Sunday, March 1, 2015

Winter Work. Cancer: Is There Hope? Could You Eat on $3.37 a Day? Baking Secrets. God Never Gets Lost. Update.

 

For "Scripture Sunday":

Winter Work

"The winter months should be more than just a time of waiting for the spring Holy Days. Let’s make them productive as we plan, prepare, and look for ways to help others.

chart of the crops and months in Israel

There is always a sense of sadness for me as we finish observing God’s Holy Days for another year. For those of us whom God has called, the winter months can seem bleak and tiresome with the bombardment of the pagan holidays of Halloween, Christmas, New Years, and Easter.

Here in Wisconsin we are reminded of this bleakness as we face the winter weather as well. The farms and gardens are done producing for another year. The weather turns colder and windier. The daylight portion of the day shortens. There is a sense of the year being finished until we see new life and vegetation blooming in the spring.

God had the Bible recorded for us from the perspective of Israel – its location, its rhythm of life, its culture. We can glean much from Scripture if we consider this and miss much if we don’t. Even when it comes to aspects of agriculture, the Bible speaks from a perspective of what would take place in Judea. From a northern hemisphere perspective, the growing season is done for the year, but that is not true in Judea.

In the land of Israel there was still work to be done after the fall harvest and Holy Days. Farmers needed to prepare the fields for the winter planting (the ground there doesn’t freeze solid like it does here in Wisconsin). Equipment needed to be repaired and prepared before the next year’s season. Crops were taken to market, put up for storage, or preserved for future use. Around October/November there were olives and figs to harvest. Mid-winter brought the citrus harvest, and the “late rains” which helped to soften the ground for the spring plantings. Come March/April there was preparation for the barley harvest before Passover.

There is a great spiritual parallel in considering what we should be doing over the winter months. The coming months, while we wait for the spring, are a time to be active, planning and preparing ahead. In light of that, why not use this day to make a list of those things you can work on for your spiritual development this winter? Consider…

  - How can I serve the congregation better?

  - What did I learn this past year? What was God teaching me that I should pay more attention to?

  - What study can I do over the winter to be better prepared for the spring Holy Days?

  - What is my plan to get to know the local members better?

  - What should I be doing to be ready as part of the Bride of Christ?

  - What does God expect me to be doing now?

  - What section of the Bible will I use as my winter reading project?

I encourage you to make the most of these days, and each one that follows until we are once again reviewing God’s Holy Days. Let’s do the work we need to be doing while there is time to do it (John:9:4)!"  From: http://www.ucg.org/youth/vt-sabbath-focus-winter-work/ 

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Cancer: Is there hope?

"Thousands die of cancer every year, begging the question: are there things we can do to help prevent cancer? Discover simple and effective ways to reduce your risk of cancer with Dr. Neil Nedley, president of Nedley Health Solutions, and Pastor John Bradshaw in this inspiring program."

Video at: http://www.itiswritten.com/television/episodes/9521

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Could You Eat on $3.37 a Day?

Healthy Diet Plan

Story at-a-glance

"A typical family using the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP), the official name for food stamps, will have about $3.37 per person, per day, with which to buy food.

People on tight budgets tend to opt for the cheapest, most filling foods, such as white bread, factory-farmed ground beef, and ramen noodles, which are detrimental to your health.

New research found the difference between buying food for the most healthy diet pattern or the least healthy diet pattern came out to about $1.50 per day.

Bone broth, fermented vegetables, and sprouts are examples of inexpensive foods that are phenomenal for your health.

Growing your own vegetables can also save you considerable money on produce; 53 money-saving tips for buying organic are also included."   Complete article at: http://articles.mercola.com/sites/articles/archive/2015/01/05/healthy-diet-pattern.aspx

also:

Healthy Baking Secrets Revealed!

Story at-a-glance

image "With a few healthy ingredient substitutions, you can prepare delicious, nutritious, guilt-free baked goods in your own kitchen.

Five top baking secrets are revealed—and they include butter and chocolate."  Complete article at:

http://articles.mercola.com/sites/articles/archive/2015/01/05/healthy-baking-secrets.aspx

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God Never Gets Lost.

