Christianity - Christianity
People in general
are equally horrified
the Christian religion
at seeing it practiced.
praying Christian, every person who has an encounter with
must have a passionate concern for his or her
brother or sister,
his or her neighbor. To treat any one
of these as if he were less than
the child of God is to
deny the validity of one's spiritual existence.
Just as there comes a
warm sunbeam into every cottage window,
so comes a
lovebeam of God's care and pity for every separate need.
of the springtime, Father of flower, field and fruit,
smile on us in these earnest
when the work is heavy
and the toil wearisome; lift up our hearts, O God,
things worthwhile--sunshine and night, the dripping rain,
the song of the birds, books and music, and the voices of
our friends. Lift up our hearts to these this
grant us Thy peace. Amen.
Christ himself came down and took
possession of me. . .
I had never foreseen the
possibility of that,
of a real contact, person to person,
here below, between a human
being and God. . .
sudden possession of me by Christ, neither my sense nor
imagination had any part: I only felt in the midst of
my suffering the presence of a love.
glory of the star, the glory of the sun--we must not lose
in the other. We must not be so full of the hope
of heaven that
we cannot do our work on the earth;
must not be so lost in the work
of the earth that we
shall not be inspired by the hope of heaven.
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Two - Year Three
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of the matter, if we want a stable world, is a very
and old-fashioned thing, a thing so simple that I
am almost ashamed
to mention it for fear of the derisive
smile with which wise cynics will
greet my words. The
thing I mean is love, Christian love, or compassion.
you feel this, you have a motive for existence, a reason
an imperative necessity for intellectual
is bigger than any problem. God in you is greater than any
difficulty that you have
to meet. God cares for you more than it
is possible for any human
being to realize. God can help you in
proportion to the degree in which you
worship him. You worship
God by really putting your trust in him
instead of in outer
or in fear, or in depression, or in seeming
dangers, and so forth.
You worship God by recognizing his presence everywhere,
people and conditions that you meet; and by
You pray well when you pray with joy.
When we're helping
other people, we're nourishing our soul. Depression
means we've got the wrong goal. We have
peace of mind is our only goal. By
concentrating on helping another person,
we renew contact
with our soul and with God. We can feel peaceful again.
sense of joy surrounds us and all
and self-anger disappears.
Peace of mind has nothing to do with the
external world; it has only to do
with God. Love really is the answer. We're here only to
teach love. When we're doing that, our souls are singing
and dancing. When
we remind ourselves
that we are
spiritual beings, that life and love are the
eternal, that's when our soul is nourished.
|If someone were to ask
me whether I believed in God, or saw God, or had
particular relationship with God, I would reply that I
don't separate God
from my world in my thinking. I feel
that God is everywhere. That's why
I never feel separated
from God or feel I must seek God, any more than
a fish in
the ocean feels it must seek water.
In a sense, God is
the "ocean" in which we live.
is right here, wherever you are. God is within you and
around you. God is omnipresent and omniscient.
You never have to beg
or bargain with God
The Holy Spirit knows your needs even
before you do.
it is God's very nature to fulfill your needs, at the
time and in the manner
that is best for you. There are
many lessons we
must learn in our lifetime,
but none is
more essential to our happiness than
this one. We never
to entreat God to be more kind or benevolent.
kindness and benevolence.
The very substance of God is
love that created you and me.
It is the love
within the little acorn that
becomes the great oak tree,
the love that protects the lilies of the field.
the love that is
breathing for you, the love that is
beating your heart.
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incredible, however, are the times we know Christ is with
in the midst
of our daily, routine lives. In the
middle of cleaning the
house or driving somewhere in the
He stops us. . . in our
tracks and makes His
presence known. Often it's in the middle of
mundane task that He lets us know He is there with us.
that there can be no "ordinary"
for people who live their lives with Jesus.
(ellipsis are from source)
fathers and mothers looked well to the root of the tree
and were willing to wait with patience
for the fruit to
appear. We demand the fruit immediately even though the
root may be weak
and knobby or missing altogether. Impatient Christians today explain away the simple beliefs
of the saints of other days and smile off their
serious-minded approach to God
and sacred things . . . .
