I will exalt you, O LORD, for you lifted me out of the depths and did not let my enemies gloat over me. O LORD my God, I called to you for help and you healed me. O LORD, you brought me up from the grave; you spared me from going down into the pit. Sing to the LORD, you saints of his; praise his holy name. For his anger lasts only a moment, but his favor lasts a lifetime; weeping may remain for a night, but rejoicing comes in the morning. When I felt secure, I said, "I will never be shaken." O LORD, when you favored me, 
you made my mountain stand firm; 
but when you hid your face, I was dismayed. To you, O LORD, I called; 
to the Lord I cried for mercy: "What gain is there in my destruction, in my going down into the pit? 
Will the dust praise you? 
Will it proclaim your faithfulness? Hear, O LORD, and be merciful to me; O LORD, be my help." You turned my wailing into dancing; 
you removed my sackcloth and clothed me with joy that my heart may sing to you and not be silent. 
O LORD my God, I will give you thanks forever.

--Psalm 30 (NIV)

Sunday, November 3, 2013

Garden Party

A little girl asked her mother, 'How did the human race appear?'
The mother answered, 'God made Adam and Eve and they had children and then all mankind was made.'
Two days later the girl asked her father the same question. The father answered, 'Many years ago there were monkeys from which the human race evolved.'
The confused girl returned to her mother and said, 'Mom, how is it possible that you told me the human race was created by God, and Dad said they developed from monkeys?'
The mother answered, 'Well, dear, it is very simple. I told you about my side of the family and your father told you about his.'

It was a lovely day. I was sitting on a bench by a small garden of pretty white and pink flowers. Bees flittered back and forth between petals. I thought about the perfection of it.
In the light breeze of the afternoon you could just get a whiff of the perfume of those blossoms. Obviously the bees could smell it for they were attracted to the source of the pleasing odor, which is the reason flowers smell good in the first place. The whole design of the blossom is made to attract the bee, stick pollen to it and let it carry the pollen to another plant to impregnate it, so to speak. This is a neat little system of bees and flowers working together for their mutual benefit.
If reproduction is the benefit to the plant, what is the benefit to the bee? The bee goes from flower to flower gathering nectar to take back to the hive. In the hive the bees turn the nectar into honey. It is stored in cells and when the honey is ready, the cell is capped with wax for storage. Then comes winter when the flowers are gone to seed, the bee taps the wax and has food to last till spring.
Pretty ingenious for an accident, don't'cha think?
They say if you put some monkeys in front of typewriters they would produce all the works of Shakespeare if given enough time. How much time, do you suppose? And how would you keep the monkeys at the typewriters? And how would they live long enough? Shakespeare didn't sit at a typewriter (well, of course not, typewriters didn't exist, but he sat by a blank piece of paper with a quill) for some interminable time. He started with an idea and plan of what he wanted to say and wrote it over a short period. He designed his plays with intelligence, not chance and accident. Frankly, I don't think those monkeys would produce all those works if they pecked away for eternity. But I don't have enough faith to be an evolutionist.
Frankly, every fish I ever saw taken out of the water for any period of time evolved into a dead fish.
Then God said, "Let the land produce vegetation: seed-bearing plants and trees on the land that bear fruit with seed in it, according to their various kinds." And it was so. The land produced vegetation: plants bearing seed according to their kinds and trees bearing fruit with seed in it according to their kinds. And God saw that it was good.Genesis 1:11-12
And God said, "Let the land produce living creatures according to their kinds: livestock, creatures that move along the ground, and wild animals, each according to its kind." And it was so. God made the wild animals according to their kinds, the livestock according to their kinds, and all the creatures that move along the ground according to their kinds. And God saw that it was good. Genesis 1:24-25
Then God said, "Let us make man in our image, in our likeness, and let them rule over the fish of the sea and the birds of the air, over the livestock, over all the earth, and over all the creatures that move along the ground."Genesis 1:26
A belief in creationism is an act of faith. So is the belief that evolution explains how we came to what we are. I choose the more logical.

