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jon p. amos, hollie's
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Why "A minor"?
November 2002
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A minor


Tuesday, December 31, 2002

Covenant Worldview Institute: Japan Report

Here's the Tokyo Smiths' missions report and Christmas letter.

jon :: link :: comment ::

Holiday Notes #4

This week Duane taught Auburn Avenue's Adult Sunday School class; he was finishing an introduction to the church calendar. It was great to finally meet him. He even brought Bailey's Playskool Darth Maul!

Worship at Auburn Avenue was better than ever. It's been over a year since my last visit, and they've tweaked the liturgy a bit. The Lord's supper was not at all tacked-on; it felt like and indeed was the climax of the service.

jon :: link :: comment ::

Holiday Notes #3

We just returned from a quick trip to visit Hollie's grandparents in Lafayette, LA. Ethan wasn't much for driving nearly 8 hours roundtrip, but otherwise we had a great time.

The main highlight for me was knocking around Lafayette yesterday afternoon with Hollie's grandfather, Francis Martin. We drove around downtown, where we visited the Cathedral of St John the Evangelist (RCC); then we had a delicious meal of shrimp and crawfish at Don's Seafood & Steakhouse, where we talked about the church and theology for hours.

jon :: link :: comment ::

Saturday, December 28, 2002


Watch out! The Rev Jeff Meyers has arrived in blogdom.

jon :: link :: comment ::

Thursday, December 26, 2002

Holiday Notes #2

Yesterday I finally read most of Dave Hegeman's Plowing in Hope (Canon Press, 1999). It was a perfect diversion for the hotel, plane, and airport. I thoroughly enjoyed it.

One of Hegeman's main themes is that the Bible begins in a garden and ends in a city, and that the goal of our culture-making is to work toward glorious garden-cities. Several times, I thought of this discussion (which all started with a Two Towers quote). I also kept thinking of Jim Jordan's work - from the garden-city motif to the priest-king-prophet pattern (which Hegeman just briefly mentions on pp 46-7). The book is subtitled Toward a Biblical Theology of Culture, and it is certainly that. Full of fruitful biblical theology, it includes several insightful Hebrew and Greek word studies.

I'm not sure I share Hegeman's eschatology down to the last detail, and I think I'd want to nuance his sabbatology, but on the whole I thought his book was wonderful.

jon :: link :: comment ::

Where have I heard this before?

I mentioned that Hollie gave me David Gray's A New Day at Midnight album. There's only one song on the album that I recognize, and for the life of me I can't remember where I heard it. It's not likely that I heard it on the radio; I'm thinking more along the lines of TV or maybe even a movie preview. I did a few Google searches and turned up nothing. Here are the lyrics to the first verse and chorus (via davidgray.com):


Take your eyes off me
There's nothing here to see
Just trying to keep my head together
And as we make our vow
Let us remember how
There's nothing good that lasts forever

Time out on the running boards
We're running
Through a world that lost its meaning
Trying to find a way to love
This running
Ain't no kind of freedom

Any ideas? (Of course, I don't believe the lyrics' pessimistic crap, but the song is musically lovely.)

jon :: link :: comment ::

Holiday Notes #1

Flying with a baby is the way to go: Three cheers for pre-boarding! Chicago Midway was a real drag, though - not the ideal place to spend Christmas afternoon. However, we finally made it to Monroe, and that's what counts. Ethan and his grandparents are already having a great time together. And Christmas dinner was delicious!

jon :: link :: comment ::

Monday, December 23, 2002

Travel & Gifts

Hollie's parents generously gave us plane tickets for Christmas. So tomorrow we fly from Spokane to Seattle, where we spend Christmas Eve and wake up the next morning to fly to the good ole South. I've never flown on Christmas day. I'm curious to see whether the airports are busy.

We've already exchanged gifts with one another and my parents. Hollie gave me David Gray's A New Day at Midnight album, a Roget's International Thesaurus, and three (yes, three) nice coats. My sister, Jordan, gave me The Big Lebowski video - a film that I count as one my three vices - and the Allman Brothers' Eat a Peach (because the last couple times I had this album, I loaned it out, never to see it again). Among the gifts from my parents were a Liddell & Scott Greek-English Lexicon, The Tolkien Reader, and a wool cardigan sweater-vest. (I've been known for wearing cardigans and sweater-vests; now I have the super-duper combo.) Oh! and my family gave Ethan the Playskool Star Wars X-Wing set with Luke, R2, and Vader, so now we're sure to win our epic space battle with Duane and Bailey!

