Saturday, November 14, 2009

One Order Of Crazy, Coming Right Up

Yesterday, as my sisters, family and friends, gathered in California to bury my dad, I got ready to go out and listen to GUM, a great band and one of my new favorites. Right before I left last night, I got a call from Char and Kelly. I was told how hard it was not having me there and that they really had needed me to be there. I sort of went ballistic, letting them know they didn’t get to say that to me. I really am evil, I’m afraid.

I use to be a nice person. I think I was anyway. Maybe not. Anyway, I am pretty sure I have changed, and not for the better, since my dad died. I can go from teary-eyed to raging lunatic in under sixty seconds. God, help those who have contact with me in the days to come and please heal those who have been so unfortunate as to have crossed my path in the last few weeks. I need some serious penance to happen.

A week ago, I received an amazing posting on my Facebook page. It was about fifty ways to love your neighbor. It came from XXXChurch, which has an awesome ministry to the porn community. For those of you who are still reading after that bit of information, let me explain. This church doesn’t judge people, they love them right where they are. What a concept! I know it is radical and crazy and probably a bit dangerous but I like it. I am ready for real. Real people, real life, real experiences with a real God. Is that asking too much?

So, here is the deal. I don’t want to write about dead people forever. I can’t promise that I will never write about dead people again because I probably will now and then but I am ready to move on to breathing people. It’s still about butts and ashes, loving people from end to end. Just breathing ones, for now anyway.

I am going to go through all fifty ways to love your neighbor, one a week for the next year, with two freebies obviously. My plan is to actually DO each thing suggested. It won’t be easy, I am scared and I may fail miserably. But what if I don’t? What if I actually make it through this ridiculously crazy list of fifty freeing, bizarre ideas? Will it change me? I can only hope!

Why do I really want to do this? I have asked myself that, repeatedly. Here is all I can come up with:

~ I need to make a difference in this world and it has to be with something that matters in the long run.

~ I want to leave my children something of value when I die. Since there won’t be any money, I figure acts of integrity in Jesus' name might work for something.

~ Crazy seems to make sense to me. Are you surprised?

Last night, at the concert, there was a little gal drawing henna designs on people. She gives the money she makes to the poor of this world. I sat and watched her and thought, “Why not?”

This is Chinese for courage. That's what I was told anyway.
I hope it doesn't actually mean crazy and yet I wouldn't be completely shocked.

If any of this interests you, check back on Monday. That's when I will be attempting the first way to love my neighbor. One order of crazy, coming right up ...


Sarah said...

yes, it does mean courage, not crazy. :)

good luck on loving your neighbors. let me know how that came out. i don't know any of my neighbors.

Marla said...

Thanks, Sarah. The scary part of this is the "neighbors" I will be loving aren't your usual, run-of-the-mill kind of neighbors. This could get interesting!

Lily Robinson said...

Jesus did not come to minister to the saints...

I love the way you write about dead people, but I suppose I'll love the way you write about living ones too.

Please pass along a message to your sons... "Though these words aren't adequate, I thank you."

MindyBB said...

LOL, I love this! Have you read "Crazy Love" by Frances Chan? I LOVE his and Shane Claiborne's style of minisrty thay are "real" Rob Bell too... I feel so displaced in a weird and okay way maybe there's a shaking going on? Like wake up and love some people?! I am waiting with greaat anticipation to see how this works!

Marla said...

Lily ~ So true. As for my writing, I can only hope my "breathing" scribbles will be as interesting as my "dead" ones.
My boys thank you! It means a lot to them when people care. They are both helicopter pilots. Amazing young men, indeed.

Mindy ~ The list actually was written by Shane Claiborne, I believe. Haven't read Crazy Love yet but I do love Chan. He is CRAZY! Question: If I end up getting arrested, you will bail me out, right?? :-)

Mrs4444 said...

It's nice to meet you :) I'm really glad you led me to your blog through your comment-you seem like a "deep" person, and deep fits me, too. I can totally, totally relate with that need to be real-it hit me about 20 years ago, and I embraced it wholeheartedly and have never looked back :)

Sorry about your dad's passing and the accompanying family drama.

The 50-ways plan sounds like a good one. Good luck!

Marla said...

Mrs4444 ~ Thanks for following! I promise to do my best to not lead you in the wrong direction. :-) Yes, I am often accused of being deep. I am starting to think this might be code for crazy.

Thanks for your kindness regarding my dad passing. I know life will be easier someday ... just not today. :-)

The 50 list is haunting my sleep so I am anxious and scared spitless to begin tomorrow. It will be real if nothing else so hang on!

Jana said...

Real does not get more real than with you sister chick. Go get em! Loving you and praying for you today and always!


Marla said...

Thanks for the encouragement, Jana. You may live to regret it. :-)

Unknown Mami said...

I'm sorry to hear about your Dad and I wish you much success on this "crazy" journey.

Marla said...

Thank you, Mami ~

DeLinda said...

Miss Marla,
I want you to know how much I enjoy reading your thoughts, and appreciate the complexity and 'depth' as well. I also want you to know that being 'deep' doesn't equal being 'crazy', this just simply means that you're a "thinker"....and that IS NOT a bad or crazy thing! You inspire me to dig and think deeper, and the mere fact that you 'think OUTSIDE of the box' is awesome! Some people don't know how to handle that, but that's just exactly why God didn't make us all the same in this world. Now THAT would be BORING!! Don't ya think?

Just remember that you touch alot of peoples lives, allow yourself time and space to grieve, get angry, sad, glad, even if it's all in the same minute. That STILL doesnt make you crazy!

The concept of "Loving your Neighbor' is directly from God, and though it does sound somewhat scary, it is totally a "God-thing". Jesus always went to people in their world, not in organized worship or related activities. He went WHERE THEY WERE, and how they were. That is the best way to minister to people, because as we know, NO ONE is perfect!

Keep writing Maam, you are wonderful and I Love you for your example! Big Hugs,,,DeLinda

Marla said...

DeLinda ~ Wow! I hardly know what to say after all your kind thoughts. So, does this mean you are going to go with me when I hit the streets? :-) I love you, DeLinda!!