HAPPY THANKSGIVING

HAPPY THANKSGIVING

GOOD MORNING ALL
HAPPY THANKSGIVING. 
It is a beautiful day in Iowa today and an opportunity to say thank you all for your support and prayers over the last year in Iowa. Planning just a simple day with rest and the dogs will walk me somewhere before dinner or lunch or whatever. I remember the farm and how Thanksgiving was the day that one covered the windows with clear insulation and one insulated the farm house with hay bails for the coming winter in Western Minnesota. To think of all the adventures and the friends I have been blessed with over all the years. It will be more rewarding to just be grateful all day.
GOD bless, and stay safe.
Cares and Prayers
ME, Mack and Jake

SURPRISE

SURPRISE

What a wonderful day off. (plus Sunday). Cousin Nedra just stopped by as I -was getting ready to forward today’s WORD. She called first and asked if I would like some freshly baked chocolate chip cookies.  Well duhhhh. They are great, btw.  This is also more than a Daily Word today. The Test is to fill in the blanks. ________________ ASSURANCE __________ ___.
Takes me right back to the Church Choir. Life just has a way of putting a smile on your face when you least expect it.
Stay safe and enjoy the day.Cares and Prayers
ME, Mack and Jake

SHARING THE WEALTH

SHARING THE WEALTH

Sharing the Wealth

from: 7-24-2005

No Amount of Money
No amount of fame,
No amount of power
Can keep the grim reaper at bay.

Nothing that you do here
Can protect you from his hand
The secret lies in living
To help the most you can..

For those whose gifts are many
Much more is required
To help the ones less fortunate
And those whose lives are tired.

The truest gifts present themselves
When you stretch forth your wealth
To touch the ones that got you there
And recognize that in yourself.

The gifts of GOD weren’t handed out
In fits of preference,
But given to the ones GOD thought
Would take best care of them.

The poor man found the gift of love
And family that stood fast..
The rich man found the people
That loved him for his wealth..

Which gift contains more value
And which message do you heed,
The gift of love so freely shared
Or the poverty of greed…..

dw

IN HEAVEN AS IT IS ON EARTH?

IN HEAVEN AS IT IS ON EARTH?

IN HEAVEN AS IT IS ON EARTH

Jesus said: When you pray, pray this way:

“Our Father who art in Heaven, Hallowed be thy name

Thy Kingdom come, Thy will be done

ON EARTH AS IT IS IN HEAVEN” …..

I have always been intrigued by this prayer offered up by Jesus. Over all the years I have heard so many threats about what can happen as a result of having been born. As an example: The mysterious ‘they’ mentioned to Jesus that it would be better not to marry than to risk sin and damnation should it not quite pan out the way it was originally intended.

I have heard so many sermons and ‘Bible’ studies of losing favor with GOD and being subjected to ‘HELL’ for being the ‘wrong’ faith persuasion and being subjected to eternal damnation as a result.

There are actually an estimated 2.2 Billion people who proclaim Christianity as their faith.

Major religious groups

  • Christianity (31.2%)
  • Islam (24.1%)
  • Hinduism (15.1%)
  • Buddhism (6.9%)
  • Folk religions (5.7%)
  • Sikhism (0.29%)
  • Judaism (0.18%)

“As of 2010, Christianity was by far the world’s largest religion, with an estimated 2.2 billion adherents, nearly a third (31 percent) of all 6.9 billion people on Earth,” the Pew report says. “Islam was second, with 1.6 billion adherents, or 24 percent of the global population.” Apr 2, 2015

Interestingly enough, Judaism, which is the foundational faith of Jesus, is very much outnumbered by the others. I point out again:

“Thy Kingdom come, Thy will will be done, ON EARTH as it is in HEAVEN.”

Why would there be such an emphasis ON EARTH when many professing Christians live their lives worried about living on EARTH while waiting to enjoy life in HEAVEN. Living ON EARTH as it is in HEAVEN, which was created by GOD for some purpose to be enjoyed at the very beginning. Jesus prayed for EARTH to measure up to HEAVEN. If HEAVEN on EARTH was such a priority to JESUS I would have to ask why it is not a priority for mankind which has 31% of the entire population as adherents?

