Russia

Winter Evening – Alexander Pushkin

Winter Evening
Alexander Pushkin

The storm covers skies in darkness,

Spinning snowy whirlwinds tight,

Now it wails like a beast wildest,

Now it cries like a week child,

Now suddenly it rustles

The old roof’s dry thatching mass,

Now, a traveller, late and gusty,

It knocks at our window’s glass.

Our hut, poor and unstable,

Is the dark and sad to feel.

Why, are you, my little old lady,

Silent at the window-sill?

Are you tired, o my dear,

By the howling of the storm,

Or just dozing while you hear

The still hum your spindle from?

Let us drink, o comrade, dear,

Of my youth, so poor and hard, –

‘Gainst our woe; is a cup here?

It will cheer the saddened heart.

Sing a song about a blue-tit,

Which, beyond the sea, lived well,

Or about the maiden, bloomed,

Who went early to a well.

The storm covers skies with darkness,

Spinning snowy whirlwinds tight;

Now it wails like a beast wildest,

Now it cries like a week child.

Let us drink, o comrade dear

Of my youth, so poor and hard, –

‘Gainst our woe; is a cup here?

It will cheer the saddened heart.

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Notes From the Field – Part 1d

Session 4 – Tom Davis

  • Children’s HopeChest
  • Author of Fields of the Fatherless and Red Letters
  • James 1:27
    • 27Religion that is pure and undefiled before God, the Father, is this: to visit orphans and widows in their affliction, and to keep oneself unstained from the world.
      • God has a heart and a passion for the poor
      • There are over 200 verses about the “fatherless”
      • If this is such a predominant characteristic in God, than why do we as little Christ’s struggle with such awkwardness in the presence of the fatherless
  • Those in the church spend a lot of time talking about what we are saved from, but what about doing what we are saved for
  • We see our lives through various lenses
    • These are our experiences
    • What are God’s lenses?
      • Does God like what he sees when he “wakes” up every morning?
  • For instance, there is only a five dollar difference between life and death when it comes to maleria
  • Amos Chapter Five talks about what has gone wrong in the world
    • Amos 5:21-24
      • 21 “I hate, I despise your feasts, and I take no delight in your solemn assemblies. 22 Even though you offer me your burnt offerings and grain offerings, I will not accept them; and the peace offerings of your fattened animals, I will not look upon them. 23Take away from me the noise of your songs; to the melody of your harps I will not listen. 24But let justice roll down  like waters, and righteousness like an ever-flowing stream.
        • God wants Justice and Fairness in the world
  • “One of the easiest places to hide from God is in religion”
    • We become luke-warm, comfortable, forgettable Christians
    • It becomes all about me, and not about God and His will
    • God is to be given the best, not the easiest
  • Edmond Burke quote – In the book Red Letters
    • “the definition of evil in the world is when good men and women see injustice and do nothing.”
  • Luke 10:25
    • The Parable of the Good Samaritan

25 And behold, a lawyer stood up to put him to the test, saying, “Teacher, what shall I do to inherit eternal life?” 26He said to him, “What is written in the Law? How do you read it?” 27And he answered, “You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your strength and with all your mind, and your neighbor as yourself.” 28And he said to him, “You have answered correctly; do this, and you will live.” 29But he, desiring to justify himself, said to Jesus, “And who is my neighbor?” 30Jesus replied, “A man was going down from Jerusalem to Jericho, and he fell among robbers, who stripped him and beat him and departed, leaving him half dead. 31Now by chance a priest was going down that road, and when he saw him he passed by on the other side. 32So likewise a Levite, when he came to the place and saw him, passed by on the other side. 33But a Samaritan, as he journeyed, came to where he was, and when he saw him, he had compassion. 34He went to him and bound up his wounds, pouring on oil and wine. Then he set him on his own animal and brought him to an inn and took care of him. 35And the next day he took out two denarii and gave them to the innkeeper, saying, ‘Take care of him, and whatever more you spend, I will repay you when I come back.’ 36Which of these three, do you think, proved to be a neighbor to the man who fell among the robbers?” 37He said, “The one who showed him mercy.” And Jesus said to him, “You go, and do likewise.”

