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From the Blog

“Moving at the speed of business.” “Moving at the speed of light.” “Always on the move.”

Ours is a culture on the move. My life is always in motion. I can scarcely keep pace with my own mind, let alone the activities of each day.

When I stepped into Heathrow Airport I felt like a cow in a Masaai herd. Reentering “the west,” everyone is so serious, so busy, so hurried.

I tend towards an anxious personality. I have a variety of nervous habits. Despite the heartbreaking poverty, and times of culture shock, I’ve not been so relaxed since…well I don’t know when.

In Kenya I always knew I was the priority of whoever I was with. The relationship, the friendship, the moment is what matters. It was a powerful sense of presence.

It wasn’t always deep life-changing conversation. I watched a lot of Mexican soap operas (translated into English…Kenyans are obsessed…I know, weird right?).

I now reenter a world where expectations are different. Showing up late to meetings because I was “in the moment” won’t fly, and would be disrespectful in the US culture. How can I create a balance and retain the slower pace of life I loved in Kenya?

In a world moving so fast, how can I move at the speed of friendship?

Oct
30

To love is to be vulnerable. Love anything, and your heart will certainly be wrung and possibly broken. If you want to make sure of keeping it intact, you must give your heart to no one, not even to an animal. Wrap it carefully round with hobbies and little luxuries; avoid all entanglements; lock it up safe, motionless, airless –it will change. It will not be broken. It will become unbreakable, impenetrable, irredeemable.
C.S. Lewis

Thanks to Rose Starr for passing along this amazing quote.

I wouldn’t have called Boston beautiful before this weekend, as I’m always visiting family in December. Not a lovely time, unless like my friend Liz you like gray, rainy days.

And the first day was rainy and cool, but then a gorgeous sun broke out Sunday. We went boating in the Boston harbor, saw a Red Sox game in Fenway Park, and enjoyed the beauty of this amazing city.

The joy was dampened somewhat by the heartbreaking loss of my Irish on Saturday, but alas…there’s always next week.

May
31
Posted by brianrants at 10:01 pm

I feel priveleged to live near such beauty. No I don’t mean Desi, I mean Red Rocks :)

The curves of these rocks, the color, the angles…just breathtaking. The iPhone camera did pretty good.

Look carefully at the last photo. Desi and I nearly had a heart attack after almost stepping on it. Something about that little shaker solo gets the adrenaline pumping.

I have been thinking this for a long time, Colin put it much better than I could
“I’m also troubled by, not what Senator McCain says, but what members of the party say, and it is permitted to be said. Such things as ‘Well you know that Mr. Obama is a Muslim.’ Well the correct answer is ‘He is not a Muslim, he’s a Christian, he’s always been a Christian.’ But the really right answer is ‘What if he is? Is there something wrong with being a Muslim in this country?’ The answer is ‘No. That’s not America.’ Is there something wrong with some 7-year old Muslim-American kid believing that he or she can be president? Yet I have heard senior members of my own party drop the suggestion he’s a Muslim and he might be associated with terrorists. This is not the way we should be doing it in America.
“I feel strongly about this particular point because of a picture I saw in a magazine. It was a photo-essay about troops who were serving in Iraq and Afghanistan. And one picture at the tail end of this photo essay was of a mother in Arlington Cemetery and she had her head on the headstone of her son’s grave. And as the picture focused in you can see the writing on the headstone. And it gave his awards, Purple Heart, Bronze Star, showed that he died in Iraq, gave his date of birth, date of death. He was 20 years old. And then at the very top of the headstone, it didn’t have a Christian cross, it didn’t have a Star of David. It had a crescent and a star of the Islamic faith. And his name was Karim Rashad Sultan Khan. And he was an American, he was born in New Jersey, he was 14 at the time of 9/11 and he waited until he can go serve his counrty and he gave his life.”
Thank you Karim for your sacrifice

Brian Rants



Yesterday, a group of simple church leaders met to discuss what God is
doing in Denver.

