Categories
Hope

Tempers, anger, hate on high. Would it be safe?

Islamic Center of Orlando open house
Room filled with Parishioners from my Church a few miles north. Camera crew from Brazil. (not part of the normal agenda)

 

Islamic Center of Orlando
Josh, standing, top center led 30-minutes of Q&A before dinner. Imam top left, hand raised, addressing the group too. Both were wonderful. Our Son lower right green-plaid shirt.

 

Islamic Center of Orlando open house
Guest speaker, a Christian from Atlanta, who converted to Islam.

 

Islamic Center of Orlando open house
There was a nice presentation projected on the wall before dinner.

 

A few days ago sitting in Church, the Pulse Orlando tragedy was only a few hours old and the enormity hadn’t fully emerged, so when our Priest reminded everyone that Parishioners were invited to a Ramadan dinner celebration and Islamic presentation in three days (last night), i leaned over and asked our Son (15) if he’d like to go. He said yes.

As we walked to our car after Mass, i checked Twitter for an update – death toll at 20.

WHAT!

An hour after we got home, Twitter updated the number to 50 dead.

Please tell me this is just a bad dream.

i became afraid of the decision to attend.

Tempers, anger, hate on high. Would it be safe?

This passed and we looked forward.

Upon arrival, the teen had reservations and asked me to be attentive to our surroundings.

Already on it (but i didn’t tell him that).

We left feeling like we had made one of the best decisions in recent memory.

 

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On April Fool’s Day 2009, jeff noel began writing five daily, differently-themed blogs (on five different sites). It was to be a 100-day self-imposed “writer’s bootcamp”, in preparation for writing his first book. He hasn’t missed a single day since.

 

This website is about our spiritual health. To leave this site to read today’s post on jeff’s career health website, click here.

 

Categories
Unanswered Questions?

A blinding flash of the obvious, parable-style

Blurry Christmas photo
i know it’s a Christmas tree, because i took the photo, but everyone else would require an explanation to “see it”.

 

i rarely (in 12.5+ posts) post scripture. But today is an exception. Why? Because it clearly, concisely, and compellingly captures the transformational reason parables are critical:

Mark 4:3-20
3) “Listen! A sower went out to sow. 4) And as he sowed, some seed fell along the path, and the birds came and devoured it. 5) Other seed fell on rocky ground, where it had not much soil, and immediately it sprang up, since it had no depth of soil; 6) and when the sun rose it was scorched, and since it had no root it withered away. 7) Other seed fell among thorns and the thorns grew up and choked it, and it yielded no grain. 8) And other seeds fell into good soil and brought forth grain, growing up and increasing and yielding thirtyfold and sixtyfold and a hundredfold.” 9) And he said, “He who has ears to hear, let him hear.” 10) And when he was alone, those who were about him with the twelve asked him concerning the parables. 11) And he said to them, “To you has been given the secret of the kingdom of God, but for those outside everything is in parables; 12) so that they may indeed see but not perceive, and may indeed hear but not understand; lest they should turn again, and be forgiven.” And he said to them, “Do you not understand this parable? How then will you understand all the parables? 14) The sower sows the word. 15) And these are the ones along the path, where the word is sown; when they hear, Satan immediately comes and takes away the word which is sown in them. 16) And these in like manner are the ones sown upon rocky ground, who, when they hear the word, immediately receive it with joy; 17) and they have no root in themselves, but endure for a while; then, when tribulation or persecution arises on account of the word, immediately they fall away. 18) And others are the ones sown among thorns; they are those who hear the word, 19) but the cares of the world, and the delight in riches, and the desire for other things, enter in and choke the word, and it proves unfruitful. 20) But those that were sown upon the good soil are the ones who hear the word and accept it and bear fruit, thirtyfold and sixtyfold and a hundredfold.”

 

__________

 

 

On April Fool’s Day 2009, jeff noel began writing five daily, differently-themed blogs (on five different sites). It was to be a 100-day self-imposed “writer’s bootcamp”, in preparation for writing his first book. He hasn’t missed a single day since.

This website is about our spiritual health. To leave this site to read today’s post on jeff’s career health website, click here.