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Can You Hear Me Now?

Friday, June 09, 2006

Wise Old Owl

We all know this expression and if you’re like me; you picture an owl sitting on a branch, perhaps wearing glasses that are sliding down a bit on his/her nose, big eyes, alert, awake, and occasionally a “HOO, HOO” will come from that branch. In my mind’s eye I picture this same owl always looking, always watching, occasionally speaking, more often then not just poised and ‘controlled’. I imagine he/she has read the daily and world news that morning and is prepared and versed should the need arise for comment.

I’m trying to maintain this image for myself in many ways. I don’t always succeed because beneath the ‘wise not-so-old owl’ demeanor is one-part leopard and one-part laughing hyena preparing in the wait.

You should realize by now, if you’ve read any of my ranting and rambling, that I feel PASSIONATE about some things and only mildly MOVED by others, rarely do I feel apathy and NEVER do I feel NOTHING.

This week in the midst of my own re-design I was challenged by the ‘Tuesday Toss-up’ over at GiBee’s place. She is not only one of my first and favorite ‘reads’, she is quickly becoming a dear, dear friend and someone with whom I would be comfortable taking my shoes off (unless they were covering disgustingly stinky feet) and letting my hair down, (unless it was armpit or leg hair…no offense to the Europeans, it just makes me itchy) and just being totally ME in all my imperfections. It is what I would call a ‘make-up free zone’ kind of friendship.

Do you think this is one of the BLUE-MEN wives? You get the picture! I gotta BE ME! I am picturing this:

Wow, that was quite a tangent…

So the article she referred readers to, generated much comment and discussion. I read the article, and comments, and the whole thing woke me up at 5:00 a.m. this morning because apparently God wasn’t done dealing with me on the subject…so you, my captive audience…well I guess you’re not captive….but enthralled…okay not enthralled…and if you’re just here cause you googled a picture of a duck or ‘blue men’ sorry, leave now, it doesn’t really relate.

With the article I also reflected on some current reading. I have been reading another of Pastorman’s books by Mark Driscoll called “The Radical Reformission” (reaching out without selling out) and the author (founding pastor of Mars Hill Fellowship in Seattle) has questions at the end of each chapter and one of those questions is what prompted this post and the early morning internal alarm.

The chapter is called “Shotgun Wedding to Jesus”. You can imagine how enlightening and HILARIOUS it is, but the questions at the end, address the reading material in a REAL way.

It starts off fairly benign with questions asking: ‘what do you think are your most cumbersome sins for which Jesus died to make you a Christian?’ or ‘Which people have sinned most grievously against you, and how has Jesus enabled you to forgive them? Then he slaps you upside the head with this question: ‘In what ways are you self-righteous?’ BAM! Upside the head!

So I thought back to my own comments about the article and the comments of others and I’ve just got to say I thank GOD that when I was first introduced to Jesus that I wasn’t around people like some of us. While I no longer look at Jesus as “all play and no work”, I do continue to SEEK and FIND the loving, grace-filled, mercy-offering, sin-seeking, leader that only He can be.

It seems sometimesthat sadly the more “mature” we become in Christ and by mature I mean well read and ‘closed off’, the more standoff-ish and selective and judgmental we become. I have to repent to God daily for these thoughts and WORDS that come and go freely from my own head and mouth. I will say this in closing: While I will not ‘water-down’ the gospel with regards to the absolute truth of love, I will attempt to ALWAYS remain open enough to others to HEAR them speak and research facts on my own before I find them guilty and unworthy and face the same judgment above.

The owl has spoken!

Happy Friday!


Aunt Murry said...

I like what you said and I have been plauged by this question for about 6 months now. Oh I wish we lived closer. It is always punctuated but the statement "Am I wrong? Am I overstepping my bounds here?"

Oh by the way, when I think of an Owl, it is Always Owl out of Winnie the Pooh or the one in one if the Disney Movies. Or how about the one in the toosie roll commercial!

kpjara said...

I totally see the one in the Tootsie Roll Commercial! and I'm hoping we can sit and talk and talk and talk at the KC Luncheon!

I'm really struggling internally with what I have been force-fed and what I believe in my God-Filled Heart! I'm right there with you and I think it's how God wants uncomfortably seeking!

Anonymous said...

Why is the owl percevied as wise? Especially if the owl only says, "Hoo." The owl on the tootsie roll commercial was wrong in the number of licks to get to the center of a tootsie roll pop.

kpjara said...

You can't honestly think the OWL was wrong on the commercial...he proved it scientifically!

He also reminds me that MOST truth is relative and can be altered to align with our own desires.

GiBee said...

Um ... I don't think I ever said to force feed people the gospel or to bang them on the head with their sin, did I???!!! 'Cause that's not what I believe or agree with at.all... No siree! Truth with love and grace... love and grace. Love and grace.

I know without a doubt I struggle with sin, judging people, self righteousness, even hatred... Thank goodness God continues chipping away at me!!!

And for the record ... I would sit next to you in that comfy couch I only share with girlfriends ... the one with the ottoman for the really stanky feet in the no makeup allowed zone. But I draw the line with long armpit and leg hair... yuuhuuk! I'll even bring the chocolate!

Heather Smith said...

I agree totally that it isn't our place to judge. Some things are black and white and are pointed out in the Bible as wrong. Other things are in the gray area. But no matter what, we are all sinners. And without Christ we would all be lost. I definitely think when we are trying to win others to Christ it is good to remember where WE came from.
But like you said, we can't water down the Gospel just because we think it might offend anyone if the situation is black and white!

Sally said...

I'm with you on the non-judgemental thing...and also the grey areas- there are too many black and white proclamations made with no real thought behind them...
and by the way
this European hates armpit hair- (ugh)

Joy M. said...

I have learned recently that we don't just judge sinners. In fact, we christians spend more time judging and condemning each other that it is a wonder sometimes that anyone would want what we have. I am so so guilty of this. I identify with people who are in sin so much so that I tend to whack down any Christians that appear to have trouble reaching out to them. They may be wrong, I may be wrong, but it is not my place to put them in theirs.

God has really been dealing with me on this lately too. My ideas about black and white have been really shaken up lately. I still believe in B&W, but I see that if we don't see someone as a human that God loves first and foremost, then we have already set ourselves up as the judicial system. One minute my puny mind grasps this, the next I don't have a clue.

Oh yeah, and definately the tootsie roll owl-that's how I learned that owls have teeth!

tam said...

This is a big thinker...both gibee's and the article and yours...I'll have to save my opinion for later...