6 Toxic Things I Had To Unlearn

Growing up in a toxic environment(s) has made me develop quite a number of defense mechanism(s) that I have became unfortunately desensitised to. I did not even notice I had such things/ ideas that have been embedded so deeply within myself but I am so glad that I have managed to identify them and maybe you too could resonate as well. I believe we should always learn and yes learn from ourselves, even from the negative experiences that we have dealt with in the past. Only then can we can look forward into the future with hope and serenity. Here is me pouring my heart out. Take care of it. I will take care of yours as well.

This is the first thing that came to my mind when I was writing this post. I will never accept a compliment while growing up and it pains me to say this but I do love them , it is just that I felt so guilty receiving them. It is like I don’t seem to deserve them for some reason(s). Unfortunately, I had been given these untrue reason(s) prior to receiving these compliments, so these compliments seems very abstract and not personal to me. Yes, I have developed a coping mechanism to detached myself from compliments such that I view them as just everyday phrases that people threw around for the sake of moving through society. That is seriously how I had viewed compliments given to me for the past 25 years.

Additionally, it did not help that I was given a lot of backhanded compliments which made me develop a distaste of sarcasm to the point that I decided not to even understand it. Yes, I deliberately chose not to understand sarcasm and to take everything at its face value because honestly, I was too tired of deciphering people and their indirect ways. I am still working on this and learning to accept compliments graciously and fully. I did learn that I prefer it being told to me personally face to face rather than via text. I am still figuring out why I have this preference.

Let me give you an example:

Person A : What time is it ?

Me: Oh, it is 8pm! It is so late, isn’t it?

Person A : So what if it is late? I still can have dinner right? ( said angrily)

Me: * state of apocalyptical horror *

Herm, I know it sounds crazy but that was the kind of craziness I had to deal with as I grew up. I realised that I have done this crazy thing with others as well though not as common but I have definitely done it before. It is totally eradicated from my person. Who has time for this , honestly? THANK YOU, NEXT!

I grew up with so many indirect people surrounding me that what they say does not mean what they say and what they do always had some ulterior motive behind it. It was never straightforward, the way I always preferred. Hence, I always read into things to truly understand if someone truly means it and I ask many times ” what do they mean by it” because I genuinely want to know. Nowadays, I have learned to just take it as it is at the face value. I am truly exhausted and beyond disappointed to care if they weren’t genuine.

You have no idea how many times I would replay a conversation in my head just to see if I could have worded things better or if my reactions and demeanor was appropriate enough. This is because I was a very shy and soft-spoken little girl growing up (ps: I am still shy, and soft-spoken to most people). However, I was misunderstood to be arrogant and haughty because I refused to look people in the eyes and barely say a word when I was addressed to. Now, yes I know we have to answer if you are being addressed to but even when I was answering I was still called arrogant because I had a different mindset from most around me. I did not know it then but now I do know. I was open-minded and have progressive ideals even as a little girl. Thank my mother for that!

I have incorporated bowing which was adapted from my south Asian culture to show that I understand and to show gratitude but other than that there is no other ways I am going to show that I am “humble”. Just take me as it is.

I always dreaded the word ” no” while growing up because I always had it directed my way for even the most mundane of things. Hence, why I would avoid situations where I know that there was a high possibility of a “no”. However, as I grew up I became bolder and fought for the things I desired and believed in and didn’t care if I was accepted or not. Anyway, I have learned that it is okay to receive “no” sometimes and being vulnerable to the right people is in a way quite beautiful, hence, why receiving a “no” sometimes for the right reasons is alright with me. I know I always give my best to everything I do regardless, so I can always walk away with peace and serenity. If you get rejected no matter what the situation is , walk away with your head held high and your self-respect intact. No one or no situation is worth losing your dignity for. Trust me.

Oh this is such a SORE topic for me. I hate arguing or even confrontations for this very reason. This is because in the heat of the moment people don’t rationalise properly and throw painful words that can really wound you. I rarely throw words unless I feel a great injustice ( even so they were never profanities because it is not my cup of tea) but while growing up even for the most simplest of mistakes, I will get the most gut- wrenching , soul tearing words thrown at me. This is why I used to analyse words often and can even remember them for so many years until my mid- twenties.

