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My New Favorite Word – Compassionated

14 Mar

Passion Flower Growing in Costa Rica

O Lord, be gracious to us; we have waited [expectantly] for You. Be the arm [of Your servants—their strength and defense] every morning, our salvation in the time of trouble. Isaiah 33:2 Amplified Bible, Classic Edition (AMPC)

One of the meanings of the word gracious, chanan, in this verse is compassionated. Not only is that a great word and a new one to me, but it’s written as a command.  Isaiah is commanding God to be compassionated toward us. We all know the meaning of the word opinionated–full of opinions.  Isaiah is asking, no commanding, God to be full of compassion toward us.

compassion (n.) mid-14c., from Old French compassion “sympathy, pity” (12c.), from Late Latin compassionem (nominative compassio) “sympathy,” noun of state from past participle stem of compati “to feel pity,” from com “with, together” (see com-) + pati “to suffer” (see passion).

passion (n.) late 12c., “sufferings of Christ on the Cross,” from Old French passion “Christ’s passion, physical suffering” (10c.), from Late Latin passionem (nominative passio) “suffering, enduring,” from past participle stem of Latin pati “to suffer, endure,” possibly from PIE root *pe(i) “to hurt” (see fiend).

Sense extended to sufferings of martyrs, and suffering generally, by early 13c.; meaning “strong emotion, desire” is attested from late 14c., from Late Latin use of passio to render Greek pathos. Replaced Old English þolung (used in glosses to render Latin passio), literally “suffering,” from þolian (v.) “to endure.” Sense of “sexual love” first attested 1580s; that of “strong liking, enthusiasm, predilection” is from 1630s. The passion-flower so called from 1630s.

The name passionflower — flos passionis — arose from the supposed resemblance of the corona to the crown of thorns, and of the other parts of the flower to the nails, or wounds, while the five sepals and five petals were taken to symbolize the ten apostles — Peter … and Judas … being left out of the reckoning. [“Encyclopaedia Britannica,” 1885]

Latin compassio is an ecclesiastical loan-translation of Greek sympatheia (see sympathy). An Old English loan-translation of compassion was efenðrowung.

I pray (not command) that the Lord be compassionated with us today. And that we be compassionated with one another due to the price Jesus paid on the cross for us.

 

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Passionate Purity

22 Jun

IMG_0259_1024Lately, I can’t get God’s passion and purity out of my mind. This photograph that I’ve had on my desktop for a while, keeps me chewing on these concepts.

This afternoon I read this in the Discovery Bible app that I’m test driving for 30 days:

God is all-loving and committed to “giving Himself away” in a covenant-relationship with all who truly receive (serve) Him.  The Lord offers unlimited, personal knowledge of Himself to all through the saving work of the eternal Son (Jesus Christ), as mediated by God the Holy Spirit (cf. Rev 4:8). (Discovery Bible)

He wants to give Himself away to us.  Selah.

This is the passion we find in 1 John 4:8: The one who does not love has not become acquainted with God [does not and never did know Him], for God is love. [He is the originator of love, and it is an enduring attribute of His nature.]

And God is pure. I don’t think I’m messing with the Scriptures when I say, God is purity. He has no sin. He has no grey. He is perfect.

This is the message [of God’s promised revelation] which we have heard from Him and now announce to you, that God is Light [He is holy, His message is truthful, He is perfect in righteousness], and in Him there is no darkness at all [no sin, no wickedness, no imperfection]. 1 John 1:5

And He loves us so, that he wants to purify us, His bride.

Because pure (Gk katharos) crystal is transparent, light shines through even though it is solid.  When God’s life touches people, they are as pure crystal so His glory passes “through” them as a “see-through solid” – a transparent “sea of glass/crystal.” (Discovery Bible)

Makes me want to get down on my knees.

S.T.O.P.

26 Feb
CAM00034

As you can plainly see, I’m having difficulty with the “O” in S.T.O.P..

I recently attended a workshop on executive functions–which just means what you need to do to execute anything.  The acronym we were taught was S.T.O.P..

S = Space

T = Time

O = Objects

P = People

For example, if I’m leaving work and want to stop at the grocery store before a 6:00 appointment, I need to think of the route I want to take (Space), I need to work backwards from 6:00 and think of the drive time to and from the grocery store and determine how much time I can spend at the grocery store (Time).  I also need to think of what I need to bring, like my wallet and passport and what I need to buy (Objects).  And of course, I need to think of Mike’s likes and dislikes when I grocery shop and the person that I’m meeting at 6:00 (People).

I was thinking about executive functions in the spiritual realm.

S = Space – We are pilgrims in this world, just passing through. Our citizenship is in heaven. Psalm 84:5; Hebrews 11:13; 1 Peter 2:11

T = Time – We need to use our time well now, but will soon live in eternity. Ecclesiastes 3:11; Isaiah 57:15; Ephesians 5:16; Colossians 4:5

O = Objects – We hold them lightly and know how to be content with much or little. Acts 2:45; Philippians 4:11; 1 Timothy 6:8

P = People – We treat them as we would like to be treated, loving them unconditionally and giving grace and mercy.  Matthew 7:12; John 13:34

What do you think?

 

 

 

 

 

Deception

15 Nov
Every good thing is a gift from God.

Every good thing is a gift from God.

