nedjelja, 23. veljače 2014.

Human Beings and the Purpose of Life


"Lay not up to yourselves treasures on earth:  where the rust, and moth consume, and where thieves break through and steal.  But lay up to yourselves treasures in Heaven:  Where neither the rust nor moth doth consume, and where thieves do not break through, nor steal.  For where thy treasure is, there is thy heart also."   (Matthew 6:19-21)

What is a human being?
 A creature who has a body and soul.
"Thou hast made him a little less than the angels, thou hast crowned him with glory and honor."    (Psalm 8:6)

What is the soul?
 It is the spiritual part of man, that part which will never die.
"God said, 'Let us make man to our image and likeness.'"    (Genesis 1:26)

Where is your soul?
In every part of you that is alive.

Is your soul real?
  Yes, just as real as your body.
How do you know you have a soul?

    You can do spiritual things:  You can think, do things without being forced, decide not to do things, make things, enjoy a joke or a book or a party, talk, work out mathematical problems, etc...  An animal cannot do any of these things.  That which makes you able to do them is your soul.

Where did your soul come from?
God created your soul and joined it to the tiny body in your mother's womb.
"And the Lord God formed man of the slime of the earth:  and breathed into his face the breath of life, and man became a living soul."    (Genesis 2:7)

How long will your soul and body stay together?
Until death, which is the separation of body and soul.
"And the dust return into its earth, from whence it was, and the spirit return to God Who gave it."    (Ecclesiastes 12:7)

"Watch ye therefore, because you know not the day nor the hour."    (Matthew 28:13)
What will happen to your body when you die?

    It will rot away to the earth from which it came.
"For dust thou art, and into dust thou shalt return."    (Genesis 3:19)
What will happen to your soul when you die?

    It will be judged by God and will go to Heaven, to Purgatory or to Hell.
"It is appointed unto men once to die, and after this the judgment."    (Hebrews 9:27)
Will your soul ever be joined to your body again?

    Yes, on Judgment Day God will call your body back from the earth and join it to your soul.  This will be the resurrection of the body at the end of the world.
"Behold, I tell you a mystery.  We shall all indeed rise again:  but we shall not all be changed.  In a moment, in the twinkling of an eye, at the last trumpet:  for the trumpet shall sound, and the dead shall rise again incorruptible."    (1 Corinthians 15:51-52)
After the Resurrection, will your soul and body be always together?

    Yes, both body and soul will be together forever, either in Heaven or Hell.
"For we must all be manifested before the judgment seat of Christ, that every one may receive the proper things of the body, according as he hath done, whether it be good or evil."    (2 Corinthians 5:10)
  When will Judgment Day be?

    Nobody but God knows this.
"But of that day and hour no one knoweth, no not the angels of heaven, but the Father alone."    (Matthew 24:36)
How should you prepare for Judgment Day?

    Pray constantly, obey all of God's commandments, and do penance for your sins.
"And take heed to yourselves, lest perhaps your hearts be overcharged with surfeiting and drunkenness, and the cares of this life, and that day come upon you suddenly.  For as a snare shall it come upon all that sit upon the face of the whole earth.  Watch ye, therefore, praying at all times, that you may be accounted worthy to escape all these things that are to come, and to stand before the Son of man."    (Luke 21:36)
What, then is the true purpose of life?

    To live your life according to God's plan and thus to save your soul.
"For what shall it profit a man, if he gain the whole world and suffer the loss of his soul?  Or what shall a man give in exchange for his soul?"    (Mark 8:36-37)

"Behold now you that say:  Today or tomorrow we will go into such a city, and there we will spend a year, and will traffic, and make our gain.  Whereas you know not what shall happen tomorrow.  For what is your life?  It is a vapor which appears for a little while, and afterwards shall vanish away.  For that you should say:  If the Lord will, and if we shall live, we will do this or that."    (James 4:13-15)

The Ship of Friendship


A voyaging ship was wrecked during a storm at sea and only two of the men on it were able to swim to a small, desert like island.
The two survivors who have been a good friends, not knowing what else to do, agreed that they had no other recourse but to pray to God. However, to find out whose prayer was more powerful, they agreed to divide the territory between them and stay on opposite sides of the island.
The first thing they prayed for was food. The next morning, the first man saw a fruit-bearing tree on his side of the land, and he was able to eat its fruit. The other man’s parcel of land remained barren.
After a week, the first man was lonely and he decided to pray for a wife. The next day, another ship was wrecked, and the only survivor was a woman who swam to his side of the land. On the other side of the island, there was nothing.
Soon the first man prayed for a house, clothes, more food. The next day, like magic, all of these were given to him. However, the second man still had nothing.
Finally, the first man prayed for a ship, so that he and his wife could leave the island. In the morning, he found a ship docked at his side of the island. The first man boarded the ship with his wife and decided to leave the second man on the island.
He considered the other man unworthy to receive God’s blessings, since none of his prayers had been answered.
As the ship was about to leave, the first man heard a voice from heaven booming, “Why are you leaving your companion on the island?”
“My blessings are mine alone, since I was the one who prayed for them,” the first man answered. “His prayers were all unanswered and so he does not deserve anything.”
“You are mistaken!” the voice rebuked him. “He had only one prayer, which I answered. If not for that, you would not have received any of my blessings.”
“Tell me,” the first man asked the voice, “What did he pray for that I should owe him anything?”
“He prayed that all your prayers be answered “

