Thursday, May 31, 2012

The Buffet

  The Bible is like a Buffet, full of all kinds of food, all kinds of drinks. It isn't that the choices are not there, all is laid out to see, but some are harder to see because there is so much presented there. Once we learn this we learn to go back and take another tour. There is every kind of food that can be thought of, even desert. Some bitter, some sweet, some tart, and some mild. The Buffet is all you can eat and there are servers and ones who serve just one station, at the same time it is offered as a self serve atmosphere. What is suppose to be hot is hot and what is to be cold is cold. Just like the buffet we often go and choose what we like best, never considering the rest of the food. I think that is only natural.

   There are other buffets but none serve as much as this one does, nor the choices it has. Some have servers that attend and you are not allowed to get your own food. Some have lines with so many rules and regulations that one seldom if ever makes it through the line. Some are a free for all that have no rules and chances are, the end of the line will seem easy but like a fight to the finish, one never finishes. Some have the hot food cold and the cold food hot and a lot of lukewarm food. Some have the meats partially cooked and some meats are plain raw. Some have frozen food that hasn't been thawed and some with that freezer taste to it. None have the complete foods laid out, instead randomly selected. Some have preferred customers that get to eat first. Some serve the opposite of what was asked for while some labeling the food wrong.

  But at our buffet we can have it all, it's seldom we see the whole selection at the first pass. At this buffet anybody can serve or be served, which is a good thing and sometimes not. The professional servers sometimes have no idea what they have to offer or at the vastness of the buffet. Being human though they have their favorite things just like anybody else, so they over emphasis on what they like. Some servers like that particular food so much that they never move anywhere else. Then there are some that come to serve but really wish to be served. Some of the other buffets sometimes send out people to serve, only to get people to eat the food they serve. They find a similar food they know and try and limit the menu to get people to eat at their buffet. All buffets have some of the same foods in common, some are just prepared differently. Some are presently differently.

  The thing I think I like most about our buffet is that we have all kinds of food. Like everybody else I eat what I like first, but then I take a quick look around to see what is next. I double back for seconds and maybe I see some things I like that I missed. Maybe I see my second choice, maybe something that looks interesting or strange or new. I'll have a second helping of my preference but with other things this time, remembering that too much of a good thing ain't good no more. Nobody's counting calories and fat isn't an issue, so I go back again. The buffet is the perfect time and chance to try something you normally wouldn't buy or cook at home, let alone grow and prepare. I learned I like fried squash, frog legs, and a host of other foods at a buffet. Trying something new doesn't cost a penny more.

  Sometimes I listen to the servers and sometimes I don't. Depends on my mood and if they seem stuck on a certain food. I really don't mind if they don't know the whole buffet but if they get stuck on one food they know no more about the rest of the buffet than I do. I came here for the experience and hunger, aka... to eat. I know what I like and though I may not always know what my body needs, it will tell me. Sometimes though what I like and what my body needs is completely different. And sometimes something passed over, overlooked or new fits both bills. There are the times I don't like what my body needs and sometimes a food doesn't agree with either, but is needed, like a colon cleanse. The beautiful thing in all this is that we all are different, and that is the way it should be as the supply of food and choices never ends. If I had known it would have been this good I'd have came to this buffet much earlier. I had heard people talk about it, had it attempted to be sold to me, threatened to go and visit it, but watched from a distance. I had seen people sick from eating too much of one food or partially full from never eating new foods, but I also saw a few satisfied people leave. It seems I focused on the sick or hungry ones and not the fully satisfied ones. I wish I had started it sooner. Then again, there is no better time than now to start. Thing is, we all have to want ti visit the buffet and we all have to want to eat. No amount of sales pitches or pressure will work for one to decide to eat, enjoy, and be full. Help yourself and dig in... but only if you want too.    

