You get what you put into it

Matthew 13: 58 “And he did not do many miracles there because of their lack of faith.”

Everyone thinks of God as this being who is going to fix everything in their life, or that he is some kind of wish granting genie. That as a Christian he is required to do something for you. The truth is he already has done everything for you he is required to do. He save you. Everything else is just gravy. It is true, that he will be with you forever. He will likely do things for you, many of them you wont even be aware of. He will never abandon you.

Everyone reads the Bible and sees these miracles that he performed. They think that they are entitled, and when or if they don’t happen they get discouraged. Their faith falls and then they may even blame God for their lack of faith. Because if he just did this or did that they would believe. Seems like I read that somewhere.

The truth is, however, that you get out of the relationship what you put into it. If you are only reading the Bible ,and many aren’t even doing that, and not following God’s guidelines for life he CAN’T work in your life. Don’t take that statement too far. He is likely working in small ways trying to get your attention. Sending certain people to talk to you. Putting certain people in your path. Maybe even bringing you to this page. When Jesus traveled through his hometown they didn’t believe in him. He couldn’t heal many or do many wonders in their sight because of that.

God knows how hard the world is to live in. How the worlds standards have fallen, but he hasn’t changed. his standards haven’t changed and we still have to live by them. It isn’t easy. he knows that. He forgives, if we are sincere. He wont smite us because we stumble. Not every bad thing that happens is God’s punishment. Stupid people cause stupid crap to happen and sometimes  we get caught in the whirlwind. He will help you through it though. The closer you draw to him the more he can do in your life.

What you have with him is  a relationship. You have to put into it to get anything out of it. He has standards for life. He is a big boy. He can handle it when you stumble. Even when you hate him at time and yell and curse at him. He understands how you feel. He can be patient while the storm rolls by and he will be waiting when you draw back to him.

There are two books I can recommend. Not a fan by Kyle Idleman. And How to pray when you are pissed at God. Can’t remember who wrote it off hand. Both are really good. Not a fan give you a lot of information about living God’s way, and the other a lot on prayer and how to pray even when you are in a bad place. If you can master that then you can master prayer.

Three things Required in Life

I love youyou are important to meYou don’t have to earn my love. Three things everyone needs to hear growing up, but many don’t. We live in a world where everyone is busy, and communication doesn’t cross over very well. We assume our loved ones know and we don’t have to say it. We assume our actions will show it. Or  we say it and assume they believe it and our actions don’t live up to our words.

Everyone, especially men, need to hear these three things. God showed this to Jesus as he began his ministry. When Jesus was baptized a voice rang out “This is my son,  in whom I am well pleased.” This was God expressing his love for Jesus. Before he began his ministry. Before he did any of the miracles that would bring God glory. This is the model we need to follow. If you love someone you need to tell them. Whether they are children or grown children. It is easy for them to get into the idea they have to earn love. Earn affection and affirmation. Believe me it is super easy. Even if they understand it logically. They can get into the idea they need to do better to be well liked by others. Or they can spin it in the other direction, That they don’t need affirmation from anyone. Which will lead to a very lonely life. Because the truth is we need each other. We are social creatures that need interaction with each other.

God said this is MY son. He showed pride in this statement. HIS son. Showing validation and a treasured possession. Something that was his and  could never be taken and a bond that can’t be broken or lost.

God said In whom I am well pleased. Displaying affirmation and love with no requirements attached. Just love displayed publicly before others. Not earned and validated by a loving father.  You would be surprised how this will make you feel.  It gives you strength. An inner strength to survive.

 

Fire Survival

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Fire is an element somewhere between a gas and a liquid, but not either. Fire is closest to a plasma. Like the Sun and lightning is a plasma. It is an intangible energy of light and heat. Fire can be unpredictable and dangerous. In th Bible it is often used to describe God’s wrath, as it is one of the most destructive elements.
If your clothing or something on you catches on fire, remember to Stop-Drop-and roll. You have probably heard of this before or seen it on tv. This is where you drop to the ground and roll around to try to smother the fire out. Fire can not grow without oxygen. It needs it to burn. So smothering it will put it out. Like putting a lid back on a jar candle. The flame will go out.
                          It can only take 30 seconds for a small fire to turn into a full blown raging fire. Getting caught in a house fire can be a scary event. If it is small and slow enough it may be possible to  put out the fire with a fire extinguisher or smother it with a blanket or something. However fires can be tricky and if it is already growing it may be best to get out as soon as possible and call for help. It is not worth your life, so evaluate the situation quickly. At work our Lead happened to walk into a situation like this. One of the light fixtures fell from the ceiling and ignited some boxes. She happened to be there and grabbed a fire extinguisher and put it out before it could grow.
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jump

