The Bunsen Burner: remember it from chemistry class?

Yesterday marked Robert Bunsen’s 200th birthday.

The Google Doodle today commemorates the man behind the Bunsen Burner (today for some reason, and not yesterday, his birthday):

Bunsen’s best work came in the 1860s, when he discovered two new elements. Cesium — atomic number 55 — now plays an essential role in atomic clocks. Rubidium — atomic number 35 — is one of the ways to create purple fireworks. Both elements live on the far left side of the periodic table. His team named them after the Latin words caesius (sky blue) and rubidus (dark red). [Source: CSM]

See the animated doodle in action:

Bunsen made becoming a high school chemistry teacher cool. (Mine, Mr. Mohl, would blow stuff up every day, with a continual flow of natural gas running through the burner.)


Alive Again and Forevermore.

For we who trust Jesus as Savior, we are awakened to the reality that every day we need Him. Not just on that final day, to take us to heaven. He came to rescue us from the kingdom of darkness into the Kingdom of God’s beloved Son (Colossians 2:13-14). And he keeps on rescuing us. We have been saved, we are being saved, and we shall be saved completely in the end.

In theology these experiences are summarized as justification, sanctification, and glorification. We have been saved from the penalty of sin, justified with God through Jesus’ perfect live, sacrificial death, and victorious resurrection. We are being saved from the power of sin in our daily lives, being set apart (sanctified) by God for wholeness to join in His mission in the renewal of all things. We will one day be completely rescued from the presence of sin, no longer able to bow down to idols for Christ will be all-consuming, even being the light of all eternity. These experiences overall in a convergence of grace words cannot adequately describe!

There are deeper nuances to this thrilling doctrines, for we will never stop learning of the greatness of God’s kindness towards us in Jesus (Ephesians 2:7). (If embracing these truths bores you, consider if you are alive to God. We will dwell on them for all eternity.)

Today we have a great gift to sing of these amazing truths. A musician friend reminded me that when we sing good theology we “feel a thought.” Words alone or musical sound alone cannot produce this experience. The collision of the two takes us deeper into the truth; opportunity to embrace it through and through. We who were dead in darkness have now seen a great light; He’s made us alive again. Let’s continually sing about it.

Alive Again
(by Matt Maher)

You called and You shouted
Broke through my deafness

Now I’m breathing in and breathing out
I’m alive again

You called and You shouted
Broke through my deafness

Now I’m breathing in and breathing out
I’m alive again

You shattered my darkness
Washed away my blindness

Now I’m breathing in and breathing out
I’m alive again
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Our family fridge, July 15, 2010 {the last day of our grocery month}

10 How I praise the Lord that you are concerned about me again. I know you have always been concerned for me, but you didn’t have the chance to help me. 11 Not that I was ever in need, for I have learned how to be content with whatever I have. 12 I know how to live on almost nothing or with everything. I have learned the secret of living in every situation, whether it is with a full stomach or empty, with plenty or little. 13 For I can do everything through Christ, who gives me strength. 
—Philippians 4:10-13, NLT

Conquering Anxiety.

God will give us what we want. If we hunger and thirst for righteousness, we will get righteousness. But if we want someone else, He will let us pursue it, find it, and become fully consumed with it. That thing will leave us empty in the end. It will leave us anxious.

“Anxiety … is fear and worry about what the future holds … it is being stricken by the unavoidable and the uncontrollable.”

“… Being the captain of your own ship and the master of your destiny means you are going to sail you ship through the waters of anxiety.”

“If you want to be conformed to the image of Christ, you will be. And if you don’t, you won’t.”

—Pastor Jon Furman, “Joy That Overcomes” (series: True Joy, part 10, on Philippians 4:2-9)

The Scripture:

2 Now I appeal to Euodia and Syntyche. Please, because you belong to the Lord, settle your disagreement. 3 And I ask you, my true partner, to help these two women, for they worked hard with me in telling others the Good News. They worked along with Clement and the rest of my co-workers, whose names are written in the Book of Life.

4 Always be full of joy in the Lord. I say it again—rejoice! 5 Let everyone see that you are considerate in all you do. Remember, the Lord is coming soon.

6 Don’t worry about anything; instead, pray about everything. Tell God what you need, and thank him for all he has done. 7 Then you will experience God’s peace, which exceeds anything we can understand. His peace will guard your hearts and minds as you live in Christ Jesus.

8 And now, dear brothers and sisters, one final thing. Fix your thoughts on what is true, and honorable, and right, and pure, and lovely, and admirable. Think about things that are excellent and worthy of praise. 9 Keep putting into practice all you learned and received from me—everything you heard from me and saw me doing. Then the God of peace will be with you.

—Philippians 4:2-9, NLT

8: following in what is fully accomplished.

Let’s pick up where we left off in Romans 8. I am convinced that if we paused to consider what Jesus has done for us, we would live differently. He has already accomplished all that He calls us to be and do. The Christian life is not about you and what you must do. It is about God and what He has done.

… He did this so that the requirement of the law would be fully accomplished for us who no longer follow our sinful nature but instead follow the Spirit.
—Romans 8:4

Jesus lived a perfect life for us and died a death for us so that everything He told us to do would be considered done. Because of Jesus’ life, God looks at us and says the law is fully accomplished. We can follow the Spirit without the pressure to perform because Jesus has performed perfectly for us. Instead, we are empowered by God’s Spirit to live.

Remember today that you follow the Spirit, and so you have fully met every requirement that God demands.

Of course, many will try to abuse this freedom and inwardly reason “Since Jesus did everything, I don’t have to do anything.” But we who think thus deny the Gospel by our lives, and show the Spirit does not live in us. Jesus told us the SPirit would come and make all that is His become ours; so, to not walk in the pattern of living as Jesus is to reject Him as Lord and Savior. But, to welcome His fully accomplished work for us is to rest and revel in His greatness, goodness, grace, and to rejoice in His glory be shown through our lives. This happens through God’s continual presence, His Spirit in us.

“The Christian is like a man who has the right tune in his head but cannot remember all the words. So when Paul says that love fulfills the law (Romans 13:8; Galatians 5:15), that is not to [declare] that Christians are perfect, but that they live … according to the Spirit.
—James R. Edwards

—Quoted in the Sojourn project, forty: romans eight (to meditate on and memorize Romans 8 over the course of 40 days).

Awake my Soul, I will hold on Hope.

Sundays shall be a day when our souls are renewed to see the world as we’re meant to see it, recognizing the darkness around and especially within us, and the Light who dispels the darkness and cannot be extinguished (John 1:1-5).

I leave you with two songs by Mumford & Sons that can become for us prayers for a renewed day and world. Let’s start with where we place our Hope, and preparing to meet our Maker. Today let’s “plant [our] hope with good seeds” and not “cover [ourselves] with thistle and weeds.”
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