By Mark Ellis
The hit miniseries The Bible is setting records on cable television for the History Channel, with as many as 13 million viewers tuning in for the blockbuster. But certain aspects of the filming were even more remarkable, as producer Mark Burnett reports highly unusual occurrences behind-the-scenes that he labels miracles.
The epic five-part series, which runs through Easter, is the most-watched entertainment program on cable television, according to ABC’s Good Morning America.
The show has many celebrities following it, including rapper and actor L L Cool J, actress Lisa Rinna, and even Oprah, according to ABC. Oprah tweeted throughout the most recent episode several times, particularly about Samson: “Samson distracted by Delilah. fatal flaw,” she noted. Oprah’s interest and involvement may boost the ratings even higher.
R & B superstar Cee Lo Green’s musical addition to the production is also attracting a younger audience, giving a fresh new feel to a time-honored story.
The making of the TV behemoth was filled with strange happenings that Producer Mark Burnett can’t quite explain. When the actor who portrays Jesus told Nicodemus “The Holy Spirit is like the wind,” a strong rushing wind that felt like the exhaust behind a 747 almost blew the set over and sustained for 20 seconds, Burnett told Entertainment Weekly.
“Everyone just looked at everyone like, ‘What just happened?’” Burnett said.
The production – filmed in Morocco — also hired a ‘snake wrangler’ to make sure that dangerous reptiles did not get near the actors, and he usually found one or two snakes each day.
However, on the day the momentous crucifixion scene was filmed, the snake expert found an unprecedented 48 venomous snakes crawling around their re-created Golgotha – the place where Jesus defeated Satan, who is often depicted in Scripture as a snake.
When the baptism of Jesus was filmed in a reservoir, the producers were alarmed when part of the actor’s unique costume came off and floated away.
“Four days later, a kid showed up from many, many, many miles away, who had been seeking us through the desert to return this to us,” Burnett told Entertainment Weekly. “He didn’t know what it was why he should seek us, but he felt he had to return it.”
The series will air its final installment on March 31, Easter Sunday.
Two traveling angels stopped to spend the night in the home of a wealthy family. The family was rude and refused to let the angels stay in the mansion’s guest room. Instead, the angels were given a space in the cold basement. As they made their bedroom the hard floor, the older angel saw a hole in the wall and repaired it. When the younger angel asked why, the older angel replied…. “Things aren’t always what they seem.”
The next night the pair came to rest at the house of a very poor, but very hospitable farmer and his wife. After sharing what little food they had, the couple let the angels sleep in their bed where they could have a good nights’ rest. When the sun came up the next morning the angels found the farmer and his wife in tears. Their only cow, whose milk had been their sole income, lay dead in the field.
The younger angel was infuriated and asked the older angel “How could you have let this happen!? The first man had everything, yet you helped him,” she accused. ”The second family had so little, but was willing to share everything and you let their cow die.”
“Things aren’t always what they seem,” the older angel replied.”When we stayed in the basement of the mansion, I noticed there was gold stored in that hole in the wall. Since the owner was so obsessed with greed and unwilling to share his good fortune, I sealed the wall so he wouldn’t find it. Then last night as we slept in the farmers bed, the angel of death came for his wife. I gave her the cow instead. “Things aren’t always what they seem.”
Sometimes this is exactly what happens when things don’t turn out the way you think they should. If you have faith, you just need to trust that every outcome is always to your advantage. You might not know it until some time later. “Things aren’t always what they seem.”
Contributed by Kathaleen Pinto
In this fast, I’ve been basking myself in uplifting praise songs. It really prepares your spirit to worship and to fight as you pray seeking God for direction and instructions. Worship is a lifestyle and in this Daniel fast, it is the most powerful tool to have close by when you encounter attacks coming out of nowhere. Fix your heart, mind, body and soul towards Jesus. He can protect you from confusion, depression, pressure, anger, and any type of negative thoughts that start to attack your mind. Spiritual Warfare is not a joke. For those that are participating in the 21 Day Daniel Fast, it is imperative that you focus your mind to think positive and wholesome thoughts. Guard your mind and hold it captive to the obedience of Christ Jesus.
2 Corinthians 10:5
casting down arguments and every high thing that exalts itself against the knowledge of God, bringing every thought into captivity to the obedience of Christ,
Bless your soul with worship when you are feeling low…it’s a mighty weapon of warfare that should not be underestimated especially at this time. Fill your spirit with WORSHIP and it will be so natural by the time you come into a Sunday service to lift your hands and give the Lord PRAISE. Some people can be soooo down that they are unable to lift their hands because something is missing in their lives. It’s worship….don’t wait until Sunday pops by to get your worship on. You’ve got to practice it everyday until it becomes natural to you. Many have this amazing weapon of warfare, but can’t get delivered simply because they aren’t using this weapon of warfare. It’s time for God’s people to rise up and Give the Lord Praise and Worship so that they can see Him move mightily in their lives.
