To fortune man is just a pawn,
And till from earth he's dead and gone,
A happy life he hasn't led
For Dest'ny cares not where we tread
In life, she is a terrible judge.
If you're at peace she'll give a nudge
Then soon you're wealth she'll confiscate
And leave you poor to speculate
Why fate has been so cruel

Monday, July 30, 2007

VBS and Predestination

Ahem. My greatest apologies for not posting during the past week or so. Actually more like ten days or something. But last week, I was extraordinarily busy with VBS (I hope you know that that stands for vacation bible school, but if you don't... well, I just told you). So in '04 and '05, I was in the skit. Last year I was at summer school so I couldn't help out, but I sure made up for it this year.

This year, the theme for our VBS was what they called sonforce. Basically a secret agent thing. Now don't ask me why they did that, cause secret agents and espionage and God don't really seem to mix... at least to me they don't. But the kids ate it up. So every day during the opening session thingy, I would dress up in a trench coat and sunglasses (I felt pretty cool) and then did a little talk about the days lesson, and stuff of that sort. Then I had to rush up to the media balcony and start playing sound affects and media for the skit that came right after me. And when they were doing worship, I was working the slides for them. After that, I would head off to help with the second grade class (Which, truthfully, is one of the rowdiest crowds at VBS. Trust me, I would know). Now, also during the week, I was recruited to make a little documentary video thing for the church with my camcorder. Then again, on Thursday, I was part of a team that went around and pulled individual kids out of classes and talked one on one about salvation and such (which was pretty cool). So. All in all, I think this has been the busiest year for me in terms of VBS.

Now that I have gone on about absolutely nothing for a long while, I'll add something I've been thinking about lately. Predestination. Now, at least at this point, I would say I'm definitely free will. But it's all very confusing. Last Sunday, I stayed for the second service at church (incidentally, that was to help set up for VBS), and me and a friend did a little bible study/theological discussion (which we actually do quite often). We got to talking about free will, and he came up with a cool idea. Now I don't know if this is true or not, but I am under the impression that predestination people use Pharoh as an example of predestination. Maybe I'm wrong. So if God hardened Pharoh's heart, that means he changed something. That in turn means that Pharoh wasn't predestined. Because God changed something in reality (which he is obviously quite capable of doing) this seems to imply that the choice was originally up to Pharoh.

So here are some things I would say. I would say that God absolutely has the power to change things and predestine us. But I think he chooses not to. One argument I like to use is what I call the 'robot' argument. Our purpose in life is to glorify God, right? So how would you feel if you programmed a computer to worship you. That might be minorly pleasing... but think of how much more pleasing it would be if real people who had the choice to praise you praised you. Free will, at least to me, seems to just be logical. And not just using logic.

So the new testament is telling us to always be praying, and that prayer is a powerful tool, etc. etc. It has a lot to say about prayer. Now what is the purpose, I ask you, of prayer, if we're all predestined? I, at least, can't see any purpose in praying for something that's already been determined to happen or not happen.

If any of my arguments are stupid, or you have any points you would like to make, by all means post a reply.

Saturday, July 21, 2007


My newest song. It's kind of sad... but I have a half-excuse. Actually, most of the lyrics are from a poem a friend of mine wrote. The first verse and the chorus. It was weird, cause immediately after I read the poem... actually even while I was reading it for the first time, this tune popped into my head that fit the poem perfectly, so, I wrote this song. I actually like the music on this one. I think its up there with rain music wise. Here are the lyrics.

Verse 1:

I looked in her eyes
And saw fears
I looked in her heart
And saw tears
I heard her words
And felt the pain
I heard her cries
And saw the stain


There she stood alone
No one on her side
No one was her friend
So alone she died
No one held her up
No one found her name
When she cried for help
No one came

Verse 2:

Alone in the world
She stood on sand
Among waves of grief
Searching for land
She struggled
every day of life
Fought the urge
to end it with a knife


Verse 3:

On she stood through the
Stormy waves
Bonded to destiny
Like a slave
And Finally
The waves of strife
Relieved her
Of her broken life


And the link to youtube...

(coming soon)

Friday, July 20, 2007

Monks and Hermits

I don't really know what to write about... as usual. But I'm going to write a post and see what comes up.

Let's see. Ah. I've been thinking a lot about monks and hermits lately. I was talking to a friend of mine a couple days ago. I was telling him how I think I'd really love to be a hermit or monk (he said that he could see me doing that) but that I think God is calling me to something else. He burst out laughing, and I couldn't figure why. He said I was the only kid who dreams of becoming a hermit.

