Community? Closed or Open Source?

Community? Open Source Paradigms?

What do we have in “common” with others? Or not? Why bother?

Love. Relationships. Productivity. Personal, perhaps shared growth. Moats, drawbridges, armor and weaponry protecting one’s own turf is another way of life, if you call that life and life-giving. But aren’t there times for a right sense of fear and/or anger, times to bunker in and protect?

Whether you’re a Mac, Android, Windows, Linux or other (there are many op. systems) fan, consider community with me please!

If you follow my blog, Twitter or FaceBook posts you likely have noticed I am a full-on convert/fanboy of the Linux computer operating system. I am writing and posting this on a Linux OS fueled pc. Tux (here) is the Linux mascot by the way. Notice penguins also experience community!

Tux

Indeed, Linux itself has many (as in MANY) quite varied distributions which each have a similar core (the Linux kernel) but on top of that foundation sits everything from slightly different looking/feeling/production programs (apps) and graphical interface (desktop/s, the look and “feel”) but also many (as in MANY) varied apps that do nearly the exact and at times, THE exact same thing in different ways. WHY? Why all the diversity?

While I will not fully define open source here, and there are plenty of people making a living within such, it has at it’s foundation the concept of sharing, freedom and others gaining as you gain as you all add value to the collaboration.

Let’s admit re. computing some people simply “want it to work” and have zero interest in tweaking, changing, trying something new. Well, maybe we change our desktop/tablet wallpaper, maybe even change the color theme a little every so often.

Some folks generally FREAK at change, others FREAK at same-same.

People are different in what they find comfort, security and meaning in.

But until and unless we learn how to know God and live out His relational commands… yes, “relational commands”… to love Him supremely AAAANNNNDDDD love one another (according to Jesus THE greatest commandments on which all the rest of Scripture rests) we miss the eternal (and in my experience) and best plan of all.

Again, if you have followed me, heard me speak throughout my life I have never called everyone, not even all Christians to “live in community”. Specifically, I have never been the pied piper for the intentional community I live in. If it’s so good and I found it the best way to live out my years on earth (1971 to the present), why not tout it, shout it, promote and maybe even strong-arm others to choose as I have?

Because salvation is all about faith, relationship and entails surrender and sacrifice to someone OTHER than yourself or those whom you always agree with.

None of us fully, completely and always agree with God, not the Father, Son nor Spirit! In fact we take real issue with Him, His commandment and often run like the road runner from Him.

The exact same is true in terms of what we share or do not (or at times, cannot) share in peace with other human beings.

Paul writes “We do not preach ourselves but Christ and Him crucified”. Luke in the Book of Acts wrote “There is salvation in NO OTHER… for there is only one Name given under heaven among people by Whom we must be saved”.

So if it’s not about me… or on a broader scale, if it’s not about my personal vision, desire, fulfillment… what do I share in common with others? What can we AGREE on? What shared interests, motives, goals, spiritual, practical, living conditions, etc., etc.?

I found myself in conversation with two dear friends this past weekend and once again said “At core, all humans share two things in common: what the Bible calls and defines as ‘sin’ and the need for The Savior”. Some reading this post will disagree with either or both of these factors. No surprise to me!

See, YMMV (your mileage may vary) means that, as in most all of life, one person LOVES X style of music, X color scheme in their home or office, X clothing, X church gathering or X food while the next person might have ZERO in common with you or me on any or all of these! There is what we share in common… and do not and perhaps never will.

The “open source” concept in the most simplistic sense means a guy in Finland (Linus Torvalds) took an idea from another guy re. computer coding, engineering. He was a young university kid who came up with a brilliant (in my view) operating system. And shared it. And then came into a revelation based on other people’s work that perhaps there might be a world-wide legal structure that would allow others to share, tweak, change, add to his work.

If you really want to dig in, here’s an article and embedded TED talk clip. But please read on first if you would…

https://medium.freecodecamp.com/linux-is-25-yay-lets-celebrate-with-25-rad-facts-about-linux-c8d8ac30076d#.6f88ai5ns

If we are not careful, we become a sort of “closed system”, do not share our code and unwilling to allow others to critique and ultimately bring a maturity and “you perhaps did not think of this aspect” improvement to our life, our band, our church, our local or larger world. Community interacts as opposed to simply opposing fresh ideas. This does not mean “whatever!”, not at all. A group may well hold things in common that ought to be kept static. More on this in a moment.