An Amazing Fact: "Scientists are still mystified by how animals know when it’s time to migrate. And how do they unerringly find their way back to the same beach, stream, or feeding ground image they’ve not seen since birth? Consider the green turtles that swim from their feeding grounds off the coast of Brazil to tiny Ascension Island about 3,000 miles away, which they might not have visited since they were hatched. After depositing their eggs, they swim back to Brazil!

image The Arctic tern has the longest migration of any animal, winging each year from their nesting grounds in the Arctic North to the Antarctic and back, a roundtrip journey of nearly 25,000 miles!

These migratory habits of animals baffle scientists. Do they chart their courses by the sun, moon, or stars? Does the earth’s magnetic field direct them? What inner sense did God plant within every species (birds, mammals, fish, reptiles, amphibians, insects, and even crustaceans) to move such long distances on a seasonal basis? Especially amazing is their return is not just to a general locale, but to a very specific spot!

The God who created all the animals of the earth and placed within them a homing instinct is the God who said to Sarah, “I will return to you” (Genesis 18:14). God doesn’t get lost. The Lord doesn’t need a GPS to find us. God doesn’t need us to wear an ankle bracelet to track our movements. Our Creator always knows where we are. God promised Sarah that she would have a child of promise. She laughed. “I am old!” she chuckled. Yet the Lord guaranteed she would have a baby.
At the appointed time the Lord returned and blessed Abraham and Sarah with a child. Just as God sets appointed times within the creatures of the earth to migrate, so the Lord sets special times for us. Are you tuned in to the God who comes to you?"
KEY BIBLE TEXTS
Is any thing too hard for the LORD? At the time appointed I will return unto thee, according to the time of life, and Sarah shall have a son. - Genesis 18:14

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Update:

Another week of yo-yo weather.  Maybe a day or two of nice, and then several where the plants had to be covered up again because it was going to freeze at night.  Right now it's raining again.  Soon we will have ideal weather, but it won't last long before it gets hot.

The nice days always seemed to be on the days when we had other things to do other than get caught up on the yard work around here. 

The doctor visit was just a waste of time.  She said that there was nothing that could be done about my red, bloodshot eye, and it is still there, but not covering quite so much of the white area. But after the doctor, Jay and I had a good time in Conroe going to the lumber yards and thrift shops.  We found a new thrift shop which also takes consignments, so I see a vanload going their way soon!  There I bought a cozy, soft, grey turtleneck, and after washing it, I wore it to church with some grey and maroon accessories. 

Neither Jay nor Ray went to church with me.  I took a crockpot full of chicken spaghetti which all disappeared.  I was glad as I am not fond of chicken.  I buy it, cook it, then I don't want to eat it, so I take it to the church potluck. I arrived early so that I could help the pastor's wife.  No work or cooking is done on the Sabbath, but pre-cooked dishes are stuck in the oven to warm, salads brought out of the fridge, the disposable plates, napkins and plastic ware replenished etc.

The Bible readings were Psa. 98,99,100, Exo. 27:20-30:10, 43:10-27 and Phil. 4:10-20.

The Teaching was about "Punishment and Salvation".  One instance is in Num. 21:4-9.   The Israelites were griping about eating the manna that God had provided, so the Lord sent venomous snakes to bite the ungrateful people.  They realized how unappreciative they had been for being delivered from the slavery in the hands of the Egyptians, and said to Moses.  "We have sinned when we spoke against the Lord and you, Pray that the Lord will take the snakes away from us".  So Moses prayed for the people. The Lord said to Moses "Make a bronze snake and put it up on a pole.  Then when anyone was bitten and looked at the bronze snake, he lived."  (NIV Bible)  That was Punishment and Salvation.

The potluck was super, as usual, and we all sat around talking for quite a while after we had finished eating.  There always seem to be so many biblical questions and answers that are bandied around the dining hall.

The warm grey turtleneck was great, as it was cold.  The forecast said it would warm up, but it was just stayed a cold day.

Monday, February 23, 2015

Jordan's Terror. Bill Cosby and Brian Williams? Ampersand. QWERTY Keyboard. Update.

