Verse of the Day

Sunday, March 29, 2015

Palm Sunday

Read the entire AOC Sunday Report RIGHT HERE and learn more about the most important week in the history of the world!
Sermon - Rev Jack Arnold
Church of the Faithful Centurion - Descanso, California
Today’s sermon brought the Collect, Epistle and Gospel together and is partly contained in the forewords above.

 Consider these words from the Collect:

… thy Son, our Saviour Jesus Christ, to take upon him our flesh, and to suffer death upon the cross, that all mankind should follow the example of his great humility; Mercifully grant, that we may both follow the example of his patience, and also be made partakers of his resurrection…

In the Collect, we acknowledge God sent His Son to be our Savior.  Think about that, the Creator, Lord and Master of the Universe sent His only Son to live amongst us and not just provide us with instruction and leadership, but to give His earthly life as a one time sacrifice for our sin that we might be accounted as perfect in out final accounting, the resurrection.  How much did God value His Son?  Consider what Paul tells us - Wherefore God also hath highly exalted him, and given him a name which is above every name: that at the name of Jesus every knee should bow, of things in heaven, and things in earth, and things under the earth; and that every tongue should confess that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father.

Then consider How much God valued His Son and How Much He values us that He sent His Son here to teach us to guide us, to love us, and finally to give His Life for us that we might be free from the bonds of sin and death. Jesus set an example of humility and patience, both rare qualities in us, that are impossible for us to follow without God’s help, hence the Holy Ghost.  The Holy Ghost was sent to us that we might have understanding, comfort, strength, perseverance, courage, inspiration; all things we fall short on.  With Jesus’ sacrifice and the help of the Holy Ghost to follow Him, turning our backs on this world, we can be part of His resurrection. The resurrection itself sets a pattern that we should follow. We must first die, that is to stop our sinning, then rise again, that is to live, with humility and patience like the example Jesus set for us. We must resurrect our lives and transform them into something new. There was a reason why Easter was set in the spring time. Not only was it close to the actual time of His death and rising again, but it came at a time where the flowers bloomed anew, having been dead in winter, as Christ had been dead, and rose again, just as those flowers bloom again. This is very symbolic of His Death and Ressurection and it is no coincidence that Easter happened during this time.

Jesus set the standard of obedience to God’s will and He expects us to follow Him.  It is a hard thing to do.  We want to be in charge, we want to do what we want!  It is hard to do what God wants.  We just plain don’t want to do what we need to do, what we must do.  It is hard!  But, do you think your path is harder than that set forth for Him as laid out in the Gospel for today? No matter who you are, the answer is never going to be yes. For no matter what bad times we go through, it is nothing compared to what He went through. And in the end, the path we must follow will still be easier than if we refuse to follow Him and try and forge our own path. We will be far happier if we follow his example and lead a righteous and steadfast life, full of grace and humility, as well as patience.

Think about that before you do what you want to do.  Is what you want in line with what God wants?  Think about the answer.  If you let the Holy Ghost in to your heart you will know the answer, you will know what you are supposed to do.  You may not like it, but you will know it. Which is more comforting than the World’s way, which seems to go off in every which direction, and they are never certain about anything. However, we can be certain about what we know, what believe and we can translate that certainty into our actions.

Jesus knew what was coming, how much it would hurt both His Body and Soul as He went through with the crucifixion and subsequent descent in to Hell.   Yet, He also knew this was God’s Will that we might live.  If He did this for you, how can you not follow Him wherever His Will takes you? If He was willing to do that for all of us, then how can we not repay Him to the best of our ability? His Sacrifice demands that we repay Him to the best of our ability, by the sheer nature of it, his perfection being offered in place of our imperfection.