Merry Christmas to all, and to all a good night!

jon :: link :: comment ::

Friday, December 20, 2002

More Photos Added

...in main, adventures, and Ethan albums - including a couple of Ethan as Elvis (Halloween/Reformation Day party in Monroe).

jon :: link :: comment ::

Path of Discovery

I recently had some really good interaction with a reader who used to be part of St Stephen's Church. At one point during our email conversation, I asked (out of curiosity) how he found my blog. Turns out, he occasionally reads Barlow Farms, and from there he sometimes checks out Duane's humor at amber Bach; my blog is just above Duane's in the alphabetical list of Sensus Plenior users at Barlow Farms, and so, blog surfing one day, this fellow added my blog to his diet of amber Bach...and voila!

jon :: link :: comment ::

Archive Trouble

I'm having trouble with my archives. Most of my archive links have disappeared, which isn't all that uncommon. I've republished all of them several times, switched from "No Archives" back to "Monthly," etc., and nothing seems to work. Most frustrating of all, the one archive link that does appear takes you to a page that looks like it hasn't been republished in weeks - it uses my old, pre-CSS template.

I assume it's a problem with Blogger. I hope they'll fix it.

Friday morning update: Well at least now I have no archives instead of one archive page that's screwy. Surely it's no coincidence that the URL for the unofficial Blogger FAQ blog is archives.blogspot.com.

Friday, near noon: Everything looks good now, but I'm not going to hold my breath.

jon :: link :: comment ::

Photo Album

I will be building a Yahoo! photo album over the next few days. Watch it grow. (I went ahead and added a link on the side, too.)

jon :: link :: comment ::

Wednesday, December 18, 2002


I just realized that I didn't have Chris Smith in my blog roll. How did that happen?!

For penance, I offer a link to this lineup, which contains a photo of the Reverend (aka Hambone).

jon :: link :: comment ::

Those Ballards!

Have you ever noticed that time seems to function differently in blogdom? For instance, sometimes bloggers seem to take ages between posts; other times, posts or comments are made as fast as IM chats. Here's another case in point.

A few days ago, I listed Besty as a person I'd like to see get a comment system. Now, not only does she have Sensus Plenior, her husband Daniel is blogging too!

We all met years ago at the ultimate Christian Reconstruction Movement student conference, the Life Preparation Conference in Atlanta. LPC was sponsored by American Vision during three summers in the early 90s. Featured speakers included Gary North, Greg Bahnsen, and Howard Phillips. (For those of you who know about the Christian Worldview Student Conference in Virginia, LPC was the precursor to CWSC.)

A few years later, I spent a wonderful summer around Daniel & Betsy (just before they were married) at Twin Lakes in Florence, MS, where Daniel was Camp Director at the time. After his time at Twin Lakes, Daniel served as the founding headmaster of a classical Christian school in Jackson, MS. Most recently, I saw the Ballards when they visited the Moscow-Pullman area to check out Washington State University's graduate program in agricultural science. However, before they could move to the Northwest, they were called to Desire Street Ministries in New Orleans, where they are currently working with Desire Street Academy.

And now they have arrived in blogdom in full force. Who knows where those Ballards will end up next?

jon :: link :: comment ::

Spokane and Speeder Bikes

We made a last-minute drive to Spokane this afternoon to do some Christmas shopping - so last-minute, in fact, that we didn't even get to hook up with Rick & Rachel. Although it's a 1.5- to 2-hour drive from Moscow, Spokane is the nearest place for any serious shopping. Ya gotta love the Inland Northwest!

One of our scores tonight was the Playskool Star Wars speeder bike set. I'm not sure who it's really for, though: Ethan, Hollie, or me! I guess we'll have to share.

jon :: link :: comment ::

Which Way Are You Goin'
by Jim Croce

Which way are you goin', which side will you be on
Will you stand and watch while all the seeds of hate are sown
Will you stand with those who say, let His will be done
One hand on the Bible
One hand on the gun
One hand on the Bible
One hand on the gun

Which way are you lookin', is it hard to see
Do you say what's wrong for him, is not wrong for me
You walk the streets of righteousness, but you refuse to understand
You say you love the baby
Then you crucify the man
You say you love the baby
Then you crucify the man