Friday, October 11, 2013

There Was Night; There Was Morning -- Another Day

For in six days the LORD made the heavens and the earth, the sea, and all that is in them, but he rested on the seventh day. Therefore the LORD blessed the Sabbath day and made it holy. Exodus 20:11
"The Israelites are to observe the Sabbath, celebrating it for the generations to come as a lasting covenant. It will be a sign between me and the Israelites forever,  for in six days the LORD made the heavens and the earth, and on the seventh day he abstained from work and rested.'" Exodus 31:16-17   

By faith we understand that the universe was formed at God's command, so that what is seen was not made out of what was visible. Hebrews 11:3 

"But do not think I will accuse you before the Father. Your accuser is Moses, on whom your hopes are set. If you believed Moses, you would believe me, for he wrote about me. But since you do not believe what he wrote, how are you going to believe what I say?" John 5:45-47

I am about to write my thoughts about the six days of Creation, I repeat, these are my thoughts. There are several views about the length of Creation. I urge everyone not to accept my view, but to read the Scriptures and come to your own decision from the Word of God. I have no desire to be didactic here, only to explain what I believe and why.
In the beginning God created the heavens and the earth.  Now the earth was formless and empty, darkness was over the surface of the deep, and the Spirit of God was hovering over the waters. And God said, "Let there be light," and there was light. Genesis 1:1-3

In Young's Literal Translation, Genesis 1:1-3 reads:
"In the beginning of God's preparing of the heavens and the earth -- the earth hath existed waste and void, and darkness on the face of the deep, and the Spirit of God fluttering on the face of the waters, and God saith, 'Let light be;' and light is.

