Archive for September, 2009

What about fear?

September 26, 2009

There was an interesting discussion on FaceBook this week regarding fear.  One person said that fear and faith could not coexist in a true believers life while others felt that fear was very much a part of a believer’s life and was actually something that each believer had to deal with and come to terms with as part of their faith walk.    So I will try to answer that question to my satisfaction.  Can one be a “true” believer and coexist with fear?

Webster’s dictionary defines fear as 1) a feeling of anxiety and agitation caused by the presence of danger, evil, pain, etc. 2) a respectful dread, awe or reverence 3) a feeling of uneasiness or apprehension; concern 4) a cause for fear   In it’s verb form it means to 1) be afraid of 2) to feel reverence, awe for or expect with misgivings 3) to feel fear, to be afraid 5) to be uneasy, anxious or doubtful. 

Very few of us would not have any trouble giving instances in which we have felt fear.  I recall my feelings on September 11, 2001.  The anniversary has just passed us.  I was working on a route for my sister, and the employees at Food Lion were talking about something just happening.  I found the break room TV and there with other employees saw  the planes hitting the trade center.  I remember calling my sister and she turned the TV on and told me to come home.   I left there and drove through downtown Charlotte.  There were tall buildings on either side of me all the while I listened  to the radio and was  thinking about all the people in those buildings.  I remember my shock and disbelief and yes,  fear.  I was glad to go home.  I remember watching those towers fall over and over and over again.  As Americans, how can we ever forget that day.  How many of us felt fear and disbelief. 

I have felt fear before and after that event.  Most of us have.  There are many types of fear.  I think we could all agree there are good fears and bad fears.  A good fear would be the fear of the Lord.  This does not mean that we live in terror of God but to be in awe of and filled with reverence for Him.  There are many scriptures regarding this fear in the bible.  Here is one.  Deut.4:10  “Gather me the people together, and I will make them hear my words, that they shall live upon the earth, and that they may teach their children.”  Here is another.  Psa. 34:9  “O fear the Lord, ye his saints; for there is no want to them that fear him.”  and Ps. 145:19  “He will fulfil the desire of them that fear him; he also will hear their cry and will save them … for the Lord taketh pleasure in them.”  I think you get the picture.  So we are instructed to fear God.  To live our lives in awe of him and filling ourselves with reverence for Him. 

Because we have this healthy fear or “awe” of God we can expect certain rewards including:

  •  Wisdom
  • “beginning of knowledge”
  • “fountain of life”
  • “strong confidence”
  • “riches and honor”

There are also bad fears.    Anyone who has watched Monk is familiar with a whole group of fears called phobias.  Phobias from A to Z.  Ablutophobia – fear of washing.  I have known a few people with this phobia or at least I thought they had it.  How about, Bibliophobia, fear of books.  Or, Zoophobia, fear of animals.  Phobias hinder a persons ability to enjoy life to its fullest.  When we are faced with fears of this type we should do as the Psalms instructs in 34:4.  “I sought the Lord, and He heard me, and delivered me from all my fears. ”    The bible tells us that fear has torment in 1st John 4:18  So we should seek deliverance from fears that are bad for us. 

Fear can overwhelm us and give us an inability to face problems.  Fear can come against us and cause us to run from it.  Fear if not faced and challenged can defeat us.  The greek word “deilia” is used for a cowardly fear.  Do you think Shadrack, Meshack, and Abednego felt fear when thrown into the firey furnace?  Did Daniel feel fear when thrown into the Lion’s den?  How about Ester when she had to talk to the King?  Did Jesus know fear and have a fear of going to the Cross?  What I do know is that they faced their  fear and did not run.   Jesus did not turn from the cross even though he knew what was coming.  Ester could have chosen not to go to the King.  Daniel could have shut up his windows and not prayed in his manner to God.  Shadrack, Meshack and Abednego could have worshiped the golden statue set up.  I am reminded of the scripture in Ps 56:11 ” In God have I put my trust:  I will not be afraid what man can do unto me.”

Now back to the question at hand.  Can fear and faith coexist in a true believer’s life?   We are all facing different problems and issues in our lives.  Many face dying, cancer, diabetes, losing limbs and pain.  Many face family turmoil, death, divorce, etc.  Many face financial issues, losing jobs, lack of money and resources, homelessness, etc.   Fear can be overwhelming whether we are Christians or unbelievers.  Therefore, I do believe that “true believers” can coexist with faith. 

However, I also believe that our instructions are very clear. 

  •  Ps 27:1  “the Lord is my light, and my salvation; who shall I fear?  The Lord is the strength of my life:  of whom shall I be afraid.” 
  • Ps 23:4  Yea, though I walk through the valley of the shadow of deal, I will fear no evil. 
  •  Ps 56:11  “In God have I put my trust:  I will not be afraid what man can do unto me.”
  • Prov. 8:13 ” The fear of the Lord is to hate evil.”

So we are given pretty clear marching orders.  Our job as believers is to do battle with satan and his demon forces.  Fear is one of his tools.  Fear can cause mental and physical torment so it should be resisted.   We are to take up our cross (whatever that is) and follow Christ.  I wish I could avow that I have defeated the enemy of fear in all areas of my life.  I can’t.  But I can tell you that Christ has defeated Him and He holds the keys to my future not Satan.  I choose this day to walk with Christ and to declare his name to all those who will listen and to face my fears.  I hope you will too.

