Inside the Ark- rather icky

“If we were to progress through all the ‘bad God’ episodes in the Scripture then we would discover a god who appears to order or countenance all manner of Ethnocide, genocide, war, infanticide, murder, rape and onward.”

The “elephant in the room”: a “bad god.”

Or you might to walk with Brother Francis-Clare who writes with the clarity and humour of confidence there is no “bad god” and here is why.

Personally I find these posts valuable. Because they are not of the teaching I had as a young (or old) churchgoer.

Thank you –

Paul

(comments closed, here, please add any thoughts under the original post)

Just me being curious

Before we pop inside,let’s look back as to why we are in here – did God really do this?

noahtermite Attribution Carl D’Agostino https://carldagostino.wordpress.com/

This is  the continuation of those hard things we find in the bible, again part of a myth a very powerful story. How can we believe that Our Heavenly Father who declared all things good is about to annihilate all living things by suffocation and drowning. ( See Rashi commentary at Noes Ark 1 – the herald angels the previous post.

If we were to progress through all the ‘bad God’ episodes in the Scripture then we would discover a god who appears to order or countenance all manner of Ethnocide, genocide, war, infanticide, murder, rape and onward. That is the reason behind the references to “Stories’ here, they were written for reasons mostly having nothing to do with God but  humans, Historians and Priests, justifying the…

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The Trout of Doubt

Over at a blog called “The Undercover Christian” there is a fishing yarn …

The Trout of Doubt

“Let’s blow the lid on this, and suggest a startling idea – all Christians are sitting somewhere on a spectrum of doubt at any one time.  At one end is the conviction that God does not exist and it’s all a load of nonsense, and at the other is a wild-eyed, near-psychotic conviction that God is more real that Burger King.

And nobody is ever at either extreme.  Even self-described atheists have a part of them that thinks “but what if…?” (and they wouldn’t be very good scientists if they didn’t).  Instead, in response to the factors acting on us at any one time, we slide along this spectrum throughout our lives.  We might move in either direction, by an inch or a mile, over several years or in the space of a day.  In essence, all Christians are in a greater or lesser state of worry that they might be wrong, the whole time.  All people are, whether they’re religious or not.”

For some reason the reblog button ain’t there, so this a link to a fab post:

Doubt is okay!

Head over and see what you think – I did!

🙂

Paul

 

(comments closed here, please leave any comments at TUC’s place – thanks) 

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Superstitions of Christians (Some are really funny)

Tom has a habit of asking questions. He has a way of saying stuff. The stuff that makes you look in the mirror and see yourself more clearly. And most all, Tom does that with affection.

That is a precious gift.

Paul

 

(comments disabled here, please add to Tom’s list of over at his place, thank you)

Hard Times Ministries

I’ve heard many people believe that nothing should sit on top of a Bible.  It had to be laid down with face up and alone in the home.  Of course, no writing of comments in margins or underlining allowed.

Some in prayer believe if you call upon the ‘blood’ of Jesus that He likes those prayers more and thus, is more apt to answer.

Most of us still repeat “God Bless you.” After we sneeze.

You dare not curse inside the building of the House of God (As if God doesn’t hear you outside the building).

Many believe you can meet a good girl or guy at Church when really, the church is a house of sinners the same as in a bar or other secular place.

Many still believe you have to dress up to impress God at church.  Wow.  I could never get over this one as surely…

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Crossing a Threshold

“Smiley for Kylie is a non-profit dedicated to finding a cure for childhood cancer.”

What has this got to do with Church?

Well if church is people not bricks – and if people are living not dead – then living people connect in love, hope, sadness, and very emotion going. Church is inclusive of all, not just hymns and prayers and sermons.

Mark Meyer is living. His Smiley for Kyile is living. And Smiley for Kylie is founded on more love than I have a right to touch from so far away. And I hope you will be touched too.

I hope you will share this love you are now connected to with others in your own life, and that they will be connected with your love and this love and that they will share it with their family and friends, and so on and so on …

Love connects and love lives. And love is not just for Christmas.

