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Thursday, March 31, 2005 AD
For My Gardening Readers
You might want to check out Free Trees and Plants.com, a site that, you guessed it, gives away free trees and plants. There's a processing and shipping fee, but these are plants that nurseries would otherwise dispose of. So if your dominion-mindedness includes an earthy bent, here's a way to stretch your stewardship. (Link via Phisch.)
Posted by Valerie (Kyriosity) at 3/31/2005 07:23:00 PM • Permalink
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Wednesday, March 30, 2005 AD
Oh Dear!
Now I'll really need to mop up!
Posted by Valerie (Kyriosity) at 3/30/2005 09:42:00 AM • Permalink
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Tuesday, March 29, 2005 AD
Mopping Up
Thank you all for your kind and encouraging responses to my post yesterday, and especially for your prayers. I still have all your comments in my e-mail files, so they haven't gone to waste. But the post was kind of like barfing in public, so I've deleted it. I can't pretend I didn't do it, but I can at least clean it up so nobody slips in it, and it's not stinkin' up the joint.

I learned something tonight. I learned that I have a church, so I don't need to whole Internet to be my church. I learned that my church, though few in number, can and will love me more effectively than the kind but far-flung multitudes. And I learned that Cold Stone Creamery is a very, very dangerous place. But dangerous in a good way...just like a church.

It's good to be home.
Posted by Valerie (Kyriosity) at 3/29/2005 11:21:00 PM • Permalink
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Thanks, Richard!
Mr. Okimoto recounts the Sunday prayers at his church.
Posted by Valerie (Kyriosity) at 3/29/2005 09:48:00 AM • Permalink
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Sunday, March 27, 2005 AD
Jesus Lives, and So Shall I
Jesus lives, and so shall I.
Death! thy sting is gone forever!
He who deigned for me to die,
Lives, the bands of death to sever.
He shall raise me from the dust:
Jesus is my Hope and Trust.

Jesus lives, and reigns supreme,
And, his kingdom still remaining,
I shall also be with him,
Ever living, ever reigning.
God has promised: be it must:
Jesus is my Hope and Trust.

Jesus lives, and by his grace,
Vict'ry o'er my passions giving,
I will cleanse my heart and ways,
Ever to his glory living.
Me he raises from the dust.
Jesus is my Hope and Trust.

Jesus lives, I know full well
Nought from him my heart can sever,
Life nor death nor powers of hell,
Joy nor grief, hence forth forever.
None of all his saints is lost;
Jesus is my Hope and Trust.

