“Then God said, “Let Us Make mankind in Our Image, in Our Likeness, so that they may rule over the fish in the sea and the birds in the sky, over the livestock and all the wild animals, and over all the creatures that move along the ground.” So God Created mankind in His Own Image, in the Image of God He Created them; male and female He Created them.” Genesis 1:26-27

This scripture means so much more than we realize upon first glance. We are flesh and blood, but we are also three-in-one as God in Heaven is Three-in-One – Father, Son, and Holy Spirit. Some might think of this as mind, body, and spirit. Freud posited a theory that the self has 3 distinct parts – id, ego, and superego*

Scientists have discovered that we actually have 3 physical areas of “knowing” within our bodies. In addition to our minds, we have two other centers in our bodies with true brains of their own. 40,000 cardiac neurons form our heart brain, the cardiac nervous system. 1 billion plus neurons form our gut brain, our enteric nervous system. Sensory neurons, motor neurons, ganglia, and neurotransmitters are all present in both of these other brains. The heart-brain constantly sends electrical messages through the vagus nerve to the head-brain. The gut-brain also sends electrical messages to the head-brain – 400 times as many gut signals travel to head as are sent from the head to the gut. The gut sends neurotransmitters to the brain, such as serotonin, dopamine, and gaba, as well.

People have intuitively known this for centuries. We regard the heart as the center of Love, using ❤️ to symbolize Love. Often, we are counseled to listen to our hearts. We talk about having “gut feelings” – a deeper knowing that guides us. Stress and anxiety often result in stomachaches and even intestinal “disfortitude”. Intense grief feels as if we have been stabbed in both heart and gut.

“The intuitive mind is a sacred gift and the rational mind is a faithful servant. We have created a society that honors the servant and has forgotten the gift.” Albert Einstein

Most of us “live” in our heads, where our brains receive and process information – primarily, input from our five main senses. The head is also the seat of executive functioning, sending signals out to our bodies in order to act upon our intentions.

While our sense of identity resides in our minds, God’s Law is Written on our hearts. Our hearts are where the Fruits of the Spirit exist – Agape Love, Joy, Peace, Patience, Kindness, Generosity, Faithfulness, Gentleness, Self-control. These are only made manifest in our actions when we turn away from ourselves – our own wills, which are directed by our desires. This is what dying to ourselves means. The Gift of God’s Holy Spirit Empowers us to do this.

“On the Sabbath we went outside the city gate to the river, where we expected to find a place of prayer. We sat down and began to speak to the women who had gathered there. One of those listening was a woman from the city of Thyatira named Lydia, a dealer in purple cloth. She was a worshiper of God. The Lord opened her heart to respond to Paul’s message.” Acts 16:13-14

We must quiet our minds in order to tune into our centers of Deeper Knowledge, where The Infinite Dwells inside of us. (This actually has a term – “Multiple Brain Integration” or mBIT) This happens most often during times of solitude – when we are praying, meditating, walking, or even mindlessly washing dishes. Artists and other creatives experience mBIT as “flow” – Creativity becomes an act of Collaborating with God. It is in this Unity with God that we find our True Selves.

And it is at these times that we are most apt to hear God’s Voice Speak to us. This is where we learn to align our intentions with God’s Will. God doesn’t Call us to be believers – knowing God only in our minds.

“For I can testify about them that they are zealous for God, but their zeal is not based on Knowledge.” – Paul (Romans 10:2)

“You believe that there is one God. Good! Even the demons believe that—and shudder.” -James, brother of Jesus (James 2:19)

God Calls us to be disciples/followers – to know God deeply in our innermost beings. God Desires to have a Personal Relationship with us. It is through Communion with God that we find True Peace and Joy. We are Saved by the Blood of Jesus Christ – Claimed as Adopted Children by The Father – Transformed by The Holy Spirit

Amen! †❤️😊

*In Freud’s theoretical model, the id represented humans’ baser instincts. The superego represented humans’ sense of morality. Freud saw the ego as the mediator between the other two conflicting identities, which he theorized were in a constant tug of war to control human behavior. Despite being a committed atheist, he perceived the dual nature of humanity – animal-likeness vs God-likeness. (I don’t know how he reconciled the idea of our innate morality and acts of altruism with his belief in a Godless universe.)

