Yesterday, as usual, after church Vladimir and I went to the McDonald’s at Baltimore and Light Streets, to drink coffee and study. Time came when both of us needed to use the bathroom. The floor outside was flooded, and a sign on the door said, “Out of order. Sorry. 😦 ”
It remains out of service today.
Continue reading * All stressed up and nowhere to “go”
15One of the dinner guests, on hearing this, said to him, “Blessed is anyone who will eat bread in the kingdom of God!” 16Then Jesus said to him, “Someone gave a great dinner and invited many. 17At the time for the dinner he sent his slave to say to those who had been invited, ‘Come; for everything is ready now.’ 18But they all alike began to make excuses. The first said to him, ‘I have bought a piece of land, and I must go out and see it; please accept my regrets.’ 19Another said, ‘I have bought five yoke of oxen, and I am going to try them out; please accept my regrets.’ 20Another said, ‘I have just been married, and therefore I cannot come.’ 21So the slave returned and reported this to his master. Then the owner of the house became angry and said to his slave, ‘Go out at once into the streets and lanes of the town and bring in the poor, the crippled, the blind, and the lame.’ 22And the slave said, ‘Sir, what you ordered has been done, and there is still room.” 23Then the master said to the slave, ‘Go out into the roads and lanes, and compel people to come in, so that my house may be filled. 24For I tell you, none of those who were invited will taste my dinner.’”
This is based on the story of the great Passover of Hezekiah in 2 Chronicles 30.
This exchange occurred at Messiah Truth:
The New Testament equips me to love All.
On the one hand, one who diligently lives as Jesus taught eventually reaches a point where loving All is not merely a possibility, but a responsibility. I am at that point now.
On the other hand, loving All of necessity entails loving situations, events and people one might much more easily abhor.
1 Corinthians 12 applies to the need to love one’s whole self. We are acquainted with an individual who finds one feature of himself, or rather of his story, so abhorrent that he preoccupies himself with it, until the self-hatred becomes unbearable; at which point he lashes out. I wrote “A short route to agony” with that person specifically in mind.
In 1978, I applied through the United Methodist Church Board of Global Ministries to become a missionary to Japan; I would teach English at a Japanese Christian high school. As part of this process, they required me to read William Stringfellow’s An Ethic for Christians and Other Aliens in a Strange Land. I hated it. For the most part, it was a typical 1970’s radical screed, blaming America for every single problem that exists in the world. One point stuck with me, however. Stringfellow opines that the Kingdom never does or will manifest in any permanent or worldwide basis; the Kingdom instead appears here and there, now and then, in a community that honors the gifts of its each and every member.
1 Corinthians 12 applies equally here. I belong to “A real church in a real ’hood.” We are diligent and intentional about being that sort of community. Now, I have learning opportunities here: even though I am homeless myself, it is easy for me to look down on “the critters and the crazies” whom I meet at McDonald’s. Birur nitzotzot relates: evangelism entails facilitating each person’s discovery of his or her own way to shine.
In the Parable of the Great Dinner, the master directs his servant:
“‘Go out at once into the streets and lanes of the town and bring in the poor, the crippled, the blind, and the lame.’ 22And the slave said, ‘Sir, what you ordered has been done, and there is still room.” 23Then the master said to the slave, ‘Go out into the roads and lanes, and compel people to come in, so that my house may be filled.'”
In the Kingdom, there are no outcasts. Everyone has a place at the table.
This begins with an e-mail exchange between follower Vikkilyn and myself, back in May.
Wednesday, 05/21/14: Me: Recent events suggest it’s time for me to get more serious about “becoming” William Tell. There are some emotional obstacles there, so it’s going to take some work, and seeing this, it’s easy for me to grasp why William Tell hasn’t “happened” yet. I’ll get through it.
Tuesday, 05/27/14: Vikkilyn: Not sure what you mean by “becoming” William Tell? http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/William_Tell What part of William Tell do you want to be? (I realize that is your “stage name” but you must have picked it for some reason, after all you have written a lot about the power in a name.)
This post includes many footnotes. To get to any footnote, click on the link in the body of the text. When you’re done reading the footnote, ALT+LEFT will return you to your original place in the text.
Little things to some people are big things to others.
“We really are doing just fine. I mean years ago I would have loved to have paper towels but to us they were a luxury that we couldn’t afford. Now I can just reach up and grab one when I need it.”
The statement above was said by my husband shortly after a very LONG talk about our financial situation. We are having a tough month. We overspent and got ourselves into a pickle and then the truck broke down. We know that this struggle is something WE created but that makes it no less painful.
After saying what he said above he laughed and said “You know if a rich person heard me say that we’re alright because we have paper towels, they’d think I was nuts.”
It got me thinking. What little things are important to different people. For John it’s paper towels. We never used to be…
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There is a song from The Sound of Music that relates; it concludes, “… I simply remember my favorite things, and then I don’t feel so bad.”
Wednesday morning I stood outside McDonald’s having my last smoke before leaving. I considered that as soon as I got to the library, I’d need to count my pennies and plan spending for the rest of the week. I pondered whether or not to buy a soda on my way there. I’d had some unusual spending earlier in the week, and faced some more unusual spending in connection with the 4th of July (The library’s closed.). The wisdom of having bought or not bought a soda at this time would depend on the outcome of that planning.
9-year-old kills gun instructor • Russian aggression in Ukraine • Third world elections: the loser cries foul • A bullied child hails his rescuer • Iraq War Vet Was Warned Waffle House Wasn’t ‘Safe For Whites,’ Gets Beaten, Needs Brain Surgery
Continue reading * Firing-range instructor hands 9-year-old an Uzi. Now he’s dead.
R.I.P. Brian Williard, a.k.a. funnyphilosopher.
Homey died yesterday. Earlier in the week, he had consumed too much alcohol in too little time, and stopped breathing. Help did not arrive in time.
My grief surprised me, given that, when my mother died in 2011, I never grieved at all. However, that occurred in special circumstances. (Link)