Friday, October 22, 2010

Not New but Valuable Nonetheless

I know we are due for a "Fifth Edition" but this still sells well.

My wife is a great cook. Everyone says so and science has declared me fat on every axis of measure. So you need her cookbook (seen to the left).
It costs $25.
The link to our sales site is on the sidebar (BigHausLoot).
Buy one. Heck, if your listening to me at all, buy twenty. Takes care of all your Christmas shopping at once.

I shouldn't be telling you this but what is cool is that I can make these puppies at home. This allows a profit margin unseen in the days when I made them at Kinkos. I got me a Ricoh Aficio SP C410dn color laser printer which makes all the notebooks and products of Big Haus easy to knock out on demand.

I got it from the guys at
While the color is phenomenal, it is the duplexing that almost makes me weep. Weep, of course, in a manly, tearless way.

Friday, September 17, 2010

Of Elizabeth Catherine Wilson (nee Dodds) On Her Deathbed

My mother is now 91. And she is dying soon, in a matter of weeks. Nothing is wrong with her besides being old. Things are shutting down. She has wished this, going to be with the Lord, for decades. Not because life in our family is rotten and the escape of death the only hope, but for all the joy and blessing life has been for we Wilsons, it is "not worth comparing to the glory that is to be revealed."

While she is looking forward to an elevation beyond our knowledge, we will be left behind to elevate her memory. Her service to the Kingdom of God, her years of supporting my father as he served the Kingdom of God, and her guidance of we four, then whom we married, our offspring and the generation of great grandchildren (like rabbits) below them. She has run the race and is ready. She taught us to run it and we are ready for her to be done. She and Father taught us well that we are running "toward the goal for the prize of the upward call of God in Christ Jesus." And as she dies, our belief and joy in what she taught invests our conversation.

I thought I would post the poem I wrote for her 7oth birthday party at which I threatened her with another 10 years of life. She felt it as a threat, spoke to me (her favorite child) sternly, but nonetheless proceeded to cruise through 21 more.

To his mother on her seventieth birthday

I've known her four and thirty years today
With my mem'ry faint in events mundane;
But still, like a history studied, stays
On times. I do remember things of fame—
Not `line on line' and `precept' unto death—
But those momentous, far from commonplace,
And will not accept any trivial breath
To darken my creation. A pale face,
Still set in British dour kindness, I have
Shining in my mind. Not because of good,
Though much, to others shown. I am a slave
To position, marveling at rank as would
Angels. On high they sang of her, I heard,
Sang to me, “Queen Elizabeth the Third”.

by Evan Wilson

Friday, July 30, 2010

Simply Put

It is Simple.

For whatever peace you seek, establish order in that realm.
Before this...
To order that realm, acknowledge the need for governance.
And yet...
To know whose government it is, doubt your means of knowing.
Until now...
Your habits were your order.
They are not a means of knowing.
Your movements came from passions.
They are neither ordered nor a means of knowing.
The chaos that you made called for tyrants,
by their intent or yours,
by accident or by desperation.
What remains...
Your reason may read from
the revelation of the God,
(for He would know, would He not?)
and the reality that He made
(for that is what must be ordered).

What did they say?
Do you believe what was said?
Will you be governed?

Such is the Tao.
Let chaos chase the fool.

Monday, July 19, 2010

Royal Purple

Proverbs 31:21 She is not afraid of snow for her household,
for all her household are clothed in scarlet.

Women have a natural sense of jeopardy when subject to threats, and from threats arise fears. It is natural that institutions such as society, marriage and the church offer a degree of security regarding those threats. But it is not only these others that should sustain a woman from her fears. Her own efforts, doing what it takes to provide the “scarlet” clothes that are adequate to warm, have removed her fears. Were a woman to not rise to make this sort of contribution, she might think that her lack of provision highlights her husband's securing influence, thus she might revel in the romance of being a little “princess”. A woman’s fear can have a pervasive effect on her household, children especially. But her own work at resolving the threats she can, ameliorates those fears in her and in them. If she has cast all tasks back on her husband, her fears don’t necessarily vanish. Men have a way of being less than omnipotent. Her temptation (instead of a goodwife's resolve) is to turn her fears into frets which has its voice in nagging. A goodwife is the source of some part of the family's security and is certainly praiseworthy.

Proverbs 31:22 She makes herself coverings;
her clothing is fine linen and purple.

In the beating back of primal and survival fears, a goodwife runs up the score. Not only is her family warm, but she also takes care of her own appearance, and that in a rewarding fashion (pun intended). Whatever the economic level of a family, the wife should know that one of her tasks is the bedecking of herself as well as she can afford. God made women decorative and each should have the will and way to honor that intention. To some extent the new patriarchy/home school culture has drawn up a vision (stereotypes are not always true but are recognizable nonetheless) of some harmless drudge that, hopefully, no one notices. Just as her modesty of clothing ought not threaten the intimacy of the vow made to her husband, her fashion should enjoy the level and merit she inhabits in society. We will not have the Queen dressing like a charwoman. Dress with the glory you have earned. Advertise the glory of a goodwife.

Thursday, July 15, 2010

"A word fitly spoken is like apples of gold in a setting of silver."

My golden daughter bought a new car, a Honda Fit.


A "helper fit" for more, this fitly was
And "fitly spoken" were its words and ways.
No "fits of rage" (when foaming fit undoes),
Could fit these new wayfaring days.

by Evan Wilson

Monday, July 12, 2010

"Your Handmaid is but a Servant to Wash the Feet of the Servants of my Lord."

Proverbs 31:20 She opens her hand to the poor, and reaches out her hands to the needy.

There are some "domestic accomplishment" wives who are not “Goodwives”. These women are just “can do” personalities—choleric fascists who work like Hercules cleaning out the Augean Stables. So far, so good. But (a crucial "but") they will have an ordered household that is in service not to husband, family or guests, but is a temple to which all those must come and worship, removing their shoes in obeisance. All others than herself must not benefit, relax, consume, wear-out, dirty the thing that she has made. I have seen plastic on the furniture. I have heard of rooms banned from family life.

