Monday, December 5, 2011

Heaven & Hell

"'I am going to take this bucket of water and pour it on the flames of hell, and then I am going to use this torch to burn down the gates of paradise so that people will not love God for want of heaven or fear of hell, but because He is God.'"

Ever since i was little, i have struggled with the idea that God created a Hell. If God truly was love, how could he ever send his beloved creations to hell? Especially those, who to us, appear undeserving of such a fate. I recently read The Great Divorce by C.S. Lewis and i think that what it has to say is important, albeit the fact that it is fiction. Obviously, C.S. Lewis being human, has the same limitations as us in understanding eternity but the proposal of the idea that people choose hell & are not simply damned is an intriguing one. In the book, a young man is walking the abandoned streets of the "grey town" until he finds himself in line for a bus made of light. He meets a great many interesting characters on his way "up". When he arrives, he finds that it is excruciating to walk on the "diamond hard grass" or even to carry a leaf and that he is really an insubstantial being, little more than a ghost. As he explores his new surroundings he witnesses several of his companions on the bus (who are also ghosts) speaking with spirits, or more substantial beings who actually inhabit this beautiful, yet to the ghosts; hurtful land. In almost every case, the ghost and spirit are arguing. The spirit attempts to convince the ghost to stay, while the ghost gives any number of excuses to why he wishes to return to the dreary "grey town". Most of them do return on the bus. After wandering for a great while the main character meets up with the spirit George MacDonald (famous author). George explains to him that for those ghosts who decide to stay, the grey town (or hell) was simply a purgatory; while for those who wish to return, this country was not heaven but simply a Valley of the Shadow of Life. Eventually the main character chooses to remain and with the help of George MacDonald makes the difficult journey to the mountains where he looks upon the face of God. This land is no longer the Valley of the Shadow of Life, but heaven.

Some quotes from the book that impacted me:

Evil can be undone, but it cannot 'develop' into good. Time does not heal it. The spell must be unwound, bit by bit.

( The spirit's response to a ghost who says he came on the bus simply to inquire, not for answers because life would be stale if he actually found all the answers)

'Listen!' said the White Spirit. 'Once you were a child. Once you knew what inquiry was for. There was a time when you asked questions because you wanted answers, and were glad you had found them. Become that child again.'

    "Well," says the ghostly ex-cleric, "really, you know, I am not aware of a thirst for some ready-made truth which puts an end to intellectual activity in the way you seem to be describing. Will it leave me the free play of Mind, Dick? I must insist on that, you know."

    "You have gone far wrong," Dick replies, "Thirst was made for water; inquiry for truth. What you now call the free play of inquiry has neither more nor less to do with the ends for which intelligence was given you than masturbation has to do with marriage".

Matthew 18:3

And he said: "I tell you the truth, unless you change and become like little children, you will never enter the kingdom of heaven.

'Don't you remember on earth- there were things too hot to touch with your finger but you could drink them all right? Shame is like that. If you will accept it-if you will drink the cup to the bottom-you will find it very nourishing: but try to do anything else with it and it scalds.'

'Both processes (process of eternal life) begin even before death. The good man's past begins to change so that his forgiven sins and remembered sorrows take on the quality of Heaven: the bad man's past already conforms to his badness and is filled only with dreariness. And that is why, at the end of all things, when the sun rises here and the twilight turns to blackness down there. the Blessed will say "We have never lived anywhere except in Heaven," and the Lost, "We were always in Hell." and both will speak truly'

"Hell is a state of mind-you never said a truer word. And every state of mind, left to itself, every shutting up of the creature within the dungeon of its own mind-is, in the end, Hell. But heaven is not a state of mind. Heaven is reality itself. All that is fully real is Heavenly. For all that can be shaken will be shaken and only the unshakable remains"

