This is quite a long video but it is very interesting. Have the patience to watch it all, even if a part at a time. You will be amazed at its content and information.
Posted by Shirley Anne on January 2, 2013
This is quite a long video but it is very interesting. Have the patience to watch it all, even if a part at a time. You will be amazed at its content and information.
Posted by Shirley Anne on December 15, 2012
BY MARK ELLIS | OCTOBER 21, 2011 · 3:59 AM
By Mark Ellis
Emma at 15 months
She was bathed in prayer from the time she was in the womb. Her parents and both sets of grandparents are strong Christians. Still, when she began to point at angels and talk about them to her parents, they weren’t quite sure what to think.
It started about a year ago, when she first began to talk. “Every morning when I would get her up she would point up at the ceiling and say, ‘Look momma, there’s angels up there,’” says Caitlyn Sukut, her mother. “I thought, ‘How cute, how sweet.’” Emma seemed to be seeing things she could not see.
“Is she imaging something?” Caitlyn wondered. “It’s hard to know what a two and a half year old is talking about,” she admits. “I don’t know how much is in her imagination and how much she’s really seeing.”
After naps, Emma would talk about the angels. “What does the angel look like?” Caitlyn asked. “She looks like auntie,” Emma replied, referring to Caitlyn’s 16-year-old sister, Hannah.
Several months ago they had their first airline flight with Emma. “Look at the angels, momma,” Emma said. “They are coming with us to help get us there and to protect us.”
“When Emma first started talking about this, I had not taught her about angels,” Caitlyn notes. “I never told her angels protect us.”
(left to rt.) Lisa Hartman, Emma, Caitlyn Sukut, “Auntie” Hannah
Several weeks ago, Caitlyn went into Emma’s room when she first awakened. “How did you sleep, Emma?”
“I slept great,” she said. “The angels and the man came,” Emma replied.
“Oh, what did they say?” mom asked.
“The man protects us and loves us,” Emma said. “The man’s coming, momma. The man’s coming soon.”
“Does the man look like Jesus? Caitlyn asked.
“No,” Emma replied.
Emma has seen paintings of Jesus at church, but Caitlyn isn’t sure if Emma would confuse the person she saw in her room with the various artistic representations of Jesus. “We don’t refer to people as ‘The man’ in our house,” Caitlyn noted, so her choice of words seemed curious.
Once when mom and daughter walked into church, Emma cried out, “Look at all the angels singing to Jesus!”
“Where?” Caitlyn asked. Emma pointed up at the choir, dressed in long flowing robes.
For a while, Emma seemed to be obsessed with angels and wanted to talk about them all the time. But as she gets closer to three-years-old, she is mentioning them less.
Caitlyn’s grandmother, Lisa Hartman, has spent lots of time with Emma. “I asked her if there was an angel by me,” Lisa says. Without hesitation, Emma got very serious and looked around her grandma. Then Emma walked behind her. She pointed and said, “Yes. Don’t you see it?”
Lisa, who sometimes gets nervous on airplanes, was consoled by Emma before one of her flights. “There’s angels on the airplane,” she told her grandmother.
“It was so comforting to me,” Lisa notes. “It was a fact to Emma. No one asked her if there were angels on the plane. She just offered it.”
Lisa also noted that Emma sees angels around places that might be dangerous to small children, such as stairways, escalators, and even playgrounds.
“It’s not surprising that little ones without the theology or teaching are able to see things,” says Ron Sukut, Emma’s grandfather. Sukut is
Pastor Ron with his wife, Diane
the lead pastor at Cornerstone Community Church in San Clemente, California. “When God really starts to move in, angels start to show up,” he notes. “The only way to get our attention may be for God to reveal Himself to a child who can’t fabricate these things.”
When Pastor Ron considers Emma’s special sensitivity to the spiritual realm, he thinks about Matthew 18:10, “… their angels in heaven continually behold the face of My Father who is in heaven.”
Posted by Shirley Anne on August 28, 2012
I have been a Christian now for over 23 years. At first I soaked up all the information about my faith, God and Jesus Christ and what teachings there are in The Bible and it was a wonderful time of exploration in my life. Along the way I learned more and continued to seek knowledge and gain experience and remain doing this even now. I don’t think it is possible to know everything there is to know about God’s Kingdom during a human life-span. As Paul wrote in 1 Corinthians 12:1-13
If I speak in the tongues of men and of angels, but have not love, I am only a resounding gong or a clanging cymbal. 2 If I have the gift of prophecy and can fathom all mysteries and all knowledge, and if I have a faith that can move mountains, but have not love, I am nothing. 3 If I give all I possess to the poor and surrender my body to the flames, but have not love, I gain nothing.