Although verse 20 is not about domestic affairs, it measures the distinction between a good wife's ordered home and this other order. It is a reminder that when our hearts are in service they will choose to serve either others or ourselves. When the heart is in service to a husband and not in service to a private, unshared peace, that heart goes naturally to others as well, outsiders who have not. The goodwife's house is already an article of “service” to those who share that home and her wide reaching capabilities allow that heart to serve the needy. The productive “self-server” finds her own wants closer to her heart and can never find residual time or material to give.

Now it is also possible that a wife would be out and about serving the poor and fail to accomplish the first tier of her responsibility. The verse is not alone and has been preceded by her first calling, that of wife of a husband and potentially a mother of her children. Should a woman want to be in dominant service to the needy, then she should remain single that the calling of "lover of the home, husband and children" (from Titus) would not be an untouched arena of failure, but a reasonable avoidance of precedent claims. But if you marry, the heart that serves God first, and under such the husband second, will find herself eager to be doing good deeds beyond the home.

I Corinthians 7:34 And the unmarried woman or girl is anxious about the affairs of the Lord, how to be holy in body and spirit; but the married woman is anxious about worldly affairs, how to please her husband.

Friday, July 09, 2010

"Spinning wheel got to go round"

Proverbs 31:19 She puts her hands to the distaff, and her hands hold the spindle.

Spinning thread and weaving used to be a most basic task for women in keeping their households in clothes, tents, and rugs. This, thankfully, is no longer necessary. The principle, however, is the need for maintenance of mundane goods and conditions. Since you are on a computer reading this, you are probably middle-class, as am I. We are close enough to subsistence level that there are many tasks in a home which our lack of domestic staff leaves to us. With or without servants there are those domestic duties which need hands-on arrangement. Somebody has to do it. If the wife is at home (and I don't think she must be) the delegation of those mundanities has fallen to her. It is just like the husband's regular use of the car to go to work delegates the automotive maintenance to him. Because we do not have many layers of service below us, all of us need attend to slavish seeming actions to keep our ship-of-home afloat.

The Proverbial goodwife has already “sought the wool and flax” (v. 13), and her hands are taking this "bottom" of society's provisions, tedious as these can be, through to completion. This means remembering to buy toilet paper and aspirin, getting the stain out of junior’s pants, and wiping the counter once again.

I know that some gentle readers are asking themselves, "Can't her husband wipe something, for crying out loud?" Of course he can, just as she can fill the tank with gas on occasion. "Lighten up Francis." I even mentioned servants. I could have added children and a helpful husband without even a grimace of distaste. But the passage isn't talking about helpful husbands. It is talking about what a woman should consider about herself that she might be considered a goodwife. Does it suggest it or not? If it does, do you believe it? You have heard the standard, believed the standard, and are seeking to apply the standard. Let God judge the inconsiderate husband.

Tuesday, July 06, 2010

Profitess (Not a Misspelling)

Proverbs 31:18
She perceives that her merchandise is profitable. Her lamp does not go out at night.

A wise woman is farsighted into the future of her household because she has observed the value of her past efforts. Her good sense sees not only the accomplishment of a task but the potential profit in the inventory of things she produces. While some goodwives actually make a product (be it food, art, clothing, etc.) whose retail value is measure in dollars, all goodwives allow their work to be a profit. Each husband of such women see their fief increase through the creativity of their wife. The reputation of the family, the grace of the home, and the husbands standing as a man is being made by his wife's recognition that she is building a wide array of profit. All this collects as a value in her mind, be she making curtains, cookies, or the good will of her guests and family. It is not drudgery and “make work” for the little woman to keep her set aside in the harem. She sees a pile of wealth that sprang from her hands, and although she got up earlier than everyone else, she is reluctant to let another day end while she could still profit her husband. She is certainly, as goodwife, a "helper fit" for the kingdom her husband builds, and all the while, as she makes her contribution to his gain, the strength she gave returns to her as a more secure world.

Monday, June 28, 2010

The Big Haus Diet and Workout

She girds her loins with strength and makes her arms strong.
Proverbs 31:17

There are women who are sluggards. I have been to homes in which a reasonably educated woman spent a whole day, thank you, but in which I feared for my health. I didn't want to touch anything. I didn't want to eat anything. It wasn't her gracious hospitality that kept me there. It was my gracious Christianity. And the Black Hole of Calcutta that was the living room wasn't because of a lack of money. It was a lack of busy.

A sluggard is not merely a poor excuse for humanity beset with the "lazies", but will be, by natural laws, unhealthy. Women all over the Western World are hoping for and attempting to gain a utopia of casual, pointless T.V. lives with intermittent shopping, tramp stamp, and a small dog. And they wonder why they have to consider their diets and go to the gym. The Proverbial goodwife life is an investment in the goodwife’s body. Women naturally know that they are an object of man’s aesthetic appreciation. A woman who longs to serve her husband with an ordered, clean, and beautiful fief is also benefited by the collateral fruit of a stronger physique. I say "stronger" rather than "thin" because that is what the text above says. I also know larger women who work hard in their homes and it keeps them strong and attractive people. It is the blobs who are repellent and their homes are the matching ecosystem.

My own, The Amazing Missus, is a cleaning, cooking, hostessing machine of an 8000 square foot home under the weight of 52 years of my old friend Futility. No gym. No special diets.


Friday, June 18, 2010

"It Is Good to be Quoted" E. Bruce Wilson

In Quotes

To say what better men before me would;
To spring alive to lips and heard, adored
Though made of timely words, they timeless stood.
I battle on to say that which rewards.

I’ve rattled on a bit but wonders skirt
My verbage, as if muses heard me speak,
And while not inclined to kiss, they flirt
With waning wit, with promises too weak.

