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Friday, November 9, 2012

Memorable Journeys!
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“Success is not a place at which one arrives but rather the spirit with which one undertakes and continues the journey.” ~ Alex Noble

 Can you remember a special vacation? That one trip that sticks in the brain and lifts the spirit each time we think of it. Remember the smells, sights, tastes and comforts (or dis-comforts) it had?

It’s different for each of us and different aspects make journeys memorable.

I have a quite a few that wander into my consciousness repeatedly over the years.

One is of a glorious honeymoon in Greece! Another is the bittersweet trip to South Africa to see my dying father. Then there was that special vacation with my children aboard a cruise liner in the Caribbean, where their laughter and joy is the perhaps the greatest part of the memory.

Simpler memorable trips are the drives through colour filled fall(autumn) countryside’s where leaves revealed the gold’s, reds, browns and yellow of creation while gently swaying downwards  on breezes to land in carpets of leaf confetti that flounces up as the car blows by. Tranquil! Amazing!

Then, in October this year many people built a different memory as they watched the space shuttle Endeavour's last trip to its resting place after years of servicing world dreams. There is a pleasant time lapsed video of that shuttles last journey through Los Angeles[1] online that can remind us of this occasion. (see hyperlink at the base of this page)

This is a glorious journey that will stick in our mind if we are exposed to it.

Yet, perhaps the greatest journey on earth was a short one, taken step after step in huge pain, carrying a vast load while having little strength to make it through.

The steps of Jesus after being hit with whips and by people, having had thorns rammed onto his head, being stripped, abused and then dressed and told to carry his on execution machine to his final resting place.

The son of God, exposed to human ridicule and pain! We read in luke 23...

11 Then Herod and his soldiers ridiculed and mocked him. Dressing him in an elegant robe, they sent him back to Pilate.[2]

Then later John 19 reports...

Then Pilate took Jesus and had him flogged. 2 The soldiers twisted together a crown of thorns and put it on his head. They clothed him in a purple robe 3 and went up to him again and again, saying, “Hail, king of the Jews!” And they slapped him in the face.[3]

Perhaps Matthew 27 explains the abuse best...

27 Then the governor’s soldiers took Jesus into the Praetorium and gathered the whole company of soldiers around him. 28 They stripped him and put a scarlet robe on him, 29 and then twisted together a crown of thorns and set it on his head. They put a staff in his right hand. Then they knelt in front of him and mocked him. “Hail, king of the Jews!” they said. 30 They spit on him, and took the staff and struck him on the head again and again. 31 After they had mocked him, they took off the robe and put his own clothes on him. Then they led him away to crucify him.[4]

Why endure this?

He was God and could have had them blown away without lifting his hand!

Why endure this?

Many reasons!

That God need to cover our inadequacies and give us a path to eternity is one of the most important to us, the onlooker looking back through time.

Next, perhaps God needed to make this a memorable journey. He needed to ensure we would never forget it, or let it become hidden from the public eye.

God needed to ensure that we would remember and talk about it forever!

This was to be the memorable journey of all time!

That distance of just over half a kilometer or two thousand feet, was what it took for the journey to be completed.

Can we even start to imagine what thoughts would have gone through Jesus mind as he took step by exhausting painful, crushing step? Each one leading him to certain death, but each one also leading him to certain victory!

We are honored to read this and yet not experience it! We are blessed with the joy of the knowledge of his coming to life again, his being with God the father in heaven. His sending Holy Spirit to support us, give us courage and stability in life.

Even our prayers are enabled by this event as his death parted the curtain holding direct access to God, enabling us to have our prayers enter the very throne room of God daily.

We are so privileged by that journey!

I was not there, neither were you! However, in our human frailty we have one attribute that takes us to that place and puts us into the spectator throng.

It is the words in the bible, our ability to read comprehend and imagine the circumstances. Archeology fills in pieces of information and then as we absorb this all, we have a virtual journey and can see what Jesus endured.

I never saw the shuttle’s last journey! I simply saw the time sliced video version online. It still enabled me to understand a little of what it must have been like! Not the same as being there, but in my own way I captured a piece of that memorable journey to tell my grandchildren about it in the years to come.

