Sunday, November 9, 2014

A Message Christianity Ignores. Don’t Copy Pagan Ways. 10 Ways to Unknowingly Crush Your Cat’s Spirit. Update.

 

For "Scripture Sunday":

The Kingdom of God:
A Message Christianity Ignores

"The Gospel accounts are very clear about the focus of Christ’s message. Yet the gospel of the Kingdom of God is nearly absent from Christianity today.

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The Kingdom of God is currently in heaven. But it will be established on earth when Jesus returns.

"The myriad of churches that make up Christianity profess that their religion is based on Jesus Christ. Nearly all claim Him as their founder and say that their teachings are based on what He said and did 2,000 years ago. But, sadly, there are many doctrines where mainstream Christianity ignores or actually rejects the teachings of Jesus Christ.

This month’s column makes a bold assertion: Mainstream Christianity does not teach the same message that Jesus Christ brought when He walked the earth 2,000 years ago.

Jesus had a central message that formed the basis for His entire ministry and teachings.

He pinpointed this central message in the heart of His most famous sermon—the Sermon on the Mount. He made a statement about what should be the highest priority for His followers: “But seek first the kingdom of God and His righteousness, and all these things shall be added to you” (Matthew 6:33, emphasis added).

Jesus Christ’s words are clear—the Kingdom of God is to be the No. 1 focus and emphasis in the lives of His followers. In fact, it was the core of His gospel message.

Christ’s gospel was not just about Himself

Gospel is a common word in the Christian world. Some think of it in connection with a genre of religious music, but most understand that it describes a message. It literally means a message of good news. Most churches include the word gospel in their mission statements. Typically, the gospel is described as the gospel of Jesus Christ, and it is seen as the message of His life, death and resurrection. (You can see this by doing a Google search of the mission statements of different denominations of Christianity.)

But was this the central message that Jesus actually taught? Was His message only about Himself?

A study of the Gospel accounts of Christ’s life pinpoints exactly what His message—His gospel—was all about!

Notice Mark 1:14: “Now after John was put in prison, Jesus came to Galilee preaching the gospel of the kingdom of God.” That statement is pretty plain—Jesus preached the gospel about the Kingdom of God!

There are many scriptures that reinforce this fact. For example, Matthew 9:35 says, “Then Jesus went about all the cities and villages, teaching in their synagogues, preaching the gospel of the kingdom.”

At one point in His ministry, Jesus was about to leave an area where He had been preaching for some time. The people of that area tried to persuade Him not to go (Luke 4:42). Jesus’ response was, “I must preach the kingdom of God to the other cities also, because for this purpose I have been sent” (verse 43).

Let that sink in.

Jesus Christ said that one of His primary purposes for coming to earth was to preach about the Kingdom of God! That was His gospel. That was His message. That was His purpose. That is what drove Him.

When we understand that the thrust of Christ’s message centered on the Kingdom of God, we understand better why He made the statement in Matthew 6:33: “Seek first the kingdom of God.” He tells us to seek first the Kingdom because the Kingdom of God was His primary message.

This message is about the literal establishment of the Kingdom of God on earth at the second coming of Jesus Christ. See our infographic on page 29 to learn more details about what the Kingdom of God is.

But where is that message in mainstream Christianity today?"  More at: http://lifehopeandtruth.com/prophecy/kingdom-of-god/a-message-christianity-ignores/

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Don’t Copy Pagan Ways of Worship

Deuteronomy 12:29-32

“When the LORD your God cuts off from before you the nations which you go to dispossess, and you displace them and dwell in their land, take heed to yourself that you are not ensnared to follow them, after they are destroyed from before you, and that you do not inquire after their gods, saying, ‘How did these nations serve their gods? I also will do likewise.’ You shall not worship the LORD your God in that way; for every abomination to the LORD which He hates they have done to their gods; for they burn even their sons and daughters in the fire to their gods. Whatever I command you, be careful to observe it; you shall not add to it nor take away from it.”

God knew the traps that Satan lays with alluring ways of worship. He warned His people not to neglect His clear instructions about how He wants to be worshipped. He tells us to never assume that He would like to be worshipped in the way those who worship other gods worship them.

Yet Israel continually fell into this trap, creating a syncretistic religion that combined some elements of biblical commands with the religious customs of the people around them.