House/Building Fire
Of course in a House/Building fire the fire itself is not the most dangerous part. Most people die from smoke inhalation. Breathing in the smoke will cause you to  cough uncontrollably and pass out from lack of oxygen. After that they are consumed by the fire raging around them. The last thing you want to do is pass out in a fire. That is why you want to stay low to the ground when in a fire. The heat and smoke will rise to the ceiling. It will be easier to breath if you stay low and crawl. Easier said than done I know.
You would think that with all that fire it would be easy to see, but it is not. All the smoke will sting your eyes and the blackness will make it hard to see. If you are can’t see that can make it hard to find a way out. Most places of business have emergency exits clearly marked, and places of employment have fire drills. It is always a good idea to make note of emergency exits wherever you are. So stay low, cover your nose and mouth with something to filter the air you are breathing and crawl to the nearest exit. If you can go out a window.
If you come to a door that is closed place your hand on it and feel if there is a fire on the other side. If the door is very hot, don’t go that way. It;s not safe.  Have a plan on how to get out of your home in case of a fire and teach it to the rest of your family. Also have a fire safe to store your important documents and pictures. Have smoke detectors in every room.
When I was in elementary school I we had a fire safety day where the fire department came and instructed us in fire safety and emergency exits. We had a fire drill and we all had to walk through the building and to the exit for a roll call. One of the men grabbed me and pulled me aside down a hall where I was to play the part of a victim so the teachers would have students who didn’t turn up and have to report it.
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Car Fire
Cars, in general, do not explode like they do on tv. They do ignite however and burn fast. The pinto was a famous car because it had a manufacturing flaw that would make it suddenly ignite while you were driving it. Most cars though will not unless you are in and accident and something ignites the fuel leak. You have a limited time to get out and it wont be easy. Your best bet will be to go out a window. (I am assuming this fire was caused by and accident and your door is jammed always check the door first) First check your legs to make sure you are not pinned in and get your seatbelt undone. You should be wearing it, especially if you were in an accident. It may be necessary to cut it. They sell little devices for this sort of thing that even have a glass breaker. They look like little hammers. They even sell some on key chains that would be handy. They would be hanging just in front of you in the ignition. Now that your seatbelt is off the next step is to get out a window. Check the one on the door. Is it out already, Can you manage to get through it? If not try the windshield. It is the largest and Right in front of you if you can get around the steering wheel. If not what about the back glass.
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Wildfire
You commonly hear about them in dry, hot climates like California, but they can happen anywhere. They  usually start small and grow fast by feeding on dry burnable materials. Sometimes the heat from the sun in a combination with dry brush and the right conditions can start a wildfire, but this is rare. Most are caused by human conditions and carelessness. Wildfires are dangerous and can spread quickly, because the winds can send smoke, ash, and embers for miles. One can cause another one for miles around and they can meet and grow even bigger. The way they spread can be unpredictable and can suddenly change direction. Fire jumpers are well trained for these situations, but still can’t always be completely prepared. If you are ever out and get caught in a wildfire it is important to know what to do.
The first thing is not to panic. Remain calm as to not make any mistakes. After you have calmed yourself cover your nose and mouth with something. A bandanna or even just your shirt pulled up. It works best if you can wet it down with something if you have a bottle of water or access to water. Smoke inhalation is very dangerous. If you have trouble breathing and are breathing in the soot, smoke, and carbon monoxide you might pass out. At that point it is over for you, so Keep you airways covered as much as you can. Stay low to the ground. Remember the smoke and ash will be going up.
You need to formulate a plan for getting out of there. Remember that the worst places to be is uphill from a fire and down wind from a fire. SO always try to stay up wind from. That is moving against the wind so that the wind is blowing the fire away from you. It would make moving hard if the wind was blowing the smoke and heat into your face and the fire will be moving quickest in the direction the wind is moving it. So use the wind as a guide. If the wind is behind you blowing towards the fire move into the wind and if the wind is behind the fire blowing it towards you move perpendicular to the fire because you want to get away from the flames and out of it’s potential path. Keep in mind that the wind can blow sparks up to a mile ahead and start new mini fires beyond the existing fire. The last thing you want is to get sandwiched between two raging fires. So glance up at the top of the flames and watch the smoke and see what direction the wind is blowing it in and take the next course of action to escape them.
If possible head towards the next body of terrain that is non flammable. Head in the direction of the nearest area that is free of  trees and bush and less likely to burn. If you can put a body of water between you and the fire do so. Avoid moving through dense brush and thick undergrowth as these places will burn quickly and can leave you trapped.
If for some reason you are trapped, the best option is to hunker down in an area that will not burn. Always keep fleeing if it is possible though. SO your best bet if you can not keep moving is to take shelter in a vehicle or building if at all possible. Sometimes the best place to move is a place that has already burned if it is cooled down enough to do so. These areas can suddenly spring back up if it is still hot enough and new burnable (you) material is added and if it is still smoldering it can make breathing difficult.
If you can cross a body of water do so, fire will not cross a lake or river unless it is narrow with a lot of overgrowth on the other side. If there is a large paved area use that as a barrier. It will take a fire some time to move across the pavement, but watch out for overhanging branches. If you can not follow the road because of the width of the fire lie face down on the pavement as far from the fire as possible. If there is a ditch lie face down in the ditch farthest from the fire.
When you hunker down try to cover your body with something to protect you from the fire. A wet blanket or clothing works best. Covering the back of your head and body with  cool mud or soil will help protect you from the heat. Stay put until the fire passes.
Escaping or hunkering in a vehicle
That is if you are escaping on foot, if you have a vehicle use it. Be sure to roll up the windows and close the vents. You are now in an enclosed area and smoke getting in can make it hard to breath. Drive safely. This means to drive slow and do not drive into thick smoke. If you get your car stuck or strike a tree you are reducing your odds of survival. If you must stop your vehicle park far away from trees and heavy brush.
If you must take shelter in your vehicle and can not escape, then hunkering down in your vehicle is the best option for you. Vehicles with metal gas tanks rarely explode. Keep your windows up and lie in the back floorboard. Cover yourself with a blanket or coat if possible. Even if the fire surrounds your car stay inside, you still have a better chance of survival than running from the car at this point. Stay inside and stay low. The low air currents may rock the car, just don’t panic.
If you are hunkering down in a building for shelter. Take as many precautions as you can, but if the fire is moving rapidly, that may not be an option. First shut off any fuel lines such as propane, natural gas, or oil. Move curtains and fabric covered furniture away from windows and  sliding doors. If the glass breaks you wont want anything flammable near them. Remove any combustible materials from the yard like gas grills or fuel cans. Remove any fire wood or debris far from the structure.
If time permits try to wet the area down as much as possible this will make it harder to burn and slow down an advancing fire. Not just the ground, but the building you will be in as well. If you have several large containers fill them with water and surround the building with them.
So now stay inside. Keep window and doors closed. Do not lock any doors or windows. If fire rescue arrive you want to be able to get out or them to get in quickly. Stay away fro exterior walls. Try to stay near the middle of the building on the ground floor. Take a towel or a sheet and wet it down. If nothing is available you can dunk it in the tank of the toilet (tank not bowl) and drape it over your head.
Santelmo
A spiritual and intelligent fireball. It is said to chase people through the woods and fire them to death if caught.
Name                     Body  Mind   Spirit   Heart points
Santelmo’s Fire     3        6           7           ❤ ❤
                 Scenario: You wake in your hotel room. It is hard to breath. You can smell smoke though it is not thick yet. It seem to be coming from around the door. You place your hand on the door and it is very hot meaning a fire is right on the other side. You have a window, but you are on the third story and it doesn’t open. You have an adjacent bathroom. You wet several towels and place them around the door. It is possible to run through the fire and make it to the fire escape stairs. How are you going to get out? Braking the window has a body challenge of <7> Tying a rope from the sheets has a mental challenge of <7> Braving the fire to find a way out through the flames has a spirit challenge of <7> Throwing the mattress out the window and landing on it has a body challenge of <9>
Further study:
Playlist:
Ring of fire- Johnny Cash

Skill: Peeing Outside

11880556_10206903706168256_1907525563727763931_nThis may seem like a lame skill, after all who doesn’t know how to go number one. However a large portion of the population has a condition called shy bladder syndrome. This I where they are too nervous to go in an open environment or when others are around. It is not so easy then and can be frustrating especially if you are in hurry. This is the reason I couldn’t use urinals for a long time, which led to problems at work when I was in a hurry and a stall was not available. Something about standing there next to other people and sometimes very  inconsiderate people who will stand directly behind you at the urinal that you can practically feel their breath on the back of your neck. Not to mention that where I work half the time the small dividers will be ripped out of the wall by someone. They still haven’t caught who is doing it.
However if you can get past your shy bladder it can be beneficial to being able to go outdoors when needed. Mostly a benefit for guys, but they do make a device for women that allows them to go standing up. It is basically a specially shaped funnel. If you can get past the idea of carrying around a pee funnel in your bag or purse. Just be careful about where you go.
Normally I avoid doing this, but there was this one time I drank too much coffee before going to work. Luckily it was early in the morning before daylight. When I go to the longest stretch of road that I could see in both directions clearly I pulled over to the shoulder away from any houses and hurried around to the other side of the car. It was a relief.
Okay for this adventurous experiment, you need a bottle of water and privacy. This very male experience, does have a purpose of sorts. It is very straight forward and interesting. Have you ever tried this. Everyone urinates, fewer than you would think have done it outside. There is a sense of freedom in it. Hard to explain unless you have done it for yourself. A feeling of out of the norm. A sense of adventure really. Anyway the point of this experiment is a psychological one. You will need to really go so that you will have time for this.  You will need a large bottle of water. When you begin to urinate, start drinking. As far as possible you should try to drink the water straight down without pausing. (Don’t choke yourself though) You will feel quite bizarre sensations almost immediately. The water you expel seems to be synchronized with the water you are pouring into yourself. You should then visualize  your body to be organized in a way that the water you are drinking is directly exiting your body. It will feel as though your body has become simple and pulled inside out. Your complex intestinal system is absent.
Okay I admit this has little to do with Christianity and i am ready a new book on simple experiments for everyday life. I am trying to tie them in with Christianity and this one seemed so simple and fit with outdoor living. In biblical times it was common to use the great outdoors.

There are references to “those who pissesth against the wall” It was a common practice. Anyone who camps, hikes, or does any out door activity has done it at least once. This is an experiment that few have done i expect and thought i would post it to enhance anyone interested outdoor adventure. Just do it away from the campsite or ground water.

peecert

This goes with the post toilet training.

