Friday, May 13, 2011

As Good As It Gets

My old Sunday school teacher once was talking about her car and how it broke down on her. She was praying to the Lord that she would be able to find an honest mechanic that wouldn't rip her off. She was also asked the Lord that if He could provide the means for a newer car, this would be even a greater blessing to her.

That got her thinking, Lord, why do I have to be inconvenienced of not having a vehicle when I see sinners about who don't even acknowledge You? The Lord told her that perhaps some of these sinners may only live a life of luxury and not the eternal life that I have planned for you. She realized that she shouldn't be jealous of others and to realize that our next life is where we should store our treasures and look forward to.

I always think of this when I see other people with the ideal physique or the expensive mansion and life of luxury. I'm not saying all of these people are sinners but we should realize that our treasure is in the next life. Don't be jealous of others because who knows, perhaps this is as good as it will ever get for them.
I was thinking, this blog is mostly about me and basically writing it only for me it seems. I'm wanting to branch out and start writing inspirational messages that might effect others. I just don't know what to write about or how to gear it toward making people want to read this. I originally started this blog not intending for anyone else to actually read it, but I want someone to get some use out of it or at least comment back and tell me their opinions. IDK perhaps what I write about is hard to comment on?

Anyway back to what I was writing about... I'm not trying to rationalize my own short comings by saying perhaps the Lord has given these nice things to people since He knows they're going to hell. No I'm not saying that, anyone has the ability to fulfill the type of life they want here on Earth, Christian or whatever else they may be. I guess what I am saying is that we're all different because He all wants us to be unique with our own special talents or to have different perspectives on our understandings. Living a life of being overweight and feeling out of place will obviously have an effect on someone as will being in shape and attractive will have on another person. Some will cower, some will flaunt, but both will miss the point of what He had in store for us.

I came across Mother Teresa's poen, "Anyway" again and found it to be very applicable to what I'm writing now,

People are often unreasonable, illogical and self centered;
Forgive them anyway.
If you are kind, people may accuse you of selfish, ulterior motives;
Be kind anyway.
If you are successful, you will win some false friends and some true enemies;
Succeed anyway.
If you are honest and frank, people may cheat you;
Be honest and frank anyway.
What you spend years building, someone could destroy overnight;
Build anyway.
If you find serenity and happiness, they may be jealous;
Be happy anyway.
The good you do today, people will often forget tomorrow;
Do good anyway.
Give the world the best you have, and it may never be enough;
Give the world the best you've got anyway.
You see, in the final analysis, it is between you and God;
It was never between you and them anyway.

I must stop worrying so much about others and just concentrate on myself, there's a lot I need to work on and i need to be putting that first! Don't put your trust in people because they will fail you 100% of the time, put your trust in God knowing that what you do for Him will always be recognized.

P.S. I was just looking over my Blog and wow, is it motivational for me! I never realized how reading something you wrote earlier could really be motivating! I'll need to go back and re-read everything I have written. I can't believe it will be a year in August since I started. Most of my blogs seem to be about psychology or philosophical, am I normal for caring about this stuff and thinking about it sooo much!? No probably not, but perhaps creating a better understanding will help me better understand myself?

Anywayz, of course it's getting late, seems like my body is programmed to go to sleep at 2 in the morning NO MATTER WHAT. It is sooo annoying that I cannot go to sleep earlier, why is this so impossible for me? I need to change 2 things very soon in my life, my sleeping habits and pushing the anxiety further aside in order to help me find a new job! It sux that the thought of interviewing keeps me from pursuing a career. Sad but true I'm afraid... If you watch, "The Fairy Jobmother" you'll see I'm not the only one suffering as well... I will over come this! The Lord has made us to be capable of anything we set our minds too. My pastor told me that... and I believe it!

Sorry for such a random blog tonight!

Tuesday, May 10, 2011

Having a Relationship with The Lord... -My thoughts

Before discovering that interesting article on Google these are the thoughts I had and still do have...

What makes a Christian a Christian? Using myself as an example... I'm sure I've mentioned this in a previous blog but I grew up in a Church and just don't feel like I am truly different than someone else that may have not been raised in a Church. I'm not trying to place blame on anyone, it isn't my pastor's fault and it isn't my parent's fault. It's my fault for not pursuing a person relationship with the Lord.