Looking at the history of Christianity, it becomes evident that a similar process took place, as pre-Christian customs and celebrations were accepted by much of Christianity, though rejected by those who remained faithful to the teachings of the apostles and prophets."  More at: http://lifehopeandtruth.com/bible/blog/dont-copy-pagan-ways-of-worship/ By Erik Jones

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10 Ways to Unknowingly Crush Your Cat’s Spirit

by Kathy Blumenstock

10 Ways to Unknowingly Crush Your Cat’s Spirit

"Famously independent, sometimes falsely assumed to be immune to feelings, cats are in truth super-sensitive to emotions, sound and stress. Perhaps because felines lack the eager-to-please openness of their canine colleagues, humans overlook the big and small ways that they can break a cat’s spirit.  Are you guilty of any of these?

Not Cleaning the Litter Box: Leave the box filled with kitty’s waste because some new litters promise freshness for multiple days--so you wait till the weekend for that dreaded chore of cleaning the litter box. Imagine leaving your own toilet unflushed all week long, and you’ll know how your cat feels.

Shouting: Raised voices will terrify your cat. Feline ears are extra sensitive to loud noises, so yelling is amplified to extreme levels. A cat who hears shouting will flatten her ears, lower her head and look for a place to hide, away from the sound and fury.

Punishing: Yelling “bad cat,” throwing things, motioning in anger and scolding your cat when she misses the litter box or claws your sofa, tells her you are unhappy, even if she has no idea why. Grabbing him and shoving her face in a mess will leave her petrified. Her eyes will darken in fear, but will not alter her displeasing behavior because all you’re teaching her is to be afraid.

Ignoring The Pain: Looking away when your cat repeatedly chews at a sore spot on her belly or furiously scratches at her ears. Cats are masters at hiding their discomfort, whether an infected tooth makes eating difficult or a urinary tract infection means litter box visits are pure agony. Monitoring your cat’s wellbeing means being a pain detective so you know what ails your cat, even if she can’t tell you directly.

Leaving the Lights Off: Left alone in a silent home when darkness falls, your cat will feel abandoned. Yes, cats can see in the dark. But why not provide a radio for murmured sounds of companionship, and a nightlight, a small beacon of brightness to remind Tabby that you’ll be home soon.

Teasing: Pulling on your cat’s tail (or letting your kids do so), blowing in her face, ruffling her fur while she’s sleeping, picking her up if she dislikes being handled, jiggling her in your arms—such antagonizing behavior confuses and depresses your cat, who wants to love you. Why goad her into feeling dislike instead?

Skipping the Small Stuff: Never grooming your cat, allowing her to experience the discomfort of hairballs. Not trimming her claws, so she snags them around the house. Not checking her ears for mites, even when she shakes her head repeatedly. Ignoring her problems chewing, even if it signals gum or tooth trouble. The little things add up and can deplete your cat’s energy and health.

Hurting:  Hitting, kicking, physically harming a cat in any way, from a “light tap” to a hard smack, is inhumane, evil, morally wrong and guaranteed to instill fear in any cat, breaking her spirit, and her heart, in the process. Physical pain teaches cats to fear people.

Not Filling or Cleaning the Water Dish: Filling a small bowl with water and letting the cat drink from it no matter how long it sits, how much dust accumulates, what spills into it, then topping off the same bowl a few days from now without washing it—this gives your cat the opportunity to drink stagnant water, down to the last drop. And how many times have you enjoyed a bottled water today?

Neglecting Your Cat: Offering your cat no attention, no conversation, no affection, no interaction and no playtime leaves your cat confused. She craves even the smallest gesture or word of kindness in exchange for her pure devotion to you."

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Update:

As it was raining, Jay wrapped a piece of the inner tube over the drain leak, secured it with the clamps, and it held really well. Then he spent the rest of the week working on his neighbor's porch roof, which he couldn't do in the rain.

This has been a week of painting.

One day, Ray painted some places on the shed that the previous painter had forgotten.

Another day, Ray painted the back door.  We have gradually been painting all the doors, including the shed door, with a blue/gray paint to match the trim on the house.

Another day, we painted some places on the back of my van, where the paint had worn off. 

Then we worked on the Puddle Jumper.

PJ_Front-1109121340 PJ-Rear-1109121413

 

 

 

 

 

See that black trim around the windows?  It had faded over the years, after all the PJ is an 88 Tracer! So we taped the car up, just leaving the trim showing, primed it and sprayed it with Hammered Black.  It looks like new now.

Yesterday, I went to church, and the readings were Gen.18:1-22:24 and 2 Kings 4:1-37 and Psa. 20.  The teaching was about Obedience to God, and the pastor quoted so many of the verses where God asks us to be obedient. Obedience is the Key to Spiritual Knowledge. 

