The True King

The way George MacDonald describes Christ, and those who interact with Him, illuminates the Faith in ways I have yet to find in modern theology/spirituality. He presents Christ as the True King to humankind. This man truly was Spirit led and ahead of his time. 1800s Scotland. 

"The  men of Nazareth could have believed in Jesus as their saviour from the Romans; as their saviour from their sins they could not believe in him, for they loved their sins. The king of heaven came to offer them a share in his kingdom; but they were not poor in spirit, and the kingdom of heaven was not for them."

from Hope of the Gospel

If you get a chance, his books are available for purchase on Amazon and Ebay. I had to purchase my copies through ebay. However, if you would like to read him for free, his works are available on Google Play Books, iTunes books, and Kindle books. Very enlightening for the mind and soul. 

A Rant to Release the Chaos

Why do I see so many evangelical Christians complain about people disrespecting their beliefs, and then in the same breath, insult and belittle those with which they disagree?

Did we forget Christ’s teachings? Turn the other cheek. Take care of the orphan and widow. Christ told his own nation to respect and love the Romans who had conquered them.

Please, quit assuming all democrats or republicans are the same. We aren’t.

Please, quit assuming a dislike for Trump equates a love for Obama or Hilary. It doesn’t.

Does Trump and American Imperialism really hold more worth than Christ’s teachings?

By their fruits you shall know them.

This isn’t Christianity vs. secularism. Christ wasn’t about that. Christ teaches us the Love of God and changing hearts through the Holy Spirit.

 

This is no longer humorous. Christians making fun of those who don’t know Christ? All in the name of some prideful need to defend our nonexistent honor?

 

My mind settles with the expulsion of the swirling frustration. Those in the middle hold the weight of both sides in a near fruitless attempt to keep the world balanced.  

Why we have lost

The heroes were losing, so they decided to play the villains' games. 

Our heroes won--but lost their souls--encased within Ends that Justify Means.  

Now we are lead by tyrants. Children look up to men without chests. 

Virtue is lost

Greed is king

Our heroes are dead. Committed suicide to embrace evil within. To rise in a new suit of money and fame.  

Without a foundation, this house cannot stand.  

Insanity

The world is an insane plane of chaos, and I have difficulty navigating through the fog. 

To a fault, I argue on the side of reason with far too much emotion. Facts laid out, in my mind, should suffice. I forget personal stigmas, past experiences, and current belief systems post an issue when attempting any discourse. Public or private. 

I lose sight of the reason for discussion. Irrritated, control falters and I resort to insults in an attempt to shake sense into the other person. It fails. I fail. And we both leave with a great dislike for the other.  

 

New Scenes

I am currently writing some new scenes for a small collection of shorts about the infamous Alex Wonder. This is the most fun I have had writing in quite a while. And why is that, you might ask? Because I stopped revising while I write. 

Yes, that dreaded Muse of overthinking and doubt. Tapping my shoulder and whispering nonsense about perfecting each sentence and word before moving to the next. 

Does he not know what that does with flow? How it dries the creative juics and tempts me to procrastinate? 

Damn perfection during scene creation. I'll call for you when it is time to line edit.  

 

Caught in the Middle

I am an observer. Most times I would rather sit back, cold-brew coffee in hand, and watch the events unfold. Participation doesn't seem worth the effort most times. I know this isn't the healthiest approach. And I have enjoyed many events. But watching the world's play is just so damn interesting. 

At times though, I find myself yearning to enter that world of participation. Problem is, most times people don't like to invite the guy who silently sits and watches as everyone else converses. I mean, I try to converse, but when I feel awkward, oh boy do I talk about some weird shit. Then I notice that look in their eyes and desire to walk away. Sometimes I just walk away when I am done talking. It is usually better that way. 

I feel like I am missing something though. Some internal mechanism that ignites a willingness for people to notice you. To come and socialize with you. Seems like a lot of wasted energy to me. But it would be nice to learn it. It would also be great if I could sound like I am not insulting you when I say this. 

And yet, here I am, with this website, pushing myself to be noticed to some extent. Why? Mainly so I can get enough word of mouth for my novels and short stories. Typically, when someone attempts to self-publish and promote their own work, they have a personality to make it work. Honestly, if I could just write and enjoy the fruits of those labors without having to talk with anyone about the book. I mean, I will talk with you about what you liked and didn't like about it. Just don't ask me what the book is about if you haven't read it. I don't know how to vocalize the shapes and images in my head. 

you guys are weird. 