Parable of the new job

It was Friday, the end of your first week at this amazing new job. Your friend had told you about this company – a research and development facility where employees were allowed the creative freedom to develop any great idea that came to them. Each day before work, the employees were invited to a 5:00 a.m. breakfast with the Boss. Delicious quiches and pastries were served, as well as gourmet coffee. But it was optional, and you are not a morning person! You opted for starting work at 9:00 and catching the three extra hours of Z’s.

When you walked in on that first day, you saw that the office was bustling with activity. Others seemed joyfully engaged in their projects. You felt a little lost because no one assigned you any tasks. You looked around. On Monday, you cleaned the break room – it really needed it. Another day, you organized desks and took out the overflowing trash cans. You cleaned off all of the whiteboards, restocked the printer paper and toner, put new rolls of toilet paper in the bathrooms, and generally tidied up the place. It was tedious, but you wanted to show your new Boss that you were willing to work hard.

At the end of the Friday workday, the boss gathered everyone for a standing meeting. This, you discovered, was where all the employees stood in the circle. Each person had one minute to summarize what they had worked on over the week. The first woman to report was three spaces to your right.

“Our team is working on a wastewater management system for remote areas in developing nations – in other words, we’re reinventing the toilet.” She chuckled. Others laughed and congratulated her on her team’s progress.

The next guy, dressed in a T-shirt and jeans, explained that his team was in the midst of a campaign to crowdsource state-of-the-art computers for students who had no access to technology. This had put them at a disadvantage in their studies. Everyone agreed that this was a desperate need in impoverished communities.

Attention now turned to the guy standing next to you. You wondered to yourself, “How come I wasn’t given an exciting project to work on? I was stuck cleaning up after everyone else – it was boring.” You glanced at the guy to your right and were astonished to see that he was about 15 or 16 years old.

“Our team made nutritious and tasty sack lunches each morning. Then we distributed them to people who are currently unhoused. We fed about 4,000 to 5,000 people each day.

“”What?!” you shout in your head. “That’s impossible!”

Now it was your turn to report. “Well, um, I’m new, and I’m not on any team, yet, so I cleaned, organized, and restocked the office… ” You glanced sheepishly at the Boss.

“It certainly needed it. Thank you. Maybe next week, you can come to our 5:00 a.m. breakfast gatherings. I’d love to see you there. We break bread together, enjoy each other’s company, and hatch our plans for the day during the meal – sort of a brainstorming session, you might say.” He fixed his eyes on me. His personal invitation was so sincere and compelling.

You understood now why everyone else joyfully labored at their jobs during the week. They knew their projects had the Boss’s Stamp of Approval and Full Support because they had spent time before work in Intimate Companionship with the Boss.

As the rest of the people reported one by one, you resolved to start coming to the breakfasts. Now, you were eager for Monday to come, so you could start your new job afresh and work with others and your Boss on exciting projects! Trading sleep for all of the Joy you sensed in your coworkers suddenly seemed like a Great Deal : )

Amen ; ) ❤️

Fully God, Fully Human

It’s Christmas time, and I’m trying to imagine Your Birth into this World and Your Life, Lord. You Gave Up Omniscience, Omnipresence, and Omnipotence to Enter our reality and Live Life from our point of view. I have a lot of questions for You, Lord:

At Your Birth, did You Feel the startling shock of Leaving Mary’s Womb and Breathing air for the first time?
As You Nestled into Your Mother’s Arms and Nursed, did You Think, “This isn’t so bad”?
Did You Have diaper rash, colic, colds, chicken pox?
Was teething hard for You?
Were Your First Steps taken in Egypt?
Did You Fall Down and Skin Your Knees? Did Your Mother Scoop You up into Her Arms to Comfort You?
Did You Run to Your Mom to Show Her Your First Lost Tooth?
Did You Play games with Your siblings and friends?
Were You at the top of Your class in Synagogue School? I’m sure You Were! You Were Wise beyond Your Years – as demonstrated in the Temple when You Were 12 years old. Did You have the occasional pimple and Feel Awkward and Shy around girls as a Teenager?
Did You Hang out with Joseph, Your earthly father, fascinated by his ability to make things out of wood?
Did Joseph’s big hand close over Your Little Hand as he showed You how to hold a hammer?
What did You Make during Your Years as a Carpenter? You Created the World for Heaven’s Sake!
Were Your Tables Artistic Masterpieces?
When You Felled a tree to shape into a beam for a home, did You Think to Yourself “I Remember Making this tree to grow”?

