Tuesday, October 30, 2012

Why I Am Avoiding Halloween...And Other Things



     Why do we go "trick-or-treating?"  Why do we have parties to celebrate the "fun" of Halloween, or have a substitute for it?  Here is my take on it...
     I grew up going trick-or-treating.  I was always excited to get my costume, or wrangle one together with what we had at home.  I was thrilled to get candies, to get treats, to see others' costumes, to see the decorations, etc.  Yes, a lot of it was related to death.  Yes, many were related to "harmless" things:  such as fairies, princesses, superheros, and the like.
     When I was a young teenaged-woman, I picked up a small tract from the church our family was attending regarding Halloween's history.  Boy, it was not how I saw it!  I pushed it aside as "that was the past."  I did not really heed the pricking of God regarding the roots of this traditional holy day (holiday).  I wanted to keep with the fun!
     Well, fast forward to today.  You will not see me preparing for any kind of Halloween activity.  I do not even want to give the appearance of approval or activity of it on my part.  Just because others may do so, does not mean I want to keep my head in the sand about it (or any traditional holy days that are of unholy roots);. or pretend that the roots do not matter.  If the roots do not matter, why make such a fuss about the beginnings of the United States?  It does not matter from whence we came, only how we view things today...Right?  If roots do not matter, why the consistent debating regarding evolution and creation?
     I cannot agree to such thinking.  Roots do matter!  Here is an example:

"As ye have therefore received Christ Jesus the Lord, so walk ye in Him:  Rooted and built up in him, and stablished in the faith, as ye have been taught, abounding therein with thanksgiving."
Colossians 2:6, 7

     I see here that roots do matter!  Paul, speaking to the Colossians, was reminding them of their holy root, thereby to live accordingly.  Even Christ, speaking to His apostles, said:  "Abide in me, and I in you. As the branch cannot bear fruit of itself, except it abide in the vine; no more can ye, except ye abide in me."--John 15:4
     I cannot, in good conscience before the One who died for me, patronize unholy festivities, no matter the fun of them.  Believe you me, I thoroughly enjoy the fall decor, the winter decor, the spring decor...Etc.  I enjoy the camaraderie, the presents, the feastings, the merriment, the pleasures afforded in these holy days (holidays).  Yet, I am constrained by the love of Christ to avoid them, now that I know the truth of their beginnings, and their still-yet devilish influences.


     I want, by the grace of God (and by His grace alone!), the world to see Christ in me!  I want them to see the joy of being born into God's family, belonging to Christ, living like Christ, being conformed into His image by God, the new life of being a co-heir with Christ; the abundant peace and joy that comes before, during, and after following the heart of God.  There is an indescribable delight, peace, joy, happiness, and pleasure to be found in being separated unto Christ.  
     Nothing more than delving into God's Word, seeking to rightly divide the Word of Truth; seeking to understand my Saviour, Creator, and Sustainer; seeking to be purged of sin and its despicable ways; seeking His handiwork in creation; seeking ways to reach those who are still blind; etc., gives me more excitement!  The world and all its fancies, its traditions, hold no candle to God's ways.  Sure, I may enjoy some of them, but if they are not something that God would participate in Himself; if they are something He wants me to avoid, then I will most gladly separate myself.
     I still am struggling with other sins in my life:  one in particular is my health.  I enjoy food.  I am bored by rote exercise.  Yet, I know that I must take care of the temple given to me by God.  So, I strive to mentally, emotionally, spiritually, and physically be further and further from those sins.  
     Yet, I still struggle.  That which I desire to do I do not, and that which I desire not to do, I do.  Yet, I find that there is salvation through Christ!  He will give me victory, for He has been victorious over sin!  I need only be faithful, and not backslide.  Yet, when I do backslide, faithfully go to Him for cleansing and to be set on the right path, again.
     There are sins, it seems, that are easier to "break" than others.  Avoiding unholy "holy days (holidays)" seems easier to me than the ones previously mentioned.  I guess I just see them as non-essential to my relationship with Christ.  The way I see it, for my life, is that by participating in them would set a stumbling block for those without Christ, and those weaker in the faith.  I do not desire to do either.  I also see participation in them as participating in the principalities' of darkness' traditions.  I do not wish to participate in their doings.
     Regardless of how innocent, opportunistic, or fun a festivity may be, I will do well to take no part in it.  I am a Christian.  I do not wish to participate in religious activities that have their origins from paganism.  
     The things I have "suffered" in my separation of these "holy days" are:  no bags full of treats/candies; no presents; no big dinners; frustrated/confused loved ones; name-calling; no seasonal decor; avoidance...I cannot think of much else.  What I have received in my separation are:  peace; joy; liberty; gifts from God all year 'round; clarity; a new appreciation for the liberty in Christ to be free from previously-necessary observances.
     Since I (being a woman) am to conduct myself as the Church to Christ, I must consider her ways.  She is to be unadulterated with the way of the world; to be purged of the leaven of sin.  She is to be presented as a Bride without spot or blemish.  I know Christ is doing all of that magnificent work in her.  A question I must constantly ask myself, then, is:  "Am I willing to be molded by Christ, even if it is contrary to tradition?"
     I am not looking for a popularity contest (definitely not winning points by sharing this belief!).  I am not trying to look "super spiritual."  I am concerned with souls.  I wish to see the lost become saved.  I wish to see my sisters in Christ (and brothers) grow in their walks.
     I do not wish to force you into my way of thinking.    However, I do wish to persuade you.  I can share the reasons why I avoid Halloween, (and some other holidays), and why I believe I found the necessity to do so based in Scripture.  