An Inkling

Let me first preface that this is a fresh/new idea that I haven't fleshed out yet. 

So, for over a decade (long time, right) I have always been curious/intrigued at the intentional ambiguity of specific topics in the New Testament.

In acts we get, "So turn to God! Give up your sins, and you will be forgiven."

What, exactly, does that look like? Turning to God is obviously a metaphor for a plethora of various methods, but none specified with the exception of having Faith in Christ. The sins to give up differs for each individual.

Then a chapter later we get, "Only Jesus has the power to save! His name is the only one in all the world that can save anyone."

Now, some might provide a knee jerk reaction and say it's obvious he means to save us from sin, or hell. However, nothing specific follows. Perhaps Peter means "evil" or perhaps it is a dig at the Jewish idea that the Messiah would physically save them from the Romans.

Acts 8, "Philip...explained the good news about Jesus." Now, here is a perfect place to insert theology, commandments, whatever. But it is left open. Why? I am still under the impression it is intentional and here is why. After Philip explains the Gospel to the Ethiopian eunuch, the man asks to be baptized. Prior to meeting Philip, the Ethiopian had been reading from the Prophet Isaiah. 

So what inkling did I garner from reading and praying? 

The gospel is based on spiritual experience. The only time reading from the bible or listening to someone talk about it will "click" is if you are already on that path of searching for something Greater than yourself. Look at Saul who became Paul. He knew a shit ton of scripture, but it wasn't until Christ blinded him with Light that Saul changed. 

Spiritual Experience. Metaphysical moments with Christ. That is it. We don't need to berate anyone with scripture. We can refrain from pushing a political agenda. Because really, if you're a Christian, our goal should be helping people experience Christ. And reflecting on the gospels, I don't once recall Christ pushing any type of agenda like the current ones. 

The Holy Spirit convicts and guides the heart. 

  

A Humbling Experience

A few moths ago I, along with about two hundred or so others from work, put in for a promotion. I had been in my current position going on two years, so I figured it was finally time to move  up. Besides, My wife had achieved the goal within the same timeframe (sooner if you want to break down the details), so I knew it was possible.

The job announcement hit our emails back in October and boasted a whopping fifteen to twenty available positions. Rumor spread that the number could increase to thirty, maybe even forty. Nevertheless, I couldn't afford a sloppy resume or rushed application, so I took my time. Had my wife revise and edit. Once she gave me the go ahead, and after I obsessively read over it three to four more times, I clicked submit and waited.

Due to the high number of applications my employer receives, the computer system implements an algorithm to immediately deny applications lacking specific, albeit unspoken, criteria. If an applicant left out specific words from their job description or didn't answer key questions with the most appropriate response (trust me, one question overall flushes more applicants out of the system than any other one), then their application is rejected with an email response of "not referred". I apologize for the ambiguity, but I work for a government institution and don't think it wise to go into specific details about our applications.

A little over a month after the job post had ended, half the applicants received their email of denial. My confidence teetered the line between focused humility and unwavering confidence. A couple of weeks later unchecked confidence took over when I received an interview confirmation.

My thinking had now morphed into a cocky expectation of promotion, with only the formality of an interview in the way. I prepared little because, in my thinking, my performance thus far had been stellar, I go beyond what is expected of me, and I already possessed a good understanding of how the new position works. Besides, coworkers already in that position had told me I should get the job.

You can see where this is going.

The Thursday before Christmas I received an email of the chosen candidates, and my name was not on the list. Of course, my first response was a common one. Higher ups had their darlings in mind. Never had a shot. Pride soiled the roots of my heart and gave birth to rotten, misguided emotions.

"How," I demanded, "could they choose some of these techs over me?"

I fumed. I screamed. I sunk into my own misery.

Thank God for the Light He shines on those who ask.

I had just started reading Hope Against Darkness by Richard Rohr and John Feister. The words plunged a spiritual knife into my heart. According to the Holy Spirit, I had been an arrogant jackass.

This moment of understanding did not complete the humbling experience. That required further action on my part. I needed to know why, from the interviewers' end, I was not selected.

Shit, that was rough as hell.

Seriously, if you ever find yourself struggling with arrogance and pride and need a good check, sit down with some people who rejected you in some way or another and ask for their honest feedback.

