Now, I’m no expert in parenting or anything, but… we need to raise the next generation right. Come on, you can’t just sit there and complain about the “decline of society” and do nothing about it. The fixing starts at HOME!!!
I’ve had to babysit enough kids of our church-members (when I was a kid myself) to know that a lot of parents don’t even try to discipline their children, and even more surprisingly, don’t bother to teach them the basics of how to love God or to pray. There really is no two ways about it folks, and if you’re not raising up your kids in the right way and teaching them about the love of God then you are doing a disservice to them, AND to the world.
Don’t just force your kids to go to church with you and make them sit quiet there, make them understand why it is important to worship God. Tell them why God loves them and why they should learn to trust Him no matter what. Teach them discipline. Give them reasonable consequences for misbehavior. Don’t let even a single disrespectful word go out of their mouths without a stern correction from you. Teach them not to hurt anyone. Teach them to give to others, teach them honesty, teach them to help people. Teach them gratitude. Teach them to take nothing for granted. Teach them that the world does not revolve around them. Teach them that life may not always be fair to them, but they can get through it with the right attitude and faith.
Honestly, children learn from their parents. So if you’re a parent, your PRIMARY duty to your kid is to live out your life as best an example as possible to them. Don’t just tell them, SHOW them.
I’ve talked to people that said their parents were devout Christians but they never cared to take them to church, or they never talked about the faith to them, and so they felt not inclined to follow the faith. People, it is one thing to give an adult a choice to follow God, but it is another thing entirely to just let your children loose and not give them any direction whatsoever. Let the child choose their path once they are adults. Up until then, you raise them the way God has instructed you to. You are responsible for their moral compass until they are old enough to choose otherwise.
Instill in them all the goodness of charity and love and peace, while also teaching them how to stand strong amidst trials and how to deal with hatred from others with the grace of God. As a child, my parents always taught me the importance of prayer. They taught me that God would hear the honest prayers of a longing heart, not for materialistic things, but if I was in trouble and needed guidance, or if I wanted to help change a situation that was beyond my control for the better.
It is impossible to even begin to explain how much joy I had growing up that way – knowing that no matter what happened to me, I had an all-powerful God watching over me and waiting to answer my prayers. I believed in that strongly from a very young age. As soon as I began to talk I participated in prayer, (got whooped ONE TIME for crawling off in the middle of prayer, and ever since then have treated prayer with utmost respect and gravity), I would try to talk to Jesus as my friend and felt a sense of protection, and I came to actively seek out God’s wonders and mysteries.
My childhood was a blessed one, because I had the savior of the world by my side, and still do. My adulthood is built upon this foundation of faith from my childhood, and continues to support me and help me grow despite the trials of life.
So, please, don’t deny your children the opportunity to grow up with such guidance and sense of purpose. Let them explore God with their young, innocent and beautiful hearts. That, my friends, is the BEST thing a parent can do for their child.
(And plus, it might just lighten my burden as resident church babysitter in the future!)
“Train up a child in the way he should go: and when he is old, he will not depart from it.” (Proverbs 22:6)
My heart sinks every time I read an article online that discusses Bible prophecy or tries to warn the world about the end times, and then the comment section is filled with hypocritical “christians” who speak out of ignorance to challenge these claims. It’s almost as if “christians” are at war with one another and have thrown love – the most important commandment of Jesus – out the window.
What happened to referencing the Bible? What happened to taking heed to warnings? People will only hear exactly what they want to hear. Their ears are not open to the truth, their ears are open to words that comfort them and reassure them of themselves. They refuse to hear anything that might make them take a step back, look at themselves, and see the areas that need fixing, because that doesn’t feel very nice. They feel attacked, and feel the need to silence the person trying to warn them and help them.
3 “For the time will come when they will not endure sound doctrine; but after their own lusts shall they heap to themselves teachers, having itching ears;
4 And they shall turn away their ears from the truth, and shall be turned unto fables.” (2 Timothy 4:3-4)
But as always, the word of God has predicted everything that was to come. The verse above is playing out right before our eyes day after day. “..they will not endure sound doctrine”… Why do you think doctrine is “endured” and not just “heard”? Because sound doctrine hurts. It shows you your flaws. It tells you exactly what God has in store for the future.
