Carmel or Tariyaki Sauce

December 11, 2008

“Create in Me a Clean Heart Oh God”

– King David

“Some may trust in _(insert your trust here)__, and some in _(and here)__,

but we trust in the name of the LORD our God”

-Psalms 20:7

“Oh when I look to the shape of my heart,
It’s separated only by scars
That cut in and cut out
Oh and leave me without
Oh a heart that functions at all. “

-Noah and the Whale

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It was 6:00 a.m. on a Saturday morning and I was fuming with anger at the irresponsible and childish individuals who have been renting out my 555 sq. ft. house here in Puyallup. I was inside a refrigerator with a rag and razor blade scrapping out what I can only guess was either carmel or teriyaki sauce or a mixture of both (i hope it was and not something else, but i wouldn’t be surprised). It was disgusting and infuriating to be doing this, cleaning up the mess someone else has made of something that was mine. Consider that, I did all this while listening to worship music but worship was nowhere to be found.

It was not fair.

My heart was in a dark place and I was mad. Pissed off. Beyond words.

I chose to linger in that place of hatred and seething resentment and I enjoyed it. It felt good and it felt right. And why not? I was owed this! I could feel this way, I get a pass right?

I was wronged.

I was wrong.

My heart was far from Jesus and it hurt. How could I find my way back to Him? Does He feel the same way toward me that I felt toward these people who had been so irresponsible and selfish.

How can His love be that big?

He works in ways that blow me away.

I was at church the following Sunday and my good friend who is one of the Pastors there was preaching on desperation. Wow can you believe that? I love the ways of God. He taught on the point of desperation that was displayed in Jyris needing his daughter healed and the Woman Jesus encountered who was bleeding for twelve years and was healed by the touch of His garment. The service was AMAZING and spoke right to my heart where I was hurting. The teaching, coupled with the worship and the awesome and I believe “Mystical” sacrament of Communion helped heal my heart. Jesus was glorified in the service and I went to Him broken and in desperation. I would like to share with you this song that is so on point about the condition of the heart.

Bruised

Don’t build the castle
At your centre
Oh the heart can’t love
What it can’t remember
Be willing to be hurt
Oh be willing to be bruised
‘Cos a heart that doesn’t love
Is a heart that isn’t used

Oh turn your love to life
Let your love shine through
In everything you do
Let your love shine through

Oh I thought I felt my heart beating
Well I thought I’d never know that feeling
Oh I thought I felt my heart beating
Well I thought I’d never know that feeling

Well my heart was like a cave
Now light shines in it
Oh to fall in love is brave
Oh my heart was like a stone
That barely moved
Oh my heart was like a magnet
Oh for hearts like yours

Oh turn your love to life
Let your love shine through
In everything you do
Let your love shine through

-Noah and the Whale

Its breath-taking, the power of Jesus. He proclaimed in His home town of Nazerath what His mission on this earth was all about and is still about today. Thank you Jesus.

Isaiah 61:1

1 The Spirit of the Sovereign LORD is on me,
because the LORD has anointed me
to preach good news to the poor.
He has sent me to bind up the brokenhearted,
to proclaim freedom for the captives
and release from darkness for the prisoners…

As one of my favorite speakers, Steve Brown says… “You think about that. AMEN”


Hate and Why the Left Wingers are NOT the Party of Jesus

July 30, 2008

Many would think that because I am a conservative leaning “Evangelical Christian” that I would write a critique on the Left Wingers involving their support of aborting unborn babies. I have however decided to address the issue of hate as it relates to the politics of the Democrat Party. Now this is not a free pass on the Republicans because I have found hate to be there as well. What I am concerned with and will address is the “in your face” hatred that permeates everything the Left touches which is embraced by the Democratic Party.

You may ask me where do I see this vial hate that comes from the Left wing of the Democrat party, and I would direct you to these websites that are central to its political machine.

http://www.dailykos.com/

http://www.huffingtonpost.com/

http://www.moveon.org/

Exploration of these websites at the time of this blog finds no particular instance to take issue with; having said that, there have been many issues in the recent past with presumably more to follow. These websites have openly celebrated the deaths of people like President Reagan, Jerry Falwell, Tony Snow, and many others. I understand getting excited about political victories like when the Democrats took control of the majority of United States Government in 2006 but being ecstatic over the death of individuals is crossing the line. But it is not just these websites that I am concerned with it is groups like “Code Pink” and “Cindy Sheehan and her followers” that make me cringe as a centrist minded individual. What is going on here? These are people who go into Senate hearings and wail “Death to Bush” and “Bush loves the death of our Young Men” and they will pour blood out to show their fanaticism. I know there are crazy abortion clinic bombing “Christians” but I have not seen the Right embrace and openly court these groups or individuals like the Democrats have done with the like of “Code Pink” and others.

I love the writings of Anne Lamont who is among other things an author, activist and a Jesus follower; all I have in common with her is the Jesus part and maybe a love for the unloved then again the two are connected. In reading her book “Grace Eventually: Thoughts on Faith” she tells of her trials and struggles with God and her Christian faith, also included are many references to hatred for President Bush, neocons, and televangelists. My beef is this hatred thing. I don’t understand why someone who happens to be left on the political scale writes a book on faith and feels the need to write about how much they hate the current Administration. I can’t imagine Dr. Dobson of “Focus on the Family” writing a book detailing his faith and personal walk with Jesus and oh by the way his extreme hatred for Al Gore. Now I see the critique coming, “well maybe Dobson isn’t open about his hate for Al Gore and Anne Lamont is up front and open about her hatred of George Bush” I don’t think so, I just don’t see it. I understand that there are many short comings in the “Religious Right” but extreme hatred and ill will for certain political figures I just don’t see. I could be wrong being to close to the “kool aid” for many years some of that might of found its way into my system and has yet to be purged, so pray for me. I am reminded of something St. Augustine said that applies here “she’s a whore but she’s my mother” he said this about the church and I feel the same way about the church and conservatism.

So where am I “left” with in all of this? (no pun intended, can you tell?)

Understand that this is more of a referendum on our political system as a whole where extremists have high jacked our conversation, than a “bash the left and bash the right” campaign on my part. I have come to a point in my spiritual and political maturity where I can see my self voting for an Atheist who is a Democrat and I could sleep soundly at night; if you know me that statement is evidence of a huge amount of growth on my part. I just want to see an open, honest, and respectful debate and discourse in the political community about spirituality and the spiritual community about politics. I’ll leave you with this quote by Shane Claiborne who, being raised a conservative southern Baptist turned moderate Christian activist I find a kindred spirit in, he says this;

“I am stuck between unbelieving activists and inactive believers” .

Well everyone, that’s where I am in all this, I want to be an Activist Follower of Jesus Christ in all I do and all I believe.

Proverbs 10:12

“Hatred stirs up dissension,
       but love covers over all wrongs.” 

 Matthew 5:43

“You have heard that it was said, ‘Love your neighbor and hate your enemy.’ But I tell you: Love your enemies and pray for those who persecute you, that you may be sons of your Father in heaven. He causes his sun to rise on the evil and the good, and sends rain on the righteous and the unrighteous. If you love those who love you, what reward will you get? Are not even the tax collectors doing that? And if you greet only your brothers, what are you doing more than others? Do not even pagans do that? Be perfect, therefore, as your heavenly Father is perfect.”

AMEN.