Saturday, May 30, 2015

Sing a New Song of Justice... Psalm 9

Psalm 9 chants a song of liberation. It champions the poor over those who seek to oppress them. It, surveying the evils of injustice polis around King David, calls on God to act against the evil doers in favor of the weak. God does stand with the poor, as when Jesus choose to be the poor in his incarnation. He choose to be without home, without bed, and without respect. From rumors of being a bastard child of an illicit affair with a roman soldier to his death on cross like a common criminal, Jesus reveals the heart of God toward those people we would rather avoid and view with suspect. We avoid the poor. God calls the poor friends and more of his chosen twelve come from the ranks of the poor. Psalm 9 sings of this heart of God for the marginalized. 

Psalm 9 introduces the theme of injustice that run through the Tanak, the Gospels, and the whole of the New Testament. Moses set the poor slaves from capitative and God made them his own. King David calls on God to punish the evil to the poor in his poetry. In Gospels, God does act and we should be relieved. God chooses to be with the poor. He could have been born in the palaces of the wealthy. He could be like Caesar and been the head of an Army, prick justice by the cut of sword. But God chooses to be with the poor as one of the poor. This is good news because if we honestly look at who the poor, we can see who they really are. They have no resources but those given to them. They are dependent on others for their very living. They bring nothing in to the world and are left with nothing.

When we consider who the poor are … in our own moments of truth in the middle of a hail storm of fears, we have to realize that we are too the poor. All our gifts of warm houses, loving family, of good health, wealth in our bank accounts are nothing more than gifts from God. They could evaporate in the bright sun of time as they will. It may be a supernova of a moment when all our gifts explode into nothingness or in the slow craving of our strength through the course of the rive of time. The truth of being poor floats over our heads ready to burst at anytime. We are born from the dust of stars and we will return to dust in the darkness of a grave. All we are comes not from our labors, but from the kindness of Gods heart. We are called to use these gifts to love God and love others. When we lie to ourselves and think that we deserve or worse earned our gifts, we do all sort of nasty oppression. We are all not above the thinking of what about me. 

Psalm 9 should frighten us if we are honest. God being called to avenge the oppression of the poor we are all guilty of. God does answer the call, but he answers with his own body. It is this bloody hand, bloodied by the very oppression we demand God avenge, which is offered us. Our hope to transcend the oppression is the cross. 

I know this all to well as I soon will be dependent on the healing knife of a doctor. I will entrust my son to a man and his team I barely know. But that is the truth of life. We are always dependent on God. 

Psalm 9 champions the poor against the evils of oppression. Up to now the psalms had some universal themes as well as personal cares. God being the champion of those who have faith in him and a call for justice for personal enemies. Here in Psalm 9 comes the social dimensions. Evil will oppress the poor and again the judgement which King David calls God to deliver only calls for the evil to be returned. Rather than calling for torture of the evil doer, David calls them to suffer the pain they themselves called Psalm 9 makes us aware of the plight of the poor and how oppression of the poor has no room in the Kingdom of God.  

Then, in the Gospel, God takes the punishment into himself and offers us love. When we look for  justice we find love. 

Thursday, May 28, 2015

Peering into the Heavens - Psalm 8

In 1990 we continued the human habit of looking to the heavens by launching the Hubble Telescope into orbit. Like honey bees in the midst of a hurricane, we have been looking to heavens for answers about our fate, our God and our reality. In the decades that followed Hubble’s eye to the sky, the telescope brought us poetry form the heavens. We got to see vast glories of Heavens as none of our ancestors could have even imagined. Seeing the mysteries of the heavens pushes us to understand our limits as small creatures on a little speck of dust in the middle of nowhere. Why care about the fate of humanity? The Universe is vast and we are so small. Why would the creator of this massive existence care for my son upcoming surgery, the fate of my family, our world and our history? Time and Space are so wide.