You Must have Appeared to Your neighbors as just another fellow human being before You Began Your Ministry, though, because they were quite astonished and skeptical by the Change that came over You at the age of 30. Your Mother knew, though. She knew You could Save the wedding feast in Cana when the wine ran out. You Protested, but She turned on her heel and basically said “Make it so” as She walked away, confident in Your Godliness. You Obeyed Your Mom : )

While You Were Among us, You got Tired, Hungry, Frustrated, and Angry. Sometimes You Were Surprised, as You Were when a woman touched Your Cloak for Healing. You Rejoiced when the 72 disciples You Sent Out returned triumphantly. I can imagine You Smiling Tenderly when parents brought their children to You to be Blessed and Prayed Over. You Compassionately Healed so many people with afflictions while You Were here. You Had Moments of Sorrow, as at Lazarus’s death and Judas’s betrayal. You Were Deeply Moved by Mary of Bethany’s Anointing of You before Your Death. You Felt Trepidation before Your Capture and Crucifixion. You Loved Your People and Felt Loved by Your followers – especially by the three Marys, John, and Peter. And You Felt the sting of hatred and rejection!

You Felt Intense Physical Pain, as well as Abandonment by all of Your disciples except John. You Made Sure Your Mother would be taken care of after Your Death. From the Cross, You Assigned John the task of being her new son – Aways Thinking of others…

And of course, the whole point is that You Felt Forgiveness!
And You Felt Victorious at Your Resurrection!

While You Lived among us, Lord, You Were Fully Human and Fully God. You Know what our life is like. You Empathize with our struggles and sorrows. You Rejoice in our victories. You Are a Deeply Personal, Loving, and Forgiving God!
Merry Christmas, Lord!

Amen ✝️❤️😊

Not enough faith

I look around me, and I just don’t have enough faith NOT to believe in You, Lord. The very existence of this Universe defies Newton’s laws of motion and the laws of thermodynamics. If for every action there is an equal and opposite reaction, as stated in Newton’s third law, didn’t some Force have to cause the Big Bang? – or whatever the origins of the Universe are? I put a rock on a table once and sat there, waiting for it to move by itself. It never moved. I got bored and left.

In a isolated system, matter and energy cannot be created or destroyed. Yet, here we are : )

And if every closed system tends toward entropy – in other words, tends to fall apart into chaos – what caused subatomic particles to collect together to form atoms, the atoms to clump together into molecules, and those molecules to join together to make the Earth, stars, and planets and the rest of the night sky… And us? This is order forming out of chaos – the opposite of entropy.

There are underlying patterns and cycles throughout the Universe. Our Sun rises and sets every 24 hours. The Earth cycles through its seasons like clockwork. The Fibonacci sequence appears over and over again in nature. Stars are born, live, and die just like us. Each generation of stars is made in part from the “star stuff” of previous generations – just as the atoms and molecules, previously used by other beings, flow through our bodies – rivers of matter used and reused.

The mathematical odds of the order in our universe being a result of chance are so infinitesimal, it’s beyond my imagination. It would have to be fortuitous coincidence heaped upon fortuitous coincidence for billions of years for us to be here! The multiverse theory seems even more improbable without some Force behind the creation of them all.