For all we know, our blessings are not the fruits of our prayers alone, but those of another praying for us (Congregational Prayer). Value your friends, don’t leave your loved ones behind.

The Rainbow Story


Once upon a time the colors of the world started to quarrel: all claimed that they were the best, the most important, the most useful, the favorite.

Green said: "Clearly I am the most important. I am the sign of life and of hope. I was chosen for grass, leaves, trees--without me, all animals would die. Look out over the countryside and you will see that I am in the majority."

Blue interrupted: "You only think about the Earth, but consider the sky and sea. It is the water that is the basis of life and drawn up by the clouds from the deep sea. The sky gives space and peace and serenity. Without my peace, you would all be nothing."

Yellow chuckled. "You are all so serious. I bring laughter, gaiety, and warmth to the world. The sun is yellow, the moon is yellow, the stars are yellow. Ever time you look at a sunflower, the whole world starts to smile. Without me, there would be no fun."

Orange started next to blow her temper. "I am the color of health and strength. I may be scarce but I am precious for I serve the needs of human life. I carry the most important vitamins. Think of carrots, pumpkins, oranges, mangos, and pawpaws. I don't hang around all the time, but when I fill the sky at sunrise or sunset, my beauty is so striking that no one gives another thought to any of you."

Red could stand it no longer. He shouted out: "I am the ruler of all of you. I am blood! Life's blood. I am the color of danger and of bravery. I am willing to fight for a cause. I bring fire to the blood! I am the color of passion and of love, the red rose, the poppy and the poinsettia. Without me, the earth would be as empty as the moon!"

Purple rose up to his full height. He was very tall and spoke with great pomp: "I am the color of royalty and power. Kings, chiefs, and bishops have always chosen me for I am a sign of authority and wisdom. People do not question me. They obey."

Finally, Indigo spoke, much more quietly than all the others but with just as much determination: "think of me. I am the color of silence. You hardly notice me, but without me, you all become superficial. I represent thought and reflection, twilight and deep water. You need me for balance and contrast, for prayer and inner peace."

And so all the colors went on boasting and quarreling, each convinced of their own superiority. Soon, their quarreling became louder and louder. Suddenly there was a startling flash of bright lightening! Thunder rolled and boomed! Rain started to pour down relentlessly. The colors crouched down in fear drawing close to one another for comfort.

In the midst of the clamor, Rain began to speak: "You foolish colors, fighting amongst yourselves, each trying to dominate the rest. Don't you know you were each made for a special purpose, unique and different? Join hands with one another and come to me."

Doing as they were told, the colors united and joined hands. The rain continued: "From now on, when it rains, each of you will stretch across the sky in a great bow of colors as a reminder that you can all live in peace. The rainbow is a sign of hope for tomorrow."

And so, whenever a good rain washes the world and a rainbow appears in the sky, let us remember to appreciate one another.

What does the Bible say :
Genesis 9:12-13
And God said, “This is the sign of the covenant that I make between me and you and every living creature that is with you, for all future generations: I have set my bow in the cloud, and it shall be a sign of the covenant between me and the earth.

A box of kisses


Some time ago, a man punished his 3-year-old daughter for wasting a roll of gold wrapping paper. Money was tight and he became infuriated when the child tried to decorate a box to put under the Christmas tree.

Nevertheless, the little girl brought the gift to her father the next morning and said, “This is for you, Daddy.” He was embarrassed by his earlier overreaction, but his anger flared again when he found the box was empty.

He yelled at her, “Don’t you know that when you give someone a present, there’s supposed to be something inside it?”

The little girl looked up at him with tears in her eyes and said,”Oh, Daddy, it is not empty. I blew kisses into the box. All for you, Daddy.”

The father was crushed. He put his arms around his little girl, and he begged for her forgiveness.

It is told that the man kept that gold box by his bed for years and whenever he was discouraged, he would take out an imaginary kiss and remember the love of the child who had put it there.

In a very real sense, each of us as humans have been given a gold container filled with unconditional love and kisses from our children, friends, family and God. There is no more precious possession anyone could hold.