“For the word of God is quick, and powerful, and sharper than any twoedged sword, piercing even to the dividing asunder of soul and spirit, and of the joints and marrow, and is a discerner of the thoughts and intents of the heart.” (Hebrews 4:12)
It asks you to repent and turn to Jesus and leave your sins for the sake of your eternal future. It tells you to step out of the comfort of your sinful desires and lifestyle, and many people cannot “endure” that pain. The word of God is the twoedged sword of truth.
Coming back to Bible prophecy, everything that is meant to happen is written crystal clear in the New Testament. Jesus literally told of the signs to look out for the fast approach of the end times.
Someone points out these signs of the fast approaching end times, and immediately they get attacked by fellow “christians” on the forums.
Accusations range anywhere from “You’re judging people, that’s not Christian” to “Who are you to say you know about the end times? Only God knows that”..The ignorance is painful. Sometimes the people arguing are ones that have never even read the book of Revelations. Some people claim that everything about the antichrist and the mark of the beast is metaphorical, which is the worst blasphemy I ever heard (and probably the kind of thing the devil would like for people to believe so as to keep them unaware and unprepared).
When in doubt, reference the unchanging word of God. God gave this to us as a guideline for discerning what is true and what is not.
God has no grey areas. You either believe in the word of God 100%, or you don’t. The Bible is not a bag of trail mix for you to pick out the parts you want and refuse to acknowledge the existence of the others.
“We are of God: he that knoweth God heareth us; he that is not of God heareth not us. Hereby know we the spirit of truth, and the spirit of error.” (1 John 4:6)
Life is tough. Sometimes life can be a bit too tough! The pressure mounts, the stress leaves you sleepless, your natural panic-mode kicks in and you feel drained of energy at the end of the day.
I had a few weeks of that this month. Sometimes it feels like you just do not want to deal with all the responsibilities of life. But did you know that there is one thing worse than any and all of these feelings combined?
If, in the middle of your rushed and stressful life, you forget about God – THAT, my friend, is the worst that can happen. I almost did. When I started staying up late to get my studying done, I would crash and go straight to sleep, just to wake up early and start all over again. This cycle, I found out very quickly, is so unhealthy, both to your physical, as well as your spiritual self.
You spirit needs God. Your soul craves God. This is true whether or not you believe it! Our bodies are temporary and come from this earth, but our soul , that came straight from God, and no matter how well you think you’re multi-tasking or setting aside breaks for yourself, if you don’t allow yourself some time in the day to reconnect with your Creator, you are doing yourself harm as well as distancing yourself from the One Who loved you before you were even born!
There is a sense of peace that comes over you when you go to Him and tell Him your needs. You know He hears you and He speaks to your heart with words of wisdom and peace.
And that constant guarantee that there is someone up there that loves me unconditionally, to Whom I can pray about anything and everything and rest knowing that my prayers were heard, to know He is handling my life for me while I catch a little bit of sleep for the night, that is the best feeling in the world!!!
“Be careful for nothing; but in every thing by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known unto God.
And the peace of God, which passeth all understanding, shall keep your hearts and minds through Christ Jesus.” (Philippians 4:7)
A crown of thorns upon His head
Adorns His face in crimson blood.
His clothes, a pile of rags be dyed
In painful shades of sinless red.
I peek between the many men
That crowd around this man condemned
Whilst try my best to catch a glimpse
Of Who this man be, standing hemmed
And see beneath the blood and tears
And wounds and scars repulsive, oh!
A pair of eyes that gaze at me
And in that chaos, kindness show.
Those eyes doth gaze, my soul, within
And sift my thoughts in search of love.
And rather than to find their goal,
Do find a sinner’s heart thereof.
And as I doth stand quiescent there,
Caught in a gaze at those two eyes,
Yes, oh! Those eyes be pearls of wine –
I hear a thousand rising cries.
Some cry of death to be His fate
Some other cries do echo hate
And only few request to free
This man Whose eyes still gaze at me.
And then a voice is heard that talks
Of not a kinder word to hear,
A judgment falls of death on a cross
At which the mob does echo cheer.
