Monday, January 08, 2007

Randomness & links

If you're anything like me, you've probably had some conversations/opinions about Christian radio. I was really interested to see that Christianity Today is starting a series of articles discussing Christian radio - its history, demographic, method of picking songs, and its future. The first installment is here.

I finally downloaded Sandra McCracken's hymn album today; I like it. Lots. You can stream it and read about it here.

A cool video made by a church up in Naperville here. (I give credit to the children's ministry staff for forwarding it to me.)

And a random observation - the total number of Sufjan tracks I've listened to on is 666. Kinda creepy, no?

Oh - and LOST is taking over my life. The Joshes and I are trying to catch up before the new episodes start next month (we're more than halfway through Season 2). Unfortunately, I still haven't seen the 2 latest episodes of The Office (the Christmas one or the one from last week).

Friday, January 05, 2007

Love Alone

Have you ever realized that there is a recurring theme in your life?

Lately, I feel constantly reminded that God is in the small things. And if I'm not watching Him, I may miss what He's doing or what He wants to do.

The Christmas season can be distracting in its flashiness and hectic pace, but the story of God's coming is in direct contrast. The devotionals I read and the "messy Christmas" worship series frequently spoke of how simple and poor Christ's birth was. Aside from Mary, Joseph, some shepherds, and Eastern magi, it was not noticed at the time.

I also had a spiritual moment yesterday during a hospital visit. An elderly man (who is in hospice and unable to communicate) wouldn't let go of my hand after I prayed with him. It's hard to explain, but I had this moment where I was reminded that when we serve, we serve Christ. It's a reminder that I need.

Then yesterday, I ran across this poem in one of my Advent devotionals. (From the author, I realized that they're actually lyrics from Amahl and the Night Visitors, which I had purchased a CD of for Spear's birthday last fall. These words are sung by one of the kings on his way to worship Christ.) It challenged me with this same idea...

The Child we seek
doesn’t need our gold.
On love, on love alone
he will build his kingdom.
His pierced hand will hold no scepter,
his haloed head will wear no crown;
his might will not be built
on your toil.
Swifter than lightning
he will soon walk among us.
He will bring us new life
and receive our death,
and the keys to his city
belong to the poor.

-Gian Carlo Menotti