This needs to be a Sonnet

Like heavy cream needs to be butter:

Gentleness is subtleness;
And subtlety mocks clarity.
Who can hear a word too softly spoke,
Or bear truth without tenderness?
Hard hearts and broken hearts
Are so very much the same.
Lord only you can sort the difference
Among the sinews of the mind.
Your word alone is strong enough
To be both direct and kind.
Yet your wisdom chose to wield
Your truth on human tongues.
Your spirit hardens whom you harden
You will not forget whom you have chosen
Have mercy on your children Lord
As you have wounded, surely heal


The words of Lieutenant Lemuel, the utterance which his mother taught him:

  1. The two rivers that Hercules (our Christ) joined to clean the Aegean Stables of the church are the Spirit and the Word
  2. The Holy Spirit will pursue His children. Or, The Lord will not let go of His elect.
  3. Loving Jesus means loving His church, even if the church doesn’t love you.
  4. I am the appendix in the body of Christ. Nobody knows what I’m there for, but as long as I don’t cause any trouble, I can stay.
  5. It doesn’t matter if no one else is worshiping. Fix your eyes on the stained glass window at the back of the sanctuary, and worship anyway
  6. Being right is not as important as being obedient. Being right is not as valuable as building the church toward maturity.
  7. Sometimes it takes the right person to communicate a difficult truth.
  8. God’s kindness is not the best proof of His love; a lack of happy circumstances do not show a lack of God’s love.
  9. A single wicked thought is not a sin. We have an enemy who is actively seeking to incite wickedness.
  10. Incitement to rioting is not an excuse for rioting.
  11. Sometimes God’s providence is confusing because he needs you at a certain place & time for the sake of someone else.
  12. Everything stops to correct a bad attitude.
  13. Parenting is more important than eating, more important than sleep, more important than career, more important than appointments, more important than classes, more important than teams.
  14. Everything stops for parenting.
  15. She’s mean to you because she likes you.
  16. When you leave, it should be normal to hire three people to replace you.
  17. It doesn’t matter if you are not worthy to worship. He is worthy to be worshiped.
  18. A little poison in a bad book can ruin a child’s mind. It can only be remedied by a lot of really good books.
  19. Some things that sound fine in print are too vile to be said out loud.
  20. The task at hand may not be the test.
  21. We all sensor. The question is what we sensor.
  22. All laws legislate morality. You cannot legislate anything else.
  23. My goodness, what do they teach children in school these days?
  24. Dance with the grace God has given you.
  25. Never be afraid to ask the question.
  26. Stop asking questions. You’re scaring people.
  27. Always be ready to entertain a good argument.
  28. Some people cannot understand an argument they don’t already agree with.
  29. The Bible doesn’t say that; his grandmother says that.
  30. Prejudice is generational, but it can be corrected.
  31. Don’t act according to your instincts. Act according to your understanding.
  32. Anything worth saying is worth repeating.
  33. Repetition builds retention.
  34. Ignorance and prejudice are brain damage. They deserve your pity, not your wrath.
  35. The gospel has two wings: the Spirit and the word.

The Spirit of Mercy Should Move Us (Pt 7)

It is hard to preserve just bounds of mercy and severity without a spirit above our own, by which we ought to desire to be led in all things.

How Those in Authority Should Act

In the censures of the church, it is more suitable to the spirit of Christ to incline to the milder part, and not to kill a fly on the forehead with a mallet, not shut men out of heaven for a trifle.  The very snuffers [wick trimmers] of the tabernacle were made of pure gold, to show the purity of those censures whereby the light of the church is kept bright. The power that is given to the church is given for edification, not destruction.

How careful was Paul that the incestuous Corinthian (2 Cor. 2:7), if he repented, should not be swallowed up with too much grief.  Civil magistrates, for civil exigencies and reasons of state, must let the law have its course; yet thus far they should imitate this mild king, as not to mingle bitterness and passion with authority derived from God.

Authority is a beam of God’s majesty, and prevails most where there is the least mixture of that which is man’s. It requires more than ordinary wisdom to manage it aright.  This string must not be too tight, nor too loose.  Justice is a harmonious thing.  Herbs hot or cold beyond a certain degree, kill.  We see even contrary elements preserved in one body by wisely tempering them together.  Justice in rigor is often extreme injustice, where some considerable circumstances should incline to moderation; and the reckoning will be easier for bending rather to moderation than rigor.

Insolent behavior toward miserable persons, if humbled, is unseemly in any who look for mercy themselves.  Misery should be a magnet for mercy, not a footstool for pride to trample on.  Sometimes it falls out that those who are under the government of others are most injurious by waywardness and harsh censures, so disparaging and discouraging the endeavors of their superiors for public good.

In so great weakness of man’s nature, and especially in this crazy age of the world, we ought to take in good part any moderate happiness we enjoy by government, and not be altogether as a nail in the wound, exasperating things by misconstruction.  Here love should have a mantle to cast upon lessor errors of those above us.  Oftentimes the poor man is the oppressor by unjust clamors.  We should labor to give the best interpretation to the actions of governments that the nature of the actions will possibly bear.


This fallen world affects all creatures,
Saint and sinner, with the bread
Of hard affliction—mournful soul-ache,
Unjust judgment, creeping dread.

But the God of all creation
Has engineered a hidden path
Wherein the sweetest, purest pleasures
In affliction may be had.

The wise are found in those dark mine shafts
Sifting ore from worthless slag,
While the torrents of life’s hardships
Fall like oil upon their heads.

And the key into this pathway
Where God’s favorites know to hide
Is the simple abjuration
Of any form of human pride. Continue reading “Exhortation”