Saturday, March 17, 2007

suite judey blue eyes


but when we talk about pre-formed inner people, as i believe we have gotten in this discussion, it brings back a whole host of former questions about determinism and predestination and free will. and a scripture is brought back to mind:
Rom 9:18-20 "So then He has mercy on whom He desires, and He hardens whom He desires. You will say to me then, 'Why does He still find fault? For who resists His will?' On the contrary, who are you, O man, who answers back to God? The thing molded will not say to the molder, 'Why did you make me like this,' will it?"
yet then, while contemplating this, i was beckoned to look one verse more.
Rom 9:21 "Or does not the potter have a right over the clay, to make from the same lump one vessel for honorable use and another for common use?"
and it came across my mind as i contemplated this that perhaps i try too hard to think in terms of the universal. in absolutes. that everyone has a common experience when it comes to god. or perhaps there is some ideal that, if lived correctly, will produce a common experience that everyone should seek to relive. but what if everyone's experiences are different? what if our experience of god is completely unique in its scope and style? because according to verse 21, god makes some vessels for honorable use and some for common use. so everyone is not created equal it would seem. which brings me back to questions two:

do we run amiss by thinking that we are to strive to accomplish the things god asked of the apostles instead of knowing who we are and what god would ask of us, in our moment, as unique individuals?

none of us (i assume) feels too guilty for not spending your life building a big boat made of gopher wood and scouring ebay for the rarest of animals that we might have two. why? because we understand that is something god asked of noah and he is not asking that of us. but yet how strange it is that we feel compelled to think that we are to fulfill tasks asked of people one-thousand nine-hundred and sixty-seven years ago. with jesus and the apostles. role models? yes. keepers and purveyors of truth? absolutely. dictators of life's goals and choices by imitation of their goals and choices? hmmm.

one more ridiculous example to pound this in your brain. i'm not too sure many of us strive to lay naked on our sides for a year and lay seige to a model of our city just because ezekiel did. he only did it because it was what god asked of him. just the same as the apostles did what god asked of them. but do we fall short by not listening to the spirit ourselves and instead constantly search out the experiences of these obedient men as being the measuring stick of obeying god? because if i'm at least doing what paul was doing then i'm obeying god, right?

not necessarily.

perhaps god wants you to do something else...

a great example of this is a friend of mine and a situation she was in a few years back. she took a year off from school at an orphanage in mexico and loved it. she didn't want to leave. she fit in and loved the work and loved the kids and it came so naturally. but after her year away, god asked her to come home and she knew it. she knew it was him. now, anyone looking from the outside would have thought that a woman who has sacrificed her life in her home country to pour her life out into helping mexican street orphans have a home would say that she is one of the true few saints the world has. but it wouldn't have pleased god one bit. because it would have been disobedience for her to stay.

so i guess the sub-question that's really going on in my mind is this:
can it be a mistake for all of us collectively to think that accomplishing the tasks and goals of, as well as employing the methods given to, the apostles might make us miss what it is the spirit wants to ask each of us as individuals? to accomplish unique goals, in our unique circumstances into which we have all been placed?

15 comments:

Nate said...

I think that you are beginning to see what I was talking about in the posts "On Our Own","Conscience and The Will Of God","Works Because of Faith", "Being like Jesus", and "Within God's Will". This is what I was talking about so often. You were relating it to an experience you had with DOs, but it is really about following God, and no one else. Then each experience of faith, will be unique to the individual believer. Go back and reread them with this context in mind and see what you get out of them this time.

Nate said...

PS You are almost there. I also believe I have found the answer to your "lost one following God" thoughts.

Wendy ftfs said...

Ecclesiastes 3

10 I have seen the burden God has laid on men. He has made everything beautiful in its time. He has also set eternity in the hearts of men; yet they cannot fathom what God has done from beginning to end.

