The Mountain and The Word

So how is everyone else’s 2012 going so far?

Mine has been blessed, perhaps a few aggravations here and there, a couple set backs, but nothing to dive into the darkness and dwell about.  Just have to find alternate ways of getting a few things done ’round here, is all. 

But that’s life!  Full of obstacles and challenges, unexpected pitfalls and blessings.  Gotta love it!  Or at least try your best to keep loving it and having Faith throughout it.

My wife has been out of town since Thursday, off to celebrate her son’s graduation from Navy boot camp.  Words lack the actually expression of pride from his accomplishments as a young man of God.

I wanted to go but finances and household management wouldn’t allow for me to join.  Instead, I stayed home with our daughter so she wouldn’t miss any school.  I wasn’t really looking forward to this time spent without Babe, we miss each other terribly when we’re apart from one another, but I had to suck it up anyway.  To tell you the truth, I was more worried about having to spend five days alone with our daughter than anything.  As I’ve said in the past, she can be the cause of some grief around here, between her mother and I, and just with me.  It’s not that we don’t get along because we do.  When she is alone with either her mother or I, she doesn’t give much grief at all and makes the time seem well spent, most of the time.  The problem is, she needs to find a way to be able to handle herself in the same manner when it’s all three of us, instead of pitting her mother and I against each other, and furthermore, show the same respect for us both while we’re together that she does when we’re apart.  Conversely, we need to be able to open up to spending more time with her individually when we’re all together, perhaps “date days,” so that maybe she doesn’t feel left out.  Maybe, and I’m praying for this, that between both theories, we can all live together in a more peaceful, less tense, less aggravated, and less saddened environment.

Knowing our daughter the way I do, I would say that the task would be like trying to move a mountain.  Well, we can’t do that, we just don’t have the strength, even all three of us combined.  However, it’s not so much about moving the obstacles and challenges out of our path, as it is trekking through them, actually making that climb instead of just moving the mountain.

So that’s what we did!  In addition to a couple other fun things my daughter and I did in her mom’s absence, we climbed a mountain.  No, it wasn’t a big mountain, and it wasn’t a scary terrain, but it was the biggest and steepest rocky hill I’ve ever attempted to climb, not to mention the fact that I wasn’t even going to do it in the first place.  But our plans for Saturday derailed because of a big event going on in the city, so instead of heading back home to do hours worth of nothing, she talked me into climbing “A” Mountain.  I was worried about doing it because I’ve been battling a cold with a nasty cough for a couple weeks, I didn’t have my inhaler, I was wearing my black converse, which are not good for hiking, and my attitude toward the climb, and how much effort it was going to be, was shying me away. 

Faith!  Just climb the mountain and don’t worry about what “might” happen.  Like my mother-in-law said the other day, “if” is a big burden for a little word, and that would have been a lot of extra weight for me to carry up those trails if I hadn’t just left “if” at the bottom of the hill and just started walking. 

It was steep, I was out of breath, my legs were burning, my shoulder was hurting (chronic situation but gets worse with more movement), but it didn’t take long before I looked back and we were halfway up.  Yes, I would have liked to have my inhaler, but I decided that I would make it without it, because this was a challenge, it was fun, and it was going to be worth it…that’s what my daughter said whilst walking, anyway.

We made it to the top and it was beautiful.  We rested on some rocks for a while, talked to a couple people, took some pictures, and just hung out.  “I feel closer to God up here,” she said.  Whether she said that to please me because she knows the pride I carry in being a follower of Christ, or if she said it because that’s how she truly felt, then she was right in what she said at the bottom of the hill.  It was totally worth it.

This morning in church, we continued our study on The Book of John and the prayer that Jesus prayed in front of those chosen eleven, from whom the gospel has spread generations later to you and me.  I took notes like I usually do but, honestly, I don’t really have much to say about the sermon, although it was great.  The best part of service was, at the very end, watching my daughter, on her own accord, go up to the front to pray with someone.  I’m not sure what it was about…I didn’t go with her.  I thought that if this was her making another step toward a relationship with Jesus, then there was no room for me to be there in that moment with her.  If she wants to share, she will.  And furthermore, her mother and I are always here to help with her conflicts in faith, or at least try.  But we are only capable of so much.  Her relationship is hers and Gods, and there is nothing anyone can do to lean it one way or the other, regardless of our hopes. 

The only thing we can do is do our best to live in The Word, as it has all been put in writing for us what it is that Jesus, His Love, and His covenant is.  It’s a simple, yet, tough guide to follow and be diligent with.  However, our Love for Jesus should be the easiest way to guide us through life, as it is simply to Love. 

I know, there are many other “rules” in The Bible, and trust me, I have a hard time grasping some of them too.  In 2012 it’s just kind of hard to wrap your mind around some of the teachings, but I’m doing my best and I pray to help me not fail…or at least fail too badly.  And when I start to stumble, as we all do, we just need to remember that The Word is there to help us, encourage us, guide us, and teach us.  It will never change, it will never waiver, it will never lessen.  Our job is to live within The Word while living in this world, whilst not being part of it…with Jesus, we are so much more than what this world is and what it has to offer. 