Wednesday, May 16, 2012

Today, Tomorrow, and Yesterday

   It's funny but one can learn a lot when life hangs by a thread for a long time. It's not that I feel wise that I write these things, I'm not, but I've learned but a fraction of what I really need to know. Dying gives one a different perspective and dog paddling on the edge of life and death brings even more perspective. It gives one the time to look at one's own life and events. Time to reflect back. Time to pray. Time to analyze what went through life, how they went through life, and what defining moments occurred. Mostly time to know that there is so much we don't look at for what it is and that we don't know more than we need to know about anything. Once though we are forced to be still and no longer think about tomorrow, we see clearly events that are today. Even when we are surrounded by family and friends that would help us in any way, they can't save us. We can connect to God, not become God, but rather connect to Him on a different level. We learn to stop, stand back, take whatever breath is left in us, and watch the our world from a different perspective. So I share what I feel.   

   I can see maybe for the first time things and events clearer. Though I'd love to say, Don't try this at home folks. From the moment we all take our first breath to the moment we all take our last breath, there can be life. But we have to choose it. There can be the sibilance of life or there can be real life. One of the most quoted in the Bible by nonreligious and seldom quoted fully in the Bible by religious people is when Jesus talks about yesterday, today, and tomorrow. It confused me as well up until lately. He isn't saying don't work but rather not to get lost in your physical work. I spent most of my life working for UPS where we were told we were family, and I fell for it. I go through Walmart where I hear employees say they are a family. That happens at most of the large corporations. Families always have parents, elder members, siblings, and children. There is always a head of a family and that head of the family should care more about their family than they do themselves. I can tell you from experience that is not the case with a large corporation and never has been. We assume that in Jesus' day corporations didn't exist. Work is good and honorable and we may work with some great people, but I think He is telling us not to get lost in work. Not to make work our family nor our life. The same would apply to churches as well. We have a family that we are born unto that should be with us no matter what should happen to us, and a Father that presides over that family who has our well being first.

    Then we come to the tense thing. We need to remember Yesterday, yet forget it all at the same time. The things that happen yesterday need to be learned so we don't repeat the bad ones and maybe can repeat the good ones, but yesterday is for all intense purposes gone. There is not a human being on earth who can change yesterday and God sees fit not too, so let it go. We can do better in an attempt to not repeat it. We can be watchful for the same signs if it was good or bad to hope it does or doesn't happen again. But we are powerless to hit the reset button and do it again. Movies like Groundhog Day were made and reset buttons are hit in the dream of doing it until we get it right. But that is a fantasy. So take what things that are good, leave what things that are bad, but remember what details led to both, just don't dwell on them. Wipe the slate clean then, especially if the error was someone other than you and pray they do you the same. You can try and make amends and allow others to do the same, but you can't undo what is done and neither can they. It's over. History. Move On.

  Then there is Tomorrow. Oh how we love tomorrow. Songs have been written about tomorrow. Procrastinators will get it done.... tomorrow. The word itself sounds great, but it is a fantasy, and the best thing about tomorrow is that it never comes. When tomorrow comes it is today. This is another thing taken way out of context. Fortunes are made on that one word, and people are indebted on that one word. Take it home today and pay tomorrow. Wall Street buys and sells futures, betting on tomorrow. I think when Jesus said not to worry about tomorrow one would have to see what the times were like back then and who and where He said it to and at. Many things can be taken out of context. As a society we seem to plan for tomorrow, so much that we forget to live today. At one time people would actually prepare for tomorrow, should it come, and we'd see debt free people by their middle ages or at least the old age. We'll call that senior years to be politically correct, same thing though. But we see people in debt in their middle and late years of life even though they have supposedly planned for tomorrow, something is wrong. Life goes by and tomorrow never comes that they forgot to live today as if it were their last day. Those of us who have seen days and nights that never seem to end, expecting that last breath, will attest to live life today. Those of us who have seen the end say live it well. Planning for tomorrow isn't a bad thing, it's when you live for tomorrow and forget to live today that is bad.

