– On Mothers

vince-fleming-487796-unsplashI was talking to a woman at church once on mother’s day and I said to her that this day must be your favorite day to come to church. I was surprised when she actually told me the opposite. She said it was her least favorite day to come. There were talks about all the great things other mothers had done and she would always feel like she did not measure up.

Men will never understand the huge responsibility that come with being a mother. To conceive and carry a child inside your womb and to come near death in the process of giving birth is something truly incredible. Then there is the bonding that goes on, the feeding and nurturing that only a woman can do in this life. Women are more refined than men and naturally open to things of a spiritual nature. This is what makes them so qualified for their role.

“All that I am, or hope to be, I owe to my angel mother.” – Abraham Lincoln

I give honor to all the valiant mothers of the past, present and future for all they have done, for their sacrifice and giving, to make this world a better place. I believe we will soon be living in a millennial era of peace, largely due to the way mothers will bring up children in righteousness so as to follow Jesus and love God.

“A mother has far greater influence on her children than anyone else, and she must realize that every word she speaks, every act, every response, her attitude, even her appearance and manner of dress affect the lives of her children and the whole family. It is while the child is in the home that he gains from his mother the attitudes, hopes, and beliefs that will determine the kind of life he will live, and the contribution he will make to society.” – N. Eldon Tanner

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– Overcoming trials through faith in Christ

egg-eggshell-broken-yolk.jpgWe all have trials in life. The quote from the princess bride movie says it all – “Life is pain, anyone that says differently is selling something.” Or more correctly from the Bible– “In the world ye shall have tribulation…” – John 16

So how do we handle difficulties in life? Do we put on a bright smile and pretend everything is OK when it really isn’t? Perhaps we crumble and get discouraged and crawl under a rock? We can legitimately go forward and feel the powers of heaven upon us as we walk in faith. The great thing is that Christ told us to “be of good cheer” because he had overcome the world.

For me, my trials have been have been frightening, discouraging and difficult. They many times come upon me without any warning, like an earthquake. You can never be prepared for many of life’s challenges. There is only one hope you have to save you in your moments of deepest despair. It is the hope that comes through exercising faith in God and belief in Christ. Faith is a word of action. You must act on your faith. Let me illustrate what the faith is that is necessary to persevere you though a trial. I will do this by showing some characteristics of Christ that we can emulate. He is our example in all things.

Jesus served others, being self-centered will make you feel worse. You have to stop thinking about your own miseries and focus some love on someone else. Christ was always reaching out and ministering. Become a person that ministers to others.

Jesus lived a perfect life and sought direction from God. The combination of being righteous, humble and supplicating God in prayer is very powerful. The scriptures record that Christ would often withdraw himself and pray. For us also, we can pray and work at listening to the spiritual promptings that can guide us through our trials. Get on your knees and pray until you feel the heavens open. Don’t forget to give thanks more than just complaining to God.

Jesus confronted evil. Christ confronted the money changers in the temple, and he denounced the scribes and pharisees. Jesus confronted the devil with verses of scripture while in the desert fasting for 40 days. Evil influences must be confronted and cast out of our lives.

Jesus was ministered to by angels. “Then the devil leaveth him, and, behold, angels came and ministered unto him” – Matt 4. Seek to let the healing in your life by thinking about God and thinking positively about your situation. Negativity breed trouble, positive thinking brings light.

Jesus look at the bigger picture and knew what was most important in life. Laugh at yourself sometimes. Smile and realize how great your life really is as you look for the positive. Look with the right perspective at how you have grown. Jesus said “O ye of little faith? Seek not ye what ye shall eat, or what ye shall drink, neither be ye of doubtful mind. For all these things do the nations of the world seek after: and your Father knoweth that ye have need of these things. But rather seek ye the kingdom of God; and all these things shall be added unto you.” – Luke 12:31.

Jesus submitted to the will of the Father while on the cross – “Father, if thou be willing, remove this cup from me: nevertheless not my will, but thine, be done” – Luke 22. We need to be spiritually minded and look at life’s adventures as learning experiences to help us and others grow and show us who we are. You really only need to keep one thing in mind. Or at least this is what works for me – “And we know that all things work together for good to them that love God, to them who are the called according to his purpose” – Romans 8

– Questions to ask before getting married

OK, this is a different kind of post than I normally write. Bear with me, as I think it will be useful to many. Of course, I can always state that a writer many times writes what they feel they need. On to the topic at hand…

Lets say you are single and now getting to know a potential spouse better. Before you get too carried away in love, ask yourself the following questions and it could save you a lot of heartache later.