Know it, live it, love it, Love Him and Love it forward…and we’ll all get where we want to go.

~Dear Lord, thank you for your many blessings this week, especially for the safe travels of our loved ones and for the time well spent with our loved ones.  Please help us to continue to shine in the light of your Love so that we may count ourselves among the multitude of those that may enter your Holy Kingdom.  Please forgive me my sins, and help me work on correcting them, especially my dirty mouth, so that nobody may ever condemn me in my speech.  Lord, I pray that my Love shines as bright as yours.  In your Holy and Precious name, I pray.  Amen~



It seems like the majority of our lives are filled with “remembering” things.  Especially around this time of year.

Did you remember to get all those end of the year projects done?  Did you remember to get all the holiday cards out to everyone you know?  Did you remember to buy all the presents that you wanted to buy for everyone?  Did you remember to pay those bills?  Did you remember to…

It’s the same thing that happens every year around Christmas.  We remember everything that we wanted to do for Christmas, buy everything, send everything, but we forget why we’re celebrating it.  It’s as if we should just start calling the holiday Presentmas, or Partymas, or Debtmas.

I’m not saying that people don’t know that Christmas represents the day that Jesus Christ was born.  I’m just saying that, once the season pulls around (which gets earlier and earlier every year due to retail mind-plucking), most of what people do has nothing to do with the upcoming celebration of Christ’s birth, or, Christmas.  It’s about buying in excess, making sure one person’s house is decorated prettier than the next, partying in excess with the convenience of Christmas as an excuse, and when Christmas Eve finally pulls around, how many of those Christians come out on Holy days flock to the Churches and Thank God for His only begotten son.

In short, the holidays bother me.  I’m not saying that I’m totally innocent either.  I went shopping and bought a few things here and there, what I could afford, nothing on credit.  No, I haven’t had any spare change to toss to the Salvation Army bell ringers, but I know that there have been quite a few people that have benefited from my kindness.  I decorated our apartment but it’s not overdone and there are plenty of apartments that are far more flashy than ours.  We haven’t had a party but we did enjoy an afternoon dinner with some friends from a church and a friend from our complex…just because.  Sorry, no alcohol.  Tea, Tang, Water, and Coffee.  We sent out a few Christmas cards and have a few more to send over the next couple days.  Other than that, the season, thus far, has been mostly relaxed and calm…as it should be.  After all, we’re about to celebrate the birth of Christ….again!!  And Christ represents joy and peace, not stress and chaos.

I decorated our apartment the other day, which is at least half the size of the house that we used to live in.  I could have sworn that I packed up the Christmas tree when we moved, but, alas, it wasn’t in the storage closet when I pulled out all the Christmas stuff.  Perhaps we sold it, thinking that we would get a new one this year.  Originally, we weren’t going to be here for Christmas, as we were going to spend time in Texas with my side of the family, so we decided not to get a tree and worry about not getting to enjoy it anyway.  Plus, we don’t have enough space, and it is such a hassle to put up, decorate, then take down again…not to mention the dangers involved with the cat.

But, I really wanted to put some Christmas cheer into this place, maybe put a little bit of a smile on some faces around here, so I went along with an idea that my wife saw, making a wall tree out of garland.  I found the most special ornaments we had, ones that have been following all of us through our lives, ones we had made, and ones that were given to us, and put only those on, instead of all the regular colored ball ornaments that are so fragile that break if the wind blows on them wrong.  I obviously couldn’t put our angel on top of the tree, but she’s out and lit up, along with our nativity set, our stockings are hung under the kitchen bar, and a few other Christmas decorations are out.  It’s simple…but pretty.  And the coolest thing is that during dinner that night, we must have stayed at the table for a good half hour after we were done eating just talking about all the ornaments and decorations, remembering where they came from and what they meant to us, telling each other about them…for the ump-teenth time while Christmas music played softly in the background.  Sounds like a fake, made-for-t.v. night, right?  It’s not…but it’s a nice night to remember.

right above our dining room tableIt’s important to remember…remember that, if not for Jesus Christ, there would be no meaning to life at all, no Hope, no Faith, no Love.  There would be nothing to look forward to hereafter, there would be nothing to be thankful for now.  Everyday would just be another day, but with Christ, we have hope for peace and joy, and a promise of it as well.  Remember that God gave us the greatest gift ever….His son.  Jesus gave us Hope, Faith and Love, and the greatest is Love, which is the greatest gift we should be passing on during Christmas, all throughout our lives in fact.  Remember…He loves you, all of you, whether you remember Him or not.

