This past election cycle has been crazy. You could put it all under a circus tent because it literally is like a circus on reality TV. Maybe past elections have been like this and I just didn’t realize it….But it’s been crazy. The idea of “fake news” and “alternative facts” have been thrown out there in the last few month or so. This has all been very alarming to me. Why? Because people are taking sides in this big mess when I think it’s safe to say that we have no clue what’s actually going on. Yet we are dogmatic on our politicians and their confusing stances on policy. Just recently , Donald Trump said that “healthcare will be accessible to everyone” when on the campaign trail he said it would be provided for everyone. That’s a big difference and a big deal. They are not the same things…Yet those who champion Trump will not be shaken even though the facts have been alluded. Continue reading “Fake News? What About Fake Religion?”
The movie Interstellar is well thought out and is spectacular to watch. One conversation just floored me when I saw this movie…it made me think about Love from a new point of view for the first time. Start asking your own questions about Love and what it really means.
I loved the movie Interstellar. I thought the movie was well thought out and the filmography was spectacular to watch. I was completely engulfed in the movie from the start and I was thrown out the end of the movie thinking how small we are in such a vast universe. One conversation just floored me when I saw this movie…it made me think about Love from a new point of view for the first time. In this scene, the conversation is between Cooper and Dr. Brand on the Endurance space craft as they are deciding which move to make next. What Dr Brand says is what was so eye opening to me. Dr. Brand is in love with a college that is on a potential planet for them to visit to see if it will sustain life. Cooper is letting all those involved in the decision to know that Dr. Brand may be driven by love, instead of science alone, for the college on one of the potential planets. The conversation goes like this…
Cooper: She’s in love with Wolf Edmunds.
Romilly: Is that true?
Brand: Yes. And that makes me want to follow my heart. But maybe we’ve spent too long trying to figure all this out with theory.
Cooper: You’re a scientist, Brand.
Brand: So listen to me, when I say that love isn’t something we invented, it’s observable, powerful. It has to mean something.
Cooper: Love has meaning, yes, social utility, social bonding, child rearing…
Brand: We love people who have died, where’s the social utility in that?
Brand: But maybe it means something more, something we can’t yet understand. Maybe it’s some evidence, some artifact of a higher dimension that we can’t consciously perceive. I’m drawn across the universe to someone I haven’t seen in a decade. Who, I know, is probably dead. Love is the one thing we’re capable of perceiving that transcends dimensions of time and space. Maybe we should trust that, even if we can’t understand it yet.
This quick conversation has hit the nail on the head when it comes to why we, as humans, even see, or desire, the stories of Jesus to be true. Even though it is hard to understand…we want the stories to be true because we truly desire for something out there, greater than ourselves, to know we exist…to know we have feelings….to know that we matter and have value…..we want to know that we can be saved. We want to know where we came from and we want to be loved. I have faith there is something out there….and it is has to be Love…and it transcends all space and time, yet we can perceive it and experience it. In addition, and more importantly, Love transcends Law….the very Law we use to condemn others to the judgement of God. Did Jesus show this Love in his life? Is Love a powerful force….the most powerful force in the universe? Is God that eternally powerful force that transcends space, time, Law, and everything else that could possibly be knowable? Let’s explore this a little more…
In my last article, I gave my thoughts on how Jesus did not “grasp” for relevance but knew that Love is the only true revelation of the Father. The idea is presented by Paul in Philippians 2: 1-11, but specifically verse 5 saying,
“Have this attitude in yourselves which was also in Christ Jesus, who, although He existed in the form of God, did not regard equality with God a thing to be grasped, but emptied Himself, taking the form of a bond-servant, and being made in the likeness of men.”
Most people, in my past experience in churches, would say that Jesus shed his divine nature to become human. I do not believe that this is the best interpretation of what Paul is saying here. In an amazing book called Inhabiting the Cruciform God: Kenosis, Justification, and Theosis in Paul’s Narrative Soteriology, The author, Michael J. Gorman, makes an excellent point that Paul is saying that Jesus, who empties himself of all conceit and selfish ambition, is showing that this is who God is….The very divine nature of God is “self-emptying”, or Kenotic. This makes so much more sense to me, when reading the Bible, than a lot of traditional interpretations of Protestant Theology. God gives of himself…he shows us the exact definition of Love. The kicker is, a lot of our definitions of love are the exact opposite of the kenosis of Jesus in his life and on the cross. Maybe our thoughts on love and who God is are rooted more in our ideas of who we want God to be? Just think about it….
Excellent words from and excellent blog. Read this and reread this many times.
It’s been far too long since I sat down to write you. You’ve been in my thoughts very much and I’ve prayed for you often.
Well over two years ago I was inspired to encourage you through this blog with the idea that if I could tell you just one thing, what would it be? Well today it’s that there is so much more! More what? Would be a good question but we’ll answer that later. Here are some other questions to consider first: Do you have the feeling that there’s something lacking in your life? Do you feel less “spiritual” than many of those around you? Could God be more “real”, more present to you? Do you get pressure to religiously perform up to others expectations but when you do it’s rarely fulfilling? If you answered yes to any of these questions don’t be discouraged. God is inviting you…
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I have to question whether or not “influence” is good with in Christianity. Why? Because I can’t help but think that when another is influenced by someone, that someone is trying to make the other move according to what they may seem is right or wrong. The word “influence” is used very generously in church leadership….. and I understand that. However, is church leadership trying to encourage people to draw closer to the Father or are they influencing them to help preserve an organization in the name of the Father? How can we search our own hearts to make sure that we have pure motives when we “influence” others? Is it a maturity issue deep with in us, or is it something that we may need to avoid as to not be controlling based off of what we may want to accomplish? I believe we all need to wrestle with this within ourselves. I ask, is there freedom in the picture posted to the right?
We have seen so many people talking about how the youth of America are leaving the church, they don’t want to be there, or they don’t want to be called christian. Yet they still want to know God. We have an issue at hand that many in the religious institutions are willing to talk about but always point the finger and never look in the mirror. Unfortunately, the religious institutions very well could be creating this problem and the problem starts with the experience at these churches…and the experiences are just that…Experiences! It’s the realization that the experience leaves reality and enters into the artificial. Why? Because an artificial experience can be used to create, mold, and shape people and also bring about the desires of those in leadership at the religious institutions. At the forefront of the leadership is preservation. Preservation is the number one driver of the artificial experience at churches….it’s the desire to survive. The desire to be important. The desire to be famous. The desire to be relevant. The desire of the people to commit to what the leader’s vision and mission are. The desire to find wholeness that comes from people and not Christ. And this is what the youth today see right through.