Anyone can read the Bible, anyone you ask could tell you about how Jesus died for our sins to enable us with eternal life. Anyone can gather these facts and tell you they know them and that they are a Christian because they believe them and live by them. Anyone can do this, but I am thinking that perhaps this isn't what a true Christian is. I honestly shouldn't even use the word Christian because they're are plenty of followers of a specific religion that think they are doing as the religion specifies them to do, yet totally misses the point of what Jesus Christ wants us to do.

If a friend mentions to you of a wonderful book they just read and goes on to describe the book and why it's so wonderful, you will base your opinion on that book by what the described to you. Before you can even read the book for yourself you're going to have the pre-formed opinion in your mind. I think for some of us that were raised in the church or around religious people, this may have happened to us. We have formed our opinion of the Bible and what the Lord is, based solely on what we have heard. Whether we have heard things from our parents, pastor, Grandparents or friends, if we haven't read the book for ourselves we are only basing our opinion primarily on what we've heard other people tell us. If you have not read the Bible entirely, yet consider yourself a Christian, I'm asking you; why have you let other people form your opinion on how you're going to succeed at living an eternal life in Heaven? You can know what the Lord has done for us by sending Jesus Christ to earth in order to redeem our souls, you can know the 10 commandments and apply them to your life but you will biased opinion until reading the book the Lord has provided to you.

If I still haven't made you question what you currently believe, I ask this. What is your conscience and where does it come from? Does our conscience come entirely from us? Do you think it could be possible for the Lord or satan to influence our conscience? If we don't have a strong grasp (knowledge) on our beliefs, it will not take much for our opinion (if you're basing it on what you've heard) to sway when being attacked. I've written previously about a dream I had and how I realized that our brain is the link of our physical body and our spirit. I believe out conscience is the main communicator between the two as well. Whatever we are putting in our heads will effect our mind, body and most importantly, soul. If we have a strong grasp in our belief, our conscience will not question and our conscience will also not be able to sway when being attacked from satan.

To have a personal relationship with the Lord is to study what he says in the Bible, first. We should continue to study and question everything we do not understand in the Bible. Research using other books or Google for other people's ideas and opinions. The more information we have about our Lord and Saviour the closer we will be to knowing the Lord. When we know the Lord our personal relationship will begin to grow.

The Lord gave us the capability to seek Him out. If we're too lazy that we just choose to be ignorant and believe what we hear, I wonder what He thinks our our relationship? I'm sure He still loves us but if we knowingly are too lazy to learn or study about Him, I really don't think we would please Him.

Koinonia: is what Christians need to have with The Lord

Having a Relationship with The Lord...

This has been on my mind tonight. I Googled this phrase and was quite surprised on how much it applied to what I was wondering and already thought about having a personal relationship with Jesus Christ. I will post my findings here and write the next blog on my own feelings and thoughts. So here is the article...


If you were asked to choose one of the following phrases to complete the sentence, which would you choose?
To be a Christian is...
(1) to believe that Jesus was born, lived, died, and was raised from the dead?
(2) to accept that God became a man in the person of Jesus Christ in order to reconcile all men with Himself?
(3) to receive Jesus and have a personal relationship with Jesus Christ?

