The root cause of unforgiveness is bitterness and hatred towards the person who has offended us.
One of the hardest things in life is to let go of old hurts. We often say, or at least think: “What you did to me and my family, my ancestors, or my friends I cannot forget or forgive. … One day you will have to pay for it.” Sometimes our memories are decades, even centuries, old and keep asking for revenge.
Holding people’s faults against them often creates an impenetrable wall.But listen to Paul: “For anyone who is in Christ, there is a new creation: the old order is gone and a new being is there to see. It is all God’s work”. 2 Corinthians 5:17-18 Indeed, we cannot let go of old hurts, but God can. Paul says: “God was in Christ reconciling the world to Himself, not holding anyone’s fault against them”. 2 Corinthians 5:19. It is God’s work, but we are God’s ministers, because the God who reconciled the world to God entrusted to us “the message of reconciliation”.2 Corinthians 5:19 This message calls us to let go of old hurts in the Name of God.
The view that higher education is spiritually dangerous is very common among Witnesses. Witness leadership also discourages higher education because they believe it’s a waste of time. Jehovah’s Witnesses have been predicting the end of the world since the religion’s founding at the end of the 19th century. By their rationale, time in college would be better spent out on the streets, converting persons to become Witnesses.
Watchtower organization doesn’t discourage education, but rather secular education. Higher education is supposedly spiritually dangerous. The most intelligent and eloquent professors will be trying to reshape the thinking of your child, and their influence can be tremendous. Continual association with non-believers in an academic setting can “erode thinking and convictions.”
Jehovah’s Witnesses are encouraged to make their preaching work the top priority in their life. Higher education is discouraged, based on their belief that it is futile to plan for secular advancement in a world that faces imminent destruction, as well as fears about succumbing to “worldly thinking” and concerns that advanced education might lead to a lack of humility or involvement in immorality. Because evangelistic activities take priority over educational success, young Witnesses rarely progress to college or university, which Holden (1.) describes as a source of regret in subsequent years among those who are raised in the organization and later choose to leave.
Watch Tower Society publications advise parents to recommend alternatives to university education for their children, suggesting associate degrees from community or technical colleges or short courses in subjects such as office administration, automotive repair, computing, or hairdressing. They urge young Witnesses to pursue higher education only to gain skills to obtain a reasonable living while maintaining flexibility to pursue their “true” vocation, serving God.
Author James Penton’s (2) major study of the Witnesses, Apocalypse Delayed, noted that of those Witnesses who do progress to university, few are likely to take studies in such areas as the humanities and the social sciences, “disciplines that are most threatening to the Witness world-view”.
Jehovah’s Witnesses provide religious training programs for their members, focusing on improving skills for their ministry. These include School for Kingdom Evangelizers. Some of these programs are by invitation only. Holden (1.)observed: “Despite the fact that Witnesses claim to reason from the scriptures, their theology is taught in a highly mechanistic fashion, and written publications encourage the members to learn almost by rote.”
The lack of higher education can translate into more tangible problems for Witnesses. Pew research also shows that Jehovah’s Witnesses are among the lowest earners of any religious group.
Leaving the faith at 18 changed my life completely. I went to university, where I made even more friends who showed me that being in the “world” is completely fine, and that debate and discussion is also OK. I began a life where constantly questioning and improving my beliefs and ideas and always being open to those of others were my only constant doctrines. I began a life where I could decide what to believe for myself, and I wasn’t afraid of someone telling me I couldn’t.
Jehovah’s Witness doctrines provide no method for baptized members to leave on good terms. Those who choose to depart and announce their decision to terminate their membership are regarded as voluntarily entering the world of Satan.
Watch Tower publications define such individuals as being “more reprehensible than those in the world” and direct that they are to be shunned by other Witnesses, including close relatives, with no social or religious contact and no greeting given. Sociologist Andrew Holden claims his research indicated many Witnesses who would otherwise defect because of disillusionment with the organization and its teachings remain affiliated out of fear of being shunned and losing contact with friends and family members.
