Wednesday, June 26, 2013
We often speak of these verses as "faith" verses, but if you noticed, it doesn't say, "Faith is like a grain of mustard seed....." Yet, I believe these verses do tell us much about faith.
Faith is not here referred to in quantity but it is referred to in quality. These verses do not say that faith is a grain of mustard seed, nor does it say that the Kingdom of Heaven is a grain of mustard seed. It says, "...It is LIKE a grain of mustard seed....." So, what is meant by "LIKE"? LOOKS like? No! Of course not. Rather, it ACTS like a grain of mustard seed.
If you take a grain of mustard seed and lay it on the table, you may watch it all day long and it will not do anything. It is dead, or dormant! But if you take that dead seed and put it into soil, water it, and tend it carefully, it will come to life and spring up into a great plant and be productive. That's just like faith. You may have a table top full of faith but it is dead. James 2:26 says, "...Faith without works is dead also." So, faith must be put to work. It's not how many seeds of faith you have, but it's the quality of the seed that will make a difference. Faith can be dormant or it can be active.
I think we can say that faith works like this: First the seed (faith) is planted into the ground. Don't worry about what it looks like now. It must complete it's dormant state of existence. Then water by prayer and positive confession. That's not Positive Mental Attitude statements, rather Positive Word of God statements. Finally, wait! This may be the hardest part - Waiting. Isaiah 40:31 "But they that wait upon the Lord shall renew their strength, they shall mount up with wings as eagles, they shall run, and not be weary and they shall walk, and not faint." Wait patiently and expectantly. Then comes the harvest!
Don't be concerned that you have a little faith or a lot of faith but see to it that you have active faith - faith like a grain of mustard seed!
Saturday, May 26, 2012
What is retirement? Wikipedia says, “Retirement is the point where a person stops employment completely. A person may also semi-retire by reducing work hours. Many people choose to retire when they are eligible for private or public pension benefits, although some are forced to retire when physical conditions don't allow the person to work any more (by illness or accident) or as a result of legislation concerning their position…..”
Now that just doesn’t fit my erroneous ideas of retirement! Does it fit yours? Isn’t retirement supposed to be a time of happy celebration, fishing on the bank under the shade tree, hammocks, Ice tea or lemon aide, birds chirping in the trees, etc? I want to do what ever I want to do and I want everybody to cooperate with everything I want to do. I don’t want to pay anymore bills. I don’t want to receive anymore aggravating telephone sales pitches nor do I want my mailbox to be cluttered up with a lot of useless paper sales pitches that I have to put in the trash and then have take out the trash! Just give me a life of ease and let me close my eyes and float off into the wild blue yonder!
HaHa, HaHa, HaHa, Ha!!! WOW! Let me pull my mind back together and get real. Look at Wikipedia’s definition again – “…the point where a person stops employment completely.” If by ‘employment’ they mean ‘work’, then I am not retired.
My wife Janis, ‘retired’ from teaching yesterday, Friday, May 25, 2012. We are excited. It was posted on facebook and many friends congratulated her. My mother took Janis and I out to dinner to celebrate the event. I thought about buying her some flowers to help celebrate, but wouldn’t you know, I didn’t ever get a ‘round-tuit’. Sounds like something big, doesn’t it? Well, the truth of the matter is this: I don’t do any fishing or sleeping in the hammocks, I do not get to have my own way about very many things and I still get those aggravating phone sales calls. Based on my experience, I’d say that Janis will not stop working. After all, she’s a workaholic anyway.
I do not have any intentions of taking advantage of her (as if I could) and putting her to work on fulfilling all my wishes, BUT, I’m getting a little worried. You see, I’ve been ‘retired’ for about five years now and while she has been faithfully going off to work everyday, I’ve been a little on the lazy side, calling it ‘retirement’, but now, she will be home! I will be giving up my laziness and taking on a new job every day. As a matter of fact, I've got to hurry and get off this computer before she catches me playing around again.
Yes, Janis has retired, and I am retired. Life will be changing. I just hope I am able to cope with all the changes.
Wednesday, May 16, 2012
OK, OK, So I don’t understand it all and I may know less about how to explain it to you, but here’s what I think: By using Windows Live Writer, you can type your blog once, and post it to different blog sites. However, you must have the different blog accounts. Also, you type your blog in Windows Live Writer, post it in any one of your blog accounts, exit out of WLW and open it again and paste the blog (hopefully you knew to save it) to the new blog account. There’s something I’m missing here, but you adventurous souls will have fun figuring it out, just like I did. Oh, yes! I wanted to try out some of these extras! Like, larger print, italics,
strike thru, and adding a link. Enough!
I have put my last blog on two different blog sites – one located at labrannen.blogspot.com, and the other at labrannen42.wordpress.com. I created one here on Windows Live Writer and then had to copy it and paste it for the second one. Bothe time here on Windows Live Writer. What I want to find out with this blog is, will this blog be posted on both blog sites with this one posting? Don’t know if I’ve made that clear or not but hopefully I’ll be able to give a better explanation of what I’m trying to do and say. Again, we’ll see. And maybe I’ll let you know.
