A dictionary for navigators on spiritual rough waters 46: how to define love? (2017 Revised)

1 Corinthians 13:5The spirit-mind man realizes he does not know many things about love and God. Love ties with pain. Here is a word that God uses to describe Himself. Love. What is love? Let us read about love again.
This is what he attempted in this blog before: (with 2017 up to date mind man’s deliberations in human terms and thoughts in brackets)

A dictionary for navigators on spiritual rough waters: chapter ten -how to define love? 07/22/2013 (Quoted below in excerpts)
“the most difficult word: love”
Today we read the most difficult word in the whole Bible, ‘Love’. (Most difficult outside the Bible too)

Love: This is not a shallow, superficial common word as the mind man had thought in his reckless days. There is richness, depth, breadth, width, height here. …
If he attempts to define this word with his human mind, emotion and senses, he knows he would be insulting the word.

The only way to give love justice is to define this word in the Spirit (spirit).

The next question is who is qualified (in terms of supreme authority) to define love?

Not this mind man, however spiritual he (thinks he) has turned into. The only thing he can do is to find his definition in the word of God, and let each reader find his own.

__________Here the definition goes:

The plumb-line of love: sacrificial. For example: God so loved the world that He gave His only Son, Jesus, so that whoever believes in Him shall not perish but have eternal life. God should be receiving man’s sacrifices, but He gave His own Son as a sacrifice! John 3:16 and Romans 5:8. This is how God views love and has demonstrated (unconditional) love to us. God has freely given so we need not try to earn it.
(God’s kind of love warrants one-sided sacrificial giving without the other party favorably responding or wanting to receive your love. A person in love may think he or she can give that kind of love without regret. But believe me, when human love fades, regret becomes a glaring color in your black and white life.)

Here is one verse that has persuaded the mind man (and impacted his personal decision) about love:

“Love does not demand its own way.” This is what the mind man received from the Lord (1 Corinthians 13:5) when he was on the verge of making a real big decision…
What more can he do but to let go? …Indeed, the heart has its reason that reason cannot comprehend. But, God’s way (of love) can convince and convict one’s heart…

Can one become whole again when one chooses to love in God’s way? The answer is definitely ‘yes’! …Abraham…David…Jesus’ giving Himself was the supreme example.

What motivated them? The mind man could not think of better reason than ‘love’. Love of God…O yes, love of your loved ones too!

‘Love’ indeed is the most difficult word in this spiritual dictionary, and it is also the best word anyone can lay hold of.

—-
October 28, 2017 spirit-mind-man’s update: This was written four years and three months ago. The human pain felt then can still be felt though much less in intensity and frequency today. Giving up/letting go is the hardest thing to do for anyone. Yet the supreme power of the supernatural love of God gives all the strength one needs to overcome a feeling called pain which ties closely to love. Does anyone lose out because of the love described in 1 Corinthians 13:5? No. Nobody loses out when God’s love becomes the uttermost plumb line in your life. No loss but gain. I pray all who want to encounter God’s kind of love find the peace and security only His love can give. Love means you do no harm to others or to yourself.  Love others in the way God loves you. This is the best ever commandment to keep.

A DICTIONARY FOR NAVIGATORS ON SPIRITUAL ROUGH WATERS 45: Promises (and Shield)

psalm 18:30
Today’s words are PROMISES (and SHIELD).
The wise poets in ancient days declared:
About God: He will shield you with his wings! They will shelter you. His faithful promises are your armor. (Psalm 91:4)
To God: You are my refuge and my shield, and your promises are my only source of hope. (Psalm 119:114)
I have thoroughly tested your promises, and that is why I love them so much. (Psalm 119:140)
I stay awake through the night to think about your promises. (Psalm 119:148)

The wise prophets looked into the future and proclaimed:
About What God has promised: “And all nations will call you blessed, for you will be a land sparkling with happiness. These are the promises of the Lord Almighty. (Malachi 3:12)
Prophet Daniel’s prayer: “O Lord,” I prayed, “you are a great and awesome God; you always fulfill your promises of mercy to those who love you and keep your laws.” (9:4)
God likes those who keep their promises: Proverbs 12:22
God delights in those who keep their promises and abhors those who don’t.
Prophet Isaiah knows all about how God’s promises can come true:
So the Lord must wait for you to come to him so he can show you his love and compassion. For the Lord is a faithful God. Blessed are those who wait for his help. (30:18)

Here are some Bible verses from the New Testament on “Promises” for meditation and receiving by faith!
Romans 5:1
So now, since we have been made right in God’s sight by faith in his promises, we can have real peace with him because of what Jesus Christ our Lord has done for us.
2 Corinthians 1:20
He carries out and fulfills all of God’s promises, no matter how many of them there are; and we have told everyone how faithful he is, giving glory to his name.
Galatians 3:29
And now that we are Christ’s we are the true descendants of Abraham, and all of God’s promises to him belong to us.
2 Timothy 2:13
Even when we are too weak to have any faith left, he remains faithful to us and will help us, for he cannot disown us who are part of himself, and he will always carry out his promises to us.
Romans 11:29
For God’s gifts and his call can never be withdrawn; he will never go back on his promises.

The Power of the Holy Spirit is our shield today!
Galatians 3:5-7Living Bible (TLB)
5 I ask you again, does God give you the power of the Holy Spirit and work miracles among you as a result of your trying to obey the Jewish laws? No, of course not. It is when you believe in Christ and fully trust him.
6 Abraham had the same experience—God declared him fit for heaven only because he believed God’s promises. 7 You can see from this that the real children of Abraham are all the men of faith who truly trust in God.

A DICTIONARY FOR NAVIGATORS ON SPIRITUAL ROUGH WATERS 44: the power of Grace

2 Peter 1:2Today we again read the letter G from the Book. GRACE is today’s word. The spirit-mind man used to think of grace as a weak word and avoided it until one day when he was struck (metaphorically) by it and was caught up into a realm he had never encountered before, like being suck up into a whirlwind or like being hit by an invisible lightning rod as he lifted up his hands to worship. It was just an ordinary Sunday morning but his life was never the same after that supernatural invisible encounter in his spirit.

This is what the spirit-mind man discovered about Grace.

A supernatural power that can only come from the Almighty God.
An inexplicable sense of being immensely loved by Him.
An indescribable perception of being in the presence of His absolute goodness, faithfulness, mercy, and loving kindness, resulting in total peace and great joy.
It opens into the spiritual realm (in the Christians’ experience, an intimate relationship with God just as Jesus has taught His believers).
Some of the resultant feelings, perceptions and actual experiences are listed at random below: security, wholeness, acceptance, being valued and esteemed, favored, lifted up, built up, completely broken down and yet being made re-integrated into a whole new being, complete, honestly and transparency, freedom from fear, freedom from condemnation and judgement, clean and pure, released from heavy burden/oppression/obsession, thoughts of hope and optimism, refreshing, energized, renewed, transformed inside out, made over, re-prioritized, re-focused, re-directed, renewed in youth, rest, peace, love, joy, patience, goodness, kindness, gentleness, faithfulness, self-control, and many more.
The experience is real. It has lasted decades and is still processing and ongoing.

