Tag Archives: Holy Spirit

My (Alexis Kaye’s) Story in a Nutshell

Dear faithful readers,

Can you please read this and tell me if you think this is enough info on me, or if I ought to turn this into a book about my personal life and maybe add like things I am doing to work to get over the bullying I endured as a kid and how to handle it when it happens as an adult (though I do not know how right now), and to overcome or handle my depression, anxiety, and PTSD? And is there other stuff about me that ought to be included like favorites and least favorites and so on? I’d take out the “_In a Nutshell” if people wanted to read a longer version of my story. Also, is it a story worth self-publishing? I want people to get to know me and at least try to understand why I am the way that I am, and that I am working on overcoming my obstacles and struggles, including my physical and other illnesses (depression, anxiety, PTSD). Also, I want other sufferers to know they are not alone, or a “bad Christian” for having mental/invisible illnesses they are struggling to deal with or overcome.

Please be respectful in comments or they will be deleted (This is to any bullies who may be lurking, not to my readers whom I trust and love).

Thank you!

Alexis

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Alexis Kaye’s Story_In A Nutshell

I grew up in a small town in New Jersey. I was severely teased and bullied, especially in first grade through 9th grade. In 9th grade, 2 of the bullies apologized to me. The others either stopped paying any attention or mind to me at all or moved eventually. Then I moved, with my mom, to northern California in 2000 when I was 17. It was my senior year of high school and I was the new girl. Nobody bullied me, but some people did not believe certain things about me, like that I was a virgin. As they got to know me though, they came around and knew I was honest with them about my values and who I was. I even got respected for being a virgin and for Not drinking Or doing  drugs, and for not smoking.

It was a pleasant change to be liked, but the damage from the emotional abuse and bullying I had endured made me super shy abused had taken its toll on me. Of course it didn’t fully take its toll on me until adulthood, especially after my mom died in 2006, or well, a year previous when I was looking after her. In 2005 I saw just how great a peacemaker my mom had been. And when she died, any peace I had was taken from me too and a part of me died with her.

I suffer from PTSD, and debilitating anxiety and depression that prevent me from being able to work. Whenever I tried to work, from 17 years of age (1st job) to the volunteer job I had a few summers so at the Library a few blocks away, I would get sick or injured and have to stop working. It was severe migraine headaches the first time with my first job at a local movie theater in October of 2000 – as usher or concession stand depending on the day and shift, and there were more days than I would like where the nurse sent me home from school sick because of the severity of them, and I had to leave work early a couple of times. The final time, the lady boss (there were 2 bosses) wouldn’t let me leave even though my mom had come to pick me up. My mom had to step in and tell her that she was taking me home and took me home because of how much pain I was in. And the migraines stayed for several months after I quit my job one month into it.

The 2nd job, at a fast food place on campus where I made sandwiches or handled the payments from customers as cashier, from October 2005 until April 2006 I developed anemia and was missing a ton of my classes at University and work. It got to the point where I had to tell my boss – whom I was blessed was also and mentor and friend since my freshman year – that I was being unreliable and she deserved better and I quit so she didn’t have to fire me, and she was relieved that I quit because she was concerned about my health, and She didn’t want to fire me.

My volunteer job at the local library I enjoyed most in summer 2014-September 2015. I enjoyed it so much I kept working even when I sprained my ankle, or re-sprained it, since I had first sprained it back in 2003. I actually did great until my boss retired and a new lady was hired. We did not get along and she did not help me with rescheduling my story time days when a conflict came up and I had a weekly therapy appointment after starting it after an incident That occurred a few months prior to me beginning therapy. She also did not help me at all with the monthly crafts I was hosting in advertising and picking a day when nothing else was going on. My last craft before I quit only had 3 kids showing up, where prior to that anywhere between 10 to 20 kids plus parents showed up to do crafts with their kids. And shortly after I quit, I realized how burned out I had been because I was sick lots too.

I’ve always had a week immune system, but I notice whenever I work too hard I get overwhelmed and I get sick. When I keep getting sick, I become unreliable as well as unhealthy – so it was not good for any employers or for me. Basically, anxiety and stress become so bad I get physically ill  (and always a different illness) and have to stop working/quit.

When I say I am unable to work, this is why. I am not lazy Or irresponsible. I’m not just making excuses either. I have mental/emotional disabilities that prevent  me from working a regular job (I am a writer, and self-published author). Just because my disabilities are not physical or visible does not make them invalid, excuses, or nonexistent. You (a general “you”, not everyone or anyone in particular) see someone in a wheelchair who doesn’t work and you totally understand because you can see their disability. But people look at me and see nothing wrong so assume the worst about me and judge me without even trying to understand. I sometimes even get bullied for it by people who do not have anxiety, depression or PTSD and so the don’t understand the struggles I face daily or care enough to try to understand on any level at all.

That is why I thank God for blessing me with friends who do understand because they too suffer either from the same invisible illnesses as me or similar ones like bipolar. And I have my relatives in England and 2 in Australia since they moved there who at least want to understand and try to. They don’t really understand, but they try because they love me. I thank God for them too.

In April of 2012 I was saved when I came to the LORD and was baptized after confessing Jesus as my Lord and Savior. I thought that after everything I had heard about Jesus and the Holy Spirit that I would feel different and immediately feel peace. I was disappointed when I didn’t, but my brothers and sisters in Christ assured me that it was a process that took time and not to get discouraged. I have changed, slowly, in the last 5 years and few months, but not significantly enough for my liking. Also apparently not enough for the minister who baptized me’s liking because he kept getting on my case about things and tried making me feel guilty for not being further along in my walk and because of my depression and anxiety. He kept telling me they are sins, which I know, and making me feel guilty. I started going to another church part-time when I needed to get away from the guilt trips and the Pastor at the other congregation said it was wrong to make me feel bad for my anxiety or depression. Also, I know about Elijah and King David and others who experienced either anxiety, depression, or both at one point (like Jeremiah) in the Bible but God never condemned them or judged them or abandoned them. Instead He encouraged them and gave them strength and courage to keep going and to not give up on life or on His purpose for them.

I recently self-published an inspirational book I wrote about my experiences in the past few years turned into advice with Scripture that relates to the topic I talk about. People are motivated buying it. A few did in July, a couple in August and 1 or 2 this month so far but that’s it. I feel invisible and like no one cares, which is how I have felt most  of my life. I am not blaming anyone, but if people did not keep mistreating me, ignoring me, acting like I carry a deadly infectious plague that could kill them, or like dirt/with cruelty then I would not feel like nobody cares or invisible, or unloved and unwanted. I understand now, as an adult, that it is me who is responsible for my levels of joy and peace I have and for my happiness, but I have over 30 years of emotional abuse and poor treatment to overcome, and when both of these things are still ongoing at times, it makes it harder to overcome them and feel joy or peace. I am still learning how it is possible to have peace when people do not want to be around you and those who are around can be emotionally abusive and/or treat me badly. I am learning how it is possible to love myself properly when it appears no one else does.

Jesus and His followers are teaching me, but I am having a hard time learning. I struggle daily just like everyone else. Everyone has their own problems and some similar to mine, others completely different, but struggles nonetheless. But though I struggle daily, it does not make my advice any less valuable or true since it comes from God and I use Scripture to show it/back it up. For those who do not know Jesus or who are confused , or need encouragement, and/or stronger faith in Jesus and in the One True God, I have things to say in my book that could help, if given a chance.

I wrote my book for those who need it, not for those further in their walk than me who do not need a reminder of some truths, if they have not been forgotten by the person who knows them. I am still learning how to take good care of myself, but I have always been good at helping others. Most of my friends used to come to me for advice all the time. And they always said I gave excellent advice. The only thing that has changed in my advice is that I now have even better advice to give through daily Bible study. I try to discern when to use Scripture and when not to, depending on the person and if the are open to it or not, but it is sound advice. And now it is available for everyone to read in the form of an inspirational  eBook and in paperback too.

I have lost friends over the past few years for a couple of different reasons,  but the main reason Is my faith in Jesus and my daily attempts and struggles to live for Jesus daily. And some people have told me I was high maintenance or too much of a downer (the 2nd one I was told like 2 years after my mom passed away when I was still grieving her loss after that hurt after lot). It seems some ca not handle my anxiety and depression anymore and so we either do not talk at all, or rarely do and it makes me really sad. What makes me sadder still is some of them have their own battles with depression and/or anxiety they deal with daily and I no longer know how to reach them and help them through those times because they won’t let me anymore. So they’re not there for me anymore and they won’t let me be there for them. I get it… physical distance separates us, and that’s hard to overcome, but it didn’t used to be and I don’t get why it suddenly is. I don’t judge these friends or hate them or begrudge them. I pray for them a the time and hope one day their lives will turn around for the better and that mine will too and we can all celebrate our better lives, together, in person. I love a my friends, and I still love those who walked away from our friendship too. My love is unconditional and the only way I know how to love, which is the way Jesus loves each and every one of us too.

