Josh j Smith


Sex & Love
March 30, 2006, 8:03 pm
Filed under: theology

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This is obvious to us. When we read the Scriptures we see a lot of scenes that involve someone having sex with someone they should or should not. On the surface it is really confusing because we see several sexual relationships that are completely gross and inappropriate, but never get confronted in Scripture.

However, recently I have experienced and learned something extravagant about love and intimacy in the Bible. it is in the the Song of Songs. There are several interpretation to this book and several proposals to the structure. I do not want to get tangled up in this, but I want to merely share what my perspective has been.

While a lot of the Scriptures uses explicit, sexual language for Israel’s relationship to God, this same language is used in Song of Songs, but not with the same context. It is communicating an intimate relationship between man and woman, and can be illustrated to the love relationship between God and his followers. With that being said, this is a sexy book/song and it has helped our marriage.

There are so many empty messages of sex and intimacy both in culture and church. How many times have you heard Song of Songs taught, or heard a teaching about how sex was meant to be? Intimacy is a beautiful thing that encourages mystery, searching, adventure, closeness, and fascination. I think, because we have not spoken and taught about this. Thus, that is why the media is getting all the attention, but is missing the real message of intimacy.

Changes…
– Complementing my wife a lot more.
– Living with my wife as my fascination and not the movies, internet, or fantasies
– Covenantal Love between my wife and I and God.
– Enjoying and love… I just watched Elizabethtown
– Working at marriage and not just letting it happen

As most of you know i work with teenagers, and I am trying to think how to teach the intimacy, sex, the Song of Songs to teenagers in way that is not offensive and crossing the boundaries, but in a way that is real and honest about God’s language and experience for intimacy..sex.

Any ideas?



Feeling Manly
March 28, 2006, 4:32 pm
Filed under: theology

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Demolition work is the best…sometimes. I was working with Dan, Mark, Larry, Chet, and some other guys renovating a youth building. I was the youngest most ignorant guy there. They all knew their electric, framing, plumbing, and I knew my ability to swing a hammer and eat donuts. It was a lot of fun. We got to destroy. There is not too many times in life when you get to do this …on purpose. But in the midst of destroying, I stepped on a nail. Here I am with a bunch of guys, and I am sitting off to the side wiping the blood off with my sock.
Then, I called the doc about getting tetnis (? spelling) shot, and the office was closed – understandable. But in case of emergencies they have an Answering Service. So I talked to the Answering Service, and asked them about getting a shot and
she said, “I dont know I am just the Answering Service, I can take a message for you.”
I said, “But that wont help me until Monday”
she said, “Yeah.”
I said, “Ok”
It is interesting that the Answering Service is for emergencies, but only act as a live voicemail. Peace
josh



Dust i am… The Lenten Journey
March 17, 2006, 2:13 am
Filed under: theology

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You all know, all two of you who read my blog, that I have given up meat for Lent. It has really changed my life the last couple of weeks. I avoid looking in the freezer because that is where my meat collection is, and it tempts me. Today I had my first thoughts of just giving up on it. I thought, “What does it matter?”

Other Lent experiences have been me getting sick. Last week I was in bed for two and a half days with the stomach flu. That was disgusting. I have not been sick like that in a long time. My wife did a great job of taking care of me. This week I got the cold. And right now I am sitting here sweating when all I am doing is typing. There is something wrong with me. However, the good news is… I dont have Diabetes. I got my glucose checked and I dont have it.

Anyway, all of this sickness and sacrifice has reminded me that I am very frail and mortal. It reminds of the worst thing ever said to a human in the Bible, I think. God said to the humans (all two of them), “for dust you are and to dust you will return.” I am dust, nothing but dust.

Today as I was working in the warehouse, I was listening to my iPod. I was listening to the bible, specifically the book of Psalms. So along with my sickness, I realized the dirtyness of my heart. I was listening to God speak, and it hurt because I realized that I am dust.

Realizing the my dustiness has helped me appreciate redemption.
A prayer from the book of Common Prayer.

Almighty and everlasting God, you hate nothing you have made and forgive the sins of all who are penitent: Create and make in us new and contrite hearts, that we, Worthily lamenting our sins and acknowledging our wretchedness, may obtain of you, the God of all mercy, perfect remission and forgiveness; through Jesus Christ our Lord, who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, one God, for ever and ever. Amen.



I love meat
March 5, 2006, 8:20 pm
Filed under: theology


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Meat is a beautiful thing. I was raised in a family that was knowledgable on how to eat really good, that is eat good food, and meat was essential. As the Lent season was approaching I was racking my brain for something to give up, as if it is hard. I think it is more of strategizing to give up something, but not something too precious. So I was hanging out with my good friiend, trendy Scott, and he mentioned that he was going to give up meat. I said, “Lets journey together with this.”

For some this is really easy. But for me, it has been an interesting path of loss. Meat has always been essential for every meal. It really is a change in lifestyle, and it is a journey filled with moments emptiness, but that is the point.

Even in the simple practices of eating meals, I have realized that I search for fillment in the contents that are given and prepared… normally, meat completes the meal, and completes me. I am reminded of when God provided manna (bread) and quail (meat) and gave specific instructions of how much to take and when to take. There were a few that tried to take more than what was required, and the food got infested with worms. Man does not live on bread alone, but on the very Word of God. Satisfaction comes from God, not meat, not bread, and giving up things for Lent brings me near to God b/c I am stripped of this one thing, and in the sacrifice of that I seek to be alive by God.
Peace
josh