Wednesday, November 2, 2011

Theology 101

My dad asked me the other night whether God needed our praise. I took a little time to think about it and I'm a little ashamed to say i said yes. I mean, why else would God create us? Of course, i was wrong. Its not to say that God doesn't love us, because he does. It's just that he doesn't need us. God wants us to dedicate our lives to Him, to praise Him and serve him because it is good for us. He has our best interests at heart and what is really good for us is to be his servants. It's hard to grapple with i know, but to live a happy and meaningful life (a.k.a. the American dream) we need to give it up to Him. It sounds so backwards, so against our instincts; give up control? be servants to an "unknown" God? WHAAA? But if you look around it is those who seem to "have it all" that are least satisfied (ex. Kim Kardashian teeheee). So its almost as if we weren't servants; God doesn't need it, we are in a sense doing it for ourselves because by recognizing that God is perfect and deserves our undivided attention we find ourselves. That's how much he loves us . . that his greatest desire is for his creation to be successful and happy. he is not some selfish, conceited, demeaning God (although he has every right to be). He is a God of love and compassion for his children. Adoring God is like medicine, at first its difficult but in the end it is healthy for us. In fact, it can even be addicting but of course that would be an indication of drug abuse and as we all know from Jichael Mackson thats a no no. HA' that was a joke -.- All i am trying to say is that when we love Him and trust Him we are happier people. God knows what He is doing. At first it might seem like an oxyomoron but God created us, he has just a teensy weensy bit more experience. We need to accept as humans that looks can be deceiving and what we perceive as fulfilling isn't always good for us.

Sunday, October 2, 2011


Most scholars agree that Job is the oldest book in the Bible. But there is something else mysterious about Job. Wait for it . . DINOSAURS ! boom chaka lakaa. I'm telling you; maybe just maybe there is a reference to a dinosaur in Job and his name was Behomoth (I know, wicked name right?). Check it out:

Job 40:15-24
15 “Look at Behemoth,
which I made along with you
and which feeds on grass like an ox.
16 What strength it has in its loins,
what power in the muscles of its belly!
17 Its tail sways like a cedar;
the sinews of its thighs are close-knit.
18 Its bones are tubes of bronze,
its limbs like rods of iron.
19 It ranks first among the works of God,
yet its Maker can approach it with his sword.
20 The hills bring it their produce,
and all the wild animals play nearby.
21 Under the lotus plants it lies,
hidden among the reeds in the marsh.
22 The lotuses conceal it in their shadow;
the poplars by the stream surround it.
23 A raging river does not alarm it;
it is secure, though the Jordan should surge against its mouth.
24 Can anyone capture it by the eyes,
or trap it and pierce its nose?

Notice how it compares Behomoth's tail to a cedar . We know for a fact that cedars were considered very big in the Bible.

Psalms 92:12
The righteous shall flourish like the palm tree: he shall grow like a cedar in Lebanon (would this verse make much sense if it were referring to a small or medium sized tree?)

Other verses are Isaiah 2:13 and 37:24

Honestly i can' think of another animal with a tail that big although other theories include crocodiles and hippopotamuses . But seriously? where is the fun in that ! It's obviously a dinosaur <3


Ok, i have a confession to make. My friend Meagan was talking about the book of Hosea the other day and me in typical Taly fashion pipes up that there is no book called Hosea in the Bible. Of course i was utterly wrong, Gaah ! Isn' t that sad? I've been a believer for how many years? So i read it and it's a pretty crazy book. I mean God commanded a prophet to marry a prostitute ? CRAZY. I also found an book by Francis Rivers called Redeeming Love that is based on Hosea. It's definately not for everyone but it's an interesting read. Just thought I'd let you all know. Oh, and for you information the moral of this story is to actually memorize the books of the Bible in Awana instead of being like me and just repeating them from the top of my head after i had just read the lesson (:

Too cute

I'm not going to lie, i am so jealous of this girl's skills ! Her lisp makes me happy . . i think i am going to start saying "she" instead of sea (:

Wednesday, September 28, 2011

4 Truths About Love .

These notes are from Mr. Floyd's sermon in morning chapel on Monday.

1) Love is not emotion, but action.