I wish to not mere blink as if
I might lose sight of my soul, its root
But then I wonder with a sigh,
“Does He not wish the least to refute?”
And then as though an answer sent
He looks once more, mine eyes in sight,
And feels my soul, a song of sweet
That tells me “Do not worry dear”.
And then as though a sack at hand
They push and shove this man away
And at that very moment, sad,
My heart resounds of a sinner’s pray.
In my short lifetime so far, I’ve had the blessed opportunity to come across all kinds of people, deal with all sorts of characters, and have experiences both good and bad with friendships/acquaintances.
But there is one particular thing that bothers me more than anything when I find it in another person’s character. It’s not sin. It’s not greed. It’s not laziness. It’s not even selfishness. It’s PRIDE. Arrogance.
The notion that you are above other people, that you have the right to look down upon your fellow human beings and act like you’re everything and more than perfect. This ONE character trait is something I find very hard to deal with, because I cannot comprehend how people can be unkind or arrogant towards others less fortunate just because of their worldly status or gains.
Why are people arrogant? I’ve seen and known people who think that just because they were born into a rich family, or just because they live in a developed country, or just because they have a “better” job than others, that they deserve better treatment and more respect from others. These kinds of people think that others less fortunate than them are good for nothing, and deserve no human consideration or love.
They think that your social status determines who you talk to or show kindness to. If you’re not up to their standards, you don’t get the “privilege” to talk to them or be friends with them. If this surprises any of you, then you have a lot to see yet in life, my friend.
The world is a dark, dark place, and the more I live in it the more I realize just how dark the human heart can get.
“For if a man think himself to be something, when he is nothing, he deceiveth himself.” (Galatians 6:3)
If people think that the material riches of this world, the fame of this world, are to be proud of, then you need to open your eyes. Nothing of this world will last. What happens to the money or fame at the end of your life? You cannot take any of that with you. Everything in this world is temporary, but the soul is eternal.
“Every one that is proud in heart is an abomination to the LORD….” (Proverbs 16:5)
“…..God resisteth the proud, but giveth grace unto the humble.” (James 4:6)
The Lord does not like arrogance, and it is even an abomination to Him. Why? Because God is the Creator of all, and He created every human being. Each of us is His creation, and thus equal to each other, none above the next. God loves justice, and justice counts every man the same.
It is quite surprising to me to see CHRISTIANS being arrogant against others!!! “Christian” literally means a follower of Christ. How can people who claim to follow the loving Jesus Christ live with arrogance?
“Let nothing be done through strife or vainglory; but in lowliness of mind let each esteem other better than themselves.Look not every man on his own things, but every man also on the things of others.” (Philippians 2:3-4)
This Bible verse literally tells us to humble ourselves and “let each esteem other better than themselves” – which means to consider everyone else above yourself. Be kind enough to think of other people’s feelings and needs as more important than your own.
We are called to be representatives of the loving Jesus Christ, and He set the example when He lived to serve others, and ultimately sacrificed Himself for the sake of all of humanity.
That is the kind of sacrificial love that Jesus showed us by considering our salvation more important than His own life. The least we can do is love others around us more than ourselves. ♥
Ghosts, poltergeists, apparitions, paranormal activity – you name it, anything and everything that can be categorized or associated with those words will pique the interest of ANY human being, believer or not!
It’s a curious topic for everyone, this possibility of dealing with something “supernatural”. I have known people who believe in “ghosts” and “spirit entities” who are yet unable to believe in God. Puzzling, isn’t it? Well, there are some things you and I need to discuss, my dear readers:
Do ghosts exist? Is the existence of ghosts or former people’s spirits something supported by scripture?
There are many people out there who will claim they have experienced ghosts, either by catching a glimpse of one or sensing some dark presence in the house, or waking up to the sounds of footsteps or other activity inside their homes. So of course there is wide speculation that ghosts do indeed exist.
And I’m here to tell you that in a way, they do. People have this notion that ghosts are the spirits of deceased humans, for some reason lingering around the earth instead of “moving on”. That part is the lie.
Here’s why: God doesn’t leave any crucial information like this to the imagination. The Bible tells us what happens to the spirits of people who have passed away.
