Saturday, December 12, 2009

This term was incredibly tense for me. I was placed on academic probation, and if I didn't bring my grades up, I would be dropped from the program. I admit I am not much of a study person. I don't like doing homework, and the only way it gets done is if I purposely choose a class that would interest me through out its duration. With that in mind, classes just fell into place.

The term was followed by much prayer, much stress, and much contemplation about the profession I had chosen, or I should say, God chose for me. When I entered the program, my heart wasn't into it. Sure the classes were interesting, tough, but I wasn't committed. Nothing like blood, sweat and tears to make one feel connected to the situation s/he has gone through. I was uncertain if I would make this term. In the beginning, that  uncertainty caused me to bring the whole matter to God, reexamine all the doors that opened for me to be in the program, and all the little and large miracles that happened along the way.

Even as I wrote papers, finished assignments and completed projects, I kept asking God for a miracle. One class I struggled through, you know the one. I previously wrote about one paper I was writing for that class. Anyways, each paper I did, I did poorly, or at least I felt I did poorly. Three papers, 15% a piece, and I was getting mediocre grades. I'd pray over those papers, prayed during those papers, prayed when I could. There were other areas of the class I was doing well in. The discussion section I was getting 100% on each discussion. In total, 7 discussions. The final project, the group and I received 94%, best in the class (we were told so). It was heartening to hear. I figured I'd get a B+ in the class. The other class I was sure would get an A.

I like it when God proves me wrong.

I got an A in the difficult class, and ironically, an -A in the other class. One more grade to go. I get the feeling I'll get a B+.

We'll see...

Monday, November 2, 2009

I am greatly conflicted. I am in the midst of a paper, stuck in one section, and no matter which way I go, I can't seem to budge. I've done the reading, written the intro paragraph, and still stuck. I am writing about the destruction of libraries during war times. In the eyes of some this is cultural genocide, or to quote "obliterating cultural memory, erasing identities, and intimidating local populations are all wartime strategies achieved by targeting libraries" (Edwards and Edwards 2008).

Now here is the rub, as a Christian who believes in the second coming of Christ, this seems pointless to me, at least the identity part. To build your identity into the soil of your country? I guess that's one way to live. I realize these people are holding onto this world through cultural institutions. I also realize some people don't have a relationship with God and can't understand the context of heaven or even know about its existence.

I am still confused about the matter...back to the paper.

Edwards, Julie Biando, and Edwards, Stephan (2008). Culture and the New Iraq: The Iraq National Library and Archive, "Imagined Community," and the Future of the Iraqi Nation. Libraries & the Cultural Record 43 (3),p327-342.

Monday, August 3, 2009

Jesus' Parables

Matthew 7:28 When Jesus had finished these words, the crowds were amazed at his teachings...

very rich man = very poor man
fine clothing = covered in sores
abundant food = starving for crumbs
has funeral = no funeral
"Hades" = Abraham's bosom
Torment = peace
no name = Lazarus (God is my helper)

- during this time period, people were debating about the state of the dead

The closing scenes of this earth's history are portrayed in the closing of the rich man's history...Christ's Object Lessons 269

To be "lost" is tragic!
- those who do not have a growing relationship with God

Mark 9:43-44 -symbolic of being lost?

Matthew 25:30 - symbolic of a reality of being lost
Revelation 6:16-17 - underline the idea of being lost is a tragic thing in God's eyes. Being lost should be a burden on ours souls. Being lost is not a good thing.
Hebrew 9:2-7 - We have this life and this day. When we are lost sometimes we are having a great time until we realize we are lost.
- People don't care, by nature they don't care. The disciples knew that they didn't worry about people like Christ worried. We need to learn to care and worry about people.
- We need to pray for a burden like Jesus did.
Gimics don't work (Luke16:27-31)
- The rich man is accusing God by telling Him he hasn't done any miracles or anything special in his life.
Matthew 16:1 - the pharisees asked for a sign
Act 1:6-8 - are you finally going to do something, Jesus? But Jesus points to them instead.
Ministry of Healing 143 "Christ's method alone will give true success in reaching the people. The Savior mingled with men as one who desired their good. He showed His sympathy for them, ministered to their needs, and won their confidence. Then He bade them, follow Me."
1 Peter 3:15...but sanctify Christ as Lord in your hearts, always being ready to make a defense to everyone who asks you to give...
More Sensitive to Ministries of Compassion
- world standards for being rich = more than 1 meal a day, can read and write, a modes of transportation and a change of clothes

There are Lazarus' all around us. We are rich in something as beggars are at our doors. Every one of us has a beggar in their lives.

Matthew 25:31-35 (important last day text)
Desire of Ages 637 "Thus Christ on Mount of for him in the person of the poor and the suffering. We have to have more compassion for the poor and suffering.
We need to study, embrace and obey the word of God.
Warnings against sign-seeking = against the neglecting the study of God's word, believing the 2nd chance after death, being so absorbed by the pleasures of this world that we can't see Lazarus at our gate.