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shroudofrain

:: 2009 5 June :: 4.22pm
:: Mood: I don't think there's a justifyable word for this.

Is this my legacy?
I know that church has gotten a bad rap for having hippicritical people in it. People that do nothing but break down others, using the church, so that they get -in some sick and twisted way- who they want in their church.
I haven't had this personal... until now.
A friend of mine at Real Life church in Spring Lake, North Carolina, has made mistakes in her past that she isn't proud of. Some people found this out, and by a involvement of her through their children, decided to do everything they could to turn everyone against her.
These people are the ones in the church that are suppose to be protecting her, showing her an example of Christ constantly, and yet they take up their rocks, not caring who is without sin, and letting them fly without any reguard to her continuity.
Jesus came and made himself nothing for the continuity of the people that were on the other end of the rock; to show people not that the laws in the Old Testiment were wrong, but that they were lived out like this -hints Jesus' life.
I've always known that pharisies were in any church you go to, sneeking around, planning the perfect time to make their move at someone, ready to condemn with stone and tounge... I just never would have thought that these pharisies were peopole so involved and deep in ministry of a church, of whos' purpose -above all others- is to protect the young from the stones themselves. Lets call them "Sleeper Pharisies".
All the while of listening to this and seeing this young girl get torn apart by the ones that she did nothing to but love and respect, people that she poured hard-earned comfort, love, and joy into, I think of how the pastor is going to react to this... because this will eventually get back to Darrell in some manner.
I know for a fact that Darrell doesn't know anyhting about any of this that is going on within his congragation right under his nose, and when he does, it's going hurt him bad. Darrell has been so proud of his congragation for all the things that we have involved ourselves with to help the community without any promise of reward from anyone but God himself, and not for the sake of recieving, but for the sake of giving to others in need; to hear this story of lies, decete, emotional murder of this young girl... it's going to break his heart to know that this is happening right under him, and he didn't even know it.
And all this time I'm thinking: Is this my legacy as a pastor? To have these toxic people right in the midst of leadership within my church and not even know it until they decide to tare apart a young girl in public?
Yes, yes it is. And I accept it as my legacy whole-heartedly and with tears in my eyes and pain in my heart... I accept this legacy to look forward to.

Things need to change.
Church is viewed of a collective of peopole that have a "I'm more holy that thou," persona; you'll find that with SOMEONE in ANY given church, but the sad part of it is: this persona is beoming adopted more and more as I see even Real Life -my home church- progress.
The foundation of Real Life is to live real life, showing a real God to real people. We try and meet people at their needs, and to show the love of Christ through what we do and how we do it... and to see all this happening to my friend makes others -outside looking in- think what is really taken to heart and taught over at Rea Life.
God works in mysterious ways, and so does Satan.... I just pray that love really does win every single time.
However, something needs to change. Meeting real people with real problems with a real God in their real lives leaves room for real people to make real problems. Something needs to change about how a real God helping real problems for real people is approched.
Christians and the church today -the American church and the American Jesus- has become somewhat of a marketed, segragated (not in race but in spirituality and beliefes.... even about the same thing) community. Real Life tries to break that, and this toxin has infiltrated on somewhat of a deep level. I guess it was only a matter of time, but it still hurts to know that this happened.
Darrell will take care of things when this gets back to him, and he will sort it out. I have enough faith in Darrell that this will not go further... and I'm not expecting a church to be completely immune to any of these problems, but I guess it's jsut the innitial explosion of this whole situation that hit hard.
Something needs to change... because I'm not inheriting this preconseved, marketed, segrigated community as my community of God like other churches have in America, and even the world. Real Life will prosper and take care of the situation... but this is something that has to and will be addressed, by not only Darrell, but when I plant my church.