Linus admits (and admits he is not proud of) not being a “people person”. And yet he realized his own benefit and the benefit of his amazing operating system which whether you know it or not, is daily tweaked and perfected, bugs found and fixed, updated, largely with zero money being paid to most of those helping it to work ever better.

Collaboration on his pet project was a matter of him taking the risks- and there are many- but when ten became one hundred and then thousands of geeks world-wide all got excited and began helping, bringing fresh and imaginative ideas to the system, he, they and you and I benefitted. Really?

You may not know this but Linux servers are core to the bulk of super computers, most of the Internet, the core of Apple/Mac machines and all Android phones. The German government and Brazilian government among others, use Linux. Last time I checked the Germans knew a little about technology! 🙂

Ok, so what about community? You just read it.

Plenty of programmers in the vast, VAST, wide Linux community (as Linus says) are not all the nicest people. They often argue like crazy over all sorts of things, and often really do not like one another. Sound like the rest of the human race? Christians? Churches? How to “do” church?

This alone means there are choices like we’ve never had before, and often freely shared. Collaboration. What common needs, goals, vision DO we (your marriage, family, neighborhood, town, city, rural region, nation, world) actively, actually SHARE?

I have never expected EVERYONE to think as I do, make the same choices I have, live as I live, love the music, food or computer operating system I do. I have no desire nor sense of shame about trying to force someone to love and live life precisely as I do!

Nor am I ashamed of Whom I believe in nor live with nor serve in the large Church and world. My sins, yes -but not 98 percent of the rest.

From this point of view, some freak. It’s DIVISION to NOT think like I (or WE) think. Or live. Or do music. Or etc., etc.. My take on that is I think perhaps your car is in park and therefore you are finished growing or open to noticing the good and beneficial that others may bring to the table. How does one grow when locked inside their own vacuum? For that matter, how can one benefit others by hoarding all the good stuff they might bring to share with others?

Fear, worry and anger kill community. Grace and openness feed it.

I love Open Source.

I’m an artist. I look at big picture. I imagine. I’m an ideas person, not in all things but most of the time.

Linux taught me there is almost always (-not- always) “a workaround”, another way.

Jesus tells us about Himself “I AM the Way, the Truth and the Life. No one comes to God the Father but by Me”. This I believe and from this and a number of other passages in The Bible I cannot say I believe there are options or some sort of spiritual “workarounds” to eternal life.

Yet community in whatever space, shape, be it spiritual or practical is at core a matter of personal conviction and I do believe, calling. I have NEVER believed there is only one hard template (and do not see it in The Book) that fits everyone in all times and places. Nada. Community is not salvation… but you will neither mature nor be the gift God intended all by yourself and alone.

There is this matter of the willingness, the excitement, the vision to see what -could- be if only we can find what a zillion coffeehouses/shops are named in the U.S.:

Common Ground.

Not “everything and anything goes” -but in terms of relationships and therefore community, love, the true God, the larger and local Church and indeed those outside of it are worth the cost.

Thanks for stopping by! -Glenn

Is It Me or Is This a Waste?

Disclaimer: I’ll start this writ by saying straight up that it’s not about me though I’ll illustrate by using myself as the foil. Neither does it have to do with anything I have heard or seen this morning or even lately!

I can FULLY understand why this or that person may think what I bring to any table, words, music, even my presence needs to be rejected.20160821_122044

Don’t wanna hear it. Can’t relate. Has zero meaning to me. WAY too wordy. Needs EDITING. Poorly executed. Boring. Not funny enough. All over the map, too eclectic. More precision needed. On and on. I get that and it’s all often if not mostly an accurate critique of me and my life. And likely yours. Maybe even Picasso’s or Segovia’s or Bach, Hendrix, Da Vinci. At least to some folks sometimes. And I don’t even -begin- to operate in the same area code as these amazing people!

So after hearing, reading and pondering a zillion messages -have I ever walked away thinking the same things (or worse) regarding somebody’s output: content, delivery, atmosphere, etc., etc.? OF COURSE!! Who hasn’t? “This was a waste of my time”. Yep.

Yet I am reminded of the old phrase “If God seems far away who moved?” WHY you got zero out of something may have more to say about your own flaws than those of the presenter.

I have learned the importance of questioning my own willingness to even consider a given offering of art, word, person, whatever. Put bluntly, it may not be the worth, value, content or even style or delivery of the offering. It may be my real problem with “it” is me.

Believe me, I fully get there is technical right vs. wrong, solid vs. full-of-holes, shallow thinking and little vetting and therefore our words, actions, artistic or message offerings are at fault because WE have not fully done our homework before presenting them to others.

