Archive for the ‘God’ Category

>For When I Feel Hated

October 17, 2010

>It’s the evening before Sunday, the day that many chose for worship. Or, as some believe, that God chose for worship.

Regardless of what you believe, you may sometimes call out to God, or the power above. You may feel hated. Here is a prayer for those who feel hated. I got this from my friend Michael at The Wild Reed.

A Prayer When I Feel Hated
By James Martin, S.J.

Loving God, you made me who I am. I praise you and I love you, for I am wonderfully made, in your own image.

But when people make fun of me, I feel hurt and embarrassed and even ashamed. So please God, help me remember my own goodness, which lies in you.

Help me remember my dignity, which you gave me when I was conceived. Help me remember that I can live a life of love. Because you created my heart.

Be with me when people make fun of me, and help me to respond how you would want me to, in a love that respects other, but also respects me. Help me find friends who love me for who I am. Help me, most of all, to be a loving person.

And God, help me remember that Jesus loves me. For he was seen as an outcast, too. He was misunderstood, too. He was beaten and spat upon. Jesus understands me, and loves me with a special love, because of the way you made me. And when I am feeling lonely, help me to remember that Jesus welcomed everyone as a friend. Jesus reminded everyone that God loved them. And Jesus encouraged everyone to embrace their dignity, even when others were blind to that dignity. Jesus loved everyone with the love that you gave him. And he loves me, too.

One more thing, God: Help me remember that nothing is impossible with you, that you have a way of making things better, that you can find a way of love for me, even if I can’t see it right now. Help me remember all these things in the heart you created, loving God.

Amen.

Lots of young people feel hated for one reason or another. This prayer can be a reminder. Read some of the other recent posts on this blog if you need further encouragement.

Oh, and for the next two weeks the survey to the left will be available for readers to complete. Let me know a bit about you (anonymously) and what you want out of this blog. Now I don’t know that the blog will change as a result, but you never know!

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>Spill, Baby, Spill

May 5, 2010

>Not much originality in the title, but its amazing to me that people still don’t get it even though the Gulf of Mexico is turning into a sludge pool.

Big oil funded politicians are still calling for more offshore drilling.

I’ve been reluctant to comment on the Deepwater Horizon explosion and resulting oil spill, mainly because anything I write might not be relevant within hours of publishing because of changing conditions and predictions and such.

But then I heard Texas Governor Rick Perry say,”From time to time there are going to be things that occur that are acts of God that cannot be prevented.”

It’s no surprise to learn that the GOP (Gas, Oil, Petroleum) worships big oil, but to claim that probable negligence of man was actually caused by God is a bit ridiculous.

God, or his team of writers, did say this, however, in Leviticus11: 9-12.

9 These shall ye eat of all that are in the waters: whatsoever hath fins and scales in the waters, in the seas, and in the rivers, them shall ye eat. 10 And all that have not fins and scales in the seas, and in the rivers, of all that move in the waters, and of any living thing which is in the waters, they shall be an abomination unto you: 11 They shall be even an abomination unto you; ye shall not eat of their flesh, but ye shall have their carcases in abomination. 12 Whatsoever hath no fins nor scales in the waters, that shall be an abomination unto you.

So maybe God is being vengeful because of all the Red Lobsters and Captain D’s springing up across the country. God hates shrimp. Just like he hates the gays.

No, God doesn’t work that way. Not in the 21st century, anyway.

Then Dana Perino chimed in with “I don’t want to introduce a conspiracy theory,” followed by “but was this deliberate?…Was it sabotage?”

Are these people nuts?

Here is something I don’t understand, from al.com.

With extra time to respond, BP officials said they were continuing efforts to block or contain three gushing leaks 5,000 feet below the surface of the Gulf.”

That followed a couple of paragraphs that concluded that no landfall of oil was likely for another three days.

I don’t see how conditions on the beach have anything to do with BP’s urgency to stop the flow of oil in the middle of the Gulf. There is no “extra time.” No extra time!

The problems on the beach and the problems on the ocean floor are not connected in the sense that oil not washing up on the beaches has nothing to do with the 210,000 gallons per day still leaking.

And then there is this statement by BP’s Chief Operating Officer Doug Suttles yesterday in Mobile, who said he hoped one of the leaks would be blocked by late Tuesday.

“I don’t believe that will change the total amount of oil being leaked, but it does mean we’ll go from three leak points to two, which is progress.”

Think about that. Yes, it’s progress, in that if they stopped one, they can stop the others. But, he expects that 210,000 gallons of oil a day will still be leaking, even after a leak is stopped.

When do you expect all the leaking to stop? That is the question we want answered.

Watch Celine Dion sing “A New Day.” We need a new day, that’s for sure.

>Western Tribune column January 13, 2010: Avatar

January 13, 2010

>This is my Western Tribune column for January 13, 2010. I have seen Avatar twice, and probably will see it one more time. There are so many lessons to be learned from this film, it’s hard to explain in 400 words. Here goes:

Picture credit: James Cameron’s Avatar Wiki page

I will assume that most readers have seen the movie Avatar, but just in case someone reading this has missed the record breaking sensory feast, there will be no spoiler here. The details that I reveal have already been mentioned in news stories.

On Pandora, the planet like moon where the story takes place, a world is seen where the creatures and plant life – nature – are in tune and exist in a sort of harmony that still allows an acceptance of death and sorrow.

But in the year 2154 our planet has become “brown” and humans have found a new source for resources that are much needed on earth.

With that set up in mind, some conservative and religious leaders are claiming that there is a hidden message promoting a liberal tree-hugging, anti-Christian agenda.

Hardly. I mean, the message is not hidden; it’s the theme of the movie, with a love story entwined.

Nature is a powerful force, and we witness this every year with hurricanes and tsunamis and mudslides and such. Nature affects us in other ways as well, from the microbes that help us digest our food to the diseases that we seek to conquer.

On Pandora, rather than battling nature, the Na’Vi (the indigenous blue-skinned stars of the film) enjoy a spiritual connection to the other species with a simple understanding of the circle of energy and life.

We have tried to separate ourselves from the rest of nature, in part due to religious beliefs that promote us to a status above the animals over which we have dominion and just below the God we worship, but also because of what we have accomplished with the larger brains and opposable thumbs we developed.

In doing so, we link God and nature together in much the same way the Na’Vi link their natural life with their spiritual force, Eywa. We, or most of us, just don’t admit it.

Oddly enough, we have chosen to abuse our planet and ignore the signs of peril and the results are becoming evident, through climate change, and epidemics and such.

Nature versus God, or nature equals god, are arguments as old as humanity itself.

But as in the movie, nature “does not take sides.” Yet we will continue our attempts to shift the balance of life in our favor.

We may have to wait on the promised Avatar sequels to learn how that works out.