Thursday, May 29, 2014

Writer's muse

Due to lack of inspiration for a quick blog post (which none of you suffer from, I suppose), I rummaged through the bins of the past and came upon something I wrote many years ago, just after finishing my first book (how interesting)...

When He spoke, the world was created. You can find those words in Psalm 33:9. Besides the world, He created you and me and He embedded His creating power in us (by giving us His Holy Spirit). That is why we love to build, design, fabricate and invent. That is why we love to write!

Never before would I have thought it possible to write so much about just two verses in the Bible, like I did in Sacred Sabbath. It tells me something about the enormous impact of God's words. If just two verses give enough inspiration for a book, just imagine how many books are hidden in the Bible! People get inspired every day, all over the world, when reading God's word.

Think again about that word 'inspired', it means in-spirit. I don't get inspired because I am so good and wonderful, it is because the Spirit is alive in me. He shows me things I simply could not see before. Reading God's word must be like being with Jesus. The gospel of John ends with these words: Now, there are many other things that Jesus did. If they were all written down one by one, I suppose that the whole world could not hold the books that would be written!

Wow, I am looking forward to endless inspiration! Isn't that every author's dream?

PS: Are you sometimes looking for inspiration in the weirdest places?

Tuesday, May 20, 2014

Pros and cons of FB pages

Back in 2006 (yeah, when I started this weblog) my first book in the Ten Commandments Series was released: Sacred Sabbath. It was basically a book about time management: taking a day of rest after every six days of work.

Not too long ago I was reading through that book again and while making notes I was amazed at how timely the message still is in 2014. So... (and this is how my mind works) I decided to make a Facebook page for this book series. Not just for the latest or upcoming one, but for the whole series!

The downside: I gotta bother my friends (you!) to like the page. The upside: it is a great way to give away snippets and one liners for friends to share and tweet. As more and more books are being translated in different European languages I tend to 'neglect' my English speaking audience... (forgive me). So I thought FB would be an easy way to stay connected, even if we miss each other's blogs every now and then :)

So, I hope you will visit the Facebook page and I would be honored to receive your LIKE.

Saturday, May 10, 2014

Born again ABC (5)

In the previous blogs on the subject of being born again, we have seen that the Bible clearly speaks about two different kind of births. The spiritual birth is not the same as the natural birth. But, why is it necessary for a human to be born again, or: to become spiritually alive?

The fact that we need to become spiritually alive, implicates that by nature we are spiritually 'dead'. In Colossians 2:13 we can read: When you were dead in your sins and in the uncircumcision of your flesh, God made you alive with Christ. He forgave us all our sins. The Bible speaks about living people who are 'dead' because of their sins.

Being not physically, but spiritually 'dead' means there is a barrier between man and God. Ephesians 2:1 (Good News translation) says it like this, In the past you were spiritually dead because of your disobedience and sins. Sin stands between God and mankind and makes us spiritually dead for communication with Him. I always had trouble accepting this, I used to believe in the goodness of mankind. But one look at today's headlines tells me the opposite is true.

It is easy to see this in little children, we must teach them to do GOOD, the bad comes naturally. Every human being is born with a sinful nature. Kind David wrote: Surely I was sinful at birth, sinful from the time my mother conceived me (Psalm 51:5). This is why we all need to be born again! This is why we need to accept the forgiveness that Jesus Christ offers, and turn our back to sin.

There is so much more to be said about the born again experience, about the new life that we can receive, but the most important thing is to admit that we need it! Why not accept what He wants to give us (Ephesians 2:5): to be alive with Christ! That acceptance is the most important decision we can make in our entire life.

Now that by your obedience to the truth you have purified yourselves and have come to have a sincere love for other believers, love one another earnestly with all your heart. For through the living and eternal word of God you have been born again as the children of a parent who is immortal, not mortal (1 Peter 1:22-23)

Sunday, May 04, 2014

Born again ABC (4)

When reading through the previous blog posts on this subject, it turns out that the term 'born again' is not as strange as many people think it is. The Bibles speaks about it in several places.

That the term being born again raises curious questions is understandable. It is after all something we cannot really grasp with our human (limited) mind. Even a scholar and learned man as the Jewish leader Nicodemus didn't understand it: How can someone be born when they are old? Nicodemus asked. Surely they cannot enter a second time into their mother’s womb to be born! (John 3:4). I do learn from his question that being born again happens at a later point in life. This can be when we're 10, 20, 30 or 80, it doesn't really matter.

Nicodemus did not understand the difference between the natural and spiritual birth. All he knew was the new life that came forth from a human being. The Bible, however, speaks about the new life that comes from God. We are not being born again of a human being, but of God! How that works exactly, I don't know, but I do know that it works. In 1 John 5:1 it is being described as follows: Everyone who believes that Jesus is the Christ is born of God... Well, that is not too complicated, isn't it?

The main question therefore is: do you believe that Jesus is the Christ (the anointed one, the Messiah)? This is a question of epic proportions since millions and millions of people all over the world are looking for the answer, especially within the Jewish and Islamic religions. It is a very important question that can only be answered with yes or no. If your answer is YES, you can and will experience the spiritual rebirth. Dare to say it out loud: I believe that Jesus is the Christ, He is the Son of God. If you sincerely mean this, it will without a doubt change your life forever!

In the next blog post I will take a closer look at WHY we need to be born again, namely the blockade between God and mankind: sin.