Saturday, February 28, 2004


“Life is a journey”, such has been said by some in times belonging to the more or less distant past. A continual path they say; this dusty road of life.
Through the relentless progression of history and lives lived there has coursed a constant stream of humanity across the undulating sands of this our existence. Wars have been waged, peace has been garnered, wounds have been inflicted, and healing has been ministered, for nations yes, but for individuals more. Men wish for purpose, while some find more than any could hope for. They desire hope, while some discover the essence thereof. They long for love, while some live its very definition. Ages pass as many hazard a guess at this mysterious idea… the “purpose of life”.
A baby is born, parents rejoice in the pure newness of existence… rich possibility in a new life; bright promises for a new future; consciousness of a cause greater than their own subsistence. A baby grows to a child, a family watches his growth; fosters his development; dreams of his future. Why? When the slate of life is clean, before any pages of the book are written, before the first stanza of this poem is composed… the cause exists… every human knows it. Why?
If life is a journey, where is the destination? If existence is a road, where is its end? If thought is a ferry, where lays the shore? If time is a foretaste, what is to come?
There exists a sacred sort of hope, a blessed sort of expectancy, a beautiful sort of contentment… reflected as a shadow in all who live, born in the heart of all who find the source.
The landscape has changed, the topography evolving with time, the old cast has gone on, the players in this great game constantly being replaced. The circumstances are shifting, much is different; nothing remains untouched. Yet there remains a marvelous order, a beautiful continuum, an everlasting testament, a constant display, a repeated newness, a genuine support… “Grace for today and bright hope for tomorrow… Great is thy faithfulness”.
Tis a grand sort of poetry.

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Tuesday, February 24, 2004

Content. Full. Relaxed. Happy. I'm trying to think of more descriptors of the way I feel at the moment... I'm coming up short. I just got back from a quick trip with some friends to a restaurant in Des Moines- the Big Steer, as it was called, was excellent. There are few food items I can speak of more fondly than a truly exceptional steak. My ribeye was quite satisfactory. :^).

You may think it strange that I'm talking about beef this way- but you have to realize that I've been eating my own cooking for the last looong while. Now I should note that I'm reputed to be an excellent cook- and I do think that I do a good job when necessary... But there seems to be a strange phenomenon associated with my "bachlorhood"- my culinary drive just doesn't drive. It doesn't seem to matter how many people are eating my cooking (though I do enjoy serving a crowd), even when there's just another person and myself I can feel my creative juices moving.

I think I need a room mate... living alone is for the birds.

In case you haven't noticed- this is the first time I've posted here in quite a while. I suppose I could plead my case on the grounds that I've been incredibly busy for the past several weeks with my first round of exams (histophysiology, neurobiology, veterinary immunology, and comparative (gross) anatomy to be more specific), but I won't. I just haven't felt particularly philosophical or clever as of late. I think I need more sleep. Why is this feeling so familiar... (you'd think I'd have learned my lesson last semester).
I enjoyed a quick trip home this past weekend- turns out I and the friends I traveled with left just in time; another person from our class apparently left about an hour after we did and had to turn around at the Iowa/Minnesota border due to nasty roads and weather. Praise the Lord for His guiding hand.
Oh well... I think thats enough for now. I'm going to take my own advice and go to bed :^). Grace and peace,
Ben Oh yes... here's a picture I took of Charlie... for your viewing pleasure (isn't he just so cute? ;^) lol ).

same as before... all rights reserved

Saturday, February 07, 2004

Saturdays. Warm beds, heavy feather comforters, no alarm clocks, late risings, soft fluffy slippers, hot tea brewing, fresh sausage and eggs sizzling, quiet breakfasting, pleasant scripture readings, lazy afternoons with nothing but nothing to do, crisp crunching and deep breathing of long afternoon walks in the newfallen snow, quiet evenings reading... Saturday.

I had a lovely day... as per my ramblings, I and Charlie the Basset Hound slept late. I did some light school work in the morning and since my wander lust was rising I bundled Charlie and I into the caravan and departed countryward. We drove for about a half hour- just enjoying the absence of city; the feel of the gravel under my wheels, the open expanse of field in every direction, the glorious shimmering of the sun on the fresh snow, the fluttering of gold and brown as a flock of pheasants were surprised and rousted by our passage, the friendly unhurried wave of a farmer checking his mail as we pass. I remembered my camera in it's snug compartment of my thick air force coat, and decided to stop a few places on our route and capture some of the peaceful solitude of the day. You may enjoy some of the fruits of this venture below. I made roasted Greek chicken with angry baby portabellas with hot buttered garlic asparagus on the side for my dinner... seems rather pitiful to be cooking for myself... I usually don't go to such lengths... it just isn't as fun when there is no one to share it with. I'm in a bit of a contemplative mood tonight- sitting here typing as a candle flickers with a warm sort of glow beside my stack of papers and mail needing attention at some point or another. God is so good to me, so ready to bless, so constant in love, so generous in grace... it seems to me to be almost too good to be true- that a God of such power should care for such as I.

Even when it seems my work is in vain and my life is without influence, I am reminded that mine is not to ask why, but to trust and obey... there are good days ahead.
Grace and peace my friends.

As usual, all of this stuff belongs to me, if you'd like to use any of it- let me know

Wednesday, February 04, 2004

Heh heh heh.... just figured out how to post pictures correctly. ;^). Simple man... simple pleasures (rofl). ~Ben
I decided tonight that it had been altogether too long since I had updated my readership (I know you're out there because the counter keeps going up- are you all just shy? ;^) ). I've been incredibly busy since I last had time to post, mostly preparing for my first exam of the semester, which occured yesterday afternoon covering the rather broad subject of comparative anatomy. This has been an interesting semester for me thus far- many new experiences. I can say though that I've enjoyed the experiences I've had this semester more than I did at this point last fall. I think the reasons for this are multifaceted- in the first place, last fall I did not have the foggiest idea of what being a veterinary student was like- I didn't know how the classes would be, where the rooms were in the school (our school is notoriously difficult to navigate for newcomers), where I would fit in relative to the other students, etc etc etc. I had only just been introduced to the idea of owning a place of abode a few months earlier, I think I'm only just getting used to the concept now. Anyway, I can say with absolute certainty that my stress level was much higher then than now. This past year has been difficult for me in many ways- to a very real extent I've felt like I've aged more in the last year than I have in the last four combined. A huge factor in this was the fact that I no longer am able to go home every weekend- now granted during my undergrad years I worked every weekend and so didn't really spend very much time at home, I still had the weekly contact, not to mention the ability to participate in our home church meetings. Leaving all this was very hard for me at first- I still don't enjoy the separation, but if there's one thing this past year has forced me to do, it's to become closer to the Lord. I do appreciate this. It's interesting to notice that sometimes God can use physical change to be just the catalyst needed for spiritual change... I know this has been the case in my life. While the experience of having to leave the familier and head into the unknown alone is, at least for me, unpleasant, very uncomfortable, and downright scary at times, I've realized that the greater good that God can bring through these changes is bounded only by my willingness to learn what He has to teach me. How great is His faithfulness.

I spent most of the afternoon today freezing my nose off at my sheep rotation for my clinical foundations course- it was fun getting to be back in the country for a while, but boy was it difficult standing around discussing sheep medicine and production... my feet were fast becoming amnestic concerning feeling. It felt good when we were able to do more physical activity while performing exams and such. Oh the joys of living in the south (wink wink... lopsided grin... etc.).
Enough for tonight... it's off to bed for me. ~Ben