Sunday, April 27, 2014

Excessive Preaching, or Glitter by the Bushel

  In my "spare time", whatever that finally proves to be, I have taken on a part-time job. I am working nights, at the local public schools, as a "custodian", which is a mild (and face saving) way of saying "janitor"! I will not tell you here which schools exactly we work nights at, but being the observant chap that I am, I do notice things after only one week on the job. I am not certain as to how best to go about mentioning it, since this is (clearly) a touchy subject, which is to say; women are involved. So, just be prepared (in advance) to be possibly offended by my profound "insensitivity"!
   Okay then, let us begin. Uhm, since when did classrooms become "eating stations"? Why am I finding pizza (?) boxes? Why is there popcorn on the floor in here? Is lunch time just too too far removed in time and space for these little rascals to "endure" hunger, without pounding down a few hundred calories, every hour or so? When was it exactly, between 1976 and the present; that the cafeteria and the classroom became interchangeably places to eat? I would also like to know, is all this grub being bought on the taxpayer's dime? Am I the one buying the pizza? Can I have some? Such constant eating, in order to "maintain one's strength", strikes me as "odd", at the very minimum. Is the big idea here to have the little rascals putting on some serious poundage? Who wins there? Teachers, who are nearly all female, actually believe that in order to lose weight it is "important" to keep-eating...have you noticed?
   For the past four months, I have been losing some weight, about forty pounds thus far. The shocking reality of the phenomenon is that; in order to do so, (1). I quit eating so much, and (2). I consistently work off more fuel than I eat. Uniformly, when presented with the fait accompli of such loss, not a single fem-bod which I have encountered..."approves"! Each one of them (in their own way), proposes the; "But, you've 'got to' eat!" theory. According to this view, the way to lose weight, is to continue to eat?...go figure. Women are (I think) generally opposed to the idea of quitting eating (it, as a kind of "anti-life" type of thing?), and in fact believe that such behavior is "dangerous". Dangerous to whom precisely, or just what said "danger" is, we are not normally informed of by our fem-experts. And as coincidence would have it, the vast screaming majority of government school's employees are fems, and well; you see the connection I am making then? It is a little bit like the last ten years, and it's weird-pants craze of water bottles. Just when was it (date-wise I mean), that it became "wise" to always and everywhere be taking tiny sips from a water bottle? I mean, just how "serious" is the dehydration "issue", when we consider that we discuss an air-conditioned, indoor space? Okay, so if a guy were out breaking rocks with a hammer in the sun for ten hours, without a drink, that (possibly) could present some hydration problems, but in the cool air?, sitting down in a classroom?, never once breaking a rock, nor even lifting (much less swinging!), a hammer? Please...Men and women really do differ, and at minimum, we really do disagree on just how to view "nutrition". Let's just start there! So, any other "custodial" insights you'd care to note then; Mr. Zany Misogynist Pants? Sure, how about that whole glitter thing?
   The politically correct view of "substances" is that some of them should be "controlled", and/or suitably "banned". I am quite sure that you (clearly) recall that portion of the constitution, in which authorization is granted to the the federal "gubmint" to regulate which chemicals you may lawfully pour into various orifices of your body? It is in the "controlled substances" part! You know, the whole "War on Drugs"(?), which has been such a rip-roaring success! So, as a "custodian", I am finding the true list of substances which the feds intended us to (by the founders) prohibit (for our own good of course!). Item number one on my "custodial" list of controlled substances to be banned by law from government schools, is...glitter? Not to be an insensitive boor at this juncture, but aren't we herein discussing "high schools"? This is not third graders we are talking about. No sir, these are the very-nearly "college ready", we yap about here? So, what's up with all this miserable glitter being used anyhow? In these toxic amounts, such represents; in this environ (such that it is stuck into practically every carpeted surface?), a true eco-hazard! Doesn't all this reflectivity also contribute to global warming? Talk about "scary"! Did we (the taxpayers); get a really, REALLY good deal on the junk, if we would but simply order the crud by the bushel, or something? Why are 17 year olds playing with glitter and glue anyhow? And if the goal of "education" is to make shiny (ugly) "posters" after all, rather than to master grammar, history, or logic couldn't we just do without the final five to eight years of state indoctrination? Couldn't ten year olds manufacture equally "pretty posters", just as well as our eighteeners? And it is this oafish chauvinism of mine, which brings us to my actual "custodial" gripe, the one I have (so far) only alluded to! Back when I attended the misery which is "high school", there was not nearly so much excessive preaching going on!