Jesus lives, and death is now
But my entrance into glory.
Courage, then, my soul, for thou
Hast a crown of life before thee;
Thou shalt find thy hopes were just;
Jesus is the Christian's Trust.
Posted by Valerie (Kyriosity) at 3/27/2005 04:13:00 PM • Permalink
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Blessed Resurrection Day!
"Therefore I also, after I heard of your faith in the Lord Jesus and your love for all the saints, do not cease to give thanks for you, making mention of you in my prayers: that the God of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of glory, may give to you the spirit of wisdom and revelation in the knowledge of Him, the eyes of your understanding being enlightened; that you may know what is the hope of His calling, what are the riches of the glory of His inheritance in the saints, and what is the exceeding greatness of His power toward us who believe, according to the working of His mighty power which He worked in Christ when He raised Him from the dead and seated Him at His right hand in the heavenly places, far above all principality and power and might and dominion, and every name that is named, not only in this age but also in that which is to come." Ephesians 1:15-21, NKJV
Posted by Valerie (Kyriosity) at 3/27/2005 12:28:00 AM • Permalink
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Saturday, March 26, 2005 AD
Some People Are So Predictable
Er...I mean...dependable. Yeah, that's it. Like Paulo. I knew I could depend on him not to resist the urge to try the transparent desktop trick. Pretty darn clever work there, Pau!
Posted by Valerie (Kyriosity) at 3/26/2005 08:40:00 AM • Permalink
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Friday, March 25, 2005 AD
A Plea, Gentle Reader, for Mercy and Good Sense
If you, upon reading these pages, are afflicted with a fit of inspiration whereupon you decide that I would be just the perfect wife for your friend, brother, cousin, uncle, nephew, or any other eligible relation or acquaintance, please do me the great kindness of not telling me. As my bio hints at, I am of the conviction that there is not a blessed thing I can do with such information, since it is not a woman's role to initiate any sort of courtship. So although your suggestions (and there have been a number of them over the years) are doubtless made with the kindest of intentions (and I genuinely do appreciate that), they really do not have a kind effect as they have never yet produced anything but an awkward embarrassment for me. If you are so inclined, you may point your available friend or relative to my URL (preferably in a non-public setting), and let him decide for himself whether he finds anything of interest on these pages and make up his own mind what to do about that. 'K? Thanks ever so!
Posted by Valerie (Kyriosity) at 3/25/2005 11:19:00 PM • Permalink
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Well Done
A husband honors his pregnant wife. To all other expectant papas out there I say: Go ye and do likewise!
Posted by Valerie (Kyriosity) at 3/25/2005 12:15:00 PM • Permalink
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Good One, Amy
The Humble Muser presents Schiavoized wedding vows.
Posted by Valerie (Kyriosity) at 3/25/2005 10:14:00 AM • Permalink
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One of the Few Advantages of Being Single
I can do vocal warm-up exercises in the car on the way to church. I'd have to give it up if I were married with kids. It's not the sort of thing I could do with an audience, and even if others joined in, it's the sort of thing that's nigh unto impossible without getting the giggles. Vocal warm-up exercises are just plain funny, and would not effectively engender a reverent frame of mind in little ones. Oddly enough (and if anyone's odd enough, it's me), they do help me get in the right frame of mind, because I have to be intentional about them -- I have to focus and work at them. And that ends up being good exercise for focusing and working at worship. Unfortunately, I end up at church too many Sundays with an unwarmed voice and a heart to match.

Disclaimer: I wouldn't really mind giving up this particular benefit of singleness...it's not all that big a deal! ;-)
Posted by Valerie (Kyriosity) at 3/25/2005 12:18:00 AM • Permalink
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Thursday, March 24, 2005 AD
I Still Think This Would Have Been a Fair Solution
Repeated from an October post:

"I believe in the vows I took with my wife," said Michael Schiavo. "I want to spend the rest of my live with her and I'm going to do that." (Quote from the malpractice suit that netted Mr. Schiavo a small fortune, reported by Lucy Zoe.) So we say, "Sure, Mike! We'll stop giving Terri food and water...and you too, so you can fulfill your hearts desire of spending the rest of your life with her."
Posted by Valerie (Kyriosity) at 3/24/2005 02:10:00 PM • Permalink
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Note to Self
Must try this! (Link via Barlow Farms.)
Posted by Valerie (Kyriosity) at 3/24/2005 12:00:00 PM • Permalink
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Wednesday, March 23, 2005 AD
I Rock
Or so a colleague just informed me. I responded, "Yes, I sit here in a fetal position and rock back and forth, back and forth...."
Posted by Valerie (Kyriosity) at 3/23/2005 04:34:00 PM • Permalink
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Having Mom Over for Dinner
(Courtesy of a friend. Thanks!)

Brian Hester invited his mother over for dinner. During the course of the meal, Brian's mother couldn't help but keep noticing how beautiful Brian's roommate, Stephanie, was. Mrs. Hester had long been suspicious of a relationship between Brian and Stephanie, and this had only made her more curious. Over the course of the evening, while watching the two interact, Mrs. Hester started to wonder if there was more between Brian and Stephanie than met the eye.

Reading his mom's thoughts, Brian volunteered, "I know what you must be thinking, but I assure you Stephanie and I are just roommates."

