Sunday, June 28, 2015

The role of protector

In a recent conversation with a friend I attempted to explain what kind of protection I desire from a future companion. I do not desire protection from physical harm so much as I desire protection from spiritual harm. Guys tend to geek out over their machoness, which, ok that can be cool, though I don't have a 'type' of build that I necessarily prefer in a guy, or machoness level for that matter. That being said, it is always attractive when a guy respects himself enough to take care of himself. What I really desire, however, is protection from spiritual harm. The major spiritual threats that I have fought in my life thus far are (how to describe?????):
  • bitterness
  • anger
  • fear
  • pride
  • envy
  • lust
  • feeling like I deserve to be treated a certain way, or spoken to a certain way, in order to get along with someone (ie me-centered thinking), instead of just accepting people as they are, weaknesses and all, and choosing to focus on refining my own manner of speaking and/or treating and accepting others 
  • et al.
I could give specific examples, so many specific examples for each of these threats. I have shaped my life by the way I have responded to such spiritual threats. The unfortunate thing about spiritual threats is that they are sneaky. They don't appear to be threats right off the bat. Instead of fighting them off I have embraced them, so many of them! Only to get burned. wow. They are so sneaky. They seem perfectly logical, useful, and desirable. 

I am grateful for my experience with these threats because I really believe without my experience with them that I would not/could not know peace, not the kind of peace that I have control over, or shared control over, regardless of situation and/or influence. Maybe I am just slow, but my experience has been incredibly useful to me in helping me to better understand these threats as threats, and to respond accordingly. It's a big step to recognize the threat in the first place. Learning/choosing to effectively combat the threat is an entirely other matter. That takes time, experience, and prayerful contemplation. God is good to me in answering my prayers. There is a lot that He allows me to learn through experience though, and repeated experience, because, well, it's just a really good way to learn. 

I love what the apostle Paul said about the war between the spiritual and carnal in Romans 7, mostly because it hints to the sneakiness of the threats I briefly mentioned. He really understood them. I really believe that God's law is designed to help us recognize and combat such threats, rather than succumb to and embrace their influence as I have done on so many occasions.

"For I delight in the law of God after the inward man" said Paul, "but I see another law in my members, warring against the law of my mind, and bringing me into captivity to the law of sin which is in my members."

"Oh wretched man that I am! Who shall deliver me from the body of this death?"

"For I know that in me (that is, in my flesh,) dwelleth no good thing: for to will is present with me; but how to perform that which is good I find not."

Such is the story of my life :) Oh it is not so awful. Not at all. The threats are real though, and at least for me, they are so much more real and dangerous and lasting than any physical threat I have ever experienced. Because they are so sneaky I really desire a future companion to be aware of these threats in his own life and to have experience in successfully combatting them. I just think that such a man will be more able to support and protect himself, myself, and any future children that may come along. 



Tuesday, June 23, 2015

Trespasses



Dear Everyone, 


I wrote this post a couple weeks ago, but just never got the chance to share it with everyone. I'm sorry. School is taking precedence :)





Definition of Life: a) A perfect setting to learn forgiveness b) ... c) ... d) ...


I am learning a lot about life, and about Christ. I wish I were more like him, like, a lot more like him. His way of thinking is just so-different! It is so unnatural to me sometimes. 



Christians don't believe that emotions should rule them and really, to an extent, others would agree. For example "Thou shalt not kill." Well duh. Anger, et al. associated emotions are better dealt with in other ways. But "forgive men their trespasses"? 

For those who are wondering, the dictionary definition of trespass is to: 1) enter the owner's land or property without permission, 2) make unfair claims on or take advantage of something (or someone), and 3) commit an offense against a person or a set of rules. 

Ummm ... there are an increasing number of ways for people to trespass nowadays and I am sorta not the most naturally forgiving person to those that would trespass, say, to get into my computer or phone, or say, my room or car. Emotional trespassing, yeah no, though I can't say I'm always free of fault. Umm. Let's see what else .. idk the list could go on and on and on and on.

I hate trespassing though. I hate everything about it. How it makes me so angry. And paranoid. And anxious. And yet. I am to forgive. Or rather, I have an opportunity to forgive, to learn how to forgive, and why I might want to forgive (as I would tell my nieces and nephews :) Such is the purpose of this life, well, one of the purposes of living in this world-at least according to my beliefs. How can you learn how to forgive in a perfect world? I don't really have anything inspiring to say about that other than that I am learning, if that's inspiring. 

I wish I were more like Christ, but I still have a lot to learn before I'll be able to stop holding grievances. I think part of my venom (yes my venom, my own bitter feelings about it, that I will take responsibility for), I think part of it is from my fear. Perhaps as I learn to trust God more I will loosen up and turn the other cheek, et al., instead of praying for revenge lol Yes. I did use to pray for that. Not in awhile, I hope :) But yeah. Now I pray to repent, or in other words to change, so that I will want to forgive instead of imagining up mean things to say to potential trespassers, or imagining up some type of just recompense. I think I've made some progress but I still have a long way to go!

