Saturday, May 30, 2009

What's the 411?

DOES IT SCARE you that we will be judged based on every idle word we speak?  It should.  I am guilty of this more than anyone but a friend has given me help to concur this.  Next time you find yourself curious for the 411, remember 1 Thessalonians 4:11 which says (and I begin the quote including part of verse 10): "But we urge you, brethren, that you increase more and more; that you also aspire to lead a quite life, to mind your business, and to work with your hands, as we commanded you..."  Remember that it is commanded to watch your words carefully and begin with me a trek to end idle talk.  Again, we will be held accountable for every idle word we speak, so choose wisely!

Monday, May 25, 2009

Put on the New Man

I VERY RARELY feel discouraged.  As a man of faith, what is there to possibly be discouraged about?  Lately this has been the case though.  I wouldn't so much call it discouragement so much as disappointment, but you get the idea.  What got me back in line was words of wisdom from friends and an unlikely Bible study on a trampoline (seriously!) which reminded me exactly what it is that comforts, and that is prayer.  I like to give prayer, reading the Bible, and any time spent focused on God the blanket term of meditation.  As my priest reminded me two weeks ago, we should be dedicating at least 30 minutes daily to God.  Sound like too much time?  Well, it equates to only about 2% of our day.

Don't be discouraged, for in Christ all things are made new.  No one is worthy, is it worth arguing over who is less unworthy?  It isn't, and "therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation; old things have passed away; behold, all things have become new."  This is our encouragement, we have no reason to look back, but only to look forward.  What upset me was that I spent years and years building a relationship with God, only to feel like a stranger in His own house.  All we needed was a good talk, and we are good again.

Wednesday, May 20, 2009

Morning Praises

Awake up, my glory; awake, psaltery and harp: I myself will awake early.

Wednesday, May 13, 2009

Love is an Action

AFTER MUCH DISCUSSION of the topic, a conclusion was reached.  The following is from a good friend (and fellow New Yorker) of mine, Ashlie, who (for once) was able to find common ground on a topic of discussion with me. Enjoy!

“Love is an action, not a feeling.”

For once, I am not too proud to admit that this statement, by Jacob at quite a pivotal moment, shook me.   This is not what Walt Disney taught me.  So I decided to find out where this idea came from and why I wasn’t familiar with it.

After a quick Google search, I found that M. Scott Peck, an American psychiatrist and author said:

“Love is not a feeling.  Love is an action, an activity … Genuine love implies commitment and the exercise of wisdom … love as the will to extend oneself for the purpose of nurturing one’s own or another’s spiritual growth… True love is an act of will that often transcends ephemeral feelings of love cathexis.  It is correct to say, ‘Love is as love does.’”

Looking through the rest of my search queries, I found this idea is cited from the Bible.  This helps explain why I wasn’t familiar with it. 

I read:

"Charity (love) suffereth long and is kind; charity envieth not, charity vaunteth not itself, is not puffed up, Doth not behave itself unseemly, seeketh not her own, is not easily provoked, thinketh no evil; Rejoiceth not in iniquity, but rejoiceth in the truth; Beareth all things, believeth all things, hopeth all things, endureth all things. Charity never faileth."

This finding reminded me of another little poem I recognized, a translation of this Bible passage.

“Love is always patient and kind; it is never jealous, love is never boastful or conceited; it is never rude or selfish; it does not take offense, and is not resentful. Love takes no pleasure in other people’s sins but delights in the truth; it is always ready to excuse, to trust, to hope, and to endure whatever comes. Love does not come to an end.”

I guess I never understood, up until now.  To me, the above phrase describes that love is… a wonderful thing.  I explained my point-of-view to Jacob.  He replied, “Charity!  Self-less giving!  How is that not love as an action?”

Yes, Jacob.  You are right.  Love is an action.


Wednesday, May 6, 2009


"WHAT CHANGED?" asked my friend last night.  I simply responded, "I did."  I would be hard-pressed to fully explain the extent to which I have been thinking about changes in people lately.  As I strolled through the bookstore, I passed a section of books explaining strategies to help you alter a person's decisions or feelings.  I chuckled to myself knowing that it is more difficult to move a person than it is to move a mountain.  I hate to be the bearer of bad news, but it is all a waste.  There is a way to change people indeed, but that is only through a personal change.  Christ was incarnated and walked the Earth so that we might learn from His example.  We learned, and our free will was not threatened.  I believe change is inevitable as we grow older and wiser, but it something that will reflect upon others so change wisely.