Bless you all for reading this.


Water – It’s benefits

September 1, 2009

Water is very important to life.  It regulates metabolism.    In fact, every system in our body requires water.  Our bodies are made up of 6o% water.  For that reason alone it is an essential ingredient in my cleanse.  Very few of us take in enough water and as a result are not hydrated.   Dehydration can be very serious and may require medical interaction.  Drinking enough water helps you maintain a healthy body weight, flushes toxins from your systems that you need for continued health and may help to restore your health if you have an illness. 

 Drinks such as coffee, tea, sodas, etc. cannot replace water.  In fact,  these beverages can actually increase your bodies need for more  water.  Most seniors are dehydrated to some degree.  Seniors need around 2 1/2 quarts per day.  My Mom doesn’t drink enough water.   In fact, we cannot get her to drink 2 1/2 quarts of anything.  She doesn’t like water and doesn’t mind telling you.  Sometimes we put a little lemon in it or flavor the water in some way. 

Of course, seniors are not the only group who don’t drink enough water.  Some of us do better than others.  As for myself, I am inconsistent about getting enough water into my system and have to make a daily effort to drink water.  My sister was addicted to Dr. Pepper and that was her drink of choice.  She has recently broken that habit by following my cleanse and now drinks the lemon cocktail that I use in my cleanse but still needs to drink more water.  We all do.  Our thirst does not always tell us if we need water.  One way of knowing whether you are taking in enough water is by watching your urine.  Urine should be clear or very light yellow with no smell.  If you are dehydrated, urine will be a dark yellow.  Another way is by keeping track of how much water you are drinking.  If you are experiencing 3 or 4 of the following symptoms you may be  dehydrated.

  The symptoms of dehydration include: 

  • dry sticky mouth
  • thirst
  • sleepiness
  • being tired
  • decreased urine output
  • muscle weakness
  • headaches
  • dizziness
  • fuzziness of thought (lack of focus)
  • dry skin

How much water should we take in:

There is no hard and fast rule, although many of the experts tell us we should take in 8  8 oz glasses daily.  The problem with this is this amount of water will replace what you are losing daily through sweat, urine output, etc.  but may not fully hydrate you.   I follow a formula based on your body weight.    You take your body weight and divide by 2 and this will give you the number of ounces you should drink daily.  For example, 200 lbs divided by 2 is 100 ounces.  In addition, extra water should be taken if you exercise or the weather is hot, you have any type of illness or you are pregnant.   

Once you determine the water requirements for your body then the next question becomes what type of water should you drink.  We have all heard the reports regarding bottled water.  Many times, we are drinking water that is coming from some community spicket.  Tests have been done and found that the water in many products is no safer than any other water.  Some brands of bottled water contain high levels of contaminants and toxins.  The only way to overcome this is to do your research and determine whether your water choice is safe.

There are basically three types of water.  Distilled, spring and chloridated.  I will discuss all of these later in a future blog, but for now let me say that  I prefer to drink distilled or even double distilled if you can find it.  Wikipedia defines distilled water as “water that has virtually all of its impurities removed through distillation.  Distillation involves boiling the water and then condensing the steam into a clean container leaving most, if not all,  contaminants behind.”  Criticisms of distilled water are generally:

  1. Naturally occurring minerals taken out of the water.
  2. Lacks fluoride
  3. Hard to find in bottled water
  4. Requires a large amount of energy and resources to distill water.
  5. Filtration systems work as well as distillation
  6. Distillers are costly and require large amounts of resources.

You can decide these issues for yourself but I have decided that distilled water is the purest water that can be found.  So it is that simple for me. 

I do not have a distiller so I am forced to buy my water.  I usually buy it by the gallon at grocery stores or at Walmart.  My one major concern is that is can only be bought in plastic jugs.  Preferably, they would be glass as plastic containers can 1) leach chemicals in water if left in the sun, heated up or reused several times 2) takes over 17 billion barrels of oil to meet the demand for bottled water 3) is a poor use of water resources as it requires as much as 7 times the amount of water to make bottled water and 4) it takes over 35,000 18 wheelers daily to deliver this bottled water.  We spend over $16 billion dollars a year on bottled water. 

You can buy distillers and some of them are solar powered but these can be very expensive.  So for now, I usually just buy the water and pray that the jugs are kept out of the heat.  Try to find a glass container to transfer the water into.

The important thing is to start getting this life giving fluid into you.  Here are a few fast tips to help you drink your water requirement.

  • Keep track of the amount of water you are drinking and record it daily in a notebook.
  • Start out the morning by drinking 16 ounces of water  upon rising.
  • Drink another 16 ounces before each meal – Breakfast, Lunch and Dinner
  • Drink 16 ounces in the early evening.  Avoid taking right before bed or you may spend the evening going to the bathroom
  • Drink water throughout the day. 

I think you will find that by hydrating yourself and flushing out the toxins from your system that you will begin to feel better right away and this is one of the biggest tools you can use for weight loss as well.

Have a great fluid filled life.

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