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Wednesday, December 31, 2008

Busy with Business

Changing directions personally and ministry-wise. 

Pursuing God through the church plant The Church in DeKalb, moving from Emmaus Center to TCD has been blessed by God as He has removed a lot of stumbling blocks, and has sought me through this time.

My little brother came to Christ. 

Doors Are Opening in relationships.

A full report is forthcoming, I have faith that God wants to use this blog in a certain manner. Maybe as my online journal. H-LY C-AP! It just hit. Jamie challenged me to start journaling with will benefit me and my memory - budget - relationships with God and my wife, but it will also benefit anyone who decides to read this because they will be exposed to how God is moving in my life tangibly. 

First Entry to come tomorrow ------ easy to start that way, it's the NEW YEAR! WOW! God is awesome.

My little brother and I are going to start reading the Bible together tomorrow. We are going to read it together, the entire book, in a year. Maybe we might finish it quickly because of passion, I am not afraid of that. I have set up a lot of at leasts, a lot of compromises, a lot of hitches in the plan so as to make it fail proof, possibly, but I know that God is in support of such an endeavor and will see to it that it comes to completion. 

The plan is as follows:
2 to 3 chapters of the Old Testament or as Ravi Zacharias calls it - 'The Less Recent Testament'
10 Chapters a day of the New Testament
1 Psalm every other day

If we read 10 chapters of the New Testament together a day, we can read the New Testament once a month, and I hope to have read it 12 times this next year. 

We Begin tomorrow with a full report of our readings, prayers, hopes, revelations, successes/failures, whathaveyou's, we shall see. 

Christ's Love,
joshua

Sunday, December 14, 2008

The Salvage Podcast #1

Hello and Welcome to a brand new and nervous endeavor... to broadcast my thoughts...to broadcast how God communicates to me. I am not sure what this will look like, feel like, or in what context it exists in, but I want to pioneer try to comprehend, try to communicate to you, whoever you are how I feel. I feel lost, a little like Alice maybe or perhaps Dante, though not as noble. This blog took things to one level, unsuccessfully I believe, I hope to try something else. Alive journals of my thoughts. This podcast hopes to be a confessional. It hopes to resolve conflict by trying to understand conflict, wrestle with conflict and conflictedness. If faith is strength, if faith is a gift, then doubt is a weakness, doubt is a curse. The word faith almost never appears in the Old Testament, instead God communicates to His people their need for faithfulness. God begs His people to keep their faithfulness in keeping His commands. In the New Testament, God asks for all people to have faith in the things not seen. I have faith tonight, faith enough to communicate it to you. These are strong moments, but the weak ones worry me, will my faith ever run out? Will it ever run dry, and I will stare at the once bustling river that could carry heavier burdens than these down stream.

The first Podcast is about marriage. I am married. I have been married for 2 years, almost 2 and a half. My wife and I met as kids in high school. I have learned a lot about God in my marriage. It has been a tempest not always allowing one time to breathe with storm force winds rushing you past everything you want to cling to. Marriage is beautiful, as is with everything worth cherishing, marriage reminds you that though salt is bitter and often mocking, it is there to season the meat not sore the wound. Without tears of pain, tears of joy would just be leaking eyes, a malfunction, not a redemption. My God redeems, even tears. 

Marriage is an amazing thing. God loves marriage. I want to hit two points. The first being that I love my wife. Her name is Sam. She is my best friend. She is the bride of my youth. On our wedding day, during our ceremony God told me that He was pleased. He said to my at the altar while I stared in awe of my beautiful bride, He said, if I am love, and you love this girl, then I am here. As I stared at her emerald eyes bobbing hopelessly in deep seas of crystal clear tears, God said to me, 'This is the face you love, when you see My face, how could you blink? How could you take your eyes off of Me for one second? How could you even blink?' I haven't felt alive often in my life, even less before this moment, but that day, there at that altar where hundreds of marriage happened before me and hundreds of others after, it was consecrated that day as a Holy place where God was, is, and forever will be. 