  So we come to Today. Today is the most important and only day one should worry about. This minute, this second, right now, for the next second is tomorrow and it may never come. Lives are wasted and lives and lived in today, for none other exists in reality. Today is so important that “Those who control the present, control the past and those who control the past control the future.”  George Orwell.  It looks to be pretty important. A life worth living and a life lived well is a life lived in today. I've seen people die and not one that I have seen that lived today died poorly. I've felt myself die and if I could have watched myself take a last breath back then, I would have died poorly. I do not intend on dying poorly the next round, believe me, you don't want to die that way. Today has plenty of troubles and blessings on it's on without borrowing from yesterday or tomorrow, neither of which exist. Today is the only day we have, this minute, the second, this breath. So what did you do with yours? Did you make war or peace, spread gloom or hope, hate or love, kindness or sadness? Did you tell your loved ones you love them? Did you say I'm sorry when you mistake? Did you address the thing that needed addressed? Did you take time to listen, time to share? If you did then you will have lived a life worth living. And if you use today to right the wrongs you can, make amends, make sure your family and friends know you appreciate and love them and do your work... then you are living.

  So this I write to myself as much as to whoever reads it. I've seen life come and I've seen it go, but even then I need reminded. So, what are you doing sitting here reading this. Make hay while the sun is shinning. Live well and live today. Leave yesterday behind. Give God tomorrow.             

Tuesday, May 15, 2012

Life's Crossroards, Free Will, and Predestination.

  I had the pleasure of being invited to an Atheist and Agnostic forum right after the show aired. I'm sure I wasn't their first choice but hey I figured, why not. After all, it was only to last a short time. There is one part that I was asked that I answered that most liked because they could understand it and it made sense to them, or as the New Age group would say, resonated, lol. A very few questions, and some said none, I either didn't know the answer or I was wrong. Still they said they never stumped me and I'm not that great on scripture. I had so much fun for a few days. No debate, just questions and answers. So the question asked was:

  How can we have Free Will and God knows all the answers. Isn't that a predetermined destiny?

  I remember that he got moderated for combining two questions into one. But I could see where he was coming from and it warranted a double question. The two are really connected. So here goes, without the quotes and I'm sure more added. One of these days me or Megan (hopefully) will draw what I'm talking about, I can't draw, but for now try and visualize it in your mind.

  Picture yourself in a car, truck, motorcycle, or walking. Some will have 1,000 per day while others will have millions, and job title has nothing to do with how many. There are no placement as to who gets there the first or last, only that you finish correctly, but there is a time limit. You have plenty of time allotted, but not as much as one wishes to have. There is only 1 way there... Heaven, but many roads that go everywhere else but there. There is a map and one can ask for help as much as they ask. Each crossroads you have to make a choice, but no way is marked somethings and other times it is. Sitting still won't work, somebody will run you over either pushing you their way or out of the way. We all use these crossroads though some more than others and at different times and some go through a crossroad so fast you can't even see them pass. One of three possible paths, but there is no room to turn around.

   One chooses the path they take and sometimes it may be a few hours, but it could be only a second later before the next one appears. It's like and endless maze yet if we stand back and look at it for a minute we'd see that it isn't a maze, just a series of small connections. Very few have a dead end, most just keep on going to the next crossroads. One can end right back to the place but at a different time and one can end out way out of the way and become lost. We can become so lost that directions are hard to hear or see, but it isn't impossible, nothing is impossible when we set our minds to it. But all of this strays from my original thing of the crossroads.

  From each crossroads there is really only three possible outcomes. While the mathematical possibilities for the whole race is endless, the possibility for each crossroads is only three. The mathematical possibility for the end of the race is two, good or bad. You've either finished your race well or not. You compete with nobody, so second place isn't an option. You and I either have made it to the destination or we miss. But the beauty of it all is no one crossroads, save a few, determine the way we finish. It's always possible to get back.

