Monday, November 3, 2008

SOTW #9

I was searching for a song that maybe can help all of us heal after tomorrow. I know that lots of words and accusations have been shot back and forth over our ramparts in the last couple of weeks. It's amazing how we as Christ Followers are so quick to take up verbal sticks and stones against each other.

The truth is we are one. I think Ed said it well yesterday in his message. I think that I feel like I am one of those on the fringe of the place I call my spiritual home and need to jump in. As hard as that is for a guy that prides himself on his individualism. Most of the time I DO think it's, "Jesus and me" and not everyone else. I think one of the questions he asked, and I'm paraphrasing, I don't have my notes so bear with me, "Can you be a Christ follower and not participate in church?" Or maybe it was a good Christ follower. I can't remember.

I don't know the answer to that question, to be honest. A lot of the Christians that I have met that don't go to church regularly strike me as kind of kookie. Like too much analysis of something without any other perspective but your own is probably not a good thing. We need to hear and appreciate other's takes on things in order to be able to refine and hone what we believe. That seems to be what has been working for me.

The next paragraph I was going to write was about how other things keep me at arm's length from my church. Politics, values, lifestyles, how they keep a wall up between me and others that profess to believe the same way as me. How can I be a part of something that a lot of times I'm at odds with.

The truth is that the only thing that keeps me at arm's length is myself. Oh, and the evil one. He will use whatever tool he can to draw a wedge between me and God. Even my own self righteousness. There's a saying in NA about looking for the similarities and not the differences when we as addicts go to our meetings. I think the same holds true when I go to church. I HAVE to look for what binds us together as Christ Followers and not what separates us as fallible, broken, imperfect human beings. That in the end we all are one. When it is all said and done it IS one love, one life.

So I raise my glass of delicious water (about all I can drink around the house now that I found out about my high blood pressure) to us coming together as One. A great start would be joining Carlos at Ragamuffin Soul as we Pray Backwards at 6:30pm PST. I'm going to try and stay awake and partake before I head off to work. I need to pray and release all of the conflicting emotions I've had over the last week up to God.

Oh yeah, the song! Cool video also. U2 has been one of the bands that throughout the years has kept me close to God when I have strayed so far away from Him. Like shepherds, they found me and carried me back to the rest of the flock. My first divorce it was The Joshua Tree, when my mom was passing away it was All That You Can't Leave Behind. As far as profoundly influencing my life and the way I think about things, U2 would have to be the band that has made the most impact on me. I'm not sure where I would have been without them.

So without further ado or to do...



One

by U2

Is it getting better
Or do you feel the same
Will it make it easier on you now
You got someone to blame

You say...
One love
One life
When it's one need
In the night

One love
We get to share it
Leaves you baby if you
Don't care for it

Did I disappoint you
Or leave a bad taste in your mouth
You act like you never had love
And you want me to go without

Well it's... Too late
Tonight
To drag the past out into the light
We're one, but we're not the same
We get to Carry each other
Carry each other
One...

Have you come here for forgiveness
Have you come to raise the dead
Have you come here to play Jesus
To the lepers in your head

Did I ask too much
More than a lot
You gave me nothing
Now it's all I got

We're one
But we're not the same
Well we
Hurt each other
Then we do it again

You say Love is a temple
Love a higher law
Love is a temple
Love the higher law
You ask me to enter
But then you make me crawl
And I can't be holding on
To what you got
When all you got is hurt

One love
One blood
One life
You got to do what you should
One life
With each other
Sisters Brothers
One life
But we're not the same
We get to Carry each other
Carry each other
One...life
One

4 comments:

M. Steve Heartsill said...

So...are you telling me Bub...that it's not about "God and me?"

Why not?

bub said...

Steve - Thanks for coming over and checking out the post and all of the prayers you have been sending my way. I think ultimately, it's going to come down to God and me. How about this. I think at first it's God and me. Then God, me and my family. Then God, me and my church. Then God, me and the rest of the world. Why? Because it seems to me that the closer I get to God the less it becomes about "me" and more about "how can I show Christ's love and compassion to the rest of the world?" In the "don't hide my light under a bushel" kind of way. Obviously, I'm not quite there yet, though I'm trying. When I do I will rename the blog "God, us and poker" It is funny though how one simple prayer I said a couple of years ago has taken me to where I am now. Praise God, huh? And a special "roll Tide!" for your #1 team!

Brenda said...

I was raised by super conservative Christian parents. While I'm extremely grateful for them raising me to know Jesus, I've had to rethink the way I view people and things in life. Sometimes I'm way too quick to judge others and I HATE that about myself. People that don't believe the same or the way they look or their occupation that doesn't seem moral. God is definitely changing me for the better in that area.

About a year ago I got tired of hanging with a certain group of friends that I've mentioned in my blog. I was sick of feeling like I was in Christian bubble of self-righteousness. My heart was ripped open by the Lord and my faith was tested. I felt so much confusion about what the Truth was. I had to go back to the basics and rethink what and why I believed. I do believe we need to "not forsake gathering together" and continue learning from one another. But sometimes I get really sick of the wrong way we as Christians can view others and issues that are different. I like what you said about looking for similarities in others instead. Thanks for that.

I think you have the order correct in what you wrote to Steve. That sounds biblical to me. Life is so tough... I've been a Christian since age 7 and here I am 51 and still struggling with basics.

I appreciate your heartfelt posts. They always get me thinking and I learn from you. Sorry this is so long.

Tony York said...

Ah.. church... the ekklesia. The called out ones. Church isn't a place - its a who.

In Acts Chapter 2 they were meeting in their homes and sharing meals...daily.

I am not saying that we shouldn't meet together in a particular building on particular days and have fellowhship - what I am saying is that church is where ever you are. How do you go to you?

I am struggling with these same themes, brother. I don't know the right answers but I do know that the church that I gather WITH loves me and is helping me to grow. So I agree that we all need that support.