Wings of a Dove

Psalm 55:6. And I said, Oh that I had wings like a dove! for then would I fly away, and be at rest.

I’ve always wondered where this song came from, yet as many times as I’ve read through the Psalms, I don’t remembering noticing this particular verse before. David was in that season of life when he was running, always running and hiding, from his enemies.

Haven’t you ever wished you could just fly away? I certainly have. And here’s the song I’m thinking of. Another one that’s not in my usual repertoire, but I remember it from very long ago.

Sunday Morning Coffee: God’s Brain

I saw a picture yesterday that just left me amazed. It was a photo of a human cell under the highest magnification possible.

Isn’t that something? The caption under the picture says that is the most detailed model of a human cell to date, obtained using x-rays, nuclear magnetic resonance, and cryoelectron microscopy data sets.

Is it amazing that scientist has developed the ability to see this incredible picture? Sure it is! Our brains are wondrous and endlessly fascinating.

And yet—I’m pretty sure that, as detailed as this is, there is even more to be seen in each tiny detail than we can imagine. After all, I remember being taught in either physics or chemistry–maybe both–that the molecule was the smallest particle ever until we discovered protons and neutrons and all sorts of other things in that tiny molecule.

Take it to the other extreme. We are developing telescopes than can see almost “to infinity and beyond.” Whole galaxies that shouldn’t even exist if the Big Bang Theory is correct (it isn’t). Distances our minds cannot understand compel us to keep going in our need to figure out the amazing creation of which we are nothing but a tiny speck.

All of this has led me to thinking about the mind of God. Does He have a brain, like we do? The Bible says He is a spirit (John 4:24). Philippians 2:5 says we are to let the mind of Christ dwell in us. Isaiah 55:8-9 tells that His thoughts are higher than our thought. It is clear that God thinks; that He plans; that He knows so far beyond our knowing that we can’t even begin to fathom His mind.

God engineered our brains. The human brain is magnificent! But in comparison to God’s mind, His brain, if you will, we are insignificant. His creativity is infinite. He simply spoke, and the heavens and the earth came into being. The only part of creation that involved His hands was the forming first of Adam, and then Eve. Everything else, He simply spoke into being. Amazing. God said, and it became!

I don’t know if God has a literal brain. What I do know is that throughout all of eternity, to which there is no end, we will have the privilege of His infinite knowledge, creativity, and love. Our brains are limited. His is not. In heaven, we will be as He is. Infinite learning, infinite joy, infinite grace.

Here’s a very old song that’s been playing in my head as I write. It’s a little different than what I usually post. The songwriter is Stuart Hamblen:

Saturday Soliloquy: Waning Winter

This week, I have been very thankful to NOT be living in the Midwest as a huge winter storm dumped tons of snow all across the fruited plain.

This is a photo from the Brainerd Daily Dispatch, Brainerd, Minnesota, where we lived for 11 years:

And now that the snow has stopped falling, they’re having severe wind chill. Brrrrr. I do NOT miss that!

We got wind and a spattering of rain here in my corner of PA. It lasted, off and on, for two or three days.

We escaped this time. That doesn’t mean the next snow dump will miss us :).

February is nearly gone, but March can give us a lot of winter weather. I have daffodils blooming in my back yard, where the exposure to the southern sun is longer each day. Those happy, sunny little flowers could easily get a boatload of snow dumped on them before April comes along.

We do love to discuss the weather, don’t we? Driving home from an activity yesterday, Terry and I both commented on what a pretty day it was. Clear blue skies, punctuated by fluffy puffs of cloud now and then, made the drive quite pleasant. We’ve reached the point at which it still isn’t fully dark by 5:45 p.m. always an encouraging time for me. Neither of us does well driving in the dark, so we’re thankful for a few more minutes of daylight as spring approaches.

That last sentence stirs memories of when driving in the dark was just a normal part of life. We never gave it a second thought, and were confident to go wherever we needed to go. We didn’t even think about it–just did it. I remember many days when Terry picked me up after our working day to make the drive from St. Paul out to the suburbs where we both lived. During the winter months, it was growing quite dark by 5 p.m. During snowy weather, driving became more precarious, but we were used to it. As most young people do, we took for granted our abilities to see and negotiate safely. Now? We’re rather fussy about getting home before full dark sets in.

Life changes. Physical abilities change. Where we used to find things to do all the time after the work day was over, we’re now perfectly content to stay home.

For both of us, there are a couple of things that do not, and will not, change until death takes us from this world into the glories of heaven. First, our love, faith and trust in God is stronger than ever. Second, our love, trust and faith in each other does not waver as we head into our 54th year of marriage. We’ll hit that anniversary in about three months. Amazing, and we are thankful.

No God!

