Temples

Shema Yisrael

Majesty too great to dwell in temples made of stone . I have been listening to songs by Paul Wilbur , his songs are so wonderful and I think he is a lover of Israel. Anyway this particular one says , Hear O Israel, all you chosen ones , the Lord our God is One. Majesty too great to dwell in temples made of stone. You have chosen hearts of flesh to make you’re glory known.

Hear, O Israel: The LORD our God, the LORD is one. Deuteronomy 6:4

It’s been wisely said : ” For the foolishness of God is wiser than human wisdom, and the weakness of God is stronger than human strength. 1 Corinthians 1:25 “

The pagan gods sought out the largest statues and most beautiful temples. They seem to be pleased to be carved in stone. Where were the authors of greek mythology when wisdom was holding a meeting ? God sought not , never a temple of Stone.

Don’t you know that you yourselves are God’s temple and that God’s Spirit dwells in your midst? 1 Corinthians 3:16

All of them were filled with the Holy Spirit and began to speak in other tongues as the Spirit enabled them. Acts 2:4

שְׁמַע יִשְׂרָאֵל יְהוָה אֱלֹהֵינוּ יְהוָה אֶחָֽד׃
Sh’ma Yisra’el, YHWH ‘eloheinu, YHWH ‘eḥad:. Sh’ma: literally means listen, heed, or hear and do (according to the Targum, accept)
Yisrael: Israel, in the sense of the people or congregation of Israel
Adonai: often translated as “LORD”, it is read in place of the YHWH written in the Hebrew text; Samaritans say Shema, which is Aramaic for “the [Divine] Name” and is the exact equivalent of the Hebrew ha-Shem, which Rabbinic Jews substitute for Adonai in a non-liturgical context such as everyday speech.
Eloheinu: the plural 1st person possessive of אֱלֹהִים‎ Elohim, meaning “our God”.
Echad: the unified and cardinal number One אֶחָד

Wikipedia

“The God who made the world and everything in it is the Lord of heaven and earth and does not live in temples built by human hands.
And he is not served by human hands, as if he needed anything. Rather, he himself gives everyone life and breath and everything else. The Acts 17: 24-25

Am reading a book by John Eldredge. He says our hearts are good , am still wondering how am going to believe that , i mean God dwells in us, we ought to be Holy Of Holies , the inner place where God’s presence dwells. Yet it’s still hard to believe we have good hearts, i guess the devil is a great liar but here I go , more of God and more on how to live from you’re heart.

Dedication ; Shema by Paul Wilbur.

Treasure

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Why didn't God make many Sons
How selfish that humanity exists
Solely for his glory
Are we really worth anything
We still want to be gods
Maybe God only allowed
Us wisdom to ask
So he can taunt us further
Eagles fly
Dogs fight for meat
Sparrows fall
Caterpillars we squash at will
But we are above nature
Above the mighty lion
Didn't you hear God decree
" They may rule "
Nature moves
But men question
Why wouldn't they
They are made for worship
But damnation is an option too
One wonders
Why worship
When glory hasn't answered yet
These are urgent matters
I will tell you why ,
I know Yahweh is
Worthy of it all
The source of beauty
The maker of pleasure
Keeper of life
Breath giver
King of all treasure
Honour of honours
Fountain of Wisdom
Maker of Time
Inventor of peace
Everlasting One
Is there any wonder as
To why the answers can wait
But incense must arise now !
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A filled mouth.

I think almost everyone has heard of that verse that says that out of the fullness of the heart, the mouth overflows. Let me try finding it.

Above all else, guard your heart, for everything you do flows from it. Proverbs 4:23

Okay i finally found it. But it doesn’t say the mouth overflows but rather everything , but it serves the same purpose, out of the fullness of the heart, everything flows.

Listen, for I have trustworthy things to say; I open my lips to speak what is right.
My mouth speaks what is true, for my lips detest wickedness. All the words of my mouth are just; none of them is crooked or perverse.

Proverbs 8 : 6 – 8
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Can that be said of anyone ? Ofcourse it was said of Christ. “He committed no sin, and no deceit was found in his mouth.” 1 Peter 2:22 That we do expect , but what about other people. Maybe it can be said of many , but am a good representative of people who love to story tell , don’t know much about listening and just let their mouth run on as they talk of home , siblings, movies , i mean anything they are really so interested in at the moment. So I tell alot of exaggerated tales , i mean somehow before the talking begins thinking has been going on so am only telling tales I have been telling myself and alot of times what i say in my mind about the facts isn’t true, it sometimes is just what I want them to be. Sometimes I will say something then recall the exact facts and realise I exaggerated so that a friend could really see how weighty a matter was but that’s all just lying.