I want to help those in need more than I do now, but due to not being able to work and book sales not going well, I am currently unable to which leaves me full of anxiety for my friends, and even for those I don’t know who need help that I can’t give them, and it leaves me frustrated because I desperately want to help but can’t; but people who can help will not, just like in my own life. I get some help. I live with my sister rent free because of a promise she made to my mom before she died. But doctors who could help me fix or heal my broken nose, and some other physical illnesses won’t help and aside from being poor and on MediCal for health insurance, I don’t understand their unwillingness to help me get well. And I both know, and know of too many other people with injuries or physical or mental illnesses and no doctors will help them either.

So why do those in a position to help generally either not help or give bare minimum when those who desperately want to help can’t because no money or resources to help? Some who can help do help, and God will bless them, but too who can help in one way or another don’t. I am not trying to many anybody feel guilty And I’m not  judging anyone. I just sincerely don’t get it. I especially don’t get why doctors will not help those who can’t afford to pay or who have MediCal for health coverage. MediCal pays the doctor’s bill, so what’s the problem?

Also, just because someone suffers from an invisible illness where you can’t see their symptoms or daily struggles does not mean they don’t struggle or that they are lepers or contagious or to be treated badly by anyone, whether doctor or nurse, family member or friend, or boss or coworkers for those who do work despite their illnesses, or by any person including strangers. And everyone suffers from physical illnesses differently too so it is not right to judge anyone for not being able to do something someone else can do with the same illness – like asthma, for example. In fact, only Jesus has the right to judge anyone because He alone knows exactly what each of us experiences and goes through everyday, and God gave Jesus alone the right to judge, which will not take place until His second coming – which no one knows when it will take place so we ought to be prepared daily in case it happens tonight or tomorrow!

 

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Pleasing God Above People

Pleasing God Above People

 For my whole life I was a people pleaser, but in the last 5 years in my walk with the Lord, I learned that is not pleasing to God. We are to please God above people, not vice versa. God calls us to help others, but there is a difference between helping someone in need and bending over backwards to please them and make them happy. When you make pleasing people more important than pleasing God, then you are forgetting your purpose as a child of God. God did not create any of us to be people pleasers, but to serve and to please Him. You may lose some friendships when you put God above others, but the right people will stay in your life. When your life is pleasing to God, He will help remove the wrong people from your life who are hindering your walk with the Lord and will place people in your life who will help you. God will also send people to you for you to help them with their walk with the Lord.

But please do not make the same mistake I did in trying to help someone else before you are steady and firm in your faith. The people you seek to help will be looking at your life, your attitude and behavior, your words and actions – at everything – to see how you conduct yourself. If you are telling or encouraging them in one area but they see you doing the opposite of what you say, then that will confuse them and turn them off to the Lord, and possibly to you. Heed the Lord’s warning from Matthew 7:3-5: “And why worry about a speck in your friend’s eye when you have a log in your own? How can you think of saying to your friend (brother/sister in Christ), ‘Let me help you get rid of that speck in your eye?” Hypocrite! First get rid of the log in your own eye; then you will see well enough to help deal with the speck in your friend’s eye.” I wish I had actually taken this warning into consideration, maybe then I would not have lost someone dear to me and maybe he would still be following the Lord instead of straying so far from Him the way he has. This relates to pleasing God because it does not please Him when we are at least in part, responsible for someone being led astray by confusing them. We try so desperately to please God that we end up making a colossal mistake. So let us follow carefully the instructions, commands, warnings, and advice the Lord and God give to us in Scripture. This way we will be doing what pleases God.

Matthew 10:28 tells us not to worry about people who have the ability to kill our physical bodies, for they can’t touch our souls. Instead, we are to fear God, who can destroy both soul and body in Hell.

There are more verses below that warn against seeking the approval of (or being concerned about the approval of) people above God. There are more in the Book of Proverbs, especially in chapters 10-31 both about the consequences of pleasing others instead of God, and on ways that please God and I encourage you all to read through the whole Book. Chapters 1-4 deal with how to attain spiritual wisdom and understanding, so those are definitely worth looking at too if your objective is to please God and to attain wisdom in the process. We are told in Proverbs 3:5-6 to “lean not on your own understanding, but to trust God and to seek His will in all that we do.”

 

Galatians 1:10 ESV

For am I now seeking the approval of man, or of God? Or am I trying to please man? If I were still trying to please man, I would not be a servant of Christ.

1 Thessalonians 2:4 ESV

But just as we have been approved by God to be entrusted with the gospel, so we speak, not to please man, but to please God who tests our hearts.

Proverbs 29:25 ESV

The fear of man lays a snare, but whoever trusts in the Lord is safe.

John 12:43 ESV

For they loved the glory that comes from man more than the glory that comes from God.

Colossians 3:23 ESV

Whatever you do, work heartily, as for the Lord and not for men

Acts 5:29 ESV

But Peter and the apostles answered, We must obey God rather than men.”

Isaiah 2:22 ESV

Stop regarding man in whose nostrils is breath, for of what account is he?

2 Corinthians 5:9 ESV

So whether we are at home or away, we make it our aim to please Him.

Galatians 2:20 ESV

I have been crucified with Christ. It is no longer I who live, but Christ who lives in me. And the life I now live in the flesh I live by faith in the Son of God, who loved me and gave himself for me.

John 5:44 ESV

How can you believe, when you receive glory from one another and do not seek the glory that comes from the only God?

Romans 12:1-2 ESV

I appeal to you therefore, brothers, by the mercies of God, to present your bodies as a living sacrifice, holy and acceptable to God, which is your spiritual worship. Do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewal of your mind, that by testing you may discern what is the will of God, what is good and acceptable and perfect.

 We are obedient to God when we honor His command to love one another, but we must learn to love them the way we are told to instead of making them our whole world and making pleasing others our top priority so nobody gets hurt. It is painful to hurt someone we care about when we have to either say something to them they don’t want to hear and can or will hurt them, but it is far worse for both of you if you do not tell them what God has instructed you to tell them, or to fail to do what God instructed you to do where the other person is concerned, regarding their reckless behavior or something specifically they are saying or doing that they need to stop doing before it is too late for them to repent and turn back to God to be saved. Remember this though: it is only our responsibility as Christ’s followers to warn them, or to plant the seeds and/or to water them. God is the only One who has the ability to make those godly seeds planted inside them to grow (1 Corinthians 3:6-8). In other words: we are to love others, including our enemies (Matthew 5:43-48), and to help guide them on God’s path, but, we must be sure that we are in a stable place in our own faith where we can effectively do that, and we must be sure that our objective is to please God and not put priority over the other person. God is to be number 1 in our hearts and in every area of our lives, and we must show works of faith too, in order to please Him.

Read James chapter 2 and Hebrews 11 to read more about showing our faith in the actions we take. Our actions either show that we have faith in God, which pleases Him, or shows a lack of faith which grieves Him. He wants us to fully trust, love, awe, honor, and obey Him, willingly, because we want to. The LORD wants a close, intimate relationship with each and every one of us, and Scripture tells us how that is made possible and how to maintain the intimate connection, and how to make it grow stronger, once it has been made through our faith in action (repenting, confessing Jesus as our Lord and Savior after hearing God’s word and deciding to believe it completely, being baptized in the name of God, Jesus, and the Holy Spirit, and then daily taking up our crosses to follow Jesus). Jesus outlines in the Gospels what the cost of following Him is, and the requirements for being His disciple. When we follow these instructions, we please God. He warns us against loving our mother, father, sister, brother, child, or anyone else above Him (read Matthew 10:37-39 and Matthew 16:24-27). We are to love Jesus the most in order to please God. And Hebrews 11:6 tells us “it is impossible to please God without faith”, and when we have faith in God, we will naturally want to please God, and will learn to make pleasing Him more important than pleasing others.

The right people, even if they are hurt at the beginning, will come around and accept God’s truth. As for everyone else, God tells us not to worry about them. Once we have done what we are commanded or called to do, it is in God’s hands. Let us then decide today to make every effort to please God above everything else and to seek His will in all we say and do, and in our attitudes and behavior. Let us decide to love God with all of our hearts, minds, soul, and strength (Mark 12:30) -> with our whole being. If any of us here have trouble doing that, let us come to the throne of our loving and merciful God in prayer and ask Him and His Holy Spirit to give us the help we need to show our love for Him, to equip us with all we need to obey Him, and any other areas we need help with. God is just and faithful and He will give us the help we need when our goal is to please Him. God loves all of you unconditionally. He will gladly help you where you are in need of His help. May God’s peace be with you and may You feel his love in your hearts.

