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Posts tagged ‘Bible’

Love v4.0

(~) Love V4.0

Service Rep: Hello, you have reached the Heart Systems Software Company help desk. How may I help you?

Customer: I just received your latest program, LOVE v4.0… you know… the freeware. I don’t understand it. Can tell me how to install it?

Service Rep: Sure thing ma’am. Do you have the installation disk and instructions with you?

Customer: Yes I do, but first can you tell me what the program does?

Service Rep: Sure thing ma’am. LOVE is a unique program, there is no other like it anywhere. LOVE attaches to your operating system and runs silently in the background. You will never see LOVE on your monitor or your toolbar, but you will notice its affect on every application you may have. It makes the good programs run smoother and greatly restricts and/or deletes the bad ones.

Customer: Wow! That sounds great. How does LOVE make my machine run smoother?

Service Rep: Well, good sound files, like COMPLIMENT.WAV, ENCOURAGEMENT.WAV, and KINDWORD.WAV will play frequently. Also, FORGIVENESS.EXE will be invoked every time there is an external violation, including the ever-popular syntax errors. Also, all those aggravating errors that say “unable to connect” will be avoided. LOVE allows for a smooth connection with external devices, regardless of what country it is manufactured in, the brand name, or the age of the model.

Customer: That’s exactly what I need, my machine has been isolated for too long. But what about the bad programs?

Service Rep: Good question. LOVE searches your memory for programs like HATE.COM, BITTERNESS.EXE, SELFISH.COM, and SPITE.EXE. These programs can’t be entirely deleted off your hard drive, but LOVE overpowers those programs. LOVE stops their commands from being executed and runs its own instructions. You will no longer hear INSULT.WAV and you won’t be able to write with the fonts “BADWORDS12” or “HARSHNESS10”.

Customer: That’s a fantastic program you have. Are the upgrades free too?

Service Rep: They sure are ma’am.

Customer: How do I get the upgrades?

Service Rep: That’s easy. Once you have LOVE installed and running, it automatically copies a module, or a piece of itself, to every external Hard Drive Email And Remote Terminal (HEART) that it comes in contact with. In turn, those external devices run whatever version of LOVE they have and return a module to your HEART. You will be upgraded with each and every module that you receive. But you have to remember, to receive the upgrades you have to be running LOVE, and you have to come into contact with other computers while it is running.

Customer: I can do that. I’m not very technical, but I think I am ready to install now. What do I do first?

Service Rep: The first step is to open your HEART. Have you located your HEART ma’am?

Customer: Yes I have, but there are several programs running right now. Is it okay to install while they are running?

Service Rep: What programs are running ma’am?

Customer: Let me see… I have PASTHURT.EXE, LOWESTEEM.EXE, GRUDGE.EXE, and RESENTMENT.COM running right now.

Service Rep: No problem. LOVE will automatically disable PASTHURT.EXE from your current operating system. It may remain in your permanent memory, but it will no longer disrupt other programs. LOVE will eventually overwrite LOWESTEEM.EXE with a module of its own called HIGHESTEEM.EXE. However, you have to manually turn off GRUDGE.EXE and RESENTMENT.COM. Those programs prevent LOVE from being properly installed. Can you turn those off ma’am?

Customer: I don’t know how to turn them off. Can you tell me how?

Service Rep: My pleasure. Go to your Start menu and invoke FORGIVENESS.EXE. Do this as many times as necessary until GRUDGE.EXE and RESENTMENT.COM have been completely erased.

(Pause)

Customer: Okay, I’m done. LOVE has started installing itself automatically. Is that normal?

Service Rep: Yes it is. You should receive a message that says it will reinstall for the life of your HEART. Do you see that message?

Customer: Yes I do. Is it completely installed?

Service Rep: Yes, but remember that you have only the base program. You need to begin connecting to other HEARTs in order to get the upgrades.

Customer: Oops… I have an error message already. It says “ERROR 412 – PROGRAM NOT RUN ON INTERNAL COMPONENTS”. What does that mean?