About a week later, Stephanie came to Brian saying, "Ever since your mother came to dinner, I've been unable to find the beautiful silver gravy ladle. You don't suppose she took it, do you?"

Brian said, "Well, I doubt it, but I'll send her an e-mail just to be sure."

So he sat down and wrote the message:
Dear Mother,

I'm not saying that you did take the gravy ladle from the house, I'm not saying that you did not take the gravy ladle, but the fact remains that one has been missing ever since you were here for dinner.

Love, Brian
Several days later, Brian received a letter from his mother:
Dear Son,

I'm not saying that you do sleep with Stephanie, and I'm not saying that you do not sleep with Stephanie, but the fact remains that if she were sleeping in her own bed, she would have found the gravy ladle by now.

Love, Mom
Lesson of the day: never lie to your mama!
Posted by Valerie (Kyriosity) at 3/23/2005 04:02:00 PM • Permalink
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Tuesday, March 22, 2005 AD
PC Grammar Check?
MS Word's Grammar Check just suggested that I replace "forefathers" with "ancestors" in an article I'm editing. That's not a grammar issue, people!
Posted by Valerie (Kyriosity) at 3/22/2005 07:10:00 PM • Permalink
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A Comparison I Can't Help But Make
I know there are differences between the situations, but I can't help but contrast Michael Schiavo's behavior as a husband with Dean Hellekson's. Doug Wilson says that every marriage paints a picture of Christ's relationship with the church. The picture, however, may be anything from a beautiful, accurate representation to an ugly, inaccurate travesty. Michael Schiavo is Jackson Pollock. Dean Hellekson is Michelangelo.
Posted by Valerie (Kyriosity) at 3/22/2005 09:03:00 AM • Permalink
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Monday, March 21, 2005 AD
Bugs for Jesus
A note from a friend:
Heaven is very good looking because at last we will be in complete harmony and satisfaction with Christ and the fatigue and the miseries of this life will be gone. We are in a battle, but even if we are squashed like a bug in the process, we get to bear His Name and be bugs under His banner. His banner over us is Love. Fight for joy.
It's a grace to be even a squashed bug bearing His Name, and that grace is sufficient. Thanks, Sarah!
Posted by Valerie (Kyriosity) at 3/21/2005 01:33:00 PM • Permalink
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An ADvertisement
I really like this suggestion to kiss secular dating goodbye.
Posted by Valerie (Kyriosity) at 3/21/2005 11:14:00 AM • Permalink
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Sunday, March 20, 2005 AD
This Is Not Looking Promising to Me
I just watched the trailer and poked around the IMDB info on the new film adaptation of Charlie and the Chocolate Factory. My first impressions:

1) The music is really, really annoying. If you're going to do music at all, and you can't do better than the original, then do the original.
2) Johnny Depp as a creepily effeminate Wonka. What...was Michael Jackson too busy with his trial?
3) Helena Bonham Carter as Mrs. Bucket? I just don't even know what to say about that. I'm just not seeing it.
4) I'm willing to be proved wrong, but I'm not optimistic about this one coming anywhere near to replacing the 1971 version in my affections. I've watched the 30th anniversary DVD and all its features over the past week and I love it more than ever.

Our sermon this morning was on Luke 8:
"Now the parable is this: The seed is the word of God. Those by the wayside are the ones who hear; then the devil comes and takes away the word out of their hearts, lest they should believe and be saved. But the ones on the rock are those who, when they hear, receive the word with joy; and these have no root, who believe for a while and in time of temptation fall away. Now the ones that fell among thorns are those who, when they have heard, go out and are choked with cares, riches, and pleasures of life, and bring no fruit to maturity. But the ones that fell on the good ground are those who, having heard the word with a noble and good heart, keep it and bear fruit with patience."
And that's what the Chocolate Factory is all about, Charlie Bucket.
Posted by Valerie (Kyriosity) at 3/20/2005 08:35:00 PM • Permalink
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Learning from Others' Experience
Miss Jones's experience with eHarmony has cured me of any thought I might have had of going that route myself. Not that I was having much of a thought along those lines.

