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Monday, December 15, 2008

Re-expression 12/15/08

I know a a lot of small bits of information. At the rate life is happening I do not find to try and put the pieces together. I am not sure if this is a problem or a challenge. Maybe there is not much of a difference between the two and it is irrelevant.

For a long time I have believed that one of these bits of information is the most important to me and has directed me in life in the face of many decisions, ways of thinking, and modes of living. This information is that I, a creation of a higher mysterious being known as God, am able to form relationship with God much like a relationship with any other human being. Another important bit of information is that this is possible because this is the God who chose to become human and live for some years to connect with humanity, as Jesus Christ. His life, death, and then miraculous resurrection makes this relationship with God probable.  

I have found myself studying, reading, hearing, and believing a lot of information that I can not re-express.  The pressures of society and what I believe as a large part of the human experience instills an anxiety in me.
What good am I? Does studying, reading, hearing and listening serve me as an individual? How does this all affect my belief in the fact that my relationship with God is the most important part of my life?

If I am not able to connect all past, present and possible future bits of information, am I able to share it?  How can God use me if I can not share what I have learned in my own words through my own thought processes using examples of real experiences in my life and learning and listening from others' experiences?

For awhile I have thought I would be prepared for encounters with people who do not believe in God, old friends who have abandoned their belief, or people with different spiritual views; but a couple recent conversations have been examined to show otherwise.

I can quote things (roughly), lyrics, movie lines, or passages from books but it will not fully share who God is in me and the people and things around me.  Yes they are aids and help, but being able to interpret it and apply it to myself is what I have to do in order that others can see who I really am. So maybe I don't really want this. Although C.S. Lewis (insert favorite author, person, pastor, leader, historical figure) is insanely good with his words and expressing his ideas, they will just be another quote for somebody. It is not personal.

Most of the time I am fed up with myself, frustrated, consumed by my ego. My lack of ability to allow myself to live in my uniqueness, even amongst life with people I love and trust.  I underestimate this relationship between God and me. I doubt my own existence. I force things to happen or appear in certain ways. Fleeting attempts to bulk up experiences so they just might fit into what society and my culture say I should experience and communicate to others.

What do I take from this attempt to corral my rambling of thoughts?
I want to be able to take a verse from the Bible, a speech I hear, a book I read, a song I listen to, or a conversation I have and express it to myself over and over until I really learn from it.  I want to put it in my own words.  I want to be prepared. I want to really believe in God. I want to believe in opportunity. I want to share.  Once again there is a lot of I in my verbiage. i guess I just want control of something I am beginning to know as fundamentally mysterious.

Wednesday, December 10, 2008

The return 12/10/08

I am back in the United States of America.  I have left a life that will continue in Buenos Aires. The desire I have is that it will be put on hold, but it doesn't work like that.  This I am sure of. I met encouragers, people that serve others with their hearts full, and people who persevere to be better, and good, and to love God.

My first sensation is to double back for my second coming, but I am sure this is not the next step, I trust God and his control, the Mystery.  There is a lot of open ends I have in the USA. It is not that they need to be tied, sealed, or closed They are, however, in need of being attended to.

This "attending to" will not function if I do not trust in God, the Mystery, or keep Him first in everything I do. This is a Christian Evangelical phrase that says, "the spiritual life is at our core and we must be continuously trying to recognize it through discipline, contemplation, and prayer." Prayer is important, it is powerful, and it works. If you ask me for concrete examples I will not be able to provide them. Prayer does not call for concrete examples, nor does it promise to provide them.

In regards to prayer I feel clueless. Besides the basic customs I have observed in my youth and adolescence, the examples that I have experienced while growing up have taught me what I know.
From the Lord's Prayer to prayer circles, written prayers, and then the more tangible prayer; physically transmitting the energy of prayer amongst believers through word and touch (as seen in the picture).

In recognition of the Mystery of prayer, and my ignorance of what the discipline entails, I thank God for putting people in my life that truly pray for me. I believe that some of these encouragers, servants, and friends, I have encountered and learned from this past year continuously step up to a ledge that overwhelms me with anxiety, a ledge that possibly leads to freedom, faith, or something alike. They face it and pray. This I am grateful for even in the sadness and darkness of leaving Argentina. Even when contemplating and accepting that time will continue on in the Southern Cone without me. Amen.