We still have a chance!

20140827_153451We read and study the Bible, again and again same scriptures provides new inspiration and guidance comes to our life through the Holy Spirit. Bible is alive! That’s what happened today studying the following verse:

Hosea 11v7-9

“My people are bent on backsliding from Me,

Though they call to the Most High,

None at all exalt Him.

“How can I give you up, Ephraim?

How can I hand you over, Israel?

How can I make you like Admah?

How can I set you like Zeboiim?

My heart churns within Me;

My sympathy is stirred.

I will not execute the fierceness of My anger;

I will not again destroy Ephraim.

For I am God, and not man,

The Holy One in your midst;

And I will not come with terror.

(Note 1: when I started this meditation and study, I was reading the Greek translation. I noticed two differences appearing between the NKJV and the Greek one:

My sympathy is stirred is translated as My internals (all internal organs – σπλαχνα) became emotional (moved in an emotional way).

I will not again destroy Ephraim is I will not destroy Ephraim. (the word again is not present)

I mention those differences as the Greek expressions are emphatic, showing more extreme emotions.

I always struggle with those various translations of the Bible…huge differences at times…anyway, this is another topic.)

The inspiration and guidance reflected at first to who God is. We forget that God is God and not a man. We fail when we try to compare Him to our human nature, habits, and characteristics. I feel that we are trapped every so often due to the fact that our Lord Jesus Christ came in human form and lived on earth.

The second reflection lays on God’s anger. His people had not follow His commandments, they did acknowledge Him to the level to call upon Him but not really worship Him as their master. They did not exalt Him. It was not a true love but a convenient one!

God was angry. Nevertheless, He did a conscious decision not to execute the fierceness of His anger.

(Note 2: for some relevant impetus I would like to refer you to a previous teaching entitled “His wrath or His mercy”.)

The whole picture amazed me. Recently I witnessed conversations debating whether when we are provoked in ways that might lead to inappropriate actions, we ought to remember that we are Christians and ambassadors of God. The debater supported that we do not need to do so as the Holy Spirit lives inside us. It is normal not to have negative feelings with the effect acting inappropriate. Otherwise the Holy Spirit is not within us.

It is a fact that our body is the temple of the Holy Spirit but if God Himself thinks and decides when and whether He acts upon His fierceness of His anger, how much more we are “allowed” to remember who we are and block our feelings becoming acts.

We still have a chance! Most of the times it is creative – not to mention obligatory –  to take that chance and do our best through Christ. Remember: we might be the only Bible that one reads. The responsibility is great and not to be taken lightly.

Last but not least, I was reminded and stunned at/by God’s love.

My heart churns within Me;

My sympathy is stirred.

…and His love replaced His ferocious anger. What a God!

 

 

 

 

 

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Grow in wisdom…

Luke 2v52

“And Jesus grew in wisdom and stature, and in favour with God and men.”

Our Lord, Jesus Christ, grew up as other children, he grew within his culture, the physical and social environment. Jesus did not live a Christian life as developed after His death and Resurrection. Jesus lived a life of a Jew, in a Jewish town, with the Jewish culture, food, clothes, happenings and worshipped God, His Father, in a Synagogue.

Still, Jesus was different than other kids, young men or adult men. He grew in wisdom, stature and he was in favour not only of God (His Father) but also with men.

Do you wonder why?

Growing in stature means growing in an achieved level or status. He was not rich, famous as a celebrity or a politician. How he attracted the favour of men? He was just a young boy, unknown, a Jewish young man among so many others.

Still, he was different. We do not know whether was out in the dirt, dusty streets playing with other kids or spending all day studying the scriptures but we know that he grew in wisdom.

There are much written in the Word of God about wisdom, starting from the Old reaching to the New Testament. Wisdom is highlighted again and again.  Why?

Wisdom is the base of all. Wise men asked for wisdom, double portion of wisdom! Not the human wisdom but our God’s wisdom!

Wisdom is not something that could be hidden. Wisdom is seen in our words, our actions, our life style, our thoughts, our choices, our decisions and our deeds. It is said that there are three things that we cannot hide: love, money and cough! I add wisdom!

