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.

LOVE ONE ANOTHER

LOVE ONE ANOTHER

1-25-02 (updated 8-31-20)

‘Their GOD is not our GOD.’
“Our beliefs are the true beliefs”.

So many times have I heard this come out of the mouths of Christians I am reminded of what Jesus said, “It is not what goes into your mouth that defiles you, but what comes out.”
I was involved in a discussion once with a Christian acquaintance and the topic came up of whom GOD loves more.

Who are the true chosen?

I asked him to list the people on Earth whom GOD did not create. You see we are ALL the children of GOD.

I related a story: when my grandmother baked cookies for me she always made more oatmeal raisin cookies than chocolate chip cookies. Why? Because I liked oatmeal raisin cookies more than chocolate chip cookies. If we believe that GOD shows some sort of preference for one group over another, certainly the chosen people are Asian, for there are many more of them than anyone else.

I believe GOD is big enough, intelligent enough, and loving enough to speak to all people in their own language and in their own culture. I believe there is a measure of truth intertwined within all the religions of the world and that we are missing the entire message when we exclude one faith journey vs another because of our tribalistic propensity to hold our own ritualistic faith as the entire truth of GOD’s teaching. How much wisdom has been lost in such ignorance.

Jesus taught, ”Love one another”, No caveats, No claims of exclusivity of membership. “By this [love] will they know that you are disciples of mine”, LOVE is a common destination that leads to peace. In fact, it is the only destination that leads toward peace. Until we can embrace our diversity of culture, religion, and faith with the understanding that GOD speaks through many tongues, our destination will be one of division. Until we learn to focus our energies on a common destination of loving one another, our world will never find peace. I believe that:

GOD WILL NEVER DENY HEAVEN
TO ONE WHO LOVES.
 THIS IS OUR PROMISE, IT IS OUR HERITAGE,
 IT IS OUR TEACHING, AND IT IS OUR GIFT.

THE MANUAL IS MISSING

THE MANUAL IS MISSING

THE MANUAL IS MISSING

There was a day, many years ago, when my daughter first entered my sphere. She was 5 months old and came via delivery on an airplane from Korea. There were many who gathered with us at the gateway entrance at the airport. The traveling companion stewardess brought her out and gave her to me. They also gave us a bag full of essentials to take with for a 5 month old girl. She had diapers, an extra set of clothes, a small hairbrush and wipes. As she was passed around among the crowd, I went off to a corner and began looking at just what the bag contained. I looked through it again. I couldn’t find it. I looked again.


THE MANUAL WAS MISSING

When I bought my first car I looked in the glove compartment and there I found a manual on how to figure out how the mechanicals worked. How to turn the lights on, the windshield wipers, the interior lights and how to work the radio. As well as dimensions and what kind of fuel to use. And so much more. Certainly a child must come with a Manual. How to be a dad, how to raise a little girl, how to teach. I was a bit overwhelmed.

I didn’t come with a Manual either, at least not at the beginning.

How many of us find ourselves lost, not prepared for the things of life as things happen? Today more than ever. What is a pandemic? Why can’t I just go get a vaccine and call it a day. Why is there politic, why don’t churches all believe the same thing. In Sunday school as a fourth grader I asked my teacher, “Why didn’t GOD just make good people?” I learned that that question was not discussed. Yet I wanted to know why. I have always wanted to know why. Why are things the way they are with an all knowing, all loving GOD?

religion_10

When I was done with Sunday School I was given a concordance Bible. A Bible where what Jesus said was written in red. I sat down and read the Red Print. Then I read the Old and New Testament. I had found the Manual.

Certainly it was not that easy. When I was reading Proverbs, or Wisdom, or the Psalms,  a parable from Jesus, or an apostle’s comment I recognized similar events or challenges that I had seen in the neighborhood, or a story on TV, or behavior that I recognized in my peer group. I read a simple set of rules that were put down by GOD.

Ten Commandments

These are a good start. If you find life being challenging do not refuse the Bible because it is “religious”. Look at it as an owners manual. A touch of history where when certain people did this or that their actions caused reactions. There is a story in the books that are about your challenge, both causes and corrections. Too many have their Manual sitting on a shelf covered in dust when it can be the start of a knowledgeable life that can make more sense or make pre-planning a norm and not reaction.

Have a wonderful experience when you sit down with the Manual and the one who wrote it. dw

SATAN IS NOT A GOD

SATAN IS NOT A GOD

A lot of evil has been attributed to Satan, a fallen angel of Judaism. I have a somewhat different view.
I see SATAN as an instinct that needs to be confronted in ones life for one to move on into the promise of LOVE on Earth. If GOD is LOVE, then Satan is the opposite of LOVE, the yang to LOVE’S yin. I have never been able to ascribe any kind of humanity or divinity to SATAN. I don’t see SATAN as a controlling angel, I see SATAN as a controlling attitude.

We people adore developing acronyms. I have such an achronym for SATAN. Success AT ANother’s expense.
Oh how we humans are so adept at doing this. If LOVE is created out of a bond of equality, caring, sharing and mutuality of affection, then SATAN is the manifestation of trying to take out of a relationship or circumstance a disproportionate measure of energy than ‘one’ has invested in ‘it (the relationship or circumstance)’.
The SATAN attitude draws resources out of a relationship for personal gain, satisfaction or security but does not invest a similar contribution into the relationship.