Eccl. 7

10 Do not say, "Why were the old days better than these?" For it is not wise to ask such questions....

13 Consider what God has done: Who can straighten
what he has made crooked?
When times are good, be happy; but when times are bad, consider:
God has made the one as well as the other.
Therefore, a man cannot discover anything about his future.

Eccl 8

16 When I applied my mind to know wisdom and to observe man's labor on earth—his eyes not seeing sleep day or night- then I saw all that God has done. No one can comprehend what goes on under the sun. Despite all his efforts to search it out, man cannot discover its meaning. Even if a wise man claims he knows, he cannot really comprehend it.

Eccl 9

11 I have seen something else under the sun:

The race is not to the swift or the battle to the strong, nor does food come to the wise or wealth to the brilliant or favor to the learned; but time and chance happen to them all.

Eccl 12

9 Not only was the Teacher wise, but also he imparted knowledge to the people. He pondered and searched out and set in order many proverbs. The Teacher searched to find just the right words, and what he wrote was upright and true.

The words of the wise are like goads, their collected sayings like firmly embedded nails—given by one Shepherd. Be warned, my son, of anything in addition to them.
Of making many books there is no end, and much study wearies the body.

Now all has been heard; here is the conclusion of the matter:

Fear God and keep his commandments, for this is the whole duty of man. For God will bring every deed into judgment, including every hidden thing, whether it is good or evil.

jON said...

i have a friend who says that the only book of the bible that he feels is relevant to modern life is ecclesiastes.

i know i'm close. i'm trying to get back, really. i had it, for a moment. it all unfurled and bloomed like a wonderful instantaneous flower. it all started with my grandfather who gave me the courage to believe what i truly believed in my heart. and be honest about it without shame.

but with the events of the 2nd half of my year last year being as fucked up as they were, many thistles and thorns have sprung up. i'm delicately trying to identify exactly which plant is which. so i know what i can grab and yank out by the root with confidence. regardless of what any other human would say.

it's just so strange to find oneself in a such a position of assurance of community and yet such isolation from the world at large.

its strange to look at the world and see infinity. to look at a moment and know how wide the possibilities ultimately are. and to have to guess what the best set of possibilities to set in motion are.

i know you're here, in this place, to be a strength and encouragement to me on my path. and perhaps i am to be that for you as well, i do not know. but thanks for being here and going through this with me all the same. it's nice to have people who will actually help me investigate my questions! and good to know i'll have a few more people i know already at the big party!! even if we never meet in this life, i KNOW we'll meet in the next.

and somehow...we'll recognize each other.



i'm sure of it.

Nate said...

Thanks for the congrats. Hey. did you go back and reread those posts? Did God reveal anything new to you? If not that is fine. He has you where he wants you.

Then, commenting on your post for it's sake alone. When talking about predestination. Paul talked about God choosing the "Called out ones" before the beginning of the world. Now who these people are, remains to be clearly defined. Those wacky calvinists believe that is was predestinated that only some are chosen to be God's Kingdom. Much like the Jehovah's Witnesses believing in the 144,000 gong to heaven. But, my belief is that God had some chosen ones that he knew would be needed, and put them in play at the right time. That does not mean I am a called out one, nor does it mean that I will not go to heaven. It just means that I will be a common vessel. Hey, that's good enough for me.

Now for your three questions. The answers are Yes, Yes, and Yes.

1.do we run amiss by thinking that we are to strive to accomplish the things god asked of the apostles instead of knowing who we are and what god would ask of us, in our moment, as unique individuals?

Yes. I have not been called to preach, yet. But they were. Why hasn't God chosen me. I don't know, don't care. I don't want to do it anyway. Am I in the will of God, Yes. Other wise I would be miserable of spirit, with the HS convicting me to get on the right path. I am rediculously happy. I can tell that you are not. So guess what. What you are doing isn't what God wants you to do. Think about when you have true unfettered joy, and that is what God wants you to do. How? How the hell should I know, I am not running the show, God is, ask him.