I am so glad that I have forgotten much of them because I struggle to remember most of the scenarios that has transpired. I can’t even believe that I turn out to be quite gentle after all of that. Truly it is a miracle that I struggle to feel intense anger, and at the very most, I just get very upset. Now, I won’t even bother to entertain if someone were to throw harsh words my way. I will just walk away, block them and sleep in peace at night. They are not worth even a second of thought to me. Yes, I have reached my threshold and I can’t take anymore of that. Maybe, this seems harsh but I will prioritize myself and my mental health first and foremost. Forgive and let go. Toxicity be gone! Honestly, let’s be kind to each other and refrain from harsh words. Let it not be on the tip of our tongues even in anger or sadness.

See the source image

I know these are very heavy sub-topics that I have briefly explained. However, I hope that maybe someone or some others who may not have realised that they have these conflicting things within themselves , start to realise that they do and begin the process of self-healing and resolve these entanglements within themselves. I believe that by dong so , one can be more at peace with themselves and with others as well as with the world at large.

The second noble truth states that we must discover why we are suffering. We must cultivate the courage to look deeply, with clarity and courage, into our own suffering. We often hold the tacit assumption that all of our suffering stems from events in the past. But, whatever the initial seed of trauma, the deeper truth is that our suffering is more closely a result of how we deal with the effect these past events have on us in the present.

– Peter A. Levine

6 Toxic Things I Had To Unlearn

VIDEO Pompeo Calls on Catholic Church to Be Tough on China Like John Paul II with Soviets — ‘A Powerful Force for Good in the World’

By Trent Baker

In a Friday interview on “The Hugh Hewitt Show,” Secretary of State Mike Pompeo sounded off on the arrest of Hong Kong dissident and devout Roman Catholic Jimmy Lai.

Host Hugh Hewitt asked Pompeo if the United States will speak up for Lai, who he noted is “being oppressed by the Chinese Communist Party,” and others like him.

After highlighting how corrupt and oppressive the Chinese Communist Party has been, Pompeo called upon the Catholic Church’s leadership to be as tough on China as Pope John Paul II was on the Soviet Union because the Church is a “powerful force for good in the world.”

“I think the whole world can see that the Chinese Communist Party doesn’t speak the truth, right? It made this promise to the people of Hong Kong that they’d have 50 years where they’d operate under a system that was different. That’s the deal they shook hand with, with the Brits and became an international agreement,” outlined Pompeo. “Instead, they lied. They’ve got a national security law that puts every citizen all across the world at risk, not even just those inside of Hong Kong, if they speak in a way that’s inconsistent with the Chinese Communist Party that deems appropriate or useful. The world can see this. And the world can see the people of Hong Kong now being treated as if they’re just another communist city inside of China. And I think you see the response that not only the people of the world are reacting to, but what the leaders across the world are doing to protect themselves and their people from the challenge that the Chinese Communist Party presents to them.”

He added, “I traveled to the Vatican now a week ago, a week and a half ago to speak with Vatican leadership on this very set of issues. The Holy See has the capacity to exert enormous influence. Their moral witness matters an awful lot. We need them on the world stage, talking about the horrific activities taking place inside of China today, the enormous religious oppression, the sinicization of the Bible, the tearing down of religious buildings, not just Christian buildings, Catholic buildings, but every religion. The oppression of the Muslims is of horrific stature, the worst we’ve seen since the 1930s, what’s going on in Xinjiang today. And I’ve called upon the Catholic Church and the Catholic leadership in the Vatican to stand up for these people. The Church has historically done that. John Paul II was an important part of turning the tide and creating freedom in Europe and the destruction of the Soviet Union and the freedom of people that were oppressed by the Soviet Union. We need that same moral witness today. They’re a powerful force for good in the world, and we need them talking about this in a way that is serious and thoughtful and consistent with the beliefs I know they hold so dearly.”

Follow Trent Baker on Twitter @MagnifiTrent

https://www.breitbart.com/clips/2020/10/09/pompeo-calls-on-catholic-church-to-be-tough-on-china-like-john-paul-ii-with-soviets-a-powerful-force-for-good-in-the-world/

VIDEO Debate: Does God Exist? Greg Bahnsen vs Edward Tabash

August 6, 2020 by SLIMJIM

ReformedWiki spent some time to improve the audios for this famous debate between Christian apologist Greg Bahnsen vs Edward Tabash.  The debate took place in UC Davis in California back in 1993.  Unfortunately Dr. Greg Bahnsen died a few years after that debate.  Some of you know he’s my favorite apologist.  Bahnsen was a student of Cornelius Van Til (father of Presuppositional apologetics) and he  was a prolific apologist and theologian while he was alive.

