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Friday, October 17, 2014

Listening depends on your viewpoint, doesn’t it?
Listening depends on your viewpoint, doesn’t it?

Before you talk - Listen It may change what you say.
Before you react - Think It may change how you react.
Before you judge - Wait It may change your viewpoint.
Before you quit - Try It may be the best thing you ever did.
~Unknown

Hearing and listening are two different things aren’t they?

Hearing is sound entering the ear and following the nerves to be interpreted as sound. It gives us information about what’s happening in the environmental.

Yet to listen we need to respond to the sound alerting us, decipher it and then understand what it means.

It’s that last part that makes the difference. The “understand what it means”.

That’s how when we hear puns we get both meanings and it’s funny. Or how two people hear the same words but understand it differently.

Our listening depends on the context into which we place the information we are listening to. That context gives information to the words heard.

Think of that word “gay” that today means a person of same sex sexual persuasion.

To our great grandparents the same word would never had been understood that way. It was a word describing carefree joy!

Two different times, two different contexts, two different understandings.

This is what John the guy who wrote the letters about Jesus after Jesus death was getting at when he said…

You, dear children, are from God and have overcome them, because the one who is in you is greater than the one who is in the world. They are from the world and therefore speak from the viewpoint of the world, and the world listens to them. We are from God, and whoever knows God listens to us; but whoever is not from God does not listen to us. This is how we recognize the Spirit of truth and the spirit of falsehood. 1 John 4 NIV

He is pointing out that those who love Jesus have Holy Spirit within them and this makes a big difference in how we hear things.

We interpret information we are given differently than those who reject or don’t yet know Jesus and our responses are therefore different.

With this in mind we need to pay attention to how we listen, how we consider what we learn and understand, and how we respond.

We also must try to understand that not everyone hears what we hear and if possible should try to be accommodating and switch viewpoints to reprocess what we hear from the context of those around us.

This makes us better communicators and more loving in our responses to those around us.

That makes us better people and better Christians!

Have a blessed day today!
Fri, October 17, 2014 | link          Comments

Thursday, October 16, 2014

How do I know which are good spirits and which are bad spirits?
 How do I know which are good spirits and which are bad spirits?

A small body of determined spirits fired by an unquenchable faith in their mission can alter the course of history. ~ Mahatma Gandhi

Finding out what is right and what is wrong in the spirit world is hard to do, isn’t it?

Sometimes people try to simplify this into whether spirits do good or bad things.

They classify those that do “good” from the their perspective as “good” and the rest bad.

If we use this as an argument, we can find that what one person considers “good” can be another person’s “bad”.

I think ISIS followers consider decapitating westerners to be “good”, yet most of the world considers this “bad”.

This begs the question... are spirits that promoted this activity and action,  “good” or “bad”, and why?

We are relatively sure it is a religious fundamentalism that is driving these people isn’t it? Isn't that a spiritual driven life that we are considering?

Is the spirit good or bad?

A statement from the Christian bible says…

Dear friends, do not believe every spirit, but test the spirits to see whether they are from God, because many false prophets have gone out into the world. This is how you can recognize the Spirit of God: Every spirit that acknowledges that Jesus Christ has come in the flesh is from God, but every spirit that does not acknowledge Jesus is not from God. This is the spirit of the antichrist, which you have heard is coming and even now is already in the world. 1 john 4

Okay so if the fundamentalists say Jesus was human and comes from God then all is okay according to this verse, isn’t it?

Well consider this... ISIS are Islamic State of Iraq people, Moslem fundamentalists who are Jihadist, aren’t they?  Moslem’s consider Jesus to be a prophet sent by God.

In strict terms Moslem believers fit the requirements of the above verse, as did Hitler.

Very few people will believe these are true spiritual Christians who love Jesus and God, and follow Holy Spirit correctly.

There is more to discerning of spirits isn’t there?

The bible also says that people that follow good spirits have certain characteristics and those that follow bad have certain characteristics.

