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Fools Gold

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God’s Thoughts to Me

Jesus told him, “I am the Way, the Truth and the Life. No one can come to the Father except through Me.” (John 14:6, NLT)

Don’t bother! It is not me that matters; it is my teachings that should be propagated and adhered to throughout the world (Buddha’s words, James Fowler).

The Crux of Christianity

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Siddharta Gautama, better known as Gautama Buddha, is thought to have lived approximately 400 BC. He was the founder of Buddhism. When he was dying, his adherents wanted to perpetuate his memory.

He was adamant that he didn’t want to be memorialized, but gave his own “great commission” to preach his teachings throughout the world. This sounds so noble and self-effacing.

Yet, it is extremely dangerous and deceptive, for his teachings ushered in one of the greatest religions of all time into the world, Buddhism.

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Contrary to the teachings of Gautama Buddha, we find the words of Jesus, who told His disciples just prior to His crucifixion, that HE IS the Way, the Truth and the Life.

He invites us with such tenderness and love when He sees us bogged down and heavy-laden with religion to come to Him. He invites us to follow Him for He wants to give us rest and peace beyond our finite comprehension.

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Can you imagine where we would have been if Jesus told them not to bother to remember Him, but only His teachings? That would just have been a whole new bunch of disastrous laws that kill and contain no life (2 Corinthians 3:6).

Jesus did not tell us that He would show us the way to our Pappa. Neither did He teach us new truths about God or gave us a new way to eternal life.

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No, He boldly proclaimed, “I am the Way, the Truth and the Life (John 14:6). He boldly proclaimed that many will come to Him on judgement day saying to Him, “Lord! Lord! We prophesied in your name and cast out demons in your name and performed miracles in your name” (Matthew 7:22).

Allow me to add another few favorite things that we might want to add today: we were teachers or preachers, pastors or priests, reverends or bishops, leaders of a worship team, taught Sunday School, spread the Gospel, spoke in tongues, didn’t drink … or danced … or smoked.

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We faithfully went to church every time the doors were opened, we attended all the prayer meetings, we selflessly served the saints in a church ministry, etc. Oh, the sorrow these ones will experience when He tells them He didn’t know them for they were mining for fools gold.

These things are not wrong in and of itself, but that is building on sand as far as Christianity is concerned. Christianity is built only on the Eternal Rock, the Sure Foundation; our Lord Jesus. He is the capstone rejected by the religious builders (Mark 12:10).

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In His wonderful prayer just before He was arrested, Jesus told us that eternal life is that we might know our Pappa and Him (John 17:3). Christianity IS Jesus Christ!!! HE IS the Great I AM.

If this is the truth, which it is, where does the approximately 41000 Christian denominations come from? This “knowing” is such an intimate union of our spirit with the glorious Holy Spirit.

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I personally think we will find the answer to this question in the Garden of Eden when the great deceiver deceived Adam and Eve into believing that they could be like God, knowing good and evil! In a human way I think we can compare this union to sexual intimacy between husband and wife; oneness personified.

Denominationalism is the result of that lie and the age-old characteristics of the flesh: pride, selfish ambition and dissension (Galatians 5:20). It seems that every denomination proudly proclaims that their doctrine/teachings of Jesus will show us the way, the truth and give us eternal life.

Not so! The person of Gautama Buddha might not be of much importance in Buddhism, but our living, resurrected Lord Jesus IS the crux of Christianity.

imageIn total contradiction to Gautama Buddha is the story of Sadhu Sundar Singh. He was a Sikh who converted to Christianity. A European professor of comparative religions, an agnostic himself, repeatedly asked Mr Singh during an interview why he exchanged one religion for another.

When Mr Singh answered him that he now had Jesus, the professor became quite impatient and wanted him to be more specific about the different principles or doctrines of the two religions. Mr Singh’s only answer was that the particular Person he had now found, was Jesus (James Fowler, Christ in You).

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The words of a friend of mine describes this so vividly, “You cannot eat from the tree of the knowledge of good and evil and expect to live in the Tree of Life”. Thanks Grace Ann!

Much love and sweet blessings.