Service Rep: Don’t worry ma’am, that’s a common problem. It means that the LOVE program is set up to run on external HEARTS but has not yet been run on your HEART. It is one of those complicated programming things, but in non-technical terms it means you have to “LOVE” your own computer before it can “LOVE” others.

Customer: So what should I do?

Service Rep: Can you find the directory called “SELF-ACCEPTANCE”?

Customer: Yes, I have it.

Service Rep: Excellent, you are getting good at this.

Customer: Thank you.

Service Rep: You’re welcome. Click on the following files and then copy them to the “MYHEART” directory: FORGIVESELF.DOC, SELFESTEEM.TXT, REALIZEWORTH.TXT, and VALUE.DOC. The system will overwrite any conflicting files and begin patching any faulty programming. Also, you need to delete SELFPUNISH.EXE from all directories, and then empty your recycle bin afterwards to make sure it is completely gone and never comes back.

Customer: Got it. Hey! My HEART is filling up with really neat files. SMILE.MPG is playing on my monitor right now and it shows that WARMTH.COM, PEACE.EXE, and CONTENTMENT.COM are copying themselves all over my HEART!

Service Rep: Then LOVE is installed and running. You should be able to handle it from here. One more thing before I go…

Customer: Yes?

Service Rep: LOVE is freeware. Be sure to give it, and its various modules, to everybody you meet. They will in turn share it with other people and they will return some really neat modules back to you.

Customer: I will. Thank you for your help.
– Source Unknown

Every 3.6 seconds a real person dies from hunger somewhere in the world!!!
Feed a hungry person today:
http://www.hungersite.com

My YouTube Channel
http://www.youtube.com/Ninure

God is still speaking
http://www.stillspeaking.com

John Mark Ministries
http://jmm.aaa.net.au/

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The Cross – for Good Friday

(~) The Cross

And, having made peace through the blood of his cross, by him to reconcile all things unto himself;

Colossians 1:20
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It’s become fashionable these days to wear crosses, not necessarily as a sign of faith, but as a trendy accessory. Crosses are hip now.

An anecdote someone recently shared with me tells of an encounter at a department store jewelry counter. The customer says she is interested in buying a cross, to which the sales clerk replies : “Do you want a plain one, or one with the little man on it?”

On Good Friday, we must comprehend that the cross is more than a fashion statement. Take a moment to consider what the cross meant in Jesus’ day.

A hot topic these days is crime and punishment. How do we attempt to deter violence? The death penalty has been around for ages, and the Roman Empire in the time of Tiberius took it mighty seriously. There wasn’t a hot debate about lethal injection or other humane methods of putting one to death. The Romans wanted executions to be excruciatingly painful and as public as possible. Thus, the Roman practice of death by crucifixion.

We often turn away from the horror of the cross. Sometimes we want to take encouragement from the fact that Christ died for us, but skip over the messy details. We shouldn’t. This brief account, based upon the gospels of Matthew and John, provides a sense of Jesus’ ordeal.

During the trial before Caiaphas, the priests “spit in his face and struck him with their fists.” Then, “they bound him” and sent him to Pilate, who had him flogged; the usual procedure was to tie the criminal’s hands to a pillar, strip their upper body and deliver up to 40 blows with a three-pronged whip. Then “the soldiers twisted together a crown of thorns and put it on his head,” after which “they took (a) staff and struck him on the head, again and again.” Weakened from the beatings he had received, Jesus was unable to carry his cross the whole distance to Calvary, as was customary, so an onlooker named Simon of Cyrene was pressed into duty by the soldiers. Christ was then affixed to the cross by having large nails driven through his wrists and into the wood. In crucifixions, death came by suffocation as the weight of the victim made breathing progressively more difficult as they lost strength. It took six hours for Jesus to die.

Clearly, the solemnity of the cross is increasingly lost upon today’s society. As Christians, we must never lose sight of the true meaning of the crucifixion. It reminds us that the grace that we stand in didn’t come cheap. Jesus Christ paid a huge price for our salvation. All it will cost us is our pride and self-will. Sometimes it seems to us that this is too great a price, which only indicates how far removed we are from the details of Christ’s sacrifice.