Importance of Health (and Jesus) Versus Money

Alexis Malek

05/24/2016

Important of Health (and Jesus) Versus Money

What is wrong with the people of this world? When they are sick, they go to work sick and either spread germs, are unable to do their job properly, or both. If they suffer an injury, or just got out of surgery (or both, if injury led to surgery), they still show up to work the same day, or the next day!!!!! That is not what people should be doing to their bodies, or to others if spreading germs is a risk. The Apostle Paul tells us that we (who have been made right with God) in 1 Corinthians 6:19-20 Don’t you realize that your body is a temple of the Holy Spirit, who lives in you, and was given to you by God? You do not belong to yourself, for God bought you with a high price. So you must honor God with your body.

Even for people of this world, God sent Jesus to die for them, for He died for everyone. That high price mentioned in verse 20 above, was Christ’s blood, on the cross. Jesus willingly died on that cross to save everybody, not just select people. Rather, it is select people who will accept this truth and answer God’s calling for them. But even for people who do not believe in God or Jesus, why do they worship money so deeply that they fail to take care of their bodies properly, and then expect everyone else to do the same, and get angry when someone actually takes care of themselves with rest and whatever else is called for in sickness or injury recuperation, and when confronted about it, they say “That is how the world operates.” And they are correct! That is how the world operates. But that is not how God designed us. God designed us to rest regularly to stay healthy, and to rest and take other recovery steps when sick, injured, or after surgery.

Worshipping money and making it your number 1 priority could end up putting you in an early grave, and any money you manage to make and hold on to (that does not go to bills, groceries, other necessities, or material things) will go to someone else, for you cannot take anything with you when you die!  1 Timothy 6:6-10 says, “Yet true godliness with contentment is itself great wealth.  After all, we brought nothing with us when we came into the world, and we can’t take anything with us when we leave it. So if we have enough food and clothing, let us be content. But people who long to be rich fall into temptation and are trapped by many foolish and harmful desires that plunge them into ruin and destruction. For the love of money is the root of all kinds of evil. And some people, craving money, have wandered from the true faith and pierced themselves with many sorrows.” Money itself isn’t evil, but worshipping it or placing security in it both lead to great sin. The true treasures of life are love, peace, joy, and other things that come from Heaven, from God Our Father. And when you come across someone who wisely knows to take care of their bodies when they are sick, injured, or both, then don’t yell at them or call them lazy or irresponsible, naïve, or anything else along those lines because what they are is wise and understanding of the importance of their bodies, either because they are children of God and realize their bodies are a temple for the Holy Spirit, or they understand that they can function a lot better instead of slowing people down or doing a sloppy job (and possibly spreading germs, or further injuring themselves) when they take time to rest until they are feeling better, or are healed. Instead of yelling at them and looking down on them, learn from them. Learn to honor the Lord above all else, and to honor your body before work, or money that you earn from showing up to work. Don’t make God step in by having you so ill that you are hospitalized, before you slow down, or get the rest you need to get well or recover from your illness, injury, or surgery. This is a message for everyone regardless if you walk with the Lord or are of the world and follow the world’s standards.

If you are a person of the world, go hear God’s word, accept and believe it as truth, repent of your sins, confess Jesus as your Lord and Savior, and be baptized in the name of God, Jesus, and the Holy Spirit by being fully submerged under water to die to your old self, come into contact with the blood of Jesus spiritually to be cleansed, and emerge with Christ in you and the gift of the Holy Spirit. Hear God’s word is quoted from Romans 10:17, Believe (step 2) from Hebrews 11:6, Repent from Acts 2:38, Confess from Romans 10:9-10, and be baptized is also from Acts 2:38, or Matthew 28:20. These are the 5 steps to entering a right relationship with the Lord, and tomorrow is never promised (James 4:13), so make today the day you get made right with God so you do not have to suffer the alternative when Jesus comes back to claim those who are His, given to Him by God when they believed and acted upon their belief. If you want to read about the alternative, look at Luke 16:19-31 titled “Parable of the Rich Man and Lazarus,” and Revelations 20:10-15 and 21:8. In the parable in Luke, a description of what the lake of fire (where all unbelievers will go) is given, and the rich man speaks of a very real torment that people will live with for eternity if they do not turn from their sins to the Lord and be saved while they still have breath left in them. This is not me saying this, but the Holy Bible, so I am passing along the information for those who do not know the truth so they may verify it in the Holy Bible and then learn about this truth. 1 Peter 3:9 says that God wants us all to be saved. I do too. We (God and I) both know that not everyone will be saved, but for anyone still alive now, it is not too late! The Lord loves you and wants you to spend eternity with Him and Jesus in Heaven, and also with your departed loved ones who were followers of our Lord and Savior. Put Jesus and love for and time with Jesus and your loved ones above money. God promises to supply all of your needs for all who are His faithful children, in Philippians 4:19. Also read Matthew 6:19-34 about not serving God and money, or letting worries or cares prevent you from putting the Lord first. He offers a great promise in Matthew 6:33 if you put Him first.

Discomfort From Grieving The Holy Spirit

Discomfort From Grieving The Holy Spirit

I was in Las Vegas this weekend past, visiting my father mainly for a belated birthday celebration for me and also for him. I made the mistake of going to church with him instead of either insisting on going to the Church of Christ or finding a ride of my own there and back. My father insisted we had to go to his Episcopal church, Grace in the Desert, so he could be “blessed” for his birthday, which he celebrates April 4th, but apparently missed church or the blessing that previous weekend. should have known something was wrong right then because I have never heard of someone being given a special blessing for their birthday or anniversary. Church is meant to be about worshiping God and hearing God’s message, not to celebrate people! But I hadn’t thought to find a church of Christ until Saturday evening and so I had no time to ask about a ride from the hotel and then back after, so I reluctantly went to my father’s church after breakfast with him.

I felt uncomfortable from the moment service began. There were women deacons and a priesress there, and God tells us in 1 Timothy

“1 Timothy 3:2, 8-12 NLT

 

So an elder must be a man whose life is above reproach. He must be faithful to his wife. He must exercise self-control, live wisely, and have a good reputation. He must enjoy having guests in his home, and he must be able to teach. In the same way, deacons must be well respected and have integrity. They must not be heavy drinkers or dishonest with money. They must be committed to the mystery of the faith now revealed and must live with a clear conscience. Before they are appointed as deacons, let them be closely examined. If they pass the test, then let them serve as deacons. In the same way, their wives must be respected and must not slander others. They must exercise self-control and be faithful in everything they do. A deacon must be faithful to his wife, and he must manage his children and household well.”

Deacons, like elders, must be men, according to the apostle Paul in NT. He also tells us in 1 Corinthians 11:3, “1 Corinthians 11:3 NLT

But there is one thing I want you to know: The head of every man is Christ, the head of woman is man, and the head of Christ is God.” And in 1 Timothy 2:11-15 it tells us specifically that women cannot teach men, for Scripture says, “1 Timothy 2:11-15 NLT

Women should learn quietly and submissively. I do not let women teach men or have authority over them. Let them listen quietly. For God made Adam first, and afterward he made Eve. And it was not Adam who was deceived by Satan. The woman was deceived, and sin was the result. But women will be saved through childbearing, assuming they continue to live in faith, love, holiness, and modesty.”

They also seemed to metaphorically blow trumpets for the people of the church, by interrupting service midway through to give people with birthdays or anniversaries a blessing, and then towards the end, after communion but before ending hymns and prayer, guests got called out and each one, including me, got personally welcomed. Now do not misunderstand me, it is okay to celebrate birthdays and anniversaries and to welcome visitors, but that should come after service like at my church. They need to understand we are there to worship God and that interrupting to celebrate people is not only distracting, but it sends the wrong message to God, that people come first and not Him. There should be hymn singing, opening prayer, and in some order also communion every Sunday, tithe offering, a message from God, invitation song for those in the audience who may not yet be children of God (or closing song), and closing prayer. Then during announcements, at the end, just before dismissal should be when guests are acknowledged and then perhaps a weekly or monthly lunch or dinner for birthdays and anniversaries. And if the church wants to bless someone on their birthday or anniversary,  let them do it after service is over just before dismissal.

Also, service kept getting paused to pray or sing and it sounded more like robots in stereo than true worship and I felt super uncomfortable to the point where I didn’t join in when it was words being recited perfectly and well-rehearsed (but I did join in the singing). God wants true and genuine worship from us, not sounding gongs or cymbals (metaphorically speaking). It just all felt wrong to me and I know it was because the Holy Spirit felt grieved, which we are warned against doing so in 1 Thessalonians 5:19 and Ephesians 4:30:

“1 Thessalonians 5:19 AMP

Do not quench (suppress or subdue) the [Holy] Spirit.