  The constant and nattering harangue, this self-righteous badgering, from the position of the moralist's "superiority complex", does not "belong" in our schools! Isn't this bellyache of mine here, just almost exactly what the schools themselves level against Christianity? Think for a moment of the yearly battles over manger scenes, or the moronic arguments about whether it is "legal" for a Bible study to meet, voluntarily on school grounds. Recall the outrage, the "danger" of preaching on school grounds by the "open minded, and educated professionals". Isn't such "danger" a bit like that of, in the classroom, just not "enough eating"? That is; this kind of "danger", exists mainly between your ears! What about those legal fights over whether a kid can have a picture of Jesus on his tee shirt, or "intolerantly" pass out candy with scripture verses attached? Aren't we always and everywhere warned about the "dangers of crossing that constitutional line"? Well guess what, as a part-time "custodian", I am deeply offended by the incessant, and narrow preaching going on at taxpayer expense, inside our schools! Do you doubt me?
   Enter one of our "schools" and just peer intently for about four seconds, at the walls. I swear; producing these propaganda posters must take the lion's share of our "student's" time! The glitter alone, weighing in at pounds, not ounces, (at least that portion of the stuff that stuck, and didn't end up in the carpet), is there in front of you, forming "important messages". I (for one), find the words to be disturbing. "End bullying at X-high now!", or how about "Excellence begins here!"? The sign proposing that "4 out of 5 Rap Songs Feature Drug Use", certainly makes one wonder. Is this an endorsement of drug use, or a pitch for the "federally mandated War on Drugs", it's "opposite"? It is hard to say for certain. In either case, glitter by the kilo; certainly catches one's eye. And recall that you are the one paying for this narrow-minded puritanism sir! Where, I ask, is the much vaunted "inclusion" for those drug-using, rap music addicted; deeply un-excellent bullies among us? Aren't they, (also) "our precious children"(!), being thus ostracised, by religious bigotry, and a hypocritical, intolerant fundamentalism here? If they can use that hammer, why can't we? The religion may be called marxism, but utterly religious it remains!
   To be clear here, I just hope you understand in this, that the preaching of righteousness, is itself a covenantal activity. Say it this way. When Mom said to you, in her threatening (yet endearing!) manner; "You better straighten up young man!", you instinctively grasped that such a thing was indeed, both desirable, and do-able! In short, the contractual aspect of the preaching of righteousness, supposes a kind of estate where-in the terms are either met, or meet-able. Are we on the same page here? Well then; that being said, the terms of true righteousness, that of meeting the expectation-demands of the Most High, are not, and cannot be met, nor are they meetable, by us. The standard remains "perfection", regardless of any "ability" on our part to ratify same. For this reason, and for this alone, the "world" hates and rejects faith. How "narrow", how "intolerant" is that? Just because a thing is impossible, they reject it? Likewise, for this reason, and for this alone, Christianity, (not Islam!) is seen as "narrow". And I am not eager to bring this up here, but this is the same thing we have been looking at all along (in this C.P.E. at least). This type of thinking, is (fundamentally) "feminine".
   The fem-bot view is essentially that it would be (by definition), "unfair" (therefore unjust?), to expect and demand terms of an agreement which one side could not, nor would not (supposing ability), ever, ever fulfill. And it is this feminine "righteousness" itself which we are observing here as janitor commentators. You "can" (indeed) "end bullying here at school X" supposing of course, that you are the one defining the theory and practice of same. You are (in fact), able to "strive for excellence", supposing you cared for a moment to do so. This would be true also, if that said "excellence" defined, meant mainly gluing on improbable amounts of glitter to propaganda posters... Sure, you could do so, but where is the hope in that?
   If hope turns out to be built upon the crappy, shallow foundation of my "inherent goodness", or my shabby "ability", then even I am unable to care! No sir. True preaching says two things at once. The standard-acceptable is perfection (and perfection alone), and this be true forever so! This formats point one. The second is that, the agreement, the contract (covenant really) is struck between the Father and the Son. It was never between "god and man". That kind of lousy half-wit agreement, is all about "Trying harder, to be a more loving, caring individual", you know? It is all that idiotic guck, and goo about "positivity", and "Trying your very-very best"? Melancholy molasses, maudlin sentiment we find here. In the end, it is just the flip-side to you blowing your (stupid) brains out. It is the "up-side" in "sui-cide"...hooray for that? What "hope" there is in it, is precisely what kills the heart, because the fem-hope is that maybe with enough make-up, lies, and wheedling I can skid across the finish line, on mere charm alone?