Dead people are asleep. They do not wander the earth as spirits to haunt people. They simply go to sleep in their graves.
“Consider and hear me, O LORD my God: lighten mine eyes, lest I sleep the sleep of death;” (Psalms 13:3)
In this Psalm we see death being described as a state of sleep.
Also notable is the time when Lazarus had died, and Jesus went to raise him from the dead. Jesus said to them:
“….Our friend Lazarus sleepeth; but I go, that I may awake him out of sleep.” (John 11:11 )
Lazarus was in the grave, and yet Jesus told them that he was merely sleeping. This then would explain why we read that the dead in Christ shall rise first upon the Day of the Lord:
“For the Lord himself shall descend from heaven with a shout, with the voice of the archangel, and with the trump of God: and the dead in Christ shall rise first:” (1 Thessalonians 4:16)
This verse talks about the end times when Jesus shall return to take His bride, the Church. If the dead are to rise up to meet Jesus, then surely they are still on the earth somewhere, i.e., sleeping in their graves, which is again mentioned in the previous verses leading up to 1 Thessalonians 4:16 several times.
Do these sleeping dead know what is going on in the earth after their passing away? Are they conscious and awake?
“For the living know that they shall die: but the dead know not any thing, neither have they any more a reward, for the memory of them is forgotten. Also their love, and their hatred, and their envy, is now perished; neither have they any more portion for ever in any thing that is done under the sun.” (Ecclesiastes 9:5,6)
Basically, they have no more part in the earth. Whatever happens on the earth after they pass has nothing to do with them, they have no influence over anything, their memories perish, as do all their previous emotions.
So the final answer is that the current idea of “ghosts” that haunt others or return to visit loved ones, as cool as it may sound, is NOT supported by the word of God.
So if ghosts are not the spirits of those who have passed away, what are they exactly?
That, my friends, is a topic for another week!! Stay tuned, and until then, God bless!
We are too occupied following our worldly goals, reaching out for what we believe is the best for us.
Whether this be an education, a promotion at work, or even money itself – we are always chasing after what will make us comfortable. And the worst part is, we are never satisfied.
You study to get a job. Once you get that job, you are rushing for better positions within that company. Once you reach your work goals, now you’re running after your house, a new car, a new spouse, etc. Once you reach that, you are running after securing a better future for your children/family, or perhaps a better retirement. Once you reach that, what else do you have to live for? Will you feel like you have no further purpose and let yourself slowly die away?
When you look back at the end, will you be truly happy for what you have spent your whole life doing? Will you look back and think that all those endless days and nights of hard work were worth it? Was it worth it to work hard just to reach your next job where you kept working harder, for your own self? Was it worth it to spend your whole life struggling in this vicious cycle just so you could “enjoy” a comfortable life, only to realize that you were never really able to truly enjoy it?
Let me tell you, no worldly dream will ever satisfy you the way you think it will. Once you reach each of these goals, you will find out that your human heart keeps desiring more and more, and that nothing you can do will ever truly satisfy you.
However, there is one thing that can satisfy you even when you have reached nowhere in life – that is God. I learned this the hard way!
Not too long ago, I was once caught up planning a big future for myself. I thought of all the endless possibilities, and started motivating myself to work hard with these goals in mind. But soon enough, I felt empty. When I felt tired, I had nothing to tell myself that would keep me going. In such moments, you realize how much you need God in your life, and how important it is to find rest in Him when you can.
If you keep worldly things as your only aim, like money, fame, a better life, etc., you will soon run out of fuel and motivation, and you will drift away from God. You will never feel accomplished. However, once you realize that living for a bigger purpose than yourself is more important, then life starts having new meaning.
Living with the purpose of serving God, remembering that you are put on earth for the purpose of uplifting other people’s lives at any cost, and knowing that you are moving forward with the aim of changing the world one heart at a time – this, my friends, is what Christian life is all about – spreading the love and light of Jesus Christ, and living selflessly. Trying to change lives for the better so they can see the power of Jesus work miracles in their lives.
God tells us to stop worrying about our worldly problems, and start worrying about our spiritual life more:
“Therefore take no thought, saying, What shall we eat? or, What shall we drink? or, Wherewithal shall we be clothed?”