Have you ever seen a little kid bowling for the first time? They push the ball with two hands. It slowly rolls down the alley until it comes to a dead stop in the middle. That’s because there wasn’t enough initial force to overcome the ball’s inertia and the friction acting upon it. Now imagine that the kid’s bowling ball starts to roll faster and faster toward the pins – picking up speed without any visible force acting upon it. You would have to assume there was a downward slope to the alley. Otherwise, there would be no explanation for the ball’s acceleration… Yet this Universe is expanding at an ever accelerating rate. If the universe’s expansion was a result of the energy released in the Big Bang, one would expect the universe to be decelerating. Scientists, as of yet, cannot explain what force is causing the accelerated expansion. They call it “dark energy” for lack of a better description. I’m just saying… ; )

So… if I can get past how all matter and energy exist, I’m still left wondering why I can ponder all of this. Why do I have consciousness? Our sentience is not explained by any current theory of chance. Humans are far more than the sum of their parts. We can create, learn, reason, analyze, visualize, remember and reflect on the past, and project into the future. We have complex language, with which we communicate thoughts, feelings, and ideas to other humans. We have a broad range of emotions – chief among them being love and hate. We don’t live by instinct. We think and feel our way through life. As much as I loved seeing KoKo the gorilla learn how to use sign language or like imagining intelligent dolphins saying “So long, and thanks for all the fish”, no other living being comes close to this level of human consciousness.

I could go on, but the upshot is that I just don’t have enough faith to believe that all of this and we exist by chance. To me, that takes a bigger leap of logic then to believe in an Intentional and Mindful Creator. A godless Universe contradicts science and math more than the existence of a Supreme Being.

Having faith means one believes in something that can’t be proven true. I can’t prove of Your Existence to others, Lord – though I know You Are with me. Someone once said something to the effect that “if I can believe in our existence, I can believe in anything.” That’s basically what I’m saying here. Our very existence is ridiculous to begin with! And without You, God, it makes no sense at all!

“The heavens declare the Glory of God;the skies proclaim the Work of His Hands.Day after day they pour forth speech;night after night they reveal knowledge.They have no speech, they use no words;no sound is heard from them.Yet their voice goes out into all the earth,their words to the ends of the world.”Psalm 19:1-4


“But those who hope in the Lord will renew their strength. They will soar on wings like eagles; they will run and not grow weary, they will walk and not be faint.” Isaiah 40:31

Faith in God is not a religion – something adjunct to our lives. Faith is a Way of Being! We can either move through this world connected to or disconnected from You, God. These are really the only two choices we have. That’s what eating of the fruit of the Tree of Good and evil taught us (against Your Will, Lord)

Before our fall, we were joined with You at the hip so to speak, Lord. We walked with You daily, enjoying the Supreme Order of Your Creation. We knew “Good” before that first bite because You Are “Good”. The first bite taught us about evil – disconnecting from You and going our own ways. We found out that we can serve our own wants and desires. We have free will.

What a mistake that first bite was! Chaos entered Your Supreme Order at that moment – Perfection was shattered. We can’t really frown upon Adam and Eve because if they hadn’t turned away from You, someone else would eventually try it – me… ? 😔

So You Rescued us. You Met us where we are. You Washed us Clean with the Blood of Your Lamb, so we may stand blameless before You again despite ourselves. We can once again live our lives in Your Presence, God – drawing the Breath of True Life from You.

To reduce this personal relationship with You to a belief system is an understatement to say the least.

“Jesus’ Is my Savior not my religion” Matt Maher

We are already living our immortal lives in Your Kingdom. The odds for Love, Peace, and Joy in our mortal lives are now stacked heavily in our favor – though this life is still hard…

When we are in Your Presence, Lord, we soar on eagle’s wings. We are connected to the Creator of the Universe. How Awesome is that?! We are allowed to avail ourselves of Your Omnipotent Power According to Your Will, so that sometimes, miraculous events, which defy natural explanations, occur in our reality through our prayerful connection with You.

Our whole being shifts when we’re with You. We see with Your Eyes what is important. We are freed from the matrix that we humans have created. We are able to discern between Your Truth and evil’s false reality.

You Commissioned us to go forth and make disciples of all nations – to model Life in You, to Shine for You, so others choose Good over evil, and follow You.

Your Compassion and Longing fill us to overflowing. We long for everyone to know what it means to Live in You, Lord – for it’s the Path of Life. Your Will becomes our will. We have Purpose in our lives that surpasses the grave.

Show us how, Lord, to bring our fellow voyagers on this earthly journey to the Foot of Your Cross. Soul by soul, Your Supreme Order will be Restored. Then surely Your Goodness and Love will follow us all the days of our lives, and we will dwell in the House of the Lord forever.

All Praise, Honor, and Glory To You, Oh God!

Amen ✝️❤️😊