 Holy Spirit generates good activities and attitudes:

But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, forbearance, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, 23 gentleness and self-control. Against such things there is no law. 24 Those who belong to Christ Jesus have crucified the flesh with its passions and desires. 25 Since we live by the Spirit, let us keep in step with the Spirit. Gal 5

I guess that disqualifies both ISIS and Hilter.

Instead bad spirits do the following

The acts of the flesh are obvious: sexual immorality, impurity and debauchery; 20 idolatry and witchcraft; hatred, discord, jealousy, fits of rage, selfish ambition, dissensions, factions 21 and envy; drunkenness, orgies, and the like. I warn you, as I did before, that those who live like this will not inherit the kingdom of God. Galatians 5

I think we can see both ISIS and Hitler in these "bad" activities and attitudes.

This is one way of knowing “Good” from “Bad” spirits.

Really what we want to know is when a spirit is influencing us, are we moving in the correct way. These above verse let us know what the outcome of the correct spirits influence is.

Yet, it still does not say if the spirit is actually “good” or not. It just gives us an indication by the effect we see. Yet let’s assume a bad spirit wants to confuse us so generates the “good” activities and attitudes. We would be taken in if this is the only measure wouldn’t we. Many people who follow spirits via crystals, and new age philosophies are taken in in this manner simply because they think if it feels good and seems to bring about good it is good.

To get clarity we need to read all of 1 John 4, not just the first part. Later John says…

This is how we know that we live in him and he in us: He has given us of his Spirit. 14 And we have seen and testify that the Father has sent his Son to be the Savior of the world. 15 If anyone acknowledges that Jesus is the Son of God, God lives in them and they in God. 16 And so we know and rely on the love God has for us.God is love. Whoever lives in love lives in God, and God in them. 17 This is how love is made complete among us so that we will have confidence on the day of judgment: In this world we are like Jesus. 18 There is no fear in love. But perfect love drives out fear, because fear has to do with punishment. The one who fears is not made perfect in love.

The Spirit that is from God and is “good” will say Jesus is the SON of God!

This is the “good” Spirit. A good spirit is from God and acknowledges Jesus is God’s son.

That is a Spirit that we can bring into our lives to influence us. That Spirit will cause us to love God deeply, and love our neighbours like we love ourselves. We will care and protect our neighbours, not hurt and malign them. We will change the world with love, not weapons or harsh words.

That’s the Holy Spirit I want in my life.

 I pray it’s the Holy Spirit you want in yours!
Thu, October 16, 2014 | link          Comments

Wednesday, October 15, 2014

Lost opportunities
 “A pessimist sees the difficulty in every opportunity; an optimist sees the opportunity in every difficulty.” ~ Winston Churchill

Life is a mixed up and complex experience.

It is not what most people expect, and is more than some come to believe.

Life is the very essence of living, but it also that which many fail to experience correctly.

They are unable to do what God wants of them and in so doing start to bleed away the reality that is here to experience, consider and live into.

Life is more than having breath in ones lungs it is more than just being.

 It is existing in Gods presence in a place that is specially built to bring out the best in ones very own spiritual reality.

It is the molding that takes place to form a great construction that will perform the miraculous.

We are not built to waste time on earth, we are built to provide God glory and do great things for God in the minutes that we live.

Each minute is specially provided to give us a chance to gain. Yet so many of us fail to grasp these meager seconds and do what we can in this land of sorrows that we find ourselves in.

Instead of injecting the power of Holy Spirit into a needy world we often allow ourselves to become submerged in its poor decisions, its limited sightline, and its curtailed comprehension. We lack the ability to stretch ourselves into the eternal and connect to the wellspring of life.

We need to grasp the wellspring of life!

Jesus extends this and more to those of us who follow him.

We need only listen, obey and live life to its fullest to connect into eternity.

Listening to Gods word is the supreme joy, and yet also the challenge of life.

Some don’t even get past the start. That is terribly sad. It’s a sadness that only those of us who are running the race can understand. The gun went off at Calvary, the risen Christ provided the lead to start the race, and we run to finish at the judgement of God.

Are you part of this? Do you see life this way?

There are even Christians who fail to understand this.

Are you one?

If so, let’s change gear and move into eternal overdrive.

