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What’s Helpful?

Wax Statue: ArtPrize

In our Father’s goodness, we find new ways of relating to one another.

Instead of only noticing whether something— or someone— is right or wrong, we get a chance to ask “what’s helpful?” For the sake of all, or anyone—our God shows us how to come along side with care and interest— or even friendly curiosity, rather than a challenge or threat.

Isn’t that what happened when our Father sent his Son to those who were unwittingly hating him—while being obsessed with what they saw as being right or wrong?

And when our Savior sent us his Spirit, didn’t he come along side to make “where can we go together?” the more helpful question— going forward.


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94 Responses to “What’s Helpful?”

  1. bubbles says:

    Happy spring!

  2. SFDBWV says:

    Sorry Mart my mood is already set by my remarks on the last topic a few minutes ago before this one came up.

    There is a difference between someone suing me for my coat and someone stealing it from me.

    The reason or reasons someone might sue me might play into why they want my coat as restitution. It could be that in order to make atonement with that person in giving them my coat things are reset to zero.

    However if they just steal it, one action is right and the other is wrong.

    In the horrible ugliness of the murder and rampage going on in the Mid-East, ISIS follower’s rape, kidnap, murder and torture anyone they choose. Some Christians crucified and burned alive.

    How do we not see right and wrong at play there? How do we “come along side” with such brutality?

    Didn’t God send us His Holy Spirit so that we could know right from wrong?

    Why is it you think just because we can see right from wrong we are obsessed by it? Especially when it is constantly thrown in our face.

    Steve

  3. narrowpathseeker says:

    I think I have shared this before…I have been on both sides of more fences than most people will ever stumble upon, let alone hang around long enough to stand on both sides. And there are many sides that are humiliating to even think about let alone confess them but I will….again.

    In one period of time on this journey…I was filled with hate, jealousy, and mega self righteousness. Many people felt sorry for me because they knew WHY I had become this nasty person, so they pacified me and made excuses….and I remained a nasty person. There are 3 separate memories of what was most helpful to turn away from that(not that I can’t return briefly but leave when I realize where I am). One time someone said, “Who in the H–, do you think you are?” another time…someone said sharply, “You need to HUMBLE yourself my dear!” and another time I was convicted at church with the sermon on “He who says he loves God and hates his brother, is a liar” The last one led to me being touched by the Holy Spirit in a dirty old factory as I prayed 4 o’clock in the morning and telling God I didn’t want to be filled with hate and asking WHY He didn’t fix me” Well meaning kind people pacifying me and feeling sorry for me, didn’t help me whatsoever.

  4. narrowpathseeker says:

    PS…I would add that during that period of time when I was probably at my worst, I truly believed I was a GOOD PERSON….and I was going to church, bible studies, etc. Not only did I think I was a “good” person…I thought I was WONDERFUL and far better than many!! I was CLUELESS as to the wretch I was!!!

  5. SFDBWV says:

    Mart you are such a gentle giant with an equally gigantic heart, I know only too well how easily you are hurt. I hope my bluntness does not offend, please forgive me if I have, it is never intended.

    One of the problems here is that we generalize rather than personalize issues.

    This is done as a prerequisite to the conditions set forth in the BTA rules of conduct. I understand that perfectly and agree.

    But with every good thing there is always someone who will tarnish it and ruin it. The results a loss of something good for everyone else.

    What has been happening is that instead of discussing an issue we end up discussing the interruption of the issue. This is what strife is and does.

    In a private argument off BTA I was told that every comment I would make would be subjected to a personal attack against it by someone who was angry with me.

    Even though I tried to restore a neutral relationship with that person, it failed and has its effect on the comments here on BTA.

    The results are a continuous disruption to the issues you put up for us to discuss together. I have come to the point of just scrolling past the offender and not even reading what it is said, but it remains a thorn in the side of our fellowship here as others don’t understand the truth of what is going on.

    I apologize to you and all of the others here for my connection to this ugliness. But I cannot stop the offender and neither can the counter attacks from well-intentioned others as well.

    Your attempts at putting up suggestive topics and trying to steer us in the right direction is a reflection of your peaceful and Christ-like personality and I applaud you for it.

    I pray for success in your endeavors and hope that we can get back to a point where the issues offered are what is studied and not the ugliness of human behavior.

    I for one will come along side with you and others here in trying to heal the divisions and move forward together.

    Steve

  6. foreverblessed says:

    In the former topic, that didn’t last long, I did not know what Mart was trying to say, untill he moved in and clarified it, now I got the idea that he wanted to say, that when we are a new person in Christ, we are not perfect yet. So that is someone comes to me and says, for instance: your comment was not very friendly, could you be a little friendly-er.
    And then I would immediately feel attacked, and strike back: “Who are you to say such a thing to me, you are fingerpointing, you yourself are not very friendly either.”

    Instead, as I think Mart was trying to say: You are not perfect yet in Christ, do not feel so easily attacked, and condemned, just look inside and see if you could be more friendly.
    So I could react to that person: “Oh, sorry, I did not intend to offend you, I try to be more friendly next time”.

  7. foreverblessed says:

    Ther other person who told me to be more friendly, could say it in a different way:
    “I perceived your remark not as very friendly, I would like to feel welcome at this side, have I misinterpreted you?”

    So at both sides there is work to do.

    And then I also perceived that Mart is trying to say, there are some mental issues playing a role here. So please take care about your fellow blog person.
    If I would know more about the persons backround, the struggles tehy have had in life, I would understand the way they react, and not take it as a personal attack.

    I have seen the movie: Hidden figures
    It is an awesome movie, very intense.
    Now that I have seen it, I can almost feel the way these afro-american women were underestimated, put down, not appreciated, just because they are black. Or in other words dark colored.
    Katharine had to walk 800 meters just to go to a toilet, since there was no colored toilet in the building she was working.
    That was in 1961. Unbelievable. These guys would not drink coffee out of the same pot where Katharine would drink from. Just as if she had a contagious disease.

    If a person who had been treated like that, would react very easily offended, I would understand now. As I have closely seen their lives being portrayed in the movie.
    And so it is with God, He knows all about everybody!

    On a side-note: These women remained polite and friendly. They did not want to take up arms to have their rights secured! They were christian women!
    What a good example!

  8. foreverblessed says:

    800 meter is half a mile.

  9. foreverblessed says:

    One more thing I wanted to say about the movie, is that Katharine had the best mathematical mind of them all! She outsmarted them by far! She was not only a colored person, she was also a woman. Her fiancee had to apologize, and said: I underestimated you women!
    He just said sorry!

  10. foreverblessed says:

    I have to say sorry to Jeff!: I ws not very clear in my comment about people who’se consciences did comdemn them ,especially those in prison. I did not mean to say, that people outside of prison could not have the same problem. I did not want to offend anyone. That was n ot my intetnion at all, so sorry for having offended you. I was trying to say that the probability of a person having their conscience condemning them is higher in a prison, than just any street in town.

    But I did not want to belittle anybody who’se cinscience is condemning them..
    In fact I was trying to point them to Jesus!