 

For "Scripture Sunday":

Insightsinto News & Prophecy

Jordan: Unity Through Terror

A Life, Hope & Truth correspondent in Amman, Jordan, reports on Jordan’s response to the shocking murder of a Jordanian pilot at the hands of ISIS.

Jordan: Unity Through Terror

Demonstrators, one with a Jordanian flag image painted on his face and Arabic that reads, "Muath," as in slain Jordanian pilot, Lt. Muath al-Kaseasbeh, chant anti-Islamic State group slogans during a rally in Amman, Jordan, Friday, Feb. 6, 2015. Several thousand people marched after Muslim Friday prayers in support of King Abdullah II's pledge of a tough military response to the killing of the pilot. (AP Photo/Nasser Nasser)

AMMAN, Jordan — "Last week was an intense and interesting week in Amman—with rallies, memorials, hangings and the country claiming the war against ISIS (or Daesh, as it is known in Arabic countries) as “our war.”

Last summer there was not widespread support of Jordan’s involvement in the war against ISIS. But Jordanians have unified following the burning death of pilot Muath Al-Kasasbeh at the hands of ISIS. The situation has people in this country—Bedouins, Palestinians, Christians, Muslims, etc.—coming together and generally supporting the Jordanian government in its fight against ISIS.

There was a large rally to welcome King Abdullah home after he cut his visit to the U.S. short due to the pilot’s murder. A few days later there was another large rally attended by Queen Rania. Conversations, Facebook posts and news reports are patriotic as they mourn the death of the pilot."     More at: http://lifehopeandtruth.com/prophecy/blog/jordan-unity-through-terror/

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http://info.lifehopeandtruth.com/e1t/c/*W6LbC-v2ngVZxW1NYQ5V1Qyjnm0/*W6dkwWM1d8FPXW4XlZbH3hbvdJ0/5/f18dQhb0Smj18XJ9pKW8mSngs5VQHw7W5D6QQG4VLdbYW4R4D_n57mvC2W1BQYd-7tWKPMW9dd7fb6W4yN8W7Jtx7c8mQCwmW9bTNXY954KlMW4P0Yt62c51L6W7b9Ll-8Jm2BYW4y42fg47YlYyW4bfcHb47Xx4zW3C8dd25-GNDdW3VKVtL6nGl8CW2PS9sY2HT8mrW6l4QlV1gvjSzW8hz0Ys806yj3W70ml3s3pBHqsN849PWdHxF0sN3v38GKGN3-MW18JZG11bV-1_W7TX_v44dk76ZW4RlFhK8hcwckW5lrQ3k4NgQGkW6hngKz6xqlsVW8WX9355mcFLlW75WThy8Yw_32W4PVBZl8k0mR6W8YrxVy55QnTDW2mp2PS5DhyW9N44lgF8VR6H2W4q1F6-94p8xQMnjhMkJp8wKW9hjqW85mRgWyW24plNM52NQWZW8LgGT86s6hH6W4cN8s46VG4mLW9g-gd728Rh-bf4lQVWb11

Change_Your_Life_Blog

 

 

What Can We Learn From Bill Cosby and Brian Williams?

imageTwo formerly trusted U.S. celebrities are in the news for moral failings. What can we learn from the moral failures of Bill Cosby and Brian Williams?

"We live in a culture obsessed with celebrities.

There may be nothing that gets more attention than the lives of celebrities. Whether they’re politicians, musicians, movie stars, athletes, newscasters or the children of the wealthy—the sad reality is that, more than anything else, our society seems to love watching these people stumble and fall.

Of course, those who have used their fame to take advantage of others should be prosecuted. But think about it. How many positive news stories do we read about the lives of the rich and famous?

How often do we hear about a celebrity who goes about his or her career in a professional manner, doesn’t constantly get involved in scandals, stays faithfully married to one spouse, is never caught in an embarrassing lie and doesn’t carry on in crazy or drug-induced antics? Regular, drama-free lives don’t get many shares on social media! 

