Tuesday, August 31, 2010

Hymn of the Week--More About Jesus

Amanda didn't know this one.  I remember it from way back.  It's not a very common one but I like it.

Hymn of the Week
More About Jesus
Words by Eliza E. Hewitt
Music by John R. Sweney

More about Jesus would I know,
More of His grace to others show;
More of His saving fullness see,
More of His love Who died for me.

Refrain
More, more about Jesus,
More, more about Jesus;
More of His saving fullness see,
More of His love Who died for me.

Thursday, August 26, 2010

Bev sings "The Love of God"

For Dave. Enjoy everyone!

Hymn of the Week--Ivory Palaces

We're getting back into the swing of things for Fall.  That means HOTW.  This is my mom's all-time favorite hymn.  It's a very different melody, but I like it too.  Check out the video of George Beverly Shea singing this hymn below.  It's from 1962.  He doesn't look a day over 75.

Also, check out the girl at 1:38. I don't think she's going to go down front at the end of the service. HA!!

Hymn of the Week
Ivory Palaces
Words & Music by Henry Barraclough

My Lord has garments so wondrous fine,
And myrrh their texture fills;
Its fragrance reached to this heart of mine
With joy my being thrills.

Refrain
Out of the ivory palaces,
Into a world of woe,
Only His great eternal love
Made my Savior go.



Moralism: What do we teach our kids?

Most mornings, Amanda reads some scripture with the kids and goes through a devotional called Keys for Kids.  I grew up reading this publication.  It's put out by CBH Ministries in Grand Rapids, Michigan.  It's on the radio too.  This morning Amanda said it was "completely moralistic."  Today's lesson was about not smoking, drinking and gambling.  I had to check it out.  I went to the website and Amanda was right.  It's all about not experimenting with sin.
HOW ABOUT YOU?
Do you think you need to try everything for yourself-even sinful things? You can get into a heap of trouble if you do. It's dangerous to experiment with drugs, alcohol, smoking, gambling, or other things that can hurt your body or your mind. It's dangerous to experiment with stealing, cheating, lying, disobedience, or any other sin. Listen to your parents and other responsible adults. Above all, listen to God and leave sin alone.

Now, don't get me wrong.  It would be sin for any of our kids to start smoking, drinking or gambling.  But this discussion has to be nuanced a little bit more.  And, in the battle against sin, the only power to kill sin is in the gospel.  When I grew up I was very focused on my own piety.  I was a complete pharisee.  The outside of my cup was clean, but the inside was full of all sorts of sin and self-righteousness.  At dinner, we are reading through Philippians.  Last week we read the following from Philippians 3.
[2] Look out for the dogs, look out for the evildoers, look out for those who mutilate the flesh. [3] For we are the circumcision, who worship by the Spirit of God and glory in Christ Jesus and put no confidence in the flesh— [4] though I myself have reason for confidence in the flesh also. If anyone else thinks he has reason for confidence in the flesh, I have more: [5] circumcised on the eighth day, of the people of Israel, of the tribe of Benjamin, a Hebrew of Hebrews; as to the law, a Pharisee; [6] as to zeal, a persecutor of the church; as to righteousness under the law, blameless. [7] But whatever gain I had, I counted as loss for the sake of Christ. [8] Indeed, I count everything as loss because of the surpassing worth of knowing Christ Jesus my Lord. For his sake I have suffered the loss of all things and count them as rubbish, in order that I may gain Christ [9] and be found in him,  not having a righteousness of my own that comes from the law, but that which comes through faith in Christ, the righteousness from God that depends on faith—[10] that I may know him and the power of his resurrection, and may share his sufferings, becoming like him in his death, [11] that by any means possible I may attain the resurrection from the dead.
(Philippians 3:2-11 ESV)
We talked about the word imputation.  How when Christ died on the cross our sin was imputed to him and his righteousness was imputed to us (2 Corinthians 5:21).  When God looks at us, he credits our faith as righteous, not a righteousness that is our own, but Christ's righteousness.  This was the part that I missed growing up.
[30] And because of him you are in Christ Jesus, who became to us wisdom from God, righteousness and sanctification and redemption, [31] so that, as it is written,  “Let the one who boasts, boast in the Lord.” 
(1 Corinthians 1:30-31 ESV)
Philippians is great because just after Paul talks to them about their righteousness being found in Christ, he tells them to "press on to toward the goal for the prize of the upward call of God in Christ Jesus."  We work or course.  We kill sin of course.  It is really us doing that.  But that is not where our righteousness is found.  That is not where our salvation is found.  Our righteous deeds are like filthy rags.

I want to fight against teaching my kids that if they do certain things and don't do other things then they are right with God.  Unless through faith, they come under the righteousness that is in Christ, they are hell bound.  Once, through faith, they have submitted themselves to Christ, then through the power of the gospel, they work out their own salvation with fear and trembling. 

The whole book of Galatians is Paul blasting the church there for adding anything to the gospel.  If we teach our that following certain moral laws (whatever they may be) somehow is part of justification, then we are in trouble, Paul says accursed (Galatians 1:9.)  Moralistic parenting is too easy.  It's much more difficult to paint with grays and not just blacks and whites.  With the help of God, we'll have a much larger pallet from which to paint the picture of the Christian life for our kids.

Monday, August 23, 2010

Do you know your candy bars?

What a great quiz from Mentalfloss!  Take the candy bar quiz here.  Post your score in the comments.

