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New Braunfels Herald Zeitung: Saturday, November 25, 2000 - Page 7

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   New Braunfels Herald-Zeitung (Newspaper) - November 25, 2000, New Braunfels, Texas                                Saturday November 25 2000 HfiRALDZElTUNO Page 7 A Shopping for the perfect product TIM JUDKINS This past year I was assigned the unenviable task of buying the annual Christmas tree My wife and oldest daughter both of whom had traditionally been criti cal players in this family liturgy were unavailable to participate There was a definite testosterone overload since the task fell squarely on the shoulders of my son my daughter and me Men go to stores to buy a spe cific item bag it like venison on a fall day return home with their prize and do it in the shortest amount of time possible Expediency is a critical part of the contest The faster he can hunt his product the greater a mans virility Women on the other hand shop for shoppings sake No list need exist and time is irrelevant It is the process that is the prize If in this process items are pur chased all the better A long day of shopping need not be justi fied by a purchase So one afternoon last fall my son daughter and I piled into die family truckster and headed to the most convenient tree lot we could find While my sons and my hunt ing instincts were clearly shop ping mode while conveniently concealed was in full gear We parked got out of the van and walked straight into the tent where only a few trees remained on display Then a miracle occurred The very first tree we saw was verifiably not only the best tree on display but it matched all of our parameters for what we want ed Within seconds my son and I knew that the hunt was over We had found our game in record time Testosterone oozed as we euphorically celebrated our I doubt the entire process from parking to paying was longer than five minutes My daughter however was panicstricken For her we had blasphemied the process It did not matter to her that this tree was perfect We had not shopped long enough to justify any pur chase let alone this one She being a loyal cardcarrying member of the girls would have preferred to leave this perfect tree sitting vulnerable to other hunters and proceed to countless other tree leases aim lessly roaming aisles of pine nee dles while looking at what would obviously be lesser quality trees Then after enough time had passed and only women know what that magic number is we could return to the original perfect projection of pine and make it ours Fortunately no therapy was needed and she would have to agree that no amount of searching would match the quality of this tree I would prefer to hunt and bag a fully realized relationship with God After nearly 35 years of Christian experience however I have to admit that living with God is much more like a shopping experience While the ultimate product of Christlikeness is unquestionably vital and very attainable an equally important process is necessary to realize the essential quality of knowing Jesus Unlike fruitlessly searching for a lesser quality tree once the per fect tree has been found shopping with God will always produce the highest quality of product since it always leads to Jesus himself Tim Judkins speaks about The Soup of the Season this Sunday at the Contemporary Warship celebration of First Protestant RELIGION We might forget but God looks and remembers Noah we are told lived to the age of 950 If we take this figure literally none of us can imagine i what it would have been like to live more than 12 times the I mal lifespan It would mean for example that if had dfgd 1 this year he would have been born in 1050 roughly at the time of the Norman Conquest But let us read the story as it is written After the flood Noah lived 350 years I wonder how vivid the memory of it remained Was there ever a time when the breeze blew into a gale a moun tain of clouds darkened on the horizon and the lightning split the angry sky that Noahs thoughts did not go back to the time of the deluge And when the storm was over and the rainbow appeared is it possible that Noah did not remember the covenant God had made with him and his descen dants After the flood Noah lived 350 years I wonder how vivid the memory of it remained Was there ever a time when the breeze blew into a gale a mountain of clouds dark ened on the horizon and the lightning split the angry sky that Noah s thoughts did not go back to the time of the del uge KEN PETERS I will set my bow in the cloud and it shall come to pass that when aicloud pyet earth that the bow shall be seen in the cloud and I shall look upon it that I may remember the everlasting covenant between God and every living Genesis Three hundred fifty years is a long time and Noah was only human and it is human to forget Two years ago we had a terrible flood in New Braunfels and this past month with all the rain we have had causing the river to swell out of its banks we have probably had to suppress a few anxieties about what happened not long ago But will we always