THE UNSPOKEN WORD DOES NO HARM

GOOD MORNING WORLD

After my rant of yesterday I was reminded of the above title quote.  My immediate response was that of course it was correct.  The other side of it is that the unspoken word does not fix anything either.  If there is something wrong then must we not speak up?  Are we not called to do so in fact?  I have written about all this before.  Speak up.  Remain silent.  How do you know which is the best in any given situation?

Yesterday, after I posted my blog I did my daily Scripture reading.  It was very interesting in light of the negativity I heard the day before.  The reading was from Luke.

Luke 6:36-38

Jesus said to his disciples: “Be merciful, just as your Father is merciful.
Stop judging and you will not be judged. Stop condemning and you will not be condemned. Forgive and you will be forgiven.
Give and gifts will be given to you; a good measure, packed together, shaken down, and overflowing, will be poured into your lap. For the measure with which you measure will in return be measured out to you.”

My immediate response was to marvel at how closely this scripture came to the situation I was in on Sunday.  The person being so negative was putting that forth and it evidently was swirling right back to them.  This is not a new idea.  “Do unto others as you want done unto you” is also in that same book Luke 6:31.

Am I being called to speak these words of wisdom to Mr. Negativity?  If so the call is really clear that I must be kind and forgiving when doing so.

Another response I had when I read this was reinforcement that a spoken word can do good if it is the right word or done the right way.  We are called in John 13:34-35 to “Love One Another”.  In the same book in Matthew 5:43-48 and Romans 12:14 we are told to love those that persecute you.   I had not expected an answer so quickly and yet there it was in the scripture.  I was made aware of why the person could not see good.  He was not putting forth any good words to come back to him.  I also understood quickly how, if I was to respond, I was to do so kindly with well chosen positive forgiving words.

The other response I meditated upon after I read this scripture was to question why anyone would even question the relevance of the Bible today.  If the Bible becomes unspoken words so to do no harm how is it going to help?   We must speak the words we hear in the Scripture.  This is a living book.  The words need to be read, meditated upon, shared and definitely spoken.

I was amazed.  I look to my faith for answers in my life.  I believe God has a plan for me and gave me a book with any answer I might need.  All I have to do is read it.  The answer may not come in words as clearly as it did yesterday.  I may have to read for days or weeks or even years depending upon what I am asking.  The toughest thing for me is to understand that if the words I want to hear are not spoken to me then that too can be an answer.  It might be “Not yet.”  “Not at all.” I may hear a continual “No.”  That is an answer as well.

I believe no word in that book is void.  They are filled with answers and more questions and understanding when we read, meditate and speak them.  In the old testament in Isaiah 55:11 we are told, “…so is my word that goes out from my mouth: It will not return to me empty, but will accomplish what I desire and achieve the purpose for which I sent it.”

The conclusion I take from all of this is when God speaks to me through this book He will get what He wants for me.  I hear that when we speak we must do so carefully.  Negativity as I have read in this Book brings negativity.  It was indeed what I was experiencing as the words were being spewed forth a couple of days ago.  Looking for the positive in my life I am called to give positive messages.  When I do this good will come back.  Seems fairly simple.  Unspoken words do no harm is wise and true.  When words are spoken they must be done so carefully.  Lesson learned!

…..ONWARD TO MORE MISADVENTURE…

 

 

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DECEMBER 25, 2012 – MERRY CHIRSTMAS

GOOD MORNING WORLD

Happy Birthday Baby Jesus.  What more can anyone say.  Last night we attended our Christmas Eve church services.  The message at the service was of good news of the birth of the baby.

One of the stories we were told was of a messenger that went to a village and told the ruler that he had a message for him.  He said that no one must know the words of the message.  The message was that ‘God is hidden among them’.  The ruler requested that the messenger take the message to the local monastery as well.

The monks, who had been bickering, began to treat each other differently as they did not know who among them, if he was there or in the village, was God.  The ruler began treating his people differently as he did not know who among them was God.  The people seeing this began to be nicer and kinder to each other.  They did as they were experiencing.  Perhaps that is what this world needs today.  Kindness and caring as we do not know who among us might need it.

After the singing of ‘Joy To The World’ we left church to walk out into a beautiful first snow of the year for us.  Joy was born this day.

I am leaving the rest of this entry to others wiser.  I pray your day is everything you want it to be.  I hope that Santa shared his bounty with you and yours.  It looks like he did here.  We are as I type awaiting the 8 yr old child to wake up.  The grown ups are already excited!  We will sing Happy Birthday to Jesus and then see what Santa brought.

