Christ's Glory, Not Mine

by science fiction author Andrea J. Graham

Feeling less than someone else? Good news!

You aren’t less than, inferior to, or worth less than anyone you have ever met face to face. The truth is, all have sinned. All are not good enough. All do not deserve their blessings. All deserve to die for our sins and to burn in Hell for eternity. All can escape God’s wrath only by the blood of the Lamb who took the punishment we deserved.

And on top of that, if we accept Christ, God adopts us as his own beloved children and makes us citizens of Heaven. That is amazing grace, and a secure promise to stand on. Nonetheless, let’s remain humbly aware we have not earned what we have freely received, lest we fall into prideful self-righteousness and withhold grace from others who need it.

We ourselves can stand by grace alone, clothed in Christ’s righteousness. And that goes for everyone else. I sense so many of us are hurting while blaming others for our own heart’s self-condemnation. Our feelings are our property and our responsibility. No one else is to blame for how we feel about ourselves. (Dr. Henry Cloud, Boundaries)

Let’s stop trying to justify ourselves, stop trying to prove ourselves, stop trying to earn blessings, accept we never can, and rest in Christ’s finished work on the cross, by which God’s children all freely receive God’s love, grace, and forgiveness.


Save the Boise Library!

Google Maps screenshot

The proposed plan to build a new main library in Boise is a wasteful extravagance and destructive to a city landmark and a historical landmark. It calls for demolishing the existing Boise Library! and removing the Cabin from its current location next door. Neither should be moved or torn down. While only the Cabin is on the official register of historic landmarks, the Library! building dates back to WWII and is an important part of Boise history and one of the important city landmarks that people like me navigate by.

Without the current Library! I will get disoriented in that area of town. If Boise must waste a great deal of money on Mayor Bieter’s latest vanity project, build this monument to his greatness elsewhere, without tearing down important city landmarks. I have ADHD and I need the city’s major landmarks to stay where they are. That likely goes for many others who are neurodiverse.

If this plan goes forward, I would avoid going down there as much as possible to avoid the distress of seeing my Library! gone. If the City of Boise must build their vain monstrosity, built it elsewhere, on a site where you don’t have to tear down landmarks as important as the Library! and the Cabin are.

Note on the models of the proposed changes, the parking situation looks worse, and it looks harder to access the new facility and the green belt for people driving there from my side of town. Also, where are we getting the money for this when the Library couldn’t even afford to keep the Hoopla digital media service? If the Library! has the money to blow on a such an extravagant new facility, it has the money to offer and to expand their digital media services. I’d like to see that done instead, along with the current facility renovated with only the updates that are strictly necessary, Maybe add more floors, but I am 100% against tearing it down and so much as moving the Cabin. That is just wrong.

And the Bible agrees, from the NKJV:

Deuteronomy 19:14 “You shall not remove your neighbor’s landmark, which the men of old have set, in your inheritance which you will inherit in the land that the Lord your God is giving you to possess.

Deuteronomy 27:17 ‘Cursed is the one who moves his neighbor’s landmark.’
“And all the people shall say, ‘Amen!’

Job 24:1-3 “Since times are not hidden from the Almighty, Why do those who know Him see not His days? “Some remove landmarks; They seize flocks violently and feed on them; 3 They drive away the donkey of the fatherless;

Proverbs 22:28 Do not remove the ancient landmark Which your fathers have set.

Proverbs 23:10 Do not remove the ancient landmark, Nor enter the fields of the fatherless;

Hosea 5:10 “The princes of Judah are like those who remove a landmark; I will pour out My wrath on them like water.

Visit Preservation Idaho for more ways to save the Cabin and to hear their input on why it is important.

If you share my viewpoint, please let your voice be heard at the Library! website. Boise is also accepting feedback via CoUrbanize.


Correct With Love

photo credit: Kurdistan Photo ???????? kurdistan via photopin (license)

 

The next time someone is wrong on the internet, let’s try to remember that correction requires a loving relationship, or it won’t be received well. Usually, it is best to just stop and pray. If God does ever ask us to correct his children for him, it is wise to first connect with God’s children and positively and nurture them, meeting their needs in a loving manner. If we take time to do that, we will be much better received. In this context, correction is a positive affirmation of relationship instead of the negative rejection it is when it is disconnected from a warm, nurturing relationship.

