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Cookies and Carol King

November 17, 2004

“You’ve got to get up every morning,
Put a smile on your face
And show the world all the love in your heart.”

[Beautiful, Carol King]

Ahhh, sweet idealism. This morning I am making cookies out the dough I mixed up yesterday and listening to Carol King. You really can’t beat that combination for a morning routine. Whose tastebuds don’t want a spoon full of cookie dough in the morning and a little “You’ve Got A Friend”? Plus, it goes really well with Bongo Java’s Charbucks Blend. However, before cookies, coffee and Carol King, I read some of Isaiah. One the best things about waking up and having no one be here in my apartment except me and God is that I can talk to him out loud, like he was sitting with me and having a bowl of Cherrios and bananas. Granted, this is a rather new thing for me as my theology of who God is continues to change and to be formed. So Yahweh and I were reading Isaiah together. Some passages I would read silently (he doesn’t need me to read it to him, he wrote it) and some parts I would read out loud to get the full effect of the words and to really let them sink in. For example,

And you will say in that day,

I thank you, God.
You were angry
but you anger wasn’t forever.
You withdrew your anger
and moved in and comforted me.

Yes, indeed-God is my salvation.
I trust, I won’t be afraid.
God-yes God!-is my strength and song,
best of all, my salvation!”

Joyfully you’ll pull up buckets of water
from the wells of salvation.
And as you do it, you’ll say,
“Give thanks to God.
Call out his name.
Ask him anything!
Shout to the nations, tell them what he’s done,
spread the news of his great reputation!

“Sing praise-songs to God. He’s done it all!
Let the whole earth know what he’s done!
Raise the roof! Sing your hearts out, O Zion!
The Greatest lives among you: The Holy of Israel.”

Isaiah 12 (The Message)

This should be read out loud.

The hard part about reading a book like Isaiah is that you come across passages like this as well:

Proud humanity will disappear from the earth.
I’ll make mortals rarer than hens’ teeth.
And yes, I’ll even make the sky shake,
and the earth quake to its roots
Under the wrath of God,
the Judgment Day of his raging anger.
Like a hunted white-tailed deer,
People will huddle with a few of their own kind,
run off to some makeshift shelter.
But tough luck to stragglers-they’ll be killed on the spot,
throats cut, bellies ripped open,
Babies smashed on the rocks
while mothers and father watch,
Houses looted,
Wives raped.

Isaiah 13:11b-16 (The Message)

God and I had to have a little talk about this one. The conversation:

ME: What? Has this happened yet? Did you do this already? It was prophesied about Assyria, but has it happened? This doesn’t make me very comfortable. I don’t understand how you can just use people, like Assyria. You used them to capture and destroy Judah, to oppress your people because of their disobedience, and then you turn around and destroy them. Are we all just pawns in your game?

GOD: Remeber Jesus?

ME: Yes

GOD: Remember what you studied in school about the appeasement of my holy wrath? Remeber the words expiation and propitiation?

ME: Yes and no. Hold on, let me get a book.

So, I went to my bookshelf, which all of my books don’t fit on, and grabbed a Bible dictionary. And I was reminded:

Expiation emphasizes the removal of guilt through a payment of the penalty, while propitiation emphasizes the appeasement or averting of God’s wrath and justice. Both words are related to reconciliation, since it is through Christ’s death on the cross for our sins that we are reconciled to a God of holy love (Romans 5:9-11; 2 Corinthians 5:18-21; Colossians 1:19-23).

GOD: See, I have shown my wrath in the past to those who provoked me to anger by the worship of other gods, the same is true for Assyria and Babylon and Judah and Israel. They all chased after other gods. You chase after other gods, too, and Jesus sacrifice remains for you the expiation and propitiation for your own sin and disobedience. Cool, huh? Am I not just? There is much you do not know and will perhaps never know (said with a smile). But know this, I am trustworthy and just.

ME: It’s good to be talking to you again.

With that settled, we finished our Cherrios and bananas and moved on to baking cookies and listening to Carol King. Next, we’re going to vacuum the floor.

Two Quotes that have Appeared Here Before:

Safe!?
Of course he isn’t safe!
But he’s good, he’s the king.”

-Mr. Beaver about Aslan (C.S. Lewis-The Lion, The Witch, and The Wardrobe)

“…and whether it was more like playing with a thunderstorm
or playing with a kitten, Lucy could never make up her mind.”

-about Aslan (C.S. Lewis-The Lion, The Witch, and The Wardrobe)

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