Recall Jesus’ triumphant entry into Jerusalem on this day so many years ago.  Only Jesus knew of the upcoming crucifixion, every one else, including Jews, Romans and the Christians, thought he was making a triumphant entrance in to the city to take control of things and kick the Roman occupation force out. The moon was almost full, this was the year of the Messiah according to Daniel.  Jesus chose the route into the city, through the King’s Gate.  The people saw Him coming and met him at the Mount of Olives.  They expected Him to come in and proclaim His rule.  And that He did, but not in the way the people were looking for.     Those who thought of Him as Lord looked for a Kingdom of this World to be established. Sunday was a day of triumph and fulfilled the anticipation of the Jews of a day for which they had waited four centuries.  The Messiah had finally come, at the time predicted by scripture.  They were certain that He would free them from the burdensome and cruel yoke of Roman rule.  The Jews would finally be on top of the power pyramid.  They would rule the world under Him!  As the week went on, they found that was not to be.  He did not come to rule this world, but to bring us to His World. He came to give them the key to eternal salvation. This is a far more important gift than to have power temporarily and for a short time. This is more precious than any earthly jewel, riches or rainment that one can ever find here on planet Earth. He came to take them from this veil of tears to a state of perfect freedom.  They wanted someone to throw the Romans out and all God sent them was the key to eternal life.  What a disappointment!  But to us, it is not a disappointment.

It is a gift of great joy, the fact that we should be all rights dead and headed for the pit, instead headed to a kingdom of joyfulness and laughter and all pleasant things, and a world that will be far better than our pitiful shadowland here. This is indeed the most valuable of all gifts we will ever receive in our lifetime.

By the way, the Chief Priests, who had so much invested in their 613 laws, likely searched far and wide for the crowd to convict Jesus of the crimes they found against their system.  Their system, not God’s.  Remember, there are none so blind as those who will not see.  They would not see because what was being shown to them was a new way that would interfere with their comfortable way of living.  A new way that asked of them, no demanded of them, accountability unto God for their actions.  While that crowd was no self-forming group naturally set on condemning Jesus, but a handpicked gang.  At the same time, many of those in the crowd who condemned Him the morning of Good Friday were in the crowd that welcomed Him to Jerusalem on Palm Sunday.  What a difference five days can make.

Make no mistake, we are that crowd.  And, like Pilate, no matter what we say, we cannot wash our hands of the responsibility.  Thus, we must separate ourselves from the crowd.  Separate, that is to make ourselves holy, set aside.

When the time comes, how will you ACT?

It is by our actions we are known.

Be of God - Live of God - Act of God

Sunday, March 22, 2015

Fifth Sunday in Lent - Commonly called Passion Sunday

The entire AOC Sunday Report is RIGHT HERE!
Sermon - Rev Jack Arnold
Church of the Faithful Centurion - Descanso, California
Today’s sermon brought the Collect, Epistle and Gospel together and is partly contained in the forewords above. 

Consider these words from the Collect:

… thy people; … by thy great goodness … may be governed and preserved evermore, both in body and soul …

In the Collect, we ask God to help us to look to Him for leadership and direction that we might be saved, both our physical bodies and souls.  For, if we do not look to God for our guidance and direction we are surely lost like a man in the wilderness without a compass.  When we ask that we might be governed and thus preserved by His great goodness, we are in effect asking for His Guidance for us to be guided.   Guided, that means we need to ask, then listen to what He Tells us, then actually follow that guidance.  Recall to mind this quote from GK Chesterton:

·      “Christianity has not been tried and found wanting; it has been found difficult and not tried.”

It does absolutely no good for us to ask God for guidance, then when He gives it to us for us to ignore or pretend we did not hear.  After all, there are none so deaf as those who will not hear, a concept discussed more fully in Matthew 13.13.  Thus, we need to ask for He Help, His Guidance, then actually do our very best to follow Him.

