Posts Tagged ‘Apostle Paul’



March 17, 2014

“Brothers, join in imitating me, and keep your eyes on those who walk according to the example you have in us.”  Philippians 3:17

National Christian Forensics and Communication...

National Christian Forensics and Communications Association (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

I have spent the last three days, five if you count travel, with my family in Richland, Washington for the National Christian Forensics and Communication Association (NCFCA), Tri-Windy Speech and Debate tournament.  My son competed in two speech categories and Lincoln- Douglas debate.  However, I think that I was more consumed with this tournament than he was.

These tournaments rely upon community members to be judges for the students.  Parents are used to fill in the judging gaps as necessary.  Unfortunately, there were a lot of gaps to fill at this tournament, so I spent a lot of time judging.  I was responsible for determining winners and losers of debates.  I had to place speakers in a ranking order from 1 to 7 or 8.  I had to have opinions.  I had to have preferences.  I had to judge and reveal my conclusions.

After a speech or debate, I was thanked by each competitor for giving my time to come and be a judge for them.  They welcomed being judged.  While I was there for them, I don’t know if these competitors grasp how much they are impacting the judges that sit before them.  Those who judge cannot help but be influenced by those they are judging.

I am two days removed from the competition but I am still lingering over the spoken words from that tournament:

I am still savoring the tears of compassion elicited by words spoken with a quiet, confident, spirit.

I am still smiling in remembrance of the precious lisp of a voice given to a cricket who just wanted to be a butterfly (I Wish I Were a Butterfly).

I am still feeling the empathy that came from a delicate portrayal of mental illness. (The Yellow Wallpaper)

I am still appreciating how two competitors made a caterpillar come to life.  (Alice in Wonderland)

I am still awakened to the reality of a child soldier. (War Child: A Child Soldier’s Story)

I am still relishing the tears of laughter from the creativity of an interpretation of  Dr. Seuss.

I am still encouraged by the student who endured when his memory failed him.  He fought through to the end with courage greater than the comic-book characters he was portraying.

This tournament was ostensibly about the competitors.  However, there is always so much more happening when an individual embraces judgment.  The judged will inevitably influence the judge.  These competitors are learning the skills of the spoken word.  These are skills that will assist them in influencing their world for the rest of their lives.  However, that influence is not just in the future – I was influenced by their words.  These speech and debate tournaments are less about the competitors than they may realize.  These competitors are influencing the judging adults that sit before them now because of their willingness to be judged.

If they were not willing to be judged,
they would never influence these adults.

Georg Gsell. "The Apostle Paul."

We live in a world resistant to judging.  Often, we will try to protect ourselves from judgmental eyes.  However, we will never influence a world without embracing judgment.  When Paul challenged us to imitate him, he was opening himself up to judgment.  We form opinions about Paul’s life because of his challenge; we have to determine if his example is worthy of following.  Paul embraced the judgment of others and profoundly influenced the world.  If Paul had worried about judgment, he would never have interacted with the world.  He would never have spoken publicly.  He would never have written letters.  Through the power of the Holy Spirit, Paul had a profound influence over the world, because he was willing to be judged.

The world watches all of us.
We can either scorn their judgmental opinions or
we can embrace the opportunity to influence.

Going out into the world is a declaration of our willingness to subject our lives to the judgment of the world.

Are you willing to allow your words to be judged?
Are you willing to allow your decisions to be judged?
Are you willing to allow your beliefs to be judged?
Are you willing to allow your life to be judged?

It is not about us; it is about influencing those who judge.   The willingness of those who are willing to be judged are an example to me:

Judge the words I speak;
Judge the words I write;
Judge how I conduct business;
Judge how I have chosen to raise my family;
Judge my faith.

I want to live a life that influences my world with the gospel of Jesus Christ.  Therefore, I embrace the judgment of those who watch.  I embrace their judgment because I know that they will be influenced while they evaluate me.  May we all be willing to stand before the judging eyes of our world so that we may be profound influences upon those who are watching and listening.