  So, we have choices and God only has to know the possible outcomes of each direction you take plus a fourth, for those who attempt to stand still. From a distance He can see what will happen to those that do stand still and get moved along by others coming to that crossroads where one stalls out. We often can as we gain height and distance from a crossroad, see the choices made wrong or followed wrong after we pass it. Most of us know what decisions made us decide this or that. Sometimes we can see that decision that others make that makes a difference that are good or bad in their life because we have been there before. Some call it the determining fact, I call it the crossroads in one's life, one of many. We never know when this journey will end but the good part about it is that we can end it well. We can never be so lost that we cannot find out way back... never.

  So there you have it, my weird version of life's journey.

Peace, Anthony Kimbrough          

Sunday, May 13, 2012

Judging the Little Things in Life

   My oldest daughter and I were talking today about her school assignment and that went into judging, which makes sense since she will have a teaching degree. She talked and associated the topic with judging and today at church, though we didn't go, the topic was a negative topic with loads of judging and the latest of Obama approving Gai Marriage. I might add an explanation to the spelling. Gay is not homosexual, that means happy. Gai is the correct term for men in women's roles in Shakespearean theater times and why Lesbians cannot be Gai. Or, as a friend who is into word origin once told me, queer (more on that later). I think from there the sermon went everywhere. I must admit that I really didn't miss nothing and last week I really wasn't too good with it either which led to that post before this one. I could have almost went on another one when I rented a video that the preview is for a film based on a book by a popular TV Preacher... but I'm going on another subject now.

  I think we all judge, it seems to be only natural except when we're young. Judging can be, like anything else, healthy or unhealthy, depends on how you use it and what basis you are going by. All religions and no religion has a measure of judgement, so it boils down to on what, when, who, and where. When someone murders in cold blood or goes on a killing spree, you might want to not be alone with him or her. A barking, growling dog with the hair standing up on it's spine, you don't want to pet that animal. A bad lightening storm says to get off the water or quit playing golf and seek shelter. I'm sure that one can think of a million other scenarios where judgement or lack of therein makes sense.

  Now for the part where religious people get slightly perturbed and stop and later on non religious people will probably stop, but it's all good. Angel is a term and not a class of beings. The real meaning of the word angel is messenger. People can be angels or messengers, be that good, bad, or indifferent. Certain beings are sometimes used by God to convey messages that are not human. I'm not sure if we bring sadness or laughter in Heaven, maybe both, by arguing over words. But we will go with Angel being a being from God to this world instead of it's true meaning. Angels we're told have have Free Will just as humans do and are never asked to judge. If they do they aren't in the favor of God and thus we have Fallen Angels and Satan, doing the opposite of the will of the Father. You know, maybe that just might be the reason Angels fly, because they take themselves lighter by not being the judge.

  We all set bars in which a line of perfection is formed, some religious and some from religious even when a religious conviction is not believed. Note that religious dogma nor blood lineage plays no part in what the baseline is formed upon. Feel free to substitute spiritual in that if it makes you feel better. Thing is, do you measure up to what you measure others by? I know I don't so I'd rather focus on what I do or don't do than others, but that always don't work, so I work on that part. From here on in I'm speaking as what my perception of Christianity is, which in no way means I'm right by any account, but I'm learning. I could care less what someone "feels" it means or "interprets" the Bible to mean or what they "think" it says. I go by what it actually says and mostly in the New Testament part, not that I do it all. It isn't the baseline for someone else. It isn't the baseline for who my friends are or how to select them. It is suppose to be a baseline for the reader and follower, if they decide to follow and if not it is a great baseline anyway.

   Now if I follow that baseline I will set an example, but not because I'm trying to set an example and not because I'm earning anything or expecting anything in return. It definitely can't be to fit into anybody's favor nor pleasure or being accepted. It has to be the bar for you to measure you, and I so often find myself way short. I'd like to say that one would find those measures in a church, but one by one they fall away, seduced into their own righteous. Churches are like hospitals. Churches are built for the sinner rather than the saint and hospitals are built for the sick not the well. Not all, but by and large, each day they are lost. One can though, if they don't get lost in the forest, find trees from which to find the baseline by reading slowly the books. It don't hurt to read the Old Testament and other historical accounts of history of the whole world. I'm lazy and would rather leaned by the past mistakes than keep on bumping my head.

