Wednesday, March 28, 2018

I have been asking myself "Why do I identify as a Hippie Christian?"

I have been asking myself why do I identify as a Hippie Christian? Why is it important to make that distinction? What is it that distinguishes us from mainstream Christianity? I'm not talking about our outward appearance or the music that we listen to, I want to know what is at the core of our being that makes us different and if it really matters - is it even relevant in this day and age?

What I am hoping to discover isn't so much the "How" we are Hippie Christians, but rather the "Why" we are Hippie Christians. Is there a cultural basis for being a Hippie in the 21st Century? Is there a Scriptural justification for adopting some Hippie values while rejecting others? Are Hippies still relevant today or are we holding onto a bygone era in a last gasp of nostalgia?

What is it about identifying as "Hippie" that satisfies as nothing else will? Could we be anything else and still be true to who God created us to be? Have we assessed who we are deep down and then reached a tipping point where we declare “I’m a freaking Hippie” and felt not only comfortable with that, but truly like we found our way home?

I came of age in the 1960’s, I grew up with the anti-war movement, Woodstock, Hippies and the Jesus People Movement – all at once! These things affected me to my core being and I have never been able to shake them, at least not for long and not without feeling untrue to who I am. I have more tie-dye now than I did back in the day and my hair is longer than it has ever been in my life but I keep asking myself “Does it still matter?” after all these years. Am I just hanging on to something from my youth as I come to grips with my aging or is there something deeper that resonates with both the idealistic dreams of the Woodstock Nation and the deep spiritual truths of Jesus' Sermon on the Mount?

I have been promoting the Hippie Christian way on the internet for almost twenty years now and I still question why I do it. Whatever the reason, I can’t seem to let it go, I am driven to proclaim Peace, Love and Light!

Kevin (Cloud)

Sunday, March 18, 2018

Questions About Christians and Pot

Questions come up from time to time about Christians drinking or getting high. The Bible says a lot about the use and misuse of alcohol but nothing directly addressing marijuana, cocaine, heroin or other drugs.

There may be objections to using Bible verses about alcohol to answer questions about marijuana or other drugs but I think that the allowances for the use of alcohol and the cautions about its abuse prove to be informative.

This is in no way a complete list of what the Bible says about the use and abuse of alcohol but the following verses have spoken to me the most and they have helped me formulate my personal view of moderation, responsible medical use, and avoiding judging others or causing someone to stumble
No longer drink only water, but use a little wine for your stomach's sake and your frequent infirmities. (1 Timothy 5:23)

Give strong drink to him who is perishing, and wine to those who are bitter of heart. Let him drink and forget his poverty, and remember his misery no more. (Proverbs 31:6-7)

Wine is a mocker, Strong drink is a brawler, and whoever is led astray by it is not wise. (Proverbs 20:1)

Don’t be drunk with wine, because that will ruin your life. Instead, be filled with the Holy Spirit, singing psalms and hymns and spiritual songs among yourselves, and making music to the Lord in your hearts. And give thanks for everything to God the Father in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ. And further, submit to one another out of reverence for Christ. (Ephesians 5:18-21)

It is good neither to eat meat nor drink wine nor do anything by which your brother stumbles or is offended or is made weak. (Romans 14:21)

All things are lawful for me, but not all things are helpful; all things are lawful for me, but not all things edify. (1 Corinthians 10:23)

Personally, I have a need to be in control of my being so much so that I stay away from pretty much everything. Not judging anyone, but for me one glass of wine at Thanksgiving would be a lot for the whole year – by the way I can’t even finish half a beer! I am such a light weight but seriously, I have issues with side effects even with over the counter medications. Even though I live in a state that has legalized recreational marijuana I don’t use it, but if a medical issue became untreatable I would be open to trying medical cannabis.

Peace, Love and Light!
Kevin (Cloud)

Sunday, March 11, 2018

Balance Between Being Informed and Being in the Present

I am struggling with focus, I am distracted by the barrage of “Breaking News” that is constantly being interrupted by the latest “Breaking News”. There isn’t time to process, I don’t want to unplug from the outside world and live under a rock but I am completely overwhelmed by the headlines. I have to stop binge watching the news because isolation and polarization feeds on negativity.

I am feeling fainthearted and paralyzed - I don’t want to reach numb so I am seeking a balance between staying informed and being in the present. I want to be active, to be a part of the solution but there are too many causes to support and too many movements to join. Every time that I make a donation to a cause or write a letter or sign a petition my mailbox fills up with more pleas for support. I am being crushed by cries for support as a result of my “good deeds”, it is a never ending cycle that only adds to my feeling of being overwhelmed.

I haven’t figured it all out yet, but I am seeking my focus. I am limiting which causes I donate to and I am deleting a lot more unread emails now. Yesterday it rained all day and I just sat and read listening to the rain – no television, no news programs and no negativity. A news “fast” of sorts that was so refreshing.

The apostle Paul said, "Finally, brothers and sisters, whatever is true, whatever is noble, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is admirable -- if anything is excellent or praiseworthy -- think about such things and the God of peace will be with you" (Philippians 4:8).

Peace, Love and Light!
Kevin (Cloud)