Love wins

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shroudofrain

:: 2009 25 January :: 1.00pm
:: Mood: enthralled
:: Music: My Savior My God: Aaron Shust / Go (I wana send you): Newsboys

[Church name under construction]
Part of the fruit of the spirit is to have patients. It's to wait and not only see what God is going to do, but it's to wait and see what's in your heart for the works of God himself.
Patients, this part of the spirit is something I've always had since I can remember... except now.
It's hard to wait for something that you are not only wanting to do with all your heart, but to do something that you feel God is calling you to do to spread his love to the nations.
I know I need to be patient, and I will, but it's just so hard when I have this vision of what must be accomplished not only for God, but for community's sake... wherever that may be.

The Vision/Rant:
I want to make a church that cannot be contained in a building, within a physical infrastructure or on a physical location.
I want to make a church that breaks down, to the core, what church should be: A community of people that meet together to fellowship with each other, learn, and grow spiritually and physically under the banner and love of Christ Jesus.
What church has become today is a place built on worship of a God that is hard to understand, lives to condemn, and wants you to be perfect to receive his attention, approval, and love.
This is sick. This is not what Jesus intended at all; this was not our example, in the book of Acts, of how a church should function, grow, and affect the community.
I want to create a community that does nothing but grow, expand, and deepen the love of God to anyone that chooses to accept it... who may or may not accept Christ himself, his love then.
We serve a God that we already have approval from, whom we already have love from, and whom we already have attention from. So why do we, as followers of Christ, act like we don't? Why do we perpetuate the idea that we need to ask for it?
Why do we ask to bless food when it's already blessed by God, because it came from the Earth, and the Earth was created by God himself?
Why do we treat God like he didn't commit suicide to save us from sins punishable by death... which is any sin really.
You break one commandment and you break them all, so in all seriousness we are all murderers, we are all rapists, we are all honoring other Gods... but we are forgiven from all of this... so why does the church insist in proclaiming that not only we are not, but also that we must be perfect to achieve reward from God in Heaven?
Why are we following the phrases when Jesus himself called them "Sons of Hell?"
Church must be evangelistic, to it's inner structure; it should be a place where people can not only come HOW they are... but WHERE they are in life/in their walk with God/in their life with themselves and others.
Church must be a servant of the community in ANY way that it can be, and it should not just be one church organization over another, but in conjunction with other church groups. The church down the street and the church out in the middle of nowhere and the church downtown should work together for the good of the community, despite their differences of what color the carpet in the sanctuary should be or if you should drink alcohol or nix all forms of alcohol from any type of consumption in your life completely.
That is ridiculousness... and pretty much sad.
Not only that, but it also causes others that don't believe in Christ to see the ridiculousness and have the ability to ask, "Do I really want to be apart of that?"
I wouldn't!
It turns people away from what is most important, and it's important because it gives hope for your life and it gives you the ability to say, "I don't have everything together, but it doesn't matter, because I have hope, love, and assurance in my life."
How many people can say that now, today, with how things are going in the world? How many people can say that they don't need things in their life to make them happy, because they have joy, and that's all they need?
How many people can look at their life and say, "I don't need anything else."
People may paint with a broad brush what Church is... and to an extent, they are right.
However, I feel it is partly my obligation as a follower of Christ to take that brush and attempt to brake it... or at least have it find a place that it can't paint.
My vision... or I should say God's vision for my life and my future is to bring life back to any given community. To plant not a church, but love into a community and let the roots take hold of the area and not let go.
This vision is more than what I can explain with words.
It's taking all I get in offering and tithe and splitting it down the middle: Half of what I take in, I give out to the community, and the reason for this comes from the greatest commandment that Jesus told us: "Love your God with all your heart, soul, mind and strength, and the second is like it: Love your neighbor as yourself."
"...love your neighbor as yourself." If we loved our neighbors as ourselves, wouldn't we feed them just as much we do us? Would we cloth them just as much as we do our own bodies? Wouldn't we spend just as much money on them as we would on ourselves? What would that look like? What kind of effect would that have on any given community if people, or a church had that mentality?
This vision of what I am describing is more than anything I can explain... it has to be shown, because it's going to be a movement that will take hold of anyone that notices and wonders about it.
This is not my vision just as well as the moon is yours, or anyone's. This vision is owned, breathed, fixated, and motivated by, from, on, and through Jesus Christ, the son of God the Father, and giver of the Holy Spirit, who died on the cross to our sin, and rose again for our salvation.
Now don't get me wrong: I do not claim to know exactly what God wants, and I know it sounds like I'm painting church myself with a broad brush, but I assure you I am not. I am apart of a church that is doing just his right now as I write this, called Real Life Church in Spring Lake, North Carolina, and I am fully aware that there are other churches that are doing this as well... and then some. However, I am speaking for and to those who have this preconceived notion of what church is, and the churches that have proved these notions with judgmental colors.
People see church this way, and it's for a reason, and I'm looking to paint a different picture of church starting years from now.
My generation/Our generation is the one that is more spiritual than their parents in over 150 years in America alone. What we are spiritual about is another story, but constantly I see teenagers of my generation and younger going to church not because their parents go or make them... but because they want to. Because they are searching, and because they want more and know there has to be more out there.
Times are changing, people are growing, ideas are blossoming, and we need to act accordingly.
There are people that need help, there are people that need much, there is a looming fear of everything crashing down again in terms of society, and there's this ideal that is spreading around. The ideal that there is more than just what we see, the ideal that love is more of an act than a feeling. The ideal... that community may be all of what some have to any extent of the imagination.
What will you do in this day and age? Will you paint a broad brush over all you see and give in to giving up hope in church... if there was any? Or will you take up a different brush, a brush that is easy, and it's paint is kind. A brush that will bring burden, but a brush and paint that will ensure you assurance through the rough surfaces of the canvas?
May you love your God with all your heart, soul, mind and strength... and may you love your neighbor as you love yourself.

