Tuesday, May 11, 2010

Ready to meet Him...

“Behold, I come quickly: hold that fast which thou hast, that no man take thy crown.” (Revelation 3:11)

In the last days, there shall be a time of tribulation such as has never been upon the face of the earth. Some have thought that we should stock up food and learn self-sufficient habits so that we will be able to live on our own and hide from the government. Is that the solution?

Some use the coming tribulation to convince others to get ready to meet Jesus. It’s coming ever closer, and so we should be afraid and get ready because it’s coming. Is that the right spirit?

Jesus is coming soon, and we need to be ready to meet Him. Why? Out of fear? No… out of love.

If we love Him, it will be a joy to get ready to meet Him. The more we trust Him, the less we will fear what men may do to us.

And please, please, if you’re not ready… Don’t wait. The longer you wait, the harder it will be to turn around. We are not promised tomorrow – only this moment. Life is too fragile to put these things off…

To meet Him with joy, when He comes in the clouds… To hear the words, “Well done, thou good and faithful servant…”

It’s worth any sacrifice…

Sunday, May 9, 2010

La Catedral

Here's the video of my recent recital - at least, part of the video. In this part, I play the entire La Catedral by Agustin Barrios.

Saturday, May 1, 2010

Miracles still happen...

Do miracles still happen? Does God still care for His people as He did in Bible times? Or is His power somehow limited after exercising it though the ceaseless ages of eternity?

If you're reading my blog, you should have figured out by now that I play the guitar, and you probably know that I have a CD for sale. Tomorrow (Sunday, May 2) I'll be at a garden show in Missouri. They have a folk music competition there, and I'd like to enter and play Simple Gifts. It's a folk style arrangement for classical guitar, and if I play it (and especially if I win) then I'd like to have some CDs with me in case anyone wants to buy one. Hopefully I could sell quite a few, and if I won, that would attract even more buyers. However, I'm almost out of the ones I had produced back in December. So after OKFCM (the first week of April) I mentioned to Jenae that I would need more CDs soon. At this point, I hadn't decided to enter the competition, but I was needing more CDs anyway. About midway through April, I decided that I wanted to play at this competition, and have some CDs with me available for sale. I told Jenae about it, and she assured me that there was enough time to produce more before I left. As things turned out, the schedule was a little tight, and Thursday morning I realized that we would have to pay for expedited shipping in order to get the CDs to me before we left for Missouri. (I was expecting this would happen, so it was no great surprise.) I called Jenae, and explained the situation, and she said she would try to get them mailed that day. That evening, I was playing my guitar at a recital in Norman, at Hillsdale Baptist College, (I'll put the video up here soon) and so I forgot all about the CDs and focused all my mental energy on practicing the guitar for my performances. I left my cellphone backstage, in my guitar case, on silent mode. The recital went smoothly, and the Lord really blessed. When I got off stage, I found two missed calls from Jenae and a voicemail. I didn't have time right then to attend to that, as I had a number of people who wanted to talk to me. On the way home, I listened to the message. Jenae said that she wanted to talk to me about prices for mailing my package. Oh no, I thought. It's probably too late by now; she would have mailed it already. So via texting, I found out that she had mailed it with FedEx, and that it was $45, and it would arrive Sabbath morning or early afternoon. I wasn't fully sure about it arriving on Sabbath, but since we were planning to go to the park to have church on our own, I figured we could wait until it arrived before we left for the park. When we got home, I found out from my parents that it wasn't quite that simple. We were planning on eating at the park with a friend, which meant that I might have to stay home by myself (because we would probably have to sign for the package). And my mother wasn't comfortable with mailing a package knowing that it would arrive on Sabbath. But at this point, there was nothing we could do – the package was already out of our control. Jenae said that it would have been $80 to have it arrive on Friday, and thankfully she didn't want to spend that money without getting my approval (since ultimately this is my money). :) I went to bed depressed that night. I forgot all about the wonderful recital. All I could think about was this package, that it was going to mess up our schedule for Sabbath, that I should have called Jenae sooner, that it was too late to do anything about it... In the morning, I decided that all I could do was pray about it. I had a very bold thought. What if I prayed that the package would come a day early? No, that couldn't happen. That would mean it would have come overnight, which would have been almost twice as expensive. FedEx is a business service. When they tell you a package is going to arrive Saturday, the package arrives Saturday. But I also knew that with God, all things are possible. I knew that I was asking something very large (at least it seemed to me at the time). But I decided I was going to pray anyway, and see what God would do. I prayed, with the most faith I could muster. I didn't really believe that God would do what I was asking, but I knew He could, so I prayed that He would give me more faith to believe that He would work things out for the best. Jenae was praying too, I found out later, although she probably had more faith than I did. I couldn't see any possible way for it to work out, except a miracle... and I doubted that I would get one of those.

The next morning, after breakfast was cleaned up, I went upstairs to begin my schoolwork for the day. I had a hard time concentrating. My mind was on that package, wondering what would happen to it.

Gravel crunched on the driveway. My mind raced. Someone's here! I looked out the window, and behold, a large white van had arrived. Like a streak of lightning, I had a sudden thought. The package... No, it couldn't be. It wasn't a FedEx van. It must be someone going door to door handing out literature.

The driver got out, carrying a box and wearing a FedEx uniform. Of course, my mother went out to meet him. He said the package was for Zachary Roux. At this point I was just coming out of the house. I looked at the package, and decided it must be something we had ordered... probably something for my garden. The driver said that the package was marked for Saturday delivery, but for some reason it had come early. I couldn't believe what I was hearing. I still thought it must just be an interesting coincidence. Then Mother handed the package to me. I scanned the label... It's the CDs! My mouth dropped open, and I could say nothing. Mother thanked the driver, and we returned into the house.

It was 9 AM. The package was mailed at 7 PM the night before. 14 hours...

With God, all things are possible.

He protects the sanctity of His Sabbath. He cares about the plans of a lowly human being. And He loves to give blessings to His children.

God still works miracles.