In the midst of a chaotic and confusing time, Easter remains a constant. This year it may not be shared with family in the same way or celebrated in church buildings like years-gone-by. But Easter itself remains, just like the truth that it pertains to. And perhaps, now more than ever, its message is as life-giving as it ever has been. And to that end, I write this. Not to belittle or ignore the efforts of those around the globe fighting on the frontlines of the pandemic or to overlook the heart and resilience of everyone doing their part by just ‘staying home’. But rather to strengthen my soul in the one fact that remains unturned or unchanged by this, or indeed any storm that clouds our skies…Read more
You may or may not have read the last post I wrote this week. Normally I don’t have time to write that much. But there was a certain element of the post that really kept speaking to me. So here is a little extension.
Catch up here: De-interdimensional Simplified.
Pushing past my interdimensional illustration and jumping back to that video. That video gets me every time – twice. Because I see myself in it, way too much. No, maybe I’m not going to shoot myself – but the metaphor of being deep in the crap bed we make for ourselves is so real to me. The first time it slaps me in the face for tears is when ‘I’ drop the gun and run the gauntlet against the odds because I finally see where true peace and love is. Only when I get ground into a million pieces and sometimes it’s a last resort. Which is such an insult to the love that Jesus is still pouring out for me the entire time.
The second slap is more of a gut punch. When running back, the stuff and consequences of my actions, no matter how hard I try I can’t quite make it back. So Jesus steps in. That’s when I often can’t hold back the tears.
And if my first blog post here was about the first slap – this is about the second. It came to my attention that the decision to run full-pelt at the challenges and fights and restrictions and mess and hurts and fears and insignificances won’t always be enough.
For me it comes down to value. So often I don’t value who I am enough. Yet, dare I say it, if we’d be honest to ourselves – the circumstances and obstacles we run through often value us more than we value ourselves sometimes. I know that’s true for my life. Even the crap we put up is sometimes willing to fight to keep me more than I can muster to fight against it. But even if they do value me more and are willing to fight for me more. Jesus loved me so much more first. And stereotypes and cliche phrases can’t water-down the reality of that. So much was his value of my feeble life that he’d take a bullet for it. And did.
Going through this week, physical and very non-metaphorical storms remind me how hard obstacles can fight back sometimes. But open arms and love that surpasses all understanding trump all else and even when my running home becomes a stumble or a crawl – his running is a never ceasing supersonic blur of everything as he joins me where I am and carries me the rest of the way. His value on me surpasses anything else we can imagine. His value on you surpasses anything else you can imagine. No matter what we think stands between us, does not. Not if we’re willing to run to him.Read more
Sometimes I think things are so obvious that it’s stupid. But at the same time, I’m even stupider for not remembering how simple things can be when I need to know it the most. Contrary to the overcomplicated title and seemingly hypothetical opening blurb, this post is the most simple post of them all.
We have our loves and our likes and Jesus was no foreigner to understanding the importance of relevant stories. That’s why he didn’t start his stories with ‘so I was just chilling with the Father, making some epic miracles and shooting out some lasers at devils’. No, he talked in stories relevant to the audience he talked to.
In the same way, here’s the story as I see it. Interdimentional travel is a highly exciting prospect, but until now (and for the foreseeable future), highly fictional. To switch between dimensions and places and spaces is a glorious appeal. And so often I imagine myself breaking through the dimensional divide. But even in those day-dreams – I so easily forget the most important part before going. The anchor. Tony Stark nailed it in Endgame by asking that question before even ‘is it possible’; ‘How would we even find our way back’. Or better put, how will we know where we started. Interdimensional travel is literally infinite possibilities and paths. Great if you want to loose yourself. Not great if you want to come back.
In it’s purest sense, sometimes we just forget that Jesus is everything. No matter what. And sometimes we just let distractions and illusions and desires and fears and failures and politics and semantics and starts and ends and everything else blur that truth. We burst through the pinhole of our reality and get bombarded with the biggest and the brightest that everyone everywhere has to offer. But before long, it all dies out. The initial success breads complacency, the promise of stuff leads to insecurity and the path we were on is somehow more complicated, more blurry, more full of crap that it ever needed to be. Worse still, through it all we forget how we got there.
I have recently been reminded that no matter what dimension I’m lost in, there’s an anchor to that simplistic love that casts out all fear. That destroys wipes away lies and protects, trusts, hopes and perseveres. Unlike most anchors though, the moment I make up my mind – the anchor changes from a interdimensional pinpoint to something far greater. Think more of a relentless force that will fight and stop at nothing until it has me back in His arms. He doesn’t care about politics or semantics, chaos or odds.
While trying to find a more modern analogy to the story, the truth is – this video says it all perfectly. So I won’t even bother trying to top it. And in case you don’t have time, or you can’t be bothered – we’ll skip to the bit where I remember Jesus is everything. For me, that’s something I need to be reminded of way more often than I should. But every time I do, He fights harder for me than I ever could.Read more
I know, I know, it’s ‘Mind Map’ or ‘Fluffy Picture with Lines’ these days. But I’m not referring to the process of mapping out a particular topic on paper. I’m talking about something else.