The meeting was an enlightening kick in the ass. I realized that I assume way too much, put too much faith in facts, and foolishly place unrealistic expectations on others. Also apparent, some instances require I break from my comfort zone. I cannot expect people to cater to my weirdness. God, I hate using the word to twice in a sentence.

Time to go.

 

 

 

 

 

 

My Biggest Fear

We each have one. Maybe even multiple fears. Mine is leaving without completing these stories playing out in my head. The visuals are so real. The characters like friends. The story forms into a moment of past and present.  

But what if I never complete them? What if I continue to waste time on entertaining distractions? 

Frustration within the perpetual cycle of unproductive time. Frightened by the thought I might perish and not hear our Lord speak, “well done, my good and faithful servant,” but instead hear, “piss off you time waster.”

 

 

 

Separate Sides of the Creative Process

Style and Story. The difficulty lies in attempting both simultaneously. A path best left uncharted. If you want to keep sane and healthy. 

I find myself divided between those two realms. 

Style and Story. 

Plot...

Flavor...

Character...

Dialogue...

A matter of patience--or none. 

Grab the necessary pieces and players first--then suffer in the style of perfecting their placement together. 

 

Sound the Alarms

The liberal and conservative media eagerly accept and play their role as a perpetual outrage machine. 

Truth is diluted and cut to incite the masses against each other. 

Damn the liberals! 

Fuck the conservatives!

Men like Hannity and Jones; the peeps at WaPo and CNN want your money and eyes.  

Why do we believe their lies? Shit layered with a candy coating is still shit. 

By their fruits you will know

So turn off the box

Darken the screen

Get on your knees and beg, 

"God, wake me up!" 

 

 

Current Difficulty

It is difficult to ignore the current political landscape created by those who should have known better. I believe these men and women did know better, but instead of settling for a Democrat or voting third party, they sacrificed their morals and convictions to put in this used car salesman. 

Right wing media has lowered itself to ignoring any evidence of possible collusion with Russia that they insist everyone, even fellow Republicans in charge of the damn investigation, are simply out to get the man in orange. 

The name of Christ is being tossed around and mixed with the crude oil of lies, rape, molestation, greed, and theft. If it is easy to sell one's soul, how much easier is it to sell out one's country? 

The ridiculousness has become so great, that even though a voter does believe Moore fooled around with underage girls, he has to be a better candidate than any democrat. That's fucked up. If I had the choice of voting between a democrat who sexually harassed or molested someone and a Republican who, by all accounts, appears to be a man or woman of good standing, I'm damn well going to vote in the Republican. 

Enough of a rant. I had to get it out and wasn't about to post it as a short blurb on Facebook. I mean, yeah, I'll share a link to my blog, but people don't seem to place much or any effort to make a comment on a blog. If it isn't as simple as a quick/snarky response on Facebook, it must not be important. 

Ha!

I also had to get this out because in Oklahoma, I am hard pressed to find another person with which I can discuss such matters. 

We walk among immortals, and yet, we find it difficult to discuss matters of importance. 

Social Expectation and Self Identity

November 19th marked two weeks since deleting Facebook and Twitter from my phone. As we near week four I figured I would crank out an update.

Honestly, I haven't felt this light and clear in Lord knows how long. Reading more. Writing daily. Contemplating and crafting constantly. Working on a way to remove adverbs from the English language.

I learned something about myself during this time. For some reason (probably acceptance or to feel normal) I made myself participate in what a majority of people see as normal social interaction. Talk about your day, post pictures, share stories of your crazy kids--or job--or neighbor--or who the hell ever. The urge to share this intimate aspect of myself does not exist. At least not with many people. And with those it does exist, it is not often. Ask my wife.

It does not occur to me that someone might care to see pictures of my family and our activities. I've only posted pictures/stories in the past because I've observed other people do it. I would think, "Okay, I guess that is how you are supposed to do it."

Society demands it. That is the only reason I can think of as to why I do a fourth of what I do. Keep my blog as up to date as possible. Pitch the novel when I remember. Tweet or Facebook a reminder that I am here and doing stuff. Honestly, I'd rather just be doing the stuff. If you want to read my work or participate in a conversation, give me a ring. If I do not ask you directly, to read it, I apologize because it is nothing personal. 

Now I am going to work on some more Spiral Effect...

toodles!