Monday, August 18, 2014

A Searle Classic


This Full length cashmere coat with beautiful Norwegian Fox Fur Collar and cuffs, is a Steve by Searle label, and can be easily worn with a jacket or chunky sweater beneath. Perfect for Autumn / Winter nights out on the town or a evening at the Opera.



Spliced princess cut seaming makes this coat perfect for any body type.

Email for more information and to purchase.

Wednesday, July 16, 2014

Thoughts on Health and Eternity in a Letter to my Friend

Dear Friend,
Andrea and your mother both mentioned that you were meditating upon eternity, it's value, it's glory. When I was really sick I was also. Wishing for that heavenly place and seeing all the world as nothing in comparison
 
I was just reading scripture so I thought I would pass on what I am meditating on tonight.
 
Rom. 6:10 For in that he died, he died unto sin once: but in that he liveth, he liveth unto God.
 
I looked up Matthew Henry so as to understand how Christ "lived unto God," making no assumptions simply because He was always living unto God as logic would dictate. Out of curiosity I looked to see if there was more depth of understanding.
 
Matthew Henry says,
 
He rose to live unto God, to live a heavenly life, to receive that glory which was set before him. Others that were raised from the dead returned to the same life in every respect which they had before lived; but so did not Christ: He rose again to leave this world. Now I am no more in the World,
 
John 13:1, Now before the feast of the passover, when Jesus knew that his hour was come that he should depart out of this world unto the Father, having loved his own which were in the world, he loved them unto the end.
John 17:11, And now I am no more in the world, but these are in the world, and I come to thee. Holy Father, keep through thing own name those whom thou hast given me, that they may be one, as we are.
 
He rose to live to God, that is, to intercede and rule, and all to the glory of the Father. Thus must we rise to live to God: this is what he calls newness of life.
 
My thoughts on the passage and MH's explanation:
 
I find that now that I am well and can engage in life and relationships I am beginning to be swept up in the cares of this world as if eternity is far off and hard to be understood. And here I had such a keen understanding just a short while ago. Christ maintains His view of eternity always. All in the present, though we plan and toil, is towards that end. Nothing that we do here fits us for heaven. Only Christ's continual work in us has merit.
 
We will share in His glory. It is set before us also. Unfathomable and humbling. The nature of understanding spiritual things is that it derives a greater degree of humility. It is impossible to be proud of our good graces. Anyone who is, is graceless indeed. What could possibly compare to sitting with Him in glory? Or even now knowing how He works, how He worked in us and continues to work here on earth, and working along side Him until we meet Him in eternity.
 
We rise to leave this world also. Everyday we do. Everyday we are a day closer. Every day we have nothing to lose and everything to gain. Our confidence is that the God of heaven rules and superintends over all we would leave behind. He is our confidence.
 
Should we stay a while longer, we too will intercede and rule over our homes. Our jurisdiction for the time being. We rise and we live unto God. That is our witness. Whether we rise a little, or are restored to full health that we may do quite a lot it is all done in newness of life through Jesus Christ our Lord.
 
We are the benefactors no matter what the circumstances.
 
In Christ,
Kelly
 

 

Saturday, March 22, 2014

The Second Great Embarrassment

Karl Marx was a mediocre writer, but his reference to a great philosopher has been quoted and re-quoted: “Hegel remarks somewhere that all great world-historic facts and personages appear, so to speak, twice. He forgot to add: the first time as tragedy, the second time as farce.”
If we could laugh off current evangelical scandals, our situation would not be so dim—but we cannot. Historians lecture on the Great Awakening (1730s-1740s) and the Second Great Awakening (1800s), but in our time we could mutter about the Great Embarrassment (1987-1991) and the Second Great Embarrassment (2006-present).
Read the rest here.

Monday, November 25, 2013

Our Love-Hate Relationship With Christian Art

or most people, Christianity and art no longer resonate as a glorious pairing. It's a sad and sorry truth that even as Christians, we've largely lost our respect and reverence for "Christian art."
Wandering through Western Christendom, in which artists are currently arting, I've sampled just about all the flavors of Christian creator and Christian consumer. The too-sugary-sweet, message-is-master types. The respect-me-at-all-costs-hard-bitten types. The ironic. The naïve. The truly talented. The posers. The Christians who can't tell a story without an altar call and the Christians who write as if all of reality fits into that one guilt-ridden moment when Cain was busy slaying Abel—giving man's sinful nature the last word. And of course, there are also those Christian artists who don't want their art to be "Christian" at all. (And the Christian consumers who feel the same way.)
Despite the vast confusion of taste in the kingdom, and the proliferation of art of varying quality, we share one profoundly common bond: Everyone is insecure about the branding of Christian art. Everyone worries about being labeled cheesy—even the cheesiest people I know. Some artists delude themselves into thinking that they aren't, and others attempt to divorce their faith from their creations with a secular firewall.
Many actually believe that they are building something that has never been built before, like they are the first to stand against the raging tide of schlock and do something worthwhile. They are in pursuit of Christian art, but, you know—good this time.
As Christian artists and Christian consumers, it is all too easy for our eyes—particularly (but not only) the eyes of the young—to look ever sideways. Is this cool? Is it cool enough? We get embarrassed by a movie celebrating life and grieving over abortion carnage and bemoan the state of Christian film. Why? Because of the camera work? Because of the acting? Maybe. But more likely because we believe a worldly lie about our own branding.
I come to you with strange news. Brace yourselves. There is a hundred times more schlock and garbage in unbelieving art than in ours. More terrible camera work. More bad acting. More mindlessness. More soul-lessness. More pitiful lyrics. More misery. not to excuse our own inadequacies (which are all too real), but we should stop fearing the snarkiness of those performing worse than we are.
Need some confidence? Take a look beyond our own pop-frothy moment.
Christian art? Are you kidding me? Christianity has produced the greatest art of all time. Get some swagger, people, because we're undefeated. Did a culture of atheism bring us Handel'sMessiahBach? What faith fed the Dutch masters? Give the cathedrals a glance and then find me better architecture. Have a listen to some American spirituals. To the blues. To gospel. Our brothers illuminated manuscripts (and don't you forget it). Narnia. Hobbits. Folk songs. Symphonies. Through the history of the Christian church there runs a wide and roaring river of artistic glory, feeding believers and unbelievers alike.
Now before you start pointing to some of the unbelieving masters, watch me cheat: all beauty is God's. All truth is God's. All goodness is God's. Even those who hate him are made in his image, and if they, by grace, craft glory, we should thank them very much for their contribution and swipe it.
Read the rest here.

