Monday, February 27, 2006

Why "Crossing the Bar"?

While you're waiting for the next installment on the Old Sin Nature, let me share the reason for the the name crossing-the-bar.

For several years I used the last line or even the last stanza of Tennyson's Crossing the Bar as my sig line in my email. Not only is the poem by my favorite poet, but it also goes along with my email handle, sandbar, which is made up from the the first few letters of my first and last names. Also, Crossing the Bar and sandbar seem to be a perfect fit for this "kid" who spent her summers on a boat. Mentally, I envision the harbor where we docked our boat, the Wogekasan, when I read the poem.

Tennyson lived in a precarious time. Darwin, Lyell, and Huxley, among others, were challenging the existence of God. Science shifted from understanding God and His creation to proving God had nothing to do with creation. Tennyson's struggle between his belief in God and this new emerging science is evident in his work. When one reads Crossing the Bar one can't help but recognize the dichotomy.

Sunset and evening star,
And one clear call for me!
And may there be no moaning of the bar,
When I put out to sea,

But such a tide as moving seems asleep,
Too full for sound and foam,
When that which drew from out the boundless deep
Turns again to home.

Twilight and evening bell,
And after that the dark!
And may there be no sadness of farewell,
When I embark;

For though from out our bourne of Time and Place
The flood may bear me far,
I hope to see my Pilot face to face
When I have crossed the bar.


Sunday, February 26, 2006

Taking off the Old Man

One of the best parts about the adult camp at SEYC is that we continually learn about taking off the old man and putting on the new. I used to think that it was a one-time thing. Once I was saved, I took off my old sinful way of life and put on the new saved way of life. But, two years of sitting under Pastor Al's teaching has really helped me to see that we're taking off the old man our whole lives.

So, what is the old man? It's the old sin nature. It's the thing that makes us behave the way that we do. We can decide to behave differently all we want, but until we face the reasons for that behavior, we'll just keep doing the same things over and over and over again. Paul wrote: "For the good that I want, I do not do, but I practice the very evil that I do not want. But if I am doing the very thing I do not want, I am no longer the one doing it, but sin which dwells in me" (Rom 7:19, 20). Pastor Al has been teaching us how to win the battle between the law of our minds and the law of our flesh.

Again, I ask, what is the old man? It is the voice in our heads that tell us that we're no good, that we're not capable, that we're worthless, fat, ugly. They sometimes sound like the person who once told us that lie. But usually, we've spent so much time repeating the lie to ourselves, we only hear the lie, and after we've told ourselves long enough, we just know.

When I finally broke through to understanding the concept, I had been asked to lead worship at the SEYC adult camp--by myself. Although I had played on the worship team at Logos for nearly 20 years, I wasn't sure that I could do it on my own. But, I told Denise I would, put together some songs, packed up my keyboard, and went to camp. I not only discovered that I could lead worship, but I also recognized the "voices" that told me I couldn't.

The voice was my Aunt Janet, who had told me in high school that I didn't play piano well enough to accompany someone for a concert audition. I'm sure that she meant well, but I took it to heart. I wasn't good enough. Later, the voice was reinforced by the members of the worship team. They never intentionally said or did anything to make me think that I wasn't capable, but everytime I was left out of a special or a special service, every time I wasn't included reinforced the lie.

After I understood that the old man had been sabotaging my ability to lead worship, my confidence grew and I found it easy to take him off and fill the position on the team that I was called to fill. I even spent a year as the leader of the Wednesday night team--which was one of the most spiritually satisfying periods of my Christian walk.

This isn't to say that the old man is gone. Oh, no! He lurks beneath the surface, just waiting to sideline me with some other lie. For the last several months I've been dealing with a couple of lies, mostly tied with some kind of teary emotion. But, I'm learning to look at those emotional outbursts to see if I can figure out the reason. Is there a voice that's been telling me a lie in that area? Or is the emotion tied it to something else that hasn't been dealt with? More about that later this week.

Friday, February 24, 2006

Final Dress

Today was final dress rehearsal for the Farndale show. This is the most relaxed I've ever been the night before a show. Rehearsal ended a little after nine. We cleaned up, and Isaac and I went to TGI Fridays afterwards. It's amazing!

One the way to rehearsal tonight, I saw the most awesome sunset. All the clouds along the horizon converged to block the sun. The golden-red rays pierced the clouds and as I witnessed the artwork, I praised the Artist. I felt as if this was a private show, just for me. The sun may have set, but the glow continues yet.


Wednesday, February 22, 2006

Insanity Run Amuck

Tech week of my show that goes up on Friday--The Farndale Avenue Housing Estate Townswoman's Guild Dramatic Society Murder Mystery. I'm pleased to say that it looks pretty good. (I tell my cast that it doesn't look bad--keep 'em striving for improvement). However, at the same time I had to alter 6 dresses for a wedding and do massive mailings at my day job. I'm working on publicity for the Columbus Puppetry Guild's National Day of Puppetry, and thinking in the background what I could perform if we don't get all the slots filled. I'm also looking at scripts for the next play. My home's a wreck, my family misses me (I think--at least they're missing dinner) and. . .

Insanity has crept into my life and I'm ready for things to take a giant step backward. I need some quiet time, but I'm grateful that through most of the chaos that I've been able to sense the Ever-presence of Father. For the most part (with some exceptions) I've been pretty calm through it all. It was when I got buried in the now and I forgot to look up that I got cranky.


Thursday, February 09, 2006

So, this is my first attempt at blogging. Thanks, Holly for putting the idea in my head. Up 'til now I've always thought the whole idea to be narcissistic. I don't really want to read about myself. Why should someone else? Yet, after a hard day at work and another few hours at the theatre, here I am sitting at my computer and sharing my vapid thoughts rather than sewing or collecting props or planning tomorrow's rehearsal or catching up on my worship team reading assignment.

Blogging goes against my melancholy nature. When I write, I usually don't write to share--unless I'm arguing. Get me going on homeschooling or the dangers of proficiency tests and compulsory attendance and I'll write from my soapbox for hours. No, a lot of self-editing will likely take place as I decide what is for public consumption and what is not.

So here we go. Second star to the left and straight on 'til morning.