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Friday, December 24, 2010

Okay, so Jesus wasn’t born on Christmas day, so what?
Okay, so Jesus wasn’t born on Christmas day, so what?
ScaleLoveControversy.jpg
 Wikipedia correctly says…

 Christmas or Christmas Day is a holiday observed generally on December 25 to commemorate the birth of Jesus, the central figure of Christianity. The date is not known to be the actual birthday of Jesus, and may have initially been chosen to correspond with either the day exactly nine months after some early Christians believed Jesus had been conceived, the date of the Roman winter solstice, or one of various ancient winter festivals[1]

 
December 25 is very unlikely to be Jesus’ actual day of birth.

 The reason is nobody knows the exact day Jesus was born! We have hints in the bible but no certainty.

 Firstly let us just look at the word Christmas, it is built of two words Christ and Mass. For those not in a church that uses the term “Mass” is a term used to describe a remembrance of Jesus’ death on the cross.

 It is interesting that at a birth of a baby, we name it after remebrance of his death! This is, I guess, because his greatest life’s work was his death and the subsequent resurrection!

 
Okay, let’s get back to that date …25 December of unknown year.

 Perhaps the early Church decided on the date to overwhelm another celebration, that of the Roman winter solstice celebration, which occurred on 25th December. They wanted to celebrate Jesus birth and so this date was useful. This probably happened a few centuries after Jesus lived.

 Okay, so how can we be fairly sure Jesus was not born in Decemeber?

 Well Luke says…

 While they were there, the time came for the baby to be born, and she gave birth to her firstborn, a son. She wrapped him in cloths and placed him in a manger, because there was no guest room available for them.

  And there were shepherds living out in the fields nearby, keeping watch over their flocks at night.[2]

  The shepherds were out with their flocks. We know from other secular writings that in that part of the world it was too cold at night to be out in December and so the month would have had to have had a warmer night for them to be out.

 Another piece of information that hints it was not winter was Luke 2:1

 In those days Caesar Augustus issued a decree that a census should be taken of the entire Roman world. (This was the first census that took place while Quirinius was governor of Syria.) And everyone went to their own town to register.[3]

 To get accurate figures, they would try and avoid a census in winter because due to the cold the people would be less likely to comply correctly and travel (people travelled on foot and had to stay out some nights). This again points to a warmer month.

 Okay, so now we can assume it’s not winter, and some people suggest Fall (Autumn), but there is no evidence for that either.

 
To me the importance is that we do spend time reflecting of Jesus and what he did.



This silly controversy over the date is not important!

 He was born, he lived, he was the greatest man to ever live, he gave us a special gift, himself, and I want to remember his birth! December 25th will do as well as any other day.

 What is a pity, is to see how evil has changed this day from a day of introspection and love of others into a feeding frenzy to get as much as I can!

 I love Jesus and it hurts to see how people damage themselves simply because they think his birth gives them that excuse! I pray this year people will be wiser!

 May you have a wonderful day tomorrow, love God deeply, accept your life as a gift from god and love those around you with his amazing love.

 
Have a great day!


[1] http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Christmas

[2] Luke 2:6-8 NIV (2010 version)

[3] Luke 2:1-3 NIV (2010 version)

Fri, December 24, 2010 | link          Comments

Thursday, December 23, 2010

Okay, those nativity scenes just bug me!
Okay, those nativity scenes just bug me!

 You have seen them! A rough rendition looks like this… 
NativityWrong1.jpg
 
Wonderfully tradition! Wonderfully incorrect! Very incorrect!

 Why? Well lets remove the pieces that are incorrect one by one and explain why.

 Our first corrected image looks like this…

NativityWrong2.jpg
 
So the star has gone? Why?

 Well the bible says

 After Jesus' birth, Wise Men from the east came to Jerusalem. They asked, "Where is the child who has been born to be king of the Jews? When we were in the east, we saw his star. Now we have come to worship him."[1]

 Then that…After the Wise Men had listened to the king, they went on their way. The star they had seen when they were in the east went ahead of them. It finally stopped over the place where the child was. When they saw the star, they were filled with joy.[2]

  And that Herod…Herod realized that the Wise Men had tricked him. So he became very angry. He gave orders concerning Bethlehem and the area around it. All the boys two years old and under were to be killed. This agreed with the time when the Wise Men had seen the star.[3]

 So the star appeared after Jesus was born, was around for about two years and moved continually only coming to rest over the place where Jesus was (and not necessarily where he was born) after two years of moving about. It’s unlikely to have started over that place right? So let’s get rid of the star for the first Christmas!

