A Prayer for the New Year

"O God, be thou exalted over my possessions. Nothing of earth's treasures shall seem dear unto me if only Thou art glorified in my life. Be Thou exalted over my friendships. I am determined that Thou shalt be above all, though I must stand deserted and alone in the midst of the earth. Be Thou exalted above my comforts. Though it mean the loss of bodily comforts and the carrying of heavy crosses I shall keep my vow made this day before Thee. Be Thou exalted over my reputation. Make me ambitious to please Thee even if as a result I must sink into obscurity and my name be forgotten as a dream. Rise, O Lord, into Thy proper place of honor, above my ambitions, above my likes and dislikes, above my family, my health and even my life itself. Let me decrease that Thou mayest increase, let me sink that Thou mayest rise above. Ride forth upon me as Thou didst ride into Jerusalem mounted upon the humble little beast, a colt, the foal of an ass, and let me hear the children cry to Thee, 'Hosanna in the highest.'"
~ A. W. Tozer
(The Pursuit of God, pg 59)


Meal: Unforgettable

I was going through my collection of old writing assignments again and dug up this interesting piece that was brought about by having to describe a meal without ever mentioning a taste. . . My teacher's exact words were:
"I really don't know from what depths of randomosity you pull these things, but you have a marvelous imagination."
I hope your opinion is half that positive ;P :)

Meal: Unforgettable

J D White

The smell is awful. Fire arcs up into my brain through my complaining nostrils.
    My vision blurs as a plate is placed on the table before me. Through the constant rush of tears brought on by the horrific stench incinerating my olfactory nerves, I look down to inspect the plate’s contents.
    A wash of appalling colors nearly overload my optical nerves, joining the horrendous odors in their assault on my brain. Fighting past the initial shock, I force myself to observe the supposed “food” more closely.
    A bubbling, sickly yellow sludge with neon pink sprinkles oozes about one corner. Several black, purplish-turquoise striped rectangles are stacked to one side, a bright brown slime oozing out from between them. Piled high on the rest of the plate is a steaming, moving mass of bright orange and blue stringy substance.
    I pick up my fork and push a fist against my lips to hold back a gag. Pressing the fork into the rectangles, I find they are hard and flaky. They crunch under the pressure of the utensil as I cut them in half. The brown slime squelches out from between them. I stab one of the pieces then dip it in the bubbling yellow ooze.
    The ooze, unwilling to let go of either, stretches between my fork and the plate as I pull it away. I hold my breath before bringing the fork to my mouth.
    Then I take a bite. . .

    We apologize for the inconvenience, but the writer was unable to finish this story. He is currently at Odd Ailments Hospital in a comatose state. . .

Yup, pretty crazy, huh?

My friend (who agreed to do a quick check on this for any grammar/spelling mistakes before I posted it) said:
"Ohhh-KAY then. Wow.  This is . . . um . . . hilarious? . . . disgusting? . . . I’m not really sure.  Was this out of a dream or something?"
Then she added this to the end of it:
"SECOND EDITOR’S NOTE: The writer should be in Crazy-Person Therapy for actually trying to EAT the stuff. . .  just sayin’. . . . ;P :)"


Tragedies Punctuate Travesties

So, in the last few days many of us have been inundated with all the news about the shooting in a Connecticut school this Friday that followed on the heels of a shooting in Clackamas Town Center right here in Clackamas, Oregon . . . (not to mention that whole nasty business with the Dark Knight Rises a while back).

Though I feel the need to pray and mourn for all those involved in these indeed tragic events, I also find myself wondering why we do not feel this way Every Single Day . . . Think about it. Things like this happen all over the world, especially considering that there are many countries at war with one another right now. And even more blatant than that is the Admitted and Recorded FACT that the United States alone murders children in the tens of thousands every day! (Yes, I am talking about abortion).

Again, I will say that the things that are claiming the attention of much of my family and friends are indeed tragedies. And I pray that the LORD would comfort and reveal His grace and mercy to those who are directly suffering from them. But what about the travesties of how our country (and the rest of the world) look at so many other things? Violence such as is being mourned over in these cases are considered 'cool' and 'entertaining' when it takes place in movies or TV. Life and people are not regarded as they should be. True Hope is lost or obscured under false security that is found in earthly comforts or merely 'humanitarian' acts of kindness.

Regardless of how you(or I) react or think about these things, these are all examples and reminders of one thing: the world is consumed in sin and in rebellion against God, and because of this we are all in need of the Gospel of our Savior and LORD, Jesus the Christ.

May I encourage you to read the following passages of Scripture as we continue to pray about the specific events we are aware of and also seek God's face for His glory, honor, and  praise to be proclaimed to all the earth?

Romans 1-3 . . . . Psalm 23 . . . . Psalm 17-20 . . . . Psalm 27-30 . . . . Matthew 6:25-34 . . . . John 3:16-21 . . . . Hebrews 12-13 . . . . Revelation 4:11 . . . . Isaiah 45:22-23 . . . . Romans 14:7-12 . . . . Philippians 2:8-11 . . . .

LORD, please guide our thoughts and prayers, not only in these things and in the next few days, but in All things and in Every second of the years to come. Make us concerned for Your glorification and praise in this world. Please bless us with confidence and boldness in proclaiming Your love and calling those around us to repent and turn to Your precious Son, Jesus. 
    Please reveal your glory and grace to those affected by the tragedies that have caught the attention of our country in the last few days. Convict those who need to be convicted, and please offer comfort and healing as well. Please work your redemptive glory in those lives.
    We are nothing and worse apart from You, Almighty God, I ask specifically that You pour Your grace upon this country and guide its leaders and citizens to repentance, that You and Your statutes would be held in honor, reverence, and respect.
    Thank you, dear Father, for your patience and faithfulness. Thank you for your Son, and the cross by which you have made salvation and reunion with you possible.
    In Jesus' name I pray, Amen. . .

~ J D White


Some More Art and Other Stuff

 I recently was a student in a Christian art school's College Program during their first term of official days devoted to college-level classes. One of the classes I took was a Computer Art class in which I was able to learn some graphic design and digital painting.

~ This is what I did as a graphic design project

~ And this is the digital painting
(The two characters in the back, from right to left, are a Sagri and a Kohtloac - and the foreground characters, also from left to right, are a Gandoran and a Nanhew)

Also, a friend of mine generously posted and commented on a writing assignment that you can read HERE 

Oh, and as a side note . . . one of my best friend's birthday was yesterday . . . I praise and thank God for that friend :)
But we your people, the sheep of your pasture, will give thanks to you forever; from generation to generation we will recount your praise. ~ Psalm 79:13