1. He SAID transmission, but of course actually meant transition. As the saying goes, 'we live in an age of transfusion.'
2. And the brakes was to replace calipers, he SAID, but of course he meant capillaries. You know, like those things that turn into butterflies.
Seriously, the brake issue was because of the extreme differences in temperature through which I've driven: in mid-December, -18 Fahrenheit in Chicago; by the end of January, the upper 70s in Florida, by July 4, the upper 80s in the Dakotas, and before the end of summer, it’ll get a lot higher than that—I’ll be back in Texas and Louisiana.
Speaking of hot places: I asked a lady in the hotel lobby named Susan if her background is from the Philippines. She asked, 'Yes, how did you know that?' I said, 'I lived in the Philippines for three years.' I told her about living in Makati, playing on church-league basketball teams (basketball is not my favorite sport--baseball is--but since everyone played basketball in the Philippines, I was routed into basketball--the Filipinos shot MUCH better than I did--I had too little of an arc in my shots, but I was taller, so I played center, would grab rebounds, and hurl passes downcourt to the guards sprinting on the fast break. Had a great time. Center on the opposite team was Michael Hyde. Only problem was, I'd wilt in the tropical heat. Still do. I'd prefer cooler weather--the 50s and 60s are nice.\
The Philippine people are some of the happiest on earth because they are some of the friendliest on earth. And, in the church, 'international' churches in various nations are often powered by Philippine women who work as domestics in those nations, and who worship Jesus Christ freely and joyfully in their services. For instance, I heard Philippine women sing congregational and special songs in Athens, Greece, at a church pastored by Sim Strickland. That particular church also had a lot of Nigerian men working in the city.
I have many good memories from studying at Faith Academy in Manila.
More recently, I met two Filipino church executives--superintendent and assistant superintendent--who invited me to minister in their nation.
A Filipina friend met in Colorado Springs a lady who used to teach at Faith Academy. The Anglo lady is petite, bubbly, speak fluent Tagalog, lived in Manila for 28 years or longer. They met in a bank queue. The Anglo lady ‘kept looking at me, finally, she approached me speaking Tagalog. I had her over for Filipino food for dinner one night and reminisced her life in the Philippines.’
Mark Willhoite was in the school also, as was his little sister. Mark is an outstanding singer, and in the spring of 1976, the school was singing a bicentennial musical, but in the original musical, one of the songs was 'It's Time to Pray'. On the demo recording, it was sung in a country style. Dick Cadd, the choir director, asked me about my opinion because, although he liked the song, he intensely disliked country music. I replied that, whether he liked country music personally or not, it is one of America's music styles, and the musical had a variety of styles, so it made sense to have one country song in the mix. We all knew Mark Willhoite was the best country singer, but the song just got skipped entirely rather than having a country song in the program, only because the choir director didn't like that one genre of music, and it was a pity because 'It's Time to Pray' was the program's most Spiritual song in the sense of having the strongest lyric message. Later that same year or the next, I heard Jean Urshan sing it, proving you can sing the same song in a non-country way, and if Mr Cadd had valued the song sufficiently but still couldn't bring himself to overcome his dislike of country music, he had plenty of talented singers in the school who sing it in another style.
In February in Florida, I had a morning service in a church with decoration heavy on Valentine's Day theme, which makes sense: Valentinus was a bishop who secretly performed Christian weddings at a time when this was illegal in the Roman Empire. The first time he was caught by local authorities, he defended the faith and the local authority had an ill daughter. He said, 'If your faith is real, pray for my daughter.' Valentinus did, the daughter was healed, the local official came to Jesus Christ. The second time Valentinus was arrested, it was by the emperor's own forces. Valentinus responded to his arrest by asking the emperor to become a follower of Jesus Christ. The emperor was incensed--'you're trying to convert ME?'--and Valentinus was killed--on February 14.
Many readers who read Song of Songs in the Bible and see that it is so explicit feel uncomfortable about it and try to allegorize its message--'oh, it's about Christ and the Church' or 'It's about God and Israel'. While such would not be Solomon's intent at the time of writing, it's still true, of course, that a person under God's anointing could write prophetically with a second meaning beyond his/her own immediate ken. For instance, as Peter says on the Day of Pentecost, David was a prophet and, although David might cry out to God in the Psalms for help while Saul or Absalom was trying to kill him, he could under inspiration speak of something else much later to come about.
So, yes, Song of Songs can, as a secondary meaning, be an allegory or parable, but the first, immediate, direct reading should not be bypassed--this is a lyric love poem and an excellent example for solid romance and marriage--there is the courtship, the marriage and lovemaking in chapter 4, a later falling out, and then they get back together. In a nation like the USA with its 58% divorce rate, even if ALL we got from Song of Songs was solid, happy marriages, that would greatly benefit humanity.
And so I'm glad, glad, glad (as Pollyanna would say) they emphasize this holiday. Many of these holidays have Christian roots and reasons, and we need to be upfront about that. Valentinus is one of many Christian heroes.
Another Christian hero and major figure of a major festival is Santa Claus/ St Nicholas. The description of him as wearing a red suit comes from the 1800s poem 'A Visit from St Nicholas' by Clement Moore, but the name 'Santa Claus' is simply Dutch for 'Saint Nicholas', a bishop in the 400s. In imitation of the magi giving gifts at Jesus' birth, Nicholas gave gifts--particularly to poor girls who needed dowry money. Because he wanted to give anonymously, he'd hurl a bag of money through a window. A poor family would suddenly see a bad of money land in their house through an open window, look out and see no one. Eventually someone found out who was giving. Instead of whining about Santa Claus in Christmas, we need to start using him as one church did that I saw--they had a guy in a Santa Claus suit clapping his hands and leading the assembly in singing, 'Hark! the Herald Angels Sing' and 'O Come All You Faithful'. That was exactly right because that's what Bishop Nicholas would do if he were alive today--bring glory to Jesus Christ.
A friend comments, ‘I studied all that many years ago and came under the same conclusion. I couldn't have shared it as you have so I am sharing your well-informed Post. May Jesus use you to educate the body of Christ.’ Thank you.