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Archive for the ‘Beauty’ Category

I was reading Walking With God by John Eldredge, and he pointed to a very interested idea. God’s creation doesn’t give us a sense of dated time. I thought this was stunning. Creation does give us night and day. It does give us seasons, all of which were present in the Garden. But it doesn’t give us a sense of dated time in our human sense, one that we can’t point to twenty years from now.

So much of our human architecture dates itself almost immediately. I was looking at a picture of the New York skyline and was impressed by how little was truly organic, or self regenerative. I love New York. Thought it was a great city but it was as the name suggests a concrete jungle.

About six months ago I went back to the neighborhood that I grew up in. I was surprised (or maybe not surprised) to see how dated our track home neighborhood felt. It was rows of small homes that all looked the same.

I look around at my own neighborhood and in twenty years, they will likely point to it as the track home of the early twenty-first century. It too will become dated, if not already. Even great cities like Florence, San Francisco, London, Chicago all became worn and dated. Much of Italy and Greece live off of this dated quality.

And yet when I stand in the middle of the forest, there is no sense of dated time. I don’t know why but I just find this fascinating.

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Dad,

It sucks down here. The people just don’t get it. I keep trying to show them what you look like and they just don’t seem to want to listen. They whine and complain. They abuse the snot out of each other and just won’t stop bugging me about sending lightning down. What’s with that? I perform miracles and they want more. It sometimes feels like a circus.

This guy came up to me and told me He wanted eternal life, which was good. But then I told him that He was going to have to sell his possessions and follow me. He bailed! Why couldn’t he see that it was crippling him? Everyone in the crowd kept talking about how hard it was to follow me. Can’t they see that their stuff is holding them back?

And then when I was talking to the crowd, one of the teachers came up to me and tried to trick me. Are you kidding me? He started asking me about the law. Very funny. I could see it coming a mile away. I really stumped him. I kept thinking, “When is this guy going to quit?”

Not everything is hard. I really love John. He’s got your spirit. He loves to love and I dig that. He keeps asking me about the deeper things like, “What is the word?” I love that. You’ve given him such a keen heart and mind.

Peter gets it. He took the risk to trust and figured out that he really could walk on water. I wish more of the disciples would figure that out. If only they could see what they are really capable of if they would believe. The loaves and the fishes thing took a little while though. They didn’t quite understand why I asked them to feed the people. And then nobody said thank you. Can you believe it?

One of the things that keeps me going is your beauty. The other day I sat in the wilderness and a butterfly sat on my knee. And just when I was feeling tired you gave me your sunset. You are so creative, so willing to show us your goodness. I love seeing that in the midst of the brokenness.

I also spent time with Nicodemus yesterday. He wants to meet alone. He’s concerned about what everyone will think and I keep telling him it doesn’t matter what they think. He doesn’t quite get that yet. In time, I guess.

We’re going to finish this aren’t we? We’re going to redeem what you started. I love that. It’s not easy but it’s worth it, isn’t it.
In your love.

Jesus

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How He Loves Us

This is one of my new favorite songs. (ht)

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How He Loves Us by John Mark McMillan

He is jealous for me,
Loves like a hurricane, I am a tree,
Bending beneath the weight of his wind and mercy.
When all of a sudden,
I am unaware of these afflictions eclipsed by glory,
And I realize just how beautiful You are,
And how great Your affections are for me.

And oh, how He loves us so,
Oh how He loves us,
How He loves us so

Yeah, He loves us,
Oh how He loves us,
Oh how He loves us,
Oh how He loves.
Yeah, He loves us,
Oh how He loves us,
Oh how He loves us,
Oh how He loves.

We are His portion and He is our prize,
Drawn to redemption by the grace in His eyes,
If grace is an ocean, we’re all sinking.
So Heaven meets earth like a sloppy wet kiss,
And the heart turns violently inside of my chest,
I don’t have time to maintain these regrets,
When I think about, the way…

He loves us,
Oh how He loves us,
Oh how He loves us,
Oh how He loves.
Yeah, He loves us,
Oh how He loves us,
Oh how He loves us,
Oh how He loves.