If we want to sing songs of DELIVERANCE….we have to fill our spirits with WORSHIP everyday! If you don’t, then it will be as if you are going into battle without weapons hoping that you will win. God ensures victory when we give Him Praise and especially when we Worship Him in Spirit and in Truth. So today, fill your spirit with Worship and fix your attitude about Worship. The strategy of the enemy is always to steal the Lord’s worship so what better way than to distract us from using this powerful weapon of warfare by robbing our attention and focus from God by making us focus on our problems rather than seeking God and seeing God as the answer to our problems. Fill your spirit with songs of Deliverance and surely God will Deliver you out of your trial.
You are my hiding place; You shall preserve me from trouble; You shall surround me with songs of deliverance. Selah
My Sister Sharon just found this awesome song called Awesome God and I just have to share it here. It’s sooooooo good. The original song is greatm but this remix is just awesome. I pray that it ministers to you today. It’s by Charles Jenkins Remix ft. Jessica Reedy, Isaac, Da truth, Canton Jones – KB4. I’ll also post the original song by Charles Jenkins.
Enjoy these songs everybody and may it bless your spirit today Everybody!
The Original Song
Today the third person of the Trinity is underappreciated by those who misunderstand Him and misrepresented by those overzealous for His manifestations. Somewhere between those extremes we must realize our desperate need for a genuine move of the Holy Spirit.
The world is full of books about God the Father who created the universe, and more books are written about Jesus the Son of God than anyone who ever walked on this planet. But isn’t it interesting that far fewer books have been written about God the Holy Spirit?
When teaching on prayer, Jesus declared, “If you then, being evil, know how to give good gifts to your children, how much more will your heavenly Father give the Holy Spirit to those who ask Him!” (Luke 11:13, emphasis added). You’d think that promise would create a huge desire to know more about this promised Helper—?who He is and what He does. And it would be even better if we were to experience Him as a living reality the way the early believers did.
We know that Jesus the Son is seated at the right hand of the Father (Luke 22:69; Eph. 1:20; Col. 3:1). So that means the Holy Spirit is God’s only agent on Earth. He is the only experience we can have of God Almighty, the only way we can have the work of Jesus Christ applied to our lives and the only way we can understand God’s Word. Without the Holy Spirit, we are like the disciples before Pentecost—?sincere but struggling with confusion and defeat.
More than 100 years ago, Samuel Chadwick, a great Methodist preacher and leader in England, summed it up concisely: “The Christian religion is hopeless without the Holy Ghost.”
The early church provides the perfect illustration of that hopelessness. It was made up of simple men and women. The leaders were former fishermen and tax collectors who fled in fear when Jesus was arrested and needed them most. They weren’t courageous and faithful. In fact, they lacked faith and courage. They were the least likely to be put in charge of any Christian enterprise.
Yet after the events in Acts 2, when the Holy Spirit was poured out, those same nobodies were suddenly transformed. With courage and faith, they turned their community, and eventually the world, upside down.
It wasn’t a result of their seminary training; they didn’t have any. They couldn’t hand out copies of the New Testament; it hadn’t been written yet. It wasn’t because they were wealthy and had the greatest sound system and light show at their church; they were poor people without a church building.
To the existing Jewish religious establishment, those early Christians were mocked as unlearned and ignorant people with few resources. To the Roman Empire they seemed fanatical and strange.
But one thing they did possess was the power of the Holy Spirit. Jesus told them to rely on the Spirit for everything. The early believers knew well that Christianity was hopeless without the Holy Spirit.
Giving the Spirit His Due
The Holy Spirit is underappreciated and underpreached by the 21st century church. There is a prejudice of sorts against the Holy Spirit that impedes many from learning more about Him.
The body of Christ is often divided into two sides. One side stresses the Word of God, separating itself from what it views as the emotional fanaticism often linked to those emphasizing the work of the Holy Spirit. The other side is sometimes known for drifting into unbiblical manifestations and unorthodox teaching while attributing it all to the Spirit of God.
Seeing the abuse and bad teaching, many on the first side will say: “I’m not interested in experiences and manifestations of the Holy Spirit. I just want to study the Word.”
But it was the Holy Spirit who inspired the Bible, and there are lots of promises concerning His person and work. How can anyone treasure God’s Word without giving the Holy Spirit His rightful place?
To those who move in circles strongly emphasizing the Holy Spirit, they must be reminded that everything must be tested by Scripture. The Spirit never contradicts the Word He gave us. He also never puts the focus on the preacher, because the Holy Spirit was sent to glorify Christ alone (John 16:14).
Somewhere in the middle is the kind of Christianity we see in Scripture, where the Word of God is honored along with a childlike dependence and openness to the Holy Spirit. Only the Holy Spirit can make the things of Christ real and alive to people.
Christianity does not stop at the cross where Jesus died and paid the price for our sins. After Good Friday was Resurrection Sunday, when the Spirit raised Christ.
Yet so many of us live with faint trickles and shallow pools of the Spirit, rather than the promised rivers of living water. “On the last day, that great day of the feast, Jesus stood and cried out, saying, ‘If anyone thirsts, let him come to Me and drink. He who believes in Me, as Scripture has said, out of his heart will flow rivers of living water’” (John 7:37-38, emphasis added).