Everyday things are changin', words once honored turned to lies
There's people wonderin' - can you blame them
It's to far to run, and to late to hide

So now you turn your back on all the things that you used to preach
Now it's let him live in freedom if he lives like me
Well your light has changed, confusion rains, what have you become
All your olive branches turned to spears
When your flowers turned to guns
Your olive branches turned to spears
When your flowers turned to guns

Reconcile this with my gun post below, if you can...

jon :: link :: comment ::

Tuesday, December 17, 2002

Screwtape on Parochial vs Congregational

Surely you know that if a man can't be cured of churchgoing, the next best thing is to send him all over the neighbourhood looking for the church that "suits" him until he becomes a connoisseur of churches.

The reasons are obvious. In the first place the parochial organisation should always be attacked, because, being a unity of place and not of likings, it brings people of different classes and psychology together in the kind of unity the Enemy desires. The congregational principle, on the other hand, makes each church into a kind of club, and finally, if all goes well, into a coterie or faction.

- from Letter 16 of CS Lewis' Screwtape Letters

jon :: link :: comment ::

Monday, December 16, 2002

Another Blog Added

Bringing my roll to 55 blogs, here's Berek Qinah Smith. For the scoop on Berek's upcoming studies in Philadelphia, check out the delightful Garver Gazette, page 3.

jon :: link :: comment ::

Saturday, December 14, 2002

No More Target=_Blank

Okay, your comments convinced me. No more target=_blanks for this blog...except on my blog roll, which ain't changin'.

jon :: link :: comment ::

Friday, December 13, 2002

Valerie's "Which Blogger...?"
Since all the cool kids are doing it...
(Plural Answers Version)

1. Which blogger have you known longest online only?
I don't know. I met most online-only bloggers around the same time. It all started with real-life friends Tara and Rick; Tara sent my wife an email, and I followed her link to Rick's blog...

2. Which blogger have you known longest IRL?
Either Joseph Hogue or sisters Betsy Ballard and Emily Chapman. Then there's a tie between Josh McInnis, Tara, and Rick. If this sounds complicated, it's because I'm no good with time.

3. Which blogger have you spent the most time with IRL?
In terms of actual hours, I guess Betsy Ballard. Rick moved to Monroe as I was moving away; otherwise, I'm sure it would be him. Tim Gallant recently stayed at our place during the Christ Church Ministerial Conference, but I'm not sure that counts since our days were pretty full.

4. Which blogger would you most like to meet IRL (that you haven’t met IRL)?
Joel Garver, although I most look forward to meeting Duane & Sarah, Matt Colvin, Barb, John Butler, Emeth, and Tim Eaton over the next couple months (thanks to the Auburn Avenue Pastors Conference, the Credenda/Agenda History Conference, or, in the case of Tim, his move to Spokane).

5. Which blogger do you think has the best blog design?
Ann Barlow or Tim Eaton. Simplicity is genius.

6. Which blogger do you like most to argue with?
I'll say Josh Strodtbeck just for the heck of it.

7. Which blogger makes you laugh the most?
That's easy: Duane Garner!

8. Which blogger intimidates you the most?
None come to mind, although I'm tempted to envy folks who are especially adept in Greek, like Mike Stewart and Matt Colvin.

9. Which blogger do you most wish would post more often?
John Barach

10. Which blogger do you most wish would get a comment system?
It's a tie between Betsy Ballard and Christian Kim.

jon :: link :: comment ::

Since I'm a longtime gun nut...

Which Firearm are you?
brought to you by Stan Ryker

Not the finest submachine gun, but it's reliable, it's Israeli, and it was my favorite toy gun as a boy. I fired a real Uzi at around age 15, but, alas, I haven't had another opportunity since.

- via Jason Garrett

jon :: link :: comment ::

Wednesday, December 11, 2002

Blog Roll Additions and Target=_Blank

Two blogs added: P-Duggie's Hierogrammate and The Dane's Nowheresville.

I noticed that The Dane has strong feelings against the target=_blank command. Personally, I always open links in new windows, so I've been using the command here. What's your preference?

jon :: link :: comment ::

Monday, December 9, 2002

Wise Comments on Church Division

In a comment to Jessie's post on church division, John writes:

I don't think we'll ever reach the point where every Christian agrees on everything - at least, not until Christ returns.

