Saturday, March 28, 2015

Saturday Smile - Zach King Vines

Friday, March 27, 2015

Friday Favorites - New Cactus Blossoms Tunes


The Cactus Blossoms performed a number of new songs from their forthcoming album at a release party this past Tuesday at the Electric Fetus record store. I really can't wait for the new recording to come out.

You can get their two song (You're Dreaming / Stoplight Kisses) preview of the album HERE.

Thursday, March 26, 2015

Thursday Thinking - Shame Resiliency

Newsworthy with Luke Norsworthy Podcast -
ZACH LIND: THE GOSPEL OF PHIL COLLINS
The Phil Collins part of the interview starts around 12:30.


Richard Beck's post on the Experimental Theology blog...
Zach Lind: "The Gospel According to Phil Collins"

From the Richard Beck's blog post...
...the reason Zach's lesson has stuck with me is because I find living as a Christian to be a highly creative and artistic activity. Which means that living as a Christian means cultivating shame-resiliency so that you can take the risks you need to take to creatively and artistically explore the shape of Jesus in our world. In living artistically in how you creatively express the life of Jesus in your own life you'll have to take risks in what you say or do, things that might cause shame or embarrassment.

I'm reminded of the woman who crashes the party to anoint Jesus. What a risk! What shame-resiliency! 
Read the Post 

Wednesday, March 25, 2015

Wednesday Words - Such Singing in the Wild Branches

It was spring
and I finally heard him
among the first leaves––
then I saw him clutching the limb

in an island of shade
with his red-brown feathers
all trim and neat for the new year.
First, I stood still

and thought of nothing.
Then I began to listen.
Then I was filled with gladness––
and that’s when it happened,

when I seemed to float,
to be, myself, a wing or a tree––
and I began to understand
what the bird was saying,

and the sands in the glass
stopped
for a pure white moment
while gravity sprinkled upward

like rain, rising,
and in fact
it became difficult to tell just what it was that was singing––
it was the thrush for sure, but it seemed

not a single thrush, but himself, and all his brothers,
and also the trees around them,
as well as the gliding, long-tailed clouds
in the perfect blue sky–––all of them

were singing.
And, of course, so it seemed,
so was I.
Such soft and solemn and perfect music doesn’t last

For more than a few moments.
It’s one of those magical places wise people
like to talk about.
One of the things they say about it, that is true,

is that, once you’ve been there,
you’re there forever.
Listen, everyone has a chance.
Is it spring, is it morning?

Are there trees near you,
and does your own soul need comforting?
Quick, then––open the door and fly on your heavy feet; the song
may already be drifting away.

"Such Singing in the Wild Branches" by Mary Oliver, from Owls and Other Fantasies: Poems and Essays, © Copyright 2003 by Mary Oliver.

• • • • • • • • • • •

Minnesota Wood Thrush - Hylocichla mustelina
In early spring, the fluting eee-o-lay song of the wood thrush resounds throughout the moist woodlands at dawn and dusk. In Minnesota, the bird nests throughout the state, except on the prairie and in the heavy coniferous forests along the Canadian border. It is partial to woodlands with swamps or streams. A heavy-bodied large-eyed bird, the wood thrush is easily recognized by its white eye-ring and light belly marked with black oval spots. A shy denizen of the woods, the bird is usually found alone or in pairs, foraging on the ground or low in trees. It feeds primarily on insects, spiders, and fruits. In Minnesota, the spring migration peaks around mid-May. Typically raising two broods each year, the wood thrush lays 2-5 eggs, which are incubated for 12-14 days. Young remain in the nest for 12 days and may live as long as nine years. It departs for its wintering range in eastern Mexico to Panama between August and October.

Tuesday, March 24, 2015

Tuesday Tome - New Book Club Starts April 6

I will soon be leading a Book Club at Valley Christian Church. You can get full information about the book selection, Not a Fan, and our meeting times on the Valley website.


From the Publisher's Description...
 Are you a follower of Jesus? Don’t answer too quickly. In fact, you may want to read this book before you answer at all. Consider it a “Define the Relationship” conversation to determine exactly where you stand. You may indeed be a passionate, fully devoted follower of Jesus. Or, you may be just a fan who admires Jesus but isn’t ready to let him cramp your style.  Some people don’t know what they’ve said yes to and other people don’t realize what they’ve said no to, says Pastor Kyle Idleman. But Jesus is ready to clearly define the relationship he wants with his followers. Not a Fan calls you to consider the demands and rewards of being a true disciple.

Monday, March 23, 2015

Monday Music - Resting Place




My faith has found a resting place
Not in device or creed –
I trust the Ever-Living One
His wounds for me shall plead.

Enough for me that Jesus died –
This ends my fear and doubt.
A sinful soul, I come to him –
He’ll never cast me out.

I need no other argument,
I need no other plea –
It is enough that Jesus died,
And that he died for me.

My faith is leaning on the word,
The written word of God –
Salvation by my savior’s name,
Salvation by his blood.

My great physician heals the sick,
The lost he came to save.
For me, his precious blood he shed;
For me, his life he gave.

I need no other argument,
I need no other plea –
It is enough that Jesus died,
And that he died for me.

