Discuss Matters Reading Bible Charity
(February 18 - April 11)
I remember when I was visiting you guys in Seattle the one time you wanted to sit down and talk with me about spiritual things, saying that you do not really have others with whom to discuss such matters. It was a bit abrupt and unexpected for me, and maybe I felt uncomfortable talking about such things with your hubby there, which is one of my weaknesses, so I assume I did not inspire you with any great words of wisdom. But perhaps emailing would be better, as it gives me time to reflect on a matter, perhaps research it in the bible a bit (I have it on the computer, so I can look up verses easily - I can send you this program if you like), and then respond in a precise manner. I´m generally not so good at discussing these issues verbally, although I am trying to break out of that shell and be more vocal. Anyway, as you can imagine, while travelling around Europe like this, I certainly do not get ample opportunity to discuss this matter with others. Even via email it is difficult to find such an audience. Let alone find an English speaking church which would inspire me one day a week. So I have turned to surfing the internet in search of Christian reading material which might inspire me in this direction, for I´ve read the bible so many times I fear it is getting repressively boring and I am finding it difficult to motivate myself to read it further, or to get anything out of it. I found the attached file, and finally a website which has lots of what may be good reading, and thought you might be into reading it. I remember, when in Prague, I tried to discuss with you on this topic but you seemed rather averse to the idea. It seemed you thought that anything outside of the Catholic church was toying with the devil or something. I actually asked Carol about this once, and she asked her mother, who referred to some line in the bible where God said he will build his church on Peter, and from that somehow came the deduction that the Catholic church, which Peter started, is infallible and every other denomination leads people to hell. Or that "reading the bible is only for Baptists". I consider these very faulty arguments. We should all seek a closer relationship with God, and if a certain preacher in a Catholic church achieves this for you or someone, great, but one should always seek wisdom and a closer relationship with God, which should be the main aim. Where this church, or that church, or this reading or that should only be a medium to help accomplish this purpose, meaning that the church or the reading in and of itself should never be considered the final purpose. The bible contains the word of God, and is good "food", as the bible refers it to, which nourishes our spirits and helps lead us towards a more contrite service of God etc., but one should certainly never worship the bible as some icon, or as the end of all ends. These are all various tools and mediums which we can use to help us towards a particular purpose, but we must also consider what that purpose is. Reading the attached text it forced me to reflect on these matters for myself, and I marked certain parts in red for myself, so I can go back to it occasionally and reflect on it, and hope to improve it. Anyway, while reading this you popped in my mind. Not like I am trying to preach to you or anything, but I remembered that time in your living room when you wanted to discuss these matters, so I thought you might appreciate reading it. Or at least appreciate the challenge it might provoke in you and lead you to certain reflection. The bible says that the word of God is like a two edged sword, cutting deep into your heart. I believe that this is the real purpose of the word of God, and ultimately God´s very own purpose, for how could the purpose of someone´s word not reflect their very own purpose? And if a word is like a sharp sword that cuts into our hearts, it implies that it could be painful. After all, serving God implies sacrifice, and sacrifice should imply some sort of pain, because sacrifice by itself implies we are giving up something that is dear to us, whether it be time that we could be "better spending" serving our own agenda, or the giving up of some material possessions etc. But a word which cuts deep into our soul does not only touch on some surface sacrifice or material objects or dedication of time, but on our very own purpose, and deep into our psyche, and challenges our own motivations deep inside us. A subject which many of us might tend to avoid or not reflect on. So I consider it good to read a word which would bring up these issues to me and cause me to reflect on them. Be it "the brim and firestone of the Baptist church", as you put it, or some material I find on the internet. I would never consider myself some faithful attendee of the Baptist denomination. That is not even the church which originally brought me back to Christ, but rather some independent charismatic church in Colorado. But I liked the preacher in the Baptist church of Prague, because he always moved my heart every Sunday and I really liked what he was saying, and wanted to invite you and Carol to listen to him at least on one occasion. But after he left Prague, the next two preachers there really did not do much for me, and I stopped going altogether. I tried numerous other churches in Prague, but they seemed a waste of time for me too, or I objected on other matters, so I resigned to reading the bible only. Anyway, I´m glad I found some good reading on the internet, and glad it has challenged me. I always welcome such a challenge, because I fear I am not doing enough and I need the motivation. It´s hard while travelling like this, and once the preacher I liked left Prague, I did not have any other source there. I generally liked what your Prague preacher had to say, but just felt it was too watered down and did not challenge me enough. Anyway, if you decide to read the attached reading, I think it will explain a lot. Like I said, I´m not trying to preach to you or anything, but since you wrote to me that you were going to bible studies in church, and that you missed not having people around you with whom to discuss such matters, I thought you might welcome the material. Or if you wanted to discuss certain matters with me via email, because I too do not have anyone to discuss such matters with. Which one can find surprising, and which in fact does surprise me a bit now that I actually think about it, considering all the people I know and the amount of time I spend a day emailing. Well, have a good one banana. Right now I´m in Cyprus enjoying the warmer weather, and the opportunity to work on the truck a little bit, because I still do not feel fully settled in, was rushing to get the basics done back in Prague before hitting the road with bro and sis, so many things are still unfinished. And generally feel unsettled. Imagine living in a house that you moved into six months ago and you still have a bunch of partially unpacked boxes lying around, unpainted walls, and construction material sitting stagnant in various corners waiting for some job to be completed. And imagine living and working in such an environment, spending most of your time there, and imagine that entire environment is the size of my little tin box. Such an environment can certainly draw from one´s motivation to work, and I feel it is starting to drag me down. But I enjoy the beach and beautiful nature on the outside, and the opportunity to meet new people and see new places. But the incompleteness of the caravan truck is starting to drag me down, so I am enjoying the opportunity to work on it a bit and bring it towards its eventual completion. Anyway, hope you don´t mind my long letter. After translating for so many years, I find I type pretty fast, almost as if I were talking, and being by myself like this with not so many people to talk to, I often find myself droning on and on in my personal emails, to the point that my friends practically ask me to stop it. So I spread myself out among all my friends and make a conversation out of it. So consider this a big apple sent to you! Think I´ll send it now before I finish reading it, and I´ll put some of this letter on my Christ website, so just ignore my personal letter to you found at the bottom. Have a good one. :0)
Cau Kajo! Jeste zpatky k tomu predeslemu emailu...jo, ta holka co byla mimochodem i u tebe na narozeninach, to je ona!
