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GandalfTheWise

Who are you? Really?

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One of the things I enjoy most in life is trying to see people through God's eyes.  This is hard because we've all been taught from an early age by family, school, church, peers, etc. how to put on masks to hide behind and fit in.  Once in awhile a mask slips a bit and you can catch a glimpse, but it is quickly put back in place.  I've found that each person is a unique treasure and piece of art the God has created to reflect some of His beauty and glory to the world.  Sometimes it's well hidden, but it's there.

Most of us really have no clue how do answer "who are you?"  without resorting to biographical facts (my name is..., I was born in ..., I work at..., my marital status is...,  my family is... , my gifts are..., my hobbies are... etc.) or generic descriptions that apply to many others (I am a Christian, I am a <fill in occupation>, I am in <fill in various demographic groups>, etc.)  We have gotten so used to answering predicable questions that give standard information that we often find it hard to do anything except recite facts about ourselves.  As Christians, we'll often testify of what God has done in our life and changes He has made.  But, there is still a deeper question of who is that unique person that God intended you to be that is different from every other Christian?

I've lead a class a number of times focused on helping people learn more about who God made them to be.  To me, the cool thing is watching that slow unfolding and unwrapping where we all catch more and more glimpses of those treasures and works of art that are the handiwork of God.  I start out with a few ground rules of not discussing family, work, school, or biographical facts. It's amazing what happens when you start to see people not through social filters, but through their uniqueness and what is inside.  We just started off with some simply questions that we just started answering honestly and got used to just being ourselves with no pressure to be anyone else.   I remember about 2 months into one class where I casually mentioned my real occupation and two people's jaws literally dropped.  They thought I was kidding at first.  

One of the coolest things I saw was in one of these classes/groups which was during the political strife that was happening in WI at the time.  There were people in the class who had literally been out at the same heated protests on opposite sides.  But the atmosphere in the group remained positive and encouraging.  We had started to see each other through God's eyes.

Anyway, for those who'd like to join in, I'd love to get a chance to get to try to get to know some of you in this sort of way.  In order to keep things a bit more orderly, I'll start by putting some questions in the next post, and then my responses in a response to that one.  There are no right or wrong answers!  This is about practicing dropping our walls, shields, and masks.  I'll repeat that, it's about practicing dropping our walls and masks.  It's hard to do that since most of us habitually keep them on, so we'll start pretty simple and just get used to doing it a bit.  In the course of doing this, we start to see each other a bit more.  Also, it's likely we will each start to see some parts of ourselves that we have forgotten and keep hidden. :) 

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Posted (edited)

Question Set 1

WATER: What is your favorite kind of water in nature? and why?

ANIMAL: What is you favorite kind of wild animal?  and why?

PLACE: What place on earth would you like to go see?  and why?

HOLIDAY: What is your favorite holiday? and why?

AWESOMENESS: What is the coolest or most awesome thing that you seen?  and why?

Edited by GandalfTheWise
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Posted (edited)
19 hours ago, GandalfTheWise said:

Question Set 1

WATER: What is your favorite kind of water in nature? and why?

ANIMAL: What is you favorite kind of wild animal?  and why?

PLACE: What place on earth would you like to go see?  and why?

HOLIDAY: What is your favorite holiday? and why?

AWESOMENESS: What is the coolest or most awesome thing that you seen?  and why?

Water:  I like lakes.  I just enjoy the quiet, watching the types of waves depending on the weather, and seeing the various birds and animals around them.  I find them peaceful and I nice place to just sit and think.  We have a smaller lake near where we live that I like to walk to and watch sunsets.  We also like to vacation in the U.P. of Michigan and see Lake Superior.

Animal:  I'm stuck between answering dolphins or wolves.  I like how dolphins seem to play and just enjoy the ocean.  A few stories of how their interact with people are cool as well.  I like watching how they can flip and jump around.  I like wolves in terms of how they stick together and I like the howling sound.  There is something about how a group of wolves howling has a majestic, cooperative, and independent sense to it.

Place:  I tend to like nature more than cities or man-made things.  I think parts of New Zealand would be cool to see.  There are also some of the mountainous parts of China that are cool to see (at least in pictures).

Holiday:  I tend to like Christmas and Thanksgiving for the relaxing family get-togethers.  For me it's not so much the holiday, as enjoying relaxing together.

