Who Is Your God, Anyway?


th06-openpage-cart_1985044fAs I live this life, I’m consistently faced with many things that cause me to scratch my head, but nothing perplexes me more than the believers who don’t believe. I should add, I recognize there are more viewpoints concerning God than there is sand on the seashore, but one common grain sticks out every time. People just do not believe, it seems, in God’s capacity to actually help them in their lives. They pray prayers not to get a tangible answer, but instead to soothe some psychological need or something. They follow rules of conduct or practice morality not to enjoy a positive result, but in order to hopefully escape some negative possibility. They attend meetings not for encouragement or enlightenment, but to punch tickets during spiritual labor-day. It just seems so arduous and pointless. What good is your God if He lives a billion miles from you, unable and unwilling to help you with the smallest of details of your life? What’s the point of all of your hard works and sacrifices you do for your God, when at any moment He can pull the rug out on you for no apparent reason at all? Why even call Him your Father if He would do less for you than any earthly daddy would do? Why people, why?

If there is one thing that annoys the holy bejesus out of me it is going through the motions. It’s like hanging out with people you don’t enjoy. It’s like laughing at jokes that actually offend you. It’s saying bad food is tasty and asking for seconds. It’s all ritual and acting and hypocrisy. So, why would anyone participate in that foolishness? Usually it’s because of some fear or some rejection or some nebulous loss occurring. And, people do that very same thing with God. Instead of taking their shoes off and talking turkey with God, they reform their language to sound holy and dole out false platitudes before ever getting to anything real. And when they get to something real they add so many qualifiers that it’s probably hard for God to follow along 😉 (if it be thy will, if thou wilt have time, if you’re okay with me having that, etc…). I have to tell you folks, something is wrong with that picture. I aint being critical of your beliefs, because I know someone taught you that stuff, I’m just asking you to rethink your shenanigans. If God is who He says He is, then I’m pretty sure He can see through all of our crapola. If He could create an entire world and all the life forms, it seems He might be able to fix something for you once in a while. If He is everywhere present, seems you shouldn’t have to look up to find Him, nor assume any posture neither go to any location to speak with Him. If He’s your actual Father, seems like there wouldn’t be much He wouldn’t do to help you if He could and reportedly there’s nothing He cannot do! You see what I’m saying? Something is amiss…

Just by sheer logic, and I mean down to the guts of the matter, there ought to be some grand benefit to being God’s kid; in being a believer. If there is no benefit, why in God’s name should anyone choose it? Why would I spend time bestowing the virtues of God to you if God never did anything good for me? That’s not being sacrilegious, that’s being honest. Why would you tell someone you will pray for them while they’re sick if you don’t believe God will heal? Why should you teach your kids about God if they get nothing out of the relationship but maybe a promise of a one-way ticket to heaven someday? Sure heaven is most appealing, but what about today? Look, it has to be a helluva lot bigger than that, don’t you think? The way most people believe God and who they think God is, if it were me, I would have chucked Him in a long time ago!

Well good people, that is not who God is, at all… God is everything you ever hoped He would be and then some! He ardently desires a relationship with you, not for you to prove something to Him, but to allow Him to prove something to you. He doesn’t want your rituals and your rigmarole anymore than you would want that from your children. Your behavior before Him and whether or not you sin was never His issue. You were born into this world dead in trespasses and sins and there’s nothing you can do by your own works; your foolish, pointless works, to fix that! All your focus on sin and mistakes does nothing more than to talk you into doubting who He is and what He will do, for you…

The real reason you never see Him in action or get to enjoy His goodness is because of one thing and only one thing ~ you don’t believe Him. I don’t mean believe “in” Him, I mean literally believe Him. Believing, true believing, is the polar opposite of going through the motions. It is the north when play acting a role is south. It’s getting good and damn serious about getting your prayers answered! It’s about an intimate relationship with your Father who is closer than your very breath. It is a reliance on Him opposing a reliance on yourself. You can be a self-made man if you want, but how is that working out for you thus far? Life is big and serious and tricky folks and you were never designed to do it all alone. You never want your God to be yourself.

God in His unending grace and overflowing mercy doesn’t expect much from you at all really. But, one thing He does require is that you believe; as in flat-out, no questioning, no doubt; assured of a good outcome, peaceful, quiet believing. Your prayers are a conversation with Him, not a monologue or a speech. He knows the answer to your question and is most pleased to share it with you, if you believe He can and will. He, alone, made that body you inhabit and He can fix any part of it at any time without a doctor or a medication. There is no incurable with God! Sometimes your problems have developed over a long time, in much error, like gum deeply matted in the fur of your dog. And for you and your hair’s sake, it may take a little time to extricate you from your troubles. But, be assured, the repair was underway from the very first time you voiced your dilemma to Him.  God loves everything about you, both big and small and has something great for you no matter the size of your issue. That is who God is folks and why He is everything you could ever want Him to be!

