Category Archives: Musings

Welcome to a new Blog Home

I’m a writer. I write about what I think is important at the time. I write about stuff that just needs to get out of my heart and head. (This stuff’ll drive you crazy if you don’t let it out!) I write about topics that interest me. I respond to bloggers in other universes. Mostly, I write cuz I gotta write.

For the past few years I’ve been living over at Blogger. It’s been a really great time! But, I think that it’s time to move to new digs. I’ve been reading a lot of blogs, and a vast majority of them swear by WordPress. So, here I am. As time goes on I’ll add some fun stuff…widgets and images and stuff to make this a tad homey-er.

I’ve imported my posts from Blogger so that they may be readily available for you or me. It just seemed like the thing to do at the time. Feel free to scroll through them. They will give you a better idea of who I am.

Hopefully, on this leg of my journey I’ll get the chance to meet you.

Won’t you take a minute to introduce yourself. Join in the conversation and let’s write!

An Update of sorts

My deadline of May 31st has come and gone. I think that at this time I am going to press ahead with a fiction. I’ve been able to get quite a few notes written. Mostly from memories, but some that ask questions. Maybe, too many questions. How do I start? How can I articulate complex emotions and passions in a way that doesn’t devolve into some kind of voyeurism? How can I honor God and be a blessing to others? How can I avoid ‘preaching to the choir’? Because, I have no desire to tell my story to a very narrow and somewhat ‘prickish’ segment of the culture. The story is not necessarily about, nor for, the kind of faith communities that I have been a part of. It is a story about human frailty and Yahweh’s faithfulness.
I have wrestled with how to present real people in real-life situations, (some of them not all that pleasant). Much stress and a few tears have gone into this part of the process. Thanks to our Good Creator, I came across a blog post by writer Wendy Murray this morning. She is a very sensitive person who has gone through a lot of trials. She loves Jesus and desires to honor him and his people. She struggled with some of the things that I am now striving to deal with. In her post she wrote:

As writers who also happen to be people of faith we have to be willing to look straight into the world as it is and at the people who inhabit it for who they are. They are real. They are weak. Sometimes they have sex outside of marriage. Do you know anyone who says the f-word? Have you said it in the past week?

For me, this was Ruach Elohim, God’s Breath, filling my lungs; my mind; my heart. Write what is real. Whether others accept or reject the story is not my worry. My task is to tell the story.
Thank you, Wendy!

How the Holy Spirit can show up anywhere.

This past Sunday I went with my wife to the church that my son and his family have been attending. Before going, I went to the church’s website to get some information about them. I was not impressed. And, after attending the service, I was less impressed. It was the same church that I had left. Only it had a better grasp of technology. It was more polished. But, a rock that is polished is still a rock.
They are a typical evangelical church. They truly love Jesus. And, they truly think that they are following Jesus. However, they, like so many other fundagelical churches think that their way is the ONLY way to follow Jesus. I disagree alot.
Their service was very much a patriotic thing since it was Memorial Day. Now, I do not want to take away from that. I am all for the veterans who have given so much for this country. But, I absolutely think that the Church MUST stay somewhat aloof to political leanings and patriotism. Ours is a kingdom that is NOT of this world.
Their guest speaker was Vietnam veteran who had lost both legs to a landmine. Of course, the requisite sympathy was evoked. But, this guy spoke to me. He talked at length about following a call. To me, that is like pouring gasoline on a fire. I do not think that I am following the calling that God has given. I feel like I am prostituting myself in order to pay my bills and keep health insurance for my wife and me. His words haunt me. I am deeply troubled. Could this be Ruach Elohim, the Breath of God, speaking? Could this be the Spirit that Yeshua told Peter and the others would come and teach them all things saying that I had no faith? Maybe. I am not sure. All I know is that in the most unexpected place, God may have spoken.

Our Common Human Frailty

This is not the post that I have been planning to write. That one is going to take another couple of days to prepare. But, I’m really having a difficult and emotional moment right now. You see, my dad is getting up in years. He’s 84. That’s ok, I guess. But the real issue is the dementia that has robbed him of his life. I just came from the rehab center that is his current home. He had surgery to remove his gall bladder a couple weeks ago and has not been able to return to his ‘normal life.’ I understand that dementia redefines ‘normal.’ But, I was totally unprepared for what I saw today. I will not go into details, but suffice to say that the light…no, the fire in dad’s eyes has been extinguished. I remember playing tennis with him way back in the day. He never had mercy on me, even though I was some 26 years his junior. He wanted me to learn! Today I looked into his eyes and saw…well…nothing. They are pale blue and lifeless. He even told the nurse present that his wife was gone and I am gone. He knows. The time for exiting this life is ever so near. I am preparing a eulogy. I think that God the Holy Spirit know that Bill’s life is nearing its culmination. I pray that I can do justice to the life of this man. Formed in his mother’s womb, grown up in the sight of Yahweh, and passing in the grace of God through Yeshua Ha Mashiach.

