Monday, May 19, 2008

As Aragorn said when standing before the black gate,...

"Sons of Gondor! Of Rohan! My brothers! I see in your eyes the same fear that would take the heart of me. A day may come when the courage of Men fails, when we forsake our friends and break all bonds of fellowship, but it is not this day. An hour of wolves and shattered shields when the Age of Men comes crashing down, but it is not this day! This day we fight! By all that you hold dear on this good earth, I bid you stand, Men of the West! "

Yeah...that's how I'm thinking this week. My situation in real life is nowhere near dire, though the fear is there and is real when I forget to stare it down and it overwhelms me. Fortunately, this does not happen too often, by the grace of God through the encouragement of His Spirit and of friends.

Cancer is a very scary foe. Not knowing whether one has cancer is also very scary. But this was said by a friend in Sunday School yesterday: "We need to speak the truth to ourselves and remind ourselves of what we know..." My God is still on His throne. He is not scared, nor was He surprised, nor is He wondering how this will all turn out. Comfort beyond my meager ability with words is found in those truths!

Off to Houston/M.D. Anderson Wednesday for Thursday appts.

"By all that you hold dear on this good earth, I bid you stand..." I will. Will you help by praying for us?


Friday, May 16, 2008

I think it was the Beatles who said...

*mouth guitar* da da da da daaaaaa da da *sings* "You say it's your birthday!" *mouth guitar* da da da da daaaaa da da...(supply your own percussion beat)

49. Hoping for many more. Realizing that I've long since had more of these than I will have.

My future is secure & certain, for I know Whom I have believed, and am persuaded that He is able to keep that which I've committed unto Him against that day. Still, age has a way of bringing to sharp focus what one does with one's life and how very brief it is at the end of the day. And like almost everyone, I could be consumed by regret for time misspent and not redeemed. But (to quote Paul again) "forgetting what lies behind and straining forward to what lies ahead, I press on toward the goal for the prize of the upward call of God in Christ Jesus" and rest in His glorious, marvelous, amazing grace. The regrets are there and are quite real. As the poet said, "only one life, 'twill soon be past; only what's done for Christ will last." But the regrets themselves are transformed by God's grace into prioritizers for the future. Basically, as others have said, there are 2 things God's going to take off this earth: His Word and His people. There, ladies & gents, is my focus, even as I strive to be a good professor of economics & finance. In fact, focusing on the Word and on people actually helps me very much in my study and in my teaching.

LORD, what I once had done with youthful might,
Had I been from the first true to the truth,
Grant me, now old, to do--with better sight,
And humbler heart, if not the brain of youth;
So wilt thou, in thy gentleness and ruth,
Lead back thy old soul, by the path of pain,
Round to his best--young eyes and heart and brain.

(George MacDonald's Diary of an Old Soul again)


Wednesday, May 14, 2008

Sometimes others capture me better than I can capture myself...

...and this is one of those times. George MacDonald lived in the 1800s, and had a huge impact on C.S. Lewis, among others.

Here are some snippets from MacDonald's wonderful work "Diary of An Old Soul." Ever wonder how I feel about current things medical? And how I wish I were at all times? And how I try to be? And what I desire to say more often to my Lord? Here's a pretty good running start.

(excerpt starts)

But thou art making me, I thank thee, sire.
What thou hast done and doest thou know'st well,
And I will help thee:--gently in thy fire
I will lie burning; on thy potter's-wheel
I will whirl patient, though my brain should reel;
Thy grace shall be enough the grief to quell,
And growing strength perfect through weakness dire.

I have not knowledge, wisdom, insight, thought,
Nor understanding, fit to justify
Thee in thy work, O Perfect. Thou hast brought
Me up to this--and, lo! what thou hast wrought,
I cannot call it good. But I can cry--
"O enemy, the maker hath not done;
One day thou shalt behold, and from the sight wilt run."

The faith I will, aside is easily bent;
But of thy love, my God, one glimpse alone
Can make me absolutely confident--
With faith, hope, joy, in love responsive blent.
My soul then, in the vision mighty grown,
Its father and its fate securely known,
Falls on thy bosom with exultant moan.

(excerpt ends)

Good stuff, huh? I wish I were more of a poet... John Piper says there are some things so deep in our souls that only poetry can capture them properly. Anyway, I'd suggest grabbing a cup of coffee, setting aside a few minutes and reading the whole thing here. I just did exactly that, and this is a better morning because of it.

And btw, mine is not completely an "old soul" yet, thank you very much. *grins*

"O enemy, the maker hath not done;
One day thou shalt behold, and from the sight wilt run."

May it be so, Father. May it be so.
the beach bum

Thursday, May 08, 2008


Want to save someone's life? Literally?

Are you between 18 & 62?

Then keep reading. And act on what you read.

Right now you can go to and request a kit to be screened in order to be a potential bone marrow donor for FREE! Yes, I said FREE. Usually one would pay $52, but from May 5-May 19 you can get screened for FREE!

Please pass this along to all family, friends, co-workers, etc.

Wouldn't it be an incredible opportunity to get to save a life?

Also, on Friday, May 17th, there will be another bone marrow drive in honor of a little girl by the name of Madison Courtney. Madison also needs a bone marrow transplant. This drive will also be held at Temple Baptist Church (West Campus). You can view Madison's site by visiting: I know this sweet family would appreciate your prayers as well. It is my understanding that this drive will also be free of charge. This is only for a limited time as they are doing a promotion to get potential donors. PLEASE consider doing this if you haven't already done so. PASS the word!

Note: once you're typed, you stay in the marrow registry until age 62. They contact you if your marrow matches someone. And btw, there are no needles in the typing process. (there are needles in the donation process, of course, but none in the typing process. I promise!)

This is not about my medical situation, but I feel very strongly about this. And "save a life" is absolutely not an exaggeration.

On behalf of my good friend Jason Weathers, of this young lady named Madison Courtney, and many others needing a bone marrow transplant, THANK YOU FOR RESPONDING TO THIS!