Grace is a power word. It is authoritative, real and strong. And it transforms an individual human life. Here are some random verses quoted from the Bible to illustrate grace:

John 1:14
[ The Word Becomes Flesh ] And the Word became flesh and dwelt among us, and we beheld His glory, the glory as of the only begotten of the Father, full of grace and truth.
John 1:16
And of His fullness we have all received, and grace for grace.
John 1:17
For the law was given through Moses, but grace and truth came through Jesus Christ.
Acts 4:33
And with great power the apostles gave witness to the resurrection of the Lord Jesus. And great grace was upon them all.
Acts 14:3
Therefore they stayed there a long time, speaking boldly in the Lord, who was bearing witness to the word of His grace, granting signs and wonders to be done by their hands.
Acts 20:24
But none of these things move me; nor do I count my life dear to myself, so that I may finish my race with joy, and the ministry which I received from the Lord Jesus, to testify to the gospel of the grace of God.
Acts 20:32
“So now, brethren, I commend you to God and to the word of His grace, which is able to build you up and give you an inheritance among all those who are sanctified.
2 Timothy 1:9
who has saved us and called us with a holy calling, not according to our works, but according to His own purpose and grace which was given to us in Christ Jesus before time began,
Titus 3:7
that having been justified by His grace we should become heirs according to the hope of eternal life.
Hebrews 4:16
Let us therefore come boldly to the throne of grace, that we may obtain mercy and find grace to help in time of need.
Hebrews 13:9
Do not be carried about with various and strange doctrines. For it is good that the heart be established by grace, not with foods which have not profited those who have been occupied with them.
James 4:6
But He gives more grace. Therefore He says: “God resists the proud, But gives grace to the humble.”
1 Peter 1:10
Of this salvation the prophets have inquired and searched carefully, who prophesied of the grace that would come to you,
2 Peter 1:2
Grace and peace be multiplied to you in the knowledge of God and of Jesus our Lord,
2 John 1:3
Grace, mercy, and peace will be with you from God the Father and from the Lord Jesus Christ, the Son of the Father, in truth and love.

A DICTIONARY FOR NAVIGATORS ON SPIRITUAL ROUGH WATERS 43: the victorious Giving

Windows of giving.
1 John 3:16Today we open the Book to the word GIVE. This could mean life and death. Without someone giving the right provision at the right time to another person selflessly, the would-be recipient may have perished. For example, giving of direction to the right road, giving of the right type and quantity of food, giving of warm and safe board and lodging in the freezing cold, and even giving of precious blood to save someone in critical need. Human have physical bodies and often the giving we need is in the physical.

There are other forms of giving too. For example, the ancient poet said,
“Your righteous testimonies are everlasting and Your decrees are binding to eternity; give me understanding and I shall live [give me discernment and comprehension and I shall not die].” (Psalm 119:144) This apparently refers to a higher wisdom and counsel which go beyond the human mind. To continue to keep up with the increasingly self-loving, crafty (multiplied exponentially by scientific and technological development), deceptive and unscrupulous physical world, an average human needs far more than what we have been taught by today’s education system or whatever words of wisdom (which often fall on deaf ears of today’s children) our parents have tried to impart to us based on what they had acquired and received. We can never catch up with the fast and ever-changing physical world.

But human nature has not changed. Survival strategies in a normal community are often based on generic inbuilt concepts of good and bad. How to decide what is good or bad? Often decisions are based on a number of generic social economic factors: agreed definition and standard of morality, code of ethics for economic conduct, code of social/relationship interactions with one another in the same community. By mutual adherence to such agreed beliefs and practices the family/community members can continue their peaceful co-existence.

One key success factor is giving. The ability and willingness to give (often more than what is required by legal binding covenant) enhances the quality of living together. It requires a higher belief and value system to give unconditionally and selflessly. One cannot give what one does not have. If a person gives at the expense of another person then it is not giving. The ultimate value behind giving has to be love. A love higher than human love.

Where does such a love come from? This spirit-mind man looks at this from a Christian perspective. Our God has revealed to us that He is love. He has demonstrated love historically by giving to us His Son, Jesus, to die on the cross and atone for us so that we can freely and boldly interact with God as children of the righteous God through Jesus (now the resurrected Christ). Our human mind cannot understand this completely but it does not stop us from receiving this love by faith. His kind of love is pure and without selfish agenda. How do we apply to others? We are human. Every born again Christian is also given the Holy Spirit who lives in us and gives us strength to apply God’s love for others. This means we are supernatural and not just human when it comes to applying God’s goodness.

Why do we not see this wonderful powerful supernatural love manifesting in all Christians? As we are human, we can be hindered by our flesh (hampered by un-renewed mind which in turn controls our body and emotion). Some may be subject to the influences of demons. The Bible clearly records instances of demons influencing people’s lives. Persistent seeking an intimate relationship with God through reading and applying His words, prayers and worship, and fellowship with other Christians who similarly seek God and love God are ways to establish a firm foundation in one’s relationship with God. Transformation of our character comes as a process as our minds are being renewed. God’s presence becomes real and clear in our mind. In times of uncertainty we walk by clarity in decisions and not confusion.

Why do we focus on talking about the kind of love Christians can give to others in this world? Christians remained the largest religious group in the world in 2015, making up nearly a third (31%) of Earth’s 7.3 billion people, according to a new Pew Research Center demographic analysis. Just imagine the supernatural power of love manifesting together by a third of the earth’s population!

Yes, giving is required of every Christian. The only force that compels us is the love of our God, who loves us so much and whom we are to love in return. Are lovers fools? Yes, in the eyes of those who have never encountered this love we are fools. We are fools for Christ’s sake. (1 Corinthians 4:10)

John 3:16 “For God so loved the world, that he gave his only Son, that whoever believes in him should not perish but have eternal life.
1 John 3:16 This is how we know what real love is: Jesus gave his life for us. So we should give our lives for each other as brothers and sisters.

Matthew 5:42-44 (Jesus says,)
Give to the one who begs from you, and do not refuse the one who would borrow from you.
“You have heard that it was said, ‘You shall love your neighbor and hate your enemy.’ But I say to you, Love your enemies and pray for those who persecute you,…”

Isaiah 11:2 English Standard Version (ESV)
And the Spirit of the Lord shall rest upon him,
the Spirit of wisdom and understanding,
the Spirit of counsel and might,
the Spirit of knowledge and the fear of the Lord.

more words to reflect on: identity

i found this at random from the internet. i marvel at the use of words like identity, name, seed and step. The definition is coined for programmer and it reflects a meaning deeper than its intention!

