“she has won her heart’s desire; she has unwearying strength and endless days like a goddess. but length of days with an evil heart is only length of misery and already she begins to know it.”

deep inside our hearts we know, that You are here and we will not lose hope

I woke up this morning with a terrible sadness (that stands apart from me having to be off Facebook for a month). 

There are days when things feel extra broken, and while there seem to be people and resources enough for Something Good to happen, it also honestly feels like we have grown far too used to the little pods that trap us in funny orbits.

“the tension’s right here

between who you are and who you could be

between how it is and how it should be”

– Switchfoot, Dare You To Move

“And the Witch tempted you to do another thing, my son, did she not?”

“Yes, Aslan. She wanted me to take an apple home to Mother.”

“Understand, then, that it would have healed her; but not to your joy or hers. The day would have come when both you and she would have looked back and said it would have been better to die in that illness.”

And Digory could say nothing, for tears choked him and he gave up all hopes of saving his Mother’s life; but at the same time he knew that the Lion knew what would have happened, and that there might be things more terrible even than losing someone you love by death. But now Aslan was speaking again, almost in a whisper:

“That is what would have happened, child, with a stolen apple. It is not what will happen now. What I give you now will bring joy. It will not, in your world, give endless life, but it will heal. Go. Pluck her an apple from the Tree.”

For a second Digory could hardly understand. It was as if the whole world had turned inside out and upside down. 

everything it changed overnight

this dying world, you brought it back to life

and deep inside i felt things shifting, everything was melting away

you gave us the most beautiful of days”

– Relient K, In Like A Lion

http://www.desiringgod.org/articles/the-making-of-a-modern-pharisee

This was a much-needed read for me.

1. Pharisees know what to say, but do not do what they say.

Jesus says, “They preach, but do not practice. They tie up heavy burdens, hard to bear, and lay them on people’s shoulders, but they themselves are not willing to move them with their finger” (Matthew 23:3–4). Beware the dissonance between what you say you believe and the reality of how you live, and refuse to make peace with it.

We are all sinners, so there will be always be some dissonance (1 John 1:8). We are always repenting this side of glory. But look closely at any consistent or reoccurring departure — in spending and giving, in serving, in relating to your spouse or children, in loving your neighbor, in indulging in secret sin.

What excuses do you make for the sins that entangle you? The Pharisees were happy to point out sin in others, and even happier to excuse it in themselves.

Who, Manatee?

I left work early today to take a twenty minute stroll down to Lesterville (also Llao Llao ville), and on my misguided and winding trek there I chanced upon a street soccer court with night lights and nice green netting plonked right between the Fullerton and the Singapore Gal.

That made me think about my left knee, and how it is now held together by cardboard ligaments and a vanishing patella, and how that is probably the result of persistent overcompensation for my right ankle, which still sags at its seams from a stray soccer kick that it swallowed some 6 (wow) years ago. 

So I felt sorry for myself for a bit, then I looked out at the river and the unblinking night sky speckled with city lights and felt better.

“Christianity, then, saw the battle for human virtue as no longer one of head versus heart (becoming more rational), nor mind over matter (getting more technical mastery over the world). The battle was over where to direct the supreme love of your heart. 

Will it be toward God and your neighbor, no matter who that neighbor is? Or will it be toward power and wealth for yourself and your tribe?”

Who Is My Neighbor?

http://www.dailyprincetonian.com/article/2017/04/peter-brown-late-antiquity

“Nevertheless, Brown’s productivity continues. Every day, he wakes up at 4 a.m. He then studies up to three languages, each for an hour, using books and recordings… Language learning constitutes Brown’s main hobby. He dismissed his familiarity with over 20 languages as “not so difficult,” given the numerous cognates involved. “I speak as many as I need for traveling,” he said.”

WOW

[also:

“His profound interest in others, whether now or in the past, equips him to reconstruct social relations. Brown helps countless people by listening to them, talking with them, and sending them feedback with an exceptionally fast turnaround, according to Reimitz.

Tannous said Brown closely reads the books of even complete strangers, then emails them with compliments and suggestions. Some of the recipients have fixed the messages on their walls, to reread when overcome with despair about their prospects in academia.”

and

“Brown impressed upon his students that they needed to learn by traveling, not just reading. He taught them to understand history from the perspectives of the people involved, rather than from a supposedly omniscient Western historian’s viewpoint, Michelson said.”

and

““I had to make a real effort to understand, often, my own next-door neighbor,” he said. “So I was constantly aware — and I think this is important, because this is one of the primary things a historian can really teach people — that people are different, and that it’s your duty to understand them.””]

what a truly fascinating man… incomplete and piecemeal a picture as it may be, it brings me delight to imagine a warm, kindly old genius of a man who loves learning and loves people. it is one thing to be a supreme academic, and quite another to use your marvellous mind to encourage and uplift other budding brains around the globe.. :–)