Tis So Sweet (Reprise)

I like certainty, security, stability. I want to know what’s coming, so I can be prepared. I want to understand what’s happening, so I don’t feel confused, and I like knowing what’s real and what’s not. Sometimes I get the luxury of those things, or at least it seems that way for a while. However, now is not one of those times.

I’m looking for work, and at almost 47, I’ve become a relic, because I remember paper job applications. Everything’s online now, and though I consider myself computer savvy, the internet seems to get increasingly convoluted, and there’s no personal interaction. You just send out a signal, and hope you get one back. I’m feeling a little lost and antiquated. My wife and I are stressed, and it’s getting down to the wire.

But will any of that matter? My birthday is August 21, and the whole world seems to be waiting for it. We know for sure there’ll be a solar eclipse, followed by some interesting constellations. Youtubers are going nuts. There’s talk of the Rapture, cosmic rays of higher consciousness, emerald gate portals, and even timeline splits. Some are forecasting the demise of America and the reemergence of the Nephilim. One can blow it all off as nonsense, but the world seems to have gone haywire, and there’s a lot of strange things being discovered and invented lately.

Ancient civilizations that seem to have harnessed energy sources we’re not currently aware of, with possibly other-than-human assistance or direction. They’re perfecting the ability to successfully customize DNA, they can now 3D print human flesh, and they’ve programmed AI bots that invented their own language to communicate with each other. Again, they are customizing DNA, printing flesh, and programming consciousness. And they’re trying to combine species. Oh come on, you know they are. And it sounds alarmingly similar to how some ancient texts say the pre-flood world became corrupted beyond repair, and had to be destroyed. Jesus said it would be like the days of Noah when He returned.

But again, nothing is certain. And while my heart declares with no doubt, “I know whom I have believed”, my fickle, wandering mind sometimes struggles to account for the hard to explain.

A few months ago I was struggling to assimilate new, strange information amidst the voices of intellectual scoffers echoing in my head, and I did what I always end up doing – I ran to my Rock, my Anchor, and my Shield, and into my intellectual chaos came a melody, the hymn, Tis So Sweet To Trust In Jesus. With my bass and computer I laid down 3 spontaneous tracks, then combined them with no editing. The result was a musical representation of that sweet melody running through my personal chaos, my own dreamy instrumental of that beautiful hymn, which I can listen to whenever my mind wants to run amuck. His gift to me, to feed my faith, all the more so because it came from Him. I also posted the hymn lyrics and backstory, but this blog was still an experiment and I wasn’t sure how to share my music with it.

So now that I know how, and since I find myself in a similar place, I’ve decided to reprise (rather than repost) my earlier post, and share my little bass instrumental, maybe someone else will find it uplifting as well. Feel free to share it if you want.

Link to lyrics and backstory

We’re All Worth Saving

Jesus made time for people. All kinds of people. He came to serve, not to be served, and He made no distinction between people of high or low class, between the religious and the sinner, between the socially acceptable and the shunned; He served all alike.

Although Jesus reserved some of his harshest criticism for the hypocrisy of the Pharisees, He did not hate them. He made time for Nicodemus, the fearful Pharisee who came to Him under cover of night to find answers to his troubling questions. He made time to answer the questions of the Pharisees who travelled with Him and His disciples. And when a Pharisee named Simon invited Him to dinner at his house, Jesus accepted his invitation as readily as Matthew’s.

While at Simon’s home, a woman with a local reputation for being sinful came in weeping and proceeded to wash His feet with her tears, dry them with her hair, and annoint them with expensive perfume. This situation Jesus readily accepted also.

Simon however, was appalled. It’s a pretty safe bet that this woman had never been in Simon’s home before, and maybe never would have if Jesus hadn’t been there. To have associations with this notorious sinner would have meant scandal for Simon. He might have been seen as one of those who “…lead captive silly women, laden with sins” (2 Timothy 3:6). Her steps go down to death and Sheol; he wanted nothing to do with her.

It’s my guess that prior to this, she didn’t have much use for the Pharisees, either. I doubt she had any particular longing to be in Simon’s house. But in the presence of Jesus, sinners and Pharisees often find themselves under the same roof.

Jesus lived and moved in two mutually exclusive worlds. Neither one had much tolerance for the other. It was all the same to Him whether He ate with tax collectors and harlots one night, or Pharisees and harlots the next. They were all people whom His Father loved. Beyond that, they were people He loved. Neither the sinner’s disdain nor the Pharisees’s smug self-righteousness was a part of His thinking.

Where Jesus is, anything can happen. Worlds collide, and human beings are reminded that they’re just human beings – nothing more and nothing less. Sinners and Pharisees find themselves under the same roof, faced with the same Saviour, and the realization that we’re ALL worth saving.

 

 

©2017 David Fuller

 

Criminal Controversy

In my senior year of high school, some friends and I decided to put together a pep band for the school pep rally and homecoming game. The lineup was: a guy that played keyboards, (and was the only one who could actually play); a guy with a drum set; me playing the notes the keyboardist showed me on the bass; and my girlfriend pretending to play an electric guitar because it looked cool (it wasn’t turned up).