   Here is the covenant. Sampson (my personal hero!), alone, sad and beaten is chained to the posts in his foe's house. He calls to YAH, "One more time, give me strength!". He pulls with all there is in him. It is not, nor could it ever be; "good enough". With a shout, and in the Spirit, he proceeds to pull down, with a strength not his own, the house! He kills more in that one day than in all his other mighty exploits... This guy, you gotta love! Meanwhile, the "true Sampson", with one Almighty heave, pulls down...reality itself? All his foes, ALL of His enemies, are crushed. There are no survivors.
   Well, that is not quite true. The true Sampson, after wrecking the "Is", Himself emerges alive from that awesome catastrophe. But wait! There are others! Ah, I see it now, all them that were "hidden under (and with, Him)" in that crash, they too survived! That "tiny flock" made it, by hiding under Him! That is covenant, that is the real. Start there, and lose the glitter already!
   He says to Abe, "Yo Abe, get me a head-count on the stars will ya?". Then Abe will know the number of his descendants, the size of the tiny flock! "Hey Abe-ster, sit down at the beach, I need a count on the grains of sand, so that you can know the throng which is found hidden in His, the true Sampson's side!". The reality of hope is that you shall stand again, not by your power, not because you deserve it, not for your renown. The reality of hope is that you are loved, you really are! But was for "Another's" sake, all along, there never was "another option". The snake lied! The fact of hope is; you are welcomed, (you really are!) but it was always because He-first, was and is welcomed. Start there, and ditch the glitter will ya?

Saturday, April 19, 2014

Gone Too Far...Not!

  The Beatles, on You Tube; feature music that I recall from about fourth and fifth grade. As a ten year-old, micro hippie, I thought the Beatles were "really cool" (which is an ancient form of praise).
Back in Mrs. Ryder's fifth grade class (as dinosaurs continued to roam the Earth), I had little or no appreciation for how these "cool cats" were, at that time; being influenced by hallucinogens. Go back and compare the sounds from 1963, to 1967. In four years, we go from "I wanna hold your hand, yeah, yeah, yeah,"; to "Nothing is real, let me take you down, cause I'm going to Strawberry Fields, nothing to get hung about..." The before and after photos of these guys is also a fairly spooky proposition, they go from these "fresh-faced youngsters", to these rejects from the "hair university"? From bouncy to bearded-wizened, we travel, and most importantly; we end up jaded! The question of whether they "went too far" in their "evolution", was (I think) addressed by my elders, back then. The resultant conclusion was a loose type of defining, a "non-judgemental" rule of thumb. It went something like this: "Rock and Roll music is one thing, we all loved "Johnny B. Goode" after all, but that "heavy metal" music is just going too far (for my tastes)".
  Now, this sort of drawing of lines in sand was (I now think) a form of code. Any "translation effort" at this stage by me, would be necessarily "loose", in that I am not now certain that I was at that time hearing the "undertones" of the discussion-then correctly. All that junk aside, the rule of thumb, in English might run, "This isn't about 'my tastes', let's just start there. What it is about is; look at what dope has done to those young musicians, and I don't mean reefer either. I am talking heroin, L.S.D., and that kind of thing. It has wrecked them, they have gone too far! And the way I can make this assertion, is right there in the music, just listen to it!" "A Day in the Life" just isn't in the same class as "Help!". So then, the "heavy metal" sound became a type of badge for some to wear, as an "officially unacceptable" type of marker to self-designate by. A replacement for leather jackets, as a "bad-boy" badge, is our goal here? We keep generating our "opposites"...
  To change the topic some, I go out with a church group, to the local state prison for a "chapel service" on Sunday afternoons. The burning issue, the idea which we keep returning to, out there with those guys; is whether they "have gone too far". Have I sinned "the unforgivable sin"? And as far as I can detect, the very asking of the question, proposes a "negative" as response, but that will hardly do. The problem with our consciences isn't that they condemn us, it is that they rightly do so! The flaky, lightweight smurf-love approach of much of the church just falls flat, and it does so, right about "here". When an inmate, (or me!) really wants an answer, to; "Have I gone too far?", it is not "the loving thing" to say things like, "Oh, you aren't so bad," or "You shouldn't be so hard on yourself," or Don't be so negative". Horse wonkus! The whole issue of the conscience is that it is I who damn me, and I am right to do so! For you to undermine that right, and thus, so to advance a general field of squishy acceptance, based upon a type of code, denoting merely a new, and easily kept "heavy metal" type of exclusion clause, for any proposed future "failure"; creates that very failure itself!
