Tag Archives: Love of money

Continued nostalgic Christmas memories

In Christmas in the 1950s we looked a first time at the way we and experienced the Winter holidays and enjoyed watching the movies.

When  had started sixth grade in Gretna, Louisiana to spend the next three years at the same “Grammar School” his life was common to those of his school mates.

Cover of one of the books of the Robert L. May...

Cover of one of the books of the Robert L. May story by Maxton Publishers, Inc. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Like in our country he had also real Christmas holidays, and had real Christmas programs at school. When we do hear our grand children and see what is done at schools for the Christmas holiday we do not see such nice activities like we had in school. Though, Today there are more people stressing that this is the Season of the Year, and several Christians are shouting that Christmas should be the Reason of the Season. But when they want to celebrate the birth of Christ, not much seems to remind people to that birth of the Jewish rabbi who is our saviour. On the streets and in the shops the so called Christmas songs do not really mention Jesus Christ but go on about reindeer, Santa(s), jingle bells and present, though not that special present or precious gift you could call Jesus Christ. The winter-related songs celebrate the climatic season, with all its snow, dressing up for the cold, sleighing, etc. and with the years all the pagan elements came more and more to the forefront, new mythical characters created, defined, and popularised by these songs; “Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer” and “Frosty the Snowman” both introduced by Gene Autry a year apart (1949 and 1950 respectively).

In the previous century we gathered and special presentations were offered to sing carols.

remembers

We would sing Christmas carols, which included biblical songs. The school would give the children song sheets that showed the words to those biblical songs. Teachers were free to talk to their classes about their church lives. {120714 – Christmas Of Simpler Times}

Today lots of teachers are not allowed to speak about their religious life. They are not allowed to talk about Jesus Christ being the saviour. church live and talks about God are in many schools not authorised any more.

The kids have also nothing to share about church life, because most of them never go to church or just have some periods of church activity to prepare them for the first and/or second communion. they are not really interested in anything to do with church or with religion. The talk of the day is the new smartphone or any other new electronic gadget, plus laughing with one or the other posting on Facebook. Television lost grace in the hand of our grandchildren. The present generation does not watch so much television as we did or do, but have their eyes focused on the computer screen, watching al sorts of postings or games.

Most of my friends watched the same television programs. {120714 – Christmas Of Simpler Times}

writes

We didn’t have cable tv or dish types, so our selection was limited to traditional network programming. The programs were family oriented and were not restricted to “church and state” limitations.The Cleaver family went to church and Sunday School. Andy, Barney, Aunt Bea, Opie, and Gomer were shown in their church, even when Gomer might fall asleep and snore during the “Reverend’s” sermons.
The Christmas programs that were produced and shown by ABC, NBC, and CBS did not hide the fact that “Jesus was the reason for the season.” Television hosts did not omit “Jesus” from their discussions when they were talking about Christmas. Jesus was truly “God with us” during those programs. {120714 – Christmas Of Simpler Times}

Jesus nor God are the subject of this season. It is time that those who call themselves Christian and find that this should be a time to think about Christ Jesus, perhaps should do better to have others thinking about that special man who was sent by God for a specific reason.

In Belgium we listened, behind frosted windows, to songs like the one of Frank Sinatra who sung about the songs for you and me, but were told that this was all about that heathen character the Americans loved so much, because their country had become slave of consumption. Today we in Europe are not better off. Most people are slave of money and consumption. As in the previous article told, they even get so much stress that we have already time spend in the media about that ‘Christmas stress‘.

Of the time when every one falls in love there is not so much to see. In some American writings we hear that it is now fashionable to have a divorce around Christmas. Many have new years dreams of having some extramarital adventures with some delicious unknown and some even think it can be good fun to have some extra sex with somebody of their own gender. Those same gender relations are also promoted extra in this time of year. This week for example we had on television some gays who prepared meals for each other and talked every episode about the ‘Christmas kitsch’.

Merry Christmas (Bing Crosby album)

Merry Christmas (Bing Crosby album) (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

In the 1950ies and 1960ies from the States we got Andy Williams and Bing Crosby who be the must haves and must hears at the Winter holiday season. You may wonder what glow it is when snow would appear these days. But even the snow has given it up and Winter does not want to let see her face. Bing Crosby reminded people about what happened in Bethlehem and asked people to remember it not just in this particular season but the whole year through.

Judi Harbin remarked

Just as we cannot benefit from a wrapped gift under the Christmas tree until we open it, so gratitude can be seen as our way of opening the gift of God’s love intended by all the small and big positive events of our lives

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One of the Biggest Christmas hits in several families for years

“White christmas” by Bing Crosby (1942) Original

Later he made a more fluent, faster version, which I like more

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O Little Town Of Bethlehem – Bing Crosby

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Bing Crosby “The Secret Of Christmas”

“The Secret Of Christmas” was written by Jimmy Van Heusen and Sammy Cahn for Bing Crosby, and was first performed by Bing in the 1959 film, ‘Say One For Me’. Bing recorded “The Secret Of Christmas” with an arrangement by Frank DeVol for a single that year released by Columbia Records. Bing recorded the song again in 1964 for the album 12 Songs Of Christmas with Fred Waring and His Orchestra.

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It may well be that after World War II our families had to overcome the shocks of the Great War and the last atrocity which showed the cruelty of man and made it so much more important to focus on the better soul of mankind. Perhaps it was truly a much simpler time of Christmas in our nation’s not too distant history.

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Preceding articles

Solstice, Saturnalia and Christmas-stress

Christmas in the 1950s

The Proper Place of Excess

Looking for the consummation of presents

One can buy a lot in the supermarket, but not hope

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Additional reading

  1. Creator and Blogger God 11 Old and New Blog 1 Aimed at one man
  2. Objects around the birth and death of Jesus
  3. Our love for Jesus – A Christian Science perspective
  4. Isaiah 55-56, Revelation 11
  5. God’s wrath and sanctification

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Further reading and listening

  1. Celebrating 365 Days of Legends, Folklore & Spirituality for December 17 – 23 – Saturnalia
  2. Countdown to Christmas 17: Saturnalia
  3. War On Christmas Memes: Saturnalia
  4. Christmas: it’s all about money, not messiahs.
  5. Why Did He Come?
  6. What Really Happened?
  7. He Loves You So
  8. 10 Tips for Maintaining a Healthy, Happy, Glow Over Christmas and Into the New Year
  9. Cancer survivor supports others battling the disease with massive Christmas light display
  10. Giving money for Christmas: When and how to do it right
  11. Carols by Candlelight
  12. “Hush, now listen…”
  13. Hymn, ‘Mary, Did You Know?’
  14. Carol, ‘I Saw Three Ships Come Sailing on Christmas Day’
  15. Joy to the World, Not Just Another Christmas Carol
  16. Christmas Carol Day 17
  17. Jubilation
  18. Manifestation
  19. “For hate is strong and mocks the song”–A Civil war Christmas carol
  20. Celebrating Christmas as a Family
  21. Holiday Decoration: Celebrate Christmas in Style
  22. Dec 18: My somewhere peaceful is Christmas magic
  23. New trending GIF tagged 80s christmas vhs 1987…

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Filed under Audio, History, Lifestyle, Religious affairs, Video

Solstice, Saturnalia and Christmas-stress

Today lots of people tend to treat things such as Christmas trees and holiday gift giving as if they’ve been with us forever. While these are old traditions, they were once far more localized. In this world of media everywhere, we tend to forget that customs were once far more specific to the area. Lots of people also have lost the connection of those festivals and have transposed it to their group of people, believers or non-believers in Jesus Christ or in God.

From the Saxon days there was Yule for mid-winter and in the regions of West Europe the autumn storm brought many ideas alive to think about gods who controlled everything in nature. The days becoming darker demanded for and still demand for some more light bringing into it. In the old times to honour the gods it was custom to put all sorts of things in the trees as an offering to the gods. On December the 25th it was the day of the goddess of light. Time was taken to celebrate her.

