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Get to know Jesus and get to be free

Love and truth are God’s two main qualities.

We want to know who Jesus is, but he asks us what our inner dispositions are: because we will gain nothing through finding him unless we are disposed to submit ourselves to him.

God creates, this means first of all that God puts order. He organizes the world and gives meaning to our existence. His work is completed with the creation of humanity.

We are created in God’s image and of course, to respond to God. But love has first place in God’s plan and the long evolution of sexuality has been its preparation.

Because God is not subject to time, God lives in that permanent fillness which we call eternity and in which there is no before or after, no duration, no fatigue and no boredom.

God is the one who always gives first. Jesus will offer us rest; he will give us the bread of life and give himself as the friend. Allow yourselves to be conquered by the love of the Lord who is forming you even more than you can imagine.

Jesus brings the living water, which is God’s gift to us, his children: the gift of the Holy Spirit. The Spirit; whom we receive, helps us worship God according to the truth.

God does not need the words of our prayers, but looks for simplicity, beauty and nobility in our spirit. The Spirit of God cannot be communicated except to those who seek the truth and live according to truth in a world of deception.

Each one of us is in some way the samaritan woman. Those who really seek the truth recognize it when it is presented to them.

We must first believe in the messenger of God.

The heart of prayer in the church is the mass wherein we thank God for the salvation of the world through the death and resurrection of Christ.

People, confused, are easily fooled propaganda and ideologies. People in every century have foretold the impending end of the world.

The Spirit helps the believers and inspires their prayer so that it may be heard. The Spirit enables us to understand and interpret Jesus’ words throughout all time.

This is the time to be reconciled with family members and neighbors, to let go of resentments. Since we are sinners, our salvation is worked out through suffering and through the cross.

Our desires and our prayers are powerful because we have come to the center from which God directs the forces saving humankind: because we work for eternity; our names are already written in heaven.

To evangelize does not mean to try to sell the Gospel but rather to prove its power to heal people from their demons. Stop being environs of famous people, kings and prophets of the past.

To pray is to take the time to listen, to meditate in silence on the work of God, it is to slow our desires, so as to pray attention only to God, secretly present, and slip into his will.

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Wake up to the call of God and be transformed

Many times God waits for a person in this or that desert of his or her life.

Each time God calls people to a mission, he begins by reassuring them, for they immediately understand that such mission will fully take possession of them.

We all receive existence from God, but God exists in himself and depends on no one and nothing whatsoever.

God is one, and none of those who receive existence from him can add anything to God.

God is a wholly active and perfectly free person; and he calls us to be persons who exist in truth. Hence, God creates a world in which we can act responsibly.

To worship God does not mean, as some believe, to lie prostrate before him, but rather to approach him face to face. God wants to be sewed by persons who, in turn, free others.

Experience teaches us that in order to save one’s neighbor, neither material help nor political change nor prayer is sufficient.

God, who exists, is concerned about those who still do not exists in truth. We say that God saves human person; and so we suppose that there are real persons and not undeveloped persons without liberty, or responsibility. Salvation is not the washing of souls but the restoration of the human person in all dimensions-individual, family and social.

There is a big difference between telling a person his ideas or deals are wrong or sinful, and condemning him. We usually condemn the persons; we do not make room for change and mercy.

Jesus is the light for all people of all times. By the light of Christ a person triumphs over all inner darkness. If we live in the light, the light will gradually illumine our innermost being. Part of the human condition aggravated by sin is the absence of light for seeking and discerning what is good.

We need to be continuously enlightened through prayer, listening to the word of God, studying the teaching of the Church, and accepting the good advice of our brothers and sisters.

Sin is not just doing something bad. Sin is, also, to enclose ourselves in our own petty problems and rely only on human wisdom, without opening ourselves to the horizons of God.

To be in sin, on the other hand, is to live in falsehood; it is to persist stubbornly in a certain pride, an attachment to our own judgments.

Our truth consists in living in accordance with our vocation as children of God. Truth and freedom always got together. By doing evil one becomes an accomplice of the devil and, even without wanting to do so, falls into a trap.

As long as we continue to be unconcerned about our time condition and are either agitated or idle, we are no more than slaves, even though we may excel in wealth, knowledge of status.

From the time we become children of God, everything we do bears fruit for eternity.

Healings and miracles are worthless unless they affirm faith in Jesus crucified, acting through the humble, and present in the poor.