Celebrity failures

The real juicy news that people follow on social media are the stories about the failures of celebrities. Think about two of the most recent U.S. examples: Bill Cosby and Brian Williams."  More at: http://lifehopeandtruth.com/change/blog/what-can-we-learn-from-bill-cosby-and-brian-williams/?

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What Character Was Removed from the Alphabet?

February 25, 2014 by: Dictionary.com blog 954 Comments

ampersand

"Johnson & Johnson, Barnes & Noble, Dolce & Gabbana: the ampersand today is used primarily in business names, but that small character was once the 27th part of the alphabet. Where did it come from though? The origin of its name is almost as bizarre as the name itself.

The shape of the character (&) predates the word ampersand by more than 1,500 years. In the first century, Roman scribes wrote in cursive, so when they wrote the Latin word et which means “and” they linked the e and t. Over time the combined letters came to signify the word “and” in English as well. Certain versions of the ampersand, like that in the font Caslon, clearly reveal the origin of the shape."  More at: http://blog.dictionary.com/ampersand/

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The Correct Way

An Amazing Fact: "Credit for the first modern typewriter belongs to Christopher Sholes, a newspaper editor who lived in Milwaukee in the 1860s. On the Sholes and Remington, as on present-day manual typewriters, each character was set on the end of a metal bar that struck the paper when its key was pressed. The keys were arranged alphabetically.

But there was a snag. When an operator had learned to type at a fast speed, the bars attached to letters that lay close together on the keyboard became entangled with one another. One way out of the difficulty was to find out which letters were most often used and then place them on the keyboard as far from each other as possible. This had the effect of reducing the chance of clashing type bars. This was how the QWERTY keyboard was born, named after the first six letters on the top line. It first became popular on the Remington No. 2, which came out in 1878.

The first typewriter by Sholes was made with the help of his friends Carlos Glidden and Samuel W. Soule, and was patented in October 1867. Instead of four rows of keys, this typewriter only had two rows. The top line was: - 3 5 7 9 N O P Q R S T U V W X Y Z. The bottom line was: 2 4 6 8 . A B C D E F G H I J K L M. The letter arrangement changes took place over five years with several trial-and-error arrangements.

Today millions of modern computer keyboards are still using this cumbersome letter design. Studies have shown that it is helpful to have a variety of words spelled with letters used by both the left and right hand in order to give each hand a moment of rest and readiness to find the next key to press. But the QWERTY layout tends to favor the left hand, which is helpful for left-handed people but a disadvantage to right-handed operators. Though other layouts have been suggested, the QWERTY design still hangs on. Old habits are hard to break!

In a clash with the scribes and Pharisees, Jesus’ disciples were accused of transgressing the “tradition of the elders” regarding the proper way to wash hands before eating bread. But Christ challenged them by asking, “Why do you also transgress the commandment of God because of your tradition?” (Matthew 15:3). When the Bible gives us clear instruction, we should set aside our own preconceived ideas. The correct way to do things is God’s way!
KEY BIBLE TEXTS:
Why do thy disciples transgress the tradition of the elders? for they wash not their hands when they eat bread. - Matthew 15:2

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Update:

Some lovely weather days wasted work-wise, as Ray and Jay were not available.  We have a lot of outside work to do. The cold nights returned so Ray and I had to cover up our plants again, and it was too chilly to work.  Then Ray said that his back was bothering him again, and he doesn't do much then, so we are behind getting more upgrades done to my guest house where he lives.

Jay and I did install a new white sink, new white faucet, and a new garbage disposal in my kitchen.  This updated the look quite a bit for selling this house. The stainless steel sinks and faucets look so yucky with this hard water, if you don't stay on top of them.

I checked out a neighbor's Dodge Caravan that I was thinking of buying, but the fan sounded like a 747 taking off, the engine light was on, it was out of oil, some of the tires were old and weather-cracked, and something was leaking all over the passenger side floor. I put over 2 quarts of oil in it, but the engine light still didn't go off.  There was also a swooshing noise in the engine compartment, it might have been a bad belt.   I just loved this red van as it had all the buttons and even a button to close the back hatch, but I knew better than to pay what he was asking.  I have a good old reliable van now, and I don't need to buy trouble over a few power buttons.