    The devotion of the 40 day period before Easter,today is again about our conscience being cleansed.
    Just as God is able to forget sins, He does not know them anymore, when we are forgiven,
    “No longer will they teach their neighbor,
    or say to one another, ‘Know the Lord,’
    because they will all know me,
    from the least of them to the greatest,”
    declares the Lord.
    “For I will forgive their wickedness
    and will remember their sins no more.”

    Jer 31:14

    So we can have our conscience cleansed, and purified.
    Hebr 9:14

    I wanted to point to the Greatness of the Cross:
    Our sins might be always before our eyes, they may be as big as the biggest mountain, but…
    in Christ they are washed away, as far as east is from the west!
    Focus your eyes on the Cross, and persevere in doing so, and slowly, bit by bit, layer by layer we are cleansed, if we do not give up in faith in Christ!

  11. mtman says:

    It is said that familiarity breeds contempt. Seems that applies here but as Christians we are suppose to be better than that. I think Mart’s attempt to find middle ground for those who are in conflict with each other is admirable but doesn’t seem to be working.

    I have noted that it works for a short period but then it is just waiting for the ax to drop again. Having just come back to this site I just pass over some of the comments which seem to bate or are contrary to what the site is designed for. The more insight into a subject the better in most circumstances but not when people bait others and hit known hot buttons.

    Coming along side to see ‘what is helpful’ sounds good but we are dealing with topics via comments only. It is not like sitting around a table to discuss a problem for resolution. Actually there is no real incentive for offenders to try to change behavior because they don’t have to physically face the other person as they are in different parts of the country or world.

    I think sometimes the kindest and most gentle and Christian thing to do is avoid the habitual offender. I note that contributors are now shielding most everything said by saying I hope I don’t offend anyone. I think the frustration for having to guard each sentence structure is weighing on others. In person if you say something that could be offensive but have a smile at the same time the other person understands it is being said lightly or jokingly.

    Not so here and now normal conversation is having to be apologized for. The longer it goes the more divisive it becomes. Feelings are being worn on the sleeve.

    I’ll give an example: I don’t like using this or revealing myself this much but when I was in the military I was in a small elite unit. I was then in an all four branch special operations unit. I received some highly skilled training that I wish I could forget but can’t. I live in a community of vengeful people who gossip, demean and intimidate others whom they don’t agree with. I avoid them not because of what they do but because of what I am afraid I will do next time someone gets in my face or grabs me. I was trained to kill and not subdue. I don’t want to seriously injure or kill anyone so I do what I consider is the most Christian behavior and avoid them before my past training takes over in spite of my self control.

    That to me seems the most Christian behavior and the avoidance I refer to. If you can hold your temper and turn the other cheek then good for you but if you can’t or are afraid you may blast the other party or be baited into a comment you don’t want I suggest avoidance. I am not afraid of the abuse but what I might do if pushed to far. I think some need to evaluate that part of their life also and take appropriate action.

  12. cbrown says:

    What is helpful? It is so simple. The sword of the spirit, the Word of God. Proverbs 3:5-7, 1 Corinthians 13, Ephesians 6:10-18,1 John 1:5-10 and many more give guidance on how to live a victorious life in Christ. Gal 2:20.

  13. street says:

    steve isn’t the point of this endevour, to share together and help each other on the way so we all get there together.
    it’s not that Christ needs our help in getting there, but, we know burdens are carried better when shared. God correct us if we share burdens that were meant for us to carry alone before Him. some are not. i do know we are to bring everything to God and rest in Him no matter what the circumstance. easy said, harder to do. the real benefit of this is to put into words what is going through our minds and bring them to the surface to be dealt with correctly. to examine and probe honestly to take gentleness faithfulness self control seriously. Lord lead us in the path of Righteousness for your Name sake.

  14. joycemb says:

    Chris yes that is the only way to get along in the world or culture of Christians even. If we act or react out of our human nature there doesn’t seem to be anything helpful as mtman says, and bless him for sharing his limitations here.

    When dealing with a personality disordered individual all your “buttons” so to speak will be pushed sooner or later, and there’s no winning. So thinking about what is helpful in these frustrating situations may require a different reaction every time, running the gambit of responses in order to keep peace. God has called us to peace, so don’t let a biblically knowledgeable individual even destroy that. Even the Enemy knows scripture and used it to entice Jesus during His 40 day fast. But Jesus submitted Himself to that fast and the slight-of-hand tactics used. BEWARE, be cautious and wise!

    Being one that was raised to take care of the feelings of others (at the expense of my own) and particularly an abusive psychopath I will at times fall back into my old pattern of feeling false guilt and responsibility for causing another pain, when in reality as you mentioned mtman normal conversation begins to feel like it needs an apology.

    So what IS helpful? More of Jesus, the way of holiness which our God requires of us.

  15. street says:

    many times we run into the sword of the Spirit, the law. we rarely are confronted with it in grace and truth. the woman caught in adultery ran into grace and truth. what a great day for her. not a good day when grace is absent. those days we hunger and thirst for righteousness. each day has it own trouble. worried about tomorrow or the past? Jesus will own all tomorrows and the past? he will remember our sin no more. He loves the elect and will not lose any of them. there is one who keeps saying Jesus can’t pull it of. silence him with grace and truth.

  16. joycemb says:

    Oh one more thing. I read years ago that the only way a psychopath like my dad was could be saved was by telling them that the only way they could get to heaven, was through Jesus. But don’t expect big changes overnight. My dad was saved a few weeks before he died of a stroke because of one pastor and pastors’ mother that faithfully visited his store weekly for 20 years and loved and blessed him each time. Think of that! Wow, the persistence of God! These people were the only friends he allowed my mother to have. God is persistent yet patient. I’ve learned a lot from that.

  17. jeff1 says:

    Forever, thank you for showing concern for my feelings on my conscience condemning me.

    My friends and neighbours are victims of those who call themselves freedom fighters as they believe their actions are justified having demonised those they attack as being the reason for their aggression.

    My mother always said their are no winners in guerrilla warfare and I am beginning to understand what she means.

    There is a cycle of fear and hatred that is passed down from one generation to another (history repeating itself) and no matter how hard you try it is impossible not to get caught up in it and feeling empathy for one side or the other.

    I wish I could forget all the misery that has been caused by the conflict but there are so many victims here in body but not in Spirit that I realize what my mother meant about there being no winners in this kind of warfare.

    You do not have to be locked up behind bars to feel imprisoned as memories that haunt you daily can in prison you for a lifetime. Sadly, it would appear that those who choose to achieve their ends by violent means do not have a conscience to feel condemned.

  18. SFDBWV says:

    Thought I would look in before Matt gets up to brush his teeth and I have to go down to a special council meeting at 6.

    Floodplain management issues and the forced adoption of a new 42 page ordinance.

    FEMA thinks they are being helpful.

    Seen your question to me street, of course my answer is yes we should all work together for everyone’s good. But I have no idea why you ask it of me.

    I will just add this thought on the new subject. Is everyone familiar with the George Orwell allegorical novella “Animal Farm”?

    If not read it, you will find some interesting parallels between giving and receiving, helping and being helped.

    A blessed evening to all.