Below is the debate and also further information about Greg Bahnsen:

Lectures by Greg Bahnsen

  1. Van Tilian Apologetics
  2. Worldviews in Collision: At War With the World
  3. Free Greg Bahnsen Apologetics Course from Gospel Coalition
  4. Videos of the Bahnsen Conference 2015

Read books by Greg Bahnsen

https://veritasdomain.wordpress.com/2020/08/06/debate-does-god-exist-greg-bahnsen-vs-edward-tabash/

A Perfect Heart? Who Can Have A Perfect Heart?

July 27, 2020 Nehemiah Zion

The worldly claim that perfection is impossible. The word of God declares differently. We belong to God and only the godly understand correctly what perfection means. Is it possible for man to be perfect? To have a perfect heart?

God is perfect; A perfect heart belongs to God

  • God is perfect (2 Samuel 22:31)
  • Jesus revealed how to be perfect (1 Peter 2:22)
  • The Holy Spirit is given to us to be perfect (2 Corinthians 7:1)

God desires we be perfect like Him (Matthew 5:48) (2 Timothy 3:17)

We cannot be perfect on our own.

God makes us perfect (2 Samuel 22:33) (1 Peter 5:10)

Every good gift and every perfect gift is from above, and cometh down from the Father of lights, with whom is no variableness, neither shadow of turning. (James 1:17)

What is the criteria for perfection to be found in our lives?

  • Noah had a perfect heart because he followed God (Genesis 6:9)
  • Job was perfect because he walked in the fear of 2 and eschewed evil!. (Job 1:2)
  • Asa’s heart was perfect before the Lord because he followed God. (1 Kings 15:14)
  • David’s heart was perfect before the Lord.

When is the heart imperfect according to God?

  • Solomon entertained his wives and ended worshipping other gods, going against the word of God (1 Kings 11:4)
  • Amaziah bowed before other gods. (2 Chronicles 25:2,14)
  • Anointed cherub fell because he remained sinful. His heart was proud, he wanted to be god. (Ezekiel 28:15)

We are made perfect in and through Jesus who is perfect.
“And being made perfect, he became the author of eternal salvation unto all them that obey him;” (‭‭Hebrews‬ ‭5:9‬)

“Let your heart therefore be perfect with the Lord our God, to walk in his statutes, and to keep his commandments, as at this day.” (‭‭1 Kings‬ ‭8:61‬)

A Perfect Heart? Who Can Have A Perfect Heart?

VIDEO Do Not Be Afraid – Edison’s letter from school teacher to his mother


May 18, 2020 by Jack Flacco

You will hear, “Be afraid, for the end is near. We will suffer and no one will be there to rescue us.” Do not believe it, for if there were no God the evil one would destroy the very elect; but we have salvation through Jesus. He is our shield. He is our strength.

“There is no fear in love, but perfect love casts out fear. For fear has to do with punishment, and whoever fears has not been perfected in love. We love because he first loved us.”

(1 John 4:18-19)

Illness may threaten us and cast doubt on our lives. Our hope, though, is in Jesus. He will provide us the encouragement to look toward a future filled with joy and happiness. If we believe He is the Son of God, we will live and will not fear of what will happen to us.

All joy is in God the Father and Christ the Son. Floodwaters may surround us, winds may toss us to and fro, but the love of our Lord and Savior will remain firm. He will never surrender us to evil. He will always protect us in the face of adversity.

Disease, be gone, for our Lord is greater. Illness, turn away, for our God is stronger. No power on earth can overcome us. No evil in this world can overtake us. We are Christ’s; we are His.

Brothers and sisters, do not be afraid.

Do Not Be Afraid


Thomas Edison’s letter from school teacher to his mother.


VIDEO ‘Notion’ of separation of church and state misunderstood because of ‘militant secularists’

Barr noted a correlation between a lack of religion and an increased reliance on the government

By Caitlin McFall

Attorney General William Barr said Wednesday that he believes the American public has misinterpreted the actual meaning of “separation of church and state” during a speech at the National Catholic Prayer Breakfast (NCPB).

