BRITISH AUTHOR Robert Penn writes fascinating, unique explorations of common artifacts, which, coming from less adroit hands and minds, would be cliche.
In many ways it seems very strange to me that we can talk about something as connected to the nature of God at the level of human genes. In Genesis, one of the first things we learn is that God spoke, making language one of the things we know is part of who God is.
Christians who take responsible citizenship seriously would do well to ask questions of every call to action that uses hot button words, avoid those that erode our political culture, and choose to spend energy and resources in more positive ways.
We need to give ourselves a break from the constant state of media alarm we experience. We need to learn to balance out all the bad news with the good news. We need to take time each day to focus on the simple, joyous things in life. And I do mean simple. Open a good book. Spend time with loved ones. Go for a walk outside and leave your cellphone at home.
My father-in-law, Dr. Daniel Hendriksen, studied and taught the wonder of language as a Professor of Linguistics for 30 years. He is the son of the Reformed pastor, theologian and commentator William Hendriksen. In his retirement, my father-in-law, now 89 years old, has put his reflections into poetic form. In this issue of CC on the wonder of the word I share one of his poems with you to honour his work and our God.
But I’ve found something new. This time around, the physical pace of journal writing is holding me. Date and weather, and my galloping mind is reined in. Book title and children and I am slowed to a walking pace. This writing creates rhythm as the words step out one after another like footsteps or breaths. One at a time, words slow me down.
Here’s my suggestion: find time to help children with what Grandma used to call “making your own fun.” If you have a farm, find time to be less efficient and to spend more time working with children in a way that blurs the work/play distinction. And invite others to join you.
It must seem so close. That sky and that freedom. The small bird persisted against the glass, tried another window, fluttered, rested, tried again. It persisted and persisted and I watched and up at the front of the church, the preacher preached.
Poem and photo.
I was 26 with two kids at home and felt like I was still waiting for my life to begin. After working to finish my degree, get married, establish a career and start a family . . . what was next? Where was I going? At what point do I “arrive”? What does arriving even mean?
I give myself over to rhythms of prayer because in the Western world today, one of the most effective apologetics we can give is our own transformed selves, and sitting in the presence of Jesus is transformational.
My days of posting, commenting, liking and sharing on Facebook are over. My account has been deleted, the app is gone from my iPhone, and the social media site is almost nowhere in my life. After years of almost daily engagement on Facebook, there is little regret, and almost no looking back.