Archive | wisdom

God on voting

Hey everyone,

Today’s the big day! I cannot believe it, but tonight we will select our next president here in The USA.
First of all, I want to make the point that I am really proud of each of you who voted and those minors (like myself) who supported someone (preferably McCain,) and made as much of a difference as they could even without the privilege of voting. Also, I understand that I am included the general feeling amongst many of you that McCain is the best choice (mostly because of abortion issues) but that we are not totally gungho for either candidate. That is okay! We do our best, don’t we? The lesser of two evils is lesser. Not that I consider McCain evil, but not an ideal president for our country. Even less ideal is his opponent, in my eyes.
But nevertheless, the bible tells us that God allows our leaders to climb to the places that they climb and so I think that we must be respectful to the candidates, especially whichever one is chosen tonight.
Keep them in your prayers!!!
Well, I have here in my lap a very neat book; Where to Find it in The Bible (the ultimate A-Z resource, fully illustrated) and up on my computer screen a very neat website; Gatewaybible.com.
“So using these two handy-dandy resources, I have gathered several verses from The Bible under “voting.”
10 I appeal to you, dear brothers and sisters,[a] by the authority of our Lord Jesus Christ, to live in harmony with each other. Let there be no divisions in the church. Rather, be of one mind, united in thought and purpose.”
1 Corinthians 1:10
“O Lord, you are the God who gives breath to all creatures. Please appoint a new man as leader for the community.”
-Numbers 27:16
14 “You are about to enter the land the Lord your God is giving you. When you take it over and settle there, you may think, ‘We should select a king to rule over us like the other nations around us.’ 15 If this happens, be sure to select as king the man the Lord your God chooses. You must appoint a fellow Israelite; he may not be a foreigner.
-Deuteronomy 17:14-15
Judges 9:7-15-This one is very interesting but a little longer than the others so you can read it if you choose, here.
23 So they nominated two men: Joseph called Barsabbas (also known as Justus) and Matthias. 24 Then they all prayed, “O Lord, you know every heart. Show us which of these men you have chosen 25 as an apostle to replace Judas in this ministry, for he has deserted us and gone where he belongs.” 26 Then they cast lots, and Matthias was selected to become an apostle with the other eleven.
-Acts 1:23-26
10 I appeal to you, dear brothers and sisters,[a] by the authority of our Lord Jesus Christ, to live in harmony with each other. Let there be no divisions in the church. Rather, be of one mind, united in thought and purpose.
-1 Corinthians 1:10
3

Called to be close-minded


You know,
I’ve been thinking lately about purity.
Most people (if they’re like me) make assumptions when someone is going to talk about purity.
The most common one is that the speaker is going to talk about “true love waiting.”
This is not what I am referring to. I am talking about purity of mind and heart.
Philippians 4:8 says
“Finally, brethren, whatever is true, whatever is honorable, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is of good repute, if there is any excellence and if anything worthy of praise, dwell on these things.”
Imagine-a list of things to dwell on!
I may be the only one, but I’ll be honest with you, I sometimes put things in the back of my mind to think about. What I mean is, just as I may put a list in the back of my mind (or on the back burner) of things to do,
1. Clean room
2. Blog
3. Play with Copin
4. Call Tessa

I do the same thing for things I need /want to think about:

1. Christmas
2. Driving
3. What to wear Sunday
4. That movie I saw last night

Honestly! I have to do that. Then, when I find a quiet moment, I sit down and choose one of those things to dwell on, figure out or daydream of. Well, it amazes me that God made a list-a clear, straight forward list-of what to think about.
Well, this seems reasonable.

