A Cheat Sheet for Jesus Christ as my Primary Partner

Below are quick links to the posts of my story in order… but it is better if you just go back to the very beginning and read every little post ;P

The prequel

http://gettlost.wordpress.com/2012/10/18/april-13-1999-rebirth/

Jesus Christ my Primary Partner

http://gettlost.wordpress.com/2010/12/11/my-primary-partner-jesus-christ-1-of-3/

http://gettlost.wordpress.com/2012/08/24/jesus-christ-my-primary-partner-2-of-3/

http://gettlost.wordpress.com/2012/08/24/jesus-christ-my-primary-partner-2b-of-3/

http://gettlost.wordpress.com/2012/08/26/jesus-christ-my-primary-partner-2c-of-3/

http://gettlost.wordpress.com/2012/08/29/jesus-christ-my-primary-partner-2d-of-3/

http://gettlost.wordpress.com/2012/09/14/jesus-christ-my-primary-partner-2e-of-3/

http://gettlost.wordpress.com/2012/09/25/jesus-christ-my-primary-partner-2f-of-3/

http://gettlost.wordpress.com/2012/10/23/jesus-christ-my-primary-partner-2g-of-3/

http://gettlost.wordpress.com/2012/10/24/jesse-christ-my-primary-partner-3-of-3/

http://gettlost.wordpress.com/2012/11/29/purpose/

http://gettlost.wordpress.com/2013/06/27/im-falling-in-love/

http://gettlost.wordpress.com/2013/07/02/honest-reflection-on-the-last-7-months/

http://gettlost.wordpress.com/2013/07/02/so-i-dated-an-atheist/

Any ways i hope you take the time to read each one.

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Burning Bridges, Dark Spots, and Our Love Nature

Burning Bridges, Dark Spots, and Our Love Nature.

The Smoking Bridges

Our western culture is not set up for success, at least not when it comes to relationships.

Our marriages fail.

Our kids become estranged from their parents, and vice versa.

Our friends stab us in the back.

Our employers fire us when we’re no longer as useful as the new young hipster from college.

Our bridges burn, and the flames cast light on our solitary selves, living alone in homes, jobs, and schools full of desperately hurt people.

The Dark Spots

We learn from an early age that you can’t trust others with your dark spots.

You can’t trust others with your feelings.

You can’t trust others with your mistakes.

You can’t trust others with your dark thoughts.

You can’t trust others with your fear.

You must never, ever be vulnerable.

Why We Love

So why bother?  Why even try to build relationships?

Here’s why:

You were designed to be loved greatly and to love greatly.

It is your nature.  It is your instinct.  It is a law that dwells in your inner self, stubborn and unyielding.

It is there, inside you.  It is not dead, but in quiet slumber.

As it sleeps, your love-nature is experiencing a nightmare – a frightening dream of being rejected, of being humiliated, of being inadequate.

The truth is: you are loved.  You are good.  You are enough.

But like Narnia, we must enter the nightmare, bring our safest friends, and learn our lessons.  We have much to learn, and much to conquer, and everything we must conquer is WITHIN our selves, not without.

You are not broken; You are whole.  You have what it takes.

So Now What?

Now go!  Your inner self is waiting, the nightmare ready, for you to shatter the illusion and burst that bubble of self-doubt.  But you can only do this when you invite safe people into the darkness with you – into your mistakes, into your fears, into your pain, and into your passion.

Go.  Find a friend who is a good listener, and who has never EVER made you feel:

bad

guilty

ashamed

little.

Ask this friend to come over for tea/coffee/beer/maple-syrup, and prepare yourself to tell him or her a story.  This story is your story, and it’s about you, and it’s about your darkness.

Tell your story.  Let your friend come into that story, and then wait to see what happens:

You will come out from this encounter with an almost shocking sense of confidence

that you matter,

and that your story matters and is worth listening to.

Go.  Call that friend.  Make a plan.  Tell the tale.  It’s important that you do!