I put Nala, my foster cat in a carrier, and a neighbor SPCA foster mom picked her up and BabyGirl my foster dog for Adoption Day while I was at church.  The dog loves to go there, but the cat, not so much.

On Saturday, Jay and his mother went to see his sister, and Ray's back stopped him from going to church so I went by myself.  The Bible readings were Psa. 84,111,113, Exo. 25-27:19, 1 Kings 5:12-6:13, Heb. 8:1-6 and 23,24.  The Teaching was about "A Message For Everyone, Seeking God (Yahweh)".  You have to seek the Lord, just like the people sought Jesus (Yeshua).  He would travel around, and the crowds would come to hear him preach.  Also don't seek mediums, but the living God.

The potluck was great as usual, mostly organic, healthy food, and lots of veggies.  The turkey meat loaf that the pastor's wife makes is a big hit, I don't know what she does to it.  One of the elders brought a big crockpot of deer meat.  We have a lot of fellowship and conversation in the dining hall.  We all look forward to the Sabbath and the togetherness that we all have for each other.

Suddenly my right eye felt like it had something in it, and the white part went completely red, so I have a doctor appointment today.

Sunday, February 15, 2015

Brian Williams Affair. Mardi Gras. Valentine’s Day. LOVE! Update.

 

For "Scripture Sunday":

The Brian Williams Affair

image "Sooner or later the truth will come out. Make sure you are telling the truth.

http://youtu.be/kaJj8kx0Hew

Transcript: [Darris McNeely] "By now, you’ve probably heard the sad story of Brian Williams, the anchor of the NBC Nightly News, and his suspension for six months from that program for misstating the role that he played twelve years ago in Iraq, where he had said for many years that he was involved in a chopper being hit by an RPG during the Iraq War of 2003. And the reality’s come out now that his chopper was not hit, his helicopter was not hit, and that he was misstating the story through all these years, which was recently just found out.

It’s a sad situation to see anyone get caught up in something like that and then fall from grace, if you will, from a high-profile media job such as this. But I think there’s a lesson for every one of us to consider as we look at Mr. Williams and consider that – not that we should gloat or take any pleasure in what has happened, because in one sense, any of us who work in media in any position of trust and responsibility take a hit from something like this, and it causes people to look at us with perhaps a bit more critical eye – “Can I trust this person?”, “Are they telling me the truth?”. And I think that it – regardless of whether we’re in media or any walk of life, one lesson from this is important. And it’s a lesson that I was talking to a group of students with this morning, regarding what God says in Numbers:32:23, where He says that, “If you have sinned against the Lord, be sure your sin will find you out.” That’s such a stark principle from God’s word, that our sins will find us out.

I happened to be teaching the book of Acts and I was taking them through the story in Acts chapter 5 of two people in the book of Acts called Ananias and Sapphira, who had lied to the Holy Spirit, to God, and they were both struck down in that dramatic story in the book of Acts, because in their desire to look important or to look more generous than they really were, by money that they had given to the church, they’d actually postured and lied. And they paid a very, very stiff penalty for it. That story in Acts is an amazing story, and it’s a very sobering one.

And so, with this one in the headlines for us today, and still playing out, it’s a good morality lesson for each one of us, to recognize that sin has a cost – that any transgression of God’s law has a way, in time, of eventually coming out. The lesson? Don’t sin. And if we do, repent or to change or to admit, and not perpetuate a mistake that we might be making, whatever that might be. It’s a very important lesson. God’s word is a very powerful and sharp two-edged sword.  From: http://www.ucg.org/beyond-today-daily/christian-living/brian-williams-affair

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Mardi Gras: Should It Be on the Christian Calendar?

image" Mardi Gras is marked by wild parades and raucous parties in places like New Orleans and Rio de Janeiro. So in what way is it connected to Christianity?

How much do you know about all the various holidays and celebrations throughout the year? If you study into them, you’ll find a lot of them have religious roots in the ancient pagan world and several more have a circuitous connection to paganism.

What about Mardi Gras?