The word "love" which is thrown about so freely in English, has a special meaning in Hebrew. Love in Hebrew is "Ahava" , which is made up of three basic Hebrew letters, . These three letters actually are broken down into two parts: a two letter base or root, , and the first letter, , which is a modifier. The meaning of the two letter base, , is "to give". The letter "aleph" , which precedes these two letters comes to modify the meaning of the base word, "give". The meaning of , is "I give" and also "love". We now see the connection between the two words, "I give" and "love". Love is giving. Not only is love giving, but the actual process of giving develops the very connection between the giver and the receiver. So when it says in the Bible: Love your enemies, we can see this as not an impossible goal, but an attainable one. The emotion love can't be forced, it can't be mimicked. But if we take the Hebrew meaning of love, we can love our enemies by our actions towards them. To act out of love.

2) Love is not conditional, but unconditional.

The people we most often have disagreements with, are the ones we love the most. Have you ever thought about that? Why is that? It's because we have the security that no matter how much
we mess up or hurt the other person, they will still love us. God's love for us is a perfect example of this. If his love was conditional, how many people would end up in heaven? no one. God wants us to follow his example .We are imperfect beings. We must resolve to try our very hardest to love EVERYONE despite there faults.

3) Love is not manipulation, but humility.

If you truly love me, prove it. If you do this, you will have truly earned my love. LIES. Love should not be under pressure, it should not feel like a requirement. Love is putting other people's desires before your own.

1 Corinthians 13: 4-7 Love is patient, love is kind. It does not envy, it does not boast, it is not proud. It does not dishonor others, it is not self-seeking, it is not easily angered, it keeps no record of wrongs. 6Love does not delight in evil but rejoices with the truth. It always protects, always trusts, always hopes, always perseveres.

4) Love is not sex, but service.

Have you ever noticed that in movies married couples are portrayed as never having sex. It's kind of this idea that once your married your life ends. Single people are the ones who have all the dirty fun. The reality is that married people have more sex than single people. Studies have proven it. People nowadays kind of live out the philosophy that women give sex to attain love and men give love to have sex. Extramarital sex is considered normal. Its a self esteem booster, it makes us feel loved or in some cases is used purely for pleasure. Here is the important thing to understand though, love doesn't=sex. Don't get me wrong, sex is a huge part of showing love to your spouse; but it is not the definition of love. There is way more to love than "making love". Love is being a servant to others & to the Lord.

Not a Preacher, But a Missionary

Being a teenager is all about finding yourself right? At least, that's what the books say. So as i strive to discover my purpose in life i consider the talents and gifts God has bestowed upon me. I make a mental list. The gift of speech, of love, of learning and research. Hmmm if i were a man what job would these gifts point to? Oh yeah, a pastor. There is just one teensy weensy problem. Women aren't supposed to be pastors. So God what were you thinking? Why does my gender haft to affect my life calling?

Genesis 3:16 To the woman he said, "I will greatly increase your pains in childbearing; with pain you will give birth to children. Your desire will be for your husband, and he will rule over you."

1 Timothy 2:11-14 “A woman should learn in quietness and full submission. I do not permit a woman to teach or to have authority over a man; she must be silent” But I suffer not a woman to teach, nor to usurp authority over the man, but to be in silence. For Adam was first formed, then Eve. And Adam was not deceived, but the woman being deceived was in the transgression.

When I read these verses I feel my heart break a little. I find myself asking God "am I not good enough?" Egalitarianism: the belief that we are all completely & utterly equal, it comes as a breath of fresh air to my soul. I feel myself revived, comforted when i hear that women have just as much right as men to leadership. You know what though? I'm not sure. In fact i don't think anyone is sure. That is why it is such a heated debate. Are women capable ? Is this what God's plan truly is for the World ? What verses should we ignore, and which ones should we apply ? These are all concerns for church leaders who seek to do the right thing . Many argue that women & men were created for distinct roles according to there gifts & abilities. The problem is that i can't think of 1 thing a man can't do that a woman can. Except of course, bear a child; but even this comes with a price since new life brings great pain. Even though it takes two to make a baby women who were involved in adultery or got "knocked up" usually bear the weight of the responsibility . So what does this mean ? Are women little more than servants? Does God give more importance to men? I don't think He does, i truly don't. Even though these "restrictions" God places on women are hard to understand and can even be hurtful i trust that God knows what He is doing.

