Malaysia declares MH370 an accident and will proceed to compensate the families of the victims; French police detain and question 8 year-old boy for saying he supported Charlie Hebdo attacks; The White House preps for expansive online privacy bill; A statistic shows that nearly one cop is killed per day; A Jordanian pilot, an Al-Queda recruit, and a Japanese war journalist are in the middle of an ISIS standoff. All this and more please follow the links below.
“Trust in the lord with all your heart; do not depend on your own understanding. Seek his will in all you do, and he will show you which path to take.” (Proverbs 3:5, 6 NLT)
Never Lose Trust in The Lord! Even when the path ahead looks shaky, we must not surrender our fears to doubt. It is true what they say that we alone conjure illusions, barriers, and even superstitions in our heads when all reason is lost. However there is still no excuse to pray, and to keep pushing through those illusions.
It is in these matters that we must rely on our hearts in order to clear the “smoke and mirrors” in our minds minds.
So this week, remember to keep your trust in God–and seek his will. When all things look impossible, do not give in to your own illusions that you have created for yourself. Even though life’s path is treacherous and side-winding, remember that God is like the North Star and he will always be there to guide you.
- Weekly Spiritual Digest: Give Your Anger to God (princesdailyjournal.com)
Do not repay anyone evil for evil. Be careful to do what is right in the eyes of everyone. If it is possible, as far as it depends on you, live at peace with everyone. Do not take revenge, my dear friends, but leave room for God’s wrath, for it is written: “It is mine to avenge; I will repay,” says the Lord.
Do not be overcome by evil, but overcome evil with good.
(Romans 12:17-19, 21 NIV)
Two wrongs don’t make a right and two evils don’t make it good. I was inspired to write this spiritual digest after several experiences of feeling angry towards myself and/or other people.
Finding ways to cope my anger (like sleeping, meditating, or performing deep breathing exercises) was like finding 100 ways to reinvent the wheel; it was tiresome. Not only was I tired but fed up because I was revisiting the same problem over and over again. However, it would not be until I asked myself a simple question, that I soon made an astonishing discovery:
“Why not give your anger to God? Let him take care of it.”
When I asked myself this question, I suddenly felt a boulder sliding itself off of my head; my mind became elevated. I began to feel at peace with myself and others. It was then that I realized that my anger can actually serve as an anchor towards my work and relationships with other people.
I can acknowledge that anger or resentment does promote positive change in the world. However, hurting each other through violence or taking vengeance on each other through words or actions only creates an endless cycle of pain.
Smashing cars or windows (as seen on TV) to control your anger DOES NOT WORK–you are only awakening the devil!
It truly takes a divine power and intervention to alleviate anger from your mind and spirit. Remember that “anger gives a foothold to the devil,” (Ephesians 4:27 NLT) and “Satan cannot cast out Satan” (Mark 3:23-30)–only Jesus can.
So this week, Give your Anger to God; do not Relinquish your Anger at HIM. Remember that the world creates woes for us to get angry over and start arguments with. So why worship the world? I too get angry with the world and people, but what helps me is to remember that God is all powerful–and only he can cast out my anger and relieve me of any heavy boulders that I carry on my shoulders.
And so, whatever woes, pains, ills, or frustrations that you may have, never be afraid to Give it to God. Only then will you be free from the devil’s foothold and live life!
Early on Sunday morning, as the new day was dawning, Mary Magdalene and the other Mary went out to visit the tomb. Suddenly there was a great earthquake! For an angel of the Lord came down from heaven, rolled aside the stone, and sat on it. His face shone like lightning, and his clothing was as white as snow. The guards shook with fear when they saw him, and they fell into a dead faint. Then the angel spoke to the women. “Don’t be afraid!” he said. “I know you are looking for Jesus, who was crucified. He isn’t here! He is risen from the dead, just as he said would happen. Come, see where his body was lying. And now, go quickly and tell his disciples that he has risen from the dead, and he is going ahead of you to Galilee. You will see him there. Remember what I have told you.” The women ran quickly from the tomb. They were very frightened but also filled with great joy, and they rushed to give the disciples the angel’s message. And as they went, Jesus met them and greeted them. And they ran to him, grasped his feet, and worshiped him. Then Jesus said to them, “Don’t be afraid! Go tell my brothers to leave for Galilee, and they will see me there.” (Matthew 28:1-10 NLT)
Jesus Appears to Thomas
One of the twelve disciples, Thomas (nicknamed the Twin), was not with the others when Jesus came. They told him, “We have seen the Lord!” But he replied, “I won’t believe it unless I see the nail wounds in his hands, put my fingers into them, and place my hand into the wound in his side.” Eight days later the disciples were together again, and this time Thomas was with them. The doors were locked; but suddenly, as before, Jesus was standing among them. “Peace be with you,” he said. Then he said to Thomas, “Put your finger here, and look at my hands. Put your hand into the wound in my side. Don’t be faithless any longer. Believe!” “My Lord and my God!” Thomas exclaimed. Then Jesus told him, “You believe because you have seen me. Blessed are those who believe without seeing me.” (John 20:24-29 NLT)
Faith Brings Joy
But God showed his great love for us by sending Christ to die for us while we were still sinners. (Romans 5:8 NLT)
Lord’s Suffering Servant
But he was pierced for our rebellion, crushed for our sins. He was beaten so we could be whole. He was whipped so we could be healed. (Isaiah 53:5 NLT)
God, ruler over the world and universe, heard the cries of Jerusalem and brought them a savior his son Jesus Christ! It was then that he sacrificed himself for humanity in order to rise again (on the third day) and defeat death and hell itself–the greatest feat that no man has ever performed.
