Transcribed from my diary for Sunday 2017-03-12, for now I am intentionally leaving this unfinished.
Rough day at BK. I may not have the guts to recall and tell it all. But behind it I feel certain of (1) what Jesus did among the poor, and (2) what my task is at the shelter, and what it takes for me to leave. (3) I have suspected for some time that the real means of wealth creation, of upward mobility, is different from anything we have ever imagined. I have a notion of what it may be, and enough confidence in it to act on it, but it’s still very hard to believe.
The question is whether these certainties are enough to overcome my fear of uncertainty, my fear of the unknown.
Continue reading Rough day at BK
Some weeks ago, on a Sunday afternoon just after check-in at the mission, I became clairvoyant for a few seconds, and saw many things.
The first insight was that many things I’ve been saying for a long, long time — teachings, theories, hypotheses — are far more factual than I’d ever supposed.
The last thing that came displeased me. It said, “God has a purpose for my being [at the shelter], and I’ll never get away until it’s accomplished.”
What progress I have made since then has come from acting on the “things I’ve been saying for a long, long time.” The Way of Peace was composed in 2010; I don’t know whether I’ve yet posted here all that was composed at time; I’m know there’s still a lot that I have yet to post; but it’s the basic teachings in there, including those already set forth, that I’ve been called to act on.
Yesterday afternoon on the walk back to the shelter, I was using — for the first time in months — techniques perhaps first set forth in “Paying my dues …,” first published in 2013.
The teaching set forth in “Simple,” I have been working to live out. I found the quotation in an e-mail I sent various people in 2007, telling them it epitomized what I believed Jesus actually taught.
Walking my talk, or learning to: that may be what’s keeping me at the shelter. Once I’m walking my talk enough, I may be free.
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In recent weeks, in my quest for spiritual growth and improvement of my own condition, I have had to deal with lots of complicated stuff — chakras, sephirot, different dimensions of the personality or psyche, previously unknown stages in the progression from infantilism to adulthood.
This flies in the face of my conviction that the Gospel must ultimately be simple; and the same for everyone, regardless of one’s circumstances or developmental stage.
I come to the conclusion that it is. Simple.
Continue reading Simple
In a recent post, I said, if Jesus did teach thus-and-so, he was wrong.
That’s an extreme position for someone who calls himself a Christian.
And some may be alarmed at the total rejection of Biblical “inspiration” it implies.
There are quite a few wrong things in the Christian Bible.
For the moment, I’ll pass over those I find in the “Old Testament.”
Particularly from a series of threads done by Sophiee at Messiah Truth about “365 Prophecies of Jesus,” it has become clear to me that nearly all of the “Old Testament” quotations in the book of Hebrews are misapplied.
Yes, it can shake one’s confidence in what one thought one believed.
In a comment on a WaPo article about “Prosperity Gospel” televangelists, someone said:
Jesus taught us to think of others needs before our own.
As of now I dispute that Jesus taught that.
If he did teach that, Jesus was wrong.
Continue reading Dilemma
Doing background research for some forthcoming posts, I had to track down George Ritchie’s quotation of the proverb, “Birds of a feather flock together.”
The online copy I found of his report of his near-death experience is not well-written, nor is it well-formatted, but the story is so compelling I thought best to share the below link with my readers now. I urge you to read it.
Continue reading George Ritchie’s near-death experience
Friday, October 14
At the homeless shelter where I stay, bunks are supposed to be assigned daily strictly on a first-come, first-served basis. But they try to give each man the same bunk as he had the night before. It’s an imperfect system.
About a month ago, we got a whole new crew of peacekeepers. They have their own favorites, and I am not among them. About ten days ago, Kelvin and Marvin were in line behind me. Steve, who was assigning bunks, sent word out to ask if they were there. They got called in and assigned their bunks. I got turned away.
Continue reading Forgiveness
Don’t torture your conscience over whether or not, on any given occasion, to give or not give to a panhandler.
Go with your gut.
Continue reading Facing a panhandler
(Originally posted 10/11/13. Transcribed from an e-mail I sent my mother 24 August 2010.)
Jesus said any number of things in large part, at least, for shock value.
Their outrageousness is easily lost on 21st Century students, for two reasons. First, we have heard or read these things so many times that any shock value they might have at first had for us — when we first heard them, say, perhaps at age 4 or age 5 — has long since worn off. We’re not likely to remember it, and also not likely to give the opinions of our 4- or 5-year-old selves, the credit they, in this case, deserve.
Second, by virtue of “respect for authority,” for centuries students of Chrstianity have trained themselves to ignore, deny or suppress any outrage they might feel at anything The Teacher says. Instead, one expects oneself and all one’s fellow students, approvingly, to “tip my hat … take a bow … smile and grin …”[*]
[*]The Who, “We Won’t Get Fooled Again.”
“BLESSÈD ARE YOU POOR.”
Continue reading Jesus’ outrageous parables
Many people are skeptical about prayer.
How many have prayed fervently, day and night, for an ailing loved one, and never obtained the desired outcome?
The parable of the widow and the judge promises, “[W]ill not God grant justice to his chosen ones who cry to him day and night? Will he delay long in helping them? I tell you, he will quickly grant justice to them.” For African Americans, that deserves to be laughable.
No one has ever lived, nor is ever likely to live, more expert in prayer than Jesus. I cannot believe he set forth a teaching either so completely wrong in itself or so subject to complete misunderstanding.
So what is wrong, and what is right?
Continue reading About the widow and the judge