Yet, compared to what I have gained from Jesus, that is nothing! His memorable journey has the power to save lives and so I will be telling them much more about Jesus. Particularly as the journey continues as I live each day with god guiding my footsteps. I am on a memorable journey to meet Jesus in heaven.

Now perhaps that’s the only one that for me can compare with his walk to the cross!

How about you? What your most memorable experience with Jesus?
Fri, November 9, 2012 | link          Comments

Thursday, November 8, 2012

What is the “conveyor current”? Why is it important? What has it got to do with Noah?
   
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“the prevailing theory for the cause of the Younger Dryas was a vast pulse of freshwater— a greater volume than all of North America's Great Lakes combined — that poured into the Atlantic and Arctic Oceans.”[1]

What is... “the Younger Dryas????”


What is all this about?

It’s about the “Big Freeze” a period of about 1300years, around about 11 500 to 12 800 years ago (about 10 000BC) where the earth suddenly got very cold, very quickly!

Why is it important? Primarily because the reason it happened could have similarities to our global warming nowadays, and we need to know if we are in for a similar event, but we also have a secondary reason if we are Christians.

As Christian’s, we are also always on the lookout for the timeframe of Noah’s flood, aren’t we? This event may have coincided with that timeframe, so we just would like to know more about it. It is very interesting!

This sudden change from warming to cooling that occurred, happened fast, over maybe ten years! Real fast in geological time speak!

Scientist propounded this week, that a gigantic flood of Arctic meltwater flowing into the artic at that time could have changed the saltwater density in the ocean and this changed what is known as the “great conveyor current”.

The “Great conveyor current” is an enormous ocean current that takes warm water from the Indian ocean and cycles it to the Arctic ocean where it cools, and then flows back downwards around into the Indian ocean again. Amazing right?

This is the Earth’s climate conditioning system! It evens out our temperatures and helps maintain a consistency in the rainfall and atmospheric water.

This means an event such as this huge release of freshwater into the ocean could have caused immense rains to occur suddenly over a very short period. Maybe this even caused rain for forty days and nights continually?

Maybe Noah had first-hand experience of the impact of this event?

Maybe God just used a big gush of water into the Artic ocean to do this?

Let’s look at the biblical words...

“In the six hundredth year of Noah’s life, on the seventeenth day of the second month—on that day all the springs of the great deep burst forth, and the floodgates of the heavens were opened. And rain fell on the earth forty days and forty nights.”[2] Genesis 7:11 & 12

“Springs of the Great deep BURST forth” ????

Maybe the glacial Lake Agassiz had a huge ice dam that broke many years ago, causing the great deep to burst forth? It’s a thought isn’t it?

This is an interesting fact the scientists have discovered.

The applicability to today is less, since the sudden inflow of water may not be possible as we don’t have large quantities of fresh water about to rush into the ocean.

However, if warming continues, the arctic ice gets less, and the ice there melts, it could have a similar effect of releasing a lot of water. Maybe more slowly, but our climate would still be impacted.

Maybe we need to pray that God will protect us from ourselves! It is our greed for money, industry and modern products that is impacting our Earth.

Perhaps as Christians, we need to look at building products that last so we consume less resources, and perhaps we need to support sustaining our environment.

Some thoughts for today as we recycle our garbage and decide what transportation to use isn’t it?

May you have a wonderful God Blessed day!


[1] Read more: http://www.foxnews.com/science/2012/11/06/massive-flood-that-caused-ancient-big-freeze-located/#ixzz2Bd7Tk6iE
[2] Genesis 7:11 & 12 NIV
Thu, November 8, 2012 | link          Comments

Wednesday, November 7, 2012

When the house burns down
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Saturday at 12:30am, I arrived home to find the neighbour’s house across the water of our lake, burning brightly in the night sky.

The roaring flames crackled as they consumed his memories and precious items. His life was saved! Just!



He and his two sons had escaped just in time, running out into the inch of snow that covered the ground and standing in the freezing cold. They were heated by the fire that burned its way into their souls. Lost! Everything was lost!

