Daily Diary – 4/22/18

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.

Daily Highlights:

Godly thought of the day:

Acts 14:17 says: “Yet he did not leave himself without witness, for he did good by giving you rains from heaven and fruitful seasons, satisfying your hearts with food and gladness.

Just found this a very fun moment because I read it this morning and then walked in some rain to church from my parking spot. So, I walked in God’s testimony to himself — the rain! That’s fun. God is everywhere and constantly demonstrating his glory both by his creation externally that we see and his creation internally that we experience.

Yes, things can be tainted by sin. But in their basic forms, all that we touch, see, and experience is God being revealed if we have the eyes to see it and the ears to hear it. May the word of God transform our hearts and minds so that I might live in daily, constant, ever-present awe of him!

Favorite meeting of the day:

Had a good Life Group tonight! Feels like we haven’t had many of these this semester. I’m not sure we have. But there were some really good comments on how to live our lives in light of God’s destiny and plan.

Hardest part of my day:

Working with children was hard today. I’m not sure why they seemed so loud today and why I was struggling to enjoy it. I think that I did a good job interacting with them externally, but my heart wasn’t quite in it. Not sure if it was that I wasn’t getting to spend time with Sarah. Or if it was Dale’s death. Maybe a combination of both. But I got to the end and just felt tired.

Favorite moment of the day:

I convinced Cole and Caroline Penick to watch the Court Jester tonight. I went over and worked on my lesson while they folded laundry and watched the movie. Fun! I love those two. Was just nice to laugh and work and enjoy company with one another. I’m very thankful that they let me into what could have been a very intimate moment. I know there’s a real cost to that, I’m not blind to it, and I hope that one day I am content to do the same for someone who is single like myself.

What was the weather like today?:

Rainy and misty. But I didn’t mind. The rain was God! And the fog that was rolling over the landscape was intense and beautiful. I think the fog that can layer over Fayetteville may be one of my favorite sights.

Most unfaithful moment of my day:

This afternoon, I just didn’t do much. It wasn’t very productive, and I had planned on doing that. But I ended up resting. Was it unfaithful? I guess it may have been? I did tell people that I was going to not go out to eat with them because I was going to be working, and then I didn’t. So maybe that’s why it feels unfaithful? If I hadn’t said one thing and then did another, I’d maybe view it differently. On the other hand, I do see how the Lord helped me rest today for sure.

What am I currently reading?:

Daily Bible Reading – 1 Kings 15-17

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 – He makes a very interesting argument about how television embodies the problem with American culture. One, he states that the television embodies how people are internally focused. They value what is true not based off of objective fact, but what has emotional relevancy. This is different than, say, a geography textbook that hopes everyone derives the exact same facts from it. But television is happy that you got any emotion from it. And the images that are up on screen only last a few seconds each, and then you may get a new angle or a new scene entirely. They’re not always related except by the emotions being evoked in you. If your emotions are not running, the images lose connection and you lose interest. If they’re making anything arouse within you, then they are successful and entertaining and take on truth for you.

But he also, interestingly, pointed out that television is so transient. It is a widespread indicator of where culture is at to a large chunk of people at the same time. So people are watching it and using it to intake what is true not only of themselves, but what someone like themselves is supposed to be like at that moment. Since fashion, trends, and relationships can shift so rapidly on television, people have not had any sence of permanence and it has led to a lack of identity in self. This is because we want to be unique, but the process of being unique is to be validated by others about your uniqueness. To be validated by others, you must gain their approval. And to get their approval, you must prove your relevancy to them. Proving relevancy is by knowing lingo, trends, styles, and any inner cultural phenomenon to send the appropriate signals. Thus the pursuit of uniqueness ends up driving us to conformity. It is a fascinating point and rings very true in this case. I think his argument is a bit dated (he wrote it in ’92) but I think if you extend this into media being digested on phones, it has much credibility still to be witnessed.

At the end of the day, this transcience has created a new morality. One where truth is entertainment and falsity is boredom. In other words, evil is boredom. And what can fix your problem with boredom? The Gospel? Well, it could, if you were patient enough to let it. But the Gospel does not shift and jump around every 2.5-3 seconds. It takes time to digest, appreciate, and be transformed by. But media, the consumption of videos whether short like on Snapchat or long on Netflix binges can quickly, easily, and temporarily fill that void in a satisfying enough way that it becomes the god of our lives.

A great read! For every piece of historical like lecturing, this guy can really deliver some great sections on culture.

On the Bondage of the Will by Martin Luther – No reading for this today.

What was for dinner?:

Tacos in a Doritos Locos Taco shells with some homemade dessert trail mix and Dr. Pepper. Life Group meals are always good! 🙂

Song of the day:

Messiah / Beautiful by Phil Wickham – Where death is just a memory. Oh, Dale! You’re there. I weep for you for now, but one day we’ll enter in as the wedding bells ring. I’ll be looking for you there, brother. I know I’ll see you.     

Quote of the day:

“While vacuums are empty of meaning, they are full of destruction.” — David F. Wells

Just thought this was a great summation of culture at our current stage. Yes, we have no center. Yes, there is nothing filled up by our current “truth”. But that doesn’t mean it is innocent or idle. Vacuums destroy, and they particularly are cruel to anything that tries to fill them up. They crush them and squeeze the life out of them.

We must pray for our culture. Pray fervently that meaning will be rediscovered by at least some. It may cost us dearly in the coming decades or centuries, and so be it if it does. But we must pray the Lord redirects some of those vacuums so that they are receptive to being filled and with the Holy Spirit.

Prayer of the day:

Lord, thank you for this day we set aside to love you very purposefully and intentionally. Thank you for the gift of your people with whom we can eat, study your word, and even watch movies and work with a bit. It is a glorious taste of Heaven! I thank you for showering us with affection. I thank you for giving us an inheritance and a mark– a seal, the promised Holy Spirit, which is a deposit guaranteeing our salvation now and forevermore. All praise be to you for this, oh God!             

Amen.

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