So I will prattle on, while hopes surround
Each lofty thought spun wisely sweet and bright,
To blend my fitted terms on depth profound.
At last in quotes, not yet, but might tonight.

by Evan Wilson

Wednesday, June 16, 2010

A Capital Wife

Proverbs 31:15
She rises while it is yet night and provides food for her household
and tasks for her maidens.

When a goodwife concludes that she serves in her husband's fief, there are collateral tasks revealed. It is often the case that her work must precede his in time of day, that her service should be underway before those that she serves, and even those that serve her, can address their obligations. The attitudes surrounding the “inconvenience” is hopefully moderated by the willingness and trustworthiness already attained. One of the worms this early bird gets is that she gets to set the pace and the agenda for the day (spiritually and materially) by coming to thoughtful conclusions in early diligence. Remember that her "husband doth trust in her", and her efforts are for him and his. The day’s pace, attitude, and the tasks placed on the agenda by her effort will be natural to the ends that the ruler of the fief has desired for it.

And this women is not a shortsighted, bleary-eyed drudge, dragging her tired, fuzzy slippered resentments to the coffee maker so that the beached sea lion still sleeping above stairs can not face one tiny bit of inconvenience on his descent. Such a minimalist doesn't want to be a goodwife, she just wants a tiny bit of evidence to throw in the face of accusations that she isn't. The goodwife extends herself with profit for the fief in view. Her wisdom spends money and labor to purchase long term benefits. She can then invest what she built up to make even more. She does not look at the household budget as a zero sum game with only “x” dollars and “y” demands on them. A profitable viewpoint is not constrained to the money her lord allots her, but can take that money, that time, that food, and any material profit and apply it all to future gains. It is often that a kingdom's greatest imperial expansions are provided by the hard, constant efforts of the grand vizier.

Proverbs 31:16
She considers a field and buys it;
with the fruit of her hands she plants a vineyard.

Friday, June 11, 2010

To Emily: On Goals

My Future Plans

Our going needs no reason’d argument
As dragg’d are we before the certain past
Into the unframe’d hopes ahead, where went
We all, with every soul from first to last.

With scatter’d infinite of maybes, yet
We draft a plan with single math precise
In all its vision, now of then, a bet
Against the House, before we roll the dice.

Our gambling boasts of such presumption, weak,
(Though God and chance and time and rot forbid!)
That we ignore realities that speak
Of stronger bets on what tomorrow did.

So since I can not hope to rule the next,
And if my God permits my presence there,
T’will be by wisdom how my peace effects
Whatever come, whatever will and where.

by Evan Wilson

Monday, June 07, 2010

Now We're Cookin' With Gas

She is like the ships of the merchant, she brings her food from afar.
Proverbs 31-14

We see a metaphor for a Goodwife's cooking abilities in international trade. The point of the metaphor is not in the financial aspect of trade deficits or a declining dollar, but in the range and breadth of her food provision capabilities. Out of a net spread wide come rewards, passed through her selection and efforts, in what she puts on the table. While nobody wants nor expects that every day's menu must be replete with arcane food groups, the Goodwife's menu shall not be limited to a pedestrian “hamburger helper” and a rotation of the easiest, most accessible items. We must realize that nobody thinks (like the family in the commercial seems to), that the woman whose cookies came mixed, sliced, and on a ready-to-bake pan is going to any effort, past foisting on the unemancipated offspring her mundane self-absorption. “Let’s all pretend that I cook and please credit me with a reputation!” These are called "convenience foods" for a reason. If a box of Stouffer's Lasagna is pulled out of the freezer because you just returned from a vacation and you have no time to do anything else, God bless it for being convenient. If your life needs a stockpile of convenience foods because every moment of that life is playing "Real Housewives from Whatever God Forsaken Culdesac You Live In" or you can't be bothered to learn how to cook because you like reading romance novels, the convenience it provides has been demanded by your world-without-end inadequacy.

Is “world merchant” the metaphor for your kitchen? Or would it be, “Mom, you are as intriguing as, Oh, I dunno,... as tap water.”

Wednesday, June 02, 2010

Tub Time

Just thinking. Well, I was soaking in the tub and thinking. What was I thinking about? I was thinking about wives who have complaints about their husbands. They hear the admonition from the Apostle to respect these men and either throw the impertinent Apostle over the side of "Her Majesty's Ship Amazonia" or look at the attempt through narrowed gaze wondering how they shall honor their husbands when said husband is such a fool. They want to have a husband they could respect but the command did not include a special dispensation to disrespect those men that have not risen sufficiently in the wife's esteem. The husband's faults, seen clearly by fifty percent of the population, are that he has not seen fit to look and love like Antonio Banderas, think and write like St. C.S. of Lewis, and work like an AnteBellum slave. Some of these more religious women make the attempt to "honor" the pond scum that fathered her children with fake noises of reverence. This is a wide spread problem and my tub was expending all its porcelain force to resolve it.

There is a basic error here. It is presumed by the modern that the Bible tells a wife to respect something that is not respectable. Maybe the Bible is not sufficiently up-to-date. Maybe modernity is filled with stupid people. Maybe husbands, masters, and emperors are better human beings then the average wife, slave, or citizen. Maybe the universe is not just astronomical distance but is also cosmological height. Maybe in a universe infested with height, it requires faith in height (and height alone with no admixture of your egalitarian nonsense, thank you) to live Biblically at all. "But," you say (feeling your every-waking-hour-bitchiness being torn away from your french-manicured claws), "does not he have these faults?" Yes, Einstein, he does but this is about your faults, your disobedience, and your excuse making. Just sayin'. Maybe.

This is what the difference is between an licit observation and an illicit complaint. Superiors are in charge of correcting their inferiors. Seems like this is a basic task reserved for the superior. And observation of fault becomes bitchy complaining when an inferior doesn't think anything odd of correcting "uphill". They don't even believe in the "hill". Your observation of fault will blend with your definition of who you are in the relationship. Are you less, are you a peer, or are you better? Change your notion of what a husband is.

