Anonymous

Kingdom of God

I composed this song as I was challenged by the life of Daniel who we know of in part, his life marked by several extraordinary events, but what do we know of Daniel in those silent years—from the period when he interpreted the dreams of the king to the writing on the wall to the moment his devotion to Yahweh sentenced him to the snares of a lion’s den. Approximately fifty years had passed between those illustrious days. Fifty years of anonymous living, his past glory lost in a past kingdom. Fifty years unrecorded; unnewsworthy. All we know of those subdued years is recorded in Daniel 6:10 “He went home to his upstairs room where the windows opened toward Jerusalem. Three times a day he got down on his knees and prayed, giving thanks to his God, just as he had done before.”

ANONYMOUS

Verse 1:

Fifty years have gone, from the time the scrolls recorded I interpreted the dreams of a king/Displaced in a land alone, but in the season of the common I persisted to pray everyday/ Blameless in the eyes of God, yet imprisoned in the den of the lions my faith carries on.

Chorus:

How will I live between the verses;

when the days are so ordinary still?

How will I live between the verses.

Has my heart become indifferent to Your Will?

How will I live between the verses;

I won’t surrender my Passion just to live for the thrill

Bridge:

Just to honor you, to give you the glory is never redundant.

Just to honor you, mired in mediocrity you are extraordinary still

Verse 2:

I’ve been ignored so long, searching for praises and flattery for my labor…I’m done/ But the Spirit whispers please hold on, despite the sheer obscurity and the fear of inattention, press on/ Six feet underground, my life left anonymous but I hear the lord say, ‘well done.’

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Screwtape Mock

Psychology

“I have looked up this girl’s dossier and am horrified at what I find. Not only a Christian but such a Christian—a vile, sneaking, simpering, demure, monosyllabic, mouse-like, watery, insignificant, virginal, bread-and-butter miss. The little brute. She makes me vomit. She stinks and scalds through the very pages of the dossier. It drives me mad, the way the world has worsened. We’d have had her to the arena in the old days. That’s what her sort is made for. Not that she’d do much good there, either. A two-faced little cheat (I know the sort) who looks as if she’d faint at the sight of blood and then dies with a smile. A cheat every way. Looks as if butter wouldn’t melt in her mouth and yet has a satirical wit. The sort of creature who’d find ME funny! Filthy insipid little prude—and yet ready to fall into this booby’s arms like any other breeding animal.”

It is not often a girl in a fictional story takes my breathe away in place of a blush and a grin. In fact, only one fancied female, by the name of Rachel Winslow of In His Steps by Charles Sheldon, has ever caught my eye, so to speak. Her illustrated pretty face, equipped with a world-class, classically trained voice, undergoes suspense and poetic transformation as she matured—by renunciation of self and gain—into a heavenly-minded force for the Kingdom. The contemplative dealings through an identity crisis and paradigm shift forged a human side to her character that felt attainable, as if I could say about a woman, “That is Rachel Winslow in flesh.”

Never imagined a look or figure; only a countenance and spirit. I was struck by a faceless design, that, I was certain, was inspired.

There are reasons of godliness: of surprise: of meekness: of dewy-eyed joy: of holy enchantment that stops a man in his track and declares, “Isn’t she lovely.” And when that man discovers how God voices an even higher delight over her devotion, he is suddenly shy, for she is altogether lovely. To see a woman through earthly eyes is romantic at best; to see her through a saint is novel; to see her through the eyes of God is indescribable. As I read through The Screwtape Letters by C.S. Lewis, chapter 22 introduced me to a new way of seeing her—through the eyes of a demon?! The seething disgust of Screwtape for the “prude” begged for a reimagination, as every word of satanic contempt added to the tapestry of her beauty. She is treacherous. A counterrevolutionist. Unchecked. She is mayhem. Dangerous. She is enemy.

Atypical to words like tenderness and chaste, demons know better. Rachel Winslow is badass.

Father Talk

Sexuality

Check out this blog by Albert Mohler from 2005 about Tolkien’s relationship with his sons through letter writing.

I love the forthright relationship J.R.R. Tolkien had with his sons. Aside from the adapted movies, I don’t know much about the man as I do about his colleague C.S. Lewis. Suffice it to say, this kind of parenting is rare, thus, the article is a fresh injection of how I’d love to father if I am ever given the honor. This letter, I’m sure, was not sprung upon his boys entering adulthood but part of a lifelong education on biblical manhood.

I read a book in the same vein by Elisabeth Elliot titled “Let Me Be A Woman”. It was a book of compiled letters written as a wedding gift to her daughter. Surprisingly, as a man I didn’t feel off base allowing myself to be a student of these letters that contained principles voiced for the female sex but were nonetheless intrinsically gender neutral. All the advice on human sexuality Tolkien offered his son in the letter discussed in Mohler’s article were duly noted in Mrs. Elliot’s letters to her daughter.

Something I’ll be mindful of that this article and Elliot’s book have reinforced is that letters are such a great teaching medium. For one because it will always be accessible as a treasured item, a gift that can always be referred or reread, and second because it allows for an eloquence and depth of critical thinking that I could never personally achieve in a conversation.

I am inspired.