RELIGION & MY LIFE SERIES- I LIVE BY THE K.I.S.S. PRINCIPLE

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We all know what the acronym K.I.S.S. means (Keep It Simple Stupid)  to me it makes a lot of sense. This principle transcends generations and I believe I have learned it from my parents.

Now one might think it would be an easy thing to do, but it is!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

I believe it gets easier as you start to internalise it and live it, because after a while it becomes natural, automatic. Here’s how I try to live my life and I don’t believe I have F.O.M.O. ( Fear Of Missing Out) either.

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Praise & Worship……….I make God and His Son Jesus the centre of my life. I base my life on what Jesus would say, do and think.  I try to look at people the way Jesus would see them. The Lord has made the sabbath, a day of rest…that doesn’t mean I can’t work, if my job requires it. It means to make time for the Lord, communicating and thanking Him for everything in my life. To have quality, family time together. Spend time with my spouse and children, give them my undivided attention, make them feel loved and special.

Family….as a parent I have a responsibility to teach and correct my children. I don’t have to be their best friend but someone who cares enough to tell them of their shortcomings. I have a responsibility to ‘call it out’ when they are wrong without fear of repercussions. I have found that my children respect me anyway because they know that I acted out of love and respect for them. That I only wanted what was best for them and now as adults, they have come to appreciate that more and more. I have also tried to stay as friends with extended family members. Nothing is so bad that it can’t be forgiven, that amends can’t be made.

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Technology…….I minimise the use of  computers and phones when I am with family and friends because I believe if they have made the effort to be with me I owe them my attention and respect and actually talk and communicate with them. My husband and I resisted giving our children technology ie. computers, laptops phones, electronic games etc. till they were well into their teens  and with supervised, limited time. I don’t wait for the latest version of I Phone, I Pad etc.. in technology, I stay with simplicity.

Cars….. I am driving my third Toyota 4 wheel drive Suzuki Grand Vitara which has no fancy gizmos, they are simple, smooth, reliable and never breakdown. The more sophisticated and hi tech the cars, the more likely to breakdown, cause delays and cost more to fix. A reliable, sturdy car for me is best.

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Lifestyle……….I try to live by “Kingdom Principles.” I try to live my life for God. Sure I stumble and make mistakes but I pick myself up and keep going, knowing that God is there for me.  Sure friends can affirm me but God validates me not friends. Friends come and go and if they don’t lift me up and celebrate who I am, then I am wasting my time and theirs.

Mealtimes……….are sacred times for my family. From the start, mealtimes have become family time. A time to catch up and listen to each other after a day’s work. So every night we have had dinner together to share. The saying goes that….. “If a family eats together they stay together,” well that couldn’t be truer.

Finances……as a “Kingdom Builder” my money is not my own. It was earned with God’s help. The jobs I have had have been given to me by God. How??? God has aligned people to make it happen for me. So I give to the less fortunate and try to share what I have. i love the principle in there is more pleasure in giving than receiving.  Paying it forward is a great life lesson I have learned and it always comes back to me so I always have more that what I started with.

NEVER, NEVER, NEVER GIVE UP…...is the way to live my life. Giving up is not in my vocabulary. I have never given up and I have learned to be creative and find solutions to my problems….. Ask, Seek, Knock Matthew 7:7-8 says  “Ask and it will be given to you; seek and you will find; knock and the door will be opened to you. For everyone who asks receives; the one who seeks finds; and to the one who knocks, the door will be opened.

PRAYER

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RELIGION & MY LIFE SERIES-THE WORLD DOESN’T OWE ME ANYTHING

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I write because I don’t believe the world owes me anything. Rather, it becomes a question on how I can contribute to the world’s happiness and success.

  1. My happiness depends on me
  2. My wealth depends on me
  3. Respect depends on me
  4. Trust depends on me
  5. Employment depends on me
  6. My health depends on me
  7. My fitness depends on me

Then I think of JFK’s quote

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If health is on my side I can work and seek work until someone gives me a break. I have prayed in the past and people have come my way and given me a job not because I was the most qualified, but I was told later on by my employer that they felt I would be the most trusted. I didn’t prove them wrong.                    Alternatively, I have created my own work. I put a flyer up at my local shopping centre noticeboard for work. Currently I tutor students one on one.

Respect is to be earned, I treat others like I want to be treated. If I show respect then I demand it back . If others don’t respect me then they are wasting my time and theirs.

Trust is also to be earned, I don’t trust anyone until they have earned my trust. Evil is out there, the enemy preys on the weak and tries to steal your joy like a thief in the night.

Image result for bible, the thief comes only to steal like a thief in the night I try to live by “Kingdom principles.” I believe that the kingdom of God can be amongst us, it’s all about what you project and how you can build God’s Kingdom around you.