Ephesians 4:30 NIV

And do not grieve the Holy Spirit of God, with whom you were sealed for the day of redemption.”

Making a big deal out of congregation members and guests in the middle of worshiping God is not what God wants from us and that is the exact impression I got from the Holy Spirit and from God the whole time I was there at that church. They also didn’t have any bibles, but had handouts that had everything to follow along with service, prayer books, and hymn books for the singing parts of service. How can you have a church service without the Bible, which is God’s written word? What about visitors who may come thay have never opened a bible? How are they supposed to know that the Scriptures auoted in the pamphlets handed out before service contain God’s written word and not just words the preacher made up? As it was, there was some Scripture quoted, but someone who has previously never heard God’s word before would not know that.

I has wanted to leave right away, but I didn’t know what bus route to take back to the strip, to where my hotel was and had nowhere to go. I had meant to say something to the Priestess after coming out of the ladies room (I had to go after communion so I did), but I chickened out. And I have felt guilty about it ever since. I may even look up their number to call them and let them know or send them an anonymous letter, if I can find their address online. They need to know the Holy Spirit is grieved and God ia displeased by their practices there at the church. Honestly, it was because I had forgotten my Bible and left it in my hotel room and had no Scripture backup that I left without saying a word. I feared sounding arrogant or judgmental. As soon as I am able to do so, I hope to find a way to let the church know how I felt (from the Holy Spirit) during their service on Sunday.

I did however, let my father know, when he asked me how I liked the service. I told him how I felt uncomfortable the whole time and that women are not supposed to be deacons or Priestess. When I finished telling him what I wish I had told the Priestess, he said, “and that’s that.” He obviously didn’t agree even though I was merely telling him what God told us through the apostle Paul in the NT Scripture.

Then I had lunch with my mom’s (may she be resting peacefully in the arms of Jesus) best friend who lives in Vegas, but had a chance to go to my hotel room first after service and grab my bible in case I needed it. She also asked me what I thought of the church service I went to and told her what I told my father, but this time I got my bible out, and with her encouragement,  I read the Scriptures that said deacons can only be men. Before I read the Scriptures,  she called me judgmental, and then afterwards, she tried telling me that the Scriptures I read were meant for that specific period in time and didn’t apply today. She thinks we should be tolerant of other people’s different religions and beliefs, even though Jesus never told us to do that and neither did God. In fact, we are told in Ephesians 4:4-6 that there is only “One body and one Holy Spirit, just as you have been called to one glorious hope for the future. There is one Lord, one faith, one baptism, and one God and Father, who is over all and in all and living through all.”

I told her I was just obeying what the Bible says and she tried telling me “which was written by man,” to which I replied, “The words were inspired by God.” My mom’s friend merely shrugged at that point. I don’t think she agrees with everything the Bible says, which is unfortunate for her since she told me that she believes if Jesus came back today or tomorrow, she is ready.

Later, as she dropped me off back at my hotel, she told me she was pleased with my volunteer work I told her I do at the local library near my sister’s house, and the work I do for God with church and all, which means she respects me following and also standing up for what I believe in.

I hope that telling my father and my mom’s friend, this blog, and also admitting my sin against God in not speaking up at church, praying for strength, courage, spiritual wisdom and understanding and knowledge with Scripture backup to gently correct misinformed people and those who do not know God, and to teach God’s word (outside of church, where women are allowed to do so) without fear and also askiw for God’s forgiveness in letting fear stop me were all enough to reach God’s heart to receive forgiveness. I hope He has forgiven me and will help me out in the areas I need help with to teach His word to others without fear and with knowledge of the Scriptures and actual Scripture backup so in the future, I don’t even hesitate to gently correct people who are doing something that goes against God’s word in a way that does not sound judgmental, but that reaches their hearts and where they understand in their conscious minds and change their ways while they have time, before it is too late for them. I also need strong unshakable faith and pray to God all the time for it, so I can boldly (without fear) correct or teach God’s word to everyone: friends, family, close friends, and strangers, and to churches that are not correctly teaching God’s word, to those who refuse to acknowledge God’s existence, or have either no information or wrong information about God, Jesus, the Holy Spirit, the Bible, and church worship.

I also pray for all of you who may be reading this to have the courage,  knowledge, and understanding of Scripture to preach God’s word boldly to others, and to gently but firmly enlighten or rebuke those who either teach falsely or have wrong information, or have done something that goes against God in a way that brings a change of heart to the person hearing God’s words spoken through you, so they may be saved. I offer this prayer in Jesus’ name! May God be with you all.

Happy Resurrection Day! Christ IS Risen!

Happy Easter and Resurrection Day! Today, over 2,000 years ago, Jesus was raised from the dead after dying for us 3 days earlier to save us all from our sins. He was raised up from the dead so we could all have a right relationship with God based on faith. Here are some encouraging verses about our Lord Jesus Christ, who IS Risen!

The Resurrection
1Early on Sunday morning, as the new day was dawning, Mary Magdalene and the other Mary went out to visit the tomb.
2Suddenly there was a great earthquake! For an angel of the Lord came down from heaven, rolled aside the stone, and sat on it. 3His face shone like lightning, and his clothing was as white as snow. 4The guards shook with fear when they saw him, and they fell into a dead faint.
5Then the angel spoke to the women. “Don’t be afraid!” he said. “I know you are looking for Jesus, who was crucified. 6He isn’t here! He is risen from the dead, just as he said would happen. Come, see where his body was lying. 7And now, go quickly and tell his disciples that he has risen from the dead, and he is going ahead of you to Galilee. You will see him there. Remember what I have told you.”
8The women ran quickly from the tomb. They were very frightened but also filled with great joy, and they rushed to give the disciples the angel’s message. 9And as they went, Jesus met them and greeted them. And they ran to him, grasped his feet, and worshiped him. 10Then Jesus said to them, “Don’t be afraid! Go tell my brothers to leave for Galilee, and they will see me there.”
The Great Commission
16Then the eleven disciples left for Galilee, going to the mountain where Jesus had told them to go. 17When they saw him, they worshiped him—but some of them doubted!
18Jesus came and told his disciples, “I have been given all authority in heaven and on earth.19Therefore, go and make disciples of all the nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and the Son and the Holy Spirit.20Teach these new disciples to obey all the commands I have given you. And be sure of this: I am with you always, even to the end of the age.”
Christ is Risen!
5The women were terrified and bowed with their faces to the ground. Then the men asked, “Why are you looking among the dead for someone who is alive? 6He isn’t here! He is risen from the dead! Remember what he told you back in Galilee, 7that the Son of Man must be betrayed into the hands of sinful men and be crucified, and that he would rise again on the third day.”
Jesus Appears to Mary Magdalene
11Mary was standing outside the tomb crying, and as she wept, she stooped and looked in. 12She saw two white-robed angels, one sitting at the head and the other at the foot of the place where the body of Jesus had been lying. 13“Dear woman, why are you crying?” the angels asked her.
“Because they have taken away my Lord,” she replied, “and I don’t know where they have put him.”
14She turned to leave and saw someone standing there. It was Jesus, but she didn’t recognize him. 15“Dear woman, why are you crying?” Jesus asked her. “Who are you looking for?”
She thought he was the gardener. “Sir,” she said, “if you have taken him away, tell me where you have put him, and I will go and get him.”
16“Mary!” Jesus said.
She turned to him and cried out, “Rabboni!” (which is Hebrew for “Teacher”).
17“Don’t cling to me,” Jesus said, “for I haven’t yet ascended to the Father. But go find my brothers and tell them, ‘I am ascending to my Father and your Father, to my God and your God.’”
18Mary Magdalene found the disciples and told them, “I have seen the Lord!” Then she gave them his message.
Jesus Appears to His Disciples
19That Sunday evening the disciples were meeting behind locked doors because they were afraid of the Jewish leaders. Suddenly, Jesus was standing there among them! “Peace be with you,” he said. 20As he spoke, he showed them the wounds in his hands and his side. They were filled with joy when they saw the Lord! 21Again he said, “Peace be with you. As the Father has sent me, so I am sending you.”22Then he breathed on them and said, “Receive the Holy Spirit.23If you forgive anyone’s sins, they are forgiven. If you do not forgive them, they are not forgiven.”
The Ascension of Jesus
6So when the apostles were with Jesus, they kept asking him, “Lord, has the time come for you to free Israel and restore our kingdom?”
7He replied, “The Father alone has the authority to set those dates and times, and they are not for you to know.8But you will receive power when the Holy Spirit comes upon you. And you will be my witnesses, telling people about me everywhere—in Jerusalem, throughout Judea, in Samaria, and to the ends of the earth.”
9After saying this, he was taken up into a cloud while they were watching, and they could no longer see him. 10As they strained to see him rising into heaven, two white-robed men suddenly stood among them. 11“Men of Galilee,” they said, “why are you standing here staring into heaven? Jesus has been taken from you into heaven, but someday he will return from heaven in the same way you saw him go!”
This same resurrection power that raised Christ from the dead over 2,000 years ago is in you who are children of God (who have been baptized and have the gift of the Holy Spirit! Today, let God resurrect your health, your finances, your relationships, your faith, your dreams! Whatever currently lays dormant in you, I declare will be resurrected in the name of Jesus! As Jesus told his disciples when he returned from the grave, peace be with you! Have a blessed day and let God’s resurrection power live on in you 365 (or 366 on a leap year) days a year! Let us all rejoice that our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ lives! Hallelujah!

