22/30 – If I had one day of life left

If I had one day of life left

I would start the day by making myself breakfast; banana crepes and a medium rare steak with a side of fried mashed potatoes and caramelized onions.

I’d go for an hour long bike ride, listening to a mix of Matisyahu, Electric Light Orchestra, Led Zepplin and The Arcade Fire.

I’d go out for sushi lunch buffet at my favorite sushi place the town over from where I live, pick up my tab and the cute girl who eats sushi alone.

I’d hurry back home and grab my camera and take some cloud pictures in RAW.

I’d worry less and love more, to which I’d talk to my family and tell them I want all my earthly belongings sold and the profits made divided between the soup kitchen I help out with on Thursday mornings & my former fiancee’s sons for furthering their education when they get to that point in life.

I’d facebook status my love with a bye-for-now-but-not-forever and a 🙂 to all my facebook friends.

I’d tell my father I forgive him for all the rotten shit he did to me.

I’d call up my friend Mark and tell him to be a good husband and father to his future wife and kids, or else I’ll haunt him to his dying day.

I’d call up my former fiancee and tell her that our time as a WE were some of the best moments of my entire life, and if she would hear me out I would say she deserves a better man than the guy she married.

I’d go outside with a cold IPA and a grilled cheese sandwich (dill havarti on rye) and blow some bubbles.

I’d tell my family I love them one last time.

I’d curl up in an Adirondack chair in front of an outdoor fire with my teddy bear in my arms and watch the skies and watch the stars, I’d whisper goodbye world, hello God and that’s how I would carry out my last day on Earth if there was no tomorrow.

~Nathanael~

21/30 – Favours I’d ask of Satan

Favours I’d ask of Satan

There really aren’t any favors I’d ask of Satan since he really doesn’t possess any power, he exists and he does coerce people and tempt them to do bad things but it’s up to the individual to do the right or wrong thing due to freewill – hence excuses of “the devil made me do it” really are quite pathetic, the choice was always yours!

Asking Satan for favors isn’t going to get you far, as he has no powers, he has the capability to mess with you to have the appearance of possessing powers especially when times look bleak it might seem like God is absent and Satan has the upper hand but it really isn’t so.

I remember when 9/11 happened some people asked where was God on 9/11? He was there, but he didn’t interfere with our freewill, because it was the freewill of the terrorists who crashed the planes to carry out that heinous act against humanity. I think that’s why I think freewill sucks at times, while it does give us the freedom to do almost whatever we want…whatever we want, to which we are selfish and narrow-minded at times, we want what’s best for us and not for others, we do have moments where we think about others but it’s more of a rarity than not.

I do have faith in God, what he’s doing, and the good things people do in his name… but there are times where I just get frustrated with humanity and the way we fight against each other so much of the time. I did come across link the other day that brightened up my life a bit, 21 pictures that will restore your faith in humanity, and interestingly enough if I had been about 2 feet to the right I’d have been in the first picture! 🙂

So favours I’d ask of Satan, hmmm…walk off a short pier and don’t come back perhaps? 😉

~Nathanael~

 

Don’t let God be the bandaid where stitches and social justice is required!

James 2:6 If one of you says to him, “Go, I wish you well; keep warm and well fed,” but does nothing about his physical needs, what good is it?

I came across this photo on Matthew Paul Turner’s website earlier today;

It utterly rocks me to my core and pisses me off, because I have been there before. I have been in this woman’s shoes where the church I was a part of threw some Bible verses and something about God in the mix…and that’s it! No social justice where I needed it, no comfort and certainly no love. I am speaking to myself first and foremost in this, because there have been times where I have applied God as a band-aid where stitches and social justice were required, I have made God cheap and my excuse NOT to help someone in need.

So seeing the self-hypocrisy in me with this Facebook interaction between a woman who is in need and quite possibly the church she was going to (I wonder if she’s still attending, and part of me hopes she did the wise thing and leave – this church as well as her fiance). The woman does point out she “needs prayers” but she also says she needs “help” as well, her help is quite evident and yet this church just pours acid on this woman’s open wound which is already infected, then they wrap it up with a horrible maggot infested cherry on top; “Here’s a bright spot before you go to bed for the night: You didn’t miss Summer of Revival! Hope you can make it tomorrow night for prayer & worship.” Or as translated by me; you’re life is shitty but we’re not going to help you out, feel free to come to us because we certainly aren’t going to help you out, oh and come to our event at church tomorrow night.

