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Archive for the ‘Quotes’ Category

Overheard In A Coffee Shop

pour

“Maturity is growing into the awareness of our ignorance.”

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True Happiness

In this video, which is a must watch, the guy says, “Everything’s amazing, but nobodies happy.”  That’s a pretty profound statement regarding consumer culture.  It’s kind of one of those obvious statements that when spoken needs little defense.  It’s just so true.

Matthew West sings in his song, Nothing Else.

“Not friends or money or alcohol
None of these things, believe me
You can try them all
Not status
Not success
I know none of these things
will ever bring true happiness”

Why is that?  I was thinking about it and was thinking that none of these things allow our soul to rest.  Stuff doesn’t speak into the deepest questions of the heart, such as who will love me?  It just can’t no matter how much we have.  Stuff doesn’t speak back to us how valuable we are.  It just sits there entertaining us.

What if true happiness rests in the awareness of being loved?  If the love of God is true, then the most fundamental questions of the soul can be put to rest.  And if that is true, no matter where we are, we are then not defined by our circumstances.  I love that.

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This last weekend I had the opportunity to go on a retreat with my Tribe.  It was an awesome weekend of so much healing and restoration.  But a good friend of mine asked a question as he was wrestling with what it means to surrender to God.  He asked,

“Why does surrender so often feel like failure?”

Interested in your thoughts.

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Everything has fallen to pieces,
Earth is dying help me Jesus
We need guidance, we’ve been misled,
young and hostile, but not stupid.

Tom DeLonge, Anthem Part Two

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There is a big question right now about words.  What do we do with words?

I love what George Carlin said about words.  It expresses so much insight into this thing we do with words.  He said,

“I love words.  I thank you for hearing my words.  I want to tell you something about words that I think is important.  I say they are my work, my play, they are my passion.  Words are all we have really.  We have thought but thoughts are fluid. Weweeeemmmwehemmsmarumpeedump.  But then we assign a word to a thought.  Dink.  And we’re stuck with the word for that thought.  So be careful with words.”  George Carlin

And the question is, “Do we abandon a word?”  And the reasons are many.  The word has become overused.  It has lost its original meaning.  It’s become attached to a myth that it can’t seem to shed.  We’re tired of saying it.  All of which are good reasons to ponder.  But are these really good reasons to abandon the original word?  And what is the cost of abandoning the word?

I would first ask if we have a better word to substitute what we are abandoning?  I get clarifying and being crystal clear about what we say.  It’s helpful.  But do we have something to replace it with, something more clarifying, more informative to the original idea?  Because if we lose the original word and don’t replace it with something, we lose the ability to have or continue a meaningful conversation about a thought or idea.

Abandoning the word then has the capacity to exacerbate the problems we hoped to solve in the first place.  Misunderstanding and myth become the norm rather than the exception because we have no way to talk about it.

“You know that thing?”

“What thing? You mean THAT thing?”

“No this thing!”

“But that thing is this thing.  Isn’t it?”

“For you it is, but not for me.”

“Say what?”

Life can easily resemble an Abbott and Costello routine.

I would then ask if we have moved past the original idea because something more meaningful has replaced it?  Have we, as Brother Maynard asks, “Emerged.”  And to what?  I personally think we haven’t yet.  We’ve simply grown tired of the space we are currently in.  We’ve grown tired of the cocoon we’ve been living in for some time now.  But I do think something is coming.

If we abandon the word, does that mean the word has lost its meaning or that we don’t want to work through the conflict (see #5) anymore.  I really get this tension.  Words have costs to our lives.  Misunderstanding is often harder to redeem than if no words had been said at all.  But I would offer that this leaves us in no better position.  It simple abandons our ability to have a thoughtful and generative conversation about what we originally assumed and hoped was a meaningful conversation.  It also leaves those are just beginning the conversation behind.

I keep coming back to John 1:1, which seems to echo Carlin in some ways.  “In the beginning was the word.” And I love words.

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The Coolest Thing

The coolest thing I heard today (actually read) was:

“If we then invoke the leopard that can’t change his spots, saying, ‘That’s just the way I am, might as well accept it,’ we abandon the freedom to change and exploit what we have been in the past to avoid responsibility for what we shall become in the future.”

Allen Wheelis, How People Change

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This quote is from Ikon’s “Queer” service.  It embodies the very space I would like to be part of and participate in.

“But in this room, for the next hour, we lay down these debates to concentrate on the fact that all are welcome at the table and to reaffirm that the only ones who are excluded are those who exclude themselves by not wanting to sit with others, listen to others, learn from others and love others.  We are a community attempting to work out what it means to be open to God, to loving and to being transformed in love and as such, the community is primarily for those who embrace this journey – whether conservative, or liberal, protestant or catholic, theist or atheist, gay or straight.  This is the unity that exists amidst our diversity – this is why we need this place.”

From How Not To Speak of God by Peter Rollins

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