 

Indifference

Alexis Malek

March 14, 2014

Indifference

A couple of weeks ago, one of the ministers at my church was talking about indifference and started off with the indifference someone named Gallio was showing towards something that one should not be showing indifference to if their heart is warm and soft. Religious matters are not something to be indifferent about, especially when someone is being abused or in any way harmed (even if the harm is emotional and mental instead of physical because emotional and mental hurt are harder to heal). Brother Francisco then asked us if there was indifference within the church and then answered his own question and sadly, the answer is yes. As made obvious by the trial that he made reference to in the beginning, there is indifference in the church. How do you notice indifference in the church or anywhere else for that matter? Attendance is one way: does the person show up and do what they are supposed to do? Do they do what they are supposed to do grudgingly because they have to, or willingly out of love?

I remember thinking throughout this message about indifference in different environments like the church, home, work, and all other areas of life that there is indifference going on in my environment towards innocent babies, innocent children, and an innocent puppy (19 months old) and it stems from a few things: selfishness, laziness, greed, and worst of all, refusing to acknowledge God’s existence even though both people grew up in families that went to church and at least one of them participated in the youth group (which I know because I was there). Seeing this indifference which causes neglect of innocent babies, children, and a puppy breaks my heart. The babies and puppy are blessed to have someone in the house who does care enough to meet their needs when they need to be met instead of whenever the other people “feel like it” or “can be bothered” to do it. I am not saying that the parents of these babies, children, and puppy don’t love their babies, the children or the puppy, but their love is not as strong as their laziness. Before someone thinks I am passing judgment, I am not. It is pure laziness, and neglectful, to wait 3 hours to change your baby’s diaper when he was crying about it for the past 3 hours on and off. It is neglectful to not feed your dog all day and then suddenly remember late at night or the next day. This does not happen all of the time, but it should never happen. Once is too many times and it has happened more than once.

Watching TV, socializing on your laptop or cellphone, or dealing with work issues is not more important than your babies’ needs or your puppy’s needs and neither is making your own dinner. If you are making something in the oven, that is what timers are for.  If you are watching TV, especially if you have the option to pause, then you have no excuse for not tending to your baby’s needs or babies’ needs (if they both have needs that need to be met at the same time and right away). I understand people who work hard all day during the week and sometimes on weekends too, but that also does not excuse you from your parental responsibilities or from your canine responsibilities, or quite frankly, from your household chores. Taking advantage of the person living with you and thinking it is their responsibility to care for your babies, your dog, and your house is selfish, rude, and wrong. Just because this person does not have a job that pays money does not mean she does nothing, especially if she is a child of God who goes to church every Sunday for service and every Wednesday for fellowship dinner and Bible Study, does daily Bible study and meditation with God, works at spreading God’s Word, is working on all aspects of her health so she can become independent of other people’s help and rely only on God to provide all of her needs and help her supply some of her own needs including a roof over her head that is her own and not someone else’s does not mean she is not doing any work. And helping to care for the babies and the dog that she is allergic to is also work. What about the children you ask? They range in age a little bit so the oldest one kind of takes over looking after her siblings when needed but their needs are met better than the poor babies’ needs and the puppy’s needs. It is not fair that the older kids get neglected less, but these kids also help out with their baby brothers when they are here and the oldest also helps out with the dog sometimes. She is actually a very responsible teenage girl and she has nothing but love for her younger siblings, including her 10 month old brothers.

To the indifferent and to everyone: When someone is going out of their way to help you raise your babies and take care of your dog, instead of being rude and mean and telling them off for not picking up your slack on your household chores from messes you made, you should be more appreciative of them and not give them an ultimatum about “help do this and that, or else.” If you are stressed out because of work and would appreciate more help with household chores, ask nicely to contribute instead of demanding they do it all, by themselves. Kindness goes a whole lot further than rudeness and God watches and sees everything that goes on and sees when injustice is being done. God promises to take revenge on your behalf if you promise not to take matters into your own hands (Romans 12:19).

How do you guard yourself from becoming indifferent? First, have a heart turned towards God that is open and filled with love (love for God, healthy love for yourself, and love for others). Second, stay away from people who are always negative because negativity is contagious. If you have someone, or people, in your life who are always down on life and tell you that “you can’t do this” or “you will never accomplish that, it’s impossible,” do not listen to them because they are not with God and they are living their own nightmare and not their dream. God placed dreams in everyone’s heart and if you are faithful to God, he will be faithful to you to help you accomplish your dreams but you must do your part (and know what is your part to do and what parts you cannot do alone) and trust God to do what you are unable to do yourself. God makes the impossible possible with his mighty power, ability, and willingness (if it is within God’s promises or God’s will then he will do it). King Solomon, King David’s son, who was granted wisdom from God, tells us in Proverbs 4:23, “Guard your heart above all else, for it determines the course of your life.” Jesus explains in Matthew 15:17-20 why we must guard our hearts. He does not make reference to Proverbs 4:23, but he tells us it is the heart that has murderous thoughts and is deceitful, which is why we must guard it and not let  it be defiled and we must not let our heart’s fleshly desires (what our body wants) defile us. Surround yourself with positive people who are full of love, know God and have a close relationship with him, and are living their dreams because they trusted God and did their part and trusted and allowed God to do his part. You must not let greed, selfishness, laziness, negative attitudes or behaviors, negative words, or hurtful or abusive language take control. You must exercise self-control (1 Peter 1:13), which is one of the fruits of the Holy Spirit (Galatians 5:23, though read verse 22 as well to get a list of all fruits of the Holy Spirit and read verses 19-21 to read the results of sinful natures and desires).

The most important commandment is to love God with all your heart, all your soul, all your mind, and all your strength (Mark 12:28-12:30 and verse 31 lists the second greatest commandment: to love others as you love yourself). If you obey the most important commandment and also the second one, then you will not only be fulfilling the requirement of God’s laws, but you will find it hard to become indifferent with love in your heart. Faith in God is also required because when you have faith, you are not showing indifference but respect, love, and trust. For people who do not believe God exists or choose to ignore the fact he exists because of something that happened to you, out of greed and selfishness, or for any other reason, you need to get over your reasons for not acknowledging God exists when you’ve seen proof of it (Romans 1:19-21 and also Psalm 19:1-6) and deal with the reality of it. If you lost a loved one, even though you do not understand why God did it (Isaiah 57:1-2 may bring you answers and comfort on that matter), then choose to let go of the hurt and hang on to the happy memories and know that if they were right with God when they died and you are right with God when you die, you will see them again.

If you won’t see them again then rest assured that when you get to Heaven (if you make it there), that there will be no more mourning, grief, sadness, pain, sickness, stress, or anything bad and Jesus will wipe away all of your tears (Revelations 21:4). If you don’t want to acknowledge God exists because then it turns out you will be held accountable for all of your thoughts, speech, and actions, and want to live life how you want to, outside of God’s law and giving in to your sinful desires, then you are in big trouble. You need to wake up and realize God does exist and yes you will be judged for how you lived your life and treated others and on everything you say, think, and do throughout your lifetime from the moment you are old enough to understand the difference between right and wrong until the day you die and leave this earth. If the existence of God seems too incredible and unrealistic to you, how is it more realistic to believe that people either evolved from monkeys and apes or created themselves? How is it more realistic to believe in the Big Bang Theory? Science comes in handy for a multitude of things and God does help people out with their scientific work when it is in alignment with his will (such as finding cures for cancer and other currently incurable diseases) and anything to help his people in ways God wants us to help them with science. But science cannot explain everything. There is no scientific answer for the existence of God and love is not able to be answered in a scientific matter either since love is more than chemistry between two people.

