Cubit

Cubit: (n) an ancient linear unit based on the length of the forearm

Scouring my mind, I do believe the only time I’ve ever heard or read the word “cubit” is in the Book of Genesis and the story of Noah.

In this tale, God tells Mr. Noah to build an ark and “cubit” is one of the measurements to determine how big it’s going to be.

Once I discovered that a cubit is really about eighteen inches, I was able to go through the text of the narrative and ascertain how immense this boat was purposed to be.

Although it was a quite formidable structure, it probably was not large enough to hold all the animals of the world, even if they came two by two.

Now, I did not doubt the value of the story—trusting that what I read was inspired and I should go ahead and follow through on it.

But I would not hold to the veracity of every detail.

I have friends who would not associate with anyone if they found out that person did not believe that the Bible was the whole Word of God—inerrant and infallible.

I have other acquaintances who would doubt my sanity if I held fast to the Noah story as related by Moses in the book.

But one of the ways I know that every person, in his or her own mind, has found some interpretation that pleases them about the Great Flood is that we no longer use the word “cubit.”

Actually, eighteen inches would be a very handy length to place into our lexicon.

But it got associated with the story of an ark built by a man who believed the world was about to be flooded and it was his job to save a skeleton crew.

funny wisdom on words that begin with a C

 

Cowrite

Cowrite: (v) to co-author

Inspired.

Divinely inspired.

I don’t have a problem with either of these thoughts.

I’ve been inspired. I will even be so bold as to claim having been divinely inspired (if by divinity you include science, life, nature, humanity and breathing.)

Yet, I have a problem believing that something ever written by a mortal hand is minus all the twitches and nervous energy associated with that being.funny wisdom on words that begin with a C

Therefore, when you tell me that God wrote something, I become skeptical. My understanding of our Creator is that He is much more involved in the visual media of sunrises, sunsets, stars, planets, galaxies—and the universe, for that matter.

For any writer will tell you that the most dangerous thing to do is try to place truth in stone when your own mortality limits the comprehension of truth.

I fully understand that all those who ever wrote a “holy book” believed, in the moment, that their hand was overtaken by a divine spirit which urged them to convey the ideas.

But time marches on. What we believed to be true yesterday is not quite the same today.

And the search for “universal truth” really does not take us through volumes and volumes of thoughts and reflections, but rather, to the doorstep of a single emotion: love.

Maybe this is why a fisherman and cowriter once scrawled, “God is love.”


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Clientele

Clientele: (n) the customers

Long ago in a universe that was far-out, but not far away, there existed a gathering of human souls called “church.”

Like every idea which is acted out by human beings, it was flawed from inception.

But at the root was a watering hole, where people could get together, rub up against each other, feel uncomfortable and blessed at the same
time, and walk out at the end of an hour inspired and also entertained because the children’s choir broke rank and failed to deliver the perfect performance that the young director from college had envisioned.

It was elegantly imperfect–which made it adorable.

The laughing was equal to the crying.

The “amens” were matched by groans of conviction.

It might have continued in that format as a great, uplifting experience had the accountants and the fanatics stayed away.

The church treasurers became very concerned that all bills be paid and money set aside for the carpet that would need to be purchased three years from now.

And then there were the fanatics–those who discovered that if they could get people to be afraid or nervous, they could stimulate attendance and keep people “fired up.”

Somewhere along the line, this organism called “the church” welcomed in nasty clientele.

These individuals were pious, knowing more about Bible verses than life, caring more about the vestibule than the hungry and homeless in the community, and were determined to maintain purity instead of welcoming the stained.

The innocent were targeted.

Races were rejected.

Preferences were labeled “abominable.”

The church became a repellent to anyone who wanted to find a location for a soul-stirring, emotional rejuvenation–a penitentiary full of guards with nobody willing to be prisoners.

Procedure became more important than salvation.

So the more humble folk, who knew they were sinners but prayed for God’s grace, gradually slipped out the front door, to never return again, leaving behind a quorum of quasi-religious critics.

Is it possible that the clientele could be changed and we could return to an assembly that was meant for humans instead of one that tries to gear its programming only to an Almighty God?

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Amendment

dictionary with letter A

Amendment: (n) 1. a change or addition to a legal or statutory document: an amendment to the existing bail laws. 2. an article added to the U.S. Constitution: e.g. the First Amendment.

Perhaps the most appealing part of the American story–from the birthing of a nation to the present-day collision of government–is the notion that even though we were greatly inspired to begin a country, with forefathers who have been touted as geniuses and revolutionary thinkers, we did understand that there would be a need, as time pressed on, to amend our original convictions by the sheer beauty and majesty of revealed wisdom.

If not, we would have those running for Congress who would still insist that because the original document claimed that black slaves were less than a whole human being, that we shouldn’t veer from that course and change our approach.

There is nothing written by man, whether inspired or not, that doesn’t require some sort of editing and tuning up as the clock ticks away.

This is true whether it’s the Constitution of the United States, which began with an agrarian society encompassed by slavery with no comprehension whatsoever about how much land mass would eventually be involved within its borders, to the Good Book, which started off with two people in a Garden and ends somewhere far away in the Universe, in an Eternity of Eternities.

I don’t believe that amendments are contradictions, but rather, necessary stipulations absorbed, to remind us of the original spirit of the text and the need to be inclusive instead of destructive.

Yes, the Good Book has many amendments in it, which some fundamentalist preachers and congregations fail to recognize because they give the same weight to a chapter in Deuteronomy that they do to the red-letter truth in the Gospel of John.

Here’s what we know for sure:

  • Life is moving towards life.
  • Freedom is moving towards freedom.
  • Liberty is also packed up and on its way to liberty.

Anything that comes along to deter the journey of this trio will be recalculated and rebooted in a different direction.

I want to be part of the amendments which make everything we believe more human, more accessible and more powerful, to create better people … instead of just maintaining strong control.