Much that passes for Christianity today is the brief
the severed branch to bring forth its
fruit in its season. But the deep laws of life are against
it. Preoccupation with appearances and a corresponding
neglect of the out-of-sight root
of the true spiritual
life are prophetic signs which go unheeded. Immediate
all that matter, quick proofs of
present success without a thought of next week
year. . . . Bear your cross, follow your Lord and pay no
to the passing religious
vogue. The masses are always
wrong. In every generation the number of righteous
small. Be sure you are among them.
Christianity is an entirely positive influence. It comes
into a person's life
to enlarge and enrich it,
to make it
fuller and wider and better; never to restrict
cannot lose anything that is
worth having through
acquiring a knowledge
of the Truth. Sacrifice there has
to be, but it is only
sacrifice of the things that
much happier without--never of anything that is worth
having. Many people
have the idea that getting a better
knowledge of God will mean giving up things
will regret losing. One girl said: "I mean to take
up religion later on
when I am older,
but I want to enjoy
myself for a while first." This, however, is
the whole point. The things one has to sacrifice are
and belief in necessary limitation
any kind. Above all, one has to sacrifice
there is any power or endurance
in evil apart from the
that we ourselves give it by believing in it.
Though Christian charity
sounds a very cold thing to people whose heads are
and though it is quite distinct from
affection, yet it leads
to affection. The difference
between a Christian
and a worldly person is not
worldly person has only affections or "likings"
and the Christian
only "charity." The
worldly person treats certain people kindly because he or
she "likes" them: the Christians, trying to treat
everyone kindly, find themselves
liking more and more
as they go on--including people they
could not even
have imagined themselves liking at the beginning.
Christianity - Christianity
|According to Gallup
surveys, confirmed by other polls taken over the past
33 percent of all Americans over age 18
indicate they are evangelical or "born again"
That translates into 59 million Christians,
or one in every three adults, who experienced
point in their lives as they made a personal commitment
to Jesus Christ.
This information should grip us with terror.
It means that the greatest revival in history
has so far
been impotent to change society. It's revival without
reformation. It's a revival
which left the country
floundering in spiritual ignorance. It's a change in
without a corresponding change in behavior. . . .
The American Gospel has evolved into a
gospel of addition without subtraction. It is
that we can add Christ to our lives, but not subtract sin.
It is a change in belief
without a change in behavior. It
is a spiritual experience without any cultural impact.
is revival without reformation, without repentance. . . .
The proof of religious conversion is
to demonstrate that we have both added a relationship
with Christ and that we have subtracted sin (repentance). And we multiply proof
to a weary world by what we do--our
deeds, our obedience. What we do must confirm
what we say. Our deeds are the proof of our repentance.
Don't be fearful about
the journey ahead; don't worry about where you
or how you are going to get there. If you believe in the
person of the Trinity, God the Father, also believe
in the Second Person
of the Trinity, the One who came as
the Light of the World, not only
die for people, but
to light the way. . . This One, Jesus Christ,
the Light and will guide your footsteps along the way.
In our whole life
melody the music is broken off here and there by rests,
and we foolishly think we have come to the end of time. God sends
a time of forced leisure, a time of sickness
and disappointed plans, and makes
a sudden pause in the
hymns of our lives, and we lament that our voice
silent and our part missing in the music which ever goes
to the ear of our Creator. Not without design does God
write the music
of our lives. Be it ours to learn the
time and not be dismayed
at the rests. If we look up, God
will beat the time for us.
I compare the troubles which we have to
undergo in the course of the
to a great bundle of
sticks, far too large for us to lift. But God does
to carry the whole at once. He mercifully
bundle, and gives us first one stick,
are to carry today, and
then another, which we are to
carry tomorrow, and so on. This we might
if we would only take the burden appointed for us each
but we choose to increase our troubles by carrying
stick over again today,
and adding tomorrow's
burden to our load,
before we are required to bear it.
Have courage for the great sorrows
of life and patience for the small ones;
and when you
have laboriously accomplished your daily task,
sleep in peace. God is awake.
are many who want me to tell them of secret ways of
and I can only tell them that the sole
secret is a hearty love of God,
and the only way of
attaining that love is by loving. You learn to speak
speaking, to study by studying, to run by running, to
work by working;
and just so you learn to love God and
man by loving. Begin as a mere apprentice
and the very
power of love will lead you on to become a master of the
St. Francis of Sales
|isn't it funny how often we see the first 26 words of
this passage, but almost never the rest?