Friday, August 20, 2010

Family Worship

Matthew Henry:

    If therefore our houses be houses of the Lord, we shall for that reason love home, reckoning our daily devotion the sweetest of our daily delights; and our family-worship the most valuable of our family-comforts...A church in the house will be a good legacy, nay, it will be a good inheritance, to be left to your children after you.
From Donald Whitney's book Family Worship.

ht: TheResurgence Blog

Tuesday, August 17, 2010

U.S. News College Rankings

I just got an e-mail from my alma mater, Taylor University, about their fourth annual number 1 ranking by U.S. News and World Report.  To quote the e-mail,
For the fourth year in a row, Taylor University is the number one Midwest University in the category Best Regional Colleges in the newly-released 2011 U.S.News & World Report survey, America's Best Colleges.
My pet peeve about both this survey and how colleges report the findings is that from reading this e-mail you would think that Taylor University is number 1, at least number one in the Midwest.  Right?  Wrong.  There is also a listing of National Liberal Arts Colleges.  Many of Taylor's competing colleges are on this list.  For instance, Calvin College in Grand Rapids, Michigan is number 101 on the National Liberal Arts Colleges list.  Wheaton College in Wheaton, Illinois, is number 55 on the National Liberal Arts Colleges list.

From U.S. News & World Report

From the e-mail again,
While a number of Indiana colleges and universities received high rankings in various categories, among the four primary regional and national rankings (National Universities, National Liberal Arts Colleges, Regional Universities and Regional Colleges), Taylor was the only Indiana-based school to achieve a number one university-wide ranking. Additionally, Taylor was one of only two Council for Christian Colleges and Universities (CCCU) member institutions to achieve a number one ranking - regionally or nationally.
"One of only two Council for Christian Colleges and Universities (CCCU) member institutions to achieve a number one ranking - regionally or nationally."?  Come on.  They don't state, like I did above, that many other CCCU schools are ranked higher than they are.  What do you think?  Is the way that Taylor and other institutions report these findings misleading?  Is it U.S. News that's misleading?

Monday, August 16, 2010

Camping and the Vikings

I know the photo is terrible, but it was a great moment.  This weekend we pulled the PUP 15 minutes from our house to Rice Creek Chain of Lakes Park.  It is an Anoka County park and I would highly recommend it.  Our site has water and electric and tons of space.  The usual state park sites are close together, usually don't have water and aren't very private.  These sites were the opposite.  Our site was shaded and backed up to a tall grass prairie/wetland.  We couldn't even see our neighbors.  The reservation site was also very easy to use.  When you put in the date you want, it brings up a map of the camp site with the available sites.  There are trails for biking and a nice little beach on the lake.  My only criticism is that there is only one bathhouse for the whole campground and the roads are paved.  But with water at each site, we made do.  If you're looking for a camping spot in the Twin Cities, I would highly recommend this spot.

We had a great weekend of simply relaxing.  Amanda said that it was one of the first weekends that we did absolutely nothing.  The weather was great.  We did have some intermittent showers, but it was no big deal. We brought our little TV so that we could watch the Vikings first preseason game on Saturday night after church.  (I know, really roughing it.)  When we're enjoying times like these, Amanda and I say to the kids, "This is livin'!"  That was certainly our theme for this weekend.  We're looking forward to a few more weekends at home, the State Fair, our annual Door County trip with Shube and the gang, and then a September camping trip South along the Mississippi river with D&J.  Summer's slipping away.

Thursday, August 12, 2010

Read Alouds--The Borrowers

We've finished all of our home school read aloud books for the year so we are on to some that my mom has passed along.  We just finished The Borrowers by Mary Norton.  It's a great book about little people that live in the floors and walls of a house.  All is well until a young boy comes to live at the house and the borrowers' daughter is "seen".  All the kids loved this book.  Apparently it is the first in a series of books about the borrowers.  Maybe we'll have to investigate the others.

Skol Vikings!

Amanda took the three boys down to Vikings training camp today.  I am so excited for them.  I hope they have a great day, see some good practice, and maybe even get some players' autographs.  The picture above is them waiting in line this morning with the rest of the Vikings faithful.  I'll post more pictures throughout the day as Amanda sends them to me.


UPDATE:
They're in.

Wednesday, August 11, 2010

Lucy Ruth

Shube has written songs for each of our kids.  Here are the kids singing the latest installment.

Tuesday, August 10, 2010

Quotes: Short Day

Because of a storm rolling in this morning, the skies got really dark.  Matt's response:
It's gettin' night.  That was a pretty short day.

Thursday, August 5, 2010

Camping and a bike ride


We camped last weekend at Baker Park Reserve in Maple Plain, MN. It was a great park. We've been there before, (It's right by Brad's house.) but we've only camped there one other time, pre-PUP. We liked the big sites and all the things to do at the park. The staff driving around on Saturday afternoon with an ice cream truck didn't hurt either.

We took a bike ride on Saturday afternoon. I hadn't ridden my bike much prior, so going for a 6 mile ride pulling two kids in the trailer, may have been biting off more than I could chew. The picture above is about half way.  The three in the middle were the ones pedaling.  The others were the ones riding.  It was fun though. We're looking forward to our next camping adventure soon.

Wilco at Austin City Limits

This is my second music video in a row. I will get back to posting fun stories about the kids and the life of the Gammons family soon. Until then, enjoy this Wilco video from Austin City Limits. I especially love the guitar solo at about 25:30. I'm no guitarist, but it's pretty fun to watch that dude. It's great how even when he is totally jammin' out, you can still tell that he has the melody in mind.

Watch the full episode. See more Austin City Limits.