My prayer to our Father in Heavens is that we go in front of His throne and ask Him for double portion of His wisdom. We know, with no doubt, that what we ask according to His will, He will give us. In Jesus Name, amen!

Love,

Dimitra

 

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A list of beliefs…

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You have made known to me the path of life;

You will fill me with joy in your presence,

With eternal pleasures at Your right hand.

Psalm 16:11

 

Time, indeed, is a sacred gift,

And each day is a little life.

Sir John Lubbock

 

 I have noticed that there are four basic (and more if we combine the basics) categories of people:

  • The ones living in the past
  • The ones living in the future
  • The ones living for the moment
  • The ones living at the moment

I promised long- long time ago – years ago – that I would live at the moment. I truly felt “awarded” for this decision through time, especially, this past year.

Living in the past means that we focus on what happened in the past, our past experiences and we are missing what’s happening today, at this moment.

Living in the future means that we are dreaming, planning for what will happen next moment, next day, next month, next year or so on. Again we miss what is happening today.

Living for the moment means I do as it comes and as it is convenient today, this second, this moment without conscience of how this will shape life, how will affect beloved ones and the consequences out of it. It is mostly about pleasure and quick fixes.

Living at the moment means to truly live what is happening at this moment, act based on principles, values and doing what is needed to be done without allowing the influence of what happened or will happen or just for the pleasure of the moment. What I do today will influence the future but I do not try to predict the future or just do something that will e.g.  reduce my stress this moment and bring damage later on. It is to really be present without wavering back and forward and fully using the conscience.

Decisions taken and choices chosen which might  seem irrational or difficult or abnormal, were probably not paid back from the source that I was expecting but they did pay pack in a completely unexpected way and from an unexpected source. What we sow, we reap – or as we say: what goes around comes around.

It might appear that my writing today comes out of pride or arrogance, but no! I speak with a humble way, as I have been humbled too many times. I fully acknowledge that all happenings are out of the Grace and Mercy of God Almighty. There are a lot of times that I faced death but I am still alive, not out of my own strength but and only through Jesus Christ.

Philippians 4:13 “I can do everything through Him who gives me strength”

As I write this post, my mind moves forward, backward, left and right. I started remembering all lessons learnt slowly that I could conclude with a list of what I remembered and reconfirmed:

  • My Master is the Lord and nobody else;
  • Life is difficult, still, the point is what do I do about it (being proactive);
  • One voice is important; one person can bring a lot of changes in this world;
  • I am what I believe, think and eat;
  • Life is long enough to enjoy, enjoy, enjoy each moment but do not become arrogant;
  • Be kind, polite, understanding but not tolerant when I have to stand for the truth;
  • What’s happening today, it will not necessarily be repeated tomorrow;
  • Relationships are of vital importance in our lives; relationships are commitments by definition, otherwise, they  are just casual acquaintances;
  • Commitment is not for ever; it lasts for as long as the relationship lasts; the relationship lasts as long as we want to and work on it; and Commitment is about respecting, behaving with dignity, being honest, straightforward, speak the things with their name and not just moving around them without saying the truth and the important.

You probably make no sense of what I say today, nevertheless inside my heart does make sense. Sometimes, we do not know how to present what our inside converses about, so please forgive me.

P.S.

“The warrior knows an old saying: “if regrets could kill…”

And he knows that regrets can kill; they slowly eat away at the soul of someone who has done something wrong and they lead eventually to self-destruction.

The warrior does not want to die like that. When he acts perversely or maliciously – because he is a man of many faults – he is never too ashamed to ask forgiveness.

If possible, he does his best to repair the wrong he has done. If the injured party is dead, then he does some good turn to a stranger and offers up that deed to the soul that he wounded.

A warrior of light has no regrets, because regrets can kill. He humbles himself and undoes the wrong he has done”

From the “Manual of the Warrior of Light”

By Paulo Coelho

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The desert and the fly…

LovingMinistry:

52 today and one of my most precious experiences which took place just bit more than 10 years ago, May 2004. As I red it, all comes back, same pictures, same thoughts, same feelings, time is a strange thing!