4 Love is patient, love is kind. It does not envy, it does not boast, it is not proud. 5 It is not rude, it is not self-seeking,it is not easily angered, it keeps no record of wrongs. 6 Love does not delight in evil but rejoices with the truth. 7 It always protects, always trusts, always hopes, always perseveres.
8 Love never fails. But where there are prophecies, they will cease; where there are tongues, they will be stilled; where there is knowledge, it will pass away. 9 For we know in part and we prophesy in part, 10 but when perfection comes, the imperfect disappears. 11 When I was a child, I talked like a child, I thought like a child, I reasoned like a child. When I became a man, I put childish ways behind me. 12 Now we see but a poor reflection as in a mirror; then we shall see face to face. Now I know in part; then I shall know fully, even as I am fully known.
13 And now these three remain: faith, hope and love. But the greatest of these is love.
Many long-standing Christians sometimes go too far in the execution of their duty toward God. They are filled with knowledge and understanding right enough but many lack the love or rather do not show love especially to those not of the faith. One of the very basic teachings is to love one’s neighbour as one’s self yet the command is often lost whilst trying to reach out to others. There are many ways to please God and many more to displease Him. Mankind is born to sin, it is part of our nature and it is sin which separates us from God. For those of us who have accepted Jesus as their Saviour, those sins are paid for but that doesn’t mean sin should continue in our lives, we have to make every effort to stop sinning. We are in a constant battle to stay on-track with God. We forget sometimes that those we are trying to reach with The Good News, The Gospel, are just as we were before our conversion, without salvation, without Jesus and without their sins forgiven. God lays down the rules, He alone is the ultimate Judge. If as unbelievers we ignore God, ignore His rules and reject His love we stand condemned before Him and He will be our judge. It is human nature to judge others, to have an opinion about others, to criticise their lifestyles and behaviour but as Christians we must remember that we too were not perfect in the eyes of God, we are still not perfect and won’t be until we pass from this life. Christians have to stand up for what is right in God’s eyes, we must tell others about the consequences of their sinful behaviour by telling them about God’s love through Jesus Christ, the forgiveness of sins, everlasting life and salvation. This we need to do in love and with compassion for it is by God’s grace that we ourselves have been saved through our faith. God is a merciful and gracious God, a loving and a faithful God but He is also a righteous and holy God who must judge according to His own Law. When making a stand for the righteous Law of God we must however not make demands. We cannot judge what is done by others not of the faith when they come against God’s will by the sins in their life else we may be accused of bigotry and hatred, which is often the case these days. People feel they have the right to unbelief and they do have that right, they always have. Our duty as Christians is to point them to the Truth, to speak about The Good News, The Gospel and the coming Kingdom of God. We are not judges, yet, so let God be the judge and leave it all at His feet.
Posted in God, Gods love, Gods love through Jesus, Jesus, Jesus Christ and The Holy Spirit, Law, Lifestyle, Love, Religion, Righteousness, Salvation | Tagged: Christian, God, God's love, Good News, Jesus Christ, Religion and Spirituality, Salvation, Sin, The Gospel | Leave a Comment »
Posted by Shirley Anne on August 5, 2012
I suppose most, if not all my readers will have seen the film ‘The Sixth Sense‘ where a young boy claims to be able to see and communicate with the ghosts of those who are dead, specifically those killed unlawfully. Indeed many people lay claim to this or similar abilities. However these claims are very much debatable. Have you ever seen a ghost and if you did what did you think you were seeing? The first thing is to consider if indeed there are such things as ghosts. As a Christian I am led to believe in the spirit realm and I do believe we are capable of connecting with the spirits of other people. Now before you start thinking I am into spiritualism think again, there is no way as a Christian believer that I believe we can communicate with the spirit realm even though I believe it exists. God forbids such things. No, what I am saying is that often we receive ‘messages’ or better put we get ‘feelings’ when say a loved one is in danger or has been involved in an accident or something like that. It’s like having a sixth sense. Some would call it a premonition either before or after the fact. It could be that The Holy Spirit is guiding our thoughts, who knows? I do believe in angels, that is in their existence and capability to communicate with us and we with them. However, angels are not ghosts but spirit beings that manifest themselves as living fleshy beings when they reveal themselves. It is possible that I have spoken with an angel without knowing it. Now about ghosts, I don’t claim to have experienced such things and hopefully I will not if it means someone I love has to be in danger for it to happen but some people do lay such claims. They are often proved to be right when the bad news is revealed. Now the question is how are we capable of such things if we are not spirit beings and if we are spirit beings from whence does that spirit come? You see, many people refuse to believe they are spirit beings in a fleshy body and think everything is due to their brain. The brain is a wonderful thing but it is also a material thing so unless it happens to be a radio transmitter and receiver too there is no way it could be capable of connecting with something it cannot see! Some would then say well it is telepathy that allows those connections but what is telepathy? Is telepathy really the same as radio? If not, then telepathy would have to be a spiritual thing, something a physical thing is incapable of being. Either way it doesn’t explain the phenomenon that we call a sixth sense.
