Thursday, November 10, 2005

Tomorrow's God

Our Greatest Spiritual Challenge

Recently, I finished reading a thought-provoking book by Neale Donald Walsch, author of the “Conversations with God” series, called “Tomorrow’s God”.

In it he encourages us to honor those religious traditions that serve a worthwhile purpose, and to let go of those beliefs that are empty, or even harmful.

“Seek, on a regular basis, spiritual inspiration and sustenance for your soul… honor that which is divine… Do this in whatever way feels fitting to you. Go to church, temple, mosque or synagogue regularly if that is where you find inspiration. Yet do not be afraid to ask questions there. Do not be afraid to contradict there, if a contradiction appears in your heart. Do not swallow anything whole, and do not accept anything on someone else’s word, and do not “go along with the crowd” because it is the easiest thing to do…"

He continues, “Educate yourself … If you haven’t ever understood what happens at a Quaker meeting of the Society of Friends, go to one. See what goes on there”, (page 228-229). As one who has experienced the wonder and beauty of a meeting of “Friends”, I could relate to this.

Simply put, the message of the book seems to be “We are all One”.

There is no God separate from (us)”, and “ALL OF (US) WILL AWAKEN”, (page 31, 155, 168).

On page 386, Walsch summarizes the message of “Tomorrow’s God” in 9 simple points:

1. Tomorrow’s God does not require anyone to believe in God.
2. Tomorrow’s God is without gender, size, shape, color, or any of the characteristics of an individual being.
3. Tomorrow’s God talks with everyone all the time.
4. Tomorrow’s God is separate from nothing, but is everywhere present, the All in All, the Alpha and Omega, the Beginning and the End, the Sum Total of Everything that ever was, is now, and ever shall be.
5. Tomorrow’s God is not a singular Super Being, but the extraordinary process called Life.
6. Tomorrow’s God is ever changing.
7. Tomorrow’s God is needless.
8. Tomorrow’s God does not ask to be served, but is the servant of all Life.
9. Tomorrow’s God will be unconditionally loving, nonjudgmental, noncondemning, and nonpunishing.

It is a well written, thought provoking, and an interesting read suitable for the masses.

Up for a challenge,
URfriend, Dean Johnson

P.S. Some related sites

Sunday, August 14, 2005

We Are All - One

After a recent meeting for worship it was suggested that three succinct quotes are often effective to express and summarize a personal perspective, outlook, or belief. Here are three of my favorite quotes.

Christ is all, and in all, (Colossians 3:11).
That God may be All in All, (1 Corinthians 15:28).
He that is joined unto the Lord is One Spirit, (1 Corinthians 6:17).

Together they say to me that the Christ is all, and that God is all, and that We are all… One.

URfriend, Dean Johnson

P.S. Love is revealed to “gather together in One all things in Christ” showing us that nothing could separate us from God, or one another, (Ephesians 1:10, Romans 5:8, 8:39).

Love reconciles everything, making peace with everything and everyone in heaven and on earth, (Colossians 1:20).

The alienation and separation people experience in a darkened mind are just temporal lies, deceptions, and misperceptions, (Ephesians 4:18).

For Christ is all. God is all. And We are all ….One.

With the mind of the Christ we can see beyond a limited individual human viewpoint to the divine perspective revealed at the consummation, to Eternity where "God is all".

Seeing everyone as joined to the Lord, and as One Spirit.
URfriend, Dean Johnson

Sunday, June 19, 2005

Looking to the Divine Light Within to Guide & Direct.

Anyone remember the game where everyone sits in a circle, and you whisper a message to the person beside you, and they pass it on to the person beside them, and so on, and by the time it gets to the last person, it is not the same message. As the murmur travels from one person to another it becomes harder and harder to understand the original message, and its intent. As with all communication, what is said is not always what is heard, and what is intended by the speaker, is not always what is understood. The Gospel, prophecy, and scripture is a bit like that too.

Just a couple of words about prophecy, and scripture. Holy people of God spake as they were moved by the Holy Ghost, ( Peter 1:21).

Many of our fellow travelers would agree that the scriptures are are a sure word of prophecy. They are safe. The path of the message is simple: God - Prophet - Scripture - Us. Not a lot of chance of the message getting distorted, especially with the Spirit within helping us.

However, Peter makes some interesting comments in 2 Peter 1:16-19.

He says "We have a more sure word of prophecy."

Apparently speaking of the transfiguration, he says, "we were eyewitnesses"... and "this voice which came from heaven we heard"...and so "We have a more sure word of prophecy". It did not come second hand. God spoke to us directly.

Peter heard God's voice personally, and then he says....YOU also "will do well to take heed". Listen to God's voice to your own heart. It is direct, applicable to your own heart, for your own situation, straight from heaven. You don't have to interpret, what another man has said. You can hear God's voice directly. Listen to it like you would pay attention to a light shining in a dark place, until the day dawns.

You don't have to listen to false prophets, interpreting the scriptures for you, telling you how to live, or what to believe, (2 Peter 2 :1). You have an anointing that abides within you. You don't need anyone to teach you, (1 John 2:20, 27). You don't need someone teaching you their private interpretations. You have access to God yourself. Pay attention to The Light that shines within you, and you will be lead by the Spirit, and will know that you are his Child.

He spoke to holy ones in ancient times, and he speaks to holy (made whole) people today. Yes, God still speaks directly to his children.

We look to the Divine Light within to guide and direct.

Today, if you will hear his voice,
URfriend Dean Johnson

Sunday, June 05, 2005

Values to Practice and Cherish

This Blog is built upon the values and practices I treasure most.
So today, I discuss personal faith perspectives. They will come up again and again in our discussions.

The Belief-O-Matic Personality Quiz says that I fit the
Liberal Unprogrammed Quaker Faith.
No surprise to me. It is great having a place to belong.

In The Religious Society of Friends (or Quakers)
I find the same principles that I love. Check them out.

1. We are peacemakers. Actively promoting harmony, peace and non-violence.

2. We cleave to honesty. So we are often not even comfortable making promises or swearing oaths.

3. We hold to simplicity: a socially conscious lifestyle that allows spiritual devotion and service without distraction.

4. We involve ourselves in social action, and humanitarian service, after carefully discerning divine direction. This is done through corporate prayer and listening in silence, rather than through decisions of clergy, or hierarchies.

5. We are radically inclusive, even Universalist. We are all One, regardless, without exception. Perhaps, the most well known Quaker phrase is "There is that of God in everyone." This has led to a deep respect for others, even for those who do not share our views. We hold forth our peculiar perspective without denying the legitimacy of another's journey.

6. We unceasingly promote equality for all people.

7. We emphasize spiritual reality, without any emphasis on outward sacraments or ordinances.

8. We are non-creedal. We understand the Bible as a revelation of God, but not the only revelation, for God continues to reveal truth.

9. We tend to have no salaried ministry, but we do encourage traveling "friends" who visit the meetings. We look to the Divine Light within to guide and direct.

10. Our meetings are open and participatory, often with times of silence until someone is moved to share or contribute.

Lived out, these ideals develop into a radical egalitarian counterculture, a society of friends, powerfully working with divine guidance for the common good, defying oppression, and changing the very fabric of society. This is revolutionary.

Who are you? Take the Belief-O-Matic Quiz for yourself

Discovering my own personal treasure,
URfriend, Dean Johnson

Sunday, May 29, 2005

My First Blog

I am looking forward to sharing my thoughts with you.
I hope to hear from you all.