Veda is Over…I’ve been transformed!

I did it! I’ve been baptized. VEDA (video SSSVeda-31-Im-a-pickleevery day for the month of April) officially ended last week on April 30th. I decided since I was baptized that day I would do a final…summary…video after the baptism.

Everyone getting baptized got there early and one of the pastors talked to us (there were about 50 people). One of the things she shared was the story of the cucumber and the pickle. Basically she explained that the process of stepping into the water to be baptized didn’t automatically change you, just as putting a cucumber into water doesn’t change it. When we make the decision to be baptized we are making a declaration of our faith. That whether we are changed or not from the baptism is really dependent on the work we are doing on ourselves. Are we surrendering to God? Are we doing the work, reading the bible, building a relationship with God etc etc. It’s only then that we, like the cucumber, can be transformed.

It was a lovely evening but as always I would have loved some huge flash of lightning from the sky or some other sign that my life was changing when I was dipped into the water…of course I didn’t get it. I am glad I did it and like the pickle I too have been transformed with my new faith and will never turn back into the cucumber.

I need to continue the work but I look forward to see how my life changes from here on out. Keep stopping by and I’ll let you know how it’s going.

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SSSVeda Day 30 I’m getting baptized today!

Hi Everyone, This is it…the big day…I’m going to be SSSVeda-Day-30-I'm-Getting-Baptizedbaptized today!!! Not a lot to share about it but I’m excited. I’m glad I didn’t do it over the years when I was in retreats or camps where many chose to take the step. I wasn’t ready then. It would have been doing it for others and not for me. Now I’m ready for the commitment. So I’ll let you know next week how it went!

SSSVeda Day 29 Reach out a hand

Reading the letters from Paul you see that people SSSVeda-Day-29-Gift-of-Givingare people…two thousand years later and we are still very much the same when it comes to many of our short comings.

Paul explains that he doesn’t want them to do it out of guilt nor out of wanting something in return. Those who sow little will reap little and those who sow a lot will have a great harvest (Paraphrased)

Reach out to someone in need. I know that money is tight for many of us and I know I wish I could give more money to family and causes…but your gift doesn’t have to be money. ¬†Your time, a text, a call, a pat on the shoulder might be all someone needs to make their day.

Have a great day!

SSSVeda Day 28 My DNA…

I do hope no one is offended by this…not sure why theySSSVeda-Day-28-DNA‘d be but you never know. In any case back in the early Fall or so last year I sent my ‘spit’ into Ancestry.com and had my DNA done. The results were pretty much what we expected; i’m largely Irish, English and Western European…but there was a small part…European Jewish.

I thought it was interesting that we had some Jewish in our ancestry but didn’t think much more about it. Then I start reading the bible. Now it is very clear in the bible…like crystal clear…that the Jews are God’s chosen people. So I had the thought that it must be cool for the Christian Jews…or maybe… Messianic Jew (one who combines the belief Jesus is the Messiah with elements of Judaism) to understand how they really got it from the ‘get-go’. They were given and taught the Old Testament and they figured out the message and recognized that Jesus was the Messiah.

So all that being said I thought it was kind of cool that somewhere back in my lineage I might have some Jewish family ties. Again I am what i am and not pretending to be anything i’m not…but I thought it was kind of cool….so no offense to anyone.

SSSVeda Day 26 Your spiritual community

In reading 2 Corinthians today I was struck by the fact that Paul was having to write a letter to some of the churches he had startedSSSVeda-Day-26-Find-your-community to tell them to quit fighting among themselves. The people were believers but they were calling themselves ‘followers of Paul’, followers of Peter’ or followers of Apollos. He pointed out that they were cutting Jesus up in pieces and that they were all followers of Jesus Christ. He was also trying to stop some ‘misbehaving’ going on, someone was having an adulterous affair etc. How frustrated Paul must have been. I bet he wished he could take his faith and go into the mountains and live away from the complaining of people.

