Tuesday, June 06, 2017

Walking in the "Son" Light

By Rick Blumenberg  @rickblumenberg
In addition to my blog, books, articles and Sunday School lessons I’ve written through the years, I’ve also written several dozen songs. Since I don’t read or write music, I have to depend on someone else to write the music for me and that’s not easy to do because everyone I know is as busy as I am. The result is that my music is only found in my head and only heard when I sing it as I drive down the highway or find myself doing something else that calls for a song to pass the time.
So I decided to share the lyrics of some of my songs on my blog from time to time. This one is called Walking In the “Son” light (of the Love of Jesus)  Since you can’t hear the music in my head, just pretend it’s a poem.
Verse 1
Sometimes days are dark and the clouds obscure the sun.
Troubles seem to pile up in my way.
But I won't be discouraged ‘cause I'm walking with the Son
And Jesus' love shines on me every day.
Jesus never leaves me so I know He's always there
Ever since I learned to walk by faith.
Walking with the Son, heaven is begun .
I'm walking in the "Son" light every day.
I’m walking in the Son light of the love of Jesus
Basking in the glory of His love!
I’m walking in the Son light of the love of Jesus
Shining down from somewhere up above.
Never have I ever known such marvelous radiance
It fills my life and sets my heart aglow—
I’m walking in the “Son” light of the love of Jesus
Glory how it thrills my soul!
Verse 2:
The master's yoke is easy and his burden is so light.
The enemy can't take my joy from me.
Satan was defeated long ago at Calvary
When Jesus gained eternal victory.
We've just got to tell the world of His all‑surpassing love.
It's warm and bright like sunlight in the spring.
Walking with the Son, Heaven is begun.
We’re walking in the “Son” light of the King!
Verse 3:
If your load is heavy and the road is all uphill
And all your skies are overcast and gray.
Remember Jesus loves you and you know he always will
He’ll walk with you if you'll walk in his way.
Weather makes no difference when he's walking by your side
His glory can break through on any day.
Walking with the Son, heaven is begun.
We’re walking in the "Son" light every day!
I’m Rick Blumenberg and that’s “My View from Tanner Creek”.

Friday, May 12, 2017

I Looked For Jesus

I woke early and went out in search of Jesus. I took the path that lay at my door and followed its winding way amid giant maples that grew on either side. I looked up into leafy branches and waded through lovely patches of wild flowers. I stopped briefly at a small brook that gurgled unheedingly on its way. I had heard that Jesus was there, but I looked and I could not find him. So I went on.
I walked through beautiful meadows of lush green, past vineyards and orchards and fields of ripe grain. And I came to a busy highway where I saw men speeding by in new automobiles, wearing fashionable shirts and handsome ties. I looked into their faces but they were bitter and anxious and hurried. So I went on.
I passed stately mansions with broad sweeping lawns, and dingy hovels with curtain-less win-dows and rickety steps. All the time I looked for Jesus, but no matter where I looked I did not see him. So I went on.
I chanced upon a beautiful temple, and seeing the grandeur of its stone and masonry I went into the coolness of its sanctuary. I looked up at polished arches gleaming in the shadowy heights and saw the sun spilling through awesome windows of richly stained glass. I looked up and I looked around and I looked to the windows. I looked for Jesus, but all was cold and lifeless and He was not there. So I went on.
I traveled through the busy streets of a towering city. And I became weary and thirsty, but the day was far spent and I had not seen Jesus, so I went on.
I followed a dusty road up into the mountains where I saw a spring of cool, clear water, gush¬ing from the mountainside. Beside it was a cup and I saw an old man sitting there. The old man took the cup and held it under the flow until it brimmed full and spilled over the side. Then he gave me that cup of cold water and he smiled. And there, in the simple kindness of a gentle stranger—I saw Jesus!
If you know the Lord Jesus Christ be sure the people around you can see him in you. They may have been looking for a very long time and although he is ever present and always reaching out to us, they may never see him anywhere else.
I’m Rick Blumenberg and that’s….“My View from Tanner Creek.”

Monday, April 24, 2017

Goodbye Winter. Hello Spring!

When I visit with friends and family from Southeast Missouri where I grew up, or with other "Southerners" who live in milder winters, they often ask, with some trepidation, about all the snow we get in Michigan. I then let them know that if you don't love, (or at least tolerate) snow you shouldn't live in Michigan.

