Added commentary to the posting A Progressive Call to Arms

Added commentary to the posting A Progressive Call to Arms

1. Clarification

speaking at CPAC in Washington D.C. on Februar...

speaking at CPAC in Washington D.C. on February 10, 2011. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

We love to clarify some expressions and make it clear what our thoughts are on the present subject of the Clinton-Trump matter.
It looks like the article A Progressive Call to Arms made some Hillary Clinton fans angry taking we are attacking her and in favour of Donald Trump. The other way round we also had reactions from people who found we attacked Donald Trump and where in favour of Hillary Clinton, gay marriages, paedophile acts, free sex, abortion a.o..

As editor of this site I noticed that out of the very good founded negative reactions, there where also ones where the accuser could not see the difference between what our writer wrote and what the writer of the reblog article wrote.

2. Ways of reaction

First of all, please do know that all who want to react on an article may do that straight onto the particular article and do not have to use the personal e-mail addresses of the authors of this site. All reactions shall be published as long as no abusive language is used, and for this above mentioned publication some heated minds used not such nice words, not to be presented in public. F- words and swearing can be censured and replaced by dots ….., but we would prefer not to have such words being used.

Normally we also do not like it when replies are given anonymously, and if so we shall answer them if we have the impression it is not spam or phishing. For those who become marked as Spam by the WordPress Spamfilter Askimet we do not bother to reply.

3. Concerning opinions of us and of the writers of the original blog article being reblogged by us

Please do find some words here to bring clarity on some reactions to us as well as on the article A Progressive Call to Arms presented.

On November 11 “No” reacted on the site of The independent thinker’s article A Progressive Call to Arms which seem some others might think the same of us.

You preach about love and acceptance, but you gloat about how happy you are that people who voted for Hillary are crying and upset about this election.

As editor of this site I noticed that out of the very good founded negative reactions, there where also ones where the accuser could not see the difference between what our writer wrote and what the writer of the reblog article wrote. Please always keep in mind that when we reblog an article and present the short overview of it, it does no have to offer our view, or we do not have to agree with everything what is written in the reblogged article.

4. Concerning the given links to other articles

We also want to make it clear that only the heading “Additional Reading” presents articles of which we mostly totally agree with, but when they have reblogs in it, the same applies like in this sites opinion, to present a view from someone else who does not have to have totally the same views as us.

Under the heading “Further related articles”, as the title indicates, we do want to give our readers a list of some interesting literature around the spoken off subject. Though that list may have contradicting articles in it. Because we do prefer to bring an objective overview of what is thought about the subject.

To be as objective as possible for all discussions we want to present different opinions. We do believe objectivity for selecting the articles is a necessity also to keep credibility and not to come over as biassed and brainwashing.

5. Our or/and my personal opinion

Hillary Rodham Clinton, January 2007

Hillary Rodham Clinton, January 2007 (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

It is not because we do not like it that Donald Trump became president-elect that we would not present articles in favour of him. From my point of view he can well be a very dangerous candidate, or not the one who would be stabilising the country, but more the opposite, could bring more division in the United states of America, what the heated debates already proof. For those who follow my personal blog (or My space) and “Our World” it is also no secret I admire the work Barack Obama and Hillary Clinton and if they would have read my opinions on different matters they also could know that Bernie Sanders would be some one whom I wanted in the running for president. Others break me off being a communist, though I would say to them I am more an Utopist who can live with social democrats.

6. Attacked from four sites

Funny though that, from the two sites we got criticism hating the particular person (Clinton and Trump) and people calling us names because we would be for abortion and other things they are against (homos). On the other hand we also got reactions from transgender who were not pleased with certain links we placed.
We understand that these might be people who are worried about their loved ones, worried about the future of their families, and their healthcare, and the state of their country. They also seem to give the impression to be worried about their rights, but then we do wonder if they are also worried about the rights of others. That is one facet we want to come up for, for all people their rights. Good people but also bad people have their rights … also criminals do have their rights (many seem to forget that, or not want to give them rights). But in the heated debate about the controversy around Trump-Clinton many seem to considers other citizens as criminals though they are not.

A lot of people also want to see the world in black and white and do forget that there are shades of grey. In a way have received remarks from the different camps to be in favour of the other camp might proof we were not so bad with our remarks, being somewhere in the middle, showing different aspects of one or the other group which should be under consideration.

7. LGBT, Transgender people versus Eunuchs and Androgynous persons and sexism

Violet Velvet has good reason to be upset with some writings in the articles we presented in our selection on the reblog A Progressive Call to Arms. Certainly when she looks at an article of Florence Selvan, who lives in Bangalore, India, who claims to like woman as a beautiful creation of God.

Though this Florece Selvan, writing “Perceptions” under Flo Sel on WordPress, when she writes over transgenders does have a weird look on such other creations of God. Where did she get it from to speak about eunuchs and having it about transgender people as if they are both the same, plus writing it in a very negative way?

The Kızlar Ağası, head of the black eunuchs of the Ottoman Imperial Harem. The title literally means “Chief of the Girls”.

Violet Velvet and others may not forget that though in their region there may not exist eunuchs any more, they still exist in the world. Though Florence Selvan and others should also know that transgenderism has nothing to do with eunuchs as such (except when you limit it to the idea of a man who has had his sexual organs removed, what some might do) or people taken away (like a castrate) deprived or losing the testes or external genitals, having made incapable of reproducing his species..

In this time and age people have to come aware that “Transgender persons” may include transsexuals, transgenderists (in one usage of the term, persons who gender-identify with the opposite sex but who choose not to undergo sex-reassignment surgery or hormone treatments), and androgynes (biologically or psychologically androgynous persons), among other groups. In its broader sense, transgender is closely related to the more-recent term genderqueer, which is self-applied by persons who are either transgender or who have no gender, a third (neither male nor female) gender, or a fluctuating gender, but which is a term which I would not prefer to use because they are not “queer“, though some of them might be eccentric, or unconventional. They might be odd in the eyes of many but have not to be unbalanced mentally and they too should have the right to live in our society.

LGBT publications, pride parades, and related events, such as this stage at Bologna Pride 2008 in Italy, increasingly drop the LGBT initialism instead of regularly adding new letters, and dealing with issues of placement of those letters within the new title.

Sel Flo wrote pehaps with good intention, under the heading “love Others”

There’s so much more to learn about eunuchs and LGBT, but for now, I choose not to ignore them but be nice to them whenever I get to see them and make them know their life is respected and valuable. {Love others – Transgenders}

but does not comprehends what a transgender really is and what such a person often has to endure. The same with several people in the United States being against those male and female people who find that they are not sitting in the right corps, and want to change that situation, transferring their (sexual) outlook. Though people who are feeling offended by her article should not take it so personal and perhaps better try to give that writer a better insight in transgenderism.

“No” in his/her reaction may think we are not in the knowledge

They’re worried about whether or not they could possibly be deported, or that they may die without access to health insurance. People who are afraid because of the racism and violence surrounding them, about what might happen to their children.

and asks

Are you pleased and proud when you read news stories today about little girls getting their pussies grabbed in school? People scrawling racist messages on people’s lockers in school, on the outside of buildings? Children being told by other children that now they’re going to “go back where they came from”? This is what makes you happy? This has made you smile for the last three days? Really?

By placing the link to the reblogged article and to the one on transgenders we did not want to hurt people, though we might have stepped on many toes (hence the name of this site).

The unknown reactor (who reacted on The independent thinker 2016 a progressive call to arms under the name “No”) like others who accused us for agreeing with the awful actions of Mr. Trump, should know that we detest such sexism from any person and do not find it acceptable in our civilised world. (In case they would have read our other articles that sexist attitude was one of the elements we put in the spotlight as one of the reasons not to vote for Trump.)

LGBT flagWe are totally against the sexist attitude to value one or an other person of one or another sex as less valuable. But as such we also demand people to accept people who changed their sex or who have same sex relationships, as long as they do not harm others with it. We also complained that too many American voters seem to think that all homophiles or male gay are paedophiles, and that certain people think or find it justified that males in higher functions just can do whatever they like with people from the other sex. Those Americans who think transgender are people who have a psychosexual disorder which creates for them  an obsession with children as sex objects and would have them to overt acts, including taking sexual explicit photographs, molesting children, and exposing one’s genitalia to children, have really no idea what transgenderism is and should be educated to understand such people.

Many also seem to overlook that those now having come in charge already passed laws making it legal for businesses to discriminate against members of the LBGT+ community and that Mike Pence passed laws discriminating against a woman’s right to choose.

8. More than one community targetted

Black Lives Matter die-in protesting alleged police brutality in Saint Paul, Minnesota, September 20, 2015

We also may not forget that Donald Trump has not limited his hate-speech to members of just one community. People may not think we would also be blind for several crimes done by people from the black community. We can understand the ex-schoolmaster who wrote

The problem is that certain segments of our society are in denial about some of the crimes committed in our country. For example, the Black Lives Matter supporters blame the police for the killing of a few black people some of whom had criminal records.  But they ignore the fact that the greatest killers of black people are other black people. In Chicago, the murder rate of black on black is greater than the casualties we suffered in Afghanistan. So why doesn’t the Black Lives Matter supporters focus on the greatest killer of young black men? {A Progressive Anti-Trump View Point With My Rebuttal}

kkkThough since Trump was chosen the extreme right parties and the KKK think they have again ground to stand up and to bring actions against coloured people. Just a few of the spate of racial incidents are given in the article The Great Divide Widens.

Even when there may have been blacks who voted for Trump they are warned that their votes do not matter. When in schools youngsters may find again on the toilet doors “Whites only,” “White America” and “Trump”, plus see everywhere slogans who should remind people to whom America (so called) belongs “#Go back to Africa” and “Make America great again,” the whole world should look in agony to that state which calls itself a free country. And for American Christians it should be reason enough to ring the alarm bell.

9. Rage against Jews, Marxists and communists

Camden41, the retired public school administrator who wrote

The inference here is the Nazis Party coming for the Socialists, etc. Well the word Nazis is an abbreviation for Nationalsozialistische Deutsche Arbeiterpartei.  The translation is National Socialist German Workers Party. Notice the second word is Socialist and the forth word is Workers. If you read about Germany from 1917 to 1920 there were a host of new political parties competing for power in German. Street battles were fought between competing left wing groups and between competing left and right wing groups. In 1919 two Jewish Marxists, Rosa Luxemburg and Karl Liebknecht, tried to overthrow the Weimar Government through violent revolution. It was brutally suppressed and Luxemburg and Liebknecht were executed. Because of this event and others, Hitler as a World War I soldier considered Marxists, Communists and Jews to be traitors.  This is what fueled his rage against them. {A Progressive Anti-Trump View Point With My Rebuttal}

He should know that the ideology of the Nationalsozialistische Deutsche Arbeiterpartei or NSDAP, the political party of the mass movement known as National Socialism was “own people first” and that their hate for Jews did not arose from the attempt to overthrow the Weimar Republic. The leadership of Adolf Hitler, brought a totalitarian regime in Germany in 1933 and its methods brought not only Europe but the whole world in turmoil until 1945 and even several years after World war II.

Some of us having remembrances of those years and we having been imprinted very much by our family how such attitude of mind could bring terror on a whole society, even having had family members also been victims of the camps, do know what agony such attitude of a dictator and of a swept away people can mean.

That we compare what is happening in America to that person is because we have felt it ourselves what happened so many years ago and saw how many people were blind or did not want to see it what was going on or what was going to happen.

The hate for the Jews had much deeper roots and in a bad economical situation in many countries those masters in finances always have been the easy target, because they mostly seemed to have it better than the poor locals.

Bijbelvorsers writing

In Europe we have seen the vitriol and hate spreading of Donald Trump and how he created division. As such we can understand people over there now are afraid of violence under a Trump presidency. {A Progressive Call to Arms}

is a general impression of many Europeans, but got the American reaction

What nonsense! You are either a victim of propaganda or ignorant of what is happening in this nation. {A Progressive Anti-Trump View Point With My Rebuttal}

It can well be w e do not know enough what is happening in the United States, but than that would come of not enough information or the wrong information reaching us. He writes

We have had a crime wave from illegal immigrants.  Murders, rapes, etc. in such numbers that many Americans voted for Trump to stop the violence and return our nation to law and order. Fueling the crimes are the drugs flowing over our unprotected open southern border.  Are you not aware that our Border Patrol police fully supported Trump?  Are you not aware that police forces throughout the US supported Trump?  Are you not aware that over 200 generals and admirals supported Trump? {A Progressive Anti-Trump View Point With My Rebuttal}

In case, like you say and like we know that many from the police-force voted for Trump, it also can mean that the U.S. of A. has become a police state, which should have us worrying as well.

That

Only the ignorant would associate the KKK with the Republicans. It was also Eisenhower, a Republican President, who used the law to enforce the integration of schools in the 1950s. {A Progressive Anti-Trump View Point With My Rebuttal}

is not taking into account, or even ignoring, that the weapon lobby and several racist groups and Neo-nazis as well as the Ku Klux Klan gave money to support the Republican Party candidate. In case police, other armed forces and KKK where so eager to vote for Trump that does tell a lot to us about the agenda of Trump in which those people could find themselves. for us in Europe even a more clear signal that we do have to be very careful about that person who became president elect recently.