Yah, I thought that was the one you were talking about, and actually wanted to ask you, but it slipped my mind. I find a lot of people can be smiles and party, like a reflection of my own smile and giving nature, but when my giving runs dry or I am not chipper and happy, the same reflection turns instantly sour. Like they are not capable or interested in supporting me when I'm down and their smiles are there as long as they keep receiving from me. Kind of sad actually, but I think we have a gift, because the giving is like a never ending well which just keeps giving. The bible talks about fresh water, and if we become selfish and horde the well water for ourselves, it become stale and stagnant. Doesn't taste so good, and may lose it's life energy. But by giving we are constantly replenishing the well with fresh and life giving water, and there is the secret in having a giving heart. You are like feeding yourself more by giving more. A wonderful gift indeed, but it can be a drag to see how selfish and uncaring people can be on the receiving end. But I guess I should just feel sorry for them, because they don't have that gift, or don't understand how they can get it, and they only see the immediate here and now when they are actually receiving something, not understanding why they should give when they stop receiving. A sad lot I would say, but not good if I let them drag me down, depress me, and stop me from giving. In any case, I'd rather focus on giving to where it's more appreciated, like to charity etc. It seems I just gave and gave in Prague, and that sometimes when people get too much, they feel guilty and need to separate themselves from the guilt, so they start talking shit about you. Almost creating an ugly excuse why you are so generous, as if you had some mean motive behind it. So I've lost my enthusiasm about being generous to a lot of people, after discovering that they have a tendency to think such things. Makes my stomach turn, and I'd rather leave them alone with their own selfishness and let them deal with it. But I do hope to get more involved in charity. Mother Teresa gave her life and she kept saying she could never pay back for what she received from the poor people she was helping. I guess she is talking about the spiritual satisfaction one gets from helping someone less fortunate than them, and the joy you feel when you help out someone who truly needs it. I look forward to living that joy more one day. Right now I'm still trying to make enough money just to feed myself, and it's difficult to get involved in charity when I keep moving around, but I'm trying.
My husband and I do not drink......I know EVERYONE there does and that will not bother us.....and the pub there with outside Grill is PERFECT.......I sent this on to Brian and it sounds like the winner idea!:) Thanks also for your link to your 001yourtranslationservice.com/christ/.........There is a lot to read and we are so busy today with packing and leaving tomorrow(Tues) I will just say to you that I am impressed Karl. I sensed from the very SECOND that I first saw this site on a Praha google search that I was drawn to this and to your site and to you........I sensed instantly and without words that you were a spiritual man . I will read more later......your honesty about anger and generational vices.....all true, all wise......and God does heal. Miraculously. Life is so simple really......so easy.....God wants us to laugh, to be happy and enjoy.....we tend to make things so ugly and complicated......at a young age you are very wise .
Well, I look younger than my 42, but it's also true that I like to spend a lot of time reflecting. In fact, I can't seem to turn my brain off. If I'm sitting on the tram I'm always thinking about business or this or that. When once asked, a friend told me she was thinking about absolutely nothing while staring off into space, and on numerous occasions. I found this difficult to believe, but perhaps this fact has helped my wisdom, as I'm constantly reflecting. Not to mention that the bible says we should seek wisdom, which I try to do actively. So thanks for the nice compliments. I used to get more hits for my Christ site, but I got busy with work and neglected it for a long time, so people no longer write to me. But I've been working on it again, and hopefully won't take so long before people start writing me again. Must say it was entertaining some of the questions they asked me. Although mostly they were looking for a shoulder to cry on because they broke up with someone - not the volunteer work I had in mind. Maybe I will be an evangelist or something. I've always had an inkling to be a writer, and recently I started realising that with my travel blob etc. I look on the internet for sermons or some good Christian reading and it is difficult to find. And everything I do find they want to charge something for, which I find absolutely appalling. Charging for the word of God like that, if it is the word of God at all. For what I did find didn't inspire me very much, so I feel that perhaps my own writing could be more inspirational. Usually flows into my head after reading the bible a bit. I think that is one good thing about the internet, because it can open the subject to people who otherwise might feel uncomfortable about addressing their questions or problems in person, at a church. Which in itself often seems dead to me. Stand up, sit down, everyone sing together in horrible no part harmony. And then quickly scurry home, lest you might get entrapped in a conversation. Not much fellowship there, but I guess it depends where one is. maybe better in the US. In Canada it was like a dead socialist institution. In Prague I wasn't inspired. There was one church I liked in the US, which seemed more independent thinking. Anyway, I enjoy writing, as you can see from these long letters, and it comes out almost as fast as talking, since I type so fast. Hopefully my Christ site will be able to help save some souls.
