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Showing posts from April, 2005

be@peace

I have been reading through the Amplified Bible as my current translation of choice and yesterday I came across a particular phrase that struck me hard enough to leave a mark.

“…may there be peace – every kind of peace (blessing), especially peace with God, and freedom from fears, agitating passions and moral conflicts.” I Peter 5:14 amplified

Argh. These are the exact three areas which I find myself struggling with over and over again, and I need to remind myself that wrestling with these things is not merely a tiring, futile ordeal, but it is indeed meant to develop strength and skill and maturity in my spirit.

Freedom from fears: Yeah, I admit to a life-long struggle with fear. I am afraid of the dark, death, demons, people not liking me when they get to know me, hurting someone, never amounting to anything special, getting old and useless, trying really hard and failing, snakes, deep water, losing people I love, being ignored, making a wrong decision that messes things up real bad, n…

Anyone can be RICH!

Really, it’s true. Being rich “implies having more than enough to satisfy normal needs or desires” (thank you, Webster). Well, I guess my first question is why anyone wants more than enough? Doesn’t enough imply that you have…well…enough? (Enough can be defined as “to a degree or quantity that satisfies” - Mr. Webster again.) But at this point we enter some fuzzy waters (hope you don’t mind the mixed metaphor). How does one measure satisfaction? While one person might think that owning a bicycle is enough, someone else might believe that a car and a truck and a motorcycle are absolutely necessary for their lives. Some are satisfied with a bowl of cereal for a meal, others insist on a full four courses. I cannot tell you what enough is, that is something you must work out in your own life, but I know there is something inside of mankind that is constantly craving satisfaction, and very few people experience it for extended periods of time. Hunger is a good thing, but not if it is a sta…

Opposite

There are some things that just don’t seem to want to co-exist in this world. Like heat and ice (though despite the sun’s hot rays yesterday, there were still some ice floes on the edge of the river that had not yet realized that the temperature was way past their melting point); caterpillars and butterflies (you are either one or the other); darkness and sight (cats have the distinct advantage here); politics and mercy (sorry, Greg); lions and antelopes in close proximity; hot and cold (you usually end up with lukewarm, though a hot fudge sundae is the delicious exception); fear and creativity – you get the idea.

Let me name two more things: compassion (that is, a soft heart) and strength. These are two things that I highly value, but have seldom seen in perfect balance, especially in my life. Usually those who are empathetic and emotional and kindhearted are also easily overwhelmed by adverse circumstances or conflicts or criticism. Those who have been through harsh situations often …