While the world may forget his glory, his story still lives on! And his spirit and his peace will live inside those who seek it!
Glory to God! And Glory to Jesus Christ for showing God’s love to us–and for permitting us to live life with no fear of death! For we will rise too and join him in his kingdom forever and ever.
- Weekly Spiritual Digest: Happy Palm Sunday! The Prophecy Has Been Fulfilled (princesdailyjournal.com)
The Triumphant Entry of Jesus Christ
By artist Hanna-Cheriyan Varghese
“The next day, the news that Jesus was on the way to Jerusalem swept through the city. A large crowd of Passover visitors took palm branches and went down the road to meet him. They shouted, “Praise God! Blessings on the one who comes in the name of the lord! Hail to the King of Israel!” Jesus found a young donkey and rode on it, fulfilling the prophecy that said: “Don’t be afraid, people of Jerusalem. Look, your King is coming, riding on a donkey’s colt.” His disciples didn’t understand at the time that this was a fulfillment of prophecy. But after Jesus entered into his glory, they remembered what had happened and realized that these things had been written about him. Many in the crowd had seen Jesus call Lazarus from the tomb, raising him from the dead, and they were telling others about it. That was the reason so many went out to meet him—because they had heard about this miraculous sign. Then the Pharisees said to each other, “There’s nothing we can do. Look, everyone has gone after him!” (John 12:12-19 NLT)
Happy Palm Sunday! The Prophecy has Been Fulfilled! Today is the day when God heard the people’s cries and brought them a savior: Jesus Christ!
“Praise God! Blessings on the one who comes in the name of the lord! Hail to the King of Israel!”
- Weekly Spiritual Digest: Be Wary of Your Jealousy of Others (princesdailyjournal.com)
If you are wise and understand God’s ways, prove it by living an honorable life, doing good works with the humility that comes from wisdom. But if you are bitterly jealous and there is selfish ambition in your heart, don’t cover up the truth with boasting and lying. For jealousy and selfishness are not God’s kind of wisdom. Such things are earthly, unspiritual, and demonic. For wherever there is jealousy and selfish ambition, there you will find disorder and evil of every kind. But the wisdom from above is first of all pure. It is also peace loving, gentle at all times, and willing to yield to others. It is full of mercy and the fruit of good deeds. It shows no favoritism and is always sincere. And those who are peacemakers will plant seeds of peace and reap a harvest of righteousness. (James 3:13-18 NLT)
Jealousy is like a thunderstorm–it builds and builds, forming dark clouds. And when it is ready to strike, it will spout out a bolt of lightning which can electrocute or kill a person in less than one second. In this same respect, jealousy is dangerous and hard to control; it’s unpredictable!
There are many instances when I have carried bitter jealousy and self-ambition in my own heart, but what reminds me “to let go and let God” is the simple fact that the world is not pure. We compete and sometimes murder each other over worldly possessions (and even human reasoning), which in reality it brings us pain and destruction. Jealousy and selfish ambition are agents of destruction. Even though we cannot control them, let us least be aware of them and try our best detach ourselves from them.
This week be aware of your jealousy and selfish ambitions–and do not let them control your actions. Being aware of jealously is a path towards humility, which God wants us to portray in every good act that we do.
- Weekly Spiritual Digest: Speak No Evil and Don’t Judge (princesdailyjournal.com)
Warning Against Judging Others
Don’t speak evil against each other, dear brothers and sisters. If you criticize and judge each other, then you are criticizing and judging God’s law. But your job is to obey the law, not to judge whether it applies to you. God alone, who gave the law, is the Judge. He alone has the power to save or to destroy. So what right do you have to judge your neighbor? (James 4:11, 12 NLT)
Everyday I see people (and even Christians) speak evil against each other. I can understand that people are inherently fallible and they do not want to abide by certain standards of living. But why does that give the celestial right for anyone to use foul language or a gavel to correct people? I can recognize that a gavel in the hands of the law has yielded (in some cases) great benefit to the common good of society, but it cannot be compared to the size of God’s hammer.