Awesomeness:  Definitely the total solar eclipse last summer (we drove down to Missouri to see it).  It was one of the few times I was just stunned by something.  The 360 degree sunset, the aura of the sun around the moon, the coolness (from a 90+ high humidity day).    EDIT[Angels' answers reminded me.  How could I forget the birth of my 3 daughters? :) That was amazing.]

Edited by GandalfTheWise
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Water:  I like rivers.  Particularly the type where you can witness the water breaking around objects like rocks or fallen tree limbs, and especially when they have waterfalls mingled in.  My favorite area is Tahquamenon Falls in the UP of Michigan.

 

Animal:  I love horses, beautiful, powerful, amazing creatures.

 

Place:  Anything to do with nature, away from the hustle and bustle of the city.

 

Holiday:  Easter.  Even though I dislike rain, I love the splendor of spring, and for the most part Easter Sunday more times than not is a beautiful depiction.

 

Awesomeness:  The grand canyon, absolutely breath taking.

 

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1 hour ago, GandalfTheWise said:

Question Set 1

WATER: What is your favorite kind of water in nature? and why?

ANIMAL: What is you favorite kind of wild animal?  and why?

PLACE: What place on earth would you like to go see?  and why?

HOLIDAY: What is your favorite holiday? and why?

AWESOMENESS: What is the coolest or most awesome thing that you seen?  and why?

I cannot even say how much I LOVE THIS!! 

Water: I like rivers, the small kind that run through a forrest. They always look so calm but they carry so much power. 

Animal: I don’t have a favorite, they are all magnificent. They are all unique and special in their own way. 

Place: I want to go scuba diving in Phuket and drink hot chocolate in the Swiss alps. I would love to see Ireland too. It’s gorgeous. 

Holiday: my favorite is Christmas, my family (religious and non) are usually all together and the food is good. I love easter too though, I love spending time with Family and Friends who have a relationship with Christ, our church always does something special on Good Friday 

Awesomeness: 2 things come to mind, I serve and pray at a church camp weekend (unsaved or saved people can go, it is for all to learn about God) once a month, the changes that happen with the people we pray for are amazing, the confirmation of faith and the miracles that God gives on that weekend has had my jaw drop more than once. 

I went scuba diving in mozambique and on one of the dives we did a negative entry, you basically fall into the water and keep on falling until you’re 7m deep then turn around, as I turned over to adjust my boyuncy etc. a massive sea turtle was swimming up to the surface less than a meter away from me. I could touch it. That entire dive was like that, I saw manta rays and the turtle came back down. It was amazing! 

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Water: I like streams that are long and winding, with small pools of deeper water here and there. I like to walk barefoot in a shallow stream on a hot summer day. Hearing the birds in the trees, and the occasional breeze rustling the leaves. I love the sound of water gurgling gently over rocks. Most especially, I enjoy watching the tiny animal life that lives in a stream. Salamanders, tiny penny toads, frogs, tadpoles, and dragonflies. I find it very relaxing to visit a good clean stream, where I can simply be quiet and enjoy the beauty of nature.

Animal: My favorite wild animal is the elephant. Elephants are majestic, smart, and loving. They live in herds where all of the members are related. It's a tight family unit. They show emotions and caring towards one another by touching each other, staying close together, and mourning their dead. One of the cutest things is a baby elephant. When a new calf is born, the whole herd celebrates and comes to greet the little one (just like human families). The adults protect their young fiercely, and often will take turns watching over baby. Elephants are simply awesome creatures.

Place: If I had the money, I would love to visit countries in the UK. Particularly, the countryside and small villages. Ireland, Scotland, and parts of England come to mind. From what I've seen in photos, the landscapes are outstanding; with soft hills and lush grasses. I enjoy history, so I would love to visit old buildings and the ancient ruins of castles. In fact, I would move permanently to the countryside somewhere in the UK if I were able to.

Holiday: Thanksgiving is my favorite holiday. It's the only one where I can get together with family members. It's a day to remember our blessings and give thanks. And the food is great.

Awesomeness: The turn of a century and a new millennium at the same time. These events weren't "seen", as they pertain to time, but I feel blessed to have been alive at the dawn of a new thousand-year time period. As we live longer lives now, it will become more common for people to see the turn of a century. But a millennium? No. That is rare indeed.

 

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3 hours ago, GandalfTheWise said:

Question Set 1

WATER: What is your favorite kind of water in nature? and why?

ANIMAL: What is you favorite kind of wild animal?  and why?

PLACE: What place on earth would you like to go see?  and why?

