Categories
Current Events light and darkness

Listen to Your Life

Listen to your lives for the sound of him.

Search even in the dark for the light and the love and the life because they are there also, and we are known each one by name.

Frederick Buechner, Secrets in the Dark: A Life in Sermons, “Delay”

How can one hear a whisper
The whisper we each long to hear

I know you and I love you
And I will lead you to Life
If you will follow


How can one hear that whisper
Over the blaring TV screen
The even louder unsocial media
Telling us we are No Good
Unless we show this color
Drive this vehicle
Fly this flag
Wear these shoes

All hollering you are No Good
Unless you spend this extra dollar

Over the subterranean rumble
Signals from family:
You aren’t who we hoped you would be

How can one hear that whisper
Over the substances we use
To kill the pain of being No Good
The loudest voices of all
Telling us, time and time again,
You are No Good

Is there any hearing left
Any ability to discern?

Oh God, have mercy
Whisper loudly


Listen to your lives for the sound of him.

Search even in the dark for the light and the love and the life because they are there also, and we are known each one by name.

Frederick Buechner, Secrets in the Dark: A Life in Sermons, “Delay”

Grace and peace to you…

dw

Photo by dw

Categories
the real self

False Choices

We too easily assume that we are our real selves, and that our choices are really the ones we want to make…

Our choices are too often dictated by our false selves.

Hence I do not find in myself the power to be happy merely by doing what I like.

On the contrary, if I do nothing except what pleases my own fancy I will be miserable almost all the time.

Thomas Merton, No Man is an Island, “Conscience, Freedom, and Prayer”

I don’t know enough about brain chemistry to say anything much about it. But I understand that we can easily become like trapped rats poking whatever button we can find that results in a little dopamine poof. And then another. And then another, bigger poof. Each poof producing in our brains what we associate with pleasure. Followed by a lack of pleasure. Followed by looking for that button again. And, can we poke it a little harder and get a little bigger poof this time?

I have been that trapped rat. I have family members who were those trapped rats who I hope and pray found mercy and relief when they left the earth that had become to them a maze with no way out and all the buttons no longer sufficient.

We have thriving industries that depend on our false selves making the choices for us. Until we no longer have any power to choose anything but what we have become addicted to, perfect consumers.

God in heaven, be merciful to us, guide us to our true selves, to choices that don’t go poof.

Jesus, you came that we might have joy, abundantly, not dependent on dopamine and the pleasure pulses it gives. Inclusive of pleasure, yes; thank you. Requiring pleasure, no; thank you. Joy no one can take from us, not ‘like the world gives’. Thank you.


Grace and peace to you…
dw

Photo by dw

Categories
Scripture

Light and Darkness

“This is the crisis we’re in: God-light streamed into the world, but men and women everywhere ran for the darkness.

They went for the darkness because they were not really interested in pleasing God.

Everyone who makes a practice of doing evil, addicted to denial and illusion, hates God-light and won’t come near it, fearing a painful exposure.

But anyone working and living in truth and reality welcomes God-light so the work can be seen for the God-work it is.”

John 3:19-21, Peterson, Eugene H.. The Message: The Bible in Contemporary Language . The Navigators. Kindle Edition.

I’m enjoying reading The Message, Eugene Peterson’s translation of the Bible, because it gives me fresh insight and perspective on passages that are very familiar. This is an example.

I wrote on this passage a couple of years back, using a more familiar translation. I updated the original post this week with what I hope is a more engaging response. I’d be honored to have you take a look.

Grace and peace to you…

dw