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The bright rough road. Our journey with God

God never says that the road to salvation will be easy, but he does say that it will save us. He provides us with the necessary education required to maneuver the obstacles on the road and the strength to stand up to the oppresser who will seek ways to stop us in our tracks or direct us along another path away from salvation and God.

Whether we are rich or poor it does not matter. All persons who desire to live in heavenly paradise are required to travel the rocky path. We will not be alone, but we must have love so profound that we imitate the one who guides us, Jesus Christ. Being poor physically doesn’t excuse us from living the Christ. There are many examples of individuals who are poor in the Bible and their reqind was the greatest. Take the widow who gave her last penny, Jesus said she would receive a great reward because of how deeply and generously she gave. On the other hand Jesus warns us about how we become attached to riches. In the story of the rich young man, even though he followed all the commandments he still was not able to enter the heavenly paradise. Jesus told him to go sell all you have and gave to the poor, and what did the young man do? He went away sad for he had many possessions. He was too attached and so missed the invitation Jesus was giving him to journey with him on the road to salvation by growing closer to him.

Dying to self is essential when travelling on the bright rough road. This means that things of the flesh do not consume us so that we become dark. Our Good God, though the road is dark and rough, gives us Christ as our light to brighten the way. As such he teaches us through his word in scriptures and the tradition of the apostles and those who came after. Living as an apostle means to be responsible and accountable; not just for ourselves but for others.

During our lifetime we will experience trials, temptations which sometimes may seem as punishment from God. Nevertheless, though these may be dark times, we must never cease or be discouraged from expressig our gratitude to God. After the storm comes the sun and through the darkness there is light, so also when we persevere through temptations we become healed.

On the journey on the bright rough road we have to be consistent and persistent is nourishing our souls. We must have food for the journey, if not, the road would be lonesome; a wilderness. Therefore prayer should not be something we do occasionally, instead it should be a necessity as it is the basis for nourishing and rejuvenating our souls, and it provides conversational companionship for our journey.

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Consequences of the first murder by Cain in the Bible

The first murder ever recorder was done by Cain as read in the Bible in Genesis Chapter 4. He was jealous of his brother Abel whose offering the Lord preferred to his. So he killed him.
Doubts overcome those who isolate themselves.
To the person who has been reborn, it becomes impossible to commit real sin: to deliberately refuse to love, or to forgive or to continue to struggle.
The Lord demands faithfulness and perseverance from those he has chosen: this is how we save a world that seeks truth everywhere and does not know to which Lord to surrender.
God sees the way one has used his talents; and the sin is to have kept for self what one has received. Many times God waits for a person in this or that desert of his or her life.
Each time God calls people to a mission, he begins by reassuring them, for they immediately understand that such mission will fully take possession of them.
We all receive existence from God, but God exists in himself and depends on no one and nothing whatsoever. God is one, and none of those who receive existence from him can add anything to God.
God is a wholly active and perfectly free person; and he calls us to be persons who exist in truth. Hence, God creates a world in which we can act responsibility.
To worship God does not mean, as some believe, to lie prostrate before him, but rather to approach him face to face. God waits to be served by persons who, in turn, free others.
Experience teaches us that in order to save one’s neighbor, neither material help nor political change nor prayer is sufficient.
God, who exists, is concerned about those who still do not exist in truth. We say that God saves human persons; and so we suppose that these are real persons and not undeveloped persons without liberty, or responsibility. Salvation is not the washing of souls but the restoration of the human person in all dimensions-individual, family and social.
Often enough, society puts obstacles in the way of anyone who does not want to play dirty and who refuses to imitate the lifestyle of selfish persons.
At times, to gain the kingdom we will have to sacrifice even our job, our security and our life.
Scandals are part and parcel of this world, but the power of evil does not diminish in any way the glory that God will receive in the end. Through suffering and hunger for justice God will awaken love and make it grow.
Forgiveness must replace the thirst for revenge. The offensive suffer from our companions are nothing compared with our offenses against God.
The world needs; above everything else, the forgiveness of God, and those who want a more just society will not achieve it through accusations and hatred.

