Tuesday, December 25, 2018

Merry Christmas Daily Press

My discourse to the Daily Press opinion's written on this joyous day of Christmas. May you learn something today, find joy in your hearts and give thanks for family.  

As I do every day, we make the coffee, hope the paper is on time and awaiting my barefoot scamper across an aggregate driveway. The scamper reminds me I should have put on shoes for the millionth time. In this moment of darkness, as I reach for my paper, I look up. The winter stars are shining, the sun nowhere to be found, all is quiet on the western front. It is here I stop every day and look up. I look up and I thank God for everything he has given me. 

Have you ever stopped and watched a crowd of people? Watched intently, selected individuals and then regress to the understanding of the crowd? For me, I do not see people, I see individual realities. Every person in the crowd lives their own reality. There are times to stop and offer assistance to realities and, understanding. There is also a time to stop and fight realities lived by those who mean to do us harm, change our realities or harm our nation. 

Today we remember Jesus the Christ. My church reality has become neutral over the years like Digby’s. I ponder the need for humans to have to believe in miracles to believe in Jesus the Christ. The Bible is riddled with stories of nonbelievers until Jesus performs a miracle. I think my faith has grown, has found a different reality, a lonely reality. I do not need Jesus to perform miracles for me to believe. I do not need Jesus to die on a cross and rise three days later for me to believe. I believe because I know, it is the right thing to do to help humanity.  I am reminded of a small book Thomas Jefferson wrote, I have a copy but for the sake of having to leave my coffee, I will not retrieve for the proper title. Google this and find “The morals of Jesus Christ.” This book is a book that every reality should own and read. It is this book if lived by, will bring you happiness. Or shall I say, brings my happiness to bear. 

I think about  Barabbas and another book I read “The Zealot.” While our bible leads us to believe he was a robber, factual history tells us he was a freedom fighter captured. This freedom fighter resisted the Roman rule in Jerusalem. This is why he was set free by the crowds and not this rabble-rouser Jesus the Christ. Jesus to was a fighter, prone to acts of demeaning others, and violence in the temple, throwing over the money changers tables in the temple (John 3:15). Luke 22:35-36 Jesus called for his follower to buy a sword. Luke 12:51 Not peace, but a sword. Because of him, a son will turn against father, the daughter against mother, and a daughter-in-law against mother-in-law. Even a person’s enemy will be a member of one’s own household (Matt. 10:34-36.) Like John the Baptist, Jesus the Christ was a freedom fighter, a rabble-rouser, a zealot, and a thorn in the side of the Jewish Priest he saw as collaborating with the Romans. He saw the taxing of the poor and requiring animal sacrifice in the temple as a means to find favor in the eyes of God. You see the money changers were there to sell animals to be sacrificed and we can all guess who kept the money or do I have to spell it out for you?

What amazes me most is the people's lack of understanding Jesus. There are two Jesus’s if you will, Jesus of Nazareth and Jesus the Christ. Each has a story to tell, a beautiful story of love, forgiveness, anger, violence, and war. Today’s Daily Press offers only one side, much like our Pastors found in everyday church USA. They are preaching a dogma that benefits them and justifies their own realities while trying to change my reality by using shame. 

I urge each person to read Thomas Jefferson's book. I would also urge each person who reads this to understand, there is a time to fight and a time for forgiveness and love. This is what Jesus teaches.  

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