    Steve

  19. street says:

    Seen your question to me street, of course my answer is yes we should all work together for everyone’s good. But I have no idea why you ask it of me.

    steve lets take a longer view of your question,”why ask it of me?” looking past the horizon in faith we are asked to do many things. like moses standing at the burning bush God asks moses to do some things and the obvious response is why and how?

    i was thinking about the book of Philemon about a slave that is returned as a brother. lets say he is returned and not a brother in the Lord. is he not a brother in the flesh too? how am i to deal with this? and why do i have to deal with this? our circumstances are from God to serve His purposes not ourselves. lets come to Him in time of need. i am the last person to ask you for something, i know you are 10 times busier than i am. praying for you and bta friends.

  20. joycemb says:

    Yes Steve some interesting parallels there,. I’ll take the Kingdom of God any day no matter the current political or cultural climate. We can still shine as bright as stars though, As you and many here do already.

  21. joycemb says:

    Before bed after praying about the day’s events here I was reminded of Jesus’ words in John 14:1 NLT
    “Don’t let your hearts be troubled. Trust in God, and trust also in me.”

    Blessings abundant to all in Christ Jesus, our hope.

  22. SFDBWV says:

    Pat sent me an email yesterday with a story of a beautiful wooded park and a mosquito. It was like an Aesop fable in that it had a moral to it.

    She was afraid to post it here because she thought it too incendiary.

    You see that is what has happened here. People are afraid to speak up or say anything because of the uproar that follows.

    It has been forgotten that we all here are people, human beings with all of the emotions, hopes, dreams and yes flaws just like everyone else.

    We are for the most part confessing Christians, but somewhere in our confessions we get lost thinking that some of us may be more Christian than another.

    To be honest it is both helpful and annoying to get handed a string of Bible verses in an attempt to sound like some of us are better at that than others.

    Helpful when we use a Bible quote to encourage someone who needs a hand up, annoying when used as a weapon or as an excuse.

    In my simple basic look at my Christianity, I think God wants me to be a better neighbor, father, husband, friend, citizen, sometimes a leader and sometimes a follower. He wrote a book to show me how and gave me His Son so I could be.

    I honor Him by accepting His gift and following His example as best that I can. After all I am human and as it is said somewhere else “to err is Human, to forgive divine”.

    When I answer my phone, after hearing who has called the first thing I usually ask is “how can I help you?”

    I have stayed here when others have left for two reasons. I want to help Mart with BTA and I want to hopefully help any whom I can by doing so. I learned years ago that in helping we also receive as a blessing always is a two way street.

    42 degrees and wet.

    Steve

  23. remarutho says:

    Good Morning Mart and Friends —

    Have not found an opening in which to offer a response to the topic Mart has launched — “What’s Helpful?”, though I consider each one here as a person — child of God — follower of Jesus — vessel of the blessed Holy Spirit.

    It seems the young man in the sculpture can no longer help the little old woman to get where they are going on foot. It has come to simply carrying her, because she is too weak to walk on her own, even with a cane.

    As some have expressed here before, after reading the posts I find I do not know how to offer encouragement within the limits of the subject being discussed. So, recently I just listen and close the site without posting.

    An anonymous saint has said:

    “Look after each other so that not one of you will fail to find God’s best blessings. Watch out that no bitterness takes root among you, for as it springs up it causes deep trouble, hurting many in their spiritual lives.”

    Each one here is a spiritual and a physical being. My sense is that if we could look into one another’s face — and hear one another’s voice, we would respond very differently to the group and to individual writers here.

    There is a woman in the church I attend who will be 98 in August. She must bury her daughter, who just died of cancer. At last my friend is ready to move into the room her son and daughter-in-law have had ready for many years in their home. My friend has come to the end of wishing to carry on by her own strength. She is fretting over what she will be able to do to be helpful when she moves in.

    Blessings,
    Maru

    7C/45F with rain. Thunderstorms forecast

  24. jeff1 says:

    Please forgive me for going off topic but I need to share this. Today, as a believer, I am challenged and condemned due to the death of a man who is both seen as a terrorist and a peace maker.

    In my younger days I both feared and hated Martin McGuiness. he was a ruthless republican who became one of the IRA’s senior leaders.

    He was responsible for bombings and killings throughout Northern Ireland and my fear of him was that I was British with huge connections to the Security Forces.

    Even though Martin McGuiness did bring about the peace process by negotiating a political agenda to achieve his goals he has never said because he has never felt the need to feel remorseful for the deaths he was responsible for on his journey to obtain his goals of a United Ireland.

    To his way of thinking he was a freedom fighter taking back his country and the deaths were desirable to further his cause.

    Knowing many of the victims of the IRA and to some extent being one myself I find it difficult to feel any kind of sympathy for this man’s family or friends.

    You can say he was a changed man but listening to the news this morning the only thing that was changed was this man’s strategy on how to achieve his goals of a United Ireland. Violence wasn’t working so he with the republican movement did the next best thing and in doing so made them selves look whiter than white.

    Forgive me for not trusting these men’s motives other than wanting to appear whiter than white in the eyes of the world, but if you were to visit the victims of border areas where genocide was carried out in removing families with British connections you would perhaps understand my reluctance to believe this man to be the peace maker when the reality is that he just choose a different method in achieving his goals.

    Forgiveness, I can not do, so I do the next best thing, I try to forget that men like his exist and I do this by focusing on Christ. I was raised in a church that focused on Christ so it is not new to me. I had wandered from my faith but today it is that faith that I look for to strengthen me, to help me forget the horrors of the past and to help me forgive those that I do not understand.

    I found the words of a conservative politician who had lost friends in an IRA bomb very comforting today.

    He said that although he could not stand to be in the same room as Martin McGuiness there was no doubt in his mind that his actions had brought about the peace process and because of it many lives since had been saved.

    He said it did not matter how he felt but what had been achieved and that now there was hope to go forward and I thought how right he was because the future belongs to my children and my children’s children and for them maybe I can just begin to see Martin McGuiness in a different light.

  25. cbrown says:

    Good morning all! Steve,I read your post and would say that Gd”s Word is what I find as “helpful”. Spring is here in Florida.I have been to West Virginia in Winter but hope to visit there in the Spring or Fall.Blessings, Chris

  26. joycemb says:

    Viv when I decide to forgive someone it’s for me to have peace in my heart and not for them, although being forgiven can soften a hard misguided heart along the way as its a reminder of Jesus great gift of forgiveness for ALL my sins not just a few. That’s my take and I’ll be praying for you all.
    Bless you Steve,Maru, Mart and all today on your particular journeys.

  27. cbrown says:

    “God’s”. Posting on a cell phone and could not proof read.

  28. cbrown says:

    “God’s”

  29. joycemb says:

    Chris I agree about Gods word but sometimes it can be used as a hammer to beat the hearer rather than allowing the HS to bring light. Especially if you don’t particularly like the preacher. Print devoid of love. Bible interp can be confusing and messy sometimes.

  30. SFDBWV says:

    Chris the brain is quite adept at fixing or tricking, I did not notice any discrepancy in your post until you pointed it out. I hope you can stop in when you come to WV this spring, I live in Bayard.

    Viv if it helps there are lots of people across my life that did bad things to me, nothing as horrific as what you have had to endure, but somewhere in my life they became unimportant because I no longer gave them any control of how I felt. It just didn’t matter anymore. I guess you could either say I forgave them or forgot about the pain they caused.