Friday, November 22, 2013

Meditating On Future Life - John Calvin

WHATEVER be the kind of tribulation with which we are afflicted, we should always consider the end of it to be, that we may be trained to despise the present, and thereby stimulated to aspire to the future life. For since God well knows how strongly we are inclined by nature to a slavish love of this world, in order to prevent us from clinging too strongly to it, he employs the fittest reason for calling us back, and shaking off our lethargy. Every one of us, indeed, would be thought to aspire and aim at heavenly immortality during the whole course of his life.

 This life, though abounding in all kinds of wretchedness, is justly classed among divine blessings which are not to be despised. Wherefore, if we do not recognize the kindness of God in it, we are chargeable with no little ingratitude towards him. To believers, especially, it ought to be a proof of divine benevolence, since it is wholly destined to promote their salvation. Before openly exhibiting the inheritance of eternal glory, God is pleased to manifest himself to us as a Father by minor proofs, viz., the blessings which he daily bestows upon us. Therefore, while this life serves to acquaint us with the goodness of God, shall we disdain it as if it did not contain one particle of good? We ought, therefore, to feel and be affected towards it in such a manner as to place it among those gifts of the divine benignity which are by no means to be despised.

 Were there no proofs in Scripture, (they are most numerous and clear,) yet nature herself exhorts us to return thanks to God for having brought us forth into light, granted us the use of it, and bestowed upon us all the means necessary for its preservation. And there is a much higher reason when we reflect that here we are in a manner prepared for the glory of the heavenly kingdom. For the Lord hath ordained, that those who are ultimately to be crowned in heaven must maintain a previous warfare on the earth, that they may not triumph before they have overcome the difficulties of war, and obtained the victory. Another reason is, that we here begin to experience in various ways a foretaste of the divine benignity, in order that our hope and desire may be whetted for its full manifestation. When once we have concluded that our earthly life is a gift of the divine mercy, of which, agreeably to our obligation, it behoves us to have a grateful remembrance, we shall then properly descend to consider its most wretched condition, and thus escape from that excessive fondness for it, to which, as I have said, we are naturally prone.

Wait Til It's Free - Support the Project


My friends Colin and Emily Gunn are busy about another project. This time their focus is Obamacare.


Wait Till It's Free (Teaser Trailer) from Wait Till It's Free on Vimeo.

They are less than $5000 away from their goal with 8 days to go. Visit the Kick Starter Page to see how you can become a part of this important project.

Wednesday, September 25, 2013

He Must Be Repentant

True repentance is the result of an accurate understanding of the significance  and gravity of sin, coupled with an overwhelming desire for the remission of that sin through the person and work of Christ and a turning from sin and dead works to faith and obedience. Jeremiah Burroughs, in his book Gospel Remission, gives us a portrait of true repentance as only a Puritan writer can. In describing the penitent believer's attitude toward his sin, Burroughs writes:

Oh, I see the angry countenance of an infinite God against me, whose eyes are a flaming fire looking with indignation upon me! I see a dismal cloud of the displeasure of the Almighty hanging over me! I see woe, misery, and destruction,  pursuing me! I see blackness of darkness and desolation even surrounding me! I both see and feel the woeful accusations of a guilty conscience within me, condemning me, continually grating upon my soul and terrifying me with dreadful visions of eternal miseries to betide me! I see the chain of black guilt and horror on my soul, that I carry with me wherever I go! I see the bottomless gulf of eternal horror and despair with the mouth of it wide open to swallow me up!

This type of imagery is anything but familiar to those of us who are used to trafficking in the seeker-friendly, purpose-driven, best-life-now drivel of our day. Seldom do we hear about the "black dismal cloud of the displeasure of the Almighty" anymore. However, this is how the repentant sinner thinks about sin.

Monday, September 23, 2013

Luther on Praying for Piety in Marriage

[My] dear son and daughter, you need not consider praying for a pious spouse a disgrace, For you do not consider it a disgrace to ask God to give you a sound hand or leg...Now a pious spouse is as necessary as a sound hand or leg. For if a husband or wife do not turn out well, you enjoy few good days or hours and would prefer to have a paralyzed hand or leg instead. -Martin Luther, What Luther Says

Monday, September 09, 2013

WHO WILL STAND

One of the better memories from 1941

Ladies Pre-War 1941 Columbia Cruiser Bicycle


From a time when bicycles made you feel like you were soaring.
Every time you ride this bit of nostalgia, you'll be on vacation.
$99 opening bid