Option #1 - has to do with the historical Jesus and the events of His life in the first century.
Option #2 - has to do with the theology of Jesus which explains incarnation and Christology.
Option #3 - has to do with the personal, subjective experience of Jesus.
There really should be a fourth option: (4) All of the above. The objective historical foundation and theological formulation are essential prerequisites to the subjective relationship with Jesus. But if one's understanding of Christianity is comprised only of assent to the objective facts, and devoid of the subjective personal relationship with Jesus Christ, can such a person be considered a Christian?
What does it mean to have a "personal relationship with Jesus Christ"?
Evangelical Christians have often proclaimed and explained that to be a Christian is "to receive Jesus and have a personal relationship with Jesus Christ." Many who have heard that proclamation have not been able to understand what evangelical Christians mean by that phrase. Is it possible for the non-Christian, the natural man, to understand or comprehend the meaning of that phrase?
The natural man can understand "religion" ­ how religious organizations function, how they solicit finances, how they utilize propaganda to get their message out. The natural man can understand rational assent to religious tenets, propositions, principles, statements of history, theology, and doctrine. The natural man can understand adherence to a belief-system, or devotion to an ideology or an organization. The natural man can understand "spirituality" if it is defined as the serenity of "well-being", or devotion to a meaningful cause, or the recollection of an ecstatic experience, or conformity to a moral ideal.
But is it possible for the natural man, the non-Christian, to understand what it means to "have a personal relationship with Jesus Christ"? The Apostle Paul explained that "the natural man cannot understand spiritual things" (I Cor. 2:14). Is "having a personal relationship with Jesus Christ" a spiritual reality that requires the presence and appraisal of the Spirit of Christ to understand what it means? If so, is it possible to adequately explain the meaning of this reality to a non-Christian?
A philosophy student, with whom I had an acquaintance, was very brilliant, well-read and articulate. He was willing and desirous of considering the facts of Christian history and theology under the microscope of human reason. But with a sneer and derisive comments full of scorn, he would mock and make deprecatory comments about those who referred to a "personal relationship with Jesus Christ." Why? This was outside of his ability to understand on a purely rational, philosophical and scientific level.