Sometimes we have stuff on our computer that we are not aware of. Sometimes this is good and sometimes this is not so good. I was just curiously browsing my stuff and clicked on my Windows Live folder and saw Windows Writer. I clicked on it and followed through with what seemed like a good thing and so here I am now. I think this will let me blog from here (wherever I am) and then my other blog/s will be notified. So, this is an attempt to just see what happens. I think it will be good. We’ll see. And if I remember, and feel that I have the time and knowledge to do so, I’ll post another blog letting you know how it all panned out.
Thursday, March 29, 2012
If I really believe that, then I believe that the Muslim religion is wrong. That does not mean that I have to hate a person because he is a Muslim. I would dare to say that the Muslim people probably have similar feelings about their religion. They have a right to feel that they are right and I am wrong. This is America! The United States of America. That is one of our guaranteed rights - to believe about God as we choose. Freedom of Religion!
Christianity is a wide spread religion with many variations by many people. These variations sometimes are so huge that people of another faith, maybe Muslims, do not even recognize the two as being Christian, or maybe they would not take the time to investigate the differences and would just class them all the same. I'm beginning to see Islam similar to that. It is a wide spread religion and I suppose that there are many segments of Islam that do not agree on all things that they teach and/or practice. I don't think that we need to class them all together but they are still all Muslims. They are proud to be Muslim and I am proud that I am a Christian. I am embarrassed and ashamed of some so-called Christians and am not the least bit pleased with some Muslims.
Can I tell you what I believe with out you getting mad at me? I believe all true Christians will go to heaven. All others, whether they are called Christian, Muslim, Hindu, Jew, Atheist or whatever, If they do not know Jesus Christ as their Lord and Savior, will not go to heaven. That is what I believe.
Now, I'm not going to take up sticks and stones, nor any other material weapon, and launch an attack against those who do not believe what I believe, unlike some "religious" people. However, I have a guaranteed right in the Constitution of the United States of America to Freedom of Speech. I will attempt at times, to convince other people that Jesus is the one and only way to heaven. If the Holy Spirit doesn't get involved in opening the blinded eyes of those who do not believe in Jesus, then I will be wasting my time trying to convince them. I will then focus my attempts on others. I will not try to slander or destroy those who reject my testimony.
I hope this is understood as it is intended. I'm just taking a stand and making my view known publicly.
Friday, March 9, 2012
I don't know all the reasons why some people cannot have peanut butter, but I do know one reason it is bad for some folks. If you have a bad liver, some doctors will tell you that you should not eat peanut butter. What ever the reason may be, I have found a solution. Hooray! My first discovery was that other nuts that make butter is a very good substitute. For example, Almond Butter. I've found it at Walmart, Bi-Lo, and of course the health food store. But, be ready to pay noticeably more. Not as much as medicine but a lot for 'peanut butter'.
The next discovery I made was "nutella". Have you ever heard of it? Yes, it's on the shelf near the peanut butter also. Nutella is a Hazelnut spread with skim milk and cocoa. Believe me. This is good stuff. It too is more expensive but it may be worth it if you can't have peanut butter and wish you could.
Now, there is one more substitute that I have found to be excellent, maybe the best yet. I just found this at Bi-Lo about a week ago. It's called "Soy Wonder", a creamy soybutter. Don't let the "soy" scare you. I'm willing to try things. Sometimes I loose and sometimes I win. I believe I have won with this one. I'm telling you, this is good. Ummmm-ummmmm good. Of course it is peanut free.
Three peanut butter substitutes. All priced about two dollars more (depending on the size). All good. So, do not be distraught, you peanut-butter-loving friends. There is more than one way to satisfy that peanut-butter-loving taste bud. Almond butter, Nutella, and Soybutter.
Thursday, December 15, 2011
Friday, December 9, 2011
I know that if it wasn't for the Christmas reason for celebrating this season, we really wouldn't have much, of lasting value, to be thankful for. I do love the Christmas season. The Christmas carols, the Christmas plays, the family get-to-gathers, and yes the overeating, are things that I enjoy. As I get older, I find some of the values of these things seem to change, but it is still a great and enjoyable season.
I'ts important that we understand the reason for the season. Without beating around the bush, I'll tell you that the reason for the season is Jesus, The Christ, The Son of God. We celebrate His birth on December 25th. and that is the reason for the season. Somehow Santa Clause & the reigndeer, elves, trees, lights, trimmings, the snowman, etc., entered into the celebration. To some, that takes away from their idea of a joyous Christmas. To some it seems to add to the celebration. There are some people who do not believe in Santa or Jesus and the whole season is an annoyance to them. I say, every man has the priviledge to choose for himself, but I do hope each and everyone of you will know the joy of the season like I have found it to be with Jesus. I've made my choice: "As for me and my house", we believe that Jesus is the reason for the season.