The Time Is Now

The Time Is Now

Let us be vigilant against our own downfall.
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There must come a time when we realize that the choices we make, the things we say, and the things we don't say highly impact the people around us. We are not merely living for the benefit of ourselves, but for the benefit of our neighbor. What would our lives begin to look like if we stopped acting on selfish gain?

It's a fascinating concept to swallow, because since the beginning of time man has acted on being the most superior form of himself as possible. But wasn't that our downfall? We must analyze our own thoughts and actions and figure out why we are so concerned with having our eyes open to the knowledge of good and evil rather than being content with our eyes being focused on the issues already in front of us. Why does our blood rush with the desire to know all there is to know, and to be capable of doing more than what we can already do? Let us be vigilant against our own downfall and not get so wrapped up with becoming like God. Superiority looks nice, but really it's just a wilting flower embodied in thorns we are too blind to see and one of the most dangerous forms of idolatry.

It's hard to study Genesis and think that we could've done any better. Our conversations are built on greed, our politics are centered around us against them, our "Good Samaritan" attitudes at the root are about "what can I get in return for helping my neighbor in need?"

Selfishness and superiority starts with the belief that what God has already blessed us with, isn't enough. While we are complaining about needing to be and have more, we are withholding the opportunity to help our brothers and sisters around us. What they need is what we already have inside of us, and what we need is already on the inside of someone else. The time is now to be empathetic to the precious life throughout the world.

For every genuine there is a counterfeit from the enemy. The temptation that the serpent brought to Eve in the Garden was the first counterfeit that was offered to humanity. "You will not certainly die,” the serpent said to the woman. “For God knows that when you eat from it your eyes will be opened, and you will be like God, knowing good and evil.” Genesis 3:4-5 completely contradicts God's purpose and design of man. We were made in the image of God, not to be opponents and forces against him. If we were supposed to obtain a level of superiority where we were like God, we wouldn't need each other, making God's design pointless.

"And let's not be consumed by winning. Because if my neighbor is being hated, profiled, violated or otherwise mistreated, WE aren't winning." It is because I strongly agree with the words of Bernice King, that I urge you with every fiber in my being to get out of your own bubble of greed and prosperity, and to be a voice for the voiceless.

Selfishness was in the equation of The Fall, but selflessness is in the equation of God's Redemption Plan. The time is now.

Cover Image Credit: Wordpress

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12 Bible Verses For Faith In Hard Times

Remind yourself that God is always with you.
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Lately, I have felt lost at what God wants for my life. Ever since I've come back to UWG everything has been horrible. It seems that I can't catch a break. I'm trying my best to focus on school, work, and extracurricular activities. But it's hard when I'm having issues with my apartment/roommates and knowing my family back home is struggling and needs many prayers. All, I keep thinking is maybe Carrollton isn't where I belong anymore. I've asked God if He can guide me in the right direction. Below, I have found Bible verses that have helped get me through these rough, past couple of weeks.

1. Isaiah 43:2

"When you go through deep waters, I will be with you."

2. Psalm 37:5

"Commit your way to the Lord. Trust in Him, and He will act."

3. Romans 8:18

"The pain that you've been feeling, can't compare to the joy that's coming."

4. Proverbs 31:25

"She is clothed in strength, and dignity, and she laughs without fear of the future."

5. Joshua 1:9

"Be bold. Be brave. Be courageous."

6. Ecclesiastes 3:1

"There is a time for everything and a reason for every activity under the heavens."

7. Isaiah 41:10

"Don't be afraid, for I am with you. Don't be discouraged, for I am your God. I will strengthen you and help you. I will hold you up with my victorious right hand."

8. Isaiah 66:9

"I will not cause pain without allowing something new to be born, says the Lord."

9. Psalm 91:4

"He will cover you with His feathers, and under His wings, you will find refuge; His faithfulness will be your shield and rampart."

10. Psalm 62:1-2

"My soul finds rest in God alone, my salvation comes from Him, He alone is my rock and my salvation."

11. Philippians 4:13

"I can do everything through Christ who gives me strength."

12. Jeremiah 29:11

"For I know the plans I have for you, plans to prosper you and not harm you, plans to give you hope and a future."

Cover Image Credit: pixabay.com

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The Struggle Of Maintaining A Strong Faith In College

I never thought I would struggle with having a strong faith, until college.

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Growing up Catholic, my faith was the most important thing to me. I never thought it would be so difficult maintaining a strong faith in college. I was born into a huge Catholic family and growing up, I resented the idea of going to church and it was always a struggle for me.

My parents are both Catholic, as is the rest of my family, and it was the one thing I knew would never change in my life. I was baptized, received my first communion, and was confirmed. All three of these things are huge sacraments in the Catholic Church.

Typically, you are baptized into the Catholic Church as a baby and you receive your first communion around the age of 7 or 8. Your conformation is the most important day in your young, Catholic life. This is the sacrament where you become an adult in the churches eyes. This process is long and tedious. Although, often times it was a lot to do, it was an amazing period of growth in my faith for me and in the end was with it.

As a Freshman in high school, my parents left my faith up to me. They wanted it to become mine. With that opportunity, I ran. And started to have a very strong faith. I was very involved in my church doing mission work, bible studies, and even leading small groups. I was fully devoted to my faith pretty much all of high school and it was something that was so beautiful and I was so proud of. I didn't just go through the motions, I tried m hardest to live the life God designed for me while still bringing praise to his name.

Flash forward to my senior year of high school. The biggest, most unexpected thing happened in my life that acted as a wave in my calm sea of my faith.

On August 5th, 2016, I lost one of my very good friends. Logan's passing was so difficult for me and it made me start to question my faith.

How could God let this happen?

Why Logan?

Why now?

These were all things that constantly went through my mind. After that tragic experience, my faith was undoubtedly shaken. I lost touch with God during my senior year, which was something I never expected to happen.

I then moved into college with an already rocky faith, and in my head I thought I would move to Kentucky and my faith could instantly be fixed because I could move on from the past.

I was wrong.

In college, having a faith is difficult especially when a lot of your friends do not share the same religion as you. College is cool though because in church, when you look around at who is there, it is all college kids who want to be there. These kids no longer are being forced to go to church on Sunday with their parents. It's all their own effort.

With that being said, it's still not easy. One of the main issues I struggle with personally is scheduling. I'm always so busy with things like class and sorority that it has become difficult to attend church. Yes, I should do a better job of making my faith and attending church a priority, but y'all, life is busy. It's something to work on.

So how am I going to work on it? I plan to get more plugged into the church on campus and make it more of a priority in my life. I'm attending church more now that I am home again with my family. It has started to impact my life in a positive way. When I go back to college in the fall, I'm going to want to maintain this spiritual point in my life.

Faith is not perfect. It is ever-changing much like a roller coaster. You will have low and high points in your faith, but the important thing is that you accept that and still remember one thing. God loves you and wants a relationship with you.

Cover Image Credit:

Katelyn Dougherty

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