Quote:”Definition (Identity Columns in TSQL*)
An identity column has a name, initial seed and step. When a row is inserted into a table the column will take the value of the current seed incremented by the step.” Unquote.

“As a man thinks in his heart, so is he.” (Proverbs 23:7)

When I plant a word (seed) in my heart (mind), I can see an image of me. That image of me will produce an identify of the “me” I see in my own thought image.

what word seed am i planting in my heart today? this moment?

what current seed incremented by my thought step?

Jesus said in Matthew 15:18 “But the words you speak come from the heart—that’s what defiles you.”

a man’s identity can be defiled by what he thinks he is.

Romans 3:22 We are made right with God by placing our faith in Jesus Christ. And this is true for everyone who believes, no matter who we are.

Romans 5:9 And since we have been made right in God’s sight by the blood of Christ, he will certainly save us from God’s condemnation.

Romans 5:11 So now we can rejoice in our wonderful new relationship with God because our Lord Jesus Christ has made us friends of God.

Galatians 2:20 My old self has been crucified with Christ. It is no longer I who live, but Christ lives in me. So I live in this earthly body by trusting in the Son of God, who loved me and gave himself for me.

Galatians 3:26 For you are all children of God through faith in Christ Jesus.

Galatians 3:27 And all who have been united with Christ in baptism have put on Christ, like putting on new clothes.

Galatians 3:28 There is no longer Jew or Gentile, slave or free, male and female. For you are all one in Christ Jesus.

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

*Note:Transact-SQL is Microsoft’s and Sybase’s proprietary extension to the SQL used to interact with relational databases.

A DICTIONARY FOR NAVIGATORS ON SPIRITUAL ROUGH WATERS 42: “Call for Daniel”

daniel-512DANIEL: God is my judge, or judge of God. He was a Jewish prince, probably born in Jerusalem about B.C. 623, and was taken to Babylon as a young captive for training in the court of Nebuchadnezzar.
Daniel was distinguished for his proficiency in the “wisdom” of his day, and was brought out into public life. He soon became known for his skill in the interpretation of dreams ( 1:17 ; 2:14 ), and rose to the rank of governor of the province of Babylon, and became “chief of the governors” over all the wise men of Babylon. He made known and also interpreted Nebuchadnezzar’s dream; and many years afterwards, when he was now an old man, amid the alarm and consternation of the terrible night of Belshazzar’s impious feast, he was called in at the instance of the queen-mother to interpret the mysterious handwriting on the wall. His interpretation came to pass and the Babylonian king was killed that night.
During the two years of the new king, Median Darius’ reign Daniel held the office of first of the “three presidents” of the empire, and was thus practically at the head of affairs. His fidelity to God exposed him to persecution, but was miraculously delivered (from the lions’ den); after which Darius issued a decree enjoining reverence for “the God of Daniel” ( 6:26 ). He “prospered in the reign of Darius, and in the reign of Cyrus the Persian,” whom he probably greatly influenced in the matter of the decree which put an end to the Captivity (B.C. 536).

Daniel 5:12 Expanded Bible (EXB) (Daniel as described by the Persian queen mother)
The man I am talking about is named Daniel, whom the king named Belteshazzar [1:7]. He ·was very wise [L has an excellent spirit] and had knowledge and understanding. He could ·explain [interpret] dreams and ·secrets [riddles] and ·could answer very hard [unravel] problems. Call for Daniel. He will tell you ·what the writing on the wall means [its interpretation].”

A DICTIONARY FOR NAVIGATORS ON SPIRITUAL ROUGH WATERS 41: start afresh in A, B, C

matthew-1128I rested for one year. The last blog in this series was aptly named: “MORE WORDS FOR HARD TIMES”. Today I start afresh and dive into my ocean of God’s words. Be refreshed and spurred to ponder more as you dip into the ocean of God’s treasure chest.

ADAM’s famous quote: Genesis 3:12 Expanded Bible (EXB)
The man said, “You gave this woman to me and she gave me fruit from the tree, so I ate it.” The Bible recorded only two sentences that Adam uttered to God and this was the second and last.  A rather sad precedent for mankind.

BANISHED: Adam was banished from the Garden of Eden after his fall. His first-born son Cain was banished from the presence of God after murdering his brother Abel. King David banished his son Absalom from Jerusalem after his murder of his brother Amnon. But here is a little known prophetic statement made to David by a nameless woman who had a great reputation for wisdom.
2 Samuel 14:14 “We will all die someday. We’re like water spilled on the ground; no one can ·gather it back [collect it together]. But God doesn’t ·take away [discard] life. Instead, he plans ways that ·those who have been sent away will not have to stay away from him [will bring back/home the banished]!”

COME to his senses, COME home, COME celebrate:
Jesus has given us this story to show the EXTENT OF THE LOVE OF GOD FOR HIS CHILDREN. In this story a son was lost to the world but came to his senses and returned home. His father who waited daily for his change of heart and return was overjoyed and called for a great celebration. The word “COME” is a great word when we turn back to God. Jesus has extended the same call, “Come to me, all of you who are weary and carry heavy burdens, and I will give you rest!” (Matthew 11:28)

Excerpts from the story of the prodigal son from Luke 15
Expanded Bible (EXB)
17 When he ·realized what he was doing [came to his senses; L came to himself], he thought, ‘All of my father’s ·servants [hired workers] have ·plenty of [more than enough; abundant] ·food [bread]. But I am here, ·almost dying [perishing] with hunger.

20 So the son left and went to his father.
“While the son was still a long way off, his father saw him and felt ·sorry [compassion] for his son. So the father ran to him [C an undignified act for a family patriarch; evidence of his unrestrained love] and hugged and kissed him. 21 The son said, ‘Father, I have sinned against ·God [L heaven; v. 18] and against you. I am no longer worthy to be called your son.’[a] 22 But the father said to his ·servants [slaves], ‘Hurry! Bring the ·best clothes [L first/best robe; C either the father’s own, or a ceremonial robe for an honored guest] and put them on him. Also, put a ring on his finger [C probably a signet ring indicating sonship and authority; Gen. 41:42] and sandals on his feet [C slaves went barefoot]. 23 And get our ·fat [fattened; C prepared for slaughter] calf and kill it [C people only occasionally ate meat; such a large animal indicates a major celebration] so we can have a feast and celebrate. 24 My son was dead, but now he is alive again! He was lost, but now he is found!’ So they began to celebrate.

sound mind quotes 1: power in me

smith-wigglesworth-quotes“In me is working a power stronger than every other power. The life that is in me is a thousand times bigger than I am outside.”
― Smith Wigglesworth

“The Bible is the Word of God: supernatural in origin, eternal in duration, inexpressible in valor, infinite in scope, regenerative in power, infallible in authority, universal in interest, personal in application, inspired in totality. Read it through, write it down, pray it in, work it out, and then pass it on. Truly it is the Word of God. It brings into man the personality of God; it changes the man until he becomes the epistle of God. It transforms his mind, changes his character, takes him on from grace to grace, and gives him an inheritance in the Spirit. God comes in, dwells in, walks in, talks through, and sups with him.”
― Smith Wigglesworth