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When I was in junior high there were about six or seven categories of music. There was rock, pop, country, soul, jazz and orchestra. I’m sure I’m missing a few but the point is that the large portion of music was in neat little categories. And then in the 80’s rap and punk began to emerge. And then Run DMC covered Walk this Way by Aerosmith. I remember the first time I heard this song. I was completely blown away by the idea of covering a song in this way. Someone had the audacity to cross over. It felt strange and weird, and wrong in so many ways but right in so many new ways. People were asking, “Can you do that?” And with that…the cross over was born.

In the 90’s musicians began to experiment with cross over in a huge way. There was country-pop, rap-rock, jazz fusion, house, trip-hop, grunge. The lines between categories began to seriously blur and new music was born. You name the category and someone had mashed it up with some other type of music. I remember the first time I heard Linkin Park, which wasn’t new but musically was so fresh. I loved it. NuMetal didn’t exist even a decade ago. And this blending of music produced some incredibly creative expressions of music. Not all of it was good, but a lot of it was.

Well then I read the Tall Skinny Kiwi post, and he says,

“i am in london. staying the night on jonny baker’s couch. again. the ‘small missional communities’ conference went well in northampton and it was great to see the various streams (cell church, base ecclesial communities, savlos, emerging church, anglican cell, post-YWAM, etc) come together. came home with jonny, which is why i am here.”

His description of the various group, all of which are emerging expression, caught my attention. Post-YWAM? Then I started thinking about presbymergent, submergent, anglimergent, Luthermergent, Reformergent and so on. And I realize that we’re experiencing the mash up of Christianity. We’re experimenting with new expressions that can feel strange at the same time bringing something new that we’ve never seen before. And for some this must feel so strange. What are they doing? Can they do that?

I like it.

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Page 123 Meme

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Aaron tagged me on the 123 Meme. It’s relatively simple.

  • Find page 123
  • Find the first five sentences
  • Post the next three sentences

A friend of mine just returned a copy of Iron John by Robert Bly so this should make for an intriguing post.

“What is left? We can’t stop the story here, because the feminine has not yet appeared. His mother, as the maternal form of the feminine, he has of course experienced, but that is all. And now he is about the meet the feminine in a nonmaternal form, in its powerful, blossoming, savvy, wild, instigating, erotic, playful form.”

Wow, that’s a great picture of a woman.

I tag you, if you want to play along.

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When I was a child I used to go to my grandmother’s house in Ontario California for a week during the summer.  We’d wake up by 7:00 because there were no curtains in the room we stayed in and the sun used to shine in our bedroom.  The first thing we would do is rush and turn on the television and watch our favorite cartoons.  But once breakfast was served, my grandmother would turn off the television and tell us, “You two should play outside.”  When we used to complain, she would then say, “You kids should be so lucky.  I didn’t even have a television set when I was your age.”
Fast forward 30 some odd years.  I spent a weekend a while ago with some friends at  nice little retreat up in the hills.  It was an absolutely stunning location with so much beauty.  My wife and I have a strict rule of no television until after school during school year.  On vacation we relax that a bit.  But sensing the beauty of the surroundings I turned off the television and told the kids (some mine and some my friends) to go out and play.  My kids are used to this but my friends kids instantly grabbed their hand-held Nintendos and spent the next two hours playing them.  When they had to turn them off the first thing they said was, “I’m bored.”

And now I’m wondering if I’m turning into my grandmother or this generation just doesn’t know how to use its imagination.  Some of my best days were spent with the television off.

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Thank You

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If you are reading this…Thank you.

I’ve been in a really great presence of love lately.  And this has made me aware of how blessed I am.  One of the things I am blessed to have is people in my life who dialog with me about what is one my heart.  And the more I learn to share what is one my heart the more I realize it is on other people’s hearts too.  This learning to share and let what is inside come out is not the easiest thing for me but it is worth it.  The sharing and dialog has enriched my life in so many great ways.

So today I want to say thank to everyone who passes by and reads this.  Know that I appreciate what you give to me.

And if you can, let me know who you are and why you read my blog.  Thanks in advance.

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