Sanctified Tourist

Why can't all followers of Jesus just come together around scripture?

Look y'all, this post is not being written to wag fingers at Halloween enthusiasts. I just want to lead you into deep theological waters so get out your paddles.


Leave a comment

Halloween—Sinister or Benevolent?

Look y'all, this post is not being written to wag fingers at Halloween enthusiasts. I just want to lead you into deep theological waters so get out your paddles.

My sister and I think this picture of us is hilarious.  She in her cute little angel costume, with her arm around our brother the devil, and me in my witch costume.  After we finished chuckling over the irony of our sibling roles  played out in this snapshot, we then wondered what our sweet, innocent mother was thinking to dress my brother and I in such dark costumes.  It’s culture y’all, plain and simple.

Culture is pervasive and persistent.  It seeps into our children and into our parenting.  It overrides common sense at times and puts its arm around our shoulders as if it is our best friend.  Look y’all, this post is not being written to wag fingers at Halloween enthusiasts.  I just want to lead you into deep theological waters so get out your paddles.

Here’s what has me thinking…God communicates with His people symbolically and figuratively through scripture…like Jesus being the Way,  the Door,  the Beginning and the End…all figurative language. So isn’t a costume a symbol too?  A representation of  reality?  Culture tends to forget that there is a spiritual realm teeming around us.  Could evil Halloween symbols be representing  real invisible entities?  Even if we don’t really mean for them to? Even if it is all in fun?

Parenting through such cultural obstacles is a daunting task.  Nothing is cut-and-dried when it comes to making spiritual decisions about your children that’s for sure.  I just wanted to invade your thoughts for a blink, a moment,  and remind you of what you already know, evil is real.

Look y'all, this post is not being written to wag fingers at Halloween enthusiasts. I just want to lead you into deep theological waters so get out your paddles.

i love 2

 

Sanctified Tourist is not paid to endorse any products or ads.

Advertisements
It's not weird to think outside of the box...no really! Making communion part of your family experience can become a beautiful tradition.


1 Comment

Why Family Communion Could be a New Tradition

Eating the Lamb of God series, Part 2

Jesus represents the Passover Lamb in this series on the Lord's Supper. Communion is more than just a nibble of bread and a sip of wine. Go symbolically deep with me y’all.

The following passage is a tad negative, but stay with me because I want to look at these words with a positive spin.

28 Everyone ought to examine themselves before they eat of the bread and drink from the cup. 29 For those who eat and drink without discerning the body of Christ eat and drink judgment on themselves. 30 That is why many among you are weak and sick, and a number of you have fallen asleep. 1 Corinthians 11:27-30 (NIV)

“That is why” is cause and effect wording…in essence saying, “You do this, and this will happen.”  It WILL happen.

It's not weird to think outside of the box...no really! Making communion part of your family experience can become a beautiful tradition.

To be more uplifting, let’s look at the opposite of this statement.  Eating the Lord’s Supper in a worthy manner should also have a effect that we should rejoice in… strength not weakness, health not sickness, life not death.  Qualities we should emphasis personally and in our families.

My out of the box question is this…why couldn’t I celebrate the Lord’s Supper in my home on certain occasions?    The church is not just a denomination or a building as culture seems to think, people are the church…your family is the church.  Why couldn’t you create special moments with our Lord…times that your children would never forget?  Take Christmas for instance.  Why not celebrate His birth, then celebrate His death with a family communion time.   Birthdays, anniversaries, a new job, cancer diagnosis, cancer remission, retirement….any day, would be an awesome time to celebrate the Lord’s death until He returns.  My husband and I ate the Lord’s Supper together in our hotel room after our wedding.  It is a beautiful memory.  Wouldn’t it be a perfect family tradition…remembering the Lord together and promoting a strong spiritual life within your home?

i love 2

 

You might also be interested in Part 1 and Part 3 of the Eating the Lamb of God series.  Click below.

Jesus represents the Passover Lamb in this series on the Lord's Supper. Communion is more than just a nibble of bread and a sip of wine. Go symbolically deep with me y’all.Jesus represents the Passover Lamb in this series on the Lord's Supper. Communion is more than just a nibble of bread and a sip of wine. Go symbolically deep with me y’all.

 

Sanctified Tourist is not paid to endorse any ads or products.

 

 

Jesus represents the Passover Lamb in this series on the Lord's Supper. Communion is more than just a nibble of bread and a sip of wine. Go symbolically deep with me y’all and see how I approached a curious Muslim visitor about communion.


2 Comments

How I Explained Communion to a Muslim Visitor

Eating the Lamb of God series

Jesus represents the Passover Lamb in this series on the Lord's Supper. Communion is more than just a nibble of bread and a sip of wine. Go symbolically deep with me y’all and see how I approached a curious Muslim visitor about communion.