You remind me of St. Paul.....i do not know why.....I jsut sense a connection . You are right about making a positive difference in this world. I sense that you really are. I will forward a picture to you of me with my 2 daughters........Amy lives in Minneapolis is married with two darling boys.....(she is on the right of the picture) Molly is on the left side and works in Lincoln (an hour from Omaha ) she had driven to MSP to bring her sister and the boys back to Lincoln for the week to visit . Her husband will come later in the week. I won't bother you any longer Karl.......if you think of other things between now and tomorrow morning.......bring it on.....I am so appreciative. It is Holy Week......if you are spiritual......be on guard and LAUGH.......LOVE....BE HAPPY .....May the angels protect you ..guard you... and always keep you healthy and safe...........Bless you!:) Ann Marie
Thanks for the good comments. I could use some blessing, or primarily work, as my money is running out and I need another one of those miracle things. Sometimes I feel like David in the bible, when the land was subject to three years of drought, until people started asking what was wrong. And they eventually came upon the injustice of some small village, fixed their wrong, and their prosperity resumed. It seems odd that I have had so little work for so long, but it forces me to look around and clean up my shop, so hopefully I'm covering all the bases and God will resume my wealth. I got a bit fat lazy in Prague, and neglected charity and spiritual matters, so such "wrath" always brings one around and things start fresh and new again. But this time I'll really try harder not to drift back into lounge lizardville. Difficult though with our human nature. Hope you're enjoying yourself in my town!
Each and everyone one of us is going through tough times right now, but God is getting ready to bless you in a way that only He can. Keep the faith. My instructions were to pick four people that I wanted God to bless, and I picked you. Please pass this to at least (4) people you want to be blessed and a copy back to me. This prayer is powerful, and prayer is one of the best gifts we receive. There is no cost but a lot of rewards. Let's continue to pray for one another.
thanks for the prayer, it is always uplifting. Cant think of anyone else to forward this to besides the ones you already did. I think all my friends are atheists, or would feel weird about receiving something like that. And I'm not the superstitious type to believe that forwarding these will give me some big powerful benefit. A lot of these things are made up to convince people to forward them, and when they do, everyone just broadcasts everyone else's email addresses, until the forwarded letter ends up in the hands of a spammer and they sell the email addresses. I've read many types of these forwarding emails, including that the cancer society of America will give some money to a dying girl on her deathbed for every forward. None of it is true, and I'm certainly not the superstitious type. But praying for one another is good, and God looks more favourably on that than when we pray only for ourselves, which a lot of people tend to do. I still don't have much work, but recently I had a couple of small projects, so enough to survive another month. It's scary, but I have been doing a lot of soul searching during this period, and think it is good. When I was rolling in lots of cash for the past few years, I forgot about charity and God a bit, which is human nature, so I need to be reminded about this. I think God wants me to be successful, but he knows I have a tendency to get fat and lazy. But I have adopted some new policies because of this, and I'm bored and tired of constantly partying, so hopefully if I start getting lots of work I'll be able to control myself and apply the wealth productively. Well, that's my selling point to God anyway. As long as I have enough work to survive, I'm basically happy. Although I'd like to get more involved in charity and am constantly praying for it. I'm getting rather bored with the translation gig, or even the constantly in front of the computer gig. I'd like to get involved with people more, especially children. Spending less time in front of the computer, which I will probably still always enjoy. The stuff I do is quite intellectually stimulating and I enjoy it, but I'd like to get more people active on a charitable level. That would be nice. Well, hope you had a nice Easter. Mine was rather crazy medical wise, but that's a long story. Think I'll be going to the Greek side for an operation in a couple of weeks. Have a good one.
The prayer: Father, I ask You to bless my friends, relatives and those that I care deeply for, who are reading this right now. Show them a new revelation of Your love and power. Holy Spirit, I ask You to minister to their spirit at this very moment. Where there is pain, give them Your peace and mercy. Where there is self-doubt, release a renewed confidence throu gh Your grace. Where there is need, I ask you to fulfill their needs. Bless their homes, families, finances, their goings and their comings. In Jesus' precious name. Amen. (If the Lord lays upon your heart to send this to more than four "4" people, you are truly blessed). You are in my thoughts and in my prayers God Bless