So once the holy women who hoped in God used to adorn themselves and were submissive to their husbands, as Sarah obeyed Abraham, calling him lord. And you are now her children if you do right and let nothing terrify you.
I Peter 3:5-6

And if you don't keep thinking that you rule just as much as he, you will find that your husband's manifest errors remain observable but entrusted to agents higher than yourself to discipline. You can rest. You can reverence. You can respect.

You already know this. You already agree with me. Answer me this, should children be expected to honor a mother regardless of her outbursts, her moods, her inconsistencies, her mistakes, her outright uniformed judgments, and her lack of style (yep, really, just deal with it)? You and I think they should. I have a reason. You are just selfish.

"If you see in a province the poor oppressed and justice and right violently taken away, do not be amazed at the matter; for the high official is watched by a higher, and there are yet higher ones over them."

Ecclesiastes 5:8

Friday, May 28, 2010

Quiet Descends

O goddess sing, whose wane and fall has come,
Of He above who reigns and made thee thus.
Thy beauties born were borne by man that from
Their supplicance they got more life from dust.

Cry down the gods for He has surely said,
"Thy time is o'er and given to My Son!"
What crowns divine fall from thy brows and heads
To pass from night to this, the day of only One?

The stone we graved in passing likeness of
And trees the same (we raised and bowed to less)
Were made for more, from naught but thought above
And did declare to those who hear, a rest.

But certain silence walks behind my tongue;
Though words, high words, had tumbled out before
Of gods' romance, of having been that once.
But this, O God! The God, my God! Adore!

by Evan Wilson

Monday, May 24, 2010

Trust and Get Gain

The heart of her husband trusts in her, and he will have no lack of gain.
Proverbs 31:11

When someone or something is trusted, a certain release of control is delegated to the thing or person trusted. “I trust a chair,” means that I intend to give up supporting myself by my legs, and delegate that effort to the legs of the chair. If I trust my wife it means I find her able to take over the areas I delegate to her, and in those areas, since I hope to gain from life, I will gain in her efforts. It is the center (“heart”, as in heart of the tree) of the husband that relinquishes control of areas of their life together. A “Goodwife” is not one who makes her husband concerned or suspicious of her abilities. No one likes to be in the chair that gives cause for suspicion. To avoid embarrassment, you start to tuck your legs under you, in case the chair fails. What then is the point of the chair?

Tuesday, May 18, 2010

Good Mornin', Goodwife!

Proverbs 31:10
A good wife who can find? She is far more precious than jewels.

A “goodwife”, tragically, is a rarity. When you have read all of Proverbs 31 it should be obvious why. It is almost as rare as righteousness. The comparison to the precious rarity of jewels is multifaceted (ow!). Besides rare, they, second only to a "baby-in-the-room", gain a woman’s attention.

Jewels, it should be noted, are not valuable intrinsically. They are made precious when the market declares and we believe them to be a valuable item, like cash money. These retain their value as long as the market believes them to be worth something. How far has the average Christian woman fallen from this description in Proverbs? How much time is wasted making excuses, or denigrating either Solomon or the Word of God? How easy is it to sell men on you by just adjusting cup size, eyelash length, or “suggestion”? Who needs to work so hard?

Proverbs 6:25
Do not desire her beauty in your heart,
and do not let her capture you with her eyelashes;

Husbands often behave badly. Wives do no less. If your looks and your leisure are the measure of your success as a woman, you may be, at best, a precious and prize cow. You have filled out the herd of many thousand head that wanders the malls of this land. And no, that wasn’t a “jewel” you left behind nor did your husband “rise up and call you blessed” for having left it steaming in his life on your way to lunch with your spray-tanned friends.

Tuesday, May 11, 2010

On Sexy Time

If husband and wife are going to govern their marriage together they have to jointly know what is going on. Alone, each tends to project their own views of what sex is about. We think, incorrectly, that our physical reactions and emotions are the same.

The men say, “We want sex, dang it!” and the women say, “Us too... sometimes.”
And here we have liftoff into our problem.

Proverbs 5
15 Drink water from your own cistern, flowing water from your own well.
16 Should your springs be scattered abroad, streams of water in the streets?
17 Let them be for yourself alone, and not for strangers with you.
18 Let your fountain be blessed, and rejoice in the wife of your youth,
19 a lovely hind, a graceful doe. Let her affection fill you at all times with delight,
be infatuated always with her love.
20 Why should you be infatuated, my son,
with a loose woman and embrace the bosom of an adventuress?

There! See?
Hey wife! I got a verse!
In the Bible we are supposed to want her all the time.
And we do. Our work here is done.

But what is it that we are desiring “all the time”? Men think it is the tingling they feel in their naughty bits, (the big stupids).

Genesis 2
23 Then the man said, "This at last is bone of my bones and flesh of my flesh; she shall be called Woman, because she was taken out of Man." 24 Therefore a man leaves his father and his mother and cleaves to his wife, and they become one flesh. 25 And the man and his wife were both naked, and were not ashamed.

This is the Mojo (and Evan is its prophet).
This is the magic passed down to every man (discounting the eunuchs). The act of sex, which we seem to want just like animals, is not merely an act desired for the physical satisfaction. We share that with the animals. The human and moral desire of man is for rapprochement, the rejoining of that which was previously separated. Sex is a metaphor in which we enact this desire. God gives us pleasure in it physically, but the closer we approach the sensation of reunion, the higher and more intense the act becomes.