Posted by Shirley Anne on April 22, 2012
A couple of years ago my ex. and I met for the first time with a person I had only previously known via the Internet. Initially we were treated very well but as the time we shared together passed by I could sense some friction between us. It is hard to live with some people even for a short time and I guess she saw us, that is E and myself as being difficult at times. I also sensed it was more to do with E than it was to do with me. When we visited with her she had only two bedrooms and only two beds. This made the sleeping arrangements rather difficult as E and I could not share a bed and E needed the spare bed more than I did. That meant I either had to share the other bed with our host or sleep on the sofa. I chose the sofa. I could not share a bed with my host no matter how innocent the invitation, it just didn’t feel right. I was left therefore to fend for myself. Not very good hosting on the part of my friend I thought however I managed to find some blankets and settled down on the sofa. I spent three nights on that sofa and each night I was disturbed by the cat who wanted to share my sleeping arrangements. E required to eat something in order to take some of her medication which did make it awkward sometimes. I felt my friend found it difficult to accommodate E’s needs at times and it showed in her reactions. My friend, our host, slept in until almost lunchtime each day leaving us to fend for ourselves with nothing to do to wile away the hours. I found an old guitar, tuned it and sat on the veranda playing quietly to kill the time but was scolded later by my friend for disturbing her sleep-in. Some host! It is fair to say that we had some great times together despite all of this. Our visit only lasted three days and my friend had to return to work whilst we continued our holiday from the hotel we had booked. My friend brought us back to the city but not to our hotel, she decided to drop us off on the opposite side of the square from where the hotel was situated which meant that we had to struggle a little with getting back to the hotel with our luggage. I knew from that moment that our friendship had ended but I still love her and she will always be my friend. I still think about her and I do not hold anything against her, in fact she figures in my prayers every day along with all others I know who are not Christians. She ranks amongst those, especially some of my friends and acquaintances, who won’t or don’t accept Christ as their saviour preferring as they do to trust in their own understanding of who God is or believing in some strange philosophy that has nothing to do with God. What they fail to understand is that God says differently for there is no other name under heaven by which we can be reconciled to God other than through Jesus. It is so simple and yet people cannot see it. It isn’t surprising though as these things are recorded in the Bible but we pray nevertheless. God acts when we pray in accordance with His wishes. My hope is that all those I pray for will eventually realise their need in Christ and turn to him one day.
Posted by Shirley Anne on April 15, 2012
Where is this world headed? The future of mankind is often the subject of debate with many different views on offer. Some place our future in the hands of science and technology and our own abilities as human beings, others may say it is all in the hands of God, some even think we might be overtaken by aliens and yet others have no real opinion regarding our future or how it will pan out. The secularist will say that our future is entirely in our own hands and in a way that is perfectly true, we do determine our own fate, we are free agents. However, with all the unrest that’s going on throughout the world it seems to me that we do not learn by our mistakes. The idealised ‘utopia’ many consider to be the goal we are aiming for can never be achieved by our own efforts, history shows that we constantly keep making the same mistakes. There is war of one kind or another in many diverse places and according to a report I read a few years ago there are around 34 skirmishes in the world at any one time. We talk about brotherly love and goodwill to all others but we never seem to achieve it. Mankind is inherently sinful, we just cannot help ourselves. We simply find it difficult to live in harmony. Disputes often arise based upon race, religion, ethical standards, lifestyles and a host of other things simply because we are so diverse in our outlook and we are often reluctant to accept our differences. Everyone wants to have their say, promote their views but not everyone wants to leave it there. If we are seen to be different from those around us it can lead to friction, rejection even hatred. There is a future for mankind but it may not be the one we expect. For believers in God and Jesus Christ there is a future that non-believers want to believe, favouring their own but that is to be expected. The Bible is a collection of books covering many things but around one-third of it is prophecy, things that have been foretold before they happened and things yet to come to pass. For instance many of the prophecies have already been fulfilled long after they were written down and based on this fact we can assume with confidence that the remainder of the prophecies will, one day, be fulfilled. Even so just knowing this won’t make a skeptic believe until it actually happens by which time it will be too late to do anything about it. It’s like we have the knowledge that there is a bomb somewhere that is going to explode one day but we turn a blind eye to it and hope everything will be alright. The bomb could explode tomorrow, next year, twenty years into the future but for those who doubt or put the information to one side it will come as a great surprise when it does. To the open-minded amongst us it would be useful to know exactly what these as yet unfulfilled prophecies are so preparations can be made. The link below will reveal that information.