One way I do this is by living the truth, the truth according to JESUS CHRIST.

I care very much as to what happens to people and my family esp. my children. I care for my elderly mother. I support my children and advise them when they are wrong, without being afraid of the rebuttals.   I donate to the poor. I volunteer at my local church by teaching students who want to learn about God from non -christian schools. I really enjoy it and I try to make it enjoyable for them as well.

I avoid temptation by not getting myself involved with people or places that might lead to temptation. I love simplicity. I enjoy boundaries and I like living within parameters. I believe in prevention rather than the cure. I also believe that people are flawed including myself. I trust in the Trinity :- FATHER, SON & HOLY SPIRIT AND THAT THEY WILL LEAD ME TO THE TRUTH and they have.

One might think that my life is BORING! No it’s not, my life is great and I owe it all to God. Prayer and surrendering to God, communicating with HIM about my life and  asking for help is exactly what God wants. I give praise to Him and try to live my life accordingly. I keep track as to how God is working in my life by the validation I get from HIM and the way He answers my prayers. I try to have a heaven perspective. Planning not just for this temporary life but for my forever life.

In return, God has blessed my life abundantly. I have always had work, I have always had money in my wallet, I have the respect of my family and friends. I have worked hard and enjoyed living in my own home. I have been on some fantastic holidays. I have had the pleasure of having our children wanting to join us as well, and we have had some great family holidays. Recently my mother turned 80 years of age and three generations all went away celebrating her special day together.

LIFE IS GOOD WHEN YOU GIVE IT ALL TO GOD

Prayer

Dear Father God,

You know us better than anyone else, even ourselves, guide our paths and align them with Yours so that we may grow and learn to become the best versions of ourselves. Send your Holy Spirit to infill us afresh with the gifts of love, patience, kindness and right judgement so as to fulfill your will for us and to make us worthy of heaven. AMEN

 

 

COURT SIDES WITH COLORADO BAKER ON SAME SEX WEDDING CAKE

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COLORADO BAKER WINS COURT CASE READ ON

I can understand why some people would be upset about this court case ruling. But consider this, “The Marriage Equality” bill has been passed however, there are people within that vote who have an opinion or have taken a stance on this.   In that YES vote, there are people who live by faith and by what Jesus has passed on to us. To sit and do nothing and agree to it when your faith tells you otherwise, is going against your principles and God’s truth.

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The “Marriage Equality” act should not take away the right to express our view, it should not take aways our freedom of religion, freedom of speech and how we express it. Just as the gay couple have a right to live their lives according to their values and beliefs, so too then have the people who don’t believe in gay marriage.

The gay couple now could have found another baker who could have given them exactly what they wanted. NO problem, why fight this when it’s everyone’s right to live their lives and express their faith without retribution. DEMOCRACY does not mean one for all, we don’t live in a communist or marxist society. DEMOCRACY means living together in harmony and with human dignity and religious freedoms. To take that away would be draconian, it would be unfair to give one group their right to express their faith/values and another to be censored.

Church and state should not mix but we can co-exist and live in harmony if we respect each other’s differences.

What would the church know about politics or fiscal policies? What would the law makers know about God and His plan for mankind? Or what Jesus instituted in the church? We have over 2000 years of intelligence that can help us understand the truth according to Jesus Christ and His forefathers.

Then Jesus said to them, “Give back to Caesar what is Caesar’s and to God what is God’s.” And they were amazed at him. (Mark 12:17)

PRAYER

Dear Father God,

Please help us to live out your plan for mankind and to express our faith according to our values and beliefs as they have been passed on to us by Jesus Christ. Help us to live in harmony with one another.  Through Jesus Christ, AMEN.

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RELIGION & MY LIFE SERIES-THE EUCHARIST-THE REAL PRESENCE

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I write because yesterday amongst friends it was said that praying at home and listening to podcasts is enough for spiritual growth. I think that’s a great way to enhance your spirituality but incomplete, here’s why?

Today as we live in a more secularised society it requires supernatural strength to overcome the many temptations. The eucharist then for me becomes a font of energy to love as Christ loved, the see people as Christ sees them. I believe that receiving the eucharist strengthens me and helps me on a daily basis.

Jesus, at the “Last Supper” on Holy Thursday instituted the mass and the eucharist as a way of connecting to Him and for us to grow in love of Him. So, the more we partake in this mystery, the more we receive the real presence in the eucharist, the more we become like Christ.

Jesus didn’t mean for this to be a once only. He wanted us to continue with the mass and the eucharist long after He was gone, so that we may be strengthened by His body and by His precious blood, His way of passing His saving power.