The pot luck was great as usual.  The new family didn't share our food as some of it had been cooked just before the service.  They are real sticklers about the Sabbath, they won't cook on the Sabbath, they will only eat what has been prepared the day before, Preparation Day, Friday.

I drove home to take Ray a plate from the church, as he couldn't leave his house in case his illegal squatter showed up to get more of her things.  We will be so glad when all this is over.

Then I drove to Luby's in Conroe, and met Arlene from the RV-Dreams chat room. http://www.rv-dreams.com/chatroom.html.  About 50 RVers were having a GTG there.  I didn't eat as I was already full from the church potluck, but I enjoyed listening to everybody.  Lots of the RVers were staying at Thousand Trails, Conroe.  Many of the full-timers are gate-guarding at different locations.  Like anytime RVers get together, there was incessant chatter.  This is to show how the great big long table looked:

Lubys-2-1108162920_01

Lubys-1108163138_01

 

 

 

 

 

These pictures were taken with my new cell phone, so they aren't the best.  Then I scurried home, and only just got there before dark.  There was a wonderful and unusual sunset, and I wish I had stopped along on the road to take a picture, because it was gone by the time I got home.

It was a very special day.

Monday, November 3, 2014

Can the United States Defeat ISIS? What Time Is It Anyway? Vote For Wildlife. Where Am I? Update.

 

For "Scripture Sunday":

Can the United States Defeat ISIS?

Can the United States Defeat ISIS?

A U.S. Navy F/A-18E Super Hornet aircraft sits on the flight deck of the aircraft carrier USS Carl Vinson on Oct. 16, 2014, as the ship supports Inherent Resolve.

"One pressing issue facing the United States is the ISIS threat. What are the options available to the U.S., and is it possible for a coalition to defeat ISIS?

The rise of ISIS (the Islamic State in Iraq and Syria) has captured the attention of many in the United States and the world for the last several months. The debate continues about whether or not ISIS can be defeated solely by the coalition’s air power (supporting Iraqi and Kurdish forces) or if American ground troops must again be sent into Iraq.

According to Speaker of the House John Boehner, “At the end of the day, I think it’s gonna take more than air strikes to drive them outta there.”

More recently, Senator John McCain said that ground troops, or at least special forces, should be sent in to defeat ISIS because “they’re winning, and we’re not.”"   More at: http://lifehopeandtruth.com/prophecy/blog/can-the-united-states-defeat-isis/  by Joshua Travers - October 27, 2014

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What Time Is It Anyway?

"Oh, hi there. I was running out of paper, so I thought I would slice off one end of this sheet and put it on the other end. But it doesn’t seem to be working. I still don’t seem to have any more paper.

If it doesn’t work for this piece of paper, would it work if we tried it with something else? What if we tried it with a day? Could we cut off an hour on one end of the day and add it to the other end and end up with a longer day? Actually, we would not be any more successful than we were with the paper.

Yet every spring in much of the Western world we go through this process. We call it Daylight Savings Time. We really don’t change the day—the sun still rises and sets on schedule—but we try to trick ourselves by changing the time on our clocks.

Most nations have tried using some version of Daylight Savings Time, but most have found it confusing, and it’s primarily the nations of the Western world that continue to use it."  Complete article at: http://lifehopeandtruth.com/speaking-of/what-time-is-it-anyway/

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National Wildlife Federation Action Fund

Manatees Don’t Vote,  But You Do.

Vote for Wildlife on Election Day

"Why have record-breaking numbers of manatees recently been dying in Florida?  800 this year!
In part because some of the conservation funds that should be protecting important streams, wetlands, forests, and beaches have been taken away from conserving these critical habitat areas. Nutrient runoff may be contributing to deadly outbreaks of red tide.
Wildlife across the country need help. In every state, in every district, we urgently need friends of wildlife like you to stand up and fight back against injustices like this.

Manatee

In states and cities throughout the country, measures that protect wildlife are up for a vote this Election Day. So are candidates who stand for—and against—wildlife interests.

A lot is at stake—healthy habitat for manatees, wetlands protections for great blue herons, limiting carbon pollution from power plants, restoring wild bison to their habitat, and so much more.

Manatees, great blue herons and all wildlife can’t vote, but you can!

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http://action.humanesociety.org/site/R?i=aDQqTT3aMXQNI6KvQBUujQ

Who cares about innocent animals in fear.

Who cares about fair chase.

Who cares that there’s so few of them left.

Who cares about the health of the ecosystem.

