Matt W Cook

writer.former fundamentalist.christianly fellow

Month: October, 2005

Prudent steps…

One day Prudence was discussing spiritual matters with her dear friend Christian. She asked him whether he had fully gotten rid of those carnal inward affections that were characteristic of him when he lived at his old house. He replied that he would, but they remain still. He does what he hates and refuses what he loves. Prudence then asked him if he ever vanquished those things that are a spot on his soul. He replied:
Chr. Yes, but that is but seldom; but they are to me Golden Hours, in which such things happen to me.
Prud. Can you remember by what Means you find your annoyances at times, as if they were vanquished?
Chr. Yes, when I think what I saw at the Cross, that will do it; and when I look upon my ‘broidered Coat, that will do it; also when I look into the Roll that I carry in my bosom, that will do it; and when my thoughts wax warm about whither I am going, that will do it.

These four things Christian found to be encouraging and helpful in his battle toward sanctification.

The Cross
The life and atoning death of Christ. To think about what a great sacrifice He made to cure my disease of sin is helpful in at least two ways. One, it shows his great love to me, which causes me to love Him more. And two, it shows me how bad sin is and the destruction it causes, making my heart hate it all the more.

My ‘broidered Coat
Represents the righteousness that has been given to me through Christ. This mainly refers to the positional righteousness I have, but I think it may partially refer to the work of the Spirit in sanctification as well. This sight helps me to vanquish sin because I see Christ’s holiness that has been freely given to me, and I want to emulate that holiness in my life. Also, I see the work of the Holy Spirit in my life and I fear quenching His work, so I strive to be holier still.

The Roll
The roll represents the assurance of salvation that Christian received when his burden fell at the cross. He lost this assurance when he slept at the arbour and had to retrace his path in sorrow because his assurance was gone, and without that assurance he had no hope in him for heaven. When a Christian has full assurance that He who began a good work in him will complete it, he is less likely to become discouraged and is pushed to run hard after the One who has sealed him so. When the unregenerate believes he has an assurance of salvation, it often paralyzes his good works and causes him to stagnate. In a true believer, however, the Holy Spirit causes this blessed assurance to vivify the affections. The Christian’s assurance motivates him, it never cripples him.

Whither I am Going
It would do well for Christians to think about their final state. Whatever trials I am going through on earth cannot compare to the eternal weight of glory to be revealed at the end. Much less can the fleeting pleasures of sin hope to compete with the soul-ravishing joy of knowing the only true God and Jesus Christ whom He has sent. These lovely thoughts cause the Christian to desire a taste of heaven on earth, and sin is a bitter obstacle to the sweet taste of God. The Christian who has his eyes set on his prize will avoid this harsh food at all costs. So much should the Christian desire the taste of God that Jesus says he should be willing to part with his right eye or left hand for it.

More pics

Hey folks! I’ve got a few more pictures on the net, check ’em out:


He can sit up and everything these days!

It’s nice here.

Psalm 119

Back in the day I started a blog for little comments on passages from Scripture. It died due to lack of discipline. I’ve brought it back to life today. Try to keep me accountable on it. I want to work at it and post at least once a week.

Psalm 119

A twist

Matt

…the approximate number of mosquitos in the Pakistani town of Kunri in early fall. Like a good sidekick, he walked down the limb he was on to his dear Shan and told him his revelation. Shan’s attention, however, was elsewhere. You see, a collision at speed of 1 billion miles per hour (which is only possible because Todd is writing this story) has some dramatic effects on the environment. 1 billion miles per hour is actually slightly faster than the speed of light. So for less than a millisecond dear dummy barbjohn was travelling faster than light itself (this is, of course, impossible). Within this split-millisecond a largish force field was erected around barbjohn (this is, of course, impossible). Within this forcefield, as per Einstien’s theories and such, time slowed down to a crawl. From Shan’s, barbjohn’s, and the funny bird/mammel critter’s point of view, the trip and collision took practically no time at all. But from the rest of the world’s perspective, the trip took thousands of years because they we outside of this outlandish and rather improbable forcefield. So by the time the massive explosion struck the tree, mankind had achive self-actualization and had created for themselves a perfect, peaceful, prosperous and pleasurable society in which all were healthly, wealthy and wise. This massive explosion, however, managed to destroy everything outside the cute little forcefield within a million mile radius. So the entire planet was destroyed and the tree and it’s occupants were sent flying out into the dark empty reccesses of space. Shan tried to explain all this to barbjohn and rebuke him soundly for his meddling with quantum physics. By the time barbjohn had enough sense to pretend he had figured it out they noticed that there was a large round planet-like thing in their flight path. Shan began barking orders to the crew, not that there was any crew or flight controls for the crew to use, but mainly because it felt like the right thing to do. They began to brace themselves for a crash landing on this strange, and probably out-landish land.