This post was inspired by Matthew 6:14-15. I know I have these weaknesses, but Christ specifically points them out in these verses:

14 For if ye forgive men their trespasses, your heavenly Father will also forgive you:
15 But if ye forgive not men their trespasses, neither will your Father forgive your trespasses.

I'm not very good at forgiving yet, but I'm working on it. Some day I'll understand it. Some beautiful day <3
Have a great week everyone and good luck with everything!


Matthew Chapter 6

Jesus continues the Sermon on the Mount—He teaches the disciples the Lord’s Prayer—They are commanded to seek first the kingdom of God and His righteousness.
 Take heed that ye do not your alms before men, to be seen of them: otherwise ye have no reward of your Father which is in heaven.
 Therefore when thou doest thine alms, do not sound a trumpet before thee, as the hypocrites do in the synagogues and in the streets, that they may have glory of men. Verily I say unto you, They have their reward.
 But when thou doest alms, let not thy left hand know what thy right hand doeth:
 That thine alms may be in secret: and thy Father which seeth in secret himself shall reward thee openly.
 ¶And when thou prayest, thou shalt not be as the hypocrites are: for they love to pray standing in the synagogues and in the corners of the streets, that they may be seen of men. Verily I say unto you, They have their reward.
 But thou, when thou prayest, enter into thy closet, and when thou hast shut thy door, pray to thy Father which is in secret; and thy Father which seeth in secret shall reward thee openly.
 But when ye pray, use not vain repetitions, as the heathen do: for they think that they shall be heard for their much speaking.
 Be not ye therefore like unto them: for your Father knoweth what things ye have need of, before ye ask him.
 After this manner therefore pray ye: Our Father which art in heaven, Hallowed be thy name.
 10 Thy kingdom come. Thy will be done in earth, as it is in heaven.
 11 Give us this day our daily bread.
 12 And forgive us our debts, as we forgive our debtors.
 13 And lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from evil: For thine is the kingdom, and the power, and the glory, for ever. Amen.
 14 For if ye forgive men their trespasses, your heavenly Father will also forgive you:
 15 But if ye forgive not men their trespasses, neither will your Father forgive your trespasses.
 16 ¶Moreover when ye fast, be not, as the hypocrites, of a sad countenance: for they disfigure their faces, that they may appear unto men to fast. Verily I say unto you, They have their reward.
 17 But thou, when thou fastest, anoint thine head, and wash thy face;
 18 That thou appear not unto men to fast, but unto thy Father which is in secret: and thy Father, which seeth in secret, shall reward thee openly.
 19 ¶Lay not up for yourselves treasures upon earth, where moth and rust doth corrupt, and where thieves break through and steal:
 20 But lay up for yourselves treasures in heaven, where neither moth nor rust doth corrupt, and where thieves do not break through nor steal:
 21 For where your treasure is, there will your heart be also.
 22 The light of the body is the eye: if therefore thine eye be single, thy whole body shall be full of light.
 23 But if thine eye be evil, thy whole body shall be full of darkness. If therefore the light that is in thee be darkness, how great is that darkness!
 24 ¶No man can serve two masters: for either he will hate the one, and love the other; or else he will hold to the one, and despise the other. Ye cannot serve God and mammon.
 25 Therefore I say unto you, Take no thought for your life, what ye shall eat, or what ye shall drink; nor yet for your body, what ye shall put on. Is not the life more than meat, and the body than raiment?
 26 Behold the fowls of the air: for they sow not, neither do they reap, nor gather into barns; yet your heavenly Father feedeth them. Are ye not much better than they?
 27 Which of you by taking thought can add one cubit unto his stature?
 28 And why take ye thought for raiment? Consider the lilies of the field, how they grow; they toil not, neither do they spin:
 29 And yet I say unto you, That even Solomon in all his glory was not arrayed like one of these.
 30 Wherefore, if God so clothe the grass of the field, which to day is, and to morrow is cast into the oven, shall he not much more clothe you, O ye of little faith?
 31 Therefore take no thought, saying, What shall we eat? or, What shall we drink? or, Wherewithal shall we be clothed?
 32 (For after all these things do the Gentiles seek:) for your heavenly Father knoweth that ye have need of all these things.
 33 But seek ye first the kingdom of God, and his righteousness; and all these things shall be added unto you.
 34 Take therefore no thought for the morrow: for the morrow shall take thought for the things of itself. Sufficient unto the day is the evil thereof.

Wednesday, June 10, 2015

...

There is a lot in these verses. 