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We must never doubt. God will always feed us

Because of food, the people in the Bible rebel against God time and time again.
The first awareness that the Israelites had of the Spirit of God came to them through the prophet’s deeds. The prophets were those persons who knew something of God’s secrets, and with whom God had shared some of his wisdom, and who on certain occasions possessed an irresistible power. By the way the prophets acted, the Israelites came to understand that God communicated his Spirit like a violent and sudden wind.
It is one thing to say and do strange things, to speak in tongues, etc; quite another and more important to have received the responsibility to guide and teach God’s people. It is the Spirit of Moses, God’s representative who will produce in the seventy elders strange prophetic manifestations.
In the Bible, the story of Eldad and Medad shows that God does not always give his Spirit through official channels. Thus the authorities of the people of God should not be surprised when the Spirit is given where they are not: such will be the case in the story of Cornelius.
God provided food for his people just when they lacked everything. The phenomenon of requesting bread from heaven is to sustain us on our journey. Therefore, we must choose between serving and being served, sacrifice ourselves for others or taking advantage of them. Turning to Jesus must be a priority for us for he is our educator.
God has set on this earth all that humanity needs for food and development, but if we do not know how to listen to the word, we will not know how to solve the world’s most urgent problem, the distribution of the riches of the earth. Faith in God’s promises is the only force with which to fight against egoism and unequal privileges and it will eventually obtain food, peace, and freedom for all.
People struggle for adequate food, and their first preoccupation is to survive, because if they do not eat they will cease to live. God wants us to do work and believe. We must receive the sacraments for they help us to mature in our life with God. They affect the very core and being of our bodies. God multiplies the little we have so we can bring his blessing to others. This is how he makes believers out of us. That is why when we look at the world and reflect on life, we easily find signs of the presence of God.

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A disciplined nature is required to be a disciple

No one can serve two masters; for he will either hate one and love the other, or he will be loyal to the first and look and down on the second. You cannot at the same time serve God and money. (Matthew 6:24)
The value of prayer does not lie in the quantity of words and the mere repetition of formulas, as if accomplishing a task. The value of prayer lies chiefly in our inner attitude of faith and love of God. To pray is not to talk much, but to surrender our lives into God’s loving hands.
When we forgive someone who asks for forgiveness, we are not doing that person a favour, nor do we deserve any credit for doing it; we actually free ourselves from some rancor or hatred that is poisoning us.
Fasting is unworthy when done to obtain human approval rather than God’s. When we are bright-eyed this signifies generosity, while to be dark-eyed signifies meanness.
Jesus affirms that money is a false god, because it offers happiness and security for the future, but robs us of our only riches, that is, the present time. Caught up in making money, we are unable to live truly and freely; we neglect our personal growth and family life, keep silent before evil and lie.
We must choose between serving and being served, sacrificing ourselves for others or taking advantage of them. At this time we need to be reconciled with family members and neighbours and to let go of resentments. Since we are sinners, our salvation is worked out through suffering and through the cross.
Our desires and our prayers are powerful because we have come to the center from which God directs the forces saving humankind: because we work for eternity; our names are already written in heaven.
To evangelize does not mean to try to sell the Gospel but rather to prove its power to heal people from their demons. We must stop being envious of famous people, kings and prophets of the past.
To pray is to take the time to listen, to meditate in silence on the work of God, it is to slow our desires, so as to pay attention only to God, secretly present, and slip into his well.
Let us ask Jesus to help us to live a life for others out of the love we have for him.

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Let us live in the awesomeness of God

