Mike’s Rumblings – 06-23-23
This is an audio version of Mike Murphy‘s Friday rumblings. This is a regular post on Facebook that I’ve turned into a podcast. I decided Mike’s words needed a wider audience. You may agree or disagree with what he says, but there is certainly much food for thought contained here. You can friend Mike on Facebook for the printed version or read it below.
1.“If you want to identify me, ask me not where I live, or what I like to eat, or how I comb my hair, but ask me what I am living for, in detail, and ask me what I think is keeping me from living fully for the thing I want to live for.” ~ Thomas Merton
What are you really living for?
What’s holding you back from being all in?
If you have a mature small group these are great questions just waiting to be discussed. For that matter just sitting quietly by yourself, with a journal at the ready, might prove to be a life giving spiritual exercise.
2. Bishop Robert Barron tells us of an Irish wag who summed up the Catholicism that he was taught, with this phrase: “In the beginning was the word, and the word was no!”
That was pretty much it. 😀
3. “It is said that
before entering the sea
a river trembles with fear.
She looks back at the path she has traveled,
from the peaks of the mountains,
the long winding road crossing forests and villages.
And in front of her,
she sees an ocean so vast,
that to enter
there seems nothing more than to disappear forever.
But there is no other way.
The river can not go back.
Nobody can go back.
To go back is impossible in existence.
The river needs to take the risk
of entering the ocean
because only then will fear disappear,
because that’s where the river will know
it’s not about disappearing into the ocean,
but of becoming the ocean.” ~ Kahlil Gibran
4. “Much of what the Bible demands can be stated in one word, Remember.” ~ Rabbi Abraham Joshua Heschel.
“Christian faith is grounded in remembrance – we are called to remember God‘s presence in the gospel life of Jesus, in our personal stories, and in our daily lives.” ~ Trevor Hudson
5. “When I look back on the Trump years, I see a dark time of division, corruption and social decay…America was more bitterly divided, and deficits increased each year of his presidency. His early Covid lies helped fuel an immense amount of confusion and almost certainly cost American lives. And his entire sorry term was capped by a violent insurrection fueled by an avalanche of lies.” ~ David French is an attorney, evangelical Christian and political conservative who writes opinion pieces for the NYT.
“Now, as Trump seeks to return to the White House, he speaks of Jan. 6 as “a beautiful day.” He says there was no reason for police to shoot the rioter attempting to break into the House chamber, and he denies there was any danger to his vice president, Mike Pence, who was hiding from a pro-Trump mob chanting for him to be hanged. He has promised to pardon many rioters if he becomes president again.
On this and a host of subjects, from sexual assault to foreign and domestic policy, Trump’s positions have become even more extreme, his tone more confrontational, his accounts less tethered to reality …Where he was at times ambiguous or equivocal, he’s now brazenly defiant.” ~ “The deepening radicalization of Donald J. Trump” ~ WAPO
There are those who yearn deeply for his return to power. May our good God rescue them from this desire and save us all from his promised retribution.
6. St. Louis University priest and ethicist John Kavanaugh, who passed away in 2012, observed that “On many Sunday morning presentations of Christianity, we hear much of money and success, often of psychological stability and social popularity, frequently of the glories of capitalism and the dangers of socialism, but rarely of the poor, the suffering, the rejected and disenfranchised.”
When it’s all about my agenda, my needs, and my desires, it’s easy to forget about the poor, the suffering, the rejected, and the disenfranchised. These are the people Jesus felt a special kinship with. So when I say I want to follow Jesus perhaps I need to actually stop being so self obsessed and start caring more deeply about the people Jesus cares about.
7. “I am so distant from the hope of myself,” writes Mary Oliver.
As one who sometimes feels that way, I’m glad that “Saint Mary” (as some see her) told the truth about how hard it can be to embrace our own flawed humanity.
I’m also glad for her steady reminder to get out of our own heads and into the natural world where the trees urge us to “stay awhile” so we can learn from their rooted and uplifting way of being in the world. Like the trees, we can catch the light and shine it back, breathing peace into a world where everyone should have a chance to shine.” ~ Parker Palmer, Quaker author, educator, and activist
8. The Southern Baptist Convention has backed itself into a corner and the fundamentalists in the mix don’t have nor do they appear to desire an exit strategy.
The issue is all about male headship and biblical inerrancy. Here it is in a nutshell.
Want to be a pastor?
Do you sense God called you to that?
Not if you’re a woman.
It’s a men’s only club.
It just ain’t biblical for a woman to desire that which rightfully belongs to a man.
And if it ain’t biblical then it can’t be Southern Baptist.
Oh ya, the guys decide what’s biblical.
Not you. Cuz you’re a woman.
9. “Lord, let me let you love me.” ~ John O’Malley, SJ
This is quite beautiful. I have pushed back on God’s love for me far too often. I felt unworthy of it. God’s response: “I get it. I know you and why you feel this way. But I still choose to love you.”
10. Garth Brooks, the Country Music Hall of Famer, said last week that his new bar in Nashville, Tennessee, would serve “all kinds of beer, including Bud Light. If you come into our house, love one another. If you’re an a**hole, there are plenty of other places to go. I love diversity and I will always be inclusive. All are welcome.”
I think he’s right. I don’t have to agree with someone’s lifestyle choices, music preferences, religious affiliation, beer likes, or political opinions in order to treat them as a fellow member of the human race and a sacred creation of God.