Love, love, love

Transformers The Ride - 3D
Transformers The Ride – 3D (Photo credit: prayitno)

In the Transformers movies, one of the main protagonists is named Bumble Bee.  Bumble Bee, it seems, has suffered some sort of damage to his ability to talk.  It’s a little strange, because we see some of his team mates get ripped apart and battered unimaginably.  Most of them are fixed, but Bumble Bee is left with out a voice.

Perhaps Bumble Bee has a really annoying voice and nobody wants to hear it.  Or maybe he does not have the right robot insurance or something.  Anyway…

Bumble Bee compensates by stealing phrases off the radio and putting them together to say what he wants to say.  And this is my point, why I have subjected you to perhaps the geekiest blog intro ever.

Some of them when I pray, I feel a little like Bumble Bee.  My prayers evoke what feels like a response from outside of me.  But it feels like this outside presence is using my own memories like Bumble Bee uses the radio, it feels like memories, words etc. that are already inside my mind are strung together in new ways.

This way of progressing does not merely repeat things back at me that I think I already new.  The context within my life, and the juxtapositions of the different phrases etc. brings out a legitimately new understanding.

That was more of  the geeky introduction, in case you like to keep track of such things.  But don’t worry.  The introduction is now officially over.

When I was praying yesterday, I had this experience, of God speaking to me through that which I already know.

His message was liberating and terrifying; at first heartening and then as I pondered it… really hard.

I realized how little truly matters.

It doesn’t matter what I wear, what I buy, what my house looks like.  And doesn’t matter if I’m ugly.  It doesn’t matter if I’m educated.

It doesn’t matter who I know.  Mostly, it doesn’t matter what I know.  It does not matter what my life experiences are.

It doesn’t matter if I am deeply loved by those around me.

In the final analysis, I am powerless to determine all these things.  Through the actions I take (and the ones I don’t take) I can stack the deck a little bit, too increase my likelihood of how all those things turn out.

But the final deal is God’s.  And the way he deals all those things out will emphasize the point: none of that matters.  Even the last one.  It just doesn’t matter how much people love me.

All that matters is how much I love others.  Deeply love them, love them in wisdom and truth.  Love them as unconditionally as I can.

In the end, we will be lead to a cross.  Will we follow His example and pour out our love once we are hanging from it?

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jeffsdeepthoughts

The stories that speak to our soul begin at a home where things are good. Cinderella is happy with her father. The three little pigs have grown up and are ready to move on. Bilbo Baggins knows his shire. Adam and Eve walk with God in the garden. My story isn’t much different. There was a time and a place where it was so good. There was a community for me. And there was joy. We were filled with a sincere desire to do what God wanted us to do. We possessed explanations and understandings that went a certain distance. We offered security and tradition and laughter. For a lot of years, that was enough. I have this sense that it was also necessary. I have this surety, now, that it certainly wasn’t everything. There were some things that became increasingly problematic as time went by. There was a desire to package things up so very neatly. Sunday morning services were efficient and strategic. Responses to differences of opinion were premeditated. Formula began to feel more important than being real. A real desire for everybody to be one of us, but also a real sense that there is an us, and there is a them. They carried a regret that it has to be this way, but deeper than this regret was a surety that this is how it is. I began to recognize that there was a cost of admission to that group. There were people who sat at the door, collecting it. Those people wished they didn’t have to. But I guess they felt like they did have to. They let some people in, and they left others out. There was a provisional membership. My friends did possess a desire to accommodate people that are different… But it would be best for everyone concerned if they were only a little bit different. I did make many steps forward in this place. Before I went there, there were lies that I believed. Some of the things that I learned there, I still hold on to. But that place is not my home anymore. Those people are not my community anymore. There were times it was hard. I am engaged in a different community now. And I am working hard at finding a place in many different places now, embracing many different kind of families. I don’t always get it right. I am trying and I am learning and I am moving foreward. I have this sense that I am not alone in these experiences. I believe that we are tribe and we are growing. We are pilgrims, looking for a new holy land. Perhaps we won’t settle on the same spot of land. But if you’ve read this far, I am thinking that we are probably headed in the same general direction. I have begun this blog to talk about where my journey is taking me. In every space, we find people who help us along. And maybe we can get to know each other, here. We embrace ideas that provide a structure for the things we believe, and perhaps we can share these too. Maybe we can form a group, a tribe, a community, if we can figure out a way to work through the shadow of these kinds of groups, if we can bigger than the us-and-them ideas that have caused so much trouble in the past. As important as they are, I think the very nature of online interactions will lend itself to something equally powerful. I am stumbling onto these practices that my grandfathers and great grandfathers in the faith engaged in. I am learning about these attitudes and intuitions are so different than the kinds of things we call doctrine today. I don’t know about you, but I am running out of patience, and even interest, in conversations about doctrine. I hope that maybe you’ll share a little something about where your journey is taking you, and maybe our common joys and challenges might help each other along, and we might lift each other up. Thanks for doing this journey with me.

5 thoughts on “Love, love, love”

  1. Okay there, Qoheleth . . .

    No, really. You know that thing about real artists having to actually suffer? That’s you, my friend. I’m sorry about it, but . . . you’re right. We should’ve expected a cross anyway . . . It’s a sorrow AND an honour, I guess . . .

    Like

  2. “Liberating and terrifying”… You can say that again, I admit I don’t like thinking in this monochromatic light… it strips off all the fluff that allows me to float along in my personal fairytale, and now, well yeah you said it.

    Like

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