 Next our image changes again…

NativityWrong3.jpg
 
Those wise men were not there at the birth!

 If you read over the texts I extracted from the bible, you will see that they were nowhere near the place where Jesus was born at that time. Not only that, but when we check out the texts it never says there were three of them! This was fabricated by the church well after Jesus lived, simply because there were three gifts…

 “Then they opened their treasures and presented him with gifts of gold, frankincense and myrrh.”[4]

 Now these were expensive gifts! When we add to this that Herod didn’t push these guys around, since it says…

 When King Herod heard this he was disturbed, and all Jerusalem with him.[5]

 Why would a king get disturbed by three men?

Not likely but since they were king makers, it probably was a bother.

But, would all of Jerusalem get disturbed by three men?

 Not Likely! 

What we do know is that roads were dangerous and carrying expensive items meant thieves, and king makers would have had many servants and protectors with them.

Probably somewhere between 50 and 200 and since the whole of Jerusalem was disturbed, it was probably quite a few.

 Not three!

 So let’s remove the “3 wise men” and be wise!

 Now the image changes again!

 
NativityWrong4.jpg
 
The stable is gone!

 The text that refers to where the birth takes place is…

 So Joseph also went up from the town of Nazareth in Galilee to Judea, to Bethlehem the town of David, because he belonged to the house and line of David. He went there to register with Mary, who was pledged to be married to him and was expecting a child. While they were there, the time came for the baby to be born, and she gave birth to her firstborn, a son. She wrapped him in cloths and placed him in a manger, because there was no guest room available for them.[6]  

Where does it say stable?

 In this latest version it does not even say “Inn”, it says “guest room”!

 Why? Well the word translated can be equally as well translated guest room and it was our 16th century translators from Europe who decided on “inn”. Fortunately with the wealth of information and archaeological finds, we know this was unlikely and it was far more likely it should be guest room! That’s what the most up to date translation says!

 So, Jesus was born into a middle class home! One artistic rendition of the type of structure is shown below…(okay so I’m the artist…please be gentle)

 NativityGood.jpg 

These houses had more than one living area.

The guest room (or prophets rooms as it is sometimes called) was reserved for honoured guests (so we can see Joseph and Mary were not considered honoured guests).

 Then there was a living area where the rest of the family lived and slept, probably the area that Jesus was born in.

Then there was a lower area into which the livestock was brought in during the cold nights. This was their heating mechanism. The animals body heat helped keep the place warm.

Even in Europe until recently people slept above stables in some places for the same reason. 


 If you want more information on this there is a great book by a respected scholar who lived in the Middle East as a Christian for many years, who speaks the languages and understands the archology and cultures. His name is Kenneth Bailey, and his book is “Jesus through Middle Eastern Eyes
[7] is a very good read!

 
Into the floor of the living area, they often made depressions into which feed for the livestock was placed so they could chew it during the night. It is probably into this area, the Manger, that Jesus was placed.

 He was probably in the middle of family since Joseph would have stayed at family and the fact he was still there two years later when the wise men arrived, seems to back that doesn’t it?

 So out Nativity scene has shrunk with reality, but has grown with value.

 
We see Jesus as like most of us middle class people, not poor like the shepherds who would have been let into the house in the lower level with the animals, not rich or considered important, like the people in the guest room. Part of a loving family born into a noisy humanity where there were probably lots of curious and considerate women and men. Joy to the world indeed.

 This is why when I look at our traditional nativity scenes I find them contrived and collapsing two years or more of activity into a badly representative picture.

 It’s good to have memories, but is it good our kids have to know they were lies? I prefer to tell my children the truth, but explain that it’s okay that some others still want to use the nativity scene as it shows the few years as one. It's for those of us who are deeper with God that can understand the implications.

 
Hey, I hope I didn’t upset you with these facts.
Have a great day!