True
Honorable
Right
Pure
Lovely
Of Good Repute
Excellent
Worthy of Praise

It is a simple list, but I’ve noticed a trend lately that I think discounts these qualities and ignores the message of Philippians 4:8
It amazes me how many “young people” (high school and college age) who are Christians or, at least, claiming to be, have no issue discussing things which are not on this list. They have no problem reading books on them, pondering them. Now, for their sakes, I will be truthful.
It always annoyed me in Junior High how my teachers and bible study leaders would avoid “touchy subjects” like drugs, alcohol, death, sex, any of that sort of “grown-up” thing. Well, some of the girls in my class had issues that they needed advice for, others were dangerously naive. I myself had questions that I had hoped they could answer. But these people would avoid these subjects at all costs. This, I do not believe in. Things, even “bad things” should be addressed and not ignored. As I said in my couple of posts about spiritual warfare, it is helpful to Satan if we ignore him. The other way to submit to him is consciously choosing to follow him. In order to deter this, my leaders never spoke of Satan or demons or spiritual warfare. In doing this to the extent which they did, I believe that many of my peers fell into his clutches in the former way-ignorance. All this to say, I believe in addressing issues, knowing what evil is in order to avoid it, but back to the trend.
Many people think that they can saturate their minds in evil and behave purely.
This is a lie. Many people watch “dirty” movies etc, but others seem to have justified their saturation by saying that it is to educate themselves. They watch the movie for the message or read the book so that they know how to witness to that sort of person. It is a fine line, but one not be crossed. Even if you want to be able to relate to the voodoo tribes of Africa or understand your non-Christian roommate or understand demons (which is necessary!) it does not mean that this should be your primary topic up in the ol’ attic.
No matter what you study, who you hang out with, where you go, what you watch, makes sure that you have that list in mind. Literally.
I recently made a new criteria for myself. When choosing whether or not to watch a movie or keep something such as a book (I am at war with pack-ratiness) I don’t just ask myself if it is “okay” or “clean enough” now, I ask myself: “Will/do I benefit from this?”
Does it promote purity? Is is lovely? Is it truly excellent? Of good repute?
So many “young people” see “old people” as close-minded.
Elderly people jump when they hear “modern music.”
They shake their heads at “modern clothes.”
They frown at “modern motion pictures.”
We see them as “missing out” because we like the new artists, new fashions, new movies, but is it worth it? I’ve heard it said that “what one generation tolerates, the next generation embraces.” Is it really worth it to watch that new, artsy movie with all of the cuss words and sex scenes thrown in, or is God more pleased with the 82 year old who’s never stepped into a movie theater in her life?
Next time you call someone (even in your head) “close-minded,” think about that short little list:
True
Honorable
Right
Pure
Lovely
Of Good Repute
Excellent
Worthy of Praise

Do your thoughts fit into one or more of these categories?

Everly Pleasant

6

Riding the wave

Swirly Plate By, E.P.

When will people learn?

That includes myself. When will we ever not be taken by surprise when something devastating happens? When somebody dies…someone that we actually knew. Not the grandmother of the friend of the girl you know from Sunday School. Not that random face in the obituaries. We don’t open the paper and go: “Oh my goodness! I can’t believe it…someone died this week.” We are only surprised when it’s someone we knew. And we think Me? The main character of my story…no way. And this is all just repetitive and morbid I know, but I’m getting at something.

Time. It’s ticking…slipping by. I have expressed previously my fear of change and the creepiness I find it the natural passage of time, so I get this idea, I stick it in my head, that time is just a wave you have to ride. But you know, our time on earth ends. The wave washes up. At some point, it will be over. Obviously, anyone who has ever experienced this hasn’t blogged about what it was like or told their friends. They left for good (okay, minus Lazarus etc.) so we don’t think about it, we forget that it will ever happen because all we remember is being alive and no one who has ever been anything but alive has ever spoken about it. But us Christians have a gift to give and we need to snap out of our daze, hop off the wave and realize that this is a limited time edition of a one life only sale!

Okay, lying all corniness aside, we’ve got to pick up the pace. We get awkward, we want more time. We have all these little problems. Well when we die and those people whose souls we sacrificed to the evil idol of procrastination are being judged, won’t you think that this is a bigger problem then “I’m shy”?!

I feel kind of bad saying all this in such a light, goofy bluntness way because I’m seriously convicted and passionate about it. I’ll be honest and tell you that I’ve never really witnessed to someone. (Okay, minus once when I was very young…that didn’t go so well…) I hope that my life has been a witness and I’ve talked to people about God and faith before but I’ve never prayed and then walked up to a person who was lost with the intentions of taking them to Heaven with me and started talking. Why?

