In Thought, Word & Deed

In Thought, Word and Deed

This is a touchy subject because of the wide varieties of wrong there is to suffer, but I want to base it all on one premise. If you have been living your life for the Lord, or seem to witness or just give people the general impression you’re a Christian, than you can apply this theory.

In Jesus life he had been suffering wrong and it isn't all documented, but I can imagine from the time he stayed behind when Joseph and Mary had to go a day’s journey back to find him in the synagogue actually teaching at the age of twelve, he had to have suffered injustices.

The focus here is his constant dodging of situations where people wanted to stone him, push him off a cliff, jail him and in general just kill him.

We in our lives live under the title 'Christian'. We are known around the neighborhood, at work, in the supermarket and so on. I have been amazed how many times I have been told, 'do you remember when you did this several years ago, when we worked for the State and you claimed you were a Christian?'

You see people watch us Christians even when we aren't aware of it. People have even said to me, "you are a Christian aren't you?" I said yes how did you know? They said I could tell from the way you behaved.

So in retrospect, let me liken it to several other paid attention to categories. In my recollection, whenever I was introduced to a Jewish person, I never forgot that they were Jewish. If I was told this woman is a widow that would stick in my mind. If someone told me so and so was an atheist or Buddhist, or even a professor, it was permanently ingrained in my mind.

Now how much more do we remember things, and then will monitor the behavior to see if they live up to their title. How many times have you been introduced to a pastor, and after, watched them with some kind of expectation as to the standard of character they should display, or the way they should act?

Now to get on with this commentary. As I have surfed MySpace and landed on a multitude of profiles, I have noticed that much of the "who am I" paragraphs contained blame against a spouse, for where I am at now. People hang a shingle out there with the accusation of "victim." In so many posts in the group Over 40 & Fine, I have read so much blame against ex-s that it is just unbelievable. People are still hanging on to the sufferings done by other people.

Then to compare with that, I read other "who am I's" that talk about drama, saying 'I don't need anymore drama, because of this!' Guess what people, life is drama, life is trials, hassles, troubles, and the list goes on. Marriage is hassles, troubles, drama; you can't get away from it. Whether at work, driving down the road having some one flip you the bird because you didn't see them and accidentally cut in front of them. Or maybe you’re the one that doesn't know how to control your middle finger or the words that come out of your mouth.

Paul laid it all out for us in 1 Corinthians 6:1 - 8 ending with.. Now therefore there is utterly a fault among you, because you go to law one with another. Why do ye not rather take wrong? Why do ye not suffer yourselves to be defrauded? 8 Nay, ye do wrong, and defraud, and that your brethren.

I like how the NIV children’s version puts it..7 The lawsuits that you have against each other show that you are already defeated. It would be better for you to let some one wrong you! It would be better for you to let some one cheat you! 8 But you yourselves do wrong and cheat! And you do this to your own brothers in Christ!

Talk about a chastisement! If we are to suffer what we feel are wrongs enough to go to court for, how much more should we suffer wrongs that are much smaller than that? Do we not know that many things are because of something we have already perpetrated, and it is just coming back to haunt us. What are the consequences of sin? If you live together with your spouse before you get married, do you think there are not consequences?

The wages of sin is death, but the penance of sin still does not elude consequences does it? In an earlier commentary I spoke about the sins handed down to the third and fourth generations of those who are disobedient to God. So now, where does this leave us, God forbid, we suffer wrong?

We need to take another look at were we came from, and how we got here. If you suffered verbal abuse by a spouse and never flailed a word back out of offense, then bravo for you! If you even gave it a thought, rendered actions that imitated harshness, or even rendered silence extending beyond the season of the argument and into a new dimension of time, meaning you decided to give them the silent treatment to extend their punishment, than you are guilty as charged.

Let me remind all of what was taught on the subject of lust, as an example to step into this next lesson. Matthew 5:28 But I say unto you, That whosoever looketh on a woman to lust after her hath committed adultery with her in his heart.

Wait a minute, nothing got verbalized! The eyes and the heart were the only offensive parts of the body. Now read 2 Corinthians 10:3 - 5 For we walk in the flesh, we do not war after the flesh: 4 (For the weapons of our warfare are not carnal, but mighty through God to the pulling down of strongholds;) 5 Casting down imaginations, and every high thing that exalteth itself against the knowledge of God, and bringing into captivity every thought to the obedience of Christ;

This is a deep set of scriptures and what it is telling us is that we are to even eliminate thoughts to keep us from being led astray. When I first learned of this set of scriptures years ago, my first thought was that we are plummeted within our own minds of the things we have been exposed to in the world. So we need to try to draw back our thoughts that cause offense. I remember the bad influences that I have been exposed to as I grew up, being associated with people who just couldn't keep their minds out of the gutters.

Now, those thoughts can't help but surface when the flesh says,' I'm going to show this spirit who’s the boss!' So we constantly war against our flesh. We have to pray for a cleansing of our minds, and we also need to remember to bind Satan in the name and by the blood of Jesus when ever we are led to that extreme in our thought process. Then we can start to resume control over our thoughts and take possession of our vessel again.

Jesus reminded us in Matthew 12:34 -37 speaking to the Pharisees saying, O generation of vipers, how can ye, being evil, speak good things" for out of the abundance of the heart the mouth speaketh. 35 A good man out of the good treasure of the heart bringeth forth good things: and an evil man out of the evil treasure bringeth forth evil things. 36 But I say unto you, That every idle word that men shall speak, they shall give account thereof in the day of judgment. 37 For by thy words thou shalt be justified, and by thy words thou shalt be condemned.