“Militant secularists have long seized on that slogan as a facile justification for attempting to drive religion from the public square and to exclude religious people from bringing a religious perspective to bear on conversations about the common good,” Barr said during the virtual ceremony that had been postponed since March due to the coronavirus pandemic.

Barr said he believes that “traditional morality” has diminished, to be replaced by people who are “actively hostile” in advocating for the separation of church and state – threatening core principles in the country’s democracy.

HOW US CAN HELP CHINA’S UIGHURS, WHO SUFFER DISAPPEARANCES, FORCED ABORTIONS, OTHER ATROCITIES

The attorney general said there is a direct correlation between the removal of religion from schools and public spaces, and the “striking increases in urban violence, drug abuse and broken families.”

“Problems like these have fed the rise of an ever more powerful central government, one that increasingly saps individual initiative, coopts civil society, crowds out religious institutions and ultimately reduces citizens to wards of the state,” Barr said.

Barr used the breakfast to point out recent Supreme Court cases that conservatives seemed a win, including the July ruling that said employers could opt out of the Affordable Care Act’s birth control mandate if they have religious objections to contraceptives.

The decision angered woman’s groups and health organizations in Democratic districts as it could result in the loss of employer provided contraception for thousands of women in the U.S.

Barr was honored during the breakfast with the Christifideles Laici Award, which honors a person the organization believes exemplifies “Selfless and Steadfast Service in the Lord’s Vineyard,” according to the NCPB website. But not everyone was happy with the move.

https://www.foxnews.com/politics/barr-says-notion-of-separation-of-church-and-state-is-misunderstood-because-of-militant-secularists


AG Barr: ‘Separation of Church and State Does Not Mean Separation of Religion and Civics’

By Alexander Watson | September 25, 2020 | 10:50am EDT

Attorney General William P. Barr. (Screenshot, NCPB)

Attorney General William P. Barr. (Screenshot, NCPB)

(CNS News) — At the National Catholic Prayer Breakfast on Wednesday, a virtual, online event, Attorney General William Barr said that the “separation of church and state does not mean separation of religion and civics,” and added that “militant secularists” had used the “separation” claim to try to “drive religion from the public square.”

The attorney general further said that America’s cultural degeneration stemmed from a loss of “traditional morality,” and stressed that religion is the “strongest bulwark against tyranny.”

(To see video of the speakers, click here.)

Barr is a Catholic who attended Catholic schools as a boy. He is married and has three daughters. He first served as attorney general under President George H.W. Bush (1991-1993), and started as attorney general under President Trump in February 2019.

At the prayer breakfast, Barr said, “[A]s events like this one remind us, separation of church and state does not mean, and never did mean, separation of religion and civics.  As late as 1952, Justice William O. Douglas could write for a majority of the Supreme Court that ‘we are a religious people whose institutions presuppose a Supreme Being.’”

“Alexis de Tocqueville, the keenest observer of the early American republic, praised America’s separation of church and state while extolling America’s union of the ‘spirit of religion’ and the ‘spirit of liberty’ as the key to its success,” said Barr.  “And Tocqueville identified religion as perhaps the ‘greatest bulwark against a descent into tyranny.’”

__alt__

He continued: “How does religion preserve liberty?  In the first place, as our Founders recognized, religion assists in the formation of virtuous citizens who are prepared to exercise liberty responsibly.  Whereas, in democratic times, individuals have a tendency to withdraw from public life and pursue private self-gratification, religion builds community, strengthens social cohesion, and turns our attention to the common good.”

“At the same time,” said Barr, “religion safeguards individual rights by warding off what Tocqueville called the ‘impious maxim’ that ‘everything is permitted in the interest of society.’ For all of these reasons, Tocqueville referred to Americans’ religion as ‘the first of their political institutions.’”

“Unfortunately, in the last half century, that foundation of our free society has increasingly been under siege,” said the attorney general. “Traditional morality has eroded, and secularists have often succeeded not only in eliminating religion from schools and the public square, but in replacing it with new orthodoxies that are actively hostile to religion.”

(Getty Images)

(Getty Images)

“The consequences of this hollowing out of religion have been predictably dire,” Barr said.  “Over the past 50 years, we have seen striking increases in urban violence, drug abuse, and broken families.  Problems like these have fed the rise of an ever more powerful central government, one that increasingly saps individual initiative, coopts civil society, crowds out religious institutions, and ultimately reduces citizens to wards of the State.”

