COME ON, ITCH MY EARS ALREADY!
This weekend I wrote this article but wasn’t sure if I was going to share it. But tonight I was feeling FRISKY!!!!!! So listen up people because this one may get ugly!
Okay so here’s the deal, no one likes bad news, right? Everyone wants to be told, hey everything is going to be okay, you don’t need to suffer, God doesn’t want you to be sick, God wants to be rich! “BY HIS STRIPES WE ARE HEALED!” …
Okay, first, let me address, the whole “By his STRIPES we are healed line.” – Jesus learned obedience through the things HE SUFFERED! Okay, news flash people, the servant is NOT ABOVE THE MASTER, what is good for the King is good for his joint heirs! How can we be healed by another’s stripes, you ask? Well, when you are CRUSIFIED WITH HIM, His stripes are actually YOUR STRIPES. As we are all ONE in Christ Jesus, and if we are ONE, then HIS STRIPES ARE OURS and VICE VERSA!… Too much?… Okay, I’ll try and explain this one in another essay, but pay attention now because I’m about to write one of the most “UN – itchiest articles of all times”
Many people won’t like this one. But just because you don’t like, don’t make it any less true! Nah Nah na na Nah!
I have titled this essay, “ITCH MY EARS ALREADY!” I would love to tell you, my F.I.V. infected adopted stray cat Oreo gave me the idea when he came up to me this morning and jumped on my keyboard until I gave him the old scratchity scratch, but Oreo does not get this honor.
The idea for this paper came to me when driving to the store. I turned on the car radio, which is always programmed to the Christian Radio station because all other music is of the devil! And anyone who says different, is of the Devil too! … Kidding folks settle down in the peanut gallery. As it turns out, we have a pretty awesome Christian Radio station out here that plays amazing music in the morning because I gotta have me my Kirk Fraklin and Third Day! Not to mention RICHIE RIGHTEOUS, WHO IS THE BOMB DIGGITTY DOOO!… But did I get my southern gospel size helping of Christian tunes tonight? NO!
Like all Christian radio stations, time is purchased by preachers to further the “good news of the Gospel”, or at least whatever their “version” of it is… And we all know, how different VERSIONS there are… Baptist, Pentecostal, Catholic, Non-denominational, Lutheran, Trinitarian, etc, etc, blah, blah, blah, there are more divisions in the Christian faith then in any other major religion. But they all have one thing in common, many of those who grace their doors all crave a good serving of that down home FEEL GOOD PREACHING!
For years, I had thought the “Itching ears” passage in Timothy, spoke of the “damnable heresies” we all know and love and share door to door, especially like the nice Jehovah’s Witness ladies who came a knocking yesterday asking me if I “knew the Truth”… “What is Truth?” I replied with a smirk on my face and then graciously took her flyer…
Well, I believed those “damnable heresies” to be false beliefs, false doctrines, vain traditions etc… But tonight, I understood for the first time, what this passage in Timothy really meant.
2 Timothy 4:3
For the time will come when they will not endure sound doctrine; but after their own lusts shall they heap to themselves teachers, having itching ears;
It sounds like a bad joke… So I turn on the radio and I hear this big name preacher screaming, “I am telling you God is doing something… If you have given up on your family, don’t! If you have lost your children, get ready to find them again! If you have suffered, if you have hurt, if you feel like you can’t TAKE IT ANYMORE!!!!” — Insert big audience reaction, … “Then get ready, because GOD IS DOING SOMETHING! He is going to turn it all around for you, he is going to heal you, he is going to bring that loved one back, He is going to give you every little thing your heart desires!!!! Because GOD IS GOOOOODDDDDD!”
Then it hit me! I said to myself, “He’s telling them, exactly what they want to hear.” I mean sure, who wouldn’t want to hear everything is going to come up roses when all you smell is the manure of life piling around you! And I got sad, because I knew he was lying to them all.
WHAT JACOB? … Yeah, I know, we all want to believe that God is going to make everything all right, and YES, I promise one day, we will come to stature of the perfect man and the knowledge of the truth. And that day, we won’t care what we have endured, we will have learned to endure it joyfully, because we will have understood that it works patience, and that our present suffering will be as nothing compared to the glory revealed in us later…
But right now, itching people’s ears is not setting anyone free. Promises of hope mean nothing to those who continue on in their illness, thinking, “If only I had more faith.” Empty words mean nothing, to those who continue giving more than they can afford to only find their home foreclosed on.
This man’s words were empty. Thousands of people were in that audience, and I know, without a shadow of a doubt, that for thousands of people, things were not going to miraculously turn around over night. The reason, is because our lives, our troubles, our circumstances are more lessons for us than they are plagues that God does not want us to endure. What we suffer actually brings us closer to God than never having to struggle to begin with. And when we negate the importance of our struggle and our suffering, and say, God does not want thus in our life, weu miss the most important thing God is trying to teach us.
