Low Life

Low life; a step into real Christianity.

The spiritual journey often begins low. More often in church height in spirituality is encouraged. More learning, memorizing and volunteering seem to be a sign of spiritual maturity.

However the message of Jesus tends to be focused on those that live low; those that give everything and those that have little left.

Jesus gathered his disciples to a field and gave them a raw word of direction. Jesus boldly proclaimed that the goal of everyone should be to take up their own cross and carry it. (Matt 10:38)

This is a call for hardship to be embraced and suffering to be celebrated, but it is also a call for each of us to journey lower.

Some see this as invitation to die with Jesus but that would be without reason, yes it’s a nice sentiment but not a reality. Us dying with him is less than void, his death is what mattered in regards to experiencing this eternal life God has in store for us.

We are not called to die on that cross but to carry it, to experience it, to journey with it.

The cross is heavy, it’s burdensome, and it is just plain lowly. When that cross is pressing down on our backs and we can’t stand anymore, we become low. This is spiritual maturity according to Jesus, not the heights of ordination, leading studies Bible studies or church attendance.

Mary thanked God for recognizing her low status when impregnating her with the divine seed. (Luke 1:48)

Embracing our low standings should not be our only goal. We should seek to take whatever good standings we have in money, talent and resources and share that with those who are in need of whatever we can provide.

Paul echoed this in his writings to the Romans when saying, “Be of the same mind one toward another. Mind not high things, but condescend to men of low estate. Be not wise in your own conceits.”
(Rom 12:16)

In some churches the goal is how high you can get; how many service attendees, how many financial pledges they can bring in. In contrary, the christian life cannot be lived in height but only in low stature.

Confession is Bigger than Sin

 

 

In the book of James there is a verse that traditionally reads like this, “Confess your sins, one to another so that you may be healed.” James-5-16

 

I’m sure you can see how this has played a part as legalism in some of our denominations, churches and many different religions around the world.

 

When looking at the scripture at face value and using a lose understanding of the scripture this scripture cannot only become misunderstand, as it has. It can also be made into a doctrine that controls, scares and promotes a false emptiness for alot of people, which it has. that is not to say that some haven’t been helped by doctrines that focus on confessing sin to one another, accountability is something we all need. Most times in scripture we find that God’s ideas are bigger than ours, God’s idea of sin is more than just doing bad stuff, God’s idea of repenting is bigger than just saying sorry for sins. God is so much Bigger.

Moses wanted a way to put God in a box, similar to what we do today is the modern church, Moses asked God, let me see you, like Moses could have processed all that was God. Even at on behalf of the israelites, he said he needed a way they could express this God they couldn’t see. How do you speak of a God you can’t see? How do you share a God you can’t feel? They wanted a physical and mental box understanding of God, give us a name, some personality traits. But God said, no, he I will be who I will be, they will see me by my actions, they will know me when I come into contact with each one. He didn’t want a broad understanding of himself, he didn’t want everybody to know the same God, they would all have many different and diverse experiences with this God.

 

Back to the scripture, Two out of three translators do not translate this word “sin” which in Greek is Par-ap’-to-mah and they agree on the original word here should be used as faults, we all remember what a fault is from geography class, rocks or plates which are cracked and moving, which might eventually lead to something collapsing over time, or even caving in.

 

The word healed is a holistic, universal and all covering word. So it would be best to use the word whole based on the Greek word ee-ah’-om-ahee which is a verb that is very similar to the Greek word sozo used for salvation, it deals with healing, deliverance, safety, mental health. etc.

 

The word, “confess” here is a rapid violent rushed verb. This isn’t about just talking. A picture that the Greek gives us is a man unloading and throwing it on the ground, this is something heavy, this is a secret, a struggle, some baggage.

 

So looking deeper in the scripture It reads like this, unload your faults to one another so that you may become whole, really whole.

 

Go into your closet and unload all those things, you thought you forgot about but they still affect you. You’re out working so hard because mom never said, “Good job.” You gave yourself to all those guys because dad just couldn’t hug you. All those things, those heavy things need to come out and it needs to be unloaded, in your women’s group, your home study, to your pastor, therapist or spouse, whoever you can trust but it needs to come out, so that wholeness came come in.

