Posts Tagged ‘Religion & Spirituality’

Things I Wish I Knew Long Ago

growing up

Image by elyse patten via Flickr

1. Life is a gift, and no matter how long we live, there’s always more to learn about it. It will teach you more than any classroom. Free your mind from “small thinking” and always contemplate the magnificence of being alive.

2. You are the only one of you in the world and you were not a mistake. There is a reason you are here, follow where your heart leads you and you will find that reason.

3. Find a mentor whose life illustrates integrity, compassion, sacrifice and strength. They created a path and even if you don’t want to walk in their footsteps, you can definitely learn from their example.

4. Never forget to give. No matter how little time, money or energy you have, contributing to your community, your environment is vital to the refreshing of your spirit. It will do more for you than you ever do for others.

5. Control money, never let it control you. If you don’t know how, learn. Never forget it is what you own and not who you are. HOWEVER, always have some, where no one else knows about it. Financial independence means you can walk away.

6. Keep a list of your values where you can regularly see them, for when circumstances are overwhelming. You will be grateful for a reminder. We are all human, but living outside your values makes life more miserable than any circumstances.

7. Cultivate relationships with “givers”. They will support you in your path and remind you who you are. It is your sacred duty is to feed those relationships. Don’t waste energy on the “takers” in your life; they are bottomless pits that are never satisfied.

8. Take care of your body now and every day after. Do not take your youth for granted, it fades fast. Feed it, water it and exercise it, like the delicate machine that it is. Avoid extremities of any kind and when it is in pain, listen to it.

9. Our sleeping dreams are catapults of our waking dreams. Do not deprive your life of its greatest asset…rest.

10. Whatever you pay attention to becomes a reality in your life. Choose wisely.

11. Respect begins within. Strive to treat yourself the same way you treat others. The more you understand yourself, the easier it is to understand the behavior of others.

12. Your first relationship with the world began with your parents. Revisit that relationship. The more you recognize them as people, not caregivers, the more you realize who they are, and who you are. Your life is not pre-determined, you are in control.

13. Your life, your knowledge, your skills, your experiences, your gifts are valuable and eternal. Develop and share them, it is the spark that can envelop and heal other souls around you. Don’t stifle your light.

14. You are at least ten times prettier than you think. Ask your mother/auntie/granny if she thought she was pretty when she was twenty. She’ll say no. Then find a photo of her at that age. See? Don’t ever let vanity take away from your spirit, it is a waste.

15. The only thing you should ever fake is confidence. If you don’t have it, pretend. In every new situation, pretend you’re not nervous and not afraid. The pretend part will eventually disappear and the respect you gain will bolster you in future situations.

16. In really tough situations, remember what it was like to be a nine-year old girl. Do a cart-wheel, even if you don’t want to, and remember that feeling of freedom. You are still that same person, remember that, and you will stay young until the day you die.

17. Cut or potted flowers are never a waste of money. They remind us, no matter how ugly things get, that there is beauty in the world.

18. Trust your gut. Before you know what it is, your gut does. You can ignore advice from friends, family, even your own brain, but you can’t ignore your gut, it never lies. Drowning it in alcohol or Haagen Dazs won’t make it stop telling you the truth.

19. Wear sunscreen on your face, neck, and hands every day, winter and summer. You’ll remember me when you look in the mirror at age fifty. Floss your teeth. Put nothing in your body that can permanently harm your spirit, including the wrong man.

20. Raise your consciousness. Believing there is a God and knowing Him are two different things. Cultivate that relationship and the world you live in will never be more than you can handle.

Are you a successful Christian?

Jesus resurrected and Mary Magdalene
Image via Wikipedia

You are the only one that can define your success, as a Christian or anything else that you set out to do. What you want from your Christian life could vary greatly from what I want from mine. The true meaning of what it means to be a Christian may be different for you than it is for someone else. We could say we are a success now, just because we call ourselves a Christian. But, what if we decide that our becoming a Christian, was really the sacrifice and work of Christ alone, that we just accepted Him as our Savior and that really, the road to Christianity is just beginning, and we have a long way to go before we reach success? That is what I decided and these are just some of the areas that I am working on, ways that I want to illustrate that Christ is King of my life.