God became fully man. The simple and profound belief of Christians reveals the mystery in God’s full Glory. Yes, God will be with my son as they rid once more his body of a tumor. Yes, God arises as Emmanuel in our daily lives and cares deeply about our faith. As we grow to understand the vastness of Universe and our small space of it, I grow more to love Psalm 8 and Jesus. The whole psalm speaks of the glory of God and how we share this glory not our of some ability, rather out of God’s grace. Growing up, we use to play the parlor game of finding the reason for man’s place in the world, though we falsely assumed it was one of power based on out superiority to the other animals. It was our reason and rationality. We were smarter. Books were written touting out thumb or our language. Yet, the Psalm 8 makes a clear case for our place being straight from God. God became man and dwelled with us, and because of Jesus and the Incarnation we are given love and grace despite the fact of our smallness in the world.

When my son comes under the surgeon’s knife, again, I find God who created the nebulas, the billions of Galaxies each with hundreds of millions stars like our small sun, lowers and empties himself to be with us. When this frighten father fearing the future sits around and waits for the report of our son and his recovery, I know God will be with me. When I look to the beauty which Hubble revealed, I find the Cross of Jesus; I find Jesus as he holds the whole of my family. The truth of the Psalm 8 fills me with love for God, for others, for the whole of creation, and for the future.

Wednesday, May 27, 2015

Psalm 7 & God's love

Psalm 7 pleads with God to save us from the enemies. So much so that one can hear the volume of the Psalm in the voice of a boy sent to his room for a timeout protesting his innocence and his moral outrage. “Why? I didn’t do it!”

Yet, Psalmist opens out in dark plains of his fears and outrage to the possibility that he too might be guilty of the crimes he prods God to avenge. If I have done these things, then let me suffer like my enemies. We Christians understand that we are all stained by our the shopping list of violence catalogued in Psalm 7. So are all to expect God’s judgement as the Psalm 7 demands of God. Violence without end? Where is the peace that knows no end come in? Context opens the door and lets us free ourselves from the punishing dark room where we protest, “them, God, get them and not me.”

King David is being pursued to be killed and he must take flight from those enemies that wish to dry his moving blood. Psalm 7, his poem of pleading for God’s help does show he is aware of his own failings. How many of us want God to take vengeance on our enemies and yet don’t consider that we too are the pursuer as well as the victim? The King David asks God to take his vengeance on King David’s enemies. He asks God for their own violence be turned on them. That they fall into the pit they dig, in others words, to take the effects of their actions upon themselves. If the loved God and others, then would God’s judgement be the return of Love to them?

For Christians, God does allow the judgement of David, but in his steadfast love, he takes on the cross. God in Jesus allows the violence of man onto to his person and nailed to the cross. God takes our violence and returns it to us so we can see what King David glimpses. When we see the cross, we should see that we are violent and like a mirror, we can choose life. We can finally take refuge in God and God grants us the ability to love, love God and love others. We find relief from the persecutors in our lives and the ones living within our own skin. God has pronounced judgement in the forgiveness of sin and asks us to return to him. That is the only miracle I need in my life. My God bless my son and my wife. May the Lord who is always with me love me even in this dark time?

Psalm 7

Plea for Help against Persecutors

A Shiggaion of David, which he sang to the Lord concerning Cush, a Benjaminite.

O Lord my God, in you I take refuge;
    save me from all my pursuers, and deliver me,
or like a lion they will tear me apart;
    they will drag me away, with no one to rescue.
O Lord my God, if I have done this,
    if there is wrong in my hands,
if I have repaid my ally with harm
    or plundered my foe without cause,
then let the enemy pursue and overtake me,
    trample my life to the ground,
    and lay my soul in the dust.Selah
Rise up, O Lord, in your anger;
    lift yourself up against the fury of my enemies;
    awake, O my God;[a] you have appointed a judgment.
Let the assembly of the peoples be gathered around you,
    and over it take your seat[b] on high.
The Lord judges the peoples;
    judge me, O Lord, according to my righteousness
    and according to the integrity that is in me.
O let the evil of the wicked come to an end,
    but establish the righteous,
you who test the minds and hearts,
    O righteous God.
10 God is my shield,
    who saves the upright in heart.
11 God is a righteous judge,
    and a God who has indignation every day.
12 If one does not repent, God[c] will whet his sword;
    he has bent and strung his bow;
13 he has prepared his deadly weapons,
    making his arrows fiery shafts.
14 See how they conceive evil,
    and are pregnant with mischief,
    and bring forth lies.
15 They make a pit, digging it out,
    and fall into the hole that they have made.
16 Their mischief returns upon their own heads,
    and on their own heads their violence descends.
17 I will give to the Lord the thanks due to his righteousness,
    and sing praise to the name of the Lord, the Most High.