In our attempt to explain the phrase and its meaning we will consider the individual words of the phrase: (1) Relationship. (2) Personal. (3) Jesus Christ.
RELATIONSHIP - In its broadest sense this simply means that one object has a connection or correlation with another object. The relation of this to that. Mathematically, it may be the relationship of x to y. Geometrically, it may be the angle of relationship between one line and another line. Mechanically, it may be the relationship of the clutch to the drive shaft of an automobile, or one part of a machine to another part. Cosmologically, it may the relationship of earth to the sun; or even more extensively it may be the relation or relationship of everything in the universe to a constant (such as the speed of light within a vacuum), which is how Einstein developed his "Theory of Relativity", which was essentially a theory of relationship.
The above mentioned relationships are all impersonal relationships. As it is our objective to understand a personalrelationship, we must explore what that means.
personal relationship must involve at least one person. The first dictionary meaning of "personal" is defined as "how something relates to or affects a person." With this broad definition, a person can have a "personal relationship" with anything that affects or relates to them ­ a dog, a tree, a flower, a bottle of beer, etcetera ad infinitum.
An individual person might consider the historical evidence of a particular event or person, and then relate such to their own situation. Is that a personal relationship? An individual person might develop ideas into a logical explanation of how they fit together and function. Is that a personal relationship with a particular ideology? Can one have a personal relationship with history? ...philosophy? ...theology? If a person associates themself with, or relates to, a particular social unit, such as an organization like a fraternity, is that a personal relationship? Does loyalty, adherence, commitment and dedication to a grouping of other persons constitute a personal relationship? What is a personal relationship?
Surely the reader can recognize that I am questioning whether the phrase "personal relationship", as used in the evangelical terminology of contemporary religion, is but the personal affect that Christian history, theology and community have upon a person who consents and assents to relate to such. In its broadest definition this could be called a "personal relationship"; but are we content to accept that as the intent of the Christian relationship with Jesus Christ?
PERSONAL - How personal does the relationship have to be to be a personal relationship?
If you receive a loan from another individual, is there a personal relationship between the payer and the payee?
Is the legal and contractual relationship between an employer and employee a personal relationship?
Do you have a personal relationship with your great, great grandfather who may have died twenty years prior to your birth? Or is it just a biological and genealogical relationship of heritage?
Is it possible to have a personal relationship with George Washington or Napoleon Bonaparte?
Is there a necessary personal relationship between siblings within the same family? Does biological kinship establish a personal relationship?
Let me share a personal illustration: I have a sister. We are related. She is my relative. We have a genetic and biological relationship. Is that a personal relationship? I have not seen nor communicated with this sister for over twenty years, nor does she apparently ever desire to do so. Do we have a personal relationship?
We must admit that the broadest definition of a "personal relationship" allows for a unidirectional relationship whereby an individual person relates to an object, an idea, a cause, an image, a fantasy, a mental construct, or a person who is no longer living. A "personal relationship" also allows for a relationship of two or more persons that is merely contractual, biological or social.
But a "personal relationship" is also defined as a dynamic inter-relatedness between persons, an experiential relationship between two persons that involves subjective interaction and communication, a person-to-person relationship, the connection, correlation and interaction of at least two persons in what might be better termed aninterpersonal relationship.
I have an interpersonal relationship with Joe, for example. We are friends. We interact. We communicate back and forth. Since Joe is a Christian, I have a different kind of interpersonal relationship with him than I would have with a non-Christian friend. With a Christian friend I have something in common that allows for communion and fellowship (koinonia), a communication based on our spiritual commonality in Christ; a deeper level of interpersonal interaction and communication than I could have with a person who was not spiritually one with me in Christ.
But every other interpersonal relationship that I might have is not on the same level of experiential interpersonal relationship that I have with my wife. The interaction of our interpersonal relationship as husband and wife involves a connection, a "knowing", an intimacy, an "intercourse" (social and sexual) that is deeper than any other interpersonal relationship that I have. And the fact that she is a Christian wife allows a spiritual communion and oneness that makes our marital interpersonal relationship as deep as any human interpersonal relationship can be.
That is why the Apostle Paul uses the intimate interpersonal relationship of husband and wife as the best human and physical analogy to the interpersonal relationship of a Christian with Christ. (Ephesians 5:22-33). The closest oneness and intimacy of personal relationship on earth that can be used to picture and describe and explain the oneness and intimacy of a personal relationship with Jesus Christ, is the marriage relationship.
JESUS CHRIST - What then is a "personal relationship with Jesus Christ"? Or would we be better served to refer, instead, to an "interpersonal relationship with Jesus Christ", in order to avoid any idea that we are referring to an individual person relating to an object, an idea, a cause, an image, a fantasy, a mental construct, or a person that is no longer living?
Is a "personal relationship with Jesus Christ" just a relation of our mental assent to an historical Jesus? Is a "personal relationship with Jesus Christ" just an ideological relationship of belief based on the circumstantial evidence of reports that we can read in the Gospels of the New Testament? Is it possible to have an interpersonalrelationship with an historical personage that lived hundreds of years ago? Is it possible to have a interpersonalrelationship with a logical construct of theological tenets about God and His Son, Jesus Christ?
Or does an "interpersonal relationship with Jesus Christ" necessitate an experiential, interactive relationship that involves an inter-relatedness, a oneness, a union, a commonality of identity, an intimacy, a "knowing" that can only be likened to the marriage relationship on earth?
