Thank You Lord

Greetings!

For some time now, “Thank You Lord” or “Lord God” has been my CONSTANT and CONTINUAL prayer to our Father and our Savior MINUTE by MINUTE (repeating it numerous times each minute when possible) and HOUR by each HOUR.

It has become my version, all wrapped into one, of the ‘approaches’ taken by Brother Lawrence in his “Practicing The Presence Of God” (please reference the Post by this title), the “Jesus Prayer” I came across in “The Way Of A Pilgrim” ( http://desertfathers.webs.com/thewayofthepilgrim.htm ), the writing by the anonymous author of “The Cloud Of Unknowing” ( http://www.catholicspiritualdirection.org/cloudunknowing.pdf ), the writings of William Law and others in an effort to CONSTANTLY and CONTINUALLY have God and Christ Jesus before me….my aid in assisting me to “Draw near to God and He will draw near to you.” (James 4:8).

As Brother Lawrence clearly explained, this kind of dedicated attention to God and Jesus can be difficult at first, but after persistent practice, it becomes a ‘natural’ part of you. Personally, I still have lapses but they are becoming fewer, and in spite of this….IT’S WORKING!!

Of course, I certainly haven’t attained to the ‘mystical’ experiences of Brother Lawrence, Saint Catherine of  Siena and so many others but the slow, evolving progress is obvious to me.

Although I don’t exactly “whistle while I work” quite yet, I have become much more patient and calm with menial tasks, which I used to NEVER look forward to! There is a peaceful acceptance of these chores that I never previously encountered.

More importantly, I am becoming more acquainted with our Father and Jesus in a way I cannot humanly describe. Again, it is by far not of a ‘mystical’ magnitude!

It helps keep me from those vain and useless ‘wandering thoughts’ (please reference the Post by this title) as well as my mind off of myself. This is probably why I am more at peace and contented.

I find my daily Scripture readings/studies to be more ‘alive’. Words take on more essence and meaning than they did before and I contemplate on them more often….it takes me much longer to get through a chapter and I thoroughly enjoy it!

I am quicker to laugh and more overjoyed in my spirit when I see or encounter good stuff; and on the other hand, I am also more deeply touched with sorrow by sad happenings, whether by natural evils, human evil and sin or just plain suffering; I cry easier at both the good and the bad.

This short HEARTFELT prayer repeated so frequently is not some mindless, robotic ‘chant’ or ‘mantra’, but rather, an expression to my Father and Savior that is understood between us to represent and include the following, but not limited to:

“Thank You Lord” or “Lord God” represents God and Christ Jesus for:

1.  Your loving and selfless sacrifice Jesus, not only for us believers but also those of the entire world (1 John 2:2)

2.  Just being there the way You are Father and Christ Jesus

3,  Your unfathomable grace, patience and mercy in Divine Love toward me and the entire world….especially believers

4.   Your calling me and guarding as well as establishing me (2 Thessalonians 3:3)

5.  Being able to be “strong in Him Who is invigorating me – Christ!” (Philippians  4:13)

6.  Filling my every need as well doing infinitely more for believers than we can ask or imagine (Philippians 4:19; Ephesians 3:20)

7.  Always knowing what I need without my even asking (Matthew 6:8)

8.  Humiliating and allowing me to suffer when I do not let You have Your way with me

9.  Allowing me to see that You will bring to a GLORIOUS END from ALL the sin, evil and suffering I am constantly and forever observing in the world  (1 Corinthians 15:28 and the Post “All Creation Will Be Saved”)

10. Your precious gift of the Holy Spirit (Romans 8:9) which not only is my Comforter/Advocate/Helper but will also lead me into all truth (John 14:26), will guide my every step through the day if I allow it (Romans 8:14), allows me to know the very depths of God (1 Corinthians 2:10) and the mind of Christ, Himself (1 Corinthians 2:16), is always interceding on my behalf with utterances and pleadings to God I cannot humanly understand (Romans 8:26)….but will also enable me to bear the  Holy fruit of the Spirit (Galatians 5:22).

11. Preparing an inheritance for all believers that is GLORIOUS and MAGNIFICENT beyond human comprehension and to take on an immortal, incorruptible celestial body (1 Corinthians 15:53) and existence EVEN of the nature of Christ Jesus Himself (Philippians 3:21)

12. Having ALL THINGS work for the good for all believers (Romans 8:28)

And, the list goes on!!!

Please don’t misunderstand me….there will always be times for regular, formal prayer. Likewise, during the day, we can spontaneously thank Them for various  things as they may occur as well ask for help as the need may arise.

It is in between these times that I go to Them with the “Thank You Lord” prayer.

We are fortunate and blessed beyond measure as Christians to ALWAYS be able to thank God and Christ Jesus for ANY and EVERYTHING (1 Thessalonians 5:18)….even that flat tire you have on the way to work when you were running late to begin with (if may have keep you from a nasty accident just up ahead!)!

