2019 BOOKS


Keep One End Full and the Other Empty! It Is Excellent Advice - I Know

By Sandy Shaw

Keep One End Full and the Other Empty!

When we were 'born again' and came to believe in Jesus Christ, and then learned that it was Jesus Christ Who took the initiative and called and chose us, we have that desire and motivation to serve loyally and lovingly and faithfully.

But even after receiving this wonderful new life - old habits can hang around.

Even as disciples of Jesus we are aware that old habits seem to cling to us - and we wonder if we will ever be rid of some of them. They can appear to have such a hold.

That is why Peter says - Now make the effort to get rid of certain things.

The new life will never die - but the old ways have to die.

We are in the concluding verses of I Peter Chapter 1.

When we are born again a seed is planted in us - verse 23 - the word used is "sperm" or "spore". God planted His Sperm in us. It sounds very physical as well as spiritual - and it is - because just like a baby that seed has to grow, and develop and mature.

We are born again and after we have lived a number of years, we can discover that some habits and traits can be difficult to break.

It can be like men taking the hardest of granite.

In order to break that hard rock - they drill holes in it - a series of them - and then they break of pieces of a tree and place these pieces in each hole - and pour water in every day for two or three weeks. The cells of the wood grow - and the granite is split.

Life - new life - can crack and break that which is hard. The life of God in us and watered regularly through the Word and prayer and fellowship - can crack bad habits - and push other things out of the way - things that God does not want us to have in our lives.

We have to learn a new language as we speak to a new Father. We are a new baby growing - and we have to learn to walk and talk.

The physical life and spiritual life need the same kind of care.

One medical man said recently when asked by a new mother for one piece of advice as she was about to take the new five days old baby home - he said this - "Keep one end full and the other end empty and you won't go far wrong".

That is basically what Peter is saying here - Keep one part empty - and the other part full - and you disciples will not go far wrong.

Babies need washing and cleaning - and so do all growing Christians. As soon as the baby is born those present take away all the traces of that former existence in the womb. We too need to be washed and cleansed from our former existence - with all the traces being removed. That is why we have Baptism.

Peter mentions five things - which can cause spiritual disease if not dealt with. These five things can become a source of ill health.

1. Malice - that certainly can prevent or stunt or thwart your growth. Malice has been described as - a perverted joy in hurting someone else. Or it is a desire to bring a person down a peg or two. Peter says - now get rid of that.

2. Deceit - guile - being deceitful - being too clever by half. Peter says - now get all of that out of your life - have nothing to do with underhand methods - and don't be a snake in the grass.

3. Hypocrisy - insincerity - play acting. Take off any mask - be real. Don't be hiding behind some exterior - deal with that at the beginning of your Christian Life. Be what God would have you to be.

4. Envy - this was responsible for the first murder in history. Envy looks at someone and says - "They have more money than I have - they have more opportunities than me - they have more gifts than I have - they have more friends than I have. They have more - and I resent that!

Envy is a horrible thing - and Peter says don't envy - get rid of all that. Get this side cleaned up - if you want to grow.

5. Slander of every kind - this can be so harmful if it is allowed to lurk around - gossip. It is like a beast of prey that does not wait for the death of the creature it devours.

These must be washed out of our lives - and then we are told to crave pure spiritual milk. LUNGE at the very breast of God. We need more than just rooting out bad things - we need to be filled with good things.

Keep one end empty - and the other end full - and you won't go far wrong as you follow Jesus Christ.

"Gracious God, help us to be rid of those things which should have no place in our lives. We find this difficult at times. Enable us to grasp the truth of your Word in this part of Scripture - and as we feed upon Your Word day by day, may we grow and develop and mature. Risen and living Jesus, help us. Holy Spirit, help us." Amen.

Sandy Shaw is Pastor of Nairn Christian Fellowship, Chaplain at Inverness Prison, and Nairn Academy, and serves on The Children's Panel in Scotland, and has travelled extensively over these past years teaching, speaking, in America, Canada, South Africa, Australia, making 12 visits to Israel conducting Tours and Pilgrimages, and most recently in Uganda and Kenya, ministering at Pastors and Leaders Seminars, in the poor areas surrounding Kampala, Nairobi, Mombasa and Kisumu.

He broadcasts regularly on WSHO radio out of New Orleans, and writes a weekly commentary at http://www.studylight.org entitled "Word from Scotland" on various biblical themes, as well as a weekly newspaper column.

His M.A. and B.D. degrees are from The University of Edinburgh, and he continues to run and exercise regularly to maintain a level of physical fitness.

Christians and Unconditional Love

By Dr. Jeff Davis

Love is the foundation of Christianity. God so loved the world that he gave us his only begotten son. God commanded his love towards us while we were still sinners. Sinners receive grace to turn into children of God motivated by His desires.

But when a person is born again the grace of God has been shed abroad in their heart. This love is greater than any we have ever known and the purpose of giving this gift to us is so that we can share it with everyone we meet. God uses His people to spread His message to the world at large.

People who do not share these same feelings tend to offer conditional love to everyone they meet. This means that if they are in a relationship with someone else they promise to be there for that person as long as that person remains the same. When all is going well mutual feelings of affection abounds But let one person do something the other does not approve of and suddenly those feelings of affection are gone. It disappears.

How can someone tell if they are walking in conditional or unconditional love? How is it possible to know for sure that unconditional love remains unconditional? It has to do with understanding how this type of love works. Conditional love focuses on the actions of others to determine whether or not to extend love. If their actions are pleasing then love is given. But whenever those actions change (and they always will when it comes to dealing with people) so too will the feelings between the two. Many people have thought they were in love only to find out that a single incident could erase that love forever.

