びっくり!

Today I was so surprised.

I walked to UniQlo to buy some new, cooler clothes for the upcoming summer months. As I was checking out, a cover of Mighty to Save by Hillsong came on the radio. マジ?

When I was in Shimonoseki, I was in the Japanese equivalent of the dollar store, Daiso, and heard a version of “In Christ Alone”. It wasn’t the hymn version, but the lyrics were definitely Christian.

Over my time in Japan (coming up on two years soon!) I’ve noticed so many covers in Japanese music. In Shimonoseki, there is a Disney restaurant, where they play Japanese covers (sometimes in English, sometimes in Japanese) of Disney songs.

Why are there so many covers of Western songs? A friend said so that there is enough Japanese content on the radio, TV, etc. Much like the CRTC (if my memory serves me correctly..) in Canada.

So it gets me wondering, how do they choose which songs they will do a cover of? How did they come across these Christian songs? It’s so bizarre, but also I am really glad for all of the Christian propaganda in North America, because it slowly trickles into countries that are fascinated by anything English. It gets here. Slowly, but surely.

1 out of 4

Key Indicators for a life that’s pleasing, honouring to God:
1 Peter 1:13-22

1)
fuel gauge = hope (v13) Set your hope: focused conscious choice, confidant expectation of something better tomorrow.

2)
altimeter (height above sea level; don’t pay attention and you will exit acceptable airspace) = holiness (v.14) He called us to be holy. set apart in character, conduct, calling. “Be holy for I am holy”

3)
attitude display indicator (shows position according to the horizon) = fear (v17), reverent fear of God. respect, want to be in right relationship with God, will I do what I want that will satisfy me for 67 seconds? No, because I’m afraid of how that will affect me and how will God respond? thieves on the cross.. “The fear of the LORD is the beginning of wisdom”, in Prov. & Psalms; if you don’t have the foundation of fear you are in danger.

4)

air speed indicator (speedometer) =love, earnestly, fervently, deeply, “to stretch out”, put effort into it.. love those who are difficult to love, “all men will know you are my disciples if you love one another” love the hardest person to love.

obedience; rom 1:5, 16:26; obed. of faith, then obed. of truth

How Am I Doing?

hope = yes, I hope. My hope is built on nothing less than Jesus’ blood and righteousness.

holiness = hmm.. I have been struggling with this all year. How can my coworkers see that I my life is different from their, because of Christ? Is there really a difference? They sometimes call me “Happy Girl” because I’m joking or laughing a lot, which, IMO, I can only do because of the joy that God has given me. But I don’t really feel separate from my coworkers. Well, one of them is really pessimistic, which is sooo frustrating, but another coworker is a really great guy — good morals (for the most part), an honest, caring guy who would be an amazing Christian, if only he could believe. But am I really set apart from these guys? It frustrates me to no end that I can’t see it. Gah. I am not as holy as I should be.

fear = Do I fear God? I’m going to say, no. I do a little, but not enough by any means. I don’t often do “devotions”, which I feel like I should do. I do commune with God in other ways — writing out the Bible in a notebook, through music, through listening to sermons like these. But, and especially since I’ve got my computer back, I haven’t been doing what my heart really desires — communing with God. However, I didn’t really do that during Lent either. I found other things to occupy my time. As Kevin said, I have to make the concious decision on my own to do it, I can’t expect outside factors to do it for me (we were talking about something slightly different, but it still applies).

love = I love people. Most people. I can think of two people off the top of my head whom I find really difficult to love. And I don’t even try. One of them is so unbelievably irritating that I don’t even talk to them for the most part. And I see them about four day a week. I knew a couple days after I met him that he would be so difficult to love, and I must say that I have really failed this test God has brought my way.

Ah, what a difficult message! And I know, I can see areas where I need to change, where I HAVE to change, but will I? Can I force myself to? All I can end with is, God help me!

For The Love of A Man

To Buck’s surprise these dogs manifested no jealousy toward him. They seemed to share the kindliness and largeness of John Thornton. As Buck grew stronger they enticed him into all sorts of ridiculous games, in which Thornton himself could not forbear to join; and in this fashion Buck romped through his convalescence and into a new existence. Love, genuine passionate love, was his for the first time. This he had never experienced at Judge Miller’s down in the sun-kissed Santa Clara Valley. With the Judge’s sons, hunting and tramping, it had been a working partnership; with the Judge’s grandsons, a sort of pompous guardianship; and with the Judge himself, a stately and dignified friendship. But love that was feverish and burning, that was adoration, that was madness, it had taken John Thornton to arouse.