Luke Chapter 6

 And it came to pass on the second sabbath after the first, that he [Jesus Christ] went through the corn fields; and his disciples plucked the ears of corn, and did eat, rubbing them in their hands.
 And certain of the Pharisees said unto them, Why do ye that which is not lawful to do on the sabbath days?
 And Jesus answering them said, Have ye not read so much as this, what David did, when himself was an hungred, and they which were with him;
 How he went into the house of God, and did take and eat the shewbread, and gave also to them that were with him; which it is not lawful to eat but for the priests alone?
 And he said unto them, That the Son of man is Lord also of the sabbath.
 And it came to pass also on another sabbath, that he entered into the synagogue and taught: and there was a man whose right hand was withered.
 And the scribes and Pharisees watched him, whether he would heal on the sabbath day; that they might find an accusation against him.
 But he knew their thoughts, and said to the man which had the withered hand, Rise up, and stand forth in the midst. And he arose and stood forth.
 Then said Jesus unto them, I will ask you one thing; Is it lawful on the sabbath days to do good, or to do evil? to save life, or to destroy it?
 10 And looking round about upon them all, he said unto the man, Stretch forth thy hand. And he did so: and his hand was restored whole as the other.
 11 And they were filled with madness; and communed one with another what they might do to Jesus.
 12 And it came to pass in those days, that he went out into a mountain to pray, and continued all night in prayer to God.
 13 ¶And when it was day, he called unto him his disciples: and of them he chose twelve, whom also he named apostles;
 14 Simon, (whom he also named Peter,) and Andrew his brother, James and John, Philip and Bartholomew,
 15 Matthew and Thomas, James the son of Alphæus, and Simon called Zelotes,
 16 And Judas the brother of James, and Judas Iscariot, which also was the traitor.
 17 ¶And he came down with them, and stood in the plain, and the company of his disciples, and a great multitude of people out of all Judæa and Jerusalem, and from the sea coast of Tyre and Sidon, which came to hear him, and to be healed of their diseases;
 18 And they that were vexed with unclean spirits: and they were healed.
 19 And the whole multitude sought to touch him: for there went virtue out of him, and healed them all.
 20 ¶And he lifted up his eyes on his disciples, and said, Blessed be ye poor: for yours is the kingdom of God.
 21 Blessed are ye that hunger now: for ye shall be filled. Blessed are ye that weep now: for ye shall laugh.
 22 Blessed are ye, when men shall hate you, and when they shall separate you from their company, and shall reproach you, and cast out your name as evil, for the Son of man’s sake.
 23 Rejoice ye in that day, and leap for joy: for, behold, your reward is great in heaven: for in the like manner did their fathers unto the prophets.
 24 But woe unto you that are rich! for ye have received your consolation.
 25 Woe unto you that are full! for ye shall hunger. Woe unto you that laugh now! for ye shall mourn and weep.
 26 Woe unto you, when all men shall speak well of you! for so did their fathers to the false prophets.
 27 ¶But I say unto you which hear, Love your enemies, do good to them which hate you,
 28 Bless them that curse you, and pray for them which despitefully use you.
 29 And unto him that smiteth thee on the one cheek offer also the other; and him that taketh away thy cloak forbid not to take thy coat also.
 30 Give to every man that asketh of thee; and of him that taketh away thy goods ask them not again.
 31 And as ye would that men should do to you, do ye also to them likewise.
 32 For if ye love them which love you, what thank have ye? for sinners also love those that love them.
 33 And if ye do good to them which do good to you, what thank have ye? for sinners also do even the same.
 34 And if ye lend to them of whom ye hope to receive, what thank have ye? for sinners also lend to sinners, to receive as much again.
 35 But love ye your enemies, and do good, and lend, hoping for nothing again; and your reward shall be great, and ye shall be the children of the Highest: for he is kind unto the unthankful and to the evil.
 36 Be ye therefore merciful, as your Father also is merciful.
 37 Judge not, and ye shall not be judged: condemn not, and ye shall not be condemned: forgive, and ye shall be forgiven:
 38 Give, and it shall be given unto you; good measure, pressed down, and shaken together, and running over, shall men give into your bosom. For with the same measure that ye mete withal it shall be measured to you again.
 39 And he spake a parable unto them, Can the blind lead the blind? shall they not both fall into the ditch?
 40 The disciple is not above his master: but every one that is perfect shall be as his master.
 41 And why beholdest thou the mote that is in thy brother’s eye, but perceivest not the beam that is in thine own eye?
 42 Either how canst thou say to thy brother, Brother, let me pull out the mote that is in thine eye, when thou thyself beholdest not the beam that is in thine own eye? Thou hypocrite, cast out first the beam out of thine own eye, and then shalt thou see clearly to pull out the mote that is in thy brother’s eye.
 43 For a good tree bringeth not forth corrupt fruit; neither doth a corrupt tree bring forth good fruit.
 44 For every tree is known by his own fruit. For of thorns men do not gather figs, nor of a bramble bush gather they grapes.
 45 A good man out of the good treasure of his heart bringeth forth that which is good; and an evil man out of the evil treasure of his heart bringeth forth that which is evil: for of the abundance of the heart his mouth speaketh.
 46 ¶And why call ye me, Lord, Lord, and do not the things which I say?
 47 Whosoever cometh to me, and heareth my sayings, and doeth them, I will shew you to whom he is like:
 48 He is like a man which built an house, and digged deep, and laid the foundation on a rock: and when the flood arose, the stream beat vehemently upon that house, and could not shake it: for it was founded upon a rock.
 49 But he that heareth, and doeth not, is like a man that without a foundation built an house upon the earth; against which the stream did beat vehemently, and immediately it fell; and the ruin of that house was great.