Catacomb Resident Blog

Active Community

06 January 2022

This blog is not saying anything new. I might offer a prophetic message that is rather rare, but it's not new. There are other people out there writing blogs and even books on this same emphasis of renewing the Covenant. I already have an established link back to a community based on such teaching.

How many books does it take? There's never enough and yet too many already. That is, no matter how many books get written, we cannot possibly cover it in all the different ways it could be expressed. At the same time, there's too many books for anyone to read, so they have to pick and choose. The honest truth is, very few readers are equipped to find a stronger faith just by reading something. Words just don't do it justice, so there has to be something inside the reader already that enables them to respond in faith.

God intended for us to find Him through community with others. A primary mark of genuine faith and peace with God is the testimony of how we love each other. It's not what we can gather to accomplish, but that we gather at all when there's every fleshly reason not to. It's the power of the Holy Spirit to keep us acting like a family regardless of the human differences.

Absorb this: Human conflict is not a sin. Nor is it a sad inevitability. No, human conflict is God's will for fallen mankind. The Covenant does not dissolve conflict; it regulates it and makes it a blessing. Tension is from God's hand; avoiding it is a sin.

You've heard it before: Peace is not the absence of conflict. Peace is conflict handled properly. If you presume tension and conflict as part of the blessings of God, then you are better prepared to seek what it is conflict is supposed to do for us. The first step is to stop taking yourself so seriously. Do you not understand that God grants each of us a powerful conviction that will inevitably vary from what God has given someone else? He speaks to us in our hearts things that conflict with what He tells someone else. A primary work of the Holy Spirit is learning how to carry on in fellowship and communion against our God-given differences.

A friend of mine likes to say that reality itself is fungible -- one man's reality is as good as another. He says that pointing back to the psychology of phenomenology. All we really have is experience and perception, and it's utterly impossible to say what's objectively real. Human perception is simply not capable of figuring out what's real, so it's silly to believe in objective reality. That's the real source of human conflict. Rather, we should each assume that every other human we encounter spends at least part of their time in a parallel reality.

God does this to us for a reason. He isn't concerned if we know what's actually real; He wants us to obey Him regardless of our perceptions about what's real. We should be able to build up an awareness of conviction in isolation from the broader reality. We need to discount all sensory data and logic, too. Don't ignore it, but consider it intrinsically untrustworthy. You have what you have to go on, but you should be working toward having full confidence in your convictions first.

Thus, it is highly improbable that anyone is going to swallow everything I post on this blog. What is probable is that God can use what I write to provoke someone else pursuing an area of faith they had previously ignored. I'm not trying to get you to buy my ideas; I'm trying to provoke you to find your own understanding.

Granted, at some point I'm hoping you'll come to expect that somewhere out there in the real world is a place where others will tend to share enough of your faith and convictions that you can fellowship and form a communion. God's best blessings are not in what people can write in books or anywhere else. God's shalom is the product of a community of folks who love each other knowing they don't agree on everything. It's all about people -- specifically, it's about real persons with all the dynamics of daily change. That's the ultimate reality God created. Your experience with reality is like getting to know a real person. Like any other real person, no two of us will have exactly the same experience with the same person. Reality is like that, too.

Don't ask for a written compendium of teaching. Write your own, even if not literally on real paper. And then understand that such teaching is your own, and only your own. Sure, you are supposed to share it. But it's not so you can persuade others to walk your path, but to realize that the path God has for you includes a certain amount of conflict. It's not the knowledge and teaching, but the moral conviction about being a community that really matters in the Kingdom.

Pray for a genuine faith community. Look for God to provide it. Know for sure in your own heart that the greatest repository of truth in this world is the interaction between God's children.

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