The extraordinary power of the cross is that no matter where we’ve been or how far we’ve wandered, we can stand in God’s presence – just as we are. It serves as the bridge between a broken people and a Holy God. Take a moment this Good Friday and ask yourself which side of the breach you’re on. Believing on the power of Christ’s death and resurrection, cross that bridge into eternal life and peace with God.

REMinistry

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Looking unto Jesus the author and finisher of our faith; who for the joy that was set before him endured the cross, despising the shame, and is set down at the right hand of the throne of God.

Hebrews 12:2

Every 3.6 seconds a real person dies from hunger somewhere in the world!!!
Feed a hungry person today:
http://www.hungersite.com

My YouTube Channel
http://www.youtube.com/Ninure

God is still speaking
http://www.stillspeaking.com

John Mark Ministries
http://jmm.aaa.net.au/

For Maundy Thursday: God’s plan for your life

There have been a number of times when I have been truly blessed to meet someone who I knew was both “called to ministry” and “called to be MY friend”.

The author of the following is such a person, and I so thrilled to be able to share something he wrote for the American Bible Society‘s e-mail devotionals based on the Lectionary readings for the week and church Holidays.

At the end of this I include a extra paragraoh that was not included in the e-Bulletin sent out by the American Bible Society.

“Discover God’s Plan For Your Life!”


by JimHarvey

Maundy Thursday
March 20, 2008

Exodus 12:1-4 [5-10] 11-14
Psalm 116:1, 12-19
1 Corinthians 11:23-26
John 13:1-7, 31b-35

Discerning God’s Plan for Your Life

One recent morning, while riding in a New York City subway car, I looked up from my seat to see an ad for a book. The book purported to be able to give its readers the tools to create the life they desired by following a prescribed number of steps. In bold letters next to a replica of the book’s cover, readers were encouraged to find out God’s plan for their lives. Perusing both the ad and the book’s title, I had to ask myself, “Does the one really have anything to do with the other?”

I have not read this book, so I cannot make any comments on its usefulness. I would hope, though, that if you followed the author’s instructions, you would indeed achieve a life more like the life you want to live. But that is discovering your plan for your life. God might have something completely different in mind. Comfort might be our desire, but Jesus makes it clear that we are called to a life of service, and service is usually not very comfortable.

In John 13, Jesus sets for his disciples, and for us, an example of humble service. Getting one’s hands and knees to wash someone’s feet is not a comfortable position for the washer, but it does show concern for the comfort of the one whose feet are being washed. That is service, but beyond that, when Jesus “…laid aside his garments; and took a towel, and girded himself,” (John 13.4b, KJV) he was laying aside the things of the world and making himself open and vulnerable.

Jesus does not promise that if we follow his example we will be comfortable or achieve the life we desire. But, he does promise a joy that comes from serving God, serving others, and living in harmony with creation. “If ye know these things, happy are ye if ye do them.” (John 13:17, KJV).

God’s plan for your life is not revealed by following steps prescribed in a book advertised on the subway. It is revealed through meditation, prayerful discernment, and by an openness to the possible agony that goes with it, all the while knowing that joy is the promise in the end.

The Reflection for Maundy Thursday was prepared by James Harvey, MA, a graduate of Garrett- Evangelical Theological Seminary in Evanston, IL who serves as Lay Leader at the Park Slope United Methodist Church in Brooklyn, NY.

           
When Jesus went to Gethsemane , I am pretty certain that he was NOT looking for eight simple steps to getting the life he wanted.  He had already discovered God’s plan for his life (John 13.1), and from what we read in Matthew, he was not happy with what he had discovered.  He says, “My Father, if it be possible, take this cup of suffering from me!  Yet not what I want, but what you want.” (Matthew 26.39b GNT)  Considering this, how dare we assume that God’s plan for us includes wealth, power and creature comforts?

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Every 3.6 seconds a real person dies from hunger somewhere in the world!!!
Feed a hungry person today:
http://www.hungersite.com

My YouTube Channel
http://www.youtube.com/Ninure

God is still speaking
http://www.stillspeaking.com

John Mark Ministries
http://jmm.aaa.net.au/

Dear Dr. Laura – a blast from “my” past.