Traditional Christmas card with holly and mistletoe. Circa 1880s

Druids, Celts, and even the Romans used evergreen branches made into wreaths in winter solstice celebrations. Because so many things lost colour and seemed to have died people looked up for those elements in nature which could be so strong that they stayed green. Pagan symbols as holly and ivy remained green and were taken as a promise of life to return in dead of winter. Holly – prized for its ability to bear fruit in winter and its healing uses – were the blessings people hoped they could have in the house and share with each other. Healing elements were very important to get through Winter.

While the Romans were holding the feast for the god Saturn — which occurred about the time of the winter solstice — they decked the outsides of their houses with holly. At the same time the Christians were quietly celebrating the birth of Christ, and to avoid detection they outwardly followed the custom of their heathen neighbours and decked their houses with holly as well. In this way holly came to be connected with Christmas customs. The plant was also regarded as a symbol of the Resurrection.

The missionaries coming in these regions quickly understood how the pagan traditions were so strong and how people would not like to give them up. This we still see today happening. As Christians should come to know more about traditions and about usages all over the world, plus having the Holy Scriptures to find what they could or could not do, we see that those who call themselves Christian still do not like to give up those pagan traditions and pagan festivals.

The Roman Catholic Church had already given in to Constantine the Great allowing the false teaching of the trinity be part of the Catholic Faith, so it was a further small step to adapt the Western Celtic and Saxon traditions to the Roman Faith. In 336 CE, during the time of this so called  first Christian Roman Emperor for the first time on December 25th “Christmas” was being celebrated.

A very early Christian tradition said that March 25th was the day when Mary was told she’d give birth to Jesus (called the Annunciation). And nine months later, of course, would be December 25th. But the Bible doesn’t mention the exact days of that annunciation, nor of the birth of Jesus, though from all the secular writings we do know when the cencus took place, when the falling star appeared and that it was in October that Mary and Joseph went to fulfil their duties. We can take it was in 4BCE on October the 17th that rabbi Jeshua from the tribe of King David was born. For those who would love to celebrate his birthday it is strange that they than not do this around the period Jesus was rally born.

An image from the necropolis under the Vatican...

An image from the necropolis under the Vatican in which Jesus = Mithras (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

It is true that in many cultures we can find a festival of lights, also the Jews have such a festival of lights. Germans and Scandinavians had their yule festival. Celtic legends connected the solstice with Balder, the Scandinavian sun god or Norse god of light, son of the chief god Odin and his wife Frigg, who was struck down by a mistletoe arrow from the blind god Hödur (or Höd). At the pagan festival of Saturnalia, Romans feasted and gave gifts to the poor. Drinking was closely connected with these pagan feasts.

The Babylonian sun-god and god of agriculture and flocks, Tammuz, lover of Ishtar, born on the winter solstice according to legend was also celebrated on December the 25th and by the Roman Catholic Church his symbol was taken as the symbol for Jesus (the sign of Tammuz or the cross), placing Jesus as the bringer of light and god of light.

The leaders of the instituted organisation of clergy who accepted the trinity, agreed to adopted the saturnalia day of the ‘day of birth’ or ‘day of new life’ as a remembrance day of the new life Jesus has given to all mankind. For them it was easier to get more converts by keeping the folks from indulging in the old pagan festivals as part of the pagan culture, now transformed or redressed in a Roman Catholic dressing.

Branches that had thorns became to be the thorns Christ wore on the crucifix (sign of Tammuz) and the berries were stained red by his drops of blood. From the Norse and the Druids, the Mistletoe you may find growing here everywhere and at that time was considered special because of it found growing on the sacred oaks, was featured in several old myths and held to be sacred and associated with fertility, which led to kissing boughs.

Also today at the Christmas markets we can find the gangway where there is the kissing bough custom one holds that a woman who refuses the kiss shall have bad luck, and that those who kiss underneath it shall be having a blessed and fruitful year.

Not all the following years Christmas was part of Christian life. During Cromwell’s rule, Christmas was even banned. Charles II restored the holiday in England. However, the Parliament of Scotland officially abolished the observance of Christmas in 1640, to purge the church “of all superstitious observation of days”, and it was not restored as a public holiday in Scotland until 1958.

Julbocken, by John Bauer (1912)

From the 4th to the 19th century the tradition of the Northern people their celebration for their chief god and the father of Thor, (Thunor, or Thonar), Balder, and Tiw, Woden or Wotan became more and more also liked by the people from Holland and Belgium and the man with a long white beard who rode a horse through the heavens one evening each Autumn became their Sint Niklaas (Sinterklaas) or Sint Nicholas  (saint Nicholas) and in the Anglo Saxon countries Father Christmas or Santa Claus/Sancta Claus.

1881 illustration by Thomas Nast who, along with Clement Clarke Moore’s poem “A Visit from St. Nicholas”, helped to create the modern image of Santa Claus

From the 20th century onward that Father Christmas started gaining more popularity and the presents became more and more the focus of the people for that season were the darkness seemed to have darkened their Christian sight. Lots of Christians enjoyed decorating the ‘Christmas tree‘ and telling their children the Saint from Spain had brought presents for all those who had behaved well the previous year. Later in the month it was the Santa who once more brought presents in the house.

History illustrates the awesome outworking of initial events from when the Divine Creator has declared

Zephaniah 1:17-18 The Scriptures 1998+  (17)  “And I shall bring distress on men, and they shall walk like blind men – because they have sinned against יהוה  {Jehovah}, and their blood shall be poured out like dust and their flesh like dung.”  (18)  Neither their silver nor their gold shall be able to deliver them in the day of the wrath of יהוה  {Jehovah}. And by the fire of His jealousy all the earth shall be consumed, for He makes a sudden end of all those who dwell in the earth.

This comes from the Christadelphian bible reading for December 15 when we started reading this short and somewhat overlooked prophecy of Zephaniah. He would have been one of the prophets Peter referred to, as we read the final chapter of his second letter of the same day-reading, he told them they should remember

2 Peter 3:2 The Scriptures 1998+  (2)  the words previously spoken by the set-apart prophets, and of the command of the Master and Saviour, spoken by your emissaries,

Today we may find lots of people who have stress about the coming days when they have to present nice meals and many presents and have to fulfil many family visits and social obligations. Their eyes are closed for the real issue in life. Not a Santa shall bring salvation and he from the North has nothing to do with the birth of Jesus Christ. When we look at the many Christmas markets we even do not see much what reminds us of the Saviour who was sent by God to this earth.

Ages ago holy prophets told about the eyes of people which would become blinded. Today we

“should remember their predictions

Folk tale depiction of Father Christmas riding...

Folk tale depiction of Father Christmas riding on a goat. Perhaps an evolved version of the Swedish Tomte. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

We also should remember that they also warned for the time that scoffers were going to come and would lead people following their own sinful desires. About the promised one who was born, lived for a very short time here on earth, died, was resurrected from the dead and showed that he was not a spirit, but the one brought back alive by his heavenly Father, that master teacher is not remembered much these days and many do not think about his return or even do not believe in it.

Yes many laugh at us and say,

“Where is the promise of his coming?”

Many children have to promise their parents that they will be good next year. Then they also will get some present. But not many children learn about that man who died for our sins. Not many take time in this ‘Time of the year’ to read the Bible and to meditate on what God and his son Jesus had to say.

Today lots of people are concentrating on their self and do see all those refugees coming in our regions as a possible threat to what they can enjoy. Many are afraid they shall have to share with those poor people who travelled thousands of miles to find their luck in our Western world where money seems to flow like moulted butter.