That right there is a promise, and you remember that God's promises he always keeps!

In summary:

2 Corinthians 4:6 - 11 gives us this to go on... For God, who commanded the light to shine out of the darkness, hath shined in our hearts, to give the light of the knowledge of the glory of God in the face of Jesus Christ. 7 But we have this treasure in earthen vessels that the excellency of the power may be of God, and not of us. 8 We are troubled on every side, yet not distressed; we are perplexed, but not in despair; 9 persecuted, but not forsaken; cast down, but not destroyed; 10 Always bearing about in the body the dying of the Lord Jesus, that the life also of Jesus might be made manifest in our body.

So as we walk Christ like, putting on the face of Christ, we are gonna bear the brunt of everything just mentioned in the previous verses! So, let’s stop our whining and complaining and celebrate that we can endure it for Christ's sake.


20 Aug 2011


Arab Christians shake off fear at Catholic youth gathering

By Daniel Silva

MADRID, Aug 20, 2011 (AFP) - Fade Sarkis, a Christian who fled Iraq after receiving death threats, says he has finally found a sense of safety in Roman Catholic youth festivities in Madrid.

"I am very, very happy here. I have never seen so many Christians in one place," he said as lounged on the grass of Madrid's central Retiro park surrounded by dozens of other pilgrims.

"It helps me feel more Christian, everyone here is Christian, I feel relaxed, I feel good," added the 23-year-old who moved to Paris from Mosul as a refugee two years ago after receiving several letters from Islamists warning that he would be shot because of his religious beliefs.

He is one of about 200 Iraqis who have come to Madrid for the six-day World Youth Day festival, which wraps up Sunday with a mass celebrated by Pope Benedict XVI and is expected to draw around one million faithful.

Christians are a small and vulnerable minority in many Arab countries, except for in Lebanon where they make up about one-third of the population and wield political power.

And those from nations like Iraq where Christians routinely suffer attacks, or countries like Syria where there is a growing risk of violence against them, say taking part in the gathering helps ease feelings of isolation.

"Here we do not feel so alone," said Bassam al-Ahmad, a 21-year-old business administration student from Damascus as he left a mass held in Arabic Thursday at Madrid's San Jeronimo el Real church for pilgrims from the Middle East.

"Of course we are afraid. We see what is happening in countries around us and we fear that the same could happen in our land," added al-Ahmad, one of around 640 Syrians taking part in the festivities.

Syria's Christians fear their religious freedom could be threatened if President Bashar al-Assad's autocratic but secular rule is overthrown by the violent protests sweeping the country.

In Egypt, attacks against Christians have increased since a popular uprising overthrew strongman Hosni Mubarak in February.

Hundreds of faithful sang songs and waved flags from Iraq, Lebanon, Syria and Jordan during the Arabic mass on Thursday, which was presided over by Bishop Shlemon Warduni of Baghdad.

"The situation is not good for all Iraqis, not only for Christians, because there is no peace. Because we are a minority it is worse for Christians because there are many fanatics that want to do bad things against us," he said.

Warduni's Church of Our Lady of Sacred Heart in east Baghdad was itself hit by a suicide car bomb in July 2009 that killed four people and wounded 21.

He warned that the unprecedented pro-democracy uprisings sweeping through the Arab world could lead to more violence against Christians in the region by Islamic fundamentalists.

"For me it doesn't help, on the contrary it is very bad. The strong fanatics are becoming even stronger but we trust in God that he will do something to protect us," said Warduni, the second-most-senior Chaldean bishop in Iraq.

Iraq's Christian population has halved since the US-led invasion to oust Saddam Hussein in 2003 and now stands at around 400,000, he said.

Many Iraqi Christians have moved to parts of the country that are perceived to be safer.

Steven Jaleel Mansoor, a 22-year-old student, fled to the northern city of Mosul from Baghdad with his two sisters, his mother and his father last year seeking greater security.

"Iraq is dangerous because Muslims bomb Christians in Iraq, they don't want Christians in Iraq," said Mansoor, who is the only member of his family attended World Youth Day.

Some Iraqi Christians though said they saw improvements to their situation, despite the challenges that they face.

"We have Christian televisions stations, radio, newspapers. This is my first time at World Youth Day because during the Saddam era we could not get visas to travel," said Matti Ismael, 42, from the northern Iraqi town of Karemless.


© Copyright AFP 2011.


My hope for you is that you have had a prayer of salvation,
and if you haven't and you want to ask Christ into your heart and life,
then I offer these words for you to repeat,
but only if your heart is sincere,
because God knows it if you're not.


Dear God, I now know I have needed you and have
rejected your calling, so today, right now, 
I ask Jesus Christ to come into my heart and my life, 
and forgive me from all past sin and Lord cleanse me 
from my unrighteousness. I believe that Jesus was 
crucified for my sin, died, and was buried and rose from
the dead according to the scriptures. I want you forever more
to be my guide and I want to follow you as a believer. 
I ask for your strength to change my heart and 
my earthly ways so that I can become a better 
child in your kingdom. Show me how to depend 
on you in all things. And show me how to do 
your will in my life. I thank you and pray this
prayer in the name of Jesus Christ, Amen!

May 5th, 2009 - 16 rev.