Ahhhm how “they” quickly forget!!

Then again, there are have been numerous versions of the letter below posted to newsgroups, on blogs, and forums in the last 30-womethging years. There are many GBLY and progreesive Christians who have never seen it.

It is one of those “tongue” in cheek yet true articles that all of us “liberal” and GVLT christians should have close at hand. – Ninure da Hippie

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Dear Dr. Laura,

Thank you for doing so much to educate people regarding God’s law. I have
learned a great deal from you, and I try to share that knowledge with as many people as I can.

When someone tries to defend the homosexual lifestyle, for example, I simply
remind him that Leviticus 18:22 clearly states it to be an abomination. End
of debate.

I do need some advice from you, however, regarding some of the specific laws
and how to best follow them.

When I burn a bull on the altar as a sacrifice, I know it creates a pleasing odor for the Lord (Lev. 1:9). The problem is my neighbors. They claim the odor is not pleasing to them. How should I deal with this?

I would like to sell my daughter into slavery, as it suggests in
Exodus 21:7. In this day and age, what do you think would be a fair price
for her?

Lev. 25:44 states that I may buy slaves from the nations that are
around us. A friend of mine claims that this applies to Mexicans but not
Canadians. Can you clarify?

I have a neighbor who insists on working on the Sabbath. Exodus 35:2 clearly states he should be put to death. Am I morally obligated to kill him
myself?

A friend of mine feels that even though eating shellfish is an
abomination (Lev. 10:10), it is a lesser abomination than
homosexuality. I
don’t agree. Can you settle this?

Lev. 20:20 states that I may not approach the altar of God if I have a defect in my sight. I have to admit that I wear reading glasses. Does my vision have to be 20/20, or is there some wiggle room here?

I know you have studied these things extensively, so I am confident you can help.

Thank you again for reminding us that God’s word is eternal and
unchanging.

Sincerely, A Concerned Crusader
(Author unknown)

Challenge, Controversy and Change – a StillSpeaking Devotion

Challenge, Controversy and Change
Acts 21:17-26

When we arrived in Jerusalem, the brothers welcomed us warmly. The next day Paul went with us to visit James; and all the elders were present. After greeting them, he related one by one the things that God had done among the Gentiles through his ministry. When they heard it, they praised God. Then they said to him, “You see, brother, how many thousands of believers there are among the Jews, and they are all zealous for the law. They have been told about you that you teach all the Jews living among the Gentiles to forsake Moses, and that you tell them not to circumcise their children or observe the customs. What then is to be done? They will certainly hear that you have come. So do what we tell you. We have four men who are under a vow. Join these men, go through the rite of purification with them, and pay for the shaving of their heads. Thus all will know that there is nothing in what they have been told about you, but that you yourself observe and guard the law. But as for the Gentiles who have become believers, we have sent a letter with our judgment that they should abstain from what has been sacrificed to idols and from blood and from what is strangled and from fornication.” Then Paul took the men, and the next day, having purified himself, he entered the temple with them, making public the completion of the days of purification when the sacrifice would be made for each of them.

Reflection by Ron Buford

Among religious people, breaking the 10th commandment is a great stumbling block: “Thou shalt not covet.” Here are two Christian sects: one Jewish; the other Gentile. The Jewish sect has good reason to ask, “Why keep Moses’ law when newcomers don’t have to keep it?”

The church today stumbles similarly. Why do we accept unmarried couples living together? We had to get married. Why do we let gay people get married? They used to have enough shame to keep their behavior a secret. Why do we accept people who are divorced? We stayed married and hated each other. Bottom line: We suffered, you suffer too; God requires it.

Correction: No, not God but our imperfect understanding of God required these things for a while. The love of God, changing our understanding, and our own repentance compel us to risk making change, no matter how much it costs us, no matter how many jobs, members, churches, or friends we lose. God’s ever-expanding inclusion and grace is the greater good—even greater than everyone getting along.

In the book of Acts, Paul connives (yes, connives), strategically dividing his enemies based on their theological differences, opportunistically seizing upon his Roman citizenship to bring about change. He escapes Jerusalem’s perception of control over God’s plan, moving it to the Roman Empire–whose control will also eventually fade . . . just as we and so much of what we believe and do eventually fade into the arc of God’s future.