[1] Matthew 2:1 NIRV

[2] Matthew 2:9 NIRV

[3] Matthew  2:16 NIRV

[4] Matthew 2:11 NIRV

[5] Matthew 2:3 NIRV

[6] Luke 2:4-7 NIV (2010 version)

[7] Bailey, Kenneth, Jesus through Middle Eastern Eyes, IPV Academic an imprint of Intervarsity Press, Downers Grove, Illinois,2007

Thu, December 23, 2010 | link          Comments

Wednesday, December 22, 2010

Horrible relations: Hate, hurt, and love!
Horrible relations: Hate, hurt and love? 

StrugglingPeople.jpg

Is this statement below typical of our Christmas gatherings

 ”Christmas time is here and it is once again time for everyone to pull some Christmas cheer out of their ass and try to survive yet another holiday. The Christmas season, which starts around August of every year, has always been an enigma to me. No matter how bad the last one was people will still attempt to make the next holiday an event that doesn’t look like an episode of Jerry Springer.[1] 

I certainly hope not! But for many people it is typical!

  We know this is not a perfect world, but can’t we have a little perfection…at Christmas?

 
Surely if God is real then he would ensure that the peace and joy that Jesus was meant to bring to this world would be in more abundance at Christmas?

Surely loneliness, hate, anger, drunkenness, and false hopes wouldn’t be part of what we experience? 

These experiences seem opposite to the words given to those downtrodden, bottom of society people, the shepherds, in the hills around Bethlehem heard over 2000 years ago… 

“And there were shepherds living out in the fields nearby, keeping watch over their flocks at night. An angel of the Lord appeared to them, and the glory of the Lord shone around them, and they were terrified. But the angel said to them, “Do not be afraid. I bring you good news that will cause great joy for all the people. Today in the town of David a Savior has been born to you; he is the Messiah, the Lord.” - Luke 2:8-11  

Or are they?

 These shepherd were not exactly people wanted by society other than to meet their needs of supplying resources for food and clothing. They had to live in the fields!

To supply societies needs they had to kill the animals they loved and protected and knew by name. Not nice! 

Shepherds were low on the social hierarchy of the time and not exactly spending quality time with their families when approached by those angels!

Can we say they were having a great Christmas?


 Then, h
ow about that Christmas couple Joseph and Mary?

They had it a bit better because they were staying with family (not in a stable at an Inn, see previous blogs I have written that explain that is a mis-interpretation from the past that we only now know enough to correct), but they were not given the guest room of the house either because they were not as important as other guests in the same house at that time or because people thought they didn't deserve it! 
 

Then about two year later, Mary and Joseph have to bail out the country with Jesus because a guy in charge of their government decided to kill their baby boy!

In anger Herod killed all the boys in that town under two years of age!

That would not exactly have made Joseph and Mary, or Jesus popular people! I guess this was not eactly a good Christmas for those townsfolk right?
 

The Christian Christmas is full of stress and strife! 
But it is also full of love,
compassion and caring!
Many of our Christmas' experiences are full of strife as well!

Divorced parents spending time in the same space for the sake of children, children putting up with parents that have hurt them, drunkards in families using Christmas as chance to escape reality thereby damaging everything and everyone around them.

Lost family members leaving gaping holes that memories just cannot fill, and many other hard situations.
 

As Christians what are we to do, how are we supposed to handle this and make some small sense out of it? 


Firstly,
we need to understand that Christmas is about giving and NOT about receiving!

Yeah! I know that the TV and advertisments say differently, but here’s the thing..... THEY WANT YOUR MONEY!

Basically they lie! Call me direct, but am I wrong? You decide!

 If we disconnect the fable from the fact, we find that during that first Christmas some family in Bethlehem gave up their home to out of town visitors, had it invaded by smelly low class shepherds, had to find towels to mop up blood and mess from the birth, had the noise of a crying baby in their home and yet dispite all this they were entertaining God! 

They gave, we received, and we don’t even think of them! Have you ever thought of the family that had their home invaded and abused over that first Christmas?

So, how about our home invasions (or our invading of someone elses home Embarassed). If we are to make the best of Christmas we need a heart change!

We need to look at Uncle John, the drunkard, from a different perspective.