    Either way God will give you the “things” you need in order to continue on, whereas His love and forgiveness is unconditional somewhere in it all He knows exactly what you feel and loves you greatly.

    I see in the news this morning of the passing of McGuiness, I say leave him to God and have peace in your heart. I join others here in praying for you to have that “peace of God which passeth all understanding” (Philippians 4:7 KJV)

    Thank you for the blessing Joyce.

    Maru it looks like we have almost the same weather.

    I found out yesterday one of my friends has colon cancer. He is in his late 50’s his mother died of cancer, as did his brother. I told him he can survive this and do pray he does. His father a longtime friend of mine should not have to bury all of his family. Vince is a Christian if he should not survive this, he is ready to go.

    Steve

  31. joycemb says:

    So then the question becomes as Mart asked, where can we go together by doing what is helpful?

  32. joycemb says:

    9:37 following my 9:07 thought.

  33. joycemb says:

    Jude talks about things that can ruin a church or fellowship. I came across an article in www. patheos .com “6 types of church members that will destroy your church”. that puts it in a contemporary context. But Mart I believe is asking us to figure out how to get along on a blog, which as someone said is different than the face to face interactions in a building. The article doesn’t offer any ways to create unity despite the problems listed, but I think that having the opportunity here to think and learn better and helpful ways of interacting is a great opportunity for those of us who have stuck it out for so long. I know for me growth spiritually has been my no. 1 focus since my conversion. Growing into knowing God better and by default learning His ways.

  34. SFDBWV says:

    Joyce and all others. Ask by Joyce where do we go from here? For me it is quite simple. We need to be polite, respectful, mindful of the feelings of others and honest.

    We should never pick apart what others have said as if we know better. We should never attack another if their belief is different than ours. We can give our own understanding of matters, but not tell someone they are wrong insinuating we are right.

    Really it is just common curtesy.

    What to do when someone violates the parameter of these common ideals? Ignore them do not pay any attention to their commentary and if you just must say something at all, follow the lead of the angel who argued with Satan over the body of Moses and just say “The Lord rebuke you.” Then let the Lord do just that.

    These are of course my thoughts, all of you will have your own, but Joyce ask and this is my answer.

    Steve

  35. jeff1 says:

    Joyce, I have discovered that those that I am thinking about are not concerned for me and that is why I must get it out of my mind and leave it with God so that I can get on with my own life.

    I spent my young life listening to the wrong people and I do not want to spend my old life doing the same.

    I was very taken by the Lord whose attitude on television this morning seemed right to me he said he could forget how he felt and look at what had been accomplished and he impressed me by his attitude.

    He couldn’t forgive but he was willing to look at the bigger picture and put his own feelings aside I commend him for that and want to be able to do likewise.

    Thank you also Steve for your words which always encourage and yes it does help to know that you understand what I am talking about because I do not always explain myself very well and also thanks for all prayers.

  36. joycemb says:

    Steve I believe you are echoing Marts sentiments exactly. Regarding right and wrong when it comes to Bible interp., experience, even reading other commentaries there are shades of gray among Expert Theologians, yet you don’t hear them like you said Steve picking each other apart. That’s the mark of an amateur. Best to disregard that stuff I agree. How to disagree amicably takes the others’ ability to focus on the issue under discussion, and not take it as a personal affront. It takes time to build that kind of trust. Every time its broken its like starting all over again, but after a while I agree its best to rebuke and let go. What is the price of peace?

    I’ve watched NT Wright speak and field questions from theology students at Wheaton and Moody. Disagreements done with respect and Christian love help us all think and learn. Ravi Zacharias is another who knows how to speak to those who disagree, with truth, love and respect.

    Steve and Viv thanks for taking time to read and reply-still figuring this out myself.

  37. street says:

    [19] Therefore, brothers and sisters, since we have confidence to enter the Most Holy Place by the blood of Jesus, [20] by a new and living way opened for us through the curtain, that is, his body, [21] and since we have a great priest over the house of God, [22] let us draw near to God with a sincere heart and with the full assurance that faith brings, having our hearts sprinkled to cleanse us from a guilty conscience and having our bodies washed with pure water. [23] Let us hold unswervingly to the hope we profess, for he who promised is faithful. [24] And let us consider how we may spur one another on toward love and good deeds, [25] not giving up meeting together, as some are in the habit of doing, but encouraging one another-and all the more as you see the Day approaching.

  38. street says:

    been thinking about the picture….
    does not look like a way forward.

  39. SFDBWV says:

    In the USA there is a place called “Boy’s Town”. A home for the unwanted or orphaned. It was established I believe during the Great Depression by a Catholic priest, Father Flanagan.

    It has a statue of an actual event whereby a young boy has a younger one on his back in the same fashion as Mart’s picture.

    The story goes as follows. When the two youths approached Father Flanagan, one carrying the other, The Priest ask the bigger “Isn’t he heavy?” and the boys answer was “He aint heavy Father, he is my brother.”

    This is the inscription on the statue.

    Boys Town still exists I believe though long ago it became a place for both boys and girls who had nowhere else to go.

    Sometimes when there seems as if there is nothing left to do we do what is needed to “carry on”.

    And of course there is the famous poem of the foot prints in the sand whereby it is Jesus’ foot prints we see in the sand as He carries us along.

    Steve

  40. jeff1 says:

    The poem you mention, Steve, my father kept a framed picture of it hanging in his bedroom.

    As I listen to the news this morning and listened to the mixed reaction to the death of Martin McGuiness I think of my mother’s words ‘one person’s meat is another person’s poison’ and now I understand them.

    If I look at him from the past and its difficult not to as many of his victims are speaking of their loved ones whom he denied a life to then it is difficult to say anything good about him.

    Those who do speak well of him are looking at what he accomplished which was to bring a ruthless violent group of men to the political arena so from their perspective he is a peace maker.

    I am looking at his motives and he has been truthful throughout his life i.e. justified in killing for his cause and that cause a United Ireland.

    How do I forgive someone who believes he has a legitimate reason for what I see as murder.

    The truth being that one person’s freedom fighter is another person’s terrorist.

    My mother said there are no winners in guerrilla warfare and for the dependents of the victims of terrorist throughout the world my mother today is proved right.

    God’s ways are mysterious to those of us who cannot understand why someone who has never felt the need to show remorse may go down in history as a peace maker when the true peace makers are found in everyday life doing their best to live with their neighbours harbouring no cause other than to live in harmony with them.

    Farther Along

    Tempted and tried we’re oft made to wonder why it should be thus all the day long
    While there are others living about us, never molested, though in the wrong
    When death has come and taken our loved ones, it leaves our home so lonely and dreary
    Then we do wonder why others prosper living so wicked year after year
    Farther along we’ll know all about it; farther along we’ll understand why
    Cheer up my brother; live in the sunshine, we’ll understand it all by and by
    Faithful till death said our loving Master; a few more days to labour and wait
    Toils of the road will then seem as nothing as we sweep through the beautiful gates
    Farther along we’ll know all about it….
    Yes, we’ll understand it all by and by

  41. SFDBWV says:

    Hello Viv, at first I was going to go all the way back in history to a Celtic Queen who burned to death women and children of the “occupying” Roman’s there in Briton as they huddled together in a large building for safety.

