Thursday, January 28, 2010

Your Protector never slumbers

Children of the heav’nly Father

On a boat trip with her father, Karolina Sandell witnessed her father fall overboard and drown. The tragedy shattered her, but out of that life-shattering event, she penned these words, "Children of the Heavenly Father, safely in His bosom gather... Though He giveth or He taketh, God His children ne’er forsaketh... Praise the Lord in joyful numbers: Your Protector never slumbers. At the will of your Defender ev’ry foeman must surrender!" Tragic life; high faith; divine light.

Words: Kar­oli­na W. San­dell-Berg
Tune: Tryggare kan ingen vara

Children of the heav’nly Father
Safely in His bosom gather;
Nestling bird nor star in Heaven
Such a refuge e’er was given.

God His own doth tend and nourish;
In His holy courts they flourish;
From all evil things He spares them;
In His mighty arms He bears them.

Neither life nor death shall ever
From the Lord His children sever;
Unto them His grace He showeth,
And their sorrows all He knoweth.

Though He giveth or He taketh,
God His children ne’er forsaketh;
His the loving purpose solely
To preserve them pure and holy.

Lo, their very hairs He numbers,
And no daily care encumbers
Them that share His ev’ry blessing
And His help in woes distressing.

Praise the Lord in joyful numbers:
Your Protector never slumbers.
At the will of your Defender
Ev’ry foeman must surrender.


Tuesday, January 26, 2010

To God the Father's love

We give immortal praise

Words: Isaac Watts (1674-1748)

We give immortal praise
To God the Father's love,
For all our comforts here,
And better hopes above.
He sent his own eternal Son
To die for sins that man had done,

To God the Son belongs
Immortal glory too,
Who bought us with his blood
From everlasting woe:
And now he lives, and now he reigns,
And sees the fruit of all his pains.

To God the Spirit's name
Immortal worship give,
Whose new-creating power
Makes the dead sinner live:
His work completes the great design,
And fills the soul with joy divine.

Almighty God, to thee
Be endless honors done,
The undivided three,
And the mysterious one:
Where reason fails with all her powers,
There faith prevails, and love adores.


Thursday, January 21, 2010

A right way of doing good for the poor

Benevolent thoughts to ponder, in a context of 'health care reform'

For even when we were with you, we gave you this rule: "If a man will not work, he shall not eat." 2 Thessalonians 3:10

I am for doing good to the poor, but I differ in opinion of the means. I think the best way of doing good to the poor, is not making them easy in poverty, but leading or driving them out of it. In my youth I travelled much, and I observed in different countries, that the more public provisions were made for the poor the less they provided for themselves, and of course became poorer. And, on the contrary, the less was done for them, the more they did for themselves, and became richer. There is no country in the world where so many provisions are established for them; so many hospitals to receive them when they are sick or lame, founded and maintained by voluntary charities; so many alms-houses for the aged of both sexes, together with a solemn general law made by the rich to subject their estates to a heavy tax for the support of the poor. Under all these obligations, are our poor modest, humble, and thankful; and do they use their best endeavours to maintain themselves, and lighten our shoulders of this burthen? On the contrary, I affirm that there is no country in the world in which the poor are more idle, dissolute, drunken, and insolent. The day you passed that act, you took away from before their eyes the greatest of all inducements to industry, frugality, and sobriety, by giving them a dependence on somewhat else than a careful accumulation during youth and health, for support in age or sickness. In short, you offered a premium for the encouragement of idleness, and you should not now wonder that it has had its effect in the increase of poverty. Benjamin Franklin, "The Encouragement of Idleness," 1766

"He who has been stealing must steal no longer, but must work, doing something useful with his own hands, that he may have something to share with those in need." Ephesians 4:28

"All hard work brings a profit, but mere talk leads only to poverty." Proverbs 14:23

Then Mary took about a pint of pure nard, an expensive perfume; she poured it on Jesus' feet and wiped his feet with her hair. And the house was filled with the fragrance of the perfume.

But one of his disciples, Judas Iscariot, who was later to betray him, objected, "Why wasn't this perfume sold and the money given to the poor? It was worth a year's wages!" [He did not say this because he cared about the poor but because he was a thief; as keeper of the money bag, he used to help himself to what was put into it.]

"Leave her alone," Jesus replied. "It was intended that she should do this... You will always have the poor among you, but you will not always have me." John 12:3-8

Statistics to ponder

79 percent -- the number of absent African American fathers after four decades of supposedly kind social programs. 30 percent -- the number before such deadly 'help.'

2 out of every 5 -- the number of African American babies that will be aborted this year, targeted by social programs.


A dead giveaway

When someone says they love our country, yet work frantically to destroy its very fabric, it's not America they love.

When someone says they care for the poor, yet mandate programs that destroy the poor, it's not the poor they care about.

When someone uses dark means, backroom deals, bribes, kickbacks, bullying and lies to pass 'health care,' is it really the poor they care about?

When someone uses moral language to create a 'benevolence program' that sets up voracious, taxpayer-funded centers of power, is it really the poor they are helping -- or themselves?

No. When you hear such people use language about helping the poor, hear the parenthetical statement of John 12:6, loud and clear: He did not say this because he cared about the poor but because he was a thief; as keeper of the money bag, he used to help himself to what was put into it.

They don't say these things because they love the poor. It's something else they love...


Monday, January 18, 2010

Hope: Inspired bicycles

Watch and soak it up! Awesome... :-)

Saturday, January 16, 2010

Haiti: Money is worth nothing now; water is the currency

Sobering words from those trying to help:

One foreign aid worker told Reuters,

"Money is worth nothing right now; water is the currency."