Did I ever tell you about the time I did try an online matchmaking service? This was about seven years ago, I'd guess -- before I swallowed the TULIP bulb -- and I joined for three months. I actually had a pretty good correspondence going with one fellow. He called himself a hypercalvinist (at the time I had no idea that was an actual term -- I thought he was just being cute) but he didn't act like one -- didn't question the salvation of my then-Arminian soul, for instance. We spent most of our correspondence arguing theology, of course, and I'm the one who finally said, "You know, our disagreement here is too deep for us to consider taking our relationship any further." (Hey, you know you're a hopeless romantic when theological compatibility tops your list of necessary qualitities in a potential mate.) Of couse we said we'd still correspond, and of course he quickly disappeared off the face of the earth. Once I became Reformed, I wished I could have told him, but I had no way of contacting him. And he has a fairly common name, so tracking him down is unlikely, though that didn't stop me from just spending an hour Googling with no results but an 8-year old e-mail address. Just one of those "I wonder whatever happened to?"s.
Posted by Valerie (Kyriosity) at 3/20/2005 02:39:00 AM • Permalink
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Saturday, March 19, 2005 AD
Other Than That, I Liked the Movie
Too much lightning. Too much talking to dead people. Too much Alfred Molina. Not that he was in too many scenes or did a bad job, there was just too much of him. He was too...puffy.
Posted by Valerie (Kyriosity) at 3/19/2005 11:35:00 PM • Permalink
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Thursday, March 17, 2005 AD
'Doing the Next Thing'
Rick Saenz is fond of quoting Elisabeth Elliot's watchword, "Do the next thing." It occured to me today that this kind of "baby step" approach, which Rick most recently advocated applying to simple living, can apply to any kind of life change...any kind of obedience. And it can start at any point, even in the midst of backsliddenness.

That's where I am right now -- slidden right back into the quicksand of chaos that I've spent the last twentysome years trying to crawl out of and inevitably falling back into. My life is a disaster area. My house, my health, my spirit, my work are all in rather serious disarray. So I'm going to do one thing, make one small change, and see what happens, not worrying about the rest of it for the moment. The one small thing I've chosen is staying away from the junk food machine at work. There are days I live off candy bars. I leave the house without eating breakfast, I don't pack lunch, and I stay 'til all hours without anything for dinner. And the machine beckons. If I have to go without anything, so be it, but my hope is that I'll want to bring lunch, or at least go out and pick up something halfway decent. And if I want to bring something for lunch, then I'll find myself wanting to go to the grocery store and pick up supplies, and wash a few dishes to have something to prepare food in -- those will become the next "next thing."

I feel stupid (and ashamed) admitting my gross ineptitude at life, but what would be even stupider (and more shameful) would be for me to keep staring at the chaos in hopelessness instead of looking to Christ in hope and saying "Yes" to Him in even the very smallest of ways.
Posted by Valerie (Kyriosity) at 3/17/2005 09:24:00 PM • Permalink
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Rich Man, Poor Man
A wonderful, O Henry-esque story about what it means to have much or little. (Thanks to Jellybeans and Chocolate for the link.)
Posted by Valerie (Kyriosity) at 3/17/2005 04:30:00 PM • Permalink
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Tuesday, March 15, 2005 AD
When Adam Fell
I wrote this one about four years ago. I happened across it today while looking for something on an old forum.

The only tune I could find at the time to fit it was "Vater Unser," which I still think works pretty well. "Melita" and "St. Petersburg" work, too. Anybody have other suggestions or an opinion on which works best? The meter's 88.88.88. Here's the Cyberhymnal's search-by-meter page. Hmmm, I like "Barragh" quite a bit...never heard it before. Nor "Middlesex." And I can't stand listening any more. Those awful MIDIs are physically painful to my ears!