I want to remember people, so they will remember me.

As a Christian, I want people to know I feel they are important by remembering their names and remembering important things they share with me. I want this not only because they are God‘s children and I should care about them because God does, but also so that they will be more likely to remember me. I want them to know I am there for them and can help them if they need it.

I want to remember that success is independent of age, education, failure and public opinion.

There are many other traits that you could put into this category that could be your stumbling blocks, but these particular ones have just been areas where I’ve personally had the most difficulty overcoming. The enemy uses these attributes as weapons against me often, wanting me to believe that my age, my education or lack thereof, a fear of failure and what other people think about me or my actions are legitimate reasons for me not being the best Christian I can be.

I had to generate a life purpose and remember it every day.

It’s tempting to get caught up in our families, jobs and even church work. Those things aren’t bad, but we know there is an eternal life beyond the one we are living. We have God’s Word as the instruction book for our lives. So, there are certain things we are commanded to do. Beyond our own wants and desires, we must concern ourselves greatly with the will and purposes of the Father. It’s easier and more beneficial to us, if we incorporate His will into our lives instead of keeping our plans and purposes separate from His. Our goal, as much as humanly possible, should be to let Him guide us into our purposes.

I have to work really hard to keep a positive attitude, and I fail often.

It would be nice if God could flip a switch in us, after we become Christians, that made us magically feel good all the time, regardless of the circumstances. Or, would it? I guess it kind of goes against the free will rule, doesn’t it? I know there are others like me who are trying really hard to bite their tongues, think before speaking and trying to leave work outside the door when they come home. But, I also know others that seem to never be ruffled, never speak a cross word, and seem to have a smile on their faces every time I see them. What is the secret? I do know that there was a time in my life when I didn’t even question my attitude, it never occurred to me that I had to be more open to others and less caustic when someone didn’t get my order right the first time. I praise the Lord for opening my eyes to my behaviors and attitudes, I guess that’s a good start.

I have to remember to have a sense of humor.

If you’ve spent any time in this world at all, you know our Lord has one. Otherwise, we would have never had the experience of seeing a giraffe or an anteater. And, how about the coldest winter on record after the big, bad, global warming scare? A co-worker made some special coffee at work one morning and told me it was ready. As I went into the break room, I noticed there was only enough left in the pot for one more cup. I was feeling particularly smug, being one of only a few who would have the privilege of drinking this delicious brew, as I poured the coffee into my styrofoam cup. I gazed out the window at the beautiful morning, and as I looked back down at my cup, to my utter horror, the coffee was going into the cup and right through the bottom side, where there was a hole the size of a dime. I hurried and grabbed another cup to hold underneath my damaged one, but I was only able to save a little less than half.  I was so disappointed, but I repented as I cleaned up the break room counter, and I laughed all the way back to my desk. I very much enjoyed my three drinks of coffee and as the scriptures tell us, I know the Lord was laughing too.

There’s so many other areas that the Lord is helping me with, like perseverance, dealing with change, and especially giving me courage through Him, so I can share Him with others. We have to remember we are, sometimes, our own worst enemy. Don’t stop learning and growing; you will be a successful Christian, if you will just allow Him to walk with you.

Jeremiah’s Hope and Change

Rembrandt - Jeremiah lamenting

Image via Wikipedia

It’s something America already knows about God, but it won’t touch her soul until she comes to the end of herself. She will discover that at the very bottom, God is there! The farther down we go, the more of God there is to be discovered. The best place to discover and recognize God is in the shadows of grief and despair.

When Jeremiah hit the dark bottom, he bumped into God! This is what Jeremiah learned:

“God is a God of compassion…his compassions for me cannot fail…they are new every morning…great is his faithfulness…” (Lamentations 3:22-23). Jeremiah realized that great truth can only be realized by those who are falling down.

1. We are at a very low point; when troubles flow over my heart like water, I say, “I am cut off,” but God draws near and whispers, “Do not fear!” (Lamentations 3:54-57).

2. When God seems to have “covered himself with a cloud, so that my prayers could not pass through,” he will still see our troubles and will “judge my case” (Lamentations 3:44, 59).