10. Winners and losers

Obama-Biden Transition

Obama-Biden Transition (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

We accept that the American people have chosen and for a system (Electoral college) and for a person who by them could be nominated to be the next president of the United States of America. that we call all Americans to their senses and to respect the outcome of the voting, not going on the streets to fight for it, does not mean we agree how everything worked out or that we would stand behind one or the other without seriously taking into account what they want to accomplish and even more important How they want to accomplish something.

For the ones, like “No” who think we do not realize that the States has come into a difficult situation whereby many people are not just upset because their candidate lost, they should know we are very aware that their fear might be very legitimate and real. (They also should now that Trump never has been our candidate to become the president of such International important state.)

No writes

Most of these people just wanted to live in a place where they didn’t have to worry about being assaulted for their religion, or race, or gender. They do not deserve this condescension and smug attitude.

But than he totally goes wrong saying

They do not deserve to see people like yourself bragging about how they had this coming to them because they voted for Hillary, and this is their punishment.

We advised people not voting for Trump and if No would have read our material much better he would have seen that after Bernie Sanders was out we also advised his voters And republicans to go for the safety of the country and as such to voter for Hillary Clinton.

Many of these people, like myself, were Bernie supporters, trying to stop what they thought might be the end of their civil rights. They wanted to do the right thing. They wanted to see this country united in love, not in hate.

It makes me sick to see posts like your most recent one, gloating about people being upset with the election results. Have some empathy. Have some compassion for these people. They voted for a candidate that you didn’t like, but now many of them are suffering the consequences of seeing millions of racists emboldened because their candidate won. This is what you want? This fills you with joy?

For the record, as said above we have nothing at all against Hillary Clinton nor Bernie Sanders (we like him very much), and for the Republican lovers we have nothing against several party members and even could have found Carlson a good candidate.

But to say that those who vote for Hillary Clinton would be helping her with her criminal activities {Hillary is the only candidate with this record…} is to take short views. And to say because we advised to vote for the Democratic Party’s candidate Clinton does not mean we do not like many of Bernie Sanders his iedeas, which are more in line with my political thinking.

11. Time for additional parties in the United States of America

We are aware of the diversity within the Republic Party, also in the Democratic Party. We even would find it much better that several who are now still belonging to those parties would go out of those parties and create some new parties to give a better balance in the American politics, offering so much more choices for people to vote for, and having a better representation of the diversity in the population.

Do not think we are not aware of some other parties in the U.S.A. The liberals and Green party being the more usable acceptable political parties, but we also have seen the guy with his cowboy hat defending all the weapon carrying, and then also some girl (of which I forgot the parties name) who did not seem to live in a realistic political world. But please enlighten us and give an overview of all the political parities on which the American population can vote for a president, and tell us how the ones who have not enough money would be able ever to go for president candidate.

The retired public school administrator and history professor who taught Western Civilization, American Civil War, United States History, Economic History, Ancient & Medieval Foundations, American History Since 1945, commented

I can supply a list of people of different minorities who are Republicans and Republican supporters.  Also are you aware that Elbert Guillory who is a Louisiana State African-American politician switched from being a Democrat to a Republican two years ago?  When he was asked why he switched, he said, “I was tired of the same old false promises of helping my constituents by the Democrats.  My constituents are worse off today than 50 years ago.  The only thing the Democrats have done is given us a government plantation.”) {A Progressive Anti-Trump View Point With My Rebuttal}

It is also known and shown to Europeans that many Democrats after so many generations and years being for the one group went to the other camp wearing the Trump gadgets, proud to go for change. But is it not that many citizens just had to switch from the Democratic party to the Republicans because there was no other valuable alternative.

The U.S.A. like Great-Britain shall have to come to learn that countries in the present time may better be governed by more than two political parties. A legislative power vested in both the government and a chamber of parliament, Senate and a Chamber of Representatives, having a variety of parties making coalitions.

12. Workforce and Feeling for others

Camden 41 asks us

If Trump is so much a bigot why does he have so many minorities working for him even in executive positions {A Progressive Anti-Trump View Point With My Rebuttal}

In the lower echelons he used lots of people, he wants now to put out of the country, because they were cheap labour for him and he knew they would not protest, because then they would be nowhere. For the executive positions it would not surprise us that Mr. Trumps shall use any body as long as he or she is usable for him. It looks a person who is willing to go over corpses to get his goal. In the end it shall be a person who shall not show any compassion for anybody. At his campaign he showed already how he could make use of people and how he could abandon them.

For those who called us names and did find we do not have compassion for people, we want to assure them we just feel for others and try to have empathy with many.

If you truly cared about love and acceptance, and were a compassionate person, you would feel a sadness for these people, not happiness at their despair. {wrote No}

We are not at all

gleeful about the outcome of this election. {No}

Though No’s reaction may not be directed to us, but more to the writer of the reblogged article, I found it important to react to some of his words, because our readers coming to the reblogged article and coming to read further, should know clearly where we stand in all this, and what our opinion is.

13. Not spreading hate nor killing

We do not want spreading hate, but would like to shed light on the circumstances we all have to face. Only by open debate, willingness to listen to all parties involved, analysing all things said, and having the will to understand the way of thinking of the other, willing to show empathy, we shall be able to come to know more, to enrich one another and to come to live together in peace.

Not only racism is ingrained in several societies, also prejudice or partiality and short-sightedness create a lot of unnecessary problems in many countries and many societies. Everywhere people should come to understand that liberty and freedom can only be fully existing there where people are willing to respect the freedom and choices of others.

Progressives and Hillary supporters are hypocrites!  On the one hand they say kill fully formed babies but spare murders the death penalty.  They also support sparing animals from being killed for furs but kill babies. {A Progressive Anti-Trump View Point With My Rebuttal}

We, like many other Clinton supporters never said to kill fully formed babies. We are even not for abortion, but do defend those who would like to undergo an abortion.

In reaction to Make Religious Freedom Great Again I also expressed my self for myself and for my Christian community, saying that in a democracy, those who believe in the Most High Divine Creator should have full respect for their Maker as well as for the one God Who allows to be in charge of the nation.

Like Jesus taught his followers to have respect for the Caesar and the system which was ruling over them, we too should be humble and accept the vote of the majority. We also should know that real believers in God are the minority and that those who are children of God would have to follow their heart but also have to protect and come up for the weaker ones and for those who are at the marginal site of the society (tramps, transgender, psychopaths, criminals, the ill and poor). As Christians, i.e. following Jesus Christ we may not exclude any one, even not our worst enemy. For all people around us we should have an open hand, an open heart and a listening ear. For all around us we should be prepared to help and to be ready to come to be there for them.

Papapound and others, may think I would be ‘for’ abortion; Not at all.

We are against any necessary killing, be it plants, animals or people.

I am against abortion. But I do know that in certain cases choices can be made which we would not prefer. We always have to take into account the circumstances a person came into such situation, she has to make such a difficult choice … because do know often it is not such an easy choice. When a person is a victim of rape, who are we to going to decide that woman does not want any remembrance of her rapist facing her every day of her further life?
I know she could have taken the ‘morning after pill’, but that is by many also already considered ‘abortion’ or something ‘not to be done’. I my self would not like to see some needing or willing to take such a drug. Also a a contraceptive women do not have to use chemical medical drugs, but can use other preservatives or methods for not becoming pregnant (e.g. temperature methods). But in a society where there should be freedom of thought I should respect the choice of the other person. I have no right to decide over the body and/or mind of others. As such it is also not to me to judge those who are born in a body and afterwards do feel like it is not their body nor their personality. What right do have hetero’s to cast away gay, transgender and other people who are not like them and whom they often may not like?

The person going to lead the country should be there for all sorts of peoples and all sorts of men and women living in his nation. He should be the protective ‘father’ of all in the nation.

If a boy feels he is really a girl, wants to be recognised as a woman and finds in the medical world the solution to help him to get a body that feels like ‘her’, who I am or any body else, to forbid such a choice? The same for a girl who has the feeling she is a male being and wants to take part in the male activities as an equal?

God has given man talents and the medical profession is one of the higher goods God provided for man. In case the medical world can bring solutions for people who are not feeling right in their skin, why should they not have the free choice to get what they want with and for their body and mind?
Also those, who have part of their body male and part of it female, why should they stay excluded from a normal life in our present society? I do agree two centuries ago those people could only survive by acting in circuses and to be a rarity on fairs. Did we not come more civilised?
Have we no better feelings for such people who are confined in a tortured body and soul?

For homosexuals, transgender and other people, they should be able to go to places for care where there is no objection to their choice of being or against their longings, like having children and caring for a family. Many Christians in America seem to have lots of difficulties with that. Perhaps they better ask themselves what would Jesus do and what would Jesus expect me to do?

14. Political correctness and free choice

I am against a state pampering and overruling everything and everybody. Also the ‘overcorrection’ and absurdities like not allowing schools to use the word ‘mother’, ‘mom’, ‘mams’, dad’, papa’ is just absurd, the same as those who do not want that we use the word “zwarte piet” (black Pete) and may not have those helpers of Saint Nicolas have black painted faces.

But I also disagree with the state ruling that Catholic or Protestant hospitals have to do things against their faith. If people want to have something done to them of which we religious people would not agree to, they should have the right to go to other places where such things can be done to them. But for general state hospitals everybody from whatever religion or class should be helped in the way that person would love to be helped, and as such when an abortion is required in that state hospital or in any neutral clinic such people should receive help in this difficult matter.

The same for the uniforms in schools. I totally disagree with states who (like the Belgian government) forbid in state schools that children wear any religious symbol. That goes in against the freedom of choice and against the respect of man himself and of his religious choice. In a state or provincial school each pupil should be free to wear any religious symbol, be it a cross, a fish, a David star, a yarmulke, a headscarf, a long dress, cloths which cover arms and legs, decent shorts or trousers. But when a Muslim wants to go to a Christian school he or she can not complain about the uniform he or she has to wear and has to go swimming with both sexes in the same swimming pool (though I can accept they can demand separate clothing rooms for male and females). It is their free choice to go to whatever denominational or non-denominational school. When somebody goes to a Bible-school he or she can not complain that before classes start there is been read from the Bible and been said prayers and that even at times they have it about a three-headed god. Those who only want to worship The Only One True God (like me) should make their choice in such a way that the children are brought up in a Christian, Jewish or Islam way, respecting that Oneness of God.

Having religious/and/or ethic or liberal education an obligated subject, all schools in Belgium are obligated to offer 5 main religious denominations plus ethics or morals. I do know in the United States of America they still do not have such a provision, mainly because conservative Christians would be against such a system, but also one may find such education is not at all the task of the governement and that should be something each individual family should have to decide for themselves. But then this would create that children do not know about the other religions. Like in our country all children have to learn about the other religions and about the other philosophies, as such avoiding that the citizens would grow up with wrong ideas about the other religion, something which we can clearly see in the United states. In the U.S.A. lots of Americans have a totally wrong concept of the other Christian denominations and, even worse, about the other religious groups, in particular the Islam. Because in the States at school nobody was obliged to read the Bible nor the Quran they can not openly properly discuss with each other and see where certain groups claim things which are not written in those holy Scriptures.

15. Freedom and Knowledge safeguard for the future

Featured Image -- 7136Only knowledge can safeguard the future of a state and not like we can see the bad evolution now of many states (even the Belgian state) trying to keep their youngsters dumb and not thinking for themselves. A really dangerous evolution. (As a teacher I myself had the last ten years of my career, to lower the level of the courses each subsequent year and had to see the degradation of the bachelor, Licences and Masters degrees, not only until I retired, but saw it continuing and schools aiming for better evaluation marks and more people coming out with so called high cyphers but less knowledge.)

The freedom spoken off in the constitution of France, America and some other countries based on the French revolution was made to guarantee each individual’s freedom. Each citizen of a state should have the right to make his or her own choices concerning the own body and concerning himself or herself. If we want to belief in One True God, that should be our right. If we want to worship that Maker of the Universe, that should be our right. But others who want to worship a tri-une god, trees, planets or do find such things rubbish should have the right to worship those or not to worship anything.

Also for what people want to eat, all should have the freedom to eat and drink whatever they want, like for all things, as long they do not hinder other persons with it. If you want to eat pork meat or blood, that is your full right, but if a Jew, Christian, or Muslim does not want to eat pork that should be his or her right too, and nobody may force him or her to do so. The same for people like me, who prefer to eat more vegetables and prefer to eat natural non-tampered foods, we should have the right and the possibility to have vegetarian or vegan or kosher or halal meals. Also me not wanting to eat blood or having contributed blood, should be in the liberty not to have a blood-transfusion.

It looks like such allowances to others seems to be something very difficult to cope with by North Americans. When I hear certain Christians talk about the amendments and their freedom, they often only think about their own denomination and their own particular choices. A great example is the use of weapons. How can it be that a Christian would carry or would use weapons and even teach their children to use guns? Though those so called Christians living in the United states of America call it their inexorable law.