The Spiritual Exam

                                     After your mental exam you are lead down another musty smelling hallway and out the back door again into the outer area with the fire ring. This time you walk past the medical tent and into a small wooded area until you come to a clearing with a small stone open air church. It had six stone pillars holding up the roof and two rows of stone benches on a flat cement slab leaving room for a walkway between them leading to a stone podium used for service. To one side was another tent. You are lead inside where a young man sat in a black leather chair. He waves you in and motions to an adjacent chair for you to sit in. This man had sandy brown hair and a smooth shaven face. He dressed in a blazer and tie with basic black slacks. A cross lapel pin on the tie held it in place.
             He picked up a clipboard and spoke. “Hello, you must be our newest student. I ampastr Rev. Holder. I will be teaching your spiritual lessons and helping you with any spiritual needs while you attend the academy. Now is time for your spiritual evaluation. Let us begin.”
<Rev. Holder is a pleasant young man eager to serve God. He can cast out demons and break curses. His little church provides certain spiritual items for donations, since it would be wrong for the church to sell them after all.>
Complete the following assessment table using 1-5.
 1-Never 2-seldom 3-occasionally 4-frequent 5-always
Living in Christ
I practice regular quite time with Christ
When I Make a decision I consider what Christ would have me do first
My actions reflect my desire to grow closer to Jesus and God
I trust Jesus to help me through the troubles I face in this world
I have confidence in my salvation
Living in the World
I read the Bible daily and seek to understand God’s word better
I can answer questions about daily life from a biblical perspective
When the Bible exposes an area of my life needing change i respond quickly to make things right
My public and private life is pretty much the same
My actions display my faith in Christ
Prayer Life
I engage in prayer daily at least three times a day
I spend as much time listening to God as talking to him
I expect to grow in my prayer life and intentionally seek help to keep growing
I pray because I am aware of my need and dependency on God
I set aside time to pray intercessory prayers and prayers of healing and conversion for others
Relationships
I forgive others of their actions that have harmed me
I allow other Christians to hold me accountable for my actions
I encourage and listen to feedback from others about areas I need improvement on
I seek to live in harmony with other members of my family and those outside my family
When I point out problems to others it is done in a loving way not in a criticizing way
Ministry
I am not afraid to share my testimony
When I am confronted about my faith I remain strong and firm in my testimony
I serve others expecting nothing in return
I give faithfully of my time and finances to the church and ministry
I expect God to use me every day for his kingdom
Now draw a large circle with five smaller circles within it going towards the center. Then divide the circles into five equal pie segments. Label each inner circle moving from inside to outer circle 5-25. Start with the inner most circle as 5 outer most circle is 25. Label each segment one of the five table areas and add up your score for each and shade in the areas up to the value for each. This will give you an idea of what areas you need to work on in your spiritual life.sprtwhel.png
Now to clear your continence with a full confession to God.
Make to God a full confession of your life. Take your time and think openly. You have received full forgiveness with Christ so let it all out. Below is a simple guide based on the ten commandments to help you think and open your heart.
The Ten Commandments
First Commandment
I am the LORD your God. You shall worship the Lord your God and Him only shall you serve.
Have I…
  • Disobeyed the commandments of God or the Church?
  • Denied the existence of God?
  • Deliberately misled others about doctrine or the faith?
  • Despaired about my salvation or the forgiveness of my sins?
  • Presumed on God’s mercy? (Committing a sin in expectation of forgiveness, or
  • asking for forgiveness without conversion and practicing virtue.)
  • Loved someone or something more than God (money, power, sex, ambition, etc.)?
  • Let someone or something influence my choices more than God?
  • Been involved in the occult? (Seances, ouija board, worship of Satan, etc.)

Second Commandment
You shall not take the name of the Lord your God in vain.
Have I…

  • Used the name of God in cursing or blasphemy?
  • Failed to keep vows or promises that I have made to God?
  • Used vulgar, suggestive or obscene speech?
  • Belittled others in my speech?
  • Behaved disrespectfully in Church?
  • Misused places or things set apart for the worship of God?
  • Committed perjury? (Breaking an oath or lying under oath.)

Third Commandment
Remember to keep holy the Sabbath day.
Have I…

  • Set time aside each day for personal prayer to God?
  • Missed Church on Sunday or Holy Days (through own fault w/o sufficient reason)?
  • Habitually come late to and/or leave early from Church without a good reason?

Fourth Commandment
Honor your father and your mother.
Have I…

  • (If still under my parents’ care) Obeyed all that my parents reasonably asked of me?
  • Neglected the needs of my parents in their old age or in their time of need?
    (If still in school) Obeyed the reasonable demands of my teachers?
  • Neglected to give my children proper food, clothing, shelter, education, discipline and care?
  • Provided for the religious education and formation of my children for as long as they are under my care?
  • Educated my children in a way that corresponds to my religious convictions?
    Provided my children with a positive, prudent and personalized education in the teaching on human sexuality?
  • Been to my children a good example of how to live the Life of Faith?
  • Prayed with and for my children and family?
  • Lived in humble obedience to those who legitimately exercise authority over me?
  • Have I broken the law?

Fifth Commandment
You shall not kill.
Have I…

  • Unjustly and intentionally killed a human being?
  • Been involved in an abortion, directly or indirectly?
  • Seriously considered or attempted suicide?
  • Deliberately desired to kill an innocent human being?
  • Unjustly inflicted bodily harm an another person?
  • Unjustly threatened another person with bodily harm?
  • Verbally or emotionally abused another person?
  • Hated another person, or wished him evil?
  • Been prejudiced, or unjustly discriminated against others because of their race, color, nationality, sex or religion?
  • Joined a hate group?
  • Purposely provoked another by teasing or nagging?
  • Recklessly endangered my life or health, or that of another, by my actions?
  • Driven recklessly or under the influence of alcohol or other drugs?
  • Abused alcohol or other drugs?
  • Sold or given drugs to others to use for non-therapeutic purposes?
  • Helped another to commit a mortal sin through advice, driving them somewhere, etc.?
  • Indulged in serious anger?
  • Treated animals cruelly, causing them to suffer or die needlessly?

Sixth & Ninth Commandments
You shall not commit adultery.
You shall not covet your neighbor’s wife.
Have I…

  • Given in to lust?
  • Deprived my spouse of the marital right, without just cause?
  • Claimed my own marital right without concern for my spouse?
  • Willfully entertained impure thoughts?
  • Purchased, viewed, or made use of pornography?
  • Listened to music or jokes that are harmful to purity?
  • Committed adultery?
  • Committed rape?
  • Masturbated?
  • Engaged in unnatural sexual activities?
  • Engaged in prostitution, or paid for the services of a prostitute?
  • Made uninvited and unwelcome sexual advances toward another?
  • Purposely dressed immodestly?

Seventh & Tenth Commandments
You shall not steal.
You shall not covet your neighbor’s goods.
Have I…

  • Stolen?
  • Envied others on account of their possessions?
  • Given generously to others in need?
  • Considered that God has provided me with money so that I might use it to benefit
  • others, as well as for my own legitimate needs?
  • Practiced the works of mercy?
  • Deliberately defaced, destroyed or lost another’s property?
  • Cheated on a test, taxes, sports, games, or in business?
  • Squandered money in compulsive gambling?
  • Failed to honor my part of a contract?
  • Failed to make good on a debt?
  • Overcharge someone, especially to take advantage of another’s hardship or ignorance?
  • Misused natural resources?