The song I’m picking this week is a song that my mom and I really love by Mark Schultz.  She once had the opportunity to meet him when my brother hosted him during a concert he played at a church in Texas many years ago.  She brought me home an autographed CD of his, which I then gave to my tattoo artists, who had just been saved and had turned from a life of chaos to Christianity.  I would have loved to have made a video to this song, but our new internet service is so slow that it takes twenty-four years to upload anything anymore.  ~Dear Lord, please help the company we use that says they offer the fastest service be able to provide some faster service soon~

~Dear Lord, Jesus…Thank you, once again, for all of your countless blessings this week.  most especially for your guidance, strength, and faith we’ve faced stressors and struggles.  Please watch over Mama-T’s surgery tomorrow, see that she sings all the way through and comes out singing as well, so that she can continue to sing and glorify you.  Please watch over all of us in our travels and please wrap your arms around the world to help them find those gifts that you’ve given to us, Hope, Faith, and Love, that the world may start to become less chaotic and stressful, within their own lives and towards others.  Lord, all things can be done through you, which means peace, joy, and healthy outcomes can be obtained through you, so it is that which I seek for all of those I love and all those around me, Lord.  It is in your name, I pray.  Amen~

What Have You Done Today To Make You Feel….

What have you done today to make you feel proud?

It’s difficult, in today’s world to find something to be proud of, in ourselves, in our families, in our communities, in our government, in our world.  There are so many things, as each day begins, that make the possibility of achieving pride subject to change.

We may start off our day thinking that everything is going to go just right and at the end of the day we will be filled with pride that we’ve put in our best efforts and have remained successful at whatever our endeavor is.  But things may happen that chip away at that potential for pride…

We let our frustration from the morning, such as traffic or being late, follow us around and show up through our attitude with others.  We take criticism for something that we may be responsible for as a personal attack on our character or judgment rather than an opportunity to grow and learn.  We make snap judgments and knee-jerk reactions that hurt people and, often times these days, get people killed. We lie and steal as if not a single parent has taught us right from wrong then look around and wonder where all these kids parents are.  We watch the news to find that another parent has killed their child, and if they haven’t killed them, the child has disappeared and the parent doesn’t know why because the parent wasn’t there, and if the parent isn’t there, then it’s a famous or well-trusted idol who’s sexually abusing them.  We see the tally of how many lives have been lost in this war oversees, and wonder why a war is still going on, then get even more frustrated at the government who just can’t seem to get their shit together…on anything!  And on top of that…the weather and all the natural disasters lately are very strange and, well, scary.  All these things makes it hard to have just an honest days pride.

But….if you wake up each day and just live your day as the best Christian possible…then you can take pride in that.  If you remember your beatitudes, then you shouldn’t have to worry about your judgments and actions, and you’ll know to be compassionate, sympathetic, and to pray for every thing and one else going on that is evil in the world.  Wake up, take in a big, deep Christian breath, start your day, and be at peace!  It could be a good recipe for life!

**I didn’t make that video, it was a lucky find on YouTube.  Lucky because I agree with almost everything in it, except the idea of the evolution.  My mom said I was a hairy baby but I really struggle to believe that at one time we were apes.  Why?  God said so!**

~Dear Lord, thank you so very much for all of your blessings this week, and for continuing to watch over our health.  Please bless each day ahead with peace and happiness, and with each person who needs your help, Lord, please bless them with the opportunity to be open to hear you, Lord…that they may find their way to your word and the peace that you offer.  Please help us to love more, laugh more, and grow more and we continue on our journey to you and your Heaven, Lord.  For all that you do for me, my family, and for my brothers and sisters, I thank you and praise you.  In your most Holy name I pray.  Amen~

The Gospel of Chaos 1:1

One would think that with all this chaos in my mind and heart right now, I would have so much to say, yet, I’ve been staring at this screen for at least half an hour and haven’t been able to think of one thing to say.  I went to church with my mom this morning, took notes, and still can’t figure out what to say. 

Yes, I’m at my mom’s house…in Texas.  My wife and I went shopping last Wednesday afternoon and, after a phone call about some test results, left the store before we had anything in the cart and started packing…leaving about four hours later and driving sixteen hours through the night to get here the very next day.

So now I’m here and there should be so much to say because there is so much going on but, alas, I’m unable to purge anything…my tear ducts even seem to be in a form of drought, despite my desire for them to just bust wide open, hopefully relieving this heaviness on my chest and this tightness in my throat.

Surely there must be a word to define all that I’m feeling…sad, hurt, fear, anxiety, stress, anger, bitterness, defensive, exhausted, yet, at the same time, showing calm, patience, a sense of reason.  My wife is scared because this is not how I should be acting…and I would agree with her, I’m a little scared too, but I’m leaning more on the calm side, finding comfort in my Heavenly Father, that He is guiding me through this darkening part of my journey.