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shroudofrain

:: 2008 4 November :: 11.01am
:: Mood: confused

Some stuff going on:
Ok, so, I've been having conflicted ideas about my future, but I will give an update before I go into what's going on with me personally right now.

Update:
I'm no longer on my way to Liberty University. I just don't think that's where God is leading me and so therefore I am headed to Campbell University... but not immediately.
Right now I'm a student at FTCC (Fayetteville Technical Community College), and I'm doing alright I guess.
I've been the Youth Worship Band leader at Real Life Church for a while now, and I'm loving every minute of it.
Again, I'm very involved with my church and I'm doing alright at school and such.

What's going on with me now:
Alright, now down to the whole point of this post.
I've been in deep with my church and such. However, I'm very deep and near the end with this semester in school... and it seems the closer I get to the end of the semester, the more and more school seems to get in the way of all that I want to involve myself with in church.
Now, I want to tell all of you straight up: I may take a year or so off of school it self (I'm not going to stop going to school... but I think I may need a break from that), and I have heard a lot about the peace corps and how the people involved can get college credit for the work that is done... so I may be looking into involving myself in that and then going back to school after serving some time there.
I am just having to go through a lot of stuff in my life right now kind of finding myself (for lack of a better term), getting over some past experiences... kind of digging up everything and healing from all of it (which may mean me going to another counselor or something), and all that good stuff.

I have a lot of decisions that need to be made within me, and I have a lot to go other emotionally so that I can become as a clean slate for God so that he can make me how he wants me to be/how I should be in his sight.

Just pray for me... that's really all that anyone can do for me at this time.

