Archive for April, 2015

Life Is… One Liners?

Posted: April 29, 2015 in Life Is...
Tags: ,

So today i thought i would share some of the responses i have gotten from people and from my own research. There are just two more posts for this imagesseries.

Let me start off today’s post with my grandson’s answer. i asked him the question, Life is… and within seconds he answered, “Life is what you make it.”

Life is… greener on the other side

Life is… when you wish upon a star

Life is… somewhere over the rainbow

Life is… ten percent of what happens to you and ninety percent how i respond to it – Lou Holtz

Life is… just a mirror, and what i see out there, i must first see inside of me – Wally “Famous” Amos

Life is… a zoo in a jungle – Peter DeVriesUnknown

Life Is… a maze

Life Is… a game

Life Is… winning and losing

Life is… divided into the horrible and then the miserable – Woody Allen

Life is… like an onion; you peel it off one layer at a time and sometimes you weep – Carl Sandburg

Life is… a tale told by an idiot, full of sound and fury, signifying nothing – William Shakespeare

Life is… the flower for which love is the honey – Victor Hugo

Life is… very interesting, in the end, some of your greatest pains, become your greatest strengths – Drew Barrymore

Life is… hard; it’s harder if your stupid – John Wayne

UnknownLife is… as tedious as a twice told tale – William Shakespeare

Life is… is something that everyone should try at least once – Henry J Tillman

Life is… an unbroken succession of false situations – Thornton Wilder

Life is… not a matter of holding good cards, but playing a poor hand well – Robert Louis Stevenson

Life is… one big road with lots of signs. So when you riding through the ruts, don’t complicate your mind. Flee from hate, mischief and jealousy. Don’t bury your thoughts, put your vision to reality . Wake Up and Live! – Bob Marley

Life is… full of suffering, and there are defeats. No one can avoid them. But it’s better to lose some of the battles in the struggles for your dreams than to be defeated without ever knowing what you’re fighting for. – Paulo Coelho

 

Advertisements

Let’s look at the last sentence of John 6:63, “The words (truths) that I have been speaking to you are spirit and life.”

So it says that the Words, truths that Jesus was speaking were spirit and life. Selah…. (Pause and think on this) Upon first reading i immediately took that to say that life is the words Jesus spoke. But… it does not say life is the words i speak. No doubt there is life and the spirit in the words Jesus spoke. Jesus spoke words and Lazarus came to life so from that it could appear that life is the word. I happen to think there is a difference between life being the word and the words i speak having life. i think in part what Jesus is saying is that to simply breath has no benefit, no profit and i get that! Breathing without Christ… well, what’s the purpose?

Hebrews 4:12 says “For the Word that God speaks is alive and full of power [making it active, operative, energizing, and effective]; it is sharper than any two-edged sword, penetrating to the dividing line of the breath of life (soul) and [the immortal] spirit, and of joints and marrow [of the deepest parts of our nature], exposing and sifting and analyzing and judging the very thoughts and purposes of the heart.

This can get a little deep for my purposes but you can research it on your own if you desire. His words are nourishment to our spirit and our soul. His words have the power of life and death in them.His words change lives, transform situations and make the impossible possible.

DEEP BREATH…. TIME TO TRANSITION… So how do i reconcile all that with Genesis 2:7 “Then the Lord God formed a man from the dust of the ground and breathed into his nostrils the breath of life, and the man became a living being.” Does that put me right back at Life Is… Breath, more specifically God’s breath?

So, what is the breath of God? my understanding is that the breath of God is the life and power of God, and is given to man to animate him.

The Creator of heaven and earth did two things in creating man. First, He formed him from the dust of the ground, and, second, He breathed His own breath into the nostrils of Adam. This distinguished man from all of God’s other creatures.

Genesis 2:7 reveals three significant facts about man’s creation. The first is that God and God alone created man. God created the substances, and then He used those substances to create man. God had both the omniscience (all-knowledge) and the omnipotence (all-power) to do exactly what He wanted.

Second, God breathed His own breath of life into man. Man is more than “dust” or physical substance. Maimagesn has a spirit. Picture it this way: Adam’s body had just been formed by God from the dust of the earth—a lifeless human body lying on the ground. Then God leaned over and “breathed” His own “breath” into Adam’s nostrils. So what exactly did God give Adam? i have always believed that when God breathed into Adam He gave him a portion of EVERYTHING He is. Much like a candle lighting another candle. What does the candle being lit get? A portion of everything the already light candle has!

