Morning meditation 3.30.15

Morning mediation 3.30.15

John 16:33 “I have told you these things, so that in me you may have peace. In this world you will have trouble. But take heart! I have overcome the world.”

We live in a world that’s beautiful, and before you try to sway me into thinking / believing otherwise, here’s my 2 litas. As we enter into Holy Week, we know where this road winds; we know the crowds who waved palm branches will be the ones clamoring to crucify Jesus.
And once we get to Golgotha, we face Jesus on the cross. We collectively put him there, and God leveled with humanity and “it is finished” was uttered and Jesus died for all of humanity, and 3 days later rose again.

It is finished, the God so many then (and even now) thought was out to get them, to destroy them, gave his only son as a gift to humanity. ALL of humanity, not a select few, not to those who followed him, not to those who sing the church songs / know the bible verses / tithe 10%… ALL. OF. HUMANITY.

We as followers of Christ should live that out, the actions of what Jesus said and did to those around us. We shouldn’t be living with our heads down, distancing ourselves, and taking on a false piety that we have the corner on God. We don’t and never will.
God reveals Godsself to all of mankind and womankind time and time again. I try to conduct my life in light of what Jesus said and did, I live in light of the resurrection.

And the world before then and now and beyond our finite mortal coils will get progressively better. It might not seem that way, but believe it or not, perfect shalom is on the horizon.
All of humanity will be reconnected and reunited with their creator, all will be set in a place of peace. This I believe with every cell in my body.
“It is finished” is also a posture of moving forward, to play an active role in this world around us. Don’t let your existence be one of coasting, we need you!

It is by playing a part we make the world a beautiful place. It is a good world, and will continue to be because “it is finished”. In Jesus’ death and resurrection, we too find ours as well, and by doing so we can live that out to everyone around us.
There will come a day where everyone will utter this universal truth, and what a glorious day that will be!

~ Nathanael~

Morning meditation 11.24.14

Morning meditation:
It’s not fool proof, nor is it straight out fact, but I’m willing to venture that how we answer this following question shapes our outlook on the world and how we interact with it. Ready? Okay!

“The world is a _____________ world.”

This past Saturday I celebrated Shabbat with some Progressive Jews in my hometown. I found them while doing some searches online, and what appealed to me was their values statement, especially the part where they said the following;
“Our actions within this community nourish one another’s spiritual growth so that we may fulfill the Jewish social justice imperative of “Tikkun Olam” (repair of the world).”

I, as an individual, believe the world is a beautiful place. It teems with life and Godness and goodness and richness it sometimes makes me cry happy tears.
I grew up hearing that the world was broken, ruined, fallen, et al. and in some ways that dictated my perspective and conduct within the world. I left it alone, I gave up, I slumped my shoulders in apathy. As I’ve gotten older God has performed a bit of heart-and-mind surgery upon me. I see the world in a much better light, I see myself contributing to it and helping to be a part of change, restoring and reconciliation, pushing forward as we a human race move forward in the direction of perfect shalom.

I am not naive, I am not socially blind to the times when mankind hurts itself or others. But these setbacks does not sway me from pressing forward in doing good, it does not sway my thoughts and prayers of “thank you God for making a beautiful, wonderfully made, good Earth.”

So, what say you? How do your thoughts and views shape your world and the world at large?

Be blessed and continue to bless others, do your part in “Tikkun Olam” where you can with the strengths and gifts God has given you.

~Nathanael~

Transformative beauty; one of the many reasons I love tattoos

Transformative beauty is one of the many things that captures my attention in this world, because it reminds me that no one and nothing is beyond the range of being redeemed. I see tranformative beauty in nature, but more often in humanity, and personally speaking I enjoy seeing the transformative beauty that happens when a tattooist makes something better out of someone’s ink than what they once had.

The owner of Dream City Tattoos, the place where I got my first tattoo, is very good at doing that. Gonzo takes this:

and transforms it into this:

and every time Gonzo posts a tattoo piece of this nature I thank God for his ministry of transformative beauty.

***

When I look at these tattoos I think in broader and bigger terms; that I in someway am capable of helping transform other people’s lives for the better. It empowers me to utilize and hone my own craft, it brings me back to the center of my being and what my calling and vocation is in life.
I am realistic that where I’m at now isn’t where I will be forever, I too am being transformed into something else. Transformation requires change, and it helps if one’s posture of this change occurring is one of acceptance. It isn’t always easy to adapt with changes, and that’s why I also think it is important to be in community, to be around people who you care about and (hopefully) they care about you too so that you can get adequate support where needed.

Be transformed and play your part in transformative beauty, it will make a world of difference!

~Nathanael~