Eighth Commandment
You shall not bear false witness against your neighbor.
Have I…

  • Lied?
  • Knowingly and willfully deceived another?
  • Perjured myself under oath?
  • Gossiped?
  • Committed detraction? (Destroying a person’s reputation by telling others about his faults for no good reason.)
  • Committed slander or calumny? (Telling lies about another person in order to destroy his reputation.)
  • Committed libel? (Writing lies about another person in order to destroy his reputation.)
  • Failed to make reparation for a lie I told, or for harm done to a person’s reputation?
  • Betrayed another’s confidence through speech?
  • Other things to Consider
    Have I…
  • Made a good Confession of my mortal sins least once a year?
  • Made reparation for any harm I have done to others
  • Abandoned my spouse and family?
Further study: (films or dvd)
Commandments
I Am
Ten Commandments
Print and use this image to write down the ten commandments from memory.
command

Your New Identity In Christ

Your new identity in Christ.

                      If you have baggage. Troubled past and overwhelming emotions or damage. It can mean a new life and a new start. In these dangerous times, God is an ever-present source of inner strength and a help in trouble. See my post on what real physical effects prayer and meditation can have on the body.
But more than that, God knows everything that is going on. He knows the best course of action. He knows what trouble lays ahead. If adventure and survival is your game, He is an indispensable tool for your belt. A perfect travel companion. He knows the trail ahead before you even get to the bend.
He is faithful and will never abandon you. We all have fears sometimes of the unknown. God is a security blanket that is always with us. Always For us. When Egypt faced a famine, He warned them ahead of time through Joseph and gave him the plan to deal with it so no one would starve. He even reconciled him with his brothers and restored their family. God can prepare you for difficult times ahead and take care of your family and your personal problems too. He wants what is best for you, and when God wants something done, what man can stop him?
So why would you not want God? God doesn’t seek to control you. Maybe he asks for a standard of living. Don’t hurt other people (except in self-defense). Don’t spread lies about others, don’t treat your parents badly. basically don’t be an asshole. Is that really a bad price. I’ve read the Bible, i don’t see anywhere in  it that says you can’t go after a promotion or get that raise. No where does it say you can’t get that new car or job you really want. God cares about the things you want too. It does say not to make these things high priorities over caring for your family or making them all-consuming. I guess that is where people get discouraged by Christianity. It does require self-control. It is all right to want money, but to make it the highest priority in your life is the sin. It is all right to want nice things, as long as you aren’t hurting anyone to get them. You are supposed to put God first, so that everything else fall into perspective and your priorities are in order.
Is that really a bad thing. Is that new car more important than your wife or child? Don’t have a wife or child? Then if you have the money get the new car. The Bible doesn’t’ say you can’t have things, just keep your priorities in check.
Imagine you wake up and you have lost everything. You have managed to survive, but you have nothing left. Who are you? What are you? We identify ourselves with what we have and what we accomplish. Our homes, jobs, possessions and when we lose them we loose ourselves. Deep down at the core of who we are and our identity it should be that we are the adopted son or daughter of God.  In choosing God he takes us into his family and we become his child and nothing can take that from us. The world can’t take it away, the devil can’t take it away, we can not give it up or throw it away. Once we are his it is a permanent thing. We are his forever. He will always love us.
Your Heritage
Being a new creature in Christ means that the old you is no more. You have a new identity as an adopted child of God. This is something for you to hold on to always. You can not lose it. At the core of who you are this is the foundation to build upon. You can not lose it, the devil can not take it away, you can not give it up. That is right. Once you have taken this step you are His always. You may choose at times to walk away, but he will not walk away from you. He has excepted you and he will not abandon you, ever. He is Abba (Father).
You are fearfully and wonderfully made.
Now on to the exercise. Build you family tree. Heritage was always important to the early Jews. They kept long family histories. Just reading the Bible you can see that. You may not be able to track your families history back that far, but you can start with your parents and work your way back at least a few generations to some idea of your place in history. It may seem like the Bible was just this historical record thing that happened a long time ago, but it is still going on. It may not be being recorded as cannon right now, but God is still working in the world and you are a part of it. By becoming his you are baptized into his family and he is using you in his will same as he was using believers before you. The world may have changed, but he hasn’t and he still works in the world today.
                          When God lead Abraham from his home to the promised land he would give him, this is part of your history as well. When God lead his people out of Egypt and through the wilderness, this is part of your history as well. You are part of his people. This was part of his plan for you. In making you he began forming you from the beginning of time. You can read the account of Abraham in Genesis and Moses in Exodus. Or if you only have your pocket  New Testament Stephen lays it out pretty well in Acts Chapter 7. This is part of your history and the history of Christianity.
Further study:
The Bible Series (tv show) and the sequel The Bible Series AD.
Print this bracket and place yourself in the middle and your parents on either side. Then trace your families backwards from there. This is your genealogy. This is what it took to bring you into existence. Consider that. If any of these couple had never met, you wouldn’t be here.
BRACKET
                               Okay, so start at the beginning then. God created the universe. The Bible says 6 days (on the 7th he rested so not a day of creation)  There are scientists who have been studying universal background radiation that was present at the big bang and have been able to divide it down into 6 phases they believe symbolize the 6 days God mentions, but that is still speculation. The important thing to understand is God made it all. Another important thing to know is YOU DON’T HAVE TO UNDERSTAND IT ALL AT ONCE. It takes time. Most people are still learning themselves.
                          Get yourself a good Bible. The most favored are the King James Version (kjv) and the New International Version (niv) which has modern language and many find easier to read. I would suggest getting a one year Bible. It has the whole thing divided up into what you need to read each day to read it in one year. My mom and I have a One year chronological Bible that rearranges the books and verses into a chronological order. That is the order in which things happened. At the very least you should get a copy of the New Testament. If you really want to understand it better get a Life Application Bible. It has footnotes and explanations to what is going on and why. Also a little history information.
bookmr
Bookmark
                          Not much of a craft I know. Just have to print out the picture. It has little check boxes for each book of the Bible. As you work your way through it in the Heritage section of this book. Reading the Bible can seem overwhelming, You just have to remember one fact. You don’t have to do it all at once. It is something you can tackle a little at a time. If you are like me with a poor memory you do well just to remember the highlights and have no real hope of quoting scripture. I know the stuff that goes on and all the important things, but I can’t quote a verse and tell you book and chapter where it is. Many people can do this, but you don’t have to. It is all about a relationship with God. Not about being memory-man.
                           So God made Adam and Eve. The serpent that represents evil (devil or Lucifer) tricks eve into believing God has lied. She wants to be wise like God so she eats. It is not a sin to desire to be like God for God is perfect. But she disobeyed God’s command and believed God lied to her. She ate and sin entered the world. Adam followed too. It is not all eve’s fault as some male supremacists will claim. Men are just as guilty. God said that the hour they ate it they would surely die. This was a spiritual death. Not a physical one. That is they died to God. They were separated from him and it is also interesting to know that it follows the same pattern with own growth cycle. Children grow and are innocent until puberty and then it is like the person they were die and they become someone else. Full of anger and hormones and lose their innocence.  But that is just from my own mind and not taught anywhere. But that is the big and short of it with sin. Since the eating of the fruit all mankind has a sin nature. This is what leads us to doing it and separates us from God and being filled with a spirit of goodness. We can’t be good without him leading us. The world after the fall of mankind proves it. Starting with Cain who killed Abel to the fest of the world becoming so vile God killed them all with the flood. And now look at the world we live in today. Thanks to God’s leading we kept the world from going completely bad again, but it is still heading in that direction. Just taking longer. Giving God’s followers time to save those they can before he passes judgment.