One other thing about marriage. I believe that God loves it. God wants us to see our marriages as something, if only in a dim mirror, see who God is. God loves us as we are supposed to love our spouses. I have wronged my wife. I have wronged God. God forgives even though we do not deserve it, He forgives. My wife forgives. God shows us a lot of things. In the Old Testament, God made promises to people and called them Covenants. These Covenants were important, so important that is often some of the most character defining moments for us to understand God. God made a Covenant with Noah when He promises never to flood the world again. God also mentions that if anyone sheds another mans blood, that by men's hands will his blood be shed also. Later God promises Abram a son, and Abram sacrifices animals to God to show him his commitment. God asks Abraham to then sacrifice that son, Isaac, to show God his faithfulness. God makes promises and seals it with blood. Every Covenant between God and man of the Old Testament is sealed with blood. There are at least two Covenants between man in the Old Testament involving Abimelech, and neither are sealed with blood. They both fail. 

Marriage is a covenant. Marriage is a promise between to people that God ordained should be sealed in blood. There are two sides to the equation, husband and wife. They both have ends of the bargain to uphold, and they both have consequences to the breaking of this Holy promise. God wanted these Covenants to work. God made us so that we would seal our Covenants with blood. If both joint members of this Covenant are pure on the wedding day, then blood will seal the Covenant of matrimony. There is no shame in the pure majesty of God's divine plans for our lives. God made us to glorify Him. God works inside of biology too. 

There is also blood that would seal a Covenant of Everlasting life. God shed His own blood, Christ's blood on the Cross to seal the promise He made to us in John 3:16. For God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son that whoever would believe in Him would not perish but have everlasting life. This Covenant would not fail sealed in blood for all time. God loves you. There is a beautiful wedding planned, arranged, and waiting for you. It is your day to stroll down the aisle, and accept Jesus' hand, to be his bride, to seal your Covenant relationship to Him with His blood on the Cross split for you. To take his vows, to keep His commands: to love others, and to love Him. 

Friday, June 13, 2008

Winter

I just finished revisioning a short story I wrote about 4 years ago during my freshmen year in college. I know this isn't a typical post for this blog, but I really want give this a shot, and see how it is received. This is a strange story, but it is important. Notice what is in the story, but then also notice what is intentionally excluded.