The measure of a relationship may simply be that it is either a friendship where LOVE becomes manifested through its participants, or it falls into the realm of “what’s in it for me?” Only GOD seems to be capable of bringing this LOVE attitude to relationships.

Satan, on the other hand, is a poor administrator of relationships, whether they be among individuals, groups, states or nations. The challenge is turning away from the survivalist mentality and embracing the LOVE mentality, that is the whole challenge of the Christ. Often humans ascribe to GOD a belligerence born out of preference. Then they extract a license from that attitude. Religion is from man, GOD is LOVE. One needs only LOVE, one does not need religion, per se, to LOVE. What one can use are examples of what LOVE is when manifested as a human entity. For the Christian, JESUS becomes this example. For others the journey may be different. We are not the judges.

I believe the KINGDOM on EARTH will only be born out of this LOVE and we must be careful not to taint the religion to use it for personal control of people and personal power, and personal satisfaction. Even Jesus ascribed HIS own ‘power’ to one greater than HE, and often thanked that power of LOVE for its intercession in His own life. We will be wise to do the same and judge much less.

LOVE causes us to care and share and reach out and give a hand up. GUILT should never be our motivation, and personal reward makes the giving quite shallow indeed. LOVE is the destination, not Success AT ANothers expense. The choice will always be ours. Our affiliation to either attitude will always be our choice. I would offer up to you the example of Jesus.

GOD blesses. GOD bless you, this day. (originally written 2-22-2005)

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THE BLESSING OF TODAY

THE BLESSING OF TODAY

GOOD MORNING ALL

Welcome to a blessed Monday. Work, Income, Chores, friends. The sun always reminds us that today is a new day. The past is done. Today is not yesterday and HOPE is always the home of GOD. The concerns of the world today is in the heart of most. The SUN is our opportunity to anchor ourselves to OUR circle of living and our blessing of life. Enjoy today, whether a simple recline of thanks in a favorite chair, the kind hello from our work mates, a note from our friends. Too much news separates us from ourselves. I thank GOD for all the gifts that have brought me this far.

Cares and Prayers

ME, Mack and Jake

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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TEST NOT : SH*T HAPPENS

TEST NOT : SH*T HAPPENS

Do Not Test the Lord your GOD (Matthew 4:7)

So often I hear on the news that GOD will save me. Or I have faith that GOD will save me.
A young boy told the pastor that he hated GOD. The pastor asked the young boy “Why? What did GOD ever do to you?”
The boy said “I prayed to GOD to help my Grandma when she was sick and she died.”
The Pastor asked: “How did you want GOD to help?”
The young boy said: “I wanted him to make her feel better. She was in a lot of pain. Now she has died.”
The Pastor replied: “Your Grandma was very sick. She was in a lot of pain from her illness and would not survive. Is she in a lot of pain now?”
“No.” said the young boy.
“Did you pray that she would not be in any more pain?” The pastor asked..
“Yes, I did..” The boy responded.
“Then GOD answered your prayer and she is not in any more pain. She has gone home to be in Heaven with GOD and Grandpa.”

GOD knows ALL. GOD is ALL. When asked what to call GOD if asked, GOD said “I AM. Tell them I AM sent me.” (Exodus 3:14)

Years ago I directed a church service for a group of campers that camped every weekend in a small county park in western Minnesota. I did this service for a friend who asked me to do this as a mission to the community over the summer months. There was one camper with his family that was there most every weekend. He was the Fire Chief in a small rural town not far away. Mostly volunteers and himself. I was taken aback the first Sunday he came to “Church in the Park”. I had already done a few Sundays and had gotten to know many of the camper families. He was the second pew table back. He wore a simple yellow T-Shirt with a saying on it in black. SH*T HAPPENS. It caught me off guard for a few moments, but after a few moments of thought I could see from a Fire Chief, in a small rural town with an all volunteer Fire and emergency staff, just how appropriate a place like the “Church in the Park” would be for such an observation to be brought to the children of GOD and GOD’S focus on wisdom.

We often meet GOD more in times of challenge than comfort. With today’s news from a virus, in addition to social relevance, as well as human behavior we feel that we should be protected by GOD from everything because we “believe”. I look at the news and over and over and over GOD is feeding us his warnings through the voices of virus experts, neighbors, strangers, friends and more to warn us of what may lie ahead. Not because GOD is guessing, but because GOD knows.

We shout that we are free to do what we wish. GOD sends a separate message, Free Will is not insulation. And the man in the second pew has a message that is the truth of life. The fireworks that start a fire, or get in a child’s eye and potentially blinds them is not expected, but SH*T HAPPENS. It is usually a human choice that causes many events that could easily be avoided by heeding the warnings that the GOD they say they believe in has already warned them about and that history has many times proven it’s reality.

GOD’S promise of forgiveness does not change the outcomes of free will. Do not test the Lord your GOD. There is very little that GOD has not warned us about if we simply pay attention and attribute to GOD’S warnings to apply to all of us.

TEST NOT YOUR GOD, SH*T HAPPENS

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.