Not My Jesus?

thXNYB5Y5M

I listened to a podcast called Evangibros that I highly recommend.  I encourage all to listen to one in particular regarding the confrontation of racism.  The link is below:

https://www.facebook.com/evangebros/

Why? Because it is challenging, deeply thought provoking, and hopefully uncomfortable.  The hosts, Don M. Schiewer and George M. Benson invite a very close friend’s of Don named Chris Sanchez.  I have intentionally prayed, fasted, and gratefully sat in silence in hopes to see and experience the hurt in not just Chris’ eyes but also through the rejected Nazorean.  The hope of this podcast is to invite all respectful discussion with open ears, minds, and hearts.  For the ‘privileged’, like myself, it is simply best to be still and silent.  And so I have, for many days pleading in silent prayer to combine my experiences with Chris’ knowing we are more like Christ when we seek community despite our various differences.

The first stone cast by Chris towards my already broken glass house of piety crashed in as a reminder of how oppression blossoms within Liberation theology.  Ancient Jewish perspectives, and yes Jesus was a Jew, draws Western Christianity kicking and screaming into the forgotten Jewish mindset of the blood, sweat, and heavy tears wrought by enslaved captivity.  Way back then, daily life was lined with rotting corpses pegged and tied to crosses on many Roman roads dominating this culture of oppression and racism.

I have replayed the words gracefully spoken by Chris over and over in my prayers and recognized that beautiful portion of Liberation theology within my own reality and my personal intimacy with Jesus the rebuilds the castle in my heart starting with a rejected cornerstone.  Dare we consider that all lines measurements and lines founding this church are trued from this one stone? Boldly, I say “Yes!”  I bless the words and work of Chris and will continue to pray towards a reparation for the sins of our own nation.

I cannot help but see that Liberation theology is a very human hope firmly adopted by the promise revealed at Mt. Sinai.  It was a necessary theology of hope of healing the sickness of hate, greed, and power nurturing racism both then and now. My rub with Chris came quickly in the program when he rightfully said, “You don’t have a right to criticize the how he protests nor why (paraphrasing here). Furthermore Chris’ quote preceding this the program stated:

“If your not showing up where the oppressed exists and are moving, then I’m not interested in your gospel; I’m not interested in your Jesus.”

Ouch.

Seriously America, we have wannabe Nazis parading and spewing their hateful rhetoric. When did vomiting this vile ideology that our Nation (was way too slow) to war against now require police protection at tax-payers expense for a sick minority’s freedom of speech? Chris was there protesting. Thank you my friend. Chris also said it felt good to release his anger and yelling at the wave of right hands raised in salutes to “Heil Hitler!”

This is certainly not my America…

My rub with Chris? Protesting is a double edge sword glimmering with both edges of the sacred and profane. My very needed portion of my conversation with Chris is discuss the dark seduction of protesting even he unknowingly admitted to when it felt good to release whatever brought some catharsis.  So what would Jesus do Chris? ( I apologize for what may seem as a very trite question I assure you it is not.)  The sacred consciousness that inspires Chris to protest is surely from above since silence conspires with acceptance of oppression. Yet, I have serious concerns for limiting one’s Christianity to Liberation theology.  Jesus is still doing something new. The work of this living Christ of God is still perfecting holiness within. No?  Does the end justify the means?  Does trading violence with violence beget peace? “Our struggle is not against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the powers of this dark world and against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly realms.” (Ephesians 6:12)  Did not our Jesus conquer this darkness by solely trusting His Father by offering perfect love as a perfect sacrifice?

So… Do I know a different gospel or a different Jesus?

imagesCAV60KRO

His,

Chris (Clody)

 

Advertisements

Just One Question?

I find no greater peace than walking my dogs before the dawn and praying the Rosary. Today, as I entered into the imagery of Jesus carrying his cross, I was further silenced in the symbolism of the cross and its shape of a “t“. As I surrendered to the last mystery of his crucifixion, a horror and beauty only G-d could hold, I was given this question:
Was Jesus nailed to :
theology
or
the poor,
*  they who mourn,
*  the meek,
*  they who hunger and thirst for righteousness,
*  the merciful,
*  the pure of heart,
*  the peacemakers,
*  they who are persecuted for the sake of righteousness?

Shouldn’t each plight of the latter be considered?
Who are these people? …before you answer that consider the following quote:

“I really only love God as much as I love the person I love the least.”
– Dorothy Day

 

thwhavwg5j

Become Peace,

Chris

Gone Boy

images (1)

Gone Boy

A squeak of a bus door,
Pierces chatter of tiny voices,
Engine grumbles to an awkward stop –
My new friend balances to his feet.