Can you imagine losing everything to save your life?

There are two options in a situation like this.

One can fall into depression and considerations of what could have been, or one can with a progressive future perspective, look to the future as a new beginning. A change to cut a new path in life, to get new focus, and move forward without the encumbrances that hold those of us that are too attached to our materials things.

It is hugely difficult to take this second step, isn’t it?

As a Christian, we find it easier! We have our lives to look at to see it works. When a Christian turns to God and hands over control of their life, the old self is torched and becomes ashes, while the new self grows vibrantly in the glow of God’s love. This experience is wonderful, fulfilling and for those of us that are bravely trying to step forward in this faith-filled life, one of amazing complexity and beauty.

This gives us courage to know that by giving God everything, we gain hugely.

The man who lost his home does not know it yet, but I am aware that the town is reaching out to help him. Hundreds of miles away, people are looking through their homes for items of furniture that he could use, bed linen to help him out, clothes to fill the gap until the insurance can help him get new items to replace the old.

He has a chance to make many friends, have many people love him, to have God supply the needs he has lost through the love of others.

Sometimes a loss is just an opportunity in disguise!

Today, as we face our own losses in different areas, let’s remember that it’s not the loss that counts, but what we gain thereafter.

Have a splendid God blessed day!
Wed, November 7, 2012 | link          Comments

Tuesday, November 6, 2012

Skilfully crafted, enjoy responsibly...
  
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He who works with his hands is a laborer. He who works with his hands and his head is a craftsman. He who works with his hands and his head and his heart is an artist.~ Louis Nizer [Between You and Me (1948)]

American elections are poised to deliver a new president or re-instate a previous leader.

With this comes the pomp and plastic splendour of the campaign rolling to a close and then the work will start. That hard work that takes younger focussed and enthusiastic men, and turns them grey overnight with the stress and strain of office and responsibility that it brings.

Powerful men have powerful problems and tremendous pressures don’t they?

We all have pressures and responsibilities, but each of us is crafted differently. God builds us to deal with daily circumstances in different ways. Our challenge is we don’t understand his work or what he expects from it, other than what he reveals in his bible.

Solomon in Ecclesiastes 11:5 says...You don’t know the path the wind takes. You don’t know how a baby is made inside its mother. So you can’t understand how God works either. He made everything

God made everything! He constructs us in our mothers before we are born. That president to be was constructed for the task before their life began. Americans may vote today in America, but God’s vote was in before time started.

God knows what we are still to experience before we do!

So how can our vote and actions have value?

The fact that God knows does not free us from driving events in the direction he wants them to go.

God does not want inactivity but participation. Is he not the one who said...

“Give to Caesar what belongs to Caesar. And give to God what belongs to God.”

“Give” is an action word. It is not “wait”, “ignore”, “reflect”. It is a word that implies ones interaction with another.

In another place he says...

“Suppose someone forces you to go one mile. Go two miles with him.”

This second reference was related to the Roman government of the day.

The soldiers of the day could enforce people to carry their burdens for a mile according to the law.

What Jesus was suggesting was that we should not only do what is asked of us but also gladly do more when it helps another.

This is the message we need to hear!

We are crafted to do God’s work but cannot do so if we do not participate fully in life around us. Today, Americans are voting and vote they should!

Today in the rest of the world we may not be voting, but the rest of us are living! We should also be praying because that election impacts the world significantly. Lets pray that God leads the American public to chose the correct leader for our time.

We need to participate! We need to grasp life with both hands, we need to take our craftsman design, and allow our lives to build it out to form the great plan that God is unveiling over time. We through our participation in that plan take God’s craftsmanship and allow him to become the artist of the future.

There is a motto on an advert for a whisky that says “skilfully crafted, enjoy responsibly”. I believe the same can be said of our lives, “skilfully crafted, enjoy responsibly

Today, let’s enjoy what we do, and how we do it responsibly.

Let’s be responsible to God, our Father, who created us and helps us every moment of that day.

