Wednesday, March 14, 2012

Words of Wisdom from Janet ... Miss Jackson if you're nasty!

I'm still attracted to control, but I also know that an attraction can turn into an addiction. The more I have, the more I want. Just as there is no drink that will set the alcholic free, no drug to liberate the junkie, there is no amount of control that will satisfy that kind of freak. Only God is in total control. Not me, not you, not anyone.

Literally, the velvet rope is the barrier that keeps partygoers outside a nightclub from getting to where they want to be. You can look at these partygoers in many ways, however. It's those people who simply want to have fun but are unable to gain admission to the fun room. It can also be those people who are seeking relief from the weight of their problems, and people looking to belong. To get beyond that rope - at least the rope that exists in my imagination - requires, in the words of the songs, not putting people down, but rather freeing ourselves from feelings of hatred and oppression.

I believe we're either moving forward or moving backward. "That applies almost to everything," my friend explained. "We can change cities, countries, and hair colors, but nothing changes until we figure out how to change our attitude and belief system. We move backward when we keep doing the same things and expect a different result. We get discouraged and fall into despair. Superficial external moves - like a new wardrobe or a new apartment - just have us moving from side to side. Different scenery, some sensibility. Be careful, because all of that may be just smoke and mirrors, because it's not going to cure your pain. But to move up, to gain a higher consciousness and a more effective way to deal with our problems - that requires faith. Faith in something bigger than yourself."

My growth depends on faith, as it must for everyone else as well. My spirit of generosity and selflessness also depend on faith. I'm grateful for the comfort that my work provides. I'm grateful for the privileged life that I lead. But I realize that it's the spiritual life that sustains, that nourishes us. In the early morning hours, when I read my Bible, when I pray, when I talk to Jesus, I'm no longer haunted by remorse. I know that the mistakes I've made are in the past; they're gone, forgiven, and no longer cause for guilt or shame. I'm looking forward, not behind.

These words have reminded me yet again that everyone's relationship with God is different and their own. You may not agree with how they live it out, but that doesn't mean they don't know God in their own way. I'm finding the same thing as I read Kris Jenner's book and learn that she went to Bible Study at Pat Boone's place in the 80s and became a born again Christian. It always urks me when I tell people that I've read/heard that Bono's a Christian and they say, "No he's not." How do you know? You may think I'm naive when I read these things and believe that these people are Christians, but who am I to judge them? If they're saying it but they really aren't, God will convict them of that and deal with it Himself. I think I've talked about how much I loved the book Blue Like Jazz. It blew the little box I was living in apart and opened my eyes up to the fact that everyone's journey is different and you have no idea where they've come from, so let go of the judgment. These two books were a great reminder of that. I think we may be surprised by who we meet in Heaven. :)

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