At the end we had a time of prayer about Denver. We weren’t really
focusing on any one person, just for God’s healing and transformation
for Denver.

A friend who I had not spoken with for a month was moved to pray
specifically for me, and named 2 emotions I’ve been deeply struggling
with, and prayed for God’s healing for me. He also spoke several words
directly to my heart about what my family is going through.

Thank you Lord that out of 6 billion people you had a word just for
me. I needed to hear that.


Brian Rants
brianrants@gmail.com

Mar
14
Posted by brianrants at 5:18 pm

The book of James says that when we make a request of God, we must
believe he will answer.

A bit of a strange thought. I mean, why would we ask God for something
if we do nor think he will do it?

But that is frequently the case with me. I pray because I should, or
as a last ditch attempt to affect the circumstances of my life. In
fact, I pray much more with the attitude of an agnostic.

I have met significant obstacles in my personal and professional life.
Yesterday I was so stressed I think I scared my employees :) last
might as I lay in bed I approached God and asked him to give me faith
as I prayed. Then I brought my requests with an expectant heart,
praying even with language that believed he would answer.

It changed my mindset. I began to pray more out of hope than fear. I
began to sense God guiding my thinking, and today have already seem
him answering.

Is prayer God intervening or meditation that releases answers we
already know? Is it God's voice speaking into the stillness, or the
quiet voice of inner wisdom finally finding room to speak?

Yes.

Brian Rants
*Sent from my mobile device

Jan
17
Posted by brianrants at 12:00 am

Forgiveness is such a unique and powerful force. It is the trapdoor
escape, the path of greatest resistance.

It is wise, confusing, and absolutely necessary. It is nobility in a
pauper's rags, strength dressed up as weakness.

It is heart wrenching, and life giving. It releases the guilt of the
undeserving, and enables the victim to be oppressed no more.


Brian Rants

"Love never fails."
St. Paul
1 Cor 13

Jun
29
Posted by brianrants at 2:53 pm


From: Tim Pynes

If this doesn’t tug at your heartstrings nothing will. We’ve all
seen the faces of those ravaged by the floods of Sri Lanka and
New Orleans….
This “award-winning” photograph of the recent floodwaters rising
in Ireland captures the horror and suffering there.
Keep these people in your thoughts and prayers…

Sep
03

Experience would tell me that if I hear a slur about Mexicans floating through the air of my local park, it probably was lofted by a white male.

Experience would tell me that if someone died last night in a gang-shooting in Compton, CA, it was probably a young black male.

Experience would tell me that if a school shooting and suicide happened yesterday, it was probably disgruntled white boys.

Experience. Hunches.

Are these the root of prejudice? Racism?

When I walk down Colfax street late at night in Denver, am I more alert to the presence of a homeless man, or a well-dressed urbanite?

This is painful to talk about, because there is prejudice in each of our hearts. A lifetime of side comments, misunderstandings, and lack of open discussion about our differences and similarities in society leaves these blank spots in our knowledge of our fellow Americans.

So this snap judgments, this hunches, are these prejudicial? On some level, I think they might be. But I do not think they form the core of racism, and not all of categorization is ill-intended (those hard nosed Irish-Catholics).

We must go deeper into the belly of racism. There at the core, I believe, is dehuminization. When I look at a man who has tragically chosen a life of crime in inner city Compton, and see “another black gangsta,” I have dehumanized him. When I hear that white man lofting his disrespectful remarks about Hispanics, and see “an ignorant redneck,” I have dehumanized him.

I have categorized him in a way that removes him from me, that makes him dissimilar and separate. In reality, that young black male is my brother, a fellow human. That young disgruntled white youth is tragically deceived, and probably believes that no one gives a sh#$ about his life, so why not take it and a few others at school?

Our cultures vary widely, and with it our values, beliefs, and behaviors. But at the core we are HUMAN. And when I look at someone, be they a success or a failure in the eyes of our society, I should see a brother, a sister.

And when that brother or sister–or myself–makes tragic choices, it is a cause for sadness. For when one of our kind drops, the ripples are felt throughout humanity.