Originally posted on LovingMinistry.AlmostDaily:

My relationship with silence is an adventurous one! I claim that I love silence but the truth is that I do not live in silence. My home and my office are filled with sounds of music or radio conversations or sounds out of TV documentaries, including my own voice when I sing or when I quarrel with my own computer! Yes, I live a single life and I adore silence but somehow, it seems that I do not walk my talk!

However, there are places on our noisy planet that silence reveals itself in glorious ways. One of those places is the desert. I had the privilege to spend three days with the Bedouins in the Sinai Desert. I slept under the stars and on the soft sand. I bathed using water from a 5-litre container and my skin dried before I had any chance to towel my body.

The…

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Love is not pride…

Love is not pride….

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All things are ready…

Matthew 22v4

“Again, he sent out other servants, saying, “Tell those who are invited, “See, I have prepared my dinner; my oxen and fatted cattle are killed, and all things are ready. Come to the wedding.”

What a God we serve! He says “…and all things are ready”! That’s a true statement! We are all invited to the wedding and to the feast, to the celebration! Wow! Let’s get ready!

As I read the above-mentioned verse, I really get excited, as I do know – out of the remaining verses, chapters and books of the Bible that the dinner was already prepared and all work done on the cross by Jesus Christ, our Lord, the Son of God, the Saviour, God Himself!

Matthew 22v14

“For many are called, but few are chosen.”

If you keep reading the verses following Matthew 22v4, you realize the extra miles and efforts that the Lord did, does and will do to bring more and more people in the feast. However, not all the invited ones are willing to participate and that’s how the story ends by “For many are called, but few are chosen.”

Some believers misunderstand the meaning of this scripture as they did not coalesce it with others, such as:

1 Timothy 2v3-5

“This is good, and pleases God our Savior, who wants all men to be saved and to come to the knowledge of the truth. For there is one God and one mediator between God and men, the man Christ Jesus,”

Everybody is invited, Jews and Greeks, Gentiles, free and slaves, men and women…

Due to the fact that God wants all “for many are called”, I understand that all=many are called – not few – however, all called won’t participate in the wedding due to two reasons:

  • Even if they were called/invited, they declined and never went;
  • They did accept and went to the wedding but without the truth into their hearts…with the wrong outfit!

The Lord read our hearts and not our appearances. We cannot fake it! Or we love Him and go prepared and with all our heart and willingness or not! There is no secret kept from Him! The ones whose heart is not at the right place, even if they had been called together with everybody else, they would not cross the door, they won’t be chosen!

That’s the truth and it was told in all honesty and written in black and white in our Bible!

Verily, everything was done and has been prepared by our God and our Lord. It was finished on the cross and fully implemented through His resurrection. He has done His part and He has given us plenty opportunities to reconcile and follow a different path in our life, to walk along the path with Him and to reach the end together.

Have we done our part? This is the question to be asked and to be answered! Whether we are chosen for the feast is absolutely depended upon us and ONLY from our walk and decisions taken by us, choices made by us…

The table is ready!

 

 

 

 

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Built up…

Colossians 2v6-7

As you therefore have received Christ Jesus the Lord, so walk in Him, rooted and built up in Him and established in the faith, as you have been taught, abounding in it with thanksgiving.”

Ah, Colossians! What a letter! I love it as I love the letter to Philippians. Paul sounds so different than in the letters to Romans or Corinthians.

The above scripture is so inspiring and a great encouragement for us. It concludes all books of the Bible in just one paragraph!

  • At first, we need to receive Jesus Christ – The Lord!
  • Then, we have to keep walking with Him – not with Paul, Peter, Kathrin etc, but we walk with Jesus and this is sufficient.
  • Not only walking with Him but ROOTED AND BUILT UP. Wow, so strong phrase! Rooted means to make our foundations in Him. Built up means to keep building ourselves and our life with Him and according to Him.
  • Two important elements: Faith and Thanksgiving.

How can we please our Lord without faith? How can we access Him without faith?

How can we go with expectation to Him without thanksgiving?

We need a thankful heart and a spirit of gratitude.