  1. Are you happy as an individual first, and not looking for a marriage to “save you”?
  2. Do you have common interests?
  3. Do you share a common religious faith, ideals and standards?
  4. Is there a Physical attraction?
  5. Have you observed how they treat their parents and siblings?
  6. Do you agree on decisions regarding having children and upbringing of them?
  7. Do you each bring out the best in each other?
  8. Are you able to say “I’m sorry, please forgive me.”?
  9. Have you put their interests first and treated them like a King or Queen?
  10. How have you handled disagreements?
  11. What was it that initially attracted you to this person? Have you thought to wonder why? Will this become a problem later?
  12. How will you support yourselves financially?

Disclaimer and notice: I am not a marriage counselor no expert in this topic by any means. The information contained in this blog post is without warranty, either expressed or implied. Neither the post’s author, nor distributors will be held liable for any damages caused or alleged, resulting directly by or indirectly by this post. No animals were harmed in the writing of this blog post.

– Are you in need of answers?

240px-Le_Mans_-_Cathedrale_St_Julien_CV_01One question everyone is asking today is – Why? Why are senseless killings happening in our schools? Why is there hate, crime, oppression, bullying, abuse and killing? We all want to know how to stop it. One murder is too many. One abuse is too many. Can’t everyone simply be loving, helpful, encouraging, supportive, and charitable?

Unfortunately, things went wrong right from the beginning when Adam and Eve partook of the forbidden fruit and we ended up in this fallen state. The Bible also tells of how Cain killed his brother Abel. Others found ways to make secret plans to get gain.

The reason bad things are happening is because of the fallen world we live in and the Satanic influence that is pervasive. Mankind became prideful and rebelled against God. Even the people being lead through the wilderness, that had the presence of God going before them, had stony hearts that Moses said would some day need to be turned into a new heart of flesh that would have the word of God written on it.

It would certainly be great if everyone could grow up in a loving home and then make their own loving home, generation after generation. It would be easy if we each had all the opportunities in the world, all the food and shelter we needed and did not have to compete for it. But we don’t have a perfect world to live in. There is competition, oppression, greed and evil of the ugliest kind. Something actually went wrong right from the very beginning, even before Adam and Eve existed. What went wrong was that an angel of light rebelled against God and was cast down to earth. That is all part of the plan, but it means that we have opposition in our lives with good and evil forces opposing each other.

The Answer

One day, people came to Christ with some troubling news. Bad things had happened and they perhaps wanted him to make it all go away, or perhaps organize some resistance to the Roman occupation. He did not. Nor did he even try and comfort the people in this case. Let’s read what happened.

“There were present at that season some that told him of the Galilaeans, whose blood Pilate had mingled with their sacrifices. And Jesus answering said unto them, Suppose ye that these Galilaeans were sinners above all the Galilaeans, because they suffered such things? I tell you, Nay: but, except ye repent, ye shall all likewise perish. Or those eighteen, upon whom the tower in Siloam fell, and slew them, think ye that they were sinners above all men that dwelt in Jerusalem? I tell you, Nay: but, except ye repent, ye shall all likewise perish.” – Luke 13

Bad things are going to happen, evil will abound and bring destruction. What did Jesus say about our day?

“And then shall many be offended, and shall betray one another, and shall hate one another.” – Matt 24:10

Never before in the history of the world have people been more divided than at this time. Our technology has enabled this. It has enabled massive amounts of information to flow in and out of our minds. People can express their opinions and in an instant be heard by people around the world. Some feel empowered to belittle others, and many rise up in their pride to try and usurp power from God. Pride and rebellion are what caused Satan to be cast down from heaven to be among us. Satan wanted to take God’s place.

There is only one answer for how to get out of this predicament. God gave that answer right at the very moment He kicked Adam and Eve out of the garden. He told them that life would be hard and that the serpent (Satan) would have power in this world. Then he gave the answer for how Satan would be overcome. He said that Christ would come from the seed of the woman and that Christ would one day put an end to Satan’s rule and crush him. Speaking to Satan, God said.

“And I will put enmity between you and the woman, and between your offspring and hers; he will crush your head, and you will strike his heel.” – Genesis 3 NIV

Christ is the “he” and Satan was able to strike at “his heal”, but then gets crushed by Jesus. It is time to kick Satan out of our hearts and out of this world. Unfortunately that can’t happen on a world-wide basis until we all work at it together and that won’t happen until we are all unified and working together when Christ comes and establishes a thousand years of peace. Christ is the only way. For now it means you will have to accept him on your own and wait it out. The world, as a whole, is only going to become more wicked as the division grows ever wider between the Godly and the Godless.