Mia

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The Shepherd from Heaven

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God’s Thoughts to Me

He will feed his flock like a shepherd. He will carry His lambs in His arms, holding them close to His heart. He will gently lead the mother sheep with their young (Isaiah 40:11, NLT).

He Feeds Us

Today is the beginning of the International Fibromyalgia/ME Awareness Week. Although research is only in its infancy, we look forward to progress and perhaps a breakthrough in the near future.

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Due to unbelief, many if not most sufferers, received very bad and hostile treatment from the medical profession.

But at least we are finally beginning to be acknowledged as human beings with a real and quite disabling disease.

Isaiah 40:11 reminds us so wonderfully of how well the good Shepherd from heaven takes care of mothers and their children.

He cares for the broken ones, the weak, the sick, the unimportant, the unwanted and the rejected of this world. They only need to come to Him.

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When my son, Simon, was in Grade 11, we had to buy text books for Grade 12 when the Grade 12 pupils were selling their old books second-hand at a much lower price than new books.

I recall the week when we had to pay about R600 (around $67) for two text books as well as payment for the initiation camp for the following year’s Grade 12 learners.

It was in the middle of the month and we were stone, cold broke with only a few pennies we had to rub together in any case. Yet, I knew I had a Pappa who promised to take care of all our needs.

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The morning the payment was due, we still had not received our Lord’s provision, but I assured my children that the money would be paid before the end of the day.

When they left for school, I had a serious talk with my God, reminding Him that today is D-day and we still were empty-handed (or rather empty pocketed).

He told me to go to the ATM, and of course I stubbornly had to argue a bit, for the previous day when I checked, I was taunted by a big, round zero. Oh, those trust issues!!!!

At the word of our Lord, in the famous Peter style with the fishing nets, reluctantly, off to the ATM I went.

I couldn’t believe my eyes when I found that double the amount we needed was paid back to us from the Receiver of Revenue. We were overjoyed and my children’s faith grew with leaps and bounds.

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One would think that I was now cured of my stubbornness. Oh no, not this one. As a Fm/CFS sufferer, I had my fair share of unbelief, rejection and neglect from doctors, church people and also family and friends.

To such an extent that I landed up in the proverbial pig pen; not because of my foolishness, but because I had no one to care for me when I couldn’t take care of myself. Nobody believed that I was really ill.

But I was never alone. I could hear my Pappa screaming in my pain and suffering. Faithfully He was working in His normal mysterious ways to perform His wonders in my life.

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The shepherds of ancient times would break the legs of the lambs that constantly wandered away.

Then he would set the leg and carry the lamb on his shoulder until the leg was healed. After that the lamb would remain by the shepherd’s side for the rest of its life.

Pappa knew of my stubborn propensities to be a master performer to earn everyone’s love and approval.

With my religious mindset, I just could not believe that I already was loved and accepted by our God.

Because of His amazing love, He did what the shepherds did with their stubborn, wandering lambs. Allowing Fm/ME in my life, He “broke” my legs.

With such tender care and love, He gently set it as well and carried me around His neck until I was healed of my stubbornness and insecurities.

I have learned how good it is when my Beloved Shepherd Himself feeds me with the milk of His love… His grace … His life and compassion.

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Fm/CFS has taught me how to always walk with our Lord and never ever to leave His side again.

Even though we suffer greatly at times, I am so grateful for the wonder and joy of walking daily with our God … for the privilege of living in His Loving Embrace.

Love and sweet blessings

Mia

We all have experienced how our Lord has provided in miraculous ways. Please, share His goodness with us!
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The Sabbath Moon

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God’s Thoughts to Me

You are trying to earn favor with God by observing certain days or months or seasons or years (Galatians 4:10, NLT).

So don’t let anyone condemn you for what you eat or drink, or for not celebrating certain holy days or new moon ceremonies or Sabbaths. For these rules are only shadows of the reality yet to come. And Christ Himself is that reality (Colossians 2:16-17, NLT).

The Shadows of the King

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In any democracy, the government has the privilege of governing the nation with righteousness, integrity and justice. The Cabinet is responsible for making laws that would be fair and beneficial to the citizens of the country.