   Even at this though, life is short and passes by fast. No rules and it can go quicker, too many rules and it passes by quicker only we miss the whole human experience. It is a coin tossed into the air where one sees heads and the other sees tails, but it is still the same coin and it will most certainly fall back to the lowest solid point that sustains it's weight. Some focus on just that one side they first see while others can see both sides as it flips and tosses back down. Those that do see the simplicity and beauty of the substance it is made from. When I look at someone I see the outward appearance then I look to what is on the inside and then the whole complete person. Note that some beautiful people will become ugly and some ugly people will become beautiful and some just level off. No matter what, I've yet to find someone that I do not learn and grow from.

  So back to the paragraph that I typed the word queer. That come from a life long friend in whom I have a great deal of respect for. This guy has the heart of a Lion, yet is a gentle as a Lamb. Because of growing up together he is like family and I don't really understand his lifestyle choice, but he probably don't understand mine either. Our parents were friends and we grew up as friends and because of his good heart and patience with me I learned, as he is all who know him. In his words he is queer. In my words we all are queer, only in different ways, and that makes life so much more enjoyable, keeps it from getting boring. The lifestyle he has is wrong in the Bible, so is coveting, envy, being prideful, lying, judging, hating, drunk, adultery, tattoos, shaving the head, gluttony, interest on loans, murder, and there are some more. So if you can see one of those categories you fit in, they are all equal, none of those are worse. The worse ones are blasphemy, and telling someone they are useless or a fool. If you cannot find at least one of these your guilty of then ask family or a friend. If they say your clean then you must be perfect and not human.     

  So we can embrace the differences that each share or we can focus on them. Some like long hair, some short. Some like tattoos, some don't. Some like fat and some like thin... and the list is endless. At the end of the day though we have to ask ourselves if we display a good light on what we say we believe. Most beliefs that I've ran across, and some that believe in nothing, share a common thing. Christianity is the one that I've came across that shouts it. Life is meant to grow inside. Learn love, truth, kindness, forgiveness, compassion, and belief. It really doesn't matter if it was Jesus when He walked or Paul through the resurrected Jesus. So is this or that wrong? Yes or no, no maybes. But if you are busy pointing out the other people doing wrong ask yourself. Do you want to be judged like that? That isn't a question, but rather a fact. Personally, I'm going to beg for mercy and grace. Here is something to think about. If we are all judged by what we do, then what we do to another, does that not count?           

Monday, May 7, 2012

Have no idea

  I actually stopped and listened to a preacher on the radio today, first time in quite a while I listened to the whole broadcast. Chip Ingram, and I hope I spelled that right. He is the last of the ones besides the preacher at the church we've been to lately. The more I actually learn the less I like. It was either Hitler or one of his goons that said if you tell a lie long enough and loud enough and repeat it people will believe it, and that is what the word Christian has become. I see now what I saw back when I was young except this time rather than listening to people regurgitating and twisting truth I'm not walking away, I stand firm in my beliefs. I read and learn more and more each day and the more I learn the more I find I don't know that I want to know. Then again, all above a few things is optional reading and one shouldn't forget to mix other historical and present day things just for fun as well. So a few things I've learned. I promise there is a point to this all.

  When I was young people said God didn't like men with long hair. That to me just didn't sound right. I grew my hair down to my belt and all the while I heard that, yet I read about Samson and Delilah. Then I look over at a picture of Jesus hanging in the church and guess what, His hair looks pretty long. When I questioned that I was told I was getting smart with whomever and even told once the depiction was wrong. This lead me to ask why a picture that was incorrect be placed of our Lord in what was suppose to be His house.... I wasn't invited back. The women (and I won't call names) sat and talked, peering at me occasionally, twisting back and forth while I sat there. Their sons had short hair and appeared to be sweet clean cut boys, but appearances were deceiving. They done crap I wouldn't dare do. They did have nice clothes though and mine were adequate. God really don't care what you look like, but He does want your best... inside.

