Simply Voices

CongregationalSingingThere’s nothing so wonderful to me as standing in a congregation with good singing. I love organ and brass accompaniment, but when a congregation sings acapella, breaking off into four parts, it can be a foretaste of heaven’s music.

Late one night I discovered a YouTube channel that is produced by the Church of Christ denomination. One of their distinctives is acapella singing in parts.  On this video channel I discovered old gospel songs I hadn’t heard since childhood. If you’d like to sing along, they often sing all the verses as well, which is great. So often in (the few) churches that still sing these, they skip verses. So here you are at this link for those who like the simplicity and beauty of the human voice without other instrumentation. I hope the songs are a blessing to you.

Here’s one of my favorites.


Will’s Home – Just in Time for Mother’s Day!

Will’s back home from his first year at college. He had a wonderful year at Wheaton College Conservatory and made the Dean’s List. We are thrilled to have him home again, but he’s working hard this summer with a landscape company, so we’ll catch him when we can.  Here’s Will playing Toccata Festiva by Purvis which expresses the feeling of having our son home again. Happy Mother’s Day to all the mothers out there.

A Simple, Golden Act

It’s a comforting thing to have a strong hand take your weak one, to feel patience coming from your helper instead of irritation. It’s wonderful to not be afraid, and to have a heavy burden lifted and carried for you by strong arms. To the frail elderly in this world gone mad, someone to look out for you on the street and even take the time to chat a bit must be a blessing.

This story attached here went viral this week. The fact that it was so unusual that it made news shows how far down we have come as a society. But when goodness does make news, it’s worth sharing. Too often headlines about the elderly are bad news stories where they are preyed upon, abused, neglected and abandoned. But not this time.  A simple act, based on the Golden Rule of treating others as we want to be treated, made a headline. Blessings on this young man who did what was honorable.

“…there’s nothing so kingly as kindnesss…”

from Nobility, by Alice Cary


Happy Birthday, Russ!

A big Happy Birthday to our dear brother-in-law, Russ Turner! His daughter, Rachel, summed it up this way in a post.

Dad – You are my rock and the man I look up to. You hold a very special place in my heart – one which nobody else could ever fill. The amount of pride I feel when I tell people about my papa is simply inexpressible. You are an earthly representation of how the Lord loves and cares for His children. Thank you for your seemingly endless love. Happy birthday, pops. XO

We all love and admire you, Russ Turner. God bless you and your family always.


Sunday Music Break!

Of all the singing voices in the world, this is the one I love the most. His voice was always filled with so much love and kindness. He has some great advice in this song.


Cosmo is a Porno Rag We Can’t Avoid

cosmoI snapped this photo of Emmy a while back while we were waiting in line to buy groceries at Pick ‘n Save, our local food store. After reading this piece from Newsbusters today, I was reminded of what we have slowly grown accustomed to, and it is sad. Playboy isn’t at most checkouts where children stand with their parents.  Cosmo’s endless flaunting of tawdry sex is literally placed at eye level for a child.  Our daughter can now read whatever they want to put in her face. No amount of protesting can outdo the profits from selling this swill. It’s the sum and substance of American popular culture, and it makes me sick.

Comments under the article on social media were typical. Howls about censorship. “Don’t like it? Don’t buy it.”  These low-brow commenters are unable to think past their own genitalia. I have news for them. No, I don’t like it, I don’t buy it, but you have no right to force feed sex to my little daughter. It’s a form of sexual assault.  So get out of her face with it, store managers. Get it out of the faces of all the children out there who didn’t ask to look at this and who don’t need lewdness shoved down their throats.

When parents keep ant poison out of reach of children, we censor our household products for safety. That’s what parents do–protect our children. America would be filled with screams of horror if toxic waste would pour from our faucets. A just cause indeed! Storm city hall. Do whatever is necessary to stop the poison in our kitchens. But Americans do nothing anymore  when the innocence and morals of children are poisoned by porno rags like Cosmo at the grocery store.  Moral toxic waste matters not at all. Don’t like it? Don’t buy it. Who cares what children have to see. It’s too much to ask that adults get Cosmo over in the magazine section on a top rack. It’s all about meeeeeee…

That was my rant for the day, not usually put on the Hope Blog, but some things are worth saying. Loudly. Even if nobody is listening. I object. It’s wrong. It’s shameful, and the shame of Cosmopolitan magazine and store customers who think it’s fine is well-earned.

He is Risen!

Ye sons and daughters of the Lord,
the King of glory, King adored,
this day Himself from death restored.

When Thomas saw that wounded side,
the truth no longer he denied;
“Thou art my Lord and God!” he cried.

Oh, blest are they who have not seen
their Lord and yet believe in Him!
eternal life awaiteth them.

Now let us praise the Lord most high,
and strive His name to magnify
on this great day, through earth and sky: