31 March 2015

My King – No Fault

Greetings Dear Reader,

Pilate couldn't find any fault in Him.

Pause for a moment to consider just one thing you have done wrong.  It does not need to be big or horrid.  Jesus’ brother, James reminds us that “If someone obeys all of God's laws except one, that person is guilty of breaking all of them.”  The Father’s standard is perfection and no one measures up to that standard.

Jesus, however, did.  Pilate could find no fault in him.  No one could produce evidence of any wrongdoing.  He was the fulfillment of the symbolism of the spotless lamb for Passover.  He kept the law in every point.  He did it so that we, the lawbreakers could benefit from his death.

Death is the penalty of our sin.  We forget this.  He did not owe a death.  He paid one for all of us.  He took our pain, punishment, shame, and sin.  I cannot ponder this for too long without being totally shaken by it. 

Again I am reminded that he rode into Jerusalem for Passover knowing that he was the sacrifice.  Everyone he loved would abandon or be separated from him.  Everything he did that was good would be questioned and dismissed.  People who saw him raise the dead would call for his death.  Those he healed would demand that he be wounded.

He spent the week with the people he loved.  Jesus continued to work the plan right up until he handed back to the Father in the garden.  He never left his faith or his obedience to the law.  He never was guilty and no one could honestly find fault.  He died innocent of all charges to insure my redemption.  That’s my King.  I wonder if you really know him.

Known by the Scars – Michael Card

Mother Mary cried as she held heaven her arms
For the shadow of the scar she saw was clear
As her own bewildered baby lay weeping for the world
Whose frightened tears would free us all from fear

The marks of death that God chose never to erase
The wounds of loves eternal war
When the kingdom comes with its perfected sons
He will be known by the scars

For a time He sought to tell the world He was the Way
That God the father had a human heart
With His own holy hands He sought
To touch and heal their scars
But they chose to tear those gentle hands apart

What was there to wipe away the tears
Firm the holy eyes of God
As He looked upon His one and only Son
Who'd never sin, no nigh, yet was crucified

The marks of death that God chose never to erase
The wounds of loves eternal war
When the kingdom comes with its perfected sons
He will be known by the scars

And after they had slain Him and laid Him in the grave
And the ones He loved had fled into the dark
Then His love and power raised Him
God won the victory
But they only recognized Him by the scars

The marks of death that God chose never to erase
The wounds of loves eternal war
When the kingdom comes with its perfected sons
He will be known by the scars

Wishing you joy in the journey,

Aramis Thorn
Mat 13:52 So Jesus said to them, "That is why every writer who has become a disciple of Christ’s rule of the universe is like a home owner. He liberally hands out new and old things from his great treasure store.”

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30 March 2015

My King – The Pharisees

Greetings Dear Reader,

”The Pharisees couldn't stand Him, but they found out they couldn't stop Him.”

Almost from the beginning the Pharisees opposed Jesus.  They were charged with understanding the Law of Moses and caring for the people.  Instead they turned the law into a prison that they used to control and rob the people.  They heard Jesus challenge their corruption and chose to protect their power over the truth.

I see so much of this today.  Those charged with the care of Christ followers burden them with practices and pretenses that enslave them to a religion.  Instead of using the Gospel to free people it gets used to manipulate them.  Even this week, Holy Week is used to promote practice over faith.  Not everyone does this but it still happens. 

As a Christ follower my obligation is to assure that those who are willing to come to Christ find the burden easy and light.  It is my responsibility to attend to the weighty matters of the law and by doing so assure that the Gospel reflects who Christ is.  The Gospel is about Jesus and his redemption of humans.

I must not pack the Gospel with my brand of faith and practice.  I must assure that what I tell others is clear and pure.  I must assure that I give accurate distinction between what is required and what is preference.  The latter does not matter to anyone but me.  The former must be lived and shared whenever possible. 

It is the Pharisees ancient and modern that drive people away from Christ.  It is failing to live the Gospel in a way that honestly represents Christ and who he is that I must avoid.  Jesus made it clear that his followers need to love others.  He made it clear that following him meant service and sacrifice.  He took up the cross long before he met Pilot who condemned him.  That’s my King.  I wonder if you know him.

Come As You Are – David Crowder

Come out of sadness from wherever you've been
Come, brokenhearted; let rescue begin
Come find your mercy, O sinner, come kneel
Earth has no sorrow that Heaven can't heal
Earth has no sorrow that Heaven can't heal

Lay down your burdens
Lay down your shame
All who are broken
Lift up your face
O wanderer, come home
You're not too far
So lay down your hurt
Lay down your heart
Come as you are

There's hope for the hopeless
For all those who've strayed
Come sit at the table
Come taste the grace
There's rest for the weary
A rest that endures
Earth has no sorrow that Heaven can't cure

Lay down your burdens
Lay down your shame
All who are broken
Lift up your face
O wanderer, come home
You're not too far
So lay down your hurt
Lay down your heart
Come as you are

Come as you are
Fall in His arms
Come as you are

There's joy for the morning
O sinner, be still
Earth has no sorrow that Heaven can't heal
Earth has no sorrow that Heaven can't heal

Lay down your burdens
Lay down your shame
All who are broken
Lift up your face
O wanderer, come home
You're not too far
So lay down your hurt
Lay down your heart

Come as you are

Wishing you joy in the journey,

Aramis Thorn
Mat 13:52 So Jesus said to them, "That is why every writer who has become a disciple of Christ’s rule of the universe is like a home owner. He liberally hands out new and old things from his great treasure store.”

