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What I Have Learned…

Pursue righteousness, faith, love, peace with true believers.

Do not quarrel; be gentle to all

Turn away from those who are: lovers of themselves, lovers of money, boasters, proud, blasphemers, disobedient to parents, unthankful, unholy, unloving, unforgiving, slanderers, without self-control, brutal, despisers of good, traitors, headstrong, haughty, lovers of pleasure rather than lovers of God, having a form of godliness but denying its power.

We have a spirit of power, love, and a sound mind given to us by God.


What I Have Learned….

There may not be anyone who sees or knows of my sin, but God sees and knows all of my unconfessed sins (even the ones I myself am not aware of). My sin is not against man, but it is against God. I must take responsibility for my own sin, not blaming others, admit and acknowledge what I have done, be truly sorry for it from my heart, turn away from it, confess it to the Lord and receive His forgiveness, the sin is then gone and I am wiped clean of it.(Psalms 49-54)

Every creature of God is good; nothing is to be refused if it is received with thanksgiving.

Treat older men as fathers and younger men as brothers. Treat older women as mothers and younger women as sisters. Honor true widows (60 and above in age).

Do not receive an accusation against an elder, without it coming from two to three witnesses.

Elders keep yourselves pure. Use a little wine for the stomach and infirmities.

Pursue righteousness, godliness, faith, love, patience, and gentleness.

Be content with food and clothing. If rich,   do not trust in riches (trust in God), do good, be ready to give, be willing to share, storing up for the things of eternal life (not storing up for this temporal life on earth).

What I Have Learned…

Make supplications, prayers, intercessions, and thanks for all men.

Make supplications, prayers, intercessions, and thanks for all kings and those who are in authority.

Men pray everywhere, lifting up holy hands, without wrath or doubting.

Women wear modest clothing [with proper behavior/manners-avoiding extremes or excessess], without braided hair, gold, pearls, or costly clothing.

Women submit while learning in silence.

Women do not teach or have authority over men;remain in silence.

Women continue in faith, love, holiness, and self-control.

Mystery Bundle Giveaway

f457a639df14822faf6b3e20bdb5c953February will bring with it a Mystery Giveaway. The Giveaway will consist of a book [used] from the book Review list at Reflections choosing…and an 18ct. package of Stash Tea at Reflections choosing. The Giveaway is only open to United States residents/addresses; due to possible custom regulations in other countries regarding the shipping of tea.

In order to qualify for an entry into February’s Giveaway you must post a comment somewhere within the Reflections Web Site [either corresponding to a blog or a book review]. For a comment to qualify it must be in good taste, appropriate for all viewers to see, and relevant to what it is posted under. Please keep all comments focused and brief.

The qualifying comments will be from February 01, 2016 until February 29, 2016. The winner will be announced on March 01, 2016.


Will The Real Thanksgivng Please Stand Up…!

