Putting off the “love bit”

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“It’s never going to work”, Nan’s Notebook

“I am not a believer.

I left Christianity nearly 20 years ago and have not regretted my decision for one single moment.”

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More and more I wonder why we have made “believer” synonymous with “faith and/or religion” – which means “believing” is now “believing” in a proscribed and defined deity.  And is the cause of much verbal warfare (and far worse) … of many institutions and the ongoing “warfare” over their legitimacy/supremacy assumed AND legitimacy/supremacy challenged.

(all of which “gets in the way” a tad)

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I was a believer of many things before I became a “believer”.

I still am.

I believed in love – and still do.  I believed in hard work and getting up again – and still do.  I believed in kindness – and still do.  I believed I shouldn’t be rude – and …  I believed my mum and dad knew everything – and …  I believed my big brother was awesome – and still do.  Just not in the idolising/hate way I used to.

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In short, my living is founded on beliefs of all kinds.  And those beliefs changed and still change.  My “believer” belief no different.

“I am not a believer.” Is like saying I am dead.  Unable to believe anything anymore.  Beyond belief.  Literally.

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I am.

A believer and always will be.

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But what I believe … Now that changes constantly.

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I see Jesus being a believer.

Of love. Of kindness.  Of meeting each where each is in that moment.  Of not labelling or categorising or compartmentalising.   Of allowing and empowering.  Of enabling and liberating.  Of changing for me as I change for me.

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As for the “factual” and “literal” healing and miracles and superpowers and dying and resurrecting and the “evidence” of the bible …

Which must include all that sacrifice and slavery and original sin not eating bacon sandwiches and genocide (repeatedly) of the Old God … 

I don’t need that to be true as I don’t need the New God and the cross to be true.

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For if I need that to be true to be a “believer” … what else do I “need”?

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So, when Nan comes along and blows great big holes in my “believing” (she has written a superb book challenging the “believers” beliefs) … then where do I go and what do I “believe”?

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And all that Old God “badboy stuff” … ?

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My reading is that loads of that (going back to the Garden and forwards) was a crafted and superstitious and controlling bigging-up of “my God is bigger than your God” rhetoric.  Because there is no point in being “Chosen” if your God ain’t the Biggest Baddest Top Table God.

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But – If I read the bible right … I don’t think Jesus needs anything.

Which is the power of love without any conditions at all.

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Maybe that’s why we struggle with love.

We need it to be conditional.

So we argue about “the conditions” …

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which (conveniently) puts off the “love” bit.

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I didn’t want to do this

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English for dummies: “I have one sheep. I have many sheep. You have one ship. You have many ship. We have one sleep. We have many sleep.”

You are now proficient in English. Please go and teach all those johnny-foreigners how to speak it as well!

🙂 🙂 🙂 🙂 🙂 🙂

Pastor Roland Ledoux wrote a stonking post yesterday. I was in complete, ecstatic, orgasmic spiritual lust with Roland yesterday (and if that’s not okay – don’t care)!

One letter. Just one letter! Vessel. Vassal. The difference in one letter is MASSIVE!! The Lord has been doing a jig around my heart and desk and keyboard and head ever since I read Roland’s words.

Last night as I slept, God Soft Hands Jesus didn’t. He was dancing all night long in one paragraph of Roland’s post.  This one:

“Being obligated to someone does not equate to unconditional “agape” love! Unconditional means just that; NOT expecting anything in return. You can know that Heaven is involved, but even if it wasn’t, unconditional love says you would love anyway! You love someone for who they are, not for what you can get. A vassal will always expect something in return and a vassal’s lord will always expect to give something in return for that loyalty!”
(read the full version here: Vessels or Vassals: Pastor Roland Ledoux)

Last night as I slept, God Soft Hands Jesus didn’t. He was embroidering just one bit, in that one paragraph, of Roland’s post.

Paul: (snoring lightly – but ever so elegantly)

God Soft Hands Jesus: (dancing lightly – but ever so enthusiastically) So imagine this dear “snoring Paul”: There is no heaven. There is no God, Jesus or Holy Spirit. There is no Church. There is no Institution, denomination or dogma. There are none of the trappings you all join or love or resist and/or criticise. There is nothing – and no one – to blame. There is nothing – and no one – to applaud. There is no eternal living. There is no living happily after. Being saved does not mean a ticket through the Pearly Gates. There are no Pearly Gates.  So you have nothing to look forward to after you breathe your last breath. What you see here is all you get. What you have now is all you have. What you are is down to you – and no one else. Your relationships are Your Relationships. So where do you go when you die? You don’t go anywhere. You stop. You are no more. You end.  Unconditional love says you would love anyway.

Unconditional love says you would love anyway.

This morning I didn’t want to do this.  I have a list of things to clear today.  I have commitments right through to bedtime.  I don’t want to be here writing a post – not today.  But when I sat here with today’s lectionary verses, GSHJ pulled me on to the dance floor.  He wrapped that sentence around us – and …

Here I am.

🙂 🙂 🙂 🙂 🙂 🙂

Untitled

Discipling for dummies: “I have been saved. I have been many saved. You have one saved. You have many saved. We have one save. We have many save.”

You are now proficient in discipling. Please go and teach all those sinners to be disciples as well!

:-/ :-/ :-/ :-/ :-/ :-/

Vessel. Vassal. One letter. Just one letter! The difference in one letter is MASSIVE!!

If there is no heaven, no reward, no eternal life … just what is it you will be saving them from and for? Just what is your foundation of “discipling” and “making disciples”? If you have really and truly “got it” with all this God stuff – then why not try taking God out of your sales pitch.

Have you heard the Good News?
No – what’s that all about?
Unconditional Love, my brother! That’s the Good News! I can save love you!!
How does that work?
Easy! You become a vassal vessel, you empty yourself of everything, and allow God Unconditional Love to fill you up and guide you!
To do what?
To love everybody!
Who is everybody?
“Everybody” is “Everybody”!
What’s in it for me?
Everlasting life for eternity …. ah crap! I can’t use that anymore …
Can’t use what?
Nothing. I was just having a senior moment!
So what is in it for me? What do I get out of it?
???
You will be save … ah crap again!
???
You can come and join us in chur … ah Nuts!
???
The bible says so …. Doh! And Doh again!!
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Try taking God out of YOUR sales pitch and what are YOU left with – and just WHO are you left with?  That – for me – is why HE was dancing all night.

Discipling is NOT a sales pitch.  God is NOT an investment portfolio.   Love is NOT conditional.  That is “vassal love”.

“Vessel Love” is unconditional love is – because Unconditional Love says you would love anyway.

(Now is it okay to be in complete spiritual LOVE with Roland? Because lust is not enough – lust doesn’t do it for me – but unconditional love does)