Third, man became a living soul. The word soul in Hebrew is nephesh, meaning “an animated, breathing, conscious, and living being.” Man did not become a living soul until God breathed life into him. As a physical, animate, rational, and spiritual being, man is unique among all living things upon the earth.

This is starting to sound like the “which came first question, the chicken or the egg,” Gods’ breath or God’s Word?

 

i think we can all agree that, no air, no breath, no life! Wikipedia says, Breathing is the process that moves air in and out of the lungs, or oxygen through other breathing organs such as gills. For organisms with lungs, breathing is also called ventilation, which includes both inhalation and exhalation. Breathing is one part of physiological respiration required to sustain life. “Breathing is required to sustain life” but is it life?

breath-of-GodBreathing is one of the few bodily functions which, within limits, can be controlled both consciously and unconsciously.

Conscious control of breathing is common in many forms of meditation, swimming, cardio fitness, speech or vocal training, where one learns to discipline one’s breathing, initially consciously but later sub-consciously, for purposes other than life support.

Unconsciously, breathing is controlled by specialized centers in the brainstem, which automatically regulate the rate and depth of breathing depending on the body’s needs at any time.

So, without air, without breath there literally is no life. So is this the one true answer and all the others are a by product of this one. i mean life wouldn’t be so awesome without the air i breath. Life wouldn’t be a series of events without air and breath. Life just wouldn’t be anything if it weren’t for air and breath… right?

And what about those people that we all know who seem to have no life despite the fact that they breathe? Now if that’s true then breath, air, is not the answer i’m searching for. i mean air can exist without man but breath can not take place without air, but as i just shared i know many people who breath but they appear to have no real life. Sure they have a physical life but is that the life Jesus meant when spoke about life?

Perhaps this gets confusing because there is a physical life and a spiritual life and i’ve been looking for an answer that will cover them both? That’s somewhat surprising to me as i usually go directly to the spiritual because for me everything is spiritual. Physical is temporary but spiritual is eternal… right?

Look at John 6:63, Jesus says, “It is the Spirit Who gives life [He is the Life-giver]; the flesh conveys no benefit whatever [there is no profit in it]. The words (truths) that I have been speaking to you are spirit and life.”

It is the Spirit Who gives life [He is the Life-giver]. So it is a spiritual matter and add to that the words that follow, “the flesh conveys no benefit whatever [there is no profit in it].” So does that mean that air, breath, are not what life is? And… what does this verse do to the other “Life Is…” answers we have shared?

Here’s one thing i know for a fact as of this post. i know where life comes from and i’m thinking that knowing where it comes from will help me to understand what it is.

Today’s post comes from a reader.

Well, this is my maiden blog and what a wonderful subject with which to launch!  As I understand it, the blogging question is “What is Life”.  So….here goes…..

Life is the very essence of Jehovah God Himself. In Genesis, God gathered together a collection of dirt/clay, shaped it into a creation named Adam, which housed both man and woman.  Then He breathed into their nostrils His essence….life.  Adam had no memories, no behavioral patterns, no perspective on everyday affairs, he was just an inanimate object made of clay until God breathed Himself  (spirit) into him.  At that time Adam/Eve were one with God because  they had His thoughts,  imagesmotivations, character, ability to speak His personal language and was able to commune with Him on His level. This was His big dream and His plan all along, to have a family and a Bride for His Son that thought the way He did, loved what He loved, hated what He hated, was in sync with His emotions and plans.

We had that ability until the choice was made in the Garden of Eden to allow our soul,which can only operate through information given to it, to rule. Free will is located within our souls/intellect and was the key ingredient to maintaining our relationship with God. God has to be our first love by “choice” so hence, the tree of the knowledge of good and evil.  We chose to receive a counterfeit source of life that comes thru outside information, experiences, etc to determine our identity, thoughts, memories.  As a result of not choosing to allow our spirits to lead and interpret these things for us, the very life-sustaining, immortality that was given to us by God began to grow less effective in our lives and our bodies became mortal.

