Sunday, January 21, 2007

1 John 4; May the Force be with you.....

Up at 4 this morning...made the mistake of having caffeine late in the day. Had Michael for about 5 hours and wanted to keep up with him. He's probably sleeping now, and Nana Karen is wired for sound!

I subbed at a local high school a few times in the last couple of weeks...for the same teacher--career tech ed. I guess he thinks no one can handle the lab modules in the I got to show the class the movie, Star Wars: Phantom Menace....the first part 6 times in two days. The second part 6 times in 2 days. Do you know how boring that was for me? I think I memorized the lines. I thought I might go mad after the 6th showing of the pod races.

The wisdom of Yoda hit me in the second half of the movie. It's the scene where the Council is grilling little Anakin Skywalker to see if he measures up to be a Jedi. Yoda asks the future Darth Vader if he is afraid. Ani lies and says, "No." Yoda and the Council (cuz they're Jedi and all) aren't fooled one bit.

"Fear leads to anger, anger leads to hatred, and hatred leads to suffering," I believe is what Yoda states in that old voice version of Kermit the Frog.

Psychologists tell us that anger is not an's the base emotion of fear gone another step. Or do I have that turned around? Anyway, that way makes sense, because it's clear both can be twisted around each other. Our basic fears about life....loss of life, of love or of those we love, easily lead to anger. One of the stages of grief...either of facing the death of a loved one, or of our own anger. Who would think that we could become so angry at a loved one when they die? It's because our fear of abandonment leaves us pissed off. How could they leave us? They would never have left us if they truly loved us.

"Fear leads to anger, anger leads to hatred, and hatred leads to suffering," and fear leads to the Dark Side is the message the little fella tells Ani. Like the Matrix, Star Wars can't help but throw in the spiritual side of creation. The Force is good, the Dark Side, evil.

1 John 4:18There is no fear in love. But perfect love drives out fear, because fear has to do with punishment. The one who fears is not made perfect in love.

And, yet, we in the flesh still fear. We can't help it. We fear all kinds of things. But Perfect Love drives out fear, right?

But, we're human. Flesh. Would that we COULD follow this! We try:

16 And so we know and rely on the love God has for us. God is love. Whoever lives in love lives in God, and God in them.

We all know that God is love. We feel it often, I hope. We get glimpses of heaven.

I was at an art supply place buying canvas yesterday afternoon. I was in one line to begin with but was drawn to another checkout lane. The check out woman was talking to the customer in front of me, and I heard the word "prayer." When it was my turn, I asked her if I could pray about something for her. She looked at me and our eyes connected. She told me she was starting a singles ministry and to please pray for guidance from Him as to where she needed to take it. I said I would. I asked her to pray for me...the canvases and paint I was buying were for paintings for Him. We connected eye to eye again, and had this God moment where we laughed, we both flushed like we were having hot flashes and grabbed each other's hands. "If we never see each other again on earth, I'll meet with you in heaven," she said. "Praise God." We said together. That was a moment of perfect love. He orchestrated that moment, to give us that connection. To show us how it should be, COULD be...if only we would let go, and let Him.

19 We love because he first loved us. 20 If we say we love God yet hate a brother or sister, we are liars. For if we do not love a fellow believer, whom we have seen, we cannot love God, whom we have not seen. 21 And he has given us this command: Those who love God must also love one another.

That's a tall order, isn't it? We need to not only love a fellow believer...we need to love each other, no matter the walk. Tall order, indeed. We're walking in these fleshly garments. Is this a set-up or something? Sometimes, I just ask the Lord...."What were you thinking? You are perfect love. There is no way we can be You. You've bundled us up in imperfection, in emotion, in ego. How can we ever measure up?"

And then, we get those God moments where we know that it is possible:

10 This is love: not that we loved God, but that he loved us and sent his Son as an atoning sacrifice for our sins.

Phew. It's not OUR love for God. It's HIS love for us that qualifies us to be "Jedi." Thank God.

