Tuesday, August 24, 2010

Books Books Books

Sometimes, I feel guilty for reading books that don’t have anything to do with God, such as Harry Potter or Twilight. But when I really start to think about it, it seems silly. God created the universe and then created us in His image. So we humans get our creativity from the Lord. Authors like J. K. Rowling and Stephanie Meyer are just using that gift in order to create other worlds. People have compared Harry Potter to Christian themes- the way Harry dies for everyone who is fighting with him, his friends, teachers, and even some enemies. I can see why people compare the two; however, I can also see how the two are completely different. Many people have gotten very up in arms about this subject, mainly Christians. They think it’s horrible to say that a story about witchcraft and wizardry could ever be compared to the story of Jesus and that it’s a doorway into that witchcraft. Once again I can see both sides to this argument. On one hand it is absolutely ridiculous to compare the world of Harry Potter to real witchcraft. Those who have practiced Wicca may laugh at the thought of it because if Wicca was so easy as to just wave a wand and say a ‘magic’ word then many more people would be involved. But it’s not. The real world of witchcraft is much more complicated. On the other hand, I understand the doorway opinion because the world of Harry Potter is enchanting (which, by the way, is exactly the way any story should be) and some readers may wish, desperately, that it were real. So, they go in search of witchcraft on the Internet or library and what do they find? The Wicca section. Great. So, yes, I understand both sides. So I suppose those secure in their salvation through Jesus could read the book series and appreciate it for what it is; a story, and not be influenced by any “doorways” that may or may not be there.

Lets go back to the first sentence of the above paragraph. Why do I feel guilty? Well, the first answer that pops into my head is because I probably should be reading something more biblical or at least in some way Christian. But why? I go to school and have to read about non-Christian things all the time in class… why is this so different? I think the real issue of this is how I view my relationship with God. A good example of this could go like this: When classes are in session and I have work, I usually get fairly stressed out about my relationship with God. This is because throughout my day I am holding up one hand to God, as if to say “Wait, wait, let me just finish this and then I’ll spend time with You” and using the rest of my energy to do homework for classes or get a project for work done. But if I invited God into my day to share it with me and to invite Him to teach me anything He may want to teach me, I think the day would go very differently. The same goes for reading books. Instead of saying to God, “Wait, let me just finish this series and then Ill start reading Your Word again,” I could talk to Him about the book- the themes, characters, and overall creativeness of it. This may help me to see more in the story and may also strengthen my relationship with Jesus.

Monday, June 14, 2010


So, I've been having some issues with forgiveness. I know I need to forgive because Jesus said, "If you forgive those who sin against you, your heavenly Father will forgive you. But if you refuse to forgive others, your Father will not forgive your sins."- Matthew 6:14-15. So there is someone I need to forgive. Every part of my flesh rejects this idea. I don't want to forgive this person... I would much rather kick them in the shins multiple times!!! However, on my more sane days, I realize by not forgiving this person, it is holding me back in my walk with my Lord. I can hold myself back enough, I don't need any more help, thank-you. So, I've tried to start my journey to forgiveness. I'm at the very beginning so I haven't gotten very far yet. But this is the question I've asked myself and God: How do you forgive someone who hasn't asked for your forgiveness and how do you treat them once you have forgiven them, especially if you don't want to be friends with them?
At this moment, when I see this peron, it feels like someone has punched me in the stomach and I can't breathe very well. And on top of that, I get so angry and hurt that they won't just come up to me and say, "I'm sorry". This is so annoying and I would really like for it to stop. How do I make it stop? I need to forgive! GRRRRR....

Anyways, in the book The Shack, the author touches on forgiveness. This is what he says, "Forgiveness is first for you, the forgiver, to release you from something that will eat you alive, that will destroy your joy and your ability to love fully and openly. Do you think this man cares about the pain and torment you have gone through? If anything he feeds on that knowledge. Don't you want to cut that off? And in doing so you'll release him from a burden that he carries whether he knows it or not- acknowledges it or not. When you choose forgive another, you love him well."

Now, the person I'm trying to forgive probably doesn't feed on the knowledge that they caused me pain, but I certainly don't think he cares very much. This is also very painful. But to let this whole mess continue to upset me, I put my happiness and joy in the hand of this person and thats not where it should be. Therefore, I'm trying very hard to put my happiness and joy in the hands of God, who will never disappoint.

In The Shack the main character asks how to forgive the person who took his daughter away. God says to simply speak it; there is power in what God's children declare. So this is what I've got to do. Declare forgiveness for this person. I don't know how long it will take but it'll get there eventually.