There is only one source from which a human being is given life, and  that is God. There is no other entity that can cause something to come to life.   We all have a spirit that came from God that keeps us physically alive but because of Adam’s choice, we do not have complete access to it until we are born again. The Holy Spirit then begins to unpack all  that was hidden since the fall  in the Garden.  When  Jesus  said ” I have come that you might have “life” and  have it more abundantly”, He was indicating that we already have the source of “life”, our spirits, which keeps us physically alive, but that Holy Spirit would begin unpacking a measure and dimension of “abundant life” packed  away in our spirit  that our souls could never dream of.

Wow!  The ability to live life and commune with God on His Level!

So, to me when I am asked “What is Life?” , it is being who you were created to be, His Equal Partner .  Can you imagine?

Life Is… HARD!

Posted: April 16, 2015 in Life Is...
Tags: , , , , , ,

After three weeks the number one answer by far is Life Is… HARD!

So how about you? Is life hard for you? Do you struggle all the time? Do you wish things were easier? If so, that puts you in exactly the same boat as most others.

People don’t realize it because we trick ourselves. We think, “If i had ‘X,’ everything would be fantastic! If i could just achieve ‘Y,’ then everything would be wonderful!”

Thing is, that’s not true. Guess what happens when we get our heart’s desire? We walk on a cloud for a few hours, weeks or maybe a month and then, we adjust. We think, if i were rich, life would be easy! If i were famous, life would be grand! If i could just looking like that person, i’d never have anything to complain about.

Everyone knows that rich people, famous people, successful people, extraordinarily beautiful people have just as many problems as everyone else. It’s just a different set of problems.

Matthew 6:34 (MSG) says, “Give your entire attention to what God is doing right now, and don’t get worked up about what may or may not happen tomorrow. God will help you deal with whatever hard things come up when the time comes.”

Here’s what i have found… my life is hard when i take my attention off Him. AND… the farther away from Him i get the harder life is. This is one of those experiential things. i can share till i’m blue in the face but you won’t get it until you experience it for yourself. Perhaps the picture can at least bring us some perspective.

FB_IMG_1429056843160

So here’s one for thought…

images

Life is like a camera…

Focus on what’s important,

Capture the good times,

Develop from the negatives,

And if things don’t work out, take another shot.

 

Life Is… A Series Of Events?

Posted: April 10, 2015 in Life Is...

In a movie i recently watched they said several times “Everything will be alright in the end, so if it’s not alright at this moment then it must not be the end.” On one hand i like it because it helps me to not get caught up in a single moment of time. On the other hand i don’t like it because it means that for the most part i’m living life for the future for something to come. It’s like being a Christian for the sole purpose of heaven and i’m not convinced that that is what God had in mind when He created me.

UnknownMost people i have done and currently do life with, tell me that they never planned on doing what they are doing. They say that this is not the life they signed up for. They share that if they could have written their life stories during their early years; the story that they have today is not the story they would have written. i don’t even remember what i thought my story or life would be when i was i high school, but i’m fairly certain that this is definitely not it. But in all fairness that’s hard to say since i can’t remember and truthfully i can’t think of anything i haven’t done that i have ever thought of so maybe this is it. I mean i’m not dissatisfied with the core elements of my life. i have the woman i knew would be my wife, best friend, lover, and partner. i have two children who make me proud in so many ways. i have grandchildren that will accomplish great and Godly things with their lives. i have a handful of friends who have my back.

In general i think that i like others struggle with the “shoulds” of life. i have been raised to believe that life is supposed to happen a certain way, that regardless of the unexpected, there are set ways for me to respond and i am to accept them as “out-of-my-control.” When things don’t happen “my” way, then i need to get over it and get my life back on track. The thing that seems strange to me, is that i, we have all these “shoulds” and expectations of what our lives should be like, but very few, if anybody’s life, ever turns out exactly the way they thought it should.