So all are sinners. Me, you, everyone. That is where Jesus comes in, but not yet.
Abraham is called for God to set up his own special people. He creates the Jews to set up a priesthood for himself to bless and lead the world, but they fail to be righteous enough. But God still manages to set up  a priesthood and give them the ten commandments. This is God’s standards. We of course can’t live up to them completely, but God is the standard and he can’t change to suit us. It may seem like he is strict that is because he is perfect.  He is Just, he is righteous. He is unchanging. He is also love and mercy and peace.  He wants to be in a relationship with us. He loves us. But we are sinners and the two don’t mix. We can’t enter his presence without is righteousness killing us. Think like this. The tabernacle they built in the desert to take with them was to be God’s dwelling place among them. Only the high priest could enter there and only after a ceremony to cleans himself. He wants us, but we aren’t holy enough by ourselves. We are unclean to God.
God sets the standard for holy. He sets up the priesthood to allow us to be cleansed and draw near to him. There is a problem though with it. Namely the priests. They are not perfect and the animals they sacrifice are not perfect. Before the priests can offer atonement for the people they must first offer atonement for themselves. And this must be repeated because the people are not perfect enough to stay clean after it is done. The system has a flaw. It is important to note that animal sacrificing does not please God. For the price of sin blood had to be paid. This was a requirement. It doesn’t please God to kill. But the price of sin is death. Payment had to be made. But you have to remember that dead to us does not always mean dead to God. I believe animals have souls and when will kill them for whatever reason they return to God.
                              So skip ahead and Jesus is born to Mary. He is born without sin. He is perfect in God’s eyes. Just as the priests had to sacrifice a lamb without blemish Jesus is the lamb of God without blemish (sin) There is theories that the stable he was born in was the same one that is used to house the lambs that were raised for sacrificing. It was near Bethlehem where Jesus was born. He gave his life to be the perfect sacrifice for us.
               So we could repent of sin and draw closer to God the way he wanted us to.
God said he created the light and formed the darkness.  Notice he said formed the darkness. That is not to say that he didn’t make the darkness, but that he formed it. Like the light casts a shadow. Darkness is formed  when light shines. This is a good analogy for good and evil. God is good. He is the standard of good. He did not create evil, He can not do any evil act. He did form evil in that He sets the standard for good so that anything that does not measure up to that standard is evil.
A man fell in a hole. If you stop and pull him out that is good. It is a good act, therefore if you see him and ignore him and leave him there in the hole without trying to help him. That is evil. It is an evil act.
Further Study: (films)
Bible series and bible series AD
Genesis Code
What does it mean to be a Follower of Christ
                       So, how do you be a follower of Jesus. A lot of people talk about how important it is to be one, but few actually tell you much about the how to. I think that has to do with what it means and how so many misunderstand it.
To start off you must surrender your will to Jesus. So right there is where so many fall away. They look at that statement and think it means “I can’t have the things i want or i can’t do the things that make me happy.” It is a simple and common misunderstanding. It has more to do with attitude than physical things. The way you look at the world. Now that being said there is something to do with how you live your life, in the way you relate to people. You have to surrender your attitude. Change your views. We build up a wall as a defensive measure to keep people out of our intimate part of our selves where we feel vulnerable. Jesus wants into that part of us and to bring those walls down. We don’t like that, but it in necessary for strength. True strength. What we hide makes us weak. Jesus forgave us. What other people think doesn’t matter. All that matter’s is what God thinks. He knows and accepts us so those things don’t matter anymore. Once we accept that it is over. The pain and shame of what was done in the past is over. Only from here on out matters. The walls come down and we are leaning on God’s strength not our own. We don’t need that attitude any more.
Now in surrendering our will we must change the way we live our lives. Yes we don’t like that usually at first either. Yes we need to consider what we do and evaluate whether it is something Jesus would approve. things like addictions. anything we put before God’s will. Drugs are out. Obviously, smoking is not forbidden as long as we use moderation. Moderation is key in most things. As long as they don’t become center of our lives. Don’t drink in excess. If you drink so much you can’t stand up it may be time to pull back on the reigns.
How we treat other people. Do you look down on others, Be honest it may be hard to see ourselves in a clear light. Are you withholding forgiveness. God forgave us we must forgive others. Doesn’t mean you have to forget. If someone wrongs you, you need to forgive them as God forgave you and treat them as an individual. Don’t snub them or rub their face over anything. You don’t have to trust them in the future, just don’t go out of your way to be rude or judgmental. Look at them in your mind and remind yourself they are human just as you are. They aren’t in the right place in their heart and if you hold onto that hatred you wont be either.  Just let it go. They will get theirs eventually. God is a just God and vengeance is his. He is faithful.
Now as to what we do in our lives. 1 Corinthians 6: 12 “I have the right to do anything,” you say–but not everything is beneficial. “I have the right to do anything”–but I will not be mastered by anything.
We have the right to do anything, but not everything is good for us to do in life. We can’t allow other things to take over our lives. Recreational things are fine, but don’t make them life consuming.
Luke 9: 23 Then he said to them all: “Whoever wants to be my disciple must deny themselves and take up their cross daily and follow me.
                We must deny ourselves meaning surrendering our will and take up our cross daily the struggle we have in our lives to pursue righteousness and purse Jesus.  Others will look at us a Christians and persecute us and call us names. They may even hate us, but that is our cross.  To pursue Jesus daily we must seek out to do the things we know will please him. Like helping others and doing what we know is the right thing and when you aren’t sure what the right thing is you seek God’s wisdom to figure it out.
Okay, so you are getting ready for church on Sunday even thought you got a million things to do today, the collection plate comes around and you are putting your money in even though you are short on money this week. You had a long day and you are pulling out your bible to read your daily passages even though you are really tired and want to go to bed. Does this describe you at any time. If you skipped church once in a while it would not be the end of the world, if you didn’t give everything you had to the church it would be okay, if you skipped reading one time who would really know. All of time is God’s, he is eternal, all things are God’s he doesn’t need your money, He doesn’t need your worship, The rocks and trees will cry out to him. He is God, he doesn’t need us he wants us. The things we do are outward indicators of an inward relationship. We do it to show him we love and want him more than those things. The inward relationship is what is more important than the outward indicators. Take a look inside yourself. Where are you in your relationship with God. He wants you to want him more than anything else. Put God first and all things will follow.
We all want miracles in our lives. God will perform miracles if you are devoted to him. You get the kind of relationship you put into it. When Jesus went to his hometown he could do very little there because they didn’t really believe in him and didn’t follow him. If you want God to work in your life you have to put in the effort. It is a hard truth to accept. We live in a broken world that holds to different values. Stress and pain everywhere. God is greater. He will help you with those things if you place your heart in his hands.
Further study:  (Book)
Not a Fan by Kyle Idleman

Homesteading Program

HomeSteading

A homestead is home where everyone in the family pitches in to produce their own sustainable economy. You grow and produce what you need to survive and enough to sell or trade for what you can’t. Before my Grandfather passed away he put the family home and land into my youngest aunt’s name with a promise that she would keep it and it would be a place where anyone in the family would have a place to stay if they needed it. He was an old generation farmer who always had a garden going and my uncles and cousins would drop in and out moving into the place. A few had trailers sitting on the place that they would use until they didn’t need them.

Victory Gardens

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You don’t have to have a large area to grow a survival garden. Choose a location that gets sun but consider the amount of sun that what you will be growing will need. Some don’t need full sun. Divide the plots into 12 inches by 12 inches. Plant the tall plants like corn in the back so they don’t block the sun for the shorter plants. The sun rises in the east and sets in the west.