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I was starting to think I can’t possibly change and it’s just my nature but then a friend said this “The key statement I said was:
YOU DON’T HAVE TO.
The entire christian Life is characterised by the Holy Spirit leading us not to give power to our misdefinitions.
We don’t have to sleep around because it’s ‘easier’ than remaining pure.
Take an example of your FAST.
You don’t have to fast but you’ve taken it on.
Even when you want to eat, you’re disciplining yourself till a time you’ve set aside.
My issue is when we identify as christian, there are things that are already defined in that worldview.”

I mean in my head I sort of went , no need to be serious and at about the same time , come-on easier said than done . Ofcourse it’s always easier said than done. So is a mouth that doesn’t lie a possibility ? I mean the Bible does know how hard taming the tongue is , James noted on it.

but no human being can tame the tongue. It is a restless evil, full of deadly poison.
With the tongue we praise our Lord and Father, and with it we curse human beings, who have been made in God’s likeness.
Out of the same mouth come praise and cursing. My brothers and sisters, this should not be. James 3 : 8-10.

But James doesn’t end there, he goes on to note ; “Can both fresh water and salt water flow from the same spring?
My brothers and sisters, can a fig tree bear olives, or a grapevine bear figs? Neither can a salt spring produce fresh water. James 3:11 – 12 “ Sort of like he was claiming that it is not right that your mouth praise God and at the same time tell lies or rather that the impossibility.

We don’t want this said of us , Not a word from their mouth can be trusted ; their heart is filled with malice. Their throat is an open grave; with their tongues they tell lies. Psalms 5: 9

Christians are always taking on battles. But while some battle with purity, others take on the battle of words and others still of pride. The battles are endless. But our journeys are going on still. I guess like C S Lewis noted when talking of our temples being of cards , somehow God is always knocking those down. You know we are told not to build on the sand land , but when we have begun building on the Rock , maybe it’s also right that we remember that houses built of hay are burnt down. But why care , God is the builder. The goal is Christlikeness.

But of course one must take ‘sent to try us’ the right way. God has not been trying an experiment on my faith or love in order to find out their quality. He knew it already. It was I who didn’t. In this trial He makes us occupy the dock, the witness box, and the bench all at once. He always knew that my temple was a house of cards. His only way of making me realize the fact was to knock it down.

A Grief Observed by C S Lewis.

If anyone builds on this foundation using gold, silver, costly stones, wood, hay or straw,
their work will be shown for what it is, because the Day will bring it to light. It will be revealed with fire, and the fire will test the quality of each person’s work. 1 Corinthians 3: 12 – 13.

Now that I think of building, I was talking to a few friends and a disturbing high school story came up. There’s this book about ‘Anjelica’ and she said she went to heaven and to hell. Also that in heaven the houses we inhabit are dependent on the service that we do on earth. My friend said she even provided biblical proof but she hasn’t sent it to me yet. Ohh I don’t believe any such thing and I don’t think there’s proof so am not at all talking about that. For me heaven is given by grace and worrying about houses seems rather impractical given that it’s all about God and dwelling with Him for eternity. Also Christ said he went to prepare a place, he didn’t ask the disciples to get ready preparing their own place. Sorry I went off topic.

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But rather they should say , “The mouths of the righteous utter wisdom, and their tongues speak what is just. Psalms 37:30

From the mouth of the righteous comes the fruit of wisdom, but a perverse tongue will be silenced.
The lips of the righteous know what finds favor, but the mouth of the wicked only what is perverse. Proverbs 10 : 31 – 32.

My mouth is filled with your praise, declaring your splendor all day long. Psalms 71:8

So here is what i have learned. That it all goes back once again to guarding our hearts. Also that we can’t quite exhaust the topic of words. We keep waiting on God , because it’s always about Him. So let’s fill our hearts with the word of God , then our mouths will speak truth. Let’s meditate on his word day and night.

I had an “I”

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I had an I
It didn’t matter why
But I Loved that
And hated that
I wore this and
Despised that
I went to Church
And despised the club
The why didn’t matter
But I was better than most
I begged not and cried not
I kept the rules
And hid my face
But I still thought it most beautiful
I didn’t know why
And didn’t care why
Didn’t know I was learning
And had copied
Even how to eat
But I knew the other bit
That I was unique
But Now
Now I can’t have an I
If God says submit
Submit I ought
And when He says forgive
The “Great I AM ” has commanded
I ain’t there yet
But I know now
That worth and gold
Is when I do
As my breath giver says
My learned and unique opinions
Hold second place.
Now the “I Am ”
Has to take back His place
Now the I “ceases “
Even while it be
Preserved.