“The secret of spiritual success is a hunger that persists…It is an awful condition to be satisfied with one’s spiritual attainments…God was and is looking for hungry, thirsty people.”
― Smith Wigglesworth

“It is better to live ready than to get ready!”
― Smith Wigglesworth

“God has privileged us in Christ Jesus to live above the ordinary human plane of life. Those who want to be ordinary and live on a lower plane can do so, but as for me, I will not.”
– Smith Wigglesworth

“There is nothing impossible with God. All the impossibility is with us when we measure God by the limitations of our unbelief.”
― Smith Wigglesworth, Ever Increasing Faith

“The Lord would so cleanse the motive and desires of our hearts that we will seek but one thing only, and that is, His glory.”
― Smith Wigglesworth, Ever Increasing Faith

A DICTIONARY FOR NAVIGATORS ON SPIRITUAL ROUGH WATERS 40: MORE WORDS FOR HARD TIMES

MOREMore words for hard times coping, or rather, overcoming, which is a better and stronger action word, with victory in sight. Hard times draw out the best in human, the tough ones who go on and become tougher still. The weak ones too must rise to their best and become tough and free from their bondages. Hard times test for the best in each. What victory-ensured word shall we read today from the book of victories -the Book of God, the Bible?

Yesterday we read from the alphabet L (for Look). Today we read from the alphabet M. MORE. The word is “More”.

The definition of the term “MORE”: “MORE” has something to do with “VALUE” in quantity and in quality. There are plus and minus involved in the matter. The word “More” will generate a further “More”. For that matter, the word “Less” will generate a further “Less”. Like the word “Lack”. Such quantitative terms are like an epidemics. They are reproductive.

For example: I could do with some more clothes: additional, further, added, extra, increased, new, other, supplementary. ANTONYMS less, fewer. he was able to concentrate more on his writing: to a greater extent, further, some more, better.

More of what for hard times combat? This is the crux of the matter. Let us read on from the Holy Bible New Living Translation (NLT). The boldness and the italics are added. My own notes are in bold letters and italics as well.

First, Jesus says what God values. He values your life far more than you can ever imagine. 

Matthew 10:31 So don’t be afraid; you are more valuable to God than a whole flock of sparrows.

Second, Jesus asks you to value your life too, above all else. 

Matthew 16:26 And what do you benefit if you gain the whole world but lose your own soul? Is anything worth more than your soul?

Thirdly, Jesus says that you have far more resources and power to do things (even like Jesus does) than you can ever imagine. 

Matthew 21:21 Then Jesus told them, “I tell you the truth, if you have faith and don’t doubt, you can do things like this and much more. You can even say to this mountain, ‘May you be lifted up and thrown into the sea,’ and it will happen.

Fourthly, when God gives you something He gives you the power to multiply. It is expected that you generate “MORE”. 
Matthew 25:19-21, 2919 “After a long time their master returned from his trip and called them to give an account of how they had used his money. 20 The servant to whom he had entrusted the five bags of silver came forward with five more and said, ‘Master, you gave me five bags of silver to invest, and I have earned five more.’ 21 The master was full of praise. ‘Well done, my good and faithful servant. You have been faithful in handling this small amount, so now I will give you many more responsibilities. Let’s celebrate together![a]’ 29 To those who use well what they are given, even more will be given, and they will have an abundance. But from those who do nothing, even what little they have will be taken away.

A DICTIONARY FOR NAVIGATORS ON SPIRITUAL ROUGH WATERS 39: MORE WORDS FOR HARD TIMES

hard times contrastHard times are the number one concern to every individual, not to mention those with a family to feed. Hard times means a lack. Lack of sufficient resources. Lack of the usual stuff that we consider constituting physical, mental and emotional security and well being. Increasingly we hear of news of certain economic phenomena that gives us this sense of lack and the resultant loss. Loss of assurance. Loss of peace. Loss of comfort. Hard times means moving away from our comfort zone. Is there a way out? Today we read a word that points to a ray of light. A word of encouragement in hard times.

The word: LOOK. BEHOLD. Look. Jesus said, look.

If we can only see grim pictures, Jesus would not have urged His followers to look. The word “Look” is very pertinent today. Since Jesus Himself has urged us to look, we need to look. But what shall we look at which will counter hard times?

“Behold, a sower went out to sow.” (Matthew 13:3) This is what Jesus talks about when He meets the multitude. The people have come to see what good things He can give them. Free food. Free healing. Free deliverance. Even political and military positions and related material and social benefits. Sure. Jesus is fully capable of feeding thousands of hungry people without charging money. He does not even have to spend money to buy all those food. He just makes them appear out of thin air using fives loaves of ordinary bread and two normal fishes. Jesus is also fully capable of calling down heavenly armies to fight His just war and conquer the evil earthly kingdoms. He has the divine supernatural authority and power to as the Son of God to do what He wants if needed. 

But Jesus does not talk about His power and authority as the Son of God. He does demonstrate them in His healing and deliverance ministry and in His teaching of God’s words about the Kingdom of God. But in general He teaches something else. He talks about everyday living of the ordinary man who encounters hard times as shepherd, fisherman, farmer. He often addresses a common profession: farming. Sowing of seeds for crops. This is the generic profession for all of us today. He speaks of the chances of failure and success in getting a good crop. Some will fail. Some will succeed. Interestingly He does not talk about economic conditions like recessions. He only speaks of one criteria. The soil condition. But others fell on good ground and yielded a crop: some a hundredfold, some sixty, some thirty.” (Matthew 13:8) Jesus also links economic sowing of seeds with the spiritual sowing of God’s words:But he who received seed on the good ground is he who hears the word and understands it, who indeed bears fruit and produces: some a hundredfold, some sixty, some thirty.”” (Matthew 13:23)

Do we need to fear hard times then? The Bible has a classic example of a man who sowed in hard times. Abraham’s son, Isaac reaped harvests of hundred-fold when all others suffered famine. he became very rich because of his sowing in hard times.

This is how the Bible describes his success: (Genesis 26:1-6; 12-14)

There was a famine in the land, besides the first famine that was in the days of Abraham. And Isaac went to Abimelech king of the Philistines, in Gerar.

Then the Lord appeared to him and said: “Do not go down to Egypt; live in the land of which I shall tell you. Dwell in this land, and I will be with you and bless you; for to you and your descendants I give all these lands, and I will perform the oath which I swore to Abraham your father. And I will make your descendants multiply as the stars of heaven; I will give to your descendants all these lands; and in your seed all the nations of the earth shall be blessed;because Abraham obeyed My voice and kept My charge, My commandments, My statutes, and My laws.”

