Tag Archives: Suffering

Don’t Harden Your Heart

When taken by grief and facing many disappointments the danger is that our heart becomes hardened and that we do not want to see the source any more of living water.

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Today we listen to Baptist preacher Shawn Thomas who knows that there can be “great” sorrow, and “unceasing” grief also for a Christian.

He remarks

Perhaps, contrary to all we’ve heard and been taught all these years, the measure of a godly person is not how “happy” they are all the time, but how unceasingly sorrowful, as they bear in their souls the burdens of the lost and hurting individuals around them. Those who do so are in good company: they are like Paul, and most importantly, they are like Jesus Christ Himself. Those who do not feel deeply the spiritual burdens of others cannot claim to be like Him who was characterized as “a man of sorrows.” {Are Good Christians Always “Happy”?}

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We may suffer emotions and shed tears more than once in our life. Every day we face the world we also must face that we do have to tackle the problems of the day, enduring at the sight of them.

Often, being wronged we ourselves fall in the trap of doing wrong to others. Or we leave ourselves be carried away by all the problems, agony and heartache, that our own heart becomes hard like a stone. Very great sadness and emotional suffering can tear us down or become a cancer in our life.

Facing this life we also do have to face the difficulties of it. We must know we have been given a library of books to guide us through that life in a way that we shall be able to bare those pains and difficulties. We often forget that when certain things happen we perhaps also where the origin of or causing the problem to ourself. Sometimes we are put back in place, corrected as if you were. sometimes it are others who remind us of what we are doing wrong.

The tendency of our proud human nature is to reject criticism and stick to our stubborn path. But we do so to our own harm.

There is time to “stick to your guns” and do what you know God is leading you to do. But we should also have an openness to listen to someone who sees that we are making a bad mistake and need to correct it. Blessedly, David had the wisdom and humility to listen to Joab, and then act — and he saved his kingdom as a result. May God give each of us the humility and grace to listen to loving criticism, and respond in a way which will benefit ourselves and others. {Responding To Correction}

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To remember

  • Those who have hardened their hearts will believe and do just about anything except turn to the Lord.
  • they believe Any likely (or unlikely!) alternative => they’ll take any other course of action, to keep from humbling themselves + having to repent of the sin that they are clinging to instead.
  • need to beware of any hardness of heart creeping into our own life

In light of these warnings:

  • — Don’t let
    a sin remain unrepented in your life
    a bitterness against someone remain unforgiven
    pride refuse to be humbled
    an area of disobedience stand

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Preceding articles

Our existence..

Facing our existence every day

Facing daily events and exclaiming “Good grief!”

Fear, struggles, sadness, bad feelings and depression

Reminding myself!!

Are you right down in the dumps? Stop digging!

Ruth having reason to grief

A look at the Poet’s corner’s grief basket

Some Thoughts On Bitterness From Various Authors

Dealing with Disappointment

A Glory followed by Despair

Depression Is and When

Crying is good for inner self!!

I said God it hurts

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Additional reading

  1. Failing Man to make free choice
  2. A time for everything
  3. Trusting, Faith, Calling and Ascribing to Jehovah #16 Benefits of praying
  4. If there is bitterness in the heart
  5. No time for immorality
  6. What Jesus did: First things first
  7. Be humble like Christ
  8. Forbidden Fruit in the Midst of the Garden 2
  9. Necessity of a revelation of creation 4 Getting understanding by Word of God 2

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Further reading

  1. non-failure is not equal to success.
  2. The Personal Priority of the Word
  3. The Revealing Nature of Mourning
  4. To the proud and worldly
  5. #4. What we reap
  6. Too Much Grace?
  7. Confident Humility
  8. Pride…
  9. They are Hard but Necessary

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shawnethomas

“Now while they were on their way, some of the guard came into the city and reported to the chief priests all that had happened.” (Matthew 28:11 NASB)

You have to ask yourself: just how depraved were these chief priests? The guard reported to them “all that had happened” — i.e., that the angel had appeared, etc. — didn’t they fear that this might really be a work of God? If Jesus could do this, was there any way that they could stop Him? And yet they schemed together (:12) and spread a lie about His body being stolen (:13-15) instead of repenting and believing in the Lord themselves.

There is an important lesson here:

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Filed under Being and Feeling, Lifestyle, Re-Blogs and Great Blogs, Religious affairs, Welfare matters

Facing daily events and exclaiming “Good grief!”

When waking up every day we may be lucky to wake up, to face the day again. In the day we may perhaps encounter lots of things which surprises us and sometimes we call out ‘good grief’

The young Garrick Sinclair “Ricky” Beckett, a U.S. Army veteran honourably discharged as a professional saxophonist in the Army Bands, currently attending Concordia University-Ann Arbor in the Pre-Seminary programme with a major in Christian Thought and a minor in Theological Languages looks at a popular cartoon figure.

He writes

As he hears some bad news, Charlie Brown exclaims, “Good grief!” We often think of this as an oxymoron. Grief can’t possibly be good! {Good grief}

English: Robert Plutchik's Wheel of Emotions

Robert Plutchik’s Wheel of Emotions (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

By the word grief we think of sorrow and distress, even of great mourning and affliction. When having bodily pain or when our mind is being hurt we can be grief stricken. Deep sadness caused especially by someone’s death or by trouble or annoyance grief comes over us. Grievance overmans us when there is a cause of such suffering or a deep and poignant distress caused by or as if by bereavement. We can come to grief but than it means we fail in something we’re doing, and may be hurt.

Mary Bringle also noticed

Even the cleverest boy could come to grief alone, in the night. {Collins dictionary on Come to grief}

In Dutch ‘grief’ is ‘verdriet’ and is connected to ‘lijden (suffering), ‘bedroefd zijn’ (grow sad, being sad, be sorry, sorrow) maar ook tot ‘afkeer’ (aversion, distaste, disgust, revulsion,repulsion, repugnance, loathing, abhorrence, abomination, scunner). When ‘come to griefwe founder, break down, collapse, fall through, flop (informal), be defeated, fall short, fizzle out (informal), come unstuck, run aground, bite the dust, and even feel that we go up in smoke, come to naught, not make the grade (informal)go down like a lead balloon (informal). In any case it looks like it turns out badly, us falling flat on our face, meeting with disaster. Stuck with grief we may be found lacking or wanting, facing a spiritual miscarry or misfire.