Saturday, May 23, 2015

Fear As A Gift to God

Fear is part of life as I have found. Psalm 6 talks about fear and the distress which we find in the course of living. Psalm 6 speaks about when we reach the cliff edge of our abilities and our own limitations. More then limitations, we discover our own failures and faults. This Psalm answers my fears about my son’s surgery. I hate not knowing the immediate future and it makes my shake with terror. I left with going to God in prayer. 

When I contemplate the next few weeks, my sleep makes me weary, I wake with pains in my bones and then I am left asking the God of the Cross to be with me within the days of my cross. God is with me and stays with my family in the next few weeks and the rest of our lives. I wake and do my routines of working out and spending time with God. On Saturday, it is my day with my son and in these days I find Jesus in our play together. These are the moments that God gives me and I find comfort. Psalm 6 speak to bring all of my fears and failures to God and his being with me even in these.  
Psalm 6 To the leader: with stringed instruments; according to The Sheminith. A Psalm of David. 1 O Lord, do not rebuke me in your anger, or discipline me in your wrath. 2 Be gracious to me, O Lord, for I am languishing; O Lord, heal me, for my bones are shaking with terror. 3 My soul also is struck with terror, while you, O Lord—how long? 4 Turn, O Lord, save my life; deliver me for the sake of your steadfast love. 5 For in death there is no remembrance of you; in Sheol who can give you praise? 6 I am weary with my moaning; every night I flood my bed with tears; I drench my couch with my weeping. 7 My eyes waste away because of grief; they grow weak because of all my foes. 8 Depart from me, all you workers of evil, for the Lord has heard the sound of my weeping. 9 The Lord has heard my supplication; the Lord accepts my prayer. 10 All my enemies shall be ashamed and struck with terror; they shall turn back, and in a moment be put to shame.

Friday, May 22, 2015

Friends, Christians …Lend Me An Ear: Psalm 5

Rising in the morning after sleep I am left with chips of raw dream fragments from my slumber. The may be nonsensical or maybe have a hidden treasure within them. I then take the dream fragments and cut and polish them to see if they reveal any brilliance in the light of the morning. I take them into prayer with me to see what God will make of them. To cut facets to the dreams takes effort. Looking through the eyepiece of faith reveals the glory of God even if the dream proves only to arise from the greasy pizza the night before. For the true Glory comes form God lending an eye to me in the morning light.

Dreams have always fascinated us, from the Egyptian Pharaoh’s cows to the dreams of Joseph calling him to be the father of Jesus, the morning light shown on dreams have given humanity hope and the presence of God. Psalm 4 was about God being with us in our sleep and God safe guarding our sleep within his presence. Psalm 5 is about the morning after the dreams have visited and we are left with the stillness of the morning. Sunrises on our fresh mind.

Mornings have been the traditional time of prayers, when we can spend time with God and God lends us an ear. There is a theory that dreams and sleep are bodies way of clearing out the brain and mind. This clearing opens out into a morning and then we can be with God afresh like a first date with your true love. Psalm 5’s poetry has an awareness of the realities of life, from the wickedness of our world and its oppression of the poor. It acknowledges this in the light of the morning, and it continues to shine a light on the hope of humanity, God is still with us. No matter the events that will come, the wars, the violence of man, the lies of money lovers and the news of our sins which fills the morning if we let it. God will lend us an ear to our concerns.

God, who pays attention to a man of little worth in the eyes of the world, who lives in a small place like Spokane Valley, with a family like billions of others, differs than the world in that God loves what we fail to notice. God is with me in my morning prayers and listens to me and pays attention to me and to all the little ones who history will forget. His Book of Life means those who have spoken and listen to God in their sleep and in their morning. For to have the ear of the Master of the Universe every morning is a bless as wide as any Galaxy. I am so very grateful, even in a world were we mess up and by killing and oppressing each other. The sun also rise on us and God will lend an ear and hear our pleas like mine for the welfare and joy of my son, for y gratitude for the presence of Lace my wife and for all the small gifts of my life.