Greetings!  I’ve taken a hiatus from spending quality time with my husband/spending any time with others/blogging/writing while I’ve dealt with the learning curve of my new job–curriculum coordinator for elementary school and early childhood at CDS in Costa Rica.  I don’t ever think I’ll be able to say, “Hey!  I’ve got this job down,” but I can say that it is not consuming every waking hour any more.

A few weeks ago I was preparing a teaching for the Women’s Bible Study based on one of Beth Moore’s teachings from her book Breaking Free. It’s a marvelous study and if you haven’t done it, I highly recommend it.  This particular study included some mathematics:

My environment + My experiences = My “truth”

My “truth” + 0 = Incomplete

My “truth” + Satan’s lies = Captivity

God’s truth > My “truth”

At the same time I was reading Brendon Manning’s book, Abba’s Child, about God’s “boundless compassion, infinite patience, unbearable forgiveness, and love that keeps no score of wrongs.”  As I read his book and thought about Beth Moore’s teaching about self-deception, I ran across this quote:

“And so we unwittingly project onto God our own attitudes and feelings toward ourselves.  As Blaise Pascal wrote, ‘God made man in his own image and man returned the compliment.’ Thus, if we feel hateful toward ourselves, we assume that God feels hateful toward us.”

It had never dawned on me before that the same way we can project our feelings upon others, we can project them upon God, but once it finally did, it became obvious that this very fact holds many of us back from a rich love-relationship with God.  So I’m going to add a little math of my own:

God’s truth + My acceptance = Peace

Abba, Father, help us to learn to receive your amazing, enduring love each and every day.

Presumptions…Good Ones

16 Sep

IMG_8030Last week I was reading a book about Cognitive Coaching, of all things, and came across a direction to presume. When I hear the word presumption used, it’s usually in a negative sense.  Since word dissonance nibbles away at my brain, I decided to investigate.  Checking in my beloved Noah Webster 1828 dictionary, I found some of the major definitions of the word:

  • To venture without positive permission; as, we may presume too far;
  • To form confident and arrogant opinions; or
  • To take or supposed to be true or entitled to belief without examination or positive proof, or on the strength of probability.  We presume that a man is honest, who has not been known to cheat or deceive; but in this we are sometimes mistaken.

Back to cognitive coaching.  I read that when we are coaching, whether coaching a student or fellow teacher we are to make three positive presumptions:

  • Nobility of purpose
  • Positive intentionality
  • Prior and ongoing thought

Isn’t that rich?  Rather than walking into a coaching situation presuming the worst, presume the best.  Of course, I immediately thought of the Biblical principal about thinking the best of someone.  But sometimes I need a new way to look at an old truth to make it live in my life.  Think about those positive presumptions as you read this verse from 1 Thessalonians.

Gently encourage the stragglers, and reach out for the exhausted, pulling them to their feet. Be patient with each person, attentive to individual needs. And be careful that when you get on each other’s nerves you don’t snap at each other. Look for the best in each other, and always do your best to bring it out. I Thessalonians 5:13b – 15

Summer Rain

25 Feb

summer-rain-243616

Do you know what a summer rain is?

To start with, pure beauty striking the summer sky, awe-filled respect absconding with your heart, a feeling of insignificance at the very heart of the sublime, so fragile and swollen with the majesty of things, trapped, ravished, amazed by the bounty of the world…

Just as tear drops, when they are large and round and compassionate, can leave a long strand washed clean of discord, the summer as it washes away the motionless dust can bring to a person’s soul something like endless breathing.

That is the way a summer rain can take hold in you–like a new heart, beating in time with another’s. ~ Muriel Barbery, The Elegance of the Hedgehog

Sing to the Lord with grateful praise; make music to our God on the harp.  He covers the sky with clouds; he supplies the earth with rain and makes grass grow on the hills.  Psalm 147:7,8

**NOTE:  For those of you in the throes of winter, I’m sorry.  It is clouding up to a nice summer rain in Costa Rica right now.

Photo credit: nature.desktopnexus.com/wallpaper/1179350/

Love, not Fear

26 Mar

Enter into God's love

“And so it was that my fear turned to rage, which I carried around with me like a large and heavy parcel that could not be set down.  It kept me from merriment when jests were told.  It kept me from curiosity when I heard a man describe to my father how blood from one dog had been put into the veins of another.  Because of it I could not feel humility when I heard sermons preached at church, nor patience when the nightmare woke Toby three times in one night.” ~ from A True and Faithful Narrative  by Katherine Sturtevant

I was thinking about this statement about fear–the typical example for a parent is when you can’t find your child, maybe you got separated in the mall, and a gazillion scenarios stream through your mind–pedophiles, kidnappings, your child in traffic. . . you know.  This is a sharp, immediate terror.

That feeling of relief when you are reunited is often followed by anger, isn’t it?  “Why did you wander off?” we roar, “I told you to stay with me!”  Fear can keep us from so many things.  What about the sodden fear we sometimes live with for years–fear that someone we love will never come to Christ or be freed of addictions.  What can we do when fear begins to affect our lives?  We need to learn to step into God’s love which drives our fear away.  Make a conscious effort to step into the awareness of God’s accepting love for you today.  You are Beloved.

There is no fear in love. But perfect love drives out fear, because fear has to do with punishment. The one who fears is not made perfect in love. 1 John 4:18