Earth is certainly a flawed location. WAR is an industry on EARTH. Illness is a part of world history. As of today no one in the world should be ignorant of the suffering of a pandemic, not just now but throughout world history. Politics plays to a select crowd of the wealthy and select voters. The priority of business conglomerates seems to take advantage of as many humans as possible to create income, chasing money, money and more money. Nations rebuild the armies of other nations to fight more wars to make more money. Is this truly our answer to the prayer of Jesus, whom 2.2 billion people profess to follow?

“ON EARTH AS IT IS IN HEAVEN”. It is pointed out that it will be more difficult for a rich person to enter Heaven then a camel to pass through the eye of a needle. Many of the world’s wealthy profess to be Christian to get elected throughout the world and yet “ON EARTH AS IT IS IN HEAVEN” is either a mistaken prayer by Jesus for Heaven would not be my cup of tea if they reflect each other.

So let’s take it a step further. One dies. I could take myself. What have I done to make the world a world that reflects Heaven? What have I done to make HEAVEN like a reflection of myself in a mirror?

What are you going to take to Heaven with you when it is your time. When you walk through the pearly gates what do you expect to bring to the table? Will you debate which religion is right? Will you enter Heaven as a Baptist, or a Catholic, or a Methodist, or a Mormon. The entire religion of Jesus was Jewish, will you accept Heaven with a Jewish background? Will you follow your political leader’s leads into Heaven, behaving just like they are here on EARTH? Will you look for the purple robe that you feel you should be given because of all the good that you have done? What sort of a Heaven will you be creating when you get there? Will it be socialist, a democracy, or an anarchy or a Communist?

IN HEAVEN AS IT IS ON EARTH?

There is an answer. Two thieves were crucified with Jesus. One lobbied for Jesus to save himself and both of the thieves. The other said “What we have done was our doing, what He has done was nothing wrong. We deserve what we get, He does not deserve this for what He has done.” What did Jesus reply to the second thief? “Today you will be be with me in Paradise.” No question from Jesus of his faith, if he had any or not, no color, no tribe, no particular affiliation that Jesus was even concerned about. What did that thief do to have the opportunity to be taken to Heaven by an itinerant Rabbi named Jesus? He believed in what Jesus said about how to live your life ON EARTH AS IT IS IN HEAVEN. It is a difficult door to walk through. You must walk through the door to HEAVEN believing that ON EARTH AS IT IS IN HEAVEN is the prayer and the purpose. Jesus and this thief were GOD’S examples of how to accomplish the dream.

In your own corner of the world try to make “ON EARTH AS IT IS IN HEAVEN”. That is the prayer of JESUS and the prayer of GOD.

We need that prayer now more than at any time in the history of the world.

I pray this for all of us.

AGAPE LOVE

AGAPE LOVE

Agape love is not a manufacture of people, it is the creation from GOD. It is a state of realty.

