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Sunday, March 8, 2009

Miscellanies

Misc #1 When I started this blog, it was really my intention to have more sheep on it. I have an idea for a cartoon that I came up with when my husband got home from the Shepherds' Conference last year. I need to get that up here; I am sure it is still relevant.

Misc #2 This year is Dr. John MacArthur's 40th year of preaching the Word of God at Grace Community Church. I have been a believer for the last 23 of those years and a great deal of my theological understanding has come from listening to his teaching and reading his books. I have had the honor of attending Grace Community Church three times and I have heard him give messages in the same room I was in three times, though they were not the same three times.

The first was on a Saturday evening, after an amazing barbecue dinner on the campus of The Master's College. It was the beginning of WOW week for my son and the other new students on campus. There was a gathering that evening for the parents where they served us dazzling, delectable desserts and absolutely amazing peach iced tea. The campus musical group, Majesty, ministered to the sad, joyful, weary, thrilled, torn-up, overwhelmed, heart-broken parents, who would soon be leaving behind the young men and women they had raised. And then Dr. MacArthur spoke. I can't tell you exactly what he said; I can only tell you with certainty that he said everything this momma needed to hear.

The next time I heard Dr. MacArthur speak was my first time at Grace Community the following morning. What I remember struck me that morning:

The hymnals they use are the same hymnals that I had been singing from my entire Christian life, only there were about a bazillion more voices singing the hymns I love. They sang some different hymns as well, and we collected those numbers and took them back with us to introduce them to our own fellowship.

Bonus misc about that hymnal: Number 4 is How Great Thou Art; number 181, Were You There? (which you heard if you watched the Conference this year); 183, Beneath the Cross of Jesus, and number 520, Redeemed, which early on I dubbed that Irish Western hymn. At the Conference, they also sang 493, It Is Well with My Soul, which is the song that was sung at both my sister's and my father's funerals. Those hymns and the many, many more that we sang back then, are sweet friends; dear companions who minister to my soul each time we meet.

I found the size of the people particularly interesting. We sat in the section farthest to the right when you come in the back doors and the people in that section were all normal. The people in the next section, to our left, looked pretty normal as well. But if you looked at the folks way over on the other side of the room, farthest to the left, they were the size of ants.

There was a man who sang a special that day. He sang number...this is where the memory gets dicey...my sweetheart is thinking he sang number 4, How Great Thou Art, but I am leaning very strongly towards number 382, Be Thou My Vision. I am pretty sure I am right, because he had a lovely Irish tenor sort of voice and I remember thinking how beautiful that song sounded coming out of him. This was in 1999. If anyone reading this was there and knows different, then hey, make a comment about it, by all means. :)

The pulpit rose up from the stage like something out of 2001: A Space Odyssey.

And then there was Dr. MacArthur doing what before that day I had only heard recordings of, preaching the Word, with integrity, and care, and power. The text that day was Hebrews 1:1-3.

The second time I was at Grace Community was my son's graduation and the third time was also the last time I heard Dr. MacArthur preach in person (so far), the worship service the next morning. That trip was a great blessing as well (especially since it meant my son was going to be living closer to home).

I am grateful that God has used this man to convey His truths to me. I am grateful for the conveyance that has given me greater understanding of my Lord and Master, Jesus Christ.

On to different things...
Misc #3 Today my husband and I went to Costco. When our shopping was through, we stopped off at the food court to get a Very Berry Sundae. Mmmm....AND gluten free! While we were sitting at one of the tables I noticed the ATM in the picture to the left. What a perfect illustration of the state of our economy.

Misc #4 Another thing that caught my fancy was a woman and man who passed by.

Woman: Have you tried their pizza yet?
Man: No
Woman: Oh ho ho ho...


Conclusions drawn by me:
Woman: Have you tried their pizza yet?
Read: Because eating this pizza is something everyone does and if you haven't yet, you most certainly will.

Man: No
Read: No

Woman: Oh ho ho ho....
Hear: ...this said with a deep and knowing tone of voice; an anticipatory, wait'll-you-taste-this-you-won't-believe-it sort of tone; the ho's follow in rapid succession like they are being shot from some high-powered automatic weapon; it sounds not unlike something Maurice Chevalier would say.
Read: Oh boy, this is the best thing on the planet and once you've tried it, you will never eat anything else, EVER.

The woman is obviously not bothered by gluten.

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