Psalm 5

Listen to my words, Lord,
    consider my lament.
Hear my cry for help,
    my King and my God,
    for to you I pray.
In the morning, Lord, you hear my voice;
    in the morning I lay my requests before you
    and wait expectantly.
For you are not a God who is pleased with wickedness;
    with you, evil people are not welcome.
The arrogant cannot stand
    in your presence.
You hate all who do wrong;
    you destroy those who tell lies.
The bloodthirsty and deceitful
    you, Lord, detest.
But I, by your great love,
    can come into your house;
in reverence I bow down
    toward your holy temple.
Lead me, Lord, in your righteousness
    because of my enemies—
    make your way straight before me.
Not a word from their mouth can be trusted;
    their heart is filled with malice.
Their throat is an open grave;
    with their tongues they tell lies.
10 Declare them guilty, O God!
    Let their intrigues be their downfall.
Banish them for their many sins,
    for they have rebelled against you.
11 But let all who take refuge in you be glad;
    let them ever sing for joy.
Spread your protection over them,
    that those who love your name may rejoice in you.
12 Surely, Lord, you bless the righteous;
    you surround them with your favor as with a shield.

Thursday, May 21, 2015

In the Deep Sleep of Presence

Psalm 4 has its heart the process of sleep. To sleep in peace, to ponder God in sleep and being with God even as we sleep. The psalm streams a waterfall of words on the being with the Lord and how the Lord hears our prayers. Hears our prayer. Having the ear of the Master of the Universe arises in me as a privilege. Rather than sitting on God’s lap with a laundry list of my wishes and desires and having the good elves shoo me away for the next kid, I find sitting and listening at the feet of the Master more than enough. Yes, he will wipe and wash the dirt from my worn feet, but hearing him in my dreams, brings me peace.

Money forms the crooked backbone of our world, and we all suffer from the temptation to conflate money, its power and prestige, with Gods. I remember working on a national prayer hotline how every shift I had a gentleman call asking to win the lotto as if powerball would solve the hole in his heart. Before we laugh at him, I have heard similar ideas about wanting to follow Jesus to go to heaven. If we follow Jesus to save our skin in the afterlife, are we really suffering from chasing our egos and fail to find the presence of the Lord. Are we chasing vain world, when the Word that came to dwell with us in the flesh stands ready to be with us. When I listen to God in my sleep, in my prayers I discover the same gladness and joy spoken about in Psalm 4.

Yes, we are promised heaven, and yet, I discovered heaven begins in the presence of the Lord. When I sit and listen to the Lord, peace finds me and I am save within his presence. God has come to be with us and the Master of Universe empties himself to the point of listen to a small man in Spokane Valley. God listens to me about the fears I have about my son and his upcoming surgery. Jesus listens as a brother bring the turkey for Thanksgiving when I share about being overwhelmed by my little Tito losing his eye.

God the Father speaks to me in my distress and beings the calming water of living voice whose baritone vibrato can shake the foundations of my fears. The Holy Spirit’s hand takes my shoulder and guides me to where i need to go and helps me as I lift my son in the coming weeks, months and years. I am so very grateful for God’s hearing my prayers. Answering comes from the hearing and in the act of conversation with God in everything, I find the Gospel.

Psalm 4

Answer me when I call, O God of my right!
    You gave me room when I was in distress.
    Be gracious to me, and hear my prayer.
How long, you people, shall my honor suffer shame?
    How long will you love vain words, and seek after lies?Selah
But know that the Lord has set apart the faithful for himself;
    the Lord hears when I call to him.
When you are disturbed,[a] do not sin;
    ponder it on your beds, and be silent.Selah
Offer right sacrifices,
    and put your trust in the Lord.
There are many who say, “O that we might see some good!
    Let the light of your face shine on us, O Lord!”
You have put gladness in my heart
    more than when their grain and wine abound.
I will both lie down and sleep in peace;
    for you alone, O Lord, make me lie down in safety.