So all that being said, i need to have dreams and hopes and expectations, to prepare for life in some ways. But i can’t hold on to the disappointments of life.
So it’s time to begin the shift and find out what “Life Is… Supposed To Be.
UnknownIsaiah 58:18 says, For thus says the Lord—Who created the heavens, God Himself, Who formed the earth and made it, Who established it and did not create it to be a worthless waste; He formed it to be inhabited—I am the Lord, and there is no one else.
He did not create the heavens and the earth to be worthless waste. So how can i ever think that He created me to live a worthless waste of a life? That’s only possible if i don’t know who i am or i trade who i am for something other than what i was created to be. He created the heavens and the earth to be inhabited and i believe He created me to be the inhibitor and the inhabited as well. Inhibitor of the heavens and earth by being inhabited by Him, created in His image and likeness.

Anyone can study to become a doctor, lawyer, teacher, or anything else, but that knowledge will only take me so far. On the other hand, discovering the deep wisdom of knowledge instilled in me before my creation ensures that my life is far more meaningful and fulfilling.

While there may be those that would strongly disagree i believe that the most valuable knowledge that i will ever discover is, and always will be, within. Everything outside serves only to confirm what i already know or to distract me from what i know.

So what i know for sure so far is that Life Is… not a worthless waste!

 

 

Life Is… An Amazing Story!

Posted: April 6, 2015 in Life Is...

One of the readers says… Life is… An Amazing Story.

Definitions:

AMAZING: causing great surprise or wonder; astonishing.

STORY: an account of past events in someone’s life or in the evolution of something.

imagesNow that is life in a nutshell.

In the beginning… the whole creation process. Amazing! We grew in someone else’s belly. Amazing! We breathe. Amazing! Have you ever stopped to think oh I need to breathe? I’m not speaking of the phrase “take a (usually deep) breath”. Just breathe. No, it happens when God’s will allows it to happen. Amazing! Have you ever had to tell your heart to beat? No, it just happens on God’s will because we are God’s creation. Amazing! This is part of the Amazing story God has written for us. The gift of life is Amazing!

Weak you say? OK how about this. If I had to give my son up to die knowing the way he would die, knowing that he was doing it for people (some of which would never know that he even did it for them) to save a broken and sinful world would you do it? TRUTH time! I am a mom and I would say “NO WAY”. God gave his son, on purpose, with deliberate intent and allowed him to die on a cross for US. Amazing!

Unknown-1OK, too much? Well, it’s not weak! Let’s go this route. We wake up every morning under a roof, on a mattress, with sheets and a blanket, we walk into a 2nd room to brush our teeth, a 3rd to make our breakfast, hold on….a 4th room to eat that breakfast. Amazing! We walk on carpet, and the temperature is exactly what we want it to be for this morning routine. Amazing! We drive a car to work. Amazing! See more of God’s Amazing story being formed here? I have just started to learn (personal experience & in reading) but cannot even partially comprehend what conditions others live in. It is Amazing! They are happy, do not think suicide and depression isn’t an option. This is part of their story. Amazing! These people live in our world and share the same air that we breathe, TODAY not in the 1800’s or Biblical times, TODAY! There are people who have no home, no bed, no food, not even clean water. These things are very much a part of their Amazing story, but not a part of mine (I take much for granted & I am changing this). Some have sickness and illness I haven’t even heard of. These same people would love the chance to work. They would not grumble or complain about hours or bosses, nor would they ask for a raise. They don’t have a car to get them to this job but after walking miles they would be thankful. This is yet another piece in each person’s Amazing story!

OK, too farfetched for you to imagine? Let’s get personal. Let’s get specific! Cancer, Toothache, Chronic Pain or fatigue, Miscarriage, Heart Attack, Arthritis, Depression, Stroke, Diabetes, Allergies, Broken Foot, Headache, Cold, Flu, Divorce, Infidelity, Accidents, Fired, Death, Financial, Insurance… any/all of these ending with Suicide. Amazing that anyone could feel so desperate and without hope that suicide is even an option. Each of these items are a piece of a personal, intimate 1 of a kind AMAZING (see definition) story. Really? Before getting upset (even mad) at me, read the definition. YES, REALLY! You are here reading this blog (I am here writing it), so by God’s grace we are ALIVE & our lives are saved! That (example headache) is part of OUR Amazing story. Did that Cancer lead you to a new relationship, did divorce bring you to God and did that headache show you a co-worker’s sympathetic side? Why me & not him/her? Part of the story! Amazing! We (myself INCLUDED) spend a moment of time feeling sorry for ourselves & in that moment what we have NOT done is taken 1 moment to be grateful that we have the ability to survive, thrive, and overcome these things through our Amazing Christ. Remember EVERY moment is part of our Amazing story “good” and “bad” alike. No 2 stories are the same, each was written for us before birth by our heavenly father. We have free will to do, handle, and look at things as we please*. I have a promise that I am not alone, I am unique! God has promised that all things work together for good to those who love and serve Him faithfully (Romans 8:28)ALL THINGS. Did we catch that? ALL! Amazing! It may be difficult for us to see and understand how this is accomplished at times, but God has promised it, and He will deliver. 2 Corinthians 4:8-18Living Bible (TLB) we are pressed on every side by troubles, but not crushed and broken. We are perplexed because we don’t know why things happen as they do, but we don’t give up and quit. We are hunted down, but God never abandons us. We get knocked down, but we get up again and keep going. Is God’s promise of our Amazing Story enough?