Barbjohn to the Rescue!

Todd

Noseless, Tear-ductless, and friendless, Barbjohn resolved himself to squint up the tree with a vitality which only comes at this exact point in the story. In the distance, and engaged in intense hand-to-hand combat with what appeared to be a cross between a duck and a meerkat, Shan was slowly being backed off the edge of a limb on the tree. Gathering up his courage, and his jet-pack, which he purchased at a thrift shop from What’s Her Face for $5.21, tax included, Barbjohn hit the shiny red button, which he had installed for an extra 6 cents, and propelled himself into the first branch on the tree at close to the speed of sound. Needless to say once Barbjohn could hear again, he resolved to push the shiny yellow button, which is programmed to propel the user automatically to the nearest Shan. Paused in the middle of their deadly duo, and eyeing eachother ostentatiously, Shan and the duck/meerkat cocked their heads at exactly the same time, and at exactly the same angle (47 degeres) to hear the soft classical music which the engine of the jet-pack created slowly growing louder. And since duck’s/meerkats despise classical music (as any good woodlander knows), this particular composition by Bach assaulted his ears in such a way so he disengaged his fight and fled up the tree. Unfortunately for somebody, the duck/meerkat was also named Shan, and when the flying Barb-John careened up the tree the engine decided to target the duck/meerkat (whom we will now refer to as his proper name Duckmeerkatus). Barbjohn impacted with Duckmeerkatus at approximately 1 billion miles per hour, which is possible because I’m writing the story, creating a deafening explosion and a tremendous fallout of feathers, teeth and Bach. When Barbjohn came to, Shan was shaking him violently. Before passing out again, Barbjohn’s eyes locked on the tree trunk, which displayed in Times New Roman font 43.5: Level 1 Billion 4 Thousand and Three. All Barbjohn could recall about that number was it had something to do with…

Finally!

Guess what? I just changed my web service here in Kunri and I finally have some pictures up for you all to see!


Joseph enjoying his bath.


he tomb of Quaid-e-Azam Muhammad Ali Jinnah, the founder of Pakistan, in Karachi.


A very charming snake charmer at Clifton beach.


My mother-in-law with her two grandkids.


A lovely view from my roof.


Me and Ruth, lookin’ good.

More to come later!

News from the East

There’s no need to tell you what happened in Pakistan last week, I’m sure you already know. I should let you know that we’re totally fine here, the quake wasn’t even felt on this side of the country, at least not physically. Images of the damage caused by the earthquake are all over the news, and I think there are two good questions we need to ask and answer.
“Do you think these Galileans were worse sinners that all the other Galileans, because they suffered in this way? No, I tell you; but unless you repent, you will all likewise perish. Or those eighteen on whom the tower in Siloam fell and killed them: do you think that they were worse offenders than all the other who lived in Jerusalem? No, I tell you; but unless you repent, you will all likewise perish.” Do you think the people in the affected areas are under God’s special judgment? Not likely, but unless you repent your fate will be worse.
And a very important question to ask: “What is the Christian’s response to this?” I don’t mean, how can we explain this so God doesn’t look like a bad guy, you and I have already read good articles answering that question. I’m saying what should we do about the quake? Here’s a partial answer:
1 – Weep. Weep with those who weep, let this touch your heart, even though it’s so far away. Think about those in Canada who have friends and family in this area.
2 – Pray. God uses these things, He always does. Pray that the damage might be lessened, that good can come from this. Pray for the families who have lost people. Pray for the Good News that can go there.
3 – Give/Go. Give a cold cup of water to the least of these. You will by no means lose your reward. The early Christians were known not only for taking care of their own, but for taking care of everyone too. I wonder what we are known for today.
4 – Praise God. Praise Him that this is not the norm. That these disasters are rare, even though we call these things on our head every time we sin. Even in all this, God is merciful. Praise Him that He will bring good out of it all, that the weeping lasts only for a night, there is joy in the morning.

Barbjohn’s new friend

After waiting a few moments wracked with intense pain, barbjohn did the first thing that came to his poor scrambeled mind; he picked up the rusty pitchfork and began to brush his hair using short, brisk, strokes. Thus engaged, he began to relay the situation over in his head “I’m really in no place to be doing anything, not only am I an invalid, but I just fell from a 900 storey tree, and not only that but I’m an invalid (barbjohn’s reasoning tended to be rather circular at times.) So sighing to himself he began to cry (tearless crying of course since barbjohn lacked tear ducts as well.) Hearing his cries afar off a sad, little, puppy came to investigate the matter, upon seeing the poor creature moaning in the hay, the sad, little puppy went over and placed his paw on Barbjohn’s knee. He looked up and saw the little animal and queried “will you be my friend?” Well, with a knowing smile and a flick of the tail, the little puppy bit of Barbjohn’s nose and trotted off into the sunset.