Our job is to obey the 12 commandments and nothing else. If a commandment says to judge one another, then we are allowed to–but in this case there is no such commandment.
So this week, try your very best to not speak evil against each other or judge your neighbor. Remember that our job is to obey the law, not to judge whether it applies to us. God has given you life and he has the power to take it away, so obey him and you can never go wrong!
- Weekly Spiritual Digest: Jesus and The Prince of Demons (princesdailyjournal.com)
Jesus and The Prince of Demons
Then a demon-possessed man, who was blind and couldn’t speak, was brought to Jesus. He healed the man so that he could both speak and see. The crowd was amazed and asked, “Could it be that Jesus is the Son of David, the Messiah?” But when the Pharisees heard about the miracle, they said, “No wonder he can cast out demons. He gets his power from Satan, the prince of demons.”
Jesus knew their thoughts and replied, “Any kingdom divided by civil war is doomed. A town or family splintered by feuding will fall apart. And if Satan is casting out Satan, he is divided and fighting against himself. His own kingdom will not survive. And if I am empowered by Satan, what about your own exorcists? They cast out demons, too, so they will condemn you for what you have said. But if I am casting out demons by the Spirit of God, then the Kingdom of God has arrived among you. For who is powerful enough to enter the house of a strong man like Satan and plunder his goods? Only someone even stronger—someone who could tie him up and then plunder his house. “Anyone who isn’t with me opposes me, and anyone who isn’t working with me is actually working against me.
“So I tell you, every sin and blasphemy can be forgiven—except blasphemy against the Holy Spirit, which will never be forgiven. Anyone who speaks against the Son of Man can be forgiven, but anyone who speaks against the Holy Spirit will never be forgiven, either in this world or in the world to come. “A tree is identified by its fruit. If a tree is good, its fruit will be good. If a tree is bad, its fruit will be bad. You brood of snakes! How could evil men like you speak what is good and right? For whatever is in your heart determines what you say. A good person produces good things from the treasury of a good heart, and an evil person produces evil things from the treasury of an evil heart. And I tell you this, you must give an account on judgment day for every idle word you speak. The words you say will either acquit you or condemn you.” (Matthew 12:22-37 NLT)
No matter what you do, there are those who will make false accusations against you in order to tear you down. And what we see here is just that but also the beauty of Jesus’ wisdom and intelligence.
If Satan is casting out Satan, then what benefit would Satan have to possess a man in his ways? It is this type of poor logic that shows how ill-conceived people can be–especially those who perform the same acts as Jesus. We must never forget that evil is at hand and only the Holy Spirit can cleanse a heart from performing evil acts.
So do not blaspheme the Holy Spirit. Jesus has made an exception to forgive anyone that has blasphemed against the Son of Man. But he will never forgive anyone who blasphemes against the Holy Spirit. The Holy Spirit is more powerful than the power of Satan. To show disrespect towards the Holy Spirit is to show respect towards the power of Satan.
Always be mindful of what you say and don’t make false or ill-conceived accusations like the Pharisees.
- Weekly Spiritual Digest: Finding Your Spiritual Gift (princesdailyjournal.com)
Now, dear brothers and sisters, regarding your question about the special abilities the Spirit gives us. I don’t want you to misunderstand this. You know that when you were still pagans, you were led astray and swept along in worshiping speechless idols. So I want you to know that no one speaking by the Spirit of God will curse Jesus, and no one can say Jesus is Lord, except by the Holy Spirit.
There are different kinds of spiritual gifts, but the same Spirit is the source of them all. There are different kinds of service, but we serve the same Lord. God works in different ways, but it is the same God who does the work in all of us. A spiritual gift is given to each of us so we can help each other. To one person the Spirit gives the ability to give wise advice; to another the same Spirit gives a message of special knowledge. The same Spirit gives great faith to another, and to someone else the one Spirit gives the gift of healing. He gives one person the power to perform miracles, and another the ability to prophesy.
He gives someone else the ability to discern whether a message is from the Spirit of God or from another spirit. Still another person is given the ability to speak in unknown languages, while another is given the ability to interpret what is being said. It is the one and only Spirit who distributes all these gifts. He alone decides which gift each person should have. (1 Corinthians 12:1-11 NLT)
The Book of Corinthians is a letter written by Apostle Paul to help the Christians in Corinth break free from the corruption that was taking place in their homeland. And in doing so, Paul covers a wide variety of topics such as rival factions, incest among believers, public lawsuits between fellow Christians, disorderly conduct, the Lord’s Supper, and the abuses of spiritual gifts in order to show that Christ is the only solution to all of these topics. Throughout his letter, he explains why Jesus’ followers should let Christ shape their lives, beliefs, and values, and why they should not conform to the world around them.