Mardi Gras is considered to be the culmination of a festive season leading up to what the mainline Christian community refers to as Lent. Mardi Gras is purposely designed to commemorate frivolity, carousing and sin, but is considered in many quarters to be part of the Christian calendar."  More at: http://lifehopeandtruth.com/life/plan-of-salvation/holy-days-vs-holidays/mardi-gras/

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3 Romantic Alternatives to Valentine’s Day

image "Valentine’s Day draws near, many will celebrate romantic love. But what about true love? Here are three ways to escape the superficiality of Valentine’s Day.

With Valentine’s Day around the corner, millions of people have already made plans for romantic getaways, ordered flowers or chocolates and started writing valentines. For the holiday that is supposed to epitomize romantic love, it is very materially based and commercialized."  More at:  http://lifehopeandtruth.com/relationships/blog/3-romantic-alternatives-to-valentines-day/

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Dear Friends,
What is the most misunderstood word in the English language? Some have made a strong case for words such as unique, literally and ironic.
But I think the most misunderstood word is one that carries many definitions, some of them contradictory. That word is love.


Too often when we hear the word love in popular culture, it doesn’t mean a selfless caring for another person that makes us willing to sacrifice and be patient and gentle and kind. No, it’s too often a code word for unbridled sexual lust and selfish desire.

Valentine’s Day is generally considered a celebration of love. But what kind of love? Mardi Gras celebrates free love—but it’s a shallow substitute for the real thing, and it brings painful baggage.

God’s festivals, the seven listed in the Bible, truly are based on love—godly love, outgoing love. They show us how God loved us, and how we should love Him and our fellow humans. You can learn more about them in our free booklet:  From Holidays to Holy Days: God’s Plan for You.
With warm regards and in Christian love,
The Life, Hope & Truth team."   

And also: http://lifehopeandtruth.com/life/plan-of-salvation/holy-days-vs-holidays/valentines-day/

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Update:

The weather is still chilly in the mornings, but is lovely in the afternoons.  The birds are still happy that I refill the feeder, and Nala, my foster cat likes to watch them from the screen porch.

Jay and I went to a yard sale at a storage place, and I bought a real solid wood 15-light exterior door, and a very lovely ceiling fan and light.  It's always good to upgrade stuff.

I had bought a NIV Bible at a thrift shop and it had the Bible book tabs stuck on it.  I can usually find the scriptures pretty fast, but the tabs sure made it quicker.  I had some tabs, so I have started to put them on the KJ Study Bible that I use the most. It takes time and concentration to do it right.

Ray and I went to church, Jay wasn't feeling well. The readings were Psalm 103, 104, Exodus 21:1-24:15, Jer. 34:8-22, and 33:25, then Matt. 15:1-20.   The teaching was about being no longer foreigners, but being fellow citizens with God's people and members of God's household, Eph. 2-1-22.

The potluck was great, and I took a mess of veggies.  One of the elders has been sick and is now on an all vegan diet, so I made them especially for him.  Spaghetti squash with herbs, onions and orange peppers;  all veggie and tomato spaghetti sauce;  green and red seasoned cabbage with onions done in virgin coconut oil; and an apple trifle.  I never knew that cabbage could be so popular!!  After I had sautéed each part, green cabbage, onions, and red cabbage, I layered it in a square Pyrex dish and then covered it with shredded mozzarella.  It just had to be warmed in the dining hall oven so that the cheese would melt. The spaghetti squash was a change for everyone, too, and they liked it. There were a lot more dishes brought by others to enjoy.  I don't have anyone to cook for anymore, so I like to spend my Friday afternoons (Preparation Day) cooking stuff for the church potluck.

After I got home I took my foster dog, BabyGirl, a black/white lab, to a neighbor's, also another foster mom, for playtime as they have acreage.  Even though BabyGirl was a little confused at first, she had a good time.  She gets so bored hanging around here, so they offered to let her play with their dogs.  She really warmed up to the two little dogs.  They also have 5 big dogs, bigger than she is, but she preferred the little ones. When she was brought home she ate her dinner and crashed.  So everyone had a great day.