Some people sayGood grief‘ when they are surprised or shocked. When we face something that’s actually worth grieving over, we’re often overwhelmed.

From a ‘sukkelstraatje’ (being in trouble/in dire stratis) we can become ailing (sickly) with a ‘sukkelpartij’ (sucker party) receiving ‘zielspijn’ (agony, heartache, profound sorrow) or ‘zieleleed’ (sadness). That ‘zielesmart’ or ‘zielsverdriet’ (anguish, heartache,profound sorrow, misery, unhappiness),  ‘Weedom’ (woe), ‘hartenpijn’ ‘hartenleed’ (heartache, heartfelt grief, heartfelt sorrow, heartbreak), agony consumes us with grief.

We do know we have to cope with it, we have to conquer it or go over such grief.

It’s rather ironic that our culture views grief as a bad thing while it encourages grief over a lot of things. It is encouraged that we grieve over minimum wage, to grieve over what the White Man did to black people centuries ago during slavery, to grieve over what the government did to the indigenous peoples of America… {Good grief}

The savoury on our daily bread is not always pleasant. we may try to begin every day with gratitude, because all we have, has been given to us. This body, heart and mind, friendships, opportunities, challenges, family,… it is all given to us. But honestly we are not always pleased with the confrontation with it.

We may value family where we practice love and sharing.  We may value work where we share our passions and gifts. And most of all we would like to have a good health and value it.

img_4537As we align with gratitude, values, dharma,  and who we are as limitless conscious existence, every action we take becomes a contribution to the whole. {Why Are We Here?}

Getting up we notice we face the day and can fill it with words and deeds.

this world we touch but in words

words insulated in plated metal

this world we hold but in teeth

teeth estranged from heart’s palate {This World, A Seat}

Sometimes it looks like every day again we do have to start all over again, going back to these “manifold temptations,” which tour around our face. Every day there are so many things we do have to face, so many experiences we have to go through.

It can be anything in this life that tends to trouble us or haunt us that can bring grief over us.

something that hurts you at the most sensitive and delicate core of your soul, heart, and mind — things that tend to make you miserable.  How do we get past these things? {Facing Trials: Why Do We Suffer? – Introduction}

Facing each day we have to open our eyes and look at all things, seeing them in perspective, trying to understand what is really going on and what sort of place it deserves.

The danger is to just endure our troubles with groans and whines and complaints and not do anything to discover the remedy to the situation.  We come into the danger of thinking, “Why is God doing this to me?” {Facing Trials: Why Do We Suffer? – Introduction}

With “Ricky” Beckett we urge you not to think “why” these things happen to us, but rather to think what.

 Instead of thinking, “Why me,” think instead, “What can I learn from this?  What does God want to teach me?”  And then how:  “How will this make me grow closer to God?”  In short, other than the sinful condition of the world we live in, that is why we suffer — to learn something from God and to grow closer to Him, and then the “why” may reveal itself to you as God works out His progressive revelation in your life.  That’s the short answer, but now let’s discuss the longer answer. {Facing Trials: Why Do We Suffer? – Introduction}

Each day again, and again, we should be prepared to learn and to continue our road, up to a better world for us.

We are living in this world and walking on our paths under the eye of our Heavenly Father.

Say to yourself,

“There is a definite plan and purpose for my life.  God has examined me and has adopted me into His family.”

Why does He do this for us?  So that He may bring us into perfection (which is not acquired during this earthly life).  That is His objective — that you may “be conformed to the image of His Son” (Romans 8:29), as Jesus Christ will say, “Here I am with the children God gave Me” (Hebrews 2:13).  If we do not believe and recognise this fundamental concept of ourselves as Christians, then we are bound to go astray and misunderstand these troubles that happen to us as God’s children. {Facing Trials: Why Do We Suffer? – Introduction}

These days lots of people take some time to think about the death and remember the dead.

When death and disaster occur, we are so grief stricken that we don’t know what to do. While all this is going on, we avoid grieving over our sin, which the thing we should grieve the most. It is good to grieve over this because our sin alienates us from God. “The wages of sin is death” (Romans 6:23a). We should grieve greatly over this because the end of our sin is death. But fear not! The Romans verse continues, “but the free gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord.” Godly grief is good grief, for it leads us to repentance. Godly grief, or good grief, causes us to recognise our need for forgiveness—our need for Christ. By repentance we exercise faith in Christ for the forgiveness of sins, and we are justified by faith (Romans 5:1).

Let us always remember that God may permit all these things we have to face, to happen to us and to the people around us, not for the purpose of making us suffer and watching us squirm, as some would like to believe, but rather in order to chastise us, which He enacts due to our complacency and for our failure.

In 2 Peter 1:5-7, the apostle writes that Christians are to discipline themselves and to supplement attributes to their faith, not merely to be content with minimal faith but for it to be forever increasing.  There are Christians who do not take heed of this exhortation and instead are indefatigable with their complacency and indolence.  As I understand New Testament doctrine, if we do that we should not be surprised if we start to experience troubles — that God perhaps begins to chastise us by shaking us off our shiftless butts. {Facing Trials: Why Do We Suffer? – Chastisement}

We ourselves are also not free from bringing grief to others. We must recognise that we too can do things wrongly. We too can bring pain to others and give them heartache or grief. Many Christians are convinced that as re-born people they cannot sin. But they are mistaken.

First John 3:9-10 says,

“Everyone who has been born of God does not sin, because His seed remains in him; he is not able to sin, because he has been born of God.  This is how God’s children — and the Devil’s children — are made evident.”

 Now, it is easy to misinterpret this passage.  It is not saying that God’s children are incapable of sinning.  After all, even though we’re God’s children, we still sin.