PRAYER: Father, forgive me of my fear of other people’s judgment.  Forgive me for relinquishing opportunities to influence this world because I am afraid of a negative reaction.  Help me to welcome the evaluation of my life; use my life to influence the world around me.  Lord, I pray that you will draw others to your Son, Jesus Christ, through the influence that comes from a willingness to be judged.  I pray this in the precious name of your Son, Jesus Christ. Amen

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July 18, 2013

“So then you are no longer strangers and aliens, but you are fellow citizens with the saints and members of the household of God, …” Ephesians 2:19


NETHERLANDS HOLLAND (Photo credit: LachieB1)

I have never been around more Dutch people than in the Church of my youth.  It was generally know as the “Dutch Church” while there was actually only one family from the Netherlands.  The vast majority of the other members had been born and raised in the United States.  However, many could claim a Dutch ancestry but their motherland dead-ended in Minnesota.  They knew very little of the actual Netherlands much beyond windmills, tulips, and canals.

However, that did not prevent a very real ethnic identity within that Church.


Netherlands (Photo credit: Vicki Devine)

There was distinct passion and pride for all things Dutch.  Most members’ homes contained some knick-knack, trinket, or lawn ornament paying homage to Holland.  I remember one family friend who wore a baseball cap emblazoned with “If You Ain’t Dutch?, You Ain’t Much!”.   Many in this small community held that opinion and those outside felt its sting.

Christus in the storm on the lake; Rembrandt (...

It was a bit ironic how fiercely loyal they could be to a heritage which was more American than Dutch.  Most had no idea of the providence in the Netherlands, from which their ancestors migrated; that there actually are providences; that there is no country called Holland; that the Kingdom of the Netherland extends to the Caribbean; that Rembrandt, Vermeer and Van Gogh were Dutch painters; that the war of the United States of Independence was significantly financed by the merchants of Holland.  They do not know anything of the politics, geography, or culture of their heritage but they sure were proud of it.

I don’t think that my experience was unique.  Every major city has ethnic neighborhoods.  There is little, Saigon, Pakistan, Italy, Moscow, Manila, and Poland, just to name a few.  There is Chinatown, Germantown, Koreatown, Japantown, and Frenchville.  All are areas with a very distinct ethnic identity; an identity for a place that is not the inhabitants’ current home.

I realize that there can be a lot of negatives associated with these communities.  However, there is one aspect that I like:

The zeal for a place that most in the community have never known.

The Apostle Paul writes that all who are in Christ are citizens of the Kingdom of God.  Now, there is a reason for some zeal.  The Kingdom of God is better than any kingdom of this earth; being a child of God is better than being a member of any nationality.  Fierce loyalty is an appropriate response of someone who has been adopted as a fellow heir with Christ.

I should be zealous for this place that I have never been.

The good news is that this place of my hope and zeal is not exclusive.  My heritage is Dutch.  My son and daughter are Korean.  They can never be Dutch.  I can never be Korean.  Yet, the origins of our pasts do not prevent us from being fellow citizens with the saints and members of the household of God.  The community of God does not have barriers of discrimination or superiority.  God’s kingdom is open to all who will come to him regardless of race, gender, or nationality.

That should get us passionate about who we have become in Christ.

How can any of us “ho-hum” this place of our hope?

How can any follower of Christ prefer the world more than the place of our new citizenship?

We should be fired up about who we are in Christ!

While it is silly to think that if you ain’t Dutch, you ain’t much, it is true that if you ain’t got Christ, you ain’t got anything.  We should want others to be like us because it is better to have eternal life.

Our zeal for the Lord should fire us up to boldly proclaim our true citizenship and call the world to our Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ.

PRAYER: Lord, you have given me a heritage that is far better than anything this world has to offer.  Father, thank you for adopting me into your family.  Thank you for giving me an inheritance and a hope.  Thank you for saving me.  Lord, may my zeal for You be seen.  My hope in you be evident in all that I do.  Help me to boldly proclaim the free gift of citizenship that You are offering to all people.  May your name be praised and glorified.  I pray this in the precious name of your Son, Jesus Christ.   Amen.

Fun and Informative Video on the Netherlands:  Holland vs the Netherlands


“PACK RIDING” – June 9

June 9, 2013

“All things are lawful,” but not all things are helpful.  “All things are lawful,” but not all things build up.  Let no one seek his own good, but the good of his neighbor.”  1 Corinthians 10:23-24

981002_10201434224324276_965735367_oYesterday, I completed my first century bicycle ride, the Bob LeBow Bike Tour.  I had two different experiences on this ride.  I rode in a group for the first 60 miles and finished the last 45 miles on my own.  Riding in a group is better.

