Monday, January 14, 2013

Big Faith

The disciples had enough faith to leave their occupations and their homes and families in order to follow Jesus. They lived with him and learned from him through all the years of his ministry. Some had even been on the mountaintop when he was glorified and transfigured. A bright light enveloped them and a voice from heaven proclaimed Jesus as the “beloved son” of the Father. Yet their belief in him could not heal the demon-possessed boy when they came down from the mountain. When they asked him why, Jesus said it was because of their unbelief. Unbelief? What was he talking about? They believed in him. What more is required? The Church says belief in Jesus is all we need. Apparently, according to Matt 17:20, Jesus says it isn’t enough. In the New Century Version he says their faith was “too small”. The question is, If faith in Jesus is too small, then what is Big Faith?

How do we learn to believe what Jesus believed in order to do what he did? 

The first thing we need to understand, and admit to ourselves, is that our historical tendency to worship Jesus Christ as the only begotten Son of God is not sufficient in itself to produce Christ-likeness. 2,000 years is long enough to wait for this “small” belief to miraculously transform us. The bible says it comes by the renewal of our mind. Among other things, that means a new understanding of the nature of man and our relationship to God. Jesus’ great discovery was the divinity (Christ) in himself. Paul says that same Christ is in us and is the hope of our glory. We must not balk at the extraordinary concept of the divinity inherent in man. It is ours to take hold of. Jesus tried to teach it by modeling it for us. God is spirit and that spirit lives in us the same way it did in him. It’s time for us to start believing that.

Sunday, January 6, 2013


It’s a new year and I feel a renewed vigor to find out why I don’t have the mind of Christ yet. PauI said it’s the goal of the Christian life, but how and when do we get it? I’m going to be 70 this year and there isn't a whole lot of time left. I don’t see it happening to many of my friends either. Most of them seem to be just getting by. But just when I decide that it’s only wishful thinking I read where Jesus says, “Be ye perfect, even as your Father in heaven is perfect”. He wouldn’t say that if it wasn’t possible. I still think we’re missing something. Anyone who reads my blogs knows I’ve come to the conclusion that we don’t get the Mind of Christ by believing the right things about Jesus. In Discover the Power Within You Eric Butterworth says, “You must come to believe about yourself what Jesus believed about himself”. I believe that. Now what was it that Jesus believed?

I would think that his final prayer before leaving the earth would be some of the most revealing words he ever spoke, and also the most likely to be remembered verbatim by the gospel writers. And what does he use this momentous occasion to say? He asks God to show us our unity with one another and our connection to him, and to the Father. He prays, "that I myself may be in them" and "that they will all be one (read remember that they are one) just as you and I are one, just as you are in me, Father, and I am in you. I am in them and you are in me“. This One-ness he speaks about only began to make sense to me when I learned a little bit about Quantum Physics. It was a kind of missing link for me for the understanding of things the bible says about God and our relationship to him - things like his spirit living in us - like him being everywhere and knowing even when a sparrow falls - like numbering both the stars in the sky and the hairs on my head.

Jesus knew what the rest of us are just now beginning to learn about quantum physics - the reality of life that creates, governs and sustains the universe lies far beyond the material world which has captured us all. How often did Jesus tell us not to fall for the things of this world? In the Gospel of Thomas he had much more to say about this illusion. Alas, The Church condemned the Gospel of Thomas as heresy so no one was allowed to read it. As a result we’ve gotten so involved with our earthly existence we have not seen the true reality of life (“the truth that can set us free”). Remember the great words of Pierre Teilhard de Chardin, “We are not human beings having a spiritual experience. We are spiritual beings having a human experience”. This involves a proper understanding of the word “eternal”. It means more than without end. It also means without beginning. That means we have existed since the time when there was nothing but God from whence we all came. All of life is a constant flow of His energy (“made in his image and likeness”) connected in a dazzling array of different manifestations. God is Christ teaching us the truth about who we are (“saving us”). He is also Jim Pons trying to figure it all out. 

Jesus also said that Jim Pons is not of this world, even as He is not of it. What then, am I of? It’s beginning to look like some magnificent manifestation of divinity that we're all part of and connected to. Somewhere in our understanding of that magnificence is our connection with God… and the missing Mind of Christ.