Tuesday, October 25, 2011
We have just returned from a trip to Tulsa where we witnessed and celebrated the wedding of our granddaughter, Jessica with Brad, a delightful young man. It was a joyful time that reminded me again of the wonder of love in full bloom in God's world with beautiful people. So Charlie wonders this morning-after why I sometimes allow some of my life experiences to leave me disillusioned. Why do I expect more from our congress, for example, than they can provide? As usual, the answer lies in my ego. I expect more because I think I know more than I do. I think I know how they should work together for the good of our country. When I drop the ego and return to my true self, I can continue the joy of the weekend and live in the pleasant now.
Sunday, October 16, 2011
As a pastor and healer of sorts in the Air Force I was known as a protestant chaplain. This, in spite of the fact that I was not much of a protester. The name came from Christians related to priests who protested some of the practices of the Roman Catholic Church in the 16th century. I never was a part or that or any subsequent rebellion. I do not have any active part in the current activities of protestors now achieving so much attention in New York, San Antonio or the many cities of the United States and major cities of the world. I am not that kind of protester. However, as a Christ follower, I do have some sympathies for their essential message as I understand it. Jesus was clearly opposed to greed and always concerned with the plight of the sick, the thirsty, the hungry and "the least of these." He spoke the truth: "the love of money is the root of all evil." We see what it is doing to our culture today. He loved the wealthy and showed them how they could share with the poor. Today he is surely using the wealthy who are ministering to the needy through their money. This includes at least some of the 1% our children in the streets are crying out against. May the Warren Buffet tribes of givers increase. The rest of us (the 99%) must find our ways to make the most of whatever life we are given. Our peace within depends on how we relate to the inequality we find throughout our culture. All religions have a strand of their belief system that says if we are to have peace we must treat others as we wish to be treated. Many of the irreligious know that as well.
Friday, October 7, 2011
Autumn is here in South Texas and after a string of rainless 100 degree temperatures it couldn't be more welcome. Even down here fall is transition time. After being kept in with swollen, painful feet it was my summer of discomfort. Just in time for fall I am beginning to walk with only minimum pain. To be out working a little in our yard I am finding new freedom. I am also able to look back at whatever went "wrong" and see what I have learned and can still learn from it. That learning involved recognizing whatever the pain was about, it helped me connect with my deeper self. On my good days, at least, I could see that beyond the physical pain was spiritual peace and comfort. I just had to realize that only my negative thoughts about it made the pain worse. It is like Jesus saying to turn the other cheek. That was not practical advice; it was parable, metaphor. What it means for me today is to not take the painful feet too seriously. Whatever happens to them happens only to my outer shell. What I do with my inner self, beneath my thoughts and other interpretations, determines whether my summer of discomfort is over and I do not carry it over to a "winter of discontent."