Friday, October 29, 2010

Are You Content?

I know very few people whom I would call 'content.' At least, content according to Jeremiah Burroughs' definition from back in 1648:

"Christian contentment is that sweet, inward, quiet, gracious frame of spirit, which freely submits to and delights in God's wise and fatherly disposal in every condition." Jeremiah Burroughs, The Rare Jewel of Christian Contentment

People ask me all the time, "so, Chris, how are you doing?" And the expression on their face and tone of voice tells me that

Monday, October 18, 2010

Thank God For Suffering?

In my last post, I shared a little bit about Mary Beth Chapman, wife of Steven Curtis Chapman, and the death of their five-year-old daughter, Maria.The Chapmans' suffering was (and I presume still is) deep.
Her website has this tagline right under her name: 

"Love of God is pure when joy and suffering inspire an equal degree of gratitude."

I had to read that a few times to

Monday, October 11, 2010

Beauty Will Rise

Well, today is Janie's birthday! That's a significant date, and I hear that significant dates are supposed to be tough to get through when you've lost someone. And....yup, it's tough! I just feel a little weird and can't put my finger on it any better than that. How strange to have Janie's birthday come along without her! We will be eating cupcakes in her honor....if you feel inclined, you can go off that diet for a few hours and eat a cupcake too....make 'em fun and make 'em extra sugary...and stick one of those pumpkin-shaped sugary-buttery things from Brach's and maybe a few candy corns on it....that's how she'd eat it.

Need a little 'Janie fix' to get you through? This should do the was part of my remarks at her Memorial Service back in May:

Your digital clock reads 10:11 twice a day. That happens to be her birthday as well, 10/11. So Janie of course christened those two times of day, “The Magical Time.” “Look!” she’d say, pointing to the clock, “It’s the Magical Time! Make a wish!”

She got all of us noticing that time and we were well trained to point it out if we saw it. 

Did you ever realize, those of you who knew her, that

Sunday, October 3, 2010

A Thick, Thick Heaven

I'm still thinking about heaven these days, just thinking lots about what Janie has been experiencing these past five months. I'd love for you to read this from a new acquaintance of mine, Pastor Jared Wilson of Middletown Springs, VT, who put this up on his blog recently. 

A Thick, Thick Heaven
Wim Wenders created a now-classic foreign film, Wings of Desire, several years ago in which an angel renounces his angel-ness to experience human romance with the woman he'd fallen in love with. (Wings of Desire was remade a few years later in the American film City of Angels, with Nicolas Cage and Meg Ryan.) One of the major conceits of Wings of Desire was that, when an angel, our lover saw the world -- and we saw the film -- in black and white and shades of gray. When he gave up his "wings" and became human, the film turns to color to reflect