By this He meant the Spirit. Everything about the Spirit speaks of powerful currents of life that refresh us and flow out to bless others.
Let’s remember how any person becomes a Christian: Before a person can feel the need for Jesus Christ as Savior, he or she must first be convicted of sin. “And when He has come, He will convict the world of sin, and of righteousness, and of judgment” (John 16:8). The Holy Spirit shows us our sin and our need for a Savior. That is what every believer experiences in conversion to Christ.
1:00AM EDT 7/1/2010 Ed Donnally
Bill and Annette Wiese have been changed forever by 23 minutes of unthinkable horror.
When Bill Wiese says he’s been to hell, he isn’t using a metaphor. He says he saw and felt its horrors for precisely 23 minutes.
At exactly 3:23 a.m. on Nov. 22, 1998, Annette Wiese awoke to her husband’s screams. Rushing down the hall of their Santa Ana, Calif., home to the living room, she found him lying on the floor in a fetal position, his hands grasping at the sides of his head, begging her to pray for him.
Wiese explained in gasps to his wife that God had taken him into hell, a place that many people don’t believe exists.
“I knew that most people on the surface of the earth did not believe or even know that there was a whole world going on down here,” Wiese says. “This place was so terrifying, so intense and so hostile that it would be impossible for me to exaggerate the horror.”
Wiese described being mauled by four enormous fiends and feeling complete terror. He had insatiable thirst, he breathed putrid air, heard endless screaming and was aware of intense flames and a gigantic pit.
“It was terrible,” he says. “I was thinking, I have to get out. Only, in hell, you understand you’re never going to get out.”
Although Wiese had been a Christian many years, he says God blocked his awareness of that so he would experience the hopelessness of hell. “The fact that I knew God was kept from my mind,” he says.
When suddenly Christ removed Wiese from his torment, He told him he was to preach the message that hell exists and assure unbelievers it is not God’s desire for them to suffer for eternity.
The visit, chronicled in Wiese’s book, 23 Minutes in Hell, started the Wieses’ evangelistic journey. They founded Soul Choice Ministries and since 2007 have transitioned from successful real estate careers in Southern California into full-time ministry.
Both are longtime Christians and neither had a prophetic inkling of the event Wiese would go through or their call to evangelism. Wiese does not know why God chose him to carry this message.
“The only possible reason I can think of,” he says, “is that God knew I would draw attention to His Word and point people to what the Word has to say [about hell].”
He believes God wants the message delivered to the unsaved for salvation and to Christians to invoke witnessing. His description of his visit is sobering enough to do both.
“It’s impossible to know the hopelessness of hell,” he says. “Here, even if things are terrible, you think you can die and get out. But there you can’t die. And you know you’re never going to get out.”
His message stirs an adverse reaction in many people because Wiese claims hell is not a biblical metaphor but an actual place. Hell, he has discovered, is under fire by some Christians.
“The doctrine of hell has disappeared this century,” he says. “God wants me to draw attention to His Word that says hell is real—not allegorical but [a] literal burning hell—and people will go there if they don’t know Jesus as Lord and Savior.
“It’s not important that [people] believe me,” he says. “It’s important they believe what the Bible says. Hell is real, and I don’t want anyone to go there.”
Source: To Hell and Back Again.
It would be naive and irresponsible to suggest that all spiritual dreams result in a true God connection. Dreamers who mistake their own subconscious thoughts or even demonic influence as divine instruction can make grim and historic mistakes. Recently a woman in a rural village sacrificed her child in the river out of obedience to what she thought was a dream from God. So how can you discern whether a dream is from God?
- It’s biblical. Make sure it doesn’t contradict the Bible. Scripture forbids many kinds of spiritism, including sorcery and consulting psychics (see Lev. 19:31, Deut. 18:10-13). It’s a good idea to get counsel from a trusted pastor or Bible teacher.
- It’s convicting. “Usually, when you are very in tune with spiritual things, if you have a dream you are convicted by it,” says Abraham Sarker, author of Understand My Muslim People. (See Is. 6:1-6.)
- It lingers. Unlike most dreams that fade from memory, a dream from God lingers and might bother you until it fulfills its purpose.
- It comes to pass. Many dream conversions are based on testimonies of people whose dreams literally come true, as in the account of Saul and Ananias (Acts 9:10-19). An aid worker tells about a woman in Indochina who cried when she first met the worker’s friend. She recognized the man from a dream she had. In the dream, this man told her he had a message for her. “So she talked with him, and he led her to the Lord,” says the worker. This type of experience is commonly reported in the underground church.
Would You Recognize a Christian Cult if You Were In One?
News headlines are filled with stories of religioius cults rising across the country. Charisma News Editor Jennifer LeClaire offers insights on how to recognize a Christian cult.
Read more at:
Don’t be fooled as I was. Recognize occultic influences for what they are.
I didn’t want to face my furies. I wanted someone else to do it for me. As a compulsive person, I was particularly vulnerable to the quick fix of mind-bending fads and cults.
Compulsive people are dependency-prone. And from childhood I’d been attracted by the invisible world.