Though he were a Son, yet learned he obedience by the things which he suffered;
There is no greater teacher than the pain of a mistake. If you have ever done anything foolish, and God knows I have… Like that time I tried to impress the kids in my neighborhood by sticking my tongue to the frozen flagpole and ended up stuck there until the fire department came. I became the laughing stock of the town. Thank God, My wife finally forgave me for doing that last year…
My point being, when we do something foolish that causes us pain, we think… DUH! I’LL NEVER DO THAT AGAIN!
For someone to say, that God doesn’t want us to go through what we are going through, does a hell of a lot more harm than good.
Here’s the reason, you’re in the situation to begin with. So what are you chopped liver? What is God like, “Well I don’t want Jacob to be stuck to that flagpole but he just needs to have more faith?” No, to say that God does not want this or that in our life is to say God is not in control. And believe me, the CONTROL is all about our REAPING WHAT WE SOW… But, we’ll get to that.
And then you have those miracle healers, you watch them on TV and its like a miracle a minute, people cured from cancer, jaundice, back problems, but never gullibility (I wonder why that is?) Listen diseases go into remission, I have Crohns, asthma, and terrible gas (insert smiley face) — Now if God is all about healing the FLESH (which he wants to perish) how come amputees don’t have their arms or legs miraculously grow back. Can God not handle this feet? Of course he can. But the point is, what we suffer is what is healing us to begin with. And once we learn this, it makes our disabilities easier to handle.
Now am I saying, God doesn’t heal? Of course not, but its not, “BE WHOLE IN THE NAME OF JEEEESSSSSUSSSS!” and then you fall over to the floor and some over weight men in three piece suits, two sizes to small, pick you up, stick a microphone in front of you, and you say… “I’m healed!”
Now, birth is a process, so is healing. Cut yourself and see how long it takes. It heals, sure, but not in one instant. And whatever is bound in the earth is bound in heaven… Whatever is without is within. If you want TRUE HEALING, If you want a way out of your suffering, find the cause, the way any good doctor does. There is a reason, Jesus is called the good physician. A Physician finds the source of a problem and gives you your medicine! SO WE HAVE TO LEARN TO TAKE OUR MEDICINE and not go to these knucklehead multimillionaires to gets our ears itched.
If you heal the inside first, the outside will follow. These are words to live by.
I mean really what do you think Jesus, who is TRUTH, was going around and healing? The Blind, the Deaf, The Lame, The Leprous, the Demonic and The Meatheads.
Scripture is an allegory “Church”, I am not going to argue over whether or not, he literally healed anyone, as it doesn’t matter at all if he literally healed anyone, as God looks to the INWARD MAN, not the OUTWARD MAN. The Outward man Perishes, the Inward Man is renewed!
I had a conversation with a dear friend who told me, “God doesn’t want people to shrivel up and die.” I replied, “Name one that doesn’t.” It is determined, that this flesh body, this temporary Buick we are driving around in perishes. WE DO NOT! But, we learn a great deal through this wondrous pilgrimage that has been set before us. We learn through the things we suffer, so why not learn to enjoy the ride and learn from the signs along the way.
Many religious leaders today are promising all sorts of awesome things instead of telling us that we reap what we sow, that we must endure until the end, that “through great tribulation we enter the kingdom”, that “he who does not pick up his cross” is none of His!
No, the preachers talk about healing your club foot, finances, relationships, health, family, and when that’s not enough, they throw in the future bliss of eternal buffets in heaven, std free relations (notice I didn’t use the “s” word). And, of course, my favorite, being poofed away to the clouds while God torments those evil chooches who got that dreaded chip implanted in their hands so they can buy food at the grocery story, HOW DARE THEY!… (I think I should add a good old fashion LOL for that last one.) I mean the truth is so much easier to believe than the lies this world will feed you.
Is there not a greater comfort knowing you are suffering for a great purpose, than believing God doesn’t want that for your life? Would you rather believe God has somehow overlooked this minor detail called Crohn’s disease and abuse, (which I suffered from both)
When people told me, God wanted me to be free from Crohn’s, I thought, “Than He must not be a very powerful God, because I’m in intensive care right now enjoying my third blood transfusion”.
Now I want to add, that I have been symptom free for three years now. What has changed? Has God healed me? Sure, why not? And if I get sick again, did God give it back to me? Sure, why not. The Lord giveth and the lord taketh away… BUT ONLY BECAUSE I NEEDETH IT… and because in the end, like Job, I am DOUBLEY BLESSED and I’m not talking double your pleasure, double mint gum blessed, I’m talking, unity of the spirit…. But if I am meant to suffer a terrible death to further my journey to the Kingdom, what choice do I have but to accept, if the Lord gives there is good reason, if the Lord takes away there is good reason. Whether I live or die, I do ALL UNTO THE LORD.