I think you get the point. My life is an Amazing Story verse for 2014 was Philippians 1:6Living Bible (TLB) And I am sure that God who began the good work within you will keep right on helping you grow in his grace until his task within you is finally finished on that day when Jesus Christ returns. By NO means am I saying at any point in this ENTIRE blog that I am perfect or have any of this perfected, I AM A WORK IN PROGRESS, but Looking back, God’s promise for my Amazing Story came to pass. I chose to focus on this verse, I chose to FIND the AMAZING things that Life is … Embrace them, see the best in them, and trust that God created me in his image and likeness and he created an Amazing Story for me. AMAZING!

 

In my (humanly) effort to continue to be a work in progress in my relationship with God my 2015 verse is Nehemiah 6:3 (NLT) so I replied by sending this message to them: “I am engaged in a great work, so I can’t come down. Why should I stop working to come and meet with you?” Here is my translation… I am doing an essential job in my Amazing Story, I am building my relationship with God and I am allowing others to see him through my actions, words, and every piece of my daily life. I will not allow myself to be distracted by “things” (come down) furthermore, I don’t need to “come down” because down there I have an Army that can handle “things” and they can act on my behalf so I can continue my job at hand.

 

Unknown*The way you will handle things is directly related to the way you LOOK at things. If you look at anything you might perceive to be “bad” and see how it could be “good” or even a lesson, it might just change your reaction.

Life is… An AMAZING Story, written by my Father.

i have shared this very Easter for many years and i’m sharing it today instead of waiting for tomorrow in hopes that it will serve as a tool for remembering what the next three days are all about.. Perhaps this fits our series Life Is… better than one would think. Just maybe this is an example of what “Life Is”

Edith Burns was a wonderful Christian who lived in San Antonio, Texas.  She was the patient of a doctor by the name of Will Phillips.  Dr. Phillips was a gentle doctor who saw patients as people.  His favorite patient was Edith Burns.

One morning he went to his office with a heavy heart and it was because of Edith Burns.  When he walked into that waiting room, there sat Edith with her big black Bible in her lap earnestly talking to a young mother sitting beside her.

Edith Burns had a habit of introducing herself in this way:  “Hello, my name is Edith Burns.  Do you believe in Easter?”  Then she would explain the meaning of Easter, and many times people would be saved.

Dr. Phillips walked into that office and there he saw the head nurse, Beverly.  Beverly had first met Edith when she was taking her blood pressure.  Edith began by saying, “My name is Edith Burns.  Do you believe in Easter?”

Beverly said, “Why, yes, I do.” Edith said, “Well, what do you believe about Easter?” Beverly said, “Well, it’s all about egg hunts, going to church, and dressing up.”

Edith kept pressing her about the real meaning of Easter, and finally led her to a saving knowledge of Jesus Christ.

Dr. Phillips said, “Beverly, don’t call Edith into the office quite yet.  I believe there is another delivery taking place in the
waiting room.”

After being called back in the doctor’s office, Edith sat down, and when she took a look at the doctor she said, “Dr. Will, why are you so sad?  Are you reading your Bible?  Are you praying?”

Dr. Phillips said gently, “Edith, I’m the doctor and you’re the patient.”  With a heavy heart he said, “Your lab report came back and it says you have cancer, and Edith, you’re not going to live very long.”