Prayer
Gracious God, we believe in You, and to Your deeds we testify. Let the stillspeaking God be true, and every human trapped in time and space be a liar. As we receive new light from You, grant us courage in the struggle for justice and peace, Your Presence in trial and rejoicing. Amen.

  Join us on i.ucc.org for prayer and conversation.

My YouTube Channel
http://www.youtube.com/Ninure

God is still speaking
http://www.stillspeaking.com

John Mark Ministries
http://jmm.aaa.net.au/

WWJD? – its to laugh

WWJD?

Most people assume WWJD is the acronym for “What would Jesus do?” But the initials really might stand for “What would Jesus drive?”

One theory is that Jesus would tool around in an old Plymouth because the Bible says, “God drove Adam and Eve out of the Garden of Eden in a Fury.”

But in Psalm 83, the Almighty clearly owns a Pontiac and a GE. The passage urges the Lord to “pursue your enemies with your Tempest and terrify them with your Storm.”

Possibly God favors Dodge pickup trucks because Moses’ followers are warned not to go up a mountain “until the Ram’s horn sounds a long blast.”

Meanwhile, Moses rode a British motorcycle, as evidenced by a Bible passage declaring that “the roar of Moses’ Triumph is heard in the hills.”

Joshua no doubt drove a Triumph with an after market slip-on muffler because: “Joshua’s Triumph was heard throughout the land.”

And, following the Master’s lead, the Apostles car pooled in, you got it, a Honda: “The Apostles were in one Accord.”<

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Every 3.6 seconds a real person dies from hunger somewhere in the world!!! Feed a hungry person today:
http://www.hungersite.com

God is still speaking
http://www.stillspeaking.com

Endounters

(Your favorite Hippie wrote this herself back in 2006,so your forgiveness is asked for any and all typos or broken links)

Have you ever read the story of the woman at the well? It’s found in the Bible in the 4th chapter of the Gospel of John (John 4:7-39) . If you haven’t read it before, or haven’t read or in a while, you may want to read it before continuing reading this post.

It is one of those stories that we so-called liberal Christians love because it shows something Conservative Christians don’t really seem to want to understand….Jesus was more concerned about people than “morality”.

Everything, and I do mean everything that Jesus said and did in this encounter with the “woman at the well: was wrong, violating either the mores ( the accepted traditional customs and usages of a particular social group), or “The Law” as thee people of His time understood it.

1) Jesus spoke to a Samaritan and asked for assistance.
The text puts it mildly, when it says that Jews didn’t associate with Samaritans. The Samaritans were to say the least generally despised by the Israelites, and considered them worse than Gentiles.

2) Jesus spoke with a woman and carried on a conversation with her as an equal.

3) Despite the fact that Jesus knows, and point out that the woman had had “five husbands” and s living with a man she us not married to, Jesus does not speak a word of condemnation.

How many times have you heard people say it is their “job” as “Christians” to point out the sins of others? Yet here we have Jesus not saying anything to the woman about her :sin:, not telling her to leave the man she is living with….he is “silent” about her “lover” and her “life-choices”.

Instead he answers her questions and teaches her.

4) It is to this woman that he FIRST reveals that he is the Messiah!!
John 4:25 The woman said, “I know that Messiah” (called Christ) “is coming. When he comes, he will explain everything to us.” 26 Then Jesus declared, “I who speak to you am he.”

5) He sends/”allows” the woman to go and “evangeligize”

When people say that Jesus only chose men to be his “messengers” this is one story they need to re-read honestly!!

*****

I suppose I shouldn’t be too hard on Conservatives for not getting these points. The disciples who lived in close contact with Jesus took awhile to get them.

It is a good thing that Jesus did not wait until they did…..

John 4:39 Many of the Samaritans from that town believed in him because of the woman’s testimony, “He told me everything I ever did.”

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Every 3.6 seconds a real person dies from hunger somewhere in the world!!! Feed a hungry person today:
http://www.hungersite.com

God is still speaking
http://www.stillspeaking.com

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