    However I decided to talk about two other related events or perhaps the people responsible for the events.

    The USA has a proud history of conquering the land from coast to coast and of our “founding fathers” as well as “hero’s” who have been given a special place in “history”.

    However as time passes by some of the “hero’s” shiny armor has become tarnished by the truth as time has had the opportunity to see more than the moment.

    I am encouraged to know that for each of us there is a book, as God keeps a record of our lives. The more important book of course is “The Book of Life”.

    Lost to history and the movement of time are countless lives of people. Of their hopes and dreams, of their struggles and accomplishments. Their names forgotten.

    But there is a record as God remembers each person and the life they lived, both good and bad.

    In the end of all things God will honor as well as judge.

    Be at peace Viv, you know and trust God. Let Him handle the things you cannot.

    The Celtic queen and her daughter were killed by the Roman’s and their “tribe” defeated by the Roman army in retribution to the “murders” of the women and children.

    Both ironic and sad that thousands of years after nothing really changed because human nature never changes without the rebirth and indwelling of the Holy Spirit.

    Steve

  42. joycemb says:

    Maybe the purpose of helping one another isn’t to move forward but to just get through. God knows how messed up this world is. It’s certainly mind-boggling at times but there seems to be no end to the ways our common enemy (Satan) tries to stir up strife, discord and other ways to steal, kill and destroy even.

    Viv I feel sad for what you are going through.

  43. joycemb says:

    Viv it just occurred to me and wondering if God isn’t bringing something good out of Ireland’s dark past? Watching BBC last night there seems to be the same wondering from what little I watched.

  44. jeff1 says:

    I have been wondering the same and I want to believe that good can come out of our dark past.

    We have come so far but it is the past that we cannot get past because many victims cannot forget.

    It cannot be easy for those who lost loved ones, my aunt lost her 19 year old son he was shot with two other police officers when on duty.

    The scars remain and with those who killed them now getting pardons those who lost loved ones are wondering where is the justice in that and I cannot say I would feel any differently if I were in their shoes.

    At the same time I have two young sons and selfishly I want a better future for them so I find myself between a rock and a hard place in my outlook for the future.

  45. joycemb says:

    Viv healing takes time, I know well. It may not be your generation that reaps the benefits truly but God will and is getting you through one day at a time. Bless you dear.

  46. street says:

    was reading the scripture today from odb. it spoke of of joshua concurring the land with no mercy. at the end of the list of victories there is mention that the victims has not sought a peace or a treaty with israel. God had harden their hearts. martin may have seen a better way forward. after darkness, light.

  47. street says:

    I will stop all her celebrations:
    her yearly festivals, her New Moons,
    her Sabbath days—all her appointed festivals.
    12
    I will ruin her vines and her fig trees,
    which she said were her pay from her lovers;
    I will make them a thicket,
    and wild animals will devour them.
    13
    I will punish her for the days
    she burned incense to the Baals;
    she decked herself with rings and jewelry,
    and went after her lovers,
    but me she forgot,”
    declares the Lord.

    14
    “Therefore I am now going to allure her;
    I will lead her into the wilderness
    and speak tenderly to her.
    15
    There I will give her back her vineyards,
    and will make the Valley of Achor a door of hope.
    There she will respond as in the days of her youth,
    as in the day she came up out of Egypt.

    16
    “In that day,” declares the Lord,
    “you will call me ‘my husband’;
    you will no longer call me ‘my master.’

  48. mtman says:

    My contribution to this discussion probably won’t help much but for what it is worth these are my thoughts. McGuiness did some despicable things yes, but in the end he played a big part in bringing peace to Ireland. I’m Irish and my ancestors came from N. Ireland. My secretary came directly from Ireland and went home to visit. She reported she was shocked at having armed soldiers all over the streets and the razor wire barriers. This was when the IRA was at its worst. She said she felt she was in a concentration camp and not her home town. We need to remember how things were back then and the fighting, terrorism and brutality. Ireland has a rather long history of this behavior. Many came to our country as Irish slaves. Its a part of history that has been swept under the carpet but equally brutal. My great grandparents came over during the potato famine and were so loyal to the royalty of England they did not immigrate directly but via Canada a part of England..

    McGuiness did things then that he surely had to live every day knowing and carrying that burden to his death. We don’t know how many times he may have wished things were different and he had done differently. He may have changed his mind but we will never know. God knows and if McGuiness confessed his sin he was forgiven. God forgives every sin confessed except one.

    If he did confess his sin and was forgiven that doesn’t remove the accountability for his acts but it put him right with God. His victims still suffer and they need to find their solace with God too. If he didn’t confess his sin then he carried a terrible burden to his last breath. To anguish over his burden is to take part of that burden ourselves. Sometimes we don’t know why we suffer as we do but usually it is something that ultimately builds stronger character in us. I would let McGuiness go and leave it in God’s hands as that is where it rightfully belongs.
    Read about the thousands of Irish that came to our country as slaves and how they were treated. History is full of injustice and the Irish are not exempt from their share. Mcguiness is now part of history and no longer part of the present…a good way to leave it.

  49. jeff1 says:

    Yes, Joyce, there are day I am so aware of this but likewise there are days when I feel I am back in the wilderness; a lost sheep fretting and wondering when it will stop hurting so much.

    I’m only human, I’m just a woman.
    Help me believe in what I could be
    And all that I am.
    Show me the stairway, I have to climb.
    Lord for my sake, teach me to take
    One day at a time.

    Chorus:
    One day at a time sweet Jesus
    That’s all I’m asking from you.
    Just give me the strength
    To do everyday what I have to do.
    Yesterday’s gone sweet Jesus
    And tomorrow may never be mine.
    Lord help me today, show me the way
    One day at a time.

    Do you remember, when you walked among men?
    Well Jesus you know if you’re looking below
    It’s worse now, than then.
    Cheating and stealing, violence and crime
    So for my sake, teach me to take
    One day at a time.

    Chorus:
    One day at a time sweet Jesus
    That’s all I’m asking from you.
    Just give me the strength
    To do every day what I have to do.
    Yesterday’s gone sweet Jesus
    And tomorrow may never be mine.
    Lord help me today, show me the way
    One day at a time.

  50. jeff1 says:

    Thank you mtman for your comments and you are right it is the present that we need to focus on and what the future holds for a younger generation.

    My prayer is that history does not repeat itself in their time so that those who lost their lives will have died for a better future then they themselves had.

    Their courage and loss will not have been in vain.

    O valiant hearts who to your glory came
    through dust of conflict and through battle flame;
    tranquil you lie, your knightly virtue proved,
    your memory hallowed in the land you loved.

    Proudly you gathered, rank on rank, to war
    as who had heard God’s message from afar;
    all you had hoped for, all you had you gave,
    to save mankind – yourselves you scorned to save.

    Splendid you passed, the great surrender made;
    into that light that nevermore shall fade;
    deep your contentment in that blest abode,
    who wait the last clear trumpet-call of God.