Many people do not see what is really going on and how those set apart men of God had warned for certain situations we can see today. Also Jesus told about the signs of those days we have today. That time Jesus spoke about, may be much closer than many think. Many are blinded by the money this world is offering. Lots of people think everything can be said with presents and with the value of money. The real value for life they often do not see. Capitalism has put sand in their eyes.

The ways of godless thinking and living will be seen for all the foolishness they are; and we must never forget, there are only 2 ways: the broad way and the narrow way. Those on the narrow way are

2 Peter 3:12-15 The Scriptures 1998+  (12)  looking for and hastening the coming of the day of Elohim, through which the heavens shall be destroyed, being set on fire, and the elements melt with intense heat!  (13)  But according to His promise we wait for a renewed heavens and a renewed earth in which righteousness dwells.  (14)  So then, beloved ones, looking forward to this, do your utmost to be found by Him in peace, spotless and blameless,  (15)  and reckon the patience of our Master as deliverance, as also our beloved brother Sha’ul wrote to you, according to the wisdom given to him,

“waiting for new heavens and a new earth in which righteousness dwells. Therefore, beloved, since you are waiting for these, be diligent to be found by him without spot or blemish, and at peace” (verses 13,14).

Included in what they (we) are waiting for, is what Job perceived and that we read today. He declared,

I know that my Redeemer lives, and at the last he will stand upon the earth. And after my skin has been thus destroyed, yet in my flesh I shall see God, whom I shall see for myself, and my eyes shall behold, and not another. My heart faints within me!” (19:25-27).

He believed in resurrection!

That final comment is most thought provoking. Our hearts will be in danger of fainting within us for multiple reasons, when God “bring(s) distress” – the experience will be awesome for believers! But how imminent then will be the time when they will “see God” through seeing his Son, marvelling in anticipation of the ultimate time when

God himself will be with them as their God … for the former things have passed away” (Revelation 21:3,4).

Let us anticipate in faith the things that “our eyes shall behold” to carry us through the coming time of “distress”.

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Additional reading

  1. Holidays, holy days and traditions
  2. Christmas customs – Are They Christian?
  3. Christmas, Saturnalia and the birth of Jesus
  4. Irminsul, dies natalis solis invicti, birthday of light, Christmas and Saturnalia
  5. Focus on outward appearances
  6. Jesus begotten Son of God #1 Christmas and Christians
  7. Christmas in Ancient Rome (AKA Saturnalia)
  8. Christmas trees
  9. Actions to be a reflection of openness of heart
  10. With child and righteousness greater than the law
  11. Objects around the birth and death of Jesus
  12. Politics and power first priority #3 Elevation of Mary and the Holy Spirit
  13. The imaginational war against Christmas
  14. Autumn traditions for 2014 – 1: Sinterklaas and Zwarte Piet
  15. Manna from Sint Nicholas
  16. Traditionalists Vow to Fight Charges of Racism in Netherlands
  17. Ignorance of Today’s Youth (and Adults)
  18. Sancta Claus is not God
  19. Brits believe Santa present at Jesus’ birth, new poll reveals
  20. Wishing lanterns and Christmas

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Further reading

  1. Winter Solstice and Yule
  2. Yule is upon us!
  3. Dickens’ Christmas Story as an Intertexteme in Leskov’s Yule Short Story
  4. Winter Solstice 2015: Shortest Day Of The Year Celebrated As Pagan Yule
  5. Commercialmas
  6. Yule 2015 #15 performing magic
  7. Yule 2015#16
  8. A radiant vision of splendour
  9. Yule prep
  10. Yule Wreath and Garland
  11. 13 Trolls
  12. War Against Christmas?
  13. Holiday King of the Hill
  14. SGC Admin: From our inbox to you from: Patti Wigington: Paganism/Wicca Expert
  15. Yule – Wicca subject of the week
  16. Happy Yule 2015
  17. How to bring some real Christmas spirits into your Yule-tide
  18. 10 Ways to Celebrate Yule
  19. Santa Claus, Krampus,The Wild Hunt and Me.
  20. Vigil
  21. Use Yule Bells For Positive Energy
  22. Irish Christmas
  23. Christmas, the Weridest Holiday of the Year; Part one
  24. Holly Tree
  25. Holly, Plant of Saturn and Mars
  26. Symbol of Yule: Holly Mistletoe and Bayberry Candles
  27. Memories of Yuletide
  28. A Little history on the holly tree
  29. Let It Be Done Unto Me
  30. Annunciation
  31. Annunciation: a reflection for Advent
  32. This Annunciation
  33. The Annunciation, according to Bl. Anne Catherine Emmerich
  34. Tuesday 15th December
  35. Wednesday Writings – Annunciation
  36. Mary’s Heart
  37. Angels & Advent: In His Shadow – a sermon podcast
  38. And the virgin’s name was Mary
  39. Angels of Advent: Encountering the Annunciation
  40. Somersaults /Wednesday, December 9, 2015
  41. Feast of the Immaculate Conception of the Blessed Virgin
  42. Mary and a “Yes” to God’s Request
  43. Joseph’s Pregnant Advent
  44. The Overshadowing of Mary –Pentecost
  45. Christmas
  46. Saturnalia
  47. From Sukkot to Saturnalia: The Attack on Christmas in Sixteenth-Century..
  48. Togas, Laurels, Chariots and Some Roast Lambs’ Testicles
  49. Countdown to Christmas 17: Saturnalia
  50. Saturnalia Is a Fleadh by Another Name. Just Don’t Tell Jerry Buttimer
  51. By Jove! It’s Christmas: Did the First Christian Roman Emperor Appropriate..
  52. War On Christmas Memes: Saturnalia
  53. War On Christmas Memes: The Yule Tree
  54. Christmas: it’s all about money, not messiahs.
  55. Geranium Lake Properties, Saturn and Sol
  56. Advent Calendar Day 15: Christmas: The Perfect Excuse For A Fight? by Lucy Brazier
  57. Pig Washing 1, “Christmas”
  58. Christmas is Pagan!
  59. Christmas — Who gives a rip HOW we came up with the date we use?!?
  60. Christmas is Tammuz’s Birthday?

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Filed under Being and Feeling, History, Lifestyle, Religious affairs, Spiritual affairs

The Proper Place of Excess

The Word of God given to us in the Bible or Holy Scriptures tells us to know Who we should worship and what we should not worship. Idolatry of money has crept into the soul of mankind and has poisoned their hearts.

The wisdom teacher of Ecclesiastes says, there is a time for all things under the sun, no to agree with the excess man loves so much, but as a warning how to behave and how and to what to focus.

For those who want to celebrate Christmas for whatever reason they want to give, Christians should remember that it is originally a pagan festival and should better abstain from it. But we do agree in Wintertime it is ideal to socialise at the dark hours and it may be lovely to exchange presents around the turn of the year.

When we provide presents for others they should be given with joy and when it brings such a stress like we hear many tell on television, than there is certainly something wrong.

In so called Christian countries, we also see lots of Christmas markets, but at those ‘great events’ there is not much to see about what they call would be the “reason of the season”. At most Christmas markets there are not many stall about the nativity of the Nazarene Jew nor about that man’s ransom offering. Jesus Christ his birth they often call the reason for the season, but we can not see him much in that season or in people’s homes. Also the attitude of those people gathering at those markets does not speak of such an attitude that master teacher asked from his followers. Most people strolling around at those markets are more concerned about the food and drink opportunities and in buying (ridiculous) gadgets and not to expensive presents.

So many feel obliged just to find an other gadget or an other extra surprise and do hope they themselves also will receive many presents.

In this society where excess has become a way of life, for many it might well be also a way of understanding the world, a way of being and interacting in the world, but for sure many chapters in the bible warn for such an attitude and ask us to focus on the more important immaterial things.

Those who call themselves Christian should wonder where they fall in the consumer trap of the capitalist society and why they do not keep to the festivals ordained by the Most High? the festival for the goddess of light and a celebration for a Santa Claus for sure are no part of those.