Proverbs 22:4

Humility and the fear of the LORD bring wealth and honor and life

God is asking something of us. ALL of us. Humility. To fear the Lord. Until the debate on woman's role in the church is settled (which i don't know if it ever will be) I think it important to humble ourselves and be grateful for the opportunities the Lord has given us. We can get so caught up in ourselves and wanting to be more that we lose sight of what truly is important, and that is serving the Lord. I can see my gifts and abilities as being wasted due to my gender or i can find another way to use my gifts for His glory. As always, God provides an answer. I can be a missionary. Is it not the same thing ? Bringing people to Christ, encouraging and helping them throughout their spiritual journey? Sure, it doesn't come with a title, but titles mean little to God.

Matthew 20:16
"So the last will be first, and the first will be last."

Have you ever asked yourself who was the greatest christian who ever lived? A few names might come to mind: David, Billy Graham, Mother Theresa, Rick Warren. The answer is no one knows. Maybe the greatest christian who ever lived was a little old lady in a pink sweater who sits in the pew all the way in the back and truly rejoices in serving the lord. Maybe there is no such thing as the greatest christian who ever lived.

God calls us to be fishers of men and what better way to do that than to be a missionary? A calling that can be fulfilled in any circumstance, anywhere; even in your own hometown. God knows, maybe i am totally off on this and he will soon reveal that His plan for women is to become leaders in the church. It is not my place to judge if one of you do seek a career in ministry. It's just something to think about, something to consider. Living a life of love, being a servant.

p.s. my opinions may be subject to change as i become more aware & educated. Please pray for me and my struggles with woman's role in the church (and in life) and that i may keep my sight on what is truly important. Feel free to post any opinions or thoughts you may have on the subject !

Tuesday, September 27, 2011


Ok, so you know that really creepy verse in Genesis about the Nephelim ? Well in case you didn't it is in Genesis 6:4-6 "The Nephilim were on the earth in those days, and also afterward, when the sons of God came in to the daughters of men, and they bore children to them. Those were the mighty men who were of old, men of renown. Then the Lord saw that the wickedness of man was great on the earth, and that every intent of the thoughts of his heart was only evil continually. And the Lord was sorry He had made man on the earth, and He was grieved in His heart."

If you are anything like me, you are probably thinking to yourself, Oh my gosh some studly angel came down from heaven and seduced some 16 year old girl & BAM ! out came Hercules. Even though understanding every minor thing about Genesis is a) impossible b) not relevant to our relationship with God, it is still fun to speculate. The important thing to recognize is that God is not concerned with the how but the when. If He does not clarify, He obviously doesn't think it important for us to understand.

3 theories for sons of God :

1) Sons of God actually refers to sons of the line of Seth. Nephelim would refer to the sons of Seth (through whom the line continues) intermixing with the daughters of Cain (who was cursed) creating offspring unsightly to God.

2) Sons of God = angels. In other parts of the Bible (especially in Job) sons of God refers to angels. A man both human & angel would be considered an abomination. This could be another reason for God wanting to wipe out the Earth through the flood, to rid the Earth of such people.

note: a fault with this theory is that angels do not marry ? Do they have specific genders?

3) The third theory is more recent. Actually the first time i heard of it was when i was in Israel and our tour guide ( a seminary professor who majored in O.T. scripture, especially Genesis) stated that he believed sons of God referred to kings of old. Kings in that time were considered pure and were not supposed to mar there purity through unclean women.

Horn of Africa

Droughts have been occurring in the Horn of Africa for years but it took a famine this severe for people to notice . Usually these tragedies & realizations are too much for me to handle, so i selfishly shun them out, pretend like everything is ok. But no matter how painful it is , it simply can't be ignored. There are real people out there suffering, dying, losing loved ones. Over 30,000 kids have died in the past 90 days .The good news is . . we can do something to help . DONATE !

Joshua project

It's crazy too see how much of the world has yet to hear the good news ! Even some people groups in the U.S. are still unreached . Joshua Project is a site that provides an in depth look at all the people groups who have yet to hear about God, the percentages of people who have, and the overall population. Please remember to always pray for missionaries who are dedicating there lives in service to the Lord and that their efforts would be rewarded by touching the lives of people .