Posted by Shirley Anne on January 29, 2012
I had the strangest feeling last Friday evening. I had taken E out to lunch in the afternoon. We had travelled to various venues before arriving at the one we had originally thought of visiting in the first place. We had not been to this restaurant for quite some time, possibly more than twelve months but we had chosen well. We went the full three courses and I had my usual bottle of red wine. Later we indulged in a liqueur coffee before finally returning home. Well I actually was dropped off at the pub and I stayed there until well after midnight chatting with friends. E would have collected me had I phoned her but I decided to walk home instead. It was a dry and pleasant night if a little cold so the walk itself was nice but doing it in high heels was not to be recommended. I managed though and was home around one o’clock. I didn’t retire to bed until after two but spent some time online first. It didn’t take me long to board that train to Slumbertown but I was up again two hours later to pay the little girl’s room a visit. Half awake and half asleep I sat there a while and it was then that I was overcome with a very strong feeling, one I had never before experienced. Essentially it was a feeling of meaninglessness if there is such a word, a feeling that somehow my life was totally meaningless inasmuch as no matter what I do to be happy and to enjoy life in the end it is all quite meaningless and pointless. My thoughts turned to Scripture and specifically the Book of Ecclesiastes which describes what I was feeling about my life. I have mentioned this book before and I still recommend it as I do all of Scripture for what it contains. I have learnt to be happy and content with life, learnt to rest in the love of God and it is only because of that love that I find life bearable. We all want to be happy and content but do we really understand what that means? There are many pleasures to be had in life but they never completely satisfy the soul and we return to them repeatedly in the hope that we will have a good time and be happy. When the self-indulgent pleasure has passed we look forward to other things or a repeat of the same which tells me that life’s pleasures are but short-lived and have to be revisited over and over. In the end we tire of them. This is the feeling that I was experiencing. I realised that there is only one thing that lasts forever and it isn’t what my flesh and bones experience but it is what my spirit experiences, the love of God. Whilst I am in the flesh all I can do is to work, rest and play. I am on a merry-go-round that never stops and never really satisfies. I am constantly seeking new avenues for pleasure but it is all truly meaningless. We are but a breath, a whisper and our passing is hardly noticed in the vastness of the Universe. We live but for a short time and we are gone. All we can do is try to enjoy it the best we can. It’s what comes after that is more important.