Our Father and Savior do not allow ANYTHING to touch us that is not for our eventual good (Romans 8:28)….certainly just another reason for us to always and continually say “Thank You Lord”!!

Until later, in Him,

Fred

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Thank God Continually For Being The Way He Is

Hey, there!

First of all, it defies human logic and the laws of science that there even is God. They scream out that something can never come from nothing and every thing has to have a beginning; so, how could God have no beginning?  Was there never a nothing to begin with? Ha!….I’m rightly confused!!

Anyway, after we come into our glory, I sure hope we will be able to ‘understand’ how our Father first got there!

We so take for granted that God is as PERFECT as He IS as well as for what He PERFECTLY is NOT.

He NEVER:

lies, leaves us alone NOR fails us, is unfair, is moody, is prejudice, is weak, is tired or sleepy, subjects us to anything that is not for our good, is mean spirited, makes a mistake, is caught by surprise at anything, is defeated, sins and is NEVER everything else we can think of that is negative, evil and smacks of failure.

He ALWAYS:

Is PERFECT and GLORIOUS in EVERY way….His POWER absolutely knows NO LIMIT! Is for and stands for LOVE, JUSTICE, MERCY, FORGIVENESS AND KINDNESS.

I have a calendar in my kitchen with different pictures for each month showing awesome views of the universe. They are truly  a wonderful reminder of His awesome power, the likes of which I am sure is just a SMALL SAMPLE of what we will discover and experience when we come into the Kingdom. You can reference the Post “God’s Creative Handiwork” for some breathtaking  displays.

Our Father also truly LOVES BEAUTY….besides those sample we see around us in nature, it is further illustrated by the description of the New Jerusalem in Revelation 21:18-21.,,,JUST BEAUTIFUL!

Likewise, our Lord, Savior, Brother, Friend, and King ,Christ Jesus, is as PERFECTLY PERFECT as is His and our Father.

We should be so THANKFUL that the RULING POWER and CONTROL in all creation is not with someone like Satan; but rather, is with our Father and Jesus….and we should THANK Them TIME AND TIME AGAIN throughout the day and night with a short, spontaneous acknowledgment  of “THANK You for being there as You are”.

All the best, in Him.

Fred

Nothing Happens Without God’s Permission

Hello, again!

Nothing, ABSOLUTELY NOTHING, happens on this earth or in the heavens without the explicit ‘permission’ of God and Christ Jesus. Quite literally, there is no such thing as an ‘accident’!

John 1:3 informs us that “not even one thing came into being which has come into being” apart from God creating it through Jesus Christ. And, Colossians  1:15-17 not only confirms this but reminds us that “in Him, ALL THINGS HOLD TOGETHER” (emphasis mine). In other words, EVERYTHING is controlled by Him.

An illustration of this is in Job 1:6,12; 2:6 where Satan, himself, is shown to be limited ONLY to what God gives him ‘permission’ to carry out.

It should not concern us as to who is President of the United States or who rules any country on this earth because we know that God and Jesus Christ ALLOWED her/him or them to be in that position in accord with Their Own Divine purpose (Romans 13:1)….even though they may be humanly foolish and/or evil like Pharaoh (Romans 9:17), Hitler and other similar sickos.

Another example of this is in John 19:11 where Jesus tells Pilate “You would have no authority against Me, if it were not having been given you from above….”.

No President, head of state or ruler of any country  can carry out any decision or policy they have made UNLESS God and Jesus give them  ‘permission’ to do so:

“Mortals make elaborate plans, but God has the last word.” (Proverbs 16:1….The Message Bible)   Forecasters speculate on the possibility of an asteroid(s) striking the earth but this should NOT concern Christians because we know it will not happen without the ‘permission’ of God and Jesus. If it does happen, it is for Their Divine purpose and for our good, as well as the eventual good of all mankind. (Please reference the Post “All Creation Will Be Saved”)

This is true in our personal lives, obviously. Whatever circumstances you and I find ourselves in God and Christ Jesus not only allowed them but also engineered them….for Their Divine purpose with each of us.

The best example of why God and Jesus can allow such overwhelming evil,suffering and any circumstance to exist is the crucifixion of Jesus, Himself.

The GREATEST wrong, evil and sin EVER committed by any human or humans was when Jesus was crucified. The creation tortured its Creator and then nailed Him to a tree to suffer the most agonizing of deaths.

However, as it is with ALL the evil, wrongs and sufferings we have existing today, God gave ‘permission’ to have His Son go through this for His Divine purpose. We will clearly see why He could and can do this as explained below.

God actually takes this GREATEST of evils and sins and turns it into the GREATEST  BLESSING for the ENTIRE creation, even for those who did the crucifying! What love, power and wisdom does our God and Father have!!

