fear

Apr. 22nd, 2008 07:27 am
acresofhope: (chloe I can heal you)
Star Wars Episode I was on TV recently. Actually, I think it's been playing a lot lately. Anyway, Yoda always has a way of stepping on my toes. The next best thing to the Bible he is.

Fear is the path to the dark side. Fear leads to anger. Anger leads to hate. Hate leads to suffering.


I'm afraid of most everything, and lately, afraid of church. I don't know what it is. I used to love it. What made me so afraid? I don't want the anger part to come, and if hate ever comes into the equation? Then I'm totally going to Hell.

Dear Jesus, help me release this fear before it snowballs into something neither of us want.
acresofhope: (Default)
I have the hiccups.

The skin under my purity ring is itching. I wonder if it means anything. I can just hear Him now... "I'm God, not a magician! Get out and meet people!"  Becuase sometimes, He likes to talk like Leonard McCoy, along with just about any other character I know. It's probably just some random itching, though.

I haven't been writing much, but maaking icons instead. Whenever inspiration dries up I usually switch words for images. It usually seems to work. Of course, sometimes I just play Kingdom Hearts II or some other game. Not that I have all that many games. The only other game I have is Budokai 3, and then whatever Nintendo games my brothers have, but that's only when they've brought the GameCube. I want a Wii so badly it's not funny.

I just got the first Superman movie from Netflix. I love them so much. I just wish I could afford to rent more movies at once.
acresofhope: (worship)
I'm having a fit right now, much like the one I usually have around Christmas time, but let's stick to the holiday at hand.

Religious Rant: Beware of Jesus )

P3

Mar. 4th, 2008 03:03 pm
acresofhope: (soaring flying)
I'm on my brother's laptop. The wonders of wireless. I want one of these for myself. Only thing is getting a job...which wouldn't be so hard if I wasn't terrified of everything. I wish I could channel my inner Chloe while I'm not sitting at a computer.

This post will mostly be spiritual. I will cut for that reason. If you're not a big fan of Christianity, don't read because it'll probably piss you off. You'll accuse me of being intolerant...which is pretty screwed up. Hate to tell you, but sometimes believing a certain thing is true means you have to believe other things are false. That's reality.

spiritual thoughts )

*facepalm*

Jan. 23rd, 2008 07:39 pm
acresofhope: (chloe can I kick you?)
I apparently don't watch the news enough. I prefer not to most of the time. It's very depressing.

Apparently, there's a group of..."Christians"...protesting at a certain actor's funeral. For the love of Christ, a man is dead! It's not something that should start a protest! If they really believe he's in hell, you'd think they'd be morning him. Apparently they think they're sinless. You deserve hell as much as the rest of us. Bastards.

I apologize to my fellow Christians for using the wordy-durd, and to the rest of humanity for whoever these people are. If you've read my profile, I'm sure you could figure out what I believe about the subject, but I will go on record to say this: I don't care what these people claim, but they are not Christians. It's not something I would normal come out and say, but I think I can in this case.

lyrics

Jan. 16th, 2007 04:19 am
acresofhope: (how much this kills me)
I was sure by now
God, you would have reached down
and wiped our tears away
stepped in and saved the day
but once again
I say "amen"
and it's still rainin'

but as the thunder rolls
I barely hear
You whisper through the rain
"I am with you"
and as Your mercy falls
I'll raise my hands
and praise the God who gives
and takes away

I'll praise You in this storm
and I will lift my hands
You are who You are
no matter where I am
and every tear I've cried
You hold in Your hand
You never left my side
and though my heart is torn
I will praise You in this storm

I remember when
I stumbled in the wind
You heard my cry to You
and raised me up again
but my strength is almost gone
how can I carry on
if I can't find You?

but as the thunder rolls
I barely hear
You whisper through the rain
"I am with you"
and as Your mercy falls
I'll raise my hands
and praise the God who gives
and takes away

I'll praise You in this storm
and I will lift my hands
You are who You are
no matter where I am
and every tear I've cried
You hold in Your hand
You never left my side
and though my heart is torn
I will praise You in this storm

I lift my eyes unto the hills
where does my help come from?
my help comes from the Lord
Maker of Heaven and Earth

I lift my eyes unto the hills
where does my help come from?
my help comes from the Lord
Maker of Heaven and Earth

I'll praise You in this storm
and I will lift my hands
You are who You are
no matter where I am
and every tear I've cried
You hold in Your hand
You never left my side
and though my heart is torn
I will praise You in this storm
acresofhope: (live - move - be)
I had a talk not too long ago with [livejournal.com profile] ferretgirl_1124, and somehow things got around to the spiritual. I can't remember exact details (which makes me wish I kept logs), but it started me thinking. She mentioned that there are miracles that happen in all different kinds of religions. I said that I believe there are lots of spiritual beings out there, but I give the title of God to only one. She asked why, and I said He's most powerful...but after further reflection, I don't think that's quite it. Not entirely, anyway.