  Have I lost you there? Let's reboot the discussion then. The unforgivable sin against the Spirit is almost universally misrepresented. Let's just start our word train there. This has just about nothing to do with what most evangelicals blather on about, namely a rejection of the Son, and in an orderly and serial fashion; so to do. To qualify His word in this fashion, says in brief, that unrepentance itself is unforgivable! That is clearly insane. If that were the case, there would be no hope for us, in that we failing to repent, must succeed at it! The actual issue was that the exorcisms being done in ancient Israel, were fairly elaborate affairs. They might have included prayer, incense(?), scripture readings, fasting, and importantly; these actions were taken on only by paid professionals! This was definitely not an impromptu affair, done by amateurs who just go around yelling at devils...
  The Nazarene comes along, and with a word, (okay, maybe with a pointed finger too?) He boldly speaks directly to the spirit, and demands, "You,... out, NOW!". The Lord of the Covenant was doing legal evictions! And the blasted thing left, just like that! The drawn out affair, the official rigamarole of the pros was now being done by non-union scabs! This was the "problem" for the professionally religious. They could not equal, nor duplicate His deeds and so; their retort was to the effect: "Well, the only reason He can do that, is that He is one of them! He casts out the devil, by the devil's own power!". This type of brain failure on the part of the "spiritual giants" present at the time, is what brings out, in effect; "You cannot be that stupid, I say so! Say anything you like about the Son, it's all forgivable, but when you begin that nonsense with the Spirit, then you have gone too far! Such idiocy is just too much, not in this nor the next world, is such darkened "thinking" allowed. Even you blockheads cannot be that dense, so to "miss" that the crippled now stand up whole, the blind are now seeing, the dead rise, and the demon-possessed are now clothed, and in their right mind." To "blame" this wholesome work on the devil is to purposely "miss" the entire reality of the only escape hatch available, from the sinking submarine (of existence itself!) as being showcased by the Son-come (and coming!), as ratified by the Spirit, and by Him-only (until you join in at least). The "deal", the covenant, is always, always, always (are you "getting" this?), between two contracting parties, ratified, and "observed" by a third, and impartial party. Such is the shape of the real. You cannot "take it, or leave it". Beyond "it", there is nothing "there". The "deal" (the real one), is thus between the Father and the Son...isn't it obvious? Oops, I can see that glazed look again creeping across your mug. In our ambition to achieve clarity, let us re-re-boot!
  Think with me of the future. Is there a type of unforgivability out there in future land for we, the religiously devout rocket scientists to avoid? Of course there is! Rev 14: 9-11 is a ghastly affair. This business of; "Drinking the wine of the wrath, mixed in full strength of His rage, so to be tormented with fire and brimstone", is a fairly strengthy assertion I should note. It contains zero loopholes, and sure looks "unforgivable" to me! The smoke of the torment goes up ever, and ever; so just what is the egregious, and unforgivable sin in question here? Well basically, it is the idiotic attempt, to (by "law"); muscle the Spirit out of position. We blockheads thereby assert that He is incompetent to witness any further contractual obligations?...Huh?
  Think small with me here. So you want me to come over and mow your lawn? You offer me ten bucks, and I object that the amount is wrong, plus my schedule won't allow, yadda yadda. Finally, we haggle, and come up with a "binding" agreement. What is "bound"? My conscience is being bound mainly, and if things get ugly, it also could descend into a matter of "law", but such is not necessary! The heart and soul of compacts is dealing with your brother in good faith, did you miss that? Do you see? I, as a son of Adam, and you as one also, are indeed competent to negotiate our friendly contracts, but there is always, always, and always, a "silent third party". He Is the One who ratifies, validates, and regularizes all contractual (read as; "covenantal") agreements, and He must not (and really can not in any case) be spurned, or ignored. If any contract to do anything, for any one,... ever (are you "getting" this?), is not witnessed by the Spirit of Truth, then there is no way left open for us to define the word "lie"! Minus this Witness, there remains no way to discuss the phrases "in earnest", or "in good faith". So then, to "take the mark" in your body, is to say (in essence); that the government of this world (the "authority-below"), is not only competent to witness compacts, but actually "replaces" the Most High? Wonkus of equine! You cannot be that stupid! He says so. Violation of the covenant authority, is to say two things at once, both of them unacceptable, both of them untrue, and finally and ever certainly so!