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A lovepoem

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You all write them
So easily
So why can't I.
We hope to to give our lives
For what we can't live without
And ofcourse we do
But not every Romeo
And Juliet end up in the tomb.
And as for Rose
Loving a dead lover eternally
Is the easiest of affairs
But when you've gotten your hearts desire
When Romeo and Juliet are granted sixty
Years to spend together
That's sadly an eternity.
I will love you for a thousand years
Soon becomes , but I don't have
The power to.
My only wish is eternity with my lover
Soon becomes an I didn't think
It would be granted.
The imperfections become so clear
But so do our failures
Only you turns to
The times have changed
Seasons have changed.
Afterall how could we love for eternity
When we can't even stay the same
For athousand years.
My love will always be yours
Is a claim that I will stay the same
Yesterday, today and forever,
But that itself is a lie.
I still wish I could live only for you
But reality binds me to a whole
Lot of things.
And I change lovers like I do books
All too easily
Nowonder marriage is God's affair
Bound not by love but vow
I still wait for the promise of love eternal
But I wait for that promise
Only from the Unchanging One.

Wise Words

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Haven't you heard his cry
That he says the proud
Will be humbled
Then why does the
Comparison between persons
Go on still
Because our teachers were
Not lying when they said
You can't do anything good
Without the Holy spirit.
I have read the wisdom
In James that even favouritism
Between the rich and poor
Is sin , so why do I do it still
Maybe because I have not held
On to the word where My Lord
Does declare that those who remain
In him bear much fruit
And also that No branch
Can bear fruit by itself
Knowledge only takes you
Half way to the truth
Seek the fountain alone.


Africa

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What’s culture and what’s our thing?

This question started or grew more disturbing when I told my class that I loved crying under rain. And yes I do , but usually am actually talking to God while I do it. Someone was kind enough to mock me and my fancies. A friend agreed that he was right, that’s something Indians do , they dance under rain with those they love and it’s so romantic, okay they do it in their movies, we know nothing about their real life. Anyway I started to feel like they were right and I was such a copy cat pretending to be something am not. I sort of forgot that we fancied the rain when we were little kids, my mum made strict rules to prevent playing under rain , but we and some other kids in the neighborhood , deep in a village in Uganda , just loved to play under it and we sang and danced. One time it increased way too much that we had to go into the house but usually when it wasn’t that much , we enjoyed the feeling of being under it. When I banned my siblings from playing in it and told them to follow my mum’s orders , they were furious. So the one thing that has really changed is that we have grown up and almost forgotten how to dance under rain or dance in broad day light.

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Anyway , the question still drove me into a crisis. I have watched Watoto Church in Uganda , Phaneroo ministries and worship harvest and my universities awesome performances and thought we are such copy cats , where is our own thing. I rather think that’s foolish because Phaneroo ministries actually recited original poetry and didn’t just try to reproduce something else. Anyway , it got even general, our Universities, our music, it all feels like all we do is use stuff that isn’t originally ours but probably from Europe or some British era. Asin some people tried celebrating Halloween and I figured that aint our tradition, they are being such copying fools and most importantly, pretending to be something they are not.

Then I realized English is more like my primary language, I can’t say the word “disgusting” in my local language, same goes for many other words. And I was feeling like I don’t even know what’s African anymore. And all this copying makes it feel like the others are superior and that’s why we speak their language, now that doesn’t feel good at all. I guess that’s why I always remember that accents also vary. Also that America copied or brought English from Britain then sought to make it their thing and called it American English. Yet in a way they were right, how English evolves in America is different from Britain and different from any other country , so it’s only right to say this is South African English. But at our schools, we notice British and American English, we call American English the slung or wrong English and prioritize knowing what the Cambridge dictionary says even though we know nothing about Britain at most.

Anyway , just because people now own land titles, doesn’t mean we are lesser than the person who invented that. We use common law , doesn’t mean the British systems are better. Because it will always go back to who we are. And who we are is not what we wear or the house we sleep in .

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See just because we sing an old German hymn, doesn’t mean we are less talented. Just because I buy shoes I saw someone wearing, doesn’t mean I have lost my identity, generally abit of humanity has pioneers, but the pioneer in inventing a light bulb , didn’t create the sausage but just savoured it , neither did he create the tie or shirt he just copied and bought that. So we are both pioneers and receivers , because we are made to serve and also enjoy what others have made , how others have served. We are made to serve and also to be served. My identity is not lost just because I admired the Brazilian masks and decided to have a mask party myself .The judgment of humanity won’t be , what family traditions have you lost and which have you kept. We don’t say the light bulb and neon lights appeared and the soul felt it’s worth , we say Christ appeared and The Soul Felt It’s Worth.

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Let me do all the copying I want. Except ofcourse in exams because then that’s cheating. But I can do all the copying I want because who I am doesn’t suddenly vanish , I don’t cease to be when I act like Romans in Rome. But when I get to Rome and agree that Zeus and Hades are gods too, then I am losing sight of the command not to comform , them am sinning, then am losing sight of who I am.