Let’s revel in the power and guidance of Holy Spirit!

Let’s remember Jesus and his guiding words and apply them moment by moment!

 Have a good one!
Tue, November 6, 2012 | link          Comments

Monday, November 5, 2012

The core of love is life, and of life is love
  
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At the center of your being you have the answer; you know who you are and you know what you want ~ Lao Tzu

Lao Tzu was the father of Taoism and was at one point the person who maintained archives for royalty. His writings came out of disillusionment and social despair.

Yet, many of these writings are fairly profound and the statement above almost hits the mark. Looking inward is not the answer to the question however, and this is what many people try to do to find the answer. While the answer lives in the core of our being, the answer is not found by searching inwards for it.

For example, the practice of meditation that clears our mind and makes it vacant is a prime place for another type of entity to use it. The bible says...

43 “When an impure spirit comes out of a person, it goes through arid places seeking rest and does not find it. 44 Then it says, ‘I will return to the house I left.’ When it arrives, it finds the house unoccupied, swept clean and put in order. 45 Then it goes and takes with it seven other spirits more wicked than itself, and they go in and live there. And the final condition of that person is worse than the first.[1] Matthew 12:43-45 NIRV

If by some miracle we as non-Christians can clear our minds sufficiently to clear our inner self ( a difficult task), then the only aspect a person without Jesus has, is to face the fact that soon the problem that has been cleared with return and make things seven times worse.

This is not something that is good to allow to happen, and is why as Christians we do not meditate in a way that is to clear our minds, but rather we meditate in a way that takes us into God’s words and the biblical truths.

Here is a whole slew of references to Christian meditation, notice none of them say meditate on nothing, but all give direction to our meditation.

Psalm 119:48
 I reach out for your commands, which I love, that I may meditate on your decrees.

Psalm 119:78
 May the arrogant be put to shame for wronging me without cause; but I will meditate on your precepts.

Psalm 119:97
Oh, how I love your law! I meditate on it all day long.

Psalm 119:99
 I have more insight than all my teachers, for I meditate on your statutes.

Psalm 119:148
 My eyes stay open through the watches of the night, that I may meditate on your promises.

Psalm 143:5
 I remember the days of long ago; I meditate on all your works and consider what your hands have done.

Psalm 145:5
 They speak of the glorious splendor of your majesty— and I will meditate on your wonderful works.

 Notice how God, what he has done and what he has explained to us, is central to our meditation!

That’s Christian meditation!


Similarly, we as Christians differ from many other religions in that we look outwards to find our inner core.

 By meditating on God’s word we are drawn into deep love.

The central truth of Christianity is ““‘Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind.’ This is the first and greatest commandment. 39 And the second is like it: ‘Love your neighbor as yourself. ‘” [2]Matthew 22:37-39 NIRV

Looking first to the love of God, and then the love of others, what we find at our core is love, the love of God that overwhelms us and flows outwards from us. Then as we see the love gushing from our hearts, we respond in love to those around us, the actions of which define our core.

Central to this is the fountain of love that lives deep within us, enabling this central focus of our lives to also flow from us and encompass our purpose with God’s intentions. This is God himself in the form of Holy Spirit. We need to protect this flow by following God’s guidelines for our life.

14 Guard the good deposit that was entrusted to you—guard it with the help of the Holy Spirit who lives in us. [3]2 Timothy 1:14-18 NIV

Our souls should be focused on magnifying and extending God’s love through our lives to the benefit of the universe in which we live. We are not alone! God is with us and those around us who love Jesus. We are all with God.

If we want to understand the circle of life, this is it....we are within God who is within us, moving us to his good works.

The core of God’s love is life, and of our life is God’s love. Let us realize this and today as we take to the roads of our life, let’s work within that heavenly flow of love, making ourselves better people and living the right way.

Have a good one!


[1] Matthew 12:43-45 NIRV
[2] Matthew 22:37-39 NIV
[3] 2 Timothy 1:14-18 NIV
Mon, November 5, 2012 | link          Comments


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Rift in Evil

By Ken X Briggs

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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?

 

 
  

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 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
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