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This Week In The Chapel

Light on
In The Chapel

The Art Of Loving

"I AM that I AM."
Almighty God )

Openess Connection Trust


Fascinating people boldly transforming their lives before us. Discussion for your group:

what is your story of a stranger?

Dreamers Hill

our table is lit


 . . . the fruit of the Spirit is
and self-control.
There is no law (Jewish Law) against such things.


Dreamers Hill

"You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart, and with all your soul, and with all your mind, and with all your strength." 

This is the first commandment.

The second is this: ‘You shall love your neighbor as yourself.’ 

There is no other commandment greater than these.

Be Encouraged

Being Fit

Giving all diligence, add to your faith virtue;

and to virtue knowledge;

and to knowledge temperance;

and to temperance patience;

and to patience godliness;

and to godliness brotherly kindness;

and to brotherly kindness charity.

For if these things be in you, and abound, they make you that ye shall neither be barren nor unfruitful in the knowledge of our Lord Jesus Christ.

_ Peter


living water


I am made in the image of God, not your image of God.

We are committing ourselves to the work of reclaiming Chrisitanity; to reclaim it from those who have stolen it, hijacked it, made it something other than it is.

We are commiting ourselves to reclaiming the story of one of relentless compassion and extravagant grace and radical inclusion.

We are reclaiming Christianity from those who have perverted it into a gospel of politics; to reclaim it as a story of transformation, a story that makes a difference, a story that calls you and I to feed the poor, to clothe the naked, to stand on the side of those who are oppressed, and to call forth the truth that ultimately sets all of us free.

Fetching Water

And that's another cool thing our Senior Pastor told us.


Love - Martin Luther King Jr

Out beyond ideas of right doing and wrong doing there is a field. I'll meet you there.

When the soul lies down in that grass, the world is too full to talk about.


In The Light

Let your light shine.


Love keeps no record of Wrongs


Be transformed by the renewing of your MIND, that you may prove what is that good, and acceptable, and perfect, will of God.


Authencity is the elasticity of human connection. Its longetivity abides in trust. Its bond, the glue, the sealing agent is love - authentic love. Nothing else suffices to keep these connections alive. Without them we are strangers.


A confidant brought me The Big Leap by New York Times Bestselling author Gay Hendricks, PhD, for review and discussion. It is insightful and illuminating. A central theme of Gay's book is about how to identify and break through 'the big problem' which keeps us stuck operating in zones beneath our created capabilites and creative capacities. In light of our coincident exploration of the nature of true love as well as our daily practice of living in light we are probing the imapct of love on our ability to transcend and ease at transcending upper limits (smashing glass ceilings) wherever it facilitates or empowers us to continually reside and operate inside those zones in which God's Creation is experiencing and PROVING that good, and acceptable, and perfect will. Fascinating stuff. The resourcefulness of authentic love is phenomenal. It is HUGE. This love - authentic love - keeps no record of wrongs! Do you find this to be true? Can you corroborate this finding?


We are built for connection. There is a place, however, where we can become strangers even to our self, where connections seem criss-cross or are in fact all wrong. Is this familiar? There is a place where too the desire for connection is real but the experience of connection is fake, a farse, a pretense, and most everything within it is a continual upkeep. Is this familar? Discuss. Can love abide there? And what does one do when one is wronged, even repeatedly so? Is this attribute of love - this keeping no record of wrongs - authentic? Is it built for our current reality and sustainability? Are some things just outside the realm of love?

What do you find? Share.

Obsession (Discuss)


Come, let us all be friends for once, 
Let us make life easy on us, 
Let us be lovers and loved ones,
The earth shall be left to no one.

Yunus Emre


"It is not our experience that makes our lives, it is what we do with it."

When I am down, and, oh, my soul, so weary
When troubles come, and my heart burdened be
Then, I am still and wait here in the silence
Until you come and sit awhile with me.

You raise me up, so I can stand on mountains
You raise me up to walk on stormy seas
I am strong when I am on your shoulders
You raise me up to more than I can be.

You raise me up to more than I can be.



Being fully functional and wholly human!

Love keeps no record of wrongs.