Superstition was part and parcel of New England life. There were rabbit’s foot keychains and horseshoes nailed over doorways.
Then came the Ouija board craze. Great mysteries were revealed by this means, a neighbor assured me. She had special clairvoyant insights, and in my early teens I made frequent visits to her house seeking answers to all kinds of problems.
Once as a seventh-grader, my friend Betty Lou and I attended a magic show at the Barre (Vermont) Municipal Auditorium. When the magician needed volunteers, we streaked to the stage.
Perched on wooden folding chairs, we stared obediently into his intense blue eyes. Later friends told us that after being given hypnotic suggestions, we had scratched frantically as if covered by fleas and shivered violently from icy cold blasts.
Afterward, my mind wouldn’t focus. I felt confused, disjointed. The next morning I made the mile walk back to the auditorium. At my knock the door was flung open, and there he stood.
“I’m one of the people you hypnotized last night,” I told him. “I’ve felt strange ever since you woke us up. My mind seems fuzzy. Everything is all mixed up.”
“You must be one of the very sensitive ones,” he replied. “Really, what I did last night was routine. Perhaps you went into a higher plane of consciousness than the others.”
He pulled a chair beside mine and explained that he would call upon a higher power to help me. I didn’t understand the words he used after that.
Ten minutes or more passed. His voice trailed off into a chant.
“You should have no further problems now, Miss,” he said.
I thanked him weakly and backed out of the room. But a part of me that had felt safe and secure before, now felt violated.
Dabbling With Deception
Psychic phenomena continued to fascinate and lure me. Shortly after representing my state as Miss Vermont in the Miss America pageant, I visited a woman who told fortunes with a deck of cards.
Read More at:
In a quiet place in her heart, God revealed to her that He had made her well, that all the crying and heart-wrenching sobbing that she had experienced was part of the healing from the abuse that she had suffered. God revealed to Lisa that He would prepare her to go into the world and tell her story of healing to all who would listen.
Note: LifeSite News has published the remarkable testimony of 35-year-old Lisa Moeller, a former drug-addict lesbian who found Jesus. It’s a lengthy article, but for those who find it an applicable subject matter, well worth reading. The following is the last part of the report. Click on the link provided to read it in its entirety:
In the midst of her lesbian lifestyle, Lisa had an “unsettled feeling that it just wasn’t enough”. Through her depression and tears it began to dawn on her that she had a “God-shaped hole in my heart, and was wise enough to know nothing but Him would fill it.” She would pray: “God, please don’t let this be it for me,” all the time thinking her prayer futile since she “never believed in mixing my lifestyle and the Truth of God into one.”
But God, who honors the deepest desires of the human heart, must have heard the broken woman’s prayer.
As Lisa was on her way to Spokane in the summer of 2010 to collect signatures for a state ballot at a gay pride parade, she experienced a supernatural moment of God’s healing grace that turned her homosexual life upside-down.
“One night in my hotel, I went to bed completely homosexual. My mannerisms, dress, body language, etc., were all very masculine. I hated men, angry at every one for the abuse that I had suffered by a neighbor when I was a child”, she revealed. “When I awoke, there was a Presence in the room that I cannot find the words to completely explain. It was a peace I had never experienced before.”
Lisa was shocked the following morning by a new set of desires and inclinations that she began to experience right away.
She tuned the TV to a familiar female news anchor that would have normally found attractive and could not understand why she was not interested in her anymore. On her way to work that same morning, she caught herself watching a man jogging down the road, and she could not take her eyes off of him.
Lisa remembers panicking. She did not grasp the significance of what had happened to her. She broke down in overwhelming confusion. But, in a quiet place in her heart, God revealed to her that He had made her well, that all the crying and heart-wrenching sobbing that she had experienced was part of the healing from the abuse that she had suffered. God revealed to Lisa that He would prepare her to go into the world and tell her story of healing to all who would listen.
Lisa was distraught: How could she who did not know how to be a woman, dress like a woman, talk like a woman, or even walk like a woman become a part of God’s plan?
In an act of faith, Lisa put the restoration of her identity into the hands of God. As part of the healing journey she experienced a dramatic stripping away of “every resource in my life I ever attempted to hold onto.”
Gone were the romantic relationships. Gone were her close friends. She became separated from the destructive influences of her past life. Lisa learned to rely totally on God for her support. She learned to discern the voice of God above all other voices.
“Although the last two years were undoubtedly the loneliest and hardest two years of my life, I grew completely dependent on God” she said.
During moments of prayer, God revealed to Lisa the reason why she took on a masculine identity and treated her female partners so well. It was not because of her own insecurities, or because she wanted what was truly good for these women. Everything that Lisa did for her partners was really done on behalf of the little girl inside herself who was sexually abused. God revealed to Lisa that through her actions, she was attempting to heal herself from the abuse she had suffered as a little girl. But it proved to be an unending cycle, because she saw that no one can ever be the source of healing. Lisa understood that her yearning for healing was why she could never do enough for her partners. She learned that she could not heal herself because only God alone is the One Who heals . . .
