September 24 – 26, 2003

I’m so distracted today…the last few days. It’s just that today the results of being distracted are more easily seen. I feel like the only way I will be able to maintain any touch with God today is on a moment to moment basis…Like that’s bad or something?

I miss you today, Jesus. I feel I’ve missed you  – I’m still not getting up early, I’m not taking the time I should. I’m not praying like I want to – transformational prayer. I’m going to get outside somewhere and try praying through the “Waking the Dead” prayer again.

I took time yesterday morning and walked to Carrie’s and got a coffee then went over to Comeford Park and read through the Waking the Dead Prayer. It was good. But somehow, it felt corrupted. People feel like a “drain” on my resources right now. I feel like there are a bunch of people sliding away from AC3 and even their faith, and it’s my job to “win them back”.  I know that I cannot – should not, and so maintaining my resolve NOT do something even drains me. I see Tammy on my walk and stop to chat – I feel drained. I pass by First Church (populated by “drains”) and feel drawn to pray for them, and by the time I get to the office…blech.

I realized last night that I’m pretty annoyed with almost everyone. But it’s not from a classic place of superiority or anything like that. As I run down the list of people who seem to be wriggling and pulling away, I realize I’m at least as worried as I am annoyed. These are people who are either currently disappointed in me, or run the RISK of becoming disappointed in me (or with AC3 which is such a part of me, it might as well BE me in some ways)

There is list of people, who while currently not a “threat” of leaving, could become one very quickly if I screw up – if they “perceive” I screw up. I’m not even going to try to type that list….maybe I should.

God these are the people I feel a large degree of responsibility for. People who’s approval matter to me. Spirit, guide me. As I type out these names, I release them. Father, please free me – a deep freedom, a lasting freedom. Please free them.

(I did type those names. 38 of them)

Then there are those that I feel have already been cut. I’m guilty of ACTUALLY disappointing these:

(12 more names)

Oh Father, I need you to show me what it means to be Sam. I feel like in frustration and anger over their own pain..their own burdens that they bear – some of these people have knocked me down and are holding Sting against my throat just like Frodo did out of his own pain. I see the fire in their eyes, the willingness to kill. For those who have NOT done this – I see the potential. And then there is the list of names of those YET to come…the next 40 years. My grandchildren. Mike and Sally, Sam and Ralene, our new neighbors….WHO ELSE!

God, I need your freedom in ADVANCE…I need to borrow some courage for the future. Or perhaps I need to better budget the courage I have now… Both.

Bring them in, God. Bring them to us.

No don’t…we can’t do this right. We don’t really know what we’re doing!

But bring them you will…for you are the hero of this story. We will be spent on the beaches of Normandy. That is what we were made for. Sometimes  I wish you made us ignorant of these things. It’s one thing to be a drone in a massive army but it’s an altogether other thing to KNOW that you’re a drone in a massive army. But this is YOU’RE universe. Not mine. You have proven to me that you love your “drones” wildly. You created love…well, you ARE love. I’m so glad you are.

I think, “what would it be like if God were NOT love?”

I bet that there would be NO creation at all.

This certainly could not be a universe created for cruelty sake. In order for it to be effectively cruel, it would have to be populated with creations that could comprehend that they were being tortured. Therefore, these creations would have to possesses an intrinsic understanding of love or else how could they be tortured by the lack of it? And if they possess this capacity, that would make them of a HIGHER order than their cruel God. And that is a contradiction in terms.

That all pre-supposes that love is higher than selfish gratification which is a concept true only in a universe created by love…the universe I live in.

So, it would be possible for a god to create a universe in which cruelty reigns – it just wouldn’t be THIS universe. It would be a universe where the highest value is God’s satisfaction through the suffering of his creation. Yes, there could certainly be that kind of universe, but it could not possibly be THIS universe – because God created me, and I know better. Hmmm. Puts a new spin on John chapter 17:20 My existence is proof of a loving God?

Geesh. No pressure.

In the final analysis – the most cruel expressions of creation are simply twisted expressions of a desire for love, making love the highest value. And if God were not love – then all of creation would in fact be striving for something higher than the creator, thereby making the creation higher than the creator, and that is a contradiction in terms, no matter what universe you’re from.

Onward.

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