    Long years ago, as earth lay dark and still,
    rose a loud cry upon a lonely hill,
    while in the frailty of our human clay,
    Christ, our Redeemer, passed the self-same way.

    Still stands His Cross from that dread hour to this,
    like some bright star above the dark abyss;
    still, through the veil, the Victor’s pitying eyes
    look down to bless our lessor Calvaries.

    These where His servants, in His steps they trod,
    following through death the martyred Son of God:
    Victor, He rose; victorious too shall rise
    they who have drunk His cup of sacrifice.

    O risen Lord, O Shepherd of our dead,
    whose cross has brought them and whose staff has led,
    in glorious hope their proud and sorrowing land
    commits her children to thy gracious hand.

  51. street says:

    Ephesians 3:13
    Therefore I ask you not to lose heart at my tribulations on your behalf, for they are your glory.

  52. joycemb says:

    Yes, Joyce, there are day I am so aware of this but likewise there are days when I feel I am back in the wilderness; a lost sheep fretting and wondering when it will stop hurting so much.

    Viv read My Utmost 3/22 it encouraged me when I read it last night.

  53. jeff1 says:

    Thank you Joyce for the referral, it is encouraging and I am struggling so bless you for your empathy and understanding.

  54. bubbles says:

    Things and situations at work are concerning me. There is a group in leadership positions who are planning to implement practices that do not align with Scripture. I cannot participate in these practices. One in leadership leads a group in prayer every morning. I am not going to participate in this any longer. Last year we had one in the lead who was not a believer, and their philosphy was in alignment with the Bible. I feel as though God is using this to see I need to leave. I was torn about leaving earlier in the week, but events of the past two days have made me see this isn’t a place I can work any longer. Please pray that I could get out of this mess.

  55. bubbles says:

    We were made to use a program this year without much training in it. I read about the program and some of the components were questionable. I kept thinking something isn’t right; it is very subtle. Now things are becoming more clear and I am seeing this is wrong. Wrong is wrong. This is black and white. No gray areas. It’s not about who is right and wrong. This is about this saith the Lord and this stuff is wrong. I cannot participate and will not participate in it.

  56. street says:

    still thinking of the sculpture a few post ago about person holding a knife and carrying the big ten. none are righteous no not one. running around with a dagger and self-righteousness are just as bad as running around with envy or covetousness. is there a mirror we can check throughout the day to see if we are walking in the Spirit???? the law is a good mirror to see what we are but can not fix us. another mirror? perhaps not!

    thinking about the Spirit.

  57. SFDBWV says:

    Dear friend Bubbles, most any of us that have had to work in a place we did not like know how that dislike grows daily. Making life intolerable.

    My most heartfelt sympathies for you. I could say empathies for you, but each person’s struggle is different and very personal.

    It would be easy for any of us to tell you what we would do, but you must follow your own instincts, wisdom and heart in this matter, as I go to prayer this morning and as often as you need it regarding your request, I will join you in asking for resolution and peace from our Heavenly Father.

    You are not alone, we (Matthew, Glenna and I) are here.

    Steve

  58. mtman says:

    How sad Bubbles that your employer is implementing practices that go against your Christian beliefs and all the while they claim to be Christian. You need prayer….

  59. bubbles says:

    Thank you. Most of these oractices will be implemented next year. I am asking God to get me out of there.

  60. narrowpathseeker says:

    Good Morning All

    Bubbles, I am also sorry to hear of your difficulties at your place of employment. I will pray for you as well. May His name be glorified in His answer.

  61. jeff1 says:

    bubbles says: 5.40 am post

    Thank you. Most of these practices will be implemented next year. I am asking God to get me out of there.

    Thinking that God does not always take us out of difficult situations but remember He is with you in your struggles.

    When I have been at my wit’s end I have just said the Lord’s prayer and it has brought me comfort and though I did not hear God I knew He was with me and it strengthened me greatly.

    Do not think so much about the outcome but who is with you in your struggle. God will not hold you responsible for an outcome you have no control over.

  62. SFDBWV says:

    Such a sad and senseless tragedy that occurred in London yesterday afternoon.

    One of the incidents of being older is having lived when things were different, or at least they seem different now.

    Young people really only know one thing, what they experience now, what they have learned now. With almost nothing to compare it to.

    Being older I sometimes wonder how this world can go forward at all. When in my estimation it actually needs to back up to more peaceful days.

    I do believe it is a sign of the times as ascribed in Scripture, that these days are leading us up to the last days.

    With each new election there is a hope of a better change. I am sorry, but with the new administration we have in the White House I don’t see brighter days ahead.

    We as a people need desperately to know whose back to climb upon and take us forward and it isn’t on the backs of the popular elected we see now or even on the horizon.

    Somewhat ironic in that Jesus carried His cross on His back to His own execution, and we are that cross that He carries still on His back.

    Forward to that wonderful day when all is set right again, but only through the steps of Jesus along that path with mankind on His back.

    Keep looking up.

    It reached 12 this morning under clear skies and has warmed to 23 as I write. We may see a little spring in the coming week. Unless the call comes.

    Steve

  63. joycemb says:

    Bubbles, just thinking you might try writing a letter or talking face to face with the person in charge and tell them your concerns about the new policies and why you feel you can’t work using them. Hopefully they will explain their position more in detail then you can make a decision about continuing next year or not. Talking helps clear the air for good decision making I think.

  64. joycemb says:

    Mtman I was intrigued by your remark that the Irish were slaves. I checked on snopes and they say the Irish were actually prisoners bought from a man in Ireland and used here as indentured servants to the wealthy land owners. Being a slave was different than being indentured, but often suffered greatly under the land owner. They were not “owned” like blacks were and could work their way out of the indentureship or go to court even if mistreated and win their freedom. It also says the myth of slavery of Irish is still promoted by white supremacists. ( Not saying you are a white supremacist) I just needed to know as my grandfather came over from Ireland. But what little I know about him was he was a scoundrel that kidnapped my grandmother when she was 16, brought her to another state and had 4 children with her, all the while haveing a wife and children elsewhere. My grandmother turned to prostitution when he died to support herself and the children but also used the children to find men for her, The children (my father) were also abused by her and sometimes the men.

    Im so thankful to God for intervening in our family line. Oh what a wonderful God we serve!!!

  65. poohpity says:

    I was so touched in watching a relay race in the Special Olympics. One person who was clearly out in front and was only a few feet away from reaching the finish line happened to notice that another racer behind her had fallen. Much to my respect and admiration all the racers stopped to help him up even the one who was winning stopped and left her position to go back and also helped her competitor up. It so happened that all racers finished together as they held up the fallen one leaning on each other. They moved forward together in unity of just finishing the race. They were all winners.

    Wouldn’t it be nice if rather than comparing who is right or wrong, or a better Christian than another or even if in our opinion one is a Christian or not that we realized that together we can finish this race of life looking out for what is in the best interest of others above ourselves then we can finish together in Christ as all winners and that none will be left behind.

  66. mtman says:

    Joycemb: There have been several books written on Irish slavery and most have copies of original documents. The Irish were brought over before black slavery and much of that history has been watered down and now is represented as myth. The Irish did come as slaves, indentured servants and contract labor. They were deprived of their personal freedom and treated miserably.

