Monday, January 29, 2007
Monday, January 22, 2007
(Tamara, I wouldn't read the article if I were you...trust me...)
The real reason I was searching google was to see about correlations between abortion and other issues in society. I found several articles on correlations between abortion and breast cancer though there were multiple sides to the story.
Also disturbing, I found articles about how Roe v. Wade won't end abortion in the USA b/c there is a drug out there that can be prescribed to do the same thing. The drug has been approved by the FDA for use with ulcers but is being used for abortions as well.
God, have mercy on your people! I ask forgiveness, Lord, for the sins of my generation and the generations before me, for those who have sacrificed their children to Molech and for the Church which has done little or nothing. God, I'm asking that you would end abortion in our land, turn our hearts back to You! End Abortion & Send Revival! God, have mercy on a stiff-necked, apathetic, complacent people! Turn our hearts back to You! Though Satan rail against this generation and seek to take out 50 million of my brothers and sisters each year in the USA alone...Lord, have mercy and open our eyes to what we are doing! You have given us over to it b/c we begged for it but, Father, I'm asking in Your wrath remember mercy!!!
Wednesday, January 17, 2007
So, I have decided that I have no understanding of what "joy" is.
Deuteronomy 28: 46-48 (AMP)
46They shall be upon you for a sign [of warning to other nations] and for a wonder, and upon your descendants forever. 47Because you did not serve the Lord your God with joyfulness of [mind and] heart [in gratitude] for the abundance of all [with which He had blessed you], 48Therefore you shall serve your enemies whom the Lord shall send against you, in hunger and thirst, in nakedness and in want of all things; and He will put a yoke of iron upon your neck until He has destroyed you.
"Joy is a delight of the mind, from the consideration of the present or assured approaching possession of a good." Locke.
That which causes joy or happiness. " A thing of beauty is a joy forever." Keats.
Webster's dictionary & others: The passion or emotion excited by the acquisition or expectation of good; pleasurable feelings or emotions caused by success, good fortune, and the like, or by a rational prospect of possessing what we love or desire; gladness; exhilaration of spirits; delight.
synonyms: happiness, pleasure, enjoy, rejoice, gaiety, delight, bliss
antonyms: saddness, despair, grief, unhappiness, misery, sorrow
New Cathoic Dictionary: The passion opposed to sadness, and arising from the possession of a desired or coveted object; one of the fruits of the Holy Ghost; an effect also of contemplating the sacred mysteries of the Resurrection, Ascension, and Coming of the Holy Ghost.
Holman's Standard Version's definition
Strong's & Amplified results:
joy: (to) rejoice, exult(atation), glad(ness), to tremble from fear, triumph, ringing cry of entreaty, supplication in proclamation, joy, praise, cry, shout, display joy, to rejoice (arrogantly), exult (at) , to rejoice (religiously), merry, you who rejoice, showing joy, mirth, gladness, gaiety, pleasure, joy (of God), glad result, happy issue, alarm of war, war-cry, battle-cry , blast (for march) , shout of joy (with religious impulse) , shout of joy (in general), alarm, signal, sound of tempest, shout, shout or blast of war or alarm or joy, good cheer, to glory (whether with reason or without), to glory on account of a thing, to glory in a thing, to rejoice, be glad, to rejoice exceedingly, to be well, thrive, in salutations, hail!, at the beginning of letters: to give one greeting, salute, the joy received from you, the cause or occasion of joy(of persons who are one's joy), favored with blessings, made blissful, blessed, satisfaction in God's favor and salvation, regardless of their outward conditions, happy, blithesome, spiritually prosperous, the delight, the blessedness, delight, exultation, ecstasy, rapture, enrapture, with a happy heart
have joy: to be useful, to profit, help, to receive profit or advantage, be helped [or have joy]
turn into joy: to leap/dance/spring
enjoy: to see, look at, inspect, perceive, consider, have vision, learn about, observe, watch, look upon, discern, distinguish, give attention to, to be seen or cause to see, to cause to look intently at, behold, cause to gaze at, to look at each other, face, to seize, dispossess, take possession off, inherit, disinherit, occupy, impoverish, be an heir, come to poverty, be poor, to cause to possess or inherit, to cause others to possess or inherit, to be pleased, be determined , to make acceptable, satisfy, to be accepted, to seek favour of, to make oneself acceptable or pleasing, to be pleased with, be favourable to, accept favourably, to hit the mark (of one discharging a javelin or arrow), to reach, attain, obtain, get, become master of, to happen, chance, fall out (to specify, to take a case, as for example), to meet one, of he who meets one or presents himself unsought, any chance, ordinary, common person, to chance to be, enjoyment
shout/sing for joy: to overcome, to be overcome, to cry out, shout for joy, give a ringing cry (in joy, exaltation, distress), to cry aloud (in summons, exhortation of wisdom), to cause to ring or sing out (for joy), rejoicing (participle)
Verses that are making me think about "joy"...