This is the reason God and Jesus Christ can allow such awful suffering and circumstances to exist in the world: if God can take the GREATEST evil/sin (the Crucifixion) and turn it into the ENTIRE creation’s GREATEST BLESSING….which is their ultimate glorious salvation….how much ‘easier’ will it be for God, through Christ Jesus, to eventually bring about blessings and a glorious ending from ALL the ‘lesser’ evils, sins and sufferings that exist today, as well as in times past. (Please reference the Post “All Creation Will Be Saved”)

How blessed and fortunate we Christians (as well as, eventually, the ENTIRE creation) are to have a Father and Savior such as we have…. and we should be continually giving thanks to Them for this.

Later, in Him,

Fred

Christian Tidbits

Greetings….this Post will be an ongoing one where I will add information from time to time that you might find interesting, and maybe even helpful! It could also be titled “Did You Know?”:

1. Jesus was also an Apostle. Hebrews 3:1

2. It is unknown how many “wise men” there were when they brought gifts to Jesus; and, they actually came to Him in a “house”, not a manger scene. Matthew 2:11

3. According to Clarke’s Commentary, the names of the two robbers who were crucified with Jesus were Zoathon on the right and Chammatha on the left (http://bible.cc/mark/15-27.htm)

4. The Bible is not only the world’s best-selling book but it is also the most shoplifted! (Several sources, but one is http://www.unexplained-mysteries.com/forum/index.php?showtopic=17733)

5. Believers are never told to celebrate the birth of Jesus….for one thing, it is unknown. (December 25 was a pagan holiday and has nothing to do with the real day Jesus was born on)

6. Believers are never told to celebrate the resurrection of Jesus, although we are told to observe elements of  the “Last Supper”.

7. Talk about “funny money”: David purchased his first wife, Michal, from Saul with 200 foreskins of just killed Philistines! 1 Samuel 18:27

8. There are at least 64 types/kinds of “spirit” mentioned in the Bible, based on Strong’s Concordance using the King James Version:

“God, Christ,anguish,sword,worship,fear

mouth,grace,glory,antichrist,error,foul

righteousness,familiar(psychic),wisdom,jealousy

evil,sorrowful,sad,lying,good,understanding

troubled,hasty,humble,broken,man,vexation

beast,proud,judgment,burning,perverse

Holy,contrite,faint,excellent, whoredom,grace

unclean,dumb,deaf,power,infirmity

truth,divination,holiness,life,bondage,adoption

slumber,fervent,love,meekness,gifts

healing,faith,earnest,joy,peace,gentleness

longsuffering”

In addition to these, there are the  7 Spirits which stand before the throne in Revelation 1:4.

The various spirits govern us….not the physical elements.

9. The New Jerusalem will be about 1,500 miles long, about 1,500 miles wide and about 1,500 miles high. Revelation 21:16 ( a furlong is about an 1/8th of a mile)

10. It is interesting that the beginning of our present heavens and earth in Genesis 1:1-2 started with a complete covering of water. With the advent of the new heaven and new earth in Revelation 21:1, the sea and oceans will no longer exist. Sorry, surfer dude/dudette! And, no more tanning,  as there will be no sun….Revelation 21:23.

11. In 1526, William Tyndale published the first printed English New Testament. For his faithful efforts, the clergy and bishops of the Church of England were instrumental is having him endure a disgusting and cruel imprisonment, then being strangled at the stake and finally burned to ashes in 1536….fervently praying with his last words, “Lord, open the king of England’s eyes.”. (Paraphrased from Adlai Loudy’s GOD’S  EONIAN PURPOSE, Chapter 2)

12. James, the brother of Jesus, at some point became an apostle (Galatians 1:1).

13. Humans and animals have a soul….plants don’t (this is taken from the Post: “Lazarus and the Rich Man”):

“the soul is actually in the blood: “for the soul of all flesh, it is in the blood” (Lev.17:11….Strong’s Concordance has “nephesh” or “soul”; also, Darby’s Translation, Concordant Literal Old Testament and Bullinger’s Companion Bible have “soul”). Where there is no human blood….there is no human soul (or, life, consciousness, etc.).”

“This is why animals and humans can be said to have a “soul”….because they have blood flowing within them. Even though plants, vegetation and the like are “living organisms”, they are never said to have a “soul” because they have no blood….meaning, they have no consciousness nor any type of feelings. If you chop a tree down, rest assured it feels no pain!”.

14. Why is it difficult for any Christian to believe in the resurrections to come since God was the One Who originally created humans through Christ from the ‘dirt’ to begin with? And, Jesus even says in Matthew 3:9 that God is able to create “children to Abraham” from stone itself.

