Thursday, June 23, 2011

Weary legs and Beauty...

It had been a long wonderful day; lots of work with the satisfaction that you knew you were participating in something larger than yourself. Nevertheless, the weight of the First Father’s curse prevailed as it does on most days and our legs felt the weariness of suburban life, unused to the city. To reduce the burden, we spent a few hours on our friend’s deck sipping at two bottles of wine I had purchased at a local shop. It was nice to find some invigorating moments with good friend over drinks. It’s these times that make you look forward to the Great City when they become perpetual.

I told Sarah that I wanted to transfer to the next train even though it was one stop. As I was telling her that my shins were developing splints, we ran into a crowd coming down the transfer ramp having just disembarked from the previous train – one we would have liked to have boarded. Disappointed, we trudged our way to the platform. “10 minutes” flashed as an indicator of the next train and I began to regret the choice of taking the transfer. I knew we could probably walk the distance in the same amount of time but was too tired to even make that decision. Thankfully there was a bench with two seats, as we sat, we took a breath and settled in to wait the eternal “10 minutes” – at least my shins could rest.

Then, from across the tracks we heard the familiar sound of one of the many street performers in the City. It was unusual in that it was almost midnight, but we were thankful to hear the plucking of a classical guitar. The sounds grew more satisfying when the flautist joined in. “Where is that water?” Sarah asked. I hadn’t noticed the sound until that moment, but the normal sound of liquid draining somewhere through the complex pipe system of the City was evident. “I don’t know?” I replied. The guitar, flute, and sound of running water could well have been replicated in any rural scene where a creek is full of life. But here we were resting our weary legs ten feet underground waiting for the next train. It was worth missing the previous train, and making an attempt at a one stop transfer.


Kirk and Sarah

Monday, June 20, 2011

A friend's project...Dickens...

John Hendrix's upstairs studio

This past March I had the privilege to go to a conference in St. Louis that was about the Church and the Arts. My friends John and Andrea Hendrix were gracious enough to take this poor traveler in for almost a week. I was able to spend considerable time with them all including going to see where John works as an illustration professor on the campus of Washington University, and partake of some ice cream at a favored Hendrix spot after bowling...I lost both rounds.

John hard at work on a "Charles Dickens" illustration

Andrea had story time with Jack and Annie (apparently Annie needed help smiling)

The whole St Louis Hendrix crew

I was also able to observe my friend's work habits as an illustrator. I slept on the futon upstairs next to John's studio. One of the projects John was working on was illustrations for a children's book on Charles Dickens. He recently posted on this project (click here for the site) saying it was ready for publishing. I thought I would share his site with you and also a few of my own pics of my time with the Hendrixes.

Kirk and Sarah

Thursday, June 16, 2011

On our way...

Smokey downtown Jacksonville, Florida

By the time you read this we will be in New York City for our summer project. We spent the last few days traveling up to Maryland where my (Kirk's) parents live. We traveled through wildfire zones (Jacksonville, Florida - the pic of the city skyline is Jacksonville, that's not fog, but smoke) stopped over night in Charlotte, NC with Scott and Audrey (thanks you two). We then drove through the Shenandoah Valley in Virginia (I was reminded of my Civil War history and "Stonewall" Jackson) before arriving today in Elkton, MD. It was two long days and I am quite tired - I hope I recover enough for the project.

I-81 in the Shenandoah Valley

Tomorrow we are taking the train into the Big Apple where we will begin the project for the staff - the students arrive on Monday. Sarah will be making furious preparations for the art work to be done and I will be doing more prep for the teaching times. Please pray that we focus and are able to get work done.

little white church on the way

We will be sending out a "funds update" (probably something referring to "pie") soon, but in the meantime ask that you continue to pray for God's provision for our summer.

Thanks for your continued prayers!
Kirk and Sarah

Thursday, June 9, 2011

In my reading...

I've really come to enjoy reading the theology of Herman Bavinck (more on him click here). I came across this passage in my reading as I prepare for teaching college students this summer about the importance of the arts to the mission of God.
In no way should the Christian faith be represented as otherworldly or anti-creation. Rather, grace and nature are united in the Christian faith, and general revelation links the kingdom of heaven and the kingdom of earth - it joins creation and redemption together in one great eschatological cantata of praise. Grace restores nature, a religious life is woven into the very fabric of ordinary human experience. Finally, God is one and the same loving God in creation and redemption; grace restores nature.
This comes from his Reformed Dogmatics, volume I, Prolegomena. His entire dogmatics have recently been published by Baker Academic. I commend all four volumes to you. I only say that to you all because my wife also has come to like Bavinck. In a recent paper I did quoting him often she said, "I really like this Bavinck guy!". And we all know her opinion is much more important than mine could ever be.

Kirk and Sarah

Monday, June 6, 2011

More info please...

I looked at the date of our last blog post and realized I hadn't done anything in 4 months. That is waaaaaaay too long.

Seminary is a bit to blame for that as I had four papers to do for my four classes. that isn't all that big a deal for a Master's level program EXCEPT that the topics of the papers were all ones related to the arts, and of very high interest for me. I finished them, some better than others, but I am satisfied to know I will be returning to those same topics again in the course of my career.

This summer Sarah and I will be on the road for two months, spending three weeks in NYC, 10 days in Colorado, and a week of vacation in the Outer Banks with family. Squeezed in between will be travel and seeing family and friends - some we haven't seen in quite a long time. (If you are interested in helping out with the ministry expenses of the summer - which we would be most grateful - go to

This summer marks the start of what we are trusting is our permanent return to NYC. It is our hope that we will be moving to (or very close to it!) The Big Apple by September 2012. The thought of getting back to the City excites me to no end. We are grateful for your continued prayers and support.

Kirk and Sarah