We see it in all the insecurities, or even perversions, men encounter. There are the endless commercials and huge market for male enhancement products. Enlarging a man is less demanded by a woman, but for the man it grants an emotional sensation of his greater rapprochement. And then there are men who dress up in women’s clothes or want to be surgically made into “women”. From size insecurities to perversions, man wants to enter woman from every angle and with great frequency. For the married, the wife is the “target” of their never-fully-achieved rapprochement. Thankfully, God in his wisdom has given us the solaces of orgasm, marriage and children. Orgasm punctuates the attempt, marriage allows continuance of the attempt, and children are a victory in the attempt, as the child “is” in a sense the successful combination of the two people.

Monday, May 10, 2010

A Little More "Shut the Heck Up."

Those who tell a future story based on prophesy is trying to match the vision to a narrative, yes, but their narrative is, by definition, a fiction. The latitude of fiction is that I can make anything happen and it can bear a wonderful similarity to the vision it promises to “fulfill”. These Bible teachers think that in this God is glorified. God is only glorified in His having accomplished (in history) a story which followed a preexistent vision to the prophet describing the same. God is not glorified by us creating a fictional accomplishment and believing it strongly. They have tried to glorify when they should hope. Any false prophet has the same latitude if he can craft both a prophesy and write book after book on how it will be fulfilled.

We know that the whole creation has been groaning in travail together until now; and not only the creation, but we ourselves, who have the first fruits of the Spirit, groan inwardly as we wait for adoption as sons, the redemption of our bodies. For in this hope we were saved. Now hope that is seen is not hope. For who hopes for what he sees? But if we hope for what we do not see, we wait for it with patience.
Romans 8:22-25

Friday, May 07, 2010

The Gravity of Being a Christian

So you go to a believing church. They confirm to you the great truths of the Faith. But you really wish your Christian life was more "real" and was more successful. Depending on your emotional frame you seek out a spiritual function that will excite you because it seems to you that an excited Christian is a good Christian. Some ministries will offer you the heaviest back-beat this side of Aerosmith while some tweak you emotionally giddy with the magick of Latin. There is nothing wrong with having a back-beat in church nor is there something wrong with Latin. What is wrong is the "cart-before-the-horse" error of crafting an excitement in a religious circumstance and telling yourself you are on the road to the deep things of Jesus.

What am I suggesting? Christianity is not by Faith lived in excitement, it is by Faith lived in deeds. Feel free to be excited (and you very well may be) after your "have done all that is commanded."

"Show me your faith apart from your works, and I by my works will show you my faith. "
James 2:18

"Every one who comes to me and hears my words and does them, I will show you what he is like: he is like a man building a house, who dug deep, and laid the foundation upon rock; and when a flood arose, the stream broke against that house, and could not shake it, because it had been well built."
Luke 6:47-48

Head faith becomes heart faith, not when you "feel it deeply", but when your see the world before you in no other way. Christians have problems because their head faith is in Jesus but their heart, their center, is in submission to other claims about reality. The emotional church moment works you up into a state of "willfully suspending your disbelief" in those other claims and just as in the movie theater, you judge the movie (church) by just how well your heart and center ignore the reality of your actual beliefs about life outside. Such it temporary and you keep going back to get the jolt.

You have heart faith in gravity. You never run through a catechism before your take a step. You practice no apologetics for sitting on a couch. You certainly would claim 32 feet per second squared if asked but that is not gravity to you. Gravity for you is to look out your eyes, move with your limbs, plan you every day never doubting that 32 feet per second squared is the way the world is made. Do I need to develop an emotionally mystic fit to keep gravity true (most of the time)? I would seriously worry about such a man.

So if you claim Jesus as Lord and you wish that you did what He told you, you may wish to depose all your other little gods of self and society and consider viewing the world no other way.

"Why do you call me `Lord, Lord,' and not do what I tell you? Luke 6:46

Tuesday, May 04, 2010

Of Kings, for those That are Not

It is self-evident that our government governs our neighbor, not just ourselves. Any society has need for a law above us each. This is the economy of government. We can say, in some crude form, a government is pyramidic by necessity. If a man arbitrates between two; he governs them. And when a general directs the many agencies of his army to battle; he governs. These pyramids (where the base effected is broader in number than that which affects) are essential admissions in the theory of rule. The importance of your rule is defined by the numeric breadth of people you are above. The quality of your rule is in the economy of your pyramid.
When pyramids first were built in the 3rd dynasty of Egypt, the experiments, though necessary, failed to reach the Wonder of the World perfection of the Great Pyramids of Giza (4th Dynasty). Pharaoh Djoser managed by his undeniably brilliant seer/architect Imhotep to erect a step pyramid. The shifts between the levels was stark and sudden, like the ziggurats in Babylonia. The Pharaoh Snefru shot for the stars, almost literally, in that the pitch of his pyramid (as begun) would have thrown the pinnacle into impossible heights. The inevitable decision was to change the angle of the sides midway up and Snefru is remembered by the barn roof in the desert. To rule well, the difficulties of the crude pyramid must be shaped and stacked to define the idea of government more clearly and to have it function more efficiently. As in the words of Jethro;
“Moreover choose able men from all the people, such as fear God, men who are trustworthy and who hate a bribe; and place such men over the people as rulers of thousands, of hundreds, of fifties , and of tens. And let them judge the people at all times..”
Exodus 18:21

The clearer the pyramid, the more efficient the government. Absence of graduated delegation is foolish and tragic but to completely remove the pyramid will provide your brief society with the joys of, “And every man did what was right in his own eyes”. Good, perhaps, for Ron Paul but not for the sane.

An aristocracy/oligarchy considers that a plateau is as good as a mountain but loses the rule that they, the aristos, need as a mini-society themselves. A democracy/polity does not even rise above the plain. Their rulers are themselves. They have delegated up, not down, so that they do not bow to the definition of rule. It looks to be a pyramid but the peaks or plateaus at the top always feel the rule of the constituency, the mob. Democracy organizes its rebellions into scheduled overthrows. And we wonder why modern democracies wander further and further away from God. They can’t absorb the concept of an agent whose rule was not up to them and at their permission. And why do parents, clinging grimly to the monarchy of the home, sound so petty, angry, and impotent. Wisdom is lost with forms other than the strict pyramid. These shifts, they say to avoid tyranny, are in reality to avoid government and its benefits to the ruled.