In Daniel’s time , he had a reason for not eating the food at the royal table. He could wear their clothes , as long as they ain’t female’s clothes , he could speak their language and have their name , but God had given laws on what he could eat so avoiding their meat was really just obedience to God. We can eat their meat as we please , we can eat snakes if we are the kind that loves trying everything out. But when we bow before their idol, the line has been crossed, we have gone too far and we are failing. Am not ready for a gender crisis in Uganda just because people are suddenly thinking that like the United States of America , we should be free to choose our gender , I can’t be part of the LGBTQ movement whatsoever that means , but I will try their apps like Facebook and maybe their recipe for fried chicken. See ninety percent of people in my country fancy luxury houses and think maybe that would be cool , but that ninety percent also know that marriage can only be between a man and woman and homosexuality is just unacceptable foolishness. In short some things do have a connection to your identity, to who you are , but others don’t. You can have their sea food , but you wouldn’t wanna wear a mini skirt or claim civilians deserve rights to own guns. We are not losing track of who we are just because we are starting to think the practice of giving and receiving flowers ought to be amazing. We are African and it’s lovely.

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I love America but their problems just always feel over the top crazy to me. I prefer to struggle with poverty on my side of the world than battle with a homosexual child on their side of the world. I mean they have excessive hoarding, gun accidents , racism , migraines or over consumption of drugs , adultery, racism , suicides which make it feel like wealth or nice streets don’t eliminate your problems , all you ever do as you progress is get rid of one set of problems and take up another. In short in America people can have clean streets and garbage houses which is rather confusing. I know my approach feels hopeless but it’s really not , because we all do turn to the Source of all things, the source of healing who is God.

Anyway, about copying, let me use an example of Christmas. For us the villagers and poor ones , we don’t put trees in our houses , we don’t mention Santa nor share presents. Most of what we do is buy meat, wear new clothes to Church to show off mostly , then we gather as a family sometimes, at my granny’s place and have lunch while story telling, then walk back home. Okay that’s my family tradition. But generally we don’t hang decorations but they do it in hospitals, churches and in some rich people’s homes. Now those are copied traditions , people will copy Christmas trees , elves and santa outfits and some families have traditions of exchanging gifts. We have watched television alot so we know of the Grinch. Then we sing Christmas songs and act too. It may feel like we have lost track of who we are but there’s a tradition we don’t copy which is the mistletoe, in Africa kissing in public , even on the cheeks is only acceptable on a few weddings. So we don’t do it. Anyway, even when you study other countries, their traditions and what they will do will vary from neighborhood to neighborhood and then home to home. So aren’t we glad we share some things like the good food tradition. Aren’t we glad so many of us around the world celebrate Christmas.

This is a post about Africa , there’s a general fear that we have lost track of our traditions and who we are. I know we have preserved some like dowry and kneeling down to greet , but now people are wearing shirts that say ‘black lives matter ‘ , that’s a phrase that only really means something to Americans , point is there’s a fear that we are losing our identity. But isn’t that fear actually a universal thing, social media has made it easy to know we have so much in common so all over the world people are facing a cultural loss crisis. It’s not just Africans that now feel less of African and rather lost , maybe it’s time we know that Culture wasn’t as important as we thought it was.

Likewise bound by tradition are those areas where discrimination is greatest.

World Aflame by Billy Graham.

I don’t feel like a loser for copying a court , i mean one might ask why I ain’t inventing my own design , but even Americans and the British are copying. I don’t want to handle a universal problem or fear like it’s only native to Africa.

You know before I started watching Chinese series, I thought all Chinese looked alike , there was a habit where we watched their movies and said these guys are identical, watching their series alot more has made me realise that that’s not true at all . No wonder when many whites see African kids all dirty and shabby , they think they must be living the most miserable lives in utter poverty. As a village Child , I can tell you that that’s not true. The pictures probably look sad because it’s terrifying to take pictures sometimes. But families and reasons vary. And poverty is not as miserable as three quarters of the World think it is , get to know the children before making any conclusions. Anyway , that’s a message I would give to only a few. But when it comes to losing Identity, am still waiting for the answers , afterall the big question still lingers . Is Africa lost when the traditional wear and most beautiful traditional dance is forgotten ?

God shall never conform to the standards of men.

For those God foreknew he also predestined to be conformed to the image of his Son, that he might be the firstborn among many brothers and sisters. Romans 8:29

https://youtu.be/WMtqd7IhA8U

Today’s post is just about a song that i have so enjoyed , the message is so amazing and i decided to share it. Actually it was first shared by a friend on his YouTube.

The bit about ‘it’s the creature to submit’ is on point. It’s a wonderful message. Hope you love it too.