If we look to Him for guidance, we then look to Him for safety.  Safety means only the safety of our soul, our eternal life.  Things may get tense here, for as Aslan is not a tame lion, God is not a tame god.  He is the one true and triune God.  Not tame, but the savior of mankind.  Think about this; pretty clearly the Mosaic Law with its 613 rules did not really work to save mankind.  The constant sacrifice of animals could not make us accounted for as perfect in God’s eye.  After all, an animal would never work to cleanse our sins, account us as perfect and let us enter into heaven, as Christ’s sacrifice by the terrible death on the Cross did for us. An animal is a poor substitute for a divine being that is our conduit from heaven to earth, and visa versa.  We were always destined to fail.  We cannot make the grade on our own.  We need the One Sacrifice, One Time, for all mankind, for all time.

Our only means of being accounted as perfect when we come before God is to rely on the sacrifice and intermediary priesthood of His Son, our Savior Jesus Christ to account us as perfect before God on that final day.  Your AOC ministers, while officially titled as priests are not intermediary priests, there is one high priest, Jesus Christ the Righteous who is also the propitiation for our sins!  He is our Savior, our Leader, our Teacher, our Master, our Example!

Christ came to succeed the Old Covenant which was marked by sacrifices of innocent animals, that really did not do the job, with the New Covenant which is marked by His death on the cross for our sins, and this has done the job which was intended. Before the world began God knew of both the New and the Old Covenants. The Old Covenant had to be put in place before the New Covenant or Jesus could come to Earth. The people had to be prepared for Him.

At the same time, as imperfect creatures with free will if we do our very best to follow His Word, we will not be perfect.  On the other hand, we will be better than we will if we do not.  Thus, without the sacrifice of His Son, we will not make the cut.  It is a better solution than sacrificing the animals like the Hebrews. Without Him, we will end up in the pit.  We need that one sacrifice, one time, for all mankind, for all time. If we did not need that sacrifice, then we wouldn’t be seeing all the troubles in the world today.  Today’s world makes clear the need for the sacrifice He made for us; one time for all time. Unlike the sacrifices of the Old Testament, which required multiple sacrifices a year, this sacrifice was made one time, one year, for all time. It is a far superior arrangement, but it came at a heavier cost than the Old Covenant, the cost of His death. It is a cost that we should always remember and be thankful that He was willing to die for our sins.

In the Gospel, Jesus reminds us that if we believe in Him and keep His Word (keeping His Word meaning acting upon it), then we shall make our seamless journey from the Shadowlands to His Home.  Few of the Pharisees could conceive, or peradventure would not conceive, that God would send His Son to this world for us. They did not even believe He had a son, they were looking for the Messiah figure they thought couldn’t be Him. The Messiah was in fact Jesus, the Christ of God.  They expected an earthly savior, one who would drive the Romans out and put the Jews in charge of that corner of the world.

Their problem was that Jesus came to save our souls and give us eternal life, eternal life starting right then.  Not just for the Jews and Israel, but the whole wide world, Jew, Gentile, Greek and all others.  Jesus brought salvation and life to the entire world.  That was not what the Pharisees were looking so hard for with their magnifying glasses as they examined Torah and The Law.  Pharisees were not big picture people, and as Calvin told Hobbes, “We big picture people rarely become historians.” It would seem that also applied to the Pharisees though they were not “big picture people”, they misinterpreted the prophecies of the Messiah. Regardless, even though some people chose to misunderstand the prophecies, He came and He made that one sacrifice, at one time, for all mankind, for all time. For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life[1].

Who is Jesus?  Our Savior?  Indeed.  But, more He has been since before the beginning of the world, for He is one with I Am.

Through His Actions, we are saved.

Do ye likewise:
It is by our actions we are known.

Be of God - Live of God - Act of God

[1] If the text of this sentence seems familiar, it is John 3.16, probably the most widely quoted text of the Bible.

Sunday, March 15, 2015

Fourth Sunday in Lent

To read the entire AOC Sunday Report go RIGHT HERE!
Sermon - Rev Jack Arnold
Church of the Faithful Centurion - Descanso, California
Today’s sermon brought the Collect, Epistle and Gospel together and is partly contained in the forewords above. 