For a few weeks prior, we were allowed to practice during study hall. It was a small school, and the sound traveled, and we had some issues with students getting bathroom passes to listen to us practice.

We were excited, the whole school, because this was a Baptist school, and being allowed to have a band, with drums, was kind of a big deal. Even if it was just a simple keyboard melody doubled by a bass guitar, with a drumbeat and a silent guitar.

The day of the rally, we were informed that the band would not be allowed after all. The reason?

“WE WERE TOO CONTROVERSIAL” Yes, that’s actually what they said.

I thought that was ridiculous on the part of a small, Baptist high school nobody knows about. Now, I’m incredulous, because this exact same ridiculous type of reasoning is being adopted by Google, Facebook, YouTube, and others and applied in increasing attempts to censor, guess what?, “CONTROVERSIAL SPEECH”, which is also labeled “hate speech”.

What? Since when did controversial become a crime? Or hateful? One of my favorite things about being an American has always been the freedom of controversy. Our nation was born out of controversy. And when did it become a crime to say or do something, just because someone else doesn’t happen to like it? And how is it that the liberal left is now using the same ridiculous reasoning (motivated by the same fear) as the teachers at my Baptist high school?

The Hope Of Glory

What’s ahead
Beyond my fears
Beyond the shedding
Of my tears
The hope of glory
Shining bright
In my heart
A candle light
A flame of Love
Eternally
Melts my heart
Changes me
The strongest faith
The slightest doubt
The victory
He’s holding out
Can I ever
Be released
Son of Love
The sweetest peace

 

 

©  2017 David R. Fuller

 

Just Sayin

​I don’t want to read about praying. I want to talk to God.

I don’t want to read about seeking Him. I want to know Him.

I don’t want to read about how to know God’s will. I want to know God’s will because I know God.

I don’t want to take your word for it. I would like to ask God myself. The Bible says I can. And it contains a crowd of witnesses who say He will answer.

I don’t want you to take my word for it. See for yourself. You don’t have to go anywhere or do anything. God is wherever you are, and He has all the time in the world.

I don’t want to read about what it means to know Jesus. I want to learn what it means to know Jesus.

I don’t want to ask, “What do I think Jesus would do?”. I want to ask Jesus what to do.

Incidentally, His answer frequently differs from mine.

I don’t want a religion with you. I want a relationship with Him.

And, hopefully, with you as well.

I don’t want to wonder if He’s real, any more than I wonder if you are.

I don’t want to be left in the dark. I want to see clearly.

I don’t want to be loyal because I fear punishment. I want to be loyal because I love.

I don’t want to worship. I want to adore.

I want The Rapture to happen to my heart right now.

I want to love so much, to love any more would tear me apart at the seams, but that wouldn’t stop me.

I don’t want to be filled with the Spirit. I want God to flow through me like a fountain, and get everyone else wet. Sometimes people get upset when that happens.

More Than Personal

A good many people nowadays say, “I believe in a God, but not in a personal God.” They feel that the mysterious something which is behind all other things must be more than a person. Now the Christians quite agree. But the Christians are the only people who offer any idea of what a being that is beyond personality could be like. All the other people, though they say that God is beyond personality, really think of Him as something impersonal: that is, as something less than personal. If you are looking for something super-personal, something more than a person, then it is not a question of choosing between the Christian idea and the other ideas. The Christian idea is the only one on the market.

Again, some people think that after this life, or perhaps after several lives, human souls will be “absorbed” into God. But when they try to explain what they mean, they seem to be thinking of our being absorbed into God as one material thing is absorbed into another. They say it is like a drop of water slipping into the sea. But of course that is the end of the drop. If that is what happens to us, then being absorbed is the same as ceasing to exist. It is only the Christians who have any idea of how human souls can be taken into the life of God and yet remain themselves—in fact, be very much more themselves than they were before.

You may ask, “If we cannot imagine a three-personal Being, what is the good of talking about Him?” Well, there isn’t any good talking about Him. The thing that matters is being actually drawn into that three-personal life, and that may begin any time —tonight, if you like.
What I mean is this. An ordinary simple Christian kneels down to say his prayers. He is trying to get into touch with God. But if he is a Christian he knows that what is prompting him to pray is also God: God, so to speak, inside him. But he also knows that all his real knowledge of God comes through Christ, the Man who was God—that Christ is standing beside him, helping him to pray, praying for him. You see what is happening.

God is the thing to which he is praying—the goal he is trying to reach. God is also the thing inside him which is pushing him on—the motive power. God is also the road or bridge along which he is being pushed to that goal. So that the whole threefold life of the three-personal Being is actually going on in that ordinary little bedroom where an ordinary man is saying his prayers. The man is being caught up into the higher kind of life—what I called Zoe or spiritual life: he is being pulled into God, by God, while still remaining himself.

–C.S. Lewis Mere Christianity