Genesis One tells us God created the heavens and the earth. It indicates the earth existed in a state of waste, void of life or anything. The Literal Translation implies a possible gap in the creation of the forming of the matter and the six days of preparing earth for life. This gap could be short, could be long. I don't know if there really was such a gap or how long it lasted, and it doesn't matter because God doesn't deal with anything here but the heavens and the earth we know and how it concerns mankind. 
God is eternal. Time does not apply to God. The earth is finite because He created it so. Time, as we know it, was designed for the creation, not for the Creator. God has no beginning or end. The earth has both. All our measures of time are dictated by the way the creation was designed.
The earth as created by God turns on its axis. It is not the sun or moon that dictates a day's length, it is the revolution of the earth. At the beginning earth was in darkness. I believe this was really, really, really dark darkness. Darkness is the absence of God.
God said, "'Let light be'; and light is."  This light was not sunlight. It was light. God created light and later he endowed certain objects of have light.  This first light was some kind of Godly light. I don't personally think the light referred to here was God although scripture says: "God is light; in him there is no darkness at all." (1 John 1:5b) I believe this was the creation of the light we see.
Whichever, light existed separate of the sun and other objects we attribute it to today. Two reasons: First, the sun, moon and stars weren't created until the fourth day. Second, Revelation tells us someday God will do away with the Sun, moon and stars, yet "there will be no more night. They will not need the light of a lamp or the light of the sun, for the Lord God will give them light." There will also be no more time.
But in the beginning, when light had been created, as the earth revolved on its axis, there was night and there was day, a day. Why not accept what it says? I know there are arguments that “Yowm”, translated “day”, can be used to mean a period of time, that so can the phrases "there is night, there is morning". But why try to build large constructs when single day will do?  Why not apply Occam's Razor, "one should not increase, beyond what is necessary, the number of entities required to explain anything"?
I use to go; well everything fits with the evolutionary concept of creation. There was an occurrence, things were formed, there was light, there was an earth of primeval soup out of which land formed and seas were separated as the temperature cooled. Then came all the plants and animals and finally man. Why, there is no conflict between God and science. Time doesn't even exist for God, so length isn't a problem. 
But there are two problems to my mind, one supernatural, and the other natural.
"In the beginning God created." God said, "let there be light; and there was light".  Hebrews 11 says, "By faith, we understand the universe was made at God's command". God said to the Israelites, "For in six days the Lord made the heavens and the earth". These statements do not say God created a process and it moved slowly from simple to complex. These are actions that seem to spring instantly from the will of God. The verses say there were a night and a morning and a day each time, but this doesn't necessarily mean it took God 24 hours to create each thing, only that each creation was done on a separate day. Why can't we accept that God didn't need million of years to accomplish this. Hebrews 11 also says, "that what is seen was not made out of what is visible"; in other words, that which existed on God's command did not evolve out of something previously existing, so when God said let there be plants, there were plants. When I was trying to line up Divine Creation with natural creation, wasn't I merely trying to appease those who scoff at my faith in the power of God? Wasn't it my pride afraid of being laughed at for being so ignorant of scientific speculation? I have come to believe everything that anyone believes, whether God or science, is a matter of faith. Why should I fear their faith if I truly believe my own?
There is a natural problem as well. It is that third and fourth day. On the third day, God said: `Let the earth yield tender grass, herb sowing seed, fruit-tree (whose seed [is] in itself) making fruit after its kind, on the earth:' and it is so. Why is this a natural problem? It is because God didn't illuminate the Sun, moon and stars until the fourth day. `Let luminaries be in the expanse of the heavens, to make a separation between the day and the night, then they have been for signs, and for seasons, and for days and years, and they have been for luminaries in the expanse of the heavens to give light upon the earth:' and it is so.
If God set up an evolutionary process over millions, or even thousands, of years for his Creation to develop, how would plants blossom and bloom before they had the sunlight needed for photosynthesis to produce their food, if the sun didn't evolve until many, many years later? You cannot line up God's Creative order with the evolutionary order. So why try to make God's Creation last the millions of years necessary for evolutionary theories to work?
I would say that God had the power to nourish the plants however he chose. But everything you read in Scripture about God shows order. If there is an odd hiccup in a sequence it is usually on purpose to get your attention. If all the plants were created on a single day, they would last until God gave the Sun the power of light the next day. 
There is a second aspect to this setting of luminaries in the heavens. They mark the seasons. They are markers of time. We already have the earth rotating on an axis, which gave us a day. Now we have a sun for the earth to orbit around, giving us our year, and we have a moon orbiting the earth, giving us our month. Thus we don't have arbitrary measures for our lives, but a standard. Why then should we have one other important measure of our calendar that is arbitrary, namely the week?
We don't. We have our week because God created the heavens and the earth in six days and rested on the seventh. If God has set a standard of seven 24-hour days as the basic work week of humans, why do we want to stretch that standard when applied to Him?
Now there is another interesting statement made on the sixth day, after the creation of all the creatures with the breath of life in them, including man. It is this:
"Then God said, "I give you every seed-bearing plant on the face of the whole earth and every tree that has fruit with seed in it. They will be yours for food.  And to all the beasts of the earth and all the birds of the air and all the creatures that move on the ground--everything that has the breath of life in it--I give every green plant for food." And it was so." Genesis 1:29-30
There is no reason not to think Isaiah 11:6's prophesy of the future, "The wolf also shall dwell with the lamb, The leopard shall lie down with the young goat, The calf and the young lion and the fatling together; And a little child shall lead them," is not a return to the state of the Garden of Eden.  Until the fall, there were no carnivores. Every creature was a vegetarian. So how do I accept eons of bloodthirsty beasts tearing at each other before Adam and Eve?  
In one comment, the question was raised, what did the animals do to deserve to die?  The answer is nothing. That is the point, when Adam and Eve disobeyed God and sinned they could not adequately cover themselves with leaves. An innocent sacrifice was needed to atone for them and God spilt the first blood by slaying animals for their skins to cover Adam and Eve, pointing millenniums ahead to the Lamb of God, Christ, the innocent shedding His blood to cover our sins.  It was sin that brought death into the world and all the bloodshed that followed, human or animal.
I guess I could touch on one more point concerning length of time. In Genesis 2:2-4   The woman said to the serpent, "We may eat fruit from the trees in the garden, but God did say, 'You must not eat fruit from the tree that is in the middle of the garden, and you must not touch it, or you will die.' " "You will not surely die," the serpent said to the woman.
Who lied here? Was it God or Satan in the form of the serpent? Adam and Eve ate the fruit and didn't drop over dead. God confronted them and some animals died, but Adam and Eve went on to live a long life.  Adam lived to be 930 years in fact. Now if we want to use the thousand years is as a day as the Lord's yardstick, then Adam didn't live to be a thousand, so he did die on the day he ate the fruit. But again, why not stay with the simple words of the text. God didn't say they would drop dead, he said they will truly die, and they did die physically eventually, which they would never have done if they had obeyed God. However, the moment they bit into that fruit they died spiritually.
Anyway, I am drifting toward other subjects. These things are some of the thoughts I have, my opinion, my wrestling with the subject of the length of Creation. I am willing to except what the Bible says is what the Bible means unless it is clearly shown as allegoric, symbolic or parable. Again, please don't accept anything I say, but study the Word and come to what you believe for yourself. 