I woke up stiffly, with a sharp pain in my neck. It is fairly common for me to wake up in a place I don’t remember falling a sleep, but I have never seen this place before. With a tremendous slam, the door flies open, and the snow follows a strange older man into the room. Like steam rising from a boiling pot, the cold emits from the man as he proceeds in. All that I have on is a towel, with my head relaxed on the arm of an uncomfortable chair. The chair’s plush damask decoration glistens in the batting light from the fireplace I must have obviously tried to warm myself by. Everyone in the room has their eyes fixed on this odd old man as he paces the floor without addressing us. He is mumbling in a strange language I can’t translate. As you listen you get the strange lyrical sense of foreign languages on virgin ears, he is not pleased with the current state of affairs. In mid-stride, he freezes. He stomps his right foot soundly on the misplanked wooden floor. Everyone, including myself which I more than anything followed the rest of the boy’s reactions, jumped to our feet immediately after this gesture from this weird old man.
“MARCH!” the old man yells in a foreign accent, “MARCH IN A STRAIGHT LINE!” He yells so loudly it hurts my ears. The voice that flowed from this man did not suit his body whatsoever. It was a deep, baritone voice that a man twice his size might not be able to produce. “MARCH!” As this broke from his mouth in stinging fashion, we all scramble for the door. I was near the back of the pile of terrified and confused boys, behind a boy a little shorter than me,
“March? March Where? Whe…” a small boy cried out before he was swiftly downed with a kick to the chest, I wasn’t even to the door when my spot in line was quickly shot up a number, seeing the young boy quickly knocked to the floor by a big black boot to the chest. We all knew then that we were not taking our towels to where we were going, nor would we speak up again. “MARCH!” he yells again. I was in the third row of the formation, two boys, who were just as tall as me, were in front of me, and then another row was just ahead of them. They were lead; I would never have picked lead. My row was third, and we were followed by three rows of boys, the last being incomplete because of the boy who was sacrificed to save us.
I had nothing covering my feet when the pain of the snow first touched them. The pain of snow against bare skin is one of a fiery tingling. Beneath this snow must be thumbtacks. “MARCH!” he yells in his gruff foreign voice. “MARCH, AND SWING YOUR ARMS!” he exclaims again. Swing our arms?! None of us have any clothes on, and until now we were doing a great job of hiding that fact. “MARCH! AND SWING YOUR ARMS EVEN THOUGH YOU ARE EXPOSED!” The new winter air stabs my pride.
We march into darkness. The house shrinks away from us. The inviting smoke from the fire place, the towels, the chair, the boy we left behind fall away from us now, into the blackness, into the cold we march.
We continue to march on this high burmed path covered by snowy pine trees on both sides. We have only been marching for a little while when my feet really started to feel the affects of the snow. My feet numb themselves to avoid the pain, frostbite hasn’t set in yet. I notice that I am starting to limp. My right foot is not holding up as well as I thought it would. I can’t help but baby it.
“March! And swing your arms!” he shouts again, “MARCH! SWING YOUR ARMS AND STOMP YOUR FEET!” he screams again. He must have seen me, and knew I would be the next to fall out of line. “MARCH! AND SWING YOUR ARMS! MARCH, AND STOMP YOUR FEET, LET THEM KNOW WE ARE COMING!”
As soon as he finished the ing in coming, a boy directly in front of me winces in pain, a “hsss” sound escapes his lips as he pulls his left foot from the snow, and quickly remembers his place, and tries to cover up his fallacy. It is too late, and our guide was already on top of him as soon as he returned his foot to the snow. With a violent shove, our young comrade is thrown into the darkness, and the last we heard of him is a splash, indicating to me that below is a reservoir filled with not yet frozen icy water. Straighten up, Straighten Up. That could be you.
“MARCH! MARCH AND SWING YOUR ARMS, STOMP YOUR FEET AND SHOUT!” he yells his command as he continually adds to the list of ridiculous things. Shout? What does he want us to shout? I don’t know what to do. Every step I take, the snow feels like tacks. My feet are turning white, the first sign of frostbite. I don’t know where we are going, but I am sure by the time we get there my feet will be completely frostbitten. “MARCH! SWING YOUR ARMS, STOMP YOUR FEET, AND SHOUT!” Straighten Up.