HOLIDAY: What is your favorite holiday? and why?

AWESOMENESS: What is the coolest or most awesome thing that you seen?  and why?

Water: a babbling brook, I find that sound beautiful and soothing

Animal: penguin, I love how they stick together during the cold winters.  They all huddle together and move around in a circle so everyone gets a chance for a little warmth and to get out of the cold wind.

Place:  Israel,  I would love to stand where Jesus stood, walk where he walked.

Holiday:  I don’t like holidays.  I don’t know why we celebrate one day something we could celebrate any and every day.

Awesomeness:  Beautiful fish and sea turtles while snorkeling in Hawaii.

n

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2 hours ago, GandalfTheWise said:

Question Set 1

WATER: What is your favorite kind of water in nature? and why?

ANIMAL: What is you favorite kind of wild animal?  and why?

PLACE: What place on earth would you like to go see?  and why?

HOLIDAY: What is your favorite holiday? and why?

AWESOMENESS: What is the coolest or most awesome thing that you seen?  and why?

Picking a "favourite" of something is notoriously difficult for me. At different times I would choose different things and often I like different elements of a variety of things. I will do my best.

WATER: I like bubbling brooks. I like the steady flowing of water towards the sea. The way it just keeps going. I like to sit on a bridge looking. Beautiful. peaceful, full of joy. But equally I love the ocean. I love the thought of this massive body of water eventually leading to places far away that I have never seen. I love the waves as they role in and crash against rocks. 

ANIMAL: I love animals. Leopards have long been creatures I admire and love. They are so majestic and they are independent. They are also very adaptable. I like the cat family in general. The other creature that I really like are Whales. Whales make the most beautiful sounds. I can listen to whale song all day. So big and powerful, yet graceful in the water. 

PLACE: I have always wanted to see Scotland and Ireland. I have heard a lot about those places. I feel like I could be at home there. I love the culture, the history. Also, I would love to see anything in the Mediterranean. Lots of history there, natural beauty, great food, weather. 

HOLIDAY: Christmas. I remember the so many amazing Christmases where we were a huge family all together. We have sadly become a smaller group over the years, and that makes me sad. But I still like the fact that it's the one time in the year that we are truly together.

AWESOMENESS: Hardest one of all. So many to choose from. Two things that come to mind. Firstly, I once got to go to an observatory and there I clearly saw Jupiter. It was amazing to see it so clearly. I have always enjoyed star gazing and been interested in space. It often helps me to see things in perspective. Secondly, I have been on Table Mountain a few times. Normally I climb up, but once I got to go up by cable car. It was an amazing day. The whole experience was just spectacular. You can see the whole Cape Town and the mountain itself is very beautiful. 

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4 hours ago, GandalfTheWise said:

Question Set 1

WATER: What is your favorite kind of water in nature? and why?

ANIMAL: What is you favorite kind of wild animal?  and why?

PLACE: What place on earth would you like to go see?  and why?

HOLIDAY: What is your favorite holiday? and why?

AWESOMENESS: What is the coolest or most awesome thing that you seen?  and why?

My favorite water would be lakes. I grew up near them and favor them over the ocean any day.

My favorite wild animal would be the owls. They are rare to see in nature, they make me laugh to watch them, and they seem to be associated with wisdom.

The Place I would like to go see would be France the Alp mountains, to learn more of their gardening techniques along with the people there.

My favorite holiday would be Christmas I suppose. I do like the Christmas spirit it brings.

The coolest thing I have ever seen would be the mountains in Colorado. So huge and so cold the higher you go up. Will never forget it. 

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Posted (edited)
16 hours ago, GandalfTheWise said:

Question Set 1

WATER: What is your favorite kind of water in nature? and why?

ANIMAL: What is you favorite kind of wild animal?  and why?

PLACE: What place on earth would you like to go see?  and why?

HOLIDAY: What is your favorite holiday? and why?

AWESOMENESS: What is the coolest or most awesome thing that you seen?  and why?

All my answers are of a personal nature, and tend towards peacefulness.

Water: Light rain falling outside, in a quiet house.

Animal: Black labs. Very intelligent, affectionate, and friendly.

Place: An island in the Caribbean with blue green waters and beautiful beaches.

Holiday: Thanksgiving, especially if I can stay home and watch some decent games, LoL (I know it sounds terrible, but my truest family is in Heaven).

Awesomeness: Personal. Has to do with someone I am very fond of.

 

Edited by Hidden In Him
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