Oh My God

A profound song by Jars Of Clay with a painfully real focus:

 

Oh my God, look around this place
Your fingers reach around the bone
You set the break and set the tone
Flights of grace, and future falls
In present pain
All fools say, “Oh my God”

Oh my God, Why are we so afraid?
We make it worse when we don’t bleed
There is no cure for our disease
Turn a phrase, and rise again
Or fake your death and only tell your closest friend
Oh my God.

Oh my God, can I complain?
You take away my firm belief and graft my soul upon your grief
Weddings, boats and alibis
All drift away, and a mother cries

Liars and fools; sons and failures
Thieves will always say
Lost and found; ailing wanderers
Healers always say
Whores and angels; men with problems
Leavers always say
Broken hearted; separated
Orphans always say
War creators; racial haters
Preachers always say
Distant fathers; fallen warriors
Givers always say
Pilgrim saints; lonely widows
Users always say
Fearful mothers; watchful doubters
Saviors always say

Sometimes I cannot forgive
And these days, mercy cuts so deep
If the world was how it should be, maybe I could get some sleep
While I lay, I dream we’re better,
Scales were gone and faces light
When we wake, we hate our brother
We still move to hurt each other
Sometimes I can close my eyes,
And all the fear that keeps me silent falls below my heavy breathing,
What makes me so badly bent?
We all have a chance to murder
We all feel the need for wonder
We still want to be reminded that the pain is worth the thunder

Sometimes when I lose my grip, I wonder what to make of heaven
All the times I thought to reach up
All the times I had to give
Babies underneath their beds
Hospitals that cannot treat all the wounds that money causes,
All the comforts of cathedrals
All the cries of thirsty children – this is our inheritance
All the rage of watching mothers – this is our greatest offense

Oh my God
Oh my God

 

Like A Child

“When our inner child is not nurtured and nourished, our minds gradually close to new ideas, unprofitable commitments, and the surprises of the Spirit. Evangelical faith is bartered for cozy, comfortable piety. A failure of nerve and an unwillingness to risk distorts God into a bookeeper, and the gospel of grace is swapped for the security of religious bondage.” Brennan Manning, REFLECTIONS FOR RAGAMUFFINS, Pp.221″He called a little child and had him stand among them. And He said, “I tell you the truth, unless you change and become like little children, you will never enter the kingdom of heaven. Therefore, whoever humbles himself like this child is the greatest in the kingdom of heaven.” Matthew 18:2-4

“Then little children were brought to Jesus for him to place his hands on them and pray for them. But the disciples rebuked those who brought them. Jesus said, “Let the little children come to me, and do not hinder them, for the kingdom of heaven belongs to such as these.” Matthew 19:13-14

Papal “Infallibility”

THE CATHOLIC CHURCH: A SHORT HISTORY by Hans Kung, Pp.60-61:

    Under Justinian, of all emperors, Pope Vigilius presented such contradictory theological viewpoints in the face of the heretical monotheism at the Fifth Ecumencial Council, in Constantinople, in 553 that he lost all credibility. Later he was not even buried in St. Peter’s, and down the centures was ignored even in the West.

    Pope Honorius I was even worse. At the Sixth Ecumenical Council, in Constantinople, in 681, and then also at the Seventh and Eighth Ecumenical Councils he was condemned as a heretic; this was confirmed by his successor Leo II and by subsequent Roman popes.

Historical research, notably that of Yves Congar, has shown that down to the twelfth century, outside Rome the significance of the Roman church was not understood as a real teaching authority in the legal sense (magisterium) but as a religious authority, which was given with the martyrdom and tombs of Peter and Paul. No one in the whole of the first millennium regarded decisions of the pope as infallible.

God and Science, Theoretically Speaking

Science IS built on observations. However, the syntheses of observations that scientists use to frame the explanations of data gathered from observations (e.g., evolution) are theories. Theories are unproven ideas. Because they are unproven and often unable to be observed, one must choose to have faith (complete trust or confidence in someone or something) in them. The big bang is not able to be observed. Therefore, it is a theory. Creation is not able to be observed. Therefore, it is a theory. It simply comes down to a matter of what direction one chooses to direct their faith in. Atheistic scientists have chosen a direction that I have chosen to reject. I chose to reject it because it provides no peace or directive for me to live my life, love, and raise a family. Why, honestly, would anyone choose a perspective on life that only offers a dead end with no prospect of meaning?

That being said, I think there is plenty of room for science within the context of God. There are multiple perspectives on the biblical account of Creation, but, simply put, if God explained everything about creation in the bible, it would require volumes. The point is that God is responsible. That is the theory that I choose to place my faith in.

Angels

For some reason, I never took the idea of angels, or guardian angels, seriously. Recently, however, I came across the following words spoken by Christ within the context of discussing the connection between God and children:

“See that you do not look down on these little ones. For I tell you that their angels in heaven always see the face of my Father in heaven.” Matthew 18:10 NIV

 As a father to a four year old little girl (with a baby boy due in October) this verse is extremely comforting to me. I often find myself worrying about the dark circumstances of the future world that they will be living in. However, Jesus has guided the willing for far longer than I can comprehend and he will be faithful to guide my kids, too.

Breath

Like a machine, a mower
Consuming, cutting down
The tasks, distractions
That lie before me
Sometimes a sidestreet from a noble road
Often just a rashy alley lit with neon
My soul stumbles in a stupor
Until I fall, face down
Broken on the ground
Still in the aftermath
Too weak to move
Resting in a breath
A moment of humble clarity
My head against His chest
Listening to the Rabbi’s heartbeat

“People think the more they are doing for the Lord, the better and that he’ll be more pleased with them. But, God is more concerned with our relationship with Him. If we’re spending time with Him, those activities should come as a natural outpouring – not the other way around.” -Jeremy Camp