Two plus Two equals Five

I have finished Orwell’s 1984. Having grown up in the 60’s, I can see a lot of what he wrote reflected in the mentality of that era. We were neck deep in a cold war with the USSR. Vietnam was exploding on our televisions and rock-n-roll was my language of choice. We saw in the so-called ‘establishment’ an attempt to control our thought and way of life. Ok, so maybe we were a tad paranoid about that. But, that era prepared me, and countless others, to accept the new orthodoxy of Christianity. I was a Jesus Freak. I grabbed onto the tenets of that movement with both hands. Over the years I became convinced that we were right and everyone else had missed the mark. The biggest proof that we had was communicated in our own language. We had ‘chosen’ to be ‘born again’ through ‘faith’ in the ‘gospel,’ whatever that was. We had our own music and culture. If something wasn’t “Christian” it was suspect. That leads me to this quote from Orwell’s work.
The character O’Brien speaking to Winston:

You are here because you have failed in humility, in self-discipline. You would not make the act of submission which is the price of sanity. You preferred to be a lunatic, a minority of one. Only the disciplined mind can see reality, Winston. You believer that reality is something objective, external, existing in its own right. you also believe that the nature of reality is self-evident. When you delude yourself into thinking that you see something, you assume that everyone else sees the same thing as you. Bit I tell you, Winston, that reality is not external. Reality exists in the human mind, and nowhere else. Not in the individual mind, which can make mistakes, and  in any case soon perishes; only in the mind of the Church, which is collective and immortal. Whatever the Church holds to be truth is truth. It is impossible to see reality except by looking thought the eyes of the Church. That is the fact that you have got to relearn, Winston. It needs an act of self-destruction, an effort of the will. You must humble yourself before you can become sane.”

Ok, I took some liberty with that quote. I substituted “Church” for “Party.” In the evangelical, neo-reformed church there is an understood command to not question the party line. We are told what to believe and how to express that belief. When someone, (me for instance), begins to question things, we are told to hold to the ‘orthodox’ faith or face some kind of retribution. Mostly, this involves being ‘shamed.’
I’m sorry if anyone is offended. But, I simply DO NOT adhere to any teaching that is exclusivist or patriarchal. I don’t buy into the fundagelical literal belief that requires anyone to believe exactly as the ‘party’ does. I must live in a world where questions are welcome and faith is allowed to grow in ‘real time’…for real people.

1984 was a very, er, Interesting Year

I’ve got some kind of virus right now. It’s kicking my butt. So, I really am trying to take it easy. But, I was checking some of the posts out there in the blogoshpere and came by one by James F. McGrath. The only reason it jumped out at me is that I am currently reading 1984 by George Orwell. (For the first time. Ok, I’m a little behind, let it go.) Most of the time when I read fiction I find myself transported into the world that the author has created. For C.S. Lewis I find myself in Perelandra, Malacandra or Narnia. Tolkein takes me to Middle Earth. With Orwell, I find myself in Oceania. However, McGrath makes the point that “Orwell has written a book that seems like it ought to change the world.” This I find interesting. More than making a political statement, he was making a critique of society and culture at a very basic level. Classism, racism and any other social construct came under his scrutiny. I appreciate McGrath’s insight on this. I may have to re-read the book with my own worldview placed under the microscope.

Be Still and Know that I Am God

Be still and know that I am God.
I get up in the morning and rush to eat and get my coffee
Be still and know that I am God.
Hurriedly, I take 1 hour, no more, no less for prayer and meditation
Be still and know that I am God.
Throw food in a bag a run off to the salt mine
Be still and know that I am God.
Put out imaginary fires and ping-ping like a Balley ball
Be still and know that I am God.
70 MPH home to workout, feed Bill, eat, crash…crash…crash
Be still and know that I am God.
Sleep, dream, toss, awaken…………….
I get up in the morning and rush to eat and get my coffee
Be still and know that I am God.