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Mast & Helm

from the hands and from the heart

Without Separation

Everything outlines your gleaming visage, and I could never paint it - who could ever paint everything? Beauty ad infinitum.

…To say the very thing you really mean, the whole of it, nothing more or less or other than what you really mean; that’s the whole art and joy of words.” A glib saying. When the time comes to you at which you will be forced at last to utter the speech which has lain at the centre of your soul for years, which you have, all that time, idiot-like, been saying over and over, you’ll not talk about joy of words.

—C.S. Lewis - Till We Have Faces

Jacket on. Be strong.
Jacket on. Firm.
Jacket off. Remember, always strong.

—Mr. Han ‘The Karate Kid’ (2010)

Trust in Relationships

As each agent daily makes new the relationship’s trust, it seems that Christ invites each to walk in his lofty footsteps; to each place hands on his sturdy and steady hammer; to taste the wine on which lingers truest overcoming - ‘Behold I make all things new’ 

On Weeping From James Cameron's Terminator 2: Judgment Day

T800: Why do you cry?
John Connor: You mean people?
T800: Yeah.
JC: I don't know we just cry. You know when it hurts?
T800: *Pauses* Pain causes it?
JC: No, it's different. It's when there's nothing wrong with you but you still hurt anyways. You get it?
T800: No.

Do you know what it’s like to be unmade?

—Hawkeye from The Avengers

How long have you been doing music? I just found your page through liking my Thrice post, and then your music. asked by yourradiance

I’ve been performing regularly for what seems to be approaching 3 years now. Thanks for taking the time to check it out. I’m thankful for that.

I am colorblind
Coffee black and egg white
Pull me out from inside
I am ready

I am
Taffy stuck, tongue tied
Stuttered shook and uptight
Pull me out from inside
I am ready
I am…fine

I am covered in skin
No one gets to come in
Pull me out from inside
I am folded, and unfolded, and unfolding

I am
Coffee black and egg white
Pull me out from inside
I am ready
I am fine

Colorblind - by Counting Crows

On Christianity and Hopelessness

Somehow hopelessness seems to have a part in Christendom. For when the hopelessness and the defeat settle in, then we are required to stand in the strength of Christ.  Lewis once wrote that “God who foresaw your tribulation, has specially armed you to go through it…Not without pain… but without stain.” I’m not convinced that one is supposed to believe in “himself”, for one is supposed to believe in Christ. For it is written that when we are weak that He is strong. 

So the Lord’s wired you a certain way. Have we come to think that now we’re on our own? That with our abilities we might be able to make it through? It seems to be quite the contrary. Shall we have more trust in ourselves to navigate, we who are laymen, than the Chief Navigator because we’ve discovered we’ve been given good sea legs? Good sea legs do not help in navigating. They help in standing fast through the storms. 

If The Lord has gifted you with sturdy legs in time of storm, don’t let the enemy beguile you into thinking that because you’re having trouble navigating that you have neither sea legs or direction. If the Lord has given you the natural ability to stand through the torrent, He only asks that of you, for it’s He who will navigate. Stand fast with Christ.

The Light in this broken, crooked, and sorrowful world is a fading and a dying light. But a light whether fading or dying is still a light. It is the lamp beneath our feet. And it shall guide us in this time of dark and daily malaise until the Lord returns to blow it back into full flame. In my sorrow the very least I know is that.

Even if we are killed, I’d rather be killed fighting for Narnia than grow old and stupid at home and perhaps go about in a bath chair and then die in the end just the same

The Last Battle - C.S. Lewis

I have been reading Lewis’ The Last Battle with my students for the past month. There are numerous lines that I came across where I had to read slowly for fear that I would weep outwardly. This is one of them.

Man on Fire

MANZANO: What was she to Creasy then?
RAYBURN: Light. At the end of a long, dark tunnel. Somehow, she showed him it was alright to live again.
MANZANO: And they took that away.

Science Fiction

Shall I ever become accustomed to this strange time? A time of magical devices that house a thousand volumes of songs? Sleek crafted land vehicles? Hand held touch screen-photo-video-audio-recording telephones? Digital night lights, and electronic digital music? Electronic Libraries? My, doesn’t the very ring of these devices merit a sense of strangeness?

Let’s observe that there are women clad in form fitting glitter, who’ll pay a surgeon to insert silicone into their bodies to appear more beautiful. There are children who slink from the daylight to stay indoors in order to vicariously live their lives through a television screen. The entire thing sounds quite like a science fiction novel to me. Not to mention the year is 2012.

If this were a story, my hope is that I am one of the characters that sees past what the world has deftly sold to us: That the ‘futuristic’ times have not come, and that the whole world is one meaningless rock of banality, that there is no wonder in the world, that the story books shall never be. 

If in this one instance the story books are made real, but we have become too accustomed to the gizmos and gadgets that we once thought should be strange and new, it leads me to think that there might be other features in the story books that we might have overlooked because we are too familiar with them.

I shall not forget my deep longing for another place, for I don’t feel at home in this strange land. I shall never find the concrete jungles, the towering buildings, and affectations recorded on billboards comforting. Neither shall I find the unnatural flashing lights and noises any solace. In what many would call a daily state of malaise, I shall call homesickness. I refuse to accept the idea that I could ever feel at home in this strange, strange place. Sure, inklings of light are found here. Goodness is still present, but she is in chains and she languishes and toils. One day all things shall be made new. That is my hope.

"I am in exile; a sojourner. A citizen of some other place."

That’s what I’ll stick to. There’s something in it that rings with freedom. I could be mistaken, and the world might be full of nothing, but how many times in the story books has the outcome been the converse? To me the story books are much more honest about what real life is like, and so, come the accusation of naivety, and ignorance. What I observe is that the best characters are usually expected to find such a resistance. It never stopped them. I pray with all my heart that it shall never stop me. The cry of many a character has been “I will never give in. My allegiance will never be yours”. 

"Why so much show, why so much bravado, boy? Everything is fine, and cheery and at ease, no need to be so worked up" they might say. But this is only a way to slowly dim the light. Christ, help me to keep my light atop a hill, and to never hide it beneath a bushel.

"I stand ready and tall: Reflect the light."

Entire Radiohead set from Coachella 2012.

A whole Villagers’ show before Connor went under the radar to write new stuff. One of my favorite Singer/Songwriters.

The Christian is in a different position from other people who are trying to be good. They hope, by being good, to please God if there is one; or - if they think there is not - at least they hope to deserve approval from good men. But the Christian thinks any good he does comes from the Christ-life inside him. He does not think God will love us because we are good, but that God will make us good because He loves us; just as the roof of a greenhouse does not attract the sun because it is bright, but becomes bright because the sun shines on it.

Mere Christianity by C.S. Lewis

Remind’s of Terrence Malick’s Tree of Life - “Make me good. Brave.”

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