Let’s power on with Jesus since all other sources are faulty and fail either now or at deaths door.

May our Lord bless and keep you!

Have a great day!
Wed, October 15, 2014 | link          Comments

Tuesday, October 14, 2014

What is reality?
 “Don't believe everything you read or hear, remember a large part of our world is made up of fiction!!” ~ Victoria Addino

What is reality? How come it’s so difficult to discern or know?

Today’s world is a huge swirling mixture of fact and fiction to the extent that most of us do not even know where we come from, what we are doing, or why?

You ask how can this be?

How much of human existence can you map out? What did the Babylonians contribute to our modern existence? Ten Greeks? The Egyptians? The Medes and personas? The earth church? The dark ages? Newton? Pascal? Einstein? Electricity? the holocaust? the united nations? Steve Jobs? Samsung? UNESCO?

How much of these can we really say we have knowledge about that is absolute and complete?

Let’s investigate this a little

How many of us are certain our existence is real?

We think we know truth...but do we?

The very food we eat is an illusion in some ways. So much of the food we consume has been altered. A brief study will show we consume chemicals that make it taste better, look better and that changes the basic properties of it so that we the consumers, never really understand what a true unmodified form of the food is like. The number of chemicals we consume is incredible.

In North America most meat is a “nice” red colour. What we don’t realise is that this norm which we seek and desire has been carefully constructed by those who sell it to us. Meat drained of blood and refrigerated in a browner colour. But because that doesn’t sell so well, a chemical is applied to make it red so we perceive it as better. Is it? Not really!

That’s food but what is another example.

How about life perception?

This weekend I was amused to see my family at Thanksgiving in the lounge all sitting with an electronic device (computers, cell phones and iPad’s) doing something electronic while they chatted to each other. The ebb and flow of conversation was supplemented with a stream of electronic information, games, communications and stimulation.

Discussion with our elders of the movement and travel environment after the world war was supplemented viewing an example on a cell phone upon which the mode of vehicle that was used to travel Europe of the time was displayed and the person who had driven it, confirmed the type and model for those who had never been there to see and understand. The electronic imagery was enhanced with words and explanations which brought a new understanding to the previously perceived “reality”.

This reality was constructed of bits, bytes and words, yet we would have considered that we understood a truth. Yet did we? Only the man who drove the car at that time and God knew that truth. To each of us it was a construction in our minds.
 
Reality is virtually impossible to conceptualize isn’t it?

What is truth in this environment?

It is a delightful mixture of fact and fiction all merged into a seaming real reality.

This is the reality of life.

Even in Jesus day, the reality of life was supplemented by stories and information that modified the perceptions of those who listened to it. How else could Jesus have been pinned to that cross and left to die like a lab rat finding a cure for an incurable disease?

Yes, even our health comes with truths many of us would prefer to ignore.

So what is reality?

Reality is knowing God and looking for truth in our world with as much honesty and courage as we can muster.

It is permitting ourselves to see things we would rather not see, or hear things we would rather not hear, but filtering them into a cohesive whole by allowing God to direct our actions and thoughts without reservation because we know he is supreme and the upholder of the universe.

We need not fear the latest scientific fact or unearthed treasure because Jesus said “I am the way the truth and the life. No one comes to the Father except by me.” John 14:6

If Jesus is truth we cannot hide behind false securities. We need to step out and face the facts of life head-on, as difficult as they may be. We can express reservations on things that apparently seem to flow against what we know of God’s world, but we should still view them.

None of us sees reality and in the modern world, the fiction we view is more than the reality, by far. We trust images and words fed to us by media almost more than truth itself. We believe we are knowledgeable to the extend we turn this knowledge into an idol. We fail to find truth because it is virtually impossible to dig through the digital morass to extract the small kernels therein.

To succeed we have to have God’s guidance.

Today let’s start to straighten out our perceptions. Let’s ask what is real and what is not? Let’s understand only the creator and sustainer of everything truly knows. How about we ask Him?

 Have a great day!
Tue, October 14, 2014 | link          Comments


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Rift in Evil

By Ken X Briggs

  • Published: September, 2010
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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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