Agape love is not a manufacture of people, it is the creation from GOD. It is a state of existence between two spirits as people. I am more and more convinced that the pleromic love JESUS speaks of (Love one Another) is not a one sided exchange. To be in ‘agape love’ is to be in a state of mutuality. If this emotion is not jointly held in common, it is not love but merely infatuation, or desire or lust, or business but it is not love. I believe that agape love is a shared emotion created jointly between two people. ‘Love’ is not a one way street as so many seem to present and/or live it. The word ‘Love’ often is used to mask possessiveness or control. It is often a word interchanged with lust or desire. I do not believe the ‘love’ to which JESUS refers is anything but this agape love that is a creation out of the mutual affection between two people that even the participants find difficult to describe. Once found, it becomes a most difficult emotion to duplicate for it depends on this mutuality between two people that is such a rare discovery. I have also found that its discovery is incomprehensible in its scope to the physical, its reality in a daily existence lived by just a very few who risk convention to pursue it. I do not believe that there are too many who truly believe that GOD can perform what seems to be impossible through something as elusive as this spiritual emotion people often casually refer to as love. That may be why it is so difficult to live its promise, we do not allow it to ourselves. We perceive it to exist only in a specific life structure that may, in fact, vary between the spirits that share it among themselves. Rather than be defeated by circumstance, this agape love has the power to overcome circumstance, but it can only do so in its mutuality, for that is the source of its existence. “What is impossible for men, is possible for GOD”. It is no wonder that the teachings of Jesus have seemed so radical. The basis for agape is so very elusive, even to those who have discovered agape love in one another. Agape Love is a different emotion. The risks of this unconditional Love can scare people from entering into it. The spirits know that ‘from the heart’ opens up the heart for hurt and risk. Yet the experience of it is profound. It’s power in its mutuality scared those who felt threatend by it and they could not accept it. Those who experienced it sacrificed themselves to carry its message to the masses.

Agape Love is not an idealism, it is not an attitude, it is a real gift from GOD.

 

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ON EARTH AS IT IS….

ON EARTH AS IT IS….

For years I have heard many sermons about living life for a future existence somewhere in a place called Heaven. Are you living to die? Or are you living to live?

Jesus said, “Pray to your Father this way: (Matthew 6:9-): Our Father who art in Heaven, hallowed be thy name. Thy Kingdom come thy will be done ON EARTH AS IT IS IN HEAVEN. Give us this day our daily bread and forgive us our trespasses as we forgive those who trespass against us. Lead us not into temptation (but when we have been tempted -dw) deliver us from evil. For thine is the kingdom, the power and the glory forever. Amen”.   

“ON EARTH AS IT IS IN HEAVEN.”  I have pondered these words over many many years and I keep hearing a similar thought over and over, again and again and again.

How do we perceive HEAVEN to be. I often talk to people who are so stressed out
because they feel that won’t make it. But Jesus is offering an alternative that has the potential to take you there, now. How about “ON EARTH AS IT IS IN HEAVEN”.

If you believe you do things again and again and again,
what is your incentive to do it in any one particular way vs another?
Should Jesus be the way or perhaps Mohammed, Lao Tzu, or James?
How does your ‘way’ fit into Heaven on Earth?

When things are tough, do you bag this life and start over?
What is the point?

If the object is the experience, then experience it.
Take it in, enjoy what is there to enjoy; sorrow where there is sorrow,
hurt where there is hurt, heal where there is healing.
Leave a little behind before you go.
Breathe the air in the morning.
Watch the sunset at night.
Touch the lives you’ve been given,
Take care of your charge.
Learn from the journey.
Enjoy the stay.
Be thankful for the gifts.
Give what you can.
Lead by example.
Risk your heart.
Respect others.
Allow belief.
Realize that some have not arrived.
Learn from those who have.

And when the journey has run it’s course,
Be grateful for the opportunity. You may be asked
“Would you like the opportunity to do it over again?”
ON EARTH AS IT IS IN HEAVEN…..

 

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CAN ANYTHING GOOD COME FROM NAZARETH

CAN ANYTHING GOOD COME FROM NAZARETH

CAN ANYTHING GOOD COME FROM NAZARETH
Passion and culture and unconditional love.

Throughout his travels Jesus, the man, was surrounded by crowds of people seeking to be healed by Jesus.
None of them seemingly, approached Peter, or James or Luke or Matthew or any of the other disciples to be healed. Many over the years have discussed the nature of Jesus’ healing.

In fact, in his own community of Nazareth, stopping in as the healer of so many, Jesus found healing to be difficult. “A prophet is not recognized in his own hometown”.(Mark 6: V 4-6) he said. And he could work no miracles there, though he cured a few sick people by laying his hands on them. He was amazed at their lack of faith.