“March, swing your arms stomp your feetandshout!” That is all I could think of to ‘shout’, was to repeat what he said. I yelled as loudly as I can, but the frigid air stings my throat and I choked at the end. Drawing breath to quickly in a frigid air is like swallowing fire, and I do my best not to cough too loudly, as this would be a grievous offense worthly of exile.
“MARCH, LET THEM KNOW WE ARE COMING!” he yells directly in my face as if what I said were not good enough for him.
I see in slow motion, the heel start to slip, the weight shifts, and the boy tries to regain his balance awkwardly. He flails his arms, and draws the attention of our guide. After this happens, the boy realizes his futile flailing will only draw a worse punishment and concedes the fall. He lands on his back, and the brutal leader peers down at him with hatred. “YOU HAVE FALLEN, YOU ARE NOT MARCHING.” He exclaims in an embarrassing manner. With the injury coming, the insult seems crippling, and I am embarassed for him. He delivers the same fate sealing kick to the chest, the same downward tumble, and the same inevitable splash.
Our formation doesn’t change. We can see the holes were the two boys left, caverns of shame, places in line I will not soon forget. Though I did not know them, I will remember the fear in their eyes, the same fear I feel costantly. I hope my empathy will survive this cold. They are a reminder to us, that we can not make a mistake. As we continue to march, and continue to get closer to our destination, I begin to feel the affects of the cold against my flesh. I cannot recall the last time I was warm, the last time I wore clothes, the last time I was not marching, the last time…No warmth could ever undo this cold. This cold is so deep, if I were struck; the blow would shatter my brittle bones. My feet have grow more white proceeding up the foot to the ankle, and the bottoms have turned a slight gray transformation. Don’t look down, look only ahead. The soles of my feet are completely black. A black I don’t want to see again. A black worthy of fear. My footwork has become sloppy because I cannot feel my feet; the pain has shifted up to my shins. It feels like my shins crack open with every new step I take. Eventually the crack will widen so far that my I will end up crawling to where we are going. Even if there were nails beneath the snow, I wouldn’t feel it, they would pierce my flesh and I would simply take them with me.
“MARCH, AND SWING YOUR ARMS, STOMP YOUR FEET AND SHOUT!” he yells again. It seems like he is getting louder if that is at all possible. My limp is getting really noticeable, and I am, subtly shaking. “MARCH! LET THEM KNOW WE ARE COMING. THEY MUST KNOW WE ARE COMING!” With the end of that command comes a turn in the path. The path veers to the right, and the tree line breaks away. As soon as we complete the turn, a glow of light is revealed to us. It must be a town; it must be where we are going. I was so taken in by the origin of lights, city on a hilltop, that I didn’t think about the trees not being there. Now we are on an open plain. There is nothing around us to shield us from the wind. A gust quickly shoots up and shakes our formation. I, for a moment, lose my footing, but quickly regain unnoticed. A boy two rows behind is not so lucky, and falls on his back. “YOU HAVE FALLEN LIKE THE OTHER, THIS IS NOT ACCEPTABLE. YOU CANNOT FALL, YOU CANNOT FAIL!” He delivers the same fate sealing kick to the chest, the same downward tumble, but this time no splash follows. Eight of us remain. “MARCH, SWING YOUR ARMS, STOMP YOUR FEET AND SHOUT! LET THEM KNOW WE ARE COMING! THEY MUST KNOW WE ARE COMING!” he yells again. The black continues up my feet toward just below my ankle. My shins have split completely, as the more steps we take the more my shins have split. I cannot feel the snow brush against my feet nor the tracks I leave. The wind is getting worse, and my shaking is getting more frequent.
On an open plain the wind whips violently. The wind has no feelings; the wind doesn’t care how cold you already are. The wind is the wind, shapeless, nameless, faceless. I wish I could stop it, find where it comes from and burn it to the ground. I hate the wind, the wind will feel my wrath. The wind keeps blowing despite me, and we keep marching toward the town ahead in the distance.
The path we are walking is poorly illuminated by the reflecting moonlight. You cannot see anything ahead of you except the lead boys, and our guide. A boy steps on a stick, and he almost tumbles to the ground. The snow is not freshly laid, it has been there for long time, and crunches under our feet, as it does after it freezes and becomes compact. I cannot feel the crunch; I can only hear it when my feet stomp through.