16. Right to kill or to wear weapons

The papist and editor of the WordPress blog The Good News in the reactions on his article Make Religious Freedom Great Again writes

“Carrying” a gun is NOT the issue in America. Of course hunting is not the issue. If caught killing in wanton waste, there are high fines. If it continues, you go to jail. We have laws for all your concerns. Not sure where you are getting your data on gun use and waste in America. {comment on the carrying of guns}

America has a different cultural heritage and Constitution than other cultures. I don’t believe that there is no hunting in Belgium. There is lots of hunting in America. Hunting is a big sport. That is the main purpose for the love of guns. Also it puts meat on the table (I eat meat–I used to be a vegetarian). Are guns used irresponsibly–every day. I put that mostly to lack of guidance from elders and the welfare state. {Good news now WordPress 2016/11/11/ Make religious freedom great again/#comment-3443}

In Belgium, like in other countries in Europe we do have hunting under strict laws, but that does not comprehend having people carrying weapons just like that or for their own defence.

In Belgium people also do eat meat of untamed animals or venison, brought on the table because there where hunters killing those animals. But those in charge of the hunt have to go through a selection and have to pass the exams for hunting. But when they are Christians they too should keep in mind what God expects from us how to treat the things we want to eat. We may not kill animals nor plants just for pleasure and may not waste food, as such only do it out of necessity and for necessity (e.g. keeping a balance).

But such weapon-carrying should never be for carrying it as a defence weapon or to use against human beings, and that is what many Christian Americans learn. In Europe we have seen lots of examples where the target when practising is a figure of a human being. We also hear enough of innocent killings in schools, because youngsters could have access easily to such deathly tools.

Christians always should promote life and should be ready for those who have problems concerning life matters. Anti-conception is also part of such life matters, to avoid worse decisions. Every civilised country should make it that there should be no reason to discuss abortion. The same every country should protect its citizens that no accidents or no crimes can be done by dangerous tools, like all sorts of guns.

Why should a citizens being able to buy war guns, or even pistols (which are not much use for hunting I think), but also why would people have to be allowed to wear certain knifes when they are not working on the field or in the wild or on hunt?
Certain knifes can well be accepted in certain occasions but not in others, the same for certain rifles.

But as Christians we should not carry guns at all. Even if you want to eat wild flesh, the hunting can be done by others, let them do it. Plants, animals, human beings are all creatures of God we should respect. We may not tamper with our food and may not spill or kill living things unnecessary or for fun.

All those American Christians should remember that

“Freedom means not limiting the freedom of others”

and that they themselves should also always keep to the teachings they so call promote. So often we hear Americans shouting to “Love the Lord” and saying that they are Christian and that others should become Christians.  As such they and we, as Christians, should promote Life (and not death by the use of weapons or by medical tools) and should promote peace and respectfulness for all around us, even when they are not of the same opinion like us.

17. Conclusion

calltoarms7All are welcome to react on certain situations and certain sayings. Such reactions should always happen in a civilised way. What we see and hear happening in the United States of America, protestors not happy that Trump became the president elect, protesting in a violent way never can receive our approval. But certain sayings and action of that political figure who in the coming four years has to lead an enormous nation can’t receive our approbation either. Also us giving our fiat for one way of thinking does not have to mean we exclude all other ways of thinking of the counterpart.

Life is never build up on only two colours black and white. Luckily there may be lots of variations in shades and in colours but also in opinions. Having different opinions on different subjects can only enrich our society and make us to think continuously about those matters discussed. Together we all should construct a society where as many people as possible can live in peace.

People need to find ways to live with each other in a situation that can be pleasant for all parties involved. They should look for ways to be united, not divided.

I thank all people who took the time to read this article and who are willing to take time to read our other articles. I am also very grateful for those readers like papapound and camden41 who were willing to spend time in reading our material and to comment on it, at their own sites (though pity Camden 41 did not make our replies public on his site).

Marcus  Ampe
Founder and editor of Stepping Toes and From Guestwriters

Peace Love Write

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Preceding articles

Islamophobia Must be Fought and Defeated

Stand Up

God Isn’t a Republican

American Christianity no longer resembles its Founder

A Progressive Call to Arms

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Additional articles

  1. Mass Media’s Deception Causing Division
  2. American Senate ignoring many voices and tears of their own people
  3. The twist of politics and expression
  4. Where is the USA wanting to go with the freedom of their people
  5. Walls,colours, multiculturalism, money to flow, Carson, Trump and consorts
  6. Coming closer to the end of 2015 and the end for Donald Trump as presidential candidate
  7. Looking at an American nightmare
  8. Fearmongering succeeded and got the bugaboo a victory
  9. Blinded crying blue murder having being made afraid by a bugaboo
  10. Some quotes Americans should remember when going to the ballot office
  11. When so desperate to hold onto power
  12. The clean sweeper of the whole caboodle
  13. A strong and wise fighter who keeps believing in America
  14. Brexit No. 2 Blow-up
  15. Voted against their system
  16. Nigel Farage called Donald Trump’s victory ‘bigger than Brexit’
  17. A philosophical error which rejects the body as part of the human person
  18. About lions and babies
  19. Youngsters, parents and the search to root in life
  20. Westboro Baptist Church and Catholic Truth against Nelson Mandela
  21. Always a choice
  22. Human relations 2013
  23. 2014 Culture
  24. 2014 Human Rights
  25. 2015 Human rights
  26. From Guestwriters 2015 in review
  27. Same sex realtionships and Open attitude mirroring Jesus
  28. Tony Campolo Calls for Full Inclusion of LGBT Into the Church
  29. Cincinnati outlaws quoting the Bible
  30. Study says highlighting gender leads to stereotypes
  31. Roman Catholic Church in the United States of America at war
  32. The Catholic synod on the family and abortion
  33. Two synods and life in the church community
  34. Need to Embrace People Where They Are
  35. Belonging to or being judged by
  36. Trump et al.— The Global Storm
  37. A strong and wise fighter who keeps believing in America

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Further related articles

  1. “Reality” and the Trump Election: Social Desirability and The Donald
  2. President Trump. Why the surprise??
  3. Trump v. Clinton
  4. Trump and the hidden racism inside us
  5. The New Balance Of Power In The Wake Of A Potentially Unstable US President
  6. America’s #1 Thug Said WHAT???
  7. The World According to President Trump
  8. A Liar in the Oval Office Could Threaten the World’s Order
  9. How the Electoral College skews our perceptions
  10. Here’s How Campaigns Would Work If We Abolished the Electoral College
  11. Hillary Clinton encourages supporters in first public remarks since conceding election
  12. Political Perfection. Ronald Reagan, Margaret Thatcher, Donald Trump, Theresa May
  13. Donald Trump meeting with old nemesis Nikki Haley about cabinet positions
  14. Jon Stewart: Donald Trump Is A ‘Repudiation Of Republicans’
  15. Why Trump? To The Intelligentsia From The Flyover Zone
  16. what the church is supposed to do now #ElectionAftermath
  17. Bernie Sanders: Trump Must Dump Steve Bannon — ‘President Can’t Have Racist At His Side’
  18. Donald Trump Is Threatening To Cut All Federal Funding To “Sanctuary Cities”
  19. A Response to Piers Morgan’s Daily Mail Article: ‘Memo to millennials, that awful feeling you’ve got is called losing. It happens. If you want to know how to win, stop whinging for a bit and learn some lessons from Trump’
  20. Moving forward
  21. You Didn’t Get Punk’d
  22. John Stewart says “nobody asked Donald Trump what makes America great”
  23. Glavin: TrumpWorld – The global order we all grew up with is finished, period
  24. This is Our Country
  25. Bernie Sanders Wants Donald Trump to Apologize
  26. One Race-Humanity
  27. Racism Did Not Elect Donald Trump
  28. Remembering The Dead – TDoR
  29. In Development: Web Site Aggregating Legal Resources for Transgender People
  30. DIY transitioning; this time its personal
  31. Now What?
  32. Transgendered Deserve Equality, Rights
  33. Dear healthcare provider
  34. 16 Officers Unlawfully Detain Black Trans Woman
  35. Bathroom Bans
  36. Baptized Out Of Tradition
  37. Celebrating Trans Lives
  38. We Need to Be United, Not Divided
  39. California Teachers Offered “Anti-Hate, Trump Teaching Plan” To “Empower Students”
  40. On gestures, meaningless and otherwise
  41. Gender Roles and Binaries in Julianna Baggott’s Pure (Deanne B. and Laura M.)
  42. It is vital we talk about the welfare of trans kids
  43. Week One in Trump’s America
  44. #NotMyPresident
  45. The Curse of the Alpha Female
  46. Donald Trump Tells Supporters to Stop Hate Crimes: Don’t Give Him Any Credit
  47. To the people calling us babies and telling us to grow up because our candidate didn’t win:
  48. The Truth About Why There is Rampant Disaffection
  49. San Francisco Teacher Defends Lesson Plan Calling Trump Racist, Sexist
  50. White Supremacists Have Control of our Elected Offices, our Militia, Police, Guns, Christian Congregations, and the Media, . . . but we shouldn’t be alarmed.
  51. One Week Since The Election
  52. “I do it for all the little girls”
  53. Why the Left is to blame for Donald Trump
  54. How am I supposed to be Thankful right now?
  55. We’ve Become Desensitised to Racism
  56. Street harassment, and silence
  57. The persecution of women isn’t just about ‘everyday sexism’; it’s life or death
  58. Against normalizing Trump and his ways
  59. Lauren Heuser: Clinton did lots wrong, but simple sexism remains a major reason why she lost to Trump
  60. A Handy Guide to De-Bunking Mansplaining and Sexist Pub Shouting Matches (Thanks for the Feminist Fuel Mr Trump)
  61. in re: “trump won because leftist political correctness inspired terrifying backlash”
  62. It’s Donald Duck!
  63. Love Trumps Hate
  64. Trumpocalypse?
  65. Media’s Role in the US Election
  66. Donald Trump, the Medicaid Monster, and Entitlement “Cuts”
  67. We shall be governed no better than we deserve…
  68. Break Up the Democratic Party by Michael Hudson
  69. The Kids Are Alright, Trump and Sitting On a Man
  70. California Teachers Offered “Anti-Hate, Trump Teaching Plan” To “Empower Students”
  71. Don’t Let Clinton’s ‘Basket of Deplorables’ Divide the Office
  72. Is it Right to Boycott Ivanka Trump’s brand because of her father’s misconduct towards women?
  73. This Isn’t About JUST Race
  74. We Need to Be United, Not Divided

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30 things to start doing for yourself – #6 is vital.

30 things to start doing for yourself – #6 is vital.

Being sitting on a bench or jumping across many people lying down, the beautiful photographs tell us the inner stories, the battle,the struggle but also the winner, the way to accomplish. 100% sure doing nothing will not bring anything good to it. It won’t work.

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Whatever dreams me may have, whatever lovely thoughts we would love to carry with us on our life path, we must believe in ourselves and may not hesitate to go for that gut-feeling and inner wish. We may not only listen to those who say it is idiotic or impossible. Nothing is impossible as long as you believe it can be possible. No matter how it turns out, when you would not have tried it you would always regret it not having tried.

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Look at the beautiful things around you. Open your eyes but keep dreaming very much awake. Dare to see and accept that it always will end up just the way it should be. Either you succeed or you learn something. Win-Win.

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* In life, it’s rarely about getting a chance; it’s about taking a chance.  *

* Be happy for those who are making progress. Cheer for their victories. Be thankful for their blessings, openly. *
* What goes around comes around, and sooner or later the people you’re cheering for will start cheering for you. *

* Remind yourself that you can and will grow stronger from these hard times. And remain conscious of your blessings and victories – all the things in your life that are right. Focus on what you have, not on what you haven’t. *

*Do what you know in your heart is right. *

* The journey of a thousand miles begins with one step. Whatever it is you dream about, start taking small, logical steps every day to make it happen. Get out there and Do something! *

* Everyone’s life has positive and negative aspects – whether or not you’re happy and successful in the long run depends greatly on which aspects you focus on. *

* Wealth is the ability to fully experience life. *

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Find Also to read:

  1. See the conquest and believe that we can gain the victory
  2. Not holding back and getting out of darkness
  3. Live …
  4. Luck
  5. Choices
  6. If we view the whole world through a lens that is bright
  7. Don’t Envy the World
  8. Right to be in the surroundings
  9. By counting our blessings we not only feel good, but we multiply our good
  10. Never making mistakes because never doing anything
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Running away from the past

Being born, growing up. Days which start and days which finish. Days and nights, working hours, moments of rest and relaxation. From baby, encountering lots of difficulties in our will to try to find out and to try to do things. when times come before our eyes and we see them go past, we can only see that somehow we keep carrying them with us for the rest of our life. We sometimes we think we forget them, but suddenly they reappear. Sometimes we can not let the past  for something what is gone. It may have been fortunate or may have been awful.

English: Students look at a section of the exp...