But that isn’t how life works. It would have been easier for Paul and all the others to go create their own commune (think back in the 70s…) Paul knew however that Jesus was very specific about certain things and one of them was that it was the apostles jobs to spread the ‘Good News’ and teach people about our Savior.

Fast forward a couple of thousand years and the story is the same…there’s a lot of arguing on which church ‘has it right’ and who believes what. I think having a lot of churches isn’t necessarily a bad thing, I know when you go around to churches and see where you feel comfortable you find the style of the pastor may or may not feel comfortable to you. And you MUST make sure the teachings are biblical based and centered on the fact that Jesus Christ is the Son of God and the ONLY way to eternal salvation.

SSSVeda Day 25 Looking at life through different lenses

I had to buy some reading glasses recently. I found a pair for $1.00 at Dollar Tree which i thought was a heck of a deal so I bought two. SSSVeda-Day-25-Lifes-new-lensesOne i keep in my prayer closet and one I keep on my bedside table.

Some mornings I need the glasses, some mornings I don’t. But when I need them it’s amazing that a little piece of plastic can turn a blur into words.

The glasses kind of remind me of how the reading of the bible and accepting Jesus into my life causes me to see things clearer in my life as well. I see things from a different perspective…and I like the view.

SSSVeda Day 24 The Road to Emmaus

This week at church the pastor talked about theSSSVeda-Day-24-Road-to-Emmaus road to Emmaus. The funny thing was…I knew what he was talking about!!! Briefly stated the Road to Emmaus (there are many retreats taking their name from this ‘scene’ in the bible) takes place on Resurrection Day after Jesus’ body is found missing from the tomb.

Two followers of Jesus are walking home from Jerusalem. They are heading to the town of Emmaus (I think the bible said it was roughly 7 miles away). The two are saddened by the crucifixion of the man they had believed was going to triumphantly be their King and free the Jews from the Romans.

Jesus comes up and begins walking with them. (The bible says God keeps them from recognizing him). Jesus asks them what they are talking about and they tell him surprised that he could be so out of touch with the big news. when they are done Jesus chides them for their lack of faith and proceeds to give them a history lesson on how the crucifixion happened exactly how the prophets said it would in the old testament.

Jesus agrees to eat with them and He breaks the bread their eyes are ‘opened’ and they suddenly recognize him. They were sitting with the resurrected Jesus. How cool is that?!

Jesus then vanishes and the two guys (Cleopas and an unnamed dude) high tail it back to Jerusalem to tell everyone what happened. (Their story represent two more documented people who saw the risen King.)

Anyway what struck me then and has struck me in reading through the books of Matthew, Mark and Luke, is how the Old Testament is so specific about what iwas going to happen when the Savior appeared and yet most of the Jews didn’t see the connection. They didn’t believe Jesus was the Messiah written about by the prophets.

I recognize that not everyone believes what I believe but I’d say read the bible all the way through and then let’s talk.

The bible even religious beliefs aside, is a history lesson. The facts in the bible have been proven by thousands of experts, many of whom set out to disprove the events and were unable to do so. (Some like Lee Strobel actually became believers after their research. ) God knew what He was doing when He put the bible together. The deeper people look into it, the more evidence they find. Nothing is random.

Over the last six months I’ve watched a series of documentaries and read some books by non religious experts about the events in the bible and how the bible was constructed. Not because I needed the facts to believe but because I am amazed how intricately the book and facts are woven together that make it virtually impossible to disprove. Over and over again the data in the bible is ruled accurate. No question that a man named Jesus lived…performed many many many miracles, was crucified and rose from the dead.

I guess the question of whether He is the Son of God is still up for debate but geez people…after reading all the other evidence that doesn’t seem to be that big of a leap.

The bible is a very important part of mankind’s history so even if you aren’t religiously inclined, approach the reading as a history lesson. What have you got to lose? Stick with it. Read it all the way through and see what conclusion you come up with. It might surprise you!