I Chronicles 16: 26-29
26For all the gods of the people are [lifeless] idols, but the Lord made the heavens. 27Honor and majesty are [found] in His presence; strength and joy are [found] in His sanctuary. 28Ascribe to the Lord, you families of the peoples, ascribe to the Lord glory and strength, 29Ascribe to the Lord the glory due His name. Bring an offering and come before Him; worship the Lord in the beauty of holiness and in holy array.
They kept the Feast of Unleavened Bread for seven days with joy, for the Lord had made them joyful and had turned the heart of the king of Assyria [referring to Darius king of Persia] to them, so that he strengthened their hands in the work of the house of God, the God of Israel.
And be not grieved and depressed, for the joy of the Lord is your strength and stronghold.
11Light is sown for the [uncompromisingly] righteous and strewn along their pathway, and joy for the upright in heart [the irrepressible joy which comes from consciousness of His favor and protection]. 12Rejoice in the Lord, you [consistently] righteous (upright and in right standing with God), and give thanks at the remembrance of His holiness.
2 Corinthians 8:2-4
2For in the midst of an ordeal of severe tribulation, their abundance of joy and their depth of poverty [together] have overflowed in wealth of lavish generosity on their part. 3For, as I can bear witness, [they gave] according to their ability, yes, and beyond their ability; and [they did it] voluntarily, 4Begging us most insistently for the favor and the fellowship of contributing in this ministration for [the relief and support of] the saints [in Jerusalem].
Hebrews 12: 10-13
10For [our earthly fathers] disciplined us for only a short period of time and chastised us as seemed proper and good to them; but He disciplines us for our certain good, that we may become sharers in His own holiness. 11For the time being no discipline brings joy, but seems grievous and painful; but afterwards it yields a peaceable fruit of righteousness to those who have been trained by it [a harvest of fruit which consists in righteousness--in conformity to God's will in purpose, thought, and action, resulting in right living and right standing with God]. 12So then, brace up and reinvigorate and set right your slackened and weakened and drooping hands and strengthen your feeble and palsied and tottering knees,(A) 13And cut through and make firm and plain and smooth, straight paths for your feet [yes, make them safe and upright and happy paths that go in the right direction], so that the lame and halting [limbs] may not be put out of joint, but rather may be cured.
I still don't understand "joy" though I am convinced that the dictionary is wrong. Their definition is that it is an emotion but I've always been taught that "happiness" is the emotion because it is temporary..."joy," on the other hand, is permanent, a state of being. Now, my brain knows that but my heart is highly unsure then what "joy" is if it is not felt. How then is joy any different from hope, peace, or faith? Is a sense of peace really joy? Is there any feeling or sense that lets you know you are joyful? How do you know you have joy if there is no emotion or sense of it in the natural? Is joy wholly supernatural and never felt? If the opposite of joy is sorrow then how is joy different from happiness? If I am to command my soul to rejoice then am I to command my soul to have joy? Or can only God grant joy? What then does the "fullness of joy" (Ps. 16) look like? What does the joy set before me look like? Is that different than the hope of my calling? How do I trade sorrow for joy if I feel only heaviness, despair, dullness, and fatigue? Sure I have happy/good days from time to time but those are like the wind therefore that cannot be the same as "joy" if joy is a permanent state of being. If "in His presence is fullness of joy" then have I ever truly been in His presence?...