So Isaac dwelt in Gerar.

12-14 Then Isaac sowed in that land, and reaped in the same year a hundredfold; and the Lord blessed him. 13 The man began to prosper, and continued prospering until he became very prosperous; 14 for he had possessions of flocks and possessions of herds and a great number of servants. So the Philistines envied him.

A dictionary for navigators on spiritual rough waters 38: more words for hard times

time square hilton NYThis traveler continues this journey on spiritual rough waters with a positive word. Not smooth but it’s worth it.

F= FIRST

‘First’ is a word commonly associated with performance superiority. Where an individual considers a thing of positive value to him, he wants to be first, to gain an advantageous position, and it means acting before all others. In a competitive environment he wants to be the winning one when compared to others in the same arena. The competition may be real or imagined on the part of the person who is required to perform, often with a stated corporate goal (with his own personal agenda) within stated corporate parameters. In a modern competitive economy based on scarce and limited resources, there is no way anyone who wants a reasonable and sustainable living without being measured by parameters set for performance in a corporate society.

In summary, often we (earth dwellers) want to be first only when there is a competition for scarce resources. There is a finite limit no matter how advanced we may currently are in ‘creative’ technology and science. The resources of the earth are finite. Parameters set by human and enforced by those with authority and power can restrain mankind from harmful ‘excessive consumption’ within the known and predicted limits of time and space and power. Increasingly the ‘war’ to control resources will intensify in quantity and frequency.

Enough for the discussion of physical natural ‘doom’. How can Christians be hopeful for exemption from this inevitable natural constraint for all earth-bound mankind? For the spiritual (supernatural) Christian, the word ‘first’ could mean quite opposite in the spiritual dictionary. The focus makes a paradigm shift to a set of limitless parameters. Parameters not bound by scarcity of resources. Let us read some positive meanings of ‘first’:

First thing first: Whom we believe (limitless and preeminent -above all)

and did not know her till she had brought forth her firstborn Son. And he called His name Jesus.

He is the image of the invisible God, the firstborn over all creation.

And He is the head of the body, the church, who is the beginning, the firstborn from the dead, that in all things He may have the preeminence.

[ The Last Enemy Destroyed ] But now Christ is risen from the dead, and has become the firstfruits of those who have fallen asleep.

and from Jesus Christ, the faithful witness, the firstborn from the dead, and the ruler over the kings of the earth. To Him who loved us and washed us from our sins in His own blood,

saying, “I am the Alpha and the Omega, the First and the Last,”

I am the Alpha and the Omega, the Beginning and the End, the First and the Last.”
Christian’s strategy in a physical world:
But seek first the kingdom of God and His righteousness, and all these things (physical and other things to meet all your needs) shall be added to you.

The hardworking farmer must be first to partake of the crops.

So the last will be first, and the first last. For many are called, but few chosen.”
Matthew 20:26-28  Yet it shall not be so among you; but whoever desires to become great among you, let him be your servant. 27 And whoever desires to be first among you, let him be your slave— 28 just as the Son of Man did not come to be served, but to serve, and to give His life a ransom for many.”
And you shall love the Lord your God with all your heart, with all your soul, with all your mind, and with all your strength.’ This is the first commandment.
Revelation 2:5

Remember therefore from where you have fallen; repent and do the first works,

“I know your works, love, service, faith, and your patience; and as for your works, the last are more than the first.

1 John 4:19

We love Him because He first loved us.

For the Lord Himself will descend from heaven with a shout, with the voice of an archangel, and with the trumpet of God. And the dead in Christ will rise first.
Hebrews 12:22-24 But you have come to Mount Zion and to the city of the living God, the heavenly Jerusalem, to an innumerable company of angels, 23 to the general assembly and church of the firstborn who are registered in heaven, to God the Judge of all, to the spirits of just men made perfect, 24 to Jesus the Mediator of the new covenant, and to the blood of sprinkling that speaks better things than that of Abel.
Two role models who scored ‘first’ in faith in action:
[ Mary Magdalene Sees the Risen Lord ] Now when He rose early on the first day of the week, He appeared first to Mary Magdalene, out of whom He had cast seven demons.

Then the other disciple, who came to the tomb first, went in also; and he saw and believed.

———————————–

Warning:
For the time has come for judgment to begin at the house of God; and if it begins with us first, what will be the end of those who do not obey the gospel of God?

(to the church) Nevertheless I have this against you, that you have left your first love.

A dictionary for navigators on spiritual rough waters 37: words for hard times

sea foams in sky

I decided to resume writing this unusual word dictionary for spiritual navigators. Today we look at some positive words to be used in hard times. Unlike many may think, these are not cliches. They are for the believers. Let’s ride this rough waters together! (Note: in summary, the following words are all neutral words which require your input to add value.)

A: Abundance. A very large quantity of something. This is a neutral word. If just gives you a measure of stuff. You need to fill in the blank or a substitute for the stuff. It matters what you fill into your life if you want an abundant life. Jesus actually promised His believers abundant life in goodness (richness and wellness in every aspect of the good life that God has originally designed for man). But many have not received. Two things are required: believe in Jesus. Be careful what you input into your life’s data base. Yes, today is our life’s PC/Mobile phone data base total cleansing and re-formatting day.

B: Behold.Similarly, behold is a neutral word. Its value and outcome depend on the content and object of your beholding. If you apply your vision on evil and enjoys watching it, you will be inputting into your soul evil which outcome will of course be evil. If you behold goodness (matters that please the good Lord) you will of course reap good. What you saw and what you input into your own soul (through the window of your soul –your eyes) is what you will reap.

C. Control. This is a bad word for those out of control. This is not necessarily a good word for those who are obsessed with control. It becomes a good word with the right input from the person who uses it. When used on one-self, it becomes a good word, self-control. This comes with the empowerment of the Holy Spirit in a believer. The Holy Spirit in us is a Spirit of power, love (God’s kind), and self-control (or sound-mind). It becomes a bad word when the person (presumably a leader) uses it to Lord over others (in the Christian scenario). Jesus warned the disciples (and apostles) not to exercise their authorities this way.

D. Demand. This is neither a good nor a bad word. It depends on who you are and the contents of your demand. Demand is a strong word which is backed by some forms of authority. A superior may be in a position to demand his or her subordinate to complete an assignment within that person’s job description. On the  other hand, a superior may not be empowered to demand an unpaid voluntary worker the same way. The authority may ideally be imbued on or delegated to the person in charge but the ability to exercise that authority is another matter. It takes a lot of factors to exercise an demand effectively. In a Christian organization, one essential key is the true knowledge of God and His word and the practice of being led by the Holy Spirit. There is no short cut. In practice, those who know God and walk in His spiritual great light do not need to use the word ‘demand’ on one another. The assignment still gets done perfectly and on time according to God’s will. How marvelous!

