Sunday, February 09, 2020

An Ancestral Oddball.

      A few posts back, I said I was an ancestral oddball. Explanation follows.  All my siblings and I were born to the same mother, but different father's.
       My mother had five kids. Four boys, one girl.  I am the outlier. Typical if you know me. I never make things easy. I was born to a different father than my siblings. He died a number of years ago. I don't remember when.  I never met the relatives on his side. All I knew was him. Never knew his parents or any other members of his family. 
       I suspect this is where I got the 20 odd percent of British/Irish according to 23 and me. So I guess I got the biracial thing going. My mother, father and all my siblings died within the last 35 years.          I never really knew the father of my siblings. I never really knew his parents or grandparents. My mother mentioned them when I was growing up. But they all died before I came into age. I don't know about where my siblings kids are, or whether they're still alive. I lost touch with that side of the family when my last brother died about ten years ago.  
        And I'm not really interested in tracking them down, if they're still alive. For all intents and purposes, I'm it.  The last apple on my family's branch of the tree. Once I'm gone, that's it.
         I've got nobody, as far as I know. All I have is myself. It's kind of scary.  But it is what it is.  
         Why am I sharing this on Facebook?  I live a fairly open life here. There are very few secrets in me. I keep those close to the vest, but the rest? I put it out there for all to see.  My mixed up life. For what it's worth. Which ain't much.

Wednesday, January 15, 2020

A Conversation With God...

A conversation between me and God shortly after I arrive in Heaven.

God: Okay, Pierre. Here's the deal. You accepted Jesus my son as your personal saviour. That gets you in. The bad news is that we haven't figured out where to put you.

Me: Okay.

God: You met the minimum requirements. But you haven't done anything else.  You don't evangelize, you don't witness, you haven't brought one soul into the kingdom.  You got in by the skin of your teeth. You don't even pass out tracts.

Me: Have you ever seen Chick Tracts, Lord? 

God: Okay, point taken.  I know you like to sing so we'll put you in the Heavenly choir. For once you won't be the only tenor in the section. 

Me: Cool! 

God: Now, for where you're gonna live. Obviously, we're not putting you in the high rent district. You won't be hanging with me, or Jesus. The Holy Spirit gets around a lot so you'll get to rub shoulders with him. But all the good digs will be taken by Mary, Joseph, the Disciples, Paul, the Old Testament Patriarchs. That bunch.  You won't be there. Besides, they aren't the most exciting crowd. Important, but not exciting.  So I guess we'll put you in the Heavenly Ghetto. 

Me: From what I hear the Ghetto of Heaven is infinitely better than the finest gated community on Earth. 

God: It is, but that's where all the praise singers will live. 

Me: You mean I have to listen to praise music for eternity? 

God: Either that or the campus where all the musicians who performed all that awful Contemporary Christian Music of the  70's and 80's will live.  Your choice.  It could be worse. You could be stuck where all the televangelists live. 

Me: Yech! Unless I get to smack the televangelist that convinced me to toss my ELO collection, I want nothing to do with those Brylcreem prophets!  I guess I'll take the bad CCM. At least some of them rocked. The lyrics were crap but it had a beat. Petra won't be there will they? 

God: You chucked away a perfectly good ELO collection because some idiot televangelist told you they were of the devil? Oh, he's getting a Heavenly Wedgie for that one!  I love ELO!!  Are you kidding? Petra's the house band! Especially with Greg X. Volz as the lead singer!  I rock to those boys!! Good choice in your choice of residence. I'm not looking forward to being praised 24/7/eternity. But them's the rules.  Welcome aboard and get your robe, and other goodies over at Processing.

Me: One more question, Lord. What about beer?

God: What about it?

Me: Is Heaven going to be a dry Paradise?
 
God: Oh, no. You know how boring this place would be if we didn't have good beer? In your case, all the Bourbon barrel Imperial coffee stout you can drink!!

Me: Yeeeah boyee! 

God Don't do that again!!!

Tuesday, January 14, 2020

Trying To Figure Shit Out.

