Hello, friends. Today I have a comic song to share with you. It’s about the apocalypse — which is always good for a laugh. It’s called “Judgement Day Blues.”
(Sorry that the performance is a little rough. I only wrote the song this week, and I haven’t found enough hours to polish it up. But you’ll get the idea.)
I’m laughing at the apocalyptic here, but seriously: I think this is one of the most harmful parts of our received tradition. I’m an experienced preacher, so I can almost always find some way to put a positive spin on those passages of scripture. But I get tired of doing that. I feel strongly that this part of our tradition has done a lot more harm than good. It just isn’t a healthy way to think about God.
I hope that a little laughter will be good medicine for that. Please share this post with someone who needs a laugh.
Hello, friends. I’ve a little song to share with you today — a piece of wisdom from my martial-arts tradition. This is something every martial artist knows about what to do when you’re falling.
Please take a leap by joining the conversation: share a story or ask a question below.
P.S. If you have another minute, I have a short essay you might enjoy reading as well. It’s a guest post, as a “Monk in the World,” over at Abbey of the Arts. It’s about karatedo as a spiritual practice. I really like the virtual community there. (Except that they don’t have much of our humorous, skeptical side — but you can always come here for that!)
Last week, a fellow Merry Mystic named Dudley asked me to explain something about my song, “Longs For You.” Dudley wrote:
Such a beautiful thought, and feeling!
You declare that you know for sure that She longs for us, Adam. Can you elaborate a bit on HOW you know this for sure? When I meditate, I sometimes feel a sure Presence that carries me for hours. But I have considered this a result of my own longing; I’ve never really thought that God was “longing” for me! How can you be so sure of that?
Well, there’s a story behind this, but it takes a bit of telling, so I’ve put off answering until today. But now, here it is: I once heard five words from God.
Please join the conversation by sharing a story or asking a question below.
P.S. If you missed my song, “Longs For You,” you can still find it here.
Well, this song is sort of sentimental. It isn’t funny, or witty, or erudite. It won’t be going platinum. But it’s one of those things about God that I know beyond doubt — and there aren’t very many of those, so I thought I’d better share it. I hope it will speak to you.
I hope you feel it too. If so, please share it with a friend.
Here’s a little satirical song about the unwelcoming “welcome” some of us encounter in church.
Please share your thoughts below. And hey, please share this post with anyone you think might get a laugh. Heaven knows we can all use one.
P.S. As you can probably tell, Tom Lehrer’s music was a big influence on me. My parents had some of his albums—Songs by Tom Lehrer, More of Tom Lehrer and, of course, An Evening Wasted with Tom Lehrer—and I listened to them eagerly, even before I was old enough to understand them. So the way I turned out is really his fault.
Here’s a big bowl of pills. Some of them are miracle cures. Some of them are poison…
Please leave a comment: are you thinking of a particular “poison pill” in the Christian tradition?
Incidentally, I’m a big fan of the animated television series “Avatar: The Last Airbender.” When I made this video, I kept thinking of this scene from the “Cave of Two Lovers” episode:
Iroh: You're looking at the rare white dragon bush.
Its leaves make a tea so delicious, it's heartbreaking.
That, or it's the white jade, which is poisonous.
Zuko: We need food, not tea. I'm going fishing.
Iroh: Hmm ... delectable tea? Or deadly poison?
Iroh: Zuko, remember that plant I thought might be tea?
Zuko: You didn't ...
Iroh: I did ... and it wasn't.
Iroh: When the rash spreads to my throat, I will stop breathing.
But, look what I found:
these are bacui berries, known to cure the poison of the white jade.
That, or maka'ole berries that cause blindness...
Have you ever asked God to tell you what to do? I have …
Leave a comment and tell us a story: have you ever received clear instructions from God? Did you ask for them?
P.S. — Here’s the text of that poem.
On Not Having Heard From God Recently
I think that if I were King,
I'd want a captain who doesn't keep asking,
What should I do now?
I'd want an agent who knows what I want,
and does it,
and rarely asks for advice or permission.
I'd want an independent servant,
someone I have to seek out
to comfort from time to time.
I'd find her in the field, at night,
in the chapel there alone, with her weapons beside her.
I'd sit down next to her,
pray with her.
After a while, just as dawn began to lighten the sky, I'd say:
I just want you to know, I'm grateful for all you do.
Anything I can do for you?
Anything you need?
And my captain would smile,
maybe for the first time in days,
and she'd say:
No thanks, Boss.
I've got it covered.
So, I was just waiting at the dock, minding my own business, when this duck came up and …
Please share this post, or another of your favorite Merry Mystic posts, with someone you think might enjoy it. (You can find all the recent Merry Mystic video posts here.)
Here’s a new song about responding to that good news.
Sheet music for “Turn to the Life” is available in the Free Stuff area here. There are three versions there: voice with piano, voice alone (as for a church bulletin insert), and a choral arrangement.