E. Evangelize. This is the only word that says something substantial and of significant value. To preach the gospel. In the Greek New Testament, gospel is the translation of the Greek noun euangelion (occurring 76 times) “good news,” and the verb euangelizo (occurring 54 times), meaning “to bring or announce good news.”

Bible verses:1 Corinthians 15:1-8 New King James Version (NKJV) The Risen Christ, Faith’s Reality

15 Moreover, brethren, I declare to you the gospel which I preached to you, which also you received and in which you stand, by which also you are saved, if you hold fast that word which I preached to you—unless you believed in vain.

For I delivered to you first of all that which I also received: that Christ died for our sins according to the Scriptures, and that He was buried, and that He rose again the third day according to the Scriptures, and that He was seen by Cephas, then by the twelve. After that He was seen by over five hundred brethren at once, of whom the greater part remain to the present, but some have fallen asleep. After that He was seen by James, then by all the apostles. Then last of all He was seen by me also, as by one born out of due time.

“A dictionary for navigators on spiritual rough waters” 36: haiku and poetry

a bird and a country lane
a bird and a country lane

Today we sail and navigate through the word ‘poetry’ (a collection of poems).

Here are some definitions by various conventional dictionaries on the word ‘poem’: At one end of the spectrum a ‘poem’ is defined as a piece of writing in which the words are chosen for their sound and the images they suggest, not just for their obvious meanings. The words are arranged in separate lines, usually with a repeated rhythm, and often the lines rhyme at the end. In summary it can bear the following characteristics:

1. A verbal composition designed to convey experiences, ideas, or emotions in a vivid and imaginative way, characterized by the use of language chosen for its sound and suggestive power and by the use of literary techniques such as meter, metaphor, and rhyme.
2. A composition in verse rather than in prose: wrote both prose and poems.
3. A literary composition written with an intensity or beauty of language more characteristic of poetry than of prose.

It’s origin: [French poème, from Old French, from Latin poēma, from Greek poiēma, from poiein, to create
At the other end of the spectrum, it can come in the form of ‘free verse’ (vers libre in French). The characteristics of free verse is that it is not confined in any form.Free verse poems have no regular meter and rhythm, do not follow a proper rhyme scheme as such; these poems are based on normal pauses and natural rhythmical phrases as compared to the artificial constraints of normal poetry.
Where does a haiku fit in? Because haiku originates from Japan and is written in the Japanese language, the most an English writer can do is to follow the number of lines and the count of syllabus in each line. For example, I adopt the format with three lines of 5 syllables/ 7 syllables/ 5 syllables. The haiku usually talks about nature. In the following example, I describe an old man observing the signs of youth and life as depicted by Spring time:
seeing a wee bird
bravely perching on new twig
stirs up his old heart
I like to add original visual images too to enhance the presentation. Sometimes I add audio rhythm too as I am led in my spirit to read it aloud.  (I can’t find a close-up bird picture today so I use an older picture taken of a bird flying high and you can see it if you enlarge the view).

“A dictionary for navigators on spiritual rough waters” 35: the paradox of “picture’

paradox of pictureThe word ‘picture’ for a photograph is another word of paradox. When we first see it we would imagine a copy representing a real thing. Yet when we compare the physical with the image, we realize that the copy is not a copy.

How can that be? A ‘photographic picture’ may give the connotation of ‘copy’ or ‘duplicate’ or ‘print’ or ‘reflection’ or whatever you like to call it. But there are lots of variables. Assuming all other variables (including especially the qualities of the camera and the photographer) are perfect and stand at perfect constant, time still change everything. No moment ever stands still or remains the same as the moment just passed.

How shall we call a picture then? A mere print of a momentary impression by the camera and the camera man/woman. The word ‘impression’ may be a more apt substitute for the word ‘picture’. Impression implies the subjective input we infuse into each work of our individual human hand. Aside from the hardware (cameras, computers, mobile phones which double up as cameras, printers etc.), our technique, skills, and technical experiences, our thoughts, attitudes, feelings, emotions, moods, perspectives, values, judgements, morals, religions, beliefs, five senses, likes and dislikes, preferences, priorities, affiliations, social and peer sentiments, relationships, statuses and phases of life, financial means and stability, physiological and psychological factors…(just fill in whatever that influence you) are all subjective but pertinent variable factors that affect our input and output.

What is the use of a picture or impression to an onlooker then? Should a photographer simply keep all the photos in his or her own private albums? But at some points of life everyone wishes to share a bit. The good news is that you don’t have to keep everything in your closets. Why? Because many share subjective variable factors at certain phases of lives. Some can even identify and empathize with you for the impression you have displayed which has also spoken to them.

