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mantra

Here is another blog I put out during the Kickstarter Campaign.  -MDP-

I want to make a book recommendation. Find a way to get a copy of Krista Tippett’s book, Becoming Wise: An Inquiry into the Mystery and Art of Living. I love the entire book, but the fourth chapter in particular, entitled Love, has inspired me to read and reread it multiple times.

One of the more fascinating dialogues in that chapter is from Georgia Representative John Lewis. Let me say that his comments are absolutely remarkable. Notice that I didn’t say political. I’m fairly grossed out right now with the political situation in America, so don’t think for a moment that what has stirred me was political in nature. Don’t soil his ideas by rinsing these beautiful thoughts through some political paradigm. The context was about love in the midst of what is unlovely.

civil-rightsA much younger Lewis and other Civil Rights leaders of the 1960s worked diligently to impress upon the minds and hearts of African Americans to hold the vision of what an equal and loving society could look like. It needed to be more than a whimsical dream. It had to have substance. The people had to be taught how to have faith, how to love, how to look beyond what they were experiencing. The teaching was to see and claim the Promised Land of equality while enduring far less than the integration they saw in their spirits.

The real battle was to avoid the temptation to retaliate with rhetoric and deeds that were combative and ultimately dangerous. That temptation and the dangers were a daily enemy. The leaders held the people to the default notion that whatever was done in return must be out of love. You have to believe that the DNA of God, which resides in every human being (regardless of color, creed or status), will eventually respond to love. That was the plan that eventually helped win the day. I suspect we ALL have to return there at some deeper level.

I’ve been fairly frank in my estimation that the applause we so readily give to dreamers is pretty much overcooked. Does the dream really benefit us all, or is it tied to personal ambition and agendas? I can always be happy for anyone being successful at what he or she does, but you can keep the chill bumps. I’ve reserved my chill bumps for the dreams that tangibly touch all of us with acceptance, tolerance, and yes, the word we’ve murdered for millennia, love. Dreaming for a culture of love isn’t too much to ask, is it?

Dreaming for it is easy. Living it as a “now” reality, when not everyone is on board, is the real challenge. That’s the mountain we’ve got to climb.

Do we remember when Jesus kicked over the tables of the money changers in the Temple? What do you think that was about? Do you think he was that offended about keeping ritualistic order in the Temple? He did other things that weren’t kosher in the Temple. I know it’s difficult for some to imagine this, but a close reading of the New Testament seems to indicate that Jesus countered the Mosaic Law much more than he obliged it. The scribes were on Him constantly about his lack of interest in satisfying the demands of the old Law.

He kicked over those tables to send a message:

Whatever is common and customary in your ideology about God is probably the exact opposite of reality! Follow Me around and you’ll begin to understand that you don’t understand how this works. What you won’t touch, I will touch. Where you retaliate with hate, I extend love. When you are convinced you are disqualified, I use you regardless! It’s people over principle every time. Save your energy to be like Me instead of just talking about Me. Be like Me, and I’ll turn your world upside down.

That’s what that disruption was about. Counterflow. He was all about bringing a different kind of energy to the party. Faith, love, and hope were directed towards people. It’s not sort of the point. It is the point.

How do we do that? Really, with all the crap that is stirred around us, how do we live the love energy? That’s a massive question. Granted, it won’t be easy whatever the direction we go, but I think we must take a cue from what John Lewis unveiled for us. We hold a transformed culture in our heads and in our hearts, and live everyday as you would if it were a “now” reality. You live now as if it’s already here.

But, what if it’s not appreciated? Everyone won’t appreciate it, but you’ll know deep inside that this is the true DNA of Jesus. This was His path. Loving people over principle will eventually win the day.

Make it your mantra, your juice for living. Sow it everywhere.

Live every day inside this magnificent truth: GOD LOVES US ALL!

MDP

xo

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