Lynn K Wilder a slujit în Utah, în templul Mormonilor, ca profesoară a Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints (Biserica lui Isus Hristos a Sfinţilor din Zilele din Urmă). Ea explică ce a determinat-o să părăsească această sectă.
În timpul celor 30 de ani ca mormon, am crezut sincer că „experiențele spirituale mistice” mă aliniază cu Tatăl meu ceresc, Isus și Duhul Sfânt (am crezut în trei dumnezei separați, însă nu în Trinitate), în Biserica lui Isus Hristos a Sfinţilor din Zilele din Urmă.
Când un patriarh și-a pus mâinile pe capul meu să-mi dea o binecuvântare, potrivit ritualului iudaic, am simțit un fel de curent electric prin trupul meu. Am fost de multe ori copleșită de emoții slujind ca lucrător ordinat în templul din Chicago sau ca profesoară la institutul ce dă direcția în educația Bisericii, Brigham Young University. Am depus mărturie că Joseph Smith a restaurat „singura biserică vie și adevărată”
În mod sincer, m-am încrezut în sentimentele ce au venit din aceste experiențe, fără sa-mi dau seama că ele ar putea fi falsificate; înrădăcinate în ceea ce Biblia numește „un alt Isus” care învață „o altă Evanghelie”. Astăzi, nu mă mai încred doar în sentimente sau în căutări ale vizitelor spiritelor în templu ca măsurile potrivite pentru a testa adevărul. Trebuie să îți folosești creierul și să citești Biblia.
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There are few epitaphs I would rather have engraved on my tombstone than Paul’s words of commendation to Philemon, “the hearts of the saints have been refreshed through you” (Philemon 1:7). Oh, how I love Philemons and want to consistently be one!
Here are twenty practical ways that you can seek to nurture this refreshing gift in the midst of your own local church.
– Greet people on Sunday mornings with a smile. It is o.k. to let your face say that you are “happy” to be at church. Go out of your way to say, “Hi,” ask questions about the lives of others, and listen attentively.
– Visit the widows and shut-ins of your church. Take an afternoon and visit three or four. Sit, talk, listen, and be willing to look at their photo albums—all of them (1 Timothy 5:3)!
– Have a mouth that is overflowing with grace (Ephesians 4:29) and is slow to wander down any other road.
– Show up each Sunday morning with a mental list of three or four people that you are going to find and minister to (Philippians 2:4). Many of us walk into church with an attitude of, “I wonder who will minister to me today.” Nothing can be as drastically encouraging to a local church’s membership than a people united in the understanding that they are there to serve and love one another.
– Be a Monday morning encourager instead of a Monday morning critic by sending your pastor an email detailing what you appreciated about his Sunday sermon.
– Don’t rush out of church on Sunday mornings. Be one of the last to leave because you are taking the time to talk with everyone you can (this will be hard for the introvert—but some of the most engaging and refreshing people I have served with are introverts. They wear themselves out on Sunday morning). The football games and lunch will be there fifteen or thirty minutes later.
– Often remind others of the benefits of salvation and the graces that flow from union with Christ. Let it season your conversations.
– Routinely have a crock-pot meal or roast cooking on Sundays and spontaneously invite a visiting family or family-in-need for supper following the service.
– Seek out those visiting the church, get to know them, and introduce them to others. Find connections and be a networker to the glory of God.
– Aim to remember peoples’ names and greet them by name each Sunday (I wish I was better at this, because it means so much to people). The Cheers’ theme song had a point, we all feel loved when our name is known (Isaiah 49:16).
– Refuse to speak ill of others in the congregation (Ephesians 4:31).
– Get to know the children of the congregation and seek to talk to five different children each Sunday morning (Matthew 19:14).
– Know the Word and season your conversations with it. This isn’t to impress others, but rather to encourage them in the faith. The Word does not return void (Isaiah 55:11).
– Write and mail anonymous encouragement notes to members of the congregation. Why are we so hesitant to pass out encouragement? We can never encourage others too much (1 Thessalonians 5:11).
– Always speak the truth with others (Ephesians 4:25). “Let your ‘yes’ be yes and your ‘no’ be no.” (James 5:12).
– Ask the pastor if there is anything you can do to help him during the week and be willing to do it.
– Refuse to listen to gossip or be a purveyor of it (2 Corinthians 12:20).
– Willingly bear the burdens of others in the congregation (Galatians 6:2). This means praying for them, serving them, giving financially to help those in need, loving when love is not returned, and being quick to forgive.