“MARCH! SWING YOUR ARMS, STOMP YOUR FEET, AND SHOUT!” our leader screams again. There are a lot of things to keep track of when you are this cold. “MARCH! LET THEM KNOW WE ARE COMING! THEY MUST KNOW WE ARE COMING!” Straighten up! Straighten Up! He is looking straight at you. “YOU ARE NOT SWINGING YOUR ARMS! YOU MUST SWING YOUR ARMS! THAT WAS THE SECOND COMMAND. YOU HAVE TO SWING YOUR ARMS! THEY MUST SEE YOU SWINGING YOUR ARMS!” He storms toward me with the same enraged, teeth-grinding expression. I was swinging my arms, I know was swinging my arms, I know I was. God! I was, I am not afraid, I know I was swinging my arms. If anything, I would think he was punishing me for this incessant limp. “THIS FAILURE WILL NOT BE TOLERATED!” our guide brushes past me in a fury of anger. He omits no warmth, no heat, and with a shove, open-handed to the chest, the boy is sent flailing downhill in to the darkness with a thud. I swore he looked straight at me. “YOU WILL ALWAYS SWING YOUR ARMS! YOU WILL ALWAYS STOMP YOUR FEET! AND YOU WILL ALWAYS SHOUT! THEY MUST KNOW WE ARE COMING!” This line of command sounded like it was shouted directly in my ear. “FAILURE WILL NOT BE TOLERATED! MARCH! SWING YOUR ARMS! STOMP YOUR FEET! AND SHOUT!”
“March! Swing your arms, stomp your feet, and shout!” we cry back in unison. This is what it feels like to fall into line. We reverberate his commands as if we have known them our whole lives.
“You were not shouting, you did not complete the command. You have failed. This will not be tolerated!” our leader exclaims, and the same sequence is initiated, the storm toward the weaker link, the contorted fear shaped face, the open-palmed shove, tumble, they are no longer with us, they do not deserve to be. Our numbers grow thin. 6 are left to approach the city. “THERE IS NO ROOM FOR WEAKNESS. NOW IS THE TIME OF OUR GREATEST NEED! NOW IS THE TIME FOR US TO ANNOUNCE OUR PRESENCE! NOW WE TRULY MARCH!” he cries out now and repeats the same order as since the beginning we have heard. We repeat it with vigor and intensity. “MARCH!” “March!” “SWING!” “Swing!” “STOMP!” “Stomp!” “SHOUT!” “Shout!” I yell back until my voice breaks. There is no warmth. There is no cold. There is no pain. I am the rhythm. I am in unison. I am a cog in this machine whose purpose is to let ‘them’ know we are coming, the ‘they’ is not important, the why is irrelevant, the cold has been rendered useless. My feet are black, rock-like, and solid. I do not feel the crunch of the snow, the piercing of the wind, the, used to be, unbearable cold. My fingers turn white, and the process will start again.
“MARCH! SWING YOUR ARMS! STOMP YOUR FEET! AND SHOUT!” we all yell together! We are together, we are one in the same! The accent, the vigor, the power, the blend.
We are approaching the city with haste, as quick as marching will allow us. As suddenly as I say this to myself, I feel my legs tearing away from me, and feel myself fully engulfed in this procession. I feel myself running with determination, as I pass the boys left and right of me. The city’s walls grow taller and taller in the horizon. A large gate stands in the center of these walls, and is lead up to by the path we are on.
“CHARGE AND YELL! CHARGE AND YELL! CHARGE AND YELL!” I scream to my comrades, my brothers, I have become the leader, and our guide has fallen into ranks. “CHARGE AND YELL! CHARGE AND YELL! CHAAAARGE!” I cry out again. We are nearing the large, dull gray, metal gate. We can see men on the walls, we can see people behind the gate. Our yell has turned into a barbaric yalp! It is just a noise, a cry, an assertion to let them know we are coming!
As suddenly as we reached the gate, I hear the first of us fall. I didn’t see it, but I heard the loud shot, and a boy cry out. I turn backward to see what happened, and a boy grabs for his chest, and blood pours through his fingers, and down his naked body. A marksman shot him through the chest. Blood spurts out and soaks into the snow, red and white and pink and black. He falls to his knees with a horrid blackness filling his eyes, and his mouth ajar, not crashing but sinking into the snow around him. Frost bite is no longer his concern. Just as soon as we all turn to face the gates, a hail of gun fire rains down on us and strikes and kills several of the other boys in the same fashion. Our guide and I are all that remain, now for the remainder of the bullets that will hurl down at us. He looks at me with fear in his eyes, and I know now that this was not planned.