"Love is an active, accountable, responsible 'being' that makes decisions reflective of its authentic self."

My vote is for renewing the mind. No hesitation! The benefits are all-around huge. Loving our Lord God with all one's heart and mind and soul and strength, and one's neighbor as one's self, is at minimum, I find, a healthy life exercise inspiring wonderful renewals. I've found in it no snobbery nor stuffiness, no backwardness nor haughtiness, no compulsions nor obsessions nor in-circles of exclusive prudity. Neverhtless, all such winds do come wafting through opened windows. It's the climate! Let it be.

Oh, I have a story.

It was another of those early formative days of youthful unboundedness when the world is at our doorstep and the universe is at easy reach with every leap or stretch.

The handsome, respected visitor was well equipped in knowledge and spirit. He kept the packed lot of us unaware of time passing. He was teaching us the spiritual practice of not offending one another: of the damage wronging each other causes our spirits, our walk, our relationship with God, and our relationship with others, and of how to maintain this 'best practice' and grow strong and live long.

He was well received.

I was acutely receptive. Perhaps, naturally so, considering my history, I welcomed this depth of engagagement swimming in this new ocean of love. I was not alone in this eagerness for growth and camaraderie. Many of us took copious notes. But my life lesson had only just been introduced. This evening was about to become for me a breathless dive deep into the wee hours of a new morning.

If you ever enjoyed anything the likes of the youth of my upcoming, you know there is always the gathering after the gathering after the gathering! Parents could pretty much forget (or keep fretting and steaming, as the case might be) about finding us or having us back in the house at some respectable hour after a young-people's meeting. I guess parents were afraid of us getting into trouble or of us discovering things they did not want us to know. Hahahahaha! And we didn't have cell phones with GPS locators. Hahahahaha! Oh, dear me!

This night, my spiritual mentor was somewhere on the sidelines patiently waiting. I had no idea. Now even the stars above were winking bed time. The night had gone quiet and it would not have been a long walk toward home, but we weren't walking in that direction. I hadn't realized this. We were heading toward the breezy ocean. This spiritual mentor (I've had a few) had long since weaned me off of sweet milk onto the meatier habits of a joyful life. I was feasting on this stuff, and growing ever more muscular. Or so they intimated introducing me at ever more and newer and farther gatherings. I hadn't realized this either, and may never have had it not been for reflection and reunion testimonies. I tended toward deflection. Learned that from my mother! What a woman!


"You know, there is offending and there is being offended," my mentor said on our way to the breezy ocean.

"M-hm." I was thinking.

"There is giving offense and there is taking offense," he said.

"Taking offense? What do you mean?"

"Just that," he said, "Someone may be giving you something, that doesn't mean you have to take it."

Damn right! I was thinking, but in far less harsher tones. I was tender back then. On the outstide!

My heartrate was steadily increasing.

I was expecting him to reveal the spiritual art of fighting back; not always having to turn the other cheek. A wrong hand could give a sweet face a good bruise!

Instead, he said this:

"When someone drops something, it doesn't mean you have to pick it up."

"What do you mean?"

"There is offending and there is being offended, it is up to you to be strong and wise enough not to be offended?"

"What?" Oh no-no-no-no-no-no-no-no-no. No! "What? What do you mean? How can you 'not be offended' when someone is out and out offending you?" Come on now!


I was already secretly worried about earning the title of 'softie' and now my mind was quickly settling on the notion that this new meat of the joyous life is far worse to the gut than turning the other cheek.

I was already convinced that this new thing would set me up to being bullied then require of me to offer my holy smile to that bullying beast just at the time when I was strong enough and bold enough to punch its lights out. Do you know what I arose from? You be Job. I'll be David. This new thing is about being a doormat then saying thank you, sir, for stepping all over me. Have you any idea that I have never called anyone sir in my life. Do you want me to tell you that story? Do you want to be the first to hear 'sir' cross these pursed lips?

My mentor was in for a fierce push back from me and he got one! Intellectually. Emotionally. Spiritually. I've earned enough jewels for my crown. If I am going to stay committed to not offending them, let them stay the hell away from offending me! But I had not heard him yet. Thank God he loved me enough to stay with me, to listen to me, to hear me, for this was about to be one of the most pivotal lessons of my life. I have paid for a few.

