Dear Church Leaders: The Revelation Came from the Wilderness, not the Pulpit

Crap, another friend shared about getting kicked out of church. Arrgh. It’s painful, but sadly not rare– I have my own stories…

People can have different ideas, or giftings that don’t fit traditional parameters (e.g. gender/marital/parental status, etc.), and misunderstandings can be easy. But should talents or abilities cease the moment someone enters a church? Can we, especially those in church leadership, listen to someone if they aren’t preaching from the pulpit?

God has used a whale, worm, donkey and various plants to communicate throughout the Bible. How much more a fellow human?
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Maybe that Mess was People, Not God?

Did you ever visit a church and something rubbed your heart wrong? Or maybe you experienced something from someone identifying as a Christian–maybe it was gossip, deceit, or some form of oppression, or maybe flat-out hate, or abuse? Worst of all, it may have been done with the support of bible texts.

If you thought: This cant be God—and if it is I want nothing to do with *Him– you may have been right. Maybe it was People, not God.

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The Torch and Oven: A Christmas Story You didn’t Hear

Christmas is a time to enjoy cozy lights, sweets, and Dutch “gezelligheid” – a wonderful word without pure translation, but roughly  ‘nice/comfy/friendly/cozy-ness.’

Some think of “baby Jesus,” others of making everything “just right”, and still others wish to fast forward through the season. Holidays can be painful for some who’ve suffered so much, and I want to share a verse I’ve never heard at Christmastime which may give hope, especially to the oppressed. Or maybe just more perspective beyond the baby in a manger…

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A Rebel Christian Manifesto…or, Apology

This has been an extra hard post to write and share. The danger in revealing something of your heart is it becomes open for ridicule, but it can also spark hope in someone– do people know how loved they are!? So I write knowing some identifying as Christian will dispute, just like I dispute the Nashville Statementplease don’t think that speaks for me, other humans, or those  identifying as “Christian”, or even God *Himself

Religion can steal/steel compassion and common sense, resulting in misinformed, cruel statements, actions, policies. But bible verses have always been used against fellow man, woman, child, even the environment.

Even the devil quoted scriptures.

 

 

(*I use He and His as simple pronouns for God but fully recognize God with male and female “identity” -for lack of a better word- as demonstrated throughout the bible and blatantly through humanity. Related post here.)

So for those not wanting anything to do with God or “Christians” because of those calling themselves “Christian,” and to stand (or, ahem, #takeaknee) with rebel Christians who’ve been persecuted and pushed out of churches for thinking, doing, or flat-out being something “different,”

And for every child, woman, or man that heard your voice doesn’t matter because of your age, skin color, gender, marital or parental status, anything external,  and for every creature and all nature that was abused under the notion that those made “in the image of God” are superior, this is for You.

REBEL CHRISTIAN MANIFESTO, or APOLOGY

Dear Children, little brothers and little sisters, You are the Mightiest Warriors of all.
Your heart, ideas, dreams and very life matter, not because of anything you do, but simply because: You Are. We are humbled by you. You’ve gone through fire because of the grave failings of our own adult hearts (Proverbs 17:3), and our grief is bottomless. (What are these tears God wipes in heaven if there are no more tears there? Maybe the ones we cry when we see just how much you’ve endured on our behalf…)

child heart - adult heart - as we grow let our compassion grow too
All heaven will bow before you. Thank you for your willingness to exist in this time with us.

Dear Women, Sisters, “Equal but with separate/different roles” was a lie spoken over you like “separate but equal” was spoken over those with darker skin color before you. You ARE equal to your brothers and your value rests not in your (in)ability to birth or raise children, to cook or clean… Your “role” was never meant to be defined by society, culture, the church, or anyone. God has always challenged our perception and understanding of identity and contrary to popular belief/practice, your giftings and talents were never supposed to be checked at the door when you came to a church service.

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If People are like Trees, Here’s to All the Weeping Willows…

The world puts people in boxes: you’re female so you feel like this, you’re Christian so you think like this, you’re American so you act like that…

God likes to mix things up to help break the social/tradition walls we build between people. Just consider the movie Hidden Figures (based on a true story) where we see brilliant, computer-like brains placed in– not just black, but black, female bodies– in 1960s America. LOL, God is such a rebel…

Hidden_Figures_movie still
Still from “Hidden Figures,” based on the untold true story of the women nobody knew behind the NASA mission everyone knew..  “Genius has no race.. Strength has no gender…”

Continue reading “If People are like Trees, Here’s to All the Weeping Willows…”

Submissive God? 3 Bible Verses Exposing Mankind’s Freedom that May Blow Your Mind

If God really existed, why is the world so wrecked? And if *He is so “good,” how could He let those things happen to me…?
(note: I use He/His as pronouns for God but fully recognize God with male and female ‘identity,’ for lack of a better word, as evidenced throughout the Bible and the human race. 2-pt post here if you like).

Just one look at the suffering and oppression in this world –not just against people, but all creation– and it’s hard not to stumble on belief in a good God. But blaming (or denying) Heaven for all the woe ignores our God-Given freedom to destroy everything just fine on our own.

God is waiting for the miracle-save the world-justice-love-JasNotes-authorunknown

Hands can hurt flesh, and mouths can speak death, yet we rarely see God grab someone mid sentence, or mid swing. And if He did intervene every time we exercised our freedom, would we really be free?

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4 Important Words that Totally Lost their Meaning, and Hope for 1

Language is living. Social environment, technology, time and the freedom and individuality of every human being modifies our communication. But there are some words that should just stick and if they don’t we may need to replace them. Here are four that, in my opinion, have totally lost their meaning–they need to be spelled out before their weight or truth comes across.

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Igniting Heaven on Earth: Sound the War Cry in Your Heart

A picture with caption “true friendship” and heart dog emojis came on my twitter feed. Many replies read “awwww,” but my heart broke when I saw it…

homeless man and dog

Did people chose to overlook the life status of this pair? Maybe it wasn’t popular to burst the love bubble with, “But they’re homeless!” Whatever it was, only one of the many replies said: ‘I wish I knew where he was so I could help.’

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Sometimes We Need Mud in Our Eyes to See Straight [#LoveHateCountdown]

Why did Jesus heal blindness two different ways? One man was healed with a word, the other with spit and dirt. It was a mess, it didn’t make sense, but after a rinse a man born blind could see. The religious elite didn’t like it. They held an inquiry, interrogating and frightening the parents. They asked the man: “what did he do to you?” but weren’t satisfied with the answer. They insulted him to the core and then excommunicated him.

But like all freaks, weirdos, outcasts and misfits, Jesus seeks us out…

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Did You Make God an Idol? 5 Signs and Tips to Quit

It’s possible to get so wrapped up in God, the Bible, your ‘quiet time,’ that you miss His Heart and religion creeps in. God becomes a mere idol and the effects can be devastating, especially if you’re in a family.

I have heard too many stories of people who got, or are currently planning divorce because their partner is getting in the way of their “ministry” (aka service to/for God). #SayWhat?!  If you or someone you know ever thought, “I could do so much more for God, go further, faster.. if they didn’t hold me back…” , or if you were willing to serve God at any and all costs, look out, this post is for you.

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