Attorney General Barr, who was awarded the Christifideles Laici award by the NCPB, spoke at the breakfast on Wednesday morning to a virtual audience of more than 3,000 people.

The Christifideles Laici award is given to individuals who the NCPB has determined live out the lay Catholic apostolate in an exemplary manner.  The award is named after Pope St. John Paul II’s 1988 apostolic exhortation to the laity.  The dedication of the award reads:  “In Honor and Gratitude for Fidelity to the Church, Exemplary Selfless and Steadfast Service in the Lord’s Vineyard.”


Attorney General William Barr on Religious Liberty


AG Barr: DOJ is monitoring government restriction on religious services


Trump’s AG Barr: “We have to stop policies that undermine religion”


16th Annual National Catholic Prayer Breakfast where President Trump will be Speaking


Why ‘Separation of Church and State’ was Never Intended to Mean ‘Government Versus God’


 

6 awesome and rather intriguing Israeli customs

by Helen Mitchell | Feb 12, 2019 | Israel

Micah Exhorting The Israelites, By Gustave Dore. Dore, 1832 – 1883, French. Engraving For The Bible. 1870, Art, Artist, Holy Book, Religion, Religious, Christianity, Christian, Romanticism, Colour, Color Engraving. (Photo by: Universal History Archive/Universal Images Group via Getty Images)

Every culture has its own little quirks and idiosyncrasies. What’s amazing about Israel is how a country that’s less than 75 years old and includes immigrants from all over the world has such a strong and unified cultural identity. Here are 6 fascinating facts about Israeli culture:

1) The Israeli population is one of the most educated in the world

According to a recent report, Israel is the third most educated country in the world. More than half of Israeli adults between the ages of 25 and 64 have completed a higher-education degree. This is more than nearly any other nation on the globe.

2) In Israel, there’s a committee for everything

Maybe it’s a result of Israel’s history of kibbutz living, but the fact is that Israelis know how to organize themselves into groups. If you’ve ever spent time in Israel, you’ll know that just about every social and administrative domain has a small committee of volunteers (called a vad) running it.

This goes for apartment blocks, where the vad collects payments from each resident and oversees maintenance and repairs. It even goes for children’s kindergartens, where the vad lets parents know how much money to contribute and buys collective gifts for the teachers.

3) Israeli people aren’t shy to ask questions

If you’re visiting Israel, don’t be surprised if the person sitting next to you on the bus starts asking you questions you don’t feel so comfortable answering! This could be anything from how much you earn to what strategies you’re using to lose weight!

It’s really not that anyone is trying to embarrass you. It’s just that Israeli people tend to say what they think and have a genuine interest in other people (as well as maybe a little well-intentioned nosiness!).

4) Once a year the whole country stops moving (apart from bikes and skateboards)

Even though many Israeli people describe themselves as secular, the truth is that the nation still has a deep respect for its Jewish customs. This is especially evident on Yom Kippur – the biblical Day of Atonement.

On this day, all shops and offices close. Many people fast. And no one drives anywhere.

Since there are no cars on the roads, all the children and teenagers who are off school for the day get out their bikes, skateboards and roller blades and take to the streets!

5) One of the first things Israeli people share with each other is where they served in the army

In other countries, people often introduce themselves by saying what job they do. In Israel, it’s just as common to start with what you did in the army. Since all Jewish young people serve in the army for 2 to 3 years after high school (some much more), it’s a huge part of Israeli identity and a topic that brings people together.

6) Israel remembers its fallen soldiers one day, and celebrates its independence the next

For outsiders, it sometimes seems strange how the whole country spends one day deeply mourning its victims of war, and then as the sun goes down, the people switch to a mode of celebration and set off fireworks to celebrate Independence Day.

This move from grief to joy, which might seem peculiar to some, is actually key to the Jewish psyche and to Jewish people’s survival through the millennia.

The Jewish people have always known tragedy and persecution. And they know how to grieve and remember their lost. But they also know how to keep moving forward and not despair. The Jewish culture is one of life, hope and joy – sometimes in the midst of unimaginable adversity. Without this spirit, the tiny nation of Israel would never have been able to achieve what it has in just over 70 years.

Israel really is an incredible country. There’s nowhere else in the world quite like it. Do you have any experiences of Israeli customs that have surprised or inspired you?