Thursday, May 22, 2008

Rehashing and Somewhat Expanding a Previous Post

The last post was some what of a short if we can call it that, for its length betrays that idea, but truly I do not believe it wasn't a full exposition on such a thought on communication and the purpose of communication, on relationship to ourselves and humanity as a whole.

Why Communicate? Well, I am not sure, but I think I left the issue under investigated, which might or might not under achieve my purpose and betray my entire world view if left alone.

The idea of the question words and their purpose, separate yet equal, lead to an eventuality which must, in my opinion, be seen to its logical end point. In the Cross, Crucifixion, and Resurrection. Here is what I mean.

What, When, Where, Who, How and Why are answered simply, not simplistically in the Bible. A short caveat to this point. The Bible answers these questions simply. God speaks through his prophets and authors simply to relay almost incomprehensible and remarkably difficult concepts to his people. God knows men's hearts, we cannot bear the logic or justice of God within our own conceptions of time or reality, ergo as an eventuality through the though process and outworking of skepticism taken hold most fervently in a pluralistic culture that was formed in the minds of the atheist forerunners of this culture: Neitchze, Huxley, Russell, Dawkins, we lose touch with reality, time, rationality, and reason. Because of these ideas and ideologists we have lost our original scope at looking at the world, to simply ask these six question words.

I assume at some point people have asked this about themselves to some degree, not finding all of the answers inside themselves maybe their gaze turned outward, key distinction not upwards merely outward, to reason with themselves and others the conundrum of these question words and their existence.
What, When, Where, Who, How and Why...

What? What is Life, or Human Life, we see this question prevalent in many arenas of contemporary culture, most explicitly investigated in the questions of when life begin, i.e. abortion. What is life? What do we call human? The Bible answers this question simply to say that God created all life and all things, in six days (however you perceive these with a proper Christian scope), and on the sixth day God created mankind, in our first father Adam.

When? A long time ago (yet another debatable topic too much so for this short medium), as the Bible concisely explains 'In the beginning...'

Where? God exists everywhere, and so this question is not necessary for him, but God created the Heavens and the Earth, followed simply to concentrate fully on His creation here on Earth.

Who? This question is answered in two fold, God created Us. God the uncaused, transcend, all-good, all-sovereign God of the Bible, that includes Old and New Testaments, which also concordantly includes The Trinity as we know it, God, Jesus, and the Holy Spirit all whom have always existed throughout time and space. Humanity, as we know it, given a concise, not brief or abridged, but concise history examined through the Jewish people with forerunners such as Adam, Noah, Abraham, Isaac, Jacob (Israel), Moses and so forth to all the way to us. This is a complex who.

How? God does not give us a description of how he created creation other than explaining to us that He created us out of dust, and breathed life into us creating us in His (Their) image and likeness.

Why? The why here one could assume would be the most complex, but as it is, admittedly so, the most complex, it is also answered most simply only implying and practically achieved in the most complex form: worship. We see God's glory and worship him for it. That is why. The entire endeavor to search for the meaning of life is a trivial pursuit outside the scope of Scripture, and Christian may sometimes forget that humanity without these answers may be lost at sea without this definitions or defining words.

How could we lose touch with such a simple concept? Answer questions because in accordance with evolutionary practices, if a certain subject, item, or piece of existence was unprofitable it would have become extinct, so somewhere along the way humanity developed the ability to ask questions, and these questions shape the way we think, but of course people do not perceive existence this way, and choose to leave this one arena of life without a single question being asked. If questions were not meant to be answered then, why would we have asked them in the first place? God answered these questions accurately the first time, and choose the let these answers serve for all time, they remain and have sustained validity, relevance, and absolute authority for all time.

So What is the problem? We sin.
When? All of the time.
Where? Everywhere we are.
Who? Everyone
How? In every way imaginable.
Why? Pride.

What can we do about it? Ourselves nothing. Christ did all that for us, as He was the only one who could. He, as the greatest show of Love every recorded here on Earth, died for our sins, and bore them on the Cross, He rose again, three days later, our God defeated the grave the only arena man has never been able to conquer, and ascended into Heaven, where He stays, and we wait for His return.

