Monday, December 22, 2014

Hey, Jude!

The Book of Jude is only twenty-five verses long, yet so rich !

Theological conundrums, strange angelic tales of yore, a beautiful, oft overlooked prayer, and stern warnings for apostates with expressive little poetic denunciations.

Listen to his little series of similes, directed at the apostate teachers and infused with unexpected vividness:

They are like clouds carried along by the wind, but bring no rain.

They are like late autumn trees stripped clean of leaf and fruit, pulled up by the roots and completely dead.

They are like wild waves of the sea, with their shameful deeds showing up like empty foam.

They are like wandering stars, for whom God has reserved a place forever in the deepest darkness.

He closes his short epistle with a wonderful, short prayer. 

Clear your throat, muster up your best radio voice, and say this aloud:

"Now unto him that is able to keep you from falling, and to present you faultless before the presence of his glory with exceeding joy, to the only wise God our Saviour, be glory and majesty, dominion and power, both now and forevermore. "

Amen and amen.

Monday, December 15, 2014

Lonely Stranger

I must be invisible
No one knows me.
I look in the mirror
can't they see?

I'm a lonely stranger here,
Well past my day.
And I don't know what's goin' on,
so I'm sure you'll be on your way.

Where I am, stay away;
Don't get close to me,
'cause it's sure to end in tears,
So just let me be.

Some will say that I'm no good anymore;
Maybe I agree.
Take a look then walk away.

'cause I'm just a lonely stranger here.

Apologies to Eric Clapton

Monday, December 8, 2014

Little Boy

Breath comes slowly.

Like a clock slowly ticking down, the long years of life are coming to an end.

Reclining on the comfort of his own bed, Joe's body is discomforted as he feels the long arm of death reaching out to him. His heart too is uneasy as he recalls his past.

Gazing over to his left, he sees the young boy present by his bed side. So innocent, so pure.

"Little boy, murmurs Joe weakly----could you pray for me? His voice grows choked--I have gone astray, my little boy."

"Yes, sir. I would be happy to pray for you. What do you wish I ask for?"

"I wonder, could you ask our Lord... ask Him, little boy, to take my sins away?'

Sincerely, the boy reaches and grasps the hand of the old man. Clinging tightly, Joe closes his eyes and listens.

"Our Father, I love you. Oh, I love you! I know you love him too. Make him feel your love, oh God. Make him forget his mistakes. I know you do not remember them anymore, Jesus. I know you see snow."

Feeling comforted yet not at peace, Joe continues,

"What must I do to be holy again like you ?

Speak again, my child--I know my life has had wrong.
Speak again and help a sinner be strong."

The little boy leans closer and closer still. "He only sees me," he whispers softly in Joe's ear. "he only sees innocence."

Peering through failing eyes, he stares longingly at the portrait in his hand. His ten-year old self stares back at him with all the purity and joy of a little boy.

His arm grows faint, his breathing slows, his eyes drift upward, and Joseph Louis Vito closes his eyes at peace.

Heaven opens, and an angel departs. Sweeping down, he gently scoops up a cherry-faced little boy -- so innocent, so pure -- and, grasping him tightly, soars heavenward.

"See how great a love the Father has bestowed on us, that we would be called children of God; and such we are."--I John 3:1

"Now all glory to God, who is able to keep you from falling away and will bring you with great joy into his glorious presence without a single fault." Jude 1:24