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29 March 2015

My King – …You Can’t Live Without Him

Greetings Dear Reader,

I realize that what I am about to write sounds arrogant, exclusive, and narrow.  I also know that it is possible for something to sound that way, be true, and not be unkind.  You cannot live without Jesus full stop.  I do not mean the pasty Jesus of Renaissance era portraits.  Neither do I mean the fake demanding unloving Jesus portrayed by many “Christian” organizations.

I mean the living Son of God who died so that you could live.  I mean the God/man who could have turned us to dust but chose to live among us and pay for our crimes.  I mean the humble King who road into Jerusalem on a donkey knowing the ones who cheered him on would call for his death within the week.

I wonder Dear Reader when was the last time you looked at Jesus without all the senseless trappings for religion and politics.  He is so much more than anyone can portray.  He is what sustains us even when we hate him.  Jesus is the answer.  He is the answer to every question.

I realize that sounds simplistic and there many complex questions that follow that statement.  Every answer, however, must proceed from a foundation.  That foundation is Jesus.  If you do not honestly look at my King how can you be certain that you do not need him?

All he asks for is everything.  All he starts with, however, is asking for a little faith.  That tiny step, not a leap, is all it takes to begin the journey.  He will meet you where you are.  No one needs to do anything first.  That would be like trying to clean the house before the maid comes.  It would be like trying t get better so you can do see the doctor. 

It is by faith through grace that we are accepted.  It is not by ANYTHING we can do.  In him we live, and move, and have our being.  That’s my King.  I wonder, have you really looked at him?


In the gas station bathroom by the condom machine
I heard the word of the Lord
He said "Take off your shoes, this is holy ground too
You know I came for the sick and the bored."
Beneath the selling of beers
And the welling up of tears
Out beyond the beam of the remote control
There's a whispering voice
That the humble ear ears
that says "I am still waiting for you to ask just to be made whole."

And the bush it was burning on the mountain top
And though the leaves never blackened, the fire didn't stop
That's the way that it works in this old life of sin
You gotta let the fire burn you just to get clean within

I am so often deterred from my actual intent
by distractions in a cellophane wrap
And by a cruel voice that taunts me when I open them up
to find just one more box full of crap
It's where you're mocked while you abstain
and then cursed when you give in
It's all a game that's impossible to beat
But there's a peaceful refrain God'll sing in your brain
when you put the nails to your hands and your feet

And the smell of our sacrifices
still fills up my head
There's just a few left at the altar, Lord
all the rest of them fled
And we've cried and we've tried
We've sweat and we've bled
But we don't just need atonement
We need to be raised from the dead

When they took down the cross from that dark hillside
The blood on their hands was the blood from his side
That's the way that it works, that’s the way it must be.
You gotta let His blood stain you of you want to get free
If you want to get free
If you want to get free
Don't you want to get free?
I think you want to be free.

Wishing you joy in the journey,

Aramis Thorn
Mat 13:52 So Jesus said to them, "That is why every writer who has become a disciple of Christ’s rule of the universe is like a home owner. He liberally hands out new and old things from his great treasure store.”

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28 March 2015

My King – You Can’t Outlive Him

Greetings Dear Reader,

God is eternal.  We have trouble grasping the concept of eternal because we are finite.  He exists outside of time.  This is another small dose of theology proper that I would ask you to endure.  You see, no one created God.  He has always been. 

I find this much easier to believe than I do an infinite regression of happy accidents required for the universe to exist through spontaneous evolution.  What I am more concerned about here is the implication of this eternal existence for me as a follower of Christ.

It means that my King has all things under his control.  He will not fail and he will not cease to be there.  Coupled with his omnipresence it means that he is always everywhere.  It means that time will not erode who Jesus is.  We may abandon the truth of his existence and nature but it will not change him.

The big implication for me seems selfish at times but it is also vital to an honest understanding of Jesus.  The eternal God who became a man remains an eternal God.  This same all powerful, ever-present person has a quality that changes everything.  Jesus loves me.  Yes it is an old simple song.  Yes it seems simplistic. 

The crux of the matter is that he did not have to come to us.  He could have left us to our short time, limited understanding, and self-destruction.  He could have let time consume us all.  Instead he stepped into time from eternal life to embrace death.  He did it because he loves me.  He did it because he loves you Dear Reader.

He embraced death to live out the two greatest commands.  He did it out of love for the Father and he did it out of love for his neighbors.  He did to set an example of how much we gain when we do this.  The eternal God loved us so much that he would rather die than live without us.  That’s my King.  I wonder, do you know him?

Jesus Loves Me – Michael Card (not the song that you think it is)

Jesus loves me, I know it's true
Because He died for me and He died for you
When I think of all the pain that He went through
I want the world to know and I want to shout the news

Jesus loves me, this I know
It's not just the Bible that tells me so
I can feel it, feel it in my soul
Jesus loves me, this I know

Jesus loves me, how can it be
That the only Son of God should care for me
To take away my sin and set me free
To take my life and make it all, it's meant to be

Jesus loves me, this I know
It's not just the Bible that tells me so
I can feel it, feel it in my soul
Jesus loves me, this I know

Jesus loves me, He loves you too
You can't understand it all just believe it's true
He'll take away your old heart, give you one that's new
You'll feel the walls come down as His love comes breaking through

Jesus loves me, this I know
It's not just the Bible that tells me so
I can feel it, feel it in my soul
Jesus loves me, Jesus loves me
Jesus loves me, this I know

Wishing you joy in the journey,

Aramis Thorn
Mat 13:52 So Jesus said to them, "That is why every writer who has become a disciple of Christ’s rule of the universe is like a home owner. He liberally hands out new and old things from his great treasure store.”