Pulling green, seat corners while passing by,
A shy smile and softly whispered, “Bye”,
Chris bounces down steps with a little hop,
to a corner where he crosses the street.

An ungreased squeak and slapping of doors,
Her impatient eyes peer through a noisy headache,
Runny nose, lunch box and left shoe untied,
A trapped shoelace trips this kindergartner’s gait.

Scooby-Doo lunch box crashes open,
A little boy splashes into the hot, black street,
Before her taken breath could exhale,
Red-lightning, a skidding thud; tires atop shoeless feet.

Terrified eyes catch mine,
Watch the bus!”, she mouths to me,
Her heart-wrenched screams of “Help!”
Get blankets!”, then silence, as all turn to see…

My baby!”, “My baby!” shatters the quiet,
A rush to cover body,
A small huddle catches a grieving mother,
While a strange, rush of peace covers me.

Years darkened by nightmares,
Wakening to saying the Lord’s prayer,
Yet, since Chris, I believed all would be well,
For peace stares unhesitatingly into Death’s glare.

I miss you friend. RIP Christopher Corbett, 1971

 

By Chris Clody
7/8/17

Our Racism 24/7

cop

Racism Witness

History can no longer be hidden,
As racism paints our real-time streams.
White privilege has become bedridden,
Unable to wake from its cozy dreams.

Brothers left beaten by boys in blue,
Oaths to serve and protect forgotten,
When will white pride put on oppressed shoes?
Still blind eyes turn from their days of cotton!

Indignities of indignities,
Wicked betrayals to brotherhood,
A self-caused American disease,
Now forcing riots in our neighborhoods.

True equality for ALL citizens,
Lest’ the privileged accept God’s condemnation.

Peace waits impatiently…

by Chris Clody
9/24/16

The Only Life That Matters…

dallas

Tragedy & Unaccountability.
Boils the soul belly up and white.
A child’s hope becomes fear’s amputee
Insecurity aligns crosshairs of a gun sight.

Dare we be outraged?
Is violence forged by hate forgivable?

Our corruption can never be fixed.
Yet, the solution rests within tension.
Held together by a lamb in our midst,
Who offers peace and hope through redemption.

Dare we turn away?
Has arrogance won our hearts?

Truly the only life that matters,
Is one shared together in God,
‘Lest you expect hope from lives we’ve shattered.

By Chris Clody
7/10/16

Green and Peaceful Pastures

As Lent finds me, I pray that I continue to endure with courage. Courage to lower my defenses and reveal God’s beauty and humility. Endless are my prayers to engage others with the best version of myself. As Lent teaches and I listen and realize, that best version is the very image He breathed within.

images

The Rest You Seek

I Am the rest you seek,
I Am the rest you seek,
Serene are my pastures,
Giving strength to the weak.
For I Am your rescue,
Your ransom and peace,
Open your hearts,
Awake to My mercy,
Find Me the humble,
The outcast,
The meek.

Come to Me brother,
Reconcile your sin,
Bathe in my mercy,
Let forgiveness begin,
Give me your burdens,
Your worries,
Your sorrow.
Give me your hurting
Your end of your rope,
For I Am your rescue,
The Giver of Hope.

I Am the rest you seek,
I Am the rest you seek,
Forgiven forever,
I Am the Word God speaks,
I’ll raise you in splendor,
From sin’s desolate bleak,
Rejoice with Me,
And sing of this glory,
Come live in my love,
My joyful,
Heartbeat.

By Chris Clody 2/20/2016

God loves you excessively – and there’s nothing you can do about it…

imagesCAAULHD4…Or is there?  When you come to terms with the inescapable prognosis of an Omniscient Love enveloping your next inhale, holding your breath doesn’t seem to be the logical answer.  I believe there may be more behind a friendly smile encountered in passing.  The smile I easily offer is not only a renewed gratitude towards my Loving Pursuer, it is also the symptom of a humble victory of my quiet war with chronic pain.  For it is in this found peace amidst a constant storm that lifts the corners of my mouth.  I believe peace, not freedom from pain or even finding happiness, is humanity’s mooring against loneliness and possibly despair.  As prayer and nausea extend my early mornings long before my feet find the floor, I am still grateful for each inhale that comforts my soul far beyond that gulp and warming descent of perfect coffee.  In a way, I am grateful for pain since it not only thins my spiritual veil but awakens me to sensing more of what life has to offer.   Loneliness flees like dark from light with a knowing I am never alone.  To some who find my perspective a result of desperate religious brainwashing, I can gently assure them that chronic pain will gladly prove that wrong rather quickly.  So pass along a smile today knowing God loves you more than we’ll ever know.

His Peace,

Chris