(The photograph at the top was taken by the author in the Rocky Mountains near Vail, Colorado, August 1999.)

Tuesday, October 8, 2013

You'll Get A Big Bang Outta This One

In the beginning God created the heavens and the earth. Now the earth was formless and empty...

When I was a child I did not like church. Up until I was nine I had little exposure to things ecclesiastic. My ancestral tradition had been Quaker, especially on my father's side, but my progenitors had gradually been disabused of their Friend standings since first arriving on these shores nearly 330 years ago.

I was sprinkled in the Grove Methodist Church that my great-great uncle had built, where my mother's family attended and my parents had been married, but between that time and several years latter when my father returned from the South Pacific after the war, I don't recall being inside a church.

For some reason I do not know, it was decided in mid-1950 that yours truly should become a good Christian child and attend Sunday School. Every Sunday morning I was scrubbed down and dressed up in my goin'-to-meetin' suit and send down Washington Avenue to the Downingtown Methodist Church. I faithfully earned my perfect attendance pins, but this hollow symbol was all I got out of the experience. My parents and grandparents didn't come to church. I remember they came once when I was in some kind of little church play playing a tree, but other than perhaps Easter they didn't come. I don't even think they went at Christmas. It begged the question, why did I have to go?
By the time I was 12 I could make enough of a fuss about it that they gave up forcing me out the door on Sunday. I became just another of many who claimed Christianity and practiced nothing.
I was lured back to the church as a young teen by the lure of a hamburger. A friend and classmate invited me to Methodist Youth Fellowship with the promise that after the meeting we would all go to Dick Thomas's Brick Oven Drive-in out along Route 30, which was country back then. I loved the food at the Brick Oven, more than I loved the Lord I am sad to admit, and I would endure anything to eat there, even go to church.
I went that time and I stayed in the group. It was fun and interesting, but I was in it for the fun and games, and food, not the message. And I thought I was so smart. I liked to ask what I though were tough questions. I was looking for the gotcha.
"If God created the universe, then where did God come from?"
There you go, Reverend. Get out of that one, huh. Oh, ain't I just so profound, like no one ever asked that one before.
But you remove God from it all and the mystery remains and everything in the end comes down to faith. If the Big Bang created the universe, where did the Big Bang come from? Where does nothing end and something begin? How could nothing become something? Don't dwell too long thinking about it or it will drive you crazy, because something from nothing is impossible and there being nothing without something is impossible and there being something without end is impossible.
Our being here is impossible. Yet, here we be. If you can believe in this impossibility, then why not believe in God? The Big Bang came out of some singularity and I accept that the singularity was God and in an instant of time he created the universe and remains in control of its destiny. It takes no great faith to understand the complexity of all we are and see his architecture, programming, art, skilled labor, design and intelligent. It takes more suspension of disbelief to ignore God's hand in this creation.
"For since the creation of the world God's invisible qualities-his eternal power and divine nature-have been clearly seen, being understood from what has been made, so that men are without excuse." Rom 1:20

Where were you when I laid the earth's foundation?
Tell me, if you understand.
Who marked off its dimensions? Surely you know!
Who stretched a measuring line across it?
On what were its footings set,
or who laid its cornerstone-
while the morning stars sang together
and all the angels shouted for joy? Job 38:4-7