“When you see in a province the poor oppressed and justice and right violently taken away, do not be amazed at the matter; for the high official is watched by a higher, and there are yet higher ones over them. But in all, a king is an advantage to a land with cultivated fields.”
Ecclesiastes 5:8-9

Monday, May 03, 2010

The Art of Marriage

Proverbs 24
3 By wisdom a house is built,
and by understanding it is established;
4 by knowledge the rooms are filled
with all precious and pleasant riches.

Enjoying life “with the wife that you love” is your lot in that futility you call your marriage. Be advised that a married couple can and often do differ from each other and from other couples in their complexity of eye and understanding. This will make homes different from each other in how artfully humane the home’s environs become.

Certainly there are some dear Christians whose vision of life is that of an engineer or a mathematician. Their homes will be, if godly, always neat, and it will look like someone works there as “a lover of the home”. Since the “desire of the eyes” is a vanity and not intrinsic to holiness it ought never supplant the love we have for God or be a standard of judgment by which we assess another Christian’s walk. If both parties to the marriage are artless, then the accidentally Bauhaus living room and abhorrent color schemes chosen will have no negative effect on “sustaining a socially avowed sexual relationship” nor on the holiness of their hearts. Such lives can be tranquil, when both can’t cook, if neither can taste the food.

But many people do have a degree of taste, and hope that life will become more beautiful than it was. That means that there can be the temptation of divergent levels between the spouses. How often has the wife been the most moved to “art”, but the least equipped? How frustrated is a man going to become when he has to live with “cute” decisions? And how tempted can a woman become when her husband can’t (or won’t) wear a tie that matches anything within a hundred yards?

Civilization is the increase in the intricacy of a culture’s order. Affluent civilizations increase in the realms of art. But many men think that civilization is an attack on their manhood. They have considered that the raw demands of life should be met in aggressively raw form (therefore the manly form). Women don’t make it easy by trying to define the “civilized” as delicate and passive. It is as if you have a party and you want the theme to be “bunnies” and you ask the poor sap to die cut rabbits and flowers out of paper bags and put them by your driveway with tea lights for the whole world to witness and bewail. Imagine his pleasure, ladies, when he asks what will be the theme of your next party, and you say “Ragnarok. Could you build me some heavy iron, flaming tripods to go out by the driveway?”

Women, it is possible that a thinking and artful man, while shopping with you at Bed, Banal, and Beyond, could suggest (hold on to your seats, ladies) that, given the intimate nature of the bedroom, satin is preferable to canvas as a bedspread. And maybe a watercolor landscape would be nice instead of the Spinal Tap poster he had framed with plastic while in college.

This is a decades long arena of joint government of your marriage. Art is an objective communion between the Other and the Self entering sensually but enjoyed mentally. Within a marriage each party must remember their duty to the sense and enjoyment of the other. The husband serves his wife as a member of himself by considering her “eye” and her enjoyments. The wife serves her husband as head of herself by submitting to his “eye” and his enjoyments.

Proverbs 31
11 The heart of her husband trusts in her,
and he will have no lack of gain.
12 She does him good, and not harm,
all the days of her life.

Song of Solomon 3
9 King Solomon made himself a palanquin from the wood of Lebanon. 10 He made its posts of silver, its back of gold, its seat of purple; it was lovingly wrought within by the daughters of Jerusalem.

Tuesday, April 27, 2010

When Husbands Revere Christ...

C. S. Lewis suggested aptly in his Four Loves that a Christan husband is wearing two crowns. His reverence for Christ means that, like Christ, he gives himself up for her. He wears a crown of thorns. The other crown is in that which touches both their erotic and mundane affairs. It is a paper crown.

The crown of thorns is found in the array of service that a man offers to his family. It is his actual husbandry, (as in farming) of his fief and (like all farmers) he will work like a dog to maintain the physical health and defense of all he surveys. Most wives fail to object to this crown being worn by husbands. It is the paper crown that chafes.

Obviously there are those sorts of harridans who marry some schmuck and tyrannize his days. There are also those who think that marriage is fifty-fifty which only works in agreement and can't work otherwise. Of course these women have an odd notion that somehow the disagreement should have a default setting (to resolve the fifty-fifty problem) which makes a gentleman grant the female her way. So in this "equitable" marriage they either agree or the woman is in charge. Biblical, it is not. "Hell on Wheels" is what it is called by professionals. What about the "Biblical" family who hasn't wandered off into Emergent-church land, voted for Obama, recycled, or worn a helmet while bike riding? They ofttimes go to a Bible preaching church, and know that submission to husbands is the Bible way. And yet...and yet... some of those homes are shopping for the wheels to which they will strap their living hell.

These Christian, conservative couples err when they see submission in marriage as something that touches on the MOST IMPORTANT THINGS. That is right, I said this is a mistake. It is a widely held opinion that a wife needs to accept the dictates of her husband regarding Ideas: theology, politics, philosophy. The problem is, Ideas ought not be assented to in obedience without agreement. An Idea becomes a mere Position held like the patriotism of a mercenary. Ideas cannot function as truth claims based on the non-epistemic demand of some theology martinet with a rod up his butt. If he can’t convince the woman who loves him of the truth of his ideas, then I suspect he has a lousy defense for them. He should encourage her to resist his arguments lest he be deceived by her easy acquiescence and proceed to humiliate himself in public. Her loving demand for better proofs is a humbling protection of egotistical man.

This is where a knowledge of the paper crown comes in. These higher things have their own crowns. The husband, as husband alone, is not given that crown of epistemic certainty. God bless you both if the husband can also wear those crowns effectively in a family. But to do so he must appeal to the epistemic realms (not his husbandry); the revelation of God, the law of Reason, and the evidence of Reality. The wife, for her submission to BIG ideas, must look only to those authorities.