I feel like I’m in one of those boxes they used to have on game shows where blasts of air come in and send money or whatever all around the box as everyone watches, while the contestant has to struggle to catch and hold onto their prize…except in my box, emotions are flying around, and because they are intangible, I can’t grab them and hold onto them long enough to focus on each one.  At the moment they’re just kind of hitting me and bouncing off until they come back later and hit me again…I hope that changes, I’m sure it will later down the road.  But for now, this box is filled with emotions, memories, and unhealed wounds that hit and sting…if only for a moment, then fly off in another direction again.

Life is scary, strange, imperfect, full of struggles and that’s what makes us who we are so that when we get to the next part of the journey, we’re somehow prepared, even if we’re torn down to nothing just to be built up again just so we can learn how not to be so torn down the next time.  The Lord shows us the truth about ourselves through the life that we lead and the choices we make, sets us down on our path at birth and allows us to come to the forks in the road, and with each direction we choose, He shows us our truths, whether we like them or not.  Our desire in life, well, at least my desire, is to please Him, so that I may be counted among those beside Him in the Kingdom of Heaven, having felt His nudges, understood and carried out His word, and faithfully followed Him on my journey toward Heaven.  Sometimes, to get there, we have to go through a great deal of crap, endure emotional turmoil, pain, shame, live with memories and embedded behaviors that have no purpose, other than to remind you that you are stronger than that now…that the power within you is greater than the circumstance around you.  And the more you commit to that desire, the more truth will come out, but the more truth you find out, the more at peace you will become…because God does not want us to hurt more than we have to.

There are many ways to translate the phrase In Venere Veritas, a song title by the band HIM.  The lead singer, of course, is the only one who knows what he meant by it, but, it’s art and therefore open to interpretation.  In…is simply “in”, venere is “Venus” and veritas is “truth.”  In Venus is truth!  Huh?  The truth is on a planet?  No.  Uh oh…the truth is within the goddess Venus?  We’re not supposed to worship any other god…so now what?  How about we look at the symbolism!  First, the symbol of Venus is a cross with a circle on top of it. 


The cross, representing our spiritual connection to the universe and the circle representing our inclusive connection to the universe.  The attributes of venus are love, allure, desire, beauty, passion, harmony, affection, sexuality, creativity, attraction, inspiration, femininity, aesthetics, imagination, appreciation, relationships, and unification of opposites. All that being said, could it not be said that these attributes are what should be aimed for, careful to not find ourselves with over-abundance, but that it’s quite possible that in the desire to be the kind of person that is those things, the truth about ourselves, and the Truth of the Lord, is going to help lead us there, keep us there, and grant us the keys to the gates of Heaven, where we can leave all the baggage we’ve been carrying along the way behind?  Sounds good to me anyway…at least right now…

~Dear Lord Jesus, you know my needs better than I do, so I ask that you continue to guide me with your love so that I may have the strength, the courage, the wisdom, and the ability to continue this journey and fight the battles ahead of me and not lose sight of hope in the face of the struggles ahead of me.  I ask that you watch over all of us in our travels, and in our daily health so that nothing shall overtake us that doesn’t need to right now, Lord.  Thank you for your many daily blessings and lessons.  In your highest, most holy name, I pray, Lord.  Amen~

The End Is Near!

In the movies, there would be someone cast to play the homeless looking crazy person holding a sign proclaiming “The End Is Near.”  Why do they have to be homeless and crazy looking to be feeling like the end is near and be the one’s with the guts enough to proclaim it?  Can not I, a well groomed, “sane enough” person with a home feel the same way and believe and proclaim the same thing and have it not get the same effect?  Who is the world going to believe when someone tries desperately to tell them that the end is near, when they’ve neglected to listen to all the warnings already placed before them, even when one of those people was Jesus himself?

Jesus has said that when the hearts of the world become cold, and when mothers and fathers are turning against sons and daughters, when neighbors are turning against neighbors, and when we have displeased Him enough, when we’ve turned blind eyes and hearts to the world around us and the well of compassion has run dry here on Earth, He will put an end to the war…claim all whom is His, whom have faithfully taken Him into their hearts and followed Him toward the Kingdom of Heaven, leaving the rest for the devil, for they have the less righteous path.

Yet still, with everything that has been going on in this world, we do not yield and think, and while some do think, they do not act.  Socially, this world has become like hell on Earth, forcing people to act in desperation, leading to sins of unbelievable magnitude, even over small things.  The baby won’t stop crying?  Mothers are putting duct tape over their mouths or stuffing them is boxes, kicking them until they are quiet, yet they have not quieted because of the kicking, but because they are dead.  People are robbing others, often times killing them, to get money to pay for food.  People pick fights over small things, shoes, cutting in line, parking spaces, taking the last one of something…yet the argument goes beyond any normal sense of civility, considering the offense, often times getting the police involved for mediation, or worse, to pick up a dead body at the end of it.  People picket churches, calling them greedy, because they want to build a complex on a piece of property that would offer shelter for low-income families in need, but people would rather call a church greedy than helpful, and oppose them building on that property instead.