Students look at a section of the exposed Wasatch Fault, a classic normal fault located in North Salt Lake, Utah. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

How many people do we not know who are trying to run away from their past? Sometimes we meet people who do not want to be remembered of their past. Several people do everything they can to get all remembrances of their past out of their way. Others only want to keep certain pictures going around to show the better part of their passed moments. As such they can get the less nice moments into oblivion.

Nobody wants to remind those painful moments of their life. We all want to dream of better moments and of miraculous and magical life. If things happened in our lives which we did not like, we prefer to put the fault to something or some one else. Mostly we do not want to see the fault by ourselves, and when we see that we ourselves where at fault often we do not want to admit it. Most of us do not want to have the pain to be remembered at those bad things that happened in our lives.

We would love to see that no bad things would happen to us. As soon as everything seems to go so smoothly, then with a finger snatch everything seems to go wrong. Moods change so easily.

Many of us do not like it when things go wrong or when we are brought in a bad mood. Most of us do not want to be angry or in a bad mood, but the anger and bad mood come again and again.

What can we do against it?

One moment everything looks to go enormously well, the other moment everything turns out to go terrible. The world has seen times were people had peace with each other and at other moments they seemed not to be able to cope with each-other. At times people had difficulty to survive and had to face thirst and hunger. Sometimes even the same people could find more than enough of it all. Often the might have found abundance, but really did not appreciate it or did not know they had so much, until they had lost it.

All of us probably have seen times of joy but also times of sorrow.

We are just a ball in the game of life, rolling from one side to the other.

How often we do like it to be rolled from one place to the other in case it could bring us something better (we think)? But how often did we not make the wrong choice, did we choose for the wrong party? How many times did we want to blame ourselves when it did not turn out like we had hoped?

In certain religions, people created somebody they could blame for what went wrong. Some like to think on their left shoulder is sitting a bad ‘ghost‘ or ‘devil‘ which lures them in the bad situations. It is that devil which makes them to have bad choices, doing things wrong, having bad or making them cross with others. Is that not easy to blame such a devil?

Like the pendulum of the always ticking clock we are pulled form the right to the left, from the good to the wrong or to the bad, and than there are others who want us to choose. Is that not difficult?

Why do so many people want to make it so complicated whilst life can be less complicated?

When something happened, why do we want to forget it and leave it in the past like it never happened. Why do we not want to take the opportunity to learn from it and to keep it in our mind to remember ourselves how we next time should not do it that way or should not let it turn out like it did previously?

It is impossible to turn back the time. What happened happened. How many times did we give the excuse we needed more time?

Did we ever think that if we would have accepted our own strength and would have shared it more with the other we could have reached much more? How many times did we want to hear the other for the good of us growing and did we want to work together to make everything better without having ourselves in the picture as the one who could make everything better? So often people do not want to hear the voice of an other in their mind, telling them to do what they should do. But when they did something others do not like, they are the first one to tell tit was somebody else his idea, or somebody else’s fault something went wrong.

Lots of people do enjoy it to look at others their mistakes or failings. How many do not like to listen to gossip and rumours and evil insinuations? when we hear people talking around us talking about others, how many do not derive pleasure from the shortcomings of others, especially those who have previously appeared to be models of uprightness or have been in the footlights?

Have you tried to hear the voice which comes over all the din of the market, the buzz of social gossip, the stamping and mirth of the pleasure spots?

How often we feel that wrong is done to us and do we want to have revenge? How many of us when we long to retaliate for wrongs done to us, hear again that calming voice penetrates our hurt and our angry frustration?

We should come to know that vengeance only belongs to the Supreme Being. It is not up to us to take the law into our own hands, for God has allowed the justice system and He will repay.  (see Romans 12:19). Anger is a great bungler, and it has well been said that we get at odds when we try to get even.

It Ain't My Fault

It Ain’t My Fault (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

We can all remember moments in our life where we were angry, with or without reason. Many times in our life we had moments we could not pretend that nothing was happening that we did not like. More than once we got to the point we had to do something to make it better or to change the situations so that we could find a better way to handle or to deal with the situation or person in a non-attached way. We had moments in our life where we had to take care of what needed to be done, responding with patience and understanding, and moving on.

In our life we should come to a point realising we do have to move on. Than we should try to break the habit of a lifetime and should want to try and reinforce a new approach to how we view ourself. How we look at our self and what happened in the past is something we only ourself can change. With time we can slowly try and retrain our thinking to no longer be so hard on ourself.

We have to stop giving others but also ourselves the fault. We have to stop thinking the others are bad but also have to stop thinking we are bad. At times we might have taught we were the reason we were hurt and that it was our fault. When we were ridiculed at school or did fail to get top marks (sometimes finding 9/10 in a test wasn’t good enough and anything less than an A+ was a fail in our parents eyes).  How many people are not surrounded in their youth with negativity, blame and ridicule just kept heaping one on top of the other and that made them feel absolutely worthless.

But in the creation of the Most High nobody is worthless. Nobody is guilty for his total life. A person may have stolen bullied, not having told the truth, having sexual and other escapades, it might even be someone may have brought damage to somebody else or even murdered some one, there is hope for that person.

There has been a man in history who made arrangement than any evil person can be pardoned for the atrocities he or she might have done. Every person on this planet has his past, which can be seen as the past that has been but is also gone. We do not have to carry the past with us as a burden or like a ball of plumb hanging at our legs, like by the prisoners in the old times. All chains are broken today by one person to whom we may look up.

Today there are still lots of people who say it is impossible that there could exist a man of flesh and blood who would be willing to swipe over the faults of other people, forgive what they have done, and would not mind taking them in a reign where everybody is considered equal and live together in peace for ever.

But a barrister is provided who works pro-deo. At no cost for us that advocate will take counsel for anybody of the world who is willing to accept him to be his solicitor. He does not charge anything. The only thing he demands is that we recognise his Father and his position and that we would like to try to do the Will of his Father like he only wanted to do the Will of his Father and not his will.

When you are willing to accept that man in your life and understand what he has done for mankind, than you may forget all your previous life and start all over again. With a new slate you may start afresh. Is that not great? Would that not give any hope?

Yes you may forget your past in such circumstance, but you shall have to run away from your past also. That solicitor will require from you that you really want to turn over the page and start anew.  He will be a mediator between you and his Father, who he wants that you shall accept also as your Father in heaven. Turning over the page shall require that you run away from your past, let it be what it was, but not without forgetting to learn your lessons from it.

All people should come to see that they are fortunate and that they are saved, valued, loved and accepted for whom they are and for what they have done but even more for what they shall try to do. They all should try to see and find the good persons around them, their family who love them and care for them, and their good friends who support them, and those who are willing to accompany them to better pastures.

Let this be your time also to value yourself and to challenge and change the habit of a lifetime.

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Find to read:

  1. Malefactors becoming your master
  2. The first on the list of the concerns of the saint
  3. Doest thou well to be Angry?
  4. Be ye angry and sin not
  5. She who sows thistles will reap prickles
  6. The mistake is the one from which we learn nothing
  7. Never making mistakes because never doing anything
  8. He who smiles rather than rages is always the stronger
  9. The business of this life
  10. Be holy
  11. God does not change
  12. Singing gift from God
  13. Unconditional love
  14. No good thing will he withhold
  15. Clothe yourselves with compassion, kindness, humility, gentleness and patience
  16. Change
  17. A Living Faith #8 Change
  18. Only I can change my life
  19. Wishing to do the will of God
  20. One mediator

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Please do find also to read:

  1. Simplicity, Clarity, Beauty
  2. Tiny Seed Within
  3. Touching Peace
  • Who’s fault is it anyway? (wenonachad.wordpress.com)
    He can be dramatic and take offense at little things if he’s in the right mood. He goes from one mood to the other very quickly sometimes and he has a very anxious personality at times. Lily is the only girl. She is artistic and crafty. She is also the most spiritually minded. She has been asking questions and talking about Jesus pretty much since she learned to talk. We already feel like she had a ministry calling on her life. But she is also bossy sometimes and demanding. She likes things done her way and she will tell you that! I absolutely love my kids and daily they teach me some kind of lesson.
  • My Fault (shruti14.wordpress.com)

    Cant forget those black days you gave to me / those stains aren’t easy to wash off / Which keep me reminding of our dusk / Never can I forget that bitter words which pierced my heart

  • it is his fault (wonderlandbytatu.wordpress.com)
    One of the glorious aspects of being pregnant (again) is that I can literally blame Eeverything on the little guy inside.
  • “Its Not My Fault” (emankawas.wordpress.com)
    I have noticed a dramatic change in myself: energy is low, ambition is limited, and motivation is dissolved. It was painful to wake up to reality that “I have changed”. Now it started to become clear to me why, it’s because I have been in the defense mode for so long that I started to put it on the top my priorities and let other important things go, like (motivation, ambition, drive, humility and passion).
  • Letter to my mother (notdazedorconfused.wordpress.com)
    With no conditions. I was your baby. Then suddenly I was stupid, ugly, useless. I was nothing. Then you kept apologizing. Your temper, your mood wasn’t helping. Yelling was how you talked. I had to tolerate that. I had to hear you yelling. And believe you when you said it wasn’t my fault. I wasn’t bad in any way. I was healthy and capable. But I was also abused. Abused by the people I trusted the most. Cause I was a child. Your child. And your world. It was also mine. I can feel my heart aching as I am writing these words. So much yelling. So much pain. So much confusion. And it wasn’t my fault. As you said you were unwell. Unwell and sick.
  • Does the Truth Help or Hurt Relationships? (robertjrgraham.com)
    I really thought that if I let people know the ugly thoughts, not only would they be hurt – but they would probably become angry and disown me – betray me, talk shit behind my back. I would be the outcast.

    So I beat them to the punch! Hah! I’d banish myself to my own room (or apartment, as I got older). I’d banish myself to silence.

    You can either have a N.I.C.E. (Not Interested in Connecting Emotionally) relationship… where you hide what is true out of fear. Or you can have an alive, real relationship with intimacy, compassion and understanding.

  • S for Sorry (saikounikkou.wordpress.com)
    I’m sorry for being too selfish / sorry for always blaming / and forgot where I stand and where you stay
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Members of the ecclesia uniting and seeking God’s help in tribulation

In the readings of today we look at the brothers and sisters in Corinth some 2000 years ago.

In Belgium the community has been troubled by persons perhaps wanting to claim to have the right to make foundations and to direct the groups of people wanting to come together under the name of Christ.

Paul the Apostle, Russian icon from first quar...

Paul the Apostle, Russian icon from first quarter of 18th cen. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

We remember how the apostle Paul makes the argument that he has borne witness to the people of Corinth, he has shared the gospel, he has brought them to Christ and showed them the way but that he has to be sad because he only could see division between those who should be united as brethren and sisters in Christ.

The apostle Paul in his 5th letter to the Romans and his first three letters to the Corinths, also talks about the subject of tribulations, those times when we run into problems, or trials.

Those bad experiences are not nice, but we can learn from them. We should make it possible that we can grow from such unpleasant situations. At all times we should show our love to those who are around us and who our worth having us very close to them. Some we perhaps have to leave where they want to stay far away form us, but that is than their own choice. We should and did give our hand to all those who wanted to accept the hand of friendship and of co-operation.

We know, but also others should know, that

…no one can lay any foundation other than the one that has been laid; that foundation is Jesus Christ.”  He is very clear that “Christ is made the sure foundation; Christ the head and cornerstone.”

The first baptist church of Palo Alto  which seeks to nourish a thoughtful, maturing faith, say they offer all ages opportunities to explore and deepen their faith. They also write:

Even a big ego can give itself over to the foundational significance of Jesus Christ.  Paul clearly sees that he serves a God who is infinitely more than he himself can ever claim to be.

We, who call  ourselves Christians, should be as followers of Christ Jesus, being willing to make all efforts to unite with each other. We should not give any importance or priority if we came to faith by such one or an other one. Our main concern should be to have our community growing, so that many more people could find God, His son and His other children. We should take all efforts to get along with each other. This shall demand sometimes having to put some water in our wine. We must learn to be considerate of one another, cultivating a life in common.

From Paul we get to know that already early after Jesus his death that there where disturbing reports brought to the attention of the apostles, about converts fighting among themselves! They were all picking sides, going around saying, “I’m on Paul’s side,” or “I’m for Apollos,” or “Peter is my man,” or “I’m in the Messiah group.” Today not much has been changed. We still can see such situations taking place in several churches. And the Christadelphians, living in this world, are also victim of this human condition. We should be careful and ask if the Messiah has been chopped up in little pieces so we can each have a relic all our own.

Instead of trying to find out who belongs to whom, we should better concentrate on finding ways  to get together in unity, feeling as friends and not competitors. We may ask if there was any of us being baptised in a persons his name. (1 Corinthians 1:10-13) Coming together it should be all because we love God and we follow the same Christ.

Because of our faith, Christ has brought us into this place of highest privilege where we now stand. We should be pleased we could get baptised and be taken in a community of brothers and sisters, willing to follow the Nazarene Jew Jeshua, Jesus Christ, the Messiah. Having received the baptism in the name of Christ, and not in the name of an other worldly man or organisation, we should be happy we could become children of God in the Body of Christ. We should confidently and joyfully look forward to sharing God’s glory.