Finding your spiritual gift is something that cannot be found, because only God the Father can choose which gift each person should have. However, what is important is that the same spirit that provides these spiritual gifts (gift of healing, prophesy, wise advice, etc.) also lives inside of you and me.
God works in mysterious ways and he uses us, through the Holy Spirit, to help one another–and to serve his plan. Your spiritual gift is the Holy Spirit that has been given to you by God. The Holy Spirit strengthens your backbone when you are crouched in fear, and gives you guidance when you are lost in the dark.
So this week don’t contemplate on the spiritual gifts that you don’t have. Instead focus on your Holy Spirit–the gift which has been given to you by God–and see where it takes you. It may lead you to post Weekly Spiritual blogs!
- Weekly Spiritual Digest: Honor God with Your Body! (princesdailyjournal.com)
People were bringing little children to Jesus for him to place his hands on them, but the disciples rebuked them. When Jesus saw this, he was indignant. He said to them, “Let the little children come to me, and do not hinder them, for the kingdom of God belongs to such as these. Truly I tell you, anyone who will not receive the kingdom of God like a little child will never enter it.” And he took the children in his arms, placed his hands on them and blessed them. (Mark 10:13-16 NIV)
On December 14th 2012, America and the world witnessed a tragedy unlike none other: The Sandy Hook Massacre that left 26 dead including 20 children.
That day made me see the world for what it was and still: a world plagued of violence and vices; a world that does not belong to the Kingdom of Heaven. This act was not of God but of Man–Man’s failure to protect God’s Kingdom. It is tragedies like these that I ask for God’s forgiveness for all of us as sinners and retribution; onto those who have committed these types of horrific acts.
Children are the Kingdom of Heaven. For they carry God’s purity and innocence. And if Man cannot do what is necessary to save them from evil then the Kingdom of Heaven will always be destroyed on Earth.
God was there at Sandy Hook Elementary School–protecting his children and bringing those home to his kingdom of everlasting peace. And now we must do our part and live according to God and not of Man. We must protect our children, our Kingdom of God, so that the world can keep itself away from darkness .
Rest in Peace to the 26 beautiful souls of Newtown. You are the shining reminder of why we must turn away from darkness and live in light. May you find everlasting peace
- Weekly Spiritual Digest: Keep Calm and Carry On [God’s Will]! (princesdailyjournal.com)
Jesus left that part of the country and returned with his disciples to Nazareth, his hometown. The next Sabbath he began teaching in the synagogue, and many who heard him were amazed. They asked, “Where did he get all this wisdom and the power to perform such miracles?” Then they scoffed, “He’s just a carpenter, the son of Mary and the brother of James, Joseph, Judas, and Simon. And his sisters live right here among us.” They were deeply offended and refused to believe in him.
Then Jesus told them, “A prophet is honored everywhere except in his own hometown and among his relatives and his own family.” And because of their unbelief, he couldn’t do any miracles among them except to place his hands on a few sick people and heal them. And he was amazed at their unbelief. Then Jesus went from village to village, teaching the people.
(Mark 6:1-6 NLT)
Jesus says that a prophet is never honored in his hometown but that doesn’t mean his work is any less important. A person doesn’t need to be respected or honored to be useful to God. If friends, neighbors or family don’t respect your Christian work, don’t let their rejection keep you from serving God!
One truth that I have learned early in my life is that you can’t force people to like you–no matter how hard you try to make them smile or respect you. This was indeed a painful truth for me–while I was growing up–but it was self serving; because it taught me to not waste my kindness or energy on those who don’t want it or those who pride themselves too much. Just like this verse here, Jesus knew that there were those that needed him the most; and so he did not waste his time with those “unbelievers.”
In life, we too must learn from this example. We must learn to not let rejection (especially people from our own hometown) hold us back from fulfilling our purpose and God’s purpose. We must continue like Jesus did and carry on.
So this week, “Keep Calm and Carry On [God’s Will]!”
- Weekly Spiritual Digest: My Prayer For the Philippines (princesdailyjournal.com)
Ohio Kidnapper Ariel Castro was found late Tuesday at his cell; The senate panel approves Syria resolution; Ministers from Turkey, Jordan, Lebanon, & Iraq appeal to international support for Syrian refugees; Putin and Obama will have an uncomfortable confrontation in coming G20 meeting; Attn. General Eric Holder’s stance on pot is seen as a mistake by Drug Abuse Groups; and NY Mayoral Candidate Anthony Weiner has a standoff with Rabbi Heckler. All this and more, please follow the links below.
- Weekly Spiritual Digest: Alleviate Stress By Finding Joy In God’s Commandments (princesdailyjournal.com)
- Meet The Candidates: Christopher Conroy (princesdailyjournal.com)
- Weekly Political Tweet: Syria Resolution (princesdailyjournal.com)