Why I Write These:
These are written in honor of my grandfather, Leon Milton Buttermore, who has a memory that I am envious of, and I hope that by doing this I am able to be the kind of man who starts to treasure the things given him.
Godly thought of the day:
Judges 11:30-31 says: “And Jepthah made a vow to the Lord: “if you give the Ammonites into my hands, whatever comes out of the door of my house to meet me when I return in triump from the Ammonties will be the Lord’s, and I will sacrifice it as a burnt offering.””
The folly of this statement is just insane to me. The Lord has already decided he cannot bear the misery of his people any longer back in chapter 10. He’s already moving on behalf of his people. But Jepthah thinks that he can bargain with God. And he does.
He makes a vow with God that never needed to be made and he made a bargain with God when instead he could have just trusted God to provide for him as he needed. Instead, he had to burn his daughter — an only child — alive. Let this be a stark reminder to not make up rituals that we think appease the Lord and bring favor to us. The Lord is already on the move. We have only to be faithful and look for him and follow him. If we start adding to his work, it may actually burn up things we most cherish.
Favorite meeting of the day:
Only had one meeting today, so I got to go with that. Had a good time with Luke Stanton at the gym this morning. We went to the hot tub/sauna there, and it was great! We had good conversation, and I think there were some really good things to walk away with. I hope that he was encouraged, and I trust the Lord will continue to work in his life.
Hardest part of my day:
Dale Wright has rectal cancer. At this point, his medical options are basically up. So I need to visit him. I’ve never watched someone die before, and I’m not eager to do it. But this is a part of the Christian life I need to learn, and I have no doubt that Dale will die well and he will be an encouragement to me.
Still, my hand is not eager to the task. It may never be eager to this task. I’ve just never done it before, so it’s new and scary.
Favorite moment of the day:
Had a really cool moment. Was doing some lesson prep for Tuesday morning and ran across some people talking about how Genesis 3 with the Lord walking in the “cool of the day” really is the “wind of the day” and that the Lord seems to have shown up to commune with his people at a regular time. Some were saying that as you look at the text and the rest of the Bible, it may have been around 9AM. If so, then this would line up well with the Spirit coming at 9AM to the apostles in Acts 2!
I don’t know if this is accurate or not, but I want to investigate. Even if it is not accurate, it is a strong reminder that the Bible is a fascinating book to plumb! Every word has meaning. Every word has detail that was not idly added. I have so much to discover, and I look forward to it!
What was the weather like today?:
I was inside most of the day. It was a bit snowy and ice was on places this morning. But it seemed like it warmed up a bit by the end of the day. I spent most of it preparing for my lesson and workshop next Wednesday that I’m doing.
Most unfaithful moment of my day:
I realized I haven’t been praying very well for leaders to be raised up in the ministry I’m doing on Tuesday morning. I want leaders to be raised up, but I haven’t been praying for that. I am glad the Lord revealed that to me. I need to be praying for that.
What am I currently reading?:
Daily Bible Reading – 1 Samuel 28-31
Dangerous Calling by Paul Tripp – No reading for this today.
Church History by Eusebius – No reading for this today.
Addictions: A Banquet in the Grave by Ed Welch – No reading for this today.
No Place for Truth: Or Whatever Happened to Evangelical Theology? by David F. Wells – I really liked his analysis of how the Reformation differed from many things. Especially, I was intrigued by how the Reformation evaluated all work as meaningful because work is not an end in itself, but it is a means to an end.
When you look at the history before the Reformers, western culture largely had varying degrees of honor in certain types of work. We still do this by associating worth with amount of capital gained, which is faulty. But the Reformers did not act like the Catholic church and the Greeks before them who thought that those things most closely associated with the engagement of the mind towards thinking of the universe were of higher honor than menial labor. They saw how everything was to be an opportunity to be for God’s glory.
Also, I really did enjoy the fact that he talked about how America is a country held together by these dual bands of invidualism as well as conformity. This has had a really, really interesting effect where a bunch of immigrants have come and while not abandoning their ethnicity, they engaged in conforming to a certain manifest destiny that was the American dream. It just is a huge shift in our culture to today. I wrote it like this: “Our culture used to thrive off of ethnic people coming to be part of the American Dream, but now the American Dream is just to be ethnic.”
This all plays into Wells’ larger narrative in the book that in society in general, and theology particularly, we have lost our centers and our culture and churches have suffered bitterly for it. Very interesting points, and I found the history lessons engaging today from him!
On the Bondage of the Will by Martin Luther – No reading for this today.
Princeps Fury by Jim Butcher – The library finally got the last 2 books of the Codex Alera series in! I am excited to read them. I think this book is going to be quite intense!
What was for dinner?:
No real dinner. I did eat a bit of the dessert from last night. Had mostly leftovers today from yesterday night. 🙂
Song of the day:
Tis So Sweet by Jadon Ladvik – Jesus has proved himself in my life so many times. It is sweet to just trust him in. Not to bargain with him like Jepthah, but to remember his word and know that thus saith the Lord means something.
Quote of the day:
“What’s right is what feels good.” — David Wells
This is a good quote that basically boils down where American culture is at right now. Does it feel good? Then it must be right because how could you feel good about something that is wrong?
This explains how we can encourage one woman to murder her baby, while celebrating the birth the other woman has. This explains how we can call it beautiful when two people have sex, but another similar couple have sex and it is called rape if one of them felt violated after the fact. I’m not downplaying real sexual abuse there. But there’s moments of real consent, I have no doubt, that have occurred and then someone felt bad about it afterwards and called it a violation. We just don’t have any grounds to evaluate anything anymore. How do you know what is really sexual assault vs. what is actually just a bad sexual experience called assault? Who is to say? The person who feels bad, right? Is that really how we evaluate things in our society now? I think it is, and it is madness.
Prayer of the day:
Lord, we are made in your image. Let us keep our eyes on you so that we remember your image. You are the God who gives us order, purpose, and reason to evaluate our lives in this world. If we take our eyes off of you, then we find ourselves forgetting what it measn to be human. We start acting irrationally. We must not lose sight of who you are, because if we do we lose sight of who we are. Lord, be gracious with us. Help us to trust in your word. Help us not to add to what is required of us. Help us to not seek to strongarm our way to favor with you. You are good and you are faithul, and we trust you to be the good and faithful God that we can reign forever with if we have but a simple, obedient faith that goes forward confident in the Gospel placed before us.