The world is out for themselves, every man for themselves.  When we were growing up and we had a fight with our siblings, one of our first retorts were “it’s not fair, ” and our parents were quick to tell us that “life isn’t fair.”  Well, brothers and sisters, here on Earth, especially now, life is not fair.  All the sense of right and wrong that we grew up with, even according to the Bible, is backwards.  We can stand up for what we believe is right, only to be told it’s wrong, because Man’s law does not follow God’s law, and society, anymore, has no respect for either law.  Therefore, right is wrong, and wrong is right, and backing down from what is fair, just, and right is the right thing to do in order to save yourself from Man’s law or death by Man’s stupidity.

And God is not happy with what He sees.  He’s been trying to tell us, but people aren’t listening.  You think all these insanely huge natural disasters lately have just been the natural progression of the Earth’s aging process and global “whatever they want to call it?”  No, it’s not.  It’s God telling us that we’re screwing up, disrespecting Him, and He’s none too pleased with us.  That we have taken what He’s given to us and smacked Him in the face with it.  He created the Earth for us and we’ve destroyed it, and continue to do so, not just with further advancements in technology, but with warfare.  He gave us the gift of salvation and people turn it away.  He gave us Him, someone to have Faith in for all eternity, that knows us better than anyone, yet still people do not Trust in Him, even to provide a meal.  He gave us Love, the greatest gift of all, and yet people only share it with those whom they deem worthy of it, instead of sharing it with everyone, automatically keeping us from peacefully co-habitating with everyone on Earth, and automatically separating us from God, who Loves us ALL.  And He gave us Hope, which, without fully indulging in the other two, we have no way of ever nourishing for ourselves, and certainly have no way of nourishing for those around us.  Thus, looking at the majority of the world, it looks pretty damn hopeless.

And here we are, faithful Christians, doing our best to follow the Word of Christ, keep Him fully in hearts while under attack from the less Christ-like, struggling in almost every way imaginable.  We thank God every day for the blessings He’s bestowed upon us, for the meal He provided for us when we weren’t sure where it was coming from, for the gas money that came out of nowhere, for that check that came in the mail that we weren’t expecting that paid for that thing we were wondering how we were going to get money for, etc.  We pray every day for good health, safety, peace around us and within us, and strength to continue our journey toward His Kingdom, with Him as our Shepherd.  Yet all the while, we are under attack from every angle, be it the guy in the parking lot who gets mean and out of control when we act out of fairness and hold true to what’s right, or under attack from the man who looks for any small detail he can find to try to get money through deceit, all at our expense.

The more we puff up and claim that those demons who attack us will fail because we our children of God, and we have God to protect us, more demons come out to attack.  Our son, the other day, told his mother that, because of this, we must be doing something right, for if we weren’t under attack at all, then we must be on the wrong side of things.  It makes sense, although having to be in the midst of it is chaos at times, although I know I’m in the right, and I’m happy to proclaim my Love for God and that I’m doing my best to do right by him…so it’s bittersweet.

So while the world is in the shape it’s in, I still have my greatest gifts, my salvation, Faith, Hope, and Love.  Now, in the midst of all the “sweet pandemonium,” I just need to find the peace within it, so I don’t lose my mind, as it certainly feels like I have been.  I was in tears the other night just because I was made to feel like I was wrong when I knew I was in the right, at least mostly.  Of course, further Bible readings in Matthew lead me to understand that sometimes you just gotta walk away and let the other person have it.  It’s not easy being a follower, it’s not easy being faithful, it’s not easy being hopeful, it’s not easy to love, and it’s certainly not easy to find peace in all of this, but Jesus does not want us to suffer.  He gave us peace through his Holy Spirit, and the Holy Spirit resides within us, as long as we concede to allow the Holy Spirit to guide us.  Jesus knows us and our lives and what it is we are supposed to be doing with it, the more we try to remodel his Temple, as each one of us is His Temple, the more resistance we’ll get.  If we just let it be, take the day, take the circumstances, take it in and pray about it, He, The Holy Spirit within us, will guide us with our next step…all we need to is let go and let God.  In that, we’ll find peace.

~Dear Lord, I humbly pray to you, as my Father in heaven, who knows all that I need, to bless me and family with all the strength, courage, and wisdom right now to travel the road ahead of us, overcoming all obstacles in our way of You.  Thank you for all the blessings you continue to bestow upon us each day.  Please use us, Your servants, to help the down-trodden of the world to see Your Light, Lord, so that we may help lead others to You and help this world get back on track to a more peaceful, Faithful, Loving, and Hopeful society.  In Your most precious name, I pray.  Amen~

Where Were You? Controversial?

