Wednesday, February 29, 2012

this side of the cross

in his book, for the love of god, d.a. carson highlights the disciples' doubt in mark's account of jesus walking on water. they were astonished, completely amazed, and utterly afraid. and this was after jesus had miraculously fed five thousand men with five loaves of bread and two fish in front of them. (as if that wouldn't be enough to convince someone of jesus' power.) carson writes, "their entire orientation was still too restricted, too focused on the immediacy of their fears, too limited by their ability to penetrate to the full mystery of who jesus is an why he came. this side of the cross and resurrection, we still have less excuse than they."

this side of the cross, i'm just as guilty of letting fear cloud my vision and losing my perspective on the power of christ in my life. when the disciples witnessed jesus preaching and performing miracles, they were still unclear about who he was and why he came--the details of his death and resurrection had not completely unfolded. they were walking by blind faith, and fearing much along the way. on this side of the cross, we know the story. we know why jesus came and what he accomplished, yet it's still difficult to believe at times. my fears compromise my faith and require daily surrender to refocus. my human inclination is to devise plans to combat my fears--like how to succeed in order to control my fear of failure--rather than pulling back the veil that my fears create and trusting in the one who fed, healed, shepherded, and saved the lost the lonely (and walked on water).

carson comments, "if jesus truly is the promised messiah, if he enjoys the powers he has already displayed, can any responsible disciple think that he is losing control? can any responsible member of the twelve [disciples] imagine that this sort of messiah could call disciples to himself, and then lose them all in a boating accident?" trusting in jesus will never fail, but allowing my fears to drive the boat will absolutely end up in a crash. this side of the cross, i have no excuse for not believing that.

Thursday, February 23, 2012

this year's new tradition: spontaneous birthdays

within the span of a week falls my birthday, my husband's birthday, and our anniversary.  this makes for far more cakes and meals out than our stomachs can handle in one week (well, i could probably handle the cake part).  in an effort to curb celebration fatigue this year, we decided that we would celebrate just our wedding anniversary on the actual date and would celebrate half birthdays in lieu of real birthdays.  this seemed like a great plan for spacing out the celebration...until we forgot that we made it. (today is josh's half birthday and no cakes have been baked.  in fact, i'm working late and he's going to small group tonight.  our paths won't cross until about 11pm.  happy birthday, honey?).  once we realized that the half birthday thing wasn't going to work out, josh suggested that we celebrate spontaneous birthdays this year.  the theory being that out of the blue one of us would declare any random day as a the other's birthday and would plan some type of celebration/gift.  being the calendar brain that i am, i was initially a bit skeptical about this idea.  but josh did pull off a pretty incredible spontaneous getaway weekend earlier this month (we spun a bottle on the counter, drove two hours in the direction it was pointing, ended up at a beachfront inn on the cape, and loved every moment of the adventure), so i decided to go with it.

glad i did.

on his way back from work on saturday, josh called and announced, "happy birthday!"  and told me to stay in the spare room until he came upstairs.  when he got home, i walked into the kitchen and found this homemade coffee table waiting for me. my brother had found this window on the side of the road and given it to josh a while ago; josh paired it with some pallet board and turned it into a rustic-looking coffee table to fit our vintage theme.


and check out these sweet homemade coasters that our friends gave us as a wedding gift.  now i can put them to good use!

now it's my turn to plan a spontaneous birthday for josh.  power tools and i don't get along, so there won't be any more sweet furniture creations, but we'll see what kind of surprises i can muster.