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shroudofrain

:: 2008 12 March :: 12.10am

The Revelation: What is a Christian?:
The things that we use to explain what a Christian is, is more or less what a Christian does or believes. The question I beg is: "What IS a Christian?"
-A follower of Christ
-A light to the world and salt of the Earth
-A warrior for Christ
Yes, we are the followers of truth; the people of The Way, The Truth, and The Life, but more important, we are the soldiers of Christ's army/warriors in God's name. We (Christians and non-Christians) have to face the facts:
-We are at war
-We need to fight
-WE ARE AT WAR
If you ask someone what spiritual warfare is, most will either ask you/someone else what it is, or guess. What this "term" is, is the reality of our lives, Christian and not. There are things going on beyond our senses and understanding all of the time. Even the Bible addresses this, in Ephesians 6:
"... For we are not fighting against people made of flesh and blood, but against the evil rulers and authorities of the unseen world; against those mighty powers of darkness who rule this world, and against wicked spirits in the Heavenly realms." –Eph. 6:12
Even the Bible says we are at war/that we are fighting. See, we aren't looking at this war through a television screen... but through chain-mail and a helmet. That's the thing, in itself, that most see this war as... like we are seeing the war in Iraq: We tend to think that we aren't directly affected... but we are. We have been disillusioned to believe that sense most aren't in a position in our churches that's revered as leadership/authority, we think that we're cheering on our team... but we are in the frontlines, taking the hits like EVERYONE else. Now, don't get me wrong, this isn't the churches' fault or anyone else's. Facts and parts of reality are usually pushed out of the picture, in every fraction of life; we can't help what has happened, but we can decide what will happen, to a point.
My generation is the most spiritual generation in the world since two hundred years ago. Now, my question is: What are we so spiritual about? What is this rising generation on fire for? What are we willing to fight for... or even to die for? We, as a generation, have to constantly fight in our lives. I know that this seems like just another thing we need to fight and all, but if you think that then you aren't seeing the importance of what is really happening. This is your life, and it's ending one minute at a time... so what are you using this time for: glory of God, or transgressions of Satan? Who are we fighting for: Death or life?
War is a horrible thing; this isn't any different. I've seen people with the devil in them... literally. I've known people that have gone through exorcisms and change... even down to what they look like. Hell is real; most would agree with me, but this war is real too, and (Christian or not) guess what we are up against?

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shroudofrain

:: 2008 5 March :: 11.24am

Too Late in the End
Hope is gone, fallen out, dead... My dear friend.
Love was there, and then it went like a flame.
This wound isn't one to easily mend.
The price you pay for playing in such game.
Determined I was; too late in the end.
I can't believe this ended like it did.
This is the place where sutch and sutch are bent.
On the road of my life this marked as: "skid".
"Determined I was; too late in the end."
this is a constant thought of my own mind.
A note to self I would go back to send.
Guess this shows how I was through all this: blind.
"Determined I was; too late in the end."
I didn't loose just my mate... But a friend.

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shroudofrain

:: 2007 8 August :: 8.39pm
:: Mood: calm
:: Music: Guardian Angel: The Red Jumpsuit Apparatus

I can feel it. I can feel it in my heart; in my soul. Something that will truly put all of what I have been taught, all that I have built up in my mind to believe, all that I have known to be true to the test.

Something is going to happen that will push this little war to its outer limits and show me a fragment of what I have been fighting for, for the past three and a half years.

It makes me excited, afraid... but excited. It is going to change a lot of things, but I know it's going to be for the better.

It makes me wonder, though, why He lets us build these things up just so He can break them down. Makes me wonder why it is, exactly, He lets us go on our own just so He can bring us back to Him. I know we have freedom of choice and He isn't going to intervene that much until He decides it's The End, but still.

"He is good... unsafe... but good."

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shroudofrain

:: 2007 27 June :: 8.13pm

THE RED JUMPSUIT APPARATUS LYRICS

"False Pretense"

Oh, it's time to let it go

The world's got a funny way of turning 'round on you
When a friend tries to stab you right in the face
Losing faith in everything I thought I hoped I knew
Don't sweat it, {it was} set on false pretense

Betrayed but not gonna be willing to change
And it doesn't seem likely to fade
Betrayed but not gonna be willing to change
Cu-cu-cu-cuz you know...

It's sacrifice
False pretense you'll hurt again
Stop pretending to deny
False pretense you'll hurt again

All along you know you thought you got the best of me
{But} you were wrong and I'm laughing right in your face
I cannot believe you claimed you were my family
Don't sweat it - it's set on false pretense

Betrayed but not gonna be willing to change
And it doesn't seem likely to fade
Betrayed but not gonna be willing to change
Cu-cu-cu-cuz you know...