Hence, it is alright to use the word ‘picture’ to describe a photograph just as you may describe a drawing or a painting. For that matter, a photograph becomes an art because of your subjective input which gives a glimpse of your life that someone somewhere may identify and share.

~~~~~You may be surprised, we (human) are pictures/images too. We are created by God in His likeness, with all His honor and glory intended originally.

Then God said, “Let us make mankind in our image, in our likeness, so that they may rule over the fish in the sea and the birds in the sky, over the livestock and all the wild animals, and over all the creatures that move along the ground.”
[ From Adam to Noah ] This is the written account of Adam’s family line. When God created mankind, he made them in the likeness of God.
When Adam had lived 130 years, he had a son in his own likeness, in his own image; and he named him Seth.
James 3:8-10 New International Version (NIV) but no human being can tame the tongue. It is a restless evil, full of deadly poison.With the tongue we praise our Lord and Father, and with it we curse human beings, who have been made in God’s likeness. 10 Out of the same mouth come praise and cursing. My brothers and sisters, this should not be.

“A dictionary for navigators on spiritual rough waters” chapter 34: ‘assure’ with authority

  1. tell someone something positively or confidently to dispel any doubts they may have.
  2. make (something) certain to happen.

If you assure someone of something, you need to be in the position (power) to make it happen. The word is often used with confident authority. without authority over the matter you cannot possibly assure others it will happen the way you say it will.

We can mean well when we assure someone of the good and avoidance of the bad. But unless we can make it happen or not happen, we are actually giving a false hope to the party to whom we are giving an assurance.

In human history, there are countless incidents of false assurances, especially over matters that involve intrinsic values. For example, in relationship human feelings and emotion change overtime. In matters of life and death too, no human can predict 100% accurately the actual outcome.

Yet, there is the existence of such a word, ‘assure’, despite the chance that it may bring disappointment of a failed promise.

So who is qualified to use this word freely? Who has the final say over what will happen? Yes, only One, God.

Jesus has the key

Matthew 5:18 For assuredly, I say to you, till heaven and earth pass away, one jot or one tittle will by no means pass from the law till all is fulfilled.
John 3:5 Jesus replied, “I assure you, no one can enter the Kingdom of God without being born of water and the Spirit.
Matthew 18:3 and said, “Assuredly, I say to you, unless you are converted and become as little children, you will by no means enter the kingdom of heaven.
John 5:25 “And I assure you that the time is coming, indeed it’s here now, when the dead will hear my voice—the voice of the Son of God. And those who listen will live.
Matthew 21:21 So Jesus answered and said to them, “Assuredly, I say to you, if you have faith and do not doubt, you will not only do what was done to the fig tree, but also if you say to this mountain, ‘Be removed and be cast into the sea,’ it will be done.
Matthew 17:20 So Jesus said to them, “…for assuredly, I say to you, if you have faith as a mustard seed, you will say to this mountain, ‘Move from here to there,’ and it will move; and nothing will be impossible for you.
Matthew 18:18 “Assuredly, I say to you, whatever you bind on earth will be bound in heaven, and whatever you loose on earth will be loosed in heaven.
Matthew 19:28 Jesus replied, “I assure you that when the world is made new and the Son of Man sits upon his glorious throne, you who have been my followers will also sit on twelve thrones, judging the twelve tribes of Israel. Luke 23:43 And Jesus replied, “I assure you, today you will be with me in paradise.”
Luke 18:28-30 New King James Version (NKJV) 28 Then Peter said, “See, we have left all[a] and followed You.”

29 So He said to them, Assuredly, I say to you, there is no one who has left house or parents or brothers or wife or children, for the sake of the kingdom of God, 30 who shall not receive many times more in this present time, and in the age to come eternal life.”

Footnotes:

  1. Luke 18:28 NU-Text reads our own.

“A dictionary for navigators on spiritual rough waters” chapter 33: ‘conform or transform’

  1. Conform takes human effort. The paradox of ‘conform’: Over recent history, the word ‘conform’ has been associated with ‘prohibitive’ words like, ‘bondage’, ‘oppressive’, ‘totalitarian’, ‘subservient’, and has become a unwelcomed negative behavioral word among the proclaimed ‘individualistic’ young people. Yet unknowingly, while rebelling against their parents’ or grandparents’ moral values, they practice conformation among their global peers in copying the patterns set by popular trends and icons at the period. The adults are just as paradoxical. Whilst claiming under grace (and thereby not under law) and rejecting the solid foundation of the eternally unchangeable moral value of the holy God in the Bible, they practice conformation to the worldly values that point to only one way, the way of eventual destruction (physical, mental and spiritual).
  2. Transform is a supernatural process. The refreshing empowerment of ‘transform’: God has actually given this key word to believers living a successful and wonderful abundant life. Unlike what many people think, and indeed what many human power system practitioners practice, God does not want conformation to dead letters.

Not all believers are equally wise or highly educated or trained and qualified in the world or having the same resources at disposal.

Therefore, when God issues a command He makes sure His believers can apply easily. Otherwise He would not be good and just.

When we are required to do something we need the following prerequisites:

  1. willingness;
  2. ability;
  3. capacity;
  4. all other circumstantial and environmental variables being favorable.

The average believers of Jesus know and are normally willing to please God by applying the Biblical principles in our lives. The problem is often we are stuck at the rest of the prerequisites. God of course knows this very well. He sees what we are and what we actually do (including our thoughts and our spoken words). He knows that when left on own, we cannot practice his words like what He commanded Joshua to do:

“This Book of the Law shall not depart from your mouth, but you shall meditate in it day and night, that you may observe to do according to all that is written in it. For then you will make your way prosperous, and then you will have good success.” (Joshua 1:8)

The answer is how does God do it? Empowering. He empowers us. How does He empower? Empowerment is a transforming process.

  1. He gives every believer His Spirit that gives birth to us as a new creation. A mark that we belong to Him. The spiritual power within to do the impossible that God expects of us.
  2. He gives every believer His words. The truth and spirit that set us free from the bondages and oppressions of sins from the enemy of God. The ingredients for everything we need to live the abundant godly life that Jesus has promised.
  3. He gives us every spiritual blessings in the heavenly places in Christ Jesus. All the richness of God for us to live as His glorious inheritance.
  4. He gives us the faith of God. The key to access the above. The faith to move mountains.
  5. He gives us the resources needed to live a godly life and partake His own holy divine nature.
  6. He gives us the divine life of Jesus Christ (as He is so are we in this world).
  7. He gives us eternal life with Him.

How do we take hold of them? Just believe and by faith take them. This whole list of good gifts are freely given by God to everyone who believes. The words of God are guarantees. The Holy Spirit enables them to come into physical existence in this realm. This changes the physical environment too. We receive God’s favor. It makes the key difference.

How does the word ‘transform’ work? It works with the Holy Spirit and the words of God. It works on our mind as we are being renewed by God’s words and the might of God (the Holy Spirit). The good news is God gives to all who believe and ask by faith. He has no favoritism.

Romans 12:2 New King James Version (NKJV)

And do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind, that you may prove what is that good and acceptable and perfect will of God.

be transformed by the renewing of your mind

“A dictionary for navigators on spiritual rough waters” chapter 32: the pattern of ‘pattern’

When a word comes in the spirit, it comes with impact. Like this word, ‘pattern’. For a layman it may seem an ordinary word. For a professional it is not. If someone says, I don’t have a pattern, I just do free flow, the really creative artist will laugh. An artist is known by his or her pattern (Pablo Picasso had his picture drawing pattern. Robert Frost had his poetry writing pattern). Writers, doctors, lawyers, sportsmen, musicians, preachers, politicians, leaders, teachers, everyone with a profession too. Every man has a pattern in life. The world is made up of patterns. The ocean has pattern. Every navigator knows this. No one would dare venture into an unknown zone not knowing its pattern.

In daily life, you need pattern to love, to work, to study, to relax, to socialize, to relate, to connect, to communicate…