Forgiving the past, but not forgetting it, we need to realize that he didn’t choose with joy to become who he is now.

He was pulled down by vile Satans clever tricks that confused his mind! What he thought was a happy temporary escape from reality was in fact the bait set by Satan to destroy his life and trap him into a descending circle of pain.

Don't let Satan use your Christmas to do the same to you!

Only love, care and compassion can pry the jaws of that trap back and it won’t be easy! 

Uncle John's only chance is to want to do something about it and maybe you suffering for Jesus will provide that motivation!

Secondly, suffering is part of human existence, but how we do it that is critical!

If we expect strain and pain, preparing with prayer and in quiet time before the day, then we have a better resilience against the pain and hurt that gets dished out.
 
Then, forgiveness is something that if given quickly, fully and meant, takes the bite out of meanness!

Think about it, the person being mean is trying to get under our skin, letting them do so means we hand control of our lives to them!

No way, should we allow a previous lover, spouse or family member to have this control. This control belongs to our God alone!
 

Thirdly, loving is not making out that we are caring and loving, it’s actually doing it in the face of rejection.

There is nothing soft and cuddly about Christian love! It’s a power love, screamed out by God as they tore flesh from his body! It has the ability to change the world and has done so! It has the ability to enable us to love in the face of rejection. It changes goivernments and peoples! It can change us and our lives radically, if we let it!

 We are able to love because we have Holy Spirit in us, and by submitting to God’s love, we give him the right for revenge, releasing ourselves from that pain!

(Gods word says…
 Romans 12:19  Do not take revenge, my dear friends, but leave room for God’s wrath, for it is written: “It is mine to avenge; I will repay,” says the Lord. ) 

Think about it, by forgiveness…we are released from hateful thoughts that would plague our minds and emotions dragging us down. 

Fourthly, look for ways to serve! Service of others is central to true Christmas!
 
IF we want, demand, expect,
all we set ourselves up for is life not meeting our false expectations.

IF we love, care, help, serve,
it is amazing how those gifts of appreciation and love sneak into our lives unexpectantly, giving us joy at what seem to be a difficult time.
 

So friends, let us be courageous this Christmas, love in the face of rejection and loss, help when it hurts, serving instead of be served, and finding joy in places we never though possible! 

May God bless you this Christmas!



Wed, December 22, 2010 | link          Comments

Tuesday, December 21, 2010

Cornerstones, keeping the edges of life together!
Cornerstones, keeping the edge of life together!
cornerstone.jpg

“Then what is the meaning of that which is written:

   “‘The stone the builders rejected
   has become the cornerstone’[a]?

   Everyone who falls on that stone will be broken to pieces; anyone on whom it falls will be crushed.”

Do you ever feel like life is causing you to fail, fall down, or lean away from your true purpose!

Maybe its because we need a good cornerstone in our lives?

Cornerstones, even today are different from the rest of the building. They are key to keeping the building together and correctly supported.

Wikipedia defines a cornerstone like this...

The cornerstone (or foundation stone) concept is derived from the first stone set in the construction of a masonry foundation, important since all other stones will be set in reference to this stone, thus determining the position of the entire structure.

So this is an important stone. Its the one that gives meaning to all the others!

In the bible there is continual reference to cornerstones and Jesus says he is a cornerstone. This allegorical reference is helps us understand that he is the one on which our Christian life is built.

A builder can decide not to use the cornerstone as a reference, and then the accuracy of the building will be less, the walls will be less accurately built in relation to each other and so the building would be at risk of failing its purpose.

Jesus does this for us!

He is the reference that holds our life together correctly and ensure we meet our purpose. He makes sure we are correctly places in relation to one another, and that we will be able to support the weight of life that will rest on us!

Cornerstones often contain a marking or time capsule from which the time is measured in the building. Jesus' death is the time measure for this world, and his point of activation in our lives, by our verbal acceptance of him, is the start of the time of our eternal living!

This analogy of a cornerstone is quoted by different people in the 1st century as they heard Jesus using the phrase containing cornerstone or used it themselves.

One example is above text in this blog just below the title where Jesus is reported by Luke as refering to himself as a cornerstone.