He then mentions that “your heavenly Father knoweth that ye have need of all these things.”
“But seek ye first the kingdom of God, and his righteousness; and all these things shall be added unto you.” (Matthew 6:33)
It is very important to remain faithful to God and take time to actively pursue His presence. If you incorporate your spiritual goals into your daily life, then life will become this harmonious ambition to shine for God, and then you will feel His presence along every step of the way, in everything you do.
No comfort, no human relationship, no riches and no fame can come even close to the satisfaction that can fill your heart when you start living for Him, when you make Him an inseparable part of your life.
Love God, and love your neighbors more than yourself. Be that person in this selfish world filled with greedy people working themselves to death for their own material gains.
Be the different one.
God bless you all!
The devil is one cunning, sly thing. I can’t express how deceitful he is. His influence upon this world is quite significant, and yet he tries to hide his identity and make it seem like this world is meant to be the way it is right now. Opening your eyes to this truth, recognizing that he is the cause for all the evil in this world and why so many people are going astray, will make you a bigger enemy to him. He will do all he can to stop your progress.
He has blinded the eyes of so many people to the truth of the gospel. He works in both realms – among the people of the world as well as the Christian churches – and tries his best to take people’s focus away from what is important.
Many Christian churches today, I must sadly say, are under the influence of false ideologies that the devil has planted in their leaders’ minds. So many of the shepherds are now just wolves deceived by the great wolf himself. You would think that the Bible would be held up high as the ultimate authority in churches, and the final word in all decisions about right and wrong. Well, no.
Today there are too many “feel good” churches where your inner feelings are held higher than the powerful word of God. Anyone can say anything that their “spirit” is urging them about, and it is taken as the truth. Instead, God’s word tells us to test the spirits:
“Beloved, believe not every spirit, but try the spirits whether they are of God: because many false prophets are gone out into the world.” (1 John 4:1)
We are told to test the spirit and see whether they are from God himself. I have heard far too many false doctrines in churches, and I am getting tired of it by the day.
Here is one example that bothers me the most:
Too many churches preach the “prosperity gospel” – they teach people that if you follow Jesus Christ, He will give you all the riches you will ever need, He will give you a better job, a better car, a better house, etc. One time I had to walk out of a church in the middle of the service because the preacher would not stop shouting about this and he kept making people “claim” these blessings and much more.
Exactly where in the Bible does it say that following Christ will lead to you becoming a millionaire? Actually, if you have actually read the Bible, you will know for sure the story of the wealthy man who wanted to follow Christ.
This man came to Jesus, asked Him “Good Master, what good thing shall I do, that I may have eternal life?” (Matthew 19:16) Jesus told him to obey all commandments. When the man said he was “perfect” in keeping all those commandments, Jesus said:
“If thou wilt be perfect, go and sell that thou hast, and give to the poor, and thou shalt have treasure in heaven: and come and follow me.” (Matthew 19: 21)
Jesus told him to SELL whatever he had and give it away to the poor. Jesus did not congratulate him on all his wealth and say “well, you’re going to get many more riches, just follow me”… NO!!! He has told us over and over again that the riches of the earth are not meant for us, but it can only prevent us from entering heaven.
Go back to that verse – Jesus said that if he sold all his possessions and gave it to the poor, “and thou shalt have treasure in heaven” – he would have riches in heaven. That is what Jesus tells us to focus on – not on the worldly possessions and riches, but our riches in heaven that can only be gained by showing kindness to others.
Look at what He says later on:
“And again I say unto you, It is easier for a camel to go through the eye of a needle, than for a rich man to enter into the kingdom of God.” (Matthew 19:24)
Jesus tells us that it is basically impossible for a rich man to enter heaven.
Now, here is another blasphemy I once heard at another church: (I have tried going to several churches, visiting, trying to see if I can agree with any of their ways)
I heard the pastor of this church say, “my dear brothers and sisters, when Jesus said “it is easier for a camel to go through the eye of a needle”, He was NOT talking about the actual eye of a needle. He was talking about one of the gates of heaven, and the name of that gate is “eye of the needle””
You can guess what happened after I heard that – we just left that service. I don’t know if I should laugh or cry because of the ridiculousness of this claim – WHY should they twist the scripture like this?????