Likewise, they can also withdraw any law from the statute books when it has served its purpose, is outdated or are not for the good of the people anymore. I was overjoyed when the apartheid laws were scrapped from the statute books of South Africa between 1990 and 1994.

In the same way, our Pappa God, the Author of the Ten Commandments, is the only Person with authority over the old covenant laws of Moses.

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Being the Lawmaker, He had all the right to be the “lawbreaker” as well by withdrawing any law that did not serve the Royal Law of Love.

Our Lord Jesus and the Pharisees were often in heated discussion about the observance of the Sabbath. This day was a gift from Pappa, a gift of rest from our physical, everyday labor to spend time with Him and our families.

It was also a gift to usher us into His emotional and spiritual rest, All in all, the Sabbath was just a shadow of our Lord who invites us to Him to experience rest from our labors and be under the favor of God.

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As with every religious heart, the Pharisees added a myriad of rules and regulations, man-made prohibitions and injunctions to the Sabbath law. They transformed this wonderful gift of grace into a legalistic, nightmarish horror.

When Jesus sojourned the earth, we find three instances where he confronted the hypocrisy of the religious Jews who were trying hard to retain their religious power and authority over the ordinary folk by smothering the Spirit of the Sabbath.

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When Jesus and His disciples were attending a Passover feast in Jerusalem, our Lord of mercy healed a paralytic of 38 years at the pool of Bethesda, meaning “house of mercy”.

The Pharisees were enraged by this poor fellow who had the audacity to break the Sabbath law by carrying the pallet!

At another occasion Jesus and the disciples were walking through some wheat fields on a Sabbath. According to Deuteronomy 23:25 they were allowed to pluck the heads of wheat with their hands, but not to harvest it with a sickle.

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Well, the disciples made use of this concession and were harassed by the Pharisees who accused them of breaking the law by harvesting, and that on a Sabbath!

The third time our Lord of love and compassion, was in a synagogue when He noticed a man with a deformed hand. The Pharisees were watching Him with a hawk’s eye.

According to the law, you were allowed to save someone’s life on the holy day! When they questioned the Lord on what was permissible on a Sabbath, Jesus turned the tables on them by making doing good and saving a life two sides of the same coin.

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A deformed hand was not a life-threatening illness. Yet, if one of their sheep were to fall into a pit on the Sabbath, they would rush to save their asset.

We find the anger of our Pappa burning within Jesus towards the hypocrisy and inconsistency of their hardened religious hearts.

These blind men considered themselves the experts in leading the blind into the Kingdom of our heavenly Father. Yet, they had no inkling of their own blindness.

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They were leading these poor folk straight onto the highway to hell. They hated the only Way and Truth and Life and ferociously tried to get rid of this Man called Jesus.

I used to condemn these Pharisees for their hatred against our Lord Jesus until I realized that for a long time, I used to be exactly the same.

The denomination I attended as a child taught me that a prayer meeting was against our Lord’s command, to go to your inner room and close the door when you prayed.

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We were boxed into a religious closet. An invitation to a personal relationship with our Pappa became a man-made rule.

At communion we sat next to a long table where the pastor would break a loaf of bread and then hand out pre-cut pieces. We drank the wine from a big silver communion cup. Sitting in the pews were against the way our Lord taught us in the Upper Room.

Truth be told, I enjoyed the big gulp I could take of the delicious sherry that was served and we didn’t have to wash all those little glasses afterwards!

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Apart from that, I still don’t know why we did what we did in the way that we did it. I just know that I looked down on those who didn’t do things our way.

I have found that all the different denominations have their own set of rules and regulations that made their particular brand the best and most correct on the religious market.

Although differences in the style of liturgy is not wrong in and of itself, it does earn our Pappa’s stern disapproval when it replaces the unity in the Holy Spirit of love. Of that, everyone needs to be their own judge.

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Dear ones, let us all take a heart inventory, asking our Pappa to uproot all the secret and stubborn laws hiding in the rocky ground of our hearts.

Let us allow Him to destroy all those weeds preventing the tiny mustard seed of faith to sprout and bloom into a mighty tree of life.

Love and blessings

Mia

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