Wednesday, May 20, 2015

Gods Glory in Loving Enemies… Psalm 3

Psalm 3 enters into the darkness of real life. Like fling open the door and finding your bed filled with dirty sheets and infidelity like my poor Grandfather once did, Psalm 3 strips the Disneyness of life and reveals the pain of having enemies. Do we have enemies in life? We all do not like to think about enemies surrounding us, but if we are honest, we recognize the enemies we have. These enemies are all around and sometimes look glare at us in the mirror. How to escape these foes? Do we have a platoon of angels to slay our enemies and make them pay for the pain the caused?

Jesus calls us to love our enemies and that is his Glory. In Psalm 3, the call is to look beyond the enemies surrounding us and look to the Glory of God. We are called to make our homeless in his Glory and then God will deliver us from our enemies. And yet, the Glory comes from Jesus loving those very enemies, in reality all of us including me, and taking on the cross for their sake. We, to our chagrin, are called to rise beyond our hate and to lay down our perchance for violence and love those that despise us. We, of course, want to wallow in our hate of our enemies. To wallow in hate is like a stink bug lowering his head and aim his backside to pollute in self protection. The shoe will still crunch us in our hate. God call us to love our enemies.

The Glory of God comes through the Cross and through Jesus rises beyond the Cross to Easter. To make our home in the Glory of God means to trust this truth as people go at us for we will all have enemies. To make our home with Jesus means to transcend our own need for vengeance, for vengeance is the Lord’s, and to live in love and take the cross that comes with it trusting in the coming Easter. When I am attack for my faith in Jesus or because of my disfigurement or because of my Mexican heritage or because I believe they way Jesus does that Greed is not Good and a Nation that stands on Greed will fail to find God’s Grace, I remember Jesus words and think of how to love and how to turn my bitter heart toward Jesus and his Glory. For to love those that despise you makes the spooning up an egg to the top of Mount Everest with nothing more that flip flops and a bathing suit seem more possible by comparison.

But with Jesus and his strong hands, even kneading and softening of my coal hard rock of a heart becomes possible. Psalm 3 proclaims the trust in Gods hands and I place my life in those hands. For in his Glory I discover love, love God, love of my wife, love of Tito, of those who call me an idiot for voting as I do, for those who hate Mexicans like me out of fear, and love for the sun rising in the morning as I walk to work.

A psalm of David. When he fled from his son Absalom.

Lord, how many are my foes!
    How many rise up against me!
Many are saying of me,
    “God will not deliver him.”[b]
But you, Lord, are a shield around me,
    my glory, the One who lifts my head high.
I call out to the Lord,
    and he answers me from his holy mountain.
I lie down and sleep;
    I wake again, because the Lord sustains me.
I will not fear though tens of thousands
    assail me on every side.
Arise, Lord!
    Deliver me, my God!
Strike all my enemies on the jaw;
    break the teeth of the wicked.
From the Lord comes deliverance.
    May your blessing be on your people.

Tuesday, May 19, 2015

Psalm 2 and War

Psalm 2

Why do the nations conspire[a]
    and the peoples plot in vain?
The kings of the earth rise up
    and the rulers band together
    against the Lord and against his anointed, saying,
“Let us break their chains
    and throw off their shackles.”
The One enthroned in heaven laughs;
    the Lord scoffs at them.
He rebukes them in his anger
    and terrifies them in his wrath, saying,
“I have installed my king
    on Zion, my holy mountain.”
I will proclaim the Lord’s decree:
He said to me, “You are my son;
    today I have become your father.
Ask me,
    and I will make the nations your inheritance,
    the ends of the earth your possession.
You will break them with a rod of iron[b];
    you will dash them to pieces like pottery.”
10 Therefore, you kings, be wise;
    be warned, you rulers of the earth.
11 Serve the Lord with fear
    and celebrate his rule with trembling.
12 Kiss his son, or he will be angry
    and your way will lead to your destruction,
for his wrath can flare up in a moment.
    Blessed are all who take refuge in him.