  You "go too far" not in listening to "heavy metal", or "joining a gang"; you do so when you say that the powerful deliverance FROM devils, is done BY devils. Or to rephrase, you go too far when you say that contracts and agreements can only ever be sealed by the "gubmint", and that we as private individuals (sons of Adam), "Have no right to do so"! Your promise to me to pay me the ten bucks we agreed upon, in my successful mowing of grass, is "really" between "just us", and it is Really Testified To, and Ratified by, Him-Most-High. It is both, or else our consciences are completely out to lunch! Without Him as Witness, there remains no way to judge the truth of anything! In such a case, we would not be able to tell the difference between demonic oppression, from that of Spirit guided goodness. Without Him, there is no "standard" by which to do so, and He, in any case; would never agree to that type of thing. If you don't know that about Him, you know nothing about Him. Are we really that blind? And without His "meddling" in our affairs, the answer must be a vigorous "Yes!". Our conscience is only a "guide" insofar as it has been taught. But it is best (and only truly) taught by Him, the Spirit of Truth. In brief, "going too far", means trying (seriously?) to educate our sense of right and wrong away-from, and outside Him-Forever-Right? Such is the contraband our parents imported from Eden. It proves to be poison and at very best, outrageous nonsense! The smuggled goods numb us, but not even we are allowed to be so stupid, as to "dismiss" the testimony of the Spirit!
  The entire mission of the Son into this crazy rat-hole of a world, was to deliver the deluded sons of Adam (pssst, this is where you come in); prior to the coming violent overthrow from on high. Our "problem" is Him, and His unstoppable justice! As merely (or only); sons of Adam, there was no hope remaining for us. However, as Sons of God, which would be another class of creature (since the Incarnation at minimum), there was a new way (one precisely, to be exact) out of here. It is Easter! The Real Contract, the Actual Covenant (of grace!), isn't some deluded mess between "God and mankind", that generic mass, proposing "blessing" upon some vague fulfillment of "goodness" by us. We've got none! Rather, the Real Deal is betwixt the Father and the Son. In that compact, the Son "vouches" for, and undertakes to ratify all righteousness for His own, and succeeds marvelously! The Father Almighty "overlooks" our base treason, and insane rebellion against "Is", and her Maker, and declares us lawfully dead, and so we are!
  The Mighty One retains the right to recall the dead (for purely legal purposes you see?), and does so in the case of the Covenant Lord Himself, since He has been found innocent of all charges leveled against Him. He then, (that same Lord) "insists" that we be raised-with Him, as joint heirs? Eden thus is forever closed to us, but a better-higher, a cleaner-gladder "new land" beckons! The Spirit Himself, as the "disinterested, and third party" testifies! To kill off this testimony is to murder hope itself, and He will not allow that level of stupidity. Even we cannot be that dumb, and He says so. He the Guarantor, He the Executor, He the Executed! Who is "equal" to all this? That-a-way we find hope, life, and sanity. It's Easter I tell ya! He is risen indeed, so to never die again...pssst, this is where you come in!

Sunday, April 13, 2014

Potato Chips From Mars

  This really ought not bother me as much as it, in fact; does. Does anyone even recall when all of this began? You know what we are talking about here, it is those darned stories about Mars, and (is it more than one?) the ridiculous meteorite(s) "found".
  I want to say that it was back in the eighties, or nineties when we first heard that (now get this), down in Antarctica, a sliver of rock was "found". It was "proven to" have come from Mars. Was it because of some lichens or moss found on it? Do you recall this? The thing was supposedly launched, not only into orbit, but with enough boost to leave Martian orbit? Furthermore, the rascal then found it's way into earth's gravitation and next, "chose to" land on a land mass, amid a world in which the majority is surfaced with water? Upon that land mass, it next volunteered to bury itself; not in miles thick ice, where you might expect it to, but just kinda ends up bouncing down on a beach? Then it had the remarkable savvy to find that very very small section of the frozen continent in which people do live (all 14 of them!). "Fortunately", someone (of the 14?) reached down and picked her up! And just to make this bizarre summary truly stupid, we are to infer from the droll, and matter of fact manner of the "scientists", that there is nothing at all unusual in the entire mess!
   Would anyone have objected if instead of a rock, it was a bag of potato chips which had so very marvelously made the long journey?
  Back in the 1950's (I think) there was some talk that an "atomic cannon" might potentially be able to launch (ala' Jules Verne), satellites; thus by-passing the need for rockets. That idea failed. The highest anything could be shot upward was in  the neighborhood of 60 miles, and then the stinker would invariably proceed to obey Mr. Newton. So, a rifled round, with an a-bomb behind it, could not even orbit the world, but meanwhile, a "volcano" on Mars ejecting rock out of a very unrifled caldera, not only achieves orbit, but boosts beyond escape velocity! Makes tons of sense to me.