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Amen, amen, I say to you, unless you eat the flesh of the Son of Man and drink his blood, you do not have life within you. Whoever eats my flesh and drinks my blood has eternal life, and I will raise him on the last day. For my flesh is true food, and my blood is true drink. . . . Just as the living Father sent me and I have life because of the Father, so also the one who feeds on me will have life because of me.          (Jn 6:53-57)

(click below for podcast on the meaning of the real presence)

The presence of the risen Christ in the Eucharist is an inexhaustible mystery that the Church can never fully explain in words. We must remember that the triune God is the creator of all that exists and has the power to do more than we can possibly imagine.

Through the power of the Holy Spirit, the transformed bread and wine that are the Body and Blood of Christ are not merely symbols because they truly are the Body and Blood of Christ. As St. John Damascene wrote: “The bread and wine are not a foreshadowing of the body and blood of Christ—By no means!—but the actual deified body of the Lord, because the Lord Himself said: ‘This is my body’; not ‘a foreshadowing of my body’ but ‘my body,’ and not ‘a foreshadowing of my blood’ but ‘my blood'” 

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By his Real Presence in the Eucharist Christ fulfils his promise to be with us “always, until the end of the age” (Mt 28:20). As St. Thomas Aquinas wrote, “It is the law of friendship that friends should live together. . . . Christ has not left us without his bodily presence in this our pilgrimage, but he joins us to himself in this sacrament in the reality of his body and blood”Summa Theologiae, III q. 75, a. 1).

(Courtesy USCCB Logo)

This is what Jesus intended for us as a way of remaining close to Him,  accepting His saving power and salvation, then why wouldn’t I partake in it?

PRAYER

Dear Jesus,                                                                                                                              We praise you and thank-you for your precious gift of your sacrificed body on the cross.  Because you so loved us, You wanted to keep us close to You through the eucharist-your real presence of your precious body and blood. Please help us to believe and partake in this special offering and gift to us. AMEN

RELIGION AND MY LIFE SERIES_Why I go to church

 

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I have heard from family and friends that mass can be boring. That we can pray alone. I can understand why people would think this,  but as I remember……….. going to meetings at work was boring, going to Professional Development sessions was boring, going back to study at university was boring, my graduation was boring, waiting to see my doctor or specialist for 1 hour sometimes 2 hours was boring.  I get it! But think of the purpose and the greater good.

Sometimes we do things because we have to, sometimes we do things because we need help in some area, sometimes we do things because it will add something to our lives. I would like to think that all the above reasons can add to our lives. So I go to church because of what it can add to my spiritual growth and the chain reaction it may effect in my life .

Without church then  it just becomes a Jesus thing, not that there is anything wrong with that, however, Jesus lived a life that encompassed the hebrew tradition of His forefathers and He refers to our Old Testament fathers in the New Testament.

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Reading the bible can be difficult and confusing, I don’t always understand the context, the message nor the Hebrew traditions. Going to church helps unpack all of these and then I go to a bible study group to fellowship and chat with friends for greater understanding.

The truth matters and it should matter to all . If I can do something to help myself then why wouldn’t I do it? When I think about how so many people waste their time in gambling venues, on their phone, watching soap operas and going to beauty therapists, I ask, where is the balance?

At Holy Thursday, Jesus instituted the eucharist and the mass, He said…..“Do this in memory of me.” – Jesus (Luke: 22:19). Jesus didn’t say if you have the time, or whenever…. He commanded it.. DO THIS! He said.

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For Jesus to say this, He must have known how important it is, how life saving it can be.

If you really thought about who you are, who God is, and how much thanks you owe Him, you would want to go to Mass. The Mass would become the source and center of your spiritual life.” – James Stenson

The great Bishop Fulton J. Sheen, when conducting a retreat for teenagers, once gave a talk on the meaning of the Mass. He said, “If you don’t get anything out of Mass, it’s because you don’t bring the right expectations to it.” The Mass is not entertainment, he said. It is worship of the God who made us and saves us. It is an opportunity to praise God and thank Him for all that He has done for us.

If we have a correct understanding of Mass, Bishop Sheen said, it will become more meaningful for us. We will want to go to Mass. We will understand why the Mass is God’s precious gift to us, and we wouldn’t think of refusing that gift.             (Courtesy of CERC)

“Where two or three are gathered together in my name, there am I” (Matthew 18:20). Image result for Matthew 18:20

When God is with us in prayer, God’s favour and healing is bestowed upon us, and when it’s done in multitudes, it has a magnifying effect.

If we give God a chance, He will help us experience the tremendous benefits of the Mass and the Eucharist. James Stenson writes: Be patient. Bring an attitude of prayer and thanksgiving to Mass, and you will reap great spiritual riches: consolation, confidence, peace, deep happiness, and spiritual strength for the challenges of life.

I do not want to lose on my salvation. Do you?

