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Posts Tagged ‘Scripture’

Freely you have received; freely give.

–Matthew 10:8

Today’s affirmation comes from the seventh rune of the Elder FutharkGebo. Its traditional meaning comes from the Rune Poems, the oldest of which translates as follows:

Generosity brings credit and honour,
Which support one’s dignity;
It furnishes help and subsistence to all broken men
Who are devoid of aught else.

–The Anglo-Saxon rune poem, Verse VII, as translated by B. Dickins in Runic and Heroic Poems of the Old Teutonic Peoples

The profound is often cloaked in simplicity, and so it is with one aspect of Gebo: spiritual generosity. Gebo’s poem calls us to share the gifts we’ve been given. The first step is recognizing and claiming our unique talents and abilities; the second is sharing them in ways that support everyone’s highest good (including our own).

While it’s true that everyone you meet may not want your gifts, a kind smile or a compassionate word, you are not responsible for anyone’s choices but your own. You have come here to contribute in a special way, and allowing anyone to dowse your light with negativity prevents you from experiencing the peace, joy, and freedom you deserve. Consider as well that it does not support your highest good to continually give to anyone who does not value your time and energy. Share your light because it feels good to do so, and learn to walk away from those who can’t or won’t see it.

By courageously using your uniqueness to make the world better, regardless of doubt or rejection, you help reassure others it’s alright to do the same.

Gebo affirmations:

For the highest good of all, I claim my uniqueness and share my gifts with everyone I meet.

Awareness of my higher purpose and the courage to act on it expands every day.

A quote that relates, from a wonderful man who let his light shine in the face of staunch opposition:

For to be free is not merely to cast off one’s chains, but to live in a way that respects and enhances the freedom of others.

–Nelson Mandela

About this affirmation: if the words presented above don’t ring true for you, change them! The words don’t do the work on their own…it’s words + repetition + personal intent and emotional connection that make affirmations such powerful catalysts for positive change. Feel free to create ones that feel good and reflect who you are.

Click here to see other affirmations in this series.

Additional rune source material: Oswald the Runemaker

Affirmations inspired by Orin and Sanaya Roman

I’ve been a runology student for 20 years. See the About page or click here to learn more about my work with the runes.

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I just read a fascinating story in the New York Times discussing the possibility that Jesus was married based on the probable authenticity of a recently uncovered papyrus.

If this is true, what does it mean? Why is the possibility that Jesus wasn’t celibate so threatening to some of the article’s detractors? (Some immediately dismiss it; others assert that “wife” simply means “the Church?”.)

Edit: moments after posting this, the story mysteriously disappeared from the NYT blog. I’ve changed the first link above to point to a similar story at NPR.

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…for hastening the demise of mainstream evangelical Christianity.

As more Christians realize the extent of your arrogance, insensitivity, righteousness, and general asshattery, many will undoubtedly hasten to distance themselves from you and your rhetoric. If I were a Christian, I’d certainly be embarrassed to be associated with you.

[The earthquake in Haiti] may be a blessing in disguise.

Would you say the same if someone you love was there at the time of the quake, still missing and likely buried under rubble?

[The Haitians] made a pact with the devil, [and] have been cursed ever since.

You’re a jackass, Pat Robertson. You’re insulated by wealth and privilege and are completely out of touch with reality as a result.

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The wise have long attested to the power of laughter to strengthen the spirit and dissolve negativity.

Have a look at these, then have a good laugh.

And the Christ-Cons wonder why:

The Decline and Fall of Christian America

 

Video source: YouTube via Blueollie

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Iowa is now the third state in the U.S. to affirm the basic human dignity of committed lesbian and gay couples by recognizing their right to marry. Iowa Supreme Court Justice Mark Cady deserves commendation at the highest level for recognizing and acting upon the need to strengthen the separation between church and state.

The beauty and sanctity of religion is diminished when it’s used to hurt people. Until they “get” this, evangelical Christians will continue to witness an exodus from their ranks and the crumbling of their antiquated institution.

How would Jesus feel about these signs? Would he agree they further his messages of love, charity, and forgiveness? I doubt it, somehow.

Source: The Des Moines Register

Anti-gay rights protestersAnti-gay protest sign

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These thoughts are not revolutionary; many who’ve gone before have spoken or written these words. In my case however, knowing these truths and experiencing them have been two entirely different things until very recently. The true meaning of joy is becoming less a mystery to me with each passing day.

If this sounds profound, I believe it is. If this sounds haughty, know that I have no delusions of having “arrived” at a place of spiritual superiority – only an increasingly clearer understanding of the true nature of joy. It’s this I wish to share in a series of posts, beginning with this one.

What follows is a question I asked my spirit guide as well as the answer she provided.

What is the true nature of joy?