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27 March 2015

Second Thoughts – Lost Lives and Distant Dreams

Greetings Dear Reader,

Sometimes I will end the day with thoughts that are important to get out.  Usually I just write them and put them in my journal folder.  I have chosen that on occasion I will share them with you Dear Reader.

Time moves so quickly through the pinch.  Death collects his toll along the way with no regard for our plans and dreams.  He interrupts at will and we must deal with the loss.  The souls are taken and we are left to tend the shell and the pain.

We collect losses at an ever increasing rate as we age.  I have met those who are the last of their troop.  They recount those who have gone on ahead and the sadness lingers.  The toll is always too high and never refundable.

The pain never escapes entirely from our souls.  No matter the level of comfort or healing.  The ones closest to us are the hardest.  They haunt me in that figurative way that no others can see or feel to my satisfaction. 

Sam counsels me in times of desperation and sorrow. He was my first and deepest loss. Too young to understand I blamed myself.  Sarah went quietly taking with her a blessing not quite materialized.  Rachel left behind a gaping wound that never quite fills.  She would have been twenty-four today.  And there is another, unnamed and unknown. 

We cannot change the loss and in each case the loss has done worse.  We have let steal dreams.  I make bad choices at times because of the pain.  In doing so I dishonor the lost.  As I celebrate the Grandfather, Sister, Daughter, and Grandchildren I will never hold while on the journey I vow to make the journey honor them.   I will forfeit no more dreams due to the pain.  I will be the example I should be for them and for others. 

The journey calls and we pay for the journey with our dearest blood.  The Father did as well.  He too lost so that he could call us all to him.  So I raise a glass to the ghosts who haunt me bidding the love and peace.  I promise to do better.  After all I do not sorrow without hope.

Wishing you joy in the journey,

Aramis Thorn
Mat 13:52 So Jesus said to them, "That is why every writer who has become a disciple of Christ’s rule of the universe is like a home owner. He liberally hands out new and old things from his great treasure store.”
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My King – On the Mind

Greetings Dear Reader,

“Well, you can't get Him out of your mind”

Next week is Holy Week.  From this point on I try to think of Jesus moment by moment.  I ponder what he must have been pondering.  I do this on purpose.  When I do not he is still there.  You see this among human kings.  The will of the king echoes throughout the land.  The land and the king are one in a sense.

That which is under the control of the king is influenced by those loyal to the king.  My King is ever present in the world.  More has been written about him than anyone.  His name draws a reaction or response from everyone.  I recall meeting my friend Shay and simply saying his name.  We were instantly friends.

My King is not someone who can be taken passively.  He promised to draw all men to himself.  He will be seen and heard.  Nothing has impacted history more than Jesus.  He becomes either our cornerstone or our stone of stumbling.  We fall into him or over him. 

People try to discredit Jesus.  Some do so mildly and some have committed their lives to it.  Some use him for their own benefit.  Some benefit from truly knowing Jesus.  My hope is that everyone will look at him honestly.  Read the Gospels.  Ask the questions.  Look for the truth. 

Jesus will eventually have all things under his control.  He will dominate us with love and mercy.  He will permeate the world with goodness and grace.  He is on the mind even when we do not want him to be there.  You cannot get away from someone who is everywhere.  That’s my King.  I wonder if you have really considered him?

Scandalon – Michael Card

The seers and the prophets had foretold it long ago
That the long awaited one would make men stumble
But they were looking for a king to conquer and to kill
Who'd have ever thought He'd be so weak and humble

He will be the truth that will offend them one and all
A stone that makes men stumble
And a rock that makes them fall
Many will be broken so that He can make them whole
And many will be crushed and lose their own soul

Along the path of life there lies a stubborn Scandalon
And all who come this way must be offended
To some He is a barrier, To others He's the way
For all should know the scandal of believing

v He will be the truth that will offend them one and all
A stone that makes men stumble
And a rock that makes them fall
Many will be broken so that He can make them whole
And many will be crushed and lose their own soul

It seems today the Scandalon offends no one at all
The image we present can be stepped over
Could it be that we are like the others long ago
Will we ever learn that all who come must stumble?

He will be the truth that will offend them one and all
A stone that makes men stumble
And a rock that makes them fall
Many will be broken so that He can make them whole
And many will be crushed and lose their own soul

Wishing you joy in the journey,

Aramis Thorn
Mat 13:52 So Jesus said to them, "That is why every writer who has become a disciple of Christ’s rule of the universe is like a home owner. He liberally hands out new and old things from his great treasure store.”

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26 March 2015

My King – Guarding and Guiding

Greetings Dear Reader,

With baseball’s opening day also being Resurrection Sunday (next week is Holy Week) I am quite excited for both.  The reason I mention it here is that before the season starts I watch a few of my favorite baseball movies.  My current favorite is Trouble with the Curve

It is the story of a father and daughter with baseball as the backdrop.  We begin to understand why the father sent the daughter to boarding school as the story unfolds.  She has no idea and he is certain he did the best he could at the time.  He acted as he did to protect his daughter.  In a key moment he says to her “You don’t know half of what you think you know.”

I have thought this so often when one of my children was arguing with me.  I can only imagine how often the Father, God thinks that about me. He knows what is best and I ignore him.  He lets me get into trouble and is there for me when I realize my error.  He constantly stands guardian over my soul.