After Lisa was healed that night at the hotel, or “delivered from homosexuality” as she likes to put it, she believes that God restored her identity as a woman and set authentic feminine inclinations and desires within her.
“Now I desire the things that my partners did. I want to be held, taken care of, protected, talked to sweetly, and treated gently,” she said. “My identity is now intact and safe in the hands of Jesus, and that is how He created me to feel.”
“Sometimes we carry so many burdens that are not our own … things we have no control of, questions and worries that do not rightfully belong to us. God wants you to do an inventory of your soul to see what you can find.”
“If you are carrying burdens that belong to Him, He wants them back. He is ready to lighten your load . . . I finally have peace and I owe it all to Jesus Christ. Not many people would look at a drug addict and a lesbian and dare make the statement: ‘One day she will serve the Lord.’ It sounds pretty ridiculous, but it happened.”
After three kids, 22 years of marriage and a fortune spent on his wife’s health, Hafiz didn’t know what else he could do for her. In a land where women often face brutal mistreatment, Hafiz was a fervently attentive husband, but Laboni was incapable of caring. She didn’t know why, but she was ready to leave—again.
By now, Hafiz knew the drill, but that didn’t make him resent it any less. As hard as he tried to keep Laboni from wandering out on her own, her mental illness would always make her resist. Their once happy marriage had turned into a nightmare, and Hafiz was desperate to wake up.
Read More of her story here: Her Illness; His Nightmare – Gospel for Asia.
There was one thing that bothered me about our family prayer – it was too monotonous. It had two songs to sing, a psalm to read, and everyone prayed. Mamma prayed the longest while my sister and I picked at each other.
It was alright once and twice but then it became more of a ritual. And if we missed any part of it, there was nothing short of judgement that we felt on us. (Important to ponder on how to keep your family prayers fresh – oh my, I am a parent already!)
I wonder if our church services have become rituals too. The only thing that changes everything about a service is the presence and power of the Holy Spirit. Apart from that it is simply a ritual and a tradition passed down the years.
Good to ask, why do we do what we do? If we don’t have a solid answer other than it was something that has always been done, it is time to change.
One thing, I did not understand in our culture was that almost after 45 minutes of worship three people would pray extremely long prayers for the blessing of the meeting. And I would wonder, so what was the last 45 minutes about? Or didn’t that need God’s blessing?
How about some churches that still have testimonies that have no head or tail, no beginning or end, for somebody’s joy at the expense of everyone’s time. Testimonies in the church must be highly monitored as you are in an assembly.
One of the infamous testimonies is about a lady who got to testify about her dying goat and she wept and wept. And she cried more because her pastor’s beard resembled that of the goat. Now I don’t know if that is a true story but quite a popular one.
Questions you need to ask while deciding to include in your service timings the testimonies or even entertaining guests are:
Does this glorify God?
Is this going to a blessing?
Is this something the pastor has to summarise?
Is this worth everybody’s time?
A young church planter recently asked me, what can I do different in my church service? I simply said, “Don’t do the done, seek God for the new”.
Read More at:
This is a reblogged post from Evangelist Shyju Mathew. I think it’s a great read…makes you think doesn’t it…..? What great things can make the Devil hate the church? Why doesn’t the Devil Hate the Church? Do we lack power, authority or conviction? Food for thought. Enjoy this post everybody!
From as long as I can remember I grew up in a church, a Pentecostal Malayalee church to be specific. Even though we saw the enemy try to creep in from time to time, it was a blessed church that enriched us spiritually.
The Lord gave my young ministry further exposure when I got to travel at the age of 11 to preach the Word of God. In that light, I also saw how the enemy had his finger in many of those churches I travelled.
Here are few of the areas where the enemy tries to place his finger on and 10 things he would love to see in your church:
1. A Divided Church With Internal Politics
There is nothing worse than a church that has a kingdom of its own within the Kingdom. What frightens me the most is the carelessness and casualness with which people fight within the church.
Let us not forget that it was in the New Testament itself that Ananias and Sapphira was struck dead for lying against the Holy Spirit. It’s good to remember that the church is not our playground, it’s a holy body where God meets, speaks and ministers to His children.
2. A Sleeping Church Who Has No Time to Pray But Play:
It bothers me that a church gets a full attendance for a picnic but not even a 1/3rd attendance for a prayer meeting.
The devil is not afraid of such a lukewarm church because only a praying church is a fire breathing church.
Read More: 10 Things The Devil Loves About Your Church
Well, as some of you know I’ve been reading a lot of books lately concerning healing and deliverance so today’s post is more in respect to gathering information to keep Parents in particular well-informed about the crazy trends that youth are facing today. Some of these activities you may be aware of already and some of them are completely news to me. All of these activities listed below are from ivillage.com if you want to read up on them yourself.
I did a post earlier this year about the story of a 16 year old ex- cutter that is a trend that teens are becoming more adepted at concealing. All I can say is that when it comes to healing and deliverance ministry and intercession as a whole, the most important thing for all of us to do when counseling someone is first get educated about the trends that are out there and then assess the types of activities or behaviours that someone has been engaging with in order to pray strategically, and/or direct the person to proper resources for professional help. You can only do this by gathering information and educating yourself about these strange activities that are evolving as technology keeps advancing and as teens and children experiment with new crazy ideas that soon become fads.
