I'm God's Daughter-in-law

So the other night I was having a great conversation with a friend.
And this friend and I were discussing the role of the church in modern society, but more specifically, in our immediate sphere of life. What purposes does it serve in the world and in my/your world?
Here is what I concluded to put it simply: God is God. God is in everything. But God is not church. Because God is God. And church is church. duh.
God has a son. His son's name is Jesus. If Jesus had a wife, her name would be "the church." The church is the bride of Christ. We, as believers, are the bride of Christ. We are the church. We are Jesus' wife. Still with me?
So technically, if Jesus is the son of God, and the church is His bride, that kind of makes the church God's daughter-in-law. An important role in la familia, but not quite AS important as the son himself.

But like every great bride, the church is meant to love and serve and fulfill the needs of Christ. And in return, like every good hubby, Jesus is our protector, provider, and unconditional lover. Sounds like a match made in heaven eh? (pun intended)

Therefore, church, in the physical/social definition of the word, is important, but not everything in the grand scheme of faith. Before you crucify me for blasphemy, hear me out. What I'm saying is, if you fit into that group of us that have missed more than one church service, or don't look and act like everyone else, or happen to have sinned more than twice in your life, you shouldn't feel as though you've missed the boat. We don't just go to church, we ARE the church, and the church is a beautiful, romantic body with the potential to remedy every one of this world's infirmities with God's love. Let's make our man proud.

Empire Thinking

Through out the course of history, several ancient empires have risen to power to by conquering their surrounding territories and preserving a strong imperial drive through the generations.
The Assyrians, the Babylonians, the Greeks, the Persians, the Romans – they all established strong empires through strategic military and political advances. One common denominator sticks out – a tradition of greatness.
Take the Spartans for example.
As soon as the children were physically able, they were trained vigorously at a special training academy where they were hardened in body and mind; taught to fight with ferocity, skill, and valor.
The point is that these young children were instilled from birth that their lives were destined for greatness. Success was a given. They did not think this way out of arrogance but out of the understanding that success was always attainable through relentless effort. They were told that their very existence was crucial to their people’s survival; that their existence made Sparta better, stronger.
Whether this was actually true or not, they believed it with every fiber of their being. And that is what I believe actually does make it true.
What’s your point?
Imagine if we lived in a world where from day one, it was stressed to you that your presence in your family, on this earth, and in this global community, makes everything better. You are meant for greatness. You are a wellspring of potential. The whole world depends on your life’s contribution. Nice, huh?
Where does God fit into all of this?
I believe that God is calling us to be Empire thinkers. He wants us to develop our generation, and the generations that follow, into people who realize the weight of His call and purpose. We’ve been called to go into the unconquered places (i.e. school, work, home, etc.) and to make disciples for our Kingdom.
Stop everything. Think about it. Go realize your greatness. Come back. And go tell someone about theirs.

Día del Trabaje

Labor day is a funny joke. If the creators of this oxymoronic holiday were referring to the labor involved in being extremely lazy all day, then alright, we're on the same page. I agree that is hard work doing this much of nothing.
For those of you who shared the same confusion about this holiday, read on...
Labor Day celebrations began in 1882, originating from a desire by the Central Labor Union to create a day off for the "working man". It is obviously still celebrated mainly as a day of rest and marks the symbolic end of summer for many. Labor Day became a federal holiday by an act of Congress in 1894.

What does this mean for you and I?

I have no idea but I like asking that question because It makes the reader anticipate a very intelligent, informative answer to no avail.

What I do wonder is why we didn't name the thing, "Take A Break Day", or how about "Hey, Chill Out Week", or even "Mom, I'm freaking playing XBOX, turn off the garbage disposal 'cause I can't hear where the shooting is coming from!...Day." Any of these potential holiday titles would adequately suffice in describing the contents of such a labor-free day. And furthermore, they would prepare a foreigner for "how we roll" in the United States of Awesome.
Either way, I commend you Central Labor Union Worker Man for getting fed up with constant productivity - who needs that anyway?
I say all this to say, Happy Labor Day. It's good to know we're sharing the fun with Puerto Rico, the Canal Zone, and the Virgin Islands.
And as a group of well-versed philosophers from the UK, better known as Frankie Goes To Hollywood, once wrote: "Relax, don't do it, when you want to go do it." - Let that move you.


The YMCA - it is a fertile ground for physical discpline in the community. Such disciplines would include sculpting and crafting your body into a desired form of anatomical art. Others would be the discipline to not look down while a certain clothing-impaired old man strikes up small talk in the locker room. Take a guess which discipline I exercised earlier this afternoon - you guessed it, the second one.
...You know, I really want to go on and somehow transform this traumatic blog into some kind of deep, spiritual truth. But I really can't. And in fact, I think it's much more amusing to leave it at that and allow such mental images to sink in for further comedic effect.
The moral of today's story is this: eye contact is everything. Just don't let your eyes contact anything below the waist. Goodnight.