I had the opportunity to teach a Muslim visitor about communion recently,  after I had written this post,  and while it was fresh on my mind.  He had been visiting our congregation with a friend, and when the Lord’s Supper was passed I heard his friend frantically try to explain this Christian symbol to him.  So what would you say?  Would you use the standard explanation, “The bread is the body, the juice is the blood?”  But these words could not possibly make sense to someone who knows nothing of Moses and the Passover.  It seemed prudent to me to offer him an abbreviated history lesson so he could fully understand why we worship the Son of God.  But this is no ordinary history lesson y’all.  This one is rich with imagery from the Holy Spirit.  You will get an idea from my post of some of the things we talked about.

Jesus represents the Passover Lamb in this series on the Lord's Supper.   Communion is more than just a nibble of bread and a sip of wine.   Go symbolically deep with me y’all and see how I approached a curious Muslim visitor about communion.   

Each denomination has their own “communion culture” that can sometimes contribute to lulling those eating into repetitious ritual.  Most of us don’t even think about the beautiful back story that sets the stage for the meal with Jesus in the upper room.

I have to stop and tell you how exciting this part is to me. I’m getting goosebumps with the perfection of it all. GOD is so great and powerful that HE explains spiritual things to HIS earthly people by using figurative language. All those of you who loved that aspect of literature when you were in school, you came by it naturally. Similes, metaphors, personification…all of it, from HIM. Your FATHER started it all. So go symbolically deep with me y’all… The Lord’s supper was originally Passover.  The Passover meal was first initiated in Exodus 12 when the Israelites prepared to flee the Egyptians. They were to smear the blood of a spotless lamb over the doorpost of their homes, then cook the lamb and eat it as part of the meal along with bread with no yeast. The Angel of Death would pass over the homes with the blood, sparing the ones inside.

That night the blood of a spotless lamb saved them.

THAT NIGHT THE BLOOD OF A SPOTLESS LAMB SAVED THEM. (This is me shouting from the rooftops)

For further spiritual tingles:18 For you know that God paid a ransom to save you from the empty life you inherited from your ancestors. And it was not paid with mere gold or silver, which lose their value.19 It was the precious blood of Christ, the sinless, spotless Lamb of God.20 God chose him as your ransom long before the world began, but now in these last days he has been revealed for your sake. 1 Peter 1:18-20 (NLT)

Jesus represents the Passover Lamb in this series on the Lord's Supper. Communion is more than just a nibble of bread and a sip of wine. Go symbolically deep with me y’all.

So let’s put it all together. The Lord’s Supper is patterned after the Passover meal where the Israelites ate the sacrificial lamb that saved them. Similarly we eat the figurative sacrificial Lamb that saves us, HIS body and blood. Metaphorically His blood was smeared on the doorpost to ransom us.  This is very meaningful symbolism and spiritually mind blowing. I am not suggesting that anything mystical happens to the bread and wine, but listen y’all, I am suggesting that while you eat this meal, your Spiritual experience could be off the charts.

Put your boots on y’all..we’re going deeper.  Symbolically we are placing the body and the blood in the Holy Temple of GOD (you) where it becomes part of the Temple (you), as you proclaim the Lord’s death until He returns. You are a vessel of JESUS symbolically and literally. Who out there still has a poor body image? Well stop it! You are the Temple of the HOLY SPIRIT. You are sanctified. . I love taking the LORD’s supper, don’t you? (read scripture here)

Jesus represents the Passover Lamb in this series on the Lord's Supper. Communion is more than just a nibble of bread and a sip of wine. Go symbolically deep with me y’all.i love 2

 

 

You also might be interested in Part 2 and Part 3 of the Eating the Lamb of God series.  Click below.

Jesus represents the Passover Lamb in this series on the Lord's Supper. Communion is more than just a nibble of bread and a sip of wine. Go symbolically deep with me y’all.Jesus represents the Passover Lamb in this series on the Lord's Supper. Communion is more than just a nibble of bread and a sip of wine. Go symbolically deep with me y’all.

 

Sanctified Tourist is not paid to endorse any ads or products.

 

 

 

From the very start, in the garden, God gave man freedom of choice, freedom of religion if you will. Adam was given a choice. Obey or Not to obey. He was not forced. He was given options. That is true religious freedom y'all.


Leave a comment

Freedom to be an Infidel

In America, the ability to live out my belief is protected, but religious choice didn’t begin with us…

From the very start, in the garden, God gave man freedom of choice, freedom of religion if you will. Adam was given a choice. Obey or Not to obey. He was not forced. He was given options. That is true religious freedom y'all.

+

From the very start, in the garden, God gave man freedom of choice, freedom of religion if you will.  Adam was given a choice.  Obey or Not to obey.  He was not forced.  He was given options.  Consequences were spelled out.   Scripture teaches that those consequences…those bad choices…the choices that say, “No” to God, might eventually even lead us back to Him.  Remember the prodigal son?

Go deep with me y’all…create a scenario in your mind of what it would be like in the garden if there was no choice to make?  No tree to tempt?  No decision between God over evil?   if we were forced to love God would love really be love?  Read the story of Adam and Eve here.

Our Father had a choice.

He gave His Son.

His Son had a choice.

He gave His life.

So I will ask it again.  Is love really love without choice?

 

From the very start, in the garden, God gave man freedom of choice, freedom of religion if you will. Adam was given a choice. Obey or Not to obey. He was not forced. He was given options. That is true religious freedom y'all.