**Here are some links to information regarding the roots of the other holidays from which we have separated ourselves:  ChristmasValentine's DayEaster.


Growing Home




Wednesday, October 24, 2012

A Great Give-Away...But, Not From Me!

     So...I stumbled upon a great give-away happening at The Modest Mom!  I really like her website, because she is of a few who actually make lovely modest clothing.  Most times, if I am looking for something modest, it is a nightmare.
     I am excited that she is now starting Deborah & Co.!  The site is beautifully done, and easy to navigate.  The clothing is quality, lovely, and done by people who seek to glorify the Lord...How wonderful!
     Why do you not go visit her site?  Not only is she a good seamstress, she also has good encouraging words in her blog.  You will not regret it!


Soul-Winning Homemaker

     It seems that the Lord is reminding me ever fervently of the most important need of all:  telling others about Him.  Though it be important that I be a good homemaker, it is not the only role He has asked me to fill.  He has also asked me, and all the saved, to be soul winners.
     Whether it be through conversations pertaining to the catching away of the saints, news reports that confirm what Scripture already said, or preaching on the matter, I cannot escape the dire need to tell those who are blindly walking in this world that there is One who is the Light!  Whatever their thoughts, religions, etc...I must tell them that Jesus is the Answer, not anyone/anything else!
     Dear and I listened to a very good sermon by a pastor in Florida.  He went to the "down and out," (though, honestly, we all are "down and out" without Christ!), sharing the good, straight-to-the-point news of Hell and Christ's ability to save them from that destination.  Whew.  Makes me pray that I will do my part!
     If you have about 40 minutes to spare, here is the video.  I pray it moves your heart to reach the lost, even as a homemaker.  But, you may ask, what can I do?
     Do not be afraid to talk to your neighbor(s) about their religious beliefs, and to listen to them.  Then, if they are contrary to the Gospel, seek a good way to point the conversation to the truths of Scripture.  Ray Comfort and Kirk Cameron at have great ways to help in such matters.
     Do not be afraid to live like you believe God!  Sure, we will fail, but God's grace compels us to do right, if you let Him!  People do observe and discern (judge) our behaviours.  Do we really believe what we say?  Is God only a Sunday dress?  Or, is He our very being; our very purpose for living?  How do they know that we have been saved from Hell?
     Do not be fearful of man's rejection of our offer(s) to attend church with us.  Sure, our pride is stung.  "They said 'no' to me...I just won't do that again."  Shame on me for being guilty of such thinking.  Also, do not be afraid to bring up God to them, again.  Though they may be unhappy with us for it, and we be uncomfortable, is their soul worth the keeping of our feelings and pride?
     I say all these suggestions (and there are always more...If you have any, please share!), being guilty of giving in to pride.  I am constantly fighting against it for the Gospel's sake.  I also say all these things with the understanding that there are proper ways of approaching people, having conversations, and such.  Again, I highly recommend Ray Comfort's approach.
     As I take care of my home, my family, my church, and so forth, I also need to be mindful of sharing Christ with others.  He did not mean for me to keep such WONDERFUL news to myself!  Who really wants to live eternity burning forever in unquenchable fires?  I did not, and I know no one else who really wants to have that final destination.



Growing Home
DeepRootsatHome

Tuesday, October 23, 2012

Zealously Affected For...?