St. John is saying that the one “born of God” — that is, baptised in the Holy Spirit — does not make it his life’s trade to sin.
The child of God does not make it his life’s priority to live in sin, as the children of the Devil do (e.g. the homosexual lifestyle, a murderous lifestyle such as ISIS or serial killers, etc.).

God’s children are not free from acts of sin, but the child of God does not commit to be a servant of sin, but rather a servant of God and His holiness.  Christians are not impeccable; they are simultaneously saint and sinner (simul iustus et peccator).  Sin lives within us, but the Christian is justified by faith (Romans 5:1; Galatians 3:24).  John is not speaking of sinless perfection but of a life imputed with Christ’s righteousness.

We can and shall have moments of weakness and shall sin. Afterwards we should repent, which is doing a work of faith. Only when we do such works of faith shall we be able to enter the Kingdom of God. When not willing to see what we have done wrong and not wanting to repent over the wrongdoing we shall not be allowed to enter through the small gate. The teshuvah or repentance is a necessary ingredient to come to God.

Knowing that God may have a particularly great task set for us we should wonder what we can do in the world God has prepared for us. Facing that world, where we are so many times tested, we should not mind having ourselves tested, when we are standing straight in our shoes, going for the One True God.

jonah-beach-whale-168772-printSo, one may have to pass through a certain trial because of some great task ahead that God has planned for them.  Think of any biblical character that had to endure such a trial.  The first person that comes to mind for me is Jonah.  He was running from God’s calling to preach to Nineveh, and as we know he was swallowed by a great fish; and upon repentance and accepting his calling, God saved his life by having the great fish spit him out onto the land to fulfill his calling.  Maybe a drastic example, but perhaps not as drastic as you might think.  Consider any whales of doubt you might have in your life and what God is doing to bring you through those doubts, or what you ought to let Him do. {Facing Trials: Why Do We Suffer? – God to Prepare Us}

Facing each day lying in front of us we best remember that we are given the opportunity to be here and that God knows what’s best for us and what we need to experience in order to get us where He wants us to be. Therefore let us give ourselves in His Hands and be thankfull that He was willing to accept the ransom offer from His son.

As our Heavenly Father, God may see the need for trials and prescribe the necessary tools that are destined to make us grow in Him for our own good. {Facing Trials: Why Do We Suffer? – God to Prepare Us}

With the knowledge that worldly grief produces only death because the world has no hope for a relief from their grief, we do have a better prospect in the hope given to mankind.

Worldly grief abandons the person who grieves. Godly grief is guilt over sin, which this guilt leads to repentance as the sinner recognises the necessity for forgiveness in Christ, which leads to salvation because the repentance we perform is exercised by this faith gifted to us, and it is through this gift of faith that we are saved (Ephesians 2:8-9). {Good grief}

Perhaps we leave it to others to say ‘good grief’ when they see our endurance and come to see we want to present to the world a good example of a loving person, whatever happens to him.

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Preceding

Our existence..

Facing our existence every day

Are you right down in the dumps? Stop digging!

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Additional reading

  1. A world in denial
  2. Materialism, would be life, and aspirations
  3. Dealing with worries in our lives
  4. Emotional pain and emotional deadness
  5. Fragments from the Book of Job #1: chapters 1-12
  6. Fragments from the Book of Job #4: chapters 27-31
  7. Isaiah prophet and messenger of God
  8. Suffering
  9. Offer in our suffering
  10. Suffering – through the apparent silence of God
  11. Suffering continues
  12. Suffering leading to joy
  13. Self inflicted misery #8 Pruning to strengthen us
  14. Surprised by time in joys & sufferings
  15. Profitable disasters
  16. Prayer has comforted us in sorrow
  17. The soul has no rainbow if the eyes have no tears
  18. Every athlete exercises self control
  19. Trusting, Faith, Calling and Ascribing to Jehovah #4 Transitoriness #3 Rejoicing in the insistence
  20. Trusting, Faith, Calling and Ascribing to Jehovah #8 Prayer #6 Communication and manifestation
  21. Trusting, Faith, Calling and Ascribing to Jehovah #9 Prayer #7 Reason to pray
  22. Trusting, Faith, Calling and Ascribing to Jehovah #10 Prayer #8 Condition
  23. Continuing Paul’s Prayer Requests
  24. Written to recognise the Promissed One

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Further reading

  1. Day By Day
  2. Grief
  3. Throw-back Thursday: Grief is a fickle foe
  4. Book Mark: Notes on Friends’ Grief
  5. Grief From Across The World 
  6. The Well of Grief
  7. The unspoken grievance
  8. The Five Stages of Grief
  9. Sad
  10. Memories…and Grief
  11. Deviant Deflections – Unrequited Love
  12. When part of you is missing
  13. No one tells you about the guilt..
  14. Monday Morning Grievance: The New Copier
  15. After Suicide
  16. How To Go On
  17. God I miss you. 
  18. Letter to you, my little one…
  19. That feeling 
  20. Heart Holes
  21. Waiting For The Dutchman
  22. Old Unfinished Post: The 5 Stages of Relationship Grief
  23. Grief embraces love
  24. 1 a.m. on the Borderline
  25. Inside the glacier of my mind
  26. Beautiful Reminders
  27. Beyond the grey clouds
  28. The Mercy of the Morning
  29. Here’s to better naked tomorrows
  30. It Is God’s Gospel
  31. (11/04/2016) Works of the Spirit?
  32. Forgiveness and Eternal Life Through Jesus Christ
  33. Does Working with Others Lead to Better Results than Acting as an Individual? L 41
  34. Leading by example
  35. Jesus Models Friendship
  36. Saints
  37. Mercy in giving
  38. 1 Timothy 4:12 (31.10.16)
  39. The stories we tell
  40. Eulogia
  41. “Conformity To The Will Of God”
  42. Advice… L38
  43. If You Really Love Me
  44. Life Changing Moments While Young
  45. Good Advice for Us in Today’s World
  46. Love as a god

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Filed under Being and Feeling, Knowledge & Wisdom, Lifestyle, Religious affairs

A Prayer for 9-11

God Squad

world-trade-center-9-11-crossHeavenly Father and Precious Lord, we seek you and your healing mercy.

