Sunday, November 30, 2008

Sweet, Sweet Victory

No. 18 Yellow Jackets Surge Past No. 13 Bulldogs, 45-42

What a great game. This should put to rest the taunts that Paul Johnson's "Perfect Option" offense isn't effective enough to hang with the big boys. Exhibit A: Roddy Jones and Jonathan Dwyer put up a combined 358 rushing yards against the 'Dawgs, each with a pair of touchdowns to his name.

With this win, Tech moves up to #15 in both the AP Poll and BCS Rankings. Unfortunately, Virginia couldn't pull off the win against Virginia Tech this weekend, so the Hokies will be headed to the ACC championship instead of us. Alas. But there's always next season.


Tuesday, November 25, 2008

November Adventures

Because I am lazy and never got around to turning these into actual posts, here are some Jacob highlights of the month in pictures:

  • First ride on a plastic dinosaur.

  • Second year to see glorious fall leaves.

  • First opportunity to see a live-action musical: "Goodnight Moon," here with friend Judah after the show.

  • First haircut (!)

  • During...

  • After...

  • Feeding the ducks! (Again.)

  • Second trip to the Georgia Aquarium. Mommy & Me tickets are good through the end of the year!

  • First perfectly pronounced three syllable word: "bicycle"
    (Sorry, no video yet. But here's an extra photo for ya.)

    Have a happy Thanksgiving, everyone! Book reviews, general zaniness, possible profundity, and hopefully a celebratory football-related post are all forthcoming after the holiday.

  • Friday, November 21, 2008

    Yellow Jackets Hobble Hurricanes, 41-23

    It was a chilly night in Atlanta, but Georgia Tech brought the heat, and dismantled No. 23 Miami.

    We were there to witness it first-hand, bundled in multiple layers. Tech played really well, and our longshot hopes of making the ACC championship are still alive. It was a lot of fun, and there's plenty to tell, from providential Chick-fil-a to obnoxious Miami fans (though really, is there any other kind?). But for now, sleep beckons.


    Wednesday, November 12, 2008

    Butternut Squash, anyone?

    5 Minutes for Mom is having a Fun with Food Photo Contest where you can win a $500 for groceries! That can go a long way at our house with all the couponing I've been doing!

    Here's a photo of Jacob enjoying some butternut squash soup in a little ramekin-- all by himself! I was reminiscing that this time last year we were spoon feeding him homemade butternut squash baby food, but now he's graduated to new levels of culinary experimentation. He even ate all of his grilled cheese sandwich today and kept dipping it in his soup (like his Mommy does...). Yay for my super little eater!


    Monday, November 10, 2008

    Book Review -- A Primer on Worship and Reformation

    A Primer on Worship and Reformation

    (The following review refers to a pre-publication galley copy, which the fine folks at Canon Press were kind enough to send me.)

    Releasing this week is Douglas Wilson's latest, A Primer on Worship and Reformation: Recovering the High Church Puritan. As the title would indicate, the book is a short overview on how the right worship of God is vital to rescuing wayward American Christianity.

    The first chapter, "They'll Know We Are Christians By Our Schlock," laments the state of American Christianity, which is far too often driven by cash registers than by the Word of God. Wilson applies his usual "serrated edge" to provide a brief inventory of relics, a list of the wackiness that often passes for expressions of Christian devotion. But instead of dwelling on Testamints and praise song hand motions, he proceeds to sketch out the cultural trends that have brought us to this place, such as rugged individualism and pietism. By doing so, he highlights the false dilemma accepted by those seeking to address such issues in the church: endure heresy or embrace schism. However, there is a third way: namely, that of reformation.

    To advance this alternate approach, Wilson adopts the term "High Church Puritan." As he explains, he uses "Puritan" in its original sense: "one who has a deep desire to purify the Church, but who has no intention of voluntarily separating from that Church if he doesn't get his way immediately." Hence the qualifier "High Church," which signals a serious understanding of the covenant and the bond it creates between Christians -- even those in error. For those dismayed by the frivolities and idolatries of modern evangelicalism, neither doctrinal apathy nor schism are viable options. Rather, the task at hand is to work within the church to reform it. As always, reformation in the church -- and in ourselves -- begins and ends with Scripture.