The nice thing about my adopted Michigan home is that we have four marvelous seasons and each season is beautiful in its own right. The picture below is one of my favorite winter scenes. It is taken from a trail in Warren Dunes State park, which is only about a mile from our home on Tanner Creek. 

I took the picture a year or two ago as we were hiking up to a dune we call "High Point". I'm not sure if it has an actual name, but I thus named it and in our family when we say let's go to High Point we all know what it means.

We were about halfway up the trail to High Point and as usual I stopped for a moment at my favorite spot to look out over Lake Michigan. From this vantage point it is beautiful in every season. The ice mountains you see are from the waves washing up in the shallow water and freezing. When it is really cold the water quickly freezes and begins to pile up into ice mountains running up and down the beach. After a while, it becomes the way you see here and there is an awesome silence--no birds singing, no waves to be heard because the water is now frozen for about a quarter mile or more away from the shore. On a wind-still day the silence is beautiful and you feel like you're in another world. We don't make this hike often in winter because of the cold, but when we do it is always worth the effort.

This view isn't literally from Tanner Creek. Here, I am high above Tanner Creek and about a quarter-mile south. But it is my view and a favorite photograph from the many I've taken.

But this posting is really my "goodbye to Winter!" I'm ready for Spring. Recently I've seen Robin Redbreast, and I've heard the coo of turtle doves around our home.

As it is every year in the Springtime when I first hear the doves I am reminded of the Song of Solomon 2:12 and the words from the King James Version of the Bible float through my mind. "The flowers appear on the earth, the time of the singing of birds is come, and the voice of the turtle [dove] is heard in our land."

Goodbye beautiful Winter! Hello marvelous Springtime. Welcome to our wonderful world!

I'm Rick Blumenberg and that's "My View from Tanner Creek".

Sunday, April 16, 2017

He Wore the Crown well

A Tribute to Keith Gray
By Rick Blumenberg / @rickblumenberg
A good man died last week. Keith Gray’s death was a great loss to family and friends because he was a godly man who had blessed our lives with friendliness, kindness, a ready helping hand, and a quiet, but ready smile. Keith Gray was a perfect illustration of verse four of Psalm 103 which tells how God crowns his people with loving-kindness and compassion.
Carol and I became friends with Keith and Juanita Gray back in the 1960s when we were in the same Sunday School class at Alexandria (IN) Church of God. We were students at Anderson College and they were public school teachers. Their warm welcome to us made us feel at home and welcome. We didn’t know their children well and had no idea how closely our lives would be intertwined until their son Mike and our daughter Kathy met in college, fell in love, married, and gave us four awesome grandchildren that we shared with much mutual enjoyment.
Years ago a writer coined a phrase when he wrote about how most men live out their lives in quiet desperation. Keith was not that kind of man. In fact, a few years ago I wrote in my blog about the introverts among us who never want to be up front, never make much commotion, but serve quietly in the background living lives of quiet inspiration. Keith was that kind of man.
Because of his deep faith in God, when Keith was drafted into the Korean War he did not want to carry a gun and fight, but he wanted to do his part, so he served as a medic, risking his own life to save others who were wounded in battle. He returned home and became a teacher where he quietly taught young men in shop class how to work with their hands and support their families by making useful and beautiful things. At the same time he was molding their character by living out and modeling a life of quiet manliness, gentleness and encouragement.
Keith’s death was a great loss to those of us who loved him—especially his family. But he lived his life well as a devoted husband to Juanita, and a loving father, grandfather and great-grandfather. He was a well-known and beloved shop teacher in the Alexandria, Indiana school system. He was not an ostentatious man and would never willingly wear a crown (unless one of his grandchildren asked him to). He served God faithfully and lived a life of quiet inspiration—a life of service to God and mankind—crowned with loving-kindness and compassion.
The Psalmist also wrote “Precious in the sight of the Lord is the death of his saints” (115:15). To us it is a death, but to God it is a homecoming and the close of a successful life of service in a far country. It is something all God’s people should look forward to with anticipation. So, we’ll see you later Keith. And in the meantime, I know Juanita looks at this event from God’s point of view and I’m sure your arrival was a precious thing to her and she was there to give you a warm “Welcome home”!
I’m Rick Blumenberg and that’s “My View from Tanner Creek.”