Thank you –

Paul
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(comments closed here, please let Mark know your thoughts, thank you)

A Generous Helping

Smiley for Kylie is a non-profit dedicated to finding a cure for childhood cancer. The mission was not hard to decide upon because it was exactly what Kylie told us to do before she died: cure childhood cancer. I am excited to say that we just crossed a threshold. Since Kylie was diagnosed in April of 2014, her impact has now driven over $100,000 into childhood cancer research.

Our little non-profit ended 2017 with a flurry of giving that took us to $111,000!

I am blown away by the generosity and hard work of family, friends, and people who never even met Kylie. Kylie’s family would also like to thank our Board of Directors who support us in everything we do. We love giving away money to fund research and I would like to share a little backstory that will help explain what guided our decisions.

When Kylie was diagnosed…

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Stop Volunteering!

“Outside of the Christian faith volunteering is a noble act that is not a part of our normal responsibilities. Volunteering is done to help a cause that cannot function unless someone comes forward to fill certain roles. The volunteer is considered such a blessing that anything they do is applauded even if it is not done well or is not complete. The volunteer has nothing to lose and everything to gain because just showing up is rewarded with praise.”

A thought provoking read!

(please add any thoughts under Live 4 Him – they are closed here, thank you)

Paul

Live 4 Him

There isn’t a pastor or church leader out there that has read this title and hasn’t thought to themselves, “how can we stop people at our church from reading this post?” Short of crashing the internet or stealing your fellow Christ follower’s internet enabled devices you can’t guarantee that people won’t come across this post. If you are willing to continue reading you may even find yourself encouraging them to do so.

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Unexpected Invitations

It has been almost two months that I have been in the dark. I have been there before. It is dark and lonely and void of God’s presence, at least to those of us who live there. 

I have spent the time twisting and turning and writhing to find my place. Saying to myself, this is part of the journey, allowing myself to accept the time in the desert. But this time felt different. In the deserts that I have experienced before it was not God’s presence that was lacking but my own. I wouldn’t say I was alone this time. I would say that the black hole that consumed me was something beyond me. Something I had never experienced.

It wasn’t until a trip to the Blessed Sacrament that I cried out. I could not contain it. I went there specifically to cry and to beg God to come back to me, even though I know that he never left. But this daunting darkness consumed me and I hoped it wasn’t what Mother Teresa had experienced. I am no saint and I knew that I was not ready for all of that. I asked God in one breath to show up. I thought how nice it would be if the lights went dark in that chapel. Then they did. Then Father walked in. 1- God, Melissa-0.

And I left that place full of hope, knowing that in that tiny prayer, I could expect God to answer. That a single visit in the darkness could bring light. That things, they could change.

It was 5:30 am when my eyes opened. I was at peace, different from my emotional outcry the day before. I needed a good meditative piece to read and I thought of Elizabeth Scalia and checked aleteia. There it was staring me in the face- the reason for my darkness.

The piece was entitled, Are all these sexual abuse revelations triggering you? They are Me! I read it quick and with bated breath. That there could be another human on earth who could be sent to decipher my pain. We forget about one another. We don’t take the time to listen to one another. We are wild beasts ravaging around this crazy world. 

It was that sentence, the one that freed me. The one that diagnosed me. The one that let me out of my prison sentence. Two months hard labor in the darkness had been two months too long. But the words, her words, brought that first ray of light.

if you are lately feeling out of sorts — if you are feeling unaccountably sad, moody, unfocused, angry,  ashamed — if you have that cloud hovering over you, consider that perhaps you are being triggered, all subconsciously.

The weight of the Weinsteins and the Matt Lauer’s was all-consuming. The women who were getting justice while I was not. The lingering effects of sexual abuse that seep in like the bite from a poisonous snake as you slowly die without even realizing it. It is a deadly poison and a scary thought to think that you are dying and nobody has noticed. Oh how well we as victims can hide the pain.

So I pass Elizabeth’s message on to you. For those who have been living in a subconscious darkness. For predators. For the empathetic who are effected by the headlines. And for my brothers and sisters who still suffer the vile effects of sexual abuse. Know that God hasn’t left you. He is present, we need only move away the cloud.