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To remember

Thanksgiving here + gone > too much to eat + drink = Excess = regular part of natural order

Excess > consequences = plays important role in survival process

Survival of the fittest + the fertilized

Northern Hemisphere winter = season of rest + recuperation

ancestral winter seasons > forebears rejoiced in gathered harvest, savored freshly slaughtered meat, + delighted in new beer + wine.

Northern Hemisphere ancestors celebrated = winter solstice = December 21 = marking the rebirth of the sun = traditionally been associated with feasts + festivals replete with excesses => secular Christmastime holiday = direct descendant of these revelries.

Roman Saturnalia + misrule, centered on feasting + gift-giving > societal role reversals where servants + peasants became lords + ladies for a day or short season => usually steady tables of fortune turned for a moment

misrule (common in European societies and colonial America) individuals of low socioeconomic status demanded wealthier neighbors + patrons treat them – the servants + peons of society – as if they were the wealthy + deserving

Puritans of Massachusetts infamously outlawing Christmas in late 1600s =/= legendary anniversary of the Savior’s birth > simultaneous misrule celebrations that exalted excesses, some acceptable + others decidedly distasteful.

1800s, misrule evolved > new type of social inversion > persisted to our own day => Christmas made for children

children = miniature adults = occupied bottom rung of social hierarchy along with peasants + servants

Modern secular Christmas – family celebration – created at this time with children becoming focus of charity + goodwill

starting with Black Friday Eve (used to be called Thanksgiving) + continuing through New Year’s Day celebrations = unmatched devotion to consumerism, materialism, consumption, waste, and over-indulgence.

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Preceding

The Culture of Excesses- Losing Humanity

Learning that stuff is just stuff

Material wealth, Submission and Heaven on earth

Looking for the consummation of presents

One can buy a lot in the supermarket, but not hope

 

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Additional reading

  1. A time for everything
  2. The truth is very plain to see and God can be clearly seen
  3. Irminsul, dies natalis solis invicti, birthday of light, Christmas and Saturnalia
  4. Holidays, holy days and traditions
  5. A new year with hopes and challenges
  6. Opportunity!
  7. A season of gifts
  8. How to Find the Meaning of Life and Reach a State of Peace
  9. Material wealth, Submission and Heaven on earth

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Further reading

  1. Presents, Presents, and more Presents.
  2. Christmas Stress
  3. Buying All the Gifts
  4. Christmas time!
  5. The spirit of Christmas
  6. Christmas is not as much about opening our presents as opening our hearts. ~J.L.W. Brooks
  7. It’s the Thought that Counts?
  8. 30 Ways to Have Yourself a Thrifty Little Christmas
  9. 17 Things Only Girls Who Hate Shopping Understand
  10. How The Garden Grinch Saved Your Christmas
  11. 2015 Holiday Gift Guide
  12. My Christmas Gift Guide 2015
  13. 15 ways to get into the Christmas Spirit
  14. A Special Package
  15. The Gift & the Giver
  16. Baby Jesus Brings the gifts
  17. Blogmas Day 14: Christmas Gift Guide 2015
  18. On the 14th day of Christmas…
  19. Dear Santa
  20. Secret Santa!
  21. Why we don’t do Santa
  22. Nativity?
  23. Christmas Blogging Challenge Day 2 – My Favourite Christmas Tradition
  24. The Gift That Keeps on Giving
  25. The Holiday Gifting Struggle
  26. Do you search? ✨BlogMas✨
  27. Finding God
  28. Why Not Do Something Different This Christmas

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Just a Little Bit More - Book Blog

Thanksgiving, once again, is here and gone. I know I had too much to eat and drink. How about you?

Excess is a regular part of the natural order. Our bodies turn excess calories into fat cells – technically, stored energy for later use. Most excess weight, however, is simply lugged around serving unwittingly as a contributing factor to health problems. Alcohol, on the other hand, is eliminated by the body. But a morning-after dehydration headache, caused by excessive drinking, lets you know you overdid it. Long-term excessive drinking, of course, will kill you.

Excess has its consequences.

Excess, nevertheless, plays an important role in the survival process. You and I are here thanks to an excessive amount of spermatozoa, from which emerged one little victor to join forces with an ovum. Survival of the fittest and the fertilized! And not only that, some of the plants which provide food, oxygen, and beauty upon the earth produce seeds for their own reproduction numbering in excess of hundreds…

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Filed under Being and Feeling, Economical affairs, Knowledge & Wisdom, Lifestyle, Re-Blogs and Great Blogs, Religious affairs, Social affairs

Looking for the consummation of presents

When the end of the year is coming
people are looking for the consummation of presents

the sexy santa assistants were there to take a...

the sexy santa assistants were there to take a photo of you in front of the xmas tree or you could just ask them to take a photo with you and pretend that your girlfriend is a sexy santa assistant See where this picture was taken. [?] (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

We are coming closer to the Winter holidays and in the down side of this globe the Summer holidays. The holidays can be an unsettling time for atheists and the Christmas holidays may be an stressing times for trinitarian Christians. Those Christians also often want to know how atheists can cope with what those Christians call the Season of the Greatest Gift on earth.

Sarah, a dog-faced atheist currently living in North Carolina, writes

Once when talking to a family member who is aware of my atheism and verbal about it, she asked: “Does it bother you when you get Jesus stuff for the holidays?” The truth, yes and no. {Holiday Shopping For Your Token Atheist Friend}

She, like many other atheists and lots of Christians, does not seem to know that all this Christmas event has nothing to do with Christianity or the real Jesus born in Bethlehem. Christmas is a pagan feast of which real Christians should abstain. But many Christians love to think about the true real Greatest Gift on earth mankind received. That was indeed the saviour or the Kristos, Jesus Christ, who was really born in 4BCE, October 17. So, we could wonder why they like to celebrate his so called birthday on the birthday of the goddess of light and on the pagan holy day for that goddess.

Therefore it is strange that as self-proclaimed resident holiday gift adviser, this Sarah gives her guiding rules on how to shop for heathens as follows:

  1. Don’t give your atheist friend anything religious.

  2. Avoid gifts that use “Christmas” or “Xmas.”

  3. Coffee is good. Atheists like coffee. {Holiday Shopping For Your Token Atheist Friend}

When we look in the shop windows we also do not see much that reminds people of the Messiah and what he has given to mankind and why we can look at him as the best gift the world ever got.

Many may say that

“The Word became flesh.”

but do not really know what this means.

A certain Chandy who is also knowing that she is been given a gift, likes to share it, but considers it impossible. she also seems to see the reason.

No one’s bothered, which is fine. People have their own choices and finally, Jesus does love them. Others possibly communicate their theology but I can’t. And in some senses I wish I hadn’t learnt it. {Despairing Resonance}

This December she writes

Blood, bodily fluids, wordless crying are at the heart of Christmas story. It is icky, joyful and fills the senses. {Christmas fragment 1}

When we carefully look around everything turns around getting presents and just making lots of fun. Naturally nothing is wrong with making lots of fun and giving each other presents. Lovely. But to have stress about it?! And to say it is all for Jesus?!

Chandy at WordPress continues

It is icky, joyful and fills the senses.

This is why with so many objects criss crossing the planet it fulfils part of the spirit of Christmas. The handling of the card, the wrapping of the gift, the prising of the plastic, the eating of food, the drinking of wine affirms our bodily humanity; for God affirms bodily humanity in its messy state by taking on a breathing, weeing, gurgling body. {Christmas fragment 1}

Looking at mankind they all seem to look for their luck in stuff.