My King guides when I will follow and he guards when I do not. He is strong enough to allow me to exercise my anger and self-centeredness.  He waits for me to see my own errors.  He guards me until I do.

We are all on a journey to God.  I find that walking with him makes the journey much better.  He gives his angels charge to guard us.  He protects us in ways we cannot image.  When I forget that he guards and guides until I am safely back in step or until I get home.  That’s my King.

I Will Bring You Home – Michael Card

Though you are homeless
Though you're alone
I will be your home
Whatever's the matter
Whatever's been done
I will be your home
I will be your home
I will be your home
In this fearful fallen place
I will be your home
When time reaches fullness
When I move my hand
I will bring you home
Home to your own place
In a beautiful land
I will bring you home
I will bring you home
I will bring you home
From this fearful fallen place
I will bring you home
I will bring you home

Wishing you joy in the journey,

Aramis Thorn
Mat 13:52 So Jesus said to them, "That is why every writer who has become a disciple of Christ’s rule of the universe is like a home owner. He liberally hands out new and old things from his great treasure store.”
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25 March 2015

My King – Available Everywhere

Greetings Dear Reader,

Matthew, author of the Gospel of the same name portrays Jesus as King of the Jews.  He records his final words by quoting what Christ said to his followers just before he departed from them:

“When Jesus came near, he spoke to them. He said, ‘All authority in heaven and on earth has been given to me. So wherever you go, make disciples of all nations: Baptize them in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit. Teach them to do everything I have commanded you. And remember that I am always with you until the end of time.’"

Jesus made it clear that he is always with us.  If you will forgive a momentary dive into theology proper I would like to point out something that truly aids me in following Christ in the moment.  Since Jesus has all the power of the divine it means that two specific things are true about him.  First he is omnipresent (this means there is no place where Christ is not present).  Second he is eternal, or he transcends time. 

The reason this is important is that it means that there is not a moment in time where Christ is not already standing awaiting your arrival.  There is not a tick of the clock where Jesus is not available to you in that moment.  There is not a grain of sand that falls through the glass that is not appointed by his will.  In that grain he is present for anyone who will acknowledge him.

The implication of this is that anyone willing to follow Christ will have him there to guide him.  It
means that if necessary he will carry you through the moment.  It means that he knows what is coming and will not leave you alone in it.  He is always available to anyone who will seek him.  That’s my King.  I wonder, do you know him?


How can they live without Jesus
How can live without God's love
How can they feel so at home down here
When there's so much more up above

Throwin' away the things that matter
They hold on to things that don't
The world has gone crazy
But soon maybe a lot more are gonna know

For maybe they don't understand it
Or maybe they just haven't heard
Or maybe we're not doin' all we can
Living up to His holy word

'Cause phonies have come and wrongs been done
Even killing in Jesus name
And if you've been burned here's what I've learned
The Lord's not the one to blame

For He's not just a religion
With steeples and bells
Or a salesman who will sell you
The things you just want to hear

For His love was such
That he suffered so much
To cause some of us
Just to follow, follow, oh

So many laughing at Jesus
While the funniest thing that He's done
Is love this whole stubborn rebellious world
While their hate for Him just goes on

And love just like that
Will bring him back
For the few He can call His friends

The ones He's found true who've made it through
Enduring until the end
The ones He's found true who've made it through
Enduring until the end

Wishing you joy in the journey,

Aramis Thorn
Mat 13:52 So Jesus said to them, "That is why every writer who has become a disciple of Christ’s rule of the universe is like a home owner. He liberally hands out new and old things from his great treasure store.”

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24 March 2015

My King – He Supplies Strength

Greetings Dear Reader,

Perhaps one of the greatest lessons I have learned is that I cannot do most things on my own.  I have learned that I need help.  I will do my best but I cannot do most things without support of some kind. 

This is a simple concept.  We all need help.  We all need the support of others.  My King supplies strength.  He promises to work in us not only to help us do well but to give us the will to do well. 

We are not alone.  We do not have to make it on own.  In fact, we cannot make it without help.  Pride and fear keep us from admitting that we have this need.  We do not want to need help.  We do not want to need full stop.  Instead we want to be on our own on our terms.

My King does not just supply strength.  He supplies all of our need according to his ability to provide.  He wants to give us all good things and as mentioned earlier there is no limit to his ability to do so.

What he wants is for us to depend on that supply.  He wants us to focus on love and kindness.  He wants me to be good to others and live the Gospel.  He wants me to love him and love others and let him take care of the rest.  Everything else is founded on these two things.  That’s my King.


 You know it ain't no use in banging your head
Up against that cold stone wall
'Cause nobody's perfect, except for the Lord
And even the best bound to fall

Remember He is the vine and you are the branch
He'd love to get you through it and if you'd give Him a chance
Just keep doing your best and pray that it's blessed
And Jesus takes care of the rest

Yes the Lord said that, "He'll take care of the rest", He's gonna do it
Where He'll take care of the rest, He'll see you through it, yeah
Where He'll take care of the rest, the devil blew it
Where He'll take care of the, He'll take care of the rest

Just think about Moses, in front of the burning bush
Barefoot on the holy ground
You know, he must have been thinking
Hey what's an old dude like me gonna tell 'em all
When I go down, go down Moses

The Lord said, "Hey Moe
Don't you worry about you going down south
I'll be saying every word that comes out of your mouth
You just keep doing your best and pray that it's blessed
Hey Moe, I'll take care of the rest"

Yes the Lord said that
"He'll take care of the rest", He's gonna do it
Where He'll take care of the rest, He'll see you through it, yeah
Where He'll take care of the rest, oh, Pharaoh blew it
He'll take care of the, He'll take care of the rest