Falling Away

It's been a really long time since I posted. I fell away from God for a pretty good chunk of time, not something I'm proud of but there you go. As painful as it was, it taught me alot. I never understood how someone could fall away from God after being so close with Him. Now I understand that its a slow process- for example, I started being so focused on school, I kept forgetting to pray or read. I thought, "Once summer starts, it'll get better." But it didn't. That's what started the slow process of falling away. After that, it was all on me. Because I hadn't been close to God for such a long time, I started to get used to it. At first it hurt to be away from Him. It felt like my spirit was raw. But after a while. it didn't hurt so much anymore. Until it came to trying to go back to God. That was painful. First I was hit with the realization of how far I had gotten, then the guilt. I would ask for forgiveness and hope that this time would be different from the others. It usually wasn't. So I would fall back again.

Then came a situation I put myself in. It was a situation that I swore to myself that I would never EVER be in.. but there I was. Right in the middle of it. I won't get into specifics here, those closest to me know what I'm talking about. It could have been much worse than it actually was, but it was bad for me. Once out of the situation, I hated myself for letting myself get to that point. After that I still tried to go back to God and now it was excruciating. It felt like acid was being poured on my insides. I still never stayed with God for very long. In the books Black, Red and White by Ted Dekker, he portrays our relationship with God in an interesting way:

The book is about the main character falling into a dream world that is somehow connected to this reality, only it’s a completely different world. One in which your walk with God is physical rather than spiritual. In this world, you must bath in this certain body of water in order to remain pure. If you go too long without bathing in this water, your skin turns scabby and it is extremely painful. However once you get pass the first few days of it, the pain recedes and you become comfortable within the scabbiness, not only that but it also starts to be appealing. If you decide to come back to God, you must bath in the water. To do this is beyond painful. It burns as if it isn’t water, but actually acid. But once you are clean again, you realize how dangerous it is to not bath every day.
This is THE best explanation I’ve ever seen about how it feels to be with God, fall away from God, and then come back to God. Anyway...

FINALLY one night it worked. I was in tears talking to God again. And for some reason, this time was different. I still have some off days but nothing like it was before. I can read the bible and find something beautiful every time now. I can't stop drinking it in. It's quite wonderful. Now, I keep getting fascinated with topics like judging and forgiveness that I can't stop reading up on them. By the way, Blue Like Jazz is a very good book to read concerning judging. Actually its a really good book in general. The author's style is a little strange but funny in a way. I think the first few chapters are tough to get through but after that, its amazing.

Sunday, August 30, 2009

In Total Agreement?

This post might be a little all over the place… I’ve a few things I want to say. First let me warn you that since classes are starting next week for me I probably won’t be posting often… Hopefully I will find time but seeing as I find it hard to maintain 4 classes without dropping one I have a feeling I’m going to be really frazzled.


I came across someone who felt that if all Christians have the same Holy Spirit in them then they should agree on everything pertaining to Jesus, God and The Way. Honestly, this threw me for a few days along with a few other things and because of these things my spirit ached. But while reading in Romans in chapter 14 I saw that Paul was telling the believers in Rome not to argue amongst themselves about what is ok to eat and what is not. A little further on, he tells them not to argue about which days are holy. Where in the Bible does it say that all believers once they accept the Holy Spirit will agree on everything? Nowhere. In fact, Paul is constantly telling believers in Rome, Corinth and Philippi to please agree with one another. Why do this unless there was dissension? (Romans 14:1-9, 1 Corinthians 1:10, Philippians 4:2)

Once someone accepts the Holy Spirit into their heart, yes, their life will be changed. However, it doesn’t mean they know everything right then and there. We have a lot of learning and growing to do. All believers are at a different level of their faith and all grow at different paces. People don’t become robots when they become believers; they still have their own opinions. People who have opinions clash with other people who have opinions. Ephesians 4:22-24 says that we need to let the Holy Spirit change our thoughts and attitudes. He will teach us and help us to be more like God. This is difficult! It doesn’t take one day, one week or even 50 years. We will always make mistakes in this life. We aren’t perfect, but the Bible says to aim for perfection.

