Do the #refugees make you feel uncomfortable?

CS-Lewis-Christianity-Happy

 

 

Do the refugees make you uncomfortable? Do they shake you from your feeling a safety and make you rethink life? Perhaps they make you hug your children tighter at night.

Today my husband and I discussed the possibility of WWIII calmly trying to assess whether that is a reasonable concern.

Friends, my faith does not solve these problems, but it assures me that the risks are worth taking.

Another name for the Holy Spirit is “the one who stirs up.” The Holy Spirit both stirs us up and comforts us at the same time (I don’t know how, but its true).

Christianity isn’t supposed to be sitting on our laurels of blessings, feeling at one with the world.

It is a call to action to serve and love one another, to be open to other human being

 

And lets be honest, that’s dangerous. Its dangerous to open yourself to being in relationship with others. But that is our call as Christian.

We are called to preach and embody Christ and the Good News Even at the risk of our own lives. Does that include refugees who might be terrorists?

As a Christian you are called to be in some kind of relationship with every other human being on the earth.

Because they too are creations of God.
Do the refugees make you uncomfortable?

That might just be God tapping you on the shoulder.

 

 

By giving us a …

By giving us a window into the folk wisdom of an earlier age and revealing the wishes, hopes, fears, disappoinmtents, and frustrations of that time, these stories help us to understand just what is at stake in our own cultural stories. The tales we tell each other and our children not only reflect our own lived experience and our psychic realities, they also shape our lives, enabling us to construct our desires, to cope with our anxieties, and to separate fantasy from reality.” Maria Tartar Cambridge, 1997

Grimm’s Grimmest p. 15 copyright 1997 Chronicle Books, San Francisco

We tell stories to find truth. Tolkien called this the eternal truth in his Mythpoeia essay/poem.

Myths, Lewis told Tolkien, were “lies and therefore worthless, even though breathed through silver.”

“No,” Tolkien replied. “They are not lies.” Far from being lies they were the best way — sometimes the only way — of conveying truths that would otherwise remain inexpressible. We have come from God, Tolkien argued, and inevitably the myths woven by us, though they contain error, reflect a splintered fragment of the true light, the eternal truth that is with God.

Katy’s thoughts Stories help us to understand the human condition in light of the eternal truth, God….our charge is to tell the Gospel wherever and whenever possible, and since Christ’s story is our story, and our story is Christ’s story….the t

wo help us to find where God is…

What we are doing now, our job, is to speak our knowledge/prophecy/stories of God in love. Because that is our window to truth!

And ultimately Fairy Tales are stories about love! 1st Corinthians 8-12 “Love never fails. But where there are prophecies, they will cease; where there are tongues, they will be stilled; where there is knowledge, it will pass away. For we know in part and we prophesy in part, 10 but when completeness comes, what is in part disappears. 11 

When I was a child, I talked like a child, I thought like a child, I reasoned like a child. When I became a man, I put the ways of childhood behind me.” In essence the next verse is the Mythopoeia thesis “12 For now we see only a reflection as in a mirror; then we shall see face to face. Now I know in part; then I shall know fully, even as I am fully known.”

13 And now these three remain: faith, hope and love. But the greatest of these is love.”

Why I’m not an English Teacher

by Neil Gaiman

Read  kids silly stories,s read them cretumblr_muvgaeogFj1s8zzrao1_500epy and confusing and weird stories…read them Neil Gaiman, Roald Dahl, Astrid Lindgren , P. L. Travers, J. K. Rowling, Madeline L’engle, C. S. Lewis, A. A. Milne, Shel Silverstein, Read them Grimm and D’Aulnoy and Hans Christian Anderson (even though he’s creepy as all get out), READ THEM WHATEVER THEY WANT TO LISTEN TO!!!

Good Deeds

Good Deeds

“If you run now, without a moment’s rest, you will still be in time to warn King Lune.”
Shasta’s heart fainted at these words for he felt he had no strength left. And he writhed inside at what seemed the cruelty and unfairness of the demand. He had not yet learned that if you do one good deed your reward usually is to be set to do another and harder and better one. But all he said out loud was:
“Where is the King?”
The Hermit turned and pointed with his staff. “Look,” he said. “There is another gate, right opposite to the one you entered by. Open it and go straight ahead: always straight ahead, over level or steep, over smooth or rough, over dry or wet. I know by my art that you will find King Lune straight ahead. But run, run: always run.”

YAY The Horse and His Boy is my FAVORITE NARNIA BOOK!!!!

Jesus’ primary message was NOT, “Try harder; the kingdom of God is here.”

https://katyandtheword.wordpress.com/2013/07/21/church-is-not-about-belief-in-jesus/ Exactly the kind of theological thoughts that I refer to in my post about Jesus, belief and how Christianity is doing it backwards.

 

Here is an interesting theology that is truly a new trend.

We can see it reflected in Fantasy (which I think is primary a mirror of spirituality in the world)

Narnia, Tolkien’s elves, Oz, etc. posited that technology and progress was “taking over” and “obliterating” magic, and so magic had to be hidden and kept safe (this is also true in “Flight of Dragons!” love that movie)

 

Urban Fantasy (Charles de Lint and Neil Gaiman, etc) and Harry Potter signal a new thought which is that the magical/religious world is parallel to and layered with the “real” world, and once you discover it, you realize its been there all along….sounds like a conversion experience doesn’t it 🙂

I am living in parallel worlds, and I am a parallel girl…..hehehe

Jim Palmer writes “Jesus’ primary message was NOT, “Try harder; the kingdom of God is here.” Nor was it, “You have a lot of growing to do before you can ever expect to experience God’s kingdom.” Instead, Jesus said, “Repent, for the kingdom of God is here.” The word “repent” (metanoia) means to change your mind or to see things in a way you have never seen them before.” This theology of the spiritual and physical world both paralleling and overlapping in such a way that your eyes are opened to them is exactly the turn fantasy has been taking recently.

