Faith, Hope, & Love

Life, faith, surviving depression, Soulmates, relationships


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Daily Prompt – Apology

An apology can be many different things, mostly we think it is to say sorry for doing, or saying something wrong or hurtful. But it can also be a defense for a system of belief, political, or perso…

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Daily Prompt – Apology

An apology can be many different things, mostly we think it is to say sorry for doing, or saying something wrong or hurtful. But it can also be a defense for a system of belief, political, or personal option. It can also be an adjective for a sorry looking item. Whichever, position it takes it is a powerful investment in words, and attitude of the heart. When we apologize for bad behavior toward someone, if it is truly meant from the heart, there is an attitude of repentance behind it to say we will try to never do that again. When using it as a defense it is a well thought out reason for why a person believes what they do about the position they have taken. I like to think that the adjective describes a disastrous end to a project with good intentions. What ever reason you are using an apology for make sure it comes from the heart and is fully felt by you and your audience.

 


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Week 11: Back to the Basics: Light Your World

14“You are the light of the world. A town built on a hill cannot be hidden. 15 Neither do people light a lamp and put it under a bowl. Instead they put it on its stand, and it gives light to everyone in the house. 16 In the same way, let your light shine before others, that they may see your good deeds and glorify your Father in heaven. (NIV – Mt.5:14-16)

Every person is a light in their world, the light I’m talking about is our spirit/soul that radiates beyond our bodies and touches the other lives around us. The key here is what are we shining? Do we shine the principles of Christ, the Beatitudes, and the Fruit of the Spirit, or do we shine selfishness, anger, and hate? Of course, Jesus is encouraging his disciples and those listening to light their worlds with the kind of lives he described in previous verses, the Beatitudes, which are motivated and put in motion by love for all the people of the world.

In today’s larger world, and greater diversity covering every aspect of our lives, we have to look closely at what is lighting our candle; and, that we accept everyone no matter what they believe about faith, politics, or sexual orientation. Many of us have a strict belief system that refuses to bend to the progress of our times. My question to everyone whether you have a strict or liberal belief structure is – “Are you blowing out someone else’s light with your inability to accept someone else for who they are?” When our candle is lit by something other that complete “Agape” love, we have the potential to do more damage to those around us and cause further hurt.

Everyone has a light that has gone through times of trial that have either blown their light out completely, and some that have hidden their light behind great pain. I challenge everyone who reads this to take the time to examine yourself and your light closely, ferret out anything in your attitudes that are not lovely; then, ask yourself why you are holding onto something that causes hurt not only to others, but maybe yourself as well.

I love this Kathy Troccoli song, it makes you remember that not everyone has an easy life and that our love for others needs to be motivated by a love that is greater than what we can produce on our own.


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Daily Prompt – Crisis

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My life is full of crisis, and I’m sure yours is too. Crises come in many shapes and forms from the insignificant to earth shattering. My life is full of the latter at this point. The trick is to find what works to help you cope with the stress, and reminding yourself that this is not the end of the world. It is a turning point, a chance to grow and learn, an opportunity to see the Divine work miracles that you didn’t know could happen. It is a place where faith and belief flourishes – it is a place where you learn who your real friends are. I have two examples, one is my soulmate – learning to live in a soulmate relationship has pits and hills all throughout. The other is having children with mental or developmental issues. Each day is different, sometimes there are small crises moment by moment, and some days are crisis free.

So, the question is, where do you go for support? Oddly enough, the people I am in crisis with. Most of the time, the people you love the most are the people who are either going through the crisis with you, or are your support through the crisis. But sometimes when everyone is in crisis we need to look to outside sources. The best suggestion I have is to have the Crisis Hot Line number on hand, as well as, other emergency hotline numbers next to your phone or loaded into your smart phone. Crisis is scary and creates a great deal of anxiety use all the resources you have in your community, many are free.

 


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Week 10: Back to the Basics: Are you Salty?

Bowl of Salt

Matthew 5:13

You are the salt of the earth, but if salt becomes insipid, with what will it be salted? It is good for nothing except to be thrown outside and to be trodden upon by people. (Aramaic Bible in Plain English)

So let’s talk about salt. I have to say I have looked forward to studying this verse. My favorite TV shows are cooking competitions such as: Chopped, Hell’s Kitchen, Guy’s Grocery Games, and Master Chef. One of the biggest take a ways from these shows is that the thing that will get you chopped, eliminated, or sent home is lack of seasoning. Oh, for a little bit of salt, it makes a world of difference in the food we eat, whether sweet or savory.

Salt enhances the natural flavors of food, it preserves food to keep it healthy longer. Salt was also used to treat the soil before planting crops, and in the Old Testament, God told the priests to season the sacrifices-even the Divine likes salt with His meals. Sharing salt was also a way of sealing treaties of peace between warring peoples. So, salt is flavor, preservative, a way to make soil more productive, and a symbol of peace attained.

So, why did Jesus call believers the salt of the earth. Salt is used to make something plain, bland, or simple more appetizing, and symbolizes peace. The Gospel of Christ is simple and can become bland over time. You need to be salt in your relationships to prepare the soil of a friend’s life to accept the seed of the Gospel and for their lives to be made into fertile ground. The simple bland Truth needs the salt or seasoning of real life experience to catch a person’s attention, and keep them focused on what you are telling them. When this develops into belief, it then needs to be preserved by the salt of mentorship, and growth. The Salt of the Gospel then seals the treaty between a person and the Divine in a treaty of peace, and salvation.

Without the salt of testimony, life experience, and shared growing faith people will loose interest, and turn away from peace with the Divine. The message of the Gospel without relevance to the world, a Gospel that doesn’t keep up with the cultures, and progress through time becomes salt-less and bland. What takes our saltiness away? I know in my life it has been a holding to religion, traditional, and lack of growth in myself that has taken away the seasoning in my life. Unlike regular salt that can’t be made salty again, a person can regrow salt through growth, and (for me) meditation.  Asking questions, digging to find the truth and making it your own. Learning that what held as truth many years ago may need to re-thought through to be applied to life today.

So many times mainly in  the Old Testament people are encouraged to meditate on God’s word. To be honest, until recently, I have never practiced this tool to gain greater growth and understanding; not only of the Scriptures, but of myself and what holds the greatest meaning to me and my world. I encourage everyone to stop take a few minutes and look inside themselves, ask the Divine to unfold His word, and ask how this can give my life more seasoning bringing greater attraction to those around us.

Be Still and Know, Be Still and Believe~