“Finally, brothers and sisters, good-by. Aim for perfection, listen to my appeal, be of one mind, and live in peace. And the God of love and peace will be with you.” -1 Corinthians 13:11

Another thing I wanted to get off my chest... I Love Jesus. LOVE Him. He is MY (and everyone elses) Savior. If you love someone ALOT then wouldn't you fight for them? Even in a regular relationship? Someone says a lie about your boyfriend or girlfriend or bestfriend you would stick up for them and fight for them, right? Right. Well guys. I'm fighting for My God. Someone told me certain things, about Calvinism, that aren't true. It messed me up for a few weeks and actually had me doubting the Bible and what it said about God's character. It honestly seemed hopeless and I was very nearly convinced that my God was mean and unloving. Creating a group of people specifically to send them to hell? Ouch. As I said above, this really made my spirit ache. Especially when I would read verses about how Jesus came to save The World. Not just a couple people. The world. So I fought for the God I believed and trusted for the last 6 years. I fought for Him because I love Him very much. He is the one who I cried to over breakups. He is also the one I yelled at because of the breakup. He was patient with me while I had my little tantrum and then He opened my eyes. I knew the relationship was sour and not good for me, I just didn't want to accept it. He waited until I did and then helped me to get over the boy. His Word comforted me when I felt my heart being ripped out of my chest. He was always there. The very least He deserves is me fighting for Him when all seems lost. Darrin, Melanie and I searched scripture and prayed on it and we found the Truth. Everyone is chosen. But each one of us as individuals are given the choice to follow Jesus. Simple. Truth. Love.

Ok. I'm dont ranting lol. Hope to post again soon. ❤✟❤

Saturday, August 15, 2009


Hey everyone! I wanna start this entry off with telling you who my God is. My God is the one who created the heavens of the earth, who came down in human form and died on the cross for ALL mankind’s sin. He is “especially fond” (a The Shack reference ;]) of each and every person who has walked, does walk and will walk this earth. My God’s love is endless.
There. Now that I’ve gotten that off my chest, I will move onto the main subject of this blog entry. Calvinism. I was talking to a friend of mine a few weeks ago and he brought it up. I didn’t understand exactly what it was so I finally did some research on it. What I found made my heart ache for my friend. He thinks that this is the way God works and its just not true.
If you Google Calvinism you will find that it is summed up in the mnemonic TULIP. After studying up I’ve found that the T, Total depravity/Total inability, is the only one that Calvin seemed to get right. Total depravity says that because of “Adam and Eve’s disobedience to God sin has extended to all parts of every person's being”. Total inability says that it’s impossible for an ordinary human being to understand the Gospel’s message. The verses they give to back up these are Romans 5:12 and Mark 4:11. And I would also like to add John 1:5.
The rest of the mnemonic I would love to just throw out the window.

The U stands for Unconditional election. This basically says that God divided humanity into two groups, those He would make knowledgeable about Himself and those whom He would not. The latter are damned to Hell. The verses used to support this are Romans 5:15 and 9:21.
Why would God create a group of people who were made specifically to go to Hell? Why create them at all? He didn’t. Just because God knows who will choose The Way doesn’t give them any less of a choice in the matter. The verses found to refute this point of view were found by the people I go to Bible study with. (Thanks Darrin and Mel!!). Ezekial 33:11 says that The Lord takes NO PLEASURE in the death of wicked people. 1 Timothy 2:3-4 says that God wants EVERYONE to be saved. 2 Peter 3:9 says that God doesn’t want anyone to be destroyed but He wants EVERYONE to repent. Once again, I will be using something from The Shack…. God created us to share in his fullness but then Adam chose to go it alone, as God knew he would and everything got messed up. But instead of scrapping the whole creation, God rolled up His sleeves and entered into the middle of the mess- which He did through Jesus (pg 101).
The L stands for Limited atonement. This says that Jesus did not die to save all humans but He only died for the specific sins of those sinners who are saved. The verses given to support this idea are Matthew 26:28 and Ephesians 5:25. Now using these verses is really stretching it. Constantly throughout the Bible it says that what Jesus did, He did for THE WORLD. All we have to do is accept this gift. Because otherwise, how can you use a gift without first accepting it? The verse I have to support my claim is possibly the most well known… John 3:16. “For God so loved THE WORLD that He gave his only begotten Son that WHOEVER BELIEVES in Him will not perish but have eternal life.” And seriously, go to and type in “the world” and I’m sure you’ll find plenty more where that came from.
The I stands for Irresistible grace. None of ‘the elect’ can resist the call. The verses for this are John 6:44, Romans 8:14 and 1 Peter 5:10. I don’t think this is true at all! This interferes with the fact that God gave human kind free will. If we don’t have a choice in the matter then are we really more than robots? God gives each person on this earth the same choice: to believe in Him or not to believe in Him. John 6:66 says that at this point many of his disciples turned away and deserted him. Back in 6:64 it says that Jesus knew those who would desert him. But he didn’t send them away saying “Leave because you’re going to do it anyway.” He still gave them a chance. Also in 6:70 Jesus says that He chose the twelve, but that one of them was a devil. But He Chose The Twelve Of Them! Judas always had the choice of turning away from his evil thoughts but he didn’t. Even after he betrayed Jesus he could have repented and He would have been forgiven. But he CHOSE to hang himself.
Now finally, we come to the P. This stands for the Perseverance of the saints. This basically means that once you are saved you are always saved. You will never be able to lose your salvation. Philippians 1:6, Romans 8:28-39, John 6:39. This view is one of the most deceptive in all the world. Many believe that salvation is a one-time deal. So this means that today you can accept Jesus into your heart and tomorrow and for the rest of your life never pray or pick up your Bible and you will still go to heaven. WRONG. What would happen if you were to stop talking with and spending time with your boyfriend or girlfriend? The relationship would fade until there wasn’t one anymore. Accepting Jesus into your heart is beginning a relationship with the living God. You can’t just go to church once a week and for the rest of the week live in sin. I’m sorry it just doesn’t work that way. In Philippians 2:12 it says that we need to daily work out our salvation. My Bible specifically says “Work hard to show the results of your salvation obeying God with a deep reverence and fear.”