Once again, it’s Sunday evening, just before six o’clock, and I’m just starting this week’s post.  This week has been somewhat busy, mostly comprised of being sick and not feeling up to getting on the computer to do anything, and then saving my energy to help my mother-in-law move into her new apartment on Saturday.  Has anything major kept me from starting early and getting something really good going here?  No.  I even started working on a video…but only have a compilation of clips so far.  Lack of inspiration maybe?  Maybe just another week full of frustration from the events going on around me?  I don’t know.  I wish I knew…but I’m not going to go into all of that right now.  Right now, I have something bothering me.  The whole country does.  And right now, I’m going to address it, and some of you may not like it, but I’m doing it to come to grips with something and to try to understand it from a Christian point of view.

Throughout this entire week, media has bombarded us with everything to do about the ten year anniversary 9/11.  First, most importantly, I would like to say that I’ve prayed about this as much as I can, to the point of inner turmoil…prayed for the families who have been affected first hand by the loss and devastation from the events that took place on our soil on that day, prayed for the souls of those who lost their lives that day, prayed for people who put their lives on the line to help all those people in need that day, and for all those people who could do nothing but stand by in the most heart-breaking, fearful, and confusing moments, just watching, listening, and waiting to find out what in hell, because it surely seemed as though we were in it, was going on.  So before I bring it home, I’ll indulge, along with the media, and allow myself to post this song, which I almost refuse to listen to anymore (even though I love it), so that we can really, truly, take a look into that day, really think about it and get in touch with that feeling.  Think about it…don’t just think about where you were, don’t just think about what you were doing, or who you were with…you will always remember that…but what about that entire day?  What were you thinking and feeling when you saw what the media was showing it before they censored it?  Be honest!

So, now that you’ve seen those clips, over and over again…and again, and heard the song again, for however many times you’ve heard it, can you describe you how really feel, as if you’ve felt it for the first time?  Like it was that day?

We will never forget that day!  That day was so personal to every single one of us in this country, in this world.  I was at home, my parent’s house, my grandma was in the kitchen and I had just gotten out of the shower.  I was heading downstairs to my room to get ready for work when my grandma called me to the kitchen to show me that the first tower had just been hit by an aircraft.  How shocking.  Oh my gosh!  We stood there in the corner of the kitchen together, watching, waiting for information, this was terrible, all those people!  And all those people on the floors above where the plain hit, how are they going to get them out of there??  We were already watching, holding our breath…then out of the corner of the screen…HOLY SHIT!!!  ANOTHER PLANE!!!  IT HIT!!  IT HIT!!!   WHAT THE FUCK IS GOING ON?  (Yes, I swore, it’s my blog, my feelings, and I said…I was bringing this home!)  My grandma and I started to panic, my heart felt like it stopped, this wasn’t an accident, this was something much bigger, much scarier, something beyond our comprehension…and it was unfolding right before our eyes…and all we could do was watch.

My mom was in Dallas at the time, my dad was at work, and I was worried about leaving my grandma at home while I went to work, but I had to go, it’s my job after all, but I didn’t know what was going on, and there was still very little information coming in between the time that the second plane hit and when I had to leave.  I called my mom to check in with her and then left for work, listening to the radio station the entire way forty-five minute drive.  Oh my God!  A plane hit the pentagon!  What, Dear God, is going on?  America is under attack, my grandma is at home, my dad is at work, my mom is in Dallas, and we lived in Detroit…it seemed as though they were hitting major hubs that would bring down our country.  It was logical to me to think that Detroit could be one of them…bring down the Motor City and see what happens.  Well, it’s already been proven in the last few years…take away Ford, Chrysler, and GM and the economic downfall of the country began.  But I was worried…we could have been a target…but I didn’t know what to think.  Who knew what to think.  It was still early in the day and it was already overwhelmed with chaos, panic, fear, and confusion.

I got to work and a little while later found out that another plane went down in a field in Pennsylvania.  It was coming closer.  Our supervisors gave us an option to leave and go home if we chose, there would be nothing held against us if did go, but I stayed.  I spent my entire shift looking out the window at my cubicle, watching the skies, imagining the worse case scenario…what if?  Not that my place of business should be any kind of target, but why was any of this happening at all?  I couldn’t wait to get home…

When I got home, every channel was lit up with footage of what had occurred from the time the first plane hit the first tower until what was going at that night.  The media covered everything, they censored nothing!  And I watched.  We all watched.  After going through the entire day, having seen the start, heard bits of information, wondering, worrying, being scared, being confused, now…I felt obligated to know what the hell happened, why, and what it looked like.  Now…part of me wishes it was a part of history that I could only read in history books and not have the turmoil of having gone through the experience of.

Why?  Because the media is the devil.  The media shows no mercy.  They showed us EVERYTHING!  We saw almost all of it, play by play, at least the twin towers portion of it…and it’s all burned into my mind and heart in a way that makes it that I can no longer watch anything 9/11 anymore.