Everyone seeking love, joy, hope, peace, contentment and seeking to find it in stuff. Anyone who has an eternal perspective sees how silly this is – chasing after wealth and popularity and power. Still the pull of this world is strong. Smell that cheddar? Don’t worry about that spring loaded wire it’s sitting on. “People who long to be rich fall into temptation and are trapped by many foolish and harmful desires that plunge them into ruin and destruction.”  Wealth isn’t the issue.  Idolatry – love of money is.  (But sometimes wealth breeds the other.) {Contented Consumer?}

Even those Christians who say this is the season of peace are arguing that all those refugees better stayed in their country and would leave our developed society on its own, they not coming to take away some food and quality of life. They forget they themselves never brought anything themselves into this life at start, but got everything given to them, life, education, edible plants, sunshine, rain, the earth. Man is so selfish he thinks he has done it all by himself and that everything belongs to himself. To share it with others is difficult. For that reason such a gift season may not be so bad, because than people have to provide something for somebody else, and they have to spend something from their own money for it, which is not so easy for them. but many have fallen in the trap of the ” tyranny of expectations surrounding this so called Holy Day”.

Those who belong to the wealthy better should think about those who have less. This time of gifts should bring them to think about what gifts we all get in our life. Scripture is not against products that make life better for those who produce them.  It is also not against consuming products. but it warns us how we use our money and warns us about the attitude we can take or have to take with the things we can enjoy.

Scriptures does not say at all that luxury would not be allowed, but it gives us an indication that we should be willing to share with others. The Bible tells us the “Love of money” is wrong and corrupting.

Studies show that those with a lot of it are more narcissistic and less generous.  Our tendency is to think – that’s people who are richer than we are – They are self-absorbed and greedy. {Woes and Watch-out Warnings}

In the West we have become a “Consumer driven society”

Buy, buy, buy. Get, get, get. We’re all buyers; consumers of stuff. There are things we need and things we want. Separating our wants from our needs has become more difficult with the growing ideology of consumerism. The encouragement of acquiring more and more stuff at an increasing pace continues to change our society. The “one who dies with the most toys” philosophy has propelled the age of consumerism as our appetite to acquire things has skyrocketed. I wonder though if this is healthy for our society? {Top Risks for a Consumer-Driven Society}

The Spirit of Christmas (short film)

The Spirit of Christmas (short film) (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

The way people want to consume is changing and shopping becomes for some less a social activity, but a lonesome internet action, not really interested were it comes form at what cost, as long as he can get it the cheapest.

Senior Vice President of Marketing and Sales for Distinguished Programs Joseph DeRosa warns

So as we enter the Holiday season – whatever Holiday you celebrate – think about your own gift giving habits. If it’s cheaper online, I get it. That’s simply being fiscally responsible. But if it’s not, I’d challenge you to go to the store, walk the aisles, smile at others and say hello. Let’s not slip so far into our rabbit holes that we forget that the difference between living and being alive is the amount of interaction and experience we have with one another. Would any of us really want to be walking around this planet alone? Would that be alive? Not me. Make the choice to live alive. Connect with someone. Today.

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Preceding

Family happiness and little things we do

Halloween is Satanist Christmas

He who beams never walks in the dark

The Evolution Of Passover–Past To Present

Welcome to Easter 2014

Next: One can buy a lot in the supermarket, but not hope

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Additional reading

  1. A season of gifts
  2. Holidays, holy days and traditions
  3. Focus on outward appearances
  4. Irminsul, dies natalis solis invicti, birthday of light, Christmas and Saturnalia
  5. Christmas, Saturnalia and the birth of Jesus
  6. Jesus begotten Son of God #1 Christmas and Christians
  7. Jesus begotten Son of God #2 Christmas and pagan rites
  8. Objects around the birth and death of Jesus
  9. Christmas in Ancient Rome (AKA Saturnalia)
  10. Wishing lanterns and Christmas
  11. The imaginational war against Christmas
  12. Hanukkahgiving or Thanksgivvukah
  13. Thanksgivukkah and Advent
  14. Holiday tolerance
  15. Exodus 9: Liar Liar
  16. Autumn traditions for 2014 – 1: Sinterklaas and Zwarte Piet
  17. Traditionalists Vow to Fight Charges of Racism in Netherlands
  18. Geert Wilders wants mandatory blackface at Dutch festival
  19. Being Religious and Spiritual 8 Spiritual, Mystic and not or well religious
  20. Self-development, self-control, meditation, beliefs and spirituality
  21. Christian values, traditions, real or false stories, pure and upright belief
  22. I believe in you…
  23. Ember and light the ransomed of Jehovah
  24. Why we do not keep to a Sabbath or a Sunday or Lord’s Day #3 Days to be kept holy or set apart
  25. Not bounded by labels but liberated in Christ
  26. Nativity scene of the birth of the Bill of Rights
  27. Brits believe Santa present at Jesus’ birth, new poll reveals
  28. Sancta Claus is not God
  29. What Jesus sang
  30. Merry Christmas with the King of Kings
  31. Weekly World Watch 12th – 18th Sept 2010‏
  32. Christmas trees
  33. I Only hope we find GOD again before it is too late !
  34. God’s Special Gift
  35. What do you want for Christmas
  36. Speedy Christmas!
  37. Don’t Envy the World

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Further related postings on the net

  1. Christmas Twinkle and Festive Helsinki City Lights
  2. You Lived Your Best Life If You Had These ’90s Toys When You Were A Kid
  3. 27 of the best 90s toys that prove Christmas used to be way better
  4. Five holiday light displays you can’t miss this holiday season
  5. The North Poles’ Secret by Zoey Hart #CinnamonTreats
  6. Bending History
  7. Advent No.12: Gifting guide for friends…
  8. 🎶 Seventh day of Christmas 🎶
  9. Joy to the World
  10. Advent Day 12
  11. 12 Days Of Christmas… ‘This Time Of Year’ by Only Girl
  12. The Twelve Days of Christmas: Preparing Families for Emergencies
  13. BoyChild Chooses: The 12 Reviews of Christmas, Day 12–McDuff’s Christmas
  14. Bear With Me While I Wait For Santa
  15. Christmas Gift Guide
  16. It’s beginning to look a lot like…
  17. How to find the Christmas gifts for your friends and family?
  18. Transcending the Financial Border
  19. Prepare ye the way of the Lord
  20. He Loves to Hear You Pray
  21. Christmas prayers for children
  22. Christmas 31 Day Scripture Writing Plan: Day 12 – Malachi 3:1-3
  23. Advent 2015 – Day 14 – Perfect Peace
  24. Holidays for Earth Part II
  25. New Bond Street – Xmas 2015
  26. The Culture of Excesses- Losing Humanity
  27. The foolish man

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9 Comments

Filed under Economical affairs, Lifestyle, Religious affairs, Social affairs, Welfare matters

Home-stayers and their to do list

After “Day after day having reprogrammed the mind to see good, think good, feel good and be good” people would like to have some time off, not feeling to have to worry about anything.

Many people have the impression that they always have to conquer a battle. So many are bothered by thoughts of fear, thoughts of having to gain places and to proof oneself. Thoughts of striving should outweigh thoughts of struggling.

You’re not made to crawl, you’re made to walk, run and fly. {Simple nugget of truth!!!!……..}

Summer Holiday (album)

Summer Holiday (album) (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

and at holiday-time people feel like liberated from the daily struggles.

Sometimes people feel like that others want to pull them down.

If you were not a threat to anyone then they wouldn’t bother putting you down. If you were not on the right track then they wouldn’t work so hard to throw you off. {You believe you???….}

When leaving the own environment people do feel safer and do not worry so much encountering people who would try the same as those they see nearly every day. They would be surprised when they would get to know them better and longer.

Much too often people allow the opinions of others to become their reality of self.

Much to often people let others crawl over them and let others empower them. Often they do not have enough energy or background to react in the right way.

English: A girl lost in her thoughts!

A girl lost in her thoughts! (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Holiday time may be a good period to recharge and take in new energy. It is also the time which can be used to read wise words which can help to be standing strong in this world were evil is all around.