2.can it be a mistake for all of us collectively to think that accomplishing the tasks and goals of, as well as employing the methods given to, the apostles might make us miss what it is the spirit wants to ask each of us as individuals?

Yes. We are supposed to have personal relationship with God. Guess what, think of all of the married people tht you know, is any one of those relationships exactly the same. HELL NO! So guess what, every persons experience with God will be different. How can that be possible? My God is omniscient,and omnipotent, that's how.

3. to accomplish unique goals, in our unique circumstances into which we have all been placed?

Yes. God put you in creation for a reason. Maybe it was to introduce the great grandparents of the antichrist, so that he couls be born. That was all you were created for, and that is how God used you to further his design. Whatever the reason, big or small, he gave you the talent to carry that out. Just follow his lead, quit being a wimp, and do what you feel he is leading you to do.

OK that last part was ALL brother, but still in love.

Hopefully that gives you my thoughts on it.

I will be posting a what can God know, and what can omniscience consist of. This will also deal with predestination, and how much is controlled.

WOW that was long.

jON said...

i understand and appreciate, once again, your willingness to go over this stuff with me. and i appreciate your type a personality telling me to 'git r done'. what brings me peace? having people over to our home, getting high, playing games, and laughing so hard we can't take it any more. going out to the bar with people and singing bad karaoke. giving cigarettes to my poor neighbors so that they may see a small example of generosity. talking with people about their most taboo hobbies and practices and letting speask of them in an acceptable way so that they may unburden themselves and feel okay about who they are. thinking about community and seeing it grow. (although i don't know what, if anything, it will look like in the future) serving people. saying things that shatter people's preconceptions of the world around them and give them an opportunity to see the world through different eyes. drawing near to people who are lonely and offering companionship. and several such other things and places that i have been told are 'not okay.'

i had been alright with it, as i said, and as anyone who has been following along has seen. but it was the process of a half year of people beating into my head that i am a 'false teacher' and a 'madman shooting firebrands and arrows' that has me a bit shaky.

so it is not my situation that steals my peace, it is the thoughts that have been placed in my head. it is the thought that these scriptures that follow talk about me.

and thinking that these scriptures talk about me definitely steals my peace.


Mt 7:15 “Watch out for false prophets. They come to you in sheep’s clothing, but inwardly they are ferocious wolves."

Mt 24:11 and many false prophets will appear and deceive many people.

Mt 24:24 For false Christs and false prophets will appear and perform great signs and miracles to deceive even the elect

Lk 6:26 Woe to you when all men speak well of you,
for that is how their fathers treated the false prophets.

2Co 11:12-15 And I will keep on doing what I am doing in order to cut the ground from under those who want an opportunity to be considered equal with us in the things they boast about. For such men are false apostles, deceitful workmen, masquerading as apostles of Christ. And no wonder, for Satan himself masquerades as an angel of light. It is not surprising, then, if his servants masquerade as servants of righteousness. Their end will be what their actions deserve.

1Ti 6:3-4 If anyone teaches false doctrines and does not agree to the sound instruction of our Lord Jesus Christ and to godly teaching, he is conceited and understands nothing. He has an unhealthy interest in controversies and quarrels about words that result in envy, strife, malicious talk, evil suspicions...