When Adam fell, all men in him
Received the curse of death for sin.
The Second Adam bore the blame
For those who love and trust His name.
Into this world of dust and strife
He came to bring eternal life.

When Adam fell, God cursed the soil
With thorn and thistle, sweat and toil.
The Second Adam sweat like blood
And drank the wrathful will of God.
His hands and feet with nails were torn;
His head was crowned with curséd thorn.

When Adam fell, God set a guard
Of cherubim and flaming sword.
The Second Adam did prevail
To rend the separating veil
On which the cherubim were sewn,
Admitting us before God's throne.
Posted by Valerie (Kyriosity) at 3/15/2005 03:37:00 PM • Permalink
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'He, Watching over Israel, Slumbers Not, Nor Sleeps'
And without having consumed four liters of Diet Coke within 24 hours!
Posted by Valerie (Kyriosity) at 3/15/2005 12:46:00 AM • Permalink
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Monday, March 14, 2005 AD
Martin Luther on Faith
Faith is a living, bold trust in God's grace, so certain of God's favor that it would risk death a thousand times trusting in it. Such confidence and knowledge of God's grace makes you happy, joyful and bold in your relationship to God and all creatures. The Holy Spirit makes this happen through faith. Because of it, you freely, willingly and joyfully do good to everyone, serve everyone, suffer all kinds of things, love and praise the God who has shown you such grace. Thus, it is just as impossible to separate faith and works as it is to separate heat and light from fire! Therefore, watch out for your own false ideas and guard against good-for-nothing gossips, who think they're smart enough to define faith and works, but really are the greatest of fools. Ask God to work faith in you, or you will remain forever without faith, no matter what you wish, say or can do.
From "An Introduction to St. Paul's Letter to the Romans," Luther's German Bible of 1522, translation by the Rev. Robert E. Smith, link via Miz Booshay.
Posted by Valerie (Kyriosity) at 3/14/2005 07:09:00 PM • Permalink
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The Envelope, Please
And the winner is....
Posted by Valerie (Kyriosity) at 3/14/2005 05:09:00 PM • Permalink
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Saturday, March 12, 2005 AD
My blog finally republished. Many thanks to Jon for his heroic battle against the server beast.
Posted by Valerie (Kyriosity) at 3/12/2005 02:42:00 PM • Permalink
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Friday, March 11, 2005 AD
Another Beautiful Find from RadioCelt
Susana Seivane. Spanish/Celtic music from Galicia. Alas it seems from the clips at Amazon as if the album is mostly instrumental. All else being equal, I almost always prefer vocal music. Track 10, "Maneo," is the one that caught my attention on RadioCelt. Gimme a whole album of that, please!
Posted by Valerie (Kyriosity) at 3/11/2005 05:56:00 PM • Permalink
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More Trivia
Phisch started a new trivia game this month, but it is languishing for want of players. Come join us!
Posted by Valerie (Kyriosity) at 3/11/2005 06:58:00 AM • Permalink
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Thursday, March 10, 2005 AD
Everything's Up to Date in Kansas City
Including Toni's blog!
Posted by Valerie (Kyriosity) at 3/10/2005 07:27:00 PM • Permalink
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Courthouse Conversations
I had jury duty today. Thank the Lord I didn't have to serve on a jury -- I dread the thought. But I did have some interesting conversations.

Conversation One:

Man wearing a baseball cap inside the courthouse: Nice headcovering there, sister.
Me wearing a pretty, light-weight Indian print bandana: Thanks.
Man wearing a baseball cap inside the courthouse: Is that for religious reasons?
Me: No, it's for unwashed hair reasons, but I do wear one to worship on Sundays.
Me [only within the confines of my own head]: Look, brother, number one, if I should be wearing one all the time, then you should probably never be wearing one. And number two, take the hat-inside-the-courthouse out of your own eye before you get all sanctimonious on me, buster!