Let’s also remember we need loving correction ourselves and seek nurturing relationships where we will get nudged into the right direction safely. We can get through bad days by relying on a nurturing relationship with someone we can trust to lovingly, gently correct us while praising what we get right more frequently and patiently listening even if we don’t say everything as respectfully as we should. I strongly recommend we all have that relationship with Father God and Jesus Christ our Lord.

If you happen to have a good parent or spouse who qualifies, too, great. However, we need to keep the Lord as our first go-to person or our loved one will become an idol. Three reasons to avoid that. One, idolatry hurts God like our spouses committing adultery would hurt us. Two, even the best people won’t always be there for us, but God is always with his people. Three, idols often will fall off of their pedestals, but God will never fail you. So spare God and yourself a lot of pain and keep God first.

Now, some of us have conditions like Attention Deficit Disorder which cause rejection sensitivity. When triggered, it produces a physical anxiety that some would call “negative energy.” Whatever we call it, we are often tempted to think this comes from the person triggering us, blaming them. In reality, it comes from our own flesh’s response to our own perception of rejection.

Perception is not reality. Nonetheless, our flesh reacts to our perception. Our flesh’s reaction often triggers more negative behavior in the other person. And it can cause rejection where none had been. This cycle can be broken, if we can change our perception of others’ negative behavior. For example, what if, instead of perceiving rejection, we saw an indication the person is hurting and needs help? How would we respond differently? How might our more compassionate response improve their disposition?

This is far from easy, of course, and we do all need to be careful if someone truly means us harm.

Still, God can help us if we pray, acknowledge our weakness, and ask him to give us his eyes. He can also help us to treat others with respect and love even when we still find their behavior disrespectful and unloving. Again, abuse survivors, this does not mean we must let abusers keep hurting us. It means to set boundaries with respect and love. Typically, an abuser will decry any manner of boundary-setting as rude and unloving, so don’t allow them to be the judge. Let God show you how to love and respect the abuser as you also stop enabling them to keep sinning against you.

Finally, when you or a loved one is honestly struggling and truly wish to do better, give yourself or your loved one grace. Recognize where your and/or your loved one is at that day and set reasonable expectations of what can be accomplished. Lower the bar clear to basic safety levels, if necessary. Decide together on three baby steps in the right direction and take those steps together. Little by little can accomplish much and build confidence for more tomorrow.


8 Biblical Meditations For Anxiety

Guidelines for Christian meditation available in Comfort for Anxiety, please, hold the guilt trip.

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Bonus Prayers for ADHD patients and others looking for a Christian alternative to New Age clearings: 

General:

Father God, I come before you in the name of your son, Christ Jesus our Lord. Please remove every weight that besets me and keeps me from serving you effectively. Please break every chain that restrains me likewise. Please extinguish every fiery dart of the enemy. In your perfect timing, show me every hindrance, every thought of the heart that holds me back. Show me how to take it captive and bring my heart and mind into conformity to you and your truth. Transform me by the renewing of my mind. Thank you, Jesus, for setting me free. Thank you for showing me the truth. Thank you for helping me to walk in your ways. Your will be done. Amen.

For Overwhelm:

Father God, I come before you in the name of your son, Jesus Christ. I thank you that you are with us always, even to the end of the age. Deliver me from all that overwhelms me. Show me the source. Cover me in the blood of the Lamb. Anoint me with your spirit and shield me from all enemy attack. I thank you, Lord. Please break the chains of the overwhelm in my life. Please remove every weight that overwhelms me and keeps me from running a good race. By your spirit, Lord. Thank you so much that Christ died for my sins. I rest in your son. Thank you for forgiving me. Thank you for setting me free. Thank you that I can lay at your feet all that overwhelms me and rest in you. I lay it down now, Lord. I give it all over to your hands now, Lord. Your will be done. Amen.

For Financial Provision:

Father God, I come before you in the name of your son, my Lord Jesus Christ. I thank you that you are with me. Thank you for knowing my need even before I speak it. You are YHWY Yireh, my provider, and your grace is sufficient for me. Deliver me from every enemy attack on my fiances. Give me wisdom, please, to manage your property well, Lord. By the precious blood of Jesus Christ, break every chain and free me from every weight that hinders me from being a good steward of your resources. Show me anything else that gets in the way. Make a way for me, Lord, where there seems to be no way. Thank you that Christ came to give me abundant spiritual life. I thank you that you will never forsake me, for the sake of Christ’s righteousness in me. Thank you that you provide for all of my needs according to your riches in glory. Your will be done. Amen.