Choose varieties that grow vertically to increase the square’s yield. Plant shallow rooted plants next to deep rooted plants so that they don’t compete  for resources. Replant as soon as you harvest and fertilize all year round. Make a schedule for what plants you will grow in each season. Think about what you have canned in the pantry and having variety so you don’t get board with your daily meals.

Good for cool seasons spring/fall hardy and semi-hardy

Beets, Carrot, Cauliflower, Celery, Irish potatoes, Lettuce and gourmet salad greens

Hardy: Broccoli ,Brussels sprouts, Cabbage, Collards, English peas, Kale, Leeks, Mustard greens, Radish, Spinach, Turnip

Summertime: Beans, Corn, Cucumber, Eggplant, Gourds, Melons, Okra, Peppers, Pumpkins, Southern peas, Summer squash, Sweet potatoes, Tomatoes

A layer of mulch will trap in moisture. Consider a raised plant bed or even a bucket garden. A group of ten gallon buckets can grow a wide range of plants.  I dug out an old bath tub and drug it up beside the house and plan to plant something in it.

In addition to a garden you can plant some fruit and nut trees. Also consider pine trees. When we lived at a house in Ratcliff it had a line of pine trees along the back fence. I believe it was used as a wind guard. I never had to mow around it because of the pine needles. This is a good tree to consider. The pine cones contain nuts that are edible. You can use the needles around your garden to prevent weeds from springing up. When burned makes a good smoke to drive away insects or smoke signal. Aloe vera plants that are edible and containing healing properties. The prickly pear cactus is also edible and easy to grow. The fruit it produces can be eaten and the sections can be eaten. My dad once planted grape vines out in the field. I admit i haven’t taken care of it in years, but i went out and checked on it and they are still doing good. Produces large clusters of grapes still. Simple little herb gardens can be found many places.

Simple composting. Choose a section and sectioned off with four walls in  a square. Start with several shovel full of dirt and make sure it has worms in it. On top of that add four parts brown matter that is rich in carbon like dead leaves and wood or newspapers. on top of that on part green matter. Like fruits and vegetables organic things we eat. Add water generously. Then on top of that  brown matter again. Then green matter on top of that then water again generously. Things you may or may not want to compost are things that attract vermin. It will enrich your compost, but can cause problems with wildlife showing up. Things like waste matter, (poop) bones, cheese and dairy products. and meat.

Raising bees is a great, yet some what complicated to set up, survival idea. Honey keeps for a long time can be sold or traded. It is a good source of nutrition and can be added to any meal or recipe to give it a little flavor.

This is a model prayer you can use as is or in some form to bless your garden. Remember that God is the one who provides and with him all things are possible. Have faith and He will not disappoint.

Garden Blessing and Prayer
The community or family gathers around the garden.
Choose a leader to carry out the prayers.
Leader: The Lord be with you!
Community: And also with you!
We gather together to ask God’s blessing on our garden and to reflect on our own blessings. We dedicate our efforts in this garden to the glory of God, to be used for God’s purposes here on earth.
The Leader will read selected passages from the Bible and all will pray “We pray you, Lord, to bless our garden.
As all the earth is a garden, Lord, we ask that you bless this small piece of the earth. As Your Light shines upon us and upon this garden, giving us life, likewise help us to give light and life to others.
We ask you, Lord, to bless the soil that nourishes new life in this ground and in this community. Help us to look in awe at the mysteries of your work not yet seen. Help us to appreciate the nourishment of your earth and use it wisely.
We ask you, Lord, for a bountiful harvest, both in our garden and in our lives. Give us the wisdom to take what we need to feed ourselves and to use our abundance to the benefit of others.
In Christ’s name, Amen.” Holy Water might be sprinkled upon plants, seeds, soil, and all those in attendance at the conclusion of this blessing.

To receive this certificate you will need to do the following.

Select a section of land at home or at your communities’ church and draw a mock up of what you can do with that land. How you would plant a garden. What you would put where for proper growing and variety as well as what seasons to grow them in a cycle.

Plant a seed

You will need a coke bottle. You will cut out the bottom of the bottle and you will want to cut the top off as well. You put your potting soil and seed in the top part of the bottle you cut off and place it with the spout down into the bottom of the bottle. You fill the bottom of the bottle with water. Just as it sets in roots and sprouts and struggles from the ground up. You can observe it’s growth and be introspective and observe how you also are growing and struggling and grow your own roots. As it gets bigger transfer it to a proper pot and take it to you officiator. (pastor of your church)

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Animal Steading

Well if you want to be self sufficient you will need more that a garden. You will want to consider adding a few animals to the homestead. They will provide manure for fertilizing and some can provide their own products. Chickens for example. I know few people who raise their own chickens and sell eggs. This is a great way to produce eggs, meat, and feathers. It is a little work, but the benefits are great. As long as you are the kind that can do your own butchering, But even if you don’t like the idea of butchering your own animals, keeping farm animals is still beneficial. Chickens are not the only foul you can buy and get eggs from. Duck are another good egg laying foul and geese are as well. They are known to eat insects such as ticks and hornets.

Other birds you can raise on your homestead, if you are not interested in the eggs and intend to harvest them for meat are squab, quail, and genies.

There are places that will kill and clean them for you as long as you will pay.

Goats are another good homesteading animal. They can produce milk that you can make cheese and cream as well and eat just about anything. A good way to deal with leftovers you need to get rid of. There are some goats that you can harvest fleece from similar to sheep. Sheep are better for that though. Another good animal if you plan to spin your own wool although not as good for milk.

Bees are a good animal to keep on a homestead. Honey has a long shelf life and the wax has many uses including making your own candles to sell or trade. If the grid goes down everyone will want candles.

Catfish is and animal that gets little thought about for homesteading. If you have a lake or pond that you can stock they need little maintenance. You wont need to feed them as much, but you can raise them in a barrel or large tub, even a large swimming pool, but you will need to feed them every day. They grow fast and provide meat.

If butchering is not an issue for you. Other animals you can raise and harvest from are dairy cows. Provide a lot of milk and can harvest tallow (suet, tallow after rendering) from them that has several uses. Steers for meat. Rabbits are easy to raise, grow fast, and produce A LOT of manure for fertilizer. Pigs eat just about anything, and unless you can teach them to truffle hunt produce nothing other than meat and companionship.

Lastly I don’t recommend eating them, but some animals to keep on your homestead for muscle. Horses are good for transportation and mules are good pack animals that carry a lot of weight.

To receive this certificate you must complete the following.

Well, I wont make you raise animals unless that is your aim in life, but you will need to explain to your officiator a comprehensive plan for raising animals and what they can provide for the community.

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Foraging

If you are lost in the woods or just needing to add little harvesting to you homestead to get by, you can go out and forage for supplies. There are a variety plants and things you can harvest, but make sure you are sure of what you are getting. This is an area for your naturalist member of your group. A few simple plants you can probably figure out are, Dandelions. A common weed that is safe to eat. Most people know what these are. The yellow head can be eaten raw as well as the leaves. The roots you can boil. Thistle is similar a purplish weed that you can eat the seeds from the head raw or cooked. You can peel the stalks and boil them. The roots can be eaten raw or cooked.

Prickly pear cactus is a plant you can eat well on. You can peel the pads and eat them raw. Eat the fruit and roast or grind the seeds into flour. Easy to grow and a good plant to grow on your homestead.

Cattail is fairly common and grow everywhere. The flower head can be cooked and the leaf shoots can be eaten raw or cooked.

Pine trees provide nutrition as well. Take the young pine cones from the tree and dry them and break them open and eat the seeds raw. The young needles can be eaten raw or boiled or steeped into a tea.

