Notes on the Way

Nov 26 2012

The News

Hello, everyone.

The news is this:
My tumblr is ridiculously outdated (not to mention I changed my photo as a prank and can’t seem to figure out how to change it back to… me…)

To read my new writings (and fortunately much better ones) check out my new blog: http://generationchurchless.blogspot.com

I hope you’re all faring well!

Torri

Nov 8 2011

kingdomcome

i am finding in myself a person who desperately longs for the resurrection of the dead.

my sister told me a story tonight.  it reminded me that the world does not end here.

and names flood my mind… names of the living who died, and names of the dead i pray will live.

and i see myself standing amongst them all someday in a renewed world that finally births peace.

GOD.  may we seek and find all the life that is in you.  where else can we go?

"And since then, O Kings and Ladies, I have been wandering to find him and my happiness is so great that it even weakens me like a wound.  And this is the marvel of marvels, that he called me Beloved, me who am but as a dog." - CS Lewis, the Last Battle

"Therefore the LORD waits to be gracious to you,
and therefore he exalts himself to show mercy to you.
For the LORD is a God of justice;
blessed are all those who wait for him.” isa 30

we’re waiting together now.

Amen. 

Nov 7 2011

People are Wack.

"I don’t mean to criticize those mega churches, but for them it’s all about the social experience, not about the spiritual.  I don’t need church for a social experience.  I want the spiritual experience."  -  an unknown man.

the Church is the body of Christ.  it is believers everywhere - jew and gentile, western and eastern, crc and wesleyan and non-denom - coming together as one for the kingdom.  the Church, by definition, is kingdom-people together as one.  how can it not be a social experience?  when did church become about “getting fed”?  we have this backwards, my friends.

food for thought.

Oct 18 2011

a parable.

We are Lion’s paw.
A print in the dust of the heart of Dark.
Its mark short like seventy years in a single day -
a lifetime in a passing moment -
yet its impact, eternal.
Glory to Lion.

Glory to Lion
Mane of fire
Breath of fire
Eyes of fire
Gleaming metal, hot to touch,
burning all my nature up.

In the greenwhile, sun sets on a dying world.
We can’t stop it.
Sunset, though beauty, drawn out.
Focus lost.
The citizens cry, “holy, holy, holy”
to Billboard and Babels.
"Does the spire count?
To which shall we pray?”
Extravagance decides, the true form hides,
and the goat in disguise
rears his neon head.

horns of neon
breath of neon
eyes of neon.
Gleaming toxins, warms the flesh,
Image lost to comfort’s bed.

We, Refugee.
A giant wandering body
torn limb from limb by our own destructive habits.
Glory to Lion?
Refugee toes bow to Refugee feet,
Refugee stomach, to all it can eat.
You bow to what you made.
Glory to Lion?
You know better.
Stop playing that card. Don’t be a liar.

Or are we already?
Are we liar’s claw?
A print in the dust of the heart of Dark?
Is its mark starved like seventy meals in a single snack -
a long whiff of death in a passing breeze -
yet it’s impact eternal?
Glory to whom?

Come out of hiding, Beloved.
Let the Surgeon stitch you up.

We, Refugee.
A giant wandering body
thrown to the dogs by the Builders of Babel,
by citizens’ anger and word of the Goat,
but Wholly Holy by water, blood, fire.
Raised again, a Holy Whole 
by Hole in Hand of Lion’s Lamb.
Turn again. The time has come.
Glory to Lion. 

Sep 10 2011

we

Jesus could have prayed for anything.

Knowing that shortly he would be in the garden, sweating blood, crying out and being taken away to die, He lifted His eyes up to heaven and prayed that we would be unified.

“The glory that you have given me I have given to them, that they me be one even as we are one, I in them and you in me, that they may become perfectly one, so that the world may know that you sent me and loved them even as you loved me.” (see John 17).


We were made to be ONE.


I believe this is deeper than sharing goods or a purpose or “doing life together.”  I believe this is deeper than getting along and bringing denominations together.  I believe this is deeper than even praying for each other and pulling for one another.

I believe this is a call to a profound Oneness that is rooted deep in the very heart of the Church.