He was refering to texts from the past such as

The stone the builders rejected
   has become the cornerstone;
the LORD has done this,
   and it is marvelous in our eyes.
Ps 118:21-23 (NIV)

and

“See, I lay a stone in Zion, a tested stone,
   a precious cornerstone for a sure foundation;
the one who relies on it
   will never be stricken with panic.
I will make justice the measuring line
   and righteousness the plumb line;
hail will sweep away your refuge, the lie,
   and water will overflow your hiding place.
Your covenant with death will be annulled;
   your agreement with the realm of the dead will not stand.

Isaiah 28:15-17

This second quote is interesting because we get a little more about how the construction of our lives is to take place!

Justice is a measuring line.

Righteousness a plumb line.

How just are we being in our lives? How much do we allow Holy Spirit to prompt us to be just?  Jesus is just and fair, we are supposed to reflect his atributes to the hurting world. I sure hope I do so, but secretly fear i fail all too often. I wonder how you feel about it?

Jesus makes up for where I fail, because he is the true cornerstone of the living church. We may be cornerstones of small little rooms, but he is the cornerstone of the city!

Then righteousness, keeps the walls standing straight. It keeps us able to hold our heads high knowing we are living the way that is eternally blessed. (not that we are better than others!!!)

It is great to hear the words in Acts by Paul...

then know this, you and all the people of Israel: It is by the name of Jesus Christ of Nazareth, whom you crucified but whom God raised from the dead, that this man stands before you healed.  Jesus is

  "‘the stone you builders rejected,
  which has become the cornerstone.'

Salvation is found in no one else, for there is no other name under heaven given to mankind by which we must be saved."
Acts 4:10-12

God is glorius, God is good!

Let's thank Jesus for being the cornerstone today, and let us go an live our lives checking it with righteousness and ensuring it is extended with justice.

Thanks my plan! Whats yours?

Tue, December 21, 2010 | link          Comments

Monday, December 20, 2010

Why did it have to happen to ME? Moving from Asking “Why” to “How”!

Why did it have to happen to ME?

Moving from Asking “Why” to “How”![1]
painAgain.jpg


We know that the centrality of Christianity is a cross!
Why such a morbid symbol?
Today it would be a hangman’s noose or electric chair!

 
C.S Lewis in the movie Shadowlands reminds us the world is not about us but about Christ.

 The blogs over the last few Monday have helped us understand the philosophy of suffering, but now we are changing to look into "how" we deal with it!

 In a previous discussion, we discovered that every answer in this life leads to another questions. The questions win, but we need to ask them to gain answers anyhow, don’t we?

We need to move towards the “so what?” question and get past the “why?” of suffering!

 As he went along, he saw a man blind from birth. His disciples asked him, “Rabbi, who sinned, this man or his parents, that he was born blind?”   “Neither this man nor his parents sinned,” said Jesus, “but this happened so that the works of God might be displayed in him. As long as it is day, we must do the works of him who sent me. Night is coming, when no one can work. While I am in the world, I am the light of the world.”   After saying this, he spit on the ground, made some mud with the saliva, and put it on the man’s eyes. “Go,” he told him, “wash in the Pool of Siloam” (this word means “Sent”). So the man went and washed, and came home seeing.[2]

 Jesus in this quote says that the suffering is to enable God to do amazing things. He points out WE must do the works now, and continue being in the light and in fact even points out, that in some inexplicable way we are the light! He says about us…

 “You are the light of the world. A town built on a hill cannot be hidden. Neither do people light a lamp and put it under a bowl. Instead they put it on its stand, and it gives light to everyone in the house. In the same way, let your light shine before others, that they may see your good deeds and glorify your Father in heaven.

 Some of us Christians are surprised when suffering comes. The suffering that occurs is experienced as a very specific emotional experience that a person is going through. We, outside the situation, can empathize, but until we actually experience it ourselves we cannot fully understand it. 

Suffering is distant until it intrude painfully into our existence! What is it’s use?

 Suffering is often the thing that uncovers the problems with our worldview.
It sometimes causes Christians to want to swop worldviews as suffering comes. Somehow people sell a cheap form of Christianity. One that says become a Christian and be happy and content all your life! If this is not sold, it is often incorrectly assumed.