So, after some thinking and a few episodes of Stargate SG-1 (long story), I asked myself why exactly I worship the God of the Bible. I'm not sure if I have a full understanding of it, or at least not an understanding I can put into words. He created all things and is sovereign over all things. And I love Him. Those are really the only two reasons I have.

To be honest, I'm not sure how I even came to believe in Him. It was like falling in love...it kind of just happened. I guess if I could all it anything, I'd call it a miracle. And even though I've had my times of darkness and I'm just the most horrible person on the planet, He always brings me up from it. *laugh* I guess I just can't help but worship Someone like Him. He's irresistible to me.
acresofhope: (ever after princess)
Yesterday I watched The Passion...alone. I think I needed to. I keep asking God to change me, because honestly, in this place in time, I feel like I haven't changed all that much from who I used to be. Maybe this is a spiritual "wall", like runners hit on the last half of a long race. There was a time when I was doing pretty great, better than I am now even, then something happened. What was it? I wish I could pinpoint it, then maybe I could deal with what's really going on.

I'm sure most of you don't know what I mean in the specifics, but I think all Christians on my list can identify generally.

Anyway...I don't have anything else to say right now.
acresofhope: (the eyes)
Well, a few days ago I talked about something that made me really happy, and now, I will tell you what is was. Which is why the subject of this post is the rest of the lyric from A Dream Is A Wish Your Heart Makes. All of it wouldn't fit in the last subject. Neat how that worked out.

I listened to part one and two of "But I Say to You, Love Your Enemies". Somehow, no matter the subject he's teaching on, this guy ends up going back to the gospel. To him, it's central to everything and to take your eyes off grace for a moment is setting yourself up for disobedience.

But I'm getting off track.

The very first word of the Sermon on the Mount—and this is no mistake—is, "Blessed are the poor in spirit, for theirs is the kingdom of heaven." We don't enter the kingdom of heaven because of the moral resources that we bring; we enter by confessing with tears our poverty of spirit.

In Mark 10:15 Jesus said, "Truly I say to you, whoever does not receive the kingdom of God like a child shall not enter it at all." It is a gift to the poor in spirit who are broken and childlike and have no airs of self-sufficiency.

In Mark 2:17 Jesus said, "It is not those who are healthy who need a physician, but those who are sick; I did not come to call the righteous, but sinners." We enter the kingdom poor in spirit, helpless as a child, sick and in need of a spiritual physician.

This is what Jesus was doing when he ate with tax collectors and sinners—he was pursuing the poor and the helpless and the sick. And the self-sufficient murmured, "This man receives sinners and eats with them" (Luke 15:2). And when they said that, Jesus told them the parable of the prodigal son. And the point was: I don't eat with sinners because I like sin. I eat with sinners because I am the love of God welcoming home poor, helpless, diseased sinners—forgiving them, cleansing them, making them new, and sending them out to love in the power of God.

Which is why he could say to the priests and elders in Matthew 21:31, "Truly I say to you that the tax-gatherers and harlots are going into the kingdom of God before you."

How can this be: sinners and harlots going into the kingdom of God? The bottom line answer Jesus gave: "The Son of Man did not come to be served, but to serve, and to give His life a ransom for many" (Mark 10:45). He came to die for them—for us.


I was sitting there, listening to his words (which are only summarized in the transcript) and getting excited, especially the parts about being sick and "prostitutes go into the kingdom of God before you." (Matt 21:31 ESV) Now I was never a prostitute, but I was close enough to it to identify with that. I was so excited that I jumped up out of my seat and was like "Me! That's me!"

As soon as I did it, I realized how crazy I must have looked. How odd is it to say "Yay, I'm a sick whore!" I mean, I'm certainly not happy that I have all these issues or that I'm so bent to let Him down. I guess the part I'm happy about is that I know He has forgiven me, and I know He has, in one sense, cleansed me, and in another sense, is still cleansing me and making me new.