As fifteen years pass, we remember the pain and suffering of a horrible day. We remember the loss of life, the destruction, and the chaos of that fateful morning. Sorrow remains. Grief returns. Heartache and despair weigh us down.

Almighty God comfort and calm our souls. Turn our hearts into an altar where healing can take place. Transform our spirits into a place of peace. Allow restoration and redemption in our lives. We are a people who need you and your presence.

Give us strength to perform your will. Allow us to move forward as a renewed people. Keep us bold, strong, and true. Just like clay on the potter’s wheel, shape us and mold us into a new creation, one that continues to show your glory.

As conflicts remain and others begin, protect our warriors in harm’s…

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Filed under Activism and Peace Work, Crimes & Atrocities, Prayers, Re-Blogs and Great Blogs

Welcoming writing that can help to heal, to grow and to learn about ourself

In this world often people have to go to struggles and sometimes have to undergo big chocks to be placed in the reality of this life and to see and take an other crossroads.

For the founder of this lifestyle magazine it took two near death experiences before he at last came to concentrate even more on the more important spiritual matters of life. A parallelisation brought him to have enough time, lying flat on his back, having to be fed, he had enough time to once more in his life examine the Bible, his life, the way and the reasons of life.

Sometimes our whole life, our whole world has to fall apart before we come to change certain things in our life and come to know ourselves even better. Sometimes we also do have to go deep, but come to remember that joy more than once hid herself. How far and hard we do sometimes have to search to find her. {versplinterde drome}

Perhaps you too like Marcus Ampe and Liza Borstlap have to find ways to handle suffering. Though for the founder of this blog, he knew God already a long time and wanted to give the Divine Creator service already from early in his life, he also had to do a job to earn his living. He too had to make the best of his worldly life. Very often he was ‘put to the test’ and had to conquer many difficulties. That way he came to discover a greater desire for God.
Our newly joined writer also knows

Then everything, both good and bad, becomes redemptive. It moves us toward the God we desire.

and advices us

Enter your thirst. Feel your ache, the very worst ache that throbs in your soul. Face how you harm others, your spouse, your children, your friends. And face your disappointment with them. {versplinterde drome}

Life, Love & Pain

Life, Love & Pain (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Too often we are becoming blinded by the pains and difficulties we our encountering.

Danger  is that we too often let ourselves being carried away from the right track, because of our difficulties and pain.

says Marcus Ampe, whilst our fresh new author would add

When dreams shatter and pain is blinding, we’re prevented from moving ahead in our own light. {versplinterde drome}

she learned

that an awareness of inadequacy is neither a curse to lift nor a disorder to cure. It is a gift to be received, a gift that if properly used can make me powerful and strong and clear and wise. {versplinterde drome}

Our new author at her blog gives much of herself away. So if you would like to know her better, get to read her interesting blog “Heart prints”. At it she shows how she learned a lot in 2002 about the grace and wisdom of God. She learned about herself and saw with her own eyes how terrible things happened to her, but also how those turned later to make it to her advantage.

She also knows that there is an endurance that is too far for her to attain. Like the founder of this blog is aware we often need such battles in our life to end up in situations which make life worth living and give ourself a good reason to be here.

We do have to be kneaded and modelled, by time and many circumstances, having to build patience and endurance, to make life for something, and for not to loss a lot of qualities.

English: Rampton Parish Church Millennium Bann...

Rampton Parish Church Millennium Banner Displayed alongside the hymn board, it depicts (1) The Glory of the Lord appearing in the Cloud (Exod. 16:10); (2) The Fire of the Holy Spirit at Pentecost (Acts 2:3); (3) The Tree of Life (Rev. 22:2); (4) Rampton Parish Church; (5) Man tills the soil (Gen. 3:23); (6) God so loved the world (Jn. 3:16); (7) The Tree of Knowledge (Gen. 2:16); (8) The Old and the New Covenant (Song of Songs 2:4); (9) The Advent Candle (Jn. 1:9) (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

The process of cutting away the ‘dead wood’ or nasty smudges may be a painful process, but by working and trying hard we may come to reach a goal worth looking at.

When we dared to look at the new author her blog to see what she wrote in her diary we found that

It sometimes feels like I’m standing on the shore and see people struggling in the waves.
People that I cared, “shared a life.
I can not help anyone, I do not have the ability.
But I hope that they will be tired of the nonsense and trivialities, that something will happen so they can experience the peace of God. {hardepad – Stukkies uit my dagboek 2002 ~ 2012}

That is also why we welcome her greatly and do hope she, like other authors on this blog, can share their hopes in God and in their fellow man. People coming along here willing to look at our blessings and the good things of life. Seeing themselves as miniscule elements always remembering how pointless a life without God is and how void. Knowing that when we find God and are willing to share His Grace we not only have to be so grateful for the peace here on the shore, in the fields and in the woods.

On this blog, many of the writers with her, have their heart going out to the man who had to endure so much. In the knowledge there is still so much to do, she with us want to bring thoughts, answers, and hopefully some clue of hope.

Where a massive amount of doors slam in my face.
Where roads immediately ends.
Here where all plans go wrong …
Where thoughts and words fail finally … {hardepad – Stukkies uit my dagboek 2002 ~ 2012}

We are happy she is willing to share thoughts of hope and wants to look with us at her, our and others their life and look at options we may have.

With utter despair?
Or with joy for the gift pack coming?

Processed with Rookie Cam

We do hope we all shall enjoy the words shared here and giving us fresh air, opening windows also to other writers, photographers, nice pictures and texts which can enlighten us and inspire us.

We would advice our and her readers to go with her and other presented authors here, looking at it when

All seems possible and feel now.
Today.
To breathe.
Arms open, lifting your head and going to meet the light.

