I have problems sometimes getting online and jumping right into social media - or watching a whole season of some dumb TV show- or having some ultimately meaningless debate on FB - or watching idiotic 'Top Ten...' Youtube videos...... then all of a sudden HOURS and HOURS of my time has disappeared into some weird vortex of fruitless and guilt-filled, nonsensical black hole.
The internet, in and of itself, is NOT wrong or bad or sinful. Like every tool we use, it depends on how WE, individually, use it.
Christ can be promoted as well as Extreme Terrorism. Encouraging other can be posted as well as Bullying or Controlling Manipulations.
Fruitfulness or Laziness are all at the literal fingertips of our choices online.
I am ashamed to say that MOSTLY I do not use the internet rightly- in other words, for me, in a way that I feel is glorifying to God. There is much laziness and fruitlessness involved in my internet activity.
I am trying to change that. I want to be meaningful in everything I do. I want to be fruitful in what I choose to do. And I want to believe that I am honoring God and my faith with the tools that He has blessed me with.
One SMALL thing I have done lately is changing my internet settings to open up to this 'Bible Dice' page as my Homepage. So that every time I open the internet I am confronted with a Bible that I can choose to 'open up' to a number of random verses. This way I am immediately reminded when I open my browser that I can choose to keep my internet activity fruitful- and the best encouragement for that is God speaking to me from His Word.
The randomness of the 'Bible Dice' is completely fun and interactive as well... you never know what verse is going to come up for you so in the end, you can feel like the Holyspirit is tossing them at you with intentional purpose.
Something to think about.
A small thing that might help if you find yourself in that same internet black hole vortex that I do at times.
Let me know what you think.
>>> Click Here: BibleDice.com <<<
they had bought an old theatre building that still sits on University avenue in the heart of San Diego. My mother attended the adult church and I became a regular of the Jr./Sr. High School assembly that was formerly led by Pastor Miles McPherson, an urban relevant, genius of a teacher (now leading his own, 'the Rock Church').
Now, without befuddling you with details, just know that in my latter years of attending Horizon's youth group, I began to find myself quite enthused over helping out with their music ministry efforts, performing skits in public or at schools, by way of Bboying. I was a teenage breakdancer, yes indeed, with visions of Rock Steady and Style Elements (break) dancing in my head.
Well, getting back into it.... it was my years involved in that Youth Group in which I met Merle & Dave, two group leaders who were also part of a DJ & MC rap duo we all knew as MōDX. For years I grew under the tutelage of these two Rap Rabbi's, becoming more and more passionate about music and my own part to play in it. I definitely remember testing the patience of these two men many times over with my youthful shenanigans, and yet I have NO memory of either one of them losing patience or cool with me, always pointing me toward good morality and strong faith, always encouraging quality output from me no matter what I did.
I love listening to records. Now I can't say that Dave Gomez, DJ Trippin', installed that into me directly because I've always loved records, it seems. BUT I simply cannot remember anyone else before I knew him that really inspired me towards vinyl collecting. He was simply obsessed with his collection and the way in which he kept it organized and how he expected people to treat his it. It was from him that I learned to respect what, quite honestly - especially nowadays, is a musical heritage (the Library of Congress did a study on the massive record collection owned by Paul Mawhinney and discovered that from 1948-1966, only 17% of the music in his vinyl vault is available on CD or Digital download. That is, 80% of the music from that time-frame is available on records ONLY and can NOT be purchased anywhere else like iTunes, Amazon Music, etc. So if there was such a thing as a pre-Apocalyptic Record-Rapture... we would lose 3/4rths of our music history from those two decades! See a short documentary here: Paul Mawhinney ).
Two pieces of artwork I did, trying to impress the legendary DJ Trippin'.
In the early 2000's, Many Years after Dave passed away, too soon, from Leukemia, I got a surprise blessing. Merle came to me concerning our DJ friends bulky music gear. There was nothing compact about any of it at all; 18 crates of records instead of an iPod, a hundred pound speakers over the current lightweight PA systems. Circumstantially Merle could no longer continue saving all of Dave's equipment in storage. I suddenly found my self the overjoyed owner of Two Technic SL-1200MK2 Turntables, Two massively large Sunn Speakers (if you remember that company, your old), a huge amp, a 6 channel mixer (that was as long as a small coffee table, and had the words "DJ Trippin" scribed on it) and 100's of records!!!
Merle told me (paraphrasing), "You're the only guy I know that would probably respect all this, so I want you to take care of it".
I can't remember exactly what he said but it seemed like he was not necessarily 'giving' me Dave's collection... but rather charging me with its care, knowing someday, Heaven's Kingdom on Earth, Dave is gonna want it all back!
Well... after so many more years now. I want to tell you all that I have quite honestly done my best! A few Items got worn out and broke (the mixer gave out years ago. And the Sunn Speakers too), some things got stolen (one of the Technics... stolen 20 feet away from us as we were doing a photo shoot, using the turntables as props. BUT they actually only got the broken one as I was holding the working one near me like it was my life! HAHA SUCKAS!),
and I even gave a few things away (Dave had a ridiculous amount of quite horrible disco-infused Funk. Sorry Dave... I carried them suckers around for years until it broke my back and I had to loosen up on some of em!).... YET I can honestly say that most of Dave's collection is still with me to this day.
