Archive | September, 2014

The Way Of Love

28 Sep

The Way of Love
If I speak in the tongues of men and of angels, but have not love, I am a noisy gong or a clanging cymbal. And if I have prophetic powers, and understand all mysteries and all knowledge, and if I have all faith, so as to remove mountains, but have not love, I am nothing.

If I give away all I have, and if I deliver up my body to be burned, but have not love, I gain nothing. Love is patient and kind; love does not envy or boast; it is not arrogant or rude. It does not insist on its own way; it is not irritable or resentful; it does not rejoice at wrongdoing, but rejoices with the truth. 

Love bears all things, believes all things, hopes all things, endures all things. Love never ends. As for prophecies, they will pass away; as for tongues, they will cease; as for knowledge, it will pass away. For we know in part and we prophesy in part, but when the perfect comes, the partial will pass away. When I was a child, I spoke like a child, I thought like a child, I reasoned like a child.

When I became a man, I gave up childish ways. For now we see in a mirror dimly, but then face to face. Now I know in part; then I shall know fully, even as I have been fully known. So now faith, hope, and love abide, these three; but the greatest of these is love.

1Cor13

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Grace Alone

17 Sep

Every promise we can make
Every prayer and step of faith
Every difference we can make
Is only by His grace.

Every mountain we will climb
Every ray of hope we shine
Every blessing left behind
Is only by His grace

Grace alone Which God supplies
Strength unknown He will provide
Christ in us, our cornerstone
We will go forth in grace alone.

Every soul we long to reach
Every heart we hope to teach
Everywhere we share His peace
Is only by His grace.

Every loving word we say
Every tear we wipe away
Every sorrow turned to praise
Is only by His grace.

Grace alone Which God supplies
Strength unknown He will provide
Christ in us, our cornerstone
We will go forth in grace alone.

Grace alone Which God supplies
Strength unknown He will provide
Christ in us, our cornerstone
We will go forth in grace alone.
We will go forth in grace alone.

Written by: Scott Wesley Brown

Reflections

4 Sep

One of my favorite times of day, when I was growing up, was when Grandfather and I would walk down to the Colorado River and reflect on our day. We would peer into the water and go over the day’s events as we saw a perfect reflection of ourself in the water. Grandfather would explain that as our day went so would our reflection on the water gleaming for a good day and cloudy for a difficult day. He would then drop a small pebble into the still water. The perfect concentric circles developed represented how our day would go tomorrow.

Later in life he explained the reflection we saw in the water represented how we looked in God’s eyes and we were seeing what God saw in us. If we lived our day as He wanted, our reflection would be crystal clear and gleaming, if we strayed off the path our reflection would be cloudy and dark. The concentric circles represented the ring of protection God has placed around us to protect us from evil. He further explained that God would guide us along our path of life providing us protection from all harm as long as we followed His lead and if we should wander off into the dark brush, He would be there to guide us back to the path and give us comfort and peace.

Many years have passed since those days and I no longer have the Colorado River to reflect my day in, but I do have a clear mind that will reflect my day for me. As I reflect in my day in this virtual space God has always been there to lead and guide me through good and hard times and He has always comforted me and given me peace when I needed it. When I drop the pebble into the water, perfect concentric circles are formed around my center to protect me from evil.

I never once questioned He would be there and never once considered what would happen if He took a day off and was not there to lead me. I know, without Him, I would be lost. I thank Him for always being there for me.

If you were to look at yourself through God’s eyes what would you see? What would you want to change?

May all your days be bright and clear.

I love you!

Ed

Fear

2 Sep

As I was growing up Grandfather would teach me what he called the litany of life. Things like: Truth has a way of repeating itself throughout history and contrary to the idea that history begins at breakfast, it actually started before you were born. The one that literally burned itself in my mind is the one on fear.

Fear is the Mind Killer

He taught me from a young age and part of the training was learning to tame and use the mind. This of course is one of the purposes of meditation. In the training series, when fear appears, we would repeat an incantation to help move their minds past the fear. The Litany goes as follows:

I must not fear. Fear is the mind-killer. Fear is the little-death that brings total obliteration. I will face my fear. I will permit it to pass over me and through me. And when it has gone past I will turn the inner eye to see its path. Where the fear has gone there will be nothing. Only I will remain.

Now this is a nice way to look fear in the face and to dissipate its effects when faced with a dangerous situation. It helps to focus the mind inward and to have courage. However, this incantation does not really get to the root of fear and how it arises…to get to that point you have to go much deeper.

Two Perspectives of Fear

When it comes to going beyond fear you can use two different methods. One is the method of hypnosis, which is offered in a lot of the self-help material these days. The other, which is very different, is the method of meditation.

The perspective of hypnosis, to a great degree, uses mind tricks for dealing with fear at a moment in time. Repeating “The Litany Against Fear” induces a hypnotic state, so as to allow fear to wash over you.  That lasts for a few seconds but it doesn’t necessarily get you beyond fear. It is useful in the moment, but the change is not everlasting, for that we must dig deeper.

From the perspective of meditation, to get beyond fear you have to go to a place where the mind simply has the ability to stay open–allowing anything to flow through it. Anything occurring in your outer environment does not close down that space within your mind. Fear is essentially a closing down of the space at the center of the mind and spirit or soul.

It is impossible to go beyond fear permanently by only having this trick or that trick that can help you for a few minutes. To get beyond fear, you essentially must change your internal landscape. So when fear attempts to grab hold of you, you reside in a place where it can’t.

Real Fear and Fake Fear

If fear arises it may be a real fear, such as I’m going to walk over a cliff, then you just step back. Or, if a car is moving toward you at a high speed, you must be motivated to move out of the way. But that’s not really the kind of inner fear I’m discussing.

It’s the kind of fear that eats away at your insides. Real fear is nothing more than heightened awareness. That is awareness of a real situation and the fear that arises to protect you.

It is important to recognize that most fear has nothing to do with reality. Most of the time people are afraid of things that will never happen to them. This is an effect of the mainstream media and news constantly bombarding the public with negative images. This puts people in a weakened state of fear and decreases the immune system of the body. Often your mind picks up these pictures and replays them, creating a story about them. This is not useful nor is it good for the body.

So to go beyond fear, one of the first steps is to recognize that fear which is truly helpful: It makes you more aware, in real situations, in real time. Inside your fear is something that says, “Wait a minute, I think we have to do something sensible and prudent here,” rather than running around like a chicken with your head cut off, or becoming paralyzed and ducking under a chair, hoping that everything will pass one day.

Next, to really go beyond fear, you must summon the courage to look at all the fears that are inside you. Fears arise from childhood experiences and from terrible events that have happened to you or that you witnessed.

When you find these fears you can use meditation to get to a place where you simply can move to the space of awareness. As you move into the space of awareness, you can then release what is not real. This is the path to finding a peace place inside. This is a destination that can be achieved through mediation and prayer.

I offer this because we are being hit continuously with fear mongering by both the media and the politicians in Washington. Things are being so overblown by both that it appears they are starting to tell us what to believe. It is time to take a step back and determine for ourself what is real and what is fake. We cannot allow these folks to control our thoughts.

Let the peace of truth calm your mind!

Ed