Do yourself a huge favor in this short life and stop searching for some mysterious cause or some silly behavior you need to fix and learn rather how and what to believe. Your work; your real work is to convince your stubborn, human noggin to believe what God says over and above what it looks like. And when you learn how to do that, you will find that God is exactly who He said He is… Then, you will love Him with all that you are not because you are supposed to, but because it’s your only logical, thankful response to Him for all that He is doing for you!

Just believe baby, believe…

Just some good thoughts…

 

The Psychology of Fear…


imagesIt’s ironic to me that fear, which exists only in the mind of man, has such a powerful influence over the American people of today. Good ol’ Murica is literally scared to death. When fear is introduced, logic leaves the building. There’s no more sound thinking, rational thought or anything that even resembles a normal cognitive process. And, during this woefully sad circus called election season, the only real threat to so-called “ruining” our country is fear.

Fear in its true essence is nothing more than false evidence appearing real. It’s false evidence because that which people fear has not happened yet. But, in order for false evidence to gain a foothold in people’s minds it must also appear real. Fear has not always been a part of man’s existence. It first entered the scene when the original man separated himself from God and in so doing allowed entrée to a manner of thinking which formerly didn’t exist. And, ever since that fateful day, fear has been hard at work ruining people’s lives. Fear demands you react to a problem which isn’t yet a problem. The choices you make in response to fear are always wrong! However, the illusion of fear, once believed, is on its way into becoming a reality. What a person believes, they will receive into their life, positive and negative alike and the false evidence then, frightfully, turns into real evidence.

Nothing lights a fire under the American people faster than fear. The message of fear threatens your existence, your happiness, your peace. So, if you want to garner votes, simply scare the hell out of the people. Tell them of dangers that don’t exist. Carefully craft your messages and add in unhealthy doses of pending doom and disaster. When someone questions your message, accuse them of lying and then get back to the business of fear. Sound familiar?

The tenuous threat of fear aside, the ultimate trouble comes from the illogic that naturally follows it. Absent logic, the only choice left is insanity. Insanity and illogic is exhausting. Every parent knows that reasoning with a child whose not yet capable of reasoning is a foolish endeavor. Yet, that’s exactly where we are today! What would be considered horrible or distasteful or just plain wrong, somehow becomes acceptable because fear and illogic are at the helm. Without sound reasoning in place, up becomes down, left becomes right and black morphs into white. And, in a world where things no longer have meaning, what would you expect?

What I’m setting before you today folks is much bigger than politics. This is about your life, your freedom, your ability to pursue happiness. The reason America became great is because of the collective beliefs of its citizens. Its forefathers had the holy boldness to pursue a new way. They weren’t afraid to break away from the regimes of fear and bondage. They envisioned a land that would be tolerant of all people and all beliefs and fought hard to obtain it. And now, this great empire is threatened, not from factions of terrorists or illegal aliens or even racism, but more directly from the individual fears of the citizens united together to become collective fear, which however false, will become reality if persisted in. The psychology of today’s America is fear!

The solution to this grand dilemma is not found in arguing, fighting and threatening. However much you want to slap the good sense back into people, it wouldn’t matter anyway. Once people are afraid and continue to feed on that fear, their minds have become unstable. Just look around you. It’s pretty obvious in’t it? Instead, your job, your only reasonable job is to refuse to be a part of their fear. Once fear exits the picture, sound thought returns. I certainly don’t purport to be the smartest person around, but one thing I’m not, is afraid! The only true solution to your own fear is a return to love; to compassion; to sound thinking. Stop being so damn worried about some segment of society that’s going to get you! Nothing is going to get you if you trust God. It really doesn’t matter if the whole damn thing goes to hell if God’s got your back! He’ll make a way for you, no matter what it looks like.

You sir, you madam, get out of the fear business! Put love back into your heart. Return yourself to kindness, to encouragement, to love. Quit letting the great societal fear make your decisions for you. Stop stockpiling your weapons and preparing for Armageddon. Cease in your doomsday preparations. The wheels haven’t fallen off the bus yet, they just want you to think they have. You, in your life, decide the wheels are still on the bus. Be honest with yourself. Is your life, the way you have been living, really so awful? Is your corner of the globe really a “disaster?” Is the America where you reside truly been ruined by a neighbor that wears a turban? Does someone’s different beliefs threaten your beliefs? Is the truth of God somehow negated by another person’s error? Illogic people, you must rid yourself of the insanity.

Our great God that made America great isn’t out of business. But, your fear will negate His ability to protect you and help you. Don’t allow false evidence to turn into real evidence. Stop looking over your shoulder for something that is going to get you. Instead, walk out boldly with your head held high knowing that it is God who watches over your life. Refuse the psychology of fear and return to the true essence of being an American. Be a badass!