3. If the Lord allows grief and sorrow, he will at the same time uphold us with abundant compassion and love (Lamentations 3:32).

4. God is not against us, trying to crush us under his foot when we are down (Lamentations 3:34).

5. God is not trying to sabotage any of our plans; he is not causing confusion; he is not working against us (Lamentations 3:35-36).

6. Even in despair and bitterness, when it’s hard to face a new day, his compassion does not fail. His mercies are new every morning (Lamentations 3:22-23).

7. Because God is always faithful, he will not cast us away. He will do right by us and save us (Lamentations 3:25-26).

8. Being down will leave us empty and humbled, so hopefully we will begin to depend on his mercies! (Lamentations 3:18, 20-22).

We are falling down America! We have enemies, and some are from within. Are you looking to God to save you and your family? He’s the only one with true hope and change that will save us. Join me on my knees for our country.

Hijra: 1,400 Years of Experience Behind Every Batch

Hadith Oliyankara Juma Masjid

Image via Wikipedia

While mosques in American cities and towns are increasing, Islamic schools and Muslim organizations are multiplying. America is accommodating new demands: foot baths, public calls to prayer, segregated male/female gym and swimming pool hours, halal food, female head and face coverings and Shari’a-compliant financial transactions. Some are congratulating ourselves for our tolerance.

In reality, the demands we are meeting are the ingredients of a 1,400-year-old recipe in the Koran cookbook. The dish being served up is Hijra, the doctrine of immigration inspired by Mohammed’s migration from Mecca to Medina.

They are building their physical presence with public calls to prayer, schools, libraries and research centers. The Muslims are engaging in haram (forbidden actions) because it’s necessary to establish their community. The Koran has rules against friendship with infidels, but these can be deferred while they work toward their objectives. Establishing the mosque as the center of local Islamic life is mistakenly viewed by non-Muslims the same way as Christians building a church. They do not place a billboard in front of the construction stating, “Mosque coming soon! We are building a non-integrated Muslim identity so we can advance our goals of cultural, political, and spiritual Islamization of your country!”

The fight for special status and Shari’a will continue to grow with the Muslim population. They will pretend their demands are just an attempt to humor the more devout members of their community. Any actions to suppress them will be labeled religious discrimination and the complainers will be called islamophobes. Representatives of Muslim communities are cooperating with our government to bring about change. Their goal is to get us accustomed to their buildings, their customs, their holidays, their dress and their food.

In our colleges and universities, students are indoctrinated to become Islamic advocates. They are encouraged to participate in interfaith activities, proselytization and jihad training. Non-Muslim professors are solicited through zakat, a word meaning charity. It’s actually more like bribery. Money is exchanged for courses favorable to Islam and for professors to write and speak publicly, promoting Islam. Saudi Prince Al-waleed bin Talal gave $20 million dollars for Islamic study centers at Harvard and Georgetown universities. This payment was exchanged for a guarantee on the positive research, publications and presentation of Islam.

Muslims are gaining power and mass through taquiya. This is a practice where they conceal their beliefs when under threat or compulsion. They can legally deny their faith and commit illegal and blasphemous acts when they are at risk. Meanwhile, they silence their opponents and obtain favorable reputations. The sly use of zakat elicits favorable views from politicians, the media and other organizations. The results are significant. Just within the last couple of years, the words, “jihad”, “Islamofascism” and “Islamic terrorism” have been expunged from the lexicon of government officials and the media.

As Islamization of our country proceeds, preparations begin for learning the skills necessary for jihad. Young jihadists travel to their countries of origin for further indoctrination and terrorist training. Pressure has begun on politicians to permit Shari’a law courts in exchange for Muslim votes. As the Hijra advances, you will begin to see areas where non-Muslims are prohibited or physically threatened if they enter. Muslim movement will not be restricted, they will continue to venture freely anywhere in our country.

The Hijra is a political strategy to undermine our culture and values, and replace them with Islam and Shari’a. It is a cancer that is, and will continue to transform our culture, behaviors, customs, rules and laws into an Islamic state. Are you checking out the enemy within, or are you just checking out?

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