Who cares if he's so desperate to get free he gnaws off his own paw.

Who cares about those cubs, now orphaned and alone.

Who cares if you have a say.

Who cares about bears.

Who cares about wolves.

Who cares about this election.

"There are 636 wolves left in Michigan. They just came off the Endangered Species list. But like a bad dream, the trophy hunters who want to re-open a killing season on them are hoping for a green light in three days.

The bear baiters, houndsmen, and trappers across the country have been working tirelessly—and they’re only going to turn up the heat over the next 72 hours—to keep Maine a virtual “do-as-you-please” zone when it comes to killing bears with extreme methods. One of those methods is setting traps for the bears, in which the animals can languish in agony for up to 24 before they're shot at close range, execution-style. When it happens to mother bears, their cubs are abandoned, left to fend for themselves in the woods. It's appalling."  Please vote for Wildlife.

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Where Am I? An App for Frequent Travelers

"Ever ask someone to write down a local phone number, and later notice they didn’t include the area code? Or how about watching a weather alert that tells you about a tornado warning in xxxyyy county? If you travel all the time like we do, you have no idea what county you’re in, or what the area code is for local phone numbers.  Now you do! All you need to do is tap the icon for an App called “Where Am I?” and all the information in the screenshot here will be displayed.

We use this all the time,mostly for the county name, zip code, and sunset/sunrise time. It’s so simple!

Another feature that could come in very handy in an emergency, is the ability to tap on the share icon and send your location to a friend via email. If your friend opens it on their smartphone, they can tap on your location and Google Maps will navigate there!

To learn more about Smartphones and Tablets, watch the Geeks on Tour weekly show: What Does This Button Do?

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Update:

As Ray's squatter went out of town (no, not arrested yet) we tore up the floor in one of his closets because we were looking for a grey water drain leak.  We found it, but there was a big beam right on top of the drain line. It looked like the PVC pipe had come out of the fitting.  So Ray and I went to the hardware store, but there was no way that it could be fixed the conventional way.  Jay came the next day, cut a floor joist out of the way, and temporarily patched the leak with some auto gasket material and universal clamps.  Until we can find a more permanent solution we put a piece of plywood over the hole in the floor so we can inspect it. So far it is holding, but we don't want to leave it the way it is. 

Another day, we fixed Ray's temperamental kitchen faucet, and replaced the trim on the floor of his utility room.  We also took a lot of measurements, because as soon as we know for sure that there won't be any interference, we are going to enlarge his kitchen.

Ray and I went back into town and snared a used car inner tube, so we are going to use some of that to fix the drain leak with the universal clamps. Then we will wrap it with wide Eternabond. 

At church, the readings were Gen 12:1-17:27 and Isa 40:27-41:16 and the teaching was about Revelation.  The potluck was great as usual, and we all had a great day.

Sunday, October 26, 2014

Deadly New Herbicide. What Does God Say About Witches and the Occult? Are Demons Real? Update.

 

For "Scripture Sunday":

But first this, for your health's sake:

EPA APPROVES DEADLY NEW HERBICIDE, EARTHJUSTICE RESPONDS

Legal options being explored as approval gives sanction for 2,4-D use on corn, soy crops

A crop duster sprays pesticides over a farmfield.

EPA approved today a deadly herbicide, 2,4-D for use on genetically engineered crops.  DENTON RUMSEY / SHUTTERSTOCK

"This heedless action merely perpetuates the endless cycle of more genetically engineered crops leading to more pesticide use, leading to more of the same. We are examining all legal options.

The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency approved today the use of a deadly new herbicide cocktail, Dow’s Enlist Duo, a blend of glyphosate and 2,4-D.

The approval opens the floodgates for the new herbicide to be used on corn and soy crops genetically engineered to resist the herbicide’s effects. The creation of 2,4-D-resistant crops and EPA’s approval of Enlist Duo for use on them is the result of an overuse of glyphosate, an ingredient in Monsanto’s Roundup, on the previous generation of genetically engineered crops created to resist glyphosate’s effects. That overuse caused tens of millions of acres of agricultural land to become infested with glyphosate-resistant super weeds, which farmers now want to kill with the more toxic 2,4-D, one of the ingredients in "Agent Orange." "     More at: http://earthjustice.org/news/press/2014/epa-approves-deadly-new-herbicide-earthjustice-responds    October 15, 2014.   Washington, D.C. —

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From me: I knew there was a good reason why I stay away from any corn and soy unless it is labeled Non-GMO, and it rarely is.

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What Does God Say About Witches and the Occult?