I sat on the edge of my bed, watching the television, they were showing the towers burning, going up in smoke, people hanging out windows for air…and then…they showed people jumping.  From heights unimaginable…people jumped.  Because there was no better option of suffering for them…they jumped.  Burn or jump?  Suffer or end it on my own?  Can you imagine being that person?  No…you cannot!  Can you ever place yourself in that person’s head, knowing that he or she has a family at home, more than likely watching on t.v, and all you did was go to work that day, and suddenly you find yourself in a position where you know it’s over, but everywhere around you is…well, I don’t even know what adjective to place here because I wasn’t there…but tell me, what does it take for someone to hurl themselves out of an 80 story window to their death and fall like a ragdoll just to avoid burning to death?  And the media showed it.  All night long!

The next day, they stopped showing such sensitive material, but the rest of it remained.  Then the sound bytes started coming in from middle east, the celebratory cheers of a “job well done.”  It was twisting the knife in the hearts of us all even further and harder.

It all kept going…and going…and it never stopped.  It hasn’t stopped.  The first year after it happened, it was all the country could talk about, of course, and it was to be expected.  We just got dealt a major blow, and we were hurt, and pissed, but united….although unitedly pissed, and that’s not good.  The second year came around, and of course, there is a day of remembrance, which is to be expected.  We all had our united moment of silence and prayed, we talked about it with friend and family and went back to that day when….

But as the years have passed…we haven’t forgotten.  We don’t want to, but we also haven’t been allowed to heal.  We’ve been bombarded, every year, with documentaries, special occasions, news events, clips, videos, sound bytes, everything you can imagine that brings back that day, those memories, those moments of chaos, panic, confusion, and fear.  And that’s where I have the problem.

How can anyone be expected to heal in the midst of obsession?  Remembering is one thing, but bringing it back so hard, so raw, every year, is uncalled for.  It’s not fair to the families, to those who live with the trauma of that day, to all of us, as we all have a personal devastation attached to that day.  There is no need to keep reliving, yet, just letting us remember it, peacefully, without all they media hype and the images that take us back to that place in our minds and hearts that we don’t want to be is doing an incredible injustice to the people of this world.  I mourn for the loss of those lives, I pray for families and friends who lost someone in the events of 9/11, I salute all those, government and civilian alike, who put their lives at risk during the events, I cannot express enough the gratitude and sense of unity and Faith I feel from those people who took charge of the hijackers and took the plane down in the field in Pennsylvania, and I pray for everyone that one day, we can come through this without having to relive it at such an expense.

That day changed everything for this country.  So many things, as we knew it, changed that day.  It wasn’t just the loss of lives, it was the loss of life as we knew it.  We grew an anger toward people that was not predominately there, but every year since, because we keep reliving it, and are reminded of the fear, we continue to harbor and show this anger.  We grew a fear that, since then, every year we are reminded of, and no we are no longer able to just breath without being afraid that something is going to happen, especially around 9/11…why not?  We’ve allowed them to let us be afraid of them, so why not continue to threaten us when we are most vulnerable and emotionally fragile?  We grew a bitterness that, since then, we’ve not been able to sweeten, because every year we are reminded of what happened that day, so we are re-poisoned with those thoughts.  And some, unfortunately, grew even more insensitive to human reality, life and death.  By that I mean, while I know it’s the media’s responsibility to keep us informed, why is it okay that they make it into something more fit for an “R” rated movie?  Why is it okay to show that moment between life and death?  Better yet…why is it okay that we, as humans, find it acceptable to watch someone else’s mortality to the point that every network strives to have the best footage, or make the best documentary, or make the best “made for t.v” movie?

It’s been ten years to the day since terrorists hijacked U.S passenger planes and attacked The United States by way of suicide missions.  Two planes targeted the Twin Towers in New York City, causing total devastation of both towers, with the death toll numbering in the depressing thousands, including civilian and non-civilian lives.  Another mission targeted and destroyed a section of The Pentagon, mission being, “to play God with people’s lives” and, therefore, took almost three hundred of them.  A final plane, the infamous Flight 93, was believed to be heading toward Washington D.C., however, having not counted on the will of people to live, love for other people, and Faith in God, the passengers overtook the hijackers, forcing their way into the cockpit to steer them off course, ultimately, sacrificing their lives and crashing the plane into a field in Pennsylvania before the remainder of their terrorist’s mission could be completed.  The United States States took quite a hit from nowhere that day, and declared to get the leader behind it.  In fact, just this year, the supposed leader behind the attacks was found and killed, non-intended but necessary, so we’re told.  A beautiful memorial has been built from Ground Zero, the place where it all started, where Twin Towers once stood.  We’ve had vigils every year across the nation, maybe in other places around the world.  We’ve had church services that pertains to 9/11 around or on 9/11 for the last ten years, like today, and, to be perfectly honest, I almost left.  Although I’m glad I didn’t.  And I’ll tell you why.

This tragedy is fresh, it’s raw, it still cuts like a knife and the more we keep picking at it the worse it will get.  We, as the families, as the survivors, as the individuals, as the the by-standers, will never heal from the hurt…and most certainly will never heal from the fear, anger, and bitterness that, as a child of God, will cost us more in the end if we choose to refuse the best way of dealing with this tragedy in all of our lives.

