from Chaplain Royal
Sunday, November 26, 2017
Greetings to everyone! Happy Sunday. I share this message each Sunday for those who need it. I hope you find something in the words, your own thought, the music, or the images that bring you a moment of peace.
If you feel called, I invited you to light a candle, or find an object that is meaningful to you to hold, or have with you. And find a spot that you can focus on sharing just a few short minutes with these words, images and videos.
VIDEO… Take a look at this YouTube video, please, before you continue reading: “When We Were Kids” https://youtu.be/nlqrj0gmhjM
This day is full of life. This day is full of possibilities. This day is better because you are a part of it. May we each share the joys of our growth, the glory of our work, and the beauty of our smiles. Let us be reminded that today was not promised to us, yesterday is gone, and tomorrow is not here yet. Let us share our gifts now, live here, and now. The best we can.
“And then there’s the story of a preacher who got up one Sunday and announced to his congregation: “I have good news and bad news. The good news is, we have enough money to pay for our new building program. The bad news is, it’s still out there in your pockets.”
Last night Jonny and I talked about how child like I can be… my jokes, playfulness, desire to laugh, and help others laugh. I am glad at 50, I still have that. I do believe that our age is only a linear number, and should not be a number the defines us, how we act, what we do (although sometimes it does catch up with us!)
We were born this way… As a child, we see things so simply, we hear things that others don’t, and our experiences inform us in so many ways that are years from our understanding. And adults happen, words happen, and we start to grow up.
If I asked you all how many of you can paint, very few of you would raise you hands. Because you are not an artist. The question was how many of you can paint, most every single hand should raise your hands. Most all of us, CAN paint. We just need a surface, paint, and a utensil to paint with.
How fast we stop doing the things that feed us, that make us laugh, that allow us to be children at heart: Looking at clouds, running in snow, playing in rain, biking all day, playing in the dirt, exploring the jungles and valleys of our backyards and neighborhoods.
What was something that you did when you were 10-15 years old, that made you smile, laugh, or feel good? When was the last time you did that? I challenge you to do it again.
AND I remind everyone that when you hear the noise of a child crying, children being loud, and kids being kids, don’t frown the eye, don’t grumble, and stop complaining. They spirit informs them they are safe doing what they are doing. Let them be, and encourage children, at any age to life, laugh, and love freely.
We are in the giving months of the holiday seasons. A good reminder for us all is that compassion is a gift you give, share, and pay forward that does not change the balance on your debit card, in your checking account, or your wallet.
MUSIC VIDEO… Take a look at this YouTube video, please, before you continue reading. “Born This Way” https://youtu.be/XVwOS1DKG94
“I want to talk about choice.
I want to talk about the fact that just because someone who is out to destroy you says you chose to be the way you are does not mean the path of best protection is to counter with “no I didn’t, it’s not a choice, I was born this way and I’ve always been this way.”
Is who I am—my sexuality, my gender—a deep and real part of me, close to my soul? Yes. Are there choices involved? Of course there are.
I have made one choice after another to feel more at ease, more vibrant, more alive. I chose to change my name. I chose to allow myself to open to the idea that I might be attracted to women. I chose to open myself to the idea that first of all genderqueer people exist, second that I might be one, and third that I might be attracted to other genderqueer folks. After all of this, I chose to remain open to the idea that I was still attracted to men and might actually like being in a relationship with one. If I hadn’t made these choices I never could have lived into my full authentic self.
And you know, there are some things that are more attractive to me than gender. I am attracted to feminists. I’m attracted to queer people, and radicals. I am attracted to people who are assertive and like to make decisions. Is any of this biologically hardwired into me? Probably not. Is all of it impacted by culture? Definitely. But do I have every right to pursue relationships and experiences with whoever I want, because it’s my body and my sexuality? YES.
It doesn’t matter who I seek intimacy, ecstasy, joy, or camaraderie with—sexuality is sacred. Love is sacred. And I deserve and demand the right to full control over my body and what I do with it and who I share it with.
So if anyone ever tries to invalidate you or the way you seek intimacy by saying “it’s just a choice,” tell them choice is sacred.
Tell them the inherent right of every person to have full authority and agency over choices they make about their lives and their bodies is a spiritual and human imperative—that there is a word for this and it’s liberation. That there is nothing more worth fighting for.
Tell them that in your faith tradition we don’t love people despite their differences or because they can’t help being different, we love people because of their differences and because diversity enriches our world and our communities.
Tell them that in the final reckoning there is only one choice that will be judged, and that’s their choice. Tell them you hope they choose love.
” – Alex Kapitan
Our world is hungry for a time that we all can join hands and begin the work of healing, promote peace, and gather strength to promote justice. This is our purpose… to help one another.
No matter who you are, where you are from, who you love, what you believe or don’t believe, you are beautiful, loved, and worthy. May peace, love, and compassion be with you and from you.