While we are using our magnifying glass on Witnesses, we observe the Jehovah’s Witnesses are one of Canada’s wealthiest and least transparent charities. CHARITY INTELLIGENCE, an agency that monitors charities for Canadian donors, gives the group a D-grade because they do not provide details on how donations are spent. “Jehovah’s Witnesses have a one star rating out of five stars. That should be a red flag to donors. That should also be red flag to government.”
Holden, Andrew (2002). Jehovah’s Witnesses: Portrait of a Contemporary Religious Movement.
Penton, James M.(1997). Apocalypse Delayed: The Story of Jehovah’s Witnesses (2nd ed.). University of Toronto Press.
TEACHINGS OF JEHOVAH’S WITNESSES
Jehovah’s Witnesses are taught that all other Christian churches represent renegade Christendom, and only the Watchtower Bible and Tract Society (which is the spiritual leadership of the Jehovah’s Witnesses) can be trusted.
The Bible describes how the apostles could pass on their authority to future bishops: “Let another person take over his work.”Act 1:20Why should we believe
(1) that the Catholic Church lost its God-given authority to interpret Scripture and proclaim doctrine and
(2) that the Watchtower is God’s official organization on Earth with his authority to interpret Scripture? How does one know that Jesus has given the Watchtower special authority? You Will Know Them by Their Fruits Matthew 7:16
Why did Watchtower teach the following?
Taught that the world would come to an end in 1914.
Said this was a miscalculation and the world would actually end in 1915.
Said the patriarchs Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob would be resurrected when the world would end in 1925.
Strongly hinted that the end of the world would come in 1975.
In 1995 stopped printing the following message about the end of the world in its magazine Awake!: “[T]his magazine builds confidence in the Creator’s promise of a peaceful and secure world before the generation that saw the events of 1914 passes away.”Deuteronomy 18:22 states that a person is not a prophet if he makes a prediction that fails to come to pass.
If God were really guiding the Watchtower, then why would he allow his “spirit-led” organization to lead so many people into error about the end of the world? The simplest answer to these questions is that men, not God, guide the Watchtower, and so it should not be trusted with our eternal salvation.
6. “We see no reason for changing the figures nor could we change them if we would. They are, we believe, God’s dates, not ours. But bear in mind that the end of 1914 is not the date for the beginning, but for the end of the time of trouble.” Zion’s Watch Tower (July 15 1894) p.226. Over time the Watchtower started teaching that the world began to end in 1914, not that it was going to end in 1914 (even though this contradicts the Watchtower’s assertion that 1914 was not the beginning of anything but the end).
7. This miscalculation was due to confusion over whether there was a year “zero.” Russell wrote, “In view of this strong Bible evidence concerning the Times of the Gentiles, we consider it an established truth that the final end of the kingdoms of this world, and the full establishment of the Kingdom of God, will be accomplished near the end of A.D. 1915.” Charles Taze Russell”The Time Is At Hand” Studies In the Scriptures Series II (1915) 99, 101, 242.
8. “Therefore we may confidently expect that 1925 will mark the return of Abraham, Isaac, Jacob and the faithful prophets of old, particularly those named by the Apostle in Hebrews 11, to the condition of human perfection.” Joseph Rutherford, Millions Now Living Will Never Die (Brooklyn, NY: International Bible Students Association, 1920) 89-90.
9. “Whatever the date for the end of this system, it is clear that the time left is reduced, with only approximately six years left until the end of 6,000 years of human history.” The Watchtower (May 1, 1970) 273.
10. ‘When a prophet speaks in the name of the LORD, if the word does not come to pass or come true, that is a word which the LORD has not spoken; the prophet has spoken it presumptuously, you need not be afraid of him.” Deuteronomy 18:22
Jesus Christ is the ultimate high priest and He presents us with a description of the one sacrifice of Jesus Christ as far superior to the many sacrifices offered by the old priesthood.