"Resting Place" from Breathe a Little Deeper by Dave Burkum. Words by Eliza E. Hewitt in Songs of Joy and Gladness, 1891. Hymnals often show the author as Lidie H. Edmunds, Eliza's pseudonymn.
LISTEN OR BUY

Sunday, March 22, 2015

Sunday Supplication - Direction and Wisdom

Almighty God, we come to you today asking you to help us to submit our wills and our desires to Yours. Help us to live stable lives with your direction and wisdom. Help us to love your commands and to delight in your promises as we face the challenges and changes all around us. Give us your joy and peace in every circumstance.

Forgive us our sins, O God. Lead us away from temptation. You are faithful to forgive and restore those who have sinned against you. So help us to be faithful to forgive and restore those who sin against us.

O God, give us the eyes to see your goodness, and the minds to remember your faithfulness to your people throughout history. Give us hearts that are ready to worship you all day every day, and voices that are quick to sing your praise.

Through Christ, we pray. Amen

Saturday, March 21, 2015

Saturday Smile - FINE ART: IKE ANDREWS

Friday, March 20, 2015

Friday Favorites - New Cactus Blossoms Single

http://www.thecactusblossoms.com/

Electric Fetus - Minneapolis
Tuesday, March 24th - 7:00 p.m.
The Electric Fetus invites you to join us for a very special party with The Cactus Blossoms!

On Tuesday, March 24th at 7:00 p.m., we celebrate the release of the duo's "You're Dreaming" 7" single with a performance and signing by Jack and Page.

Enjoy refreshments from the Birchwood Cafe.
This event is free and open to all ages.


Thursday, March 19, 2015

Thursday Thinking about Hand-Written Notes

Wednesday, March 18, 2015

Wednesday Words - Spring


Nothing is so beautiful as Spring –        
   When weeds, in wheels, shoot long and lovely and lush;        
   Thrush’s eggs look little low heavens, and thrush        
Through the echoing timber does so rinse and wring        
The ear, it strikes like lightnings to hear him sing;
   The glassy peartree leaves and blooms, they brush        
   The descending blue; that blue is all in a rush        
With richness; the racing lambs too have fair their fling.        

What is all this juice and all this joy?        
   A strain of the earth’s sweet being in the beginning
In Eden garden. – Have, get, before it cloy,        
   Before it cloud, Christ, lord, and sour with sinning,        
Innocent mind and Mayday in girl and boy,        
   Most, O maid’s child, thy choice and worthy the winning.        


"Spring" by Gerard Manley Hopkins, from Poems and Prose (Penguin Classics, 1985).

Tuesday, March 17, 2015

Tuesday Tome - Not a Fan

I will soon be leading a Book Club at Valley Christian Church. You can get full information about the book selection, Not a Fan, and our meeting times on the Valley website.


From the Publisher's Description...
 Are you a follower of Jesus? Don’t answer too quickly. In fact, you may want to read this book before you answer at all. Consider it a “Define the Relationship” conversation to determine exactly where you stand. You may indeed be a passionate, fully devoted follower of Jesus. Or, you may be just a fan who admires Jesus but isn’t ready to let him cramp your style.  Some people don’t know what they’ve said yes to and other people don’t realize what they’ve said no to, says Pastor Kyle Idleman. But Jesus is ready to clearly define the relationship he wants with his followers. Not a Fan calls you to consider the demands and rewards of being a true disciple.

Monday, March 16, 2015

Monday Music - The River



Rolling river-
Your arms around a loved one who lies sleeping.
Living water-
The sound of baby's laughter, and a promise you've been keeping.
Currents moving through your being;
Flooding you with reasons to be.

It's flowing down from the hand of my Father.
And its streams abound in all that's beautiful and true.
And it's time you found the pure and crystalline headwaters
Of the river that runs in you;
The river that runs in you.

Rolling river-
A selfless act of kindness toward your neighbor.
Living water-
The joy of loyal friendship, and the fruit of honest labor.
A silver ribbon in the moonlight;
A golden strand that shimmers through your days.

It's flowing down from the hand of my Father.
And its streams abound in all that's beautiful and true.
And it's time you found the pure and crystalline headwaters
Of the river that runs in you;
The river that runs in you.

Rolling river-
The tears you shed when someone else is aching.
Living water-
The time you take to listen, and a sacrifice you're making.
Through the depths of your fulfillment,
Dancing down the rapids of your dreams.

It's flowing down from the hand of my Father.
And its streams abound in all that's beautiful and true.
And it's time you found the pure and crystalline headwaters
Of the river that runs in you;
The river that runs in you.

"The River," words and music by Dave Burkum, from, So Far to Go.
© Copyright 1994 by Dave Burkum (burkum.com).

Sunday, March 15, 2015

Sunday Supplication - The True Bread of Heaven

Gracious Father, thank you for sending your Son Jesus Christ, the true bread of heaven, which gives life to the world. Fill us with this bread that we might take hold of the life he gives.

Forgive us our sins, O God. And as you have shown us mercy, make us able to be forgiving and merciful to others. Help us to turn away from what is wrong and to do what is right. Help us to escape temptation.

Holy Father, open the eyes of our hearts and enlighten us in order that we may know the hope to which you have called us. Show us your goodness, and transform us by your great and saving power.

Through Christ, we pray. Amen