Still, there are ways to disagree without breaking fellowship. When Paul stresses likemindedness, I don't think he's saying that all of us have to walk in lockstep at every point (same tastes in music, same interests in literature, same views on every social issue, same styles of clothing). Nor do doctrinal disagreements necessarily violate Paul's call to likemindedness.

Certainly in Philippians 2, the call to likemindedness comes in a context where Paul is calling the church to be united in living out Christ's mindset and having a life that matches her heavenly citizenship and that fits with the gospel she preaches.

And Christ's mindset is probably the key. Likemindedness flows from humble service to others, considering others more important than yourself. If the church would do that, it might give us a new perspective on a lot of our doctrinal difficulties and the patience to work through them together.

jon :: link :: comment ::

"What is Episcopalianism or Anglicanism?"

From St Stephen's Church in greater Jackson, MS: This brief statement on the history of the English church is helpful and interesting, especially in the way it deals head-on with the "historical error linking the origin of the Church in England to the lustful appetite of King Henry VIII and his desire for a divorce." For a more full statement, see this historical essay by the Rev Dr Scott de Hart, rector of St Stephen's.

Home to the Institute for the Study of Trinitarian Theology and formerly in the REC, St Stephen's recently affiliated with the Christian Episcopal Church's Anglican Fathers of the Corpus Christi, one of the many small bodies of continuing Anglicans.

Update: This post does not constitute an endorsement of St Stephen's teaching, which I haven't quite figured out yet.

jon :: link :: comment ::

Friday, December 6, 2002

Netscape Viewing Problems

Today I looked at my blog on two different computers using Netscape Communicator 4.7, and it wasn't quite right. Specifically, the gold text in the left column was neon green, the main posts after the first few were in smaller font, and hovered links didn't underline. Any ideas?

jon :: link :: comment ::

Thursday, December 5, 2002

"As iron sharpens iron..."

Mark and Matt are at it again, and, boy, aren't I glad. I love the second-hand benefits of iron sharpening iron.

jon :: link :: comment ::

Wednesday, December 4, 2002

Old Photos

Thanks to Land of Nod Tours' Tara, here are a few pictures of Hollie and one of us together at a Southern Heritage Society ball in Monroe (hence Hollie's antebellum dress). Our names are spelled wrong, but, hey, that's life being a Jon without an 'h' and an '-ie' Hollie!

One of these days I'll hook up our scanner and figure out how to post newer photos that include Ethan.

Update: The photo of Hollie and me together is at http://geocities.com/confusedtara/11.jpg. I cannot link the photo because Geocities, as a free service, prevents linking to individual pictures. If you simply enter the URL, however, it works fine.

jon :: link :: comment ::

Amazon Wish List

For the first time ever, I started an Amazon.com Wish List. My family kept asking me what I wanted for Christmas, so I thought this might help them. Check it out if you want to know what interests me.

jon :: link :: comment ::

Template Fellows

So far I have seen two blogs with which I share this tempate: Barb's Whilin' Away the Hours and the Atlas Society, which (though we seem to have some things in common) is of no affiliation with Atlas School.

jon :: link :: comment ::

Tuesday, December 3, 2002

Thanks, Valerie!

Thanks to the benevolence of Kyriosity's Valerie, my blog got a face-lift. Now I have a cool template with cascading style sheets!

jon :: link :: comment ::

Blog Roll and Archives

At long last, I added a blog roll. Please let me know if I neglected to add you, if I have your name wrong, etc.

Now if only I can figure out how to change the color of my archive links!

jon :: link :: comment ::

Sunday, December 1, 2002

Over the past few days, I...

  • learned that John Butler of okcalvin used to be an Army National Guard chaplain

  • went to Deacon Blues' birthday party

  • celebrated Thanksgiving with my family

  • watched Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets with the whole gang: my parents, sister, five brothers, Hollie & Ethan (his first movie in the theater)

  • hosted and caught up with our good old buddy, Matt Wilkins

  • witnessed the marriage of Remy & Bethany - a wonderful wedding

  • listened to Monster Ballads (thanks to my fun wife) and Simon & Garfunkel's Wednesday Morning, 3am

  • took bundles of orders for photo calendars at Kinko's

  • had an Advent dinner with some good friends in Potlatch

  • heard the Leadbelly instrumental on which Pearl Jam's "Yellow Ledbetter" was based

  • taped TLC's Trading Spaces for Hollie while she was asleep

  • played with HTML tags for lists

jon :: link :: comment ::

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