I felt this unity for the first time amongst my brothers and sisters in Indonesia.  I’ve heard many Christians refer to one another as “brothers and sisters,” but for the first time I understood it to be more than mere semantics.  When I call them my brothers and sisters, it is neither “spiritual” nor sentimental.  I mean it.  They are my family.  I felt a tear when I left.

This is Unity.  This is Oneness. 
This is the fulfillment of Christ’s prayer for us.

But where is our unity, American church? 

Why don’t I feel that I am leaving a piece of myself behind when I move around like I do?  I’m confident this is much more a problem with my own heart than it is with the people I am around… but what about my sisters and brothers in Indonesia?  How did our great friendship come to be?  What understanding do they have that we lack here?  They are so full of love…

I am not writing to share the answers.  I don’t have the answers.
I am not writing to criticize.  I am feeling the weight of this concern in my own life.

I am writing to challenge your thinking.

We need to confront these issues.  How is it that I call people who live on the opposite side of the globe my family when we don’t even share so much as a language, yet feel like I am butting heads with so many Christians in my own country?  Why do I see such dissention and disgust between churches in the same city?  Why do we have access to Christian books of every shape and size and genre and topic – why do we have a surplus of Bibles and church services and small groups and “Christian activities” – and yet we cannot get along with each other?

Jesus prayed we would be one so that the world would know He is who He claimed to be.  This is a plea we can no longer afford to ignore.  What will we do about it?

And Jesus said, "Holy Father, keep them in your name, which you have given me, that they may be one, even as we are one… that they may all be one just as you, Father, are in me, and I in you,that they also may be in us so that the world may believe that you have sent me.

Amen. May His Kingdom come.

Aug 17 2011
"Suppose we have only dreamed, or made up, all those things—trees and grass and sun and moon and stars and Aslan himself. Suppose we have. Then all I can say is that, in that case, the made-up things seem a good deal more important than the real ones. Suppose this black pit of a kingdom of yours is the only world. Well, it strikes me as a pretty poor one… We’re just babies making up a game, if you’re right. But four babies playing a game can make a play-world which licks your real world hollow… I’m on Aslan’s side even if there isn’t any Aslan to lead it. I’m going to live as long like a Narnian as I can even if there isn’t any Narnia."
The Silver Chair, CS Lewis
Mar 31 2011

matthewthirteen

The Kingdom of Heaven is like a treasure that a man discovered hidden in a field. In his excitement, he hid it again and sold everything he owned to get enough money to buy the field.

Again, the Kingdom of Heaven is like a merchant on the lookout for choice pearls. When he discovered a pearl of great value, he sold everything he owned and bought it!

Mar 29 2011

Actual Children’s Answers to The Question “What Is Love?”
“Love is when you go out to eat and give somebody most of your French fries without making them give you any of theirs.” - Chrissy, age 6 “Love is what makes you smile when you’re tired.” - Terri, age 4“Love is when my mommy makes coffee for my daddy and she takes a sip before giving it to him, to make sure the taste is OK.” - Danny, age 7“Love is when you kiss all the time. Then when you get tired of kissing, you still want to be together and you talk more. My Mommy and Daddy are like that. They look gross when they kiss.” - Emily, age 8
“Love is what’s in the room with you at Christmas if you stop opening presents and listen.” - Bobby, age 7
“If you want to learn to love better, you should start with a friend who you hate,” - Nikka, age 6
“Love is when you tell a guy you like his shirt, then he wears it everyday.” - Noelle, age 7
“Love is like a little old woman and a little old man who are still friends even after they know each other so well.” - Tommy, age 6
“During my piano recital, I was on a stage and I was scared. I looked at all the people watching me and saw my daddy waving and smiling. He was the only one doing that. I wasn’t scared anymore.” - Cindy, age 8
“My mommy loves me more than anybody. You don’t see anyone else kissing me to sleep at night.” - Clare, age 6
“Love is when Mommy gives Daddy the best piece of chicken.” - Elaine, age 5
“Love is when Mommy sees Daddy smelly and sweaty and still says he is handsomer than Brad Pitt.” - Chris, age 7
“Love is when your puppy licks your face even after you left him alone all day.” - Mary Ann, age 4
“I know my older sister loves me because she gives me all her old clothes and has to go out and buy new ones.” - Lauren, age 4
“When my grandmother got arthritis, she couldn’t bend over and paint her toenails anymore. So my grandfather does it for her all the time, even when his hands got arthritis too. That’s love.” - Rebecca, age 8
“When you love somebody, your eyelashes go up and down and little stars come out of you.” - Karen, age 7
“You really shouldn’t say ‘I love you’ unless you mean it. But if you mean it, you should say it a lot. People forget.” - Jessica, age 8

Actual Children’s Answers to The Question “What Is Love?”