Because day to day gets in the way. We inevitably end up around a group or someone, not unlike the Council or little Yoda....and someone asks us, "Are you afraid?"

And we lie and say, "No."


BarBarA said...

Karen - WHOA!!

What a great post. I was just discussing the fear/anger connection with a friend last night and will have to point him to your blog today.

Amazing moment with the woman at the store. God is good to give us those moments of connection that make Him feel so real.

Missy said...

Karen - you don't know me, but I suspect you've "seen" me around. After your comment on YBMT, I had to "meet" you. First, let me say I admired your comment and ability to speak up for a friend and not be condescending or self-righteous. I was trying to do that, but in anger, I think I failed.

Next point - what an incredible post to read after my debaucle! It is so convicting and so encouraging all at the same time. I know I should always ask what God is teaching me at those times, but I would often prefer it be someone else's turn with the lesson. Maybe I'll remember next time, but probably not!

I read back on some of your past posts, and I think I have much to learn from you (to be selfish!). I hope you don't mind if I pop in from time to time.

Karen said...

Missy, God bless ya...we were probably reading each other's blogs at the same time! Your responses were honest and gracious. There's nothing wrong with speaking your mind...and you did it so well! I like your blog and will be visiting lots! May I link you?

geo said...

Missy & Karen,
YES! There is indeed NOTHING wrong in speaking your mind! I am so glad you two add to the conversation on Bruce's and others Blogs. In my opinion it is only when we allow others to speak openly and freely that we truly begin to understand each other and through those heated discussions we then learn we can begin to trust one another. Most people NEVER get through the heated debates to get to the other side. It is on that other side that we learn we indeed do have a friend who will not abandon us. You two ROCK!


Karen said...

Praise God for you! I TRULY wouldn't be in the place that I am today without you! I don't know if you even remember me emailing you a few years back. But I did, and you guys changed my life!

That said, I'm only going to say this on my own blog.
You have the love and acceptance of all of us, even when you name call! I have not been so lucky in my walk to be accepted for who I am. Maybe that's because it's hard to take from a female.

Your personality is strong, and honest...and I love that in people.

And here's what I've learned from Bob:
Be yourself! Say what you need! Never apologize for your opinion about others' opinions, but apologize if necessary.

bjk said...

This is good....thanks

Missy said...

Karen, thanks for the kind words. I am glad to be linked and would like to add a link to you as well, if you don't mind! Your lesson here is still feeding me and your artwork is incredible!

Geo, thanks for the kind words as well. If I offended, I apologize, for that was not my purpose. One man's free speech may restrain another's. I try to include compassion in my speech - considering others - but I often fail. I hope my attempt has at least brought me a new friend in Karen.

Karen said...

Thank you, Missy!
See what happens? God just makes good stuff happen!

Paige said...

Great post Karen. It has encouraged me to take a closer look at a couple things I sometimes trip over.

All is well with us at this time. Although I am concerned with my beloved's back.

Love & peace my siser

Karen said...

Paige, I'll pray specifically for your DH's situation. I hope it's not serious. You all have a tough journey. Love you, sis.

chris said...

Good post, Karen! And yes, I'm afraid!

Karen said...

Me, too, Chris. Thanks!

Don R said...

Great post Karen. I read every line. My last job in Arlington was a career tech lab teacher! How about that. I followed the thread at Bruce's blog, but just sat back and read, not commenting, except for a "Shazam"!!I still am trying to get used to the honesty (which I feel is good)Like you, those guys (Bruce, Steve, George) have changed my thinking. As you probably know, I got to meet with Geo in Dallas for 5+ hours recently. What a great guy! Still waiting to meet Bruce and Steve.

Tolle says bascially what you have about fear. I would recommend his works to you. May the peace of God envelope you and yours.

Kansas Bob said...

Really insightful post Karen. I love ...

"Whoever lives in love lives in God, and God in them."

... it speaks of how God's love can change us and flow through us.

Ella said...

Good words.