Participatory v. Performative Worship

Yesterday in church, we had two harmonica players

a cajon player and a potential fourth vocalist

Join us up on the stage,

simply because they took the initiative to step up.

At Beer & Hymns we have a room packed full of people

overpowering even our instruments,

except for maybe the pianist and the cajon player.

They shake shakers and play tambourines,

and its all so wonderful.

Of course, there are still a chords and keys,

time signatures and words,

but the semblance of structure

simply gives direction to the holy chaos,

it is a funnel, not a wall.

That is the challenge: to organize programs in such a way

that they invite and welcome everyone in,

so that all can join in the fun,

creating wonderful music together

before God and one another.

Hallelujah, amen!

 

 

 

 

Gone Rogue

I’ve seen it happen over and over again. A person becomes disenchanted with Christianity while still holding on with Christ. Not uncommon. Actually understandable. The breakdown occurs when we separate from the church body and then have to create our own way of maintaining our spirituality apart from it. Many times this leads to new pseudo-churches, even new denominations. It leads to division and this is unfortunate.

We must hold together to remain stronger. We must work out our differences. We cannot do this thing alone. Yes, by no means approach the Word blindly. Yes, admit and explore where you come into conflict with the norm. These are healthy and good things to do. But stay connected. A person can wander into the desert and live, even gain a following, but can they thrive? Do they have the resources to empower others to do so as well?

Good questions to ponder. We must always strive for connection, seeking paths that connect us to each other and to God. When we are planted, we grow. Even if the community is alternative, that is fine and good. Just find community and thrive.

Testify!

She stood up in front of the congregation and said,

“I shouldn’t even be here today

I’ve had seizures that limit my ability to walk

but here I am standing in front of you.

It’s all thanks to God.”

Then she sang “Jesus Take the Wheel.”

Next it was a lady in a wheelchair,

who testified to the necessity of Jesus,

“turn to him before it’s too late.”

Pretty soon it was everyone,

black and white, male and female, young and old

All preaching their own sermonette

Because the Spirit was flowing

and the gateway to the pulpit was open

My friends, do not quench the Spirit

Allow Him to flow freely through you,

to share both your gifts and your story,

so all might be empowered to do the same.

The altar call is sounded,

who will stand?

Chivalrous

Guys, we have to take a long, hard look at chivalry. When it’s true and good, it’s great. But a lot of time it’s demeaning. Unfortunately, Christianity has taken on both the good, the bad, and the ugly now and again.

We cannot feed the homeless while secretly believing they are all economic sponges and violent, drug addicts.

We cannot do missionary work in other countries while building walls between us because we believe they will rape or kill us and steal our jobs.

We cannot open doors for women and buy dinner while seeing them only as fuck-buddies, unable to do the same jobs as good as or better than us.

These things are not compatible. We may say we love everyone, but this love is often cheap. It’s more a love of love rather than a love of others. We must respect everyone. That is how we love. That is how we help. That is how we grow.

When we look at each others as equals, we see that there is in fact a lot of need out there, but we are not only empowered to meet that need but also empowered to empower as well.

 

Release Your Inner Geek

We all have stuff we’re passionate about

Could be anything from photography to rock climbing

to hand crafts to My Little Pony

Dude, get down with your groovy self

Connect with those who share in your passion

join the fellowship of the saints

You’re not alone, you are love

have fun stay safe

unlock the inner geek =)

All Saints’ Day

The saints

the miracles

the legends

the sufferings

the tortures

the blood

and the glory.

Contemplating the servants of the Divine

the rich history

gives you a greater appreciation,

a holy community

to draw from when you feel alone

and powerless

and ineffectual.

Verily you carry the seed of these heroes past!

Live in light of that ineffable truth.