Introduction to 2 Peter
- Peter's back. And this time he's writing to all of Christendom. Yeah, he likes to go big picture.
- He's also got some good news: God has given Christians everything they need to live good lives now and in the coming world. Christians have the smarts to escape the trappings of "the world" and to live as one with God.
- But Christians have to keep up their end of the faith bargain. They have to do good deeds and be smart and control themselves and preserve and be holy. Oh, and be loving, too. Exhausting.
- If anyone doesn't do these things, well, it's not gonna work out so well for them in the end.
- But if you stay on the path to goodness, everything will be alright and you'll get your ticket to board the train to Heaventown.
- Peter knows that Christians already get this stuff. But he wants to keep giving refreshers as long as he's around to do it. See, he's not long for this world—death is knocking. It's hard out there for an apostle.
- Now, some folks have accused Peter of making up all this stuff about Jesus. (Who you gonna call? Mythbusters!)
- Not so fast. Peter saw all of Jesus' goodness with his own two eyes. Remember that time he went up to a mountain with Jesus and the boss started to sparkle like a vampire?
- All this great stuff that Peter's been telling the world about actually happened. Not to mention, he adds, that the Hebrew Bible totally predicted that how Jesus' life would go down. (P.S. That's a New Testament POV and the Hebrew Bible fans don't agree.)
- But just in case you're thinking that Peter is selectively interpreting the Bible—he's not. Those interpretations come straight from God. (And yes, this is Peter talking about himself…super trustworthy!)
OCTOBER 6 Thursday
GERMAN AMERICAN DAY
4 For if God did not spare the angels when they sinned, but condemned them to the chains of Tartarus and handed them over to be kept for judgment; 5 and if he did not spare the ancient world, even though he preserved Noah, a herald of righteousness, together with seven others, when he brought a flood upon the godless world; 6 and if he condemned the cities of Sodom and Gomorrah [to destruction], reducing them to ashes, making them an example for the godless [people] of what is coming; 7 and if he rescued Lot, a righteous man oppressed by the licentious conduct of unprincipled people 8 (for day after day that righteous man living among them was tormented in his righteous soul at the lawless deeds that he saw and heard), 9 then the Lord knows how to rescue the devout from trial and to keep the unrighteous under punishment for the day of judgment, 10 and especially those who follow the flesh with its depraved desire and show contempt for lordship. 11Bold and arrogant, they are not AFRAID to revile glorious beings, whereas angels, despite their superior strength and power, do not bring a reviling judgment against them from the Lord.
In life we are always moving toward the future. Our destination is life eternal with our creator. In our little sailboat of life, we tend to be either moving toward God by taking advantage of His graces which provide the wind for our sails, or we do nothing but drift.
Napoleon Hill noted in his manuscript on a book he never published entitled “Outwitting the devil” stated drifting was one of the tools the devil uses to keep us off tack and not sailing towards God’s Mountain.
A Protection against drifting lies within easy reach of every human being who has a normal body and a sound mind. The self-defense can be applied through these simple methods:
1. Do your own thinking on all occasions. The fact that human beings are given complete control over nothing save the power to think their own thoughts is laden with significance.
2. Decide definitely what you want from life; then create a plan for attaining it and be willing to sacrifice everything rather than accept permanent defeat.
3. Analyze temporary defeat, no matter of what nature or cause, and extract from it the seed of an equivalent advantage.
4. Be willing to render useful service equivalent to the value of all material things you demand of life, and render the service first.
5. Recognize that your brain is a receiving set that can be attuned to receive communications from the universal storehouse of Infinite Intelligence, to help you transmute your desires into their physical equivalent.
6. Recognize that your greatest asset is time, the only thing except the power of thought which you own outright, and the one thing which can be shaped into whatever material things you want. Budget your time so none of it is wasted.
7. Recognize the truth that fear generally is a filler with which the Devil occupies the unused portion of your mind. It is only a state of mind which you can control by filling the space it occupies with faith in your ability to make life provide you with whatever you demand of it.
8. When you pray, do not beg! Demand what you want and insist upon getting exactly that, with no substitutes.
9. Recognize that life is a cruel taskmaster and that either you master it or it masters you. There is no half-way or compromising point. Never accept from life anything you do not want. lf that which you do not want is temporarily forced upon you, you can refuse, in your own mind, to accept it and it will make way for the thing you do want.