Today, I read Psalm 2 and as a Christian I read it differently than the original Hebrews did. For I see it through the lens of Jesus. Jesus, for me, is the anointed who the world, namely the powers of Rome and Empire, crushed on the cross. Jesus and the Holy Trinity answers with resurrection and the forgiveness of sin. The wrath of God comes under the shadow of the cross and all transforms into love. Psalm 2 delves into politics and the state of nations. As we also take a similar perspective, one looking at the history of man and his wars, can we not join God in anger. The waste of the strength of young men in the act of killing each other for the benefit of what?

All wars are wastes of human resources. Men who could be building roads, farming, and raising children are instead aiming guns, tanks, and weapons at each other. Yes, we may bow to the necessity of war in a sinful world, but it does not make war glorious. I think that is the greatest weakness of the Hellenistic ideals passed down to us. Homer celebrates the glory of violence in the Iliad and we took look at the warrior as glorious. Hollywood has cashed in our lust for glories for violence. It is this violence that Psalm 2 speaks about and how this violence comes down on the anointed’s head in a crown of thorns. Yet, God answers us and his righteousness remains and love triumphs.

Only when we find our refuge in Jesus' love can we be blessed. 

Monday, May 18, 2015

Parading through Psalm 1

Psalm 1
Blessed is the man who doesn’t walk in the counsel of the wicked,
    nor stand on the path of sinners,
    nor sit in the seat of scoffers;
but his delight is in Yahweh’s[a] law.
    On his law he meditates day and night.
He will be like a tree planted by the streams of water,
    that produces its fruit in its season,
    whose leaf also does not wither.
    Whatever he does shall prosper.
The wicked are not so,
    but are like the chaff which the wind drives away.
Therefore the wicked shall not stand in the judgment,
    nor sinners in the congregation of the righteous.
For Yahweh knows the way of the righteous,
    but the way of the wicked shall perish.

To be a tree planet by the side of a life giving stream. The vision presented in Psalm 1 as the purpose of life. Within it seemly simple verses lays the greatest mystery. Meditate on the law of God or in as the word means, meditate on the teachings and life path of God. For me as a Christian, the Psalm 1 means to pay attention to Jesus as I move within the times of my life. Love God and love others, Jesus sums up the law. Mediate on loving God and loving others, says Psalm 1, and your life will be like a tree by the side of a stream. Love God and love others in the fullness of the present moment accompanied by the living God forges a life in which God presence guides us like a marching band, kids lined up with smiles, and the smell of popcorn and hotdogs.

Last Saturday, as my son rode in the Spokane Torch Light Lilac Parade in the coolest blue Corvette. My wife and I walk past the people lined up on the street; I came into contact with Jesus. The Spirit moved me as I saw the kids wave and want to give us high five. My son, only six, waved a  yellow glow stick with a cheap plastic star from with in the car. His face illuminated like an early sunrise over a blue ocean. The afternoon filled with thunderstorms, making us doubt with we would have the parade. But the clouds parted enough and the water fed the flowers but did not spoil the the parade. The people, all with their own stories and their own concerns, cheered. I mediated on long God and loving others. In front of us was a float playing 50s music with teenagers dancing at a sock hop and behind us was a local high school marching band.

We there to support Make-A-Wish, who was there to give support in our time when our family needed a break. Psalm 1 says that paying attention to love in loving God and loving others and your life will be fruitful like a tree by a stream. The wicked all fade, the vision of Psalm 1 says. Meditate in the law of love even as you walk in the rainy night on a Spokane May celebrating Lilacs, those who protect us, those who line the streets, those walking in the parade, those riding in corvettes because their childhoods were spent fighting diseases and the Lord who is present in all of this. Coming home, life was too beautiful to capture and I let Gods love flow through me, for Psalm 1 proclaims the deepest truth.

Saturday, May 16, 2015

Prayer Paying attention

Prayer is the the reality of Christian life. Or better put, there dimension of the Christian life by which Christians measure themselves and pay attention to God. Attention is a key ingredient to both love and of prayer. The act of paying attention creates love and when Jesus shares the secret to life of loving God and loving others, he gives the reality of abundant life which arises from paying attention to God and others and the whole of creation. Instead of distraction that culture and the society throws at us, whether by desires, fears or delusions. We find God when we pay attention to our scriptures, those around us and to God who is always present. We find Jesus when we consciously look for him in others eyes and in the dignity of their persons, for in their dignity lays the image of God. God comes to us through his creation, through his love and he is with us as we go about our daily life. 