I don’t know if this happens to everyone, some people or if it’s just me. But I know that far too often I find myself lost in a Brain Storm. Official terminology aside for lack on knowing, but I use this term when I’m lost-at-sea in a thought. You see, about half the time, I have a tendency to overthink things to the nth degree (the other half if made up of stupid impulse reactions, usually courtesy of my tongue). And that can be a useful tool. It helps me problem solve, helps me predict likely chain of events (even if they never pan out that way!), it helps put my mind at ease to know I’ve thought it through.
But it’s not all plain-sailing. A Brain Storm can also hinder things. The emotional and environmental factors aside, there is a monumental assumption that underlines every Brain Storm. That logic (my logic, no less!) can answer everything. It’s a similar way that leading scientists around the world claim that science can prove everything – even if it hasn’t yet. And I’m not refuting that claim. But I am raising the point that sometimes there is a gap between understanding and truth that our minds cannot connect. Furthermore, my never be able to connect.
The question then becomes: Is truth, indeed truth? And if it is, does understanding matter?
Humour me for a second. If you know something to be true. But you don’t understand it. Does it make it any less true? I am, of course, talking most specifically about the truth of who Jesus is. Immediately offensive to some, I realise. But truth to me. Trying to fit his reality inside of logic doesn’t work. And so the only way to accept his truth is to put it into a category outside of Brain Storming and outside of a tidy theorem. Into the category of faith that what he said was true. In this case, the truth that God’s love is so massively incomprehensible that time and space were no matter for him. He broke ‘rules’ of nature and logic to connect with humankind because he cared about every little thing they did. More than that, the fact he could look past all the crap and see the value. How could I possibly logic that one away?
So to that end, this particular truth can actually calm any Brain Storm. That there’s a higher power. That he’s more than interested in me – he actually wants me. And to think too much about how or why would be a waste of my time when I can just enjoy the love he wants to give.
There’s a song that encapsulates this. And it’s been resonating with me for weeks now.The lyrics that go a little something like this:
If you want me heart; I won’t second guess,
Cause I need your love more than anything,
I’m in, I’m Yours,
Your love’s too good to leave me here.
The lesson I learnt, and am still learning? If our definition of truth is based purely on evidence that is concrete and logical, then immediately we cancel out all other potentials realities. If we broaden our acceptance to include things outside of logic, we can begin to have faith in love that can actually make us valued, accepted and whole.Read more
I can often find myself getting lost in myself. My brain can be a infinite abyss of complex realities and unending reasonings.
That is, as you can imagine, only multiplied in times of extra stresses, confusion or uncertainty. And lately, that has felt a little bit like where I’ve been.
Firstly, let me just stress that I am so blessed with the worlds’ best wife and children. I am by no means ‘going through it’. In comparison to many in the world today, I’m living the dream. But every now and again, the minor stresses that I deal with eat away at the joys.
And its times like this that it’s good to stop and re-adjust the focus. This song, recently released by UNITED, is one that really spoke to me in this way.
So often, I feel guilty of loosing focus in the moment of a stressful week or an uncertain bill to pay. So much so that even when I do try to refocus, I miss the most amazing point of all. If only just for the 7 odd minutes of this song, I began to realise that the re-adjustment wasn’t about my focus – but it was all about realising how intensely focused God is on me. Just like He does on all of his children.
And as the universe around us screams of His greatness, it fails to compare, nor does it distract God from His ultimate desire – us. And that’s more than enough to bring my focus back each time to meet His gaze.
But what measures could amount to your desire?
You’re the one who never leaves the one behind.
I’m not a big fan of the aesthetics behind this lyric video, but the song and the lyrics are just phenomenal.Read more
I realise that this blog lacks a certain level consistency. I’ll start a theme and leave it open-ended. I’ll talk about heart-felt inner battles and follow that up with a sarcastic review of my latest cinematic experience. Like I say. Inconsistent. But perhaps it is, always, honest and it is in keeping up with my life. Perhaps equally inconsistent. Perhaps not.
But as we enter into the Easter Bank Holiday, it’s something I really wanted to talk about. My past inconsistencies and failed attempts at success. I make no apology for drawing parallels to the Easter message of Jesus. The true meaning of Easter probably needs no further elaboration for you to complete the analogy. While Easter celebrates the resurrection of Jesus after his brutal crucifixion three days prior, I think so too, our past dreams and failings can rise. And I think that Jesus’s supernatural return, could actual be part of the catalyst to bring our dreams back into play.
Jesus will have about as much an impact of your life as you’ll let Him have. And while there are countless claims to ultimate success and ultimate peace out there, I really don’t think any of them can actually compare than that of what Jesus can do. And so easy as it is to put Jesus into pictorial, historical and theoretical scenarios logically, there is one arena that Jesus branded out of place. And that’s today. Society says Jesus is historical. Jesus says “I am with you always, to the very end of the age”. His friendship, his resurrection skills and ultimately his eternal ticket out of h-e-double hockey-sticks.Read more
A story is more than words and plot points. It’s more than a beginning, middle and end. A story isRead more
The last few years have been interesting for me. At times – inexplicably void of emotions or on occasions overwhelmedRead more
Nothing qualifies me to write this. I’m not a scientist or even a professor in theology. And make no mistake,Read more