Potential Essentials

The Science.
Several meanings can be ascribed to the word Potential. Synonyms such as possible, prospective, and capability appear in any household thesaurus. Potential is most often defined in two modes: scientific and humanistic. Furthermore, there are two different types of energy in the study of chemistry, one of which is potential energy. An object that has potential energy has an impending amount of force or possible exertion. In application to humans, our potential is the capabilities we possess but have not yet tapped into.
Potent Potential.
We as humans and as Christians possess an immense amount of potential within in us, but the situations that we find ourselves are also opportunities of potential to be shown; circumstances have potential as well. In 1 Samuel 9:21-27, the truth that God sees our potential when we do not is illustrated through the story of Saul. God chose him to be King out of His divine plan although Saul doubted himself. Samuel followed God’s instructions to pour a flask of olive oil over Saul’s head and anoint him as King over Israel. It is imperative that we trust God’s decisions when evaluating the changes that he ushers into our lives. Every situation has the potential to be a divine appointment of God.
Spread the Word.
God has the ability to multiply our potential if we give him our talents and abilities without inhibition or ulterior motives. In John 6:1-13 when Jesus fed the five thousand, he accepted the young boy’s offering and multiplied his potential as a result of his selflessness. The boy saw the need and without a second thought he sacrificed his meal for the sake of the hungry masses. This aspect of God’s multiplication is not dependent on our individual amount of potential but more so the willingness in our hearts to submit our potential to His will.
Team Effort.
Our potential is not something that we have to constantly grow by ourselves. God increases our abilities to meet the need for His plan to be done. Philippians 1:6 supplants this truth by saying, “…being confident of this, that he who began a good work in you will carry it on to completion until the day of Christ Jesus.” Working toward greater potential can be a difficult task when satisfaction creeps in. Complacency in growth is detrimental the body of Christ. Philippians 3:12 provides a healthy template for the attitude we should keep concerning our potential and the goals we set for ourselves: “Not that I have already obtained all this, or have already been made perfect, but I press on to take hold of that for which Christ Jesus took hold of me.”
There is great emphasis on our potential as believers here on earth however our true potential is in heaven. In my life, I regard my potential as something very valuable. Not a day goes by that I do not dream of the greatness that God has for my life. Potential is an exciting concept and to think that God has orchestrated an amazing outcome of faith and success for our lives is incredible. The logical step to follow His plan is to accept the fact that we have greatness within through Jesus while at the same time humbling ourselves to allow His complete control of our potential.

Saturday Night Fever

It's Saturday night. 8:10 pm, Eastern Time. What does this mean for you? Probably a time marker in the middle of a hip and happening night out. What does this mean for me? Um, I think my room is starting to smell like that of a rotting young mind in it's prime.

I'm sick.
I've got Saturday Night Fever.

No, I'm not a Scientologist. (shameless John Travolta plug)

Really, I know I should be praying, writing a song, being creative, using this void in my day to further God's kingdom or pioneer a noble search for the cure of some epidemic disease, but I don't.
Why do you think we do that?
Why do you think we allow the pseudo-tragedy of boredom to handicap our lives as if it really has no cure? We're not dealing with Non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma here, people. To put it simply, we're dealing with an absence of the things that we usually do with our time. The equation goes like this: time - stuff = boredom. And if we follow through with the equation and stuff is subtracted from time then what we're left with is more open time. Where in history did we go wrong to think that free time is a bad thing? It's all about perspective. Free time from a job or another arduous task of life is great, we all love that kind of free time. Free time spent in your house, alone, away from friends or the civilized world due to a lack of transportation, money, or invitation...now that is what we hate.

My point to all of this is that our perspective dictates our definition of free time into either boredom or opportunity.

This blog is a self-actualization for me I suppose. This term was brought to prominence in Abraham Maslow's "hierarchy of needs" theory, as the final level of psychological development that can be achieved when all basic and meta needs are fulfilled and the ‘actualization’ of the full personal potential takes place. Huh?

"By Job I think he's got it!" Oh, okay.

Closing truth: We need to see opportunity where our Creator leaves it. Imagine a world where every waking moment was spent being productive? It's a daunting task. Henry Varley, a British revivalist, said this, "The world has yet to see what God can do with a man fully consecrated to him. By God’s help, I aim to be that man.”

Boredom is the enemy's idea. Opportunity is God's. Your perspective could be the elusive cure to Saturday Night Fever. Choose wisely.

I cave, you cave, we all cave for blogging?

Go ahead and say it. Say, "I told you so." Say that you knew I'd eventually cave. And you were right. I got sick of all the commotion and insider's language taking place before my eyes and I had to join in. My name is Gabe Lopez and I am now a blogger.
The question now is what to write about?
One thing I should add is how I love the duplicity in personality that nearly all bloggers (at least the one's whom I know personally in "real life") exhibit. Now don't get me wrong, I don't mean for this hypothesis to convey a derogatory notion toward all those who pour their hearts into an electronic journal. I've just noticed that most people release all inhibitions when sitting behind safeguard of a 15" (give or take a few inches) glass/LCD monitor. Myself included, typing your thoughts as opposed to penciling in a journal, is just much more precise in that your thoughts are most efficiently spelled out because of the ease of edit.
Al Gore, I applaud your inventive brilliance. (For those of you that missed that, tis better to have something sharp go over your head than right at it - think about that)
As far as my duplicity-theory goes, the role which people occupy in their online-writing versus the nuances of their face-to-face personality and dialogue are often comically different. For instance, by day, the token shy kid sitting at the loner's lounge lunch table might double at night as a debonair Shakespearean keyboard charmer. God bless America - land of the free, home of the weird. See my point here? Anyway, for me, this blog will serve as a much-needed outlet for thoughts, visions, dreams, creativity and whatever else God inspires my little head to produce.
I'm tired now and exhausted from such an immense release of energy in order to bring this blog to life, to your life. Till the next time iBLOG, be blessed and remember...if you want to keep your world clean, put your rubbish in the bin. Goodnight.