The apostle Paul tells in more than one letter that we can also have glory, or rejoice when we run into problems. He himself encountered also many problems, but kept the spirit high. For him it was clear it was also about friends, who had to be cheerful, helping each other and keeping things in good repair. Whatever might happen, how bad it may look, we should keep our spirits up. By thinking in harmony we also shall be able to comfort each other and to be the backbone of something which shall be able to grow, no matter how much the outside world can try to deafen it. When we can be agreeable, we shall see that we can do more and can take more than we ever would think.

We should offer ourselves as instruments in the hands of God, and be happy whatever task would be given on us, and for whatever we shall be able to accomplish on our own or even better, together. everything we should do not for our own gain, but for the gain of the Kingdom of God. When we all do that, the God of love and peace will be with us for sure. (2 Corinthians 13:11)

English: Their are thousands of artworks creat...

Their are thousands of artworks created in the art world depicting St Paul. This painting was created by the famous artist called Rembrandt. It hangs on the walls of the National Gallery of Art, Washington DC (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Naturally we always shall have to be careful that the right teachings shall be given to all in the community. We should keep a sharp eye out for those who take bits and pieces of the teaching that we learned and then use them to make trouble. It will not be bad to take protective measures and to give these people a wide berth. (Romans 16:17) We always should  alert at noticing differences and quick at mending fences. (Ephesians 4:3)

Every day our focus should be on learning what it means to be a disciple of Christ in today’s world. We also should put aside our own ego.

As the writer of the first baptist church of Palo Alto notices that Paul clearly sees that he serves a God who is infinitely more than he himself can ever claim to be, we should listen to the Voice of God and follow His guidance.

The writer of Sure Foundations (February 23, 2014) says:

Paul was not bereft of ego and in that sense he was as human as any of us.  Still, he was the one who traveled around the known world, risking life and limb to proclaim the good news and build up the community of Christ.  Perhaps he had a right to boast, to call the Corinthians back to his way of following Christ and serving God.

The tent maker Paul, must have known something about the poles and stakes that hold a tent in place.

the foundation, the question is: what is to be built on such a foundation?  Again, Paul is clear.  There is one structure to be built on such a foundation; it is a temple, God’s temple, the one in which God’s Spirit dwells.  What is this temple like, though?  Brian Peterson writes of this text that “…God’s wisdom is the cross of Christ, and Paul’s work was aligned with that foundational reality. True wisdom does not lie in the power, eloquence, social standing, or cultural competition that seemed to enthrall the Corinthian church (or any similar things that enthrall us). A building must fit its foundation, be supported by it and shaped to match it, and Paul wisely built the Corinthian church on Christ crucified as the church’s one foundation (Brian C. Peterson, “Commentary on 1 Corinthians 3:10-11, 16-23,” 2-23-2014, workingpreacher.org).

In fact, Paul asks a question of First Church, Corinth, that we might well ask ourselves, “Do you not know that you are God’s temple and that God’s Spirit dwells in you?”  Do you know?  Can you see it?  Can you feel it?  Can you live into that truth?  For Paul this is a collective “you.”  He means all the Corinthian congregation and he means all of us.  Collectively we are God’s temple in which God’s Spirit lives.  Paradoxically, that is both a heavy and a liberating truth.  It bears all the responsibility of witnessing to heart-felt, soul-deep faith that we are building, here and now, a body to reflect the reign of God on earth.  It may look like foolishness to the rest of the world, but we know that that foolishness of Christ crucified and resurrected is ultimately redemptive of us and the whole creation.  This is cause for both labor and rejoicing.

We not only can rejoice as we look forward to being united with all those who worship only One God and who did accept Jesus as their mediator between God and man. Before Jesus returns to this earth we do have to find solutions to live with each other and to work together with each other. While here on this fallible earth, we can also adopt and live out this Biblical prescription on how to rejoice in our problems, trials and hard times.

We should bear in our heart that tribulations can create opportunities to persevere and to make us stronger. They can help us to learn, and to gain endurance, or perseverance.

” (1)  Therefore, having been declared right by belief, we have peace with Elohim through our Master יהושע {Jehsua} Messiah,  (2)  through whom also we have access by belief into this favour in which we stand, and we exult in the expectation of the esteem of Elohim.  (3)  And not only this, but we also exult in pressures, knowing that pressure works endurance;  (4)  and endurance, approvedness; and approvedness, expectation.” (Romans 5:1-4 The Scriptures 1998+)

We must know that peace with God (v 1) does not necessarily bring peace with man. The actual conditions of life, especially for believers in the midst of a hostile society, are not easy or pleasant, but the knowledge of acceptance with God, of grace constantly supplied, and the prospect of future glory enable believers to exult in the face of sufferings.

“The human mind is naturally given to shallowness and folly and the infantile, characterless pursuit of pleasure and excitement. Very few ever get beyond this stunted stage. Tribulation, if we are rightly exercised by it, forces us to come face to face with the sober realities of life, and intelligently adjust our purposes and characters to them. This is the teaching of the Scripture, and the wholesome experience of any with any sense and maturity. Some run away crying, vainly seeking solace in animal emptiness, and gain nothing from their sorrows. This is tragic” (GVG).

It is useless fretting against what we cannot alter, and therefore a courageous man will bear with it, and a faithful man will see beyond it. wherever we may stand in history of the community, we always should be prepared to continue our way on the right path, laid out in front of us by Jesus Christ. From everything, good and bad, what happens in our community we should learn and continue to look for Christ and his Father? The trials we shall encounter in our lives and in the life of the ecclesia should get us to think about all things and make us more willing to strive to the good cause, getting the perseverance, developing strength of character in us, and having the character strengthening our hope, or our confident expectation of salvation.

If in tribulation we seek God’s help, and endure the unpleasant experience moment by moment in the realization that it cannot last for ever, we will ultimately emerge from it with the knowledge that we did not rest on God’s help in vain, and that we manifested the strength to endure.

“This will lead to hope. Hope in what? In the knowledge that He who sustained us in the past will do so in the future even to the setting up of the Kingdom; and in the realization that as we emerged successfully from one trial so we can from the next, leading to a steady growth of endurance, until the time come when all such experiences will cease. Thus ‘hope maketh not ashamed’, for we shall triumph in spite of trouble, and will respond to the ‘love of God’ that will be revealed in our hearts. Let us then develop the mind of Paul in the face of trouble. Let us view it as a time of testing, in which we can manifest that faith without which ‘we cannot please God’ (Hebrews 11:6), and a period of opportunity in which we are able to demonstrate our unswerving loyalty to Him in face of a challenge. When we do this, we truly ‘fellowship the sufferings of Christ,’ and will reveal an attitude pleasing unto the Father. However, let us be sure that our tribulations are not the result of our own folly: ‘For what glory is it if, when ye be buffeted for your faults, ye shall take it patiently? But if, when ye do well, and suffer for it, ye take it patiently, this is acceptable with God’ (1Peter 2:20)” (HPM).

Let us all be well aware that:

” (11)  For no one is able to lay any other foundation except that which is laid, which is יהושע {Jehsua} Messiah.  (12)  And if anyone builds on this foundation with gold, silver, precious stones, wood, hay, straw,  (13)  each one’s work shall be revealed, for the day shall show it up, because it is revealed by fire. And the fire shall prove the work of each one, what sort it is.  (14)  If anyone’s work remains, which he has built on, he shall receive a reward.  (15)  If anyone’s work is burned, he shall suffer loss, but he himself shall be saved, but so as through fire.” (1Co 3:11-15 The Scriptures 1998+)

Let us rejoice we are allowed to be part of the temple of God (1 Corinthians 3:16). We should not worry to be laughed at and to be God’s fool, because that’s the path to true wisdom. What the world calls smart, God calls stupid. It’s written in Scripture, He exposes the chicanery of the chic. The Master sees through the smoke screens of the know-it-alls.

We better know exactly where we stand and be pleased with the position God is willing to give us. there should be no bragging about ourself or anyone else. Everything is already ours as a gift. We be should be pleased we can rejoice in the Lord, having assurance in the  hope we all have and which shall not disappoint us. Because the love of God has been poured out in our hearts by the Holy Spirit who was given to us. We should be looking forward to gather in peace and to be privileged to be in union with Christ, when we offered ourselves to be in union with God. (1 Corinthians 3:19-23)

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Additional reading:

  1. A Living Faith #5 Perseverance
  2. A Living Faith #7 Prayer
  3. Reflect on how much idolizing happens
  4. Developing new energy
  5. Kindness
  6. Partakers of the sufferings
  7. Pain and Suffering is inevitable but Misery is optional
  8. Suffering produces perseverance
  9. Your struggles develop your strengths
  10. United people under Christ
  11. Not words of any organisation should bind you, but the Word of God
  12. Make a joyful noise unto Yahweh, rejoice, and sing praise unto Jehovah
  13. Rejoice even though bound to grieve
  14. Gaining Christ, trusting Jehovah

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Find also to read:

  1. Reflect on how much idolizing happens
  2. Sure Foundations (February 23, 2014)
  3. Unity a Sign of Spiritual Maturity
    But unlike with agriculture, to describe another person as mature or immature leaves a lot of wiggle room.  It’s not so easy to say a person is mature because he or she can bear fruit.  Granted, this may be true in a strictly physical sense; we won’t get into that here.  But what about an emotional sense?  Or a spiritual?  Can we ever really say that we’ve become fully emotionally mature as a human being, always and completely able to maintain control over our feelings?  Sometimes I may display a great deal of maturity with respect to controlling my anger, for instance; but the very next day I slip back into an immature loss of temper!
    No, for human beings, the term mature is relative.  At least, it’s relative until the Kingdom of God is fully realized.

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  • Romans 5 (zachscripturestudy.com)
    Paul reminds us that we have a choice; “For as by one man’s disobedience many were made sinners, so by the obedience of one shall many be made righteous.” (Romans 5:19) This means that YES Adam and Eve broke a commandment of God, but by them breaking the commandment we were given a Savior to take our sins away from us. Jesus Christ Atoned for our sins, and gave us the free gift of Grace, but we still must choose to accept it. The Book of Mormon helps us to understand this further; “Adam feel that men might be; and men are, that they might have joy.” (Book of Mormon; 2 Nephi 2:25)
  • Godly Friendships (inspirationalchristiansfortoday.com)
    The Apostles of Christ were the foundation stones of His church. Revelation 21:14 speaks of the twelve foundations of the wall of the New Jerusalem as having in them the names of the twelve Apostles. These men were important to Jesus. However, what a mix our Savior had in friends and followers. They included: Zealots, fisherman, missionaries, an even a tax collector! They were from different geographic locations and social classes, some were more political and others had more education. When we are true believers of Christ, there is a common bond that overrides profession, education, race, nationality, geographies, linguistics, social class, and economics. We are brothers and sisters and God is our Father.  We are family…. A spiritual family.
  • The Last Thing Is Also the First Thing (normanramsey.wordpress.com)
    We are called in a much more intimate fashion. We are called not only to be saved but to serve and to move forth as a witness and an ambassador of Jesus Christ. When we do that we become very influential and useful in God’s hand. God says we are salt and light. We are justified and free to move and go as God leads us. There is no hindrance that cannot be overcome by the sufficiency of his grace.
    +
    We are to glorify God and be glorified by God. We are to have unity. We are to have unity and peace between us and God. That is God’s goal: for us to match our steps with God, to walk in the way of peace. We are to walk in constant connectivity with God. We do not do anything except God is doing it.
  • To all the Saints in Christ Jesus (twenty4sevenrhythms.com)
    A bond servant was someone who had earned their freedom, and had the opportunity to no longer be a servant, but because they loved and respected their master so greatly, they would sign a bond saying that they forfeited their freedom to continue to serve their master. That paints a wonderful picture of the type of servants we are in Christ. We forfeit our “freedom” (we all know there is far greater freedom in Christ than not) and desire to serve our master because he first loved us.
  • Corinth and the Jesus Dojo (fbcpaloalto.wordpress.com)
    He encourages that troublesome bunch to understand that everyone will be better off when they realize that Christ provides the sure foundation for the community of faith.  What would a truly Christ-centered church look like?  What would be its worship and its practice?  How would its members care for one another at the same time they serve the wider community?  We hearken back to our theme from a couple of years ago – “Come build a church with soul and spirit, come build a church of flesh and bone…Jesus shall be its sure foundation.  It shall be built by the hand of God.”
  • Everybody Must Have a Head (sonlightdevotional.org)
    Nowadays, all the preachers are Doctor So and So, and Doctor So and So. It means that these people are saying that they are Doctors of the Word of God. When you are sick, you go to a doctor, sure. And there is no problem about being a Doctor of Philosophy, but a Doctor of Theology is an offense before God. Therefore, you don’t call anybody Master. And call no man your father upon the earth: for one is your Father, which is in heaven (Matthew 23:9). Now, I had a father, and you have a father, and I called him father, but that was my natural father. It wasn’t an offense before God. But if I began to call Brother John, “Father John” or “Father Smith,” then you would know that we are way out of God’s order. So, one of the problems is not only of those who are called Father, but also for those who call them father.
    +
    At this hour, the Body of Christ is being put in order. Everybody must have a head, and Jesus Christ is the Head of the Body of Christ. When we gather together, we gather together to hear Jesus and we recognize Jesus Christ as the Head. We want to hear what Jesus says. If someone gets up and prophesies in the name of any other name besides Jesus, he is a false prophet.
  • Paul’s Letter to Corinthians (thesanctuaryatcamilla.wordpress.com)
    The apostle Paul was very concerned with the spiritual health of the people of Corinth. Today, aren’t we concerned about the same virtue of our nation, our cities and our people? I am.
    +
    Divisions: Corinthian society was riddled with competitive individualism which crept over into the church.
  • The Deprived Ones (etsop95.wordpress.com)
    Paul was judged by some in Corinth as being inadequate for the occasion he was called upon to engage (preaching the good news of God). He mentioned that as an apostle he was considered foolish, he was deprived of necessary things like food, water, and sufficient clothing, and that he had no real place to call home (4:9-13). Paul, however, was not going to be thrown off his God-ordained task of preaching and teaching; rather, he used his circumstances in order to serve God, the brethren, and even himself (cf. 2 Corinthians 1:3-7).
  • Father de Piconio’s Commentary on 1 Corinthians 2:1-5 (stjoeofoblog.wordpress.com)
    That your faith may not be in man’s wisdom. May not originate or spring from human eloquence and wisdom.  Or that your conversion to the faith of Christ may not be ascribed to man’s wisdom, but to the power of God, may be a divine, not a human work.  That which you believe and are convinced of, should be, not the wisdom and knowledge of your teacher, but the power of God who commissioned the teacher, and wrought the miracles.
  • Day 331: 1 Corinthians 1-4; Intro to 1 Corinthians (orcministries.wordpress.com)
    City of Corinth both important and very busy.  With all the hustle and bustle, with many people coming and going, this was also a hotbed for an large amount of idol worship, mostly centered around the pantheon of Greek and Roman gods.  This would have included many temples, most notably he temple of Aphrodite the Greek goddess of love.  The worship that took place in that temple would have likely involved cult prostitutes and sacrifices to idols, as well as other things that the church in Corinth would have to deal with.
    +
    In the age of denominationalism, where it seems as though the Church itself is divided on so many things, fighting within itself about who is more correct in their doctrines, perhaps we need to be asking ourselves whether Christ is divided or not.  We are all baptized in the name of the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit and members of one body.  Perhaps it is time that we embrace each other as brothers, accept the diversity of the Church, and understand that we are in agreement about the main things, letting peripheral issues remain just that and serving as ways for us to learn from each other rather than fight against each other.  Paul will circle back to this in chapter three as well.

