Hope Sustains me
Who am I?
Who are we?
Slaves to self. Slaves set free?
Sometimes weary, sometimes weak.
But hope sustains me.
Hope sustains me.
Hope in a love
that makes all things new,
that guides the way to what is true.
Hope in a love,
that’s hard to do.
Hope in love,
hope in you…
Human beings may separate things into as many piles as we wish - separating spirit from flesh, sacred from secular, church from world. But we should not be surprised when God does not recognize the distinctions we make between the two. Earth is so thick with divine possibility that it is a wonder we can walk anywhere without cracking our shins on altars.
The Kingdom of God is… | Involuntary-Guest-Post
All good and perfect gifts come from the Father. The same Father watching a road for a wayward son, the same Father that gave everything to the older son too. The same Father that cured sin throws the doors open, parties with prostitutes and thieves.
(Photo by joe miller)
Whenever I find myself judging another, may I choose instead to extend love.
Whenever I am given the choice to treat people different from myself with fear, prejudice or contempt, may I choose instead to extend love.
Forgive me for thinking of myself more highly than others, for I do not know anyone’s heart but my own. And indeed, my own heart is in need of repair.
O Lord, you have taught us that without love whatever we do is worth nothing: Send your Spirit and pour into my heart your greatest gift, which is love, the true bond of peace and of all virtue
Choosing to love may seem weaker than choosing to fight.
Choosing to forgive may seem pathetic compared to the glory of revenge.
Choosing to hope may seem delusional. ’Good luck to you and your hope.’
But love never fails. It transforms in ways that brute force cannot imagine, it brings life where war brings death. It gives hope, where fear leaves despair.
The ‘foolishness’ of love is wiser than men, and the weakness of love is stronger than men… (1 Corinthians 1:25)
Love. Love. Love.
It’s more than a valentines sentiment.
It’s a revolution of the heart and a way of life.
But those who hope in the LORD will renew their strength. They will soar on wings like eagles; they will run and not grow weary, they will walk and not be faint. (Isaiah 40:31)
Does love conquer all?
“Ever since Nietzsche it has been customary to sneer at the apparently wimpish vision of human life in the Beatitudes: the meek, the mourners, the merciful, and so on – when surely everyone knows that the people who make the world go round are the arrogant, the go-getters, the people with sharp swords or at least sharp elbows, the pushy, the proud.
Actually, all Nietzsche did was to articulate what many people, including many would-be Christians, had believed de facto for centuries, but the point is that they, and he, were wrong.
Viva la Revolucion
It is easy to hate and it is difficult to love. This is how the whole scheme of things works. All good things are difficult to achieve; and bad things are very easy to get.
Confucius (Circa 551 BC – 479 BC)
This reminds me of a popular quote from Jesus around 400 years later.
“Enter through the narrow gate. For wide is the gate and broad is the road that leads to destruction, and many enter through it. But small is the gate and narrow the road that leads to life, and only a few find it.
So often I’ve heard this used to infer that a small group of people who think or act a certain way are the justified ‘in’ group who have found the ‘narrow way’ and that everyone who disagrees with them are on this ‘broad path to destruction’. I’ve encountered this quote being used to SUPPORT narrow minded thinking and shut down any challenged to it. And on the surface you can see why. It seems to say it clearly “Narrow = good, broad = bad”.
But interestingly in Matthew 7 where Jesus says this, he says something very related to what Confucius brought up a few centuries before. Right before mentioning the narrow and broad way, the hard and easy way, Jesus reminds us of the ‘golden rule’.
“Do to others whatever you would like them to do to you. This is the essence of all that is taught in the law and the prophets.
THIS is what causes there to be a broad and a narrow way.
It’s HARD to be selfless and loving. Yet this is what everything else God has been telling civilizations through the ‘laws and prophets’ was all about. This is the core message that we still miss today.
It was not about supporting narrow-minded thinking, or proving that because you are a small group believing x or y that you are ‘in’ and the masses are ‘out’. It’s not even about God playing favorites, or being really hard to please, like a cross tough bouncer who’s letting only the pretty ‘cool’ people who never smoked into the nightclub of a heavenly afterlife.
It’s about following a way that leads to life. Starting with now.
It’s a challenge to the heart of the individual.
A reminder of a hard but fundamental truth.
It is easy to hate and it is difficult to love.
Will we choose the broad way of selfishness or the narrow way of love?
Hate brings death - love brings us to life.
Amputees, Guessing Games & How to Win an Argument
Why are we so divided?
Why is it, that even within ” christianity” we can’t all get along?
Jesus lived a life and died a death committed to peace. In life, he taught his followers to offer creative non-violent responses to any violence inflicted against them. He offered forgiveness to those burdened with sin and guilt. He befriended the outcasts and marginal members of society. He confronted those who oppressed the poor and condemned those who practiced injustice. He showed love to his enemies and persecutors. When faced with torture and death, he did not call upon his followers to rise up in revolt. Rather, he accepted suffering willingly. His resurrection demonstrates the triumph of good over evil, of nonviolence over violence. If I claim to follow Jesus, I must commit myself to his way of peace. This is non-negotiable. Peace is at the heart of Jesus’ message and ministry. It is central to the Gospel of Christ.