     Life has been very exciting these days!  All sorts of spiritual food is being fed to me, to my brethren in Christ...All of which thrills my soul to see!  I look forward to all the other things God has in store for us.
     Last Thursday evening marked our church's first special prayer meeting regarding our own building.  Our church has been renting a facility since its inception; things are starting to get stricter in our ability to use said facility (the group that owns the building also rents to others).  So, we are praying that God would clear our sites in what He would have us to do.
     It was evident when the hour of prayer was finished, that the Lord wanted some other things worked on prior to receiving our own building.  I was glad to see His desire made clear in that prayer meeting.  It blessed my heart beyond description, and relieved it, to see such clarity in prayer and study of His Word.
     Another blessing was on Saturday evening.  Some of us from church met at a church member's home for a coffee party.  It was not long after the festivities began, as some of us ladies were gathered around the table (the men were off together watching some political stuff online), that discussion started around politics and God...We soon realized that we needed to get together, regularly, to encourage one another; for the time draws even nearer to when Christ returns, and we need that familial support!
     Sunday saw the confirmation of the said ladies' meetings; something informal, yet open weekly.  This effort is a desire for many of us ladies.  Many of us were mentioning how we have seen Satan get busy with working us over, to hinder us from good, Godly communion.  For, many times a few of us would be stirred into action, yet something would be thrown in the tracks to stop us, discourage us, depress us, and keep us one from another.  Feeling isolated, unloved, unnecessary...Well, we simply kept to ourselves, striving to make it alone.
     However, since those few of us who are familiar with what typically happens when we seek to edify one another, provoking unto love and good works, and commune in Spirit and truth, we are ever more discerning of the enemy's attacks.  It was exciting to see a vigor amongst fellow sisters in Christ, who want to be zealously affected for the Lord's sake, who want to be mindful of Him and His Word, and who want to be an encouragement to their fellow sisters!
     Oh, and then there was last night.  Last night, after being rather ill all day with "the crud," (though I do have to praise God for it being minimal, compared to previous times), I was able to come to the living room to eat dinner (provided for by Ms. M) with Dear and watch some G-O-O-D preaching by Johnny Pope!  You can tell that he thoroughly studies God's Word, cultures of Biblical times, history, etc.  You can tell he throughly loves Christ!  The Bible simply flows out of his very being...I have never noticed him follow a set of notes, but rather keeps his Bible open and his heart humble...He is passionate, knowledgeable, and a mighty preacher by the grace of God!  Anyway, the preaching was very much appreciated by yours truly; for, I had not been able to get out of bed save for the occasional bathroom break, thus, no Bible time.
     The preaching fed my soul, and, as always, pointed me straight to my Great Saviour Jesus Christ.  It was a little over an hour long, but I would not have minded if it continued many more hours!  I am sharing it here for those of you who do not mind taking an hour to listen to this great message...Definitely worth the time!


     I pray that God's Spirit continues to have full sway of His people.  For those who are not of His flock, I pray that they soon realize how eternally important it is to belong to Him.  For those who are of His flock, I pray we realize, and act upon, the fact that we must be fully malleable by His Hands.  I may be but a simple housewife, but I cannot find a better life that one totally at His disposal! 

Tuesday, October 16, 2012

Watching Titus 2 Unfold

     A very special lady just left my home, a little over an hour ago.  She spent about two hours with me today, showing me the joys of making my own apple juice!  But, she gave me much more than that lesson.
     I do not like to inconvenience people...generally.  Most times, if I can figure out how to do something myself, I will.  It strengthens my homemaking arsenal to have knowledge for around the home.  Sometimes, though, I need to reach out to someone who is skilled in an area too intimidating for me.  So, I reached out to her.
     This lady is well-known to be busy.  Life for her is simply that way.  To get any extra time than I already receive is a rare gift that I do treasure, but have difficulty showing.  I just have a hard time showing my elder ladies in my life the love that wells up in me, without feeling like an idiot, from their gift of time, skill, and love to me.  So, I try really hard to shove it down (silently thanking God all the while).
     I respect this lady much.  She strives to serve God as He wishes.  I have learned much from her.
     Today, as we were sprayed by apple bits, enjoying the work (at least I did!), we talked.  We were able to catch up on one another's lives.  We were able to talk about God, and so many wonderful things about Him.
     I felt as though I were watching Titus 2 play out, right before my eyes!  Here, an elder woman, (though not old), sacrificing time to teach a younger woman skills to help her in her job as a homemaker.  Effortlessly through the process of making apple juice, we were discussing spiritual matters.  All these things encouraged me in the Lord.  How precious!
     I wanted to cry out of sheer appreciation to God for an answer to prayer.  But, I could not let her see those tears.  I feel it would have made us both uncomfortable.
     This gift is another gem in my treasure box.  I received a valuable skill, being able to make my own juice! In the process of processing apples, though, I received a gift that I cannot price.
   

Monday, October 8, 2012

Seeking To Be Afire, Again

     Lately, I have been burdened about my prayer time with God.  I have noticed it declining, and am not pleased with myself.  I do pray throughout the day, as I go along doing whatever it is I have to do.  It seems almost like text-messaging the Lord.  I know that I can constantly be talking to Him, but I do see the need to have more in-depth conversations with Him.
     I cannot tell you when it started its decline.  I can only tell you that I have noticed it, and am purposing to change this bad habit.  Though it will mean sacrificing time, I know from experience that praying to God is worth all of it.
     I also have been burdened with my study time in His Word.  Though I seek to read it every day, I have not really studied in a long time.  There are subjects on my mind of which I seek answers, and the only answer(s) I shall find is in the Bible.
     I know that when I start up a more devoted life to Him, that I will be attacked by various angles.  It is never pleasurable, that fact is sure.  I do not like the fiery darts of Satan, I do not like being persecuted for walking with Christ, I do not like the battles with evil that ensue...But, I know they will come.  I best be prepared.
     If you would, please keep me in prayer this week, as I seek to be more vigilant in my times of prayer and study.  It is awful being complacent, stagnant, or indifferent.  It is much better being zealously knowledgeable, excited, and devoted to God; regardless the attacks that come!
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