This is a good podcast for people like me who are searching for a new way of being and living. One of the many points I want to keep in my immediate memory to help me along my way, is to acknowledge and keep the good from the past wisdoms as I move into the totally new now. And then there are so many other things to absorb and keep from this podcast.

https://itunes.apple.com/za/podcast/the-robcast/id956742638?mt=2&i=1000384707763

Community

This was a good sermon…community, we are called to be community, and it wasn’t mentioned in this sermon but I add to this that community includes those of those with other sexual preferences and those of other faiths too.  They are part of our community as well. They have always been and they are often more willing to embrace those other to them than the Christian and other religious communities are. imagine if we all came together!! 

https://www.chscapetown.org/building-community-mark-harrington-23-april-2017/

Such meaningful Beauty in words. 

I place on the altar of dawn:

 The quiet loyalty of breath,

 The tent of thought where I shelter,

 Waves of desire I am shore to

 And all beauty drawn to the eye. 
May my mind come alive today

 To the invisible geography

 That invites me to new frontiers,

 To break the dead shell of yesterdays,

 To risk being disturbed and changed. 
May I have the courage today

 To live the life that I would love,

 To postpone my dream no longer

 But do at last what I came here for

 And waste my heart on fear no more. 
John O’Donohue
Excerpt from, ‘A Morning Offering’

 BENEDICTUS (Europe) / TO BLESS THE SPACE between us

Powerful parables to mull over.

https://itunes.apple.com/za/podcast/the-deconstructionists-podcast/id1080170463?mt=2&i=1000373938485

What to do part two!!!

Yes. There had to be a part two…I suppose my previous post has a counterpart. It has to.  To assert ones position as firmly as to say one is a fundamental evangelical, is to try and make clear to me how far I have strayed from this norm to which I had once adhered!  

 When one steps out of a mold, ones family members and friends will be perturbed…and the thoughts and assumptions will be going something like this….’she thinks I taught her wrong, she is confused, she is putting the negativity and judgement she has experienced over the past few years from Christians back onto them as a form of punishment or, as a result of her experiences she has rebelled…eeeek! Rebellion is bad!!! What is going to happen to her? What will happen to her soul?! What will her children be taught now she is so far off the rails?!….etc etc etc….’   

These thoughts will be there, and I know they are as I have heard some voiced to me, because in the Christianity most of us have grown up with, it is not the done thing to embrace uncertainty.   The other problem with the changes I am flowing with, is that when one person changes it forces change from those around us.  And not everyone is wanting to change.  Have a look at this picture…everything is ok, until one pin (person) decides to pull out of where it was.  It forces all the other pieces to have to make some adjustment, changes etc….we are all connected. 

Honestly, I am not trying to hurt anyone, or cause frustration or fear, but I just cannot stay put in a space which doesn’t isn’t one I can relate to anymore. I Suppose by this, I am saying sorry.  There have been many sorries I have said over the past few years. And this is another.

But yet, it seems to me, to bring it back to faith, that there was a lot of doubt in the stories of the Bible! We are MEANT to work out our faith, and this means taking the doubt, and growing with it and through it.  This is what I perceive as owning my faith. Taking responsibility for this whole idea which I simply cannot shake.  You see, I will never not believe.  

So I will keep learning and seeking and this,  is the joy of doubt.  Without doubt, I wasn’t growing and challenging the status quo into a paradigm shift.  When I said I didn’t have doubt, I was not being honest. I was fitting the mold.  By admitting I have questions. Doubts. And curiosities, I have opened up a world which keeps expanding!  I find this to be genuinely exhilarating!

What to do!!!!

….when someone very close to you says she is a fundamentalist evangelical….

I don’t think anyone I have known has ever actually come out and said that…maybe it is that she doesn’t mean what I understand it to mean?  Or maybe it is that I have watched too much tv and listened to too many podcasts about fundamental Christians and other fundamentals from other faiths!!

But then, just to check again, I researched just those words ‘fundamental evangelical’ and found this:

‘an evangelical Christian is a believer who holds to the inspiration, inerrancy, and authority of Scripture, the Trinity, the deity of Christ, and salvation by grace through faith alone.’

And why, is it, that once I searched and I found this description of a fundamental evangelical Christian, that I am not actually shocked or, for want of a different description, offended?  U know, I suppose I always knew this was her, but to hear it from her in her voice: fundamentalist evangelical, it felt strange: odd.  Which is strange in relation to me as I grew up trying to, and to a large degree, believing the same thing.  

What I did realise, is, it is the words.  I put a LOT of value on words.  

In a personal aside:  I am no good at using the correct words to put the heart of my ideas across as my emotions almost always take over the words I am feeling and trying to put into an understandable format…..but when I hear words, I take them seriously, and literally.  Maybe because if someone was able to put something into words, I am firstly in awe, and secondly, as a result of that, I am convinced they must be true!  (Which as a second aside! Is something I am having to relearn every single day! As I now know that others say things as badly as I do! And their words are not gospel after all!!)

Back to words….The word fundamental.  I suppose that we are not keen these days, on extreme language, and ‘fundamental’ is a term reserved for extremists. And evangelicals, well, I am just Personally not one anymore but don’t consider them to be wrong any more than I consider other opinions to be wrong. I’m not sure I have that right.  However, I do struggle with the view (and this is my own generalized view) of Christian fundamental evangelicals, that everyone around them is wrong.   

Inclusivity is at the heart, in my opinion, of what Jesus taught.  Jesus didn’t try to change anyone. People changed as a result of meeting Jesus.  He simply cared And he did not discriminate.  

So back to this conversation… Much as I love this person; my faith is mine. And my journey is mine.  But.  I can understand, as much as is possible from my perspective, admittedly not from her perspective, that this is difficult for her.  I am stepping firmly out of the mold I was raised in. And that doesn’t make the mold wrong! It simply means I have grown into a different shape to the mold.  

I don’t want to hurt anyone in my journey. Least of all my family.   

But it is lonely. This journey, the only space I have to hear and learn from is online, but locally? I’m alone.  I don’t have anyone to bounce my ideas and thoughts off.  It is too different from my friends.  Too different from where I attend church. And too different from my immediate family. Too much going on, and there is too little time.  

This is why I blog. This is a space I can put ideas into. My questions and maybe, one day this message in a bottle will come back with a reply……….

Where am I at?

In some ways I feel my faith has simplified dramatically because I really feel the foundation and purpose of God is Love and that makes faith a much more straight forward concept, however it’s outworking obviously then requires much more of me in how I live, act and love in the world.  And yet, as I feel it has simplified, I am also aware in way which is growing and changing, that God is so much bigger and more infinitely complex than I could ever imagine and each time I think of it all, I become more and more aware of the unboxable nature of the Divine.  

And that, is my thought for today!