Posted by Shirley Anne on December 26, 2011
Just to remind my brothers and sisters in Christ. Did you enjoy your holiday? Did you celebrate the birth of Jesus? Did you honour God by doing so? Think again. Please read again the post I placed here on 23rd December and ask yourselves whether you are truly following God’s instructions or are you simply following the traditions of men? Each time I read the article I pray that my fellow Christians would repent and come out of the ways of the world. I include myself in those prayers. In Jesus’ name
Posted in Christianity, God, Jesus, Jesus Christ and The Holy Spirit | Tagged: Christ, Christianity, Christmas, God, Jesus, Jesus Christ, Nativity of Jesus, Religion and Spirituality | Leave a Comment »
Posted by Shirley Anne on November 30, 2011
Despite it being very windy, occasionally raining and unusually warm, it isn’t the weather I dislike. In fact I love Autumn, No, it is the approach to Christmas. I hate the advertising on television which promotes and encourages unnecessary spending. Assumptions are made that everyone is looking forward to the day and accordingly promotes good times using carefully selected music and filming. Many people will be feeling left out of things because they are poor or have no family to share the time with, maybe some will be living alone. Whilst I do not agree now with holding Christmas festivities when once I did, I do realise that I am in the minority. I have written about this on several occasions here in the past year or thereabouts so I won’t re-iterate again. Christmas isn’t about the birth of a saviour anymore, it has become a hedonistic and lavish experience for most people. People will say that Christmas is for children and they want to make sure that their children enjoy the now ‘magical’ time with plenty of presents and good food. That wasn’t the original reason for celebrating Christmas. The real reason for celebrating Christmas although believed to be sincere is probably debatable in light of what Scripture dictates but nevertheless even that is ignored in favour of the modern empty version. The atmosphere surrounding the approach to the day is full of hype and is all commercially generated. It is all so false and without meaning. Is it any wonder that people do not believe in the true message that Christmas was supposed to convey? They want the tinsel, the bright lights, the food and drink, the ‘good times’, the short-lived season of ‘goodwill to all men’ and then return to their hum-drum lives the following week where none of the ‘goodwill’ goes with them. I see signs in the back windows of cars which read, ‘A dog is not just for Christmas, it is for life’, in an attempt to curb the practice of dumping the animal at the RSPCA once the novelty has worn off. Well ‘Jesus isn’t just for Christmas’ either but how many even consider that, or even believe it?
Posted in Advertising, Celebration, God, Jesus, Life, Lifestyle, Religion | Tagged: Calendar, Christianity, Christmas, Decorations and Props, Holiday, Literature, Opinions, Religion and Spirituality | Leave a Comment »
Posted by Shirley Anne on November 14, 2011
4 Anyone who is among the living has hope—even a live dog is better off than a dead lion!
5 For the living know that they will die,
but the dead know nothing;
they have no further reward,
and even their name is forgotten.
6 Their love, their hate
and their jealousy have long since vanished;
never again will they have a part
in anything that happens under the sun.
Following on from yesterdays post I thought about death and all that surrounds it. The verse above more or less says it all but it talks of this world, it talks of things to do with the flesh as much as it talks about the spirit. Those we knew in life who have passed into death know nothing, they have ceased to exist. There is a promise to be raised from the grave and into a new body and a new life for those who believe in God and have placed their faith, trust and hope in Jesus Christ but whilst even they lie in the grave it is as if they never existed. People do strange things at funerals, burial sites and memorials, acting as if they were in the presence of the dead when in fact they are completely alone! Watching part of proceedings surrounding the burial of Jimmy Saville recently I saw people applauding the passage of the hearse in which his body lay. Why the applause, why not simply a bowed head? Then it was told that he had requested to be buried at a 45 degree angle overlooking the sea so that he could look out over it! How preposterous is that? The man is dead, what possible reason is there to be buried that way, especially as he won’t be there to enjoy it? Ridiculous! I hear you say, ‘But it was his last request’, agreeing with the stupidity of it all. About eighteen months ago a Christian brother was cremated in a cardboard coffin. He realised that to spend such a lot of money on a wooden coffin only to have it burned was a silly thing to do and a unecessary expense for his widow. Now that is sensible. We place far too much emphasis on tradition instead of applying common sense sometimes. When we are dead we are dead, gone, final and it is pointless for those who live to continually mourn over their lost ones. Memories should be sufficient and indeed they are. Love those you love whilst you have them with you.
Posted in Death and mortality, God, Jesus Christ and The Holy Spirit, Life, Religion | Tagged: Christianity, Death and mortality, Disc jockey, God, Jesus, Jesus Christ, Jimmy Savile, Leeds, Leeds General Infirmary, Life, Religion and Spirituality | Leave a Comment »
Posted by Shirley Anne on October 19, 2011
If there is a silly season in the year it has got to be around about now. We are approaching ‘Halloween‘, Bonfire Night (Guy Fawkes Day), Remembrance Day, Advent, Christmas, New Years, Mid-Winters Day. Most, if not all these events are based on superstition or are man-made and have no basis in truth. Halloween is messing about with forces of evil and showing disrespect to a loving God. Bonfire night is a celebration of an attempt to blow up the Houses of Parliament, a wicked deed which should be condemned and not celebrated. Remembrance day pays honour to the forces of evil and not the memory of those who have fallen (see http://www.midnightministries.org.uk/funerals.htm ), Advent is a man-made festival which has no basis in Christianity, Christmas is likewise a man-made festival which celebrates Christ‘s death! That is what the word ‘Mass’ means. Not that many people celebrate Christmas for the right reasons anyway! Mid-winter festivals are based in paganism and New Year similarly so. People follow the traditions of men, want nothing to do with God unless it is a token gesture. If asked, many people wouldn’t be able to give a reason for why they follow blindly after the things their peers or friends do. Ask the question of yourself and if there is any benefit to you in this type of indulgence.
