Sunday, April 26, 2015

Vows: Church Membership

Vows for Admission of persons to Sealing Ordinances:
1.    Do you acknowledge yourselves to be sinners in the sight of God, justly deserving His displeasure, and without hope save in His sovereign mercy?
2.    Do you believe in the Lord Jesus Christ as the Son of God, and Savior of sinners, and do you receive and rest upon Him alone for salvation as He is offered in the Gospel?
3.    Do you now resolve and promise, in humble reliance upon the grace of the Holy Spirit, that you will endeavor to live as becomes the followers of Christ?
4.    Do you promise to support the Church in its worship and work to the best of your ability?
5.    Do you submit yourselves to the government and discipline of the Church, and promise to study its purity and peace?

On xx September 1979, I answered these questions affirmatively when I joined Chalcedon Presbyterian Church, Atlanta, GA.   I believe it was a transfer of church membership from St James Anglican Church, Atlanta, GA, where I was confirmed on 8 March 1970 (age 11y11m).

Monday, April 13, 2015

Jehovah Tsidkenu

I once was a stranger to grace and to God, 
I knew not my danger, and felt not my load; 
Though friends spoke in rapture of Christ on the tree, 
Jehovah Tsidkenu was nothing to me. 

I oft read with pleasure, to soothe or engage, 
Isaiah's wild measure and John's simple page; 
But e'en when they pictured the blood sprinkled tree 
Jehovah Tsidkenu seemed nothing to me. 

Like tears from the daughters of Zion that roll, 
I wept when the waters went over His soul; 
Yet thought not that my sins had nailed to the tree 
Jehovah Tsidkenu - 'twas nothing to me. 

When free grace awoke me, by light from on high, 
Then legal fears shook me, I trembled to die; 
No refuge, no safety in self could I see-- 
Jehovah Tsidkenu my Savior must be. 

My terrors all vanished before the sweet name; 
My guilty fears banished, with boldness I came 
To drink at the fountain, life giving and free-- 
Jehovah Tsidkenu is all things to me. 

Jehovah Tsidkenu! My treasure and boast, 
Jehovah Tsidkenu! I ne'er can be lost; 
In Thee I shall conquer by flood and by field 
My cable, my anchor, my breastplate and shield! 

Even treading the valley, the shadow of death 
This watchword shall rally my faltering breath; 
For while from life's fever my God sets me free 
Jehovah Tsidkenu my death-song shall be. 

by Robert Murray McCheyne 
Scottish Presbyterian Minister 

(Tsidkenu is Hebrew for The Lord our Righteousness) 

Sunday, April 05, 2015

Easter Hymn

Praise the Savior now and ever;
Praise Him, all beneath the skies;
Prostrate lying, suff’ring, dying
On the cross, a sacrifice.
Vict’ry gaining, life obtaining,
Now in glory He doth rise.

Man’s work faileth, Christ’s availeth;
He is all our righteousness;
He, our Savior, has forever
Set us free from dire distress.
Through His merit we inherit
Light and peace and happiness.

Sin’s bonds severed, we’re delivered,
Christ has bruised the serpent’s head;
Death no longer is the stronger,
Hell itself is captive led.
Christ has risen from death’s prison,
O’er the tomb He light has shed.

For His favor, praise forever,
Unto God the Father sing;
Praise the Savior, praise Him ever,
Son of God, our Lord and King.
Praise the Spirit, through Christ’s merit,
He doth us salvation bring.

Venantius Fortunatus
cir­ca 530-609

Music: Upp, Min Tun­ga
 Swed­ish Kor­al­bok, 1697

Saturday, April 04, 2015

Lemon Curd Trifle with Fresh Berries

*Trifles and Truffles are easy to eat Delicious Delightful Delectable Treats

 * A trifle is an English treat
 It's tasty and it's very sweet
 It's made with cake and jam and cream
 So fattening it could split a seam.

 Frederick S. Goldstein Bobbye S. Goldstein

 Recipe Links

Friday, April 03, 2015

Loveliest of trees, the cherry now

Loveliest of trees, the cherry now
Is hung with bloom along the bough,
And stands about the woodland ride
Wearing white for Eastertide.

Now, of my threescore years and ten,
Twenty will not come again,
And take from seventy springs a score,
It only leaves me fifty more.

And since to look at things in bloom
Fifty springs are little room,
About the woodlands I will go
To see the cherry hung with snow.

A.E. Housman
1859 - 1936

Thursday, April 02, 2015

Parting with a view

I don't reproach the spring
for starting up again.
I can't blame it
for doing what it must
year after year.

I know that my grief
will not stop the green.
The grass blade may bend
but only in the wind.

It doesn't pain me to see
that clumps of alders above the water
have something to rustle with again.

I take note of the fact
that the shore of a certain lake
is still-as if you were living-
as lovely as before.

I don't resent
the view for its vista
of a sun-dazzled bay.

I am even able to imagine
some, not-us
sitting at this minute
on a fallen birch trunk.

I respect their right
to whisper, laugh,
and lapse into happy silence.

I can even allow
that they are bound by love
and that he holds her
with a living arm.

Something freshly birdish
starts rustling in the reeds.
I sincerely want them
to hear it.

I don't require changes
from the surf,
now diligent, now sluggish,
obeying not me.

I expect nothing
from the depths near the woods,
first emerald,
then sapphire,
then black.

There's one thing I won't agree to:
my own return.
The  privilege of presence-
I give it up.

I survived you by enough,
and only by enough,
to contemplate from afar.

Wislawa Szymborska
 1923 - 2012
 Polish Poet
 1996 Nobel Prize Literature

HT: Carol Bakker
Blogger Friend

Photo Credit: Yours Truly
Gibbs Gardens, Ball Ground GA

Wednesday, April 01, 2015

Nothing is so beautiful as Spring   -     
   When weeds, in wheels, shoot long and lovely and lush;         
   Thrush’s eggs look little low heavens, and thrush         
Through the echoing timber does so rinse and wring         
The ear, it strikes like lightnings to hear him sing;
   The glassy peartree leaves and blooms, they brush         
   The descending blue; that blue is all in a rush         
With richness; the racing lambs too have fair their fling.         

What is all this juice and all this joy?         
   A strain of the earth’s sweet being in the beginning
In Eden garden. –
 Have, get, before it cloy,         
   Before it cloud, Christ, lord, and sour with sinning,         
Innocent mind and Mayday in girl and boy,         
   Most, O maid’s child, thy choice and worthy the winning.         

Gerard Manley Hopkins
English Poet
1844 - 1889