This new author has felt, like many of us, emotional pressure, time constraints, and work-related issues that needed all her focus and attention.  She tried to hide the stress and realised that her  turmoil was visible.

Everyone could read it on my face.  The pressure was so immense that it felt as if I was captured in a boiler, and that the all-consuming fire below me brought the boiler to boiling point.

she writes in “As I unclutter my life, I free myself to answer the callings of my soul“.

As internal war can rage in ourselves, we can use some voices and reactions form others to get us free from our trapped, irritated self.

Our suitcases are filled with all kinds of dead weight: habits we need to give up, attitudes we’ve long since outgrown, and activities and possessions that no longer serve a reasonable purpose. (Nancy Twigg)

It is nice she now comes to open her suitcases here and is, like some other contributors here, willing to unpack her treasures of ‘findings’, her ‘gemstones’.
Like Mr. Ampe she also had to push the reset button to remind herself of her personal values.

The discord comes when I forget about my own values, and start living out other people’s values.  I subconsciously make other people’s priorities my own.  For me, the result is stress and misery. {As I unclutter my life, I free myself to answer the callings of my soul}

We are convinced just by willing to share experiences, by opening up to others, willing to show our weaknesses, but also our strengths, and showing others Who gives us the strength to face this difficult life, that lots of our stress and difficulties may also melt as butter in the sun.

By falling and getting up again we come to see, that no matter what happens in life, always there is  a wonderful dream available.

That if pursued will generate an unfamiliar, radically new internal experience. That experience, strange at first, will eventually be recognised as joy. {versplinterde drome}

You will see, sharing the dream is a nice experience, enriching us all and giving hope to more people.

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Find also to read

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Additional reading

  1. The longer you wait
  2. Determine the drive
  3. Suffering redemptive because Jesus redeemed us from sin
  4. Preaching to an unbelieving world
  5. Even in tough times remembering the blessings
  6. Your struggles develop your strengths
  7. We are to be joyful in the midst of our trials
  8. Be not afraid of those trials which God may see fit to send upon thee
  9. Faith and trial
  10. A Living Faith #4 Effort
  11. A Living Faith #5 Perseverance
  12. A Living Faith #12 The Love for Jesus
  13. A “seed” for the blessing of all mankind would come through the family of Abraham
  14. God should be your hope
  15. God is good to those whose hope is in him, to the one who seeks him
  16. The truth is very plain to see and God can be clearly seen
  17. The first on the list of the concerns of the saint
  18. Unconditional love
  19. Remember there’s a light in the next day
  20. Clothe yourselves with compassion, kindness, humility, gentleness and patience
  21. The soul has no rainbow if the eyes have no tears
  22. A man who cannot forgive others
  23. The ultimate measure of a man is not where he stands
  24. Love will cure more sins than condemnation
  25. Frank risks taking
  26. If your difficulties are longstanding, try kneeling
  27. Tapping into God’s Strength by Waiting on Him
  28. Old Man of Prayer
  29. A treasure which can give me everything I need
  30. Patience is the ability to count down before blasting off
  31. Careful what you sow, it might grow
  32. Be kinder than necessary
  33. Guard well within yourself that treasure, kindness

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Further of interest

  1. Wisdom Not to Waste Our Trials
  2. Endurance and Change
  3. Things I’ve Learned About the Olympics via Facebook and Tumblr
  4. “Race” Report (It’s long!)
  5. The Race That Matters
  6. Nine Days – Day Four
  7. Both Sides Now
  8. Training to Climb 8,000 metre peak
  9. Cho Oyu Summit – Down, but not out!
  10. Trusting Our Coach in Times of Stretching
  11. Sunday S.O.A.P. – 21 Aug 2016
  12. The Excellence of Patience
  13. More than a Conqueror
  14. May the God who gives endurance and encouragement give you the same

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A Prayer for Wisdom Amid Violence

Editor’s note: The last several weeks have witnessed many events of violence that are difficult to comprehend, and which confound efforts to respond wisely and biblically: the Orlando nightclub shooting, repeated acts of terror in the Middle East, and most recently, terrifying violence involving police in the United States. As you process your own reactions to these events, please join pastor Mel Lawrenz in this prayer for God’s wisdom.

“If any of you lacks wisdom, you should ask God, who gives generously to all without finding fault, and it will be given to you” — James 1:5

 

 

Dear God,

You have said in your word that whenever we know we need wisdom, we should ask for it, and that you will give it generously. In these perilous times, we pray for your wisdom from above.

Grant us wisdom to know the way you look on the affairs of our nation.

Grant us wisdom to understand how you view our world today.

Grant us wisdom to know what an ordered and just and compassionate society looks like.

Grant us wisdom to know what to do with the reality of evil.

Grant us wisdom to uphold the defenseless.

Grant us wisdom to love you and love our neighbor as ourselves.

Lord, we pray that our leaders will personally understand that you are a dynamic reality in the world and in our lives.

May we be a nation which depends on you, acknowledges your blessings, and values what you value. And on the day after the election, Lord, help us to be faithful members of your kingdom and responsible citizens of the nation we inhabit.

In Christ’s name and for his sake, Amen.

 

 


For more biblical insight to help you grapple with the difficult issues presented by acts of terror and violence, see this past posts:

Mel LawrenzMel Lawrenz trains an international network of Christian leaders, ministry pioneers, and thought-leaders. He served as senior pastor of Elmbrook Church in Brookfield, Wisconsin, for ten years and now serves as Elmbrook’s minister at large. He has a Ph.D. in the history of Christian thought and is on the adjunct faculty of Trinity International University. Mel is the author of 18 books, the latest, How to Understand the Bible—A Simple Guide and Spiritual Influence: the Hidden Power Behind Leadership (Zondervan, 2012). See more of Mel’s writing at WordWay.

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An arm around the shoulder

When ill or not feeling well we can do with an arm around the shoulder.

Several times in our life we are confronted with moments that others try to pull us down or want us to react in a bad way, so that we make ourselves to shame or go against the commandments or will of god. When we give in and react angry they succeed and win their war with us always loosing.

