Wednesday, July 30, 2008

Things old and new

Talk about the best of the old and the new. Live webcast of vintage fountain pen repair (and the DC pen show) here.

Today writing with a Parker VS, a really nice pen. A button-filler ca. 1947-49...

Friday, July 25, 2008

"People have been undeservedly kind; they have formed an ideal picture of myself -- the devoted pastor, the kindly old gentleman, and the courageous prophet! They don't see me as I really am, selfish, self-centered, seeking and enjoying the praise of men, lazy, possessive and timid."

(--Cyril Foster Garbett, Archbishop of York, diary entry on occasion of his 80th birthday; from the biography by C. Smyth.)

On NPP




Very helpful, balanced, fair.

Saturday, July 19, 2008

Vanity, Value




"Vanity" was one of the first biblical words I learned as a new Christian. Ecclesiastes really spoke to me then as a college student. Summum bonum is the "highest good", i.e., God's glory and blessedness. Vanity is what's left when we forfeit ultimate Value.

If not in honor, beauty, age, nor treasure,
Nor yet in learning, wisdom, youth, nor pleasure,
Where shall I climb, sound, seek, search, or find
That summum bonum which may stay my mind?

There is a path no vulture's eye hath seen,
Where lion fierce, nor lion's whelps have been,
Which leads unto that living crystal fount,
Who drinks thereof, the world doth naught account.

This pearl of price, this tree of life, this spring,
Who is possessed of shall reign a king.
Nor change of state nor cares shall ever see,
But wear his crown unto eternity.
This satiates the soul, this stays the mind,
And all the rest, but vanity we find.

--from The Vanity of All Worldly Things, by Anne Bradstreet, Puritan wife and America's first female poet.

Saturday, July 12, 2008

Boaz and Ruth


[Above] Rembrandt's pen and brush drawing of Boaz and Ruth, 1645.

Naomi said, "I went away full, and the LORD has brought me back empty. Why call me Naomi, when the LORD has testified against me and the Almighty has brought calamity upon me?" (Ruth 1:21)

But later Boaz blesses Ruth with six measures of barley and says, "You must not go back empty-handed to your mother-in-law." (Ruth 3:17)

Same Hebrew word in both passages. The Lord is no one's debtor. He fills the empty. Sometimes when our dreams don't come true, we think we have nothing. But we forget that with Christ we have all things, and will never be empty-handed.

Thursday, July 3, 2008

Global Christianity

Exciting times! Just within the past couple of days I prayed with a Swedish believer (and his American fiance) who is staying with one of our Egyptian brothers. I also received emails from two new believers, one Turkish, the other a Brazilian raised by Buddhist parents. In church Sunday we have fellow Christians from other nations, as well.

Psalm 96:3 ... Declare his glory among the nations, his marvelous works among all the peoples!

Revelation 5:9 ... And they sang a new song, saying, "Worthy are you to take the scroll and to open its seals, for you were slain, and by your blood you ransomed people for God from every tribe and language and people and nation..."

Writing by hand


Nice handwriting. Fountain pen user. Flexible nib.