Thursday, February 23, 2012

INTRODUCING MY BLOG

I like to learn, but I must teach. Discoveries delight the mind, but sharing them fulfills the heart. When I gain new perspectives on God, His Word, creation, or our place in it, I feel compelled to express them. This usually comes through prophetic prose or poetic verse, but occasionally in the form of visual artwork. This blog is my way of passing along those insights and inspirations to those interested. Avoiding a topical or chronological order, I hope to pattern my blog after my own stream of consciousness: a spontaneous, serendipitous interweaving of thoughts.

In introducing my blog, let me first break apart and explain the wording of my name for it: "PastorDavidRN's DANCE with NAKED TRUTH." Its long title is an important description.

My parents named me “David,” which means “beloved.” I’ve always appreciated that about my name. Knowing its literal Hebrew meaning helped me grow up with gratitude. For as long as I can remember, I’ve always felt thankful for being “beloved,” not just by my parents, but by God.

I really am a pastor, an ordained minister in The Wesleyan Church. Since 1996, I’ve been serving a small retirement community church sponsored by Faith Legacy Church. Many of the sermons I've preached there can be listened to on my "Sermons" webpage linked above. Some of the insights I hope to share in this blog came during this pastoral ministry to seniors.

I really am a nurse, too. After getting my RN in 1981, I worked the ER for almost a decade. Then in 1991, I cross-trained to OB and have helped thousands of mothers give birth and nurse their babies. This job is still my main source of income. Meditating on the physical realities of life made so dynamically obvious in nursing has shaped much of my thinking about our humanity.

Dancing is a meaningful metaphor. Life rarely marches in a straight line. It spins and whirls, jumps and twirls. And we rarely dance alone. The dance floor of life is relational. I first used this figure of speech in my talk called, “The Dance of the Sexes.” All humans are in a dance, because we are made in the image of a Trinity of Individuals Who have danced together forever.

Nakedness is another metaphor with rich meaning. Its reputation today, however, is smothered by prudish fear and sullied with pornographic filth. Hopefully, from time to time, I will offer an array of historical, cultural, theological, and psycho-social insights on nakedness that will help restore its human-friendly significance.

Truth is foundational for true love. Without it, love becomes wishful sentimentality, at best, and addictive fantasy, at worst. Jesus said “the truth” can liberate those enslaved to sin (John 8:31-36). We get the phrase “the naked truth” from an ancient fable that beautifully illustrates the nature of truth: “While Truth was bathing in a river, Falsehood stole her clothes, and rather than wear the rags Falsehood left behind, Truth went about thereafter naked and unadorned.” I wrote a poem about this fable to expand upon its concepts.

Insights are epiphanies, realizations of truth that are usually sudden and unbidden. Since they seem to come more frequently with age, I believe most of them arise from the workings of human reason. But they can also be God-given revelations, and if that divine source is suspected, they must always be checked against God’s Word, His authoritative revelation to us. Part of the reason I’m starting this blog is that I seem to have so many of them. If they touch on Christian doctrine, I won’t be sharing them unless I can show their relationship to Scripture.

Inspirations are much like insights, but to me they serve as ignition points for creative expression. I have been writing poetry since early childhood. My love for proverbs, epigrams, and aphorisms has made me a collector of quotes and lured me into the challenging task of whittling ideas down to short, pithy and catchy sentences. Since 2006, I’ve begun to fulfill my dream doing of artwork. Some of all these areas of inspiration will appear on the blog.

God is my King. My life and my thoughts revolve around Him. If I hear Him doubted, my reason goes into gear to prove Him. If I hear Him maligned, my thoughts line up in ranks to defend Him. My goal is to love Him more. So, I can’t help but bring God into this blog. In a very real sense, He is its Lord and the motivation behind it.

Creation is everything else—all reality other than God. I have many insights and inspirations both about the handiwork of God and about His creative will in the continuity of  human creativity. But there is one place where God and creation personally meet: the Incarnation. If you find my blog heavy on the implications of that doctrine, it’s because it has captivated the bulk of my thinking for years, and I will never tire of its riches in contemplation nor exhaust its depths by writing about the God-Man Jesus Christ, the Word made flesh.

So, welcome to my blogmy dance with “the naked truth”—as it tries to offer my insights and inspirations concerning God and creation.

9 comments:

  1. Good job starting a blog! This was great to read, thank you.

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  2. Thanks... I'm trying my best not to pile more Internet verbiage on those already suffering from online-overload. I just want to pass along helpful insights for Christian faith and practice. So, I have to be really motivated and convinced before writing a new post. God bless you!

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  3. Awesome Dave, Your blog is way more thoughtful than mine which is just meant to be a quick snack on the Word of God, and encouragement to face the day with Jesus leading the way. Blessings
    http://gnfaww.blogspot.ca/

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    1. Hey, Brenda, I checked out several of your blog entries and they are wonderful. Keep it up... you are blessing lots of hearts all over the place!

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  4. Pastor Dave: Thanks, reading your account of your journey into Naturism/Nudism/Body Acceptance from a Biblical perspective was
    inspirational and was of great help in affirming to me the "rightness"& the God-inspiredness of my own recently embarked-upon journey into non-sexual nude living.
    I was one of the typically damaged humans from the mistaken Puritanical porno-prudery you so aptly described. Literally...my mothers family descended from Puritans and it's sort of remarkable to me-the staying power of 17th Century thinking!
    Thanks again;I will be reading much from your blog and such in the coming months and years.
    DY

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    1. Dennis, I'm glad you've found my blog helpful, but my "body acceptance" arguments, while certainly shared by those practicing nudism\naturism, weren't intended as an exposition or promotion of that lifestyle. "Body acceptance" covers a much larger territory, and I specifically use it to avoid having my concepts narrowed to a "nudist" focus. My own comment on my Seedbed.com article of 1/9/2014 (http://seedbed.com/feed/adopting-gods-view-of-bare-anatomy/) attempted to express this very thing and to set forth the bigger picture, which I feel God calling me to address.

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  5. Thank you for your blog. I am a Christian and a naturist too. I live in South Africa. I don't judge other that differ from my view. If you would like to know more, please visit my blog - http://naturisminsouthafrica.blogspot.com/ Please comment. Have a blessed naturist day in the Lord.

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  6. Good day, Another blog that shows that Christians can be naturists too - http://naturistchristian.wordpress.com/
    Greetings
    Peter

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    1. As this INTRO states, my interest in nakedness is to "restore its human-friendly significance." As I said in addressing the comment by Dennis above, while I agree philosophically with the concept of nakedness found in traditional nudism\naturism, my view of "body acceptance" encompasses a much broader scope. Treating the nude body as a normal part of life, rather than as a sexual event, isn't just the domain of nudism, but of health-care work and figurative art, both of which I'm involved in. However, my own occasional backyard sunbathing or skinny-dipping episodes in the summertime have not led me to adopt a nudist lifestyle. Because of that, I feel my strong words about "body acceptance" pose a greater challenge to Christian porno-prudery. When those who enjoy my body-friendly writings identify me as a nudist, I reiterate that I'm really a Christian whose strong theological belief in "body acceptance" has led me to preach it and live it.

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