Lev Haolam is an organization that supports local Jewish business owners in Judea and Samaria who are suffering because of the anti-Israel Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions (BDS) movement.

Lev Haolam gives the opportunity to support these Jewish pioneers and their families through our Surprise Monthly Package Project. Our members receive monthly packages filled with goods produced by the families and small businesses of Judea and Samaria.

https://www.levhaolam.com/blog/company-news/6_awesome_and_rather_intriguing_israeli_customs

VIDEO Actor Jim Caviezel: ‘Cancel culture’ aims to cancel Christianity

Starring in new drama ‘Infidel’ spotlighting persecution of believers

Jim Caviezel in “Infidel.”

Actor Jim Caviezel, known for portraying Jesus in “The Passion of the Christ,” is starring in a Middle East thriller about Christian persecution that he believes is particularly relevant at this moment.

“It’s relevant because we have this thing called cancel culture, and if Christians don’t watch [out], it will be canceling Christianity as well,” he said in an interview Thursday night with Fox News’ Shannon Bream.

The movie, opening Friday night in theaters, is “Infidel.” It’s a Middle East thriller in which Caviezel plays an American Christian who is kidnapped while attending a conference in Cairo and ends up in Iran facing spying charges.

In the interview Thursday, Caveziel chastised Christian leaders who say nothing about rioters defacing churches and tearing down statues, and allow their meetings to be shut down by coronavirus edicts.

TRENDING: Franklin Graham to lead prayer march in D.C.: ‘Only hope for our country is God’

“This is where the persecution starts,” he said, when leaders don’t stand up.

The movie’s executive producer is Dinesh D’Souza, who is known for his political documentaries, and it’s directed and written by Cyrus Nowrasteh.

Nowrasteh, who is of Iranian discent, is best known for directing the controversial ABC miniseries “The Path to 9/11.” He teamed with Caviezel in the 2008 drama “The Stoning of Soraya M.,” based on the true story of a woman who was falsely convicted of adultery in Iran and stoned to death.

See the Fox News interview:

In an interview with “Huckabee’s Jukebox” on TBN, Mike Huckabee asked Caviezel if he’s concerned about the backlash that will come from being in a film that “depicts radical Islam for what it really is.”

“Do you worry that there’s going to be such a backlash by people like ‘the squad’ and others who will say that you’re just a bigot, you’re a racist, you’re some kind of horrible person because you’re in this film?” Huckabee asked.

“Well then I’ll just be in the big old pile of the rest of Americans, because, you know, we’re all racists, are we now?” Caviezel replied.

“Once you scream wolf too many times, people aren’t going to listen to you,” he added. “And that’s why our media has lost credibility.”

Caviezel said he doen’t “stick his finger in the wind like some politician.”

“I was led by God Almighty to be here,” he said of his acting career.

“I didn’t think I would be doing what I am doing now, being on some screen playing representing people who are suffering for their faith,” he said.

“But at some point God calls you. And he called me. And it was, ‘[You’re] done with the boy days. Jim, I need you as a man now. That’s your purpose.'”

See Caviezel’s interview with Mike Huckabee:

See the official trailer:

Actor Jim Caviezel: ‘Cancel culture’ aims to cancel Christianity

AUDIO We’re Here To Finish The Race

Rev Bill Woods

Everything changed last March when the Nation and the World hit the panic button because of the Covid 19 (Coronavirus) pandemic.

  • Churches and businesses were shut down, many of which will never open again.
  • Our schools were closed.
  • We were in lock-down in our homes.
  • We have to wear masks and stand 6 feet apart.
  • We had to stand in long lines to go shopping for groceries and supplies.
  • Our fantastic economy plummeted until we now have a money crisis.
  • People are losing their homes.

 

Because of all this, people are lonely and horribly depressed.

  • Suicide rates have increased dramatically.
  • A good portion of our population have lost their incentive to live and just want to give up.

 

Unfortunately, many Christians are in that condition too.

  • Listen, God is not glorified if we just lay down and quit!
  • We are called to finish the race!

 

Hebrews 12:1-2:
1  Therefore, since we are surrounded by such a huge crowd of witnesses to the life of faith, let us strip off every weight that slows us down, especially the sin that so easily trips us up. And let us run with endurance the race God has set before us.
2  We do this by keeping our eyes on Jesus, the champion who initiates and perfects our faith. Because of the joy awaiting him, he endured the cross, disregarding its shame. Now he is seated in the place of honor beside God’s throne.