Consider these words from the Collect:

… we, who for our evil deeds do worthily deserve to be punished, by the comfort of thy grace may mercifully be relieved …

In the Collect, as is oft the case, we acknowledge to God our sad state, our evil nature, and then ask God to grant us His Grace to be relieved of being accounted as evil, rather accounted as perfect even though we are so far from perfect.  This is a constant refrain, so many of the collects have this same theme; we are imperfect, perfect only in our imperfection; yet God is with us and is willing to help us, but only if we let Him.  To let Him help us requires us to let Him into our hearts.

To gain eternal life, to leave this Shadowland world for the real world, the world of Eternal Life, God’s World, that is to say Heaven, requires us to be perfect.  For only those who are perfect at the final accounting can gain entrance into heaven.  Actually, we don’t need to be perfect to get into heaven which is very handy as we will never in fact be perfect, no matter how hard WE try, inasmuch as by our very nature we are imperfect. 

How is this possible?

Death is oft referred to as the “Final Accounting”, and as an accountant I can tell you that things can sometimes be accounted as what they are not, legally, too! 

At that final judgment day, imperfect creatures that we are, we can be accounted as perfect through God’s Grace of His Son, our Saviour, Jesus Christ, Paul is right on point when he talks about the two sons of Abraham, one of the bond, one of the free. 

These two are representative of the two covenants with God, the bond under The Law and the free under The New Covenant. 

The people of old are The People of The Law.  Six Hundred Thirteen Laws each of which by which they must abide.  A very complex and even more difficult life to live, with trying to comply and uphold those laws and failing. We still fail miserably at times, but we only have two laws, which we will hear about in a second. They are still hard to uphold, but if we manage to, easier to remember. Perhaps more properly said in practice 613 laws that they must live around; not so much as comply with, but avoid breaking.  Yet, they cannot comply with all the laws nor even work around them.  They are doomed to failure with no help from God. 

The New Convenant is much less complex.  Remember this from Holy Communion:

Hear what our Lord Jesus Christ saith:

HOU shalt love the Lord thy God with all thy heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy mind. This is the first and great commandment. And the second is like unto it; Thou shalt love thy neighbour as thyself. On these two commandments hang all the Law and the Prophets.

Under the New Covenant, we have only two laws which we must comply with.  But, there is a catch.  We are not to just avoid breaking those laws, we must actually live them in our hearts, souls, minds AND bodies.  We must actualize them. It is the common theme of Action not just Diction, that appears in the sermons past here.

Hey!  That is way harder.  We are imperfect creatures with free will.  That is a combination doomed to failure.

True, but we have the Get out of Jail Free card – Jesus Christ the righteous and He is the propitiation for our sins!  Remember that?  He accounts us as perfect at our final accounting!

So, now that we know there are two choices, two covenants, we can choose either to be people of slavery, enslaved to sin and Satan, or to be free people, under God and Jesus. This is the two sides that Paul speaks of, we can be either enslaved to sin, or we can be truly free and under God.  Only one side will give us true freedom and happiness and I know which side I want to be on, but the question is do you? You, and you alone can make this choice, nobody else here can make it for your. This is yet one of the actions you have to act on, and not just say it.

We always have a choice, it is upon us to choose and decide. But we must pick a side.  As I quoted last week, “He that is not with me is against me.”  Middle ground exists, but it is quicksand.  Any feeling of safety there is illusory.  We must take sides.  And, we cannot keep with those who oppose the side we choose.

We cannot have one foot standing on the slavery side and one foot on the free side. We cannot just be fence sitters, we must have our feet planted on one side.  From rational viewpoint, there is only one side to pick, and that is the side of freedom, of the New Testament offered to us by Christ himself. As people of The New Covenant, the original and real New Deal, we have only to comply with those two laws or rules; To love the Lord with all our hearts and to love our neighbor.  While it is true that those two are much harder to fully comply with than avoiding the 613 laws of The Law, we have the key – Jesus Christ.  He came to earth not only to lead us to heaven, from the front; but to be a propitiation for our sins, to make us account as perfect to God to allow us to come into His Land.