Nazareth was a community of laborers, farmers, and just ordinary people. Probably only around 100 or so occupants. Jesus was the same Jesus in his hometown even while spreading his message all around it as an adult. The people debated about the renowned healer back in Nazareth. In Nazareth the people knew “Joseph’s boy”, or “Mary’s boy”. For years the culture there was immersed in “CAN ANYTHING GOOD COME FROM NAZARETH” (John 1:45).

The culture in Nazareth had grown up with the outside comments concerning Nazareth that nothing good comes out of Nazareth. The boy and young adult Jesus lived in a cultural environment that was based on “CAN ANYTHING GOOD COME FROM NAZARETH”.

Yet, the spirit of Jesus did not buy into it.

When in Jerusalem once with his family as a young boy, he stayed over to listen to the speakers in the synagogue and increased his knowledge of the scriptures. It was 3 days before his parents figured out that he wasn’t on the road back home and another 3 to locate him in Jerusalem. When asked why he stayed behind his spirit acknowledged “I would expect to be in my Father’s house” . His spirit was forever in a different place than Nazareth. He grew up beyond the culture he grew up in. The carpenter’s son was destined to become the best know individual, with the most impact on history of anyone, ever.

Those who never knew Jesus before found healing through Jesus where healing had been otherwise absent in their own lives. I have often wondered why that was.

The biggest difference I see is the seekers for healing believed that Jesus could heal them or their friends, or ailing relatives from what they had been told by others.

And (very important) Jesus believed that He could heal them.

The belief that Jesus could heal them, or an individual they brought to Jesus to be healed shared a common bond. The key to the healing was this common bond of love.

Unconditional love. It did not question the culture or nature of the individual.

Jesus knew the power of a common bond that superseded the debate of others. It was a bond created that magnified their faith individually and created an energy that healed beyond the knowledge of those around them. It became infectious.

Many changes are challenging America and the world today. The largest is the concept that “CAN ANYTHING GOOD COME FROM ….(fill in the blank)”.
That is simply not true. CULTURE can develop and create change. An individuals Culture has to believe that what they have been taught about, or what they have grown to believe that other cultures are about, have been lied to.
Within the world today there are numerous cultures have been told throughout history that “CAN ANYTHING GOOD COME FROM …….”.

If you have heard this from others, or outsiders, even family has ostracized you for whatever reason, JESUS is an example that you can rise above what you have been told by others. In every culture there are stories of those who have followed in the same footsteps of Jesus within whatever NAZARETH they started in. Your very own Culture has the names within it. Today there is a new paradigm developing in the greatest expanse of social movement on a scale unparalleled in Human History.

CAN ANYTHING GOOD COME FROM NAZARETH was the mantra of Jesus’s culture. With a passion to help people, heal people, a belief in fairness and justice, and with the example of the cross as a measure of the passion of the message of Jesus to love one another at whatever the cost, it is in our lifetime reaching fruition more than ever before in history. LOVE ONE ANOTHER is a new paradigm throughout the world, whether or not supported by politicians or all people. 

GREATNESS COMES FROM NAZARETH is the history from Jesus’ example today as much as ever. From whatever Culture you are from, the challenge to grow above it is the challenge of the planet. Politics will not save us, politics crucified Jesus, and in so doing created the most well known example of the power of UNCONDITIONAL LOVE that could ever have been painted by a human hand.

Cherish your own cultural examples and LOVE ONE ANOTHER and you can change the future…… TODAY.

THE ADVOCATE

THE ADVOCATE

The Advocate

It was one of those stormyish Midwestern nights. The kind of weather storm that comes in from the way west and you can see and hear it moving closer. The sky gets very still and the birds stop chirping and take cover in their nests and in bushes.

The little girl heard the thunder coming closer.

Mommy”

Mommy says: “It will be all right, I’m right here, just stay in your bed, Jesus is with you.”

The thunder came closer, and then the lightning flashed outside the bedroom window.

Mommy”

I’m right here, your OK Jesus is with you. Just stay in your bed, everything is under control.”

And then the lightning struck as though right outside the bedroom window. The thunder crashed to where the house shook and the china in the china cabinet even clattered downstairs. At that same clash of thunder and lightning the little girl was in Mommy’s bed.