    As Wilson argues, true evangelism is much more than simply exhorting individual believers to share the Gospel with those around them. Rather, evangelism is the work of the Church, which seeks to transform the culture by first being transformed herself by the right worship of God. To encourage reformation of our worship, Wilson devotes chapters to each of the following:
    • Covenant renewal worship -- as summarized in Jeff Myers' pattern of call, confession, consecration, communion and commissioning;

    • Thundering the word -- for modernist methods of interpretation cannot be allowed to trump what Scripture teaches about itself;

    • The Lord's Supper -- which is an indispensable source of spiritual life;

    • Recovery of the Psalms in worship -- because God has given them for our use and benefit;

    • Right understanding of the Sabbath -- for the Lord's Day is not a drab observance of rules, but rather a joyful time of resting and feasting; and

    • The place of children in church -- because the blessings of the covenant are for them, and they should be nurtured in the faith instead of taught to doubt.

    I've read quite a few books on worship, but I really enjoyed this one. Wilson does not try to prescribe a one-size-fits-all approach to worship, and he freely admits that worship can look different from church to church without sacrificing its integrity. Instead of focusing on the nuts and bolts, he looks at the larger picture of the concerns and values that churches should bring to their worship. Plus, instead of simply berating Christians who worship in a trivial (or even blasphemous) manner, Wilson sees them as brothers and sisters in need of loving correction. Although brief, A Primer on Worship and Reformation packs in quite a bit of great material, all of which is useful for establishing a foundation for the right worship of God. I'd recommend this book to anyone interested in Christian worship, whether they spend Sunday mornings in the pulpit, the choir or the pew.

    (Note: the official release date is November 11, but Canon Press is offering free shipping on all orders placed prior to this date.)


    Tuesday, November 04, 2008

    10 Things to Keep in Mind After the Election

    As an addendum to Gaines' earlier election post this morning, I'd like to add these ten things to remember no matter the outcome, from Doug Wilson.

    #1 is obviously the most important:
    God is still Father, Christ is still at His right hand, and the Holy Spirit is still abroad in the world, recreating that world according to the image of Christ. When the nations conspire against Him, He laughs at them.

    But I do heartily recommend #7:
    Learn something about economics. Please.


    Some Thoughts (From Other Folks) for Election Day

    A couple of thoughts before I head to the polls in just a few short hours:

    First, a hymn:

    Whate’er my God ordains is right,
    Holy His will abideth.
    I will be still whate’er He does,
    And follow where He guideth.
    He is my God,
    Though dark my road.
    He holds me that I shall not fall
    Wherefore to Him I leave it all

    Whate’er my God ordains is right,
    He never will deceive me
    He leads me by the proper path,
    I know He will not leave me
    I take, content,
    What He hath sent
    His hand can turn my griefs away
    And patiently I wait His day

    Whate’er my God ordains is right,
    Though now this cup in drinking
    May bitter seem to my faint heart,
    I take it all unshrinking
    My God is true,
    Each morn anew
    Sweet comfort yet shall fill my heart
    And pain and sorrow shall depart

    Whate’er my God ordains is right,
    Here shall my stand be taken
    Though sorrow, need, or death be mine,
    Yet I am not forsaken
    My Father’s care
    Is round me there
    He holds me that I shall not fall
    And so to Him I leave it all

    Secondly, Derek Webb has some good thoughts on Christians and voting.


    Monday, November 03, 2008

    And We're Back

    So after a minor setback, Georgia Tech is back in the top 25. Check it:

    Yellow Jackets Upset Seminoles, 31-28 This really was an historic win, since Tech hasn't beaten Florida State in my lifetime. Seriously. Plus, it was a crazy-exciting game, complete with a nail-biting finish. Good times.

    Plus, the win pushes Tech back into the Top 25 (#20 in the BCS) and back to the top of the ACC Coastal Division. Oh yeah!