++

 

Blessings, Alice

Pictures:  +taken at Pearl Harbor in Hawaii, ++original taken by Alison Willis in China

Sanctified Tourist is not paid to endorse any ads or products.

The day of evil happened for me when I was fifteen and my daddy didn't come home from work one day. Here are five spiritual lessons I learned from my mother on the day my father was murdered.


1 Comment

5 Spiritual Lessons I Learned from my Mother on the Day my Father was Murdered

The day of evil happened for me when I was fifteen and my daddy didn't come home from work one day. Here are five spiritual lessons I learned from my mother on the day my father was murdered.

My father, Ken, was a small business owner with his shop located three blocks from our home.  My dad would walk to the shop every morning with his lunchbox, and made the trip home after closing up every evening.  We could expect him about five minutes after he locked up. One day he didn’t come home.

So my mother and little brother, ten years old at the time, hopped in the car to go and check on him.  What she found was a nightmare.  My father had been robbed and shot multiple times by two teenagers.  My sister and I waited for what it seemed like an eternity for our mother to come home…not knowing…nervously creating scary scenarios in our minds…but nothing could compare to the truth.

My mother, Jean, was about to put her faith into action in front of her children, and I will never forget the spiritual lessons I learned that day.

The day of evil happened for me when I was fifteen and my daddy didn't come home from work one day. Here are five spiritual lessons I learned from my mother on the day my father was murdered.

Worship When in Trouble

The first lesson I learned was that in great trial and suffering, we must WORSHIP.  Please picture the scene in my living room as my mother gathered her chicks around her after she finally came home.  In trying to perform CPR on my father, she was covered with the life blood of her husband.  It was evidence of a woman, desperately willing the love of her life to live. It was at that moment she led her children in prayer.  Scripture says that after Job got news of the death of all of his children that he fell to the ground in worship.  Job 1:20.  The bottom line is this.  My mother was so used to worshiping God day in and day out, that when the day of evil arrived, she knew right what to do.  I will ever, never forget her leading me to the throne of God on  that day.

Forgive Enemies

The second lesson I learned on that day was that when  brutally wronged, we must FORGIVE.  Even before the two teens were caught, she was feeling pity for them and urging her children to forgive.  One boy was eighteen and tried as an adult, he was killed in a home invasion after he was released.  The other boy was sixteen, just one year older than I was at the time.  He served his sentence and was released.  My mother was in grief for the parents of these boys, and for the boys themselves.  Later in life she longed to find the younger boy and let him know he was forgiven, and to make sure he was right with God.  Scripture says that you will be forgiven by God the exact same way that you show forgiveness.  Matthew 6:14-15 So be generous.

The day of evil happened for me when I was fifteen and my daddy didn't come home from work one day. Here are five spiritual lessons I learned from my mother on the day my father was murdered.Be Thankful

The third lesson I learned from my mother is that even in tragedy we must be THANKFUL…thankful that my mother and brother were not in the shop at the moment Satan entered the teens…thankful that the robbery was over by the time they came to check on dad.  I could have lived the rest of my life as an orphan.  There is always something to be thankful for, you just need to look.  Scripture say that thankfulness, along with your petitions and requests to God, bring about the peace that passes all understanding.  Philippians 4:6-7

The Church is Family

The fourth lesson I learned from my mother that day was to gain strength from the CHURCH.  Scripture says that Jesus walks among the lampstands, the churches,  and I can vouch for that. Revelation 2:1 My fifteen year old self saw Jesus send the beautiful bride of Christ  to hold our hands, comfort us, feed us, pray with us, to mourn with us, and to be our family.  Jesus was walking among His church  that day and in the days that followed.

One Moment Can Define a Life

The last lesson I learned from that day was learned in hindsight…that ONE MOMENT of tragedy borne with the dignity and grace of the Spirit, could define your walk with God for the rest of your life, and that could just be the point.  Go deep with me y’all… ONE MOMENT.  Just think of the power behind that thought.  Remember Kent Brantly, the American doctor who contracted Ebola while ministering in Africa?  Kent never ceased giving honor to God during his trials.  What about Steven, the first of Jesus’ followers to be killed?  He steadfastly served God even as he was being stoned. On the other hand, I remember a funeral where the spouse of the deceased disparaged God because He didn’t behave as He was expected to during the illness of the loved one.   ONE MOMENT…  to keep in step with the Spirit or to not.  If you are called by God to live though one moment of evil, like my mother,  this moment just may define the rest of your life.  Shine brightly for the world to see, because that just might be the point.

The day of evil happened for me when I was fifteen and my daddy didn't come home from work one day. Here are five spiritual lessons I learned from my mother on the day my father was murdered.

Later in life, my mother wrote booklets of encouragement that she passed out to everyone, even strangers.

The day of evil happened for me when I was fifteen and my daddy didn't come home from work one day. Here are five spiritual lessons I learned from my mother on the day my father was murdered.

Her words have power considering the life she lived.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Blessings, Alice

Sanctified Tourist is not paid to endorse any ads or products.