For people who claim they believe but continue sinning willfully, doing whatever they want to whenever they want to, they need to turn back to God and repent sincerely and give all of themselves to the Lord once again. When you are on fire for the Lord, there is no room for indifference, which leads to neglect and other forms of abuse. Neglect is a form of abuse and it is one of the worst kinds because it gives people the feeling of abandonment and it messes with their mental and emotional health. Always spewing negativity on other people is also harmful to the person you are dumping all of your negativity on and it is not right or fair and God will punish you if you lead a child of God astray (Matthew 18:6). Do not lead a child or another person, particularly a child of God or a potential child of God who wants to believe and follow God but does not have the full information needed to do so (the Good News and about baptism) astray with your negativity or ungodliness. Instead, turn away from your evil ways and stir up your heart with love for God to chip away the indifference, greed, selfishness, and laziness (and lust). When you have love in your heart, and have a right relationship with God, you will take responsibilities at home and with your babies, children, and pets (and most importantly the responsibilities God gave you to doing his work) seriously and will do everything with love and with a cheerful attitude.

Today, if you suffer from indifference, know it is not too late to change. If you know someone who is indifferent in any (or many/all) areas of their life, then know it is not too late for them either and pray for them. The prayer of a righteous person has great power (James 5:16). Please be one more person who is loving and open and who serves God and can bring others to God, and be someone who takes all responsibilities seriously and be careful not to neglect any area of your life be it God’s work of spreading his word and helping others in need, family (especially babies), pets, work, or any other area of your life (including your own health. Take care of your body for it is a temple for the Lord, which we are told in 1 Corinthians 6:19). Filter your thoughts, filter what you watch (TV, movies, and anything else you watch, including people watching), filter what you listen to, and fill your mind and heart with God’s Word so your thoughts, speech, and actions are in alignment with God’s will, God’s Word, and God’s way. Be careful who you spend your most time with. God still has a plan for you, or the person you are thinking of who needs help in becoming a child of God or returning to God. If it is someone else you are concerned about, then pray for the person and warn them like we are told to in Ezekiel 3 and give them God’s message about repentance and to do it before it is too late and then leave it to them and to God as to whether or not they return to God or (for the first time) give their lives to Christ first by believing, then by confessing their sins, then by repenting sincerely, then by being baptized in the name of Jesus Christ, and then by receiving the Holy Spirit and letting it and disciples of God lead you in God’s ways and love, revere, worship, and serve the Lord with all your heart, mind, soul, and strength for the rest of your days on earth.

If it is you who needs to take these steps, decide to take that step today. You were already thinking about it or you would not have bothered reading up to this point in this blog. When you live life for God and worship and serve him willingly then you will be filled with joy, peace, love, and thanksgiving in your heart. You will live a long, healthy, happy and prosperous life when you live a life pleasing to God and open to love. Feeding the desires of your flesh (lust, sex, money, possessions, etc) you are only giving yourself temporary satisfaction and when you die, you won’t be able to bring any of your possessions with you and lust will have gotten you nowhere too. However, God promises eternal satisfaction because when you are right with God, your whole being (heart, mind, soul, and spirit) are all at peace and at rest knowing that God is in control, God will provide all of your needs and do for you what you are unable to do for yourself due to lack of strength or resources or both, and that no matter how stressful life gets, the stress is ultimately temporary and better days (while you are alive on earth) are ahead of you and you will have eternal joy, eternal peace, and eternal love in Heaven after Jesus’ second coming and after your first death (departing from earth), you will be comforted by Jesus until the time of the day of Judgment has arrived. Which sounds better to you? Living life indifferently and hurting people around you who love you and count on you (especially babies, young children and innocent animals you keep as pets) and satisfying sinful desires temporarily with ungodly pleasures (or living to please other people, which is just as bad), or living your life with an open heart filled with love, joy, and peace and willingly loving and serving God and being a full child of God (through baptism and living your life in faith and pleasing God) and enjoying the benefit of salvation which includes an eternity in the presence of God and our Lord Jesus Christ after Judgment Day and living the rest of your life on earth with peace, trust and faith in God, joy, love, health, prosperity, and all good things God has to offer? God does not promise you will never have problems but he does promise to either see you through them or to save you from your difficult situation. When he changes your situation right away as soon as you have prayed then thank God; if God allows the difficult situation, he is building your faith and spiritual strength and he will see you through your difficult situation in the right time after you are ready for the positive and much needed change to come. Without God, there is no hope for your situation to get turned around unless God does it to use you to help someone else (in which case you should fall to your knees and thank God for helping you even though you’re not a follower of his Son and do evil and should turn your heart towards God and give up your sinful nature). With God, there is always hope because God honors all of his promises which are all answered with “yes!” (2 Corinthians 1:18-20). If a better life sounds good to you, and you have not already done so, turn to God and become his legal child by being baptized in the name of the Lord and take the necessary steps to be baptized and also live your whole life, in every area of your life, for God and only for God. You can turn your life around for the better today and improve the lives of those around you who you have an impact on today by choice. Will you make that choice? Do you love those whose lives you affect and love yourself enough to make the necessary changes? Do you love God enough to do so? Hopefully the answer is yes and you will start today by taking the first step (believing God exists if you have not acknowledged God’s existence yet) and then take the other necessary steps.

I apologize if this blog gets confusing and appears to have gone off on a tangent. For anyone paying attention, being a child of God and being on fire for him and having love for him, yourself, and others affects others and also you. Without love in your heart, you could become cold or indifferent. Jesus can unfreeze a frozen heart more easily than an indifferent one. Today decide to stop suffering and to stop letting other people and innocent babies, children and animals suffer from your indifference and the results of the indifference (not caring). Let God breathe new life into you today and give you a loving, obedient (to God) heart that willingly loves, worships, and serves him and makes you loving toward yourself and others.

Answers to Questions and Concerns About God’s Existence

Alexis Malek

January 31, 2014

Answers to Questions and Concerns About God’s Existence

Are you a child of God who is trying to reach someone in your life to bring that person to the Lord to be saved? Are you having problems reaching anyone in your attempts? If you are there are different possible reasons as to why you are being met with opposition or reluctance, or with hesitance or flat our refusal. It could be that someone suffered the loss of a loved one or something else bad happened to them and they haven’t fully recovered and are unwilling to believe that if God really does exist, that he would be so cruel as to take a loved one away or to let us go through horrible experiences. Other people may worship money or other things that takes away the right frame of mind to worship God because they have made something else their idol of worship (such as jewelry, clothes, shoes, cars, houses, etc). There are people who have wrong information about God based on how they were raised or on what they have been surrounded by religion-wise and they could simply be confused or loyal to their family members who practice a different kind of religion that either believes in many Gods or practice other false beliefs such as putting more emphasis on Mary than they should. Jesus should be our focus of worship, not Mary and not any other God. It seems that no matter the different reasons for not believing in God, one thing these people who are non-believers (or false worshipers) is that they have somewhere in their lives been given false information and do not know the one true God.

In order to find out origins of other religions, go online and type in the name of the religion (for example – Roman Catholic, or Mormon) and you will find articles or books (if you go to the library you may find books on the library database search engine) that will give you the origin of when these different non-Christian religions started and if they are good references, they will tell you what their proof is of the origins of these religions that do not follow Christ’s way of living. After doing that, research where to find an older bible that has all Old Testament and New Testament books in it and then if it is harder to read because it is on old English, Hebrew, Greek, or any other language you do not understand, find a translation that you can understand like NIV or NLT and the text should be saying the same thing, but in a way that is easier to understand so that we can grasp the proper context of what is written in the Bible, which is God’s written word. Any Bible that adds or takes away from what was originally written, or any Priest, Rabbi, Pastor, or Minister (or any spiritual teacher) who adds or subtracts from God’s word or twists it around in any way is a false teacher and you must be careful to test everything you hear with the Bible (and a non-Catholic and Non-Mormon Bible that follows the original text and the only difference is the wording to make it easier to understand, but the message should be the same no matter if you are reading King James version or New King James, or New International Version, New Living Translation, The Message, Amplified Version). The message should be the same in all of these translations of the Bible which means they should all contain the content that was originally written in the Old Testament and in the New Testament for the Jews and Gentiles (non-Jews). And when you find a church, they should teach from the Bible and follow the word completely and not add anything of their own or subtract anything that is written in the Bible.

