Monday, May 21, 2018

It Is Not a Gun Issue

It Is Not a Gun Issue - It Is a Fallen World Issue

It is not a gun issue - it is a doorway issue:

We are torn between restricting the access of outsiders, while at the same time assuring safe evacuation routes for insiders. Which do we fear the most at any given time? Which has the greater likelihood of happening? Which is the cheapest? We busily build separating walls and barbed-wire fences, while we let the bridges between us fall from neglect. We say (as individuals, as churches, as societies) that we have open hearts, open minds, and open doors; yet we feel the need to guard each portal and make them narrow ways.


It is not a gun issue - it is an empathy issue:

We are deluged by "me-first" messages from entertainers, politicians, prosperity preachers, and other merchants: ME first; MY family second; MY tribe third. Anything beyond that is too abstract; or there is nothing left over because we think that care and understanding are limited non-renewable resources; or we think care and understanding are signs of weakness and that others will take advantage of us. We are too small minded, too lacking in imagination, too self-centered, and too selfish, to be able to identify with others that we do not personally know, or who do not look like us. We objectify, dehumanize, categorize, and put people in labeled boxes. We seek to knock others down so that we can feel taller.


It is not a gun issue - it is a religion/morality issue:

We do not value Life. We do not value Creation. We do not value human lives. We dehumanize the other, we exclude the different, we fragment society into partisan camps, we value profit above people. God helps those who help themselves dammit. We call the beatitudes socialist platitudes. We are a mighty people, a mighty nation, and believe that might makes right. We ignore Jesus because he is not what we want him to be - what we want to be. We seek to own all things: the people around us; our environment; even God. We fear being sheep, so we become wolves in goat's clothing.


It is not a gun issue - it is a media/entertainment issue:

Video games, networks, the news, studios, publishers, and drug cartels are all profit-driven reflections of consumer desires. There is big money to be made by serving our inner desires for power, money, violence, revenge, and sex - all without consequences to ourselves. We no longer strive for emotional, social, and spiritual maturity, but seek to remain perpetual infants.


It is not a gun issue - it is a thoughts and prayers issue:

We are thoughtless in our attitudes, our actions, and our reactions. We pray that God bless America just the way it is, rather than ask the Lord to transform it into something closer to God's Kingdom. We do not pray each day for justice, discernment, or guidance. We pray for things, forgiveness, grace, and mercy for ourselves, but deny them to others.


It is not a gun issue - it is a mental-health issue:

We stigmatize and socially isolate the mentally ill from the rest of the herd, while at the same time we reduce the access to health-care and mental-health-care to those who can't afford it. We demand respect as our essential due for our personhood, but are not first respectful to others. We are resentful when we feel slighted, and we listen to the whispering devils. We tell people that revenge is sweet justice. We mock the ill, the poor, the outcast. We allow them access to weapons. We are then surprised when they snap.


It is not a gun issue - it is a biological issue:

Males wanting to be alphas, expecting free access to women upon demand. We have lost the distinctions between lust and love, partnership and dominance, propriety and property - we seek instant gratification over relationship building. We embrace our biological urges as natural, while devaluing intellectual freedom and liberating restraint as artificial political correctness.


It is not a gun issue - it is a political issue:

We have created a governing system centered upon the accumulation, use, and abuse of money, and give lobbyists, corporations, and other powerful special-interest groups greater influence and access to leaders who first serve those who can best keep them in power. We do not want leaders and shepherds; we would rather have mirrors and enablers.


It is not a gun issue - it is a liberty issue:

Over time we have over and over made decisions about which actions and words we as a nation desire to place limitations on for the benefit of the whole; as a necessary part of living together in communities. We choose together as a society with our purchase power, our voting clout, and our voices or our silence. We daily choose some "rights" over others. We choose our rights over the rights others. We choose moment by moment. We have chosen (and by that act created) the world we live in today.


It is not a gun issue - it is an "us" issue:

We can be saints and angels, but we can also be "animals". 

Guns are icons of strength and security, extensions of ourselves, and magical tokens of power over others. 