– Write thank you notes to volunteers in the church.
– Rejoice in the Lord and lead others to do the same by your example (Philippians 4:4). Don’t be an agitator, complainer, or “negative-Nelly.” This doesn’t mean we are seeking to be Pollyannish, but rather simply rejoicing in the many benefits we have as those united with the Living God by the blood of the Son.
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Probabil încă furat de niște idei auzite pe radio la amiază despre mileniști (millenials = termen ce nu are de-a face cu discuția despre mileniu/escatologie ci cu generația Y, născută prin anii ’80), despre Guyland( un fel de zonă de prematuritate persistentă, un blocaj al bărbățeilor în devenirea lor ca indivizi maturi și responsabili), am tot admirat în seara asta la Vlad și Natan maturitatea, gândirea, înțelegerea și prezentarea coaptă a unor teme esențiale pentru devenirea fiecarui creștin.
Mi-am luat notițe și am avut sentimentul ca vreau să-i opresc, ca să termin de notat. Bine ca avem înregistrări. 🙂
Din frânturile pe care mi le-am notat, unele rupte din context, cu scuzele de rigoare:
1. Vlad Crîznic – Introducere în apologetică.
– Dacă ai intenția și un plan să prezinți Evanghelia, Dumnezeu ne va da ocazii să vorbim despre El. Cel puțin în Anglia, dacă aici nu ai oportunități, cu toată diversitatea religioasă pe care o întâlnești, atunci unde? Citește în continuare „VINERI, 10 Octombrie – Weekend-ul de apologetica”
In nature, there’s a flowering shrub called the bigleaf hydrangea. If you take the seed of that shrub and plant it in the soil of Indiana, it will yield pink flowers when it blooms. But if you take that same seed and plant it in the soil of Brazil or Poland, it will produce blue flowers. Even more interesting , if you take the same seed and plant it in another type of soil, it will yield purple flowers. The bigleaf hydrangea, however, will never produce thorns or thistles. It will never bear oranges or apples. And it will never grow tall like a pine tree. Why? Because these features are not within the DNA of the seed. In the same way, the church of Jesus Christ— when planted properly and left on its own without human control and institutional interference— will produce certain features by virtue of its DNA. Like the bigleaf hydrangea, the church may look different from culture to culture, but it will have the same basic expression wherever it’s allowed to flourish.
Frank Viola, Reimagining Church, Kindle edition.
Westbury Avenue Baptist Church
International Women’s Day
Theme: Woman You Are ‘Chosen’
Creative Ministries at Westbury Avenue Baptist Church are delighted and excited to invite all the women in your church; daughters, mothers, sisters, neighbors and friends to the ‘Woman YOU Are Chosen’ Conference on Saturday March 8th 2013, at12 noon. Event ends at 3.30pm.
Our amazing Speakers will bring a message of Value, Identity, Purpose and Influence. A wonderful, inspiring day that celebrates women of all ages and all cultures. The event will also include a ‘Chosen Open Forum’, for those soul-stirring questions.
Speakers: Pastor Annie Onwuchekwa, Pastor Toyin Jama, Patricia J Morris, and Fatmohn Jama. Citește în continuare „London Baptist Events”
Psalm 131 My heart is not proud, Lord, my eyes are not haughty; I do not concern myself with great matters or things too wonderful for me. But I have calmed and quietened myself, I am like a weaned child with its mother; like a weaned child I am content. Israel, put your hope in the Lord both now and for evermore.
A number of years ago when I reflected on these words, they disquieted me and made me uncomfortable. As someone who likes to study, analyse, examine and understand, a readiness to calmly set aside things without doing such things did not sit well with me. Yet I have grown to realise that there is much that I do not understand and I never will understand. Such things may be crises on the world stage such as Ukraine or Syria, seemingly intractable situations that churches face, inexplicable occurrences in the lives of individuals and other situations. As the psalmist reminds us, at all times we must put our hope and trust in the Lord, and we can silently hold such situations before our Father, praying for His kingdom to come and His will to be done on earth as it is in heaven. In all matters, both those we understand and those we do not, let us hold them before the Lord, knowing that He will hear and answer in accordance with His perfect will.
