you board is well-built. Pursuant to your request, people call you Ishmael.
Orphans of God
I will rise from my bed with a question again
As I work to inherit the restless wind
The view from my window is cold and obscene
I want to touch what my eyes haven't seen
But they have packaged our virtue in cellulose dreams
And sold us the remnants 'til our pockets are clean
'Til our hopes fall 'round our feet
Like the dust of dead leaves
And we end up looking like what we believe
We are soot-covered urchins running wild and unshod
We will always be remembered as the orphans of God
They will dig up these ruins and make flutes of our bones
And blow a hymn to the memory of the orphans of God
Like bees in a bottle we are flying at fate
Beating our wings against the walls of this place
Unaware that the struggle is the blood of the proof
In choosing to believe the unbelievable truth
But they have captured our siblings and rendered them mute
They've disputed our lineage and poisoned our roots
We have bought from the brokers who have broken their oaths
And we're out on the streets with a lump in our throats
We are soot-covered urchins running wild and unshod
We will always be remembered as the orphans of God
They will dig up these ruins
And make flutes of our bones
And blow a hymn to the memory of the orphans of God
by Mark Heard
Dedicated to those without a voice and for those who have not yet learned how to speak...
This blog will be written for myself more than anyone else who reads it.
I am torn between anger and joy. Tim,
you were taken home
before me and for that I am envious. Though imbedded with that joy is not a sense of loss, but of deep loathing.
Surprisingly, this loathing is not towards God for taking him home, but towards sin.
I hate it.
I hate sin, and I hate what it did to Miki and Gavin.
The most difficult task is now trusting in a good and sovereign God. To not believe that it was in God's will to take Tim home is distrust. I trust whole-heartedly that He is in control of our lives.
Theodicy, is a big, unnecessary word for the problem of evil in our world amidst a good and just God. It is my hope that I will not focus on 'why' Tim was taken, but on 'how' I can best love and serve those he left behind.
until we meet again, jeremy
I can't sleep, and I can't think. I can only lie here and believe...
My prayers are with you Miki, Gavin and the Bridge community.
A Call to Battle
In a time when leaders are born out of thin air; when spiritual leaders of 'infallibility'
are voted in and declared heirs of Christ's promise for the church. And when the giants of leadership, are merely actors,
singers, or athletes, how is one supposed to take leadership seriously?
Many of us do not consider ourselves to be any kind of leader at all. We can hardly follow, let alone lead. There are so many better qualified to take on this seemingly impossible task other than ourselves, whether they are believers in the truth or not.
I challenge this passive way of living out our faith!
We who are Christians should be first and foremost in demonstrating
what a leader is. Do we not have the perfect example of true leadership in Christ?
Does the Holy Spirit not lead us? We talk a big talk as Christians, but when it comes to living out our words we fail miserably in the eyes of the world.
This call to leadership is of grave importance. Are we not entrusted to carry the very words of God to humanity? And why should they listen to us when very few believers actually live out a radical faith? Do we trust in a God that gives us the ability to lead beyond a worldly standard?
Our minds and our souls are no longer bound by sin. We are free to be Godly leaders as our Lord has intended.
He gives us passion, He gives us ability, He gives us opportunity.
Let's make a battle cry
against a sinful lifestyle, passive habit, and our own comfort and charge the enemy of this world on his field of battle; LEADING the way for ALL to follow the cross of Christ.
Lead on, jeremy
Pope Watch Special Report!
In the year of our Lord Two-Thousand and Fifth, Pope Benedict XVI has infallibly come to our aid as we await a new pope.
The news came this morning as white smoke billowed out of the Vatican. Infamous fifties band The Platters struck up their billboard charted 'Smoke Get's In Your Eye's,' while angry Catholic liberals chanted 'We Want John Paul Back!'
Some mistaken youth heard the chanting for John Paul and thought the angry mob was referring to the Beatles, and that is where the nightmare began.
Allegations of Pope John Paul II rolling over in his grave have yet to be confirmed at this hour.
Local Italian Priest and Bird Watcher Pedro Martinez Marconi said, "I didn't think the priest would be so small. He appears from this viewpoint to only be about 3 inches tall!" The near-sighted priest was corrected by an angry liberal nun.
In related news, Protestants call for a mass re-issuance of Martin Luthers 95 Thesis to be emailed directly to Benedict XVI.
Out on Bail
I long for it, and yet it frustrates me because the more I try, the more I see my sin thrive. I am beginning to tire of failure. Yet failure is a very real part of my sinful nature. I will take it with me throughout my life. Yet, I can't help but believe that as we grow in Christ these failures must lessen to a certain degree. Perhaps we conquer one area of our lives to stumble in another.
Is it possible Christian maturity is marked by victorious battles?
If you are struggling as I am, endure. I have to believe that the God we serve of grace and mercy will one day deliver us from our former ignorance aiding our escape from this sinful prison. I Peter 1:13-16
Hungry for Humanity
After a three-day departure from writing, I feel like an utter blog failure. Assuming that I still have an audience I would like to discuss my recent observations.
If you are ever mad at humanity and find that you are bitter and cynical regarding the faults and complete depraivity of man; not disregarding your complete momentary shrewdness for the created being, consider this...
I sat at Philippe's
resturant in downtown L.A. this evening, just watching people eat. The whole lot of them. Every different age, color, size and sandwich. It was a beautiful moment! There is something about food that brings healing to man. I can not find a reason to complain about a person when I see that he is just like me. He eats.
This is a tangible way for me to see that all men are the same. They eat, sleep, cry, bleed, anger, and love, just like me. Many people just like myself put up walls so that they appear impenetrable. They are false realities that keep people away. The meal humbles us. It unites us. It strengthens us.
Jesus fed the multitudes. He ate and shared His meals. He embraced through the common meal, over and over again. His brokeness is represented by a meal.
Ever feel like grumbling against your fellow man, just sit down and watch them bite by bite.
The Countdown has begun! Only four weeks and I will be in Uganda
Please keep me in your prayers, my funds are still very low, I sill need about $2000 more. I also have no money for any immunizations, and I need many including Malaria Pills.
God is good and faithful and I know that he will meet the needs of his children.
Thank you to all who have supported me in this, I will be sending out a newsletter upon my return.
Upon leaving my Milton class this evening, I am inspired in two realities.
The first, to avoid sin at all costs.
The second, after falling in to such sin, repenting immediatly.
To quote one the world's preeminent Milton scholars, Stanley Fish
; "You don't read Milton, Milton reads you!"
This is certainly true, and if I may recommend one of the finest books of all time (and unquestionably one of the most difficult to interpret) Paradise Lost Book IX
. It will change your life through how you view the problem of evil, and the realization that evil lives in you!