The TRUE tall tale of the coming of Christ  

Posted by Rachel in ,

I want to take a minute to plug an amazing Christmas album. Have you heard of the Behold the Lamb of God (the TRUE tall tale of the coming of Christ) album? It's a collaboration album performed by Andrew Peterson and others. Andrew Peterson wrote it to tell the story of Christ in a new way. A few friends and I went to see the corresponding tour on Saturday night and I was blown away. First off, the talent involved in this 2008 tour (Peterson, Bebo Norman, Jill Phillips, some Caedmon's Call guys, Gabe Scott, etc.) was crazy good. But, as my roommate Crystal and I were discussing later, this show really put the story of Christmas foremost in my mind and I saw it in a totally new light. I was in tears at times, just thinking about my a baby...and how the whole of Scripture that is really about telling his story. Church Sunday morning was also about this idea. As a result, I've been reflecting a lot on the Christmas story this season. More than usual. So anyway, here's a run-down of the album, and you can see what I mean about how it really does tell the WHOLE story:

(1) Gather 'Round, Ye Children, Come - starts off the story

(2) Passover Us - talks of the Israelites in captivity and the establishment of the Passover in the days of Pharoah, along with the need in those days for sacrifices. "...and only sacrifice atoned for the sins of the land, so you see the priest he placed upon the holy altar, the body of a spotless lamb...Lord, let your judgement pass over us..."

(3) So Long, Moses - this song talks of the journey from Moses, to Joshua, to Saul, to David, to the prophets, and of how the people were constantly looking for "...a king on a throne, full of power, with a sword in his fist...will there ever be, ever be a king like this..." And yet, Isaiah prophecied something far different about our King. "He'll bear no beauty or glory, rejected, despised, a man of such sorrow, we'll cover our eyes."

(4) Deliver Us - this one talks of the constant need for deliverance and how animal sacrifices just couldn't cut it. "Our sins they are more numerous than all the lambs we slay, these shackles they were made with our own hands, our toil is our atonement and our freedom yours to give, so Yahweh, break your silence if you can."

(5) O Come, O Come Emmanuel - the classic song we all know and love, in an AMAZING arrangement by Gabe Scott I believe. Perfectly placed here after a song about the need for deliverance and before the chronology of Jesus' birth. We need you, Jesus. O Come, O Come...

(6) Matthew's Begats - you absolutely must listen to this fun song. I am amazed that someone could put the geneology of Jesus (you know, those things we all avoid reading through in Scripture) into song form, and actually make it fun and exciting. I love that Rahab, a prostitute, and Ruth, a Moabitess, are listed here. God really can use anyone to bring about his purposes.

(7) It Came to Pass - "So it came to pass that Joseph was the noblest of men, with a woman on a donkey on their way to Bethlehem. And I wonder whether either was aware enough that day, to know the child would bring a Kingdom and the old would come to pass away." As a result of this song, I've lately been struck by how truly NOBLE Joseph was. He could have walked away...but he didn't. He stood by Mary's side, in the midst of what I'm sure proved to be a very stressful time.

(8) Labor of Love - this song kills me everytime. SO POWERFUL! "But the baby in her womb, He was the maker of the moon, He was the Author of the faith...that could make the mountains move..."

(9) The Holly and the Ivy - Best. Arrangment. Ever. Definitely deserved a standing O in concert...or at least looooots of applause.

(10) While Shepherds Watched Their Flocks - the classic song... and of course, a GREAT arrangment. "Hallelujah, Hallelujah Hallelujah, Christ is born!"

(11) Behold the Lamb of God - After Christ comes... we finally have that Lamb that we've always needed...the one who takes away our sins. "Son of god-Emmanuel, Son of man-we need you, behold the Lamb, the hope of man, behold the Lamb of God"

(12) The Theme Of My Song/Reprise - powerful ending

So, in short...go listen to this album. It might change your life...just sayin'

Funniest moment of the weekend  

Posted by Rachel in

Last weekend was a good weekend: Avenue Q on Friday, catching up with Jaclyn finally, Christmas brunch at my place for 20 or so of my closest girlfriends on Saturday morning, delivering baked goods to the neighbors with Jillian and Crystal, and a good old fashioned sleepover with Tiffany and a couple of our 10th graders on Saturday night. But, the most hilarious moment was, by far, Sunday after church.

Right after I left church, I went to the gas station, as the gas light in my car had been on since the night before. I think I was running on fumes. So I stop in at the local Chevron, and fill ‘er up. As I’m pumping the gas, I notice the screen in front of me says that you get a free coffee or soda with 8 gallon purchase. If you know anything about me at all, you know that I LOVE a good deal. Did I need to free drink? Nope. Did I want to take full advantage of something free? ABSOLUTELY. So, though I had used the pay-at-the-pump option and had no need to venture inside, I went in for my free drink. I ask the man behind the counter about the deal and he directs me to pick any size fountain drink I want. After getting my drink, I turn around to leave. Now, remember, I just left church and am therefore in church clothes: an outfit including a skirt and boots. Just behind the drink area, there is a very slippery section of floor that I had somehow missed earlier. I was not so lucky the second time around. I begin to feel myself slipping, so I try to stop the process at a slight falter and not an all-out fall. Though it seemed to be in slow motion because of my efforts at stopping the fall, I was not successful. This was, in part, because the only thing near me that I might have been able to grab onto was a little free-standing metal “tree” holding every gummy snack you could imagine. Clearly, I knew that wasn’t going to provide me any stability, so I tried to avoid it. This attempt was also not successful. Are you getting the picture here? I finally collapsed to the floor (very gracefully, I might add… no skirt over the head or anything UTTERLY embarrassing), taking the stand of gummies with me. All of them. So, there I am, sitting on the floor in a heap, my drink, cell phone and wallet somehow unharmed, with a metal store fixture on top of me. The gummy worms, bears, etc. were scattered ALL OVER the floor around me. I couldn’t decide if I was embarrassed (unlikely, knowing my track record in situations like this) or if I just wanted to die laughing. But, since I was alone, I decided to make the quickest exit possible before either emotion took over. A nice man saw the whole thing (including my awkward struggle to keep from falling) and immediately came over to help and see if I was OK. He tried to pick up the metal thing and found that the leg had been bent and it would no longer stand up unaided. Oops. The foreign man behind the counter also came dashing around the corner to the sound of his store being destroyed and immediately began apologizing all over himself as I explained the slick floor and reason for my spill. I was, thankfully, able to point out to him the exact spot that was so slippery, and I was not mistaken. Something had been spilled. I tried to pick some of the scattered gummies and he told me not to worry about it. I wasn’t fighting with that and made a quick exit, leaving quite a mess behind me. Oops again. HAHAHAHAHA even as I’m typing this, I’m remembering just how freakin’ funny this whole thing was and how it MUST have looked. I called Bek immediately because I HAD to laugh about it with someone ( clearly, I made the decision not to be embarrassed but rather to see the complete hilarity of the situation), and soon we were both crying we were laughing so hard.

Someday, you should ask me all about some of my other clumsy moments. I have 23 years full of stories much like this one. In fact, I believe I once blogged about an experience while in Paris. Check it out here. I thought I had finally left that stigma behind me (or, as it would seem at times, passed it on to my sister), but clearly, I was mistaken.

Is anyone else a clutz? Got a clutzy moment to share? I love a good story…at least then I feel like I’m not the only one.

Mocha Club  

Posted by Rachel

I just wanted to share this video from an organization I care about and support: The Mocha Club. Also love the song "Shovel" by Katie Herzig.