To be glad of life,
because it gives you the chance to love and to work
to play and to look up to the stars; to be satisfied with
but not contented with yourself until
you have made the best of them;
to despise nothing in the
world except falsehood and meanness, and to fear nothing
except cowardice; to be governed by your admirations
rather than by your disgusts;
to covet nothing that is
your neighbor's except his kindness of heart and
of manners; to think seldom of your enemies,
often of your friends and every day
spend as much time as you can with body and with spirit,
in God's out-of-doors--these are the little guideposts on
the footpath of peace.
with God--prayer--is a two-way conversation! It is not
just the voice
of praise and petitions, but often
communion. Sitting in silence with God,
whatever He may want to say. Simply enjoy the fact that
and you are, and you have a relationship with Him. These special moments with God
are when His fresh breezes
can enter your heart and refresh you.
significance of the word "meek" in the Bible is
a mental attitude for
which there is no other single word
available, and it is this mental attitude
which is the
secret of "prosperity" or success in prayer. It
is a combination of
open-mindedness, faith in God, and
the realization that the Will of God for us
something joyous and interesting and vital, and much
anything we could think of for ourselves. This state of mind also includes a
allow this Will of God to come about in whatever way
Divine Wisdom considers to be the best, rather than
some particular way that we have chosen for ourselves.
|When I awaken in the
morning, I am thankful for a new day. I am
that I have materially. I am thankful for
everything I have spiritually. I thank God
me to experience
these things, even the experiences that
may not seem so positive,
such as developing an illness. I may not understand why I have the
illness, but I sense
it is there for a purpose, and so I thank God
for it. I ask Him to allow me to expand beyond my narrow-mindedness
and self-centeredness so that I can see the good that
comes from everything.
In the very first
words of the Sermon on the Mount, Jesus puts his
on one of life's most vital issues--individual and
happiness. We all want to be happy--and rightly
so. The longing
for lasting happiness is a deep-rooted
instinct that has been built
into us by the Creator
Himself. The God who made the sunset,
painted the rose,
put the smile on a baby's face, gave the gift of
playfulness to a kitten and put laughter in our souls is
surely not happy when we are unhappy.
Although it is a God-given instinct to be
happy, we must also see
that it is only God who can make
us happy. Apart from him and his
redemptive love as
expressed through the cross and the resurrection,
would be "most miserable" (1 Cor. 15:19).
I would be true, for there are
those who trust me;
I would be pure, for there are those who care;
I would be strong, for there is much to suffer;
I would be brave, for there is much to dare.
I would be friend of all--the foe, the friendless;
I would be giving, and forget the gift;
I would be humble, for I know my weakness;
I would look up, and laugh, and love, and lift.
I would be learning, day by day, the lessons
My heavenly Father gives me in his Word;
I would be quick to hear his slightest whisper,
And prompt and glad to do the things I've heard.
Harold Arnold Walter
Christianity - Christianity
|There are two simple
little words that are the very heart of the life of the
spirit. The first word is "open."
Trine gave the secret of how to attune our lives to God.
"The principal word to use is
the word 'open',"
he wrote. "To be in tune with the Infinite you must
simply open your heart and mind
to the divine inflow
which is waiting for the opening of the gate that it may
To have an open self is to provide a
free channel for the infinite goodness of God. To have an
is to keep yourself aware, alert and sensitive
to the beauty and wonder of life. God's love will flow
through you into the world when you are open. You enlarge
the dimensions of your life when
you keep yourself open
to the highest and the best. The key to God's infinite
riches is within you;
open yourself and you will receive.
The second word is "one."
Dr. Charles Eliot of Harvard declared that the chief
of the religion of the future will be man's
recognition of his oneness with the great Creative Force
which finds its outlet through man himself.
"The life of the soul,"
said Emerson, "in conscious union with the Infinite
shall be for thee
the only real existence."
Beyond a conscious oneness with God
you should also think of yourself as one with all people
all living things. All the people you have ever met and
known are a part of you and you are
a part of them
forever. You cannot live separately and alone. You are
one with the universe,
with the sun, the sea and the
stars. You are a part of all life, plant, animal, human
"To awaken into a vision of
wholeness where we saw only fragments," wrote Horatio Dresser,
"is to begin to have a philosophy
of the spirit."
walk with Christ by faith know the meaning of wonder
their daily lives. Ordinary people experience
because of the wonder of Christ. These wonders may not be obvious
to those outside the
family of God, but they're clearly visible to
inside the family. His wonders are seen in so-called
such as a flower, or bird, or a baby's
smile. And they're
in the big things as well, such as
the courage to say "No" or
strength to keep
going when the road is difficult. Little things
big things when they're touched by the wonder of Christ.
