As s.z. mentioned below, domestic sources of Pastor Swank are drying up at an alarming pace. Looking back, it’s now clear that sometime last summer we reached the point of Peak Swank, and now face a future of ever-diminishing supplies of “womb humans,” “homo nups,” “mask muslims” and their more action-oriented confederates, “muslim murderers global.” So while the search for America’s Next Top Swank continues, let’s make the most of what little time we have left together, and join the good Pastor as he pauses to reflect upon the meaning of the season:
Esther opened her home for fellowship — Christian sharing. Mid-winter — post-Christmas drab. But not for Carl Miller as he poked his hot dog on metal stick into the living room fireplace.
I really, really hope that’s not a metaphor.
Then came the marshmallows — toasted and ready for the taking.
“Warm, pillowy, and golden brown, they yielded, despite their protestations, to a passionate ravishment by teeth and tongue…”
“Roast a marshmallow for me,” I asked the ten-year-old.
So he brought me a plateful. It’s been some time since I wafted down a plateful of marshmallows fresh from the coals.
“And it’s been quite awhile since I inappropriately conjugated a verb. Oh, must be nigh on to half a paragraph by now…”
Jesus told His disciples to separate themselves from the day’s activity to rest awhile. He knew the value of downtime, just plain “doing a huge hunk of nothing,” as my Dad used to put it. Then it was that Jesus retreated with His friends to the mountains outside the city. They’d chat. No doubt there was laughter heard echoing across the Kidron Valley toward Jerusalem’s gates.
Jesus was known to have unusually ticklish armpits.
Christian sharing is needed in this spiritually fallen world. So it was that Butch of New Gloucester lifted high his hot dog in roll as if the trophy of the evening.
Well, what can you add to that?
Dressed in condiments, it was not long until the dog disappeared — then time for at least another. Sure thing.
Apparently the roll represents Alaska governor Sarah Palin.
Esther’s Standish home is such an open, welcome place. Often she swings wide the door for others to enter…
Other times, she makes them squeeze through the basement window.
…discovering there gospel music providing background calm, a table surprising guests with freshly baked muffins and that fireplace roaring its innards.
True, Esther’s furniture and fixtures are imbued with unholy life, what with the hearth screaming at visitors and treating them to horrific visions of roasting intestines, but the dinette set does whip up a tasty corn muffin, so I think really it all evens out.
Our lives are so hurried. Jesus’ days were filled with crowds beckoning. Our hours are appointment-laden. Jesus’ calendar knew little reprieve.
Even when Lord Jesus got an Blackberry he frequently missed meetings, and according to Luke 11:28, he was over 20 minutes late for his crucifixion.
Yet it is our Lord Jesus who invites us to “be still and know that I am God.” It is Jesus who invites us to “cast all your cares” upon Him. It is Jesus who reminds that He stands at the door knocking, waiting for us to open the door, inviting Him in to sup with Him.
Although it would be nice if Jesus would call first, since the place is a mess, the kids all have colds, and the only thing we have in the house are hotdogs and cream soda, and maybe a couple of Lean Cuisines in the freezer. If he has to stay I suppose I could ask the dining table to bake up one of those Boboli pizzas…
When with Christian friends for such an evening as spent in Esther’s gracious home, we realize that the invisible Jesus presence is there with us. That of course makes that conclave different than any other. Jesus in the midst. Jesus watching over. Jesus caring and loving His own children of grace.
But Jesus mysteriously disappearing the moment the party’s over and it’s time to do all these dishes.
So it was that as I looked over the room, taking in particularly Crystal Miller, 38, conversing animatedly with Ray Alley, 80, I was refreshed with the scene. They surely had enough to talk about. They were caught up in one another’s life situations — comparing notes, sharing concerns, genuinely interested. No generation gap when believers’ hearts reach out to build another bridge.
I told the Congress, Thanks, but No Thanks on that bridge to Crystal Miller, 38.
Thank you, Jesus, for winter surprises come upon with friends.
And thank you Pastor Swank. For making us laugh about English. Again.
Posted by scott on Saturday, December 13th, 2008 at 7:56 pm.