Aloha State of Mind

Hawaii Palms

I have extended family visiting Hawaii. Bummer, I wasn’t invited. I wish I was there. I like to say, “In my mind, I’m in Hawaii.” I can hear the water. I can feel the balmy breezes. You know, Maui on the Mind.

I remember “talking story” with another friend Jason who reminded me living in the Kingdom of God is like an “Aloha state of mind”. Things are different in the spirit of Aloha. People treat each other more kindly. The pace is slower. The end result is less intense, less obsessed. The process is the prize. People are a gift. Creation is cherished.

There’s a difference between being on vacation in the state of Hawaii and being in an Aloha state of mind. The first is fleeting, expensive, often unobtainable. The latter is available, affordable and adaptable to whatever the circumstances.

The Kingdom of God is now available. “The Kingdom of God is at hand.”

The Kingdom of God is affordable. “Blessed are the poor, for theirs is the Kingdom of God.”

The Kingdom of God is adaptable. “May Your Kingdom come, Your will be done right here in my world as it is in Heaven.”

Pack your beach bag. Slip on the slippas. Hang up the hurried and hang loose, haole. Let’s travel to His Kingdom now. Seek His kingdom first and everything else is no problem, bruddah. We talk story, yah. Sit. Stay. Heal. Mahalo Jesus and Aloha!

by Doug Webster

Jesus College

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Another resource thru Jesus College – My friend Jason impacts another Jesus follower along the same lines: here’s Jesus College Adjunct Professor Tim Timmons, Sr.’s take on the “Aloha” topic.

Potato Salad Memoirs

imgres-1I stood at the deli counter next to a solidly built guy sporting a tank top and board shorts likely beach bound on a beautiful Spring afternoon. I overheard him say, “I make the best potato salad from a recipe I got from my mom” as the attendant handed him two large containers of potato salad.

I couldn’t help chiming in. (Well, I could have but my wife knew I wouldn’t.) “With a recipe like that, you’ll be on everyone’s funeral invite list.” He smiled and humored my next glib offer. “My concern is that while people are eating finger sandwiches and potato salad and talking about me at my funeral reception, your potato salad will get better ratings than I will.”

He responded, “I just hope they say I was a guy who cared about people and especially those who didn’t have much. My wife and I have been talking about that lately. What we might do to reach out to those who don’t have as much as we do.”

After the dry salami and swiss cheese landed in my cart, I extended an invitation. “If you ever want to act on what you and your wife are talking about, I spend most of my Sunday mornings hanging out with homeless friends at a motel carport in what the Santa Ana PD tell me is the Felony District. We feed, befriend, clothe and encourage homeless neighbors. You’re welcome to join us for what is always a very real and fresh get together.”

After engaging a candid chat about “hard times” including his first wife dying, he reached out his hand, introduced himself as Lance and gave me a hand shake I’ll remember until the next Sabbath.

“I really would like for my wife and I to come some time. Not this Sunday but maybe next. We’d love to do something of significance in our community.” He repeated, “We’ve been talking a lot about that lately.”

I responded, “You mean a way to love your neighbor?” Lance smiled and said, “Yeah, that’s it.” He shook my hand again. (Now two Sabbaths of hand cramps. I pity the potatoes.)

The “love God & your neighbor” gospel of Jesus is really very simple. Simply follow Jesus and invite others to join us living out His Sermon on the Mount. Trust Jesus will reveal to those hungry enough to eat and thirsty enough to drink He’s more than a role model. I am convinced plenty of our neighbors want to be good neighbors if we stop being “good” cops or critics and give them opportunities to love. The potato salad stories will be served in due time.


by Doug Webster

Jesus Collegehelping students love their neighbor

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A new resource thru Jesus College – Interview with Dallas Willard & Jesus College Adjunct Professor – Keith Giles  – Part 1Part 2Part 3

Dry Farming

Branch & Grapes 2The mission of Jesus College to “Lead Apprentices to Master Love” is guided by the words of Jesus, especially John 15. In our steps learning to be His followers, we have come across an agricultural concept that has illuminated our pathway. It is called “Dry Farming”. The parallels are staggering. Consider the concept of Dry Farming, it’s back story, the quality yield and time demands associated with Dry Farming.

~ Dry Farming defined – A soil management technique, the art of working the soil, for drought-resistant crops to grow deeper to find natural water sources and eliminate a dependence on irrigation.

~ The Backstory – “Three decades ago there was very little irrigation going on in Napa Valley. There really wasn’t enough water to sprinkle irrigate. Drip irrigation changed the picture, and not necessarily for the better. Grape growing started to become like growing hydroponic tomatoes– bigger yields of crops with less flavor, because growers were putting more fertilizer on, increasing canopy size, delaying maturity, making the vines more tasty for leaf hoppers insects. Suddenly fruit was not mature because of the unbalanced growing conditions. The fruit needed more hang time because of the green tannins from over-stimulated canopies. We don’t have those problemsin our dry-farmed vineyards, because our vines are in balance with the water supply. It changes the whole paradigm of winemaking.”    John Williams, Winemaker

~ Quality – “Dry-farmed land vines are very self-regulating, and the fruit is often superior from these vineyards because natural water availability frequently causes a good balance. By paying close attention and pruning right, the vine will set the right amount of fruit. Some of the best grapes that I purchase come from dry-land vineyards.”      John Munch, Le Cuvier Winery

“Dry-farmed potato patches are remarkably tastier, thicker skinned and hardier against diseases and pests than irrigated potatoes.”     Nathan Boone, Oh! Tommy Boy’s

~ Time – “When I first started working with the vineyard, the soil was quite depleted. It took awhile before the soil-building program starting having noticeable effects. I call this putting life back into the soil. Wine quality improved as the soil improved.”      Steve Tylicki, Steele Wines

~ What we are learning as students of Jesus College – Dry Farming can produce a higher quality yield but it takes more time and effort to harvest a mature fruit that can survive changing seasons and varied water supplies. A new wine harvest of Jesus followers nourished by the Living Water will be less dependent upon the irrigation from pastors and organized church programs as we learn to follow Jesus in our everyday lives. Each week is 10,080 minutes long. A fruitful focus is His church scattered for 10,000 minutes weekly not a church gathered for 80 minutes on the weekend. We’re learning to be less about the “Wow” of our time together and more about the “Who” of Jesus day to day.

by Doug Webster
Jesus College

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Another new resource from Jesus College – Adjunct Professor Tim Timmons, Sr. offers his Podcast on The Sermon on the Mount – “Salt of the Earth”.