Trembling Stranger

By Robb Stankey

This hymn was written in the 12th century by an Icelandic chieftain, and set to music written in the 1970s.

Hear, smith of the heavens,

what the poet asks.

May softly come unto me

thy mercy.

So I call on thee,

for thou hast created me.

I am thy slave,

thou art my Lord.

God, I call on thee

to heal me.

Remember me, mild one.

Most we need thee.

Drive out, O king of suns,

generous and great,

human every sorrow

from the city of the heart.

Watch over me, mild one,

Most we need thee,

truly every moment

in the world of men.

send us, son of the virgin,

good causes,

all aid is from thee,

in my heart.

Do it again

English writer G.K. Chesterton on the sense of wonder:

OrthodoxyBecause children have abounding vitality, because they are in spirit fierce and free, therefore they want things repeated and unchanged. They always say, “Do it again”; and the grown-up person does it again until he is nearly dead. For grown-up people are not strong enough to exult in monotony. But perhaps God is strong enough to exult in monotony. It is possible that God says every morning, “Do it again” to the sun; and every evening, “Do it again” to the moon. It may not be automatic necessity that makes all daisies alike; it may be that God makes every daisy separately, but has never got tired of making them. It may be that He has the eternal appetite of infancy; for we have sinned and grown old, and our Father is younger than we.

A case of the truth being stranger than fiction

Clint Eastwood needs to make a movie about the war exploits of recently-deceased Hawaiian senator Daniel Inouye:

Daniel InouyeOn April 21, 1945, Inouye was grievously wounded while leading an assault on a heavily-defended ridge near San Terenzo in Tuscany, Italy called Colle Musatello. The ridge served as a strongpoint along the strip of German fortifications known as the Gothic Line, which represented the last and most unyielding line of German defensive works in Italy. As he led his platoon in a flanking maneuver, three German machine guns opened fire from covered positions just 40 yards away, pinning his men to the ground. Inouye stood up to attack and was shot in the stomach; ignoring his wound, he proceeded to attack and destroy the first machine gun nest with hand grenades and fire from his Thompson submachine gun. After being informed of the severity of his wound by his platoon sergeant, he refused treatment and rallied his men for an attack on the second machine gun position, which he also successfully destroyed before collapsing from blood loss.

As his squad distracted the third machine gunner, Inouye crawled toward the final bunker, eventually drawing within 10 yards. As he raised himself up and cocked his arm to throw his last grenade into the fighting position, a German inside the bunker fired a rifle grenade that struck him on the right elbow, severing most of his arm and leaving his own primed grenade reflexively “clenched in a fist that suddenly didn’t belong to me anymore”. Inouye’s horrified soldiers moved to his aid, but he shouted for them to keep back out of fear his severed fist would involuntarily relax and drop the grenade. As the German inside the bunker reloaded his rifle, Inouye pried the live grenade from his useless right hand and transferred it to his left. As the German aimed his rifle to finish him off, Inouye tossed the grenade off-hand into the bunker and destroyed it. He stumbled to his feet and continued forward, silencing the last German resistance with a one-handed burst from his Thompson before being wounded in the leg and tumbling unconscious to the bottom of the ridge. When he awoke to see the concerned men of his platoon hovering over him, his only comment before being carried away was to gruffly order them to return to their positions, since, as he pointed out, “nobody called off the war!”

The remainder of Inouye’s mutilated right arm was later amputated at a field hospital without proper anesthesia, as he had been given too much morphine at an aid station and it was feared any more would lower his blood pressure enough to kill him.

"Justice Delivers Its Death" from Sufjan Stevens’ new album Silver & Gold.

(HT: Zach)

A short video that explains the U.S. economy better than the presidential candidates ever have.

A Christian vote for president

Vote

Think Christian presents four different Christian arguments for four different presidential candidates:

Barack Obama, Democrat:

 If we begin with policies that honor each other’s worth and end with a system that trusts in the ability to share prosperity in the face of abundance, surely we are closer to staking a claim in this corner of God’s world that others will recognize as His.

Mitt Romney, Republican:

The first function of a government being the protection of the life of its citizens, I count unfit to govern any candidate who does not believe in protecting the very lives of its most innocent and vulnerable people. Today (although certainly not always in our nation’s history), the most vulnerable human beings in America are unborn children. While I’d much prefer a candidate who opposes abortion, the death penalty and wars fought for reasons other than the defense of life (and one who doesn’t flip-flop on such matters), according to the wisdom of Augustine, I love the protection of the lives of the innocent more and give this issue the highest place.

Gary Johnson, Libertarian:

To sum up my support for Gary Johnson: I refuse to lower my standards by choosing “the lesser of two evils.” I want a candidate who will give Christians the freedom to spread the Gospel on their own terms. I want a candidate who gets booed during debates because he refuses to spin unpopular views. I want a candidate who will implement policies that do work instead of policies that should work.

Jill Stein, Green Party:

…God calls us to care for His creation. To live up to our calling and to protect those creatures He put under our care. If we wish to take this call seriously, perhaps it’s time we made the care of all of creation the center of our political platforms.

What if the presidential election is a tie? (It’s crazier than you might think.)