I guess that's the whole point of the sermon though, isn't it? Jesus loved His enemies. How can you claim to follow someone like that, who is perfect and has every right to hate His enemies, and not love your own enemies? Sounds pretty impossible to me. Maybe it'd be a gradual thing, but you'd love your enemies.
acresofhope: (at His feet)
Let love be genuine. Abhor what is evil; hold fast to what is good. Love one another with brotherly affection. Outdo one another in showing honor. Do not be slothful in zeal, be fervent in spirit, serve the Lord. Rejoice in hope, be patient in tribulation, be constant in prayer. Contribute to the needs of the saints and seek to show hospitality. Bless those who persecute you; bless and do not curse them. Rejoice with those who rejoice, weep with those who weep. Live in harmony with one another. Do not be haughty, but associate with the lowly. Never be conceited. Repay no one evil for evil, but give thought to do what is honorable in the sight of all. If possible, so far as it depends on you, live peaceably with all. Beloved, never avenge yourselves, but leave it to the wrath of God, for it is written, "Vengeance is mine, I will repay, says the Lord." To the contrary, "if your enemy is hungry, feed him; if he is thirsty, give him something to drink; for by so doing you will heap burning coals on his head." Do not be overcome by evil, but overcome evil with good.

Romans 12:9-21 ESV


I have just finished listening to a sermon from John Piper on these verses. Boy, does this hit home. Yet another ouch moment.

I don't even know how to respond to this. I have complained and, most likely, repaid evil for evil. And even now, I am tempted to excuse myself by saying not that it is not in the way that some would think I have. It really doesn't matter which way I have. I shouldn't have, plain and simple.

I want to obey this now, even if I haven't been...but where does the genuineness come from? How do I genuinely bless and not curse? I don't know how to do that! All I can do is fall on my face before God and scream, "PLEASE, TEACH ME!" and hope, with a Biblical kind of hope that is better described as expectation, for a miracle.
acresofhope: (at His feet)
Do you ever just wish Jesus was right there in front of you, in the flesh, so you could just fall at His feet? I feel like that right now.

By the grace of God, a friend who was considering suicide is still alive.

Praise the LORD!
Praise God in his sanctuary;
praise him in his might heavens!
Praise him for his mighty deeds;
praise him according to his excellent greatness!

Praise him with trumpet sound;
praise him with lute and harp!
Praise him with tambourine and dance;
praise him with strings and pipe!
Praise him with sounding cymbals;
praise him with loud clashing cymbals!
Let everything that has breath praise the LORD!
Praise the LORD!

Psalm 150
acresofhope: (Christian hedonist)
I have just started reading When I Don't Desire God by John Piper, thanks to the free resources of the Desiring God website. It's a very important thing for me to do at the moment, because though God is someone I desire, there are so many things I desire more.

I desire comfort more than God.
I desire friends more than God.
I desire entertainment more than God.
I desire rest/sleep more than God.
I desire sexual pleasure more than God.

The last one was hardest to type, simply because I'd like to say I'm done with the things of my past. Recent events have totally opened my eyes. I look at my reflection, staring at the ugly thing of a woman I see before me and think to myself, "I thought I got rid of her." But here she is, back from the dead. Maybe I should contact [livejournal.com profile] zombiekillers.

And I want to smack myself for making a joke about something so serious.

I remember talking about this with the student minister of my church. I think it was before I was even a Christian. I told him about how there were loads of things I wanted to stop doing, but there was some part of me that still wanted to do them. I talked about how much I hated this war that was always going on inside of me. He told me it'll always be like this as long as this life lasts, and he's absolutely right.

It's depressing for me, because I want it all to stop. Sin can be so subtle at times and fighting against it is hard work. I just want to stop hurting people, stop hurting myself, stop hurting God. I just want it to stop.

In the opening chapter of Piper's book, he talks about something he calls "Christian hedonism". His shortest summary of it is this: God is most glorified in us when we are most satisfied in him. The goal of a Christian hedonist is to joy in Christ above all else.

I'm not sure if I understand all of this correctly, so I'll stop at that. What I will say, though, is that my one wish is to desire God above everything else, because in the end, only He is worth treasuring. Everything else is meaningless, and anything that has meaning only has meaning because of Him. Family, friends, whoever I end up marrying, any kids I might have...it's all meaningless if He's not in the center of everything.

All of this, though, is humanly impossible. God will have to perform some sort of miracle in me if I'm ever to even get my feet off the ground. I don't understand it how all that works, how I'm deciding but He's going to do it for me...but I'm praying and trusting He'll take care of it all. Even if I knew and understood, I couldn't do it.

Don't ever be comfortable with where you are with God, live off past experiences or think you have "arrived". It's just not good for you. If you're not moving forward with Him, you'll just end up sliding backward (which I guess is where the term "backsliding" comes from). Sure, if you fall in a hole, God can get you out of it, but don't ever think there aren't consequences.

Praise be to God that there is still hope for me.

(cross-posted in no_compromise, christianbook and armyofchrist)

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