Dear Heavenly Father,

Instill in us a hunger for You, a spirit of seeking the absolute truth and to keep holy the Sabbath Day all for the glory of heaven. AMEN

 

 

 

RELIGION & MY LIFE SERIES_MOVIES

When I choose a movie I choose it for the purpose of getting something out of it. It may be affirmation, education, a challenge or light hearted humor. This movie was very affirming for me.( I went to see it at Village_ Sunshine)

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This morning I went to see this movie and I have to say it really hit the mark.            I enjoyed it at many levels.

First because it’s art imitating life, I know of a real nearby church in Maribyrnong, Moonee Ponds, Melbourne, Australia that was burned by a disgruntled youth. There are also churches been burned or bombed in other parts of the world today.

I condemn this violence as it’s not helpful and it just causes more pain and it should never be a form of expression no matter what faith it may be.

Second, that we all have doubts and fear in life. We have all been victims of injustices at some time or another. But God is always there waiting to hear from each and everyone of us to answer our doubts and fears. The movie shows this beautifully through Pastor Dave.

Third, that forgiveness is the biggest healer of all. We should never doubt God’s acceptance of us,  His unconditional love and forgiveness.

Fourth, I know families struggling with children and their faith, like Pastor Dave and his lawyer brother. Teenagers doubting the existence of God. I believe that parents need to have real discussions with their children and together be part of a church that is going to deepen their faith.

Next, is the question of whether we have the right to practice our faith. Some say faith can be divisive and it can cause violence. No!!! Religion doesn’t cause violence but the hearts and choices of people does. We should not blame religion for the atrocities of others. We all have a right to practice our religion as stated in Universal Declaration of Human Rights. (see article 18 below) http://www.un.org/en/universal-declaration-human-rights/                                        I  hate the argument that religion causes wars. These wars were all chosen by men not God. Let’s look at the now!

God is good all the time, it’s people that doubt, question and change. God never changes. Church is very relevant today, more than ever before because the world as it stands today, is in turmoil. I love when Pastor Dave was asked what is truth?  He answered that truth is a person -JESUS CHRIST -who is the true justice warrior.

Jesus’ teachings are very relevant today, they were given to us to help and protect us, not to harm us. Just look at the choices people are making today. Their choices are been driven by what the media is pushing, minority groups, what is fashionable, by stats or by desires, not by what is good, praiseworthy and pleasing to God.

We should all focus on the big picture and have a heaven perspective. This movie helps me focus of the Almighty, All powerful God and Jesus who is like God.

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Dear Lord Jesus,

Everyday helps us to be more like you and fight for what is right and just, according to the gospels you gave us. Give us the answers to all our doubts and fears and forgive all our digressions, through Your Holy Spirit, AMEN.

HAPPY MOTHER’S DAY TO ALL MOTHERS

HAPPY MOTHER’S DAY _SUNDAY, 13TH MAY

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I love my mother, I love being a mother and I love seeing all mothers with their families. I feel great joy when fathers love their wives and the mothers of their children and then doing things together and sharing each other’s company.

I believe in the unique and significant gifts and roles mothers and fathers play in the upbringing of their children and God’s children.

I have a teaching background and I have taught thousands of children and I felt that the children entrusted to me were my children as well, so I taught and cared for them like a mother.  But the ones that stood out were the ones who demonstrated virtues of :_faith in God who is the almighty and all knowing Father in Heaven and the One who is unequalled and who is greater than them, hard work, openness to learn, respect, humbleness, assertiveness, inclusiveness and empathy.

Where do all these great virtues come from? Children learn what they live, how mothers treat their husbands, how husbands treat their wives and from the role models they have before them. The examples they experience are learnt from their parents and family members way before they reach school age. It’s not until they have learnt these fundamentals that they can express these virtues and share them with others.

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Jesus is our role model, He was born of  Mother Mary with his foster father Joseph in a loving family. This is what we should aspire to, Jesus gave Mary to us to be our mother too. Mary mother of Jesus, brings her unique love, her sacrificing love in order to give us her SON Jesus. Mary was the greatest disciple of all, when the others fled because they were too scared at the end,  Mary remained steadfast and loved Jesus with her selfless love till His last breath and beyond.

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My mother sacrificed a lot for me and my brothers and I have learnt a lot from her. My children respect my mother because they have learnt it from me-their mother and so the cycle goes on.

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I don’t claim that raising children or having taught them was easy and many a time I found it extremely hard and challenging. But I never forgot what Mary went through and I always pray to her  that she be a mother to me and my children with her unique way of reaching to Her Son Jesus and God, as my greatest intercessor of all.

So, I salute all mothers from all different walks of life and ask God to bless them with all of their heart’s desires. I continue to ask Mary the mother of Jesus and the mother of us all, for her intercession in helping us raise strong families and strong children with their husbands and fathers together in a loving family, according to God’s plan. GOD BLESS ALL MOTHERS AND FATHERS

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Please pray with me

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