Posted by Shirley Anne on August 4, 2011
Ok you are sitting there in front of God (bear with me) because your life has ended and you wonder what is going to happen. You’ve heard stories about heaven and hell, the lake of burning sulphur and the devil standing there with fork in hand waiting for your arrival and you are terrified! No, this isn’t about religion or salvation but God surprises you by giving you another shot at life and you find yourself back on earth, not as an infant and not as an adult but as a youth who is a little bit wise and open to new things. Realising that you have been given another chance but forgetting who gave it to you or why, what do you do?
Looking back over your former life you see areas that you feel guilty about, people you’ve hurt along the way, things you’ve done but now regret. Maybe you see missed opportunities or bad dealings in business affairs, wrong choices in vocation or lifestyle and this time you feel you’ll not make the same mistakes again.
Think about your life and what you might change about it given the chance. What would you change? Having thought about what you might have changed are there areas that you still have time to change and if so, why don’t you do it? What is holding you back?
Posted by Shirley Anne on August 4, 2011
Life on this planet gets progressively worse. Stabbings, shootings, murders of all kinds, robbery, burglary, assault, intimidation, fraud, drunkenness, debauchery, sexual violence, sexual deviation, pornography and much more go on all around us every day. Some of you reading this will perhaps know of these things first-hand and may even participate in some of them! Well I don’t know for certain who browses my blog save those who tell me. We hear of disasters on a monumental scale, some natural and some brought about by mankind. Wars, uprisings and volatile situations between nations never cease, one ends and another begins. People will blame anyone but themselves for the state of this world. How many times have you heard, ‘Where is God in all of this’? Or, ‘Why doesn’t God intervene’? Loved ones die and we blame God for not doing something about it. The amazing thing here is that those who blame God don’t know Him, they don’t believe in Him, yet they still blame Him. As they say in the US, ‘go figure’. Yes, you might well say go figure (that one out). The sad fact is that people can witness things with their eyes yet still remain blind! They cannot experience God for they have shut Him out of their lives and no amount of explanation or teaching will convince them otherwise. For anyone who doesn’t believe that men have walked upon the Moon it is impossible to tell them otherwise. No amount of pictures, interviews with astronauts, pieces of evidence brought back will convince the unbeliever for they have made their minds up. It is just the same with God, no amount of witnesses, miracles and other evidence will convince the unbeliever of His existence. Yet the evidence is all around them, they simply cannot see or reason and they are blind to the truth. Did you ever wonder why atheists vehemently deny God? What motivates them? Many consider God to be an imposition on their lifestyle, they do not want to be shown that what they do is wrong because they don’t think what they do is wrong. They do not know God for if they did they would not be so liberal with their lives and what they do with it. To know God is to know true love, perfect love and perfect love casts out all fear. We can live in this wicked world in the knowledge and comfort of a relationship with God. When we walk in His ways (and I know none of us do that fully) we can be sure of His presence and even His input into our lives as His will dictates. When we know God personally through Jesus Christ we have a relationship with Him. He has become our Father and we have a bond that cannot be broken. For those who complain that God isn’t there when they need Him I say get into a relationship with Him first and then you’ll know if He’s there or not. Your heart has to be willing, you need to be sincere for God to respond but He will and His promises are true. Want to know where God is? He is right there beside you, waiting……………..
Posted by Shirley Anne on July 29, 2011
I was watching a program on television about someone walking forgotten paths around the countryside. This particular walk was in the Highlands of Scotland on a no longer existing railway route through the hills and valleys around the Lochs in the area. The walk was being done by a woman and for part of the way she was being accompanied by a local older man. He was dressed in a kilt and was explaining his interest in the area, his family connections and where his ancestors had been buried. He mentioned that he intended to be buried in the same place and pointed to his chosen spot. The woman remarked that it was a nice place to be buried with all that wonderful scenery about. Now this is where it gets a bit silly. What difference does it make to a dead person where they are buried? They will not be able to enjoy the place. They will not be able to see it, smell it or touch it, they will be dead! They will know nothing, they will be no more. I cannot understand why people think this way, especially as most people are quite intelligent. It is illogical to think that wherever you are buried when dead makes any difference at all. A similar thing happens when people insist on visiting the remains of deceased loved ones to ‘chat’ with them! They mutter words into thin air over a grave or place where ashes are buried and leave wreaths or some flowers as a token gesture. Some go to great lengths to tidy up the grave as if it makes any difference to the bones lying beneath the sods! Some will say that it makes them feel better when they do these things and they are acting out of respect for the deceased. The shame is that the deceased doesn’t even know what is going on and anything they do has no affect on them. What part of ‘deceased’ don’t people understand? In reality it is far better to love the person whilst they are alive, pay them respect whilst they live because when they are dead it is too late! If you love someone, show them. Don’t wait until they are dead before letting them know for they will not be able to hear you.