We should not deny suffering is part of our lives, because God is clear that suffering is part of a Christian existence!

 
In Philippians 3(NIV), Paul says “I want to know Christ—yes, to know the power of his resurrection and participation in his sufferings, becoming like him in his death, and so, somehow, attaining to the resurrection from the dead.”

 We as Christians are always therefore suffering on one shape or form.
We either suffer ourselves, or we are trying to help those that are suffering!

 
Here are some wise words…1 Peter 4 :12-13(NIV) Dear friends, do not be surprised at the fiery ordeal that has come on you to test you, as though something strange were happening to you. But rejoice inasmuch as you participate in the sufferings of Christ, so that you may be overjoyed when his glory is revealed.

 Sufferings as a Christian is not unusual! Why do we often respond with surprise! “Why did <name an illness> happen to  person X?” we ask. As if suffering as a Christian is unexpected! If suffering comes as a shock to us, then we need to ask why we are not concerned previously with it prior to that shock!  Around our world there is a lot of suffering occurring. We need to tune into this!

  We need to process the fact that suffering occurs, but is part of daily life. Every day in life is a gift to us as we move towards a place of no suffering, but here now we need to deal with it daily.

 The religious leaders in the first century wanted a messiah that would make their lives smooth and pleasant, but Jesus came and offered a life of service and humility, and said follow me, ignore the politics and social manipulators, and they rejected him.

 Do we do the same?

 A third of all the psalms are laments about how hard and bad the world is.

 As Bruxy puts it, summarized they say…

 “The world sucks!
God, I feel like you don’t care!
How long do I have to put up with this?
But I love you anyhow!”

 
The death in the cross forms our spirituality, so how can we expect different in our lives. Didn’t Jesus say in Luke 9:23 “Whoever wants to be my disciple must deny themselves and take up their cross daily and follow me.”

 In Philippians 3 we see Gods heart is filled with the pain of suffering! He hurts as we do, but only intervenes at the request of people because he has bound himself to work within mankind’s free will that he provided.

 We need to be able to say “I want to suffer as Jesus did” and therefore
tune deeper into intimate fellowship with Jesus!

 Jesus wants us to feel what he feels about the world, that it is precious, and hurting, and we should be wanting to do things to help others and this planet.
 So here are three things we can do when suffering comes our way (and that we need to tehse anyway)

 First: Love God. Psalm 13…
“But I have trusted in your steadfast love; my heart shall rejoice in your salvation.
I will sing to the Lord, because he has dealt bountifully with me.”

 When we suffer we should not make an enemy out of God, we need him!

 C.S.Lewis talks in pain of feeling like God had shut him out! But, then he goes on to begin to feel that God is good, then to praising God and finding he is connecting with the one who holds his beloved deceased wife in his care!

 By praising, C.S.Lewis was able in some degree able to enjoy the potential future presence of his wife as he connected with the one with her!

 
Second: Serve others!

 God works through suffering to make sure every part of our suffering changes into a gift we can offer others and to God himself as a sacrifice of praise. As Christians, we are “other” focused! We look to ways to connect correctly and honesty with others, and then to enable us to do something for them.

 
Hellen Keller says  “Although the world is full of suffering, it is full also of the overcoming of it. My optimism, then, does not rest on the absence of evil, but on a glad belief in the preponderance of good and a willing effort always to cooperate with the good, that it may prevail. I try to increase the power God has given me to see the best in everything and every one, and make that Best a part of my life.”

 Third: Looking forward!

 “Therefore we do not lose heart. Though outwardly we are wasting away, yet inwardly we are being renewed day by day. For our light and momentary troubles are achieving for us an eternal glory that far outweighs them all. So we fix our eyes not on what is seen, but on what is unseen, since what is seen is temporary, but what is unseen is eternal.”

2 Cor 4:16-18
 Paul says he weighs eternity, and the current horrible torment, and he looks to eternity suggesting we do not focus on the torment. His intense suffering is “light and momentary troubles.”

 Jesus says to Peter John 21:18
“Truly, truly, I say to you, when you were young, you used to dress yourself and walk wherever you wanted, but when you are old, you will stretch out your hands, and another will dress you and carry you where you do not want to go.”  (This he said to show by what kind of death he was to glorify God.) And after saying this he said to him, “Follow me.”

