Dream: Zomb Vator

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We finally fight our way to Central Building
This 33-story skyscraper is the heart of the infestation
There’s plenty of zombies elsewhere
But if we can destroy this nest
It will be easy to mop up the rest

I am confident we will succeed
Now that we know where the enemy is
And have made it past her defenses
We have just enough forces left
To contain her
So we can methodically destroy her

We don’t know long or costly it will be
But the outcome is no longer in doubt

I’m waiting on the lobby for an elevator
I’m one of the last to arrive
I see Joe and Bill get out of an elevator and hurry toward the door
Escorting a terrified woman

I’m glad they’re still finding some survivors

I get into the elevator they just vacated and head towards the top
For some reason the car stops at six
The doors open
I push the button to close them
despite knowing they’re usually a placebo

I glance outside.
Before the doors close
I see Joe and Bill hurrying into another elevator
With a different terrified woman.

I takes me a few seconds
To process what I just saw
Joe and Bill can’t have gotten back to the sixth floor
Before I did
Therefore, that is not really them.

The hive brain must have captured and cloned them
The women must be the carriers of the nest’s core memories and DNA
She is using my friends to propagate herself
Before we kill her

This… is bad

If we don’t stop her in time
She could establish herself in a new location
Wait decades to build her strength
Then launch another invasion
When we least expect it

In fact
She may already have reached
Critical mass
Somewhere else
Though I could probably find it
By following Joe and Bill

There is some good news
This is an act of desperation
And while her brain is split between locations like this
Her attention will be distracted

By that same token
She doesn’t like multiple locations
In theory she could split herself up into three or more pieces
But none of those would have enough critical mass to be “her. “

And she would never go for that
The whole point of her existence
Being to propagate her sense of self
By enslaving others.

She has no higher purpose
Transcendent calling
That she would sacrifice herself for

That is the one advantage
We have
Over her

I punch a button on the elevator
To stop the car at the next floor
Pull out my knife
And get ready
To join the fight…

Redeeming Ares, Part 10: House of Mouse

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Continued from Part 9

Prologue

I release the hand of Hermes and look around.

He has returned me from the Well of Souls to the Temple of Apollo, where my Quest began.
Apollo had demanded an offering, which turned out to be my Pride.
Eventually I turned it over to Zeus, who —
instead of destroying my Pride — reformed it into a Key.
This opened the door to a confrontation with Satan, from which I escaped bearing…

“A mouse!”

Apollo Smintheus

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Redeeming Aphrodite: Healing Hephaestus (Part 4)

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Continued from Part 3

Prologue

The arrow penetrates my heart.
I feel horror, but no pain.
I black out.

Hephaestus

A man wearing a toga and a sweatband stands over me.

H. How are you feeling?
E. Um, not bad for having an arrow in my chest. Can you give me a hand with that?
H. Hmm, I can probably cut off the end of the arrow. And rig up a brace to hold your cracked ribs together enough for you to breathe. That should keep you going.
E. Wait, aren’t you the god of healing?

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Mrs. Charming’s Castle, Act I

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Dedicated to our wives, and The Church.

Act 1:  The War

Scene 1: The Gnomes

The gnomes invaded the continent almost exactly one year after Prince Kit Charming married Cinderella, now known as Princess Ella.

“My son,” said the King. “While I gladly gave you a year to enjoy life with your beautiful bride, It is now time for you to take on the duties of royalty.”

Oh no, thought Ella.  Will he send Kit away to the war?

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LEAD! C.5 Studying Scripture

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boIn Which Diligently Searching God’s Word Leads Us to Truth

Few disciplines are as essential — or as dangerous! — as studying the words and works of God. Used in the wrong spirit, theology can become a heavy burden or a useless distraction (cf. Matthew 23:4). But when taught by the Holy Spirit, God’s word becomes the very source of life itself (cf. Luke 4:4). The challenge to us, as to Timothy, is whether we will apply God’s word rightly

Memory Verse: “Be diligent to present yourself approved to God, a worker who does not need to be ashamed, rightly dividing the word of truth.”2 Timothy 2:15 (NKJV)

Assigned Reading
  1. Richard Foster: Celebration of Discipline

    • 5. Study
  2. Donald Whitney: Spiritual Disciplines for the Christian Life

    • 2. Bible Intake (Part I)
  3. Eugene Peterson: A Long Obedience in the Same Direction

    • 6. Help: “Oh, Blessed Be God! He Didn’t Go Off & Leave Us!”
  4. Ruth Haley Barton: Sacred Rhythms

    • 3. Scripture: Encountering God Through Lectio Divina

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LEAD! B.10 From Lust to Purity

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In Which Our Desires Are Tamed As Our Hearts Are Purified

“Blessed are the pure in heart, for they shall see God.” — Matthew 5:8

Though sometimes a synonym for sexual desire, or conversely any kind of consuming passion, we will define lust as the idolatrous pursuit of sexual/romantic excitement or fulfillment. In other words, trusting “eros” instead of God to validate who we are (our “name”).

Though far from the deadliest sin, lust is certainly one of the most popular, and (except for pride) the most difficult to defend against — especially, though not only, for men.

The opposite state from lust is purity, having a heart wholly focused on God. The pure heart is one that recognizes we can only find true wholeness by submitting to God’s name — which is essential if we are ever to see His face.

Assigned Reading
  1. Peter Kreeft: Back to Virtue

    • 12. Pure of Heart vs. Lustful of Heart
  2. Dick Hockett: Foundations of Wisdom
    • 3.7 (Wise) Example: Proverbs about the Tongue

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The Quest, Part II: Dragon and Princess

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Start with Part I.

8:00 AM, Saturday, April 15th, 2006

The Castle

I am a young man, now, perhaps 13 or so. The old man has long since passed away — or perhaps just disappeared. It does not matter. I was not emotionally attached to him. I am not emotionally attached to anyone. I am attached to my studies.

I had been gradually taking on more and more of the simple chores needed to keep up the castle, so his departure was not a radical shift. We never really talked or socialized, though he would teach and quiz me as needed. Which was not very much, since I soon learned to read and taught myself from his library. My horse — the only other living thing in the castle — had soon grown bored and wandered off. I felt a brief pang at the time, but since I was already too busy for him it didn’t really seem to matter. Did it? As usual, I just returned to my studies and moved on.

Alone in my castle, with few distractions and no visitors, life was placid, but never boring. I took joy in the simple tasks of self-sufficiency, conjuring food, mastering new ideas, maintaining order in the castle so it wouldn’t get it my way. There are no wild plants or dust to disturb my tranquillity, just a few herbs in a box for my research. The armor of my childhood still lay in my room, and I would polish it and magically stretch it to keep it in my size and in good condition — for I was well brought up — but I never needed it, since I never went out, and nobody ever came.

Which is why the knock on my chamber door is so startling. I am not scared, exactly — what need I fear? — but sufficiently surprised that I spill ink over the parchment I’m annotating. Actually, so surprised I don’t even mind my clumsiness, but — without thinking — get up and answer the door. For I was brought up well.

I open it, and there stands a well-built, bearded man in his early thirties. I’ve never seen him before, but he looks at me with a smile of recognition.

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