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God in 3D Introduction PDF

God in 3D Introduction PDF

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Published by Joey O'Connor
God in 3D: Seeing God at Work in Your Life and the World Around You is a new book by Joey O'Connor that will help you discover and develop a deeper spiritual vision for your life. Filled with authentic stories of faith and struggle, hope and humor, O'Connor weaves a rich tapestry of story, scripture and insights to help you see God at work in your life and in the world around you.
God in 3D: Seeing God at Work in Your Life and the World Around You is a new book by Joey O'Connor that will help you discover and develop a deeper spiritual vision for your life. Filled with authentic stories of faith and struggle, hope and humor, O'Connor weaves a rich tapestry of story, scripture and insights to help you see God at work in your life and in the world around you.

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Published by: Joey O'Connor on Dec 15, 2010
Copyright:Attribution Non-commercial

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05/12/2014

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God in 3D
Seeing God at Work in Your Life and the World Around YouBy Joey O’Connor
Introduction
My earliest memory of actually seeing God happened sometime betweenkindergarten and first grade on my knees near the front row of St. Therese CatholicChurch in Alhambra, California. Our Irish Catholic O’Connor family of five girls andtwo boys was definitely not a bunch of back row Christmas and Easter Catholics whoarrived just before communion and bolted before the final blessing. We arrived early, for the whole Mass, so early sometimes I’d have to line up for Holy Confession and declaremy guilt of stealing quarters out of my dad’s top dresser drawer. My penance of a couple‘Our Father’s’ and three ‘Hail Mary’s’ was a whole lot better than getting caught for  petty theft and thank God, not once was I ever asked to return the money. Besides, I wasalmost positive the priest couldn’t see me behind the dark confessional screen. Almostlike the Witness Protection Program, but different.Though the priest couldn’t see me, even as a first grader, I was raised with thevery clear and distinct knowledge that God saw my every single move. I really didn’thave a choice about going to confession, but when it came to line-ups, the unspokenchoice for the spiritual formation of young Catholic children was obvious: Line up for confession now or face a criminal line-up in the very near future. Repentance or incarceration. Now is the time to turn from your life of crime.This foreboding existential first-grade angst was confirmed as I kneeled before a
 
2very large golden Jesus hanging on the cross. The Golden Jesus had his eyes closed, but Iknew he was looking right at me. God can do that, you know. That sad look on his faceseemed to say, “Seventy-five cents last week? Now you’re up to a buck? Joey, when’s itgonna stop?” There he was, the Suffering Servant, God in 3D in all His golden glory,staring down at me. Woe, oh woe, is me.Sitting in church for an hour every week, I knew I couldn’t hide from the GoldenJesus. He saw everything and even though I cornered myself in a confessional pretendingto hide my identity from the priest, who knew full well my O’Connor voice since my brother Neil was too young to go to confession and because the priest heard eightO’Connor confessions, one right after another, every single month. What was I thinking?The priests were part of the Golden Jesus God posse. My parents were friends with all the priests from every parish within twenty square miles. Even worse, as I really began tothink about it, since my dad owned three funeral homes throughout Los Angeles Countyand went to
a lot 
of funerals, my dad probably knew every priest between San Franciscoand San Diego. God’s spies in black and white collar everywhere. My folks were alwayshaving priests over for dinner and though I can’t confirm it, sometime between dessert,coffee, and cigarettes, there very well could have been subtle hints in slight whispers and priestly Irish brogues for my dad to daily recount the spare change in his top dresser drawer. Who was I fooling?Staring up at the Golden Jesus made me think of the other Jesus. The one at St.Felicitas & Perpetua Church across town. I think that Jesus was marble, but I honestlycan’t remember. I had no clue what the name ‘St. Felicitas & Perpetua’ meant, but I doremember liking that church a whole lot more because of the music. St. Felicitas &
 
3Perpetua rocked. It was the early 70’s and my mom had signed the O’Connor kids up for a Tuesday afternoon catechism class. St. Felicitas & Perpetua had these two teenagesisters who played acoustic guitars and actually looked like they enjoyed singing aboutJesus. They always played a few songs before my class and I was never disappointed. Iswayed and tapped my toe, but never too much because that would make everyone think Iactually liked church. If a priest saw me liking church, they’d force me to become an altar  boy. It was a later fate I couldn’t escape in sixth grade, red robes and all.Standing in front of a bunch of elementary school kids, the “Sisters” (no punintended) pounded out classic contemporary Catholic liturgical songs like
Glory and  Praise, The King of Glory,
and
Sons of God.
How Bob Dylan’s
 Blowin’ in the Wind 
ever made it into a Catholic Mass is beyond me? The priest told everyone Jesus was theanswer and ol’ Bob said the answer was blowing in the wind. Pretty confusing for a firstgrader. The sisters never sang Dylan, but I remember swaying and singing because thesongs were so fun and the sisters were so cool. I’d never seen a couple girls so bold andunashamed singing about the love of God. It was like they were alive on the inside. Notfaking it one bit. They really sang like they meant it. Like something deep and golden andtrue lived in their hearts. Singing about God obviously made them happy and eventhough the Jesus hanging on the cross behind them had his eyes closed like the GoldenJesus, I’m almost positive he sneaked a smile when all of us weren’t looking.There was something about those sisters. When I sang along with them, myconfessional fears seemed to just slink away. I didn’t think or care about my nickel anddime crimes. I wasn’t afraid of getting caught or being punished. I felt lighter. Likesomething was waiting to come alive in me too. Seeing them sing with Jesus above them,

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