In making a dress you need pattern too. The pattern may not be written or drawn. You can have in your heart, memory, or vision. When you boil rice you need to know a cup of rice needs how many cups of water. The really good cooks have a rich storage of secret recipes in their mind,

The travelers like to look at patterns. The photographers like to capture of moments of patterns they see on their cameras. The writers take note of patterns and put them in words. The journalists report patterns. Patterns do not confine to hardware. Software too has patterns. Even moods and feelings and attitudes and perspectives have patterns.

every blogger has chosen a pattern for himself or herself. Whilst reading this blog, you read a pattern. What am I getting at? What is my point? My point (as a spiritual mindman) is as follow:

The spiritual realm has a pattern too. In fact the spiritual pattern governs the physical pattern we see with our physical eyes or detect with our five senses. What we see is often a copy or reflection of the unseen.

Here are some verses for meditation and prayers. Note the link between heaven (unseen) and earth (seen). Both exist and are real. But human need faith to see the unseen.

So He said to them, “When you pray, say: Our Father in heaven, Hallowed be Your name. Your kingdom come. Your will be done On earth as it is in heaven.
If I have told you earthly things and you do not believe, how will you believe if I tell you heavenly things?

Hebrews 11:1-3 Now faith is the substance of things hoped for, the evidence of things not seen. For by it the elders obtained a good testimony.

By faith we understand that the worlds were framed by the word of God, so that the things which are seen were not made of things which are visible.

2 Corinthians 4:18 [Full Chapter]  while we do not look at the things which are seen, but at the things which are not seen. For the things which are seen are temporary, but the things which are not seen are eternal.

Romans 12:2 [Full Chapter]  And do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind, that you may prove what is that good and acceptable and perfect will of God.

“Again I say to you that if two of you agree on earth concerning anything that they ask, it will be done for them by My Father in heaven.
Matthew 18:18 [Full Chapter]  “Assuredly, I say to you, whatever you bind on earth will be bound in heaven, and whatever you loose on earth will be loosed in heaven.
Genesis heavenandearth

“A dictionary for navigators on spiritual rough waters” chapter 31: the paradox of ‘hear’

Human tends to assume that when a physical thing is present the functionality applies.  Experience proves this wrong.  English words are useful in hinting such caution.  Today we look at an ordinary word, ‘hear’.
Assumption: those who have ear can hear.  But the fact is not so.  Some have physical external ear but not the inner part that enables hearing.  Others can actually hear with an aid even without the external physiological part. It explains why the verb  ‘hear’ consists of the noun ‘ear’ plus a letter ‘h’.
What does the h stand for?
Let’s look at the spiritual aspect. Jesus said,  “He who has an ear, let him hear what the Spirit say to the churches.” (Revelation 2:7)
Jesus often spoke in parables when teaching the multitude. He also always explained to His disciples their meaning.  The Holy Spirit came after Jesus was raised to heaven.  The disciples received and understood the words of God because they listened to the Holy Spirit just as they listened to Jesus.
God is Spirit.  We can only hear Him in His words by being in union with Jesus in the Spirit. In Christ. In union with His Spirit. Our spirit joined to His Spirit,  one spirit with Him.
The h factor is thus a heart factor.  When we use our hearts,  We hear God perfectly.  Our hearts (spiritual part) connect to the spiritual God. Not our physiological parts.
When our spiritual hearing breaks through,  our physiological dysfunctional parts break through too.
The h factor really matters and makes a big difference in our lives on earth.
I pray knowing this truth sets free for the abundant life that Jesus has promised and brought to this world for everyone who believes.

sheep hear shepherd

My sheep hear My voice, and I know them, and they follow Me. John 10:27

1 Corinthians 6:17 New King James Version (NKJV)
17 But he who is joined to the Lord is one spirit with Him.
John 6:63 New King James Version (NKJV)
63 It is the Spirit who gives life; the flesh profits nothing. The words that I speak to you are spirit, and they are life.

“A dictionary for navigators on spiritual rough waters” chapter 30: the paradox of ‘nowhere’

This spiritual journey is all about words. The word ‘nowhere’ is not really what it looks at first sight.

By itself it means no specific meaning. What gives meaning is your attitude. When you look at it you see what you mean in your own heart. When you speak it the way you see it, It becomes what you say it is. A rather dangerous word. You go where your proclaimed words lead you. Good or bad, you choose.

This word is hidden in two words, you see either ‘no’ and ‘where’, or you see ‘now’ and ‘here’.

Most readers see the first set of words which leads one to despair.

The few who see differently are really few. They see hope by recognizing the second set of hidden words, ‘now’ and here’.

The one who sees the ‘now’ word is blessed. Here is the positive example of how ‘now’ is being recognized and proclaimed.

John 4:25-27Amplified Bible (AMP)

25 The woman said to Him, I know that Messiah is coming, He Who is called the Christ (the Anointed One); and when He arrives, He will tell us everything we need to know and make it clear to us.

26 Jesus said to her, I Who now speak with you am He.

And they told the woman, Now we no longer believe (trust, have faith) just because of what you said; for we have heard Him ourselves [personally], and we know that He truly is the Savior of the world, the Christ.

Believe Me when I assure you, most solemnly I tell you, the time is coming and is here now when the dead shall hear the voice of the Son of God and those who hear it shall live.

I assure you, most solemnly I tell you, he who believes in Me [who adheres to, trusts in, relies on, and has faith in Me] has (now possesses) eternal life.

She answered, No one, Lord! And Jesus said, I do not condemn you either. Go on your way and from now on sin no more.

And even now I know that whatever You ask from God, He will grant it to You.

Up to this time you have not asked a [single] thing in My Name [as presenting all that I Am]; but now ask and keep on asking and you will receive, so that your joy (gladness, delight) may be full and complete.

Jesus answered them, Do you now believe? [Do you believe it at last?]
sound mind
sound mind

 

“A dictionary for navigators on spiritual rough waters” chapter 29: the meaning of “meaning”

Today we come to one word, “mean”, and learn to appreciate its depth and width. when we say “I mean” we are telling others to understand what we mean. The word ‘mean’ has no value of its own. The person who uses it can intend one of the following: he really means what he says; or he doesn’t really mean it and he is trying to deceive the audience; or he means it but it is not the truth and he is also under deception; or he just says it to fill the space without meaning to say anything and/or deceive anyone.

To be true, the word ‘mean’ must be used together with the word ‘know’. If you do not know you cannot say anything and mean what you say. The problem is often we just say without really knowing. But there is One who knows what He says and means what He says. Not only that, He wants us to be like Him and know before we say. Here are some examples of Jesus, who always means what He says:

Go and learn what this means: I desire mercy [that is, readiness to help those in trouble] and not sacrifice and sacrificial victims. For I came not to call and invite [to repentance] the righteous (those who are upright and in right standing with God), but sinners (the erring ones and all those not free from sin).

And if you had only known what this saying means, I desire mercy [readiness to help, to spare, to forgive] rather than sacrifice and sacrificial victims, you would not have condemned the guiltless.

Listen then to the [meaning of the] parable of the sower:

The field is the world, and the good seed means the children of the kingdom; the darnel is the children of the evil one,
 
On the other hand, here is an example of Peter who did not mean what he said on the occasion when faced with possible danger of his own life:
Matthew 26:69-71Amplified Bible (AMP)

69 Now Peter was sitting outside in the courtyard, and [a]one maid came up to him and said, You were also with Jesus the Galilean!

70 But he denied it [b]falsely before them all, saying, I do not know what you mean.

71 And when he had gone out to the porch, another maid saw him, and she said to the bystanders, This fellow was with Jesus the Nazarene!

It was sad and shameful for Peter whom other apostles looked to as their leader at that time. He did not know that he needed not to fear even when his physical world seemed crushing. However, he was transformed by the renewal of his mind after receiving the Holy Spirit who gave him the inner strength to tell the truth and mean what he said. He became the first apostle who witnessed for Jesus, preached openly and boldly after Jesus was raised to heaven and brought thousands to give their lives to Jesus. Peter eventually died for Jesus.peter denying Jesus