The “horse” was sent to the track before ingesting least a fair load of nutritional feeding, grooming, training exercises, little-by-little work on the way up entering the Kentucky Derby! I get that. Most of us do. Paying the dues. Preparation. But how often do we criticize our own ability or even willingness to hear, to think outside our chosen “box” when making value judgments on others and their work?

I DO NOT mean “call good evil and evil good”. I don’t even mean accept everything that is put out as “beneficial” or “worthy of praise” -not what I’m saying here.

It is just that many of us are so afraid, angry or freaked on some level of swallowing bones we also toss the meat, too plain lazy to engage our brains to the extent we throw out stuff we really could be fed and enhanced by. Maybe we don’t initially like or want it… but to immediately consider it (and the person bringing it) useless and worthless? The meat gets tossed with the bones. The nutrients go out with the plastic wrap.

Ok. So you’ve heard nonsense. It “walks like a duck” so shoot it. But it is also true that at times, you’ve become the duck.

Ever sit in a Sunday a.m. church gathering thinking “I don’t hear HIM”? I have.

And on occasion, the true culprit was truly me, myself and I.

That’s what you get when you only listen to your own thoughts.

God hasn’t changed nor moved. And there is -nowhere- in this world He is not present.

See Psalm 139 for details.

Thanks for stopping by! -Glenn

GK/GKB AUG-SEP-OCT SHOWS Update

Here are details for confirmed upcoming shows. Hope to see some of you on the road! Note that GKB Kentucky shows details will be posted at http://www.grrrrecords.com/shows soon.

Thanks for stopping by 🙂
-Glenn

GKsturgisPicByStephenHKing

AUGUST:

MON. 22 GK Solo Cook Co. Jail

SAT. 27 GK Solo private event Tremont, IL

SUN. 28 GK Tremont, IL
11am: 411 W. North Street
GK joins the worship team w. a bit of guitar playing

SUN. 6pm: GK Solo Blues, etc. interspersed with message
http://www.northfieldchristian.org/index.php

MON. 29 GK Solo Cook Co. Jail

SEPTEMBER:

SUN. 4 GK/Joe Filisko:JFGK

Paramount Music Festival
Coal Dock Park
12:30-1:30pm Blues
Port Washington, WI
http://www.paramountmusic.org

SAT-SUN 10,11 GKB Somerset, KY
Somerset Blues Festival
MON-TUE 12,13 GKB Morehead, KY
Morehead State University

FRI. 16 GK Solo Blues Belleville, ON Canada
New Hope Church 151 Cloverleaf Drive 7pm
Ticket Price: $10 ADV $15 Door
Advance tickets online: http://www.tinyurl.com/glennkaiser

SAT-SUN 17, 18 GK Solo Blues Chatham, ON Canada
The Hub 64 Ursuline Avenue
Chatham, ON N7L0A8 7pm Sat

SUN. bringing message 10:30am
519.397.5674

FRI-SUN 23-25 GK Solo Blues Wise, VA

WiseVAweekend

OCTOBER:

MON. 3 GK Solo Cook Co. Jail

FRI 7 GK Solo Blues Wilmington, OH
Joe’s Java 180 East Main
Wilmington, Ohio 45177
Www.sugartree.org
937-382-8359

SAT-MON 8-10 GK Solo OH Prisons Tour

MON. 17 GK Solo Cook Co. Jail

SAT-SUN 22,23 GK Solo Blues Danville, IL:
SAT. Concert October 22 @ 7 pm, SUN. GK message 9 am @ 12 pm
http://www.facebook.com/vineyarddanville

Chicago- Argyle Night Market Report

What a sweet time! Folks dancing, great food, and I have always loved attending as well as playing shows in outdoor situations.NightMarketDancers

I try to make this an annual appearance and though the afternoon setup was hot and sweaty, a bit of a breeze and cloud cover cooled us all down as I began to play a 90 min. set.

The Uptown Boys duo opened w. a fun set (when’s the last time anyone, Chicagoan or not- heard a song all about Jean Baptiste Point DuSable, whom most consider the first continual settler/founder of what is now Chicago?). Note the little girl whose Mamma smiled and took pics of as she wandered up and began playing the hand drum and danced. The crowd went nuts, she clapped and smiled, went back to drumming, danced a bit more. Smiles all around, really fun!LilDrummerGirl

So Wendi did the merch and knitted, Roy did a great job on helping me w. driving, gear and sound tech work (as always).RoyAndWendi

Already looking forward to next year in Argyle Street, Uptown Chicago.