Now, think about the Gospel.  When we need help, how about instead of worry, we substitute trust and action?  Trust that God will give us what we need.  And, then act based on what we can and should do, not what we want to do.  Acting on what we should do gets results.   These results may or not be obvious right away, but they will be soon enough. Whereas if you never do anything, you’ll never see any results of your actions, for you are doing exactly nothing. If one is disillusioned enough by the fact he does not need to do anything, I suppose it probably doesn’t matter to that person. But to those of us who feel the acute need to do something, if we do nothing, we are going to feel that lack of action. Therefore, we are compelled to act upon our faith. Perhaps not what we want right at the time, but certainly what we need then and in the eternal future.  In the middle of nowhere, two thousand years from the nearest McDonalds, the disciples looked to Jesus to fill the needs of their congregation.  Jesus took what they had and gave them what they needed; “for he himself knew what he would do.”  He acted to help them.  Do ye likewise:


It is by our actions we are known.

Be of God - Live of God - Act of God

Sunday, March 8, 2015

Third Sunday in Lent - 8 March 2015

You can read the entire AOC Sunday Report RIGHT HERE!
Sermon - Rev Jack Arnold
Church of the Faithful Centurion - Descanso, California
Today’s sermon brought the Collect, Epistle and Gospel together and is partly contained in the forewords above.  

Consider these words from the Collect:

… look upon the hearty desires of thy humble servants, and stretch forth the right hand of thy Majesty, to be our defence against all our enemies …

In the Collect, we ask God look in to our hearts, see our desire to be His children and defend us against evil.  That also means we are looking for His Help in the form of the Holy Ghost for the changing of our hearts to actually have “hearty desires” to do His Will and to be “humble servants”, not our usual and customary self centered selves.  Quite a combination of thoughts in a small bit of verbiage! It is amazing how much we can put in a short sentence if we use our words right! If we will be follow Him, He will defend us in all assaults of our enemies[1]  If we will not accept His Help, He will not force it on us.  Back to that old, “Thy will be done.”  The question once again rises, from whose mouth does it proceed, ours or God’s? We must choose wisely, and we can only choose wisely with the help of the Holy Ghost! We must use a small bit of the wisdom we do have, to choose the help of God, through the Holy Ghost.

Today’s Epistle and Gospel share the same theme.  You must walk the talk.   

Thus, when Paul tell us to live our lives as we represent our desires to God, he tells us to make our actions match our stated desires.  Actions! Not just Dictions, but Actions! There can be a distinct difference between the two.  If you actually believe, you will act.  If you just say you believe, you will not.  Believing and saying you are believing can be diametrically opposed.  Note how many people claim to be Christian, yet do not actually act on the principles of Christ and follow His Instructions. This theme is the central theme of the Christian faith, which was first shown with Christ’s death on the cross and resurrection. He came to act for us, not just to talk or meditate, but His great plan involved action, though it was painful, it was His action that released us from the wages of sin. He gave us an example to live by, that is to live out our faith through not just the right words, but the right actions as well.

Think about the Gospel.

It is very important to be unified in our worship and maintain mutual support; a team always beats individuals.  That is not to take away from individuality, but rather to note that we need to remember whose side we are on and work together with our teammates. It does not matter how does get the credit, all that matters to our Lord is that we work together with other believers to get the job done and to get it done right.