Conversation Two:

Well, I won't really recount this one, but I ran into Cathy -- a woman who'd been a close friend in high school. We hadn't seen each other in about 20 years or talked in about 10. So we did some catching up. We managed to stay out of emotionally difficult waters, and it was OK. And that's about all I'll say here about that.

Conversation Three:

Cathy and I to the desk clerk: OK, we can't leave without knowing -- are you Lisa or Leslie?

She was Lisa. She and her identical twin had also been in our class. It was quite the class of '84 reunion!
Posted by Valerie (Kyriosity) at 3/10/2005 05:33:00 PM • Permalink
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Irresistable Grace
As most of you who have been paying the slightest bit of attention know, I've been planning to move to Bristol to join St. Peter Presbyterian Church, home of the Highlands Study Center. In the meantime, for the past year I've been attending Christ Reformed Evangelical Church. Well, come to find out, I can't leave. This congregation has been so wonderful to me and for me that the thought of not being able to be a part of it simply was not to be borne. So it was all quite Calvinistic -- not my choice, but CREC's. Folks here have been gracious to me -- you might even say irresistably so -- ergo I've decided to stick around.

I plan to reevaluate things in six months to see if I've made the right decision, but in the meantime, I'm going to assume I'm staying. Not to be outdone, folks at St. Peter have also been gracious about my change of plans, and I continue to believe that it would be a good place for me. What I didn't expect was to find another good place closer to home. As good? I don't know. Maybe. Maybe not. Maybe better. No way of telling for sure. But the idea of chucking a year's worth of relationship-building to plunge into a less-known environment finally just seemed foolish.

Now I've got to scoot. Have to go to jury duty. Pray for me that I don't get picked for an actual jury!
Posted by Valerie (Kyriosity) at 3/10/2005 07:09:00 AM • Permalink
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Wednesday, March 09, 2005 AD
Here's something I couldn't bring myself to do. I threw out a lot of stuff while sorting over the past few months, but never my journals. Of course they're embarrassingly immature, but I see glimmers of hope in them, too, when I reread them. My desire to know Jesus is a theme that runs through them --sometimes in a trickle, sometimes in a torrent. The other consistent theme in my adolescent ramblings is a wish not to be alone. Some things never change, I guess!

Do you journal (on paper -- blogs don't count for this exercise)? Have you ever? Have you kept your journals? Have you ever destroyed a journal? Do you reread your journals? Are you embarrassed or encouraged or indifferent to what you find in them? Have your dreams been fulfilled? Has your vision been expanded? Do you find anything you like better about yourself then that has slipped away?
Posted by Valerie (Kyriosity) at 3/09/2005 01:00:00 AM • Permalink
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Tuesday, March 08, 2005 AD

You're Maryland!

You enjoy contemplating your navel so much that you want to build a whole school devoted to said purpose. You like Chevy Chase a ton as well, maybe even more than Cal Ripken since he started doing those Century 21 commercials. Mostly, though, you want to kick back, watch the ballgame, and eat crabcakes. Brick is by far your favorite building material. You might even call yourself a brick house.

Take the State Quiz at the Blue Pyramid.
Posted by Valerie (Kyriosity) at 3/08/2005 08:15:00 PM • Permalink
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Monday, March 07, 2005 AD
For the Ticklement of Your Funny Bone
"Sisera" by Jamie Soles


"The Llama Song" by Burton Earny (lyrics)
Posted by Valerie (Kyriosity) at 3/07/2005 03:04:00 PM • Permalink
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The Scripture That Left Me Legless
In the comments to the previous entry, Jema asked about the post I'd written about why I wasn't a Calvinist. Though I'm reluctant to publish that, I will write about the passage that cut the legs out from under my argument.