Because it’s in your very nature to tell story.  That dark world I described above, with the failed marriages and back-stabbing friends – that is not our nature, it is our unnature.  Our stories create the empathy that’s required to nurture our marriages and relationships.  Without empathy – without sharing our stories – we are in danger of remaining hurt people who are scared to death of intimacy.  My friends, I believe with all my heart that we can rebuild bridges with our stories and one day enter a new era in which everyone in our communities are validated, accepted, and cherished as sons and daughters of love.

(All of the above is written by my dear friend Joshua.   We have shared many beers, teas and Maple syrup,  it has made all the difference. Please check out his blog http://www.JoshWestcott.com)

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Burning Bridges, Dark Spots, and Our Love Nature

Burning Bridges, Dark Spots, and Our Love Nature.

Posted in Life, love, sorrow | Leave a comment

You are Good. I Love You.

I apologise for not writing in a while. I have been hiding something, and it is hard for me to write when I cannot be authentic with you all.  I’m not good at having secrets.  Perhaps one day I will be allowed to share.

For now there is today

Tonight as I lay with Noah in Josh and Alyssas bed.  I told him that he was a good boy, a very good boy.  That I loved him.  That his mommy and daddy loved him very much.  He slowly and sleepily repeated every word I said.  I remembered my own Childhood.   I could hear my mother’s voice saying to me, “you are a good boy, I love you… it’s just your behavior that was bad.”   Yep I was a trouble maker.  Not your average stubborn trouble maker.  I was sly cunning and crafty, so most of my schemes my parents only found out about after it was too late…

Thus, I would be sat down for a full inquiry, after pouring two gallons of used motor oil down in the ditches and trying to set them on fire.  My parents would be very stern.  They would look me in the eye and say, “we want you to tell the truth, if you tell the truth you will be punished, but if you lie we will find out and then you will be punished even worse!”  Then Question period would begin.

What were you doing?

I was going to have flaming moats around my fortress.  No one would be able to get through the flames.     

Where did you get the oil?

I found the jugs next to the neighbours shed.  

This next part I admit I do not remember, I believe I got lectured about the environmental impact of the oil going into the ecosystem and the dangers of setting large quantities of oil on fire.  I was never allowed to play with fire even though I did all the time.  My parents eventually gave into my pyromania with the limitations of it being confined in the fire pit. But back to the story.  I am sure at this point they disciplined me too.  I cannot tell you what punishment I received but I do remember cleaning up the ditches and these words, “you are a good boy, I love you… it’s just your behavior that was bad.”

My parents always made that distinction very clear.   My behavior could be good or bad.  And it had consequences.  If I was good and treated others with love and respect and showed that I could take care of myself our community’s belongings I would be granted more privileges and more responsibilities.  If I was bad and acted in ways that were hurtful or destructive or negligent then I would lose privileges and face consequences.   They also made it very clear that if I lied I would be breaking their trust.  I would have to earn it back and that would take time.

However I always knew that I was good.  That I was loved. That no matter what I did… stealing motorcycles, joyriding in neighbors cars, sneaking out in the middle of the night… no matter what my parents would always love me and I am good.  I am their son.

I love you mom and dad.  Thank you for all you do and all you have done.

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A letter from Pope Francis

APOSTOLIC EXHORTATION
EVANGELII GAUDIUM
OF THE HOLY FATHER
FRANCIS
TO THE BISHOPS, CLERGY,
CONSECRATED PERSONS
AND THE LAY FAITHFUL
ON THE PROCLAMATION OF THE GOSPEL
IN TODAY’S WORLD