    You are correct in assuming that I’m not a white supremacist in fact I spoke out for equal rights and took action where I could prior to the 1964 civil rights act. I have lived up north and in the south and one of my HS friends was a great athlete and denied a chance to even try out for sports due to his color. I was repulsed by that then and now.

    Like so much of history it has been conformed to what people want it to be down through the years but there is enough documentation still available that I believe calling it a myth now is nothing more than watering down history to make it more acceptable. Many Irish who were brought to this country were denied any personal freedom and treated miserably. That does not look good in history books and has been diluted over the years. It is repulsive for people today to even imagine that there were white slaves but the evidence seems to contradict that.

    Slavery has always been present and still exists today. There is a problem in our country with “human trafficking” which is nothing more than slavery. People are sold for sex purposes and considered disposable. Still how many in the USA don’t consider it a ‘real’ problem or acknowledge it. This too will be watered down for history to be suitable for ‘civilized people’. This is a respectful disagreement that Irish slavery is not a myth.

  67. joycemb says:

    Thanks mtman, I appreciate the comment.

  68. joycemb says:

    Mtman I just read a balanced article on wikipedia about Irish indentured servants and agree with your assessment that history is often “conformed to what people want”. It is used for personal agendas sometimes to magnify and divide, where just plain truth gets lost or denied through the years. Perspective is also powerful though, like the blind men touching a different part of an elephant and then describing what an elephant is like. Truth as far as they can tell, but quite different when the blinders are removed. I think truth sometimes lies in the middle of what we all think we “know”.

  69. joycemb says:

    However when it comes to abuse there is no other perspective that tells the truth, it only hides it.

  70. jeff1 says:

    It seems that history cannot even be believed and the more I hear of what was covered up in the old days the more I realize that the difference to day is that it is brought into the open because the media bring it to the public domain.

    No one knew that Rock Hudson was gay until he was dying of aids because as my mother said it would not have been heard of in her day and it would not have done his career any good to broadcast it.

    My mother said that in her day there was woman who got rid of their babies rather than do what her mother did because the shame was so great in those days that they believed it was the better option.

    The more I hear the more civilized I see we have become.

    In this country unmarried mothers are looked after and not punished for irresponsible fathers while in the old days it would have been very different.

    I take what you are saying about slavery, mtman, it is happening in Britain too but here the authorities work hard to stop it.

    The truth is that the law now often works for the offender and it is difficult for authorities to get the evidence they need to prosecute the guilty. People will not give evidence if the courts do not give a sentence fitting the crime because they fear the consequences from the offender when he is back on the streets.

  71. mtman says:

    Someone said earlier that there are signs of the end times and I fully concur. When young girls and boys are sold all over the world as sex objects and then disposable it makes me sick. In the old days we could be outside and not fear being kidnapped or molested. It seems now that abuses occur every direction we look. This is off topic but it somehow came up and we tend to look the other direction. Because of our remoteness we worship on line in Central Fla. The pastor was asked to work with saved children who have been sex slaves as it is bad in their area. He cries a lot.

    When I taught an adult Sunday school years ago the topic of homelessness came up. One of the little old ladies promptly stated that our city didn’t have a homeless problem. I knew where she lived so I told her on her way home to look under a certain bridge on her route and report back. She came in the following week and said there were a number of people living under that bridge and she never noticed them before.

    My lesson learned is that many people are surrounded by misery and pain and we put blinders on. We really don’t look at our surrounding as carefully as we should. I’m sometimes guilty as well.

    I’m sorry I took this off subject – I’ll try to behave myself in the future.

  72. bubbles says:

    Well. Today I was screamed at, cussed out, had a piece of heavy furniture flipped and it almost hit me, and another good sized piece knocked over that caused something to come off that piece. There will be no consequences.

  73. street says:

    had a conversation with my son the other day about the Bible and history. there was a little disagreement between us over the subject area, really don’t remember exactly what, but to make my point i reminded him history is subjective and truth is not. i find it interesting people color or make history more palatable or warm and fussy. in the Bible you find no such literary device on a whole sale scale. you will find people who make it more palatable or more reprehensible according to the speaker/interpreters intent. it is what it is. i do know we are to come away from it blessed and not cursed.

  74. phpatato says:

    This meme appeared on my news feed. I think it has truth to it. So if I may, I’d like to chime in on the conversation between Mtman and Joyce and post what the meme said.

    “Society has become so fake that the truth actually bothers people”……

    How do people who are bothered by the truth live? They water it down so that it becomes palatable. Society today is full of people who “can’t handle the truth”. That is probably why they don’t like reading or accepting what the Bible says. It is far too truthful for their liking. Preachers today are watering down God’s Word in the name of tolerance, acceptance and inclusion. They walk the slippery slope of joining in on the “one world religion” parade.

    Bubbles, please know that I am praying for you. My sister and her daughter work in the educational system, here in Ontario, and it is through them that I hear of all the changes that are being made. I am very afraid for the school-aged children of today. One particularly disturbing one is the sex education curriculum that is now being taught Grades 1 – 12. Our provincial Premier is part the LBTGQ community and had sought the advice of a trusted friend (and advisor to Ontario’s Ministry of Education) until the moment he was arrested in 2013 for child pornography. What the curriculum teaches as part of sex ed, shouldn’t even be taught, unless of course you are part of that LBTGQ group. Any teacher that holds tight to Biblical values have either left teaching or have requested another subject to teach. The only school board in Ontario that has seemingly pushed back at all is the French Catholic, and parents whose children go to the public/English Catholic boards have withdrawn their children completely from the sex ed class. I fear for our children today! Look to our Lord and He will direct your path! xo

  75. phpatato says:

    Bubbles, your school day sounds exactly what my sister’s day is. As an educational assistant, she is assigned to special needs children. A couple of years back she had to wear kevlar for protection to work with a young boy who was very violent. Luckily for her – in her opinion – the boy was transferred to a school that was much better adapted for him. He was known to bolt from the school yard and was chased down more than a few times. He also now has male teachers who are more bodily able to withstand his violence. Again, I will be praying for you.

  76. street says:

    What’s Helpful?

    Job 16:1-22

  77. saled says:

    phpatato, I am an educational assistant like your sister, but in the US we are known as ed techs. My job is remedial education with students who have not been identified as special needs but I have a grandson who, at 4 years old, attends PK with a one-on-one ed tech because he is special needs. He was diagnosed with autism at age 2 and the hope is that early intervention will allow him to be come mainstreamed. I know of students like the boy you described, and because I have recently been educating myself on autism, I wonder if the child has sensory issues. Temple Grandin explains how sensory issues, such as not being able to tolerate noise or lights, can cause a child to be violent, just because they can not understand what they see or hear and are filled with fear. I guess we all know these children are not quite right.

    Bubbles, when I read your most recent post, I pictured a staff member doing the cussing and turning over furniture.After reading phpotatoes comment, I realized it was a child. I am beginning to think that the issue you have with your co-workers may be a philosophy of handling misbehavior? It is certainly getting more difficult to work in public education. Hoping that you can find a way to make things better for yourself, whether that involves a change or not.