Home Protection, Defense against the Dark Arts

Matthew 12:29 “Or again, how can anyone enter a strong man’s house and carry off his possessions unless he first ties up the strong man? Then he can plunder his house.”

Matthew 24:43″ But understand this: If the owner of the house had known at what time of night the thief was coming, he would have kept watch and would not have let his house be broken into.”

Most people use this as a reference to being prepared for Jesus to return and for us to be ready for it and not to just become comfortable in our lives and live immoraly as the world does. To keep our souls ever-ready to be judged. This is important as well, but in this post i want to speak of home defence.

So, the apocalypse is going down, chaos is kicking into high gear, how are you going to protect your home from invasion. The first thing to consider is how good are your locks. If you don’t have a dead bolt, get one. Also install a chain link lock so you can crack the door without it being easy to kick open if you needed to speak to someone at the door and aren’t sure how much you can trust them.

Install some way of looking outside without having to open the door or go out yourself. If someone knocks you want to see who it is first. A peep hole is good, they make digital ones now that are easy to install. Security cameras are another way to go. You could put one on each of the outside walls with night vision.

This is something i had considered to do for quite a while. I have three uncles who rob you blind stealing anything they think they can sell. It started off with just scrap metal and anything aluminum they can get cash for, but when that  started running out they moved up to other things. My big aluminum ladder, a metal bathtub i wanted to plant a garden in, even our battery charger which we used often.

It is easy to protect yourself when you know when the thief will strike, but most of the time you’ll be blindsided so therefore you must have a security system you can count on to feel safe.

Adopt a shelter dog. You can get a puppy if this is what you really want, but consider adopting an older dog that is in need of a home. They will bark at an intruder and alert you to danger. If they are a big dog that is formidable they can be capable of protecting you. They can chase pests away from your garden. If you want a dog that will cherish you, adopt one in need they will thank you for rescuing them and giving them a forever home. You read about it all the time how adopted animals save their families from tragedy. Alerting them from fires, or saving children from danger. I heard on the news the other day where a little terrier dog brought help to an old woman who had fallen walking to her mailbox and couldn’t get up. The dog ran up the road and baked at strangers until someone followed and saw the old woman on the ground and called for an ambulance. It would run up the road and bark at people then run back to check on the old woman and then back to get help. There was a report on a dog that pulled a child from a house fire, and one of a dog fighting off a mountain lion.

Dogs of course aren’t they only animal. If you love and animal enough any animal will attempt to protect you. There was a news report of a large parrot that fought off robbers that attacked it’s owner. Cats also have been known to protect their owner and food source. There is a video on YouTube where a horse attacks a mountain lion that was about to attack his dog friends. Man it just picked the lion up and swung it around. awesome.

So of course get armed. Consider getting a handgun. Firearms are only dangerous if you don’t know how to use them. A lot of people don’t like guns, but that is because they don’t really understand them or know gun safety. My mom was scared fo guns for a long time. She didn’t want them in the house, But with all that is going on and my dad is passed on now, she is a little afraid of being alone in the house. She is not so scared of them anymore. She bought an air pistol to learn to shoot. Always a good way to start to get over your fear of guns.

There are other things you can get besides guns. Cross bow, combat baton are two. I have a home made cross bow that mom’s boyfriend made me. It is a simple tool you can make from  pvc pipe and a rubber tube.

If money is tight, you can consider less expensive home  security. Tieing tin cans to a trip wire for example. Hanging them from chains in doorways. That is what they do in fallout 4. The jingling sound will alert you to dangerous intruders. If tin cans are not your thing try wind chimes.

Okay moving on to spiritual defences. You can set up a home altar for a spiritual shield. Some people are fine with simple worship and just a sunday thing, but i prefer the more mystical spiritual side of Christianity. There is a whole other level that people just don’t look at or for some reason don’t want to look at. God created all things and his living energy is within all things. We affect the world around us more than we realize. There is a living flowing energy all around us and we are connected to it and there by all things even at a distance. Our emotions and our thoughts affect the world around us. We pray and send our thoughts out into the spiritual miasma of energy. Our thoughts have a substance. A wavelength. Science says that. They aren’t just little things that sit in our heads they have an energy and depth. They extend out of our brains and bodies like radio waves from a transmitter. Our bodies are always giving off energy in various forms. Everyone who has life has the spark of creation within them. The soul. When we pray and meditate we calm our minds and touch our true selves. The deeper part of us that is our very basic essence. There is our true power. All things are made of energy and energy effects energy. This is where our attitude comes in. A good attitude yields a positive energy. A bad attitude yields negative energy. Not to say bad things don’t happen to good people, but they sure seem to come through them better off than people who hate everything. Plus people just like them and are more willing to help them out and leave negative people out to dry.

When i have been in a bad mood, it seems like everything want to go wrong, and i am not just seeing it that way because i am in a bad mood. I have seen it work that way for other people too. Machine where i work, they break down alot more when someone in a bad mood is running them. I’ve taken notice and observed this and when someone who is up beat is running them, they have far less trouble. It is like the energy around you take the potential and turns it into actual.

So where am i going with this. Prayer and positive energy. Surround yourself with it. Focus on channeling the Holy Spirit and the Divine when you pray and meditate. Take time each night before bed to close your eyes and calm your mind and focus on things of Heaven.

Spiritual Protection

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A strong threshold is said to be able to keep spirits and supernatural evil from entering, but it has to be a harmonious household for a strong threshold and not a bachelor pad. A single person living in a residence wont have a strong threshold. Of course that wont protect you from ghosts already in a home or anything that is invited in. A powerful spirit or curse can pass through a threshold, but it will loose some of it’s power in the process.

A little bit about black magic.

Most people don’t believe in witchcraft or black magic, but it was prelivent in the Bible. King Saul even sought out a witch to call up the spirit of Samuel for guidance. God declares Christians are to not practice such things. So the Bible would indicate there is at least something serious about it.

One time while i was on the Internet looking up news articles. I stumbled upon one about a satanist who had walked up to the front steps of a church in a city and threw down a bible in front of everyone around pulled down his pants and relieved himself on the Bible in front of everyone watching. Okay he was arrested and other satanists were posting in his defense in the comments section saying it was a religious statement of their faith and i posted something stating that is was trespassing, inciting  public conflict, exposing himself in front of minors and others. And that it wasn’t infringing on his freedom of religion, he could do whatever he wants in him own home or property. They arrest street preachers sometimes for causing a ruckus why not others too.

Well it wasn’t long after that, that i found a big black snake come slithering into my room. Okay, i am not jumping up and down here saying that is WAS a cure from the satanists, but this has never happened here in the many many years i have lived here, but there is a long standing belief that curses manifest as black snakes and black crows when traveling to their destination to attack the individual they are aimed at. This is the only time this has ever happened as well. I grabbed something to try to catch ti with. It crawled behind my desk along the wall, but when i went after it,it disappeared. I moved everything away from the wall, and searched my entire room. Even pulling everything from my closet and searching in there. It was nowhere to be found. I searched my room over three times and the outside of my room too. Never found it, but it also never attacked me if it was a curse sent after me. Who is to say, take it as you want it. But i did take the unitive to cleanse the house just in case.

It is believed that saint medals provide protection for the faithful, against witchcraft it is recommended to wear the st. Benedict medal. It can be found everywhere since the supernatural is becoming very popular.  Also learning to do the sign of the cross. It is said that evil will flee at the sign as well as hearing a hymn.

There is the prayer to Saint Michael. He is considered to be the strongest angel in heaven. Although some refer to Gabriel as the strongest. Two others are Uriel and Raphael. These are four archangels you can call out to for help.