Jesus said, “Sacrifices and offerings, burnt offerings and sin offerings you did not desire, nor were you pleased with them”—though they were offered in accordance with the law. Then he said, “Here I am, I have come to do your will.” He sets aside the first to establish the second.And by that will, we have been made holy through the sacrifice of the body of Jesus Christ once for all. Hebrews 10:8-10
Hebrews 9 and 10 tells us something that is complete and permanent, something that has happened once-for-all in the one act of Jesus Christ, something that never was and never could be done by the old sacrifices. Think again of the impact this one, once-for-all,never to be repeated, permanent in its effect, sacrifice of Christ has:
The redemption it obtained is eternal. (Hebrews 9:12)
It cleanses our consciences. (Hebrews 9:14)
It liberates us to serve God. (Hebrews 9:14)
It sets us free from sins. (Hebrews 9:15)
It does away with sin. (Hebrews 9:26)
It is established. (Hebrews 10:9)
It makes us holy. (Hebrews 10:10)
It is permanently effective, finished and complete. (Hebrews 10:12-14)
It makes us perfect forever. (Hebrews 10:14)
God remembers our sins and lawless acts no more. (Hebrews 10:17)
It makes any further sacrifice for sin redundant and unnecessary. (Hebrews 10:18)
It means that we have confidence to enter the very presence of God without fear of judgment or condemnation. (Hebrews 10:19)
It means we can draw near to God with full assurance of faith. (Hebrews 10:22)
It means that our hearts are cleansed from a guilty conscience. (Hebrews 10:22)
According the National Institute of Mental Health, anxiety disorders are the most common mental illness in the United States. That’s 40 million adults—18% of the population—who struggle with anxiety.Anxiety and depression often go hand in hand, with about half of those with depression also experiencing anxiety.
Anxiety disorder is a feeling of intense nervousness and can sometimes be known as a nervous system disorder: oversensitivity and nervousness cause an over-reaction of the sympathetic nervous system. True depression is a disease and comes from anxiety where one gets down from events and circumstances.
Normal people do not suffer when pursuing unachievable goals which may waste their energies on pointless effort. We ask a depressed person “Is there something in your life that is very important that you are trying to do but you are failing to do and you can’t bring yourself to give up?” Perhaps you are vulnerable to what you believe are catastrophic failures.
Pharmaceutical companies popularized the notion that anxiety and depression were caused by a chemical imbalance. Strict testing rules reveal how little good many of these chemical based drugs do: much like a quick band-aid on a more serious wound.
GO PLANT-BASED MEDICINE FOR YOUR ANXIETY
These “feel good” foods spur the release of neurotransmitters such as serotonin and dopamine. They are a safe and easy first step in managing anxiety. It starts with limiting or avoiding alcohol and caffeine.
SOME CHEMICAL MEDICATION TEND TO BE ADDICTIVE. YOU SOMETIMES FEEL LIKE YOU ARE ON A MERRY-GO-ROUND AND YOU CAN’T GET OFF.
Some evidence suggests that oral lavender or aromatherapy with lavender can reduce anxiety.
High-potency cannabis, or frequent use, raises the risk of psychosis
Regular use of cannabis with a high potency (HIGHER THAN 10%) increases the risk of developing psychosis five-fold, according to a study published this week by the Lancet. It also found that using less potent strains daily increased the risk three-fold. This study looked at cannabis use among 901 European patients newly diagnosed with psychosis including schizophrenia. In London, 30% of new cases of psychosis in the study were estimated to be tied to strong cannabis.
In addition, the risk of developing psychosis or schizophrenia increases when cannabis use is initiated before the age of 16. Also, persons with a family history of psychosis or schizophrenia who use cannabis are at greater risk of developing psychosis and schizophrenia. Cannabis users with a family history of psychosis are 2.5 to 10 times more likely to develop psychotic disorders, compared to non-users with a family history.
The scourge of crystal meth, with its exploding labs and ruinous effect on teeth and skin, has been all but forgotten amid national concern over the opioid crisis. Meth has returned with a vengeance.In Oregon, meth-related deaths vastly outnumber those from heroin.
