Monthly Archives: November 2012

Friends

Friendship is unnecessary, like philosophy, like art… It has no survival value; rather is one of those things that give value to survival."
– C. S. Lewis

Part of my current studies is a seminar on the writings of C.S. Lewis. This seminar meets once a week but doesn’t include his more popular writings like The Chronicles of Narnia and Mere Christianity; it only looks at some of his lesser known books. Yesterday, we studied the first half of the book The Four Loves, which included the loves of affection and friendship love. I like this seminar; it’s instructive but yesterday’s session didn’t really click for me till later last night.

Last week, when I was home for Thanksgiving Break, I had called down to Paraguay and talked with John, the guy who replaced me as maintenance man. In speaking with him, he mentioned that Jay was coming to the States the next week for a brief visit. After that conversation, I made a mental note to call Jay when he came Stateside. Last night, I enjoyed a all-too-brief conversation with Jay.

In Paraguay, I worked with Jay for over a year and a half. Not only did we work together but we traveled all over Paraguay on numerous jaunts and to Argentina and Chile on vacation. Though there are some major differences between us, he being from the South and I am a Yankee, I look back on those days in sun-drenched Paraguay with fond memories.

But however fond those memories, I concede that Lewis is correct. My time on this earth is NOT dependent on friendship, however much the contrary I want to fight his statement. My survival in Paraguay was not based on gaining new friends and establishing meaningful relationships. Those relationships enhanced my time there.

This truth is something we often overlook. We grieve over the loss of a friend and rightly so. A friend becomes part of us; when they move on or the friendship is annulled, something is lost. We lose a bit of their presence with us. But life does move on. Life changes. Physical distance grows and shrinks.

So how can we reconcile life, change and friends? Like the flawless texture of a fine chocolate, the tantalizing aroma and flavor of a perfect cup of coffee, and the exhilarating beauty of a clear winter night, enjoy it. When life brings you a friend or grants you a moment to be with friends, enjoy it, savor it, absorb it. And when it rescinds those privileged moments, enjoy the memory of those moments. Like the memory of a gorgeous sunset, may the memories imprint themselves in your mind and looking back to those moments, a smile creeps over your face.

Having said that, I look forward to the next time that Jay and I can talk and hope that  it will be face to face. May the intervening months be short. Until then, I smile. Smile 

EJ

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Personality versus Character

Dawn still hasn’t broken; the darkness still cloaks this world. I’m at my desk, prepping for an exam. The sheaf of papers in front of me looks daunting but it contains answers. Answers I need for an exam later this afternoon. So, with an exam looming, why am I blogging? Because I ran across a piece of truth and it has me all excited! May I share it? Will you read it?

Personality is given; character is formed. The personality that we are given can be damaged, life’s experiences could cause us to hide particular personality traits. God doesn’t have standard personality traits. He blesses the personality that He gave you. God does not look at jolly, talkative people as being better than quiet, reserved people. God delights in this variety. However, character is different. God has standards of character. He calls us to honesty, faithfulness, being loving, caring for others, etcetera. These standards are for us no matter what our personality is. Immature character makes personality abrasive and mature character makes personality pleasing. Character can make us uncharacteristic from our personality. Personality matures through choices and life experiences. Character grows as we seek God.

 

Blessings on your day,

EJ

Categories: About life, Praise, Quotes, Rants and Randomness | Tags: , | 3 Comments

A Chilly Truth

Needing to complete an assignment for class, I stepped outside for a walk. The chilly night air hit me and began to numb the exposed parts of my body. Hunkering into my winter coat and shoving the earbuds into my ears, I set out. The night air was still and crisp. Overhead a few stars struggled to peek through a layer of haze. The night was gorgeous and I tried to focus my mind on the Scripture I was listening to. I started my walk by the SR 127 entrance to FB and turned left, heading down to the township road. Coming up this road to Guys Mills Road, I again turned left and headed up into town. Turning the corner at the Evangelical church in town, my eyes fell on the illuminated church sign. There in bold letters was Psalm 119:105, “Thy word is a lamp unto my feet and a light unto my path.” I had to grin. The practicality of that verse struck me. At that moment, I was walking in the night; a light was something that I needed. It was more than a mere desire. A light pierces the darkness and shows the way. My grin broadened as my mind went further. A moment ago, my thoughts had threatened to stray from my audio Bible to other situations in my life. The timeliness of the truth in this verse hit home. God will illuminate my life if I step out in faith to take the next step.

EJ

Categories: About life, Praise, Quotes, Rants and Randomness | Leave a comment

Frosted Beauty

This was a foggy, frosted morning. It heralded the end of summer as it brought the first hard frost. Sunny days still remained but the glory of summer was behind. The frost gave a touch of crystal to the world. And I was there, taking pictures. Here are a few.

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This flower hid itself away, amongst the depths of the plants. Half was frosted; the other escaped.

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This latter shot I took to show the contrast. 2 hours after the original captures, the beautifying effect of the frost vanished and dead flowers remained.

Thanks for looking!

EJ

Categories: About life, Pictures | Leave a comment

A Frosty Morning

I stepped outside and breathed deeply. The crisp morning air penetrated my lungs. Ah, I thought, this is the touch of winter. The morning was more than crisp; it was bracing in its briskness. Daniel Martin, a fellow student, and I had wanted for a long time capture some morning shots at a nearby cemetery. This was that morning. The weak sun managed to throw a warm light, providing a warm contrast to the chilly surroundings. These shots are among the best from that morning.

Enjoy the refreshing draught of autumnal beauty!

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EJ

Categories: About life, Pictures | 2 Comments

Sundays Musings 11/5

Winter has arrived! To celebrate, I’m looking back in time to a time not so long ago when there was still an abundance of leaves and warm fall days. Days that only hinted at the approach of winter. Temperatures have dropped and those days are but a remembrance.

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That’s all. Blessings on the journey this week.

EJ

Categories: Paraguayan Parables | Leave a comment

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