Perfection

This world has just become too perfectionistic for me, not perfect, but perfectionistic.  I’ve never been interested in the “perfect,” even though there is this Gospel text that says, “Be ye therefore perfect, for I the Lord your God am perfect.”  Sorry for the King James’ translation.  King James sort of exudes the perfect, sort of.

The world is not perfect.  I am not perfect, and as a citizen of this world, I’m a good example of this world’s imperfection.  There is just too much perfectionism out there.  Someone is always more than willing–and ready–to pounce on imperfect people, Continue reading

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David Peters on Rules and Regulations

When I get right down to it, I think I just might be an anti-nomian, someone opposed to rules and laws as well as processes and steps.  I feel like my whole life is governed by laws and rules and regulations of every kind.  There are traffic rules and family laws and school processes and state regulations, many of which are in conflict with federal regulations.  There are rules of etiquette, thanks to Miss Manners, and neighborhood rules.  And then there are church rules and processes.  God, is there no end to all these rules and mores and processes for living!  The Jews of Jesus’ time had 619 rules based on the ten commandments.  What number of canon law is the Roman Catholic Church on these days?  Depressing!  Debilitating! Scary!  How does one keep all these rules straight? in focus?

And what happens when one really needs one of these rules broken for the sake of a person’s well being, or sanity?  All rules cannot be applied across the board unilaterally.  Pity the persons on whom some of these rules land!

Doesn’t one know the right way and wrong way of responding to people?  Isn’t that written on our hearts, like the Old Testament prophet says?  Why can’t we just have one rule: love the Lord your God with all your heart and mind and strength and your neighbor as yourself?  Can’t people figure out how to be loving to the people around them?  Why do people think we need a bunch of rules to tell us how to respond to others?  Don’t we know how to respond to others?  Isn’t that called “love”?

I have a sneaky suspicion that people who demand or expect a lot of rules in their lives have those rules so they can put limits or boundaries on their loving others.  It makes it convenient.  I can love you, but not you, nor you, and certainly not you.  Sorry, rules are rules, you know, and I didn’t make the rules.  Maybe so, but you sure like applying them to others.  Will legalists be judged by the rules in the final analysis?  Rules make it easy for others to condemn others.  You are a rule-breaker.  Forget you.  You’re excluded.

A word to the wise: those who live by the rules perish by the rules.

Why is this counry so rule-oriented?  Who benefits from all of this?  What do I get from this?  I’ll never escape a rule-infected society.  Ugh!  God help me.  God help us.

Eye to Eye

Today we gathered again, and I was asked to post the following.  It was a quick write in response to a single reading of David Bottoms’ “Eye to Eye” (which follows the actual write).

Birds are not people – though some of them can, at least in part, “think” like people do.  They can problem solve – some even abstractly – and use tools.  But I think something much more basic must have gone on here – always assuming the encounter was not pure poetic license.

I’m thinking predator to predator, omnivore to carnivore. Continue reading

Thread

“Words form the thread on which we string our experience.”  That’s what I read.  What I heard, what I thought, what I jumped to:  narrative (or story) is the thread out of which we create meaning and make sense.

Of our lives.

Of the world around us.

Of our faith.

Jesus was a story teller.  And his stories, and his story, shape or orient the way we see and process …  everything.

Without the words, threaded together, we have …  nothing.  Without the Word, spoken to bring about and order all creation, there is nothing – nothing that is would be.

So there is something fundamental and mystical in the threading of words into story.  And somehow, it seems tome, it is in the intersection of our stories, the weaving together of our varied threads, that fulness in life, and meaning, emerge.

We sit here writing.

A sacred task.

Possibly the most sacred.

Threading together the story of our life, and God, and one another.

A sacred weaving of sacred thread.