   The series of flukes required to have the thing end up, unshattered by the explosion on Mars, uncooked by the re-entry into our atmosphere, unshattered (again) upon impact, to be found (why not buried?) upon a tiny spit of land, which itself rings a continent of ice, which in turn, sits amid oceans of water; is far-fetched at the very best. But, most disturbing of all, is that in the very narrative itself, we are not free to question even a word of this fairy tale, for one huge reason; and that reason is very unreasonable indeed! Simply said, it is the religious issue of the origin of life.
   If the science guys can make it convincingly appear that life as life, is not limited to this world, and further, that the "spontaneous" appearance of same, is the norm, then their whole religion of order automatically appearing out of chaos is given a big apologetics type assist. The "Martian rock" is not about Mars, nor rocks. It is the desperate attempt of some, to stifle, and silence the voices of others. This is where you come in. It is the end of discussion, and the imposition of dogma, by those deeming themselves "more equal".
   Modern cosmology, and the life sciences are fully committed to an anti-God premise. In this polluted stream of thought, the mere act of "being against", is thought itself to be "scientific". And if some poor sap is silly enough to question this "orthodoxy", he is simply institutionally dumped. A guy can get some serious unemployment numbers racked up, right here! It is "unlawful" (verboten!) to believe that life was created, it "must have" simply occurred, otherwise everything we scientists have asserted is junk...and we can't have that! This is what the Martian bag of potato chips is really all about. Now, we all know this, but what of it? Why even discuss such?
  And I think it is this: We are never going to "convince", but we ourselves are convinced. We are not going to alter, but we have been altered. We ourselves, are the "absolutely unlikely", and we consistently talk as if there were nothing at all unusual about us? The "probability" at absurdly low levels, that we would "be" here, so to be making, or reading this blog entry; is to just be taken "at face value"! So, from our example then, the "bag of potato chips" blown out of a volcano on another world, so to go floating for thousands (or millions?) of years in space, thus to be being pulled down by the Earth, correctly finding that abysmally small section of a world to land upon, cleverly avoiding incineration upon re-entry, thus to be "accidentally found"; and surviving all this, in order to show the intact moss and lichen marks of authenticity, us!
   Easter is upon us. The great-good God looking down the corridor of history,...saw you! What precisely are the "odds" that you would "be"? I mean, what if Mom had had a headache that night? What if there had been an argument that evening, and Dad was sleeping on the couch?  What if Mom had not herself been born, because her mother miscarried? The series of flukes, luck, and strange intersections of chance required for your very existence to "be", make potato chips from outer space seem pretty darned reasonable! The enormously impossible "odds" of interplanetary potato chip deliveries, are about in the same arena as yours, maybe even better? Then take further, the "odds" that you would love and or trust Him? Please, stop the madness! If "science" has ever "proven" anything at all, it is that we humans, without serious motivation, cannot and will never admit for one moment, His Person, work, or truth. So, even if you were somehow born into this world, even if you did amazingly survive, the "odds" are running in negative numbers that you would ever acknowledge, (much less, love!) Him!
   We are both unwilling and unable. We are both pointed the wrong direction, and confused about the correct goal. We are doubly disqualified, and yet we find our own hearts and minds to indeed have been altered. The dignity of man is founded upon the shocking truth that he has no business existing, and honestly does not "belong" here in the first place...and yet he does, and he does! He cannot "explain himself". The freakishly small chances of chips from Mars, speak of an origin far from here, by a mind we have only guessed at, directed unerringly to an improbable sliver of reality. A sparrow landing upon a phone line in a gale force wind, is far far more likely than potato chips from Mars. And they, (the chips) are more likely than you! She, our sparrow friend, also does not "belong", and yet, there she sits; singing her little heart out! Your unlikely nature, your diminishingly small odds of being here to read this, is a message, a sign!
   He likes you! Do you see? He intends you, He awaits that final barbecue-dip, dash of flavor on these highly improbable chips, called "you". And that is why they, (the science folk I mean) are not to be mocked, nor sneered at. They are trying as hard ever as they can, to "remember", to recall their own deeply improbable dignity, to find their own highly unlikely place at His table. We say to them as he said to us, "Drop your weapons, come out with your hands up, and be seated, dinner is served!". His command to surrender, coupled with the invitation to dinner, He Himself, the Supreme Unlikely, He, in Person, the Friend Unguessed. From Him we find a new strength to welcome those hating us. For they despise us much for  the same kinds of reasons that we (wrongly) hated Him.
   The King has turned his foes into brothers, His haters into His friends. We are the deeply, the profoundly...unlikely. For this we give thanks, He is risen indeed!

