My quick trip with the chickadees to my aunt and uncle's in east Tennessee was awesome. We waded up a sparkling creek in the middle of the woods to some beautiful little waterfalls decorated with dancing butterflies. Grace said, "It's like Narnia!"
While Becky was in Houston for her nephew's high school graduation, I remodeled our bathroom as a surprise for her. I put down new flooring, painted the walls, sanded the cabinetry and stained them darker, hung some new shelving, etc. I was up till 3 a.m. Sunday morning finishing it up. The very last thing I did was move a wall cabinet to another wall, and as I was hammering the screw anchors flush with the wall, a bottle of cologne bounced off the shelf on the wall behind me, plunged into the toilet, and cracked the porcelain bowl, leaving a nice little hole in the commode. So now we have a new bathroom with an unusable toilet.
Which means we'll be getting a new toilet and actually have an entirely new bathroom, I guess.
That disaster aside, it came out pretty well, and Becky loves it, so that made the whole thing worth it. (I was originally thinking I could do everything I wanted to do in one day and for $100. It actually took me 3 days and about $200, which is not bad for a radically different looking bathroom. And I am not handy. At all. So I really felt like I accomplished something.)
My friend John got to the surgeon guy Friday morning for his biopsy and the guy decided he didn't need it. The thing spotted by his general practitioner is apparently "normal." So that's a total "Thank you, God!" right there.
Last night at Element we continued in our Coffee Shop Theology series. In this installment I answered the submitted question, "Why does it seem like God is silent?" It was a pretty special service. Josh did a fantastic job leading us in music, and as part of my message, we showed our folks this video from Saddleback Church's HIV/AIDS initiative. It's pretty powerful and portrays the apex of pastoral ministry.
It illustrated one of my points, which is that God speaks through the manifestation of the gospel. By that, I mean to say that if the followers of Jesus actually lived gospel-driven lives, fewer and fewer people would feel like God is silent.
Two of my other points were "God speaks through creation" and "God speaks in Scripture," and the reason we don't hear Him in either of those ways very often is because we are unaccustomed to the rhythms of the wilderness and the contours of Scripture. We find both pretty uncomfortable, and I think our preference for "private little worlds" where we are inundated with the noise of our creations is connected to the reasons why, at a time when the Bible is now more available to anyone than ever before, we are now as a Church more biblically illiterate than any time ever before.
Next week the topic the series will address is "How do I die to myself and put on Christ?" (Yes, Element folks are Super Spiritual. :-) I will use that question as a jumping off point to talk about subverting the worldly and cultural rhythms thrust upon us by rebelliously embracing the kingdom's rhythms. This is stuff on the spiritual disciplines, etc. There will probably be some good blog fodder in there too.
Sorry for the random thoughts post. It's all I got right now on this Monday that finds me tired, drained, and fending off a nagging headache.
Word to your mother, blogosphere.