Sunday, July 26, 2015


(Hebrews 12:24) and to Jesus the mediator of a new covenant, and to the blood of sprinkling that speaketh better than [that of] Abel.  (12:25) See that ye refuse not him that speaketh. For if they escaped not when they refused him that warned [them] on earth, much more [shall not] we [escape] who turn away from him that [warneth] from heaven:  (12:26) whose voice then shook the earth: but now he hath promised, saying, Yet once more will I make to tremble not the earth only, but also the heaven.  (12:27) And this [word], Yet once more, signifieth the removing of those things that are shaken, as of things that have been made, that those things which are not shaken may remain.

I learned a new word this month. Well, it’s not actually a new word, it’s quite old in fact–it’s just new to me. Though the concept it represents is not new to me, I’ve always understood what I could not put a name to, other than ‘baseline truth’ which is clumsy at best and lame but was all I could come up with to explain what I knew to be the state of actual being and what is true about anything and everything.

If I had been a better student of Greek history I might have been introduced to the Greek word for this most difficult to describe condition of truth as - ousia - pronounced oh see ah. To say that it simply means ‘to be’ is a complete over simplification because this does not dig into the complex philosophy that proclaims that all things have a reality, a state of being that is authentic, real and definite. Skewed perspectives and views, fleeting cultural trends might perceive something as something else, but cannot change the fundamental essence, substance or ousia of any thing.

In simple vernacular ousia represents that something is what it is regardless what you or I think or wish it to be. Some things are so misunderstood only God can know what is true because humans rarely see the ousia of things as they actually are anyway. We interpret what we see to suit our belief systems, experiences, determinations to hold on to biases, prejudices and influences from other sources. Sometimes those influences are decidedly wrong but, human nature being what it is, there is such strong resistance to admitting to being wrong so there’s little desire to see with corrected vision. And thus misconceptions go unchallenged for periods of time.

I’ve been forced to meet ousia head on occasionally. A time many years ago, possibly right after electricity was invented, comes to mind. I was a project designer for a how-to book producer. I designed all manner of things with all manner of media, from fabric to wood. As an employee I was paid whether my ideas were great or not so great. Given the weekly volume of new ideas that was my job to produce, not surprisingly, not all projects were outstanding but the occasional really good ones generally compensated for the stinkers, which, unfortunately, enabled me into a misconception or false sense of fail safe.

When I moved on to other challenges I unknowingly took this fallacious confidence (or arrogance) with me. Ten years later I had the opportunity to discover that we don’t get to continue on in what isn’t real if we want to grow but we have to be willing to recognize this to see with new eyes what is and what isn’t valid.

Fast-forwarding a decade through a litany of other kinds of creative work, one day I was told of an opportunity to submit a project for a publisher. It was an insider path provided by a friend who knew someone who knew someone. I quickly dived in and threw a quick project together, typed up a brief synopsis of the instructions (which was the only thing required of me in my previous work) and mailed it off, completely confident that it was a done deal. After all, I was following my established habit, what I believed to be true, from my old job and how it was before which, of course, turned out to be a serious blind spot that prevented me from seeing the ousia.

Even as I was shipping the project off, I knew that it wasn’t my best possible work but then, as in the old days, it was done quickly to meet the deadline and it was no worse than the last minute got-to-beat-the-deadline-fill-in projects that I had so often gotten away with before.

Had I stopped to think it through and looked at the situation with fresh perspective, I might have realized the person who would open the package would not know me nor my previous work. Would not see the ‘potential’ in my idea. Would not recognize or be impressed that I had been the Creative Director of a turn key book producer and that I therefore didn’t have to do the actual writing of the instructions because there was an editor to do that for me.

Nope. That simply did not occur to me.

When the standard form rejection slip came, I was pierced through. I have to admit, I took it hard. It was a wake up call that I didn’t really understand for a few days and then, worse than opening the thanks-but-no-thanks letter, when it hit me what had just happened, I was utterly humiliated by my own hubris. The only thing that consoled me was knowing that I’d never meet the person who received that subpar project.

It was sometime later, when the shame pain finally melted into long-term mild regret, that I was able to harvest the lesson–the ousia.

They say, time heals all wounds and wounds all heels. This is possible only because time moves on and human memory fades along with temporary emotion. What remains then is what is true, regardless how unlikeable it is. But it is what it is and only that which is baseline true about anything–the unshakable ousia–survives.

If we really wanted to live free from delusion we would start to question everything we are told, whether in political matters or religious and look only for what remains when everything else fails us.