10. Lastly, remember that your dominating thoughts attract, through a definite law of nature, by the shortest and most convenient route, their physical counterpart. Be careful what your thoughts dwell upon.
A simple formula combining all the ten points:
Be definite in everything you do and never leave unfinished thoughts in the mind. Form the habit of reaching definite decisions on all subjects.
Can the habit of drifting be broken, or does it become permanent once it has been framed?
The habit can be broken if the victim has enough willpower, providing it is done in time. There is a point beyond which the habit can never be broken. Beyond that point the victim is mine. He resembles a fly that has been caught in a spider’s web. He may struggle, but he cannot get out. Each move he makes entangles him more securely. The web in which I entangle my victims permanently is a law of nature not yet isolated by, or understood by, men of science.
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German American Day
German American Day celebrates German culture and heritage in the United States. This holiday also serves to remember 13 German families from Krefeld, Germany that fled religious oppression in Germany. On October 6th, 1683, these families established Germantown, Pennsylvania, the first distinctly German-American settlement. In the centuries that followed, more than seven million more German-speaking immigrants arrived on the shores of the US and as of 2010, over 20% of the US population claims German ancestry. In 1983, on the 300th anniversary of Germantown, President Ronald Reagan declared October 6th as German American Day. President Reagan officially declared German American Day four years later in 1987. Today, German American Day, a celebration of German culture, identity and heritage, is celebrated annually on October 6th.
German American Day Facts & Quotes
· The current population of Germantown, PA is 26,563 inhabitants.
· Wisconsin, Minnesota, North Dakota, South Dakota, Nebraska, and Iowa are now home to the largest number of German descendants in the US.
· After the Second World War, around 375,000 Germans immigrated to the US. In the 50s and 60s alone, around 786,000 Germans immigrated to the US.
· Albert Einstein was a German immigrant, a Jew who opted to remain in the US when the Nazi party came to power in 1933.
· The world will not be destroyed by those who do evil, but by those who watch them without doing anything. - Albert Einstein
German American Day Top Events and Things to Do
· Read some popular stories by German writers including Hansel and Gretel, The Trial and The Man Without Qualities.
· Spend some time learning more about the religious oppression in Germany in 1683 in order to further understand why the founding 13 families fled the country and arrived in Philadelphia.
· Enjoy a glass of mulled wine. It is a common drink found at Christmas markets all through Germany.
· Enjoy a German movie. Some of our favorites: Victoria (2015), Land of Mine (2015) and Downfall (2004).
· Learn more about the Nazi Regime from WW2 in order to better understand how the population of German Americans grew so quickly around that time.
Thursday is the day of the week that our Lord gave himself up for consumption. Thursday commemorates the last supper. Some theologians believe after Sunday Thursday is the holiest day of the week. We should then try to make this day special by making a visit to the blessed sacrament chapel, Mass or even stop by the grave of a loved one. Why not plan to count the blessing of the week and thank our Lord. Plan a special meal. Be at Peace.
Feast of the day: Jäger-Schnitzel
Catechism of the Catholic Church
PART THREE: LIFE IN CHRIST
SECTION ONE-MAN'S VOCATION LIFE IN THE SPIRIT
CHAPTER ONE THE DIGNITY OF THE HUMAN PERSON
Article 2-OUR VOCATION TO BEATITUDE
1725 The Beatitudes take up and fulfill God's promises from Abraham on by ordering them to the Kingdom of heaven. They respond to the desire for happiness that God has placed in the human heart.
1726 The Beatitudes teach us the final end to which God calls us: the Kingdom, the vision of God, participation in the divine nature, eternal life, filiation, rest in God.
1727 The beatitude of eternal life is a gratuitous gift of God. It is supernatural, as is the grace that leads us there.
1728 The Beatitudes confront us with decisive choices concerning earthly goods; they purify our hearts in order to teach us to love God above all things.
1729 The beatitude of heaven sets the standards for discernment in the use of earthly goods in keeping with the law of God.
· Litany of the Most Precious Blood of Jesus