Monday, September 26, 2011

Why I believe

As you might have noticed the url for this blog is why i believe.
At camp this past summer i had the opportunity to listen to an amazing speaker; Jeremy McAllister. This is what he had to say about why he believed that God is the true creator of this world and the one and only king.

1 Peter 3:15-16 . . If someone asks about your Christian hope, always be ready to explain it. But do this in a gentle and respectful way . . .

Question: Why Do I Believe That There Is A God ?

The Eyeball is to amazingly complex to have happened by accident !
- 1 Million Nerve's form and connect in order in the womb
- The eye is the most advanced piece of technology on earth

Even Darwin admits "The eye to this day gives me a cold shudder"

Animals like the Bombadier Beetle and Giraffe had to exist all at once or not at all. They could not have "evolved"

note : the Bombadier Beetle is a beetle that shoots explosives out of its butt. I'm dead serious . Look it up .

Btw. i personally believe in micro-evolution, but that this points to a creator (God)

Romans 1:20 For ever since the world was created, people have seen the earth and sky. Through everything God has made, they can clearly see His invisible qualities, His eternal power and divine nature. So they have no excuse for not knowing God.

I Believe There Is A God Because God's Creation Is Too Complex To Happen Any Other Way

Question: Why Do I Believe That The Bible Is The Word Of God ?

Isaiah 53 was written by a Shepard in the desert, 700 years before Jesus was born and 400 years before crucifixion was even invented .

Who has believed our message
and to whom has the arm of the LORD been revealed?

2 He grew up before him like a tender shoot,
and like a root out of dry ground.
He had no beauty or majesty to attract us to him,
nothing in his appearance that we should desire him.
3 He was despised and rejected by mankind,
a man of suffering, and familiar with pain.
Like one from whom people hide their faces
he was despised, and we held him in low esteem.

4 Surely he took up our pain
and bore our suffering,
yet we considered him punished by God,
stricken by him, and afflicted.
5 But he was pierced for our transgressions,
he was crushed for our iniquities;
the punishment that brought us peace was on him,
and by his wounds we are healed.
6 We all, like sheep, have gone astray,
each of us has turned to our own way;
and the LORD has laid on him
the iniquity of us all.

7 He was oppressed and afflicted,
yet he did not open his mouth;
he was led like a lamb to the slaughter,
and as a sheep before its shearers is silent,
so he did not open his mouth.
8 By oppression and judgment he was taken away.
Yet who of his generation protested?
For he was cut off from the land of the living;
for the transgression of my people he was punished.
9 He was assigned a grave with the wicked,
and with the rich in his death,
though he had done no violence,
nor was any deceit in his mouth.

10 Yet it was the LORD’s will to crush him and cause him to suffer,
and though the LORD makes his life an offering for sin,
he will see his offspring and prolong his days,
and the will of the LORD will prosper in his hand.
11 After he has suffered,
he will see the light of life and be satisfied;
by his knowledge my righteous servant will justify many,
and he will bear their iniquities.
12 Therefore I will give him a portion among the great,
and he will divide the spoils with the strong,
because he poured out his life unto death,
and was numbered with the transgressors.
For he bore the sin of many,
and made intercession for the transgressors.

I Believe The Bible Is The Word Of God Because Only God Know The Future !

Question: Why do I believe That Jesus Is The Son Of God ?

It is widely accepted that a man named Jesus truly did exist, but what to do with him ? Most people put Jesus into the "Good Teacher" category. Mark 10:17 As Jesus started on his way, a man ran up to him and fell on his knees before him. “Good teacher,” he asked, “what must I do to inherit eternal life?” Jesus messed that all up when he called himself God . John 14:6 Jesus answered, "I am the way and the truth and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me." Once Jesus called himself God he can no longer be a good teacher. He can only be one of three things. Jesus was either a Liar, a Lunatic or he was Lord .

I believe Jesus was Lord !

Mark 8:29 Then he asked them, "But who do you say I am?" Peter replied, "You are the Messiah."

Petition To Free Asia Bibi/ Christian Martyrs

encourage you guys to check out this website and maybe even submit a petition to free Asia Bibi, a christian wife and mother that was convicted of blasphemy and sentenced to death in Pakistan.