Psalm 53:1-3.

The fool hath said in his heart, There is no God. Corrupt are they, and have done abominable iniquity: there is none that doeth good.

God looked down from heaven upon the children of men, to see if there were any that did understand, that did seek God.

Every one of them is gone back: they are altogether become filthy; there is none that doeth good, no, not one.

Even Satan and his demons know that God is a reality (James 2:19)! The battle between good and evil is not endless. God will finally and forever destroy His enemies along with their lies that He doesn’t exist.

There is great sadness in v. 2 of this psalm. God, looking down on His creation–all the beauty, all the wonder that He spoke into existence–and seeing that all of mankind has forsaken Him, is both grieved and angered at the folly of the crown of His creation. In v. 3, He sees that there is none righteous. This observation is repeated in the New Testament:

10 As it is written, There is none righteous, no, not one:

11 There is none that understandeth, there is none that seeketh after God.

12 They are all gone out of the way, they are together become unprofitable; there is none that doeth good, no, not one.

Romans 3:10-12

How, I would ask, has this denial of God affected our weary old world? With all of our hype of the wonders of man’s intelligence, is our world a better place for our refusal to acknowledge the Creator?


Psalm 52: 2-4.

Thy tongue deviseth mischiefs; like a sharp razor, working deceitfully.

Thou lovest evil more than good; and lying rather than to speak righteousness. Selah.

Thou lovest all devouring words, O thou deceitful tongue.

The trouble with lying is that one must remember each lie to avoid contradicting it with a different lie and getting caught in one’s own net!

The back story for this psalm:

The terrible events that prompted this chapter are recorded in 1 Samuel 21 and 22. Doeg informed Saul regarding David’s presence at the tabernacle of God and regarding the help he received from the priest there. In an evil and paranoid response, Saul had Doeg kill the priests and others at the tabernacle (1 Samuel 22:18-19).

Though the condemnation of Doeg in this psalm is strong, we sense it should be stronger in light of the mass-murder he committed. Yet this is David’s Contemplation upon the incident, a careful examination of the root and end of Doeg’s evil.

David Guzik, BlueLetterBible

Terrible emotions lead to terrible actions. Saul’s jealousy of David eventually resulted in Saul’s own death, and that of his son, David’s friend, Jonathon.

A well-known quote is, “Oh, what a tangled web we weave when first we practice to deceive.” It is from Sir Walter Scott’s Marmion: A Tale of Flodden Field. It’s been a long time since I read that poem. Maybe I’ll do that today.

King Saul’s uncontrolled jealousy and rage at David’s popularity had led him to do his best to have David murdered. He failed, as we know, and lost his own life by his own hand in his final battle. Was he insane? Some believe so. I’m not sure, except for the degree of his jealousy against David, which turned him sullen and unreasonable. Saul clearly had no meaningful relationship with God, thereby leaving himself wide open to Satan’s influence.

Proverbs 6:16-19,

These six things doth the Lord hate: yea, seven are an abomination unto Him:

17 A proud look, a lying tongue, and hands that shed innocent blood,

18 An heart that deviseth wicked imaginations, feet that be swift in running to mischief,

19 A false witness that speaketh lies, and he that soweth discord among brethren.

The bolded words are those referring to the things that we say–the sins of the tongue. Three of the seven are sins of the tongue. As well, pride often leads to lying; murder, by its nature, involves lying; a deceitful heart leads to lying; mischief usually involves deceit.

I believe that some of the worst lies we tell are the lies we tell ourselves, about ourselves. They can include, “Well, I may be a sinner, but my sin is nowhere near as bad as THAT guy over there!” This is a lie of degree. We are blame-shifting in order to get the spotlight redirected. Also, we can feel better about ourselves when we see someone whose sin may seem more flagrant than our own. We also lie to ourselves in the opposite direction: “I’m so worthless, so bad, that God can never forgive me!”

Both of those lies are overturned by one simple fact: Jesus died for ALL sin, even the ones we may consider less virulent than others. My “little sins” nailed Him to the cross just as much as someone else’s “gross” sins. Sin is sin. It ALL offends the holiness of God.

Concerning our declaration of being beyond God’s forgiveness? First, Jesus died for ALL sin, for ALL sinners! Second, the only sin He cannot forgive is the denial of Who He is–rejection of God the Father, God the Son, God the Holy Spirit. It is attributing the works of Jesus to Satan (Mark 3:28–29, Matthew 12:31–32, and Luke 12:10, as well as other New Testament passages including Hebrews 6:4–6, Hebrews 10:26–31, and 1 John 5:16).

Lying brought Saul to his death. He wasn’t the first, and he isn’t the last. He is, however, an example of the results of deceit.

Pleased. . . .with Sacrifice

Psalm 51:18-19.

