Tuesday, November 25, 2003

November 25, 2003

10:57 PM Lunch report: really good French Fries, the hotdog was okay. I think I like the Polish dogs at Parky’s better (Gene and Jude’s doesn’t serve Polish dogs), French Fries at both place are hot, greasy and very tasty… . Later in the afternoon I saw Nick and he wanted me to listen to a CD he compiled at Samford. All country music: Toby Keith, Hank Williams Jr., and whoever recorded “Song of the South.” He had the boombox cranked up amazingly loud and was singing along with Toby Keith. He’s definitely a Southern boy at heart. 12:34 PM All this talk of biscuits and gravy has made me hungry. I’m going to go to Gene and Jude’s Red Hots for lunch. Steve Boisse and I never got around to our bicycle tour—and now it may be too cold to do it until April. So this will a solo trip. I’m going to focus on the French Fries this time—fresh, crunchy, dripping with grease. An All-American meal. 12:16 PM Only 2 days till Thanksgiving. Here’s the schedule for the AM:

7:30 AM Continental Breakfast in the Dining Room. 8-9 AM Prayer and Praise service in the Dining Room. 9 AM Turkey Trot led by Davis Duggins. Pastor’s Stroll led by yours truly.

PS Howard Duncan has planned the continental breakfast. When I told him that where I come from, “continental breakfast” means biscuits and gravy, he just laughed. 12:14 PM Brian Bill reports that Celebration Sunday at Pontiac Bible Church was “an amazing event as we wrapped up the 40 Days of Purpose Journey. Over 650 people packed into the auditorium at Pontiac Township High School to worship, remember, celebrate, laugh, and even cry.” 11:48 AM Dennis Prager wrote a powerful letter to the soldiers in Iraq. Read it and say “Amen!” (Special thanks to Ted Griffin for alerting me to the column.) 11:41 AM Kevin McCullough noted my comments re: President Bush, James Taranto, the Wall Street Journal, and the “Do Christians and Muslims worship the same God?” debate (see the entry below for Monday, November 24). Kevin linked to my comments and added this helpful insight:

President Bush was wrong on the substance of saying the we worship the same God. (There is always this parrallel though. President Bush IS a born again Christian, a genuine conversion experience he has shared on multiple occassions. Believers DO believe that there will be a day in which “every knee WILL bow, and tongue confess, that JESUS CHRIST is Lord. In other words whether or not Muslims confess Christ as Lord now – they WILL someday…just food for thought).

7:18 AM Happy Thanksgiving—2 days early. I was searching for something to focus my heart on gratitude when I ran across an old hymn called “When All Thy Mercies, O God,” written in 1712 by Joseph Addison. It appears to be based on Psalm 89. You can find all the words and a common melody here. By the way, this is part of the huge Cyber Hymnal, the largest collection of hymns and gospel songs on the Internet. Turn on your speakers and you can listen to the music while you read the words. The site contains many older hymns that have passed out of general usage. For copyright reasons, you won’t many current songs on this site. When you click on “When All Thy Mercies, O God,” you will hear one tune from the 1500s. But note the “alternate tunes.” I liked “St. Peter,” which is the common tune for “In Christ There Is No East or West.” Here are all 12 verses to this fine old hymn. Read it and sing it and get your heart in tune for Thanksgiving. When all Thy mercies, O my God, My rising soul surveys, Transported with the view, I’m lost In wonder, love and praise. Thy Providence my life sustained, And all my wants redressed, While in the silent womb I lay, And hung upon the breast. To all my weak complaints and cries Thy mercy lent an ear, Ere yet my feeble thoughts had learned To form themselves in prayer. Unnumbered comforts to my soul Thy tender care bestowed, Before my infant heart conceived From Whom those comforts flowed. When in the slippery paths of youth With heedless steps I ran, Thine arm unseen conveyed me safe, And led me up to man. Through hidden dangers, toils, and deaths, It gently cleared my way; And through the pleasing snares of vice, More to be feared than they. O how shall words with equal warmth The gratitude declare, That glows within my ravished heart? But thou canst read it there. Thy bounteous hand with worldly bliss Hath made my cup run o’er; And, in a kind and faithful Friend, Hath doubled all my store. Ten thousand thousand precious gifts My daily thanks employ; Nor is the last a cheerful heart That tastes those gifts with joy. When worn with sickness, oft hast Thou With health renewed my face; And, when in sins and sorrows sunk, Revived my soul with grace. Through every period of my life Thy goodness I’ll pursue And after death, in distant worlds, The glorious theme renew. When nature fails, and day and night Divide Thy works no more, My ever grateful heart, O Lord, Thy mercy shall adore. Through all eternity to Thee A joyful song I’ll raise; For, oh, eternity’s too short To utter all Thy praise!

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