For Him,


“…believers must really take stock of their Christianity. Is it just a tradition, an assumption, an external system, the thing which is common acceptance – more or less? Or is it really ‘by revelation of Jesus Christ’ in the heart? A real walk with God, and a growing knowledge of Christ, a life in the Spirit? God has said it: the things which can be shaken will be. What have we got that, being unshakable, will remain?”  ~Austin T-Sparks

Saturday, July 11, 2015

In Which I End This

The signs are real and there for anyone with discerning eyes to see. 

Are you frustrated yet? Even panicked perhaps?

Have you reached the place where you desperately want to do something - perform triage - anything - to change or stop the bleeding? And to be sure we are bleeding out. Most sane, intelligent people, not even necessarily spiritually inclined, see that this country, indeed the whole world, is in a death spiral. It’s not just one thing or even five things that have come together from liberal policies landing on and riding us to destruction. It’s multi-layered and diabolically evil. If you want to see just how evil, if you think all you have to do is boycott some left leaning companies, as some have suggested, to make a point or difference take a look at the list of 379. How many of these companies can you let go of and still hope to live your life the same without dramatic sacrifices?

Understand this: Taking a stand requires sacrifice unlike anything modern Christians have ever known. Wrapping our brains around this provides new perspective on the concept of refusing the mark and thus being unable to buy or sell. 

Let that soak in for a minute. 

If you don’t think you will have to choose because you will be scooped out it’s likely that you will not know what to choose or when. Or not. Let that soak in as well.

Can you honestly say you are prepared to stand and give up not just your luxuries but your common daily needs? Really?

Frankly, I don’t know what else to say. I’ve warned, I’ve written, I’ve tried to be more reader friendly, focusing more on the lighter side. But I don’t feel light and pretending that I do is disingenuous. Disingenuous was never my style. That said, if I’m going to be honest and not a hypocrite, I need to decide how long I can continue to compromise. 

This is not a call to rally. This is a declaration that the die is cast, the point of no return has been passed. It doesn’t matter how many there are in the silent majority, we are  only individuals now with One on one choices to make, but not to change the outcome but rather to insure our own eternity.

I’ve said before, the day does finally come. Today is the day I have run out of words so I’ll end this with the timeless wisdom from A.W. Tozer (1897- 1963)
Daring to Stand for Truth

The nearer we draw to the heart of God the less taste we will have for controversy. The peace we know in God's bosom is so sweet that it is but natural that we want to keep it unbroken to enjoy as fully and as long as possible. The Spirit-filled Christian is never a good fighter. He is at too many disadvantages. The enemy is always better at invective than he will allow himself to be. The devil has all the picturesque epithets, and his followers have no conscience about using them. The Christian is always more at home, blessing than he is opposing. He is, moreover, much thinner-skinned than his adversaries. He shrinks from an angry countenance and draws back from bitter words. They are symbols of a world he has long ago forsaken for the quiet of the kingdom of God where love and good will prevail. 

All this is in his favor, for it marks him out as a man in whom there is no hate and who earnestly desires to live at peace with all men. In spite of his sincere longing for peace, however, there will be times when he dare not allow himself to enjoy it. There are times when it is a sin to be at peace. There are circumstances when there is nothing to do but to stand up and vigorously oppose. To wink at iniquity for the sake of peace is not a proof of superior spirituality; it is rather a sign of a reprehensible timidity which dare not oppose sin for fear of the consequences. For it will cost us heavily to stand for the right when the wrong is in the majority, which is 100 percent of the time. 

We have developed in recent times a peace-loving, soft-spoken, tame and harmless brand of Christian of whom the world has no fear and for whom it has little respect. We are careful, for instance, never to speak in public against any of the false cults lest we be thought intolerant. We fear to talk against the destructive sins of modern civilization for fear someone will brand us as bigoted and narrow. 

Little by little we have been forced off the hard earth into a religious cloud-land where we are permitted to wing our harmless way around, like swallows at sundown, saying nothing that might stir the ire of the sons of this world. That Neo-Christianity, which seems for the time to be the most popular (and is certainly the most aggressive), is very careful not to oppose sin. It wins its crowds by amusing them and its converts by hiding from them the full implications of the Christian message. It carries on its projects after the ballyhoo methods of American business. 

Well might we paraphrase Wordsworth and cry, "Elijah, thou shouldst be living at this hour; America has need of thee." We stand in desperate need of a few men like Elijah who will dare to face up to the brazen sinners who dictate our every way of life. Sin in the full proportions of a revolution or a plague has all but destroyed our civilization while church people have played like children in the marketplace. What has happened to the spirit of the American Christian? Has our gold become dim? Have we lost the spirit of discernment till we can no longer recognize our captors? 

How much longer will we hide in caves while Ahab and Jezebel continue to pollute the temple and ravage the land? Surely we should give this some serious thought and prayer before it is too late--if indeed it is not too late already.

For Him,