“Love is when you go out to eat and give somebody most of your French fries without making them give you any of theirs.” - Chrissy, age 6 

“Love is what makes you smile when you’re tired.” - Terri, age 4

“Love is when my mommy makes coffee for my daddy and she takes a sip before giving it to him, to make sure the taste is OK.” - Danny, age 7

“Love is when you kiss all the time. Then when you get tired of kissing, you still want to be together and you talk more. My Mommy and Daddy are like that. They look gross when they kiss.” - Emily, age 8

“Love is what’s in the room with you at Christmas if you stop opening presents and listen.” - Bobby, age 7

“If you want to learn to love better, you should start with a friend who you hate,” - Nikka, age 6

“Love is when you tell a guy you like his shirt, then he wears it everyday.” - Noelle, age 7

“Love is like a little old woman and a little old man who are still friends even after they know each other so well.” - Tommy, age 6

“During my piano recital, I was on a stage and I was scared. I looked at all the people watching me and saw my daddy waving and smiling. He was the only one doing that. I wasn’t scared anymore.” - Cindy, age 8

“My mommy loves me more than anybody. You don’t see anyone else kissing me to sleep at night.” - Clare, age 6

“Love is when Mommy gives Daddy the best piece of chicken.” - Elaine, age 5

“Love is when Mommy sees Daddy smelly and sweaty and still says he is handsomer than Brad Pitt.” - Chris, age 7

“Love is when your puppy licks your face even after you left him alone all day.” - Mary Ann, age 4

“I know my older sister loves me because she gives me all her old clothes and has to go out and buy new ones.” - Lauren, age 4

“When my grandmother got arthritis, she couldn’t bend over and paint her toenails anymore. So my grandfather does it for her all the time, even when his hands got arthritis too. That’s love.” - Rebecca, age 8

“When you love somebody, your eyelashes go up and down and little stars come out of you.” - Karen, age 7

“You really shouldn’t say ‘I love you’ unless you mean it. But if you mean it, you should say it a lot. People forget.” - Jessica, age 8

(Source: harlemink)

via kidkitos
Mar 23 2011
"I have not said to my people: “Get rid of your discontent.” Rather, I have tried to say that this normal and healthy discontent can be channeled into the creative outlet of nonviolent direct action. And now this approach is being termed extremist. But though I was initially disappointed at being categorized as an extremist, as I continued to think about the matter I gradually gained a measure of satisfaction from the label. Was not Jesus an extremist for love: “Love your enemies, bless them that curse you, do good to them that hate you, and pray for them which despitefully use you, and persecute you.” Was not Amos an extremist for justice: “Let justice roll down like waters and righteousness like an ever flowing stream.” Was not Paul an extremist for the Christian gospel: “I bear in my body the marks of the Lord Jesus.” Was not Martin Luther an extremist: “Here I stand; I cannot do otherwise, so help me God.” And John Bunyan: “I will stay in jail to the end of my days before I make a butchery of my conscience.” And Abraham Lincoln: “This nation cannot survive half slave and half free.” And Thomas Jefferson: “We hold these truths to be self evident, that all men are created equal …” So the question is not whether we will be extremists, but what kind of extremists we will be. Will we be extremists for hate or for love? Will we be extremists for the preservation of injustice or for the extension of justice? In that dramatic scene on Calvary’s hill three men were crucified. We must never forget that all three were crucified for the same crime—the crime of extremism. Two were extremists for immorality, and thus fell below their environment. The other, Jesus Christ, was an extremist for love, truth and goodness, and thereby rose above his environment. Perhaps the South, the nation and the world are in dire need of creative extremists."
MLK, Letter from a Birmingham Jail