Posted in Behaviour, People, Relationships, Religion | Tagged: Death, Death Care, Loch, Recreation and Sports, Relationship, Religion and Spirituality, Scotland, Scottish Highlands, Walking | 4 Comments »
Posted by Shirley Anne on July 11, 2011
Many people today worship idols but probably are unaware that they do. An idol is something that holds your attention sometimes at the expense of more important things. In fact always at the expense of more important things! Marriages and relationships break down, time is wasted on futile and non-essential things. For a season we indulge in our passions at the expense of a better life. Now you may be thinking, what exactly are these ‘idols’? Hobbies that take over all our time, hero-worship, these days usually defined as a favourite music band, a singer or a group, a football player or the whole team (probably more usual). Some people just cannot get enough information about their favourite idol and buy all the magazine literature there is just to get a glimpse of their lifestyles and live in a permanent state of awe. So called ‘stars’, ‘celebrities’ and people in the public eye strut about like they were something special compared to the rest of us mortals and people love it! There is nothing wrong with most of these things if taken very light-heartedly and not too seriously of course but the danger remains in spending too much of our own lives and time following after the exploits of others. Don’t we have lives of our own? There are other things too that can take up too much of our time, drink (alcohol), drugs and other unsavoury and unnecessary things for a happy life and we should be especially careful in these matters. As a Christian I have to be very careful that I don’t spend time in ‘idol worship‘ at the expense of spending more time with God and the things He would have me do with my time. I have never been into ‘celebrities’, don’t have a favourite movie, book or author and things of that nature that I over-indulge myself with, in fact I only read non-fiction anyway. There are pleasures to be had in life of course and we shouldn’t eliminate everything that takes our time but we should consider the consequences of not doing so.
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Posted by Shirley Anne on June 16, 2011
I am so unworthy of my Makers love. He has put up with my rebellion, my anger, my wrongdoing and all the other things that offend Him but what has He done about it? Showered me with His love! Gave me an escape route where there was none before I knew Him. He gave me His only begotten Son as a sacrifice, an atonement for my misbehaviour, my sins. He gave me Jesus Christ who took upon Himself the sins of the world, MY sins! How wonderful is the love of God, how far beyond all understanding. What a faithful and loving God He is. I am not worthy of His love but I rely upon it. I believe in God my Maker, His Son, the Lord Jesus Christ and in His Holy Spirit who is my guide through life. Whenever I stumble He picks me up. Whenever I transgress He pulls me up and shows me my error. Whenever I am feeling down He lifts me up and reminds me of His love. He prompts me when I am slow to act. How wonderful is my God. He gave me life where there was no life before……
You caught me Lord as I lifted my hands to you,
You caught me Lord as I lifted my voice to you,
You caught me Lord when I poured out my heart to you Lord,
Then you touched me Lord,
Yes you touched me my sweet Lord,
Then you touched me Lord,
Yes you touched me my sweet Lord,
And you gave me life, where there was no life before.
Copyright Shirley Anne 5 Feb 1993
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Posted by Shirley Anne on June 8, 2011
Mankind is constantly on a quest for knowledge, never satisfied with what is known but always seeking further knowledge about the environment in which we live, the way things work, how they are constructed, the origin of our being, the origin of the Universe and an endless list of other things. Mankind’s appetite for knowledge cannot be quenched, it appears that we are ‘programmed’ to seek out these things. Too much knowledge can be a bad thing, too little can be dangerous. We have to know how we came to be and why, was it by accident or design? The simplest answer is that we were designed, not by Nature but by a Creator God. In the Old Testament of The Bible are many things about the Earth that could not have been known when the words were written down but have only become known in more very recent times. We can go on seeking knowledge by ourselves but ultimately we can know many things now simply by reading that book. It is a book about life, how it was created and why. It is worth reading and will address many of the questions we seek the answers to if we open our hearts to what it says. Either that or we continue to seek answers elsewhere and ultimately get nowhere.