God does exist and Paul tells us in Romans 1:18-20 the proof of it, saying, “But God shows his anger from heaven against all sinful, wicked people who suppress the truth by their wickedness. They know the truth about God because he has made it obvious to them. For ever since the world was created, people have seen the earth and sky. Through everything God made, they can clearly see his invisible qualities – his eternal power and divine nature. So they have no excuse for not knowing God.” This verse backs up the claim David made in Psalm 19:1-4, which says, “The heavens proclaim the glory of God. The skies display his craftsmanship. Day after day they continue to speak; night after night they make him known. They speak without a sound or word; their voice is never heard. Yet their message has gone throughout the earth, and their words to all the world. God has made a home in the heavens for the sun.” The reason we should know God exists is because who else could have created the sky, the sun, the moon, the stars, the mountains, the sand, the oceans, the trees and everything else including animals and humans? Yet people do not consider this and others who have considered it dismiss the possibility of God because it is too awesome an idea to fathom to them. They would rather go on doing whatever they please without having to worry about an invisible God punishing them for the sins they commit against him. There are other people who think that if God really existed, how he could let people die or let bad things happen to them when he is supposed to be a loving and caring God. What they don’t understand is that God takes no pleasure in people dying or in bad things happening to them but sometimes it happens due to sins they committed and other times they are being tested by trials to test their faith and when the good people die – that is, good people by God’s standards – he is saving them from pain or protecting them from the evil to come, which Isaiah tells us in Isaiah 57:2. Paul says in 1 Corinthians 15:3-8, “I passed on to you what was most important and what had also been passed on to me. Christ died for our sins, just as the Scriptures said. He was buried, and he was raised from the dead on the third day, just as the Scriptures said. He was seen by Peter and then by the Twelve. After that, he was seen by more than 500 of his followers at one time, most of whom are still alive, though some have died. Then he was seen by James and later by all the apostles. Last of all, as though I had been born at the wrong time, I also saw him.” Since all parts of the Bible are God-breathed (2 Timothy 3:16-17, which you will see quoted later when I get into proof about all Scripture being God-breathed), and Paul saw Jesus himself after persecuting him (Acts Chapter 9), then it must be true that Jesus does exist.

When people reject Jesus as the only way to get to heaven, they are fooling themselves when they believe they can get there in their own might by their own good deeds or by their own power. In the gospels, Jesus gave specific instructions on how to live and they are The Way, the only way to Heaven. You cannot get to Heaven except through Jesus and you must believe that Jesus exists, that he roamed earth as a human, believe he died to save us all from our sins and was raised 3 days later so we could have a right relationship with God based on faith. You must also believe that Jesus is coming back for the chosen ones that God has chosen to spend eternally in Heaven after Jesus’ second coming and must believe that Jesus has not yet come back, since he hasn’t yet come back and nobody, including Jesus, knows when Jesus is coming back again. The only thing we do know is that it has not happened yet.

Some people believe (and will argue the point with others) that the Second Coming has already come, but the Bible says that nobody knows when the second coming is but that there will be a series of events that happens before the end (before Jesus’ Second Coming). These events can be found in Matthew 24 (and Luke 21). In Matthew 24:4-8, Jesus says, Don’t let anyone mislead you, for many will come in my name, claiming, ‘I am the Messiah.’ They will deceive many. And you will hear of wars and threats of wars, but don’t panic. Yes, these things must take place, but the end won’t follow immediately. Nation will go to war against nation, and kingdom against kingdom. There will be famines and earthquakes in many parts of the world. But all this is only the first of the birth pains, with more to come.

Jesus lists a whole bunch of other things that will come after, but pick up at Matthew 24:23-42, where he says, “Then if anyone tells you, ‘Look, here is the Messiah,’ or ‘There he is,’ don’t believe it. For false messiahs and false prophets will rise up and perform great signs and wonders so as to deceive, if possible, even God’s chosen ones. See, I have warned you about this ahead of time. “So if someone tells you, ‘Look, the Messiah is out in the desert,’ don’t bother to go and look. Or, ‘Look, he is hiding here,’ don’t believe it! For as the lightning flashes in the east and shines to the west, so it will be when the Son of Man comes. Just as the gathering of vultures shows there is a carcass nearby, so these signs indicate that the end is near. “Immediately after the anguish of those days, the sun will be darkened, the moon will give no light, the stars will fall from the sky, and the powers in the heavens will be shaken And then at last, the sign that the Son of Man is coming will appear in the heavens, and there will be deep mourning among all the peoples of the earth. And they will see the Son of Man coming on the clouds of heaven with power and great glory. And he will send out his angels with the mighty blast of a trumpet, and they will gather his chosen ones from all over the world—from the farthest ends of the earth and heaven. “Now learn a lesson from the fig tree. When its branches bud and its leaves begin to sprout, you know that summer is near. In the same way, when you see all these things, you can know his return is very near, right at the door. I tell you the truth, this generation will not pass from the scene until all these things take place. Heaven and earth will disappear, but my words will never disappear. “However, no one knows the day or hour when these things will happen, not even the angels in heaven or the Son himself. Only the Father knows. “When the Son of Man returns, it will be like it was in Noah’s day. In those days before the flood, the people were enjoying banquets and parties and weddings right up to the time Noah entered his boat. People didn’t realize what was going to happen until the flood came and swept them all away. That is the way it will be when the Son of Man comes. “Two men will be working together in the field; one will be taken, the other left. Two women will be grinding flour at the mill; one will be taken, the other left. “So you, too, must keep watch! For you don’t know what day your Lord is coming.

Jesus not only exists, but he is God. Philippians 2:5-8 says, “You must have the same attitude that Christ Jesus had. Though he was God, he did not think of equality with God as something to cling to. Instead, he gave up his divine privileges; he took the humble position of a slave and was born as a human being. When he appeared in human form, he humbled himself in obedience to God and died a criminal’s death on a cross.

 

Also, in John 17:5, Jesus said in a prayer to his Father, our God, “Now, Father, bring me into the glory we shared before the world began.” I also encourage doubters to read all of the Book of John (also known as the Gospel of John) chapter 1, and all of the four Gospels (Matthew, Mark, Luke, and John), and Revelations where Jesus makes several statements about who he is, and his apostle Peter confirms it in some of them, like in Matthew chapter 16 where Jesus asked his disciples who people said he is and then asked who they think he is and Peter said, “You are the Messiah.” Jesus told Peter that he was blessed that his Father told him who he (Jesus) was, which was an affirmation to the statement that he is indeed the Messiah. The great prophets in Old Testament like Isaiah and Jeremiah predicted the first coming of Jesus  (Isaiah 9:6 and Jeremiah 33:15-16) and the New Testament books after the gospels all talk about Jesus, how he died for our sins and was raised 3 days later so we could be made right with God through him and through faith, and how Jesus is coming back soon for the Chosen ones that will be brought up to Heaven after Judgment has been made to all on the second coming of Jesus, which has not occurred yet between then and in the present time of 2014.

Jesus is The Way (the only way) to Heaven and proof of this is also found in the gospels, with special attention paid to John chapter 6 where Jesus talks about being the Bread of Life. Jesus also makes the statement in John 14:6, “I am the way, the truth, and the life. No one can come to the Father except through me.

Peter, who spent time with Jesus, stated in 2 Peter 1:14-21, “For our Lord Jesus Christ has shown me that I must soon leave this earthly life, so I will work hard to make sure you always remember these things after I am gone. For we were not making up clever stories when we told you about the powerful coming of our Lord Jesus Christ. We saw his majestic splendor with our own eyes when he received honor and glory from God the Father. The voice from the majestic glory of God said to him, “This is my dearly loved Son, who brings me great joy.” We ourselves heard that voice from heaven when we were with him on the holy mountain. Because of that experience, we have even greater confidence in the message proclaimed by the prophets. You must pay close attention to what they wrote, for their words are like a lamp shining in a dark place—until the Day dawns, and Christ the Morning Star shines in your hearts. Above all, you must realize that no prophecy in Scripture ever came from the prophet’s own understanding, or from human initiative. No, those prophets were moved by the Holy Spirit, and they spoke from God.” This powerful statement from Peter in the above verses prove that not only did Jesus exist, but that he is God’s Son, and that the Bible is not a work of fiction but God-inspired – which means that God helped the prophets and other original authors of the Bible to write it from beginning to end (and everything in-between). So this statement knocks out two or possibly three arguments or issues people have about believing in Jesus’ existence, who Jesus was, and the authenticity of the Bible actually being God’s written word. Another statement made in the Bible to support that it is God’s written word comes in 2 Timothy 3:16-17, which reads, “All Scripture is God-breathed and is useful for teaching, rebuking, correcting and training in righteousness, so that the servant of God may be thoroughly equipped for every good work.” The translation I used for 2 Timothy was NIV for anyone interested in checking it to make sure it is true.