  I finally quit for a while and decided to go to a girl's church who her dad said she had better bring the boy she was interested in. She invited me to the back seat the first night we met, actually the first and last time we met and I take it most of what she went for didn't take, or she was rebelling one. He took one look and after I done a handshake and didn't shake like he did, that was it. He didn't have a clue that his daughter partied and I didn't. Actually, he didn't know his daughter done a lot of things, most I probably wouldn't have and never have. That was followed by the time I went with a girl and an old man who I thought was dead coming in, suddenly screamed out, after looking comatose. He looked to be 100 years old and wore out tired. As he screamed he jumped up like a rocker at a concert. It scared me so bad, I thought he was having a heart attack, so I jumped up and said "Oh Shit!!!" Of all the times for the church to be quiet, that had to be the time. Two seconds before and nobody would have heard me over the crowd. I didn't go back there out of embarrassment.

  My next attempt was while living with a girl who's dad was a preacher. He screamed and done this heyya thing. I can't really explain it. When he called for prayer everybody jumped up and ran to the front of the church and started screaming prayers... I think. It seemed more like a competition or a side show attraction than a chat with God. I didn't know much but I knew better than that. But I get ahead of myself. My first wife and I went to a church and when we had trouble I asked the preacher if he could meet with us since we had a kid together. He looked his calendar over and set an appointment for two weekends away, said God had called him to be somewhere the next weekend. I went to a farm auction the next weekend and apparently God had called him out to go there and buy farm equipment. We separated and she left me and our kid and about a month went by and I went back, only more of a vindication type thing. He always made sure he was at the back of the church when it let out to shake people's hands and I guess bask in compliments. That day he took a check out of his pocket and said he was placing his whole check for that week in the offering plate and people should give theirs too. As I left he asked why we had not come to the appointment and he would make us another one, but he seemed pissed. I asked if we could bring her boyfriend too, I wasn't sure what their new number was.

   I got talked into going once again a few years later, and I went there every Sunday. I had no clue that the preacher belonged to the Southern Baptist Association. I delivered there for thirteen years and in all those years only heard God mentioned through the walls maybe once. What I did hear was how to milk the audience, but in fairness I was in and out. Get the signature then leave. When I met my wife she went with me to this church, even moved her membership over like I did. This preacher even preformed our wedding ceremony. I worked long hours at UPS and also farmed on the side so we only went for preaching. One day after a couple of years the preacher (again always was at the back of the church to shake hands)  leaned over and said, "Both feet in or both feet out." He leaned back over and smiled and I said, "Pardon", with a puzzled look on my face. He leaned back over and said, " Anthony, you need to get both feet in or both feet out. Sunday school, and evening service, plus Wednesday night. Both feet in or both out. " He leaned back with a big smile. I leaned over to him and said, "Well Hell, that's not a problem now is it." It would be years before I would go back other than a hit and miss type thing. Probably about twenty years.

  Up until I had a heart attack I became Agnostic. I figured that religion was just a way to control people and other than when I was young that was about all I'd ever seen. That night I found that God is real, many of the ones who say they represent Him that are fake. Their teaching are fake. Their motives are fake. Their intentions are real, but then again, to be fair, their are some that just go off what they've been told. Then there are good ones, real ones, ones that are real and pray for the answers. What they don't know they'll say they don't know and continue to learn. I finally have maybe found a church to go to, but even he has made mistakes. So far though he has been spot on more than spot off.

