Category Archives: musings

Not Too Cold for GOD

So here in the Suburbs of Chicago, it’s very cold today. Well, not just us but the whole region. Polar vortex it’s called. Air that normally swirls far to the North of us has descended upon our happy hamlets, ok maybe semi-depressed sub-urban existence to make our teeth chatter.

There are those who wish to see in this the climate change boogeyman raising his foul head. They argue for man caused climate change, and I’m always thinking: good luck controlling for all the variables.

Doesn’t matter because it’s still bone chillingly cold outside. The feels like this morning was -50F. I can feel the cold seeping in through the small gaps in the door. It pours off the windows. The heat seems to kick on every 15 minutes to hold back the onslaught.

We use the word “cold” when we talk about indifference. A cold shoulder. Cool indifference. The cold indifference of the human heart is far deadlier than the physical cold outside. I think of this because I was reading an article earlier on human trafficking and the sex trade. It takes a cold, cold heart to do what these smugglers do. The pleasures of power, sex, and greed have chilled these people’s souls to rock hard blocks of ice. I say people, because although it is primarily men who do this, there were 2 women’s names among the list of the top 20 smugglers caught in the last 10 year period.

I also think of those who cheered on the heinous abortion bill in New York. And before I go seeing it in everyone but myself, my cold indifference is there too. It may not be as fully formed, but that same tendency resides within my flesh. As Paul says in Romans, I am at war with my own flesh.

There is but one remedy and that is to look to Jesus as my Savior. As Paul says so beautifully in Romans 8, God has done for us what we couldn’t do ourselves. GOD turned the cold and dark indifference of the human heart in on itself to destroy sin and death. Ravi Zacharias uses the the following quote many times in his speaking engagements. It is an immensely concise and powerful observation on the sheer awesomeness of God’s salvation.

“It is a glorious phrase of the New Testament, that ‘he led captivity captive.’ 

The very triumphs of His foes, it means, he used for their defeat. He compelled their dark achievements to sub-serve his end, not theirs.

They nailed him to the tree, not knowing that by that very act they were bringing the world to his feet.

They gave him a cross, not guessing that he would make it a throne.

They flung him outside the gates to die, not knowing that in that very moment they were lifting up all the gates of the universe, to let the King of Glory come in.

They thought to root out his doctrines, not understanding that they were implanting imperishably in the hearts of men the very name they intended to destroy.

They thought they had defeated God with His back the wall, pinned and helpless and defeated: they did not know that it was God Himself who had tracked them down.

He did not conquer in spite of the dark mystery of evil. He conquered through it.”

James Stewart (1896–1990) was a minister of the Church of Scotland

Copyright © 2019 Amateur Anglican, All rights reserved

Leave a comment

Filed under musings

Sunday Morning

A fairly full day ahead today. I need to drop off the laundered linens at the cathedral, specifically put the larger corporal back on the altar. I need to see who arrives early at church to look for new volunteers to add to the communion prep team rotation. For some reason finding people to volunteer for an unseen role that involves getting to church an hour early isn’t all that popular. But those who do, they are some wonderful people to work with.

After church is a wake for the mother of my wife’s best friend. Please pray for us as we look for ways to share the gospel. There is a luncheon afterwards where I hope the family gets along, there’s a deep history of mistrust and animosity.

To God alone be the Glory

Leave a comment

Filed under musings

The Sexual Assault Scandal in the Roman Catholic Church

What an unholy mess

There is a lot of digital ink currently bleeding all over the internet regarding this topic. I will only add a little.

In the Old Testament there are multiple examples of men rending their garments (tearing apart their clothes off of their bodies) and then sitting in sackcloth and ashes to mourn a great atrocity. I don’t know what that looks like in the modern era, but it would be nice to see someone, anyone, in the clerical ranks try at least to rise to this level of mourning.

Please do not mistake my intent here. I grieve with the victims and their families. I grieve with the Church catholic (universal). I grieve for the clergy that must make some very difficult and painful decisions. But let us not forget, it was sin that got us here. And sin will always take us places we really don’t want to go. So, with renewed conviction, let us repent and believe the Gospel: Christ came to save sinners!

Some additional thoughts and links:

A Dominican priest and professor of theology offered his thoughts on cleanup. It’s a very practical list of basic principles without pretending it will be easy to implement.

The resignation of a cardinal is no small thing. For covering up years of sexual abuse and flagrant immoral behavior himself. Then there’s this monstrosity, a Florida diocese that was more like a gay sex club. Lord have mercy.

Soli Deo Gloria

Leave a comment

Filed under musings