My bro Dave Baumgartner helped make it all happen for the Market put a couple vids as well as pics up in his Instagram -here’s a clip. Kudos Dave!

#argylenightmarket Glenn Kaiser in concert

A post shared by David Baumgartner (@fiddlerdave920) on

Thanks for stopping by 🙂 -Glenn

Encouragement!

My thoughts on just a part of what Paul wrote in his second letter to the young leader Timothy (2 Tim. 1.5-9):

I am reminded of your sincere faith, which first lived in your grandmother Lois and in your mother Eunice and, I am persuaded, now lives in you also.

GK- Isn’t it nice when your sincerity (if real) is what comes to someone’s mind when they think of you? Too many simply act as in “actors” as in a “reality” tv show. In Tim’s case, Grammy and Mum apparently were the real deal so he had a leg up many never do. But cool that he walked the path with Jesus as they did before him. Such mentoring examples of love and faith are SO needed. So what was it about Timothy that “persuaded” Paul that the boy truly knew the Savior? What would it take to persuade others you and I do?

For this reason I remind you to fan into flame the gift of God, which is in you through the laying on of my hands.

GK- Much could be said about “the laying on of hands” but essentially it was about people who knew, kept seeking and walking with God affirming the calling and spiritual gifts in others. An “ordination” as such. Still is. Here Paul is clearly saying the “fire”, the passion and movement, activity of that (or those) gifts of the Holy Spirit in Tim’s (and our own) heart can shrink or burn hot, and that Timothy himself had at least some degree of authority as to how brightly it burned in service to the Lord and those in need around him. “By love SERVE one another”. Constant, consistent actions of authentic love persuade like nothing else.

For the Spirit God gave us does not make us timid, but gives us power, love and self-discipline.

GK- Guts, heart, not arrogance but out of God’s genuine love, the ability to edit one’s self… deny sin, demons, “bunny-trail” side-tracks of the world… all part of what God the Holy Spirit gives and part of His work in us as we follow Jesus Christ. Not rude, boastful but kind, gracious, life-giving action. Simple application of the scriptures on a daily basis. Relationship.

So do not be ashamed of the testimony about our Lord or of me his prisoner. Rather, join with me in suffering for the gospel, by the power of God.

GK- No matter how immature, flaky, spiritual shallow, unkind, unloving, uncaring certainly -some- who claim to walk with Jesus may seem to be -YOU get/keep/grow in a right attitude and spirit toward -all- people. In part this means zero shame or ducking the issues when the Good News of Christ is the issue. It is indeed THE issue. “And hey Tim, I’m a prisoner. Regardless of what they think/say/do to me I’m not ashamed of Jesus nor the fact they threw me in here because of my verbal witness and life of sacrifice for Him and the Gospel. Suffering is part of our call bro.. It is only by HIS power we make it through this life! Don’t forget to go to Him for the grace to persevere!” Suffering is part of the deal. Plenty others suffer greatly for plenty less. Or simply for self-gratification. Eyes on Him and others Timothy!

He has saved us and called us to a holy life—not because of anything we have done but because of his own purpose and grace. This grace was given us in Christ Jesus before the beginning of time

GK- No salvation in any. other. source. but. the. risen. Jesus Christ. Right after our first calling (repent, believe, follow Jesus) comes the second: live like Him more and more each new day. Holiness is not merely a given, but a received and lived-out walk where HIS nature grows and our old selfish merely human nature is “put to death”. God help us, and He does! Remember salvation is what HE did, not what we did or could ever do. Not ever.

Ok, ever feel like you have no purpose? God disagrees. The issue is a (sometimes life-long) seeking after God regarding what His calling/spiritual gift/s are in your life. That is what directs your life’s work and your work in life. Everything else is just details. Or frosting. I like frosting but you’ll die if that’s all you eat. Note “HIS OWN PURPOSE… and GRACE”. Both-and. Discover and get some solid confirmation on His purposes for you, trust and learn to apply yourself to daily walking with Him IN HIS GRACE and see what He does in and through you.

He had plans for you and your life before you were a gleam in your Mamma’s eye! Even before your Granny’s eye. Yep.

So buckle in Tim -and keep moving regardless.

That’s my very short form on this amazing section of text from Paul to a young bro who like his mentor surely lived a well-lived life.

Be encouraged- God has a plan. And it’s better than our own -every step of the way. In fact, it’s eternal when most all else ain’t.

Thanks for stopping by! -Glenn