More steps in the journey

Very busy weekend, Sunday especially. Gonna write a whole GoSpeak report on it later, but suffice it to say we were with people from 9 a.m. to 10:30 p.m. on Sunday.

Somebody subscribed to the Gospel Advocate magazine for us. Mystery. I thank the Lord for the person’s kindness. September’s issue came in the mail yesterday.

Paula brought us back a whole box of sweets from Buenos Aires. Yummy. Chocolate-covered, of course. She said they were a typical brand popular in the country.

A day or so ago I had pretty well decided not to accept any commitments outside of SJC/Taubate for the rest of the year. So much to do already. Then I get a call today about a special need in another state asking my help, which would require I be there for six days. *Sigh.* I’ll give them an answer tomorrow. I had all my reasons ready for why I couldn’t go, then after hearing the background I said I’d consider it.

In SJC’s Bible school I started teaching this quarter on “Great Prayers of the Bible.” Some of them, anyway. This past Sunday we read Jesus’ priestly prayer in John 17. Next Sunday, Solomon’s dedication of the temple. Am alternating between Old and New Testaments, for now. There’s precious little available in Portuguese, so I almost always wind up creating my own material.

Vicki and I teach Saturday in Sao Paulo, at the Ninth of July church building, for a family day. Four classes, one of them separating men and women. Title we gave them is, “Love Is Too Little, Sacrifice Is Never Too Much.” Bad translation, but you get the idea. All day event.

Weekend after next is the women’s conference, so Vicki and Leila, plus several ladies from Taubate and SJC will be gone for that. They have a part this year in providing some of the organization.

Personal support efforts have stalled for the moment, no news on that front, so Vicki and I are talking more seriously about options.

We’re looking forward to Mike and Mary Hughes from Somers Avenue coming back for a visit. This time they’ll stay almost a week, big improvement over their three-day visit back in 2008.

Finally, a note on Bible versions. The New Living Translation goofs badly on Matthew 16:18, adding a parenthetical explanation that just makes things worse: “Now I say to you that you are Peter (which means ‘rock’), and upon this rock I will build my church, and all the powers of hell will not conquer it.” There is so much I like about this version, but when it goofs, it does so royally, so that I have to make major qualifications whenever I recommend it.

So as not to end on a negative note, here’s a line I wrote in a reply on Facebook (my profile here), which I may develop later, but take it as a complete thought for now: When I’m at my worst, God does his best.

J. Randal Matheny

Be pithy.

What do you think?