Paul has always stretched me... and I have to say, I don't love it. Physically, I am very flexible, my friends and I have always joked about it, cause I am not in most other ways. He is just so darn open to life! I was born with some kind of Bah-Humbug chromosome that was passed on to me. He likes to go out to lunch with people... I being the "white recluse" do not. I like anything that has to do with getting deeper inside myself where no one will bother me and my thoughts :) So he asks a couple, their two kids and her mom. I find out about the impending function on the way to the restaurant as they are driving behind us. Nice. I ask who it is, in between heavy sighs, and it is a girl I like very much. She is Native American (N.A.) part of the Black Foot tribe, and her mom is someone I have grown to care about although haven't spent a lot of time with. Paul says he felt lead by the Spirit and I realize it's probably true, but can't help but throw out a whiny, "Can't you talk to me about these things first?" Of course then we wouldn't have done it and he knows that... oh yes, he's a keeper.
So my friends mom (I'll call her "Mom") spent most of her life in residential school. That was the imposed schooling the white man forced the Native American into... (although she doesn't like that title, she prefers First Nation.) "Mom" is dogmatic about her views and has a right to be. For five generations the N.A. people were abused sexually, mentally, emotionally and physically. FIVE GENERATIONS of N.A. children being sexually abused under the "church's" name! When I grew up the most I knew of the N.A. was that they gave us corn at the first Thanksgiving and that Tiger Lily from Peter Pan was prettier than Wendy. I mean we've all learned a little since then, yes... but an entire people group are living in 3rd world conditions now and have been messed up to the core, without hope of ever seeing their world the way it once was and very few are even talking about it... except for "Mom"... and she is pissed! Ha! I really like this lady... I know it's a stretch for her to see me as anything other than a white man, but I know she loves me too.
I forget that I am white sometimes... We go to a church that is culturally diverse... no words to describe how beautiful it is. It's not that I think I am black or brown or any other color... I just forget I'm different. When I grew up, I heard the stories of what the white man did to people of color. I learned it from Good Times and the Jefferson's more than I did the history books... but I didn't identify with those white people. I thought we were new white people... I didn't even know any racist's (as far as I knew) but that is what some people see when they look at me... I am one of them.
I know that's how the world views Christians too... us and them. I know God made us each special, unique... even our races etc. are special, but inside... we're all the same. I have been too deep inside myself for 3 years now so when "Mom" told me that, due to the abuse, her people were deep inside themselves and couldn't get out, I selfishly took the opportunity to glean. I asked her how does one get back out? She said it was due to technology... we hide in the TV, porn, what have you... (facebook) she said we need to get back to nature... to the land. I knew the answer, but I asked her if she thought we could... as a world... go back to the way things were... she said no. Eventually everything would be covered in cement. Let's hope that doesn't include our hearts.
The Atheist isn't a God hater... he's a God-not-knower... There are those though who have knowingly chosen their Master. The Bible says if you don't serve one master then you do serve the other so choose wisely. I can't control the way anyone sees me. I may look like my ancestors... (whether that's a slave trader or a safe house provider) or I may look like the religious leaders (the hucksters or the Billy Graham's) or I may look like my Father who loved the world so much that He sent His only Son to redeem the lost. Get me to the latter God. I want them to know You... even if I'm all they've got for now! Let me someday, be a truer reflection of You.