~To the contrary of what most Americans believe…Thanksgiving is not about getting as many family members together as possible and eating as much and as many different types of foods as you can until you bust (that in fact is more towards the lines of gluttony, eating past the limit that you would normally eat past).
Thanksgiving celebrations go back as far as the Egyptians, Greeks, and Romans when they would hold feasts to pay tribute to their pagan gods (idols).
There is also a Jewish festival which is similar to or resembles that of Thanksgiving, Sukkot.
Native Americans conducted feasts celebrating the fall harvest long before the Pilgrims made it to America.
Long before the journey to America, Separatists and Puritans (Europeans) were already conducting days of fasting during difficult times and feasting in times of plenty, to thank God.
In 1565 Pedro Menendez de Avile had a dinner with the Timucua tribe, to thank God for his crew’s safe arrival.
On December 04, 1619, 38 British settlers, upon reaching Berkeley Hundred, read a proclamation to have that date “a day of Thanksgiving to Almighty God”.
The festival, which is looked upon as the first Thanksgiving festival, was in 1621 after the Pilgrim’s first successful corn harvest (the Native Americans taught the Pilgrims how to plant corn). This festival lasted for three days and consisted of fowl, Lobster, Seal, and Swans (in addition to the harvested corn). The Native Americans contributed deer meat to the festival feast. There were no desserts.
The next festival of Thanksgiving did not occur until 1623, when thanks was given for the end of the long drought. This Thanksgiving consisted of fasting.
After this, festivals of Thanksgiving were held once or many more times throughout a year to give thanks after a major event…drought, victory in war, harvests, safe voyages…
In 1789 George Washington issued the first proclamation of Thanksgiving for the people to offer thanks for the U.S. Constitution and the end of the independence war.
In 1817 New York adopted the festival of Thanksgiving, it was held on different days throughout the North. The South did not observe the festival of Thanksgiving.
In 1863 Abraham Lincoln instituted a proclamation for the festival of Thanksgiving…”Americans ask God to “Commend to his tender care all those who have become widows, orphans, mourners or sufferers in the lamentable civil strife” and to “heal the wounds of the nation”. It was held on the final Thursday of November.
In 1939 Franklin D. Roosevelt moved the festival of Thanksgiving up a week from the final Thursday of November, and called it Franksgiving.
In 1941 Franklin D. Roosevelt signed a bill to make it the 4th Thursday in November, Americans were opposed to his previous move of the festival.
It appears as though Thanksgiving can be held at any time a person or group of people want to thank God for a blessing or overcoming a difficult time. The government of America has designated a specific day once a year for the event of holding a celebration to thank Almighty God for all that He has done. It is quite different from the image I received of it when I was young…I thought it was just a time to be thankful for what you had, eat as much or more than you could, display as many different foods as your budget would allow and have as many family members present as possible. The truth is quite different than the illusion.

Real Friends

“Many will say they are loyal friends, but who can find one who is truly reliable?” (NLT, Proverbs 20:6)

Your Body Is Not Your Own

“…I plead with you to give your bodies to God because of all He has done for you. Let them be a living and holy sacrifice–the kind He will find acceptable. This is truly the way to worship Him. Don’t copy the behavior and customs of this world, but let God transform you into a new person by changing the way you think. Then you will learn to know God’s will for you, which is good and pleasing and perfect.” (NLT, Romans 12:1-2)

Love Each Other

“Don’t just pretend to love others. Really love them. Hate what is wrong. Hold tightly to what is good. Love each other with genuine affection, and take delight in honoring each other.” (NLT, Romans 12:9-10)

The Order of Relationships

What does your relationship tree look like?

Does it resemble the following: Jesus…husband…children…church…family…friends…acquaintances…work friends…professional networks…

Who are our closest friends? Do they hold on to the same beliefs and faith which we do each day? …Or are they the exact opposite of who we are now?

I have found that those who¬†appear to be my closest friends (bff’s) are those who are not disciples of Jesus or on fire for Him. However, the ones who are disciples of Jesus and choose to follow His ways are farther from being my closest friends (actually there is not much (if at all) contact with them outside of church services or events (not particularly due to anyone’s fault, just life’s circumstances building walls between us).

How are we to place other disciples and like-minded people as our closest friends in our relationship tree, when they are the farthest from us? Why are the ones already in the position of closest friends, so far from being disciples of Jesus…but yet some of their behaviors resemble what you would expect from a disciple of Jesus? Is there something missing in the behaviors of most disciples of Jesus today? Why do some disciples behave as non-disciples and non-disciples resemble disciples? This is all very confusing. Furthermore, how does a disciple of Jesus gain other disciples to place in their closest friend positions? Do they already have groups and circles which are too full to accommodate another disciple friendship?

There is nothing wrong with being a friend to non-disciples, for we might end up being the light in their darkness. However, our closest friends should be disciples which encourage and help to keep our fires lit for Jesus…having the same perspectives and faith as we do now as a new creation in Jesus.

Does anyone have any thoughts on this or have seen/experienced this in their own lives? Please comment…


Since the Lord provides for the birds, the grass, and the flowers…how much more would He provide for His children [“Look at the birds of the air; they do not sow or reap or store away in barns, and yet your heavenly Father feeds them. Are you not much more valuable than they?” (Matthew 6:26)]…and I am one of those children…I know in Faith that God will provide for me WHAT I Need, WHEN I Need it. God knows the exact timing for all of our needs, we just like to have it delivered in advance most times for the assurance that we have it ready for our time of need. Be assured with what you do not see, that you will see it in the hour it is needed!