Friday, January 21, 2011

This is the day that the Lord has made

I come into this Friday feeling mentally overwhelmed. A long day at work yesterday (an 11-8:30 shift), then coming home to a stack of grown-up mail: taxes and student loans. In the words of my high school gym teacher, "It's pretty yuck." Finances frighten me because I'm never sure I've got it quite right.

However, I began my morning well, so who am I to burrow in the slump? It will be a good day! The sun is shining!

Laura and I have decided to hold one another accountable to being faithfully in the Word, so we're taking turns calling each other in the morning, saying nothing more than: "Wake up! Read Acts!" And Reader, it works! Although I confess 8 is a tad earlier than I usually get up willingly, it is a good time to rise. Up for an English muffin with a poached egg, a cup of coffee, and the early church. I was struck this morning in chapters 3 and 4 to remember what Lindsay challenged me with a week or so ago: carrying the name of Christ. Peter declares Jesus's name with such beautiful courage, boldness, surety, conviction! If I can invite others in so joyfully to buy a pair of Chacos or listen to the Avett Brothers, why can I not invite others in to taste and see that the Lord is good? And Reader, He is so good!


Wednesday, I spent the afternoon at my local Mennonite-run coffee shop, armed with my poetry notebook and a new book. Loud music and louder college students rendered me incapable of even thinking about poetry, but I was happy to begin my new book. Tim Keller's Generous Justice: How God's Grace Makes Us Just. I was soon taking notes like a college student writing a paper. Phenomenal so far. I wrote down things like:

- the righteous are those "right with God and therefore committed to putting right all other relationships in life." - Alec Motyer
- righteousness is not private morality; righteousness is social
- living justly = "radical generosity"
- "The Mosaic laws of social justice are grounded in God's character, and that will never change." Those laws were about eliminating poverty, not about giving handouts. God says in Deut 15:4 that "There should be no poor among you."
- Job does this, as he writes in Job 29:12-17 and 31:13-28. For him, not giving generously was a sin. Justice is mercy, is generosity; charity is not an option. And more than giving, he "has become deeply involved in the life of the poor, the orphaned, and the handicapped."
- "If believers in God don't honor the cries and claims of the poor, we don't honor him, whatever we profess, because we hid his beauty from the eyes of the world. When we pour ourselves out for the poor--that gets the world's notice." Whew!

Somethings I think I will burst open with all these emotions and thoughts as I (so slowly) learn more and deeper what I am to be and do, and Who God is, and how much He loves and requires; I think there's no way I can possibly know or understand enough to live how I ought to. And yet, that, Reader, is the point! There is the beauty of the Gospel: I cannot ever. He did.


  1. I might try to get my hands on that book.

    And oh, how I wish there was a mennonite-run coffee shop in my town!

  2. Good and beautiful, all of it.

    I think I need this book, too!