Disclaimer: This post is in no way an exhaustive list because there are probably new fads popping up everyday that we may not even be aware of, but we’ve got to start somewhere and become more educated with the stuff that’s bombarding children today. The information gathered here is written by Brooke Showell posted in ivillage.com so all the credit goes to her in this guest post.
May this information provided here help parents to become more vigilant in protecting their kids and teaching them the dangers of engaging in these kinds of activities.
Knowledge is power and wisdom preserves LIFE.
God bless you everybody and may you grow wiser in your own daily affairs as well as you become informed of the changing trends and fads that are costing people’s lives.
For wisdom is a defense as money is a defense, But the excellence of knowledge is that wisdom gives life to those who have it.
Here are a list of 20 Activities that you should be aware of if you aren’t already.
Teens Drinking Hand Sanitizer -
Many germaphobes are addicted to hand sanitizer every time they shake hands, sneeze or touch a subway pole, but some teens looking for a cheap high are using it in a highly disturbing new way. Kids are actually getting drunk off the over-the-counter cleanser, according to the Los Angeles Times — most formulas contain 62 percent ethyl alcohol, and using salt to separate the alcohol from the sanitizer yields a potent 120-proof shot. After a few drinks, a person might be so drunk that medical intervention is necessary, as was the case with six teenagers with alcohol poisoning who checked into the emergency room at two hospitals in San Fernando Valley, CA. Although it’s currently a small problem, health officials worry the behavior might indicate a more widespread, dangerous trend, as teens have been known to use other household items like mouthwash or cough syrup to produce a buzz. If parents buy hand sanitizer, experts advise using the foam version (versus the gel type) because it’s harder to extract the alcohol.
Car Surfing -
Car Surfing is back in the news again after a 16-year-old Florida girl suffered a massive brain injury while attempting it, according to TODAY. Teenage Hannah Huntoon was trying to ride on the trunk of a friend’s car while holding onto the rear-window windshield wiper and fell off. In other incidents of the dangerous and illegal trend, kids have climbed on top of the roof or trunk of a moving car like they’re surfing. Not only is the unrestrained surfer in danger, but the situation can get even more grave if the driver loses control or just follows the turns of the road. The result: A serious, potentially fatal accident.
The Choking Game -
It’s been around for years, and it’s still deadly as ever. Kids literally strangle themselves using either an object like a belt or a rope or their own hands to experience a momentary high. They can pass out and hurt themselves, cause brain damage or even death. And if all that isn’t enough to keep you up at night, a new study conducted by the Oregon Public Health Division reports that middle school kids who play the “Choking Game” (also known as Knock Out, Space Monkey, Flat-lining or the Fainting Game) are more likely to try other worrisome activities. The study showed that 6 percent of the state’s teens admitted to playing this so-called game, boys and girls seemed to participate more or less equally, and participants were more likely to be sexually active and drug abusers. What’s more, girls who copped to playing were more apt to gamble and eat poorly, while boys were more likely to be exposed to violence. The study’s lead researcher, Robert Nystrom, recommends parents be on alert for warning signs of the game, including unusual marks on the neck, red dots around the eyelids (a sign of hemorrhaging) and unexplained headaches. To learn more, parents can visit Games Adolescents Shouldn’t Play (GASP), a group that aims to raise awareness of — and put an end to — the game for good.
The trend seems harmless enough at first: “Planking” involves lying face-down on the ground in an unexpected place and then uploading a picture to Facebook or a blog to share with the world. And some of it is innocent, with teens and twenty-somethings posting pictures of themselves face-planted on tree branches and lawns. What isn’t: Kids who raise the ante with photos taken in dangerous places — on a rooftop, an escalator, or, as in the recent case of a 20-year-old who just died while planking, balanced on a terrace railing seven stories high. Australian Acton Beale is reportedly the first person to die from planking.
Parents are usually concerned about their college students doing more shots than studying, but the New York Daily News recently reported on a worrisome new drinking trend of “vodka eyeballing.” Partying co-eds tilt back their heads and have a vodka shot poured onto their eye, which gives a quick buzz when the alcohol enters the bloodstream through veins at the back of the eye. This stunt seems to have come from outlandish Las Vegas nightclubs, but has made its way onto university campuses. Not only does the idea sound not-so-smart, but doctors are concerned about possible long-term damage to the sensitive eye area, like scarring and impaired vision.
Purple drank is a legal and lethal concoction of Sprite, Jolly Ranchers and codeine cough syrup. Rappers, hip-hop artists and pro athletes have made this fad cool and brought it into the mainstream. Lil’ Wayne has been photographed with his “purple” filled cup, Johnny Jolly of the Green Bay Packers was reportedly drinking it in 2009 while driving, and Jim Marcus Russell of the Oakland Raiders was arrested for possession of codeine syrup without a prescription. There’s even a style of music for “leaners” to listen to — it’s slowed down to mirror the effects of the drink, which are unresponsiveness, lethargy, hallucination and a slow-mo zombie feeling
The worst part about these herb-based, marijuana wanna bes? They’re totally legal. Thought to give a similar high to smoking pot, these products are not regulated and the smoker could be inhaling toxic or poisonous contaminants. The DEA declared an emergency effort, banning the five main ingredients used in these synthetic drugs. According to MSNBC.com, makers of the faux Mary Jane have already started finding new chemicals to avoid the ban.
