I wonder (had I been born in a kibbutz in Israel)

Prior to my birth my parents considered moving to a kibbutz in Israel. I don’t know the ins and outs of it except to say that I believe it had to do with an odd and somewhat twisted eschatological (end times) view on how things were going to go down in the Middle East and then on to the world. So with that in mind I wonder how I would’ve been shaped by the events that are currently unfolding there, the issues that have been for the longest time been erupting over there, the tit-for-tat bombing and killing, essentially “eye for an eye, tooth for a tooth”…

I wonder…

I wonder if I was indeed born and raised in Israel how would I find my identity. Perhaps I would side up with Zionists claiming that the land was ALL theirs. Maybe I would be on the side of Palestinians whose land shrinks more and more, being pushed back further and further. Maybe I would take the stance some Evangelical American Christians have in thinking that if I take Israel’s side God will bless me…but it’s a lot of speculation as to how I would truly take a stand, but all I can is as that as a follower of Christ the side I do take in this issue is one of being Pro-Peace.

***

This idea of being pro-peace didn’t come to me on my own. I admit I am somewhat biased and not level when it comes to the issues of what’s going on in Israel and Palestine. Yet it is the prayer of my heart to be pro-peace, and it also stems from a statement St. Mother Teresa made;

I was once asked why I don’t participate in anti-war demonstrations. I said that I will never do that, but as soon as you have a pro-peace rally, I’ll be there.

I too want to live out this perspective, on a global-local level, to make peace with people who agree with me but also with those who disagree with me. I think it is more Christ-like to take this stance than to be swayed by ideologies and perspectives and twisting of Bible verses to suit my personal gain. Since this is an issue that concerns people it can be emotionally challenging to see anything BUT peace, to formulate and perpetuate the “us versus them” paradigm as a means to bolster a means to exclaim why “I’m Pro-Israel / Pro-Palestine” and yet when we have take that kind of side we choose to have no love in our hearts for “the other” whomever they might be.

Peace might not appear to be obtainable, but I believe in my heart that someday it will prevail across all lands…all people…and through all hearts. It takes time, a whole lot of time, but there’s no time like the present for it to start.

Pray for Palestine,
Pray for Israel,
Pray for Peace.

~Nathanael~

A coup against heaven; I will wait

I think Mother Teresa was a badass, and yes I know what she did and how she carried out her life has received some backlash as of late, but still she’s my kinda badass.

She is quoted as saying the following; “If I ever become a Saint—I will surely be one of “darkness.” I will continually be absent from Heaven—to lit the light of those in darkness on earth.” Lately I’ve been wondering about that, and lately I’ve been wondering that if on the other side of eternity there’s a split down the middle of people going to Heaven and people going to Hell, if I’m in “the right line” as it were aka going to Heaven, I will wait.

I will wait and stage a coup against Heaven, and wait and wait, till not just all my friends are invited in to Heaven, but all of humanity is invited in.

I’ve been thinking a lot about the after life, and lately I’ve been pondering the nature of Heaven and Hell, the nature of dynamic versus static realities of the other side of eternity, and get this…The nature of Heaven as portrayed by Jesus as recorded in the Bible is what I want to be a part of! Yet the Heaven portrayed to me by parents, peers, Evangelicals, everyone-gets-a-mansion peoples…this cartoon sums up how I feel about that form of Heaven;

It strikes me as absolutely boring! A mansion? Really? Give me something to do and not just say I have a house waiting above for me.

Then I think the portrayal of Hell I’ve been told about:

A lot of what I’ve been told about Hell comes from looking at the Bible in light of its English Translation and medieval artwork…

I’ve started down a path that is one that questions the nature of heaven and hell, as to what really lies ahead, because I think that we will not get a true picture of what the other side of eternity looks like until we get there.

I also think that if I’m going to start working at snuffing out hell, it starts on this side of eternity. By helping others through personal hells they’re going through caused by others or caused by themselves, those kind of hells seem more pertinent and prominent in the lives of others than anything they could possibly face after they die.
I did say could because I’m questioning if hell after one dies is an actual reality, which I must say has been something I have expressed with my closest of friends, some who are like me and some who aren’t, if I trust you I’ll tell you…but now I am extending this to a much larger audience.

It might make me blacklisted in some Christian circles, I realize that more than ever, but I want to explore this…I say maybe too besides could, simply because it is a maybe that I say these things and without absolutely 100% certainty. It’s a struggle, but I must soldier on, I must fight this uphill battle for my sake and the sakes of others.

So that is why I will stage a coup against Heaven, that is why if I’m invited in to Heaven I’ll be off to the side with Mother Teresa and anyone else who is willing to wait.

Will you wait with me?

~Nathanael~