Anymore, when I see the stupidity, evil and corruptive shenanigans that occur in the name of organized religion, Sometimes I have to wonder. 
      Did God make us in His image? Or did we make God in our image? I mean, there's a lot being done right in organized religion. The homeless are bring helped. The hungry are being fed, It does bring peace to countless people's lives. Faith has its place.  
      But there's a lot of stuff being done wrong too. The most vulnerable of us are being violated by people who are supposed to be in a position of trust. And those who are supposed to supervise them try to cover their asses by sweeping it under the rug. 
      There's thievery, there's squabbling and power grabs. Those in power abuse that power for their enrichment. Or to subjugate the powerless. People are mixing politics with faith. People making a buck off God's expense. God's words are being twisted to accommodate agendas. God's words being used to excuse all manners of evil. 
      And trust me, there are plenty of those who express no belief in God capable of both great deeds and evil ones too. No one corners the market on either good or bad. We're all capable on f*****g up on a biblical scale.  
       I don't know where I'm going with this. It just popped up into my head and wouldn't leave until I put it out there.  Kinda like verbal constipation.  That's how my blog works. A lot of the longer rants posted here end up there. Ex-Lax for my mind, as it were. 

 www.moonlightscribbler.info   Shameless plug. 😀

       But people are starting to be turned off to organized religion. It's not satisfying people's needs anymore.  More and more are no longer identifying with a particular religion, or they choose to pursue spirituality outside the walls of a church. My feeling? I identify as Christian of the Episcopal persuasion. I don't witness, or pass out tracts.  I don't evangelize. I accept people as they are, where they are. I don't always succeed. I'm trying to figure out my situation before trying to sell others on a cure. We all have to figure out what gets us through the long night. It's different for all of us.  We all gotta figure this stuff out for ourselves. I'm trying to do the best I can with what I got. Sometimes I succeed, sometimes I fail. But I try. And that is my parting word to you. You may get it right. You may blow it all to pieces. But you still gotta try. 

#JustSayin

Friday, January 03, 2020

Christianity Done Messed Uncle P's Head Up!

I was raised in the church. Raised Baptist. Did the whole Sunday school/Easter/Christmas pageant thing. Sung in the choir, served as a youth usher. Got saved at 13. The whole schlemiel. 
     Then I went into the service, fell off the church radar until 1983 when I found a cool Christian servicemen's center and church in Alameda, CA. It rekindled my faith somewhat. Got into a lot of prophecy/End Times stuff. Read a lot of Hal Lindsay, Revelation/Daniel stuff. 
      Got so bad that some televangelist convinced me that rock and roll was of the devil and I threw away my entire ELO collection. D'OH!!!  The whole backmasking fiasco. I only listened to contemporary Christian music. And a lot of that music SUCKED big time. It REEKED! Just listening to that pap would give you diabetes. 
       Then I got out of the service and went back to the Baptist life until 1993, even got rebaptized because I felt that my first baptism and 'getting saved' was purely to please my parents. 
        Then God gave me a vision of my current church.  A small Episcopal Church in Homewood. I went there and I've been there ever since 26 years later.  I love that church. I feel like I can contribute. 
         But as I've grown older, my approach to Christianity has changed. I'm no longer an Evangelical. Evangelism is too much like selling something. And I HATE selling things. I got tired of the legalistic, punitive Christianity the Fundagelicals were pushing.  I no longer believe in biblical inerrancy. If the Bible was inerrant, why are there so many versions? Why were there so many additions, subtractions? Why do certain denominations recognize the Apocrypha and others don't?  Why do so many denominations twist the Scriptures to fit their agenda? 
         Anymore, I'm starting to veer towards a more Universalist approach. I can't really put my head around a loving God sentencing millions of people to eternal hell because they don't follow the script.    
         Try as they can, the church is not going to be able to preach the Gospel to every man, woman and child on the planet. There will always be those folks who live in too remote locations for missionaries to get to. Why should they suffer an eternal punishment for a circumstance not of their own making?  I don't know.  I'm not sure what to think anymore.