Warren W. Wiersbe
"Clark, what in
your honest opinion is the right standard for determining
Is the only right standard for everyone, the
probable action of Jesus Christ?
Would you say that the
highest, best law for a man to live by was contained in
the question 'What would Jesus do?' And then doing
it regardless of results?
In other words, do you think
men everywhere ought to follow Jesus' example
as they can in their daily lives?"
Charles M. Sheldon
so one may be without connection with any church, and even
without connection with any established religion, and yet be in
hence in reality, a much truer Christian than hosts of those who
to be His most ardent followers, as indeed Jesus Himself so many
times says. “By their fruits ye shall know them,” said He.
“Not every one that saith unto me, Lord, Lord, shall enter
into the kingdom of heaven; but he that doeth
the will of my Father which is in heaven.”
the Christian religion is an inspiring, health-giving activity.
"I came that ye might have life and have it more
abundantly." Jesus denounced
and attacked the dry forms and dead rituals that passed for religion
in his day.
He was a rebel. He preached a new kind of religion--a religion
to upset the world. That is why he was crucified. He
preached the religion should
exist for people--not people for religion; that the Sabbath was made
not people for the Sabbath. He talked more about fear than he
did about sin.
The wrong kind of fear is a sin--a sin against your health, a
sin against the richer,
fuller happier, courageous life that Jesus advocated. Emerson
spoke of himself as
a "Professor of the Science of Joy." Jesus, too, was a
teacher of "the Science of Joy."
He commanded his disciples to "rejoice and leap for joy."
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|He comes to us as One unknown, without a name,
as of old, by the lakeside,
He came to those men who knew Him not. He speaks to us the same
"Follow thou me!" and sets us to the tasks which He has to
fulfill for our time.
He commands. And to those who obey Him, whether they be wise or
He will reveal Himself in the toils, the conflicts, the sufferings
which they shall
pass through in His fellowship, and, as an ineffable mystery,
they shall learn in their own experience Who He is.
think of Jesus as "Prince of Peace," you
immediately think of his
character. Jesus was a man of
peace. You see this as you watch him in the
of life. He was able to fall asleep in the
ship in the
midst of a storm so threatening that even
fishermen disciples were
terrified. He looked at over
five thousand hungry people
and he knew what
he would do. Our Lord's peace didn't come from the absence of trouble.
It came from the depths of his soul where he fellowshipped with the Father.
Peace and character go together. What we
do depends a great deal on what
we are. The secret of our
Lord's peace was his relationship to his Father. He
and therefore he trusted the Father. This
gave him peace.
Warren W. Wiersbe
We have endless
books about whether Jesus existed, or whether the
Jesus we have learned about is really accurate and historical or
mythical. We have endless complicated tracts on fine technical
issues, but we don't explore Jesus' way to happiness and peace,
or try to understand his feelings about God and creation of how he
views our relationship with God, or his attitude toward human
weakness. Understanding these things could help us immensely
in our own search for inner peace and a meaning to life.
Joseph F. Girzone
|"The Christian ideal," it is said, "has not been
found wanting; it has been found difficult and left untried."
good thing in the Christian life grows in the soil of humility.
Without humility, every virtue and every grace withers. That’s
Calvin said humility is first, second, and third in the Christian
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Two - Year Three
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What does it mean to live a full life? How do we
stay happy and content in a world that often seems to be
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|We are settling for a Christianity
that revolves around catering to
ourselves when the central message of Christianity
is actually about abandoning ourselves.
those who seek Him. Not those who seek doctrine of
religion or systems or creeds. Many settle for these lesser
but the reward goes to those who settle for nothing less than Jesus
himself. And what is the reward? What awaits those who
Nothing short of the heart of Jesus.
Just Like Jesus
mental culture go on advancing, let the natural sciences progress in
even greater extent and depth, and the human mind widen itself as much
as it desires: beyond the elevation and moral culture of Christianity,
as it shines forth in the Gospels, it will not go.
Wolfgang von Goethe