There are two phrases particularly worth remembering, “a house divided against a house falleth” and “He that is not with me is against me.”  Middle ground exists, but it is quicksand.  Any feeling of safety there is illusory.  We must take sides.  And, we cannot keep with those who oppose the side we choose.  It is the natural part of the history of the Bible. We have to choose to follow God, as there is no other reasonable option which will give us the result following God will result in. We must decide who we will follow. One man cannot serve two masters, also fits here I find. We cannot say we love and serve one side, but serve another truly. We have to choose which one we are going to love or serve, God or mammon (things of this earth/Satan).  We cannot be wishy-washy here, we must take a stand and declare it unto the world, and let them know that we are not for their ways, but we are against their ways. We have to make it crystal clear in our actions, to tie it into the theme of acting. We have to let our faith shine in word and in deed to make it count. We do not have true faith if we do not act upon the words that we speak on our lips, of believing in Christ and His Father.

Christ himself came not to unite the world, but to divide it, father against son. He came to divide, that is that we would choose the opposite side of the world, which for them is mammon, and our side is that of God and righteousness. He came to light up the world that was for Him, and that which was against Him, to identify friend from foe. Through the Scriptures we can easily tell who is for Him and who is against Him. It is simple, who holds to the principles of Scripture is for Him. They who do not hold to them are not with Him. 

You must keep constant vigilance against backsliding, for a fallen Christian is in worse shape than one who was never exposed to The Word.  The Epistle and Gospel both talk about the curious dichotomy; you are saved by faith, your faith alone saves you, not what you do; yet if you have faith, you must act on that faith.  

When you accept Jesus Christ as your Lord and Savior and repent of the sins of your former life, you are forgiven of your sins.  But, you must understand, this is not a signal to keep on sinning and keep on saying you repent.  You must truly change a new leaf and start on the new course of life with Christ, and not slip back into the old man. You must receive the Word, hear it, and act upon it and spread it joyously to others, in order for your faith to have any meaning at all. Otherwise we will have been for the worse than if we never had heard the Good News. It is not a gift to selfishly lock up, but to share and give to others. That is the true joy of the Good News. It is most certainly more blessed to give than to receive in this case.

You must grasp that your acceptance of Jesus Christ as your savior and your repentance is the beginning of your life as a New Man in Jesus.  

Will you slip?  Without doubt.  But, when you do, will you again repent and continue to do your best to follow the Word of God, the Light and the Truth?  All that matters is that you get up and do your best not to do what you did to slip. Life is a continuous learning process. Indeed, if you are a Christian that is what you must do.  We will always slip up in our lives, that is in our fallen nature. But we have to get up and get back on track, using the Holy Gospel to guide us like the instruments in an aircraft.  We cannot trust our feeling, but only our instruments (God’s gift of Holy Scripture).  You are called to believe and act on those beliefs to the best of your ability.  If you do not, then prepared as you were for life, you will so be prepared for the pit.  As you read Luke, remember the second half of the Book of Luke is The ACTS of the Apostles, not thoughts, wishes, prayers or meditations.

For, “blessed are they that hear the word of God, and keep it.

It is by our actions we are known.

Be of God - Live of God - Act of God

[1] A Collect for Peace – 1928 Book of Common Prayer Page 17

Sunday, March 1, 2015

Second Sunday in Lent

You can read the entire AOC Sunday Report RIGHT HERE!
Sermon - Rev Jack Arnold
Church of the Faithful Centurion - Descanso, California
Today’s sermon brought the Collect, Epistle and Gospel together and is partly contained in the forewords above. 

Consider these words from the Collect:

… we have no power of ourselves to help ourselves; Keep us both outwardly in our bodies, and inwardly in our souls; that we may be defended from all adversities which may happen to the body, and from all evil thoughts which may assault and hurt the soul …

In the Collect, we acknowledge to God that we cannot direct our own lives, if we listen to our “inner self” we are without guidance.  Consider the airplane flying, it orders its movements according to Polaris, the Pole Star of True North.  If a pilot flies guided by his “inner self” he soon knows only where he is: at the controls, and little else.  Like the pilot who needs to know where the True North is so he can orient himself, we need God’s guidance to move towards our goal of eternal life with Him. I had the experience of flying our Ercoupe N7543C a while back. I had to maintain altitude, heading and airspeed all at the same time. I then looked outside and re-checked my instruments. As I was flying along, I thought about how these principles of flying could be applied to being a Christian. The Holy Scriptures are our instruments and we re-check our progress in the world by the instruments of His Word to make sure we are on the right heading and not stagnating in our progress as pilgrims. God is also our infallible co-pilot, always making sure that we stay on course. If we are good pilots of our future, then we shall listen to God and His Holy Word so that we might be on course.