True joy is impassable, and unites all the bodies.

Impassable.

I’ve pondered her answer for several days. What does she mean by impassable?

I believe she means that joy is an attitude – a stance. True joy is a state of being unaffected by situation and circumstance. Unaffected! I used to wonder if remaining truly unaffected by the outside world was possible. Though I don’t yet have an answer to this, I no longer feel I need one. I do know that renewing my commitment to have joy at the start of every day has helped me live in that place recently. Because I’m committed to living with joy, I’ll renew that decision and bolster that stance as often as I need to – moment to moment, hour to hour, or day to day.

What does she mean by, “unites all the bodies?”

By “all the bodies” I believe she means the totality of self – all the parts that make up our being.

  • Joy in the mental body: imagining what living with joy is like – not for others, but for me. 
  • Joy in the physical body: claiming the health and vibrance that is my birthright and yours, and making choices that support that health. Christianity got a few things right – “Your body is a temple” is one of them (1 Cor. 6:19-20). 🙂
  • Joy in the spiritual body: believing in myself, trusting in the Universe, and having faith in the rest of humanity. 
  • Joy in the emotional body: Feeling joy! Looking at myself, others, and the events in my life through a filter of joy. 

If you know whom I should credit for the amazing image in this post, please contact me.

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I could tell early on that Stuart wasn’t the average Christian blogger. Absent from his site are the worn and tired “fire and brimstone” rants frequently found on other religious blogs. Instead you’ll find the ramblings of an earnest man who follows his heart and genuinely cares about people – one who’s unhappy about how little of the Christ remains in Christianity today.

Awhile back I asked Stuart if he’d be willing to share his knowledge about Jesus the Man. He agreed, and offered as well to contrast how Christ treated people with how many of today’s Christians behave. Here’s what he wrote:

I was asked by Jerome to write a guest blog on who Jesus is to me. I’m a follower of Christ and I work in full time in ministry as a missionary that reaches out to youth in the Pacific Northwest. I’m not an expert and I only speak from my own experiences and my heart.

So who is Jesus?

I’ll start this whole discussion with an apology and an explanation. I believe that most of your preconceived notions about Christ are probably untrue. That’s not to say that Christianity hasn’t done its job to hurt you and leave a bad taste in your mouth. I’m not denying any bad experiences you may have had at the hands of churches or Christians. I want to make a distinction between who Jesus Christ is and what the church has become. I’m not saying that all Christians or churches are bad or damaging. I’m just saying that many of them are.

So, I am sorry. It should not be this way. I am sorry for those who have acted judgmental and pious. I’m sorry for their lack of compassion and kindness. I’m sorry for their arrogance and bigotry. I’m sorry that they were mean or hateful. I’m sorry because that is not who Jesus was or taught or advocated. It was not even close. Many of you have been wronged and that was never how it was meant to be.

Jesus was simply love. He was sacrifice, compassion, grace and forgiveness. He reached out to the broken and meek. He loved those that had been rejected by the world.

Jesus to me is my life. The first twenty-two years of my existence, I lived for myself.  I was raised in a Christian home; raised with plenty of religion. None of that meant much to me. I knew the stories about who Jesus was and I liked them, but there was this disconnect between the people I saw at church and the Jesus I read about in the Bible. He lived a life of passion and purpose. He was the son of God and followed the Lord with all his being. He came to save the lost, to free the enslaved, and to heal the broken. He loved us so much that he was willing to lay down his life – that life made sense to me; it excited me. However, that wasn’t the life I saw modeled by those at church. I lived a good life. Followed rules, went to church on Sundays and I was incredibly bored.

Then one day, I decided that if Christ was real, if he did indeed call me to follow Him, I had to take a step. So I prayed, telling Jesus, I’d do whatever he wanted. From that moment, my life has never been the same. It has led me on a journey to invest in people, to serve people, to love people. I have learned that my life isn’t my own. Through Christ,  I have found purpose and meaning. I have found joy and contentment. It has changed who I am as a husband, a father, friend, and a son. He has healed wounds that life has dealt me. I have known love I never thought possible. Life has become more of an adventure than merely an existence. Though, it has not always been easy, I wouldn’t change a thing.

I challenge you to read one of the gospels (Matthew, Mark, Luke or John in the Bible). Look at who Jesus was. Look at how he treated people. How he loved. Look at the story of God’s compassion for all people (not just a select few).

I’m not here trying to convert anyone (though if anyone of you are interested, I’d love to talk more with you about it). That is not my intent. I would love for you to see the difference between who Christ is and how many Christians act today. Jesus was and  is a revolutionary of love seeking to save the lost, the broken, the hurting, and abandoned. For me to follow His life is to take this message of healing and redemption to the world around me.

Thank you again Stuart. I appreciate the time you’ve taken to share.

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