   I hear a lot of preachers preach the Old Testament and there are so good rules to live by. There isn't much that isn't covered, but that is Jewish and not Christian. Some scream Saturday and some Sunday for the Sabbath. Jesus slightly went past that saying that God made the Sabbath for man, not man for the Sabbath. The point is mute. It isn't that you can do what you want six days and keep one day for God, that ain't how it works. Then the what God has for us to eat and what not, or clean and unclean food as it is said. Jesus undone that too, but there is a special FYI on that, unclean food is artery clogging. I hear political parties each claiming Jesus, when He wasn't into politics, actually kind of unfriendly with it. I hear of churches who excommunicate members who don't comply. Isn't that like tossing a sick person out of the hospital? Then there is the numbers game, or that is what I call it. A preacher gets as many to be saved and or baptisted as possible. Baptism is a beautiful ceremony but not a requirement physically. Baptism is done by the Holy Spirit... Inside. David was dethroned and made God angry by numbers.   

  Then we go on some other stuff like is it right to be Gai? Nope. It's also not right to hate Gai or be mean to them. Is it right to have an abortion? No, but it isn't right to chastise someone who had one. Christians are not to do what the other faiths do, but nowhere does it say convert or die. Jesus wrote, with permission from His Father, a new Covenant for mankind. He fulfilled one and created a new one. I'll bet that most who claim to be Christian have no idea that Jesus only healed two non Jews and that the 12 Disciples were not allowed to preach to the Gentiles for after 7 or 8 years. Paul was an Apostle that never seen Jesus in His earthy suit but rather Glorified. I hear people say the biggest lie of all though, Jews are God's chosen people. That is nowhere in the Bible, nowhere. Abraham was an Israelite. Abraham's children became nations and one of them settled what is called Judah. While it's truth that 144,000 will be in Heaven, that is only 12,000 from each tribe. So this one I'll actually show the scripture,

    Revelation 7: 4And I heard the number of them which were sealed: and there were sealed an hundred and forty and four thousand of all the tribes of the children of Israel. 

But then this verse you never hear about.  

        7: 9 After this I beheld, and, lo, a great multitude, which no man could number, of all nations, and kindreds, and people, and tongues, stood before the throne, and before the Lamb, clothed with white robes, and palms in their hands;

  There have been many misrepresentations over the years and some thing we take as hard cold fact aren't, they are actually lies.

   In this world most go by what they've been told and just go through the motions. I love the ones who say, "You take from it what your given" or "everybody has a different explanation (or sometimes, understanding)."  Truth is truth, it does not sway.  I love the ones who say they are Zionists, that one brings on a smile. Are you Christian or Zionist, both do not belong together. Pick one. Zionism is a reincarnation of an older term in Matthew 3 about thinking birthright is a sure ticket, and I'll quote that one.

Matthew 7 But when he saw many of the Pharisees and Sadducees come to his baptism, he said unto them, O generation of vipers, who hath warned you to flee from the wrath to come?
Bring forth therefore fruits meet for repentance:
And think not to say within yourselves, We have Abraham to our father: for I say unto you, that God is able of these stones to raise up children unto Abraham.
10 And now also the axe is laid unto the root of the trees: therefore every tree which bringeth not forth good fruit is hewn down, and cast into the fire.

  So basically if you are hearing the Old Testament being preached as something past the 10 Commandments were, and it's negative, you are at the wrong crush. Then you add all the things down in the New Testament. If your are hearing we must take care Israel. If you are hearing you should hate. You are at the wrong place. God will restore His Israel, but this one belongs to Rothschild. That isn't to say that everybody there is bad, but the leaders as a whole are and the agenda is. I'll give you a quote on that one too.

 Revelation 3:9
Behold, I will make them
of the synagogue of Satan, which say they are Jews, and are not, but do lie; behold, I will make them to come and worship before thy feet, and to know that I have loved thee.