Many Christians have disputed between whether God finds us in solitude and meditation or in actions of love or if either simply form another works-righteousness of us trying to be like God again. All three contain the truth. God finds us when we are still and know God is with us as within meditation, or to try to control God through meditation and solitude as we sinning humans will be prone to do, can lead us astray. The History of Christianity is filled with such excesses. We serve love and when we seek to enslave love toward our own desires, we fall into a pit of our making. Action can be a form of prayer and paying attention to God and of God finding us, but again, we can dry ourselves out without attention to God and making the action about our power and glory and ignore God by our ego or trying to please him. The original sin lurks though our lives and we cannot escape its grip so easily. Humility means the acknowledgement of perchance to wanting to be like gods of control and ignore the God of Love.   

When I discover the God who is always with me in playing with my son, in being with the people God places in my company, in my quiet time, I confront my deepest and wounded self, the self of my particular cross. Born deform and as such always suspect in the eyes of others, for we worship beauty gives to me a heavy cross to bare and on that can only be bared with the help of God. We all have such crosses, as I am aware. 

How do we imagine Jesus. Many think of his as the Platonic ideal of man, but without the burden of being weak like the rest of us, could it be a true incarnation. Without the weakness of men, then it would be Divine pretense, God putting a costume with a ripping off anytime it was convenient. So no, God took on the weakness of humans. Though it is clear that he took on the weakness of man without taking on sin. Sin makes us inhuman. For no reason that times of great sin like WWII has us exclaim mans inhumanity to man. Sin robs us of our humanity. No, God took on hunger, on being suspicious in the eyes of others (the rumors of being bastard and views of him being weird healer and a charlatan as they very charges the state with him his whole lie and led to the cross.) The temptations to control, to be selfish and to be above the common concerns of man as a spiritual superstar. Yes, Jesus, the incarnate God, emptied himself to being with us, even if that meant dying on a cross as a forgotten man. But he rose from the grave and because of it all man like myself doomed to be forgotten will be remembered by Jesus.

Friday, May 15, 2015

God finding me

God is with my in all things. So, I am chronicling my encounters with God, the Father, Son and Holy Spirit. These are reflections on discovering who God is, the world around me, and who I am. God transforms us as we journey with him. When we pray, read and seek God, we find God and God transform us in the process. This has become my odyssey and encounter with God.

Today, I got up little late as being tired from a long day I neglected to set my alarm. The morning light peeked through our shades waking me. I realized the time would shorter than normal to get ready for work. Lately, I have started the day with a psalm and quiet time, followed by a workout. I still had time for these morning rituals. I got up and put in the drops into my eyes that decrease the pressure from my Glaucoma and allows me to continue to see God’s glory in the daylight. Then, I read and prayed, and it felt dry. Whether from preoccupation with trying to squeeze all my rituals into less time or the fears I feel for my son’s up coming surgery, I am not certain.

My day with God started after prayer and scripture as I felt the blood given to me by biology and God flowing hard through my veins as I worked out. Jumping up and down in Jumping Jacks in my morning Tabata gave the sensation of God providence. So much of my body lays beyond my control. My heavy breathing coming from pushing myself in the 4 minute interval training forces me to encounter how my of my life and body are beyond me. Little Gods is how we think of ourselves like the captains of our own ships. Making this assumption, we go about our day with a degree of unawareness of God and others around us. We forget we are mortal and that moments will pass until we will become dust waiting for Jesus to reanimate us from the grave.

When I become aware of how much real control I lack in my life, I can start to look at the God that is always with me. I find Trinity and am filled with a joy at God’s presence with me. The world changes in front of my eyes and I notice with great wonder what God has created, entering the space of prayer. Being still and know the Trinity of Father son and Holy Spirit is God paraphrases a well know verse in the Bible and it has become my truth.