2Pe 2:1-22 But there were also false prophets among the people, just as there will be false teachers among you. They will secretly introduce destructive heresies, even denying the sovereign Lord who bought them—bringing swift destruction on themselves. Many will follow their shameful ways and will bring the way of truth into disrepute. In their greed these teachers will exploit you with stories they have made up. Their condemnation has long been hanging over them, and their destruction has not been sleeping. For if God did not spare angels when they sinned, but sent them to hell, putting them into gloomy dungeons to be held for judgment; if he did not spare the ancient world when he brought the flood on its ungodly people, but protected Noah, a preacher of righteousness, and seven others; if he condemned the cities of Sodom and Gomorrah by burning them to ashes, and made them an example of what is going to happen to the ungodly; and if he rescued Lot, a righteous man, who was distressed by the filthy lives of lawless men (for that righteous man, living among them day after day, was tormented in his righteous soul by the lawless deeds he saw and heard)— if this is so, then the Lord knows how to rescue godly men from trials and to hold the unrighteous for the day of judgment, while continuing their punishment. This is especially true of those who follow the corrupt desire of the sinful nature and despise authority. Bold and arrogant, these men are not afraid to slander celestial beings; yet even angels, although they are stronger and more powerful, do not bring slanderous accusations against such beings in the presence of the Lord. But these men blaspheme in matters they do not understand. They are like brute beasts, creatures of instinct, born only to be caught and destroyed, and like beasts they too will perish. They will be paid back with harm for the harm they have done. Their idea of pleasure is to carouse in broad daylight. They are blots and blemishes, reveling in their pleasures while they feast with you. With eyes full of adultery, they never stop sinning; they seduce the unstable; they are experts in greed—an accursed brood! They have left the straight way and wandered off to follow the way of Balaam son of Beor, who loved the wages of wickedness. But he was rebuked for his wrongdoing by a donkey—a beast without speech—who spoke with a man’s voice and restrained the prophet’s madness. These men are springs without water and mists driven by a storm. Blackest darkness is reserved for them. For they mouth empty, boastful words and, by appealing to the lustful desires of sinful human nature, they entice people who are just escaping from those who live in error. They promise them freedom, while they themselves are slaves of depravity—for a man is a slave to whatever has mastered him. If they have escaped the corruption of the world by knowing our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ and are again entangled in it and overcome, they are worse off at the end than they were at the beginning. It would have been better for them not to have known the way of righteousness, than to have known it and then to turn their backs on the sacred command that was passed on to them. Of them the proverbs are true: “A dog returns to its vomit,” and, “A sow that is washed goes back to her wallowing in the mud.”

1Jn 4:1 Dear friends, do not believe every spirit, but test the spirits to see whether they are from God, because many false prophets have gone out into the world.

Wendy ftfs said...

"and thinking that these scriptures talk about me definitely steals my peace."

This is where you need to go to battle ... get it settled once and for all ...

The bottom line truth of the matter is this ... for those who have received Christ He has given them the Power to become the children of God ... John 1

You are loved beyond your own understanding ...

Anything clouding these issues for you is your enemy bringing condemnation to your thought life ...

Getting high ... are we talking marijuana Jon?

jON said...

absolutely

Wendy ftfs said...

I know marijuana well ... and I also know this, that it is the number 1 cause of psychosis in our societies today ... clouds your vision ... there is word on the street that it is not addictive but I say it is ... maybe not to all ... but an addictive personality will become addicted to anything really ... so :-)

lol

What do you think of this Jon. Are you going to now defend this drug that the healthy should not use on a "regular" basis as it goes for all drugs ... because I've heard all the defenses and none of them wash well.

Much love to you

Wendy ftfs said...

Wisdom, like an inheritance is a good thing and benefits those who see the sun.

Wisdom is a shelter
as money is a shelter,
but the advantage of knowledge is this:
that wisdom preserves the life of its possessor.

Consider what God has done:
Who can straighten what he has made crooked?

When times are good, be happy; but when times are bad, consider:
God has made the one as well as the other.
Therefore, a man cannot discover anything about his future.

In this meaningless life of mine I have seen both of these:
a righteous man perishing in his righteousness,and a wicked man living long in his wickedness.

Do not be overrighteous,
neither be overwise—
why destroy yourself?

Do not be overwicked,
and do not be a fool—
why die before your time?

It is good to grasp the one
and not let go of the other.
The man who fears God will avoid all extremes .

Wisdom makes one wise man more powerful than ten rulers in a city.
There is not a righteous man on earth who does what is right and never sins.

Eccl. 7

Susan said...

Further to your post I found this interesting testimony from Henri Nouwen which is in Nouwen's book, The Road to Daybreak.