My post had addressed what I perceived Calvinism said about the character of God -- that it made Him less loving than I thought He was or ought to be. I had wanted to make a point that it detracted from His glory, so I went looking for the passage where He reveals His glory to Moses. And what does God say when He shows Moses His glory?
"I will cause all my goodness to pass in front of you, and I will proclaim my name, the LORD, in your presence. I will have mercy on whom I will have mercy, and I will have compassion on whom I will have compassion."
We don't know what Moses saw when God revealed His glory, but we know what He heard -- this summation of God's glorious character that explicitly states His sovereign choice re to whom He will show His covenant love. Just a breath after He mentions His goodness -- clearly He sees no contradiction between them. And just a breath after He gives His Name -- clearly both His sovereignty and His goodness are integral to His very nature. It made me realize that it must have been my perspective that was off.

I remember praying something like, "OK, Lord. If that's the way You are, then I'm willing for You to be that way." Of course the words of that prayer were foolish -- who am I to presume to give God permission to be who He is? But I trust He forgave that wickedness and accepted the heart of my prayer: an admission of my inadequate understanding, repentance of my worship of the false image I'd made of Him, and submission to His true character.

I wasn't happy about it at first, though. I was the world's most miserable Calvinist for a few weeks. But then my friend Mark was preaching through Ephesians 1 -- a passage about predestination that had driven me bonkers for years -- and I suddenly found myself loving it (and hence writing songs about it). No doubt the sovereign goodness of God had something to do with that!
Posted by Valerie (Kyriosity) at 3/07/2005 08:30:00 AM • Permalink
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Sunday, March 06, 2005 AD
Happy Anniversaries
Today marked two special anniversaries for me:

One Year Ago: On the first Sunday of March 2004, I visited Christ Reformed Evangelical Church for the first time. The dear saints there have been a tremendous blessing over the past twelve months. I’ve been well fed—body and soul—by the outstanding hospitality of the congregation, by the solid preaching of the pastor, and by the weekly observance of the Lord’s Table.

Five Years Ago: In late February 2000, in the midst of writing a discussion forum post entitled, “Why I Am Not a Calvinist,” I paused to look up a Scripture reference only to discover that it pretty much made the exact opposite point of what I was hoping it might say. Be careful while wielding the sword of the Word...you may cut your own legs out from under yourself! (But don’t worry—’twas merely a flesh wound.) I went ahead and posted what I’d written, with a “(Yet?)” appended to the end of the title, but I knew my arguments against Calvinism had been done away with. A couple weeks later, on March 6, I publicly announced that after four and a half years of choking on the TULIP bulb, I had swallowed it. Unfortunately, I made the announcement in a lengthy thread of all the forumites introducing themselves to a passel of newcomers, and it went largely unnoticed. In fact, I think the only person to acknowledge the event was, ironically, an Eastern Orthodox fellow who wrote to congratulate me.

A few weeks later, I wrote this song based on Ephesians 1:3-14. I wish I could post the tune, too. It’s quiet and contemplative, befitting the disposition of a heart that had finally stopped waging war against the truth about its God.
Blessed be the Father, who has blessed us
In Christ with every blessing from above;
Who chose us to be holy and be blameless;
Whose pleasure was adopting us in love;
Who planned before the world began
By His good will that we should stand
Before Him face to face
To the praise of the glory of His grace.

Blessed be the Son, who has redeemed us;
Whose blood, for our forgiveness has been spilled;
Who lavished grace so rich and free upon us;
Who showed to us the mystery of His will;
Whose kind intent made wisdom known;
Who's made us heirs of all He owns;
In whom our hope is placed
To the praise of the glory of His grace.

Blessed be the Spirit who sustains us;
The promised One in whom we have been sealed;
Who tuned our hearts to hear salvation's message;
By whom the Gospel's truth has been revealed;
Whom God gave as a guarantee
That what He owns, He will redeem;
Who stirs our hearts to faith
To the praise of the glory of His grace.

