Saturday, March 12, 2011

I Am An Onion, An Onion I Am

The more I know, the more I know I don't know..... ya know? Let me explain.
   I have been following this Jesus for quite a few years and after the first few years, I had it all figured out, I really did. I did all the things I heard Christians were supposed to do, and I quit doing all the things I heard Christians weren't supposed to be doing. I won't list them because I am sure most reading this are very familiar with the list. The more I did (and didn't do) the better I felt about myself, in a highly spiritual way. In fact, I was much better than most of my friends and just about all others I ran across in the church and in the street. A silent head-shaker, and finger-pointer. I thanked God many times that I wasn't like the evil-doers I knew, an honest man I was, and I shined. If I wasn't me, I would want to be.
   Then one day, after carrying the weight of self-righteousness for so long, God lifted the veil for just a second so I could get a glimpse of myself, my true self...... not a pretty sight. Ya see, I had been seeing the world through a filter of my own making, my own experience, and my own understanding. Every righteous thing I thought were of God, I carried, not a light load, and everything I saw was through this "filter". Everybody I saw, every situation I came across, I judged through this lens of my own making.
   Then I was shown a filter-less view of others and I didn't recognize what I was seeing. How could Love be so blind? These people I was supposed to be kind to, according to the bible, were not even close to deserving of God's love. (must have been a bad translation of the text) I had forgotten that when God picked me up, I was cursing and spitting at Him, a God-hater and a .... dare I say, ragamuffin. Over the years I had built a filter to see the world through, layer and layer of misunderstandings and bad theological and religious views to the point where the world I saw was not God's world.
   I am in the process of peeling away these layers, like a stinking onion, and it is not a pleasant experience, but it is necessary. The more I peel away, the closer I get to seeing others through the eyes of Jesus. It is truly becoming a beautiful world of possibilities, the possibility of being Jesus to those in need. The painful side of peeling away these layers, is the view I have of myself. I have been shook to the core, humbled to the point where I can barely look up from my face-down position to say "God, have mercy on my, a ragamuffin and a sinner". An onion I am, a stinky onion, but I am smelling better with every layer.
God, help me to not think so highly of myself,
God, help me to not think so lowly of myself,
God, help me to not think of myself so much.

Thursday, March 10, 2011

Community, It Is Not Good To Be Alone

Today I caught a glimpse of three moths….or butterflies, not quite sure which they were, but they were very delicate, quiet, and flying together in some sort of airborne dance.  They had a soft tan, almost pastel yellow color and it seemed that one of them that was the center of attention. The other two were carefully and rhythmically flying around the first, in a somewhat calculated, almost dance-like balance of play and choreographed courtship.  All this was taken in by me, in the span of just a second or two…..for that is all the time I had before the trio of silence were met with the windshield of my speeding car.  I couldn’t help it, for if I could have, I would have swerved, or slowed, or screamed,…..something.  But as fate, or whatever you would call it, would have it, our paths met.  Fortunately, or unfortunately, you make the call, my car came in contact with only two of the three.  I know this because one of them was smeared across my windshield in a yellowish powder, and the other I saw bouncing along the road in my rear view mirror.  The third, I also saw in my mirror, still flying, out of control a bit, but spared death. This is where the dilemma falls, for in the seconds I saw the three, they seemed like they should be together, the three as one, but now, only one remained.   In the Bible, (Genesis 2:18) it is written of Adam, “The Lord God said, It is not good for the man to be alone. I will make a helper suitable for him.” This was brought home to me in the sight of this one lone moth fluttering away. There was an incompleteness that I noticed, but only after seeing the quick glimpse of the three.  For if I had only seen the one flying alone first, I wouldn’t have had a second thought about it, but now…….

Aaron Huey

Aaron Huey
America's Native Prisoners of War