Bask

Bask: (v) to revel in and make the most of something pleasing.Dictionary B

Intimidation enforced for the purpose of demanding imitation:

In other words, if a flag held by a soldier in uniform comes streaming by, there is a certain protocol that is supposed to be enacted by me–and preferably some emotion to go along with those well-rehearsed actions.

  • Take your hat off
  • Bow your head
  • Sprout some tears
  • Put your hand on your heart
  • Mumble a prayer

Only then will you be convinced that I am are a true patriot.

If you pray for peace or work to keep our soldiers out of harm’s way so they can return to their families after their due diligence, you just might be considered anti-American.

I love to bask–but I find it difficult to bask in the glories of the past.

There is so much beauty available. We don’t need to worship a history book, a symbol, a Bible or a creed which can be cold and leave us chilly.

Why can’t we develop a faith that births new blessings every day, and fills our hearts with such hope that removing a hat, bowing a head and speaking a prayer is spontaneous?

Bask in the glory.

I don’t want to bask anymore in the glory of what America once was, but join with my fellow citizens to keep it glorious, so that the memories of our freedom are fresh instead of arranged in the pages of the history books.

I want to bask in the glory of a God who loves me and have that sensation sweep over my soul instead of listening to how some apostle 2000 years ago was impressed enough by his mission to become a martyr.

Yes, it is the responsibility of those who are living to keep beauty vibrant, so it is not a memory that we have to conjure and thrust into prominence, but instead becomes the showers of blessing and the sunshine of our reality. 

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Apostle

dictionary with letter A

Apostle: (n.) 1. each of the twelve chief disciples of Jesus Christ. 2. an enthusiastic supporter of an idea or cause.

Titles are what non-talented people cling to in order to avoid being evaluated on the quality of their work.

You can tell exactly how useless these assigned names are by how popular they are in our present-day society, which seems to be stuck in the muck of ego, unable to maneuver in any direction.

I, too, am often asked to produce my running list of titles. These are supposed to be words that inform the hearer that I am worthy of being listened to and that I have jumped through enough hoops to be part of the circus.

I’ve even had people correct me when I’ve addressed them by their first name, to inform me that their title must be included–otherwise they have a sense of what we might call “nomenclature nakedness.”

So instead of granting people dignity and appreciation for their deeds, we bequeath them with titles.

And this is why the original apostles nearly suffocated the message of Jesus of Nazareth–because they spent most of their time sitting around discussing who was greater and who Jesus liked better. In the process they began to kiss up to the very same individuals who originally had crucified their Master.

Fortunately for us, they stopped being apostles and turned back into rag-tag fanatics.

Because I will tell you of a certainty, King George III was not impressed that Benjamin Franklin came up with the idea of electricity or had constructed a stove. He considered him a rebel and a rapscallion and was prepared to hang him.

And the American history books can be grateful that Mr. Franklin did not take offense, but agreed to don the role of rebel so that we might be free.

Titles frighten me. They assume that their mere inclusion should produce respect.

What should give us our respect is whether we follow through on what we say is truly important.

 

 

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Andrew, St.

dictionary with letter A

Andrew, St.: An apostle, the brother of St. Peter. He is associated with the X-shaped cross because he is said to have been crucified on such a cross, and is the patron saint of Russia and Scotland. Feast Day, November 30.

Long before he was nailed down on a multiplication symbol and they started a special holiday in his honor, Andrew was a fisherman in a little town called Capernaum.

His prospects for being prosperous or well-known and his aptitude for upward mobility were less than promising–actually, comical.

Living in a village of less than five hundred people and a partner in a business in which his brother, with a more boisterous personality, took over the entire room, Andrew had little chance of surfacing socially, or even generating a jot and tittle in a history book.

Yet he possessed one powerful personality trait–he was curious.

While his brother probably took the time to sleep off the latest fishing jaunt, which included heavy wine drinking, Andrew was out and about, looking for possibilities. In the process, he met another unlikely earth-shaker named Jesus of Nazareth.

We don’t know why Andrew was impressed or why he was so moved by the Nazarene’s message. But we do know that he was one of Jesus’ early followers, and ends up bringing his brother to the cause.

As often is the case, there is no Peter without Andrew. There are no five loaves and two fishes for the five thousand fed without Andrew bringing the little boy’s lunch for consideration.

And even though after all the smoke cleared of the posturing and shuffling, he did not end up being one of the inner-three best friends of Jesus (positions held by Peter, James and John), we are never made aware that he is slighted or offended in the least.

He did three things that gave him personal salvation and a place for all time:

  1. He stayed interested.
  2. When he found something important, he got excited.
  3. He stuck with it to the end.

In many ways Andrew is the hero of the gospel story simply because he brought the right people at the right time … to the right person.

 

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