From the Gospel according to Luke:

2: In those days Caesar Augustus issued a decree that a census should be taken of the entire Roman world.

2] (This was the first census that took place while[a] Quirinius was governor of Syria.)

3] And everyone went to their own town to register.

4] So Joseph also went up from the town of Nazareth in Galilee to Judea, to Bethlehem the town of David, because he belonged to the house and line of David.

5] He went there to register with Mary, who was pledged to be married to him and was expecting a child.

6] While they were there, the time came for the baby to be born,

7] and she gave birth to her firstborn, a son. She wrapped him in cloths and placed him in a manger, because there was no guest room available for them.

8] And there were shepherds living out in the fields nearby, keeping watch over their flocks at night.

9] An angel of the Lord appeared to them, and the glory of the Lord shone around them, and they were terrified.

10] But the angel said to them, “Do not be afraid. I bring you good news that will cause great joy for all the people.

11] Today in the town of David a Savior has been born to you; he is the Messiah,the Lord.

12] This will be a sign to you: You will find a baby wrapped in cloths and lying in a manger.”

13] Suddenly a great company of the heavenly host appeared with the angel, praising God and saying,

14] “Glory to God in the highest heaven,
and on earth peace to those on whom his favor rests.”

15] When the angels had left them and gone into heaven, the shepherds said to one another, “Let’s go to Bethlehem and see this thing that has happened, which the Lord has told us about.”

16] So they hurried off and found Mary and Joseph, and the baby, who was lying in the manger.

17] When they had seen him, they spread the word concerning what had been told them about this child,

18] and all who heard it were amazed at what the shepherds said to them.

19] But Mary treasured up all these things and pondered them in her heart.

20] The shepherds returned, glorifying and praising God for all the things they had heard and seen, which were just as they had been told.

AWAY IN A MANGER

(from awayinamanger.org)

The Author of Away in a Manger remains unknown. Some early works suggested it was written by Martin Luther, although this appears unlikely. It is probably a late-nineteenth-century American carol. The first published appearance is in the 1885 Philadelphia The Little Children’s Book for Schools and Families. Richard S. Hill, who was head of the reference section of the Library of Congress, researched the origins of the carol and concluded it was likely a poem read in Lutheran children’s celebrations of the 400th anniversary of the birth of Luther in 1883. The third verse did not appear until 1892 in a collection edited by Charles H. Gabriel.

Away in a manger, No crib for His bed

The little Lord Jesus, Laid down His sweet head
The stars in the bright sky,Looked down where He lay
The little Lord Jesus,Asleep on the hay

The cattle are lowing,The poor Baby wakes

But little Lord Jesus, No crying He makes
I love Thee, Lord Jesus, Look down from the sky
And stay by my side, ‘Til morning is nigh.

Be near me, Lord Jesus, I ask Thee to stay

Close by me forever, And love me I pray
Bless all the dear children, In Thy tender care
And take us to heaven, To live with Thee there

JOY TO THE WORLD

(from carols.org)

The words and lyrics of the old Christmas carol ‘Joy to the World’ were written in 1719 by Isaac Watts (1674-1748). The father of John Watts was a Non-conformist and so extreme were his views that he was imprisoned twice. His father’s influence over Isaac was demonstrated when he choose to attend Non­conformist Academy at Stoke Newington in preference to a University. Watts was ordained as a Pastor of an Independent congregation.

Joy to the World , the Lord is come!

Let earth receive her King;
Let every heart prepare Him room,
And Heaven and nature sing,
And Heaven and nature sing,
And Heaven, and Heaven, and nature sing.

Joy to the World, the Savior reigns!
Let men their songs employ;
While fields and floods, rocks, hills and plains
Repeat the sounding joy,
Repeat the sounding joy,
Repeat, repeat, the sounding joy.

No more let sins and sorrows grow,
Nor thorns infest the ground;
He comes to make His blessings flow
Far as the curse is found,
Far as the curse is found,
Far as, far as, the curse is found.

He rules the world with truth and grace,
And makes the nations prove
The glories of His righteousness,
And wonders of His love,
And wonders of His love,
And wonders, wonders, of His love.

May the Peace of Christ be yours today.   MERRY CHRISTMAS…..

…..ONWARD TO MORE MISADVENTURE…

COURAGE

GOOD MORNING WORLD

The other day I was chatting and I told the group that growing old takes courage.  Today out of the blue the word courage came to me as if it was something I was to think about or comment upon or otherwise bring into my consciousness.