So a wife, when she looks at her husband, sees only a lord over the mundanities. She has another lord for her morality and her philosophy. See to it that she submits to each in the correct area. Too often, a wife with some docility never questions the family theology or philosophy. She considers herself a submissive wife thereby, even though she feels a certain freedom to adjust or outright disregard the “little” things her husband asks her to do. This woman is, in fact, the least submissive of them all. Her larger thoughts should have submitted to God, Reason, and Reality. She instead, just defaulted to whatever her husband’s opinions were. And where she was supposed to submit, frying him some eggs when he asked, she did not. I am convinced that men would rather be married to someone who joyfully performed every mundane task requested, but disagreed on theology. Many women who disregard their husbands in the small are also disregarding real authority in the larger thought realm.

Husbandry has a natural and God-given crown, that of service.

Luke 22
24 A dispute also arose among them, which of them was to be regarded as the greatest. 25 And he said to them, "The kings of the Gentiles exercise lordship over them; and those in authority over them are called benefactors. 26 But not so with you; rather let the greatest among you become as the youngest, and the leader as one who serves.

In reverencing Christ the kind of submission a husband offers will be different then what his wife offers. The Ephesians passage lets us know that the husband’s reverence is that to membership. A wife's is that to headship. You husbands submit yourselves to caring for the needs of your body (like Christ did for His) and give yourself up (like Christ did for you).

Take, as evidence for where you are, the reaction you have had thus far. If the topic was about the other sex than that to which you belong, was your heart and thought going “I hope he/she is listening!” Are you ready to govern this government the correct way, or not?

Or, you might not think you have this problem, but for some reason the topic annoys you anyway. If it comes up in a discussion, do you find that you make lists of where it would NOT apply and you wouldn’t have to submit yourself to each other? Wouldn’t it be better to find the way to have joy in the submission, and make your lists center on your positive opportunities?

When we say that the wife is to submit out of reverence, we mean that her reverence for Christ makes her conscious of her head rather than her membership. She IS a member but sees and reveres the Head. Her husband IS the head but sees and reveres the member. The husband images Christ out of his religious reverence and the wife images the church out of her religious reverence. In claiming Christianity your marriage will be always be the "lazy man's guide to enlightenment" regarding your claim. You haven't worn the crown of Christ, O husband, but that of a tyrant, demanding service not serving. You overstepped. Some of you (most of you actually, in this age of geldings) have accepted the post of eunuch within the be-pillowed harem where your wife, not you, holds sway. What a bit of Gawd-Help-Us! And you wives! Define what it is you are doing toward your husband and declare with me that this is what you wish Everyman to know and desire the church to be in reverence to Christ. Wouldn't it be great if the Church acted like.. um... you don't? If that is too big a thought just ask your children to apply your standards of submission and attitude to any command or request you make of them. Do you desire admiration, joy and immediacy from the little blighters? "Do unto others as you would be done by", saith the Lord.

Is the rhetoric piled on too thick? I apologize. Simply put to husbands, Christ is not a bastard nor is He a eunuch so take responsibility for how you represent Him. Simply put to wives, are you acting like the Elect Lady for whom Christ died and delivered from sin and fear? What has your marriage said about the Christian faith. If you reverence Christ, this will matter.

Feminists and patriarchal martinets are declaring a different religion.

Titus 2
4 and so train the young women to love their husbands and children, 5 to be sensible, chaste, domestic, kind, and submissive to their husbands, that the word of God may not be discredited.

Monday, April 26, 2010

Who's In Charge Here?

This is the worst part of modern Christian marriage. It is the hardest to bring up and speak of, even in Christian circumstances. The men cringe, suspecting that their easily annoyed, unthinking wife will let them know, shortly after this message is completed, how she, the Great She, does not agree with Evan or the Apostle Paul. And if you ever hope to have sex again, you might want to think twice before you choose to obey Jesus before her.

Merely approaching this subject is the governing of governments, and it is a topic for the big boys and the big girls. This is not a topic for wusses (who are willing to almost cut “it” off for the privilege of only occasionally using “it”), nor is this the topic for women who think marriage is a clique in Junior High, to the top of which they rise by manipulation, rejection and favors.

How do “we” approach the question in marriage of who obeys whom? Should we jump right in on the “wives be subject” verses? No, we gotta clear something up first.

At the beginning of the “dark passage” in Ephesians there is a verse to which the feminists cling and over which the conservatives skip.

I’m conservative, and I want to look at that passage. I want it to be THE passage by which we find ourselves governing the governments of marriage with tranquil happiness. So there! I don't think that St. Paul inadvertantly let slip an idea which trumped everything he was about to say regarding wives submitting. It is an idea of "how" he wants you to agree with what he is about to say regarding wives submitting. If you don't agree with what he is about to say, you don't have what it says in this verse.

Ephesians 5
21 Be subject to one another out of reverence for Christ.

Are you religious? If so, then you claim to revere. Something or someone is the object of your reverence. It has crossed my mind that the Christian unwillingness to be what the Apostle ordered later in the chapter (both men and women) was due to the impossibility of adopting such goodness and order without settling the religion question first.

Are you having trouble guiding your wife in holiness and love? Are you having trouble obeying your husband, let alone even wrapping your mind around just saying the phrase “obeying your husband”?

I suggest that your religion is wrong. Somehow you got into a place where you don’t reverence Christ, but you have a nice picture of the “church” reverencing Christ, and you go to church. Aren’t you nice.

Until you adjust to the idea of having a god, your governance of the marriage is going be some combination of the occasional marriage seminar, a Christian self-help book and all the the worldliness you can still allow.