Edith said, “Why Will Phillips, shame on you.  Why are you so sad?  Do you think God makes mistakes?  You have just told me I’m going to see my precious Lord Jesus, my husband, and my friends.  You have just told me that I am going to celebrate Easter forever, and here you are having difficulty giving me my ticket!”

Dr. Phillips thought to himself, “What a magnificent woman this Edith Burns is!”

Edith continued coming to Dr. Phillips.  Christmas came and the office was closed through January 3rd.  On the day the office opened, Edith did not show up.

Later that afternoon, Edith called Dr. Phillips and said she would have to be moving her story to the hospital and said, “Will, I’m very near home, so would you make sure that they put women in here next to me in my room who need to know about Easter.”

Well, they did just that, and women began to come in and share that room with Edith.  Many women were saved.  Everybody on that floor from staff to patients were so excited about Edith that they started calling her Edith Easter; that is, everyone except Phyllis Cross, the head nurse.

Phyllis made it plain that she wanted nothing to do with Edith because she was a “religious nut”.  She had been a nurse in an army hospital.  She had seen it all and heard it all.  She was the original G.I. Jane.  She had been married three times, she was hard, cold, and did everything by the book.

One morning the two nurses who were to attend to Edith were sick.  Edith had the flu and Phyllis Cross had to go in and give her a shot.

When she walked in, Edith had a big smile on her face and said, “Phyllis, God loves you and I love you, and I have been praying for you.”

Phyllis Cross said, “Well, you can quit praying for me.  It won’t work and I’m not interested.”

Edith said, “Well, I will pray and I have asked God not to let me go home until you come into the family.”

Phyllis Cross said, “Then you will never die because that will never happen,” and curtly walked out of the room.

Every day Phyllis Cross would walk into the room and Edith would say, “God loves you, Phyllis, and I love you, and I’m praying for you.”

One day Phyllis Cross said she was literally drawn to Edith’s room like a magnet would draw iron.  She sat down on the bed and Edith said, “I’m so glad you have come, because God told me that today is your special day.”

Phyllis Cross said, “Edith, you have asked everybody here the question, ‘Do you believe in Easter?’, but you have never asked me.”

Edith said, “Phyllis, I wanted to many times, but God told me to wait until you asked, and now that you have asked .”

Edith Burns took her Bible and shared with Phyllis Cross the Easter Story of the death, burial, and resurrection of Jesus Christ.

Edith said, “Phyllis, do you believe in Easter?  Do you believe that Jesus Christ is alive and that He wants to live in your heart?”

Phyllis Cross said, “Oh, I want to believe that with all of my heart, and I do want Jesus in my life.”  Right there, Phyllis Cross prayed and invited Jesus Christ into her heart.  For the first time Phyllis Cross did not walk out of a hospital room, she was carried out on the wings of angels.

Two days later, Phyllis Cross came in and Edith said, “Do you know what day it is?”

Phyllis Cross said, “Why Edith, it’s Good Friday.”

Edith said, “Oh, no, for you every day is Easter.  Happy Easter, Phyllis!”

Two days later, on Easter Sunday, Phyllis Cross came into work, did some of her duties, and then went down to the flower shop and got some Easter lilies, because she wanted to go up to see Edith, give her some Easter lilies, and wish her a Happy Easter.

When she walked into Edith’s room, Edith was in bed.  That big black Bible was on her lap.  Her hands were in that Bible.  There was a sweet smile on her face.  When Phyllis Cross went to pick up Edith’s hand, she realized Edith was dead.  Her left hand was on John 14:2

“In my Father’s house are many mansions.  I go to prepare a place for you.  I will come again and receive you to Myself, that where I am, there you may be also.”

Her right hand was on Revelation 21:4:

“And God will wipe away every tear from their eyes, there shall be no more death nor sorrow, nor crying; and there shall be no more pain, for the former things have passed away.”

Phyllis Cross took one look at that dead body, and then lifted her face toward heaven, and with tears streaming down her cheeks said, “Happy Easter, Edith — Happy Easter!”

Phyllis Cross left Edith’s body, walked out of the room and over to a table where two student nurses were sitting.

She said, “My name is Phyllis Cross.  Do you believe in Easter?”

God works in wonderful ways, and to believe in His power is to truly be free.

In closing… Do you believe in Easter?