When we started the ride in the morning, we had a head wind.  It was the sort of wind that deafens your ears and steals any conversation from among the riders.  A head wind forces you to push into the pedals without a respite.  This head wind was not an encouraging sign for someone like me who was concerned about the energy requirements of a ride with a distance I have never known.

Fortunately, I fell in with a pack of riders.  Actually, they caught me.  They were riding faster than I had intended to ride.  However, the sweet relief that came as I was enveloped by this group gave me a huge incentive to cling within them.  We had a group of about 10-15 riders.  This amount of riders provides an intoxicating buffer from the wind.  The riders at the front have to work hard to break the wind but those in the back get the benefit of being pulled along.  They say that by riding in a group you can save as much as 20% of  your energy.  I believe it and I loved it.  I did all that I could to stay with this group.

The best way for a group like ours to maintain a strong pace is for everyone to take a turn at the front of the pack.  This keeps everyone as fresh as possible.  It allows the stronger riders a chance to rest without the group as a whole slowing down.  There is no benefit to riding in a pack if the riders are seeking their own good and not willing to work together.

Therefore, I took my turn at the front on a couple of occasions.  I tucked down onto my aero-bars and pushed into the wind and worked to maintain a consistent pace.  I could see the shadows of the other riders just off my back wheel as they caught my streamline.  As I tired, a rider from the back would come alongside with the pack forming around them and I would slip back into the groups streamline and get my chance to recover.

This works wonderfully well as long as the leader is setting a pace that the pack is willing to match.  I took the lead on one occasion and pressed into the wind.  I thought that I was doing a good job until I noticed that there were no shadows shadowing me.  I listened and heard only the hum of my own chain and tires.  When I glanced back, I realized that I had dropped the group.  That is not what I had intended.  I knew that I was going to need that group to make the whole ride.  I wanted that group for the rest that lay within it.  It was only a matter of time before they would catch me once again, anyways.  There was no purpose to dropping them.

Dropping them had proven to be a waste of energy.  I was disappointed in the fact that I had been working hard and no other rider had benefited from the effort.  That was not the way it was supposed to work.  The group as a whole had expended more energy because I had set a pace that was beyond what the other riders were willing to follow.  So, I slowed my paced and let them envelop me once again.  I knew that my good lay within the good of those other riders.

This experience made me think of how we, Christians, are supposed to live together.  I often hear a brother or sister in Christ lamenting about the Church or other believers.  They have a sense of being stifled by what they call the traditional church.  They feel as if their freedoms in Christ are being stolen by the judgmentalism of those within Christian circles.

The story is often the same.  They end up pulling away and isolating themselves from other believers.  They pursue their freedoms in Christ for their own good, mostly on their own.  We can pursue the freedoms we have in Christ in a manner that builds up no one else.  We can pursue our faith in a manner that is of no benefit to our neighbor.

We can work hard in our faith just like when I was riding ahead of the pack but to what avail?  We should want our faith to build up others.  We should want our strength to be providing a respite for others and pulling them along.  We should be seeking not only our own good, but the good of our neighbors.

We as the body of Christ will go to greater depths and be more relevant and effective if we are working together.  We can be used in amazing ways when we are willing to work for the good of others.  Ultimately, God is glorified when we are willing to sacrifice some of our freedoms in Christ for the well being and good of our fellow heirs with Christ.

Are you willing to take your turn and pull your neighbor along for their good and without thinking about your own good?

PRAYER: Lord, thank you for your Church and my fellow brothers and sisters in Christ.  Forgive me for allowing myself to be frustrated by them.  Forgive me for so often thinking about my self first and my neighbor second.  Father, help me to use my strengths that are a gift from you in a way that is good for others.  I want to be building up.  Lord, keep me from working in a manner that tears down or is the avail of no one else.  Help me to use the freedoms that you have given me in Christ in the most useful ways, even if that means sacrificing them for the good of my weaker brothers and sisters.  Help me to live to your glory.   I pray this in the precious name of your Son, Jesus Christ.   Amen.

Note: I am the rider in the center of the photograph with the shirt sleeve that is black on top and red below. Just a little proof that I was there.