 1 Cor 14: Make every effort to live in peace with everyone and to be holy; without holiness no one will see the Lord. 15 See to it that no one falls short of the grace of God and that no bitter root grows up to cause trouble and defile many.

Make every effort to live in peace and to be holy, without holiness no one will see the Lord.  It means you just love, just do it already.  Jesus died for us and our sins because He loves us, despite our sins, which we’re still accountable for, don’t get me wrong.  He doesn’t discriminate based on race, gender, nationality, political affiliation, brand of clothing, or anything.  He’s our father, and He will be giving us a talking to about what we did here on earth, because He loves us, and wants what’s best for us, and allows us our choices based on what He’s taught us.  He taught us a lot of things, there’s this huge book He left for us in case we get forget, The Bible, but the three most important things He taught us is Faith, Hope, and Love…but the greatest, is Love.

Matthew 5:46  If you love those who love you, what reward will you get?  Are not even the tax collectors doing that?

Meaning, if you don’t branch out and extend your Christian embrace of love around those who aren’t even like you, whom you may have prejudgments about, whatever the case may be, is that doing anything special or anything Christ-like?  No.  Tax Collectors, or in this case, terrorists, are doing the same thing.  Those men did not “just love” and, therefore, did what they did.

See to it that no one falls short of the grace of God and that no bitter root grows up to cause trouble and defile many.  Ah, bitterness.  I mentioned before that we had grown bitter as a nation, toward groups of people threatening our nation, and groups of people who look like them, and bitter toward the fact that our very comforts of life have, thusly, been sacrificed so that our seventy year old grandma practically has to have a magnetic wand shoved up her butt to get on a plane.  But bitterness is like a venom, once you get bitten with it, it runs through your blood and messes with the very core of who you are…if you don’t catch it on time.  And if you don’t catch it on time, you’ll start passing it along to others, your children are extremely susceptible.  And bitterness acts as a fuel as well, because the more our mouths speak foully of others, and the more we behave foully toward others, the more the “others” will do so in return.  You see where I’m going here?  It’s a vicious cycle…the extreme version of it is called vengeance, the first act of war.  True, it’s harder to love people that you don’t know or don’t get along with, but sometimes, if you just have hope in people, you’ll find that they’ll find hope in you, and also in themselves.  Baby steps here, but just think of the bigger picture of hope.

So we talked about Love, we just hit on Hope…now onto Faith.  Faith, well, in short?  Right now, in my opinion, my definition of Faith is…Prove It.  If you believe in Jesus and you have faith that you can do all things through Christ, who strengthens you, and if you truly want to do all those things you want to do in this world…then Prove It…even if you have to start with baby steps.

James 2:17  In the same way, faith by itself, if it is not accompanied by action, is dead.

In other words, faith without works…is dead.  Yes, folks…the very foundation verse upon which my entire blog is built on.  Cool, huh?  Well, I thought so…Hey!  Maybe today will be the day I’m discovered!  Perhaps by Richard Gere, who was just on a 9/11 tribute concert on V-H1, making a speech that got booed because he was trying to convince the crowd that “Love” is the way.  Now everyone is going to think my post is based on that…and once again, steal my mojo…just like they did in high school with Bohemian Rhapsody.  (story for a different time)

So, it’s not going to be easy, brothers and sisters.  A loss is never easy, especially one that is so devastating in circumstances, sudden, and historic.  It’s not easy to deal with in the limelight for those unfortunate ones who got placed there because of another human being’s lack of three basic principle’s, the greatest which, is Love.  But history, personal and historic, has shown us that the sooner we let things settle and just fall back into place the best they can given new conditions, the more we communicate with each other to reach a better understanding with each other, both inside and outside our circles, the more we stand united WITH each other instead of AGAINST each other, and the higher you stand when it’s time to dust off and move on toward what everyone in this world is truly fighting for, at least I hope it is, and that’s love, and the peace that comforts me within it. 

If you’re having trouble getting on your feet, just remember, if you’re on you’re already on your knees…you’re halfway there.  Just keep praying, my brothers and sisters, God’s hand will reach down to you too…

~Dear Lord, I pray that you look over each and every one of your children as we go through these times of great struggle in this world.  We all are sinners in your eyes, and none of us are perfect, but you, Lord Jesus, as our savior, promised us a place in Heaven with you and I want nothing more than to be there with you and those I love and have lost, and therefore, will do all in my power to do your works and follow your guidance so that I may see myself deserving of that place.  Please guide my wife, daughter, family and friends, brothers and sisters to continue to follow, or to find, their light, so that they may have their place as well.  Lord, please watch over all of us in our health and happiness, trials and travels this week, and please find a way to help Toby somehow so that nobody has to hurt too much just yet…I just think that now is not the time, but, Father, you know best.  In your most precious name I pray.  Amen~