remember it so acutely or with each passing year will it recede like the waters until it is half for gotten That is probably how it was for Noah Perhaps even the rainbow lost its significance for him or if it did occasionally remind him of his covenant with the Lord very likely these feelings grew less distinct as time passed and how the bow in the clouds became for him what it has become for us a lovely phenomenon of nature and little more Why are we so forgetful Why do we have so much trouble being grateful to God At this time of year those are fairly urgent questions We are now at the beginning of the holiday sea son and when it is over chances are that we will be feeling rather despondent over our failure to be as faithful to God as we should have Thanksgiving came and we were not really thankful The Advent will come and somehow we will not adequately prepare ourselves for Christs coming into our lives After that Christmas will come and wear us out shop ping and going to parties Lastly the new year will come and we will make some highminded res olutions that we can not keep It is all a rather discouraging business but our faithfulness is only part of what the covenant is about Noah might have seen the bow in the sky and experienced only a vague stirring of old mem butwhatGod sees is far fhbre important Look again at the Scripture And the bow shall be in the cloud and I shall look upon it that I may remember my everlasting We might look and forget but God looks and remembers Great is thy faithfulness O God my father There is no shadow of turning with thee Thou changes not thy compas sions they fail not As thou hast been thou forever wilt be Ken Peters is the pastor at New Braunfels Presbyterian Deciding if church is subject to man or God A family drives into Anytown USA on a Wednesday evening They stop at the first church they come to for a good Bible study When they enter they are given a copy of the manwritten study guide which is currently being used The father says No thanks well just go by the But youll not know what is being says the guide What is wrong with this picture How should the head of this fam ily respond Why should he not desire his family to be influenced by the word of God and not by other literature Consider how we have been schooled to think The 20th Century brought about the inun dation of postmodern which says in part that mans reasoning has superceded all superstitions fears prejudices inequalities etc This philosophy is followed by a dependence upon those who choose to be educa tors The educators choose where they will attain their knowledge and are leaving God and his word out of it And the people en mass abide in the collection of thoughts placed upon them by normal leaders who are flawed by constant superstitions fears prej udices inequalities etc JERRY LOCKHART The preceding is not me creat ing an enemy attack There is pre vailing rhetoric that proves the point of the previous paragraph We do not talk today in terms of thus saith the Rather we talk of Did you hear what so andso said about thusand such and thereby formulate opinions Churches for the most part say what we believe and in a huffy sort of hurt feelings manner turn away from the real word in favor of the we or worse change what they believe by altering their own writ ings such as a statement of faith every few years to keep up with the times Did they notice that the God of their Bible says I change What should be done about this What shall we do Shall we continue until the word of God is so obscured that it cannot be See Youth bag groceries deliver to needy families BETTY Lett Esther Perez and Stephanie Salazar prepare food donations for delivery Several mem ber of Our Lady of Perpetual Help Church youth group load up groceries for needy families Youth members of Our Lady of Perpetual Help Church 138 W prepared gift bags of food for more than 50 needy families on Wednesday Ninth and 10th graders helped bag and deliver the groceries They included bread turkey and canned said Darlene Villarreal a youth group member of the church Marcia Brock director of religious education said the church coordinated with Community Services to get the donated food to the families and that the church had been doing the deliveries for several years Group presents Advent Vespers on Sunday Advent Vespers choir prac tice took place Tuesday night as the group prepared for their Sunday chorale celebration at First Baptist Church on Cross Street The 41st annual Advent Vespers Massed Choir Concert will take place at 4 Sunday The New Braunfels Music Study Club sponsors the concert This years concert is a memorial tribute to Melitta Frueh founder and director of vespers Tim Smith organist and choir director at St Lukes Episcopal Church San Antonio will direct the massed choir JoAnn Lemmon will be the accompanist For informa tion call 6253875 File Photo Join us online at heraldzeitung com New Braunfels918th Annual Christmas Showcase Arts Crafts November 25 26 New Braunfels Civic Center FREE PARKING Sat Sun 10 5 AdmMon 13 Over VmbrUFREe m   

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