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Posts Tagged ‘God’

Part of me is losing faith in humanity one person at a time. Another part wants to believe good remains in the heart of each individual.

Why there is terrorism is beyond me. Why people to stupid things is also beyond me. Unfortunately, as hard as it may be, I still have to love them and forgive them… and forgive myself.

I’ve been reading Blue Like Jazz by Don Miller recently, and it’s made me think more and more about Christian spirituality — not Christianity.

One chapter I read today was titled Confession. In this chapter, he and his fellow Christian friends set up a confession booth on Reed College campus in the midst of a celebration where a majority of students get high, wasted and run naked. The idea was for this small group of people to come out of the closet and openly admit they’re Christians. They set up this confession booth not so that students would confess to them, but they would confess to the students, apologizing for the Crusades, televangelists and any other event or person giving Christians a bad name.

I like this idea. So many people I know have an issue with Christianity, with church, with religion in general. Some have been hurt by it and refuse to ever step foot in a church again. Others feel isolated when they go, so they stop going.

There’s something wrong here. Christianity isn’t meant to push people away; it’s meant to draw people into a loving, warm, real relationship with God.

Jesus had no intentions of “Christians” killing innocent people, judging others, turning people away, in His name.

Instead of shunning prostitutes and pimps, let them come in as they are. Instead of telling the drug addicts they’re going to Hell, tell them God still loves them. Instead of fighting over what style of music to have in the worship service or the carpet color in the sanctuary, agree that the main focus should be to reach out to the lost, the hungry, the homeless. Instead of telling people how wrong they are for their past behaviors and browbeating them with the Bible, show them the truth with love, compassion and a listening ear.

My brother made the comment this weekend at a church dinner that putting that much food out in front of people and expecting them not to glutton is like taking men to a strip joint and expecting them not to lust.

Point: None of us are perfect.

I’m not perfect. I’ve screwed up a lot in my life… but what matters is that I’ve realized that and I’m learning from my mistakes. I can’t let one thing rule my life, I can’t let one person control me and my emotions; I have to rise above that. I have to take matters to God and leave them in His hands, in His control. Everything happens for a reason, and I have to let Him show me that.

I have to let Him guide me.

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One night a few weeks ago, the opportunity to grab some coffee with my brother and his wife presented itself to me, and of course I took advantage of it.

He showed me this (strictly) sarcastic, satirical article in a publication he gets in the mail. The name of it slipped my mind, forgive me, but I read it and I believe it hits the nail on the head. It really gets you in the stomach… or at least it did me.

The American Beatitudes (From the Sermon on the Hill)
Matthew 5:1-16
by David D. Flowers, Satirist/Writer

1 One day as he saw the politicians gathering, Jesus went up the steps of the capital and stood behind a podium with The Statue of Freedom looming overhead. The Senate gathered around him, 2 and he began to address them.

3 “Blessed are those who have a military-industrial complex and realize their need to secure their economic interests in the Middle East, for the kingdoms of the world are theirs.

4 Blessed are those who are hedonistic, for they will be satisfied.

5 Blessed are those who are proud and arrogant, for they shall rape and pillage the whole earth.

6 Blessed are those who lust for power and prosperity and call it “justice,” for they will have comforts.

7 Blessed are those who show no mercy, for they will never be in need of it anyway.

8 Blessed are those whose hearts are peacefully wicked, for they shall be gods.

9 Blessed are those who kill for peace, for they will be called the “good” children of God.

10 Blessed are the persecutors of evil men (those who threaten the Pax Americana), for the kingdoms of the world are theirs.

11 Blessed are you when people burn your precious flag and curse you because you destroyed their homes and killed their loved ones. These evildoers simply have not understood the power and salvation of redemptive violence. My followers must understand, when we talk about war… we are really talking about peace.

12 Be happy when people curse you for this! Be very glad! For great is your reward on earth. And remember, every empire before you was cursed for the same things.

13 You and you alone are the salt of the earth. But what good is salt if it has been corrupted by dirty Mexicans from the South and cave-dwelling Muslims from the east? They should be shot like the Indians and dumped in the sea like slaves. They are worthless! This is your manifest destiny!

14 You and you alone are the light of the world–an idolatrous city on a hilltop cannot be hidden.

15 No one buys alcohol and gets drunk alone. Instead they share their maddening wine with everyone in the world until everyone has had their fill!

16 In the same way, let your American ways spew out for all to taste, so that everyone will embrace carnal living and let freedom ring!”

Makes you think, doesn’t it?

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