Gratitude List 1793

(1) For the first time, I received a substantial donation to Eden in Babylon from a name I did not recognize. Maybe that’s a sign that things are looking up.

(2) This is the most consistent I’ve been with running since I moved to Idaho. I did 2 1/2 miles last night, 2 1/2 miles two nights before that, and 4 miles the previous morning. I’m sure I’ve lost significant weight, though have not yet been to a scale.

(3) Got another column published. I’m grateful to have been given the opportunity to express my thoughts as to how some aspects of Christendom in contemporary American culture are extremely off-base.

(4) Am officially signing a W-4 and beginning my new job at the United Church next Sunday. Yesterday was Cody’s last day. I provided special music, and we had a ceremony afterwards in which Cody’s five years as their pianist was honored. The anxious fire that incessantly burns within me was once again soothed by the spirit of love and peace that prevails over this most accepting church.

(5) Zazen committed to a month’s worth of vocal coaching and I have my first official private music student since moving to Idaho. It’s wonderful how many new possibilities have opened up in my retirement, to permit me to do the work that I most love.

Hard work is painful when life is devoid of purpose. But when you live for something greater than yourself and the gratification of your own ego, then hard work becomes a labor of love.
— Steve Pavlina

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6 thoughts on “Gratitude List 1793

  1. Congratulations on everything. I would like to read your writing on “aspects of Christendom in contemporary American culture are extremely off-base.” I’m curious to see if you are finding the same off-baseness that I do.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Hey Timothy. I’m doing a whole series on different forms of off-baseness, so to speak. Maybe this one hits on what you’re thinking, and maybe not. There’s a link to the article in the gratitude list — just click on the word “column.”


  2. I missed the link earlier. I just read your article. You are on the right track, although Calvinists and Armenians have been arguing for the past 500 years. “Same as it ever was! Same as it ever was! Same as it ever was!” Being raised a Methodist, I go along with the Armenians. Frankly, Luther and Calvin were totally depraved and got it all wrong along with most of the church fathers before them as far as I’m concerned. Too much of Plato’s philosophy has replaced the Christianity of Jesus, but mostly of Paul. Christians have been way off base for a long, long time. But who am I to say? I’m a nobody, but I’m just saying.

    As far as your points about politics and the divisions in Christianity like everything else it is depressing. You have it right that Christians should talk about the Lord Jesus. That’s what Christianity is all about — worshiping Jesus and doing our part to make the world a better place in preparation for the Kingdom of Heaven to be restored on earth. That is made clear in the Lord’s Prayer. The woman telling you that God told her to talk to you about masks, vaccines and politics is way off base.

    I study theology along with medieval history. Studying one helps me better understand the other. When I was working my way through the history and theology of Calvinism a few months ago, I was inspired to write five short songs I called T.U.L.I.P. I’m sure you are familiar with the acronym. I put all five together in order in one song, 5 movements you could say, and I have it on SoundCloud. You might want to give it a listen:


    • I definitely tend toward Calvinism / Reformed Doctrine and I think the TULIP is pretty much right on. We could have some interesting arguments! (j/k)

      Seriously, Jesus said “Ye shall know them by their fruits.” Down in Oakland CA I attended a Presbyterian church that taught Reformed doctrine. There were only two White people in the congregation, and pictures of Obama were on every wall. Very loving congregation.

      In the town I live in, the large Reformed megachurch consists entirely of White people and preaches a very twisted doctrine advocating 1st Century cultural values, including slavery. Not bearing good fruits, they’ve made things very difficult on the rest of the town.

      My point is that to embrace one doctrine over another cannot in itself lead to fruits of love and good works, but to seek Christ fully can.

      Long day today but will try to get to your SoundCloud tomorrow. Thanks Timothy

      Liked by 1 person

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