Just believe and you'll receive, that comfort you need
You just think about all those lonely people you know
They've got everything they want, but they got empty souls
Well, He'll take care of the, He'll take care of the
He'll take care of the, care of the rest

You just think about Noah, toting his umbrella
When there wasn't a cloud in the sky
All his neighbors would laugh at his pet giraffe
And they would snicker as he'd passed by

But the Lord said, "Hey Noah
Be cool, you just keep building that boat
It's just a matter of time till they see who's gonna float
You just keep doing your best, and pray that it's blessed
Hey Noah, I'll take care of the rest, I'm the weatherman"

The Lord said that
"He'll take care of the rest", He's gonna do it
He'll take care of the rest, He'll see you through it, yeah
Where He'll take care of the rest, his neighbors blew it
He'll take care of the, He'll take care of the

He'll take care of the rest, he's gonna do it
He's gonna do it yeah
He'll take care of the rest
Only Jesus can see you through it
He'll take care of the rest
Yes, yes, yes
He'll take care of the, He'll take care of the

He'll take care of the rest
You better believe it
He'll take care of the rest
Only the pure at heart receive it
He'll take care of the rest
Yes, yes, yes
He'll take care of the, he'll take care of the

He'll take care of the rest
Hallelujah
He'll take care of the rest
Only Jesus can give it to you
He'll take care of the rest
He'll take care of the rest

Wishing you joy in the journey,

Aramis Thorn
Mat 13:52 So Jesus said to them, "That is why every writer who has become a disciple of Christ’s rule of the universe is like a home owner. He liberally hands out new and old things from his great treasure store.”

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23 March 2015

My King – Unparalleled

Greetings Dear Reader,

We tend to compare things.  Before I cemented my faith in Christ I did a vast comparison to other faiths.  I read what they said about themselves.  The unparalleled difference that I found is that God does not require us to earn our redemption.  In fact, it is clear that we cannot earn it.

Evolving out of a world where everything up to and including human sacrifice was employed in an attempt to appease a deity, Judaism and eventually Christianity required faith for redemption.  The Old Testament law was not a tool for salvation but, rather, a teacher to show us that we could not merit redemption through our own efforts. 

To further evidence his unique approach to us God becomes incarnate.  He journeys to us to do what we cannot.  He becomes like us so that he can die for us.  There is no one like him.  He is unparalleled in his love, power, and sacrifice.  Everything about following Christ compels us to love and sacrifice as well. 

We are to love our enemies and pray for those who show malicious hatred toward us.  Being generous is required of us by this God.  Caring for those in need is part of our mission.  Promoting peace even at the cost of our own lives is to be who we are.  We fail at this.  We are poor examples.  That is all the more reason to see Jesus for who he really is.

We fail but Christ does not.  He has no equal in his desire for us to be whole and his.  He has no parallel in the length he goes for our reclamation.  He has no competitor in his love for us.  More words have been written about Jesus than anyone in the history of the world.  He only wants one thing.  He wants to make all things “good” again.  That’s my King.

To the Mystery – Michael Card

When the Father longed to show
A love He wanted us to know
He sent His only Son and so
Became a holy embryo

That is the mystery
More than you can see
Give up on your pondering
And fall down on your knees

A fiction as fantastic and wild
A mother made by her own child
A hopeless babe who cried
"Was God Incarnate and man deified?"

That is the mystery
More than you can see
Give up on your pondering
And fall down on your knees

Because the fall did devastate
Creator must now recreate
So to take our sin
Was made like us so we could be like Him

That is the mystery
More than you can see
Give up on your pondering
And fall down on your knees

Oh that is the mystery
More than you can see
Give up on your pondering
And fall down on your knees

Oh that is the mystery
More than you can see
Give up on your pondering
And fall down on your knees

Oh that is the mystery
More than you can see
Give up on your pondering
And fall down on your knees

Wishing you joy in the journey,

Aramis Thorn
Mat 13:52 So Jesus said to them, "That is why every writer who has become a disciple of Christ’s rule of the universe is like a home owner. He liberally hands out new and old things from his great treasure store.”

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22 March 2015

My King – Son of God

Greetings Dear Reader,

I try not to venture into too much theology in this writing because my purpose is application and not education.  I know what I believe about the lineage of Jesus.  I also realize we no longer live in a world where one can assume that others know who Jesus is. 

Given that premise I want to explain something that is part of the redemption story.  We celebrate the birth of Christ because it is the act of the living God becoming human so that he can complete our redemption.  We celebrate Holy Week because the same God/man gives up that life to pay the penalty for our rejection of God and his authority.  The resurrection is the symbol that our redemption has been purchased through Christ’s sacrifice. 

I follow Jesus because he did this. I follow him because his love for us is so profound that he came to us when he did not have to do anything.  He could have left us lost and without hope.  He could have walked away let us eventually destroy ourselves.  Instead God became incarnate so that he could build a bridge to us.

My King is God.  He claimed it. He evidenced it through things he did.  The Father acknowledges it.  The resurrection verifies it.  The journey home is one of journeying back to God.  We are all headed there.  The journey requires faith and the one who redeemed us offers to guide us home.  He promises to sustain us along the way.  He sees the whole picture and helps us find the way.  He is so many things but above all he is the living God by whom all things exist.  That’s my King.  I wonder; do you know him?

Could it Be – Michael Card

In the ebb and flow of living
As we wander through the years
We're told to listen to a voice
We can't here with our ears

They say to live by something
That you can't see with your eyes
Is there really any purpose
To this foolish exercise?

