Ramblings of a Deconstructionist

Questions, Dreams, and Hopes of a Divinity Student

Fall

Fall is almost here and I am beginning to feel the air get more crisp each morning. So many seasons have changed recently. I am now an official Duke Divinity student. I have wanted to come to Duke Div. since 2005 when I was a Duke Youth Academy participant. I cant believe I reached my goal. At the Div school we are all entering into our third week of school for the semester and I am already in the midst of due dates, more reading than my eyes and mind can handle, and transformation. I know significant change is being worked out within me. It has been an interesting to move on from UNCC as a Religious Studies major,(a person who studies Religion at a distance) and come to Duke Divinity school to become immersed in practice, ritual, sanctification, and love. I am thankful for this time. I am getting acquainted with the practices I use to form my identity, and I am getting acquainted with the One I know forms my identity.

New hopes…New Year.

Beat but I’m not broken
Guide me through with your hand
Lead with your words spoken
Show me how to listen

Let your light shine through me
Take this hate I can’t release
Help me make the blind see
Misery loves its company

-Red Jumpsuit Apparatus

So long ago…

It’s weird what happens to your mood when you sit in the room you grew up in and lose yourself in memories of your past…

Friends you once had…
Loves you once had…
Music you use to know all the words to…

Memories are a weird thing.

There is much anticipation…

“Come Like You Promised”
-Ascend The Hill

Come Lord like you promised
Just like You said you would
Do not delay
Come with healing in Your touch
Come with fire in Your eyes
Just like You said you would
Come with grace and mercy
Come with judgment and might
Just like You said you would
Come riding on the wind
Through clouds of glory pierce the sky
Just like You said you would
Come and bring us back again
Lord come restore Your Bride
Just like You said you would

I choose to…

Sometimes my life gets out of control. Sometimes my outlook gets dim and I have to decide whether or not I am going to choose to believe, or not. I have realized that life is about choices. You either choose to believe in God, or you don’t. You either choose to get out of bed in the morning, or you don’t. For the past month I have been switching my answer to both of those questions. Right now, today, on December 3rd I have chosen to believe and to get out of bed because there is something more, something better, and something worth waking up for. My dear friend Rebekah shared a song with me. It is called “Carry Me” by Audrey Assad:

Pain is a forest we all get lost in
Between the branches hope can be so hard to see
And in the darkness we’ve all got questions
We’re all just trying to make sense out of suffering but

You say I am blessed because of this
So, I choose to believe
As I carry this cross, You’ll carry me
Help me believe it

Fear is a current we all get caught in
And in its motion faith can be so hard to find
And we all falter ’cause we’re all broken
We’re all just trying to turn the shadows into light but

You get glory in the midst of this
And You’re walking with me
And you say I am blessed because of this
So, I choose to believe
As I carry this cross, You’ll carry me

And I know Your promises are faithful
And God, I’ve seen Your goodness in my life
And oh, I’ve found Your mercy is a river
Your love is an ocean wide

You say I am blessed because of this
You get glory in the midst of this
And You’re walking with me

And You say I am blessed because of this
So, I choose to believe
As I carry this cross, as I carry this cross
‘Cause as I carry this cross, You’ll carry me

You’ll carry me, God
You’ll carry me
And Your love is an ocean wide

Let Us Reconsider

“Compassion grows with the inner recognition that your neighbor shares your humanity with you. This partnership cuts through walls which might have kept you seperate. Across all barriers of land and language, wealth and poverty, knowledge and ignorance, we are one, created from the same dust, subject to the same laws, and destined for the same end. With this compassion you can say, “In the face of the oppressed I recognize my own face and in the hands of the oppressor I recognize my own hand. Their flesh is my flesh, their blood is my blood, their pain is my pain, their smile is my smile. Their ability to torture is in me too; their capacity to forgive I find also in myself. Their is nothing in me that does not belong to them too; nothing in them that does not belong to me. In my heart, I know their yearning for love, and down to my entrails I can feel their cruelty. In another’s eyes I see my plea for forgiveness, and in a hardened frown I see my refusal. When someone murders, I know that I too could have done that, and when someone gives birth, I know I am capable as well. In the depths of my being, I meet my fellow humans with whom I share love and have life and death.” -Henri Nouwen

“Live towards what ought to be.” Falling Whistles

We look forward to the time when the Power of Love will replace the Love of Power.  Then will our world know the blessings of peace.  -William Ewart Gladstone

 

The desire for power, wealth, and advancement has left millions marginalized, silenced, and forgotten. Who is measuring the value of human life? Why has the grand discourse that says life is only valuable in as much as it can give you what you want the predominate voice?

 

Violence

 

Hunger

 

War

 

They all scream out…

 

This isn’t right….

 

You have heard it before….don’t grow deaf.

 

The devastation in the Congo has left 5.4 million dead. The death toll of the war in the Congo is higher than any war since WWII. The lives of innocent children are being measured by that horrible discourse.

 

I am in a class called “Modern Africa” this semester and it has been interesting to learn about the colonization of Africa. One Colonialist we studied was King Leopold who is responsible for thousands upon thousands of deaths in the Congo because of  Belgium’s desire for power, wealth, and advancement.

 

That was in the 19th century.

 

We are in the 21st.

 

This is still happening today.

 

Mineral wealth is being snatched up, people are being killed, and we have electronics to show for it….

 

Where are our voices? Where is our humanity?

 

How do we value life?

 

Help.