Unconditional love focuses solely on the belief of the person who is expected to extend love to others. It does not pay attention to what others think or say. It is based solely on a decision to love. God does not love us because we do things right or hate us because we sin. He loves us because He makes the decision to love us. Our actions do not cause Him to love us more or less. His love is based on His decision not ours.

To love others in the same way boils down to making a decision to do so. Unconditional love will not operate unless it is powered by a will determined to love regardless. It moves actions to a place where sin can be forgiven.

Visit us at http://www.drjeffdavis.org


Faith Is An Emotional Power That Makes A Human Into A Super Human

By David Samuel 

Let us begin with making it clear that we are not speaking of faith in a religious sense, but rather as a mental force used by all humans. This article is an objective exploration of the power of faith, and how the average person uses it.

Faith is possibly one of the most powerful forces of the human mind. Faith can make a person sustain unbearable difficulties, activate infinite creativity, or create an impregnable wall of limitations.

Faith in being able to invent the light bulb powered Edison to continue after 10,000 failures until he succeeded;

"I have not failed. I've just found 10,000 ways that won't work."

 Thomas A. Edison

There are many examples of the physical and emotional power of faith, both in astounding success stories, as well as the billions of untold stories of failures. Ethic 12; Everything Exists Only Because Of Its Opposite can be applied when it comes to faith, in the sense of having faith in success or in failure.

To discuss the benefits and power of faith is unnecessary, we all knows it values. Many people feel they do not have any faith and wish they could have faith as some do, but just cannot kindle its fire. The idea that one who is lacking in fire or motivation does not have faith, is actually a lie.

The fact is that we all have faith.

It's just that we often have faith in the opposite of what we want.

It's very easy to know what you have faith in, just describe the current state of your life. It is just as easy to do it the opposite way, find what you doubt you will have or succeed in, and you know that you have faith in its opposite.

Some people sadly have a devout faith in their destiny to fail at everything they do. Everyone has faith in something but, faith can also blind one. Faith is therefore a dangerous asset if not used wisely because it will be used by default in something either constructive or, destructive.

Be faithful to your beliefs and opinions, but objective at the same time.

Religions, as well as logic would agree on the following thought, merely changing the word 'God' for 'nature'. "God, or nature, does nothing without a good reason. Humans have a logical mind for a reason, use it!."

Ethicalism says to accept the ethics, then test them and prove each ethics' validity or falsity through logical and direct personal experience before rejecting or making it part of one's beliefs.

You can easily test these ideas about faith and how you may have faith in a negative outcome for your life, and how that creates the material result of what you have faith in. Remember, faith is power, it is the fuel to the engine. It will move you in any direction you put your faith into.

The effort one puts in to any task is directly proportional to the faith one has in succeeding. Be that resolving a problem, learning something new, undertaking an adventure, or anything that is in the least challenging, even having a decent day.

Faith is pure emotion. A human being is emotional, be that positive or negative. Positive emotion is the fuel to creativity while negative emotion is the fire that just burns up the fuel. Emotion is what makes a human different than an animal. We are all feeling emotions at all times, and faith is to emotion as oxygen is to blood.

Faith, like all things in this dualistic world, is the opposite of doubt. Normally, people accept that any thread of doubt destroys perfect faith. The objective view mentioned in Ethic 12; Everything Exists Only Because Of Its Opposite, shows that Faith and doubt are simply two sides of the same coin. That coin has the same buying power, it's just what you purchase that changes, success or failure.

Do You Trust You?

Most people agree that a person who does not have a strong code of moral ethics cannot be trusted fully and so emotions and an open heart are always restrained in relationships. If one wants to feel pure and full emotions, one needs to feel the other can be trusted.

The point of this article is to have you ask; 'how well do you trust yourself?' Do you feel worthy of success and happiness and all that you dream of having? Or, do you doubt your worthiness in any way?

There is a difference between being worthy and being capable. One can be capable; have the skills, intelligence, or anything else required for success, yet not feel worthy of its rewards.

The ethics will make one worthy of what one desires through a life that is lived with integrity. Without a code of conduct, we know that given too much power can turn one into a bad person.

Poor people generally have a dislike of rich people with the generalization that a rich person must be a crook or some other derogatory label. These fixed opinions associated to wealth or success, due to knowing that one’s moral compass is broken, will create faith in failure due to the doubt that one will remain pure in mind and heart if wealth is achieved.

Thus one will have faith in their ultimate failure, which is a subconscious preventative medicine to having the power to do harm.

Doubt, the other side of the coin of faith, kills positive emotion and breeds fear if left to grow. Doubt paralyses with fear.

Consider what you fear, any and every fear you have. The pain of guilt for hurting others is a pain that many people fear. This fear is alleviated by having Ethical guidelines to live by which will prevent one from doing any harm, and thus allow the faith for success to grow, creativity to be activated, and positive emotions with a happy life to flourish.

Without positive emotion, one is just going through life like a robot until the body dies. It's time to start living with faith that you can live with integrity and harm no one.

David Samuel is The Entrepreneur Monk, applying his understanding of the mind and emotions in business, relationships and personal growth.

Your mind makes you a success or failure, business skill is only a small part.

David resolved the riddle of why we do what is bad for us yet do not do what we know is beneficial and teaches that very effectively.

Read more about David EntrepreneurMonk.com

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