52 years ago at the Olympics in Mexico City, the world saw one man’s amazing persistence. John Stephen Akhwari from Tanzania, Africa, came to compete with the nations of the world who had gathered for the Olympic Games.

Athletes came from all around the globe after having trained for years to compete in the games.                                                                                                              .    – Finally, the time had arrived.

The Marathon, while not always exciting to watch, is one of the most severe Olympic tests of human endurance. `

Many runners trained extensively for years to compete.

The race began, and eventually, the winner came running back into the Olympic Stadium, welcomed by cheers from the appreciative fans. Soon other runners arrived as well, and eventually, the race was over.                           .    — Over, that is, except for one runner.                                                                                                                                                       .    – A single, lone runner was still out on the course.

Other track events continued in the stadium, and an hour passed.  Finally, 1½ hours later, the final runner, an athlete from Tanzania, John Stephen Akhwari, entered the stadium.

His pace was slow. Akhwari had cramped up because of the city’s high altitude.

.   –  He hadn’t trained at such an altitude back in his country.

At the 19 kilometer point during the 42 kilometer race, the runners were jockeying for position and he was hit.

.   – He fell badly wounding and dislocating his knee.  His shoulder hit hard     against  the pavement.                                                                                                                  – By shear grit he kept on running, finishing last among the 57 competitors    who completed the race (75 had started).

The winner of the marathon, Mamo Wolde of Ethiopia, finished in 2:20:26.     – Akhwari finished in 3:25:27, when there were only a few thousand people left   in the stadium, and the sun had set.

A television crew came out from the medal ceremony when they heard there was one more runner about to finish.

His steps were wobbly. His knee was bloody and bandaged from that fall earlier in the race where he got bumped and knocked down.

He looked terrible as he entered the stadium.

– The fans realized who he was and what he was doing, and they began to        cheer as he made his way around the track and finally, painfully, crossed the  finish line.                                                                                                                        Cheers swelled as the fans saluted the man’s determination.

Later, he was asked why, when he saw he’d lost the race by 1½  hours, had he kept on running.

His answer was simple: “My country didn’t send me 5000 miles away to start the race. They sent me 5000 miles to finish it.”

The Apostle Paul said that a crown of life is waiting for each of us who finishes the race.

But finishing is much harder than starting.                                                                  Finishing means running day in and day out.

Finishing means training and self-denial and staying focused on the goal.

God hasn’t put you here to start.  God has put you here to finish.

Keep running the good race.

Some Christians get discouraged and want to drop out of the race because of turbulence in their lives.

Turbulence is no reason to quit.  It’s a reason to bear down and try harder until you finish the race!

Too many people are watching your life and depending on your faithfulness to endure to the end and receive the crown of Life!

Hebrews 12:1-2  
1  Therefore, since we are surrounded by such a huge crowd of witnesses to the life of faith, let us strip off every weight that slows us down, especially the sin that so easily trips us up. And let us run with endurance the race God has set before us.
2  We do this by keeping our eyes on Jesus, the champion who initiates and perfects our faith. Because of the joy awaiting him, he endured the cross, disregarding its shame. Now he is seated in the place of honor beside God’s throne.

 

Turbulence can break us or make us stronger!

  • Remember, we are now in training to rule with Christ for Eternity.
  • He isn’t interested in recruiting and ruling with wimps.
  • We are to mount up with wings as eagles.

 

Isaiah 40:28-31
28  Have you not known? Have you not heard? The everlasting God, the LORD, The Creator of the ends of the earth, Neither faints nor is weary. His understanding is unsearchable.
29  He gives power to the weak, And to those who have no might He increases strength.
30  Even the youths shall faint and be weary, And the young men shall utterly fall,
31  But those who wait on the LORD Shall renew their strength; They shall mount up with wings like eagles, They shall run and not be weary, They shall walk and not faint.

TURBULENT WINDS CAUSE THE EAGLE TO FLY HIGHER.

Life’s troubles should cause the Christian to seek closer fellowship with the Lord. Troubles should cause us to fly higher.

TURBULENT WINDS GIVE THE EAGLE A LARGER VIEW.

When our lives are touched by troubles and we flee to God we begin to see the reason and result of lower living.

TURBULENT WINDS LIFT THE EAGLE ABOVE HARRASSMENT FROM OTHER BIRDS OF PREY.