"My trips to Latin America had set in motion the thought that I might be called to spend the rest of my life among the poor of Bolivia or Peru. So I resigned from my teaching position at Yale and went to Bolivia to learn Spanish and to Peru to experience the life of a priest among the poor. I sincerely tried to discern whether living among the poor in Latin America was the direction to go. Slowly and painfully, I discovered that my spiritual ambitions were different from God's will for me. I had to face the fact that I wasn't capable of doing the work of a missioner in a Spanish speaking country, that I needed more emotional support than my fellow missioners could offer, that the hard struggle for justice often left me discouraged and dispirited, and that the great variety of tasks and obligations took away my inner composure. It was hard to hear my friends say that I could do more for the South in the North than in the South and that my ability to speak and write was more useful among university students than among the poor. It became quite clear to me that idealism, good intentions, and a desire to serve the poor do not make up a vocation."

jON said...

"What do you think of this, Jon..."

"It is good to grasp the one
and not let go of the other.
The man who fears God will avoid all extremes.
"

i apologize for the lapse in response. i haven't known whether or not to say anything about this. i suppose all i will say is this: i simply think that it is a gift given to us by god as a part of creation. should it consume your world? no. but i think there is a more than mrginal difference between use and abuse. what that line is will be different for everyone, and it is up to each one to know thyself. but i do believe, and have experienced the wonderful qualities firsthand, and choose to accept them into my life because of the positive things that it brings.

"what are those things?", you ask. the main thing is that it takes away the fear. it also creates a special bonding between people. as well as shifting your perceptions to see and think things you never thought of before. new eyes and new perspectives. sometimes for good. and sometimes for ill.

jON said...

susan, thank you for the quote. it can be so hard to accept that where god wants you is where he has already put you. and we need not run around looking for the 'great thing' god would have us do. we can best serve him by loving and serving those already around us. and by following that path, we will go where he is leading. thanks for the reminder!!! very refreshing.

Nate said...

This is the last I will say about it. The things that you describe as MJs benefits, I count as your crutches. Because if you are unable to do with out MJ, that which you do with it, are the things that you do with it really all that wise? Because when you have a straight head, you may say, "Well that is just stupid." Nwthing wrong with acting stupid for havong fun. But people are stupid all of the time with out the aid of outside stimulus.

To be able to do what you believe God is telling you to do, you will have to run into people that are really destroying themselves with nasty narcs. They will never listen to a fellow doper about cleaning up. The harder narcs make people do nasty things, and hate themselves. They need help, but you won't be able to help them.

Wendy ftfs said...

"as well as shifting your perceptions to see and think things you never thought of before. new eyes and new perspectives. sometimes for good. and sometimes for ill."

I understand this ... people get together at a party and have some wine and laugh and giggle or they may smoke a little weed and laugh and giggle but both of these drugs ... both liquid and gaseous are devastating to many and they are poisonous to all of our bodies. If you are to take a do no harm attitude toward those you know and meet, there is a better way.
All people respond to love... they will bond with you immediately when you tap in to the Holy Spirit and share the wisdom and love that comes from there. This is the greatest high I have ever found and I looked into and participated in a lot of those. There is really no comparison.

What you are providing is acceptance which is ok but love ... I'm not so sure ...
when you offer or cosign substances that will negatively affect lives in your sphere ... hmmmm

There are recovering addicts who claim that addiction is a search for God and that we all have to learn how to breathe underwater here. We are in spiritual distress here on this beautiful planet and peace with the God of Love and justice is the only way we can learn this.

Every addict has had a Jon in their life to cosign what they didn't know would be their stumbling block.

As far as shifting your perceptions and the new eyes ... you have already shared that you don't trust them. Yes, it takes you into a spiritual world ... but it is a spirit world filled with delusion and confusion. In other words your enemy will simply have a hay day with you ... and those who love you and live alongside you will be affected along with you as they were last summer.

I know these may be hard words for you Jon.

Again much love to you.

:-)