6But I am a worm, and no man; a reproach of men, and despised of the people. (Psalm 22:)
48Then answered the Jews, and said unto him, Say we not well that thou art a Samaritan, and hast a devil? (John 8:)
This morning I took in two services; the early Nazarene and later the Evangelical church. At the first service I was my normal secluded self, sitting far to the rear of the church and distant from all the others in attendance. Then for the second church I discovered I was an hour early and they were having a Bible study class (along with a film, which was about the Temple, a favorite subject of mine). After the film, comments were taken, and I found myself confidently adding my two cents worth of thought. Actually it turned out to be more like a dimes worth since I spoke up so often.
There was nearby an older lady who seemed particularly interested in what I had to say. So at services I planted myself by her and began to carry on a conversation with her. I talked about my experience with Indian lore, then I told here a bit about my story The Worm and the Thread, - and then the service began.
Before the service was completely over, the lady beside me put on her coat and headed for the door - without even a backward glance.
I had the feeling she was trying to escape from me (amazingly fast on her two walking canes). And I mulled it over in my mind for a long time what I might have said that could possibly have offended her. Being offensive, I am learning more and more, is a skill I am very adept at. And what is even more troubling, I am rarely aware that I have been offensive until the offended one has blown a gasket and confronts me with their hostility.
In just about every incidence it turns out the person had misunderstood what I had said (and on occasion I had expressed myself poorly causing the wrong conclusion) and we end up having a big laugh at my expense.
But this time I could not for the life of me see how I could have said anything to cause someone to withdraw from me so determinedly. I have a pretty good memory and power of recall; but with all this recall I could not recall anything offensive. I could think of something that might have been taken as doctrinally unsound to someone, which may have caused them to shy away from me like they would from a Hari Krishna who approached them. And I was afraid she might have been disturbed by something of this sort. And for sure I would not like to have anyone feel unsettled in their stance with themself because of anything I had said. This is one reason I say so little (even in my own church) that swerves from the fundamental doctrine believed by so many. And don't you know this is very hard for me considering that I don't agree with but very little of the fundamental and established doctrines?
So, I was afraid I had offended - and I was bothered by this, yet knowing there was not a thing I could do about it, even if I did know how I had offended.
Then I recalled what I had said about the story The Worm and the Thread. I told her that the cow patties were the denominations, that maybe two or three in a congregation would be willing to climb the thread to reach God, and I told her that Jesus called Himself a Worm. I also told her briefly (because the service started at this time) about my crying for a month after I had received the Holy Spirit.
I then heard (in my mind) what that must have sounded like to someone who had not experienced the infilling of the Holy Spirit, nor had read that Jesus referred to Himself as a worm. And, of course, there's probably one in a thousand who has knowledge of either of these experiences - and the likelihood of her being one of these is very remote.
Instead of hearing the Message, she had judged the messenger!
I hadn't offended her .... she just thought I was crazy!
That explained why she was so anxious to escape my presence. I highly suspect she feared this crazy man who had approached her out of nowhere was liable to follow her home or some such.
I was greatly relieved.
I would that everyone think I am crazy and that everything I say is absurd at best, and out and out heresy and demon inspired at worst. I might as well think this, because the chances of anyone thinking otherwise is nil to none.
But I don't want any of this to come from me! I want that anyone who does learn of this, or anything else I advocate, has first been prepared by the Holy Spirit to receive such, because to do otherwise can lead to disaster.
Being seen as crazy solves both of my problems. It certainly deals with my ego, as long as I can fully accept and be thankful for being seen as crazy.
And if people see me as crazy, they will read (or hear, though I haven't been called to preach or to teach) what I have to say with but a grain of salt, ready to doubt and reject everything I say. In fact, the chances are no one will bother to read it in the first place because it doesn't fit their belief system.
If no one reads what I have to say because they find it "Interesting," or "Provocative," that means only those who have (or are) been led by the Holy Spirit will get anything out of it. And if this be the case, I am left out of the picture and can neither be charged with blame, nor be given credit for whatever should come from what I have written.
1 My God, my God, why hast thou forsaken me? why art thou so far from helping me, and from the words of my roaring?
2 O my God, I cry in the daytime, but thou hearest not; and in the night season, and am not silent.
3 But thou art holy, O thou that inhabitest the praises of Israel.
4 Our fathers trusted in thee: they trusted, and thou didst deliver them.
5 They cried unto thee, and were delivered: they trusted in thee, and were not confounded.
6 But I am a worm, and no man; a reproach of men, and despised of the people.
7 All they that see me laugh me to scorn: they shoot out the lip, they shake the head, saying,
8 He trusted on the LORD that he would deliver him: let him deliver him, seeing he delighted in him.
9 But thou art he that took me out of the womb: thou didst make me hope when I was upon my mother's breasts.
10 I was cast upon thee from the womb: thou art my God from my mother's belly.
11 Be not far from me; for trouble is near; for there is none to help.
12 Many bulls have compassed me: strong bulls of Bashan have beset me round.
13 They gaped upon me with their mouths, as a ravening and a roaring lion.
14 I am poured out like water, and all my bones are out of joint: my heart is like wax; it is melted in the midst of my bowels.
15 My strength is dried up like a potsherd; and my tongue cleaveth to my jaws; and thou hast brought me into the dust of death.
16 For dogs have compassed me: the assembly of the wicked have enclosed me: they pierced my hands and my feet.
17 I may tell all my bones: they look and stare upon me.
18 They part my garments among them, and cast lots upon my vesture.
19 But be not thou far from me, O LORD: O my strength, haste thee to help me.
20 Deliver my soul from the sword; my darling from the power of the dog.
21 Save me from the lion's mouth: for thou hast heard me from the horns of the unicorns.
22 I will declare thy name unto my brethren: in the midst of the congregation will I praise thee.
23 Ye that fear the LORD, praise him; all ye the seed of Jacob, glorify him; and fear him, all ye the seed of Israel.
24 For he hath not despised nor abhorred the affliction of the afflicted; neither hath he hid his face from him; but when he cried unto him, he heard.
25 My praise shall be of thee in the great congregation: I will pay my vows before them that fear him.
26 The meek shall eat and be satisfied: they shall praise the LORD that seek him: your heart shall live for ever.
27 All the ends of the world shall remember and turn unto the LORD: and all the kindreds of the nations shall worship before thee.
28 For the kingdom is the LORD'S: and he is the governor among the nations.
29 All they that be fat upon earth shall eat and worship: all they that go down to the dust shall bow before him: and none can keep alive his own soul.
30 A seed shall serve him; it shall be accounted to the Lord for a generation.
31 They shall come, and shall declare his righteousness unto a people that shall be born, that he hath done this.
22And the scribes which came down from Jerusalem said, He hath Beelzebub, and by the prince of the devils casteth he out devils.
31There came then his brethren and his mother, and, standing without, sent unto him, calling him. 32And the multitude sat about him, and they said unto him, Behold, thy mother and thy brethren without seek for thee. 33And he answered them, saying, Who is my mother, or my brethren? 34And he looked round about on them which sat about him, and said, Behold my mother and my brethren! 35For whosoever shall do the will of God, the same is my brother, and my sister, and mother. (Mark 3:)
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