Friday after Epiphany
Wisdom, Chapter 8, Verse 14-15
14 I shall govern peoples, and nations will be my subject’s 15 tyrannical princes, hearing of me, will be afraid; in the assembly I shall appear noble, and in war courageous.
Pope Benedict XVI wrote in his Theology of the Covenant that we are a people of many faiths with one covenant with God. Therefore, it is reasonable that strong people will honor us in our faith as we have the same covenant with the living God although we may worship in a different way.
What are some of the traits we and our cousins in the covenant may have as strong people? According to the daily elite-the voice of generation Y there are 20 things that strong people DON’T do
1. Dwell on the past.
2. Stay in their comfort zone
3. Refuse to listen to the opinion of others
4. Avoid change
5. Keep a closed mind and are open to new ideas
6. Let others make decisions for them
7. Get jealous of over the success of others
8. Dwell on the possibility of failure they keep a positive perspective
9. Feel sorry for themselves
10. Focus on their weaknesses
11. Try to please people
12. Blame themselves for things outside their control
13. Be impatient and quit easily
14. Let misunderstandings continue
15. Feel they are entitled or privileged
16. Repeat mistakes
17. Give into their fears
18. Act without using prudence
19. Refuse to help
However, on the other hand, we must realize that ruthless nations will fear a covenant people because ruthless nations are made up of ruthless people and ruthless people fear what they cannot control.
There are 6 traits of the ruthless according to Askmen.com.
1. Emotion is to be avoided in all decision making
2. No tolerance for incompetence
3. Never forgive
4. Punish quickly and brutally
5. Instill fear in others
6. Stay focused and determined
To be a people of the covenant we must remember the urgings of Christ that “This is the time of fulfillment. The Kingdom of God is at hand. Repent, and believe in the Gospel.” (Mark 1:15).
Every country in the world has its own Christmas customs. Christmas in Australia is often very hot. Whereas the northern hemisphere is in the middle of winter, Australians are baking in summer heat. It is not unusual to have Christmas Day well into the mid 30 degrees Celsius, or near 100 degrees Fahrenheit. A traditional meal includes a turkey dinner, with ham, and pork. A flaming Christmas plum pudding is added for dessert. In the Australian gold rushes, Christmas puddings often contained a gold nugget. Today a small favor is baked inside. Whoever finds this knows that they will enjoy good luck. Another treat is Mince Pies. It is Father Christmas who brings the presents to the Australian children on Christmas Eve. Homes and gardens are decorated with greenery, Christmas tree and fairy lights. Seasonal plants are the Christmas bush and the Christmas bell.
· Day Seventeen activity (Candles by Candlelight)
· Day Seventeen recipe (Australian Christmas Pudding)
Fitness Friday -Be a Radiant Person
The Four Dimensions of Life
Health for the whole person
1. Nutrition-It is necessary to eat to live, not only physically, but also in the other three dimensions.
· Mentally: If new information and ideas are not fed into the mind on a regular basis the intellect ceases to grow and develop, becoming weak and stunted. Don't dwell on the trivial, degrading, or useless; these things can be considered mental junk food. I will sing of your strength, in the morning I will sing of your love; for you are my fortress, my refuge in times of trouble ... my loving God. PSALM 59:16
· Socially: If love, respect, and companionship are not a regular part of your life, your social capabilities become weak and dwarfed.
· Spiritually: Christians nourish themselves spiritually through Bible study, prayer, fellowship, and service to others.
· Mentally: Intellect, memory, wisdom, attitude, and willpower need to be exercised.
· Socially: Love, tact, the social graces, communication, and core values grow when they are practiced.
· Spiritually: The exercise of faith, prayer, love, and perseverance are essential for spiritual strength and growth.
· Mentally: The mind needs to rest after periods of intense mental activity in order to recuperate. In addition, a good night's sleep gives the mind a chance to reorganize and start afresh.
· Socially: A time away in privacy and solitude is necessary after periods of heavy social interaction.
· Spiritually: After intense periods of ministry Christ's servants need to "Come apart and rest awhile" by spending time with Him. Time with Christ is spiritual rejuvenation. (See Mark 6:30,31).4. Temperance—The basic definition of this law of life and health is to avoid that which is harmful and practice moderation in that which is healthful.
First, do no harm.
· Mentally: Don't do anything that would destroy or pollute your mental faculties.
· Socially: Don't acquire harmful habits or friends, or engage in socially destructive behaviors like gossip, criticism, breaking civil laws, or engaging in risky, degrading, sexual behaviors.
· Spiritually: Don't destroy your spiritual sensibilities by dwelling on spiritually destructive emotions such as hatred, anger, or revenge. Avoid putting yourself under Satan's power through occult practices or the rejection of the Spirit of God.Second, practice moderation and balance in things that are good. This involves more than just a balance between such things as activity and rest, logic and emotion, solitude and the multitude. It also consists of keeping a healthy balance between the four dimensions (mentally, physically spiritually and socially). When one of these areas of life becomes all-encompassing or is neglected, the result is an unbalanced and unhealthy individual.
Finally, part of being in balance is knowing what is most valuable and important. There will be times when you will have to choose between what is best for one element at the expense of the others. A young person might have to choose between a career in sports or science. You might have time to get either physical exercise or spiritual nourishment but not both. You make choices based on what you value most. Why not make your spiritual dimension the top priority, and base each decision on how it will affect your spiritual life and health? It would be a terrible waste to make physical health your highest priority only to miss out completely on eternal life and the associated radiant health Christ promises. "But seek ye first the kingdom of God, and His righteousness; and all these things shall be added unto you." (Matt. 6:33).
5. Water, fresh air, and sunshine—These are all useful for cleanliness, which is a principle that applies equally to all segments of life.
· Spiritually: We need to open our hearts daily to the sunshine of God's love, let the pure air of the Spirit flow into our lives, and be washed in the cleansing blood of Jesus, accepting His forgiveness.
· Mentally: Likewise, when the mind is polluted and degraded there is help in the principle, "By beholding we become changed?" But ultimately, only by accepting Christ's offer to create in us a new life can the mind be completely cleansed.
· Socially: As Christ changes the life and the person sincerely repents, confesses, apologizes, and makes amends, others will realize that this is a new and clean person.
The Inseparable Four Dimensions
· Physically: Poor physical health can cloud the mind, depress the attitudes, and make it more difficult to keep spiritually healthy. Conversely, good health can clear the mind and improve the mental outlook, promoting enriched spiritual strength and health.
· Mentally: Willpower, attitude, and intellect have a decided influence on how we live our lives and apply or reject the various laws of health.
· Socially: Both the attitudes that permeate our homes, and the relationships we form, have the power to affect our health
· Spiritually: The exercise of faith, love, hope, prayer, perseverance, and dedication to God will bring peace of mind, character growth, and increased physical health.
Full Wolf Moon
According to the almanac today we are having a Full Wolf Moon; plan to get with your children or grandchildren around a fire and howl a little at the moon having fun together. Also, you could sit down together and listen to the music from Peter and the Wolf. As a child this was one of my favorite record albums that I would make my mother play over and over again much to her distress.