Blessed be the Father who has blessed us.
Blessed be the Son who shed His blood.
Blessed be the Spirit who sustains us.
Blessed be the Lord our God.
Blessed, indeed, is the God who has blessed me so richly and deeply through the fellowship of the saints and by the renewing of my mind with sound doctrine!
Posted by Valerie (Kyriosity) at 3/06/2005 09:00:00 PM • Permalink
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Fascinating Observation
Deborah notes how her daughter's apparel influences her attitude. Have you observed this phenomenon in yourself or your children?
Posted by Valerie (Kyriosity) at 3/06/2005 08:59:00 PM • Permalink
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Saturday, March 05, 2005 AD
Amazon Keeps Letting Me Down
I've been listening to this Celtic channel all day as I work, and when something catches my ear, I look for it to add to my Amazon wish list. Unfortunately, most of what I've looked for is only readily available in the UK. This Welshwoman, for instance, has a voice that'd turn a glacier into a puddle. Beautiful, beautiful. And not available on Amazon. Sigh....
Posted by Valerie (Kyriosity) at 3/05/2005 07:40:00 PM • Permalink
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If I Drop Dead Tomorrow...
...sing "I'll Fly Away" at my funeral. I went to a funeral yesterday and we sang it. Simple, joyful, hopeful, perfect.
Posted by Valerie (Kyriosity) at 3/05/2005 01:50:00 PM • Permalink
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Fun With Statistics
I found this pretty amusing. (Link via Dominion Family)
Posted by Valerie (Kyriosity) at 3/05/2005 09:40:00 AM • Permalink
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And the Winner Is...
...RadioCelt's Traditional sub-channel, which is part of the AccuRadio network, suggested by Joseph. I liked the other recommendations, too, and do thank y'all kindly for them, but this one's my fave so far.
Posted by Valerie (Kyriosity) at 3/05/2005 08:59:00 AM • Permalink
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Friday, March 04, 2005 AD
In the Same Manner He Also Took the Cup After Supper, Saying...
"This cup is the new covenant in My blood. Be sure to read up about it."
Posted by Valerie (Kyriosity) at 3/04/2005 07:40:00 PM • Permalink
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Thursday, March 03, 2005 AD
HSC Conference Brochure
A PDF of the conference brochure (designed by moi) is now up on the Highlands Study Center website. Unlike the print version, it has the correct conference dates.

So far I know that Kim and Robert, Carmon (and...?), Kelly and Mike :-( and Kelly M are all at least tentatively planning to attend. Anybody else?
Posted by Valerie (Kyriosity) at 3/03/2005 12:53:00 PM • Permalink
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Book Meme
(From Donna)

1. Grab the nearest book
2. Open the book to page 123
3. Find the fifth sentence
4. Post the text of the next fifth, sixth and seventh sentences on your blog, along with these instructions.
5. Don't you dare dig for that "cool" or "intellectual" book in your closet! I know you were thinking about it. Just grab what is closest!

Well, my closest book was The Christian Writer's Manual of Style. Unfortunately, page 123 is part of a 12-page list biblical and religious terms that shows their proper capitalization or lack thereof. So I checked page 23 -- a list of abbreviations for Bible books and related materials that I will likewise decline to bore you with. How 'bout page 223? Ah, now we're getting somewhere:
Use the Bible in most ordinary writing unless one occasionally needs the ring of extra authority implied by the full term. The term is usually set in Roman type--the Bible--unless a specific edition is referred to, such as The NIV Study Bible. See also, "Scripture Versus Bible."
Pretty exciting stuff, huh? The next closest book is the White Pages...just be glad I spared you a quote from that scintillating tome!
Posted by Valerie (Kyriosity) at 3/03/2005 09:56:00 AM • Permalink
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Wednesday, March 02, 2005 AD
Need Something to Listen To
When moving, it is probably not wise to pack and store all of your CDs weeks ahead of time. I'm in rather desperate need of music. What (free) music do you enjoy listening to online?
Posted by Valerie (Kyriosity) at 3/02/2005 08:14:00 PM • Permalink
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