Better Left Alone?

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There are some things you can’t unsee.

There are those times when you feel this thing rise up in you. It’s distinct from a sort of bitter-anger that causes you to fall into a pit of depression mixed with deep resentment. It’s this kind of anger that moves on you to fight—to fight on somebody else’s behalf.

Even if they don’t think that they deserve it.

I have watched religion beat-up on the Bride of Christ like the proverbial abusive husband. Sometimes it’s physical abuse. Sometimes it’s verbal abuse. Sometimes it goes further.

It gets to the point where I go into a church worship service and hear the Beloved speaking absolute crap over herself like she’s some sort of horrible monster.

“God help me; I’m such a horrible sinner.”

The mantra.

What good, loving husband wants to hear his wife speaking that over herself? What good, loving husband wants to hear his wife call herself a worthless piece of _______? The Jesus that religion preaches is a far cry from the Jesus I know. The Jesus I know totally called me on my self-hatred and told me it was a load of bunk—and that I was WAY too hard on myself.

I’ve seen the scars and the bruises on the arms and the faces of women who have been trafficked. It isn’t too far off from the marks left on the hearts of the people who hear a message of “love Me or be tortured eternally by my sadist of a Father.” That’s the ugly face of religion, folks.

It isn’t the gospel.

Worship is not singing to the Lord about how bad and worthless of a person you are. That’s not worship; that’s spitting on the face of the Lord and denying the gospel. That’s taking the Lord’s name in vain—claiming to believe Him while spouting blatant unbelief in His ability to have accomplished a ________ thing on the cross. Pun-intended.

Worship more has to do with being overwhelmed with the goodness of God. Letting Him wash your feet and speak words of loving-kindness over you. Worship is believing and trusting in a Lover who treasures you beyond anything else in all creation. It’s about being thrown into a sheer ecstasy at the reality that God has forever joined you to Himself. Far from humiliating you, He has allowed Himself to be stripped bare in front of the whole of creation, declaring His love before the cosmos.

Selah on that, folks.

 

 

The Ecstatic Dance

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Who needs a blast of joy today?

I am telling you, ladies and gentlemen, there is more than enough to go around!

Do you want to know what dearly frightens all of the demons of hell? Ecstatic joy exuding and pouring out from the bliss of knowing that you are forever and always embraced in the arms of your Creator, never to be parted!!! WooHOO!

So, today on the jolly blog, I am going take us back to the basics. If your grid for God has been derived from a bunch of religious guilt-trips and hating-on by haters, I have got splendid news for you: you got messed up on the head! God is the happiest Person that ever there was! (No matter how many times we forget that!) God’s a spinning dance of joy and love and community, and you are a dearly loved creation. Brilliant idea!

So, there’s this guy named Jesus, and He is really awesome. And I believe in Him. I believe in a God who is Three-in-One jolly happy dance and loves everyone. One of God favorite past-times? Loving on everyone who has been completely screwed over by religion! I believe that God is most clearly personified in the Person of Jesus.

You want to know what the cross was? You really want to know what the cross was? Well, that’s what you call spreading your arms wide-open for a hug, folks! Come at me, atheists! God completely loves you. You are amazing! Every time I run into one of you, I am reminded of God’s goodness. You want to know why? You help God deconstruct religious oppression. God doesn’t like oppression, so that makes you one of God’s favorites!

I believe that God wants everyone blissed out on the goodness of Jesus. No one excluded. I don’t care what the heck you call yourself; I call you loved!

Song of the Lioness

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I hear the rumble;

I hear the roar.

It stirs something

in me,

draws me

to soar.

It’s the sound

of my King;

He calls me

“My Queen.”

He yearns to

hear

the bellows

of the deep.

Peer into

those fiery eyes—

in which

neither weakness

nor strength

are found despised.

Fierce protection,

perichoresis;

pardon me, now,

while I write

my thesis.

FREE!

My roar fills the air

as I leap  and I bound

and I dance for

my maned one—

called sometimes

“Lamb,”

called sometimes

“Slain one”!

Beautiful!

I see You

in rain, in sun.

I hear your

whisper;

I feel you

run.

We are not

so far off,

you and I,

for here

betwixt us

meets earth

and sky.

 

 

 

Jellybeans

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I have an extreme fondness of rainbows.

I see a rainbow, and I get extremely happy.

The thing about jellybeans is that each color has a different flavor. I think that is phenomenal. Pure genius. I like to imagine the ROYGBIV part of the light spectrum as having distinct tastes. Distinct, yet unified. Seven colors. All part of this pure white light refracted through some sort of prism.

The Bible talks about the Sevenfold Spirit of the Lord. It’s a topic I am still exploring. This sense of awe and wonder tends to strike whenever I begin to contemplate it. I read about this rainbow surrounding the Throne of the Lord. This is a fun Deity. A jolly Trinity.  A kaleidoscope of joy.

Multiply. Multiply. Multiply.