Deuteronomy 18:10-12

“There shall not be found among you anyone who makes his son or his daughter pass through the fire, or one who practices witchcraft, or a soothsayer, or one who interprets omens, or a sorcerer, or one who conjures spells, or a medium, or a spiritist, or one who calls up the dead. For all who do these things are an abomination to the LORD, and because of these abominations the LORD your God drives them out from before you.”

image "God outlawed witchcraft and other pagan practices that appealed to the evil spirit realm for their power. To God, it was an abomination for His people to seek help from Satan and his demons. Still, the Israelites were enticed by these practices again and again.

image This was not just an Old Testament concern. The new converts to Christianity also took the subject of magic seriously (Acts 19:19). The apostle John also warns that those who practice witchcraft must repent or they will end up in the lake of fire—the second death (Revelation 9:21; 21:8).

How did Western, so-called Christian nations get caught up in a holiday like Halloween that dabbles in the darkness of evil spirits, witchcraft and the occult? See our article “Halloween: Should Christians Celebrate It?”"

From: http://lifehopeandtruth.com/bible/blog/what-does-god-say-about-witches-and-the-occult/    by Mike Bennett - October 23, 2014

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Are Demons Real?

Are they genuine or fictional? Is there is a spirit power behind evil in our world? Are we in a fight with spiritual wickedness?

Transcript at: http://www.ucg.org/beyond-today-program/spirit-world/are-demons-real

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Update:

Jay and I have delayed working on the storeroom extension due to some unnecessary unpleasant verbal abuse hurled at us from the guest house spare bedroom window.  I am even leery about going out of my front door in case she starts one of her tirades at me.  She is always screaming at Ray, me, the neighbors, and her son who lives the other side of my house.  Just a very unhappy person. Some people are just contentious and one doesn't want to be around them.  This week she was on Crime Stoppers as a 'Featured Felon', so her days here are numbered!!

Ray and I sanded, primed and re-painted the hood of my minivan with some spray paint that was custom mixed at Tasco Auto Color.  It's navy with a faint glitter.  It had a very special primer to use with that color too.   It turned out lighter than the rest of the van, but it looks a lot better than the way it did. Over the years, it had developed different color patches on the hood.  I have seen other minivans like mine do the same thing.

The foot that I dropped a board on last week still gives me pain every now and then, so bad that I can't even stand on it.  Then I have to support it with an Ace bandage.  Most of the time it is just fine, even though it is still swollen.  Strange!

I am getting really modern!!  My new cell phone has a qwerty keyboard, so now I will have to learn how to text.  I hope that the camera in it is OK for quick shots.  My last phone I had to pay 25¢ to get a picture into my computer, so I didn't use the camera.  This one just sends them, free, into my computer via a USB cord.

My foster animals, BabyGirl the dog, and Nala the cat, are really happy here, but they do need to get forever homes.  They are both so well-behaved that if I were younger I would think about keeping them for myself.

DSCF0085-001 For some reason, Ray is taking care of his son's dog, Belle, in his back yard.  So Jay and I are building a cross fence so she will have more room to run, and a making a dog house for her.  She is a sweet dog, but she can't be kept inside as she is a chewer.  She has chewed up all Ray's plants back there, but she should grow out of that soon. 

The Sabbath service was great at church, as usual.  Things are back to normal as our pastor and his wife are back from their week visit to the church at Cisco,TX.  One of the newcomers from last week came again this week with his dear wife and three sweet little girls.

The Bible readings were Psa. 63 and 65, Gen. 6:9-11:30 and Isa. 54:55:5, and the message was about Magnifying the Lord with soul, song, and helping strangers.  Magnify His Name, Work, and His Law. There are so many places in the Bible that say to magnify Him. 

The potluck was great.  The pastor and his wife had brought back some grass-raised beef from Cisco, and she had made a delicious meatloaf.  Grass-fed meat tastes so much better than the chemical-laden factory-farmed supermarket beef, and a smaller amount fills you up and is healthier for you.  

All of us are fed, and are around, so many chemicals these days.  I try to stay clear of them and eat only organic food which isn't saturated with pesticides, and use non-chemical cleaners and shampoo.

One dish I had taken for the potluck was a scalloped potato, cabbage, fried onion, cheese, and Greek yogurt layered in an 'au gratin' casserole, and I was even asked for the recipe.  That's a first! 

We always have plenty of food, so I brought a plate back for Ray, who doesn't like to leave his house right now, until his unwanted squatter leaves.  Hopefully sooner than the ordered 18 days.