That’s how we keep going and keep serving our God. Using faith and thankfulness, we build up starting from the foundations and we continue building up walking step by step with Jesus, facing the challenges through Him and only Him! Amen!

Love,

Dimitra

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The Letter kills…

It might be very confusing at times! Someone says that we follow the Spirit and not the Letter, someone else says that part of the letter is important when other is not a priority. Others claim that we follow our heart where the Spirit is and as long as some part of the Bible can be not followed…why should we follow the rest?

Confusing isn’t it? It is a great subject for discussion, so if you feel, please make your comments. Dialogue is good. Going through the pages of the Word of God, we see the Lord making dialogue even with people that he knew already that they were mocking him in their hearts.

2 Corinthians 3v3-6

“You show that you are a letter from Christ, the result of our ministry, written not with ink but with the Spirit of the living God, not on tablets of stone but on tablets of human hearts. Such confidence we have through Christ before God. Not that we are competent in ourselves to claim anything for ourselves, but our competence comes from God. He has made us competent as ministers of a new covenant—not of the letter but of the Spirit; for the letter kills, but the Spirit gives life.”

Today, this post is more about challenging our thoughts and seeking understanding, God’s understanding and wisdom as the main question is:

  • Where the letter stops?
  • How we follow the Spirit without damaging the doctrine?
  • What we keep from the Old covenant and what we do not?

Do you remember the story about Jesus healing a person during Sabbath and he was accused that he was not following the doctrine (which was the Law at that time). Jesus explained the priorities. Somebody would say that He is the Lord, He is allowed. Ok, what about the disciples at Matthew 12v1-2?

How that applies during our era, the New Testament – without disobeying God’s instructions?

So, now, I can say good bye and let you think! (Do you hate me? Hahaha, smiles!)

 

Love,

Dimitra

 

 

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Life or pain?

“Humble yourselves before the Lord, and he will lift you up.”

-James 4v10

Are you awake? Do you breathe? Believe it or not this is a miracle that takes place each day till our last breath, we need to acknowledge it and be thankful for this gift even if we do not feel like this! I meet a lot of elder people and no matter what their situation is, they love life, they want to live for ever…We, the younger generation, need to remind ourselves that we might complain but deep in our hearts we want to live.

I have worked with people who are suicidal. Most of them desire to die not because they want to stop living but just to stop the pain.

The scripture in the book of James speaks of humility and as we humble ourselves in front of the Lord, He lifts us up. Is it great? Most of the conflicts inside us are due to try to prove who we are, what truly happened, what we want or desire and mostly an imbalance created by the perception of being in control or keepers of the universe. We can easily cross the line from humility to pride. Pride has a lot of forms and shapes…even shyness can be a form of pride, if you know what I mean.

I pray that today we go in front of our Creator and we humble ourselves, allow Him to fight our fights, to let truth prevail and be pleased with us because we just trust Him, in Jesus Name, amen!

Love,

Dimitra

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Who then can be saved?

Mark 10v26-27

“The disciples were even more amazed, and said to each other, “Who then can be saved?” Jesus looked at them and said, “With man this is impossible, but not with God; all things are possible with God.”

We know how salvation comes: it comes through Jesus Christ. Yet, we wonder who will be saved, when and how! Even during those early days, the disciples were wondering who could sit next to the Lord, who would be first and who would be worthy to be saved.

At least, today, we know better. We might not be the disciples who saw the Lord face to face, listened His teaching from His own mouth but we know what happened after Mark 10! We know how salvation comes and how we keep it up to eternity!

What is vital is that all things are possible with God. It is a fact: we do not deserve much, especially as our thoughts and acts easily go out of God’s way.

Still, it is written:

Revelation 7v9-10

“After this I looked and there before me was a great multitude that no one could count, from every nation, tribe, people and language, standing before the throne and in front of the Lamb. They were wearing white robes and were holding palm branches in their hands. And they cried out in a loud voice: “Salvation belongs to our God, who sits on the throne, and to the Lamb.”

So, no matter the impossibility, still multitude will be saved! So, let’s keep doing His will and contribute into His work, follow His calling and don’t lose heart: multitude that no one could count…wearing white robes…

Amen!

 

Love,

Dimitra

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