  78. poohpity says:

    It is wonderful to see someone educate themselves on different behavior problems and learn about the many new ways of dealing with the hard to deal with rather than punishment which causes more harm and problems. That does not help to change behaviors but with redirection and correction they learn new ways to act by someone who has kindness and patience.

  79. poohpity says:

    Kids have this deep sense when an adult thinks they are a pain, problem or are disliked and they react to that. That is at home or in the classroom. They know.

  80. street says:

    poo said,”It is wonderful to see someone educate themselves on different behavior problems and learn about the many new ways of dealing with the hard to deal with rather than punishment which causes more harm and problems. That does not help to change behaviors but with redirection and correction they learn new ways to act by someone who has kindness and patience.”

    isn’t that what God did for us? what we needed!

  81. street says:

    saled said,” It is certainly getting more difficult to work in public education. ” most people have abandoned their responsibilities to others or failed to understand what is needed. i have to say my failures always catch up with me. lead me in the path of righteousness for Your name sake.

  82. bubbles says:

    I apologize for going off topic, Mart. It will not happen again. Mart, thank you for all you do. I request that no one here respond to anything related to what I posted earlier. Thank you. I wish for all of you to continue on with the tiopic Mart began.

  83. poohpity says:

    Yes street, that is exactly how He relates to us and it sure does work better than punishment.

  84. joycemb says:

    What’s helpful? See My Utmost 3/24

  85. SFDBWV says:

    Of late Glenna and I have enjoyed watching a program about reuniting adopted adults with their birth parents and natural families. We both cry as the stories unfold and a son or daughter, sister or brother is reunited with a family they never knew existed.

    The program is put on by “Ancester.com” and comes on Sunday evenings at 9pm.

    The two people who track down the lost families of adopted people were both adopted as children and both searched out their birth families. So they both have empathy for the people they try to help.

    Each story is heart rendering as the pain of mistakes and uncontrollable circumstances produced the adoption. Every adopted person who found their natural parents told them “Thank you” and that they held no ill feeling about their decision.

    It is a program about real people and honest healing of lifetime pain.

    With a few exceptions each story produces people who did all they could to help.

    This is my point, they did all they could.

    For a few thousand years observers and readers of Job have condemned and judged Job’s friends, but they did what they could and what they thought was right.

    God did not condemn them for trying to console Job, He said what they had said about Him (God) was in error.

    I always thought how good it was for them to come to Job and set with him and say nothing for as many days as they did. Just having someone there with you saying nothing, but being there is enough.

    I can’t always give good advice and sometimes shouldn’t try to, sometimes it is just enough for someone suffering to know that someone else cares.

    I couldn’t get BTA all morning (Bad Gateway). I never know if the problem is on my end or BTA’s end.

    A little rain this morning at 30 degrees as it warmed up into the mid 40’s.

    Steve

  86. narrowpathseeker says:

    Good Afternoon All. I hope all are having a Blessed day and I further hope that my hope for all to have a Blessed day is helpful. :-)

    I have a dear lifelong friend that lost 2 of her three children. One was killed in a car accident 30 years ago and it triggered schizophrenia which eventually took her life too as she refused medical help. Both were taken in March. Although it happened years ago…I call her and/or send a card on the dates to let her know that I am thinking of her and that I am still sorry for all the pain she has endured. That is it..a few kind words that lift both her and her husband. She says they know that others care but that her sole remaining child and I are the only ones that still remember and let them know we care. Sometimes it doesn’t even take much effort at all to be helpful..and inasmuch as it makes me feel good….I am more Blessed from the effort than the one I am trying to help.

    Steve, I got the “bad gateway” this morning too.

    I Steve…I got “bad gateway” this morning also.

  87. SFDBWV says:

    Good afternoon Pearl and all others. It looks as if the “gate” may be open again.

    I can only agree Pearl, as said before no one can bless someone else without being blessed themselves. Blessings are a two way street.

    My brother in law died a few years back, so I now call my sister in Oklahoma every year on Valentine’s Day. That was their wedding anniversary. We don’t talk about Andy, we just have a nice visit over the phone.

    Andy and I were in the Marine Corps together, I always kidded my sister that I had to go to a lot of trouble to get her a husband.

    Looks like spring showed up here today, 68 and sunny.

    Steve

  88. street says:

    Isn’t that what happened when our Father sent his Son to those who were unwittingly hating him—while being obsessed with what they saw as being right or wrong?

    And when our Savior sent us his Spirit, didn’t he come along side to make “where can we go together?” the more helpful question— going forward.

    what is helpful?

    i am thinking how the truth naturally divides. it certainly divided when it was walking on the earth. thinking you can speak the truth without compassion passion or conviction. it is another to speak it with authority? how about with all the bases covered? who is up for such a job? is this why we are to study the Word and get to know the Spirit of Truth and the Grace He gave us?
    if the Jesus divided the people He walk among how much of the same could we expect within ourselves? separating light from dark. you can not serve two masters. living by right and wrong is not living….living by faith is real living. just thinking.

  89. joycemb says:

    Street yes, living by right and wrong is not living it’s bondage. I know I lived that way as a Christian for too many years only to discover I could never be “right” enough for some. Living by faith is the way, the narrow way.

  90. joycemb says:

    See My Utmost 3/25

  91. cbrown says:

    Joyce, thank you for calling my attention to My Utmost 3/25 that was helpful to me. Pooh, I went to see “The Shack” with my wife and oldest son last night. Thank you for recommending it. The movie was enjoyable although very emotional. The Key message of God’s provision and forgiveness and man’s need to accept and repent was clear. Thank you both.

  92. poohpity says:

    Chris the book is even better. It was actually Mart who spoke of it years ago, the book, the movie was not yet made. Watching the movie prompted me to read the book. Both have pushed me to think of the relationships that God wants us to have with Him and each other. So glad you enjoyed and yes it effected me emotionally too, on so many levels.

  93. street says:

    is there a mirror we can check throughout the day to see if we are walking in the Spirit???? the law is a good mirror to see what we are but can not fix us. another mirror? perhaps not!

    thinking about the Spirit.

    thinking the Word and the Spirit are better to look at than a mirror. made in His image. works as long as you are not looking at something else.

  94. foreverblessed says:

    That is also a dilemma I have had, me looking into the 10. But it didn’t help me.

    Looking at Jesus is a much better way for me. And how can I look to Jesus, unless I study the Gospels, and see Him face to face?

    Yesterday we had a sermon about Jesus, and Peter walking on the water. the preacher said: we often talk about the fact that Peter sank.
    But how did Jesus look at this? And there started a whole sermon on Jesus view, and I was so happy to hear that.
    Just soak myself into who Jesus was, and was was written about Him.

    The preacher said, we see Jesus’words:
    “Oh, ye of little faith”
    as an accusation, or as a disappointment.
    But did Jesus mean it as such?

    I thought that a very good question! And I was listening very good, what the answer was…

    So th epreacher went on to say: If we look into Matthew, Jesus always talks about faith, and if it is as small as a mustard seed, it is there and it will grow.
    Faith in the right object: Jesus.
    As small as it is, it is there!
    Jesus must have said:
    There is faith, and as small as it it, I am so happy there is faith!

    Keep connected to Me, and you will be conquerers!
    Because I have conquerd the World! Jesus has!

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