Our Almighty God does not rush us. He patiently waits for us. Sometimes, he takes us into the desert (actually and figuratively), so we can discover or rediscover how awesome and important he is to our lives.
He is always calling us to come into his fold, but he does not rush us or manipulate us. He always has a mission for us but it is up to us to discover and come to terms with what that mission is. Whatever our mission for God is, he assures us that said mission would be a fulfillment for us. He gives us the tools we need to understand our mission and waits and guides us in the ways how our mission will fully possess us.
Through God we came into existence and our dependence should lie on him alone. Without him we are nothing and we need him for our survival.
In him we have freedom and he activity and continuously frees us from whatever bondages hold us down. He calls us to be persons who live in truth, in him, for he is the ultimate truth. He create the world and gave it to us; not to exploit, but to care for responsibly.
There are some people who believe that to be a true Christian requires over zealous gestures, such as lying prostrate on the ground, speaking in tongues or the constant loud shouts of “Alleluia” and “Praise the Lord.” Don’t get me wrong, these are indeed good actions. But not everyone is blessed with these graces. Worshipping God takes many forms, the above examples are some ways. But quietly approaching God in a quiet corner is also worshipping God and a sign of a true Christian. Worshipping God should be a freeing experience, not something that is forced. Through our experience and encounter with God we should be strengthened in turn to go out and free others.
To be free entails more than material help or political change. Sometimes not even prayer is sufficient because the key ingredient is missing. That key ingredient is God. He does not just want words or action but a complete conversion of our hearts towards him. That is how we will a live salvation history.
God would not be God if he did not care about those who still do not know him. He continues to save his people day by day especially those who are on the margins on society, those seeking liberty. To seek salvation is not suppose to be seen as a mere washing of soul but as the restoration of the human person holistically.
Therefore we are to seek God’s grace, his power to heal our spirit, to help us to believe and resonate with this truth, so that we express his love in real and spontaneous ways. When we receive God’s garce we will live his truth and blossom on earth.
Jesus encourages us to reap what is good and we can only do that if we sow what is good. Reaping and sowing goodness allows us to enjoy the fruits of God’s kingdom such as social peace, justice and happiness.
Not because we are made in God’s image means we automatically will enjoy his fruits. Our humanness make us faulter and so to enjoy God’s goodness requires sincere and contemplative actions on our part. Accepting God means accepting his rules and abiding by them so his plan for our lives can be fulfilled.
The Spirit of God gives life to us and if signs of the spirit acting in our lives cannot be seen, then saying that Jesus lives within us is quite contradictory. The Bible as the word of God helps us to recognize how God speaks to us and how he helps us to achieve our goals individually and collectively.
As Christians we can alienate ourselves from our communities. Yes we should live lives separate from a worldly one, but shutting ourselves away from each other is not the answer. Remember we are interdependent on each other and through interacting with each other we discover new meanings to our lives.
God created us in love and he wants all of us to love him back. Because he loves us he constantly saving us and yet some of us refuse to get to know him. Our intellect as human beings continue to show God’s amazing power. Our creativeness which we receive from him continues to impress us. But our genuiness should not make us build attachments here in this world for we will leave all behind at the moment of death.
Some of us are so unsettled in our belief that we ruin and flutter from one congregaton to the next. We will only be settled like the woman at the well when we drink from the well of Christ, the living water himself who is the Rock of Salvation.
Let us open our hearts to the will of God and be dazzled by his amazing and undying love for us.

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Bible study: Genesis 2-The second creation story

Genesis 2 presents us with another account of creation. It highlights specifically how humans (male and female) were created. After God created everything and then finally man (male), he built a garden and put the man there. The man (male) was lonely so God gave him all the animals as companions, but he was still lonely. So God made the man (male) fall into a deep sleep and took a rib from him and made a companion. When God brought the companion to the man (male) he called her woman, for she came from his bones.

Now the Garden f Eden is where humanity began. It was a beautiful garden from all accounts. Scholars and other passionate individuals have been searching for remnants of this garden but to no avail. Could it be the second/new Jerusalem that awaits us after death? Could it be the paradise where we will be reunited with God face to face? Think about it. In the beginning we had all rights and privileges to this Garden. But when we sinned, popularly known as the Fall of humanity by our first parents, Adam and Eve, we lost that privilege and was barred from this paradise. Humanity struggled continuously after that and continuous to struggle. But then God gave to us his Son who brought with him salvation, the pathway of reconciliation with God. It is this pathway that will grant us entry back into Eden to strolls in the afternoon with God.

Now the Garden of Eden had two trees: the Tree of Life and the Tree of Knowledge of Good and Evil. Their fruit were forbidden to eat. Our first parents with the help of the serpent ate from one of the Tree, the Tree of Knowledge of Good and Evil. Why that Tree? Before they ate the fruit they were in right relations with God. They had no sin. But upon eating the fruit, scriptures says that their eyes were opened. What does that mean? Were they blind? In a sense yes, they were blind to sin. They did not participate in sin. But upon eating the fruit of the Tree of Knowledge of Good and Evil, they now were open to the enticement of sin. And oh yes, sin is enticing. By eating the fruit they allowed sin into the world. The Tree is called the Tree of Knowledge of Good and Evil. This is important as it is what tells us of our free will. We are to use our free will to choose between good and evil.