Could it be, You make Your presence known So often by Your absence?
Could it be that questions tell us more than answers ever do?
Could it be that You would really rather die than live without us?
Could it be the only answer that means anything Is You?

In our words and in our silence
In our pride and in our shame
To the genius and the scholar
To the foolish and insane

To the ones who care to seek You
To the ones who never will
You are the only answer even still

Could it be, You make Your presence known So often by Your absence?
Could it be that questions tell us more than answers ever do?
Could it be that You would really rather die than live without us?
Could it be the only answer that means anything Is You?

It's a question you can't answer
An answer you cannot express
That the gentle Man of Sorrow
Is the source of happiness

You'll never solve the mystery
Of this magnetic man
For you must believe to understand

Could it be, You make Your presence known So often by Your absence?
Could it be that questions tell us more than answers ever do?
Could it be that You would really rather die than live without us?
Could it be the only answer that means anything Is You?

Could it be the only answer that means anything Is You?

Wishing you joy in the journey,

Aramis Thorn
Mat 13:52 So Jesus said to them, "That is why every writer who has become a disciple of Christ’s rule of the universe is like a home owner. He liberally hands out new and old things from his great treasure store.”

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21 March 2015

My King – Impartial Mercy

Greetings Dear Reader,

A few months ago I was pulled over because I had not noticed that the speed limit had dropped from 35 to 30 in a residential zone.  The officer approached the car and I proffered greeted her, proffered my license and insurance card, and waited for her to speak.  She inquired if I knew how fast I was traveling.  I told the truth, 35 miles per hour. 

The officer explained that the last curve is where the speed limit changes from 35 to 30.  I apologized she nodded and went back to her car.  I waited.  When she returned she handed me back my licenses with a smile.  She explained that she seldom gets honest answers and respect at a traffic stop.  As she let me off with a warning she said, “It feels good to be merciful to those who deserve it.”

I was grateful and said so but as I drove away I pondered the nature of mercy.  Whilst I was thankful for the grace and kindness of the officer I was reminded that God’s mercy is impartial.  We are redeemed through faith by grace.  It is God’s mercy that extends redemption to us. 

The mercy extended to us is impartial.  It is not based on our honesty or good behaviour.  It is not dependent on our social standing or economic class.  The nature of God’s mercy is enduring and unconditional.  It is based on his love.  My King has no reason beyond his own love for us to instigate mercy.  He accepts anyone who will accept him.  He made the first move by dying for us to demonstrate his willingness to be merciful. 

It is the impartial mercy of my King that gives me space to get to the cross.  It is this same mercy that gives us succor and sustenance.  It is the King’s mercy that calls us to redemption and following.  We are guilty and he is forgiving.  We deserve to pay for our rejection of him but he is content to forgive us if we will accept that forgiveness.  That’s my King.

Mercy – Matt Redman

I will kneel in the dust
at the foot of the cross,
where mercy paid for me.
Where the wrath I deserve,
it is gone, it has passed.
Your blood has hidden me.

Mercy, mercy,
as endless as the sea.
I'll sing Your hallelujah
for all eternity.

We will lift up the cup
and the bread we will break,
remembering Your love.
We were fallen from grace,
but You took on our shame
and nailed it to a cross.

Mercy, mercy,
as endless as the sea.
I'll sing Your hallelujah
for all eternity.
[repeat]

May I never lose the wonder,
oh, the wonder of Your mercy.
May I sing Your hallelujah.
Hallelujah, Amen.

May I never lose the wonder,
oh, the wonder of Your mercy.
May I sing Your hallelujah.
Hallelujah, Amen.
[repeat]

I will kneel in the dust
at the foot of the cross,
where mercy paid for me.

Wishing you joy in the journey,

Aramis Thorn
Mat 13:52 So Jesus said to them, "That is why every writer who has become a disciple of Christ’s rule of the universe is like a home owner. He liberally hands out new and old things from his great treasure store.”

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20 March 2015

My King – Powerful

Greetings Dear Reader,

I think that we do not truly understand power.  We tough it, try to wield it, and we do not understand it.  It does not move us in the proper direction.  It does not create love and compassion in us.  It corrupts us.

The power that my King wields is imperial. It is ultimate.  It is a part of his essence.  Nothing can withstand him that he does not allow to withstand him.  Nothing can resist him that he does not allow to resist him.  It is part of who he is. 

My King chooses to express his power on the cross.  He expresses it by commanding us to love our enemies and sets the example for us.  He shows his power through compassion and kindness.  He exemplifies the extent of his power through his willingness to take on all of our sin in order to redeem us.  I think his actions speak for themselves.  That’s my King.

Wishing you joy in the journey,

Aramis Thorn
Mat 13:52 So Jesus said to them, "That is why every writer who has become a disciple of Christ’s rule of the universe is like a home owner. He liberally hands out new and old things from his great treasure store.”

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19 March 2015

My King – Immortally Graceful

Greetings Dear Reader,

I speak often of how Christ followers are supposed to deal in grace.  What that flows from is the immortal grace of God.  It is grace that puts us into favor with God.  It is grace that causes God to continually journey to us.  It is grace that moves Christ to seek and save that which is lost. 

When I first began to follow Christ I learned a definition of grace that has stuck with me.  It is an acrostic.

God’s
Righteousness
At
Christ’s
Expense

It is grace that expresses the love of the Father to his creation through the cross.  I think that no matter how long I ruminate on it I will not comprehend the depth of God’s grace toward us.  We don’t do anything good without the grace of God that hinders us from our potential from evil.