Honey”, Mommy said, “It will be all right, Jesus is with you.”

But Mommy, I need Jesus with skin on”.

John 14v16(njb): “I shall ask the Father, and he will give you another Advocate (protector) to be with you forever, that spirit of truth whom the world can never receive….”

A good friend used to say to the the congregation on our retreats “You may be the only Jesus that someone ever sees…”

There will be many times in your life, whether you profess Jesus or disagree with all religion, when GOD will call upon you to become the advocate that is Jesus with Skin On. You will comfort them and be the messenger for “LOVE”. You will hold their hand, wipe a brow, comfort them in sorrow, pull them out of their river. You will be the friend, acquaintance, co-worker, or even stranger that reminds them that LOVE EXISTS ON THE PLANET EARTH. In that moment you will discover a special kind of love. Unconditional.

John 14 v 25-27: “I have said these things to you (Jesus to His disciples) while still with you: but The Advocate, the Holy Spirit, whom the Father will send in my Name, will teach you everything and remind you of all I have said to you. Peace I bequeath to you, my own peace I give you, a peace the world can not give, this is my gift to you”.

Many I have never met have prayed for me. Many whose names, cultures, beliefs, and ideas have prayed for others under whatever banner they believe because GOD is not DEAD, but because LOVE LIVES. And because of your moment, you touched someone with LOVE and created JESUS with SKIN ON. That is what JESUS is all about. LOVE ONE ANOTHER. It is the message of Unorthodox Christianity.

But Mommy, I need Jesus with skin on”.

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EASTER

Easter 2020

A card from a friend reminds me that the simplest of things can take us right back to the normalcy that we have been used to. Luckily the church I attend here has had an online hookup for the Sunday sermon for quite some time so that we all can share Easter Sunday even if remotely.

Enjoy your day and as an old favorite song of mine goes ” Count your many blessings, name them 1 by 1.”

Enjoy the day in the place that you call home.

dennis

LET GOD KNOW

LET GOD KNOW

LET GOD KNOW

In the midst of attack it is hard to think positive. In the midst of despair many will shutter themselves not just in a house, but from the people who can help them. Whether one says “I didn’t want to bother you” or “You have enough to worry about without me.”

There were a number of disciples on a boat in the lake. A storm came up and the boat swayed from side to side and threatened even to capsize. It was as though all was lost. Then they saw Jesus walking on the water. Peter was shocked and called out to Jesus from the boat. Peter asked Jesus if he could walk out to him. He then chose to walk to Jesus and made a few steps on his way and began to sink. He called out to Jesus to help him to be saved from sinking. Jesus pulled him up and they entered the boat. Jesus commented “O ye of little faith”. Immediately the weather subsided and it was calm. The disciples all bowed down and recognized Jesus as the Son of GOD. (Matthew:14: 22 )

Peter, when recognizing he was sinking immediately called out to Jesus to let him know he needed help. NOW.

Perhaps you are the person at the beginning of this post. Afraid to bother GOD or Jesus and ask for help. Maybe you feel that “O person of little faith” will put GOD and Jesus against you. Perhaps you feel that Jesus and GOD are too busy with others to devote time to your concerns.

Jesus is a radical event to our belief systems. He was then and is to this day. Accept that you are like so many for whom Jesus is a comforting thought but may not be proactive on your account.

LET GOD KNOW. LET GOD KNOW that you could use a comforting voice on the phone or via e-mail or a text. LET GOD KNOW that the events of the day are overwhelming your senses and you do not know quite how to address things. Everyday becomes another unexpected day off with all the challenges that it brings. Everyday wakes up with a question about what do I do today. Moving about the countryside has different challenges than a snow storm or a thunderstorm. Getting in the car and getting out of the car at the grocery store is a concern rather than a relief.

LET GOD KNOW. GOD will do something just for you. Be observant and pay attention and you will discover just what GOD can do, just for you.

dw