When everybody seems to be relaxing there are the many people who take care that others can enjoy their holiday and then there are the fathers and mothers who try to do their best to keep the kids happy.

A working mom in a small town writes:

I see all the pinterest posts of fun things to do in the summer. I see all my friends (and acquaintances) posting their time at the lake, at the pool, doing all the fun things summer is meant for.

But being a working mom makes things a little different. Living on an acreage comes with more responsibilities. Living within our means (well trying at least) puts a dollar sign on every activity. Being a mom that respects (demands) sleeping and eating schedules for my kids, makes things harder. {Summer Time & Being a Working Mom is Hard}

Though those who do not have the means to go far away on a trip for several days, can also enjoy the little things, and even more than those who could have everything at their hands.

Having breakfast, lunch, and supper outside can already be a thrill. Setting up the sprinkler near the swingset and slide may be a great way to spend the afternoon with everybody enjoying each-others company. Having the feeling that every body is there to be with each other, ready to spend several great moments outdoors, with or without adventurous happenings makes the days great and to remember. Also here snapshots can be a memory of those family days.

Today too many people do not know to appreciate the small things in life. Many even say ‘holiday’ and think ‘travelling’. Several people do find that they did not have a holiday when they stayed at home or in the family. Lots of people do not see the nice part of all those small or little things which are free or inexpensive and can fit into busy schedules of homework.

Summertime is hard especially when you try to live up to other people’s pictures and lives. Make it simple and do your own thing. Take away the guilt and be happy that the little things make your child smile. You don’t have to spend a lot, take an extravagant trip, or go too far to make your little one smile. {Summer Time & Being a Working Mom is Hard}

Roman Holiday

Roman Holiday (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Having lazy mornings, in-between the home work just taking some time off to go for a walk or to play. Not so much worrying for a moment that the house is (already) clean, the supplies are already stocked and you just looking around from your easy chair. That also is enjoying Summer.

Summer is the high-time to love for the songs the birds sing, the brightly coloured flowers we can see and smell, and the warm sunshine that touches our skin.

Sometimes, you might just have to let the ant, singular or plural, crawl along your hand, foot, leg, arm, maybe even up your back or across your neck. Let the fiendishly seeming and feeling little insect decide. {Rejected experiences}

In lots of places there are different events to please the people who did not go away. Art galleries, people selling other crafts at local fairs, street performances, community games, a.o.. In several places there are so many outdoor activities and attractive events, with so many interesting restaurants or eating outdoors pop-up restaurants and cafés that people have to make an “our to-do list“.

There is so much to do and so much to undergo. And

Experience is what makes life worthwhile after all, so why not try and take as much of it in as possible? {Rejected experiences}

Now the sun gives us longer enough light to sit outside and enjoy the sound of the birds or river, we should also find some time to take the Book of books, finding interesting stories or beautiful poetry and great wisdom with a lot of proverbs.

There are may who seriously think they have no God or gods, whilst others are convinced that we do not live in a godless society.

We do not live in atheism, we do not live in agnosticism. Our world has many gods, one mightier than the other – if you wagered that we count more gods today than even the Greek or Roman did in their polytheism, you would not be wrong, and your money well placed. {A different perspective}

The housewives and housemen who have no facilities to go away on holiday and look at those who can go away may not forget that their money does not necessary makes them happy.

The select few to escape the grasp of money to some measure are shunned, exiled, pitied under the names of madmen, anarchists, punks, third-world countries, simply poor.

Money however is a very punitive god, one that leads to one’s own destruction. Possessing this god, or rather having this god and being possessed by it, leads one to want to amass more of it. Money buys things,  therefore money has value. {A different perspective}

But that value is temporarily.We better go for better value which stays for ever. That eternal value and true treasure can be found in the Bible. It is a book which can give colour and light at the darkest moments of the day and at the darkest moments of your life. Everywhere it can bring the rainbow and the live giving light.

Why not taking some time to read the Bible now you do not have to go at work?
Perhaps you might start by reading the poetry and wisdom books: Proverbs, Ecclesiastes, Psalms, Song of Songs and compare the events of your life with the events in Job his life.

Though compiled centuries before the modern scientific endeavour, we can find serious and good easy to understand explanations. The Bible offers us a collection of sayings and truisms which should not be boring to read, because they are presented in a variation of styles, poetic and memorable.

That holy book does not have to be so perplexing or difficult to understand as many want you to believe. It is by holding fast to human doctrines that it might be difficult to understand. When you throw overboard all those false teachings and let the words of the Bible say what they say black on white, than there is not such a problem at all. Therefore just try to read what is written in it and when it says for example ‘son of man‘ do think a son of a human being and do not think ‘the God’ or something else. The same when there is written ‘son of God‘ do not think ‘god the son‘ or ‘god son‘ but understand that it is all about a or the ‘son of God‘ or ‘God’s son‘. When you read the Bible that way you shall find out that everything from the Old Testament fits clearly well in with the New Testament, like a jigsaw puzzle.

Try it!

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Preceding articles:

Summerholiday season time to read the Bible

Holiday making and dreaming

 Yesterday, Today and Tomorrow

A little ray of sunshine

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Additional reading:

  1. Struggles of life
  2. Are you being swept along by the world
  3. Looking at things, distinctions resolutions and expressions
  4. Let you not be defined by the effect of your wrong choice
  5. Seeing the world through the lens of his own experience
  6. Voice for the plebs
  7. Do we have to be an anarchist to react
  8. Thirst for happiness and meaning
  9. A Living Faith #9 Our Manner of Life
  10. We find by losing. We hold fast by letting go.
  11. A treasure which can give me everything I need
  12. True riches
  13. Joy: Foundation for a Positive Life
  14. Count your blessings
  15. Change
  16. This was my reward
  17. Good to make sure that you haven’t lost the things money can’t buy
  18. Morality, values and Developing right choices
  19. Sharing thoughts and philosophical writings
  20. Words to inspire and to give wisdom
  21. Believing what Jesus says

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Find also to read:

18 Comments

Filed under Being and Feeling, Economical affairs, Knowledge & Wisdom, Lifestyle, Religious affairs, Social affairs, Welfare matters

Your position about materialistic desires having conquered the world

In the previous articles we have spoken about the world clinching to material wealth like velcrostrips hoping to have all luck in the world.

The materialistic desires have conquered the world. Those who know were they come from and Who they should honour do know they should not give their love to material things.

15 Do not love either the world or the things in the world.+ If anyone loves the world, the love of the Father is not in him;+ 16 because everything in the world—the desire of the flesh+ and the desire of the eyes+ and the showy display of one’s means of life*—does not originate with the Father, but originates with the world. (1 John 2:15, 16)

In the articles we also could see how many love to be moulded by this system of things. (Romans 12:2) The worldly desires have run high in our society, but at other times people also fell for those distractions and attractions.

It Conquered the World

It Conquered the World (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

The love of money or the desire to amass riches and possess material things can corrupt the heart, leading a Christian to do things that go against God’s will. A few have become dishonest at work, have cheated others, or have even stolen money or objects that do not belong to them.

Lots of people do have many things of which they want to boast of is this. Lots of people also do think man is full of wisdom and that they have ‘most’ wisdom’. They do not want to look into their conscience which might bear witness. They are full of fleshly wisdom.

Material pursuits may bring on anxiety. For example, some complicate their lives by living beyond their means. Others have been enticed by get-rich-quick schemes and risky financial investments. For others, secular education as a means to attain financial success becomes a snare. The Bible warns: “Those who are determined to be rich fall into temptation and a snare and many senseless and hurtful desires, which plunge men into destruction and ruin.”

However, those who are determined to be rich fall into temptation+ and a snare and many senseless and hurtful desires,+ which plunge men into destruction and ruin.+ 10 For the love+ of money is a root+ of all sorts of injurious things,*+ and by reaching out for this love some have been led astray from the faith and have stabbed themselves all over with many pains.+ (1 Timothy 6:9, 10).