24. The Church which “goes forth” is a community of missionary disciples who take the first step, who are involved and supportive, who bear fruit and rejoice. An evangelizing community knows that the Lord has taken the initiative, he has loved us first (cf. 1 Jn 4:19), and therefore we can move forward, boldly take the initiative, go out to others, seek those who have fallen away, stand at the crossroads and welcome the outcast. Such a community has an endless desire to show mercy, the fruit of its own experience of the power of the Father’s infinite mercy. Let us try a little harder to take the first step and to become involved. Jesus washed the feet of his disciples. The Lord gets involved and he involves his own, as he kneels to wash their feet. He tells his disciples: “You will be blessed if you do this” (Jn 13:17). An evangelizing community gets involved by word and deed in people’s daily lives; it bridges distances, it is willing to abase itself if necessary, and it embraces human life, touching the suffering flesh of Christ in others. Evangelizers thus take on the “smell of the sheep” and the sheep are willing to hear their voice. An evangelizing community is also supportive, standing by people at every step of the way, no matter how difficult or lengthy this may prove to be. It is familiar with patient expectation and apostolic endurance. Evangelization consists mostly of patience and disregard for constraints of time. Faithful to the Lord’s gift, it also bears fruit. An evangelizing community is always concerned with fruit, because the Lord wants her to be fruitful. It cares for the grain and does not grow impatient at the weeds. The sower, when he sees weeds sprouting among the grain does not grumble or overreact. He or she finds a way to let the word take flesh in a particular situation and bear fruits of new life, however imperfect or incomplete these may appear. The disciple is ready to put his or her whole life on the line, even to accepting martyrdom, in bearing witness to Jesus Christ, yet the goal is not to make enemies but to see God’s word accepted and its capacity for liberation and renewal revealed. Finally an evangelizing community is filled with joy; it knows how to rejoice always. It celebrates at every small victory, every step forward in the work of evangelization. Evangelization with joy becomes beauty in the liturgy, as part of our daily concern to spread goodness. The Church evangelizes and is herself evangelized through the beauty of the liturgy, which is both a celebration of the task of evangelization and the source of her renewed self-giving.

http://www.vatican.va/holy_father/francesco/apost_exhortations/documents/papa-francesco_esortazione-ap_20131124_evangelii-gaudium_en.html#The_scope_and_limits_of_this_Exhortation

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I am His

Another amazing Christ follower who is deciding to be bold and share her story with Jesus on the web

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“Man at his ori…

“Man at his origin knows only one thing: God. It is only in the unity of his knowledge of God that he knows other men, of things, and of himself. He knows all things only in God, and God in all things. The knowledge of good and evil (morality and law) shows that he is no longer at one with this origin.”

Bonhoeffers Ethics

This is the center of my own faith.  When I declare, ‘Jesus is Lord’ I find my origin in Jesus Christ.  I lay down any sense of morality i may have and I center myself on Jesus.  I know myself, God, and Humanity through Jesus.   

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Prayer for World Peace – Sister Joan Chittister – Benedictine Sisters of Erie

Great God, who has told us “Vengeance is mine,” save us from ourselves, save us from the vengeance in our hearts and the acid in our souls.

Save us from our desire to hurt as we have been hurt, to punish as we have been punished, to terrorize as we have been terrorized.

Give us the strength it takes to listen rather than to judge, to trust rather than to fear, to try again and again to make peace even when peace eludes us.

We ask, O God, for the grace to be our best selves. We ask for the vision to be builders of the human community rather than its destroyers. We ask for the humility as a people to understand the fears and hopes of other peoples.

We ask for the love it takes to bequeath to the children of the world to come more than the failures of our own making. We ask for the heart it takes to care for all the peoples of Afghanistan and Iraq, of Palestine and Israel as well as for ourselves.

Give us the depth of soul, O God, to constrain our might, to resist the temptations of power to refuse to attack the attackable, to understand that vengeance begets violence, and to bring peace–not war–wherever we go.

For You, O God, have been merciful to us. For You, O God, have been patient with us. For You, O God, have been gracious to us.

And so may we be merciful and patient and gracious and trusting
with these others whom you also love.

This we ask through Jesus, the one without vengeance in his heart.
This we ask forever and ever. Amen

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