So I've been wondering... did God take delight in the middle ages monks? I mean these guys were some serious Christians. They were always reciting psalms... praying... they basically did everything for God and tried their best to be perfect. Now I got to thinking, the monks are kind of taking themselves completely out of the world. I mean they're basically saying the world is evil (which it is, but there's also hope) and then removing themselves. Now I thought we were supposed to minister to the world (which is what I think God is calling me to do... I don't know in what way). We aren't supposed to completely cut off all relations with the world, right? Well, when I think of monks, that's the picture that generally comes to mind.

Eventually, I came to the conclusion that monks actually didn't cut off all relations with the world. They prayed for the world. They helped people, cared for people, sheltered people, labored in community fields... so they weren't just these guys on top of a mountain with no human contact.

Now hermits... that's a different story. They were guys on tops of mountains with absolutely no human contact. So... I'm not sure about hermits. I mean it seems like how could these perfect guys (well... almost perfect) NOT be pleasing to God? I dunno. I'm still working on that one.

One thought I came up with is this; how many times does the bible tell us to minister to the world? And how many times does it spend telling us the rest of the way we are to behave? Aren't we to be constatntly praying, and not partaking in any of the worlds evil... um... products maybe? and memorizing the entire Bible... Everyone always stresses on ministering to other people, but it seems that the Bible emphasizes 'me' much more than 'them'.

Okay, okay, I know ministering to other people is a huge part of the Christian life, I'm just trying to make excuses for the hermits. Oh well.

Just a sidenote.... If anyone has any questions or (I don't know why these two always seem to go together... maybe they should like make a compound word out of them...) comments while reading any of my posts, I'd be more than happy to answer them. Just post a comment (and everyone knows blog writers love comments [er... at least this one does]).

Monday, July 16, 2007


My newest song... and as usual, please excuse my bad singing voice. At least I think my range is improving a little tiny bit, which is good. This song, at least in my opinion, has the best lyrics out of the bunch. But unfortuneatly, I can't say the same for the music. Rain is still probably my favorite in terms of music.

Here are the lyrics for this one. It took me so long to write this song. I struggled and struggled but I couldn't come up with any music or lyrics. But finally, I got mad at a certain circumstance. In a sudden spur of the moment, tried to do what I thought God would want me to do... which actually made me feel pretty good (I wonder why...). But then I suddenly wrote pretty much the entire song in one short sitting. Amazing what inspiration (or emotion) can do to one. Anyways. The lyrics.

Verse 1:

And here we are,
Stumbling in the lions den
Reveling in our pits of sin
Will we ever get out again

The Dark is close
Closing in around us now
Blotting out the light and good
We'd fight back if only help it would


You cleansed me
Of my sin
Died for me
You took it all away
Loved me
Cared for me
Cherished me
Though I stabbed you in the heart you loved

Verse 2:

The end is near
Everyone will soon be judged
On my cheek blows the cold breath
Of pain suffering and eternal death

The lies and deeds
Done in dark places unseen
Will soon be brought to light
Opened up shown off for public sight


You cleansed me
Of my sin
Died for me
You took it all away
Loved me
Cared for me
Cherished me
Though I stabbed you in the heart you loved


I am ugly but you loved me
I am wicked but you cared
I was scarred and so you healed me
Tried to mend my broken ways
I lashed out and tried to hurt you
You stood up and hugged me close

Verse 3

Now you Oh God
Are my light my strength my hope
In darkness no more I'll grope
Cause you sacrificed yourself for me


as usual, here's the link to the youtube video if you want...


Friday, July 6, 2007

Christian music

So what exactly makes Christian music Christian? Or, what should make Christian music Christian?

Well, generally, I believe people think of Christian music as music that sings about God (or something relating to God).

Okay, Okay, hold up here..... botheration.

I was originally going to write this post--or at least I started with the intention of writing it--about how Christian music doesn't necessarily have to be about God, i.e. praising him, singing about how he did something, etc. But now that I think about it... everything written by a Christian should have a premise that God exists. Obviously, because that is the truth, and like I said in my last post, all art should correspond to truth.

So... can we sing about anything besides God? The first question that probably comes to mind (I guess it shouldn't be the first one we think of but I'll explain that later) is, 'Is it sinful or bad to write about this?'. Take trees for example. Say you wanted to write a song about trees. Or Cheetos and Doritos. I dunno. At first glance, there seems to be nothing really 'immoral' about it. I mean... does there?

You could think about it like this though. Your writing a song about trees (or Cheetos and Doritos, take your pick), so basically, you're glorifying said thing. Glorifying said thing... starting to sound a bit like idolatry. The very reason we exist (I hope you already know this, but in case you don't...) is to glorify God. Now by writing a song about something other than God, doesn't it sort of seem like we're praising creation? Glorifying what God made, instead of the creator himself?

Just thought I'd put in a little disclaimer... I'm making up all of this as I go along so... I don't really hold an opinion at this point. Thought I'd let you know.