In my mind and my heart I am slightly worried, what she described about her circumstances could result in a physical altercation between her fiance and her, what if “tomorrow night” she’s dead because of the guy?

What if there was no tomorrow for this woman because of her fiance? What if there was no tomorrow for her sons?

***

Life is tough already, life does not need to be made even more tough by followers of Christ who don’t heed the call of tangible social justice. As Brennan Manning so eloquently put it;
“The greatest single cause of atheism in the world today is Christians who acknowledge Jesus with their lips and walk out the door and deny Him by their lifestyle, that is what an unbelieving world simply finds unbelievable.”
How can we truly show the love of God when we deny Him and others in our lack of caring for each other? No wonder we’re looked at as being hypocrites when we truly don’t help out those in need, but rather we slap “God” on the situation and consider our work to be done.

If this woman was a member of my church and I knew what was going on I would help her and her boys escape the clutches of her fiance and the church, because no one should be put through such bullshit and unChristlike treatment.

I hope that in time I am financially capable to put people up when needed, because I know what it’s like not to receive such help; I know what it’s like to try to sleep in the backseat of my car in the winter time and it’s cold out as well as inside, I know what it’s like to go hungry. I’ve been the one rejected by church people who heard my plea for help and did jackshit. No one should be put through such hardships alone especially if the body of Christ knows what goes on and does nothing, and so it begins with me, the change I want to see begins with me.

~Nathanael~

20/30 – Elevator rappers anonymous

Elevator rappers anonymous

Hello, my name is Nathanael, and I’m an elevator rapper…

I’m no good at it, but a while ago when I was in school a bunch of guys occupied the elevator and were riding it up and down rapping with whomever went in. Thankfully it was after hours because I don’t think the higher ups and professors would be mighty keen about this Occupy Elevator & Rap group.

They rode up and down and eventually I had to get to the third floor, the Mac Lab, and the only way down was by elevator…so I sucked it up and joined this troubadour of rappers. They were doing their own thing with someone putting down some lame beatboxing in the back (here’s an example of good beatboxing). Then I was given the look of it’s your turn, you put something down to our beat…and so I said;

“I’m chillin’ like a villain injecting penicillin hanging out with Bob Dylan”

They smiled at my solo rap, which didn’t make any sense, but hey I’m no MCA and I am not quick-witted like that sometimes.

***

I’m not the biggest fan of rap, but when there’s a series of lines within a rap that flows and isn’t demoralizing to women or the nature where you should kill others lest you be killed or the pursuit of money is all there is or should be, I might enjoy it. I do tend to listen to early Beastie Boys and Run D.M.C., Tupac as well as Biggie, and occasionally Nelly…but that’s about the rap I can handle at this time, though I have heard some good things about LeCrae and I hope he takes the gospel message to where the rubber meets the road, may it be there where he shares the love of God with others. 🙂

~Nathanael~

19/30 – The last time I was in San Diego

The last time I was in San Diego

I have extended family in California and Arizona, and for a while in the late 80s I saw them on a semi-regular basis. Flying was [relatively] inexpensive and so the then family of 5 would fly from Chicago to San Diego and elsewhere in that area.

So one time my family went to visit my uncle, aunt, and cousin at their place in Escondido. It was a nice trip to say the least, had I known what I know now maybe not, but I was young and naive so I didn’t know what was going on. While we were out there we drove to San Diego to spend the day at the San Diego Zoo, which was a lot of fun, but it got better when I was asked;

Would you like to go on a camel ride?

Would I! Yes! Riding animals, if possible, is pretty much one of the most enjoyable zoo-related activities a kid can do. Adults might not like it, but they’re able to bike and drive cars, as a kid who cannot do either, what beats being a biped for a while? Riding animals, and so I went on my first (and up to this point only) camel ride at the San Diego Zoo.

It’s been a long while since I’ve spent time with the extended family, but I recall with fondness the time we all went to the San Diego Zoo and I got to ride a camel. I don’t know if I’d ride one again, but if the opportunity presents itself I just might. 🙂

~Nathanael~