Essential to not being drawn into a materialistic way of life is cultivating the ability to distinguish between right and wrong when making decisions. This ability is developed by regularly partaking of ‘solid spiritual food belonging to mature people’ and by ‘having our perceptive powers trained through use.’ (Hebrews 5:13, 14) Making sure “of the more important things” when setting priorities will also safeguard us from making wrong choices.

And this is what I continue praying, that YOUR love may abound+ yet more and more with accurate knowledge*+ and full discernment;*+ 10 that YOU may make sure of the more important things,+ so that YOU may be flawless+ and not be stumbling+ others up to the day of Christ, 11 and may be filled with righteous fruit,+ which is through Jesus Christ, to God’s glory and praise.+ (Philippians 1:9,10,11).

A materialistic life-style can blind us, leaving little or no time for spiritual pursuits.
How can we examine ourselves and avoid being ensnared by such a life-style?
We need to consider prayerfully how and to what extent we can simplify our life. King Solomon of ancient Israel said:

“Sweet is the sleep of the one serving, regardless of whether it is little or much that he eats; but the plenty belonging to the rich one is not permitting him to sleep.” (Ecclesiastes 5:12)

Does taking care of unnecessary material possessions consume a lot of our time and energy? The more we own, the more we have to maintain, insure, and protect.
Could it be to our advantage to simplify our life by freeing ourselves of certain belongings?

Lennon (right) performing "All You Need I...

Lennon (right) performing “All You Need Is Love” with The Beatles in 1967 to 400 million viewers of “Our World”. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

We think life can much be easier when not loving the material things and not focusing on the world and its worldly life.

On the other hand, by cultivating a healthy fear of displeasing Jehovah, loving justice, and being determined to hold a good conscience, we show that we love “purity of heart.” That love moves us to continue to “conduct ourselves honestly in all things.” (Hebrews 13:18)

18 Carry on prayer+ for us, for we trust we have an honest conscience, as we wish to conduct ourselves honestly in all things.+ 19 But I exhort YOU more especially to do this, that I may be restored to YOU the sooner.+ (Hebrews 13:18

When we act uprightly, honesty can result in a fine witness.

Emilio, an Italian Witness who works as a driver for a public transport company, found a wallet containing 470 euros ($680, U.S.). To the surprise of his colleagues, he handed the wallet to his supervisor, who later gave the wallet to the person who had lost it. Some of Emilio’s colleagues were so impressed by his conduct that they became interested in the Bible and started to study. As a result, seven people from two families have accepted the truth. Yes, behaving honestly from a pure heart really can move others to praise God.Titus 2:10.

Materialism may not seem to be an issue of loyalty, but it is. Do we trust in Jehovah’s promise to provide what we really need?

33 “Keep on, then, seeking* first the kingdom and his righteousness,+ and all these [other] things will be added to YOU.+ 34 So, never be anxious about the next day,+ for the next day will have its own anxieties. Sufficient for each day is its own badness.  (Matthew 6:33-34)

Let [YOUR] manner of life be free of the love of money,+ while YOU are content+ with the present things.+ For he has said: “I will by no means leave you nor by any means forsake you.”+ (Hebrews 13:5)

Rather than striving to obtain at any cost some of the “better” things in life that are presently beyond our reach, can we do without them? (Read Philippians 4:11-13.) Are we tempted to forgo theocratic privileges in order to get what we want now? Does loyal service to Jehovah have first place in our life? Our answers will largely depend on whether we are wholehearted in our service to God or not.

“It is a means of great gain,”

wrote the apostle Paul,

“this godly devotion along with self-sufficiency. For we have brought nothing into the world, and neither can we carry anything out. So, having sustenance and covering, we shall be content with these things.”—1 Timothy 6:6-8.

In a revelation to the apostle John toward the close of the first century, the glorified Jesus Christ delivered a message to the congregation located in Laodicea, Asia Minor. It was a warning message against materialism. Though materially rich, Laodicean Christians were bankrupt spiritually. Instead of continuing to walk by faith, they allowed material possessions to blind their spiritual vision. (Revelation 3:14-18) Materialism has a similar effect today. It weakens our faith and causes us to stop ‘running with endurance the race’ for life. (Hebrews 12:1) If we are not careful, the “pleasures of this life” can smother spiritual activities to the point that they are “completely choked.”

14 As for that which fell among the thorns, these are the ones that have heard, but, by being carried away by anxieties and riches and pleasures+ of this life, they are completely choked and bring nothing to perfection.+ (Luke 8:14).

Time ran out for the world of Noah’s day, and it will run out for the present system of things. The apostle Peter assures us:

“Jehovah’s day will come as a thief, in which the heavens will pass away with a hissing noise, but the elements being intensely hot will be dissolved, and earth and the works in it will be discovered.”

Neither the symbolic heavens — wicked governments — nor the symbolic earth — mankind alienated from God — will survive the heat of God’s burning anger. Indicating how we can prove ourselves ready for that day, Peter exclaims:

“Since all these things are thus to be dissolved, what sort of persons ought you to be in holy acts of conduct and deeds of godly devotion, awaiting and keeping close in mind the presence of the day of Jehovah!”—2 Peter 3:10-12.

A key to spiritual protection is contentment rather than the use of this world to the full and the enrichment of ourselves materially. (1 Corinthians 7:31; 1 Timothy 6:6-8) We as such do not have to look so much at the world of mankind or the kingdom of mankind but at the world of the Kingdom of God. When we walk by faith and not by sight, we find joy in the present spiritual paradise. As we partake of nourishing spiritual food, are we not moved to “cry out joyfully because of the good condition of the heart”? (Isaiah 65:13, 14) Moreover, we take delight in our association with those who manifest the fruitage of God’s spirit.

22 On the other hand, the fruitage+ of the spirit is love, joy, peace, long-suffering, kindness, goodness,+ faith, 23 mildness, self-control.+ Against such things there is no law.+ 24 Moreover, those who belong to Christ Jesus impaled* the flesh together with its passions and desires.+ (Galatians 5:22, 23)

How vital that we find satisfaction and refreshment in what Jehovah provides in a spiritual way!

Some questions we do well to ask ourselves are:

‘What place do material things occupy in my life? Am I using the material possessions I have to live a life of pleasure or to promote true worship? What brings me the greatest satisfaction? Is it Bible study and fellowship at Christian meetings, or is it weekends away from Christian responsibilities? Do I reserve many weekends for recreation instead of using such time for the field ministry and other activities in connection with pure worship?’

Our regularly attending Christian meetings and sharing in preaching the good news are included among the necessary acts and deeds of godly devotion. May we perform them with heartfelt devotion to God while we wait patiently for Jehovah’s great day. Let us “do [our] utmost to be found finally by [God] spotless and unblemished and in peace.”—2 Peter 3:14.

Walking by faith means that we keep busy in the Kingdom work, with full trust in Jehovah’s promises.

58 Consequently, my beloved brothers, become steadfast,+ unmovable, always having plenty to do in the work of the Lord,+ knowing that YOUR labor is not in vain*+ in connection with [the] Lord. (1 Corinthians 15:58).

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Preceding articles:

Material wealth, Submission and Heaven on earth

For The Love of Stuff

Learning that stuff is just stuff

Watch out

Thought of the day: We want more, i want more, but why is that?