There are prayers to our own personal guardian angels. In the bible Jesus refers to the little children and says that their angels always stand before the lord. This would seem to indicate that they have their own personal angels and by extension we all have our own guardian angels. However translations can be tricky.

Learning simple ways to protect yourself with your faith is important to survival and should become daily practices. Prayer especially. Practice mental exercises of placing your mind in a state of simple meditative state of being in God’s presence. Imagine yourself surrounded by God’s flowing energy. Calm your mind and control any fear. This will allow you to remain in faith and not panic in fearfulness. God is always with us.

Pilgrimage: Grocery Shopping

Proverbs 31: 14

Doing the grocery shopping may not sound like a spiritual adventure, but the Bible makes it clear you are to consider the need of your family and provide for them. Anything you can do can be a spiritual adventure as long as you are going it together with God. Whether it is from week to week or stocking up for a month, it can be a worthy experience. Not everyone has the money to stockpile supplies for a disaster. It doesn’t matter though, because God can supply for all our needs. However it is not unfaithful to put things back if you can. People say that God helps those who help themselves. Although it is not found anywhere in the Bible, it is not entirely untrue. God expects us to do some things for ourselves. He doesn’t want us to just sit around and wait for him to do everything. He expects us to live out lives and rely on his teachings as guidance and him to work in our lives when we need him.

So that being said, where to start. Start with a shopping list. At our house we make a list through out the week and compile it on friday or Saturday morning before we leave out. We usually have to drive all the way to Booneville (about a thirty minute drive) to the Super center to do our shopping. So it is an hour round trip not counting the time spent in the store.

So take a sheet of notebook paper and fold it in half long ways. You should have a long narrow sheet with lines going down the side. This just makes it easier to focus and handle without all the extra space. Most names will not be that long. We usually make two or three stops to get everything we need. So we arrange everything in three groups based on what we need to get from where.

pilgrimage

Finances

We all want financial security, but for many of us that may feel fleeting. For most of us we live on a budget and week to week or for those retired, month to month.

To start with, try to put back 1000 dollars. That is a lot of money, I know, but this is money to deal with those situations that always come up. The idea is to put this money back and when you do your bills and budget you don’t touch it. You pretend that it isn’t there. If you aren’t use to doing this it can take some time to adjust, but you will feel better knowing it is in there for emergencies.

As for budgeting, you generally know what you ear from week to week, or from month to month. Take out a calendar and your bills and write down when each one is due so you can have a visual idea of when each one come due and when you will get a check to deal with them.

So start with your monthly bills and pay them first. Go from week to week using your expected check amounts. You can make corrections as the weeks get here. Subtract the bills. There you have what you can spend on other things. Go on to whatever else you need paid. Include how much you plan to spend on food and house hold goods.

Now people tend to fall into two categories. Spenders and Savers. Spenders want to spend everything on wants and fun stuff without regard to other things like bills coming due or keeping anything in the bank which gets them into trouble. Savers tend to be organized, set budgets, and make lists. They like to take care of things early and put money back and have security. These two types tend to be drawn together, causing conflict on the financial front, but for a good reason. Savers would have security, but not be having any fun and experiencing life. Without a saver in their life spenders would always be broke and have chaos in their lives and wind up with nothing in the end.

I have a cousin and his wife who both are spenders. Let me tell you what happens when two spenders get together. They are always broke and “borrowing” money (you will never see again)They have had to move several times and end up living with other people friends and family. Moving is not that hard for them, because they don’t have much to pack. They usually end up selling anything of value to make ends meet. They even had their kids taken from them. (To his wife’s mother)

For couples this can be a source of big conflict, But it is important for the two to come together on this. Here is a solution to help with this. The saver needs to make up the budget and get it organized. Then, you wont like this part savers, ask your spender to look it over and make a change. Yes, it is important they get involved and feel their needs and feelings aren’t being neglected. They can end up feeling like all the decisions are being made for them and they don’t get a say. Let them move some of the money around after the bills are paid. Maybe more for food, maybe set some aside for a movie and eating out, maybe some for clothes. Whatever they want.

Something else to consider is a savings account. This is an account that you wont touch for any reason, that will collect on interest. If you can set aside a hundred to start it off, that would be good. Then after that any little bit you can put in there each month or every other month. My bedroom I have one of those jars that counts your change as you put it in there. So does my mom. Hers tends to fill up faster than mine. We put it together and put it into a savings account at the end of the month.

So some ways to save some money. One method to cut corners is to take up couponing. It is a hobby that a lot of people find fun. It is popular among house wives. There are groups that gather for collecting, trading, and sharing them. You can join one or start your own with your friends, survival group families, or your church. Or any combination of the above.

In addition to that you can buy at bulk stores and stock pile and share with your group. My mom and aunts go in halves on a Sam’s club membership to shop at the bulk store.

Off Grid Income

There are ways to make money other than a 9-5 job. A good way to add a little money on the side is to take up a hobby that will allow you something to sell. Like fresh veggies or fruit from a home garden or maybe you can make things with your hands. A friend at work sews hair wraps and sells them and another makes their own candles. If you are a crafty person this could be a great option. It will provide you with something to sell are trade with. Just see what you are good at.

If that is not your thing people always have work to be done. Cleaning up yards, mowing lawns, or if you have your own truck or chainsaw, You can haul junk to the dump or help people move. You can cut up firewood and sell. You can also develop a skill that people require. My Uncles are all mechanics. Everyone drives or has machines they need worked on. It is a skill that is always in demand. Sometimes they have more work than they can get to. Consider you skill set and what you can do with it.

Recycling is another idea. We buy soda in the cans and then bag up the cans to recycle to get a little of the money back. I remember back when my dad was alive we would pile into the family car and drive out to the levi where we would walk up and down and pick up can people had thrown out. It was a bit of fun as a kid and a family activity.

The chart on the next page is designed like a checkbook. Use it to keep track of your in game money. Your expenses and your income. The bottom chart is for your saving account. The one to the right is for a loan they you will need to pay back. Learning to budget and balance your finances is a big skill you need to learn. Getting under debt is a pain and hard to get out from under. This is something I really think they should have a class on in high school.

Date

Details

Charges Deposits

Totals

Savings Total Debt Total

 

 

There are ways to make money other than a 9-5 job. A good way to add a little money on the side is to take up a hobby that will allow you something to sell. Like fresh veggies or fruit from a home garden or maybe you can make things with your hands. A friend at work sews hair wraps and sells them and another makes their own candles. If you are a crafty person this could be a great option. It will provide you with something to sell are trade with. Just see what you are good at.

If that is not your thing people always have work to be done. Cleaning up yards, mowing lawns, or if you have your own truck or chainsaw, You can haul junk to the dump or help people move. You can cut up firewood and sell. You can also develop a skill that people require. My Uncles are all mechanics. Everyone drives or has machines they need worked on. It is a skill that is always in demand. Sometimes they have more work than they can get to. Consider you skill set and what you can do with it.

Recycling is another idea. We buy soda in the cans and then bag up the cans to recycle to get a little of the money back. I remember back when my dad was alive we would pile into the family car and drive out to the levi where we would walk up and down and pick up can people had thrown out. It was a bit of fun as a kid and a family activity.

To receive this certificate.

Complete every other certificate in this program. Complete two pilgrimages. Show an adequate budgeting system. Explain two off grid income options. Explain a good home defence program including physical and spiritual protection. Compose three prayers for home protections, Gardening, and Animal steading. Include one home defence weapon. Present all to your officiating pastor and have him sign your certificate.

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