And then there's the records... Dave signed each and every one so that no matter how much I personally add to this massive music mountain, I still feel his presence, his passion for music and ministry, for hiphop and urban culture, intertwined through out. I am still inspired by one of the few men who took time to help me develop as a youth.
Merle & Dave, MōDX, inspired a young hooligan like me, to pursue not JUST music... but QUALITY music - and ministry as well. I learned from Merle to get smart. He collected books like Dave collected records (Guess what my second biggest passion is?). I read books because I saw him read books. The books become knowledge & wisdom. The insight became lyrics and songs. I learned from David to honor that which precedes us. To respect our forefathers boundary stones and that there is nothing new under the sun. To search deep and wide and your effort will be rewarded.
From them both I grew to understand that I could praise God JUST AS I WAS. Right where I was, in the rap culture that I grew up in, that I could use my passion for music an art unto the glory of God. That I did not have to change and wear what they wore and speak like they talked - but that I was accepted, adopted by God through Christ, with purpose, just as I was.
Thank You MōDX... I miss you Dave! And I'm still trying to get Merle to come out of retirement and spit a few verses on a track!
by Jeremiah Dirt
"I was afraid I would lose your money, so I hid it in the earth. Look, here is your money back." -Matthew 25:25
I fear I am the unprofitable servant. I fear I am that one who receiveth a talent from the Good Lord and buried it! I fear that I yield no gain to the Master. I look to the other servants, the two who have increased our Lord’s goods by double in their wise investing, and desire to do the very same! I am kindled by the prospect of the Good Lord returning from His journey and saying unto me, “Well done Good and faithful servant!” I would share in His joy and I would be given more responsibility in His kingdom.
But all I know how to do is secretly fear the master. And all I’ve ever done is bury things as if they were dead, killing them in the very act. I fear, not openly, that the Master is a dictator, a fraud, insane, pretended or simply nonexistent. More on the forefront, far more unquieting, I fear that the Master is most reliably authentic, but if I make a mistake with what He has entrusted me, I would disappoint Him. These are the ideas that waiver my faith and if any of them, or a combination of any, were true I would be devastated. I would be shattered indeed! I want God to be so real, so badly, that I harbor extreme fear concerning the possibility that He is not at all, or worse, that He is existing in fact but I bring Him no pleasure. And so I seek command over all things as a subordinate, secondary, Plan B to counter my anxiety. I am obsessed by these concerns and compulsed to act out with self-asserted control. And so the life that God gives me, and says Multiply, I fearfully hide away for myself.
Therefore I lie in public but inwardly believe in hoarding, accumulating and amassing things unto myself. I say I believe in freedom but I encapsulate all things. In this way I feel I can subjugate the aspects of my life by controlling the subjects in my life. This makes me feel safe in that I am deluded to think I am secure and free from harm if I become the master of myself, and no one else. And so I magnetize all possession and people to myself in a vain attempt to assure my security by my own vulnerable strength. Control is an illusion and I am the master of nothing. I am the master of nothing but my own reactions (which is a limiting concept, after all, in that God, who is Lord of Lords, decreed my free will in the first place). I am rotten by these fears and there is no good or no faith in me! There can be no good or faithful thing to come by them. I know this but still I act out fearfully, running afoul my faith and contravening any real freedom.
Oh what a conundrum, my fear and my faith. A diabolical dichotomy to which there is no middle ground. Fear always kills faith and faith always kills fear. They cannot be left alone in a room with the expectation that they will reconcile, one to the other. They are very much as light is unto dark in that they simply cannot exist coequal. They are murderers of the other all the time, they never agree. They are on one, forever lasting, vehement discord; fear and faith, and you must choose only one or be subjected to a mixture of the two which can only formulate a tormenting fear or a terrorizing faith. And no one likes neither of these or at least no one can prosper with either. Just ask me, the man who was given one talent and buried it.
I must decide on only one to dictate my life; confined by fear or freed by faith.
No, the choice is already made. I desire liberation by faith! I think it to be a pinnacle of love. And I desire love. I’ve read much about it, I’ve seen it acted out in the lives of others and I am completely provoked by the fact that I am possibly capable of being loved and loving. I am tired of just knowing that faith is a binding of mind and emotion to a course of action or a dogma or a person. I wish to experience the process, the belief the individual, in this case Christ. I’m tired of cognitive, noetic perception, tired of talking about, with intellect mostly, the truth in my heart. I’ve been told that God transforms lives for the better. I’ve been told that there is healing in the faith of Messiah; of mind, of emotions and even of body, and I want to participate with that. On the tail end of destroying my family with fear, I want to empty myself of untrust and be placed under the spigot where true faith comes out, to be filled, overflowing. Kenosis! Kenosis!
Give me another talent, Good Lord. Let me Practice again.