My dear God, have mercy upon the churches today!!! There needs to be a change, an awakening.
People need to start reading their Bibles for what it really is, STOP twisting the scripture to comfort yourself, and recognize it when the devil is trying to implant a false doctrine in your system or your community.
The devil is cunning, like I said before. He will do anything he can in his power to take our minds the wrong direction, make us follow the wrong path, and move away from God. This is a constant war between us. Don’t let yourselves fall for his lies!!! The doctrines he shares will sound so comforting, so beautiful, and will make you feel good about your sin.
The actual gospel is like a two-edged sword, and should work within your heart to bring out all the filth and sin and make you cleanse it all out – this is not the “feel-good” gospel but the TRUE word of God.
More on this next week!
Until then, Jesus save us!!!
In today’s world where everyone is trying to “fit in” and find a “place where they belong”, it’s really hard for someone to stand out or set themselves apart, and when they do, they are often seen as the “insane” ones. Well, today I want to talk about why we must not be afraid to be apart from the norm in this world.
I’ve seen many Christians and pastors like this trying to desperately get the wrong kind of attention, trying to show the world that they are no different than the rest. I think some Christians even believe that trying to “relate” to the world will give them some kind of golden opportunity to share the gospel, by showing the world that Christians are just like the others. This, my friends, is a blasphemous lie.
(Here is the link to an article I recently read online. This is about a pastor who thought he could “win more souls” by riding a bull inside his church!! That’s right, he thinks he is doing gospel work by bringing in a bull and putting on a show for the world!! How sad.
A true Christian is NOTHING like the world around them!! A true Christian will never be able to live like the others in the world, because they are called to be apart from it!
“But ye [are] a chosen generation, a royal priesthood, an holy nation, a peculiar people; that ye should shew forth the praises of him who hath called you out of darkness into his marvellous light:” (1 Peter 2:9)
We are a chosen generation!! We are not supposed to be like the others, but by being different in the way we act, the way we speak, the way we show kindness, the way we stand up for the truth, and most importantly, the way we love and serve God with all our hearts – by being different like this, we are supposed to show the world how brilliant the light of Jesus Christ is that can transform people!!!
“And be not conformed to this world: but be ye transformed by the renewing of your mind, that ye may prove what [is] that good, and acceptable, and perfect, will of God.” (Romans 12:2)
All you need to do is show the world that there is something fundamentally different about you, and later on they will realize that you are a child of God, and hopefully recognize and praise Him for it.
So how can we know what to do and what not to do? First of all, if you are saved already, you must have a voice inside convicting you of every action you do against the will of God. The Bible sets very clear guidelines about what angers the Lord, or what goes against His will.
Realize your identity in Christ, and live up to it. Think about it – Jesus Christ died on the cross for your sins and mine, He gave up everything He had, and until the last breath, He only had mercy to show to those that were torturing Him. He prayed that they be forgiven, He decided to suffer the worst and die with no ounce of regret or revenge in His heart.
That, to me, is the purest form of love. He was able to endure it all because He loved us that much!!! His love was true, pure, and sacrificial. That is the kind of overwhelming love that we must have in our hearts if we choose to follow Jesus. Actually, once Jesus enters our lives, once we fully become a living temple for His work, we will find ourselves wrapped in that love, wanting to share it with everyone around us. Love the people of the world much more than yourself, putting their needs above your own, and being a servant first.
This humility of Jesus Christ is an essential part of being a Christian, and sadly, nowadays, it is hard to see people who truly follow this principle. Lots of Christians today do not have the time to care for others. Some people live for themselves, going to work, coming home, planning their retirement, etc. without even thinking about where they can include their Godly purpose in this schedule. They are too busy to worry about being a good Christian.
Instead, they just show up to church once in a week, sing some worship songs, sleep through the sermon, and go home. They think that makes up for everything!!
I am telling you right now, my dearest readers, you must stop being lazy about your calling!! Embody the love of Christ, and the truth of His gospel in every step of every single day. Remember Him in everything you do. Praise Him for everything good in life, and ask for His help and guidance in bad situations.