The ocean's tides settled from its rush.



"I think I am getting to know you better," he said, "I am not your brother in vain and you are way too smart to hand your power over so easily to a bully or a fool or anyone else for that matter. You wouldn't do that. I know you wouldn't do that. I know that must mean you haven't heard me yet. Or you don't trust me yet."

Okay! I was thinking. I know a trap! Where is he going with this?

The sea was listening.

I was hearing the sea.

"I trust you," I said. I needed to break the forced silence. I was also being honest. And I was feeling broken. I didn't like being broken, especially after a night that was so beautiful for me in which I had learned so much. Besides, he had no part in breaking me. I realized that much. Something inside of me broke at my pounding it.

Now it was just he and I in the whole wide empty world. God was somewhere out there.


"You cannot be offended unless you submit to being offended," he said. "There is a gap between the offender and the offendee. The offense has to cross that gap. It's a wide gap. To hit its mark, the target has to recieve the offense. The target has to accept that offense then the target has to say to the offense, 'Go ahead! You have my permission. Offend me.' Then and only then does the target become the offendee! You are now offended."

There is logic for you!

Even I laughed. For I had to admit to myself, this brother knows me way too well. In fact, I couldn't stop laughing for a while. This brother, my mentor, got me good! On a number of levels. I'd dare to say the ocean was laughing at me.

Now I was ready to listen. My ears opened. My heart opened. My mind opened. Not because of the logic. Rather, because I trusted him. He showed he loved me.This was brotherly love in that moment - time perfected. He loved my spirit. He loved my mind. He loved my well-being. He was there for me. There was nothing in it for him. Oh, how sweet!


I learned the art of 'not taking offense' which serves me awesomely to this day.

It also saves me from being easily offended when no offense was intended, for whatever naivete was in play is then left wherever it got dropped. Hooray!

However, I've found that the gap is not always as wide as my mentor intimated. Sometimes the offense is very much intended, and very much in your face.

So what do I do?

If the offense is so close, it catches me off guard, I make a determination: am I in the offender's space, is the offender in my space, is this public space, or is this a space to which each of us has equal or common access?

If I realize I am in the offender's space I leave the offense wherever it is and get the screeching scram out of that person's space. Don't inquire. Leave! Let it lie. You've been warned! When someone shows you who they are, believe them! Full stop. Don't be offended. That offense is entirely the offender's business - lock, stock and barrel. It is only my issue if I make it my issue.

It's a little trickier (for me) when the offender is in my space, for I have choices. I can choose to invite the offender to exit. I can choose to let the offender aware of my awarenes and give them the chance to retrieve it, 'cause I ain't picking it up, but be sure to take note of the intention. I can choose to find me another space. And sometimes I flat out fail then learn to breathe again. Each of these has consequences. Don't ignore this. Life is precious. Loving is sweet.

Whatever the case, whatever the intention, sometimes we are just flat out wronged or did wrong to someone else. These we must deal with as soon as is practical. That's what love does. In the process of renewing our minds it is very useful to learn how to deal directly, judiciously, and mercifully, with any wrong. And we are learning that too in this series, for this we know, love does not keep record of wrongs.

Love keeps no record of wrongs. This is a stand-up kind of a love! This is not a doormat love nor a slap-around kind of love. This love's journal is peppered with emblems of learning and discovery and growth, and reminders of doing onto others as one would have done onto oneself, and of the joys of faithfulness and patience and peace and kindness and gentleness and goodness and selfcontrol, and of gratitude. Oh, isn't it wonderful to know love . . . it keeps no record of wrongs.


"Knowledge that takes you not beyond yourself is far worse than ignorance." Elif Shafak.




Something To Consider

* * *

You are

strong - brave - capable - valued - gifted - possessed of joy, hope, peace and love - treasured - entrusted - loved - courageous



Lennon on Love and Fear

May our light shine on sprinkled seeds along The Journey.

"Live Your Life - Live it well. You are worth it."

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