Do good in Thy good pleasure unto Zion: build Thou the walls of Jerusalem.

Then shalt Thou be pleased with the sacrifices of righteousness, with burnt offering and whole burnt offering: Then shall they offer bullocks upon Thine altar.

David knew that his failings as a man, a husband, a father and a ruler would adversely affect his people. Here, he seems to be asking God to restore His favor on Jerusalem. That favor would come with a restoration of a right heart within the people. Once that was accomplished, their sacrifices would again become meaningful to God.

Without repentance and sincerity of heart, no offering or burnt sacrifice would be pleasing to God. That is a principle that has not changed

Broken and Contrite

Psalm 51:16-17.

For Thou desirest not sacrifice; else would I give it: Thou delightest not in burnt offering.

The sacrifices of God are a broken spirit: a broken and a contrite heart, O God, Thou wilt not despise.

David is speaking in a comparative sense in v. 16. Don’t forget that he lived during Old Testament times, when animal sacrifice was ordered by God; the shedding of blood was to cover sin.

However, those sacrifices were meaningless to God unless the heart of the giver was broken and contrite over the sin for which he sought forgiveness. Sacrifices are useless when they are done for form’s sake; for gaining recognition and the praise of man. God knows when the sacrifice is genuine, and when it is not.

God also knows when one is broken-hearted before Him, in this age in which blood sacrifice is no longer required. The blood of Jesus not only covers sin; it also cleanses us from sin. When we come to Him on our knees, either physically or figuratively, He knows the reality of our repentance.

I had knee replacement surgery nearly 20 years ago. Both knees. Even after all these years, I still cannot kneel without great discomfort and the possibility of not being able to get back up! God knows, however, when my heart is truly contrite before Him, regardless of my posture.

David says that God will not despise a broken spirit and a contrite heart. To despise is to hold in contempt, to disdain. It is to look on a thing or a person and literally to turn away in disgust. God will not do that when the heart and spirit are broken before Him.

At the suggestion of a friend, I’m adding this song to my post:

Sunday Morning Coffee: Signs of the Times

Don’t worry. This is not a political post, nor is it about anything controversial.

I’m simply enjoying the little signs that SPRING is on its way!

There are cute little sparrows swirling around in my back yard. One of them landed on the windowsill of my bathroom and stayed to stare at me for a few seconds. It’s little head was all ruffled from the rain, Made me smile to see it shake and fluff its feathers.

People are posting pics of their first flowers. We don’t have any here yet. Our house is north-facing, so our first flowers will be a patch of early narcissus on the west side of our front yard.

Did you ever wonder about the names of things? Like, for instance, daffodil. I was curious, so I looked it up.


mid 16th century: from late Middle English affodill, from medieval Latin affodilus, variant of Latin asphodilus (see asphodel). The initial d- is unexplained.

The name daffodil is an alteration of the name for another striking flower, the asphodel

So, of course, I had to look up asphodel, and I learned that it is in the order of asparagales, which we recognize as asparagus.

I love learning little bits of trivia like this. Daffodils and asparagus are related!

Of course, asparagus is another delightful sign of spring. It grows wild sometimes, or is cultivated in the gardens of people who love its flavor.

In my searching, I found a link to 13,370 photos of early signs of spring! Here’s the link, in case you’d like to take a look:

February has been mild here in my corner of Pennsylvania. We could still get some winter weather, but it won’t last long. Snow is good for the soil, so it would be a good thing if we got some. But spring is on the way!

Saturday Soliloquy: Much Ado about Nothing

So, I just spent way too much time browsing through my newsfeed and my email, which I try to clean up on a regular basis. I dislike clutter, even on my computer!

I’m actually surprised that none of the characters above are holding cell phones 🙂

I’m not addicted. I often go an entire day without looking at my phone at all. If I hear a notification bell, I may or may not deal with it at the time. I may not hear notifications at all, depending on what I’m doing. I will not be a slave to my phone. Or my laptop.

I’ve been gradually unsubscribing to a lot of junk email. Sometimes it works, and I don’t see that mail again. Sometimes, they make it impossible to completely unsubscribe. When that happens, I move the email to my spam folder, and it disappears forever into cyberspace.

There’s an old song that I like. “I got along without you before I met you, and I’ll get along without you now!”

The song, of course, is about a lousy boyfriend. It’s not about lousy clickbait and useless emails. Still, the principle applies.

I rarely get caught in the downward spiral of newsfeed rabbit holes, but one of them caught my interest this morning and one thing always leads to another. . . . and another. . . .what a waste of time! Politicians, protestors, pointless prattle that never solves anything. Too much talk. Reminds me of another golden oldie:

And that’s more than enough silliness for today 🙂