Anyone spend time meditating on Revelation 21 lately? And why not?
Easter season. Things we believe in. So far we have considered the following:
We believe in one thing, namely ______. God.
Two fundamental mysteries of faith: __________ and _______________. Trinity, Incarnation.
The articles we believe, spelled-out in the __________. Creed (not the band).
We see, hear, smell, taste, touch the external, material elements of the sacraments; we believe they give us invisible ________. Grace.
Ok. The next topic regarding our faith, appropriate for the Easter season: The triune God brought about the Incarnation, accomplished everything summarized in the Creed, and gives us grace in the sacraments, all for one ultimate reason: So that we can get to ______________.
Just before the Lord Jesus embraced His bitter Passion, He sat on the Mount of Olives with His disciples and outlined the signs of the end of the world. Almost everything He said was utterly terrifying.
From where the Lord and the disciples were sitting, they could see the enormous Temple built by King Herod the Great.
“There will not be left one stone upon another that will not be thrown down,” Christ said.
And it got worse:
“Nation will rise against nation, kingdom against kingdom. There will be earthquakes, famines…” “You will be beaten in synagogues…” “Brother will hand over brother to death…” “There will be great distress in the land, and wrath upon this people.” “The sun will be darkened, and the moon will not give its light, and the stars will be falling from the sky, and the powers in the heavens will be shaken.” “Unless the Lord had shortened the days, no living creature could be saved.”
It has been a decade since a U.S.-Open Men’s Finals match went to five sets. Delpo just beat Federer in the fourth-set tiebreaker. The tall man is making Federer Federer. Very exciting…
My father, my brother, and I attended St. Albans School during some formative years of our lives. The school opened 100 years ago this fall.
I was pretty miserable at the time, but I thank God for my years at St. Albans.
I had more homework at St. Albans than I ever had in college or graduate school. The boys at the National Cathedral school were mean to each other, cruel. The cross-country coach made us run until we threw up.
But I came to understand four crucial things while I was a St.-Albans boy:
1. Being a gentleman is always its own reward.
2. The Church is as inevitable as the sun and/or moon.
3. Liberal Protestantism could not account for the truth of #1 and #2, so the discerning man looked to the Pope for clear teaching.
4. If you can write a clear sentence, you can make an impact in this world.
I wouldn’t be who I am without these precepts firmly entrenched in my mind. Therefore, I feel it is my duty to pray to God: “Vouchsafe thy blessing, we beseech Thee, O Lord, upon the School and upon all other works undertaken in thy fear and for thy glory,” as the St. Albans school prayer has it.
Serena was penalized justly (and later fined). But let’s not judge anyone. In the heat of the moment, we can say things we regret.
The story does have a moral: If you are an athlete, never mouth-off at officials.
Leave it to somone else to complain. Let the fans boo. Let your coach console you later.
I remember losing a high-school basketball game that we should have won. After the game, the coach was not mad at us.
I was amazed. He loved to yell at us. He usually told us we should use rubber-bands and peanut shells for jockstraps. But this time he said, “You guys got a lot of bad calls.”
Never occurred to me during the game.
Why second guess officials? If you overcome bad officiating and win anyway, you are a hero. If you lose gracefully in the face of bad officiating, you are noble. But any player who yells at a referee looks like a spoiled child.