When? We can make a choice right now to accept this free gift of love and grace in Christ's crucifixion, and repent of our sins, and this is the only true cure for our problem, everything else only treats the symptoms of a disease they cannot diagnose. Think of the arena of life people attempt to give Tylenol to, politics (if only a leader could cure poverty, the economy, gas prices, racism), health care (if only we could prevent AIDS), suicide (why are our children lost in a sea of depression, anxst, and torment choosing to end their lives without seeing their problems solved, they have lost the ambition or hope of ever making it out, not of their own volition, so who can?), so we have Political leaders that make promises they cannot keep, we have Physcian's prescribing medicine they know will only make the problem sufferable, and we have self-help books, feel good stories, online communities, and plenty of medication to prevent these children from making a mistake no one can fix. My God can fix all of these problems, He did it on the Cross.

Where? Everywhere we go we bear the image and likeness of God bringing with us His glory revealed to us on our hearts, ergo the natural law - fairness, right and wrong. We can worship Him anywhere, without a church or a congregation or a pastor, with a Bible (if you do not have one I will mail you one), accepting Christ and his accomplishment on the Cross.

Who? God, Jesus, the Holy Spirit, and us. We sin, God doesn't. God hates sin, not sinners (as we all are). So Because God hates sin and sin cannot exist in God's all-good presence, something has to be done in order to correct that and wipe it away. Jesus' blood on the Cross covers it, lucky us. The Holy Spirit then dwells inside us after our recognition and invitation.

How? Jesus died and excrutiatingly painful death on the Cross, though He came back, and will come back again, weird - I know. We can pray a simple prayer, and ask him into our hearts.

Why? Because without this prayer, without the recognition that Jesus can mend our broken hearts and broken lives, we will remain broken and separate from Him (God), and will be separate from Him after death, which isn't such a good thing. I know you may feel right now that you may be doing a good job running this thing, but if we are honest with ourselves, we know that we might not being doing this right, and could possibly be wrecking this whole thing for ourselves. We need Jesus. Because I have admitted this need, IT has changed my life. Ask yourself? Why am I here? Why do I feel the pain that I feel when no one is looking? Ask yourself the questions you don't talk about at parties, and see how far your answers go until you realize you don't have all of the answers, in fact you don't have any that stand up to any focused pressure or scrutiny, God will scrutinize, I am only here to Love. I love you, but more importantly God loves you, that is all that God can do, is love you, He hates sin, but He will always love you.

Sunday, May 18, 2008

Catching Up

A lot has happened since my last, and should I say, weak post. I should briefly I digress to say that my first blog entry was to test the waters of blogger-dom, and see how people generally react toward blogs, and I was impressed by recent events and responses, not all strains of this dialogue, which I hope it most certainly is.
Soap Box Talk: I believe in verbal communication as the only true form of effective communication. Now, of course, these impliments in which we try to communicate are in some achieve their purposes, I do not feel that they attain all that verbal communication can, and so if what we desire, here contemplating momentarily the human condition, is to communicate and relate and be in companionship to other human beings, and almost all of the recent inventions that have flourished and taken over the world, i.e. the internet, cell phones, instant messaging, blogging, and websites designed to express oneself in the hopes that someone sees it (myspace, livejournal), then shouldn't we then strive to communicate some idea effectively, or if not effectively for some effect we hope that that idea is transmitted well.
Whatever the case may be, the event of communicating something may inherently operate under the condition of being understood. **I am in the business of making enormous statements about life, the universe, and everything in it, so reader beware.** To expound upon that point further, if the author/speaker tries in some way to remain ambigous an idea is still being cultivated, the speaker chose to stay misunderstood for some effect, but whatever reason, we are trying to transmit some idea, and we hope that through our medium, or may be it is all about our medium, that the person on the other is receives it, and receives it in such a way as to get what we are trying to do. (I will tip my hand at this point, and say that this writing is purposefully sporadic so as to prove my point more fully, about the understanding of communication, and further to transmit to you my passion for this topic and my fervor at transmitting my own idea about the matter) But what does this anyway, how coy a statement, because of course through the tone and text presented to you, I have established great concern for the efforts put forward to communicate.