15. It is estimated that the number of living species on our planet ranges from 3 million to 100 million. Consider the fact that God through Christ Jesus had to create an INDIVIDUAL and UNIQUE ‘behavioral computer chip’ for each species!! They ALL function differently and obviously need their own distinct behavioral pattern programmed into their personal being in order to live and survive, based on the way each is created. Simply amazing!!

16. Old Testament believers are never said to have the Holy Spirit “within” them, but rather, “upon” them. Please reference the Post “The Holy Spirit Was Not WITHIN Old Testament Believers” for more information.

Until later,

Fred

 

Evil vs Sin

Hello!  Some think these 2 are the same but there is a major difference between them.

Evil is obviously the opposite of good and it can also include sin, which of course is not good. There are 2 kinds of evil….that from non-human sources (hurricanes, etc) and that from humans who are sinning. Hurricanes and the like  always bring bad news as does sinning, in one form or another.

Sin can ONLY involve human actions. A hurricane cannot “sin”, only be “evil” by its nature. Literally, “sin” means to “miss the mark”, make a mistake, fail of the ideal (Concordant Literal New Testament Concordance). This could never apply to non-human sources (hurricanes) as they have no choice in the matter. Only humans can sin.

As for why God can allow both of these to exist and cause great suffering in the world (please see the Post on “Suffering”), it is because He uses BOTH to bring about the BEST for all mankind….EVENTUALLY. At the end of the ages, it will all come to a glorious end for the ENTIRE CREATION when God will be “All in All” (1 Corinthians 15:28). Eventually, the ENTIRE creation will benefit and come into its glory when God is finally ALL IN ALL! This will take place in  different stages as set forth in the Chapter “God’s Eonian Plan and the Present Secret Administration”.

Here is an example of how God can use sin and/or evil for the most glorious good. The crucifixion of our Lord was the GREATEST  sin and evil EVER committed…..the creation murdered its Creator. Yet, God, turns it around and uses it as the creation’s GREATEST BLESSING!!   Because God allowed this  greatest of all sins and evil  to happen, Christ Jesus will now be able draw ALL unto Himself: ” I, if I be lifted up out of the earth will draw ALL (things) unto Myself”.  John 12:32….Rotherham’s Emphasized Bible. (“things” is a footnote rendering….the emphasis is mine) Please reference the Chapters on “All Creation Will Be Saved” and “God’s Eonian Plan and the Present Secret Administration” for further explanation and crystal clear verification of this.

If God can bring about the GREATEST BLESSING from the MOST SUPREME and GREATEST  sin and evil, using all the lesser sins and evil to bring about blessings and good are a “piece of cake” for Him!

Hope to see you later.

Fred

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Failure Part I

Hey, there!

There are 2 prominent types of “failure” illustrated in the Scriptures. And guess what, God brings them both to the most glorious conclusions!   That is why He is God……nothing, nothing, NOTHING exists that He will not and cannot use to bring about the utmost good for ALL. That is why He can allow evil and sin, as well as suffering (please reference the Post on “Suffering”), to exist in the world. Now, to the first….the “apparent failure”.

The best example of the “apparent failure” is the crucifixion of our Lord….it made His ministry look like a total, absolute failure.  OOPS, but wait….God does it again! He actually takes this “apparent failure” and turns it into the GREATEST SUCCESS story ever!  Because of this apparent  “failed” ministry, ALL mankind, yes ALL!, will be saved: “and I, if I may be lifted up from the earth, will draw ALL (emphasis mine) men unto myself.” (Young’s Literal New Testament, New American Standard, and others….John 12:32). (Please refer to the Post on “All Creation Will Be Saved”.)

The next “failure” is a real, bona fide failure, where we screw up big time or little time, even continuously…..real sin!  Not only are we fortunate that God and Jesus prefer mercy to judgment but ANY failures can wind up being  one of our most benefical blessings….if we do not faint and remain faithful. Quite simply, THE FAILURES ARE LESSONS TO SHOW HOW WEAK AND FRAIL WE ARE and, in turn, how much we truly need God and Christ to dominate our lives…..period! Let’s face it, most of us don’t HEARTILY turn to God and Jesus until we desperately need Them….our failures should be that motivation.

Oswald Chambers wrote in his book “My Utmost For His Greatest” (please reference the Post by the same title) that our “darkness” of suffering and failure can be God’s “gift of humiliation” to us because it “brings the softness of heart that will always listen to God”….as it (the “darkness”) will reveal how utterly human (as opposed to Holy) we truly are, and in DESPERATE need of our Father and our Savior.

I remember reading from one of William Law’s books (forgot which one as I have read so many of his writings) in which he very much emphasized that we should never, never, NEVER  give up trying after we fail.  As believers, we are under “grace”, not law (Romans 6:14, 8:2), and God and Christ Jesus will NEVER give up on us….if there is true, heartfelt  repentance and a seeking of forgiveness.

All the best in Him….later.

Fred