Sister Marilyn Hurst reminds us

Jackie Robinson swinging a bat in Dodgers unif...

Jackie Robinson swinging a bat in Dodgers uniform, 1954. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Jackie Robinson was the first black man to play major league baseball in the modern era, in 1947. Breaking baseball’s color barrier, he faced disgusting racial slurs from opposing players, baseballs thrown at his head while he was batting, and baserunners sliding with spiked shoes lifted high, trying to cut or slash him. Also, he faced jeering crowds in every stadium. While playing one day in his home stadium in Brooklyn, he committed an error. Some in the crowd began to ridicule him. He stood at second base, disconcerted and humiliated, while even his hometown fans continued to ridicule and mock him.

Then shortstop Pee Wee Reese came over and stood next to him. He put his arm around Robinson, talked quietly to him, and encouraged him, as if the crowd’s cries meant nothing. He was a white Southerner, with his own experiences of racial prejudice, and might have been expected to keep a safe distance from a black man. But it was as if he were saying to everyone:

‘This is my teammate; he’s with me!’ Reese was a star player at this time: popular and successful and well-liked. The fans grew quiet, and the game resumed.

Jackie Robinson later said that that arm around his shoulder saved his career.

A statue will soon be erected and dedicated at the current Brooklyn baseball park, commemorating this simple yet profound act, performed more than 50 years ago now — joining and identifying with another so as to share his suffering.

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Daily Bible Reading Exhortations

May 25

Reading 1 – Jos 11:5,6

“All these kings joined forces and made camp together at the Waters of Merom, to fight against Israel. The LORD said to Joshua, ‘Do not be afraid of them, because by this time tomorrow I will hand all of them over to Israel, slain’ ” (Jos 11:5,6).

“A day now near at hand will see the revelation of God‘s righteous anger, and then the further and final restoration of His house, when the glory will return embodied in the new rulers that God has promised to Israel. The ‘great fury’ of God is a necessity created by man’s sin — his pride, cruelty, and corruption of the earth. The classic illustration of what is coming is to be found in the clearing of the land of Palestine by Joshua and the settlement of a purified remnant of Israel in the place of the Canaanites, whose licentious and debased religions had forfeited their right to live. We know more of what the fury of man can do, in the terrible effects of modern war. We know its futility as we realize that there does not exist the power to bring order and peace when destruction has ceased. Apart from the overruling by which the sword of the wicked is made to do the work of God, it is not in man to dispense terrors according to deserts. The striving of the potsherds lacks the elemental basis of justice and righteousness which will never be absent from the fury of God” (John Carter, “Prophets after the Exile” 86).

Reading 2 – Isa 15:1

The word “oracle” or “burden” (Isa 13:1; 15:1; 17:1; 19:1; 21:1; 22:1; 23:1) is from the Hebrew “to lift up”, in foreboding or expectation; it implies something that God has planned for another. More often than not, it speaks of a coming punishment; but at times it simply means an important event involving a particular people. The distinction must be determined by the context. Often, the “burden” begins with warnings of judgments to come, and then proceeds with prophecies of something beneficial arising out of the dark times. Zec 12 illustrates this: it begins with a “burden… for Israel… in the siege”, but then quickly speaks of a time of blessing succeeding the time of affliction: Jerusalem inhabited again in her own place (Zec 12:6,7). The burdens of Isaiah generally follow this same pattern, with special reference to the Last Days of Gentile times and the establishment of “Israel in their own land” (Isa 14:1) and Christ as the “ruler of the land… upon the mount of the daughter of Zion” (Isa 16:1). Also the roles of various Gentile powers, especially in relation to Israel and God’s plans for the Last Days, are outlined. What might first appear to be a dry and unrewarding study becomes in reality a promise of God’s deliverance for His people (in typical prophecies) and a glorious assurance (in initial fulfillments) that God’s purpose stands firm (Isa 14:26,27).

Reading 3 – 2Ti 1:8

“Join with me in suffering” (2Ti 1:8).

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My tales will be beautiful!

In life we are confronted lots of times with troubles, fear and pain. Our pain is often nothing compared to the pains and sufferings of others. As believers in Jesus and his heavenly Father, the Only One True God of gods, we do know what we may expect in the near future, so we should not worry about this world but should be more concerned about the world to come and for what is in store for us and those around us.

Let us talk about the roses and the beautiful things lying in front of us.

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Preceding articles:

Fear in your own heart or outside of it

For those Christians who say they are the Victim

Christians remaining hidden not sharing the gospel

How To Get Started In Sharing Your Faith As a Christian

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Additional reading

  1. If there is bitterness in the heart
  2. Emotional pain and emotional deadness
  3. Evil in this world not bringing us down
  4. Dying or not
  5. Trouble is coming
  6. End of the Bottom Line
  7. A small trouble is like a pebble
  8. She who sows thistles will reap prickles
  9. Do not be so busy adding up your troubles
  10. Do the appropriate for a friend
  11. A Breath for tomorrow
  12. Shelter in the morning
  13. Luck
  14. Rejoice even though bound to grieve
  15. From pain to purpose
  16. Hope by faith and free gift
  17. 1 Corinthians 15 Hope in action
  18. May reading the Bible provoke us into action to set our feet on the narrow way
  19. You God hold the future
  20. God is my refuge and my fortress in Him I will trust
  21. Songs in the night Worship God only

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Further reading

  1. Pain
  2. Pain 2
  3. Hurting
  4. Pain is everywhere
  5. Pain can Dance – Tulsi Shrestha
  6. Pain Collectors
  7. The Agony
  8. Not Dead yet
  9. Day 285 – Positives
  10. Pain and Beauty
  11. Familiars.
  12. Fear Of Failure
  13. to whatever the future holds…
  14. I Get It Now
  15. Despite Everything: Part 2
  16. Ugly Truth
  17. What can I say?
  18. Art: Open Eyes
  19. Day 5: Dear God
  20. Use Your Words…No, Not Those.