June 7, 2013

“But because of the temptation to sexual immorality, each man should have his own wife and each woman her own husband.  The husband should give to his wife her conjugal rights, and likewise the wife to her husband.”  1 Corinthians 7:2-3

wedding in church

wedding in church (Photo credit: Brian’s Tree)

Dearly beloved, we are gathered here in the sight of God, and in the presence of this company, to unite this groom and this bride in holy matrimony. Marriage was ordained by God in Eden and confirmed in Cana of Galilee by the presence of the Lord Himself, and is declared by the inspired Apostle Paul to be honorable among all men. It is therefore, not to be entered into unadvisedly or lightly; but reverently, soberly and in the fear of God.  Whereas, it would be good for these two to remain single as Paul was single, they have determined it is better for them to marry because they can no longer exercise self-control.

These two are inflamed with a passion for one another that is beyond their self-control to resist the temptation of sexual immorality.  Therefore, this groom and this bride come before us to enter into this concession we call marriage as a safeguard against the temptations of Satan due to their lack of self-control.  It is fitting, therefore, that we should on this occasion, begin by asking God’s blessing on this marriage service. Let us pray.

I have never been to a wedding ceremony that started out this way but most adults understand the practical advice that Paul is giving us.  We need to build into our lives safeguards to help us fight temptations in areas where we know we are weak.  One of the roles of marriage is to provide an appropriate avenue for inflamed passions.  An important role of marriage is sexual purity.

I realize that there are a lot of couples who enter into marriage without sexual purity being one of the reasons.  There are a lot of wonderful blessings and reasons God has given us the institution of marriage.  However, it is a mistake for couples to forget about this important and practical function of marriage that safeguards both the husband and wife from sexual temptation.

There have been countless examples of marriages and families being shattered by a spouse who sought the satisfaction of their passions beyond the bounds of marriage.  The need for self-control never subsides.  For most, the fact that they are married is an acknowledgement to their lack of self-control.  The marriage bed is part of the discipline that marriage people should use to keep their bodies under control.

But I discipline my body and keep it under control, lest after preaching to others I myself should be disqualified.  1 Corinthians 9:27

It is a disgrace, the number of ministries and witnesses that have been damaged due to Christians failing to discipline their bodies and keep them under control.  This is not limited to the marriage bed.  A married couple is a team.  A man and wife should be striving together in all aspects of their lives to assist each other in disciplining their bodies to the glory of God.

If one lacks self control of their tongue, the other should help them in keeping it shut.

If one lacks self control regarding a substance, the other should give up their freedom to help them beat that addiction.

If one lacks self control in overeating, the other should limit their self to help them.

If one lacks self control in their responsibilities, the other should encourage them not to be a sluggard.

If one lacks self control of their anxieties, the other should speak the truths of God’s promises.

San FranMarried couples who are walking together in faith have a huge advantage in the disciplining of their bodies.  We all have our weak areas.  A spouse should know their partner’s weaknesses.  A loving spouse will want to help their partner have victory over their particular weakness.

I want my wife to run her race of faith well.  I want her to finish well.  I want her to receive the prize.  Therefore, I am committed to helping her.  She wants me to help.  It is an expression of my love for her.  She doesn’t need help with her strengths.  She needs help with her weaknesses.  I need help with my weaknesses.  I need her to help me in those areas of my live where my self control is lowest.  I want her to help me.

We show each other love by supporting each other in our respective weaknesses in order that we will both be better at disciplining our bodies as we run our race of faith.

May our marriages be all that they were intended to be including a safe haven for bodies which are control impaired.

PRAYER: Lord, thank you for my wife.  Thank you for giving me a person who loves me and wants to help me follow you better.  Thank you for giving me a person who is committed to my well-being.  Father, may your blessing pour out on her.  May your face shine upon her.  May your Spirit fill her and abound in her.  Lord, help me to help her.  Give me wisdom in how I can practically support her in her weaknesses and may you give her the desire to help me in my weaknesses.   Father, we want to give you all the glory in our marriage.  We want to run well as a couple and as individuals.  We want to finish well.  Lord, lead us not into temptation but deliver us from evil.   I pray this in the precious name of your Son, Jesus Christ.   Amen.