Sunday, April 6, 2014

Of Suds and Spankings

  We take for granted, it appears to me, that when you see suds, you've got "clean". There is an entire industry out there in consumer-land, which is based (apparently) upon maximizing and enhancing the sudsing component to detergents. What "sells" is, "lots and lots of bubbles" which (very importantly!) "last". As such, we can get a kind of glimpse into the soul; and it's pretty vile, the soul I mean.
  The concepts of "dirt" and "germs" are often linked, and (I think) wrongly so. There is a paranoid feature to much of the thing, and it is not too clear where facts leave off, and superstition jumps in. The outright fear of "germs" is often linked, (or so it is said) to "disease", at least this would be true in the minds of "germaphobes". And weirdly, the very fact of having "touched" a "germy" surface; while it was yet "dirty", is thought to (somehow) be "dangerous". It is almost as-if the skin was imagined here; to be a permeable membrane, specially designed to let microbial invaders in (!), a kind of one-way door, built to allow traffic "in" only? How weird is that? Furthermore, the bizarre connection drawn between "dangerous germs", and regular old grime, honest old dirt, is assumed to be "an issue", but has (as far as I can tell) no validity at all. Dirt per se, isn't "dirty"!
  The ideal of "scrubbed clean" as opposed to "filthy dirty" is proposing for us then; a whacked out vision of reality. The key concepts here (I think) are "safe, healthy and clean". Clearly an idiotic grouping in any case, and in order to see why I say this; just think for a moment of little kids. Do we: A. Let the little scooters zoom around, "be kids", and get dirty? or do we, B. Place them in a "safe bubble" and keep them always and ever clean? (so to promote "health" you see...). The entire idea of "bubbles" (suds actually) is a defensive posture, a hauling back from the "danger" of germs, and the fear of "sickness". Uh, such is (not only) an impossible "goal", but not to put too fine a point on it; crazy as a loon!
  Now see here young man! You; as a budding two year old, have two pathways before you. You may, ahem, either reside in a "safe" space, utterly cut-off from "germs", and so be "safe and healthy", or contrariwise, you may swing in trees, hoot like an ape, and have tons of fun. Howsome-ever, if you choose the latter option little man, you will (inevitably) "get sick", (I hate to break it to you this way). Now before you choose which you prefer, just recall that the "upside" to "getting sick", is that your immune system will be always getting stronger, savvier, and generally more able to fight off future invasions of "germs". Meanwhile, the (miserable) "upside" to living inside a sud, is that you won't have to touch anything "icky"... So then; which shall it be, short dude? Would you care to live in a "safe" bubble, or a "dangerous" real world?
  Now, nobody that I have met, actually enjoys getting sick; yet likewise, on the other side of sickness, when you emerge, again feeling better, nobody would, at that time; reject the better, stronger immune resistance thus built-up within the body. Perhaps a bit like lifting weights here, we note that no one appears to (much) enjoy the work of lifting, while most desire the look and feel of a fit body. We would like (very much!) the results without having to pay the price involved. Likewise, nobody likes getting spanked, but almost everyone enjoys the resultant "feeling able" to control ourselves.
  The LORD chastens, disciplines (spanks) them He receives as sons. The book of Hebrews goes further, and informs that if he does not "spank", it's because you have not (yet?) been received as a son! If you are not being disciplined, it's because you have not been adopted in the first place. Oops, and here I thought (all along) that it was because I didn't need it...
   There is a kind of "flip" involved in suds and spanks. We (of ourselves), choose badly. We choose to be "safe" from "germs", which is about the most dangerous thing we could do, and likewise; we choose to avoid (like the plague) correction, which is a deeply incorrect choice... When we think of a "flip", we ordinarily might think of those champs at diving. Off of a seven or ten meter board (or so), they twist around, rotate, swivel, and then enter the water leaving barely a ripple. And that could prove to be be a fairly decent mental image here. What appears to us as "graceful", or "natural" is the result of years of grueling training, coaching, and work. We want the final product without doing the work in the mid-section, thanks just the same. So, using our diver as a model, let's investigate somewhat, over here.
  Turn number one: You must "buy", you must accept within you; that getting "a love tap", or encountering a "germ", is for your long range good, and not for your destruction. In brief, quit taking everything so blasted "personally"! Not every comment in the free world is intended as an insult directed at your oh so fragile self image. Lighten up already, and grow a spine in your free time will ya? In brief, the universe is not out to "get you", nor is correction meant to crush your heart. Moreover getting a case of the sniffles is not a mortal blow, but you kinda already knew that, didn't you? Our diver has gone through move number one.