 

HOW COOL IS THAT!!!

Jim Palmer

darla-whitegirl

The language of transformation often works against us. We sometimes speak of “spiritual growth.” The idea of “growth” implies that spirituality is a process of stages in which we make improvements or progress toward becoming something more or different than what we are right now. Consider the possibility that you were born out of the image, likeness and being of God. The image, likeness and being of God is the underlying, unchanging, and fundamental essence of who you are. The truth is that there is nothing wrong with you the way you are. You cannot be improved upon, and there is never any diminishment of who you are. There is nothing more secure than your true Self and it is never threatened.

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Ozma of Oz, Eon/Eona, Song of the Lionness and coming out of the closet

Spoiler alert: if you haven’t read “The Wonderful Land of Oz,” I’m about to ruin it for you….

I think “The Wonderful Land of Oz” is the first cross gendered story I ever read..True I had read other tales of girls dressing as boys to escape whatever…but Ozma is the only “truly” transgendered character I can think of….She simply changes from a boy to a girl–turns out she’s been a girl all along. Kind of like the book “Boy Meets Boy” its almost too blase about the acceptance…but hey,  I like to think this is how it will be in a perfect world!

PS its the total feminine empowerment story, every power-player is female!

The 14 'canonical' Oz books, by L. Frank Baum

“Eon/Eona” does the girl disguise thing plus a legit transgendered character who is lovely, as does “Song of the Lioness”, Robin McKinley’s Spindle’s End hints at other kinds of love, even though sexuality isn’t really the point. of course Malinda Lo does a great (no-cross-dressing needed) out and out lesbian fairy tale. (PS want a great history of sexuality? Check out “Coming Out Under Fire” an amazing history of gay and lesbian sexuality)

All this makes me think about all those transgendered people are under enchantment, they don’t look like who they are supposed to be….

on the other hand, most fantasy is about that (I’m part fairy, I’m dating a vampire, I have superpowers, I’m really a girl in disguise, I’m a prince/princess turned into a frog)

Being a fantasy nerd, I often feel frustrated with who I present to the world and who I really am

Its difficult on so many levels..

I’m a pastor, fantasy-loving, mother. I am not right-wing, or conservative, but I’m not an atheist either. I had children young and am a professional career woman. I am creative, cheerful, optimistic and yet strong, a leader and am super-responsible.

I’m hard to stereotype.

So I read fantasy, I read it because I know that I am not limited to what other think Christianity is (THANK GOD), but at the same time I think that my Christianity defines my entire being. I read fantasy, put my family first and dress the way  I want to because I am Christian. Being Christian isn’t a guideline for me, it is the very fiber of my being and I continue to find more and more ways to live fully into it…..

If I’m in disguise, and I think all of this is a part of being Christian, what parts of Christianity are being unexplored when we are exclusive. What do gay men and lesbian women experience in Christianity that I miss out on? How about single parents, immigrants and the transgendered?

Fantasy is not about escapism, for me its about the facts of life

1. the world is full of a multitude of unique and interesting beings

2. we have to learn to get along

3. there is a battle between hatred/greed/powerseekers and love–good and evil do both exist…..

4. Even when humanity is failing, hope exists, heroes emerge, and love wins

5. Everyone has a call: a unique part to play in this ongoing quest for hope and love, and it doesn’t matter who we are, because the call is perfect for each and every one of us (only fantasy literature seems to do a good job of defining call!)

Living into this is hard, but this is my reality, and for me fantasy is another way to understand real life and the Bible….

Gotta love the irony of that…I’m sure God gave me an appreciation of wry humor so I can straddle all of that..

So some day fully believe I’ll come out of the closet…….and find Narnia

HA!

Baptismal advice for parents

Baptismal advice for parents

Baptismal advice
Lastly, and possibly most importantly, read to your children and provide them with quality children’s literature.  There is no substitute for stories and the life of the imagination for a child’s developing mind.  Children need to be able to encounter on their own terms (not in a preprogrammed “entertainment” format) stories that are subtle and challenging enough to become part of their ongoing imaginative life. Start with Grimm’s Fairy Tales and anything by Tomie DePaola, and from age 4 or 5 onward, give them C. S. Lewis, Laura Ingalls Wilder, Winnie the Pooh, E. Nesbit, Lloyd Alexander, The Wind in the Willows, Brian Jacques, Madeleine L’Engle, Susan Cooper, Joan Aiken, Arthur Ransome, The Phantom Tollbooth, Watership Down, J. R. R. Tolkien, Ursula LeGuin, and whatever else seems good at the public library.  (Harry Potter and The Hunger Games won’t hurt them, but won’t do much all by themselves, either.)  The three Christian virtues are faith, hope and charity:  to believe in the invisible, to go forward when all seems lost, and to love the unlovable.  A child nurtured on good kids’ books will know these three virtues intuitively, in his or her bones.  Nothing on TV comes close.”

DISAGREE About Hunger Games and Harry Potter (hello Hallows not Horcruxes anyone?) but the reading advice is right on (note what percent is fantasy?)

Would add Andrew Lang and my Fairy Tale list https://katyandtheword.wordpress.com/2013/02/23/fairy-tale-addendum/