Jesus is the way, the truth and the life. Here are the steps to following him and gaining peace in your heart.

1. Sanctify yourselves and cast Satan out

To begin with, you must deal with the sin question. The question you need to ask yourself is – “What sin do I now have that is unresolved, blocking me, or that I feel tempted to fall into over and over?”. Call out to God and He will forgive.

God will not hear you if you are burdened by sin, but will instead withdraw His spirit if you are unclean in any way. Yes, God is love, but He is also judgment.

“Behold, the Lord’s hand is not shortened, that it cannot save; neither his ear heavy, that it cannot hear: But your iniquities have separated between you and your God, and your sins have hid his face from you, that he will not hear.” – Isaiah 59:1,2

It is Satan who puts it into your heart to think you can’t repent. God is merciful to forgive. Christ charged the woman taken in adultery to – “go and sin no more.” You cannot believe in Christ and keep on sinning. Once you are clean, Satan cannot dwell in your heart and he will be cast from your life and you will then be surrounded by light.

2. Seek the Spirit

Oil in the Old Testament represents the Holy Spirit and you see reference to the lamps that were constantly fed oil to give light. Christ said that the wise virgins had oil in their lamps. The had lived lives that were sanctified and were thus blessed with the spirit. This is what will lead you and comfort you in these days of trouble.

But when he, the Spirit of truth, comes, he will guide you into all the truth.” – John 16

3. Ponder the Scriptures

You should read the marvelous words found in the holy scriptures. This becomes as an iron rod to hold on to as you walk the path of discipleship. It is the safety line that you grab hold of that leads you to Eternal Life.

“study the Scriptures diligently because you think that in them you have eternal life” – John 5:39 NIV

4. Worship God

There are many ways to worship Gid – through prayer, music, singing, meetings and many other means. He is holy and has all power in the Universe, all knowledge and loves his children. So much so, that He sent His son to die and prepare the way to overcome death and Hell.

“Get thee behind me, Satan: for it is written, Thou shalt worship the Lord thy God, and him only shalt thou serve.” – Luke 4

– Being a light to the world

lightI was shopping at Whole foods just a day before Christmas eve. Blasting from speakers all over the store was some very harsh rock and roll music. I was wondering – why would they be blasting this loud obnoxious music when they should be playing Christmas music?

I got to the cashier and remarked that I was disappointed that they were not playing Christmas music. The clerk leaned forward and quietly said she was told that they “needed to be politically correct and could not even say Merry Christmas to the customers”. Yes indeed! This once great Christian nation has had our society subverted. Schools can’t have Christmas parties, but instead hold a “Winter celebration”.

It is one of my regrets in life that I did not stand up and speak up against the bullies. I did not defend the bullied, but instead stood in the corner looking on. What is needed today is for people to stand up against the wrongs, the lies, the deceptions, the false religion and everything evil. It may cost you to do so. Look at what happens to those standing up against government corruption. Look at what happens when people stand and recognize that Israel has a right to decide their own capital.

It is time to be a light to the world, as Jesus challenged us to be . Darkness cannot make light go away, it is light that makes darkness flee when the two meet. If Christians stand up in humble testimony of Jesus, darkness will flee and others will see the light and find their way.

“Ye are the light of the world. Let your light so shine before men, that they may see your good works, and glorify your Father which is in heaven” – Matthew 5

The great prophet Elijah stood up against corruption in government and religion and his life was in danger. He stood up against the false priests of his day and had faith that God was on his side. God did not abandon him, but showed forth mighty power to defeat the wicked priests and destroy them.

Here is an amazing later-day prophetic voice from 1978 from a man that stood as a light.

“This new irreligious imperialism seeks to disallow certain of people’s opinions simply because those opinions grow out of religious convictions. Resistance to abortion will soon be seen as primitive. Concern over the institution of the family will be viewed as untrendy and unenlightened. In its mildest form, irreligion will merely be condescending toward those who hold to traditional Judeo-Christian values. In its more harsh forms, as is always the case with those whose dogmatism is blinding, the secular church will do what it can to reduce the influence of those who still worry over standards such as those in the Ten Commandments.” – Neal A. Maxwell 1978

We cannot let the secret combinations of our day destroy our freedom. We cannot stand powerlessly by just watching evil take over. Be a light, stand for right and be a positive force in the world.

Have a Merry Christmas as we celebrate the birth of our savior Jesus Christ!

