It's Friday and I'm Glad
1) It's a beautiful Friday here in Oak Park. Clear, sunny, not much wind, temps rising into the 60s.Great bike riding weather. Spring is a glorious season in the Midwest, and in fact one of the benefits of living here is that unlike many other parts of the country, we actually get four distinct seasons. Hard to say which is better--spring or fall but if pushed, I would vote for spring because it means you've survived another long winter.
2) My friend Dan Allen, director of Pinebrook Bible Conference, sends along this quote: “God is faithful, all the time, everyday, in every circumstance, no matter what, God is faithful."
3) The Rapture Index stands at 152.
4) I've been reading The Good Earth by Pearl S. Buck as part of our China personal education program. Though written in the early 1930s, and though it describes a culture that seems impossibly foreign to 21st-century America, the book is timeless. The world Pearl Buck creates disappeared with the fall of the last emperor. But the story itself endures because it speaks truth about the human condition. Now and then (it doesn't happen very often with me) I read a book and say, "That speaks the truth." Pearl Buck spoke the truth about Wang Lung and O-Lan, and through them, she speaks the truth about all of us. Some books you read, some books read you. The Good Earth richly deserves its place among the great modern classics.
5) We are just a few weeks past the 60th anniversary of the attack on Iwo Jima. After the battle, an unknown Marine carved these words on a rock near the temporary cemetery where thousands of American soldiers were initially buried:
And listen up good! When you go home
Tell them for us and say
For your tomorrow
We gave our today
6) The April edition of Imprimis from Hillsdale College contains a speech by historian David McCullough called "Knowing History and Knowing Who We Are." I was struck by his recounting of the youthfulness of our founding fathers. We look at Washington on a one-dollar bill and he looks old. He was 43 when he took over the continental army at Cambridge in 1775. Jefferson was 33 when he wrote the Declaration of Independence. John Adams was 40. Benjamin Rush was only 30 when he signed the Declaration. "They were young people. They were feeling their way, improvising, trying to do what would work." They say that youth must be served and they are right. God bless those who teach and lead the young people of today. Who knows but that tomorrow some of them will rise up and do the great things our founding fathers did when they were not so old?
To sign up for Pastor Ray's free weekly sermon email list, click here. You can find his daily weblog, online sermons, travel schedule, and other resources at www.keepbelieving.com. You can write Pastor Ray at email@example.com.