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Purplerays

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” Let others talk
about Thorns.
I will tell the Tales of Rose petals. ”

– Shahab Rahimi

Photo & text credit: Rumi, Saadi, Hafiz (Poems and Quotes) https://www.facebook.com/RumiSaadiHafiz

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Fear in your own heart or outside of it

Sea of Fear

Sea of Fear (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

When we grow up, looking at others somehow we are also caught by fear. Many times in our life we come into situations where we do not feel at ease, to say the least. More than once in a lifetime we shall become confronted with moments that fear comes over us. Be it a difficult moment in a travelling situation, an accident whilst working, or hearing something bad about our health.

We should not want to be unaware of our affliction and should know that not only we are facing difficulties or burdens. We also should know that they also can go beyond our strength, so that we can also become despaired of life.

In such circumstances let us think about the apostles who also had the sentence of death within themselves so that they would not trust in themselves, but in God who raises the dead (2 Corinthians 1:8-9).

Those apostles when they were with their master teacher also were caught by the fear. Though they should have known that this rabbi was a special sent one from God. But now he was sleeping and they were in such a big storm that their hearts were beating rapidly with fear.

Matthew 8:24-26 (RNKJV)
24 And, behold, there arose a great tempest in the sea, insomuch that the ship was covered with the waves: but he was asleep. 25 And his disciples came to him, and awoke him, saying, My master, save us: we perish. 26 And he saith unto them, Why are ye fearful, O ye of little faith? Then he arose, and rebuked the winds and the sea; and there was a great calm.

Mark 4:39  (RNKJV)
And he arose, and rebuked the wind, and said unto the sea, Peace, be still. And the wind ceased, and there was a great calm.

Luke 8:24  (RNKJV)
And they came to him, and awoke him, saying, Master, master, we perish. Then he arose, and rebuked the wind and the raging of the water: and they ceased, and there was a calm.

They did come up to Jesus and asked him for help, in the knowledge that he really could help them, because God was with him. When in those heavy waters, were they not of little faith, like on other occasions?

Matthew 16:8  (RNKJV)
Which when Yahushua perceived, he said unto them, O ye of little faith, why reason ye among yourselves, because ye have brought no bread?

Mark 4:40  (RNKJV)
And he said unto them, Why are ye so fearful? how is it that ye have no faith?

We should have faith in Christ Jesus and believe what he has told, that his heavenly Father is always with those who love Him. When we believe in God and believe in the sent one from God, we should have less reasons to fear than those who do not believe in the Most High. Because God is with those who believe in Him.

Isaiah 41:10-14  (RNKJV)
10 Fear thou not; for I am with thee: be not dismayed; for I am thy Elohim: I will strengthen thee; yea, I will help thee; yea, I will uphold thee with the right hand of my righteousness.
11 Behold, all they that were incensed against thee shall be ashamed and confounded: they shall be as nothing; and they that strive with thee shall perish. 12 Thou shalt seek them, and shalt not find them, even them that contended with thee: they that war against thee shall be as nothing, and as a thing of nought. 13 For I יהוה thy Elohim will hold thy right hand, saying unto thee, Fear not; I will help thee.
14 Fear not, thou worm Jacob, and ye men of Israel; I will help thee, saith יהוה, and thy redeemer, the Holy One of Israel.

Though it is normal to have fear and to be aware that we should be attentive and fearful.

A doctor delivering news of a life-threatening diagnosis or when we loose a job, we might have lots of worries and wonder what to happen next. More than once, in our life, we shall become confronted with unpleasant situations and feel like we are tested. Trials force us off of the proverbial fence. We do have to take a stand, make decisions, which can alter so much. Every time we shall have to make the right choices or the right decisions. and those decisions shall be heard and seen by others, who will make their conclusions. Our “I” shall be seen clear by others, and we shall have to feel if we are it our self or if we just go with the majority because that seems us the best choice not to be different. but than we betray not only ourselves, but also our Creator. When we do not doubt God’s promise, we should not have to be afraid to carry out.

Romans 4:20  (RNKJV)
He staggered not at the promise of יהוה through unbelief; but was strong in faith, giving glory to יהוה;

When we are not afraid to undergo these earthly sufferings by not feeling any shame to be a believer of God, than this fear shall become so small it will not hurt us, but shall make us to react in the right godly way. For we know in whom we have put our faith, and we are convinced that He is able to guard what we have entrusted to Him until ‘that day’ we know shall come.

2 Timothy 1:12  (RNKJV)
For the which cause I also suffer these things: nevertheless I am not ashamed: for I know whom I have believed, and am persuaded that he is able to keep that which I have committed unto him against that day.

Having enough faith in God and His sent one the fear shall soon be outside us.

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Preceding articles

In your own heart or outside of it

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

The Greatest Fear

Phantom Of Dreams

Home-stayers and their to do list

On the Edge of Believing

For those Christians who say they are the Victim

After darkness a moment of life renewal

There can only be hope when there is a will to be and say “I am”

You’ve got wings…

Christians remaining hidden not sharing the gospel

How To Get Started In Sharing Your Faith As a Christian

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Additional reading

  1. What is life?
  2. When discouraged facing opposition
  3. Fear knocked at the door
  4. 8 fears caused by the fear of Man
  5. Fear of failure, and fear of the unknown
  6. Facing disaster fatigue
  7. Does God stands behind all evil on earth
  8. Some one or something to fear #5 Not afraid
  9. A Living Faith #5 Perseverance
  10. Breathing and growing with no heir
  11. Not holding back and getting out of darkness
  12. Looking at three “I am” s
  13. Fear and protection
  14. People Seeking for God 7 The Lord and lords
  15. Look for your Refuge by God
  16. Back from gone #2 Aim of godly people
  17. Back from gone #4 Your inner feelings and actions
  18. Condemnation of the World and Illustration of Justification
  19. Standing within proximity of the glory of God
  20. Trusting, Faith, Calling and Ascribing to Jehovah #8 Prayer #6 Communication and manifestation
  21. Trusting, Faith, Calling and Ascribing to Jehovah #16 Benefits of praying
  22. The chosen ones to fear or not to fear
  23. Control and change
  24. Wondering
  25. Fearing the right person
  26. Lovers of God, seekers and lovers of truth
  27. Jehovah steep rock and fortress, source of insight
  28. Do not be afraid. Good news because a Saviour has been born
  29. Fear not tomorrow. God is already there
  30. Dealing with worries in our lives
  31. No fear in love
  32. Only the contrite self, sick of its pretensions, can find salvation
  33. A new year with hopes and challenges
  34. Christians remaining hidden not sharing the gospel
  35. To believe in the liberation of slavery and to repent
  36. Rejoice even though bound to grieve
  37. To know God by wonders
  38. No other god besides Jehovah who gives all explanation