Looking for True Spirituality 8 Measuring Up

Coming to own spirituality

The inability to take one’s stated goals seriously is widely shared among the human race, as easily found among traditional religious believers and committed social justice workers as within the ranks of spiritual types.
How many Christians truly seek to follow Jesus’s teaching about wealth (shun it), retribution (“turn the other cheek”), or religious pride (definitely not for the Christian)?
How many social critics pursue their political goals with close-mindedness, arrogance, or careerism?

Many Christians like others are so consumed with living their own life of faith that they don’t have time left over to worry about other people’s failings.

creation spirituality

creation spirituality (Photo credit: lars hammar)

Modern spirituality tries to detach itself form conventional creeds, particularly willing to utilize a wide variety of traditional and non-traditional (e.g. psychotherapy, physically oriented hatha yoga) resources. It nevertheless faces the same struggles as serious people of any denomination. It will always be extremely difficult to discipline the mind, renounce addictive pleasures, care for strangers, accept disappointment, and be grateful when times are rough.  Whether we are motivated to do so because God commands us to, or because we just think it is the only way to a really good life, living this way will never come easy. And therefore the struggle to do so is something that “spiritual but not religious” types and the most orthodox of the faithful have in common.

File:Tahia.JPG

Getting carried away. – This Tahia is made of coloured papers flowers wattle and crock. It multiplies the beauty of image to a great extend. Such a decoration creates spiritual emotions in the hearts and mind of devotees in Car Festival. – Photo: Taraprasad Jena

We do have to avoid many common pitfalls by focusing on spiritual virtues of compassion and self-awareness, and not forgetting to look at the critically important goals of social change.
If compassion for others and willingness to ask oneself hard questions are part of what you are about, then spirituality  is something you can respect, for it is part of your life already. And if as a spiritual person you care about the fate of humans and the earth, political activism beckons as a vital spiritual practice.

Internal angst may not be the basic for our spiritualism. Though for many the quest for our being, the reason and why of our person shall be a good reason to become looking for more and to dig deep in to the grounds of spirituality. Looking for the reasons of this universe you may find that to deny God is to debase one’s own mind and dehumanize the whole person.

The world should know that it are not the ones who fear Jehovah as the Only One God that are fools. Those who do not believe in God bilious and bloated may laugh and say “God is gone.” or “There is no God.” For the ones who believe they may be a danger because they, by many times hearing the same corrupt words and breathing the same poison gas, fouling the air; they might believe that those vile deeds of unbelievers are more successful than the good deeds of Christians.

The spiritual minded, accepting the deeds of Jesus Christ should know that the atheists their thistles are their cash crop on which Jehovah God looks down. He sticks his head out of heaven. He looks around. He’s looking for someone not stupid — one man, even, God-expectant, just one God-ready woman. The Creator looks down from heaven on the sons of men to see if there are any who understand, any who seek God. For a long time God came up empty and perhaps He still finds there is no-one who does good, not even one.

File:Bosch follower Christ's dispute with the doctors in the temple (Louvre).jpg

Christ’s dispute with the doctors in the temple. – Jesus among the Doctors, Follower of Hieronymus Bosch (circa 1450–1516)

We do have the choice to become one of “The ninety and nine who follow their fellow” or to become one of the few followers of Jesus Christ, the Messiah who many consider a joke.  See all those impostors and wonder if they don’t they know they can’t get away with this — Treating people like a fast-food meal over which they’re too busy to pray? Night is coming for them, and nightmares, for God takes the side of victims. Do you think you can mess with the dreams of the poor? You can’t, for God makes their dreams come true. When you are looking for God, willing to dig deep in your mind, meditating on His words you may be sure the True God is present in the company of the righteous and will be willing to come to you also. God is around, not only to save Israel, but also to save you.

14 The foolish* one says in his heart:“There is no Jehovah.”+Their actions are corrupt, and their dealings are detestable; No one is doing good.But Jehovah looks down from heaven on the sons of men To see whether anyone has insight, whether anyone is seeking Jehovah.They have all turned aside;+ They are all alike corrupt. No one is doing good, Not even one.  Do none of the wrongdoers understand? They devour my people as if they were eating bread. They do not call on Jehovah.  But they will be filled with great terror,+ For Jehovah is with the generation of the righteous.  You wrongdoers try to frustrate the plans of the lowly one, But Jehovah is his refuge.O that Israel’s salvation may come from Zion!+ When Jehovah gathers back his captive people, Let Jacob be joyful, let Israel rejoice. (Psalm 14)

The one true God who has revealed Himself in Scripture as a God of grace and forgiveness, who so loved the world that He gave His Son as an atonement for sin, so “that we might die to sin and live to righteousness,” according to 1 Peter 2:24, shall be there with those who are willing to follow the footsteps of the Nazarene and to take on the mind of Christ to become spiritual and following the Spirit of the Most High.

21 In fact, to this course you were called, because even Christ suffered for you,+ leaving a model for you to follow his steps closely.+ 22 He committed no sin,+ nor was deception found in his mouth.+ 23 When he was being insulted,*+ he did not insult* in return.+ When he was suffering,+ he did not threaten, but he entrusted himself to the One who judges+ righteously. 24 He himself bore our sins+ in his own body on the stake,*+ so that we might die to* sins and live to righteousness. And “by his wounds you were healed.”+ 25 For you were like sheep going astray,+ but now you have returned to the shepherd+ and overseer of your souls.* (1 Peter 2:21-25)

He graciously compels us to thank Him, and He himself should top the list of things we are thankful for.

Please do look around you and see how people bring into practice what they say they believe. Look at those who call themselves Christian and check if they are living according the commandments of Christ.

In the previous chapter we did ask:

Can you identify the people who are following in the footsteps of Christ and preaching the good news of the Kingdom around the world?

Everywhere in the world there are many people who are loving God so much that they are prepared to go out on the streets and to preach in His Name. Many are afraid of those who witness about the Creator God, whose Name should resound all over the world, and than the end would come. Are you recognising those who preach in the Name of Jehovah God and who would love to get to know as many people as possible Jehovah‘s name and His Kingdom?

Find people who study the Word of God and who are sharing the love of God with each other. Find people who are wiling to come together in the Name of the Only One True God, to worship Him according His rules and regulations and not according the many pagan rituals and human traditions.

Of course, there are other characteristics that identify a truly spiritual person, but how do you measure up to those already considered? To find out, ask yourself:

‘Do I regularly read God’s Word, the Bible, and reflect on what I read? Do I manifest the fruitage of the spirit in my life? Am I a man or a woman of prayer? Do I want to associate with the people who are carrying out the worldwide preaching of the good news of God’s Kingdom?’

An honest self-examination may help you to determine the depth of your spirituality. We urge you to take the necessary steps now so that “life and peace” may be your lot.

8 Therefore, those in union with Christ Jesus have no condemnation. For the law of the spirit that gives life in union with Christ Jesus has set you free+ from the law of sin and of death. What the Law was incapable of doing+ because it was weak+ through the flesh, God did by sending his own Son+ in the likeness of sinful flesh+ and concerning sin, condemned sin in the flesh, so that the righteous requirement of the Law might be fulfilled in us+ who walk, not according to the flesh, but according to the spirit.+For those who live according to the flesh set their minds on the things of the flesh,+ but those who live according to the spirit, on the things of the spirit.+For setting the mind on the flesh means death,+ but setting the mind on the spirit means life and peace;+because setting the mind on the flesh means enmity with God,+ for it is not in subjection to the law of God, nor, in fact, can it be. So those who are in harmony with the flesh cannot please God.—(Romans 8:1-6-8)

13 “Go in through the narrow gate,+ because broad is the gate and spacious is the road leading off into destruction, and many are going in through it; 14 whereas narrow is the gate and cramped the road leading off into life, and few are finding it.+ (Matthew 7:13, 14)

For this very reason, put forth all earnest effort+ to supply to your faith virtue,+ to your virtue knowledge,+ to your knowledge self-control, to your self-control+ endurance, to your endurance godly devotion,+ to your godly devotion brotherly affection, to your brotherly affection love.+ For if these things exist in you and overflow, they will prevent you from being either inactive or unfruitful*+ regarding the accurate knowledge of our Lord Jesus Christ.

For anyone lacking these things is blind, shutting his eyes to the light,*+ and has become forgetful of his cleansing from his sins+ of long ago. 10 Therefore, brothers, be all the more diligent to make your calling+ and choosing sure for yourselves, for if you keep on doing these things, you will by no means ever fail.+ 11 In fact, in this way you will be richly granted* entrance into the everlasting Kingdom+ of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ.+ (2 Peter 1:5-11).

Let us all be aware or remember:

Do not be misled: God is not one to be mocked. For whatever a person is sowing, this he will also reap;+because the one sowing with a view to his flesh will reap corruption from his flesh, but the one sowing with a view to the spirit will reap everlasting life from the spirit.+ (Galatians 6:7, 8)

By our willingness to become spiritual and are preparedness to follow God His commandments we can free our mind and become true followers of Christ Jesus, helping each other by exhorting and edifying each other in the mind of Christ and by strengthening the disciples and encouraging them to remain true to the faith even when we must go through many hardships to enter the kingdom of God.