Guns either reveal our strength of character, or magnify our weaknesses. 

Guns are serious tools; and tools can be things of great danger in the wrong hands - unskilled hands, incompetent hands, reckless hands, angry hands, confused hands...

To protect our right to own firearms, should we not be willing (with wisdom, discernment, and love) to selflessly place sensible controls and safeguards upon our rights? Can we not work together to make it a gun issue as a first step towards the more complex "us" issue?




(photography by tiwago)

Friday, May 18, 2018

Through Me, They Know You


Because I AM with them,
They know Your nature -
Those whom You gave,
To me from the World.
They were Yours to give;
So You gave them to me.

They have kept true to You;
They have kept faith in You -
As best as they could have.

Now they know,
That all that I AM,
Is by and from You;
Even they themselves -
Those whom You gave me.

And so, the words,
That You've given, 
To the Living Word,
For the entire World,
I have given to them.

They received Your words.
They accepted Your Word.
They know the Truth.
They know my Source.
They believe that You,
Sent me to them, for all.

Abba,
I plead for them,
(Not for the whole World right now;
But for these few faithful friends,
That You gave me in this World,
Who'll feel abandoned and alone!)
Because they are Your friends,
As all who are mine are Yours,
As all who are Yours are mine;
And it is through them that I AM, 
GLORIFIED before the World.

And soon, I'll no longer be,
In their World, incarnated;
But they'll remain in the World.
While I return into You,
Loving Abba, Holy Parent,
Protect them within Us,
So that, they may be one,
Body; just as We are One.

While I was Flesh,
I protected them from the enemy:
From their fears, wants, and needs;
From formulas, laws, and religion;
From the lust for power and control.

While I was Flesh,
I guarded them from the World.
None of them will be lost; except,
He who's been destined to be Lost,
That the writings of the prophets,
May be made manifest to the World.

Now that I'm rejoining You - guard them Father.
I pray aloud in front of the ones I leave behind,
Now, while they can still see and touch me;
So that the marvelous joy I have within me,
Would become made manifest within them!

I have given to them Your Word and Your words.
The World will hate them for being in the World,
But not belonging in indentured bondage to it;
Just as I served, but did not belong to, the World.

I don't ask You to wall them away from the World;
But I plead that You'll protect them from all evil -
They belong in the World, but do not belong to it;
Just as I belonged in World, but not to the World.

Sanctify them, 
Day by day,
With revelations:
Your Love;
Your Truth;
Your Grace;
Your Mercy;
Your Self.


Just as You had sent me down into the World,
So too have I sent them out into their World.
For their sake, I sanctify myself upon a cross;
So that, they may be sanctified in Your Spirit.

Amen.


(John 17:6-19)






(Poem and poetry by Tiwago)







Wednesday, May 16, 2018

That We May Have Life


We believe those we trust. The more we trust a person (an organization, a government, a news-outlet, a religious authority. etc.), the more we believe them. If our trust is great enough, we will believe practically anything! John tries to remind us that the news from God that we heard through Jesus is more trustworthy than any other source. If we really trust Jesus (if we really trust God) we already know in our hearts that this is true. 

If we believe false prophets of power, money, or morality who sooth our itching ears and guilty consciences more than we believe Jesus himself...

If we believe in some people's strict and loveless interpretation of the Bible more than we believe Jesus' caring and nurturing interpretation...

If we believe in Works or Laws as the routes to heaven more than we believe the Way of Jesus...

If we in believe anyone more than we believe in Jesus...

...then we say that God is a LIAR - that we cannot trust the word of the Word, the living Son!

Over and over, God says "Trust me." This is God's good news: God gave us true Life so that we would not be among the living-dead; and this miraculous Life is lived within the Christ the Mother Hen, the Prince of Peace, the Lord of the Dance and the Sabbath, the wine-maker. Not living timidly in the fear of temporary punishment or eternal damnation can we find true Life, but in wild joy and exuberant celebration - in agape and shalom. 