It is grace that keeps us in good standing with God.  It is grace that extends mercy to us.  It is grace that causes God to accept us every time we reject him.  It is grace that keeps us in his hand when we try to escape.  My King deals in grace.  He uses his love to extend this immortal grace to us so that he can allow us to know him.  That’s my King.  I wonder, do you know him?

The Grace By Which I Stand – Keith Green 

Lord, the feelings are not the same
I guess I'm older, I guess I've changed
And how I wish it had been explained
That as you're growing you must remember

That nothing lasts, except the grace of God
By which I stand, in Jesus
I know that I would surely fall away, except for grace
By which I'm saved

Lord, I remember that special way
I vowed to serve You, when it was brand new
But like Peter, I can't even watch and pray
One hour with You and I bet, I could deny You too

But nothing lasts, except the grace of God
By which I stand, in Jesus
I'm sure that my whole life would waste away, except for grace
By which I'm saved

But nothing lasts, except the grace of God
By which I stand, in Jesus
I know that I would surely fall away, except for grace
By which I'm saved

Wishing you joy in the journey,

Aramis Thorn
Mat 13:52 So Jesus said to them, "That is why every writer who has become a disciple of Christ’s rule of the universe is like a home owner. He liberally hands out new and old things from his great treasure store.”

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18 March 2015

My King – Steadfast

Greetings Dear Reader,

This is another one of those words that we do not hear as often as we would like.  Perhaps it is because it so seldom applies to people in our world.  It may be that we have become so accustomed to the transitory, temporary, and disposable that we do not fully understand the value of someone who is resolute and unwavering in duty. 

We seem to have lost the idea of duty in our society.  We count on our soldiers to do theirs unless it violates our sensibilities.  We jump to judgment against those who do what is required of them by oaths and vows.  We seem to be only resolute in our failure to see things without a self-serving filter.

We yearn for heroes who are unwavering in their commitment to good and right.  We also seek to destroy those who evidence that they are.  So seldom do we make the journey to right for the sake of right without any other pretense or reward.  My King is steadfast and resolute.  He stands firm in his love and grace no matter what we do to him.

He is steadfast in his love for us.  He is unwavering in his self-appointed duty to our faith.  He is resolute in paying whatever price necessary for our reclamation.  He is steadfast in his pursuit of us.  He climbs the hill to the cross.  He lays down on the cross. He is lifted up on the cross.  He steps into the void.  He suffers, is forsaken, and dies.  He is that steadfast in his determination to redeem us from rejecting him. 

My King is unchanging.  He is going to fulfill all that he promised.  He is preparing to make all things right.  He is steadfast in only asking us to follow in faith.  He is resolute that he will draw all humans unto himself.  He is resolute in his determination that none should perish.  He stands by me every moment offering the grace and strength to get through it with him.  He is steadfast in his love for us.  That’s my King.  I wonder.  Do you know him?

How Long Will I Love You – Jon Boden, Sam Sweeney & Ben Coleman

How long will I love you?
As long as stars are above you,
And longer if I can

How long will I need you?
As long as the seasons need to
Follow their plan

How long will I be with you?
As long as the sea is bound to
Wash upon the sand

How long will I want you?
As long as you want me to,
And longer by far

How long will I hold you?
As long as your father told you,
As long as you can

How long will I give to you?
As long as I live through you,
However long you say

How long will I love you?
As long as stars are above you,
And longer if I may

We're all traveling through time together
Every day of our lives
All we can do is do our best
To relish this remarkable ride  

Wishing you joy in the journey,

Aramis Thorn
Mat 13:52 So Jesus said to them, "That is why every writer who has become a disciple of Christ’s rule of the universe is like a home owner. He liberally hands out new and old things from his great treasure store.”

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17 March 2015

My King – Sincerity

Greetings Dear Reader,

What is sincerity?  Our generous friends at Webster’s online tell us it is “free from pretense or deceit; proceeding from genuine feelings.”  Since God tells us his motivation is love for us it follows that he must act without pretense or deceit.  His genuine feelings of love for us result in his traveling so far to redeem us.

People assign an agenda to God for their own purposes.  This, not swearing is at the center of the command not to take the name of the Lord in vain.  We are not to follow Christ with any pretense.  We are not to use God for our own purposes.  We are to reflect his love without pretense. 

My King is sincere in his love and the offer of life.  He truly withes for us to be in his care and under his domain.  His death on the cross is an act of sincerity.  The entire purpose of the incarnation is to remove the pretense of an unreachable God.  We cannot travel to him so he comes to us.  We cannot bridge the gap so he uses his life to build that bridge.  My King descends from his throne to humbly invite us to his kingdom.

There is not price of admission other than faith.  There are no hoops to jump through or proper attire to wear.  He asks us to be good, holy, and loving as token of the faith we carry but it is the faith that matters. My King is sincere that he requires nothing from us to redeem us.  He requires only that we have faith.

Simplicity is a requirement if we hope to avoid pretense.  He means it when he tells us to believe.  Paul tells us that it is “by grace we are redeemed through faith.  It is not because of our own deeds but rather it is a gift from God.”  We are the ones who try to put complexity and pretense into the Gospel.  We are the ones who are not always sincere.

If I am to serve my King well then I must not do so with pretense or insincerity.  Sincerity is not enough but it is vital to an understanding that everything is infused with the purpose of drawing us to the King.  His death and resurrection are his evidence of the depth of his sincerity.  “Grater love has no man than this, that he lay down his life for his friends.”  That’s my King.