24 “Exert yourselves vigorously to get in through the narrow door,+ because many, I tell you, will seek to get in but will not be able. (Luke 13:24)

22 There they strengthened the disciples,*+ encouraging them to remain in the faith and saying: “We must enter into the Kingdom of God through many tribulations.”+ (Acts 14:22)

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Preceding articles:

Looking for True Spirituality 1 Intro

Looking for True Spirituality 2 Not restricted to an elite

Looking for True Spirituality 3 Mind of Christ

Looking for True Spirituality 4 Getting to Know the Mind of Christ

Looking for True Spirituality 5 Fruitage of the Spirit

Looking for True Spirituality 6 Spirituality and Prayer

Looking for True Spirituality 7 Preaching of the Good News

Fruits of the spirit will prevent you from being either inactive or unfruitful

Dutch version of this article / De Nederlandse versie van dit artikel: Op zoek naar spiritualiteit 7 Prediking van het goede nieuws

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Additional reading:

  1. Determine the drive
  2. Compassion and Discipline
  3. Digging in words, theories and artefacts
  4. Exceeding Great and Precious Promise
  5. The builder of the Kingdom
  6. Kingdom of God what will it be like
  7. Christ’s ethical teaching
  8. A Living Faith #3 Faith put into action
  9. A Living Faith #9 Our Manner of Life
  10. Some one or something to fear #7 Not afraid for Gods Name
  11. Rejoice even though bound to grieve
  12. Those who make peace should plant peace like a seed
  13. Looking forward to God’s faithfulness
  14. Bringing Good News into the world
  15. The Involvement of true discipleship
  16. Testify of the things heard
  17. Proclaiming shalom, bringing good news of good things, announcing salvation
  18. Trusting, Faith, Calling and Ascribing to Jehovah #5 Prayer #2 Witnessing
  19. A Voice to be heard
  20. Creator and Blogger God 4 Expounding voice
  21. Blogging for Jesus…
  22. Preaching to an unbelieving world
  23. Words to push and pull
  24. Good or bad preacher
  25. Learn how to go out into the world and proclaim the Good News of the coming Kingdom
  26. How should we preach?
  27. Breathing and growing with no heir
  28. Breathing to teach
  29. Bringing Good News into the world
  30. Jehovah’s Witnesses not only group that preach the good news
  31. Holland Week of billing
  32. Trying to get the youth inspired
  33. When discouraged facing opposition
  34. Who are you going to reach out to today
  35. Praise the God with His Name
  36. Agape, a love to share with others from the Fruit of the Spirit
  37. Holiness and expression of worship coming from inside
  38. Belonging to or being judged by
  39. Not all will inherit the Kingdom
  40. Knowing where to go to
  41. United people under Christ

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  • How Does One Measure True Spiritual Satisfaction? (jordanbattiste.wordpress.com)religion
    I don’t think there are any monks praying in a hidden temple amongst the clouds, but I do know a little about the people who practice yoga and go to AA meetings and commit to altruism and humanitarian acts.
    +
    Can someone be spiritual and not believe in God? What about atheists and agnostics? Austin Cline from About wrote, “if spirituality really is best described as a highly personalized and privatized religious belief system, then the answer to the question is clearly “yes.” Atheism is not only compatible with the adoption of a public, organized religious belief system, it is also compatible with the adoption of a very personal and private religious faith.” Of all my speculation, this is the most satisfying answer yet. It’s objective and not riddled with bias – less truly is more.
  • I’m Confused About My Spiritual Beliefs. (thespiritualguru.wordpress.com)
    Every person is free to explore their Spirituality as they see fit. This just happens to agree with the Bible. As in Genesis God created man, and he gave man the power of Free Will. Man could choose for himself the path he would take.
    In many eastern traditions the concept of freewill is paramount. Buddhists believe that the choices we make not only affect our lives and Karma, but those around us as well. This is true, when you consider the interactions you have with others.
    What a person believes, or has faith in will determine their path in life. Faith is necessary for spiritually. It is belief in something you can’t explain. Some will say that if it can’t be proved logically it can’t exist. However humans are not the logical creatures we think we are.
    The Human mind has a logical and illogical side. The illogical is imagination, faith, belief, hope, emotion. None of which are logical. The logical side is the reasoning side, where we interact and classify what we see and touch. Where we solve problems and use our experience to keep from making the same mistakes. This logical side, however, can’t explain the other side.
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    Am I Crazy?
    A person will believe many things during their lives that have not been proven as 100% fact.
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    Whatever you choose to believe is OK. In the end your the one who has to decide to stand behind your convictions what ever they might be.
  • Short Sermons (attycortes.wordpress.com)
    a post of Peter Leithart on Pope Francis’ advice on preaching. > For Short Sermons
    Francis gives sound advice on preaching: The homily “is a distinctive genre, since it is preaching situated within the framework of a liturgical celebration; hence it should be brief and avoid taking on the semblance of a speech or a lecture. A preacher may be able to hold the attention of his listeners for a whole hour, but in this case his words become more important than the celebration of faith. If the homily goes on too long, it will affect two characteristic elements of the liturgical celebration: its balance and its rhythm. When preaching takes place within the context of the liturgy, it is part of the offering made to the Father and a mediation of the grace which Christ pours out during the celebration. This context demands that preaching should guide the assembly, and the preacher, to a life-changing communion with Christ in the Eucharist.”

  • New Creation (bhkmparish.wordpress.com)
    Paul prays first that we would be filled with the knowledge of his will in all spiritual wisdom and understanding. Paul wants us to know what God’s will is for our lives as individuals and as a congregation. To get that knowledge we’ll need spiritual wisdom and understanding. This is not just book-learning about the Christian faith (although some of that will help), but rather a deeper sense of who we now are in Christ.
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    Paul prays that we would grow in holiness, or in his words, that we would walk in a manner worthy of the Lord, fully pleasing to Him, bearing fruit in every good work and increasing in the knowledge of God.
  • ‘Be born in us today’ (bhkmparish.wordpress.com)
    Those with whom our Lord is pleased and in whom His peace rests are those who, on this joyous day, glorify and sing praise to God in their hearts
  • Do Preachers Know the Power of the Holy Spirit? (Martyn Lloyd-Jones) (chosenrebel.me)
    If a pastor always gets “expected” results, is he in danger of doing ministry apart from the power of the Spirit?
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    He may have been very ill, a thousand and one things may have happened to him, and he may go into the pulpit with fear and trembling, feeling that he hasn’t done his work; he’s got nothing. And it may be one of the most glorious services he has ever had the privilege of conducting. Why? Because he doesn’t control the power [within of the Holy Spirit]. It varies. And not only in preaching but in daily life and experience. It is the well of water that is within us and we don’t control it. It controls us.
  • Raising Children to be Witnesses, Not Just Spectators (astrugglingdad.wordpress.com)
    Raising my children with the eyes of faith, I have come to realize that this grace given to us comes with an even greater responsibility. I realize more and more that it is not enough to merely raise children who go through the motions of practicing their Catholic faith no matter how sincere or well-intentioned they may be. The task must be to nurture them to live their faith in a way that will engage and impact the growing faithlessness in the world.

  • Should a believer wait to have a “burden” before witnessing? (marcminter.wordpress.com)
    When is the right time to witness to someone?  What does a Christian need to know before witnessing or evangelizing?  Must a Christian wait to witness to someone until he or she is burdened or compelled by some inward sensation?  This question may be phrased in numerous ways and yet ask basically the same thing.  I think asking and answering three larger questions will help us answer these and others more definitively, as well as guide our understanding of evangelism or witnessing in general.
  • Meditation to Develop Witness Consciousness (rhondamills.wordpress.com)
    Regardless which style of meditation is practiced, the mistake that many people make is to think they are not good at meditating, or not being successful in the meditation because their mind wanders. Yes, your mind is going to wander. Coming back to the focus of the meditation – again and again as many times as needed – is part of the practice. Having to do that doesn’t mean you’ve failed; it means you are practicing.
  • Witnessing (hrobertsonblog.wordpress.com)
    It is precious and sacred to think on babies, and to remember my own special young motherhood and firsts in parenting. However, it is the magnitude of  a maturing relationship with Jesus Christ, my Savior that brings me to my knees. Unbelievable, that he would care for me a rebellious sinner. Care enough to die for me…is wonderful.
  • the last hour’s letter from the last apostle of the first twelve (kzlam36.wordpress.com)
    By this we know that we are in Him.  He who says he abides in Him ought himself also to walk just as He walked.
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    Do not love the world or the things in the world. If anyone loves the world, the love of the Father is not in him.  For all that is in the world—the lust of the flesh, the lust of the eyes, and the pride of life—is not of the Father but is of the world. And the world is passing away, and the lust of it; but he who does the will of God abides forever.
  • “On Meditation” – channelled spiritual message from The Circle of The Light of The Love Energy (earthmessagepress.com) discusses if we have to look in the quit to come to the light of creation.
  • In spite of insight (justmebeingcurious.com)

    One problem with written materials is that you only have whatever the author wrote down. If you have additional questions or don’t fully understand, you’re stuck. The attitude of many was, “I would prefer to learn from a disciple of Jesus or a disciple of a disciple than from a scroll.”

    And then comes The Main Man into the equation. Tapping the blackboard, whispering quietly, listening and nodding, laughing and rolling around on the floor … making it Fun! Some call it insight – I call it “in spite of insight”.

  • On Faith and Spirituality (zebrapotential.wordpress.com)
    I have felt for quite some time that god is a form of energy.  That palpable part of the universe for me that I feel everyday.  My personal energy is what I rely on the most.  It is my gauge for happy, competent or tired and needing to recharge.  I haven’t really developed this belief in god as energy.  Obvious to me is that spirituality is shared.  So, how will I share the energy given me and be receptive to that energy flowing back from others?
  • The Revisionaries (2012) (docdailyblog.wordpress.com)
    The Revisionaries is frightening because I can’t help but think about what a disadvantage Texan schoolchildren who are affected by these textbook changes will have when they get to college. Unless these Texan children attend a religious specific college they will be behind and a lot of the information they have [such as God being in the constitution] will be challenged and they will suffer as a result. At the least in college they will have to re-learn everything religion has touched in their educational career. I believe these board members’ decisions to make religion the priority will put the kids in Texas at a major disadvantage compared to the rest of the country.
  • Why study the Bible? (illustrationstoencourage.wordpress.com)
    Today there is more information available than ever before. But the big questions- questions about life, suffering and death still remain. Where can we find answers? What if the answers have been there all along, in the Bible.

Thanksgivukkah and Advent

Having several Holy days around us we should consider why those days are special and deserve to be placed separate (holiness : being set apart).

Dedication and illumination

In this Rosh Hashana greeting card from the ea...

In this Rosh Hashana greeting card from the early 1900s, Russian Jews, packs in hand, gaze at the American relatives beckoning them to the United States. Over two million Jews fled the pogroms of the Russian Empire to the safety of the U.S. from 1881-1924. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

The Jews have their eight day festival of Hanukkah, the Feast of Dedication, also called “Feast of the Maccabees“, in the Talmud principally known as the “Feast of Illumination.” But what is illuminated? Is it just about displaying eight lamps on the first night of the festival, and to reduce the number on each successive night, or to begin with one lamp the first night, increasing the number till the eighth night? Or is it only remembering the relighting of the altar-fire by Nehemiah due to a miracle which occurred on the twenty-fifth of Kislev?

A Ḥanukkah Lamp found in Jerusalem Excavations.(In the possession of J. D. Eisenstein) says:

“[We thank Thee] also for the miraculous deeds and for the redemption and for the mighty deeds and the saving acts wrought by Thee, as well as for the wars which Thou didst wage for our fathers in days of yore at this season.

Provider of light, waters, earth, plants and animals

Clearly it is not just only saying thanks for the wars having come to a good end. It is also a time to reflect on the Wonders of the Most High Adonai. Throughout history the Divine Creator God did not only provide the light of this world, the streaming waters, the food giving plants and the many animals which can be used as meat to get more strength.

In the days of the Hasmonean Mattathias, son of Johanan the high priest, and his sons, when the iniquitous kingdom of Greece [Syria] rose up against God  tried to make His people Israel forget God His Law and to turn them away from the ordinances of His Will. Taking this in mind we should notice that those adversaries of God (Satan) did not manage to get the people of God away from God. In God His abundant mercy He lifted them up. Those occupied with the Law of God could manage to get through all the troubles which came over them by the many years.

A blessing from the Jews

Not only the Jews should remember those blessings God gave to His people. By the deed of the only begotten son of God, the Jewish Nazarene Jeshua (Jesus Christ) salvation has come to other people people than the Jewish Judean people. Everybody has been called to follow Jesus the Messiah. He has been the greatest gift the Most High has given the world.

To say thanks for that gift and the many other blessings God has given this world many protestants feast Thanksgiving Day. This year they can celebrate their holy days with the Jews and give them also a stronger feeling of being respected as the Chosen People of our Creator. Certainly in this time of  growing anti-Semitism it is necessary that people are remembered of their special role those people do have in the Plan of God and world-peace.

Season of giving presents

Julius.jpg
Electric candle lights on the first Sunday in Advent

Catholics do like a lot of gifts and are also entering a season of gifts. This weekend they celebrate the beginning of Advent, looking forward to the ‘Light of God’. Following the Sunday of the Feast of Christ the King they have this weekend  Advent Sunday, starting a time of expectant waiting and preparation for the celebration of the Nativity of Jesus which they celebrate at Christmas. On the night of 5 to 6 December Catholic, Lutheran, and Orthodox Christians have Saint Nicholas bringing presents for the children. On the 24th and 25th of December they have their most special day of the year, being Christmas. Followed by the last day to give presents on the first day of the New Year, celebrating the circumcision of Jesus. That Feast of the Circumcision is also celebrated in the Eastern Orthodox Church on January 1 in whichever calendar (Old or New) is used, and is also celebrated on the same day by many Anglicans.

Advent wreaths are used to mark the passage of the season.

In the Advent Roman Catholic, Anglican, Lutheran, Moravian, Presbyterian and Methodist believers think about the first and second coming of Christ. (Parousia ancient Greek word meaning presence, arrival, or official visit, is adventus in Latin.) Those Christians do look for the shining of their lord. That manifestation, striking appearance they also want to celebrate in the feast with that name epiphany (“appearing”) which they took from the Greeks who used ‘epiphaneia’ to describe the glorious manifestation of the gods, and by the Romans as a title for the Emperor. For them Christ Jesus is such a manifestation or appearance of a divine or superhuman being and a manifestation of the gods, being god the son, God the Father and God the Holy Spirit.