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Further reading:

  1. My Reality
  2. Wall of Emotion
  3. this may – Step in
  4. Fear
  5. Fear II
  6. The Fears I can’t Shake
  7. On Summed Fears
  8. despite the anger and fear in my heart
  9. a list of things that you should fear
  10. Nightmares
  11. Flammable
  12. Depression
  13. Do not run
  14. A Woman In Waiting
  15. Why Pick A Title When I Won’t Be Able To Commit To It
  16. “Fear is Easy, Love is Hard”
  17. Fearstorm
  18. Come To The Edge
  19. Fear of going back to sleep
  20. Moments of Uncertainty
  21. Fear of the Caw
  22. Under oath
  23. Why are you afraid?
  24. Motivation
  25. Facing fears
  26. Fearing fear itself and the simple solution
  27. This Is How You Can Overcome Your Fear Of Failure
  28. The Fear of Making Mistakes: There is not Such a Thing as Failure
  29. How I Face My Fear Of Failure
  30. Do We Really Want Rest?
  31. You have to take action!
  32. Your Critics Don’t Count
  33. Don’t avoid life
  34. Stepping out on Faith
  35. Faith Walk
  36. What is the one gift God gives to all of us?
  37. Proverbs: Seek the LORD
  38. We’ll Understand It Better By and By

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Tears for Belgium

Our thoughts are with all the people affected by this cowardly attacks.

Flag of Islamic State of Iraq .

Flag of Islamic State of Iraq . (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

A pity that only such terror acts brings out the feelings of unity by the people of different nations. Though we also notice that certain places often are forgotten, though they too suffer under terrorist acts or under acts of war.

Attacks such as these underscore need for continued & concerted push by all nations to counter violent extremism.

People should unite even more and show much more interest to each-others believes and culture and need to stand together against these appalling terrorists, making sure they can never win.

 

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Find also to read:

  1. Daesh hits heart of Europe
  2. A Black day for Belgium – Brussels Airport ravage
  3. Knife-trust in democratic sore back
  4. ISIL will find no safe haven
  5. Condemning QSIS or the self-claimed Islamic state ruler, al- Baghdadi their extremist ideologies and to clarify the true teachings of Islam
  6. Al Qaeda regaining foothold in Middle East bubonic plague for American elections

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Marcus Ampe's Space

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‘I try to keep my hate in check. If you can’t hate, you can’t love.’

The author of this article thinks religion has robbed us of freedom to think and listen to our inner selves, but true Christianity demands just that. The Divine Creator requests us to place ourselves in the whole universe and to go deeper in our inner being. God demands us to come to know our own “I” and to make it not a “selfish I” but to come to an acceptable relationship with those around us.

The author also ask us to imagine a life where equality existed and institutions crumbled, which “is what keeps him pushing along”.

Those who read and come to know the Bible shall not be “misguided souls who choose to work in prisons” but the opposite shall become liberated beings who are no slave any more of this world. For them they shall know that no human being can do them something very bad. Even when they would take the life or the person this would not be the worst thing, because once death all suffering shall be ended and life gone, the person having done the killing not having accomplished much more and not been liberated himself of the agonies which are bothering his mind. The opposite he (the murderer) shall have some extra worries or bad dreams “en plus”.

To the Inside-Outside Alliance group of people who claim to be trying to support the struggles of those inside (or formerly inside) Durham County jail, and their families and friends, we would advice to revise their idea about religion and ask them not to take away the dreams of a better life which really can come true when a person does find the right religion.

By pushing all religion into the corner and to consider it evil is taking away the right of the prisoner to have a hold or guidance to become a better person or for the one who is imprisoned unlawfully to see the good his imprisonment may bring to his other inmates. Because even imprisoned we can do good to others and should be doing good to others. Even when we may be literally chained we do not have to be spiritually chained and even when they would put us in an isolation cell we can be very free when we are willing to make ourselves strong enough so that the other his limitations on us do not obstruct our self-development and our own being.

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To remember

The theory of will power

cause of demoralization in prisons:  All transgressions of accepted moral standards = to lack of a strong will

majority of inmates of prisons = people who did not have sufficient strength to resist the temptations surrounding them or to control a passion which momentarily carried them away.

In prisons = monasteries = everything done to kill a man’s will => no choice between one of two acts ==> whole life regulated + ordered in advance => to swim with the current, to obey under pain of severe punishment.

will power disappears

prison = done everything to kill inner strength > make him docile tool in hands of those who control him

penal system based on the deprivation of individual liberty

 

sound of chains + steel banging all the time = enough to test the strongest will = will break you

all we can do = give advice to people +live a moral life.

Misguided hate can hurt

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Preceding articles

Remain lovingly = No path for softies

Crying is good for inner self!!

A little ray of sunshine.

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Additional reading

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Amplify Voices Inside

Kropotkin wrote a lot on the wrongs of prisons. These two paragraphs hit the nail on the head for me. Sadly I feel these effects.

The theory of will power

“There is another important cause of demoralization in prisons. All transgressions of accepted moral standards may be ascribed to lack of a strong will. the majority of inmates of prisons are people who did not have sufficient strength to resist the temptations surrounding them or to control a passion which momentarily carried them away. In prisons as in monasteries, everything is done to kill a man’s will.

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