The Ball Tapping Game
Remember dead leg? You would hit someone as hard as you could in his thigh and run. Well, this is similar and don’t let its childlike name fool you. The idea of the ball-tapping game is to “tap” someone in the, well, balls…hard, real hard. Gawker.com reported on a boy who had to have a testicle removed due to the intensity of a tapping game he partook in. Warn your son that even though this sounds like a test of his manliness, it could challenge his manly ability to have children someday. What ever happened to good, old-fashioned noogies, wedgies and Indian burns?
The Body Spray Flamethrower
Google Earth Pool Crashing
I just read this story and thought it worth sharing. I am amazed at the power of forgiveness even in the most tragic of circumstances, this mans story about forgiving the man who murdered and raped his wife and 10 year-old daughter brought me to tears. I feel challenged by this level of compassion and forgiveness. Truly, we can only forgive by the spirit of God. we can’t do things by might and power…it really is by Gods spirit.
So he answered and said to me: “This is the word of the LORD to Zerubbabel: ‘Not by might nor by power, but by My Spirit,’ Says the LORD of hosts.
May this post minister to those who struggle with forgiveness, for I know that such a story has challenged my faith to forgive people, but I believe to a great extent we can forgive like this man did when we seek the help of the Holy Spirit to come into our heart and heal us so that we can forgive people like Jesus did for us. God Bless you everybody!
“As a Believer in Christ, I know that God forgives all the sins of those who have faith in Him. In this, I am instructed to forgive first. Knowing that God will forgive even murderers if there is true repentance, Bryan Clay will stand in judgment before Him. It is my prayer that my wife Yadira and my daughter Karla are in Heaven waiting for my sons and me to arrive to spend eternity with them. In fact, I know this is true.” -Arturo Martinez-Sanchez
(Las Vegas, NV)—Citing his Roman Catholic faith, a Las Vegas, Nevada, man nearly beaten to death in a brutal, random home invasion that also killed his beloved wife and ten-year-old daughter, has forgiven his attacker. Just three months after being left for dead after a vicious beating by a hammer wielding criminal, Arturo Martinez-Sanchez, 39, said in a recent news conference at his newly re-opened North Las Vegas boxing gym that his beliefs make it possible to forgive the killer, who perpetrated what local police call one of the most heinous crimes in memory.
Immediately following the vicious attack upon Martinez-Sanchez, the alleged killer, Bryan Clay, 22, turned to wife Yadira Martinez, 38, and daughter Karla, 10, raping both and bludgeoning them to death with the same claw hammer that left the family patriarch semi-comatose and unable to speak. A funeral mass for Yadira and Karla was said by Rev. Alberto Alzate, Parochial Vicar of the family’s parish, St. Christopher’s Catholic Church, North Las Vegas, Nevada.
“As a Believer in Christ, I know that God forgives all the sins of those who have faith in Him. In this, I am instructed to forgive first. Knowing that God will forgive even murderers if there is true repentance, Bryan Clay will stand in judgment before Him. It is my prayer that my wife Yadira and my daughter Karla are in Heaven waiting for my sons and me to arrive to spend eternity with them. In fact, I know this is true,” declared Martinez-Sanchez. (Photo: Las Vegas Review Journal)
Sons Christopher Martinez, 10, and Alejandro Martinez, 5, sat next to their father at the press conference, comforting him as he tearfully read his statement. Following the April 15 attack, having spent a full day in the blood splattered house, Christopher walked to his elementary school and informed teachers and administrators of the horrible scene at his home.
Martinez-Sanchez also made it clear that he expects Clay to pay here on earth for this terrible and senseless attack. “He will pay for his crimes. He will be punished for what he has done to my family. He must face justice and whatever penalty the judge hands down, including death, if that is how he is sentenced,” said Martinez-Sanchez.
An audience of about 75 supporters, dignitaries and media gasped when he opened his statement with the phrase, “I forgive this murderer because of my faith in God and in Jesus Christ.” Later, when asked by a reporter what he would say to Clay if he could, Martinez-Sanchez replied, “I would say, ‘I forgive you.’ If he kissed me on the cheek, I would kiss him back.”
Speaking haltingly as he struggled for words, Martinez-Sanchez concluded his appearance before about 75 reporters and friends saying, “I love my Yadira. I love my Karla. I love my sons. We all love Jesus. Through his strength, we will survive.”
Source: Christian Media Associates
I wrote this on my other blog Ramblings of a Creative Mind a long time ago and Thought it was worth sharing on my main blog. Enjoy the read.
Identity formation driven by Philosophy creation
Defining our Identity in a Pleasure Seeking World.
It is not what you are called, but what you answer to.