   I think we all have different roles to play here in this world and no one roll is better than the other. I have a friend who writes positive stuff and I love to read it. It is full of love, mercy, and compassion. Mine seems to be a little more stern and directed towards the hate that I see in most people that call themselves Christian with the my way of the highway attitude. Really, arguing over God's name? I couldn't write about Hindu or Muslim because I don't know the faiths, and that is ok. I think every group has some in it that is seen to be the icon for that group and don't actually represent the group as a whole. But as the saying goes, the squeaky wheel gets the grease and the media and governments seem to tell us what they want us to think. It's a big world folks and I can share as long as I'm allowed to live here too. Thing is, who knows, maybe they will want to change to my beliefs if they see a good representation of what they are, and if not, that's ok too.

  There is a reason that what is being taught is what seems to be everywhere and universally accepted. It is the same people who own most of the big ministries, TV and radio, books and publishers. Its a war and one that is being fought from within. If you can't defeat an opponent face to face you can let them defeat themselves from going within, like a virus in the body. Most people today can't relate Christmas without Santa Clause and most would think he has always been connected with Christmas, yet that isn't so. It was in the 50s that Coke decided to fatten the skinny man up and dress him out as he appears today. Big money was spent on Think Tanks who decided each small detail, nothing was left to chance. So if one goes back past the fifties, they'd have no clue what he is or was, and he looked nothing like the one presented today. Check out the history behind that, it will amaze you, and that is the way crap gets started. Well, that and shear repetition such as Hitler used.    

  So does being a Christian make someone better than the rest? No. Every religion makes one feel they are better than the other beliefs. The same goes with those who don't have a religion. Wars are started because somebody feels superior. Funny, when we feel superior we look inferior and act inferior. I love those "NO Fear" signs. If one has to put a sign on something to tell another person guess what, it's wishful thinking. But back on topic.

  The book of Matthew is seldom quoted and with just cause too, it dispels a lot of what we see these days being taught. Parts of it are being disputed by Scholars even today. Say what one will, Paul doesn't dispute or replace His teachings, and what is so bad about them? The Jews had the Romans crucify Him, and we'd probably, as a society do it all over again today. Like back then, not everybody would but the powers that be would, and I'm sure that many would hear sound bytes and jump for joy while heading off to do the motions of church between TV shows.

  We listen to those who take it too far or those who don't go far enough or those who have interpreted the meaning. We attack that which we do not know out of fear and insecurity. Prophets foresee the future. Try that now days and your wicked. Bet it was like that back then too. American Indians done a ceremony that was something white men hadn't seen before and were slaughtered. We read about it at Wounded Knee, and the list is a long list. So here is the thing. Atrocities are committed under the name of religion using people who are not religious. They have no beliefs or the beliefs in evil deities or gods. Belief that there is more than one god goes along with what Biblical teachings say, though there is only one Creator God.

   So being Christian requires observance of the 10 Commandments plus what Jesus taught, or the attempt to observe them. It requires no judgement on the person's part, save for their own lacking. The Old Testament has a lot of great lessons and does tell what pleases and displeases God, no different than you or I would write about what we like and dislike. Getting a tattoo, drunk, scaring the body, shaving the head probably won't get you into Hell, but God don't like it. There is no way to earn Heaven, but you are expected to try, or at least make peace. If you get to feeling better than someone try reading Matthew. By Grace are we saved and by following Jesus do we earn Grace. So I stop here with this thought and I have no idea what this was actually suppose to be headed off to say. Maybe it was just a rant done in a two day half asleep thing, maybe not. Be happy, peaceful, and humble. Enjoy today and see if you can make today enjoyable for someone else.

Matthew 11:       
16 But whereunto shall I liken this generation? It is like unto children sitting in the markets, and calling unto their fellows,
17 And saying, We have piped unto you, and ye have not danced; we have mourned unto you, and ye have not lamented.
18 For John came neither eating nor drinking, and they say, He hath a devil.
19 The Son of man came eating and drinking, and they say, Behold a man gluttonous, and a winebibber, a friend of publicans and sinners. But wisdom is justified of her children.