– Do you know where you are?

WP_20170918_15_27_31_ProI once heard a story told about a US civil war military spy ship that had been out at sea and got caught in the middle of a terrible storm. During the storm they lost all of their navigational instruments and ended up drifting into a sea port in enemy territory. They did not want to give away any hints about their being on a secret spy mission. They however wanted to know their location to confirm if they were in a friendly port or in one belonging to the enemy. The signal officer on the ship set up to sent a message to the shore to see if he could determine their location and he signaled “Where are we?”. Those on the shore were a bit suspicious and signaled back “Where did you come from?”. The ship replied “We don’t know”. The shore then signaled “Where are you going?”. The shipped replied “We don’t know, where are we?”.

At this point the people on the shore gave a very clever message back to the ship. They said “If you don’t know where you came from, and you don’t know where you are going, it really should not matter where you are.”

Knowing where you came from and where you are going are key in this life. They matter, as what you do and where you are each day should be effected by the answer to those first two questions. Otherwise might be wondering aimlessly through life with no real purpose. The answers to these two profound questions are contained in the scriptures. We are children of God the Father. He created us, gives us life and we can return back to Him.

Christ tells us to “pray to thy Father”. We came from God and can return to him. We are all born of an earthly mother and father, yet we have the right to claim our spiritual heritage and become spiritually reborn. We can become inheritors of the great God of all creation.

“But as many as received him, to them gave he power to become the sons of God, even to them that believe on his name: Which were born, not of blood, nor of the will of the flesh, nor of the will of man, but of God.” – John 1:12, 13

You are not descended from some seaweed that supposedly sprung up in the ocean billions of years ago! That is a deception of the devil. You are of divine origin! You have a divine destiny if you accept it and live up to it. The great truth to learn that will change your life and determine where you are each day is that you came from God and will return to Him. Believing on Christ will give you new and fulfilled meaning in life.

The Spirit itself beareth witness with our spirit, that we are the children of God: And if children, then heirs; heirs of God, and joint-heirs with Christ” – Romans 8:16-18

– How to be happy inside no matter what is happening on the outside

Is there some event you are facing right now that is a struggle? Circumstances in your life can certainly get overwhelming. Perhaps something you had wanted to have occurred in life has not come about. Between the disappointments and the trials you face, it is a wonder that you could ever go around with a smile on the outside, or even better yet, a smile on the inside.

Be assured that there is hope and happiness to be found in this life. Even great joy can be yours. The solution is to find a deeper happiness inside of you that is on a foundation so secure, that you can weather any storm in life. This way, your happiness is not connected with the current troubles you might be facing.

You know the answer already, you might just not have taken the next step of really making it real in your life. The answer is given to you in the Bible in several places. Let me take you back to the time of Jesus and we will revisit this time and find the key to the happiness that might have eluded you.

It was dry and hot afternoon and Jesus had been about with his disciples preaching and ministering to the people. The disciples had gone off to find food. Jesus happened to be right in the location of the famous landmark that was a well of water belonging to the ancient patriarch Jacob. Jesus approached a woman that had come to fetched water from the well. Jesus requested of her – “Give me to drink.” (John 4:7). As they conversed, Jesus told her of water that he had that she should be asking for. This was a symbolic lesson that Jesus gave her where he was likening water that would refresh the body to that which the spirit could do to refresh us. The water he spoke of would be a source of fulfillment in a similar way to how water would refresh her and yet this time keep her replenished forever so she would never thirst again. In other words an internal spring of water that was continually gushing forth.

As you symbolically walk through the desert of life, facing obstacles in your path, you are made alive inside and feel such joy inside that the sadness is replaced. Christ then is the source of true lasting happiness that refreshes you daily.

“Ho, every one that thirsteth, come ye to the waters, and he that hath no money; come ye, buy, and eat; yea, come, buy wine and milk without money and without price. Wherefore do ye spend money for that which is not bread? and your labour for that which satisfieth not? hearken diligently unto me, and eat ye that which is good, and let your soul delight itself in fatness. Incline your ear, and come unto me: hear, and your soul shall live; and I will make an everlasting covenant with you, even the sure mercies of David.” – Isaiah 55:1-3

Many in life are racing to find happiness in temporary worldly pursuits. They may even have thought they could give money away and serve others. This is certainly a good thing, but in the end would still leave a person empty. The true way to happiness is to partake of that which was offered to us by Christ.

Make it real in your life. Get to know who he was and what he did. Believe in him, have hope and faith in him.