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Day thirty five; Silence

31 Mar

It’s been two thousand, and twelve years since Jesus was killed.

I could have lived to the age of ninety, 23 times.

So much has happened. Christians, Muslims, Hindus, Buddhists…everyone’s had great big fights.

I have lived through catastophe, and technological marvel.

And God has been silent.

No revelation, no certifiable, Global miracles, no rising from the dead, no undeniable messengers, no Kingdom of God.

Faith is all I live on, on and on and on. Endless.

Sometimes it’s like a heartless surrender. Like just being there because I believe but not because I’m excited.

Resignation, I think it’s called.

There are eight billion people alive today. How many have lived since that day on the mount?

All these people with all these sorrows and all these stories on this rock called Earth. What are we living for?

If we have been ‘saved’ by the blood of christ, if the promise of salvation was sealed by his death, why are we here? Why do we keep going on? What is supposed to be happening?

Are we to find something useful, something enjoyable here?

Give up your wealth, give up your relationships, give up your cheeks for slapping. So?

This gift of everlasting life that was paid for in blood…what is it all about?

There are two of me brooding over the fire today. Me, twenty three lifetimes ago, quivering with the anticipation of Jerusalem and the New Kingdom, and the defeat of death forevermore, by my king and my lord and my friend, Jesus, and me, now, twenty three lifetimes since, just shivering.

Cold, miserable, surrounded by lunatics telling me to kneel, to bow, to dress appropriately, to weep, to repent, to fear.

“Two will be working in the fields. One will be taken, the other left behind!”

“Seek ye first the Kingdom of God! He’s not here to make your life easy!”

“See the birds of the air and the fish in the sea…how they are fed and flourish? How much more does the lord love thee!”

There is endless slaughter and mayhem of those birds and fishes.

There are non-stop injustices here, on ordinary people, of atrocious proportions, now, then and throughout history.

What is all this suffering about?

I won’t be happy if I’m rich.

I won’t be happy if I’m poor.

At least as a Christian, I can bare martyrdom because through his name joy is coming, joy is coming!

Sigh.

Jesus is looking at me across the fire with piercing eyes.

He’s trying to give me something, but I’m angry and hopeless.

It’s been two thousand and twelve years since he died.

Twenty three lifetimes and number of very large headaches.

I’m tired.

And there’s nothing but silence.

Be still and know that I am God!”  (Psalm 46:10)

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3 Comments

Posted by on March 31, 2012 in Uncategorized

 

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3 responses to “Day thirty five; Silence

  1. Paula Tohline Calhoun

    March 31, 2012 at 05:30

    Have you been listening for God’s voice in the earthquake, the wind, and the fire? Maybe the purpose of silence is to be quiet enough to hear the still small voice.

    I do understand what you are saying about the sense of futility. I’ve been there. But on the other hand, I cannot say there have been no miracles. Although I suppose that is determined by how you define them. I’m a living miracle. During the origins of the Methodist church, many of the pastors – especially here in the US – were itinerant. They traveled from parish to parish, usually on horseback and had nothing but their faith and the kindness of the parishes they visited to support them. Each annual conference they would come together with the Bishop of the conference. One of the hymns they sang together when they first arrived was, “And are we yet alive? And see each other’s face? Thanks be to God. . .for God’s Amazing Grace.”

    I do not believe that the Christian life is easy – especially when it is a life truly following our Model! But I have found through experience that we were given the model, because it creates and infuses us with joy. I don’t believe that God wants us slaving, unhappy, and constantly looking forward to heaven so we can be happy after we die! That’s the reason Jesus kept saying, “The kingdom of God IS AT HAND!” It is right within reach, touchable and available. Why put off to tomorrow what you can have today?

    On the other hand, it is very easy to fall into the trap of endless self-flagellation. We aren’t worthy; life is crap anyway, so many are suffering and I can’t do anything about it; etc., etc., ad nauseum. The Devil is a master at depression and resignation and all that crap. And we are all at one time or another better listeners of his than of God’s. The Devil speaks louder, is more attractive, and makes everything sound so logical and reasonable and right! What God has to say requires that we listen, think, be, and do. Nothing passive about following Jesus. So far, I have found that when I choose to be still and listen for God’s voice, though the directions I am given are sometimes very difficult, they always end up yielding rewards I had never imagined or dreamed of!

    You wrote:

    “There are two of me brooding over the fire today. Me, twenty three lifetimes ago, quivering with the anticipation of Jerusalem and the New Kingdom, and the defeat of death forevermore, by my king and my lord and my friend, Jesus, and me, now, twenty three lifetimes since, just shivering.

    Cold, miserable, surrounded by lunatics telling me to kneel, to bow, to dress appropriately, to weep, to repent, to fear.”

    My question then is, so why are you listening to those lunatics, when Jesus is sitting there right across from you, telling you to be at peace?

    You are entirely welcome to swat me over the head for that one! But, really – I’m only saying what I say to myself over and over! Here I am, in midst of crap all around me, and I find reason to laugh and be joyful. Here I am in a world gone crazy, and I am here and alive, and I have (most of) my wits about me! That in itself is a miracle. Why choose misery when you really do have a choice? Although I must say, if one is going to write a really fine poem, you need to grab on to a bit of misery and unhappiness every once in a while – that’s where much of the best poetry comes from.