- African Proverb
When growing up, we are taught and given an array of rules and standards of conduct to follow from our elders, parents, teachers, and peers, including various forms of media that help us to formulate a philosophy of thinking about life and how we view ourselves as individuals. We choose our own paths to follow in our adulthood that guide our standards of behaviour.
What is the standard that governs our conduct? It can either be, culturally specific, religious or secular in form but basic standards of behaviour are typically culturally based and vary between societies. The common African proverb that we can relate to is that “It takes a village to raise a child”.
Read more here: Identity Formation Driven by Philosophy Creation.
Slightly different devotional today. I just read this article and thought it was worth sharing here. Something is definitely happening here people. God is on the move. Supernatural visitations and God touching lives in remote places. God is awesome! We can’t put God in a box. He’s serious when it comes to the message of salvation. God be praised!
Dreams, Visions Moving Muslims to Christ
“Of course when I went to Mecca I was going there in order to pay hommage to the Kabba and to fulfill the requirements in Islam,” he recalled.
But the trip became more of a spiritual journey than he could ever imagine.
“That night I saw Jesus in a dream. First, Jesus touched my forehead with his finger. And after touching me, He said, ‘You belong to me,’” Ali recalled.
“And then He touched me above my heart,” he continued. “‘You have been saved, follow me. You belong to me,’ he said.”
Ali’s story in Mecca was told and dramatized in a DVD called “More Than Dreams.”
“I decided I’m not going to finish the Hajj, the pilgrimage. Whatever it takes, I’m going to follow that voice,” he explained.
The film documents and dramatizes Ali’s story and several other Muslims who came to faith in Jesus through a dream or vision.
“We’re seeing that all around. We’re hearing about people that have never even thought about Jesus as savior,” Tom Doyle, with e3 Ministries, said. “They’re content Muslims and they’re having dreams over and over.”
Doyle and his wife Joanna take the gospel to the Muslim world. He’s also the author of the upcoming book, Dreams and Visions: Is Jesus Awakening the Muslim World?
“I think our God is a fair God, that He’s righteous and just, and people are seeking and they don’t know where to go,” Doyle said.
Read More at : The story about Dreams, Visions Moving Muslims to Christ
Until June 15, Nik Wallenda was an unknown name to many. Not anymore. Nik, an American high wire artist, has become the first person to walk on a two-inch tightrope through the mist over the dangerous Niagara Falls Gorge, 150 feet above the falls, a feat never before attempted! About a dozen other tightrope artists have crossed the Niagara Gorge downstream, but no one had walked directly over the falls, and authorities hadn’t allowed any tightrope acts in the area since 1896.
Nik, a born-again Believer, confessed that it never would have happened if not for his faith in Jesus. “I believe in a thing called unmerited favor. I believe doors were opened for me that weren’t opened for others and doors that were slammed were reopened.”
“I pray and I talk to God a lot and I find peace in that. That’s how I can remain calm when people would think I could go nuts during this whole process,” he adds.
Here are 10 lessons that Believers can learn from Nik, when walking their faith walk and fighting the good fight:
Read more here: 10 Lessons Believers Can Learn from Nik Wallenda.
By Virginia Pereira, SMM Editor.
How does love respond when God asks you to leave everything you own and go live amongst the poor?
How does love respond when you open up your home to directionless strangers to provide them with an opportunity to find themselves again?
How does love respond when your own is put in harm’s way and God asks for the impossible out of you?
This is such a powerful Testimony that I just had to share it. Please read this: The Simplicity of Love.
Check this out!!! It is so important to do this self analysis everyday. This is a post re-blogged from Shyju Matthews Ministries. It will bless your heart today as you check yourself so that you don’t wreck yourself.
A Sweet sample of the questions asked:
For those who could not watch it, here are the notes of the same.
Give 1 point to each of the questions you answer ‘yes’ to.
1. Do you long for a lot of attention?
By being dramatic? By being needy, desperate? By being pushy, demanding? By getting all the attention?
2. Do you become jealous or critical of people who succeed?
Are you negative of everyone who succeeds? I could do better than them feeling? Start with humility.
3. Do you always have to win?
Continued @ Take Your Pride Test.
As in every problem solving situation, one must first recognize there is a problem. It is a key element. There was a man who was suffering from severe alcohol withdrawal symptoms (DTs) and his family rushed him to a detoxification center where he underwent treatment for several weeks. He was told not to return to the same environment because he would be extraordinarily tempted to slip back into his old habits and old ways. He deliberately went back home. He went right back to his old ways, and two years later was found dead in his closet. It appeared he was trying to get dressed for work. There are so many other stories where people’s lives have been ruined by addictions, and never acknowledging they have a problem.
There is hope!
The world hasn’t just become wicked…it’s always been wicked. The prize doesn’t always go to the most deserving.
Died 12 May 2008 (aged 98)
Read more here A Lady To Remember.
I was researching for another post of a different topic and I came across this Baggage skit and as I was watching it I heard God, speak to me to post this video Because He has a message He, wants someone to hear that is hurting deep down and is also over whelmed with carrying their emotional baggage. like the Title Says!