Mexican drug cartels stepped in and have inundated the market with so much pure, low-cost meth that dealers have more of it than they know what to do with. Under pressure from traffickers to unload large quantities, dealers are even offering meth to customers on credit.
Heroin is a depressant. It shuts you down and you’re not capable of doing a whole lot. In contrast, meth is a stimulant: addicts have lowered inhibitions and are awake 24/7, running around at night, so night burglaries abound. Eighty or 90 percent of heroin users are also using meth to temper the effects.
Like opioids, meth is highly addictive and difficult to quit.Meth has been overshadowed by opiates. Unfortunately, there are fewer tools to combat meth than to combat opioids: There is nothing like Naloxone, which can reverse opioid overdoses, or methadone, which can stem opioid cravings.
Meth or methamphetamine use is plausibly responsible for as many if not more drug-related crimes, episodes of violence, and trips to the emergency room than any other substance (discounting all of our daily opiate overdoses)
Meth first overloads and then eventually disables the dopamine system in the brain, which is not good. Meth exacerbates any pre-existing psychosis or induces psychosis altogether. Frequent users often report they hear voices, see “shadow figures,” experience severe paranoia, and endorse full-blown psychotic delusions. When you couple these sorts of psychotic symptoms with frequently hyper-aggressive and/or hyper-sexual behavior while intoxicated, you have a real public health problem. Addicts become semi-aware fragments of themselves, arousing and satisfying their darker impulses.
Meth kills by overloading blood vessels,eventually resulting in aneurysms, heart failure and strokes. As a result, long time older users are likeliest to die—in San Francisco, the average age of those who die of a meth overdose is 49.
The White House Council of Economic Advisers estimates the total social cost of the opioid crisis to the country in 2015 was as high as $504 billion, or 2.8% of GDP.Continue reading THE METH SCOURGE→
Attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder, ADHD is a chronic condition marked by persistent inattention, hyperactivity, and sometimes impulsivity. ADHD begins in childhood and often lasts into adulthood. As many as two out of every three children with ADHD continue to have symptoms as adults. The number of children getting diagnosed and treated for ADHD has risen over time. The most common type involves both a mix of inattentive symptoms and hyperactive-impulsive symptoms.
Children with ADHD also may struggle with low self-esteem, troubled relationships and poor performance in school.
A child who shows a pattern of inattention may often:
Fail to pay close attention to details or make careless mistakes in schoolwork
Have trouble staying focused in tasks or play
Appear not to listen, even when spoken to directly
Have difficulty following through on instructions and fail to finish schoolwork or chores
Have trouble organizing tasks and activities
Avoid or dislike tasks that require focused mental effort, such as homework
Lose items needed for tasks or activities, for example, toys, school assignments, pencils
Be easily distracted
Forget to do some daily activities, such as forgetting to do chores
HYPERACTIVITY AND IMPULSIVITY
A child who shows a pattern of hyperactive and impulsive symptoms may often:
Fidget with or tap his or her hands or feet, or squirm in the seat
Have difficulty staying seated in the classroom or in other situations
Be on the go, in constant motion
Run around or climb in situations when it’s not appropriate
Have trouble playing or doing an activity quietly
Talk too much
Blurt out answers, interrupting the questioner
Have difficulty waiting for his or her turn
Interrupt or intrude on others’ conversations, games or activities
Children with ADHD are more likely than others to also have conditions such as:
Learning disabilities,including problems with understanding and communicating
Anxiety disorders,which may cause overwhelming worry, nervousness
Depression,which frequently occurs in children with ADHD
Disruptive mood dysregulation disorder,characterized by irritability and problems tolerating frustration
Oppositional defiant disorder (ODD),generally defined as a pattern of negative, defiant and hostile behavior toward authority figures
Conduct disorder,marked by antisocial behavior such as stealing, fighting, destroying property, and harming people or animals
Bipolar disorder,which includes depression as well as manic behavior
Tourette syndrome,a neurological disorder characterized by repetitive muscle or vocal tics
It is possible that the chronic use of sugar could cause changes in brain chemistry that may eventually lead to ADHD. Children with high-sugar diets were more likely to have disrupted sleep, most commonly breathing problems and night sweats. Unfortunately, ADHD can’t be corrected simply by removing sugar from the diet in short-term studies.