April 21, 2013

“…He ordered those who could swim to jump overboard first and make for the land, and the rest on planks or on pieces of the ship. And so it was that all were brought safely to land.” Acts 27:43b-44

Ian Holm as Bilbo Baggins in Peter Jackson's T...My daughter recently bought the DVD of the Hobbit by director Peter Jackson.  We have subsequently watched it a multitude of times in the last couple days so my mind has been flooded with images of Middle Earth.  I love epic tales.  I have been drawn into all of J.R.R Tolkien’s tales of Middle Earth due to their epic scale.

The problem with epic tales is that they can skew our expectations of reality.

We are all part of the most epic plan ever imagined.  The wonderful aspect of this plan is that it does not come from an author’s imagination but it is real.  God’s redemptive plan has been unfolding throughout history.  What story could be greater than the Creator God of the Universe, the Great I AM, saving His fallen and rebellious creation from certain destruction?   It is a plan of unfathomable dimension and limitless depth.

However, this epic plan mostly unfolds in the ordinary.  It is typically carried out in the normal.  Every person plays a role in the greatest story of history when they rise in the morning and either set their minds on the things of the Spirit or the flesh. We are all living in the epic whether we know it or not.

There are the occasional glimpses of the spectacular but the majority of the time we trudge along in the familiar.  I want to participate in  God’s epic plan with grace and courage.  I am reminded of a scene in the Return of the KingLegolas slays an oliphant by effortlessly swinging up its side while agilely dodging his assailants. After killing the beast he then gracefully slides down it’s trunk to land lightly upon his feet.  That is the sort of participant in God’s great unfolding story that I want to be.

Mûmakil in Peter Jackson's The Lord of the Rin...

Mûmakil in Peter Jackson’s The Lord of the Rings: The Return of the King. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

However, this is where the imagination and reality clash.  Reality is more like the Apostle Paul’s experience. Directed by God to return to Rome, he was placed on a ship by his captors.  They were caught in a violent storm for fourteen days where they struggled in vain to hold the ship together.  They had to unload cargo into the raging sea.  Able seamen had to be prevented from abandoning their ship and responsibilities.  They spied an opportunity to run their ship ashore on a beach of a nearby island.  They casted off their anchors, set the sail, and made for the beach only to strike a reef.  The entire party gets washed ashore amid planks and a myriad of ship debris.  They were undoubtedly covered with sand and the grime of the sea, bruised and battered.  It was not a very graceful exit.  It certainly was not an elegant or agile landing.

That is life.

Orlando Bloom as Legolas in Peter Jackson's li...I have never really experienced a “Legolas” type moment.  Most of my moments have been more of the ungraceful and awkward type where I have landed in an inglorious and embarrassing heap.  That does not mean that they were unimportant or not a part of God’s plan.

We need to be careful about seeking out and participating in only “Legolas” like moments.  They may never happen.  I don’t know if I have ever felt like I had the perfect words to say or write.  I can’t remember ever clearly seeing the path before me so that I could effortlessly bound forward without the risk of tripping.  If we wait for the perfect conditions to make our leaps of faith, then we may never jump.

Faith is the assurance of things hoped for, the conviction of things not seen.  Hebrews 11:1

Our eyes are on another world as we walk through this one.  We have placed our conviction in things that cannot be seen.  Our reality is that we move forward by faith.  That means that we may stumble.  That means that we may become part of a group that gets ingloriously washed ashore.  We may pick imperfect words and look foolish.  We may not see the next foothold and appear indecisive.  We may be walking along and trip over the common and fall in an awkward and embarrassing heap.

PESUDA ship wreck, Tlell, BC in HDRHowever, I will risk landing in a clumsy heap over the security of standing on the sideline of God’s wonderful plan of redemption with my dignity intact.  My dignity is not worth much in comparison to God’s plan.  The opinion of others is insignificant in comparison to the glories of God. The blessings of a deep and meaningful relationship with God are found only in the practice of our faith.    God will only be found by those who seek Him through the power of His Spirit.  That happens when we are actually in the epic journey of faith.

Are you ready to trust in the promises of God and take your potentially inglorious next step?  We need to remember that every inglorious step that we take forward leads us to a glory beyond what we can even comprehend at this time.  That glory of our Lord will cause all the struggles and suffering of this time to fade in an insignificant memory.  Every inglorious step, taken in faith, serves a purpose and is transformed by the Spirit into glory for our Lord and Savior.

We must decide which glory we want the most – God’s glory or our own.