You know usually, I like to break down the scripture and show the allegory of it. But these scratching scratchersons are doing the world and their so-called flock a terrible disservice. And I will tell you why. There is a way out of suffering and our pain. And that is by LEARNING OUR LESSON.
Paul learned the hard way. I learn the hard way. I hope you all aren’t like me. Listen, because, I’m about to give you the keys to the Kingdom here!
WHAT JACOB? HOW DARE YOU? ONLY JESUS CAN GIVE THOSE KEYS OUT? – He gave the keys to us, and now I am going to give ONE MASTER KEY to you all!
I HOPE YOU STAYED WITH ME, because IT IS WORTH IT!
You cannot BELIEVE your way out of your situation, you must change what it is that got you into your situation. In other words, You are reaping what you have sown! I KNOW, I KNOW, there are people suffering with terrible diseases right now, who were probably sweet as pie in this life. And my carnal nature wishes it weren’t so. But my higher nature, understands there are greater things at work here, that many of us aren’t ready to accept. But we never truly know what has gone on, do we? We don’t truly know, why one is blessed and one seems cursed. If God does not respect one over another, then why are some born with privilege and others without. Well, I’m afraid, I’m not ready to share that one with you. But I am ready to share, what Jesus shared. And it was ALL OVER HIS MINISTRY!
I learned this lesson, when I tried to get a free lawnmower bag from the Home depot because a year earlier my lawnmower didn’t come with one. I didn’t believe they would honor my purchase, so when I told them I bought it and it didn’t have the bag, well, I just left out the little detail about it being a year old… I didn’t lie to the guy, but I wasn’t completely honest and I could have been… The instant I left, the thought came to my head, clear as day “The lawnmower is going to break” … One week later, I had to spend two hundred dollars as the mower broke down, and I returned that bag… But learned the lesson of reaping and sowing. A MASTER KEY.
I want you to think now about everything Jesus taught.
1) Forgive your enemy
2) Love those that hurt you
3) Pray for those that persecute you
4) Give to those that steal from you
5) Live by the sword die by the sword
6) Reap what you sow
7) Give and it shall be given
8) Forgive and it shall be forgive
9) Show mercy and mercy will be shown
10) Love and be loved
Look the list goes on and on. Now, think about it. Why would Jesus say, you reap what you sow and then say, forgive you enemy… Well, if you reap what you sow, your enemy you brought on yourself and if you don’t forgive this enemy and you return violence for violence, it is like your throwing the karmic ball back into play.
Yes, that’s right I used the word “Karmic”, what you got no love for the Buddha? Everyone loves a half naked guy who smiles with a big fat belly! … Or is that just me? (snicker, snicker)
Jesus was teaching us the way into the Kingdom, and the ONLY WAY IN, is to DO UNTO THOSE AS YOU WANT DONE UNTO YOU!
Think about that verse. “Do unto others, AS YOU WANT DONE UNTO YOU” – he understood, that our thoughts, our words, our actions, are causal and there will be a rebound effect. So, he implored everyone, to take their lumps joyfully as their reward for doing so would be great. The reason, is IF THEY DIDN’T, they don’t break the CURSE!
Jesus was simply was teaching that whatever comes around, goes around. This is a great lesson, if you can bear it. There is a purpose for your suffering. You are not going through hard times for no reason at all. And you will not be going through these hard times for ever. Once you learn whatever it is you are meant to learn from these hardships you will see these burdens fall away.
When our actions get us into trouble, there are consequences. The appropriate course of action is to admit your fault, not blame some outside entity and continue on in your sin.
Now Jesus wasn’t saying stay in an abusive relationship, continue to stay where someone is hurting you, quite the opposite, on the cross he forgave everyone, rose above them and never hung with them again! Hung was a poor choice of words I admit. But thank God he did for us all! The Pattern Son. And now we must Hang on our CROSS! Not go to some millionaire preacher to tell us that God doesn’t want us to hang on it.
So yes things may stink for the moment, but take a moment to ask God what you are meant to learn from them. See where you can love. See where you can forgive. See where you can step out in faith. We all have hard times, we all suffer, and we all will overcome, but there is only ONE WAY TO DO THIS!
It is through the straight and narrow gate of Love!
So the next person that tries to scratch your ears for you, you can tell them to scratch something else… your nose.. because… well, because, it’s, it’s itchy of course.
Try LOVE on for size and watch your true healing begin.