HS1 Larry Berman, U.S. Coast Guard corpsman sums up the desperate situation:

"As a corpsman, I am trained to stabilize people until they can get to the next highest level of care. I have never had to be the highest level of care someone was likely to see."

Once again the best nation on the earth is called upon to be the point of highest help to a devastated nation. Let's all be a part: give, according to your means, along trusted channels. Most churches are setting up lines of giving; also good organizations are there, where giving can be trusted.

Here again we see the greatness of the U.S. Military and the heart of faithful American people.

Even in a down economy and very shaky political context, with so much under attack here at home, let's still give as unto the Lord: the cup of cold water is needed.


Gracious Father, we entreat Thee

Gracious Father, we entreat Thee

Words: Anonymous
Tune: Cross of Jesus

Gracious Father, we entreat Thee
For a blessing rich and free;
On Thy children now united;
May they serve and follow Thee.

Grant them, Lord, Thy richest blessings;
May they each Thy presence know,
Shedding life and light and sunshine
On their pathway here below.

Grant them joy and peace and gladness;
Give them grace and power divine;
Guard their hearts from care and sadness;
Make them truly, wholly Thine.

Heirs through grace of life eternal,
While as strangers wandering here,
May their prayers ascend unhindered
To a gracious Father's ear.

May they, hand in hand together,
Tread in faith life's brief career;
Looking, longing, watching, waiting,
Till their Savior doth appear.


Thursday, January 14, 2010

Cow humor: How many seconds before you get this joke?

Like they told me, Son, you betta' keep yer day job! Er... maybe not, lol. :-)

Tuesday, January 12, 2010

A debtor, of covenant mercy I sing!

A debtor to mercy alone

Words: Augustus Montague Toplady
Tune: Celeste

A debtor to mercy alone,
of covenant-mercy I sing;
nor fear, with thy righteousness on,
my person and offering to bring.
The terrors of law and of God
with me can have nothing to do;
my Savior's obedience and blood
hide all my transgressions from view.

The work which his goodness began,
the arm of his strength will complete;
his promise is Yes and Amen
and never was forfeited yet.
Things future, nor things that are now,
nor all things below and above,
can make him his purpose forego
or sever my soul from his love.

My name from the palms of his hands
eternity will not erase;
impressed on his heart it remains
in marks of indelible grace.
Yes, I to the end shall endure
as sure as the earnest is given;
more happy, but not more secure,
the glorified spirits in heaven.


Friday, January 08, 2010

A roost at twilight

A great picture from last night, under the beautiful canopy of Florida winter sky: a flock of birds roosting, in high-vaulted cathedral -- painted with prime colors from God's palette! Enjoy!

Mercy and truth are all His ways

Give to our God immortal praise

Words: Isaac Watts (1674-1748)
Tune: Truro

Give to our God immortal praise,
Mercy and truth are all his ways:
Wonders of grace to God belong,
Repeat his mercies in your song.

Give to the Lord of lords renown;
The King of kings with glory crown;
His mercies ever shall endure,
When lords and kings are known no more.

He built the earth, he spread the sky.
And fixed the starry lights on high:
Wonders of grace to God belong,
Repeat his mercies in your song.

He fills the sun with morning light,
He bids the moon direct the night:
His mercies shall ever endure,
When suns and moons shall shine no more!

He sent his Son with power to save
From guilt and darkness and the grave:
Wonders of grace to God belong,
Repeat his mercies in your song.

Through this vain world he guides our feet,
And leads us to his heavenly seat:
His mercies shall for ever endure.
When this vain world shall be no more.


Thursday, January 07, 2010

Twilight palm and painted sky colors

Here's a shot from earlier tonight! Enjoy!

Tuesday, January 05, 2010

Daisies among seagrass II

Here's another shot from the daisies and seagrass study, tonight! A smile for the New Year! :-)

Monday, January 04, 2010

Daisies among seagrass

I was surprised to find a stretch of beach where beautiful yellow daisies are mingled among the seagrass. Here the amber rays of the late sun highlight the yellow daisies and winter stalks, against the deep blue of the sea and gradient blue of the sky... enjoy!

Friday, January 01, 2010

New Year celebration and entertainment

Kierkegaard comments on New Year celebrations:

"We all make noise on New Year's Eve because we are trying to drown out the macabre sound of grass growing over our graves. We keep time with our clocks instead of hourglasses. This adds to the delusion, because the hands of a clock go round and round, giving us the impression that our time goes on forever. Hourglasses constantly remind us that for each of us -- time is running out!"

A photo-blogger named Flesheater writes some incisive thoughts on entertainment. He says that entertainment is a counterfeit protector:

I watch T.V. when I'm afraid, to numb my mind and forget my fears. I have horrible fears that creep in when I stop entertaining myself. I believe society has trained us to run to entertainment rather than running to G-d and facing our fears with Him on our side.They've trained us to ignore real life and substitute their entertaining faux realities...

Our society is built on a grand delusion. We can not deal with reality without G-d, and since we want no part of G-d we must seek ways to escape reality. This is why we built entertainment, this is why our world revolves around something that is meaningless in its core, because it distracts us from having to deal with reality and therefore from having to call out to G-d for help...

Entertainment will not help you grow it will only choke the life out of you. Entertainment can only cover your fears up for so long. G-d brings true freedom, He has conquered death, He will take your fears and replace them with love and joy.


"I can tell you how much God you have by how much entertainment you need." - A.W. Tozer

"Now the (seeds) 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." Luke 8:14