So. Idolatry. God. It seems to me that the safe way is to write songs of praise. That's the safe way. But there's also a good way to praise creation. Instead of glorifying it for what it is, glorfy God for making it. Or if you're writing a song about say... the evil of the world (now why does that sound familiar... heh. Maybe I'm just making excuses) then make sure that the song points up instead of down. Sorta like what I said in my last post. Instead of saying everyone's evil and the world is hopeless and we're all gonna die (which incedentally isn't true)--we should give everything we write an upbeat note. A note of the redemption offered through Jesus Christ.

So in the end, do all songs have to be about God? I guess I sort of made a loop, and came back to my 'no' answer. But it's not quite as strongly 'no' as I originally thought. We have to make sure that we still have the understanding that God exists, and that there's hope. Especially if we're writing about something not really relating to God (like Cheetos or Doritos).

Sidenote: if you're wondering why I kept mentioning Cheetos and Doritos, well, I really haven't any good reason to give you. I suppose I just am having sort of a cheesy craving at the moment....

Monday, July 2, 2007

The Modern Art Culture

Well. I said I'd post on something interesting. At the moment I'm at a loss for interesting things, so I'll just post on a verse. The verse is this, James 4:4, and my NASB reads:

You adulteresses, do you not know that friendship with the world is hostility toward God? Therefore whoever wishes to be a friend of the world makes himself an enemy of God.

Boy. That hits you hard doesn't it. By trying to be a friend to the world, you are making yourself an enemy to God. Powerful. I don't think I can really 'preach' on this, but I think you can probably see for yourself where that verse applies to you.

The book of James is sure packed with powerful stuff for such a short book. You should read through it sometime.

I'm reading this book called "It Was Good Making Art to the Glory of God". It's a bunch of collected essays on making art from a christian worldview. One of the big questions is what should our art be about, or what should it depict, etc. Basically, it should depict all things beautiful. If you think about it, mainstream art and media go for shock value. But when you see something shocking over and over again, you become desensetized. So to be shocked, the artist has to crank up the shock value another notch. The world's art arena has been cranked pretty high up there on the shock value. And that's not a good thing.

So to be a good artist, you have to shock people. Now that's all good and well (actually it's not, but I felt like saying that), but you can only get so shocking. And the things that shock people are a pretty bad lot. I mean come on, do you think extreme language, gorey grisly violence, graphic depictions of sex... do you think those are glorifying to God? Fine. Maybe you do. but I don't.

So now the question becomes what should we depict in our art? The first thing that comes to mind is beauty. The problem is, when I say beauty, roses, happy smiling people, children playing merrily, a pretty sunset... these are the things that come to mind. Now I think we should focus more on beauty as opposed to chaos, unorderliness, revolting things etc, but we can't just focus on the beautiful, because we live in a fallen world. We live in a world where evil is rampant, so it looks corney and false and goody-goody when people depict a perfect world in their art (By the word 'art' here I don't just mean paintings... I mean music, literature... the creative arts in general).

To make art that resonates and gives the consumer a sense of beauty, you have to depict truth. You have to depict the world as it is. But there's a fine line here, because some people will say there's no hope and everyone's evil and we're all gonna die (unfortuneatly I think I kind of conveyed that in my song Dark Illusions... I rather regret that now. But look on the bright side, the music's cool [if a bit repetetive]). This is not I repeat not conveying the truth. Yes there is sin, and yes we're all evil, but there's an overlying sense of hope and redemption to creation. God is loving, kind, and merciful.

Sunday, July 1, 2007

Nothing Important

Well well well, I haven't posted in quite a while. You might think it's because I'm lazy, but actually I was in California on vacation (Okay, fine, I'm lazy anyways, but still...). For the first week and a half we visited family (we also went to Disney Land). The next week I went to a Christian retreat called Mount Hermon for a week. When we (me and my family) lived in California about 8 years ago, we would go up to this retreat every year. But this time around, I attended the senior high camp, which included grades 10-12. I was by myself for an entire week in a place I'd never been, and not a familiar soul within miles. It was great. I wasn't expecting it, but it was actually a really spiritually building experience. One of the speakers was amazing. Pastor by the name of Dave Jung. He did all his messages on the armor of God (mentioned in the last chapter of Ephesians). I will have to talk a bit about that sometime, but I'm to tired at this point. We arrived at our house in Connecticut around 7ish today. Boy it's great to be home.

One day when I was at my cousins house, I was tinkering around on the piano, and of a sudden, out of absolutely nowhere, I wrote a song. Eh, I guess I tend to do that all the time, but I recorded it today. Just finished uploading it to youtube a minute ago. So you can check that out at the bottom of the post (I don't know how long I'm going to be rambling on for).

Hum. Do I have anything else important to say?

Nope. So. I shall tell you about something interesting tommorow.