Judgment Confused is Grace Refused

The essential character of God is Mercy and Grace

Romans 2:4-11 gives incredible enlightenment to the issue of God’s Judgment and God’s goodness, kindness, mercy and grace:

Do you show contempt for the riches of God’s kindness, forbearance and patience, not realizing that God’s kindness is intended to lead you to a change of heart and mind (repentance).  Because of your stubbornness and your unrepentant heart you are storing up wrath against yourself for the day of God’s wrath, when his righteous judgment will be revealed.  God “will repay each person according to what they have done. (   ) To those who by persistence in doing good seek glory, honor, and immortality He will give eternal life.  But those who are self-seeking, who reject truth and follow blindness (evil) there will be wrath and anger.  There will be trouble and distress for every human being who does evil:  first for the Jew, then for the gentile; but glory honor and peace for everyone who does good: first for the Jew, then for the Gentile.  For God does not show favoritism.

God’s righteousness is not God’s holiness or “right behavior” but it is having a “right heart” toward all creation.  This “truth” sheds light on the confusion between judgment or anger and wrath of God and kindness or mercy and grace of God.  God is only angry, when we refuse or show contempt for the “riches of God’s kindness, forbearance and patience”.  This sheds light on forgiveness and the shadow cast on the unforgiving or unrepentant.  Not even God forgives a person until they enter a “season of honesty about their behavior and openness to be “unburdened of their wrath and anger” and to “receive the mercy and grace that transforms the heart”.  Regeneration is not about believing in God’s forgiveness but receiving God’s forgiveness and transforming grace.

People often labor between “having to forgive an offense” with the result that there hurts and pains are silenced or “not forgiving” by which they are imprisoned in shame and guilt for “not forgiving”.

What makes any of us think that we have to do what God cannot do.  To forgive someone who is not transformed from darkness of their own denial, into the light of self awareness is worse than what a Japanese proverb calls “writing on water”, it is being flooded with shame and disillusionment.

What we are to do is “to have a heart of forgiveness” which spares us of shame and shifts the responsibility of transformation from the offended to the offender while removing the offended shame or guilt for un forgiveness.  God who forgives all in his heart does not forgive anyone until their heart is healed of its own wrath and condemnation.  So it is with us as well.

 

More on this tomorrow!!!

 

 

The Power of Patience

The Discipline of Patience

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From the first day of surgery after being hit by a car while walking in June 2016, I have set incremental goals and celebrated every little achievement.  From the first time I could move my left leg, to the first time I was able to get a sneaker on my left foot, to the first time I could hop into a wheelchair, to the first time I could get out of the wheelchair, to the first time I could put full weight on my left foot, to the first time I could drive myself to a RedSox game and watch it from my wheelchair, to the first time, I could walk with crutches, to the first time I could walk with just a cane, to the first time I could walk without the aid of a cane……my healing over the last 4 months and six days have helped me to learn the power of small steps, small things, and patience to allow any change to happen slowly but surely.  The only way i will walk 26.2 miles next week, TCS NYC Marathon week will be a celebration of small steps paving the way for 26.2 miles.

Patience is a virtue that is developed by the discipline of “incremental change”.

Jealousy: an Attribute of God Misunderstood

jealousy not so clear

I have always been a little confused by the words of scripture, “I am a jealous God”.

I have never experienced jealousy as a positive thing but I believe God to be positivity divine or at least positively divinity.

This past weekend I was at a training where a part of me was triggered.  I felt jealousy, but in  very different way.

I was in a wheelchair for the last three months and have been walking for three weeks.  I was sitting in a large room where the teaching staff of which I was a part was doing yoga on a wide open beautiful naturally wooden floor.  this is the kind of floor my wife and I would dance on but I cannot at this time dance. They were doing yoga and I would l often be part of the group moving to the rhythm of the inner soul.  I felt internal jealousy and I spoke for that jealous part.  It was not that I wanted them to stop what they are doing and focus only on me which is how jealousy is usually perceived I simply wanted them to not ignore my presence in the room. What if God’s jealousy was not about his or her or their inability to handle you having no other God’s before him/her/them but that they simply do not want to be ignored.  When we ignore our “spiritual” intrinsic and internal parts we do ourselves a disservice.

Jealousy is not to control us as much as it is to teach us to not to put anyone person or group ahead of any other group which in effect ignores or dismisses the reality of the other’s existence.

Jealousy in human circles creates anger, hurt, despair, disloyalty, fear, etc.

In its divine circle it creates the space for the other to not be ignored but to experience compassion, courage, calmness and care.  Healthy jealousy is about wanting to connect with compassion and care not wanting to control with fear.

To attribute to God human jealousy is to miss the clarity and connection of divine jealousy.  It wants more for you not from you.

When we ignore God we are tutored to ignore people.  When we embrace God we tutor ourselves to embrace all people regardless of anything

 

 

Why Pain?

Pain is our teacher and friend not our enemy and adversary

When pain comes along

Go away says the throng

When pain attacks a part

It feels like an arrows dart

Pain comes, it intends not to stay

With a message, often hard to say

The message it’s always true

Is not a message to make you blue

The message of the dart

Is to open up your heart

When anger and fear arrive

They from light try to drive

So settle into, invite your pain

Let it linger and don’t complain

It will surprise you with a message

From heaven, from an inner Sage

Invite the pain of body, mind, heart

To write it’s message, softly start

To see it as a friend who lightly

Would write a word of love brightly

Upon the open heart

Into the open mind

From the messenger beyond

To still the waters to a pond

So when pain comes knocking

Please don’t turn her away

Include her as a part of your play

And listen to what he would say