 It should also be noted that our life here will be a lot more pleasant if we stay on course.  Recently, I read something which said at the end of our lives, the words will be “Thy will be done.”  The question is will it be us saying it or God?  We need to listen to God and do His Will.  His guidance will bring us on a path to success in our lives, if we listen to His guidance. We have to initiate the contact/relationship with Him. He does not do it on His own. He waits for an opening into our hearts. We have to let him into our hearts in order to let him guide us. If we do not do this, then how can we expect to have Him guide us, if we are not open and ready to receive Him and His Guidance? We have to be willing and ready in order to receive His Guidance, than we have to act upon the information His Guidance gives us.

Thus, when Paul tell us to keep our bodies under control of our minds and our minds to be guided by God only, he helps move us on course.  We are to be true and honest in all our dealings, both physical and fiscal and to live our faith.  Being honest with others and especially ourselves is one of the most important things we can do. If we are not honest with ourselves to start, how can we be honest with others?  For only by living our faith can we demonstrate that we in fact have faith.  For professed faith with no actions when you are able to act is not real.  You must actualize what you claim to believe. One must convert their stated beliefs into their actions, in order for their belief/faith to have any reasonable meaning. Without actions, the faith that one believes is not truly real, if it is not acted upon. If you claim to believe one way and act another, you are by definition a hypocrite. We are called to be as God wants us to be, not as we would be without His guidance and help.  God does this, not that we would miss fun, but rather that we would enjoy happiness.

Keeping evil thoughts under control can be a difficult task, but we do not have to face it alone, we have the Holy Ghost in our lives and other Christians and friends that support us and guide us, that can help us battle evil thoughts. We have to remain in control of our good sides. We are in a sense like the character Gollum from Lord of the Rings, who had a good personality and a bad one. Unfortunately for him, he let his evil side possess him and it won out. Unlike him, we need to make sure our good side is winning. To do that we must turn to God and the Holy Ghost and Christ for help. All of them will help us win our battles, but we first have to listen to what They say. We must truly be guided by the faith in our Lord.

Matthew gives us a fine example of faith that demonstrates how we must be guided by our faith in our Lord.  The woman who cries unto Jesus is a Gentile, just like us.  Just like us she longs for His Mercy.  In her case, she asks only for the mercy rejected by others, the crumbs of the Master’s Table[1].  This is the essence of our faith, we are not worth to dine at His Table, no more than dogs are meet to dine at our table.  Yet, what is left over is more than enough for us.  And we are content with that, knowing what miserable creatures we are.  And, even more important, even knowing what miserable creatures we are, Jesus offers to share His Table with us.  He is not content for us to grovel for His crumbs. If he offers his love for us, surely we should love Him back, by acting upon our faith? If we do not act for Him, then we do not truly believe in Him. In order to truly believe, you must act upon the faith that you have. Acting is the key principle, the key cornerstone of the faith of Christians, and Christ set this example of our faith by doing it, by sacrificing Himself for our sins on the cross. This was an example of action not just diction. Action is far more important than diction only. Diction is nice, but it needs to be paired with Action in order for it to have any sort of meaning.

It is also important to understand that if one loves God, He still has the exact same amount of love available for any other person or group.  His love is infinite, even if it wasn’t love multiplies in use!

Recognize how poorly you do with your guidance, accept His Guidance, stay on course and accept the fruits of that action.

Be of God - Live of God - Act of God

[1] Sound familiar?  Check out the Prayer of Humble Access, Holy Communion, BCP Page 82.