Are you following Jesus?

“Therefore choose life, so that both you and your offspring may live, and so that you may love the Lord your God, and obey his voice, and cling to him (for he is your life and the length of your days)…”

Deuteronomy 30:19(b)-20(a) CPDV

“It is good to hope in silence for the Lord’s deliverance.” Lamentations 3:26 (NAB Revised Edition)

Blessed is he who comes in the name of the Lord…

It is painful to find your life apart from the world. To be torn from the only life you know, the only way you know. We spend our lives searching for the truth and our purpose in this world. And for those of us that have found our way to Jesus, that truth is often times harsh. For in Him we find life. But He tells us as we make our way to him, “You’ve found me, now deny yourself and don’t look back. Come follow me and leave it all behind.”

And life as a Christian if you’re living it the Jesus way (not the world’s way or your church’s way) is not easy. At times you may find yourself asking, “Why am I doing this? Why am I walking this way?”  But the further you walk the more you come to realize that the world is simply desolate. The more you hear what Jesus has to say, the less the world satisfies you. The more you retreat inward, the more you see your neighbor through the eyes of a loving God. The more they hate you, the more you love them. The more despair around you, the more you frequent prayer. Your life, to most, does not make any sense, even to other Christians. And the more I’ve walked with Jesus, the more people do not understand me. But I don’t need them to understand me, I just need them to see that I am living in the way Jesus has taught me.

As we retreat inward in prayer, oftentimes it is our silence that makes for the greatest witness. Why has she gotten quiet? Why is she so deeply devout? What is it that’s different about her? I realize that at all times, it is my life that serves as a witness. I am the candle, and Jesus, He is the flame.

I choose not to post or write about my political affiliations or stances on the issues of the day. I give my opinion when asked, but do not offer it at will. I choose not to alienate people from the love of God. And although yes the gospel is offensive, I am the one who should be offended, I am the Christian, I am the one who should be living in this way. This is about me, my faith, my life, my witness, my love. I know now that turning inward makes for an outward Christian.

And I am not worrying anymore about other Christians, what they say or what they do. I know who I am, and I know where God has called me. I am learning to stay in my space and stop interfering with the work that God is doing in others. I am learning not to be offended. I am learning to shut my mouth. I am learning the gift of silence.

As I change and grow in Him, I pray that you may learn something too. Your words or posts may be alienating people from God. You may be turning outward, rather than inward. You may be pointing someone to darkness rather than light, even other Christians.

I pray that today you will meditate on the scriptures God has given us that I’ve listed above. The themes of being “in” Him, choosing life “in” Him and this idea of prayerful silence. I imagine you may find what I did, a long conversation with God, a refining of the flesh and a fresh perspective on your Christian life. There is so much to just being “in” Him. Let us choose Him this day and let Him lead, and let us reflect on which way we shall walk.

You can learn more about me and my journey as a Jewish follower of Christ and Catholic at There’s Something about Mary.

Worship without but within words…

Posted at The Postmodern Mystic — 29 December 2015

earth beautiful

From some years ago…

Sleeping… waken… open eyes… beautiful… lights dancing, but small lights. Seemingly in random motion, yet not… as I rest, relax, cease striving, I see pattern, beauty, praise. This is life itself… rather, Life Himself. Truth, beauty, goodness, love, peace, joy, music, praise, thanks… worship. Somehow, I have wakened inside worship.  How amazing.

“Lord?” I whisper, reverently, sacredly… awed.

And there is caress, a tender hug and enfolding… no words… direct impression of idea… He unspeaks… “Hush… be… I AM… you… be.” Can’t really translate the impression into words. That is as close as I can come. I was simply to exist in Him, and hush. So I did.

And then… I was inside of Someone with no boundaries or limits. Strange, to be inside One Who has no “outside”. But then He spoke, He uttered, and I flowed with that tide, that current from within Him to “other”, to “beyond” Him… He had spoken The Word.

And now, with infinite others, I was inside that Other… Holy Other… spoken forth from the First, from the Prime Mover… still dancing lights, all the same, identical pattern, Life Himself. Truth, beauty, goodness, love, peace, joy, music, praise, thanks… worship. No different, yet different, for now all this worship and praise had an Object, a Focus, the Other, the Prime Mover.

And This One, This Holy One, spoken forth from the Object of His Love, now spoke forth His Own First Word… it was, “Father”, as He wholly and entirely adored the Prime Mover. And again there was movement, the lights, we, flowed from Him, outwards, back to the Father. Amazing.

And then, between them, forevermore, remained that “word” that “bridge” the relationship between Them. And it grew, expanded, encompassing all and everything, in its own light, as This Too became Alive and Whole in and of Himself… the Relationship Between Them, as the Prime Mover spoke again… the word “Son.”

There was nothing to say, nothing to do, nothing to think, but to flow with this Life, this Love, these Words… There was no awareness of anything beyond the moment… the “I”… the “Now”… the “Here”… and Here, was, distinctly, worship.

~ ~ ~ ~ ~

Oh, sweet irony. I do not wish to speak. I am yet There… and when I “hush”, when I now “relax” and allow Him to draw me into Him with “no distance”, “no apartness”, then my mind stops thinking, there is no more I/Thou, and I am there! Such… no, no words. The sweetness, the joy and light of that, is so immediate, so poignant, that it pierces the heart and soul. Seems strange to say… joy so great it is nearly painful in its intensity. A moment more… then work… then obedience…

~ ~ ~ ~ ~

There are some who pray, who have discovered God in Silence. I never understood before. Trappists, Carthusians… My Jesuit father frequently said, if God did not command his obedience and service as a Jesuit, or if the Order ever chose to release him (as he had a request before them to do for years)… he sought to join a Carthusian monastery he knew. I asked why, and he said, “They are forever silent. They live ever in His immediate presence, and hear only Him. God grants me that only when I contemplate… but then commands me to teach. So I obey. But someday, if He grants my wish and reward, I shall be a Carthusian.”

I did not understand. I do now.

The Music! The Harmonies of the Silence! Would that I never again spoke or uttered a sound. The irony. It seems I very much am “my father’s child”. Now, that finally I desire no speech… now I am properly prepared to craft words. Now, it is time… to teach. Though all I would seek is solitude and silence.