Mini-MAX-malism: A Bigger Approach to Less is More

Less… is still enough

Less for more

The Art of Doing Less – Your Time is Finite

Looking at a conservative review of Shop Class As Soul Craft

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Additional reading:

  1. What is life?
  2. Greed more common than generosity
  3. Some one or something to fear #2 Attitude and Reactions
  4. Some one or something to fear #3 Cases, folks and outing
  5. Some one or something to fear #4 Families and Competition
  6. Struggles of life
  7. It continues to be a never ending, exhausting battle for survival.
  8. Searching for fulfillment and meaning through own efforts, facing unsatisfaction and depression
  9. Daily portion of heavenly food
  10. I Only hope we find GOD again before it is too late!
  11. How should we react against the world
  12. A call easy to understand
  13. Followers with deepening
  14. Come ye yourselves apart … and rest awhile (Mark 6:31)
  15. Suffering redemptive because Jesus redeemed us from sin
  16. Looking forward to God’s faithfulness
  17. Count your blessings
  18. God should be your hope
  19. Always set a place in your life for the unexpected guest
  20. Disciple of Christ counting lives and friends dear to them
  21. Be a ready giver
  22. Contribution – Contributie, bijdrage
  23. Bearing fruit
  24. A small company of Jesus’ footstep follower
  25. What’s church for, anyway?
  26. Making church
  27. Meeting – Vergadering
  28. Congregate, to gather, to meet
  29. Gathering or meeting of believers
  30. An ecclesia in your neighbourhood
  31. Not bounded by labels but liberated in Christ
  32. Breathing and growing with no heir
  33. Breathing to teach
  34. Reasons to come together
  35. God won’t ask
  36. Communion and day of worship
  37. Trusting, Faith, Calling and Ascribing to Jehovah #6 Prayer #4 Attitude
  38. Trusting, Faith, Calling and Ascribing to Jehovah #18 Fulfilment

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Further reading:

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Filed under Being and Feeling, Lifestyle, Religious affairs, Spiritual affairs, Welfare matters

Material gain to honour God

Front cover of the first edition of Lenin's Ma...

Front cover of the first edition of Lenin’s Materialism and Empirio-Criticism, published in Moscow in 1909 under the pseudonym “Vl. Ilyin.” (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Around us we may find lots of material things which can attract and distract us. We have nature, something which can not be made by man but can only be adjusted or changed to man’s desires. We have all sorts man-made things which can be for use or just for being there, one moment to give pleasure, an other moment to be thrown away as useless.

The things from nature, the goods which make us able to create things they all come from somewhere. It is the earth that gives it to us.  But behind it is the Master Hand. What lots of people do not see or do not want to know is that behind everything made there is the Master Creator Who allows others to be and to create such things.

For many it is a very hard thing to believe that everything we can see around us and all things we can have is because God allows it to be there. It is there because of God allowing it but it also belongs to God.  We like to think that what we have is ours and no one elses.  Man wants to have everything for him or herself. Man wants to feed the “I” and wants to satisfy the “I”. Man thinks by taking all things for him/herself he can be and can satisfy the inner person and fulfil his “I amambition.

Strangely enough people want to gather as much as they can and safe it, though they will not be able to take it with them when they die. Their possessions will either go to someone else or be thrown away to be incinerated or to go in oblivion on the trash pile.

In this world there are so many who want to flaunt with what they can gather. They are so  proud, but in a way do know nothing, and dote on an argument and quarrel on the use of a word or on the way of life. With their earthly grabbing culture they are the cause of envy and controversy and blasphemy and evil premeditation.

Strife among men whose minds are corrupt and who are cut off from the truth and who think worshipping God is for worldly gain should alert us and make it that we keep away from such things. Those who love God should know that their gain is greater contentment, for it is the worship of God.  For we brought nothing into this world, and it is certain we can carry nothing out.

1Ti 6:6-7 HNV  But godliness with contentment is great gain.  (7)  For we brought nothing into the world, and we certainly can’t carry anything out.

English: Donkey cart in Conlig A change from a...

Donkey cart in Conlig A change from all the materialism that seems to arise early in December – these children take to more traditional activities, in this case dressing up in Victorian fashion and parading along The Green in Conlig village. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Therefore, let us enjoy the beauty of nature and the God given things and let us be satisfied with food, raiment and shelter. For those who desire to be rich, fall into temptations, and snares, and into many foolish and hurtful lusts, which causes them to sink in degeneration and destruction.  For the love of money is the root of all evil: and there are some men who have coveted it and have thereby erred from the faith, they have brought to themselves many sorrows.

1Ti 6:8-10 HNV  But having food and clothing, we will be content with that.  (9)  But those who are determined to be rich fall into a temptation and a snare and many foolish and harmful lusts, such as drown men in ruin and destruction.  (10)  For the love of money is a root of all kinds of evil. Some have been led astray from the faith in their greed, and have pierced themselves through with many sorrows.

In case you love God and you want to go for Him, you should flee these things; and follow after righteousness, piety, faith, love, patience, and meekness.  We are told to fight the good fight of faith, and to let the right things reign in our mortal body, laying hold on eternal life to which we are called, having professed a true profession before many witnesses.

1Ti 6:11-12 HNV  But you, man of God, flee these things, and follow after righteousness, godliness, faith, love, patience, and gentleness.  (12)  Fight the good fight of faith. Lay hold of the eternal life to which you were called, and you confessed the good confession in the sight of many witnesses.

1Co 6:18 HNV  Flee sexual immorality! “Every sin that a man does is outside the body,” but he who commits sexual immorality sins against his own body.

Rom 6:12 HNV  Therefore don’t let sin reign in your mortal body, that you should obey it in its lusts.

Nothing but the all mighty God, mighty Prince, the King of kings, and Lord of lords,  has immortality or deathlessness, dwelling in the light which no man can approach, and whom no man has seen, nor can see. To Him be honour and dominion for ever and ever. Even Christ Jesus, the son of God had to face death. He really died, was three days in hell and was than taken out of the dead by his heavenly Father, the Only One True God.

Even the son who has received authority from his heavenly Father to judge and to be a king shall have to hand over the Kingdom of God to his heavenly Father in due time, because everything belongs to God.

Like Jesus only did the Will of his heavenly Father, and not his own will, we should try to do also the Will of God. Like Jesus could not do anything without his Father, we should know also that nothing is possible without God as Sustainer of the world allowing it to happen.

As Christians we should know that we live in the world but should not be part of it. We may get many possessions but should take care those things do not take possession of us.
Everything what we gather in our life we should use for the good. Not only for the good of the self but also for helping others.

Let us remember that those things which may life easier for us should be used to to do God’s will and to honour Him by what we do with it. And let us go for the real treasures.

Mat 6:19-21 HNV  “Don’t lay up treasures for yourselves on the earth, where moth and rust consume, and where thieves break through and steal;   (20)  but lay up for yourselves treasures in heaven, where neither moth nor rust consume, and where thieves don’t break through and steal;   (21)  for where your treasure is, there your heart will be also.

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Strife: heated, often violent conflict or disagreement; angry or violent struggle or quarrel; Contention or competition between rivals; trouble or discord of any kind; strenuous effort; open clash between two opposing groups (or individuals)

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Preceding articles:

Thought of the day: We want more, i want more, but why is that?

Mini-MAX-malism: A Bigger Approach to Less is More

Stop and Think

Learning that stuff is just stuff

Material wealth, Submission and Heaven on earth

How to Find the Meaning of Life and Reach a State of Peace

Less… is still enough

Less for more

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Additional reading:

  1. What Are You Seeking?
  2. Souls and Religions with Nirvana and light
  3. Finding Beauty Amongst the Trash
  4. True happiness, love and perfection
  5. Not holding back and getting out of darkness
  6. Purify my heart
  7. Two states of existence before God
  8. A good idea to halt all activity for one hour some day
  9. A Living Faith #3 Faith put into action
  10. Rest thy delight on Jehovah
  11. The truth is very plain to see and God can be clearly seen
  12. Humbleness
  13. Humble yourselves under the mighty hand of God
  14. What happens when we die?
  15. Is there an Immortal soul
  16. Looking on what is going on and not being of it

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Further reading:

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Filed under Lifestyle, Religious affairs