There is a verse that goes perfectly with the intention of this blog and it is found in 2 Corinthians 10:4-5, which reads, “We use God’s mighty weapons, not worldly weapons, to knock down the strongholds of human reasoning and to destroy false arguments. We destroy every proud obstacle that keeps people from knowing God. We capture their rebellious thoughts and teach them to obey Christ.”  The barriers people have put up to justify not acknowledging God’s existence, that Jesus is the Only Way, that baptism is necessary to be saved (read Matthew 28:18-20 and Acts 2:38-39), that Jesus is the Son of God and is also God, and that the Bible is real and not a work of fiction need to be removed. It is important that everyone see The Truth so they may be saved before it is too late. In order for the truth to be known, the truth has to be told to people who do not know it; for those who know the truth but deny it, they need a wake-up call and they need to read the truth in the bible and soften their hearts and open their minds to understand and accept the truth for what it is.

There is only One God and one true faith, and Paul mentions this in Ephesians 4:4:6 where he says, “For there is one body and one Spirit, just as you have been called to one glorious hope for the future. There is one Lord, one faith, one baptism, and one God and Father, who is over all and in all and living through all.

Paul goes on to tell us in Ephesians 4:11-16 that we are all given gifts that we must use to build one another up until we are mature in the faith. He says to us (everyone who will ever read the Bible and to all who already have), “Now these are the gifts Christ gave to the church: the apostles, the prophets, the evangelists, and the pastors and teachers. Their responsibility is to equip God’s people to do his work and build up the church, the body of Christ. This will continue until we all come to such unity in our faith and knowledge of God’s Son that we will be mature in the Lord, measuring up to the full and complete standard of Christ. Then we will no longer be immature like children. We won’t be tossed and blown about by every wind of new teaching. We will not be influenced when people try to trick us with lies so clever they sound like the truth. Instead, we will speak the truth in love, growing in every way more and more like Christ, who is the head of his body, the church. He makes the whole body fit together perfectly. As each part does its own special work, it helps the other parts grow, so that the whole body is healthy and growing and full of love.

God makes it clear in that he is the only God in the Old Testament too, and tells us through the prophet Isaiah in Isaiah 45:5-12 (NIV), “I am the Lord, and there is no other; apart from me there is no God. I will strengthen you, though you have not acknowledged me, so that from the rising of the sun to the place of it  setting people may know there is none besides me. I am the Lord, and there is no other. I form  the light and create darkness, I bring prosperity and create disaster; I, the Lord, do all these things. “You heavens above, rain down my righteousness; let the clouds shower it down. Let the earth open wide, let salvation spring up, let righteousness flourish with it; I, the Lord, have created it. “Woe to those who quarrel with their Maker, those who are nothing but potsherds among the potsherds on the ground. Does the clay say to the potter, ‘What are you making?’ Does your work say, ‘The potter has no hands’? Woe to the one who says to a father, ‘What have you begotten?’ or to a mother, ‘What have you brought to birth?’ “This is what the Lord says— the Holy One of Israel, and its Maker: Concerning things to come, do you question me about my children, or give me orders about the work of my hands? It is I who made the earth and created mankind on it. My own hands stretched out the heavens; I marshaled their starry  hosts.” Anyone who believes there is more than one God, when it states clearly in the Bible (the original versions which have been translated into forms of English we can easily understand but still have the same meaning), is mistaken and misinformed.  Drop down to verses 16-25 in Isaiah 45, where God once again makes a statement through Isaiah about what will happen to people who worship idols (other Gods, anything that people place more value and importance on than Him) and also what will happen to those who will enjoy everlasting salvation because they believe in Him and make Him their only God and honor Him: “All the makers of idols will be put to shame and disgraced; they will go off into disgrace together. But Israel will be saved by the Lord with an everlasting salvation; you will never be put to shame or disgraced, to ages everlasting. For this is what the Lord says—he who created the heavens, he is God; he who fashioned and made the earth, he founded it; he did not create it to be empty, but formed it to be inhabited— he says: “I am the Lord, and there is no other. I have not spoken in secret, from somewhere in a land of darkness; I have not said to Jacob’s descendants, ‘Seek me in vain.’ I, the Lord, speak the truth; I declare what is right. “Gather together and come; assemble, you fugitives from the nations. Ignorant are those who carry about idols of wood, who pray to gods that cannot save. Declare what is to be, present it— let them take counsel together. Who foretold this long ago, who declared it from the distant past? Was it not I, the Lord? And there is no God apart from me, a righteous God and a Savior; there is none but me. “Turn to me and be saved, all you ends of the earth; for I am God, and there is no other. By myself I have sworn, my mouth has uttered in all integrity a word that will not be revoked: Before me every knee will bow; by me every tongue will swear. They will say of me, ‘In the Lord alone are deliverance and strength.’ ” All who have raged against him will come to him and be put to shame. But all the descendants of Israel will find deliverance in the Lord and will make their boast in him.” God is also telling us about his nature, how he does not lie and everything he says can be trusted in these verses above. Everything God predicted would happen happened already, except for parts of the book of Revelation and other parts of the Bible that have foretold what will happen right before Jesus’ Second Coming and after judgment has been passed and the new heavens have been made. God will forgive you once you have willingly received and accepted the truth and worship only Him as your God.

Paul instructed Timothy to “Gently instruct those who oppose the truth. Perhaps God will change those people’s hearts, and they will learn the truth. Then they will come to their senses and escape from the devil’s trap. For they have been held captive by him to do whatever he wants,” in 2 Timothy 2:25-26. God directs us to do the same thing today. We who are children of God and have gained enough understanding of the Bible and fully understand the Good News should help instruct others who do not know God yet either because nobody has ever talked about God to them or due to misconceptions they were given growing up. People who are not members of the body of Christ need to be fully informed of The Truth and they need to know the Good News about salvation and eternal life. It is our job as Christians to make sure everybody knows The Truth so that they can make an informed decision whether or not to follow God and be saved or to continue on their current path. Once we have presented them with the information, all we can do is continue to be shining examples of the way Christians should act – which is like Christ in all we say, think, and do – and it will be up to the people we try to reach to decide whether or not they want to be saved.

God also gives us instructions on how to help those in the faith who are fading away or in danger of being lost or snatched by the devil. Jude, an apostle to Jesus, tells us in verses 22-23 of Jude that we must show mercy on those wavering in faith. His exact words are, “And you must show mercy to those whose faith is wavering. Rescue others by snatching them from the flames of judgment. Show mercy to still others, but do so with great caution, hating the sins that contaminate their lives.” (Jude 1:22 -23) God wants everyone to be saved so when we see a fellow believer struggling in their faith and deep in sin, we are to do our best to help bring them back to God and help strengthen their faith, and we must help in a way that we do not ourselves get caught up committing the sins that are ruining their lives and separating them from God.

For anyone struggling in their faith or who do not believe in God, Jesus, the Holy Spirit or that the Bible is God’s written word, study the verses and the full chapters and books they are written in and you will find answers to your questions, or you will gain understanding as to why God lets bad things happen to good people. Jesus tells us in Matthew 5:45, “For he gives sunlight to both the evil and the good and sends rain on the just and the unjust alike.” What Jesus is saying is blessings come to both children of God and to people who are not. Everyone receives God’s favor at some point in their life, so do not envy the evil ones who are prospering right now for God tells us through King David in Psalms 37:12, “Soon the wicked will disappear. Though you look for them, they will be gone.” If you have suffered the loss of a loved one, read Isaiah 57:2 as to a possible reason why they were taken (it says that God takes some good people away to protect them from the evil to come), or in Ecclesiastes 3:1-2, David’s son King Solomon tells us, “For everything there is a season, a time for every activity under heaven. A time to born and a time to die. A time to plant and a time to harvest,” and he goes on with a list of things there is a time for, which you can find up until verse 8 in Ecclesiastes 3. God can break the stronghold of human reasoning for whatever reason you have come up with for not believing and when you turn your heart towards God and live for him, you will see your life improve. Remember, when you are suffering for any reason, that it is temporary and that all children of God (who have confessed Jesus as Lord and Savior publicly, repented their sins, and been baptized to be cleansed by Jesus’ blood of all sins and to receive the gift of the Holy Spirit) will enjoy eternity in heaven after Jesus’ second coming and you will enjoy an eternity of peace, love, joy, and being in the presence of the Lord and your loved ones who will also make it to heaven. If you are unsure if someone you love will make it to heaven, then it is not too late to do something to help them. Enlighten them by talking about Jesus and the good news and about salvation and how to gain salvation. Tell them how they can be saved and then you have done your part and it is up to them to decide for themselves if they believe and follow God.

If you experience any difficulties in understanding anything mentioned in this blog, feel free to e-mail me and I will do my best to help clarify whatever is not currently clear to you. I tried putting things in some sort of order that could be understood and it looks okay and easy to understand but please let me know if you are confused in any area. Thanks and God bless all who read this! Hope you find this helpful either for yourself or for someone in your life.