All this creativity! Ah! So awesome. So good.

 

Not So Jaded

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I am not looking for love.

That might sound a bit odd to some of you. How many different posts and articles out there are giving tips on “finding love”?

I stopped looking for love when I realized how absolutely silly that is. I don’t need to find love because I already have love. Or, more accurately, love already has me. It’s the very fabric that holds together my being. I cannot function without it. I would fall apart without it. It is the very substance that I breathe. The image in Whom I was made. It’s just . . . there.  Kinda like that dog in “Up” that just won’t go away. He keeps following Carl around no matter how many times he is rejected. That’s a tiny glimpse of what love looks like. Tiny glimpse, mind you. Tiny! Tiny! Tiny!

Now . . . I am looking for love.

????

Actually, I habitually enjoy looking around and appreciating what I have been blessed with. So, yeah, I look around to see what I already have. Sometimes, I look around for the air. Sometimes, I look at my toes and think, “Nice! I have toes.” I love to go on treasure hunts because I always expect to find a treasure. It’s just out there, waiting for me. Set up for me to find.

Now, as the argument goes, “You just don’t live in the ‘real’ world.” I am sure that anyone with that argument has sources and experiences ready to be quoted. They may do so to their hearts’ content, and when they are done feeling tired and weary and depressed and weighed down by the worries of the world, perhaps they will come and consider Someone different.

I did not mistype.

That word-choice was quite intentional. Capitalization and all. I said “Someone” instead of “something.” Truth, for me, is not merely a list of facts and figures subjectively manipulated to support whatever is morbidly trendy. Truth is a Person. “Truth is Life is Love is Jesus Christ in relationship in the Trinity.”

And if you can say that five times fast, I salute you!

I really, really like being alive. It’s awesome. The thing about seeing the Christ everywhere is that it’s like perpetually being surrounded by a hug. You can have a miserable day, but in the end, you are held in the arms of love! The misery fades, but the love lasts—because love is faithful, and misery is such a cheater!

I define “love” or rather “Love” by Jesus Christ (and—for that matter—the whole Trinity) because I can’t find a better definition out there. Everything else just seems selfish and sad in comparison.

I say that knowing that people have all sorts of ideas as to who Jesus Christ and the whole rest of the Trinity is/are. (LOL, language limitations!!!) I say that knowing it’s not always the best communicated, and people get confused about it all the time. It just can’t stop me from falling head-over-heels and stumbling around like a really, really happy drunk.

Feel free to message me if you would like to taste the Source of the Bliss.

Until Next Time,

The Joy Detective

Clary & Watts

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This poem was inspired by a video I recently watched featuring an interview with Johnny Lee Clary. He recalls some of his most hilarious and memorable interactions with one Reverend Wade Watts. The then KKK leader didn’t know how to handle this bold man— full of love and a great sense of humor! I write this in tribute to their story. 

I—

I can’t keep up

with this drama;

someone is dissing

my mama,

and what did you

just call

my llama?

I

—haha—

I take it

so seriously

every time

you get all up

in my face

—haha, oh, man!!!—

and hate on me

because of my race!

(Don’t hate me because I’m beautiful, boo!)

Yo!

This is high-comedy;

what do you

want to be?

I see you staring

in the mirror,

but you looking

at me!

And I ain’t

quite insulted

as you’d like

me to be,

but wait—

would you

really

like me to be?

I can put on

that front; yeah,

I can go on

the hunt, yeah!

But I ain’t diggin’

for dirt, man;

I’m looking for gold.

You see the pan?

Look,

I know you’ve been

cast down;

I see them chains

and them rats around,

but that don’t conceal

to me your crown;

I see it hiding

behind that frown.

Now,

don’t you go sayin’

“I’m too lost to be found”!

I love ya, bro.

See you ’round.

 

 

A Love Letter to the Spirit of Might

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Dear Holy Spirit,

Thank You that You are not dead. That would be very sad. Thank You that You have not stopped playing and dancing and acting and participating with all of humanity. I really like You. There have been many wonderful, wonderful things that You have worked in my life. For instance, I can breathe—which is very much to Your credit.

I want to apologize for the times that I have backed away from Your displays of power because I have seen and experienced power misused. Thank You that You are kind as well as mighty. I apologize for doubting Your goodness when I read things in scripture that I did not understand and heard other people get offended by who they thought You were. I also apologize for the times that I acted proud and tried to defend myself instead of allowing You to defend me.

Thank You that You are very sweet. You remind me of a kind older brother who will not stand for anyone dishonoring or beating up on his sister. You also remind me of a mother who is very nurturing and gives good hugs.

You are strong and tender all at once.

You are also very forgiving. I can feel Your love and compassion radiating out to the hardest of hearts. There is not a single one who You would see lost. You treasure all of your children. You are extremely patient with us. Thank You.

I want to cuddle with You and be Your Bestest Friend.

Love,

Your Dear One