How have you missed it? It could be that He has simply become the character called “God” in the narrative myth which tells a story about things you don’t find that important. Or you may be an emotionally disturbed woman who dearly clings to a “fuzzy warmth” with devotion and piety but it is there to serve you rather than vice versa. And there is the deeper walk club, which can manage to not love their wives or obey their husbands, even though they have a Tolkien fan level of interest in the “correct”schematic definition of the Whole Counsel of God. It could be something else, but it seems, from the passage we are stressing, that my and your reverence for Christ is the backbone, the inertia of wonderfully accepting the following instructions with joy. If you don’t joyfully follow, you can’t point to a reverence to Christ that isn’t somehow distant from Him.

Hebrews 10
31 It is a fearful thing to fall into the hands of the living God.

Wednesday, April 21, 2010

My Pretty, My Precious

This last weekend The Amazing Missus and I drove to the Town of Hip and there forgathered with the one female descendant of Clan MacEvan.

And the bark was in bloom.

Tuesday, April 20, 2010

Complete Faith

I watched an attempt to gain more "heart" faith out of a congregation this last weekend. The assumption the pastor was making was a natural one, if flawed by the spirit of the age. The assent to a certain propositional truth is considered "head" faith and we have all witnessed both individuals and churches die in the swamp of "head" faith correctness. The spirit of the age suggests, with all of it postmodern subjectivism and its merely animal grasp of decision making, that for the heart to be engaged, the emotions regarding the truth claim need be engaged. "I believe in the Bible" becomes "YES! I KNOW (slight sob) That Jesus wrote the VERY words of LIFE! Glory!" (the latter preferably shouted). This is the St Valentines approach to the heart. In our society we consider the heart the seat of the emotions. In the Scriptures there is the sense of the center of a thing is its heart.

"Head" faith becomes "heart" faith when the truth claim made replaces the preexisting truth claims by which your life was run. In other words you look out your eyes with TRUTH A being held like Gravity is held in your next step. You don't think about it nor gauge its effectiveness. Your "head" faith must do more work than mere catechizing. It must discover and delete the earlier operating system.

Romans 10:8-10 But what does it say? The word is near you, on your lips and in your heart (that is, the word of faith which we preach); because, if you confess with your lips that Jesus is Lord and believe in your heart that God raised him from the dead, you will be saved. For man believes with his heart and so is justified, and he confesses with his lips and so is saved.

If in your heart you are still Lord, (or your mother, or your church, or the Age, or your habits) don't try to replace absence of "heart" with a more stringent "head" faith. But more to our topic, don't try to solve "heart" absence by exuberant sermons or worship-fully played background strummings by the soul patch wearing worship team leader. This sort of faux-heart faith is having a few beers too many and being convinced by your church that you are SOOOOOO in love with Jesus that for a couple of days you will forget you are really married to someone else.

Some will say that I (as usual) am stressing the head aspect. They would be correct. It isn't that we think too much about the Faith but that we think too little. We only ask that superficial assent be made as far as statements of the orthodox faith. There are inside us "head" conclusions we persist affirming. There are outright, contrary to the Scriptures, pure American, family-valued other "faiths" that you really have in your "heart". Like gravity, you can't imagine them not being true. They have to go if you want Jesus to be Lord in your heart.

What the Church recommends: 1) Assent to Truth A and for the deeper walk, 2) get really emotional about it.
What I recommend: 1) Convinced of A, root out all of its competition for your guiding thoughts. 2) Feel good about it.

Emotion answers what is. Do not depend on it to cause what should be.

Monday, April 12, 2010

Pay Attention

Marriages are funny on TV. Nothing like a stupid wife (like on I Love Lucy) for a laugh. Nothing like a stupid husband (on every other show) for even more laughs. We laugh because it is someone else. When it is in our relationship we want to cry.

I have seen marriages break up for this cause. I have seen wives outstrip their husbands in their interest in deeper things. Those husbands counted on the universally acknowledged fact that there is something manly about not knowing stuff.

I Samuel 25
3 Now the name of the man was Nabal [ed. the name means “fool”], and the name of his wife Ab'igail. The woman was of good understanding and beautiful, but the man was churlish and ill-behaved; he was a Calebite.

I have seen husbands living with the hell of the unteachable wife. Not that the woman is not bright. In some cases she is really smart, just uninterested in knowing or understanding. She uses her smarts to build what matters just to her.

Proverbs 11
22 Like a gold ring in a swine's snout
is a beautiful woman without discretion.

What would I recommend? A couple that mutually considers what they each retain from life’s observation will 1) find each other more interesting and 2) sidestep folly (since it lurks in ignorance) and 3) make gains in their standing in the broader community when their knowledge come to benefit others. As an extra, 4) the couple becomes better friends.

Each of these shore up a marriage. When you are not interesting to each other, when folly makes you both look stupid with some regularity, and when 20 years leaves you with no reputation worth remarking on, the word "tranquil" is replaced by the word "dull". Those closest to you, your spouse and your children, will think you dull first. Dull parents do not inspire the children to adopt the methods or beliefs of those parents. Dull Spouses may find that their partners will walk away because they have found another person, someone with a pulse. Or they may just want to get away from the room you are in before you revisit that limited inventory of ideas, or stories, or questions that you have used for years as your talking points.

If you seek to be tranquil and want it to be obviously not dull, realize that what you retain as knowledge in life will have at least four qualities.
1] the quality of the thing known.
2] the quality of that thing's known effect.
3] the quality of 1 and 2 relationship, in other words, why known and why efficacious.
4] the quality of increase.

Proverbs 4:7
The beginning of wisdom is this: Get wisdom,
and whatever you get, get insight.

Friday, April 09, 2010

For Philip and Patrick with abjectness and downcastness of visage

When an incorrect rationale seems to move you it is, many times, the illusion your passions provide to make you seem thoughtful. My father always said there is a difference between a reason and an excuse. Passions, if they move you, need an excuse. You know they do. It is evidence that we all understand that there is a correctness about the human animal that is moved by reason and principle. Why else would we provide faux reasons after the fact?