It all comes down to this: Jesus died for the entire world. Anyone and everyone has the chance to believe. Once you accept Jesus into your heart you’ve started a new relationship. All He asks is that you Love him with every ounce of yourself. If you truly love God are you going to go out and rob a liquor store? That’s to a bit of the extreme but you get my drift. Or how about this? Say you are married. If you love your wife/husband with all your heart are you going to go out and cheat on them? No.
I hope you guys have gained new insight on Calvinism and maybe The Way as well. Till next post- <3

Monday, July 13, 2009


I don't know about you, but for me, balance is a hard thing to sustain and to obtain once I've lost it. I remember last summer I had a very close relationship with God. I was praying everyday and reading my bible.. I really feel like He was talking to me everyday. Then classes began in the fall. But I was still very balanced. I delt with school and keep close to God. Everything was well balanced. But slowly I started slipping. Soon I began thinking things like, "After I finish and hand in my 4 page paper I can focus better on God, but right now I need to get this done" and "Once the summer begins, and school is over I can focus more on God."

Wanna Know What? I was wrong. I didn't become closer to God after the paper or the homework or even when the summer started. And now it's the middle of summer vacation and I dont feel very close to God. I've disapointed myself yet again.

Something that's happened recently has forced me to realize just why I lose my balance. Lately, I've been trying to lose weight. It's been all I've been thinking about for the past month. Now I understand why my focus shifts. I feel that if I pay any less attention on school or losing weight or whatever is occupying my attention, I will drop everything. I'll fail a class or I'll lose momentum in yet another weight loss battle and gain weight.

Once I realized that deep down thats what I thought would happen, I felt like my eyes were open. I understand why my brain went in that direction but I also see how that thought process is so completely wrong!

When God is the main focus of your life, you arent going to drop anything. Having a full relationship with Jesus will make you less anxious, less worried, and better focused (in a healthy way) on all the other things. God is helping all of us carry our load. He understand when the schoold work piles up or when we aren't happy with our bodies. He doesn't want us to be stressed and miserable! He wants us to be joyful and at peace!

As I wrote that last paragraph, I had the impression that I was writing it for myself as much as for others who struggle in similar ways. God gave me a "Gibb's slap". And if you go to google and type in Gibb's slap, Urban Dictionary has the definition for those who don't know =].

Monday, June 29, 2009

The Shack

I want to talk about The Shack by Wm. Paul Young. Personally, I rank it up there with my absolute favorite book,Edge of Eternity by Randy Alcorn. But now, The Shack takes its place. It is an amazing book.
There is so much controversy over this 252 page paperback (or however long the hardcover is ;]). This book helped me to understand the Trinity without making my brain want to explode and it also tackled the institutionalized church, the man made system. I can see very well where people would get upset. In the book, Jesus addresses insitutions and says that’s not what he came to build. “What I see are people and their lives, a living breathing community of all those who love me, not buildings and programs (pg 180).” Ut oh. What does that mean? Could it mean that God doesn’t care what church we belong to as long as we fellowship with other believers and love Him with all our heart, mind and spirit? Could it also mean that He doesn’t care how many programs someone belongs to especially if that’s how that person thinks that is the way to please God?
Guys, God just wants a relationship with us. I swear, it is that simple.
And Young wasn’t saying that in the end everyone will be saved. In the book, God said that he has forgiven everyone.This is true, however, it is still our choice whether or not to accept that forgiveness. If you don’t accept a gift that someone gives you, you can’t get any use out of it, can you?