That would necessitate the recognition that the Jesus of history, who walked around Palestine over 1900 some years ago, is still alive as a living Person, though in a different form ­ in a spiritual form, and capable of interacting in an interpersonal relationship with human persons today. That is the message of the Christian gospel ­ that Jesus lived, was crucified on the cross, and was raised from the dead in the resurrection, and having ascended to God the Father, He was "poured out" and made available in spiritual form, as the "Spirit of Christ" (Rom. 8:9), in order to indwell the spirits of persons in every age, becoming one with them in spiritual union, and becoming the basis of their new spiritual identity, as they engage in a dynamic interpersonal relationship with the living Lord Jesus.
At this point we need to admit that even the reference to an interpersonal relationship with Jesus Christ might be inadequate. The marriage relationship that Paul employs in Eph. 5:22-33 breaks down in illustrating the relationship of Christ and the Christian because the relationship between the Christian the the living Lord Jesus is also an intrapersonal relationship, involving the indwelling presence of the Spirit of Christ within the spirit of the Christian.
In order for the Christian to have a dynamic interpersonal relationship with Jesus Christ it necessitated that Jesus be a living Person. That was facilitated by the historic resurrection of Jesus when He was raised from the dead on the third day to become the every-living Lord Jesus. In order for the Christian to have a spiritual intrapersonalrelationship with Jesus Christ, it necessitated that Jesus be a Spirit-person. That was implemented by the Pentecostal outpouring of Jesus in Spirit-form when the Spirit of Christ became available to indwell the spirits of receptive individuals in every age as the life-giving Spirit (I Cor. 15:45).
This is why evangelical Christians employ the Biblical terminology of being "born again," to explain the living reality of the personal Spirit of Christ coming to dwell in the spirit of a receptive person in an intrapersonal relationship, and that to engage in a growing and developing interpersonal relationship whereby the living Lord Jesus functions in and through the Christian.
It is important to understand that a personal relationship with Jesus Christ is not just an objective relationship to the benefits that Christ allegedly made available by His historical actions of death, burial and resurrection. Protestant Christian religion, in particular, has tended to objectify the relationship of the Christian to God and Christ in a forensic, juridical and legal framework that posits the relationship as but the "justification" of a right relationship with God the Judge in the heavenly realm. As a corollary, the relationship of the Christian with God has been viewed as a static "reconciliation" that is no more personal that "reconciling" one's financial books.
The intrapersonal and interpersonal relationship of the Christian with Jesus Christ must be recognized as a subjective, internal, spiritual reality, whereby an individual in any age receives the living Spirit of Christ into his or her spirit (Rom. 8:9), thus becoming a Christian, a Christ-one. That relationship must involve a dynamic sense of ontological interaction and communion, a living and functional communication.
Granted, this explanation of a personal, intrapersonal and interpersonal relationship with Jesus Christ requires spiritual understanding that can only come by the presence of the Spirit of Christ within the spirit of a receptive person. (I Cor. 2:8-16). That is the difficulty Christians have in attempting to explain what it means to have a personal relationship with Jesus Christ. It cannot be understood until He, the Person of Christ, is received by faith.Then, we have the spiritual and relational understanding of regeneration and new birth (Jn. 3:1-6). Then, we can have the spiritual understanding of the indwelling of the Spirit of Christ within our spirit (Rom. 8:9); that the living Lord Jesus Christ is in us (Col. 1:27; II Cor. 13:5), and lives in us (Gal. 2:20) as our spiritual life (Col. 3:4). Then,we can begin to fathom that we are united in a spiritual oneness of union with Him (I Cor. 6:17). Then, we can begin to understand that we are new creatures (II Cor. 5:17; Eph. 4:24; Col. 3:10), and that our identity is only "in Him" as Christ-ones, Christians ­ that who I am can only be explained on the basis of Who He is. Then, we can begin to understand the dynamic function of the Lordship of the Living Lord Jesus, not just as an assent to His being Lord, God, Deity, but as the acceptance of the fact that my life is no longer mine to determine, but is entirely as His disposal and determination.
(Of course, my life was really never mine to determine, anyway. I was just deceived into thinking that it was, and that I was an independent self-determining self. I am convinced that one of the major reasons why the natural man, as well as most religion, including evangelical Christian religion, does not understand what a personal, intrapersonal or interpersonal relationship with Jesus Christ involves, is because they do not understand or accept that the non-Christian, the unregenerate person, has a personal, intrapersonal and interpersonal relationship with Satan, the Evil One - Jn. 8:44; II Tim. 2:26; I Jn. 3:10. cf. The Natural Man.)
So, how do we as Christians attempt to explain that the Christian life is a personal, intrapersonal and interpersonal relationship with Jesus Christ?
We do not want to "fake people out" and offer them "religion" instead ­ membership, involvement, commitment, dedication. In much of Christian religion today people are told about a relationship to "churchianity" rather than Jesus Christ. They are introduced to the "fellowship of excitement" whereby people can "get all excited about Jesus"; hyped up and "high" on Jesus. They are introduced to "programs", the success of which is evaluated by the numbers of buildings, budgets and baptisms. They are introduced to the "escape hatch" whereby the penalty of sin can be removed, and a "fire insurance policy" of eternal assurance in heaven is offered. The past can be forgiven, the future can be assured ­ such an offer provides an impersonal relationship to sin and an impersonal relationship to a future destiny, but it does not adequately encompass a dynamic and living personal, intrapersonal, and interpersonal relationship with the living Lord Jesus Christ in the present.
It is imperative that we, Christians, explain, as best we can by the empowering of the Spirit of Christ, how a personal, intrapersonal, and interpersonal relationship with Jesus Christ is initiated and functions. Only God can effect that relationship of Christ with another, as an individual chooses in the receptivity of faith to receive the living Spirit of Christ into his or her spirit.

--- This article looks very interesting as well. Leaving a link here for myself to read at a later time.