After God found out that they ate from the Tree of Knowledge of Good and Evil, he put them out of the Garden and secured the Tree of Life. God feared that the humans would have also taken from the Tree of Life and in his words live forever. So God made a Tree with fruits that make you choose good and bad and he made a Tree with fruits that made you live forever. Though God barred humans from the Tree of Life in the Garden of Eden, he still, because he loves us so much, gave us access to the Tree of Life in the form of his Son, Jesus Christ. Jesus in the Gospel of John says, “I am the way, the truth and life, no one comes to the Father, except through me.” Again he will explicitly say, “I am the Bread (fruit/food) of Life, anyone who eats of me will live forever.” See how our lives come full circle? What a great God we have.

Throughout the Garden of Eden there was a river and it divided into four main streams. These streams are:

  1. Pishon which flowed around all the country of Havilah where there is gold, and the gold of that country is good; bidellium and onyx stone as well
  2. Gihon which flowed around all the land of Cush
  3. Tigris which flowed to the east of Assyria, and
  4. Euphrates
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Bible study: Genesis 1-The creation story

Have you ever noticed how God created the world? Let’s take a look at Genesis 1 and see the order in which God created all things.

On the 1st day he created day and night. On the 2nd day he created the sky. On the 3rd day he created the earth, seas, vegetation, plants bearing seeds and trees producing fruit. On the 4th day he created the sun, moon and stars. On the 5th day he created the water creatures and birds. On the 6th day he created the wild animals, land animals and man.

This is one version of the creation story. A second version is found in Chapter 2 of Genesis. This Genesis 1 account tells us that God took six days to create the world. This six days could mean an actual day, days, weeks, months or even years. Debating how long a day is, is not to be an issue, even though some make it an issue. By the look of the account, it seems that God took it easy on day 2, for he only created the sky at that time. But the 3rd day was very productive as he did a whole of lot of creating that day. The 6th day, last day in the creation story saw God creating the most important of all his creation, man.

Now man, as in the word itself, has caused some stir among academics and activists. The Bible only says man. Now on first look we will take it to mean only the male gender, especially as Chapter 2 details the account of God forming a woman from a man’s rib. History and theology will later tell us that man especially in the Hebrew/Jewish culture denotes both male and female. However as the years progress and as the talk of inclusivity becomes more popular, activists and academics have proposed the use of the word humans. So on the 6th day God created humans in his image and likeness.

God was pleased with all his creations. By creating he puts order and organizes the world thereby giving meaning and purpose to all that existed. By creating us, God passed the mantle of caregiver. He gave us everything in creation to care for along with enjoying what he has given to us. By doing this we are responding to his generosity and love.

Creation itself has evolved both humans and non-humans. Many animals that were in existence long ago, no longer are, popular and prime example, the dinosaur. We should be aware by now of our relationship with the earth. If the earth dies we will die. But if we die the earth will live on. So let us do our duty as caregivers and care for our earth and all its inhabitants.

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God requires our prayers: he waits for us to come to him

Do not be afraid to asks for prayers. Do not be like the republican in the Gospel who announced what he was praying for. Instead be humble like the tax collector and surrender quietly to God. As Christians we are interdependent on each other. We are to pray for others and they are to pray for us. It is a give and receive partnership. When we pray for each other we are connected in a spiritual and caring way. We should choose carefully those with whom we share private concerns but we should never fear to ask for prayers.

Sometimes it seems like we will never get the answers to our prayers. That does not mean we are to give up. Praying to God is a limitless requirement and it is important to remember that God’s time is not the same as our time. He always has what’s best for us in his plan. That is why we are to keep praying for he listens to us and gives us the best answer, not the fastest answer.

If we have faith then we know for sure that God hears and answers our requests. Trusting in him puts us in a position to receive what he has for us. We must seek the good of others and not selfishly seek our own desires. God will only answer our prayers if they reflect his will.

We must not be partial or choosy with our prayers. We should pray at all times in both times of ease and times of trial. Some of us only cry out to God when we are hurting physically or spiritually. We cuss God and complain to him. But if we truly accept our role as Christians then we will not do this, for we know otherwise. We have hope and have patience and believe in a Father who cares. Therefore, we should turn to him no matter what we are facing, good or bad.

With the strength of God we are able to overcome the challenge of loving our enemies. It is understandable to not want to pray for someone who has inflicted pain on us. But our loving actions and prayers can be the bringer of peace in odd situations. This way strife will not last.

Being Christians who are faithful means to lift up our sufferings and the sufferings of others to God. He works in our bodies, but also in our hearts and souls. We must pray for physical health to be strengthened but also the spiritual health. Gd being the Great Physician always treats the whole person, not just part of our bodies.

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