   In turn two, we note that the higher the diving platform, the more crucial it becomes for you to enter the water with no splash. Shall I translate for you then? If you do not actually want, I mean inside your soul, if you do not WANT to be friendly with the "low", then you will have no true friends at all! Deal with it. This is what spanking is all about. Be nice to your sister! Share your toys! If the "stuff" of life is more important to you than the people who exist inside the real reality, then you will be alone, ever your damnably "safe" sud! And turn three builds off of this base.
   The third turn to our super diver's performance is the dizzy looking head-over-heels gig. How can he even tell which way is up with all that spin? To value people ahead of "stuff", is something we must learn by painful, repetitive lessons. If you are blessed enough in this sad cold world to have a few real friends, people who love you with your warts and all the lessor charming features of the "magic" called "you", then you are dimly aware that the more "success" you experience, the faster and furious-er you must give! Yes, I am afraid to mention it, but you might even be in position to give "correction" (God forbid!), and yell at a loved one, or even spread (horrors!) a cold, (or flu) to your own family! To refuse categorically, to "give" (germs and yelling in this case), is to die. It's about that complex. This brings us to the hard part of the dive...
   Do you get this? There are no "good options" down here. You either take the "high probable" or the "high risk", but recall that in the end, both choices suck. We all die, and promptly give an account to the High King. Or to rephrase somewhat here; bad option number one is to do the loafer drill. Just don't try! After all, failure is "all there is"; and everybody knows that "the deck was stacked against you", plus you had a "really bad childhood", and other such-like drivel, til I puke in my sock over here. Bad option number two, is to do the "on time, hard working sucker" drill. You know this one all too well, as I do, you work your ass off for forty years, and what you get is...sore! As you muddle through; for "your forty", each day you are aware that your "best" ain't really all that hot. You just "do your best", and just kind of perpetually "wish" that things could be better? So much for the "high probable". The "high risk" appears even worse! Bad option three here, is to "Try really really hard", have some "good breaks", and shine! Excel at what you do. Here, the risk is tremendous, it's a regular minefield! Your very soul is in the offing.
   Did you catch that diver's twist? To grow "great" you become a mere "user" of others, and thus have no true friends at all, only perpetually to look "down" on others. Sheer toxin for the soul, and so, somehow we desire to remain "a regular guy", and also simultaneously become "a tycoon"? So, if we could find some way to combine bad options one and three, we would find a millionaire philanthropist, who in his spare time was a janitor? Further, his co-workers and neighbors would never know of his "true identity"? Short of this miracle of duplicity, we could just sit around and read old Superman comic books maybe? But seriously, having the "ultimate dead-end job" would be the only "safe place" for us! Wealth will ruin you, it makes you "forget" way too much! The "sud" must live amid "dirt", or it becomes downright unhealthy! The germ must be encountered and battled, prior to you becoming "strong". Our proposed "secret millionaire janitor" would (doubtless) run a charitable foundation, in which the goal was to bail faster than the vessel is sinking.  Excess money is deeply unwholesome for your soul, and as it floods the boat of your life, you must rid yourself of it, or go down with the vessel. Newsflash, this just in: The "goal" of life is giving, not receiving, and to "miss" this twist in the dive; is to belly flop from 40 feet. Painful and embarrassing at minimum, fatal perhaps?
   There is nothing "worse" for you than "success", likewise, there is nothing "unhealthier" than to live inside a "clean" sud. There is no real love from the father, if he always refuses to correct the son. So then, if you find that you are unable to be generous to the poor, it is because you are no longer "one of them", and that is a truly awful place to be! If you find that you "just cannot" be generous to the needy, who then can you be generous to? Further, if there be no generosity within you, your heart is well nigh dead...and is that what you really wanted in life?
  Those little love taps, those nasty viruses teach us, they remind right here, and right now, (today) while I feel like crap, to thank! We thank the good LORD God Almighty for His indescribable gift to us sad, sick filthy wretches. Spanks and germs are those little reminders which we require, in this lonesome pilgrimage. He has heard my cry for help, yet even now, today; I cannot, I dare not, trust mine own heart. If it, my heart I mean, finally turns from You Sir, if I finally value "the stuff" above You; "the stuff-Builder", put me out of Your misery I pray! I cannot, I refuse to live without You at the center. And if I love my own "cleanness, safeness, and wealth" more than I do You, then please (!), would YOU pound me into the soil? I just can't live that way! And how precisely do I know this? He spanked me, and I began to learn the gospel; by heart!