Maybe blindness. Blindness to the need, the situation, the fact that that what’s tugging my heart is something real. Maybe for you it’s anxiety or the fact that your not confident enough in your own relationship with Christ. You haven’t memorized enough scripture yet and you’ve only prayed for a few days. And I know that I’m getting these ideas from somewhere…at one point or another I’m sure I’ve struggled with these things too. Or maybe it’s that I’ve never met a lost person.

NOT.

This guy that my dad led to Christ still calls him on his anniversary of acceptance and thanks him. That makes you feel good doesn’t it?

2

Welcome Autumn

Dearest Reader,
I think that I may actually have some inspiration for this entry but I have not yet patched it together so, if you find it choppy and awkward, I beg your pardon.
As we transition into autumn for the two thousand and seventh time, I get this feeling and identify it as negative. I get this feeling every time the seasons change, Winter to Spring, Spring to Summer, Summer to Autumn or Autumn to Winter, yet I still feel like I’ve been pricked every time this feeling occurs. It’s mostly sadness at first that Summer is over and the Summer of 2007 will never come again no matter how long I wait. That it’s not going to be summer anymore, but it’s going to be autumn and then autumn will be over and it will never come again and then winter will arrive and then leave and it’s a natural endless cycle that I can’t and shouldn’t do anything about so why should I even care?
Well, I do care every time! I am hyper-sensitive to change which is something I try to ignore, but it also does have some sane, practical, realistic sadness to it…doesn’t it? I guess when you’re a writer nothing is just practical or realistic and you get funky emotions toward everything because nothing is just a change. You see everything as a book. You think about how big the baby was when the season began. Has she grown?
You think about your friendships changing. For better or for worse?
And you analyze yourself, your age, your own changes. And really, this is pointless. It’s like trying to describe your own eyes when you can’t see them. I’ve found you can’t describe those you know best because you know every side of them, even the side that is rarely ever seen. And who do you know better than yourself? Therefore, you can never really see yourself for who you are. Are you how you should be at this age? What is a fifteen year-old supposed to do? When exactly was it that you gave up barbies? Why? It was always fun. Was it wrong to give it up? Did you do it out of peer pressure?
Then, in thinking these thoughts your tempted to change the cycle and go backwards.
And then you regret growing up. But it wasn’t your fault. It wasn’t any body’s fault. It wasn’t a fault at all. It was normal. It was natural. It was necessary. Anyone and everyone changes. It’s okay. Did I just say that? ;)
But, to be totally honest, I understand. I see the positive things about aging and maturing and I look forward to the changes of my future, but then again, I will miss my young childhood on occasion. That too is natural I suppose. It’s like that song If I could by Jack Johnson. I man dies and a baby is born. Do you cry or celebrate? I little of both. With new things, old things disappear. The keyword of this entry being “natural.”
I made the mistake of watching Peter Pan the night before my thirteenth birthday. Let’s just say that many tears were shed. I am one of those people who panic at change in age as well as everything else and I waited patiently for Peter to arrive and sweep me away to Neverland, when really, I would’ve proffered “Not-yet-land.”
Though I may be the last person on earth to figure this out, good things come with time even if other good things…leave. What pains me is to think of those children who waste their childhoods trying to grow up to soon or who never form a healthy imagination. For me, I feel like shouting at all the windows in every elementary school saying: “Savor it! It’s all wonderful! It’ll end before you know it!” But I know that you can never really appreciate anything until it’s swept out from under your feet like a rug and carried off to the attic. And I guess that I would be the same as those children, wasting their childhood staring at their future, if I were to waste these years of my life staring back.
When the bible said that we shouldn’t waste, I don’t think it was referring only to food and water. I think it was also talking about time and sunshine and beautiful days and company and ages and opportunities. But, you are older than you were when you began reading this article and you will be older when you go to bed and older still when you wake up, and even if you’re 110 years old, that’s okay, and seeing as that may be the last time you wake up, don’t spend it worrying about if that’s true.
Signing out at the last 5:47 of 9/15/2007 ever,
Everly Pleasant
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