A friend of mine googled my name and in his search he found a poem which was written by Dan Tocchini. When I read the poem, I really connected it with times of despair in my own life. I was deeply impacted by its content, yet I didn’t remember writing it. I thought this must be another Dan Tocchini. So, I forwarded the poem to my son (Dan Tocchini IV) and asked him if he knew anything about it. I informed him that it had won an online poetry contest and our name was on it.
He wrote back and confirmed he had written it in 2002 as an assignment for one of his classes and somebody entered it in an online contest.
The Heart of the Godless
Heaven is upon me and I am not ready. Wading in my inadequacies, I fondle with sin. I consort with lust and am comforted only by violence. My body aches in laziness. I am dripping with imperfection. Rooted in shallowness and wrought with lies, I am pathetic. The most subtle force will topple me over. I stand for nothing. Regret holds me hostage. My facade is fit, right and sane. But, I have no control. I despise my reflection. I am clothed in shame. Worse, I am lost and alone. I offer my mind as a playground for the wicked And, my body as their tool But even they refuse to lie with me. My silence shall become my eternal inheritance.
“Creation is a better means of self-expression than possession; it is through creating, not possessing, that life is revealed.”
Vida D. Scudder
Transformation is what occurs when people alter the way the world appears to them by making specific decisions to tap into the power of interpretation. So, why is it that producing transformations in how teams, organizations and families work together is so elusive despite well intentioned, very smart people? I believe the number one challenge is that our culture is entrained to listen for simple answers, sound bites, steps, tips and techniques to very complex challenges. We want answers to questions that demand more than what can be achieved through a sound byte or even an audio book.
Our current financial crisis is a perfect example. We want an answer and we want it now. We pass stimulus packages that don’t get read until after they become law and then wonder why things just don’t transform, no matter who we find to blame or how long or hard we keep our fingers crossed. We are steeped in the expectation the if we do a class, listen to a tape, read a book we will then be able to put it down and because we have been exposed to some interesting intellectual content turn around and implement it into our lives as if we had mastered it.
Allow me to exaggerate the point to make it as clear as I can. Imagine a group of first year brain surgeons learning about how the nervous system impacts the functioning of the body’s organs. And then they ask, “how can we start using this knowledge with our patients tomorrow?”
Any discipline requires rigor in practice to become second nature or “get it in our body.” Especially things like neurosurgery and transforming teams, family or organizations. whether it is transforming how you treat your spouse or what it takes to have your sales team generate breakthrough levels of revenue.
The work of transforming the way we live our lives is about accomplishing levels of performance in your life and business that, when considered by others appear to be impossible! I call this transformance! Transformance is a level passionate disciplined expression that transcends mere competence; it is mastery or a place of free expression marked by a distinct level of focus and self-abandonment which produces unprecedented impact, in other words it seemed impossible until the master accomplishes it.
If you have ever watched a Grand Master at Chess play 50 games at once you know what I am saying. Their ability to see the board and identify the winning moves along the way seems impossible or even miraculous, especially when the demonstration is over and he or she has won all 50 games. During the process a Master enjoys a sense of prowess that transcends competent expression.
When a master shows up, people’s stop and pay attention because they recognize something unprecedented could occur! Tiger Woods, Michael Jordon and Bobby Fisher have all done what appears to be impossible and yet they are not surprised by the transformance! They do not come to the event to find the “answer” to breaking a record, for them it is self-expression! How often do we get out of bed fully intending to express ourselves in unprecedented ways? Do we have anybody or anything that means enough to us to live this way?]]>
“For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son” John 3:16
Blasphemy is calling God a liar.
Declaring your worthlessness, denying your eternal value while gathering evidence to support your self-contempt and justifying your apathy isn’t humility; it is blasphemy!]]>
I have been watching the Youtube presentations by Atheists ranting and raving about how evil religion is. I have literally watched hundreds of videos and one of their main tenets is : “Christian nations promote imperialism, violence and oppression as was demonstrated by the Inquisitions, Witch Burnings of Salem and The African Slave Trade. They have pointed to other tragic events conducted in the name of religion such as the Japanese Empire rooted in Buddhism and Shintoism, Islam and today’s terrorist organizations, as well as the Israeli injustices against the Palestinians, etc. saying that these are evidence that religion aggravates human differences until erupt in war, violence or oppression.”
At first glance their premise seems quite compelling. This would mean that any religion would catalyze the behaviors they have cited in their dogmatic diatribes.
The Communist societies that were founded in Russia, China, and Cambodia rejected all organized religion and belief in any god. These were, as our Atheist friends would say, rational and secular societies and each one of them produced massive violence of an unprecedented order. Marxism makes the State a god, science makes Knowledge a god, Nazis’ made race a god.
Alister McGrath indicates that when a society abandons an idea of God it will “transcendentalize” some other concept in order to appear morally and spiritually superior. So, when I hear an Atheist call me stupid, moronic, imbecilic and retarded for my faith all I can say is, “Well, isn’t that special!”]]>
Yes, it must be if it is to do anything for us as individuals. Faith therefore, requires a leap. It is not a matter of galvanizing the will to believe something there is no evidence for, but a leap of commitment.
Kierkegaard says “The leap is the category of decision”– the decision to commit one’s being totally to a God whose existence is rationally uncertain and whose redemption is utterly an offense. All proofs for the existence of God and the deity of Christ fail. What if Christianity is not a doctrine to be taught, but a life to be lived?
In which case proofs would not only be unconvincing, but irrelevant.]]>