 
Jesus says to Peter he was going to suffer…but ends it up “Follow me” ….into that suffering? 

Does this make sense? Yes! 

 How does Peter react?

  He turns and asks about John, “what about him”. Jesus shuts down this path to an argument, by pointing out that suffering and following is personal and we cannot look to others.

 Don’t compare! Comparison destroys! Suffering is personal, not comparable! Suffering is not transferable! It is our personal pain and gift at the same time!

 Like love, suffering is personal, not comparable, or transferable!

 Don’t go for escapism! That ignoring the reality of suffering is escapism! This world and people in it suffer! We as Christians are to care, love, and get involved! Yes, today we need to get into helping others that are suffering! We are living sacrifices! Are you a living sacrifice?

 
Suffering is tough, but it gives us a vitality and a deep miraculous power filled walk with our “Dad” who is the creator if the universe!

 My question today is
“do you want to follow Jesus?”

Peter writes this…1 Peter 2:21       …”to this you were called!”  
Paul writes this ...2 Timothy 2:23 ... "join with me in suffering"

Jesus says this… “Whoever does not take up their cross and follow me is not worthy of me.”

 How about saying “yes” to Jesus with our eyes open?

 A God who is fully love, but wants us to serve and be willing to undergo personal suffering to glorify Him while helping others and change this world for the better.

 Will you do this today? Let God know? Tell him!

Hey, it does not matter where you are… a few sincere words from your heart, spoken verbally into this universe of time, heard by the eternal God, can change you and history!



[1] Thanks to Bruxy Cavey who’s teaching this is taken from, summarized, and even quoted at times.
[2] John 9:1-7
Mon, December 20, 2010 | link          Comments


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If you want to see a short blog describing a perspective on what I believe click here

 RiftInEvil.gif

Rift in Evil

By Ken X Briggs

  • Published: September, 2010
  • Format: Perfect Bound Softcover(B/W)
  • Pages: 208
  • Size: 6x9
  • ISBN: 9781450250894 

Available from Barnes and Noble, Amazon, iUniverse.

you can email me at Author@KenXBriggs.com

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This suspense thriller centers on Kiara, a beautiful young woman pursued by a murderous group of people, who relentlessly and ruthlessly hunt her and her sisters. Kiara has no idea why she is being targeted! When Kiara and her family turn to the law for help, this fails. Her pursuers’ powers reach deeply into the political and law enforcement world. Family support for her dwindles when they too have to flee her pursuers. Can Kiara escape the clutches of both the law and dishonest big business? With the media broadcasting that Kiara and friends are dangerous and subversive, can Kiara clear her name and bring her pursuers to justice?

 

 
  

To purchase Kiara's Pursuer ebook  @ $1.99

            kindle version click here,

To contact the author contact Author@KenXBriggs.com

 
  
  

 RiftInEvil.gifThe town of Zinaville is dropped into a spiral of evil causing a young man and a beautiful but abused woman to launch into an investigation that unveils an evil conspiracy.

A horrific mining accident results in Joshua Robyn's father being killed. Joshua struggles both with himself and his townsfolk as he tries to make sense of an incomprehensible situation. Is it an accident or a murder? Why is there a seeming link to evil? Why is his work environment suddenly threatening? What is the conspiracy about and what are they trying to do? As action moves dramatically from exotic African grasslands to the heart of North America's cities, the plot unfolds and the pace quickens. Will there be time? Why is a beautiful abused young woman in the center of this plot?

Evil tendrils tighten on their lives and the interplay between the visible and invisible world shows opposing forces at work.

Will there be a rift in evil?

Will they be able to stop the evil in time?

 

 

 
Click here to order Rift in Evil (ebook or Paper available)
  • Published: September, 2010
  • Format: Perfect Bound Softcover(B/W)
  • Pages: 208
  • Size: 6x9
  • ISBN: 9781450250894 

Available from Barnes and Noble, Amazon, iUniverse. Chapters

 
  
you can email me at Author@KenXBriggs.com
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Frugal Eating Advice
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Good advice for students living on limited $'s. Click on the image!

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