In Stillness and Simplicity – Michael Card

In stillness and simplicity
In the silence of the heart I see
The mystery of eternity
Who lives in side of me
In stillness and simplicity
I hear the Spirit's silent plea
That You, oh Lord, are close to me
In stillness and simplicity
You're the Word
Who must be heard
By those who listen quietly
Is the reason we're not still
To hear You speak because
We don't believe You will
In stillness and simplicity
I lose myself in finding Thee
Oh Lord, You mean so much to me
In stillness and simplicity
So, seek the One who dwells in you
The kingdom that within is true
That innermost reality
In stillness and simplicity

Wishing you joy in the journey,

Aramis Thorn
Mat 13:52 So Jesus said to them, "That is why every writer who has become a disciple of Christ’s rule of the universe is like a home owner. He liberally hands out new and old things from his great treasure store.”

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16 March 2015

My King – He is Strong

Greetings Dear Reader,

I am not sure what you think of when you ponder strength Dear Reader.  I fail often to remember that strength has little to do with physical prowess.  When I ponder my King I see the power, might, and strength of who he is. 

He could dismiss us from existence with a thought.  He instead chooses to love us and take on our likeness so we can be assured that he understands us.  He has the strength to command all things but yields to force of iron and wood to die.  He could force us to see the magnitude of his sacrifice but instead he asks humbly that we follow in faith.

He exercises his strength through his weakest followers.  He asks us to be his hands and feet.  He empowers us to live the Gospel and hopes that we will.  He shows his ultimate command of strength in giving us free will.  He does not force himself upon us.  He knows what is best for me.  He loves me without reservation.  He paid the price for my redemption.

In all of that, my King still chooses to let me choose or not choose him.  In the moments when I do not choose him, he does not destroy me.  He waits for me.  He uses his strength to restrain his hand and continues to wait.  He does not let anyone else take me away from him but he lets me be stubborn, obstinate, and disobedient.

Then when I realize my error he is right there.  He takes me in those strong arms and welcomes me home.  He loves me with all the blemishes and scars that are a result of my own failures.  He does not shame me.  He does not chide me.  He simple asks me to keep following.  When necessary he uses that same strength to carry me.  That’s my King…I wonder do you know him?


Wishing you joy in the journey,

Aramis Thorn
Mat 13:52 So Jesus said to them, "That is why every writer who has become a disciple of Christ’s rule of the universe is like a home owner. He liberally hands out new and old things from his great treasure store.”

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15 March 2015

My King – His Blessings

Greetings Dear Reader,

“No barrier can hinder Him from pouring out His blessings.”

I have always thought of “bless” as an odd sounding word.  It also seems so small a word for what it is.  The word is far too hasty for the magnitude of what it confers.  From the basics to the abundant every good thing we have is a blessing from God.  He blesses even those who hate him with life.

We think that we are the ones who have provided for ourselves.  It is so far from the truth.  It is Christ that “we live, and move, and have our being.”  Until I get to the place where I see that every good thing is a blessing from God I am not able to show the level of gratitude that is due.  Work, leisure, and everything in between are all part of God’s provision. 

As I ponder the blessings of my King I am led to consider that from the ordering of the cosmos to the offering of his life for my redemption he continually pours blessings upon me.  The very worst moments in my life are marked by his presence to carry me through them if necessary.  “He sends the rains on the just and the unjust.” 

As I move toward the celebration of the resurrection I must first pause to understand the blessing of the crucifixion.  In Christ’s worst moment he was still pouring out his blessings upon me in the form of his own blood.  That’s my King. 

All Good Gifts – Godspell

We plow the fields and scatter the good seed on the land..
But it is fed and watered by God's almighty hand..
He sends the snow in winter, the warmth to swell the grain...
The breezes and the sunshine, and soft refreshing rain...

All good gifts around us
Are sent from Heaven above
Then thank the Lord, oh thank the Lord for all his love...

We thank thee then, O Father, for all things bright and good,
The seedtime and the harvest, our life, our health, our food,
No gifts have we to offer for all thy love imparts
But that which thou desirest, our humble thankful hearts!

All good gifts around us
Are sent from Heaven above..
Then thank the Lord, oh thank the Lord for all his love..

I really wanna thank you Lord!


Oh bless the Lord my soul!
His praise to thee proclaim!
And all that is within me join,
To bless His holy name!
Oh yeah!
Oh bless the Lord my soul!
His mercies bear in mind!
Forget not all His benefits,
The Lord, to thee, is kind.

He will not always chide
He will with patience wait
His wrath is ever slow to rise
Oh bless the Lord
And ready to abate
And ready to abate
Oh yeah!
Oh bless the lord
Bless the lord my soul
Oh bless the lord my soul! He pardons all thy sins
Prolongs thy feeble breath
He healeths thine infirmities
And ransoms thee from death
He clothes thee with his love
Upholds thee with his truth
And like an eagle he renews
The vigor of thy youth Then bless His holy name
Whose grace hath made thee whole
Whose love and kindness crowns
Thy days
Oh bless the lord
Bless the lord my soul
Oh bless the lord my soul! Bless the lord my soul
Oh bless the lord my soul!
Bless the lord my soul
Oh bless the lord my soul!
Bless the lord, bless the lord
My soul!
Bless the lord my soul!

Wishing you joy in the journey,

Aramis Thorn
Mat 13:52 So Jesus said to them, "That is why every writer who has become a disciple of Christ’s rule of the universe is like a home owner. He liberally hands out new and old things from his great treasure store.”

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