 

So then the Christian fellowship becomes more about letting your secrets out rather than keeping them in, or worse pretending that you’re the only one who doesn’t struggle to be an example for those around you.

 

Me, I don’t have anymore room in my closet for anymore skeletons, my body is so full of baggage I’m carrying around from past hurts and regrets.

I vividly remember hearing Jim Bakker speaking in NYC and He talked a few minutes about shame, he paused and humbly said, “I don’t have shame, I am shame, I’ve been shame since the day I was born, I could never please my dad, I could never be good enough, can I say masturbate…I am Shame, but I am learning to live in the room of grace.”

I can’t tell you how much Jim Bakker has influenced me even to this day.

Confession is bigger than sin, it is unloading those bags, clearing out that closet, and coming to terms with who you are. You can’t do it alone, I would suggest finding a good church, some might hear your secrets and tell you to leave, but find a good church, good friends and spill it out, let those bags down one by one.

If you need to lay anything down, maybe it’s too heavy for you to lift yourself, shoot me an email and I will listen and well find out how to put it down together.

Email: Ricky@rickymaye.com

 

Adapted from a Chapter entitled, Humanity//Divinity: Talk about two faced from my new book coming this summer, An Emerging Spirituality. 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Time to Rethink Christianity

Ive been quoted as saying one of the greatest of injustces is the doors of church. The refugees left on the inside of those doors and all the unspoken pain and hurt they feel. Outside standing those who have been hurt by those inside, those who don’t “fit”, those who just havent reached the standard yet. The doors are closing many in, and shutting many more out.

It is the questions that cloud the mind on both sides of this door, inside questions of faith, history and self are deemed heresy and hipocracy.

Questions outside of life choices, human rights, freedom and examples are declared rebellion and dangerous.

A questions is such an unassuming place to begin, we like to think in our society that there is a definte and absolute answer to every questions asked.

The idea of Spirituality in our modern contemporary world is to see what this means to me, at this moment, in this point in my life. It all starts with you and how this word, these gods, these faiths relate to where you are.

Imagine a group of fiver runners, would it be easier for them all to jump on one guys back; that way they can make sure they all run the same path, the same way, and if they stumble they all stumble together. Yes its community orrianted, but so many flaws lay in this type of thinking.

How much more unvarying would it be to each run next to the other, saying, “hey watch out for that hole coming up on the right. If we fall, one can stop and pick that other one up. We don’t run weary because we only have to figure out the best way for us. The other runners are capible of deciding the best trail for them to take, Because I don’t know where that person is.

The bible speaks of this as working out your own salvation (Phil-2-12) the hebrew word for salvation is bedded in a holistic meaning, it is a contiuious living expericance, not a one time thing.  It is a process not a one time event, or destination. Maybe it’s time to rethink christianity.

Download this book for FREE at rickymaye.com, or on the kindle, nook, or on the apple app store, or purchase the book on my website. ON SALE 02 01 11

rethink christianity ricky maye

rethink christianity ricky maye

A New Year

A New Year

I have some weird quirky habits; I tend to over analyze and over dramatize everything, I enjoy taking bath (not necessarily weird unless you’re a guy like me, people tend to think it’s weird.) One weird habit I do have and I blame my mother for it, is that I like my drinks cold, almost frozen. It only really gets annoying till you live with me. We all have things we have learned over our lives that have become a second natured part of our daily routines. We have less than a week and another year will have gone by. All of our firm stances on world relations, war, and politics mean nothing when the year is over; because all we learned from another year ending is that even time itself ends. We on the other hand are an optimistic people; the New Year means embarking on new challenges, a second chance at a failed attempt, or more time with a loved one. I want to share this little nugget of wisdom from the Hebrew language. The word used to describe something “new” is tariy which means to be fresh or moist. The word “new” was less of a second opportunity but a quenching of the hopes for the New Year. It is a promise of new experiences, new boundaries being pushed and new heights being exceeded. Be excited for this coming year, it holds great things for you and I. things you have worked for your entire life will be culminated this coming year. Limits will be broken, dreams will be birthed. The New Year is a New day for you and I. let’s embrace the “new” the Hebrew promises’ it to be an exciting year. So instead of  vigorously saying, ” it’s the New Year.” Let’s make it personal and say, “It’s my New Year!”