PRAYER: Father, forgive me for so often choosing my glory over yours.  Forgive me for seeking out opportunities where my risks of appearing inglorious can be managed.  Forgive me for not trusting you like I know I should.  Father, help me in my unbelief.  Help me to walk by faith and to set my eyes not on what I see in this world.  Help me to set my convictions on the things that I cannot see.  Help me to take the next step of faith, forgetting myself, for your praise and glory.  Amen.



March 11, 2013

“But Ananias answered, “Lord, I have heard from many about this man, how much evil he has done to your saints at Jerusalem.  And here he has authority from the chief priests to bind all who call on your name.”  But the Lord said to him, “Go, for he is a chosen instrument of mine to carry my name before the Gentiles and kings and the children of Israel.  For I will show him how much he must suffer for the sake of my name.”  So Ananias departed and entered the house.”  Acts 9:13-17a

I got an email from a good friend with this image attached.

30 miles painThe text that he sent me was, “So, you wanna tackle my 30 mile training loop tomorrow…I think I’m going to try.  It is supposed to be 58 with mild wind.”

My immediate response was, “no.”  I had an entire list of reasons why I was not particularly interested in doing this ride.  The chief reason was that I was not prepared.  This would be my first outdoor ride of the season on my road bicycle.  The wisdom of tackling 30 miles with approximately 1,700 feet of vertical climbing as my emergence from winter hibernation was escaping me.  I could not believe that my friend would suggest this ride as my first ride of the season.

I hemmed and hawed in delay of my response to the insensitive request.  I could come up with an assortment of reasons not to do it but I continued to stumble over one question, “what is the worst that could happen?”

I could bonk.

There are a lot of alternative routes back that could shorten the ride.

I could gas-out on a climb.

I can push a bike up a hill; I have done it before.

I could be dropped by my friend.

I will just arrive a little later at our destination.

I will be sore the next day.

I have been sore before.  It is not that bad.

There was not a response to the question of  “what is the worst that could happen” that should prevent me from doing this ride.  So, I hesitantly emailed my friend back, “I am in.”

Yesterday, we went and did the ride.  We ended up cutting 3 miles and one climb (500 vertical feet) from our planned route but overall it was a great ride.  It was challenging.  There was one particular climb where I slowed and my thighs screamed to the point that I almost put my foot down but I did not and finished well.  I discovered that I was better prepared for this season of cycling than I realized.

English: Ananias restoring the sight of Saint PaulI wonder how you get prepared for the message that Ananias received from the Lord.  Ananias must have had an entire list of reasons not to go.  The chief reason was that this man Saul could have him killed.  We all have the benefit of knowing the whole story.  Ananias did not know how his story was going end when he went to meet Saul.  As he closed the door to his home, the Lord had told Ananias about His plans for Saul but He had not said anything about His plans for him.  Ananias’ step from his home was a step of faith.

I wonder if Ananias considered the possibility that he was leaving his home for the last time.

I wonder if Ananias considered the answers to the question, “what is the worst that could happen?”

I wonder if Ananias thought, “I am not prepared for this.”

We know that Ananias left his home and entered the house where the blinded Saul was staying. Ananias must have concluded that there was not any response to the question of  “what is the worst that could happen” that would be good enough to prevent him me from not doing what the Lord had told him.  Ananias was all in.

I can only conclude that Ananias had come to a conclusion similar to that in Hebrews, “The Lord is my helper; I will not fear; what can man do to me?” (Hebrews 13:6)  Ananias discovered through his obedience that the Lord had prepared him better than he may had ever imagined.

Most of us will never have to face a calling as dramatic as that of Ananias.  For many of us, the answer to the question of  “what is the worst that could happen” to the Lord’s leading is not death.

What do I have to fear; what can man do to me?

Our Lord may be calling you to something very scary.  He might be directing you to something that you feel completely unprepared for.  Ask yourself, “What is the worst that could happen?”   Is there a response to that question that is good enough to prevent you from not going down the path that the Lord is guiding you onto?

Step out in faith.  I believe that you will discover that you are better prepared than you ever thought.

PRAYER: Lord, thank you for your work of preparation in my life.  I realize that I am not even aware of most of it.  Father, grant me the faith of Ananias.  Prepare me so that I can conclude that there is nothing that I have to fear from men.  Enable me to see You clearly and desire You more than anything.  Amen

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