It's sacrifice
False pretense you'll hurt again
Stop pretending to deny
False pretense you'll hurt again

Oh, it's time to let it go

I can't seem to understand it how you turned out to be so cold
You tried but were caught red handed, are you happy with your role?
It's funny to me how you've turned into such a joke...

It's sacrifice
False pretense you'll hurt again
Stop pretending to deny
False pretense you'll hurt again

So play the game until you run out
And play the game into my hand




"Seventeen Ain't So Sweet"

Well she never was the best
Yeah at following the trends
Stayed one step above the rest
And even though it seemed

Like the world was crashing on her
Didn't let it hold her down
Didn't hold her back oh no

Don't worry you'll show them

[Chorus:]
There's a fire in your eyes
And I hope you'll let it burn
There's a scream in your voice
And I hope you will be heard
There's a fire in your eyes
And I hope you'll let it burn
Until you're heard, you're heard

Seventeen is just a test
Yeah and I would recommend
That you live with no regrets
And even if it seems

Like the world is crashing on you
You shouldn't let it hold you down
Shouldn't hold you back oh no, woah oh

Don't worry you'll show them

[Chorus]

Relax girl, turn down the lights
No one can see you shining
Relax girl, it'll be alright
No one can stop you if you try

Point of rhythm is to follow it in time
To listen to the beating in your mind
Remember if you seek then you shall find
Woah oh

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shroudofrain

:: 2007 7 May :: 7.04pm

An altered quote from Fight Club to fit my needs:
Man, I see in church the strongest and smartest men who've ever lived. I see all this potential, and I see squandering. In fact, an entire generation pumping gas, waiting tables; slaves with white collars. Advertising has us chasing cars and clothes, working jobs we hate so we can buy junk we don't need. We're the middle children of history, man. We have a purpose and a place... but no one doesn't really understand it all anymore. We think we have no Great War; Great Depression, but our Great War's a spiritual war... our Great Depression is our lives. We've all been raised on television to believe that one day we'd all be millionaires, and movie gods, and rock stars. But we won't. And we're slowly learning that fact. And we're very, very ticked off about that. No one wants the face the truth that the world has nothing to offer us. That the world has nothing to do with our salvation because the world is a place that we have grown acustome to calling 'home', and we are like kids in the back seat of God's car calling out, 'Are we home yet? Are we home yet? This car smells weird; I have to go to the bathroom; I'm hungry!'. We don't want to hear that we are at war because media and society say that war doesn't serve a purpose, like the lyrics of that song, "War, what is it good for? Absolutely nothing...." And most overlook what Ephesians says: 'For we do not fight against flesh and blood, but against the authorities, against the cosmic powers over this present darkness, against the spiritual fources of evil in the heavenly places.' We don't see who or what we should be fighting because who or what we should be fighting has hidden himself behind the junk that we buy, behind the advertisements telling us to buy the un-needed junk. 'The greatest trick the devil ever played on mankind was making them believe he doesn't exsist.' We are fools to say that there is no war because there is, in front of us every single day of our ever-ending lives here on earth. We aren't looking at this war through a television screen, but through chainmale and a helmet. We aren't on the sidelines cheering our team on but in the frontlines taking all the hits just like everyone else; whether you want to believe that or not is your perogitive, but to really understand what it means to be a Christian you have to let everything go. You have to drop your friggin' khakies, your American Eagle and Abrocrombie and Fintch merchindice, your dinner plates, your outdoor projects -that will never get done anyway, your furniture, your computers, your phones, your everything that you believe defines you as a person and take to heart what the bible says that we don't want to pay attention to. And I mean really take it in... because if we don't then we really do become the middle children of history and the label that they put on our generation -Generation 0- will live up to its name.

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af48

:: 2007 3 April :: 11.38pm

woot


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