Tomorrow I will share a deeper meaning to the word year and see what wisdom we can find in it.

To find out more about me or my teachings visit rickymaye.com

A REminder who we are

I want to share a teaching  of mine that I’ve been blessed to share with more people than i can count , and see an awesome reaction every time. On one special occasion I shared at a church I have been to only once, nobody but the leadership new me, I started and said how Jesus began to teach to a group about the Kingdom of God, and I pull out a bag of Mustard seeds and place one seed in each person’s hand directly in the center. I wait and let them observe the size of it, then I tell them, “Jesus said this mustard seed is a visual way to understand the men and women in the kingdom of God, the Greek word he used to describe this mustard seed is sinapi which is defined as being hurt, this is Jesus understanding us and letting us know the Kingdom of God isn’t full of perfect people, that’s what heaven is for, he understands we hurt and go through real life issues. The mustard seed has a protective shell on it that helps strengthen it to sustain itself during wind, rain, and drought. That seed is me, that seed is you, it is all of us.”

After I shared this, a young man came up to me and began to tell me how he’d gone to that church only three weeks and this was the only thing he understood. He said he’s heard of God speaking to other but in those three weeks he had heard nothing, until he heard this teaching, he thanked me and as I was walking away he said to me, “Now I know that God cares.” Some people just need a visual, physical, tangible love.

I offer a bag of mustard seeds FREE on my website store at rickymaye.com stop by and pick some up!

RE-Defining Christianity

As a preposition RE stays at the forefront of our conversations; but in our language RE takes on a new but misleading definition, “to take back, or go back.” RE takes on a persona of erasing something previously stated. However RE is defined to go deeper, and learn more about; with focus on the new but not forgetting but perhaps building on previous statements.

The stigma we experience in our culture is that when you tend to redefine, or reexamine something, it must be broken. Nonetheless this is not always the case. Sometimes its about stopping everything and saying we need to reexamine this and make sure this is right at this moment.

Growth

If growth is incurring change is expected. Let me give you a few examples. If a young couple buy a home when they get married, they are fairly young and just starting out in life, fast forward five years they both own their own business; he a contracting firm, and she a painting business out of the house. Growth is being experienced now the life around them needs to show that. They add on two additions to their home, two separate offices, why, was the house not good enough for them? No, they needed to expand to continue growing. Life was moving and they needed to catch up.

Life is moving and we would be ignorant to just stand still rather than move with it. Rebuilding on the concepts and teachings of Christianity is not a way of saying someone is wrong, rather it’s about those who need to hear this “good news” we need to gain back relevancy and understanding.

Time doesn’t stand still

The bible and every message conveyed from each author’s point of view reflected his culture, upbringing, and we take into consideration whom it was written about.

For some reason, I would call stubborn many of those who lead churches don’t want to say that some of the Old Testament laws and rituals were meant for a certain people in a certain place of time, because they can use some little point of text to enforce some of their beliefs. Oddly enough this is what many did to defend slavery not to many years ago.

Today we face the same dilemma; if we do not look at the bible in its historical and cultural context we will see a hundred thousand more denominations and divisions. We can stand today and look at the cultural similarities and find the absolutes and run with that. Hint, ninety nine percent of the time its love.

“Life is more.” REcapping a moment of wisdom from Jesus

In the book of John Jesus says this phrase, “I have come that you may have life, and more abundantly.” The word abundant in Greek is “per-ee” and accurately translates to exceed, the mind goes to wander and ask, “to exceed what about life?” money? Happiness? No, that life itself would exceed your thoughts, hopes and dreams.

Jesus began to teach his disciples and while understanding their worries about food and shelter and the culture around them and he said just don’t think too much into it…”Life is more.” This phrase resonates in me and I hear Jesus because he is speaking to me, life is more than food, more than money, more than clothes, there is a substance in this life we are obtaining that is more. All I hear from Jesus at this moment is “life is more.”

I hear the church today arguing and debating doctrine and the words of Jesus and I only hear Jesus saying I understand your divorce rates, but there is so much more, I understand the sexuality of this man or women but there is more out there. We tend to get up in the politics and paper of church we forget that life is about more. Church is about more.

Life is more than _____ fill in the blank.