It is election season, so get your butt out there and vote. But, more important than deciding on a candidate, decide on what it is you will and will not believe. The individual believing of one person can turn the whole world right-side up. Imagine the possibilities if the majority of us believe.

Replace the psychology of fear with the psychology of love. You won’t be sorry. You’ll be blessed!

Just some good thoughts…

 

Find Your Wings…by Trusting Yourself!


images-of-doves-1-white-flying-doveIt’s interesting to think that all of the famous or successful people you admire, be they a literary great, superstar performer, outstanding business person or even the President of the United States, all began somewhere. Maybe you read Shakespeare or Emerson with sublime admiration in your eyes. But remember, there was a time when Shakespeare and Emerson were just like you and me, beginners hastily penning their ideas into a journal at the dusty old library someplace. The reason these highly esteemed folk became so successful is that they learned to trust themselves. If you are ever going to discover your own wings, you have to learn to trust yourself.

The problem with our age it seems, is that people have become so unoriginal. It’s like someone put out a broadcast announcing that all of the things one may do, have already been done, so get on board someone else’s train and figure out where you fit! And even worse, people have learned not to question anymore. Attach an authority figure or better a scientific study and the whole world digests it as true without even giving it a second thought. The mass media machine has inundated us with so much information, that we feel we already know the answer before the question is even posed. And most dastardly of all, we’ve learned to trust what the vulgar crowd says over the still small voice within our hearts.

You, my friend, were designed to be an original. Observe nature and see if you can find any two things alike. You are unique in every sense of the word! So why should you trouble yourself so shamefully day by day for not fitting in with the organization of things? A society is made up of individuals and needs the best it can gather from each of them. A society that exists for the society is headed for disaster as group (mob) rule is always infused with danger. You don’t need a government or a celebrity or even your family to tell you what to think! Sure, you listen to advice, but then you must think for yourself. What should I be doing? Where should I be going? What do I have to offer to the world? These are the only questions that matter. The reason so many people are drifting along bored and unfulfilled is because they are busy living someone else’s dream!

Most of us shun our own insights because we have been herded and prodded to do so. Then, as Emerson aptly predicted, “Tomorrow a stranger will say with masterly good sense precisely what we have thought and felt all the time, and we shall be forced to take with shame our own opinion from another.”  We only half believe ourselves and that only half the time. We apply a strange method of thinking someone else always knows what is best for us, better than ourselves. Who should know more than I what is my duty; my obligations? Yet therein we travel down pathways and alleys seeking the happiness that someone else has promised us we’ll find there. You alone, in your heart always know what to do and what not to do. You are conspicuously aware of what causes you both delight and shame.

Though there be a thousand reasons why you distrust yourself, every one of them is a thinly clad veil for fear. If you are honest, (and who would choose to be dishonest with themselves?), the only thing that ever stopped a man from acting upon something he knows, is fear. And what great supremacy fear holds over the mind of man today! Fear whips you in line and threatens you with catastrophe for daring to step out of line! Fear drains the vivid colors out of men and makes them all grey-scale. Fear crushes your lofty dreams and orders you to settle for the status quo. Yet, fear is mastered in a moment of time when you choose to act upon what you and you alone do know.

Each person living in the world has his particular gift to offer the world. And though time is required for its development, it is there; it must be there, as all of God’s creation is never without purpose. To compare your purpose with my purpose is like expecting a salty taste from sugar. Salt is salt and sugar is sugar, and both are required according to taste; with a million variations therein. Thus your purpose must meet a need no other person can quite fill, else were all men the same and drudgery would overtake the planet. You find out your purpose by focusing in on your delights. When I read Emerson my heart doesn’t quite know what to do, but when my wife listens to him, most words offer her no meaningful impact. What is it that passionately interests you? What thing, when done by you, is without effort and that for which time stands still? In that thing are your wings, though they still exist in embryonic form.

It’s been said that if you find whatever it is you love to do and do it, you will never work another day in your life. I would expand that to say that if you find what you love to do and do it, you will be joyfully living the life God has personally called you to live. Your age doesn’t matter. Your circumstances don’t matter. How you’ve lived your up to this point doesn’t matter. What matters is that you pursue, with all that you are, your grand, unique purpose. And, that purpose will never appear written in cloud-like ink across the sky or be chanted by the convulsing masses. It won’t be written by the finger of God on your wall. Instead, it will show itself in your interests; in those things you cannot get enough of; in the quiet, silent, tender regions of your heart from whence the still small voice gently urges, go this way my wonderful son; head that way my beautiful daughter…

You owe yourself the courage to stand up and masterfully take your place in this life.

“Insist on yourself, never imitate. Trust thyself, every heart vibrates to that iron string.”

Just some good thoughts…