This man had saved his life, which was something; but, further, he was the ideal master. Other men saw to the welfare of their dogs from a sense of duty and business expediency; he saw to the welfare of his as if they were his own children, because he could not help it. And he saw further. He never forgot a kindly greeting or a cheering word, and to sit down for a long talk with them (“gas” he called it) was as much his delight as theirs. He had a way of taking Buck’s head roughly between his hands, and resting his own head upon Buck’s, of shaking him back and forth, the while calling him ill names that to Buck were love names. Buck knew no greater joy than that rough embrace and the sound of murmured oaths, and at each jerk back and forth it seemed that his heart would be shaken out of his body so great was its ecstasy. And when, released, he sprang to his feet, his mouth laughing, his eyes eloquent, his throat vibrant with unuttered sound, and in that fashion remained without movement, John Thornton would reverently exclaim, “God! you can all but speak!”

Buck had a trick of love expression that was akin to hurt. He would often seize Thornton’s hand in his mouth and close so fiercely that the flesh bore the impress of his teeth for some time afterward. And as Buck understood the oaths to be love words, so the man understood this feigned bite for a caress.

For the most part, however, Buck’s love was expressed in adoration. While he went wild with happiness when Thornton touched him or spoke to him, he did not seek these tokens. Unlike Skeet, who was wont to shove her nose under Thornton’s hand and nudge and nudge till petted, or Nig, who would stalk up and rest his great head on Thornton’s knee, Buck was content to adore at a distance. He would lie by the hour, eager, alert, at Thornton’s feet, looking up into his face, dwelling upon it, studying it, following with keenest interest each fleeting expression, every movement or change of feature. Or, as chance might have it, he would lie farther away, to the side or rear, watching the outlines of the man and the occasional movements of his body. And often, such was the communion in which they lived, the strength of Buck’s gaze would draw John Thornton’s head around, and he would return the gaze, without speech, his heart shining out of his eyes as Buck’s heart shone out.

For a long time after his rescue, Buck did not like Thornton to get out of his sight. From the moment he left the tent to when he entered it again, Buck would follow at his heels. His transient masters since he had come into the Northland had bred in him a fear that no master could be permanent. He was afraid that Thornton would pass out of his life as Perrault and Francois and the Scotch half-breed had passed out. Even in the night, in his dreams, he was haunted by this fear. At such times he would shake off sleep and creep through the chill to the flap of the tent, where he would stand and listen to the sound of his master’s breathing.

But in spite of this great love he bore John Thornton, which seemed to bespeak the soft civilizing influence, the strain of the primitive, which the Northland had aroused in him, remained alive and active. Faithfulness and devotion, things born of fire and roof, were his; yet he retained his wildness and wiliness. He was a thing of the wild, come in from the wild to sit by John Thornton’s fire, rather than a dog of the soft Southland stamped with the marks of generations of civilization. Because of his very great love, he could not steal from this man, but from any other man, in any other camp, he did not hesitate an instant; while the cunning with which he stole enabled him to escape detection.

His face and body were scored by the teeth of many dogs, and he fought as fiercely as ever and more shrewdly. Skeet and Nig were too good-natured for quarrelling, – besides, they belonged to John Thornton; but the strange dog, no matter what the breed or valor, swiftly acknowledged Buck’s supremacy or found himself struggling for life with a terrible antagonist. And Buck was merciless. He had learned well the law of club and fang, and he never forewent an advantage or drew back from a foe he had started on the way to Death. He had lessoned from Spitz, and from the chief fighting dogs of the police and mail, and knew there was no middle course. He must master or be mastered; while to show mercy was a weakness. Mercy did not exist in the primordial life. It was misunderstood for fear, and such misunderstandings made for death. Kill or be killed, eat or be eaten, was the law; and this mandate, down out of the depths of Time, he obeyed.

He was older than the days he had seen and the breaths he had drawn. He linked the past with the present, and the eternity behind him throbbed through him in a mighty rhythm to which he swayed as the tides and seasons swayed. He sat by John Thornton’s fire, a broad-breasted dog, white-fanged and long-furred; but behind him were the shades of all manner of dogs, half-wolves and wild wolves, urgent and prompting, tasting the savor of the meat he ate, thirsting for the water he drank, scenting the wind with him, listening with him and telling him the sounds made by the wild life in the forest, dictating his moods, directing his actions, lying down to sleep with him when he lay down, and dreaming with him and beyond him and becoming themselves the stuff of his dreams.

Call of the Wild, Jack London, p. 77-79