Charismatic

Charismatic: (adj) relating to the charismatic movement in the Christian Church.

Even in the midst of the 500th anniversary of Martin Luther nailing his 95 Theses on the door of the Wittenburg Church, symbolizing the beginning of the Reformation Movement and the Protestant rendition of the faith, my mind prefers to go back less than fifty years–when
those boundaries existing between Catholics and Protestants were melted away by a simple sweet spirit.

I had just begun traveling the country–a young man full of dreams and plagued by empty pockets–when suddenly the walls that had once stood strong between the denominations of the followers of Jesus began to tumble by a movement of the Holy Spirit.

Matter of fact, many of my first opportunities to sing and share ended up being in front of Catholic Charismatic meetings, where those who honored a Pope and offered wine and cheese for snacks, suddenly joined hands in prayer with their Protestant counterparts.

It was beautiful. It was childlike. It was awe-inspiriring and sometimes a bit clumsy.

One night at a McDonald’s, one of my Catholic brothers, in an attempt to validate his newfound freedom and faith, proclaimed to the entire table of hamburger-munchers that “Jesus wiped with the same hand we do.” Everybody graciously said a quiet “amen,” our Big Macs suddenly shrinking in appeal.

What were the ingredients that made this movement so successful?

  1. They didn’t take too much time discussing theology.
  2. Everyone became known as a “Charismatic” instead of identifying by their denominational nametag.
  3. Love and hugging were just as important as Bible study and prayer.
  4. The music was like children’s hymns, sung with tears.
  5. It unified.

The Charismatic Movement didn’t last very long. False teachers, televangelists and those who wanted to make a dime off of a penny’s worth of thoughts soon came in and ravaged the faithful.

But it truly was charismatic.

Charismatic in the sense of being totally charming.

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Abstemious

by J. R. Practix

dictionary with letter A

Abstemious: (adj.) not self-indulgent, especially when eating or drinking. “We only had one bottle.” “Very abstemious of you.”

It’s not fair.

Well, of course, it IS fair. It’s just more powerful to begin an essay like this with an obtuse proclamation of disparity.

I can go into a restaurant and watch somebody eat a total of three thousand calories at one sitting (being a fatty, I have total awareness of the calorie count of every known food) and watch as that individual, who has consumed this humongous amount of food, stands up and leaves, appearing to be as thin as a razor.

I, on the other hand, can meticulously consume twelve hundred calories in an entire day, and not shed one single ounce in the process.

I do not know if it’s some great cosmic joke. I am not sure if it’s some sort of genetic foible. It could be that there is a missing link in my own thinking that needs to be inserted, or a demon which needs to be driven from my deep, dark, fatty soul, to allow me to walk in the “thinness of life.”

But last night I ran headlong into the situation. Finishing up my evening, having not yet consumed my dinner, I was hungry. Now, understand–as a fat person, I don’t need to be hungry to eat. Matter of fact, there are nights when I’m watching television when I am quite full, but still am taking a mental inventory of the contents of the nearby refrigerator.

But last night I had actually expended energy and was famished. Yet I wanted to remain faithful to some unseen code of behavior, which would allow me to be considered a “fatty-in-retreat” instead of a plumper, charging ahead for more gain. So I ordered myself a twelve-inch veggie sandwich from Subway, brought it home, purchased a small bag of chips and ate it. Although quite delicious, when I finished it, I began to look around the room to find out where my dinner had gone.

They tell you if you wait twenty minutes after eating, you will feel full. I’m sure this is true, but twenty minutes might as well be three days unless you put me into a coma. I am going to start looking for alternatives. What can I further consume which will make me look righteous in my pursuit of weight loss, but still satisfy the little fat boy who live in the basement of my house?

I’m sure I did poorly.

Can I tell you?–I’m tired of doing poorly. It’s not that I am tired of pursuing upright eating. No, it’s just that sometimes I feel like I’m going against the natural order of my existence in an attempt to look better or buy more time in the calendar of my years.

Don’t get me wrong. I will still be here today–parsing my calories and analyzing my food.

Abstemious–choosing to avoid certain things.

Because it’s my lot. Some people can’t do what I do, and I can’t eat three thousand calories at McDonald’s without having someone roll me out the door in a wheelbarrow, doing chest compressions.