Children with ADHD are about twice as likely to be overweight or obese and vice versa. Many foods are very high in sugars, which are strongly associated with high insulin levels and inflammation, which is not obvious, but is present throughout the body. This inflammation can only be detected by special blood tests in research labs.
Researchers noted “improved behavior and focus” among children with epilepsy who tried the keto diet. A decrease in carbohydrates may lessen the symptoms of ADHD.
Clinical research has found improvements in cognition in adults and children on the ketogenic diet as observed below:
Most people don’t know that God want to heal them:
“Dear friend, I pray that you may enjoy good health and that all may go well with you, even as your soul is getting along well. ” 3 John 1:2
Healing is often overlooked today.
Our culture has little place for such experiences. People do not understand the concept of a “divine breakthrough” into our little world. “
If a person does not appear to be healed after prayers, one should not be anxious; the healing minister will have followed exactly what God requires. The healing is done in heaven: these are only delayed healing. God wants us to depend on Him– not a technique.
Man’s most basic need is to know that he is loved. Let us contemplate the important part love has in the healing process. At Lourdes, some people are healed and others are not, but all leave with a sense of peace,convinced that the Holy Spirit has touched them and that God loves them.
When you go to a doctor for healing, you don’t try to justify our asking for help, e.g. Help me because I can be a better parent, a better worker, a better spouse. Yet this is what many people do when they pray for healing from God: they even try to bargain with God:I will do this if only you heal me. These people have a fearful relationship with God.
The real truth is that God is Love and He wants to see you healedwithout your justification. Healing is an ordinary, not an extraordinary sign of God’s mercy and compassion. “But in every situation, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God.” Philippians 4:6
Jesus cured not just to prove He was God, but because He was abounding in love. God is more than willing to save and heal all who come to Him with open and contrite hearts. Healing can be a test of faith, but also a natural response to God’s generous love. The minister of healing, who is nothing more than a human channel, says the prayer of healing and then steps aside.
After welcoming the presence of Jesus, and giving Him praise and thanksgiving, we turn to laying of hands, which is biblical: “They will place their hands on sick people, and they will get well“Mark 16:18
Along with a prayer of faith, the value of touching the sick person in any way possible provides a channel, where power is transferred more readily and far, far more effectively. There seems to be a current of healing power that flows from the minister of healing to the sick person. But Jesus said, “Someone touched Me; I know that power has gone out from Me.” Luke 8:46Continue reading A FAITH PRAYER & HEALING→
The spiritual images began to ooze large quantities of olive oil. Other secular pictures on the wall like diplomas were not affected. Many sick people were healed by the application of this heavenly oil. The most prolific source of this oil comes from the above statue of Christ on a cross. Notice the small pail at the bottom of His feet.
The pictures on the wall bear a multitude of holy patterns that look like Jesus’ face and other such things when you look closely. An example: a rose petal with an image of Jesus on it fell right on her. The petal is encased in glass and featured on postcards she gives out.
They have a daughter with Down’s Syndrome. Maureen says people report to having holy visions of the girl. They make miraculous recoveries from grave illness after witnessing this vision.
They welcome bus loads of visitors from the United States and Canada and give away vials of the heavenly oil. They accept no donations.
The Marollys, a devout Catholic couple from Pakistan live in a home in the West Island full of statues which get inexplicably covered in oil all day long. The thick, clear oil descends off the figures in such quantities that they require a small drain pipe to catch the viscous fluid into a glass jug at the end of the coffee table. Scientifically, it is true olive oil. The drain pipe is affixed to the coffee table that holds many statuettes that each ooze oil.
There are those holy people who also have a holy chapel in their home. These holy people trade their statuettes with those “sweating” statuettes on the large coffee table. The traded statuettes continue to sweat in their new holy environment.