This is could be considered a flimsy transition to my true point. Why communicate?

There are six question words in the English language. I wish I could give you data on the worlds languages, and the question words that exist in each. This data could help or hurt my argument, so I preface this next statement by saying, to my best understanding, given the knowledge I have acquired through my current scope of understanding the world, that these six question words are markedly important to our world views and our outworking inside our own constructs.
Six Question Words: Who, What, Where, When, How, and Why...

These question words focus our attention to events, things that happened, trivial, tragic, terrifying, and terrific as they may be; we define all of this happenings through these six words, and their answers, kind of, because they need not always be answered nor do the answers need always to be fully revealed nor understood, but the questions always need to be asked.

I shall use a recent event that has happened that many of my readers will easily be able to relate to, if not then this next part may not mean as much to you, hang in there something else might.

On February 14, 2008 a lonegun man walked into Cole Hall, while a Biology class was in session, just about to get out, and fired numerous shots into a panic-striken crowd, killing 5 students, then turned the gun on himself, committing suicide, leaving 6 dead on the scene. Students fled in horror, shock, and amazement that this terrifying event just took place in their classroom. What followed is common knowledge and the reprecussions of this action are still being felt on Northern Illinois University Campus.
- I was still in my apartment, having skipped my math class to work on some other homework due that evening, when my wife called me from work, and insisted that I do not go to campus as I had planned, and to stay inside, lock the doors because so little information was known at the time. I then of course turned on the television, to find news reporters in the same frenzy I was in for more information. I watched for a long time.-
A thought struck me throughout this ordeal about the nature of asking questions. I realized that reporting the news was simply asking then seeking the answers for your questions.

In this event, questions started to be asked immediately, to help us, those who were not there, try to understand what happened.

The first question to be asked is what. The event occurred. Immediate one asks, what happened? The answer I was given was that a gunman was on campus.
Where? Evidence points to Cole Hall.
When did this happen? About 3 p.m.
Who is the gunman? A graduate student named Steven, we later learned.
How did he do what he did? He bought 4 guns, mostly online, stayed in a hotel for a couple of days, we are not sure what he hours before the shooting, but we know that he entered through the front of the auditorium, and opened fire on a classroom full of students, with a shotgun and three pistols.
Why? We have no idea.

This question begs to be asked under every circumstance imaginable. We see the lack of satisfaction evident in the first five questions, and try to find solace in a lack of understanding, but we are left with urning for closure, the only closure that can be found in asking why. Why did he shoot at students he didn't know? Why would anyone choose to do such a thing?

Why communicate? What do you have to say that I need to learn from? Why should I listen to you at all? Why are you important? I know why I am important, I am me, myself, and I, but you are you, someone else, a faceless name, or a nameless face. You are important, and you always will be.

What am I communicating? A blog about communication breakdowns.
Where? On Blogspot, Facebook, and Myspace
When? It is a windy Sunday evening.
To Whom am I communicating? I am not sure, you obviously.
How? I am typing it on a Macbook, with wireless internet.
Why? Isn't that the question?

I am communicating because I must. I have to, not to be so baselessly confused with obligated.
I won't get into that just yet.
For another post, tomorrow if I feel up to it.

Let me make clear, that we all should communicate everything, because whether we realize it or not, everything we do and say is being recorded, is being watched, lovingly because that is how we worship our God. He listens, pays attention, and wants us to notice that he is anyway. He loves us, doesn't like some of the things we do, but regardless of that He still loves us. So communicate to him, through Jesus Christ, our medium and mediator, because our communication matters, pray...