Pastor, to these beaten-down ones you have been called as an ambassador of glory. You have been called to rescue those who are awe discouraged and awe confused. You are called to represent the One who is glory, to people who, by means of suffering and disappointment, have become glory cynics. You have been called to be God’s voice to woo them back. You are placed in their lives as a divine means of rescue, healing, and restoration. You have been called to speak into the confusion with gospel clarity and authority. You have been called to give glory-bound hope to those who have become hopeless. You are called to speak liberating truths to those who have become deceived. You have been called to plead with disloyal children to once again be reconciled to their heavenly Father. You have been called to give glorious motivation to those who have given up. You have been called to shine the light of the glory of God into hearts that have been made dark by looking for life in all the wrong places. You have been called to offer the filling glories of grace to those who are empty and malnourished. You have been called to represent a glorious King, who alone is able to rescue, heal, redeem, transform, forgive, deliver, and satisfy. You have been called.
Paul David Tripp, Dangerous Calling, Confronting the Unique Challenges of Pastoral Ministry, 2012, p.151, 152
My first attempt to read a novel was, I guess, at eleven. I haven’t read much in childhood unfortunately. I seriously started to read only after I’ve met God. God filled me spiritually and only then I realized how empty I was intellectually.
So, the first attempt was Les Miserables by Victor Hugo. I don’t think I finished it. I did tried to read it several times and nearly always my mum woke me up. I didn’t understood much because of that. No wonder…
The names were interesting though. Jean Valjean, Cosette, Javert etc. French. And Romania likes French stuff. Travel to Bucharest and you’ll see Little Paris. We copy paste Paris without a licence. They tought it will be a good ideea to copy paste the language and culture. I was taught French from my 2nd grade till I finished high school. Maybe that’s why I started to hate it. Nothing personal or national. I assume it was just my old teacher. Her style was slightly communist. But enough about my petite histoire francais
Talking about Les Miserables, I realized that it’s a sad and beautiful story, but also a story about God’s grace. Max Lucado brilliantly points this out in his book, Grace.
Valjean enters the pages as a vagabond. A just-released prisoner in midlife, wearing threadbare trousers and a tattered jacket. Nineteen years in a French prison have left him rough and fearless. He’s walked for four days in the Alpine chill of nineteenth-century southeastern France, just to find out that no inn will take him, no tavern will feed him. Finally he knocks on the door of a bishop’s house.
Monseigneur Myrel is seventy-five years old. Like Valjean he has lost much. The revolution took all the valuables from his family except some silverware, a soup ladle, and two candlesticks. Valjean tells his story and expects the religious man to turn him away. Butthe Citește în continuare „A story about grace. The story of Jean Valjean”
I was challenged to recommend Christian books and quality Christian food to a young man that recently converted. Richard Wurmbrand is a must have on this list. Nowadays I don’t think you can properly understand Christianity without listening the voice of the persecuted Church and it’s greatest ambassador, Richard Wurmbrand. He spent fourteen years in cells that wreaked of sickness, disease, betrayal, lies and cruelty, during communism, in Romania. With him, The Voice Of The Martyrs has an echo in the whole world today
I’ve met Teo Palincas last year and I was amazed at the talent God placed in him. He’s attending a Romanian evangelical church in London right now, and, to be honest, I’m quite happy for him and his desire to promote God in this society although he is sometimes criticized for doing that.
Teo is sharing with us the reasons behind his decision to participate at Eurovision.
I was running a Christian coffee shop for a year and a half (with no alcohol, cigarettes), named „Arcafe”. From a commercial point of view, things were not going well, but I started special evenings of music and discussions and we were making friends with young and special people, for who, we felt useful. There, I opened my eyes to a different world and I did realized that God has a special plan for the people who do not attend an evangelical church. Citește în continuare „Teo Palincas. Guess Who I am. Why Eurovision?”
We have all been created to fulfil a need.
In the history of Israel, Joseph was born to save them from starvation, Moses was created to deliver them from slavery and Esther was divinely appointed to prevent their extinction. Even outcasts from the nation of Israel, like Rahab the prostitute who helped Joshua and his men, had their use.
Whether big or small, recorded or unrecorded, notable or unknown to the public, you were born to fulfil a need. That need arose even before your birth.
Jesus Christ came to the earth to fulfil the ultimate need of mankind; the need for a Saviour. Even He breaks it down further and describes the brevity of that need in Luke 4:17-18. The greatest need God created you for is in the reconciliation of man to Himself. You were created to promote the Kingdom of God and facilitate the return of man into a relationship with God.
All around you are people who need you.
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Te invit in seara asta, de la 7:30 la biserica. Studiem cartea Faptele Apostolilor. Suntem in cap. 7. Biserica Baptista „Biruinta”, NW9 8QG, Slough Lane, Kingsbury, Londra.
Biserica „Biruința”…cu Dumnezeu in luptele vieții!
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