    • We already know the answer to obtaining eternal life (v.25)
      • 25 And behold, a lawyer stood up to put him to the test, saying, “Teacher, what shall I do to inherit eternal life?”
    • However, he tries to justify himself (v.29)
      • 29But he, desiring to justify himself, said to Jesus, “And who is my neighbor?”
      • The great BUT statements of our lives (But, I…)
      • This parable is Jesus telling us how to live heaven on earth. In essence he is telling us that we are “Sons and Daughters of God”
        • Our goal is to change all of eternity b/c of our actions
          • B/c of the parable we are capable of using our influence, integrity and experiences as Sons and Daughters to create such change
          • We are children of royalty
  • In order to reflect a loving God we need to love others
  • In the parable “The Priest and Worship Leader” (Levite) pass by the Samaritan
    • What is Jesus trying to tell us about church leadership?
    • What does this say about being people of influence?
  • Mark Chapter One
    • Jesus is deeply moved by compassion
  • When we read nothing but the Red Letters of the Bible, we are witnessing great compassion at work
  • God is able to see that there is more wrong in the world than what our eyes will allow
    • When we show up somewhere, we are no longer alone b/c of the compassion of God
  • 70% of Russian orphans kicked out of the orphanages when they turn 16-17 end up in prostitution (females)
  • God is able to become a “father to the fatherless” through his people
  • Psalm 68 – Father to the Fatherless
    • 4Sing to God sing praises to his name; lift up a song to him who rides through the deserts; his name is the LORD exult before him! 5 Father of the fatherless and protector of widows is God in his holy habitation. 6God settles the solitary in a home; he leads out the prisoners to prosperity, but the rebellious dwell in a parched land. 7O God, when you went out before your people,when you marched through the wilderness, Selah
      • If God cares that much, shouldn’t we
  • We were created to live out crazy adventures
    • Jesus was a revolutionary Messiah – should we not try to be agents of change for our own earthly revolutions?
  • Jesus loved the poor so much he hid himself among them.
    • We should strive to do just that, Love Jesus so much that we hide in Him

The Prophet – Alexander Pushkin

The Prophet

Alexander Pushkin

Through dark, athirst in soul and heart,

I roamed a desert in a daze

And where the pathways cross and part

I saw a six-winged Seraph blaze.

With moving Fingers soft as sleep

He brushed my eyes and they grew deep

Until they gaped with Prophecy

And saw as startled eagles see.

He brushed my ears wherein he poured

The noise of every thing that roared:

I heard the shudder of the sky,

The whir of angel hosts on high,

The stir of beasts below the sea

The vines that burgeoned round the Tree,

And, leaning to my lips, he wrung

From out of them my sinful tongue

Pitted with guile and perfidy;

And his Right Hand where blood was wet

Parted my palsied lips and set

A sapient Serpent’s sting in me,

And with a blade he slit my chest,

My quaking heart thereout he reft

And in the cleft within my breast

A coal alive with flame he left.

Then in the desert I was dead

Till God called unto me and said:

“Arise O Prophet! Hark to Me!

Go forth imbued with My desire

And take My Word by land and sea

To set the heart of Man afire.”

To The Beauty – Alexander Pushkin

To The Beauty
Alexander Puskin

She’s all just harmony and wonder,

Higher than passions and the world,

She rests, with her sweet shyness, under

Her beauty’s ritual abode;

She looks around self in silence:

There’re no contenders hers, no friends,

Our beauties’ circle, pale and blend,

Fades out in her dazzling brightness.

Wherever weren’t you hurry, yet,

Even to date with your beloved,

What sense with weren’t your heart upset,

Even with song of highest sound, –

But having met her in alarm,

You suddenly shall stop, embarrassed –

In ecstasy, like one of prayers,

Feeling the holiness of charm.

Winter Journey – Alexander Pushkin

I am so cold this morning. This seemed like a good choice from one of my favorite authors/poets, Alexander Pushkin. Enjoy!

Winter Journey
Alexander Pushkin

Now the moon through fog that shivers
Makes its way across the night,
Soaking melancholy meadows
In a melancholy light.

Down the road through dismal winter,
My quick carriage carries on
Where the sleigh-bell’s tuneless tinkle
Is a numbing monotone.

Notes familiar in the music
Of the coachman’s winding song
Go from debonair carousal
To lamenting lovers’ wrong.

Neither hut nor glowing window….
Snow and hinterland…My eye
Merely marks the ciphered mileposts
Coming close and going by.

Glum and dreary- but tomorrow,
Nina dearest, I return
To your hearth and face, forgoing
All my thought to gaze and yearn.

Though the clock’s unhurried finger
Strike its circle out anew
Sending home the tardy stranger,
Midnight shall not part us two.

But for now the road is dreary.
Sleep has hushed the coachman’s tune.
Tedious, too, the tuneless sleigh-bell.
Fog is masking out the moon.