Posted by Shirley Anne on June 6, 2011
The other day my friend and I dined out together in a pub/inn/restaurant that E and I often visit. When visiting these places it isn’t obligatory to dress in one’s finest but I always make an effort when dining out. The dress code is almost always smart and casual and that is how I generally dress when out. Occasionally I see people in these places who either haven’t any decent clothes to wear, can’t be bothered to wear them if they have them or are simply slobs! Most people however are dressed in an appropriate manner. Yesterday found me on the roof of my garage dressed in a summer skirt and top and wearing make-up too, although I never go out without my make-up on! I was re-routing a rainwater drain pipe to permanently drain onto the garage roof instead of it draining on to what will be a raised paved area at the front of the house. Essentially I was incorrectly dressed to do that work and to carry out the other jobs I ended up doing like fixing other pipework, repairing a minor break in the roof seal and digging out weeds with E. I hadn’t intended to do some of that work but did so anyway. When I am out at work people often ask about my mode of dress but really speaking I seldom get myself too dirty to make what I am wearing a problem. In any case I do have overalls (coveralls) should I desperately need them! Once upon a time people used to have outer garments, coats and such when going out on a Saturday night in winter. These days men are seen wearing just a shirt and women a flimsy dress with much bare skin exposed to the cold night air. Many places don’t have a manned cloakroom nowadays so any outer garment has to be carried all night long. In life many of us go ill prepared for the situations in which we might find ourselves but it is a physical thing, we don’t take care of ourselves as we should. Despite our lack of self-care in the physical realm we do not usually neglect our spiritual well-being, how we treat ourselves spiritually, or do we? We can do many things to ensure we are spiritually happy whilst we are alive but after death then what?
When we die we have only our spirit to worry about. The flesh has stopped working, it has decayed or is going to unless it gets incinerated. Either way we leave it behind. Now we are in the spiritual realm and we are in a position whereby we can do nothing about our spiritual well-being. The fact is we can look after our spiritual well-being for when we are dead but it has to be done whilst we are alive! Our spirit wasn’t made when we were born as if it had to be composed of a material substance, no, it was made or created without substance! It has no substance. However it exists and will always do so unless it’s maker decides otherwise! That being the case don’t you suppose that it is important to ensure that your spirit is properly ‘dressed’ for the place to which it returns? That place is in the presence of our Creator God. The decision to take care of your spiritual well-being has to be made now for when you die it is too late. Get properly dressed for the occasion!
Posted by Shirley Anne on April 17, 2011
There is an old joke about a Thermos flask. If you put a hot liquid in the flask it stays hot and if you put a cold liquid in the flask it stays cold. How does it know what to do? Silly joke really. It all hinges on the fact that a vacuum does not allow heat to be conducted (there is a little heat conducted through the neck where there is no vacuum and also some very slight radiant heat loss too). It is basic physics. Each Spring we see plants ‘springing back to life’ in response to the warmer weather, leaves form and blossom grows but of course the plant is alive throughout the year. Some plants simply wind down for the Winter such as the evergreen varieties whilst the deciduous varieties go into a form of hibernation. Seeds left in the ground from last years’ plant growth respond to the change in temperature and begin to grow themselves. You might say that this is simply a response to temperature but in fact the seed has to ‘die’ before it can be reborn to form a new plant. Having ‘died’ then, what is the cause of its rebirth? Is it purely a chemical reaction and a response to temperature in which case the plant or seed isn’t really a living entity but merely a collection of chemicals that only responds to the environment where they are situated? Are plants really alive? If they are living things then it is more than simply a chemical reaction. Taking this one step further are we as human beings living creatures or do we simply respond to the environment? It might seem a logical question to ask but in fact it is not. We live and breathe just as plants do but we are capable of cognitive thoughts. There is more to us than the mere chemicals that form our physical being. If our thoughts were dependent on the chemicals we are made of we would all be the same, clones of each other but we are not! That means there is something in us that is totally independent of our physical being. There is a spirit within us that is the real us! So where did this spirit originate? Was it always there? If our spirits have always existed where were they before they were in us? Why don’t we remember where we’ve been before? The answer is that both we and our spirit were created, one part of us dies but the other lives on to return from whence it came, to the Creator. Think about it.