    By the way, with all the technological marvels that are in the world today, we have been given all the tools necessary to solve a lot of the world’s problems, to feed and clothe and house everybody, but as a race, we have chosen not to, and to blame God instead for not “fixing everything!” Why do we insist on taking credit for all the good stuff and fail to recognize that if we want to take credit for that we have to accept the blame for all of it! Also – it is probably a good idea to quit spending time trying to figure out why life exists, why we are here, etc. Something tells me we are not going to ever find that out – this side of eternity, anyway! Probably a huge waste of time, tears, and energy, and even if you do think you have found the answer, what good will it do you? To whom, exactly, are you going to prove it, and what for? 😆

    Also – I wanted to tell you that I believe our almost identical dreams is a God-thing! That’s a miracle, too, isn’t it? Your mental picture of us is probably right on target – if I didn’t dye my hair! 😆 We are both silver-haired au naturel! I’ll send a photo of me and Ashley one of these days – I don’t like photos of me as I am not very photogenic, but for someone I’m walking through the desert with, I guess I can break precedent! You do the same, OK? It will be nice to picture your face as I meditate and pray each evening.

    Until next time, all I can say is, don’t postpone happiness, and never delay joy. There’s no reason not to enter into the kingdom right now. It takes a listening ear, and a willing heart, and the faith you need will be provided. You see, we don’t even have to provide that – just accept it when it’s offered.

    Start making your plans to come visit! We are both looking forward to it! Until then, be cool, accept God’s Love when offered, laugh as often as possible, do what you can with what you have. Whatever you do out of love for God will always be enough. . .

     
    • kolembo

      March 31, 2012 at 13:11

      Hahaha, I got a blurt!
      No, of course you’re right here.
      I just had to shout it out, what it feels like sometimes, even when you’re rooted to faith.
      Sometimes the work of it singles you out so much from the rest of the crowd, you wonder if you’re doing the right thing.
      Today it’s all about talking responsibility and sorting it out effectively yourself.
      And i get it, just because we are with Jesus doesn’t mean we don’t function.
      We must function with him besides us.

      Still, we are given so little information on when and how and rely so much on the Holy Spirit in our lives, sometimes it feels so tenuous. I know the Holy Spirit guides me in a practical sense but right now I feel like I could use a more direct relationship with the power that feeds me!

      I’ll look for a photo somewhere – I already have an imagination of you that has NOTHING to do with what you look like in real life!

      No worries, photos don’t phase me, infact, I’m one who loves them – love to see that people that God loves, just as they are.

      I’m sure if I trawl through your blog I’ll find something…I saw the one of you in the nightie – internet warrior – writing on your blog as a prescription drug. It was funny!

      You have something with you and Ashley?

      So, Palm Sunday tomorrow, everybody excited, it’s odd that two-tier feeling I have.

      I’m so aware of two events happening – two time zones separated by two thousand years existing together now – how different, how similar each day from Sunday looks.

      Our forty days lent though is off a week I gather, so we cross the line on Good Friday, sorry!

      However, I’m going to filter the experience through the march to calvary.

      This weeks meditation is on Sacrifice. Can you believe it?

      Ahhhhh.

      See you tonight.

       
  2. Paula Tohline Calhoun

    March 31, 2012 at 13:47

    Our forty days may be coming to an end, but our 100 days are not even half-way finished! I have lately been considering the shape of our journey after Easter. Will we walk the road to Emmaus, have breakfast in Galilee, maybe stand with Stephen, or be perhaps onlookers, or maybe walk with Saul on the road to Damascus? Will we each be Cornelius for the other? Messengers of God? And how many times will God have to unfurl that sheet for us before we finally catch on?

    I have a challenge for you that I hope you will accept. I want you to write some poetry – for me, if for no one else. I want you to reflect a bit, in your own inimitable style, on these past 40 days. I think you will be surprised at what comes out, and i can hardly wait to read it myself!

    I have enlisted in the little challenge called “Blogging from A to Z for the month of April. We are to write a poem or essay or story each day of April, minus Sundays (except for April 1, the first day), each day with the subject to be in alphabetical. For instance, on April 1 (Sunday) I will write a poem (or whatever) about something beginning with the letter “A.” and so on. Here is the link to the site in case you are interested: http://www.a-to-zchallenge.com/p/2012-to-z-challenge-sign-up-list.html

    I will definitely send you a photo with the two of us in it. I have some nice photos from our wedding over 37 years ago, but that won’t exactly be an accurate picture of us today! I’ll put together a little group of photos of me and our whole family, and e-mail them to you. That will be fun for me to peruse through the stack. Did you get the note from me that your yahoo e-mail got hacked?

    Sacrifice. This is one time when the phrase, “Oh, My God!” is really appropriate! I get so overwhelmed when I spend any significant amount of time thinking about what was done for me, and it is still a sacrifice that I do not understand.

    My Mom and I had a conversation once in which we were discussing some icon in an art book. We got into a discussion of the prevalence of the crucified Christ on the cross, and my Mom said that that it bothered her a great deal, that for some people it is the only way they think of Jesus. The cross is an emblem of sacrifice, but more than that it is a symbol of victory! If you are going to wear a cross around your neck, or carry one in your pocket, it seems it would be more fitting to wear a “Christus Rex” – a depiction of the Risen Christ, the King, on the cross, instead of a crucifix. The victory is the central part of Easter. Granted, it could not have happened without the sacrifice first, but we are to remember most of all, that Christ conquered death, that Christ lives today, and the battle over sin and death has already been won – even though the devil still insists on stirring up battles in a war he wants us to believe that he has not lost.

    I do wish the devil wasn’t so handsome and appealing. But, it does make life interesting, doesn’t it? If I am moved to do so, and remember to, I’ll write a story tomorrow – it is a true story that happened to me, and it is actually an excellent parable about faith and works. It is a story that God pointed out to me as such as it was unfolding before my eyes. Probably to give me a kick in the butt so i would get off of it, and get busy! 😆

    Looking forward to our talk tonight. I need to see his eyes again, and see the firelight gleaming in them, and feel his arms around me. Nothing better in all of creation. . .

    Hope, Peace, Love, and Joy – enough. . .

     

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