Friday, October 4, 2013

Science and God

I may sound anti-science. I'm not. God gave us inquiring minds and an interest in our origins, but he wants us to keep him foremost in our thoughts. It is fascinating to read the theories of how the planets formed, how the sun developed and so forth. I don't believe in removing science from God's universe, but believe the error is when one removes God from scientific inquiry.
I don't know of anything in the sciences that truly clashes with the Biblical record. There may be some things pointed to by some, such as in Leviticus 11:13-19. In verse 13 it says "these are the birds you are to detest and not eat...". It then goes on to list various birds, but in verse 19 the bat is included. Well, a bat is not a bird. Oooh nooo! Throw out the Bible. But the word translated birds can just as easily be translated "flying things" and probably should have been.
The Bible isn't a textbook on science. It is God's Word of how we should live as he intended. It wasn't dictated to someone word for word, but inspired by the Holy Spirit to various people in various times and they wrote in the common words of their time and culture. Their use of expressions of their day in no way devalues the underlying truth of the message or of God's Will for our lives. There have been people closer to our own time, for instance, that referred to bat's as flying mice. But bats aren't even rodents, they are mammals.
Did God create the universe in six twenty-four hour days or over a much longer time? Only God knows. The Bible says "a day is as a thousand years" to God. Does that mean creation took only six thousand years? (I'm not counting the seventh day when God rested.) But the expression that "a day is as a thousand years" was an expression that time didn't matter to God, not something stated as precise fact. I have no argument with those who say these were literal 24-hour days anymore than I do with those who claim creation took billions of years. I don't know. God does.
It says there was dark, there was light, a day. But these may not have been the days we know. The sun wasn't created until the fourth day, so our measure of the revolution of the earth in relationship to the sun hardly applies. What measurement was God using? I don't know.
There are many creation stories in different religions. The Judeo-Christian-Islam creation is unique among them, even though many others have similarities. There is an order and logic to the Biblical creation that is not dissimilar to scientific stories of the evolution of the planet. A  hardy let there be light and a chaotic formless mass is created. A planet is solidified, an atmosphere conducive to life is made, seas and lands are separated. Plants are created to supply food for what is to come. Then the sea creatures and birds, and then the land animals until finally man and woman have life breathed into them.
Do I believe in evolution? Not in Darwinism, no. Not in some accent from an amoeba to a monkey to a man, no. I believe God formed the originals. I believe in adaptation. I don't think these things clash with science at all. What science claims is still as much a matter of faith as what the Bible says. There are scientists who believe the Bible and there are people who resolve the difference, just as there are people on both sides who dispute and try to prove one side or the other correct.
But I will continue to believe in God and in his Word over that of men, no matter how learned. What is the age of the universe? Nobody knows. Some say this, some say that, and the estimate keeps changing. What is a species? There is disagreement on that among biologists. Is their race? There are arguments against their being such a thing race. Was the universe caused by a Big Bang? That is the most widely known theory right now, but there are at least four other theories prevalent and the view of how we came about changes all the time. Are dinosaurs reptilian or aviary? Science never stays consistent  the Word of God does.
How could the sun have been stopped from rising without the earth flying off its axis into oblivion? Wouldn't the earth have had to stop revolving for this to happen? Why so? This is an account of an event using the expressions of the time and the writer. Just as we say the sun rose and the sun set is not scientifically correct, saying the sun never rose and the day was in darkness may be as well. God could darken an area like night if he willed. Still, I don't think God too small to stop the whole universe in its tracks if he willed; after all he created it.
What is the dark force beyond the universe? Science says its there, but can't explain it. Are there parallel worlds? String theory says so. There is so much mystery mixed with knowledge, we really know little. I know I'll trust that God knows the truth.

Sunset photo by Ronald Tipton

Thursday, October 3, 2013

Taking a Risk and Lessons Learned Listening

        My grandmother (pictured with me left in 1943) use to say, "Better to keep your mouth shut and be thought a fool, than open it and remove all doubt". I’ve followed her aphorism fairly well during my life. It works, too. You sit not saying a word with a group of people having a serious discussion and they start thinking you are smart, really up on the whole thing and if you do say something at some point, it gets their full attention. Of course, if you never say a word it is even better, because they go away thinking you were the brightest person in the room, you obviously understood everything and you never said anything dumb.
I discovered much later this idea didn't originate with my grandmother, but is actually Biblical: "Even a fool is thought wise if he keeps silent, and discerning if he holds his tongue.” Proverbs 17:28
Thus I take a big risk by telling about my life herein. Some may actually read these things and my mask will be off and they will see me a fool. It is a risk to expose one's mind to others. You open up your head and perhaps all that is seen is a black hole, or worse you crack that skull and a bunch of snakes wriggle out. People do need to keep in mind my essays weren’t written to influence or criticize others. This is about my exploration toward God and my failings along the way. I am not writing to confront your beliefs, but my own. All of us have opinions that conflict with those of others and sometimes we are too sensitive on hearing a different view. If you take offence to anything, then please examine why you felt offended, because there is no offence intended here. I don't ask anyone to agree with me and there is certainly no way I can force anyone to do so. All I can plead is you give it some thought before outright rejection. As I say, it is a risk to open one's thoughts or mouth. Listening can be much more profitable.
I met a man for the first time a while back and he and I began to talk. Well, he talked and I listened. What he said was interesting, because I took the time to listen and although he said occasionally, "I'm sorry, I'm talking you leg off", I assured him it was all right, I had another leg. The man was 80 years old and had served his country during the Korean War. I learned about his joining, his service, how he came to know the Lord, and much about his life. I also learned another lesson about why we sometimes endure suffering.
Besides having battled cancer for 17 years, the man more recently suffered some other ailment, one of pain affecting his ability to hold objects. He came near death, lost 40 pounds and landed in intensive care. A nurse commented to him one day on his patience and his pleasantries to them. He explained their job was difficult enough without his complaints. Besides he had no reason to fear death. Another nurse told him he did make their day easier because many under their care were bitter and blamed the nurses for their troubles. The nurses asked him to pray for them, which he did.
What did I learn from this?
The realization when we suffer, our reaction to our trouble is observed by others and may be influencing their lives in ways we don't know. They may not approach us and tell us so, as the nurses approached this man, but it doesn't mean it isn't the case and down the road our demeanor may help that observer (maybe even bring that observer to trust God).
I've had sufferings in my life, as have we all, and I hope I have borne up well through those trails. Certainly at times I thought, why me? What have I done to deserve this? I didn't necessarily do anything to deserve it. It may have been for the benefit of someone else I was not even aware of and isn't that wonderful?