If Jesus is in your heart (if you know him), then you know what John is talking about; you know how to recognize, experience, and share true Life. But those have Jesus only on their tongue (who know only a Savior of there own invention) do not truly live! They do not know freedom. They cower in fear of a beating from a vengeful god, and so they beat others in turn. They do not know Love, only lust. They do not know Life, only existence.

John wrote because the Spirit in him knew that we would replace Jesus with idols - that we would live for now and damn tomorrow, while at the same time demanding that others live for tomorrow and damn today. But the Life God wants for us (true Life, free Life, blessed Life, experienced Life, Kingdom Life) is both today and tomorrow.

L'Chaim!





(Meditation upon 1 John 5:9-13. Photography by Tiwago)

Monday, May 14, 2018

Blessed Are Those Who Choose It


Blessed are all those who:
do not follow fools and false-prophets;
do not seek the easy-way, or take the low-road;
do not sit upon thrones of scorn and negativity; 
delight in embodying loving Righteousness;
delight in meditating upon Word, Will, and Way.

The Blessed are like rooted Trees:
planted beside streams of Water;
bearing good Fruit in their season;
ever-green and ever-progressing.

Cursed are the wordly Wicked:
they refuse God's blessings;
they follow the way of the wind;
they can not stand Judgment;
they can not stand Goodness.

The Lord watches over the footsteps of the Good
- but the path of the Bad leads them nowhere.


~ Tiwago

Psalm 1



(photography by tiwago)

Friday, May 11, 2018

What If?

Sometimes,
I posit postulations -
Notions too assumptive.

Other times,
I delve deep downward -
Hidden apperceptions.

These times,
I ask Id and Ego:
"What if?"

So...


What if,
The whole cosmic Creation,
The holistic/universal Body,
Were ALL made in the
Sacred Image of God?

What if,
We, as a Body-part, who
Alone ate from the Tree
Of Goodness and of Badness:
Tasked by God to do Good
Towards the holy Creation;
Doomed by Self to do Bad
Towards the most divine All -
Until One came for us
To restore within us
The Image of God?

What if?

~ Tiwago







(photography by tiwago)


Friday, May 4, 2018

Love Will Keep Us Together.

Our Father loves me.
You know I love you.
Stay in love with me.


Love our Father;
     Love our Sisters;
          Love our Brothers.
That's how you stay in love with me.
That is how I love our Father too,
That's how I stay in love with Abba.

I tell you this so you may know great joy;
So that my joy in you will complete you.
I tell you right now that you must love
One another as I love you - without cause.
There is no greater agape love than to die
As a sacrifice on behalf of your friends -
You are my friends if you stay in love.

No longer are you enslaved,
Following a master's orders;
I call you each my dear friend,
For I have freed your minds:
To understand the Father's will;
To understand my loving way.

You did not seek to follow me,
But I preveniently called you.
I have made you ambassadors,
To go out into a selfish world,
To bear and share enduring fruit:
Fruit of the Father - Spirit-gifted;
Tools for furthering your mission.

Stay in love with me, that
You may love each other.


John 15:9-17



(poetry and photography by tiwago)



Thursday, May 3, 2018

If / Then

If we love God, then we love God's children.
If we love God's children, then we love God.


Then, we can only know for sure that we truly love God if we follow God's commands: if we love God with all that we are, and all that we have; and if we love God's children in exactly the same manner. God's commands are not onerous; the yoke is not a burden; the cross is not too heavy. By Love, the world will be transformed.

What is the greatest sign of God's love? The one who came from the water and the blood of human birth. Not just the cleansing water, but the 'polluting' blood; not just the water of baptism; not just the water turned into the wine of celebration; not just the water at a well in Samaria - the water and the blood of a spear driven into his side. Birth upon the cross.

We have this from the Spirit, and the Spirit is Truth.

1 John 5:1-6




(photography by tiwago)

It Is Not a Gun Issue

It Is Not a Gun Issue - It Is a Fallen World Issue It is not a gun issue - it is a doorway issue: We are torn between restricting the...