Each year I look to the world around me and listen for a phrase or a word or a nugget of information to guide me throughout the next 365 days or so.  One year everywhere I turned I heard the word BOLD.  Another year I heard as clear as if someone spoke it to me the word PASSION.  It occurs to me today that maybe I have been supposed to be hearing the word COURAGE and perhaps have and just not internalized it.  I heard it today.  So what is courage?

Sources tell me:

The Bible:

John 14:27 “Peace I leave with you, my peace I give unto you: not as the world giveth, give I unto you. Let not your heart be troubled, neither let it be afraid.”

Romans 8:15 “For ye have not received the spirit of bondage again to fear; but ye have received the Spirit of adoption, whereby we cry, Abba, Father.”

1 Corinthians 15:58 “Therefore, my beloved brethren, be ye stedfast, unmoveable, always abounding in the work of the Lord, forasmuch as ye know that your labour is not in vain in the Lord.”

The Dictionary Merriam-Webster (selections it was very long):

cour·age

noun

Definition of COURAGE

: mental or moral strength to venture, persevere, and withstand danger, fear, or difficulty

Examples of COURAGE

She has the courage to support unpopular causes.

It takes courage to stand up for your rights.

But as long as your courage holds out you may as well go right ahead making a fool of yourself. All brave men are fools. —Robert Frost, 17 Apr. 1915, in Selected Letters of Robert Frost , 1964

Origin of COURAGE

Middle English corage, from Anglo-French curage, from quer, coer heart, from Latin cor — more at heart

First Known Use: 14th century

Synonym Discussion of COURAGE

courage, mettle, spirit, resolution, tenacity mean mental or moral strength to resist opposition, danger, or hardship. courage implies firmness of mind and will in the face of danger or extreme difficulty <the courage to support unpopular causes>. mettle suggests an ingrained capacity for meeting strain or difficulty with fortitude and resilience <a challenge that will test your mettle>. spirit also suggests a quality of temperament enabling one to hold one’s own or keep up one’s morale when opposed or threatened <her spirit was unbroken by failure>. resolution stresses firm determination to achieve one’s ends <the resolution of pioneer women>. tenacity adds to resolution implications of stubborn persistence and unwillingness to admit defeat <held to their beliefs with great tenacity>

The Wizard of OZ:

Cowardly Lion: Courage! What makes a king out of a slave? Courage! What makes the flag on the mast to wave? Courage! What makes the elephant charge his tusk in the misty mist, or the dusky dusk? What makes the muskrat guard his musk? Courage! What makes the sphinx the seventh wonder? Courage! What makes the dawn come up like thunder? Courage! What makes the Hottentot so hot? What puts the “ape” in apricot? What have they got that I ain’t got?

What brought this word to mind I do not know?  I know I love it in church when we greet our fellow companions on the journey with the sign of peace.  Is this also sharing Christ’s courage as in the scripture passage above?

Is courage only what the cowardly lion says of it?  A song? A game? Or is it more in line with the Synonym discussion above?  I think I am looking to that today.  I think it takes courage to do most anything today.

It takes courage to run for political office as your background will probably be dissected with a fine tooth comb.  If you care about your character it best be clean!  It also takes courage to stand for your beliefs.  Ron Paul comes to mind.  He had the courage to stand strong on his Libertarian beliefs throughout this whole Presidential Campaign.  He certainly had the firmness of mind and the mettle.  One has to admire that I believe.

It takes courage to do anything in the extreme I believe.  Extreme sports, which I wrote about last summer, is an example of one kind of courage.  I think that kind of courage may not be as tough as others.  While you know it will be challenging and hard one is choosing this activity and usually prepared for all kinds of circumstances until the completion of the event. 

To me courage comes more in the real unknowing.  It takes courage to hear a diagnosis of cancer or some other life-threatening condition.  You have absolutely no idea what is in store for you and your family.  You listen and make a plan and do the best you can with the information you have and hopefully survive.  Unlike the planning of an extreme sport, this was not chosen.

I believe it takes courage for an addict to ask for help – once – twice – three – four – as many times as it takes until he or she overcomes their own destructive desires.  It may be courage that sees the families through all of this as well.

I believe it takes courage to stand up for oneself.  It is hard to tell someone that you are hurt by their actions or comments.  It takes courage to say I need you to listen to me.  It takes courage to share that you are scared.  It takes courage to say I am ashamed.  It takes courage to say I am lonely. It takes courage not to interfere.  It takes courage to follow a path you have set for yourself.  It takes the same amount of courage to say I made the wrong decision.  These types of courage would come under the discussion group of spirit I think.

Sometimes it simply takes courage just to get up in the morning.  Who knows what else I will hear there this day.

…..ONWARD TO MORE MISADVENTURE…