Wednesday, October 2, 2013


I am a walker. This is something I've done as far back as I can remember. There is a feeling of sanctuary in a walk. It is where I go to think and sometimes to pray. The setting isn't important, whether city street or forest path. Sometimes I walk with another carrying on a running conversation as we stroll. Sometimes I walk alone finding peace in the solitude of my steps.
Walking alone means I am sometimes a dangerous walker, or a foolish one if you wish. I go into places better visited with company or just wander off where prudence should dictate otherwise. I once walked seven miles during a near blizzard because the buses stopped running. Two years ago I suffered an injured foot. I had sat around several days, but then the pain eased up and I went walking into woods I had never been in. The trail grew narrow with muddy puddles and fallen tree trunks to navigate. I was far back when the pain returned. I honestly didn't think I would make it back to civilization against the stabbing, searing poker piercing my foot. 

Perhaps this man was as foolish as I. He was hiking along the edge of a bluff enjoying the view when he tripped and fell over a cliff. Fortunately he was able to grab a tree root growing out of a fissure in the sheer rock face. He hung there, gripping this thin vegetation screaming for help.
"Is there anyone up there?" he shouted.
A voice answered, "Yes, I am here."
"Great," said the dangling man. "Can you help me?"
"I can save you," said the voice.
"Please hurry," said the man.
"Do you believe I can save you?" asked the voice.
"Yes," said the man. "I believe you can."
"Okay," said the voice. "Let go of the root."
"Trust me, I will save you, but first you must let go of that root."
The man was silent for a moment. Then he shouted, "Is there anyone else up there?"

The answer is no one else is up there. Of course that is my opinion. I don't think you can ever believe He can save you, unless you are willing to let go of all the other roots that you grasp.

Thursday, September 26, 2013

CATS: Calling All That Seek

Dog spelled backward is God. Our dog’s faithfulness to us and our faithfulness to our dog may be a metaphor for our relationship with God. When our dog was 17 years old he had great difficulty walking. We put him in a vest with a handle so he could be taken here and there, like a living suitcase. He looked to us for his needs. We provided them to him. Sometimes we were angry with him, but knowing his weaknesses, we forgave him. Without our love and grace he could not have survived. He put his trust in us completely and we upheld him in his powerless old age. 
Our cats remind us God calls all that seek Him. We are lost and yet God will draw us to Him and give us salvation. My family has found lost cats for several years now and given them new life. We have especially, my wife and I, provided a home to older cats, who often do not get adopted and would perish in a shelter. 
My wife and both daughters have been employed by no-kill animal shelters, and both daughters still are. My wife is retired and my daughters work as VetTechs.
One evening the younger daughter brought overnight guests. She had picked them up that morning and they will go to the shelter and hopefully soon be adopted. Just as these creatures of God's seek love, there are people who seek their love in return. This will serve both well. 

We had the little delights for one night;  a living reminder that CATS mean God is Calling All
That Seek.