Passage of season

Like the protestants with their celebration of Thanksgiving, the Christians who celebrate the Advent remember the passage of the seasons and the special gift God has given the world. Both take it also as a time to meditate on the Works of God and how He is the Light in the dark, guiding us to the way to enter the Kingdom of God, by means of His only begotten son Jesus, the bringer of peace.

A godly mother

https://i2.wp.com/upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/thumb/9/9e/Paolo_de_Matteis_-_The_Annunciation.jpg/330px-Paolo_de_Matteis_-_The_Annunciation.jpg
Annunciation by Paolo de Matteis, 1712. The white lily in the angel’s hand is symbolic of Mary’s purity in Marian art.

The Catholic religion follows the Roman theology presenting Christ his mother as the Venus, the yielding, watery female principle, essential to the generation and balance of life. The annunciation to Mary (Annunciation to the Blessed Virgin Mary or Annunciation of the Lord) is the Christian celebration of the announcement by the angel Gabriel to the Virgin Mary that she would conceive and become the mother of Jesus, the Son of God, marking an Incarnated God and having her as the mother of god or the Venus who embodies sex, love, beauty, enticement, seduction, and persuasive female charm among the community of immortal gods.

Having Jesus an incarnation, he fitted Hermes the god of transitions and boundaries, intercessor between mortals and the divine, and conductor of souls into the afterlife. A bringer of presents he symbolises also Mercury, the patron god of financial gain, commerce, eloquence (and thus poetry), messages/communication (including divination), and travellers who will show the way to himself as the most important god.

Like Turms was the equivalent of Roman Mercury and Greek Hermes, both gods of trade and the messenger god between people and gods, Jesus is now celebrated as the divine messenger and god having come down on the earth to save his people.

Bringer of peace

When we look at the description of Jesus in Catholic theology books we clearly can see the superposition of the man born in Bethlehem on the Greek and Roman gods. Having him as Bringer of peace also fits those pagan gods, but we do know that the Real and Only One God told His people to bring a messenger of peace. Lots of Jews did also expect to find in the Nazarene Jeshua (Jesus) to find their liberator or the Messiah who could get rid of the Roman oppressor.

These days we should think of that messenger who brought ‘Grace’ and liberated us not from Romans or any other government literally, but liberated us spiritually and gave us a hope for a better future. That Nazarene Jew is the man of flesh and blood who offered himself so that we would receive space to develop ourselves in the liking of the Creator. By him we should be able to find the way to see the space of all creativity, the connection to the Divine. Many still keep looking outside themselves, but they forget how in the Scriptures is told that we should go into our own body. We can not blame others for our being what we are. We have to create ourselves and find the connection that is inside of us.

Lots of people are looking in the world around them. They should know that there is not really another place where they have to go to. Everybody is enabled to find Him who gives peace, comfort, blessings also in this life here and know on earth. Jesus prepared the way and made it possible that we can speak freely to his Father, the only One God. We just have to come to Him and just have to talk to him, as our closest Friend and He will answer and come to us.

If we want to come to peace, first of all we do have to create peace in ourselves. Therefore we should love ourselves and give the love of Christ the chance to grow in us. Like Jesus showed the world his love we also should find the inner peace he had. Like his peace brought water of life our inner peace should flow out of us flowing into the world.

Time to meditate and to feel

Various menorot used for Hanukkah. 12th throug...

Various menorot used for Hanukkah. 12th through 19th century, CE (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Putting on those candles in this holiday season, being Jew or Christian, those believers are demanded to see beyond the candle light and to see the real light. they also should come to feel a stillness deep within them, and should get to know how to look for that stillness that allows them to seek the Most High Almighty God Who is One Elohim Hashem Jehovah.

These days we get time to consider how lucky we are where we live and what we can do. We should become aware of all the things we really do get without doing enough for it. We must be aware of the nourishment we can get and the opportunities we get to live nicely and to come to an environment of peace. But oh, so often, we do not see it. We do run past it. We have our eyes shut so that we can not see it. It is all so close to us, but we do have to be willing to open our eyes and be willing to see.

God is prepared to give it you all, but you have to recognise Him and to take His hand.

“Hanukkah as the holiday of ‘miracles’ can help us reframe our gathering together with family and friends at this secular season as an incredible miracle that requires much gratitude,”

David Fainsilber, religious leader at the Jewish Community of Greater Stowe said.

“Thank God for this miracle of life and family, gathering, friends and gratitude.”

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Preceding: A Meaningful Thanksgivukkah

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Read also:

  1. Hanukkahgiving or Thanksgivvukah
  2. Being thankful
  3. Thanksgiving-Hanukkah overlap spurs thanks, angst
  4. What happens when you cross Thanksgiving with Hanukkah?
  5. Holiness and expression of worship coming from inside
  6. Count your blessings
  7. God’s Salvation
  8. Written to recognise the Promissed One
  9. A “seed” for the blessing of all mankind would come through the family of Abraham

Dutch articles about the advent:

  1. Adventstijd bezinningstijd
  2. Advent een tijd voor reflectie
  3. Uitkijken naar twee adventen
  4. Een “zaad” voor de zegening van de gehele mensheid gekomen door de familie van Abraham
  5. Uit u zal voorkomen degene die heerser in Israël zal worden
  6. Het grootste geschenk ons gegeven
  7. Wat betreft Korte inhoud van lezingen: Bijgeloof en feesten

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Find also additional reading:

  1. Do No-Thing: The Power of Self Love.
  2. Crazy Messy Love: [Insert Faith Here.]
  3. Legacy of peace
  4. Its Never to Late
  5. I Was to write about love

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  • Jen And Tim Get A Taste Of Thanksgivukkah (new102.cbslocal.com)
    On Thursday, November 28th, the first day of Hanukkah falls on the same day as Thanksgiving. Many popular websites such as Buzzfeed have created recipes for American Jews so they can incorporate both holidays and have some neat decorating ideas as well.
  • Next Thanksgivukkah in 70,000 years (vtdigger.org)
    “The calendar is drifting forward with respect to the solar cycle at a rate of four days every 1,000 years,” he said. “Right now, the earliest that the first day of Hanukkah can fall is Nov. 28. Coincidentally, this is also the latest that Thanksgiving can fall.”Other mathematicians argue that the phenomenon will never happen again. Regardless, everyone agrees on one thing: Thanksgivukkah is an extremely rare and significant event in our lifetimes.
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    Thanksgivukkah is big business. People are selling T-shirts, table décor, dreidels, jewelry and more in honor of the super holiday.

    But regardless of how people choose to celebrate Thanksgivukkah, this unique historical event offers Jewish Americans an opportunity for introspection and reflection, said David Fainsilber, religious leader at the Jewish Community of Greater Stowe.

    “The thinker behind Reconstructionist Judaism, Mordechai Kaplan, was the first to introduce a Thanksgiving service into his siddur/prayer book,” Fainsilber said. “One of his main contributions to Jewish thought is the concept that, as Jews in America, we live in two civilizations: American and Jewish. Today, as American Jews (or Jewish Americans) this concept is now taken for granted in many ways.

  • Thanksgivukkah 2013 (be-watchful.com)
    Both holidays are about being thanksful so that shouldn’t be too difficult. Thanksgiving is a day when Americans count our blessings and give thanks to those who fought for our freedom and for all that we have. We share a day together with our loved ones.
  • 18 Reasons Why Thanksgivukkah Gives Jews The Best Of Both Worlds (elitedaily.com)
    While it may be a little annoying for some Jews to have to meld two of their favorite holidays into one, it could be a lot worse: imagine if Thanksgiving fell on Yom Kippur! Thanksgivkippur would be terrible! When you think about it, it’s actually pretty awesome that the two holidays fall on the same day. It’s a once in a lifetime opportunity that every Jew should embrace and look forward to.Here are 18 reasons why Thanksgivukkah gives Jews the best of both worlds
  • Q-C Jews celebrate Thanksgivukkah (qctimes.com)
    Justin Teitle of Bettendorf says his family’s partying like it’s 1999.He’s Jewish. His wife is Lutheran. Their two children are Jewish. And Thursday was the only time any of them will ever see Thanksgiving and the beginning of Hanukkah fall on the same day. The next time the two coincide will be 79,000 years.
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    “We see it as a great chance for our kids to participate in something that isn’t going to happen again, like New Year’s Eve before the year 2000,” Teitle said.
  • Happy Thanksgivukkah (mymorningmeditations.com)
    Amazement never ceases for the enlightened mind.At every moment it views in astonishment the wonder of an entire world renewed out of the void, and asks, “How could it be that anything at all exists?”-Rabbi Tzvi Freeman
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    In my recent investigation into the concept (as opposed to the movement) of Christian fundamentalism, I see that at its heart, it is just the attempt to render a basic definition of the essentials of what makes a Christian. It’s the minimum set of standards, so to speak, that one must uphold to be an authentic believer.
  • St. Louis Jews celebrate Thanksgivukkah for first time since 1800s (fox2now.com)
    Peggy Umansky has enjoyed preparing for both holidays simultaneously. “People have been very inventive,” she says, “I have half my house decorated for Hanukkah, half decorated for Thanksgiving.”

    Umansky and her daughter made pumpkin-flavored challah, shaped and decorated like a turkey.  “I think it’s fun for the kids when the secular world meets the religious world, and they see that everything can coexist and be fun together,” she explains.

  • ‘Happy Thanksgivukkah!’ (endtimebibleprophecy.wordpress.com)
    Judith Mendelsohn Rood, a Jewish Christian and professor of history and Middle Eastern studies at Biola University, connected Hanukkah to one of Jesus’ most important teachings. In an interview this week, Rood cited John 10:22-42, when Jesus celebrated the Feast of Dedication at Jerusalem.

    “In the Old Testament, there’s the festival of tabernacles, where people lived in booths in the fields for eight days,” Rood explained. In the time of Judas Maccabeus, the ruling Greeks would not allow the Jews to celebrate this feast. Once the Maccabees freed Israel from their rule, however, they celebrated Succoth late, and that gave rise to Hanukkah, Rood said.

All I want is peace!!!

This holiday season we may think of Whom can give the peace in our heart and Whom can bring peace in the world. But we also should know we do have to find first peace and love in our own heart, before we can find peace outside ourselves.

  • Still, Small Voice (connieartiemoore.wordpress.com)
    Today, I celebrate that Still, Small Voice that speaks to each of us. Even as we may be chronically unaware of It, It speaks to us of Truth and Love, Peace and Wisdom, Freedom and Abundance so that these things are never far from our hearts.
  • Black Friday Peace (leadershipunderground.wordpress.com)
    The holiday shopping season is here. Retailers are already pushing for Black Friday, admittedly the worst day of the year for me. My wife loves the crowds on that “glorious shopping day” but I prefer to hide in the woods.During the past two holiday seasons, retailers have been selling to Americans primarily one product – Joy. We saw this message in the car commercials for Lexus and the advertising of Macy’s. The message was everywhere – buy this and you will have joy.

    As we approach the 2013 holiday season, I see a trend developing. While joy has been the “hot” product pitch of years past, I see “peace” as the sales pitch of today. We are all worn out. The noise of the national debt, the economy, the healthcare disaster, and the awful national politics, is, well, quite exhausting.

  • Peace Prevails (writingtofreedom.wordpress.com)
    Most people and life simply reflect back what we give out. By changing their paradime from fear-based security measures to love-based encouragement, the school radically shifted the experience of school for the children.
  • Being At Peace! (angelicblessings.wordpress.com)
    If we all focused on being at peace, then there would be no wars, no competition, and no competitiveness, to win at all costs.  Somehow we have put “being at peace” as the opposite of being competitive.Being at peace is not about being the opposite of being competitive; being at peace is about being at peace with ourselves. Being relaxed, being focused on the tasks at hand without outside influences.
  • Creating Peace (beencouraged.wordpress.com)
    We must have inner peace to have peace in the home. To have peace in the our communities, we must have peace in our homes. To have peace in the nation, we must have peace in our communities.
  • Preparing the Way for Christ: Revs. Bingle, Darring and Lee Dialogue-Advent 1 (judyabl.wordpress.com)
    Our Hebrew Scriptures for  the first Sunday of Advent herald an age of peace when nations shall beat their swords into plowshares and study war no more(Isaiah 2: 1-5). Nations will come to God’s house on the highest of mountains for instruction in God’s ways so that we may “walk in God’s paths”. Clearly that instruction is instruction in the ways of peace and God’s path is the path of peace. (Is 2:3b)
  • How to Sleep in Heavenly Peace This Holiday Season (accidentvictimsalliance.com)
    From the run up to Thanksgiving right on through New Year’s Day, the things dancing in my head at bedtime are hardly visions of sugar plums. It’s more likely that my sleep will be disturbed by needless worry over my menu selections, or the number of matching cream-colored napkins I have in stock, or fear I’ve left someone off my gift list.Yes, when it comes to sleep troubles, ’tis the season.
  • Poetry of Peace (steppingtoes.wordpress.com)