Monthly Archives: April 2015

“Nowhere Man”

Recorded at Abbey Road Studios in October of 1965, John Lennon wrote this at one of the lower times in his life.  I don’t mean to offend anyone, but this song gives a fairly accurate description of who I was before I started living for the Lord Jesus Christ.  I hope you’ll enjoy it, and that it helps you to press on in your own journey of faith.  God bless you.

 

The Laborers in the Vineyard

From the Gospel according to Saint Matthew:

“For the kingdom of heaven is like a landowner who went out early in the morning to hire laborers for his vineyard.  After agreeing with the laborers for the usual daily wage, he sent them into his vineyard.  When he went out about nine o’clock, he saw others standing idle in the marketplace, and he said to them, ‘You also go into the vineyard, and I will pay you whatever is right.’  So they went.  When he went out again about noon and about three o’clock, he did the same.  And about five o’ clock he went out and found others standing around, and he said to them, ‘Why are you standing here idle all day?’  They said to him, ‘Because no one has hired us.’  He said to them, ‘You also go into the vineyard.’  When evening came, the owner of the vineyard said to his manager, ‘Call the laborers and give them their pay, beginning with the last and then going to the first.’  When those hired about five o’clock came, each of them received the usual daily wage.  Now when the first came, they thought they would receive more, but each of them also received the usual daily wage.  And when they received it, they grumbled against the landowner, saying, ‘These last worked only one hour, and you have made them equal to us who have borne the burden of the day and the scorching heat.’  But he replied to one of them, ‘Friend, I am doing you no wrong.  Did you not agree with me for the usual daily wage?  Take what belongs to you and go.  I choose to give to this last the same as I give to you.  Am I not allowed to do what I choose with what belongs to me?  Or are you envious because I am generous?’  So the last will be first, and the first will be last.”  (Matthew 20:1-16)

Kurt Cobain

Kurt Cobain formed the alternative rock group, Nirvana, in 1985.  He was born in Aberdeen, Washington, and went on to pioneer the style of music known as grunge rock in Seattle.  The name Nirvana refers to the concept in Buddhism that Kurt described as “freedom from pain, suffering, and the external world.”  He died tragically in 1994, having lived a compassionate life.  Rest in peace, Kurt.

The Judgment of the Nations

From the Gospel according to Saint Matthew:

“When the Son of Man comes in his glory, and all the angels with him, then he will sit on the throne of his glory.  All the nations will be gathered before him, and he will separate people one from another as a shepherd separates the sheep from the goats, and he will put the sheep at his right hand and the goats at the left.  Then the king will say to those at his right hand, ‘Come, you that are blessed by my Father, inherit the kingdom prepared for you from the foundation of the world, for I was hungry and you gave me food, I was thirsty and you gave me something to drink, I was a stranger and you welcomed me, I was naked and you gave me clothing, I was sick and you took care of me, I was in prison and you visited me.’  Then the righteous will answer him, ‘Lord, when was it that we saw you hungry and gave you food, or thirsty and gave you something to drink?  And when was it that we saw you a stranger and welcomed you, or naked and gave you clothing?  And when was it that we saw you sick or in prison and visited you?  And the king will answer them, ‘Truly I tell you, just as you did it to one of the least of these who are members of my family, you did it to me.’  Then he will say to those at his left hand, ‘You that are accursed, depart from me into the eternal fire prepared for the devil and his angels, for I was hungry and you gave me no food, I was thirsty and you gave me nothing to drink, I was a stranger and you did not welcome me, naked and you did not give me clothing, sick and in prison and you did not visit me.’  Then they also will answer, ‘Lord, when was it that we saw you hungry or thirsty or a stranger or naked or sick or in prison, and did not take care of you?’  Then he will answer them, ‘Truly I tell you, just as you did not do it to one of the least of these, you did not do it to me.’  And these will go away into eternal punishment, but the righteous into eternal life.”  (Matthew 25:31-46)

“Help!”

Written mainly by John Lennon, this song was recorded at Abbey Road Studios on April 13th, 1965.  The Beatles are at the top of their game here, Lennon on lead vocals and 12-string rhythm guitar, McCartney on bass and backing vocal, Harrison on lead guitar and backing vocal, and Ringo rocking drums and percussion.

Enjoy:  https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=aCGvZgDvtkU

Mahatma Gandhi

Also known as “Bapu,” or “father,” among the people of India, Mohandas Karamchand Gandhi was born on October 2, 1869, at Porbandar in the state of Gujarat.  He is best known for helping to win national independence for India through the practice of nonviolent civil disobedience.  When he was nineteen Mohandas travelled to London to study law.  Returning in 1891, he sought to establish his legal practice in Bombay, but was unsuccessful, possibly because he was too kind to effectively cross-examine witnesses.  In 1893, at the age of twenty-four, Gandhi moved to South Africa, where he would spend the next two decades of his life.  While living there he devoted himself to gaining human rights for the Indian population in South Africa, as well as for women and for people of color.  From 1915 until his death in 1948, he labored for the cause of peace, freedom, and independence for the Indian nation.  England granted their independence in 1947, and the land was partitioned into two sections, Hindu-majority India and Muslim Pakistan.  Gandhi passed away while struggling to establish peace in his beloved country.

3 great quotes
“Be the change that you wish to see in the world.”
“Hate the sin, love the sinner.”
“Where there is love there is life.”

Rest in peace, Mahatma Gandhi.

Flannery O’Connor

One of the most beloved literary voices of the 20th century, Flannery O’Connor was a Southern writer and devoted Roman Catholic born in Savannah, Georgia, in 1925.  She wrote two novels and two books of short stories, often examining questions of morality and ethics, in a style classified as Southern Gothic.  Faith and the Gospel of Jesus Christ are also prevalent subjects of her writing.  O’Connor’s father passed away in 1941, when she was only fifteen years-old, and the following year she went to Georgia State College for Women, where she earned a social sciences degree.  She was accepted by the Iowa Writers’ Workshop at the University of Iowa in 1946, and published her first novel, Wise Blood, in 1952.  In response to remarks about her emphasis on “grotesque” characters in her stories, she replied, “anything that comes out of the South is going to be called grotesque by the northern reader, unless it is grotesque, in which case it is going to be called realistic.”  She faced some fairly harsh criticism from some of her critics and contemporaries, but she endured it gracefully, and much of her work portrays troubled people who experience God’s divine grace.  Prior to publication of her first novel Ms. O’Connor was diagnosed with lupus, a cross she would have to bear for the next thirteen years until her death in 1964.  Flannery was 39 when she passed away, and laid to rest in Memory Hill Cemetery in Milledgeville, Georgia.  An interesting fact about her, she was fascinated by birds of all kinds and raised ducks, ostrich, emus, toucans, peacocks, and “any sort of exotic bird she could obtain,” according to Wikipedia.  Among her close friends were two other famous American writers, Robert Lowell and Elizabeth Bishop, and she maintained a close relationship and correspondence with her mom throughout her life.  Rest in peace, Ms. O’Connor.