As we walk with the Lord it’s difficult, if not impossible, for us to be harassed by the troubles or troubler of life.

TURBULENT WINDS ALLOW THE EAGLE TO USE LESS EFFORT.

We struggle the most when we live in lower spiritual altitudes. If we draw near to God, we will find how really simple life is meant to be.

TURBULENT WINDS ALLOW THE EAGLE TO STAY UP LONGER.

When we experience fellowship with God; His peace, comfort and love, there will be a desire to remain close to Him. When troubles come we learn immediately to stretch forth our wings and fly high into the presence of the Lord.

TURBULENT WINDS HELP THE EAGLE TO FLY FASTER.

The more we soar above the cares and troubles of life, the more effective we will be in accomplishing the work God has called every Christian to do – Glorifying Him and evangelizing the world in which we live.

We need courage to keep on keeping on.

Don’t succumb to a little turbulence.  Rise above it!

Yes, we are living through difficult times, but God is still there.

I have an idea that even more difficult times are coming as we approach the Rapture when Christ will call His Church home.

Like the Gaither chorus says, “It Will Be Worth It All When We Get Home!”

IT WILL BE WORTH IT ALL

JUST TO SEE HIS FACE

WHEN HE TAKES US FOR HIS OWN!

THEN TEN MILLION YEARS TO SIN “AMAZING GRACE!”

IT WILL BE WORTH IT ALL WHEN WE GET HOME!

 

REMEMBER, WE’RE HERE TO FINISH THE RACE!


WE’RE HERE TO FINISH THE RACE PODCAST

Listen here


 

Why Can’t We Learn To Do Nothing?


Shawn Quah

“Martha, Martha, you are worried and upset about many things, but few things are needed—or indeed only one. Mary has chosen what is better, and it will not be taken away from her.”Luke 10:41–42

I’m probably one of the many people looking forward to the easing of COVID-19 restrictions—not so much because I want to go out, but because I’ve been too busy at home.

Too busy? Surprisingly, yes. Over the past two months during the Circuit Breaker, I’ve struggled with not knowing when to stop work, or being caught up by the many things I needed to do, such as house chores, taking stock of food and other supplies at home, and going to the supermarket to stock up. Some of my friends, too, have told me that they have been working over the weekends as a way of distracting themselves from the monotony of being at home for so long.

It made me wonder: Have we become busy for the sake of being busy? Have we turned home—a place that should be synonymous with rest—into a place where we should work?

A recent article on telecommuting noted that COVID-19 has changed the way companies view working from home. Many are now realising that allowing workers to telecommute does not necessarily result in them doing less work—in fact, it could be the reverse. This has prompted more firms, such as Facebook, Google, Twitter, and Mastercard, to consider a permanent shift to remote working even after COVID-19 is over.

If this really happens for more workers, perhaps it warrants a relook into how we ought to view our time at home. Do we need to keep busy all the time? Do we always need to get things done, or achieve something? What is truly important at home?

I am reminded of the story of Jesus visiting the home of Martha and Mary. While Martha was distracted by the tasks of preparation, her sister Mary did not help her, but instead sat down to listen to Jesus’ teaching (Luke 10:38-40). In our time-starved society, we might see her as being lazy—or even, forbid the thought, wasting time.

How could she do nothing while Martha was so busy?

Yet, when Martha complained to Jesus, He said: “Martha, Martha, you are worried and upset about many things, but few things are needed—or indeed only one. Mary has chosen what is better, and it will not be taken away from her” (vv. 41–42)

For Jesus, the most important thing was spending some uninterrupted time with Him.

I believe this is one way in which we can rest in the Lord. May we not forget that home is a place of rest, even though it has also become our workplace during this COVID-19 outbreak. Just as much as we work, we ought to rest the same too, and simply spend time in the presence of the people we love—like our Lord Jesus and our families.

Perhaps we need to realise that taking a break from our daily routines, sitting down for a leisurely cup of coffee, or simply chilling in the living room and chatting with loved ones isn’t a waste of time.

As we learn to rest at home, let us not forget to rest in the Lord. And may we hold on to His comforting words to Mary, that despite our trials in this world, we can hold on to the fact that when we choose to stop and listen at Jesus’ feet, our relationship with Him will never be taken away from us.

Why Can’t We Learn To Do Nothing?