The Best Self Help is Abba's Way
Jesus' Gift Consisted of a Prayer to Be Used Daily
and a Set of Interactive Values that Can Be Inferred
from All He Said and Did.
Jesus was a we person.
If you read the Lord's Prayer, you will be shocked.
Here is a revolutionary few words to be prayed by you and me - individuals.
But the pronoun used is the second person plural.
We. Us. Our.
Here is my simple version of the prayer.
The Lord's Prayer
Abba whose home in heaven is
Hallowed and holy is your name
Let your realm come your will be done
Till earth and heaven are the same
Give us this day our daily bread
Forgive the wrongs that we have done
As we forgive those who do wrong
Lead us not into temptation
Deliver us from evil Lord
And safely guide us to your shore
Yours is the power to heal and mend
Yours is the glory evermore
The best self help can be stated in one sentence.
Become a "we" person
Yes, Abba created us to operate as individuals.
We receive and process everything as individuals.
Our individual heart is the center
of both our best and our worst.
It is us as individuals we have to get in order
in order to become we persons.
Fortunately the daily use of the prayer
will get us on the road to the best self help in the world.
It contains in just twelve lines the fundamental values
Jesus commends to create world revolution.
It helps us move from being a hierarchical,
selfish, murderous world
to the world envisioned in the prayer
The root of what Jesus was up to.
He wants us to become iconoclasts.
With no gods whatsoever on this planet.
If we must have a god
let it be the One to whom we pray this prayer.
Let's not get possessive
because Jesus has already told us
by the use of the word Abba
(father, daddy, buddy, friend)
a name we can and should use.
Obviously it is not the final hallowed name
which no one can claim to know.
We are to have no other gods before this One
All of our big fan worship
and worship of things
is simply idolatry
Democracy is a recognition
that the injustice in the world is our fault.
Abba's world contains enough for everyone
if we are reasonable about it.
We spend billions upon billions
to support unreasonable rationalizations
for not making the world as Abba wishes it to be.
This prayer says we are to create a word that is like heaven.
A world where every person is valued.
Where everyone has the same chances.
That is what democracy does when it functions as it is supposed to do.
Democracy means our daily bread.
Each person is entitled to what is needed to provide a floor for living.
Forget safety net. Think floor. Think standing tall.
Forget our charity and philanthropy and think rights.
This bread line in the prayer is aggressive.
We have the right.
It is Abba's gift.
Our global economy is a rationalization wrapped in hypocrisy.
The most helpful thing anyone can do is to
forgive using the methodology of this prayer.
Forgiving is the key to personal freedom.
It lightens the burden.
It can be done in a nanosecond.
We do not need self-help seminars to get this done.
When you use the prayer
you enter a contract with Abba.
As you personally waft your forgiveness out to the world,
Abba wafts forgiveness into your very being.
If you do not or cannot forgive,
Abba still wants to forgive you but the flow will not work.
This is the only reciorocal demand in the prayer.
It is there for a reason.
It is the seat of our dignity and self-respect.
Practice These Values
What actually helps is practice of these values,
propagation of these values
and substitution of these values
for the empty and stalled value system
of the Aristotelian world.
That world is over.
The world actually moves from one place to another.
History has a progressive purpose.
If you do not believe these things,
then Abba's way is not for you.
Jesus was a mover and a shaker
and an organizer of human rights
and human prerogatives.
He died because he thus usurped the power of priests
and dissed the state for its idolatry .
His resurrection is simply confirmation
that the values he embodied are in fact eternal
as we are when we likewise embrace them.
As to the furniture of eternity,
that is not our problem at this point.
The point now is to get past charity and to rights.
Helpfulness is real hands on helping people
already crushed by the structures and evils of the world.
This is done as much by education and action
as by what we ordinarily think of as help.
Tolerance works with these other values
as a source of strength and flexibiity.
The tolerant person has a center which is free.
It is unencumbered by hatreds.
It accepts the now.
It is open to the fluidity of the future.
Tolerance relates to mindfulness which relates to temptation.
It keeps us from yielding to temptation.
Tolerance relates to being delivered from evil
because evil is clearly intolerable.
To avoid it is to move with wisdom and resilience
to a negotiational posture in dealing with all conflicts.
The Best Self Help
The best self help is not some regimen of this or that guru
- as if you were dieting.
No, the best self help is to embrace values
and practice daily a simple prayer
that grounds these values in the reality Jesus unveiled.
Jesus is the great deconstructor of the ancient world
- its superstitions and its authoritarian tendencies.
He opens the door to a progressive understanding of things.
And to the notion of universal values.
And of Abba as the universal presence
to whom every voice can call.
The use of this prayer and the practice of these values
is Abba's way.
It is the very best self help there is.
It works without fail.
It requires no maintenance or expense or organization.
Or anything else that an individual cannot bring to it
and devise and commit to.