Wednesday, January 10, 2007
Saturday, January 6, 2007
37 “O Jerusalem, Jerusalem, the one who kills the prophets and stones those who are sent to her! How often I wanted to gather your children together, as a hen gathers her chicks under her wings, but you were not willing! 38 See! Your house is left to you desolate; 39 for I say to you, you shall see Me no more till you say, ‘Blessed is He who comes in the name of the LORD!’”
Tamara and I were reading this article last night. It makes me hopeful because the Jewish people are realizing that there is no amount of compromise or diplomacy that will result in peace. More and more Jews are coming to Christ! This article also gave me more of a sense of urgency b/c there are some big things about to happen...Iran on the road to being a nuclear nation, Egypt setting up all its military weaponry on the Suez Canal, Hamas and Hizbollah are more interested in killing Jews than helping Palestinians get a homeland, and there are alliances being forged in Arab nations and passivity tinged with hatred for the Jews brewing in the United Nations. How is it that some of the church in Burkina Faso gets that those who bless Israel, God will also bless and yet we don't get that here in the USA? Maybe I'm odd but my mother always taught me that there would never be true peace in Israel until Jesus returns and that when the USA turns its back on Israel we will lose all our prosperity and blessing that we take for granted.
After reading that article I want to truly understand the end times. You would think that having read Revelation and studied it as much as I have that I would have a lot more figured out than I do. My grandfather has given me his theory on the end times (the result of years and years of study). I've read and heard Mike Bickle preach on his theory of the end times which is very convincing as well. I've heard some preach on the end times or Revelation from the pulpit. I've done a lot of studying myself as well yet I know there are lots of things that still don't make sense to me or that I don't understand. I'm almost convinced of post-trib theology though pre-wrath is convincing as well. All I know anymore is that Pre-Trib is a lie. I have never found any proof of it scripturally and it was never preached by the early church nor will the persecuted church of today accept that doctrine. (I find that very telling!) Pre-Trib keeps the church from being ready. It gives her a false sense of security. No wonder scripture speaks of a great revival (yes!) but also a great falling away. Many in the Church will be offended b/c they will have to endure great persecution! I can't tell you how many people I've talked to that, upon hearing that I believe I will be martyred, are shocked when I explain that I do not believe it will happen in a foreign country but right here in the USA. It's so sad to think that so many are not preparing themselves for what is to come. I'm not saying I'm prepared either but I have been convicted that in order to be prepared I need to live the Sermon on the Mount lifestyle. I have never, even growing up in the church, been told that the Sermon on the Mount lifestyle is a required lifestyle of all believers. Never. I don't get how I never heard that. I don't understand how I ever heard the story of the wise and foolish builders outside of the context of the Sermon on the Mount when that is what it is directly speaking about. I'm reading the Word again and again finding things I never saw before. It's like I'm reading the Word with new eyes, eyes opened, blinders being removed (though I don't have full revelation or anything yet). Lord, have mercy! Continue to open my heart and my eyes to truth even when it is so hard to accept! I want to always have a heart of flesh not one of stone! It's so frustrating having grown up in the church b/c so often I feel like I know everything already! I want to be teachable, Lord! But God is continuing to open up my eyes, oddly enough lately on dictates of the Sermon on the Mount (even before I realized those concepts were in the Sermon on the Mount)...like fasting, giving, prayer, loving others. I have this desire to be other-worldly. After losing Sean, I began to realize even more how this world is not my home. I am tired of pursuing the elusive American dream. I am tired of the dictates of this world that make me more like Martha than Mary. I am tired of things that are temporal and no longer satisfy. I want to be meek and humble, b/c I am so easily offended right now it's sad. I want to be poor in spirit and pure of heart. I want to be unoffendable! I want to radiate Jesus! I want to be pure and blameless on the day of His returning. I want to gladly don His righteousness at the wedding feast! I want to bring my "talents" (how I spent my time, money & energy and how I used my decision-making ability and my influence) and hear "Well done, good and faithful servant!" I want to be one of the virgins who kept her oil (intimacy with God) and held it as more important than just having the lamp (ministry). I don't just want to be a Christian who worries about offending people. I want to be so Christ-like that people have the fear of the Lord strike their hearts and run to Him b/c they see Him in me. I want to be refined like silver that He might see His reflection in me. Oh, Lord, grant me patience to see this refining done Your way in Your time.