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Friday, 26 September 2014

Pledge #15 - Ask God's Help

To constantly ask God for help, for none of this can I do without Him.

At all. Ever. Period. Fairly simple, but I'll expound on it slightly.

Do I mean by this, that I should not do anything? Well, no, I'm asking for help, that's something. But nothing apart from that? Just rely that God will do it all for me. No, I don't think that's what it's about.
I think God wants us to do our best with what we have. And that means putting in some effort, striving to be better. It also means praying and trusting in God - and it can be tricky knowing where which comes in more, and all this sort of thing. If in doubt, do both! God seems to be quite adept at making it work out, despite our lack of understanding in how it all works.

This concludes my series that I've been doing on this pledge of mine. Hopefully you've found it interesting. Until next time!

Sunday, 21 September 2014

Pledge #14 - Harbour Peace

To not harbour resentment, anger, hate, jealousy, or other poisoners of the soul.

I've mentioned a fair few times before on here about how emotions self-perpetuate. If you haven't heard it before; essentially, all emotions want more of the said emotion. So the more you dwell on it, the bigger it grows, the less room you have for other emotions. Particularly less room for opposite emotions. This is true of both positive and negative emotions; so it can either be a great thing, or a bad thing. If you're dwelling on negative emotions - then you can easily get depressed, or much worse. It poisons your soul. If you dwell on positive emotions - then the negative emotions don't have any room to grow.
Now, that doesn't mean that when negative emotions legitimately arise for a proper reason, you act as if they're not there. You don't just ignore them and act like it's all fine and dandy. But when things go badly, you need to make sure that it's not all negative. Find that positive - if there's not one there, make one, put one there. We can always add a bit of positive. Often, having someone else there helps, a lot.
To me, this really matters, because I don't want to be a negative person. I know what wallowing in bad emotions can do, and it drowns you. It really does. So for me, harbouring instead hope, peace, joy, and love - that's really important. It's very reminiscent of Philippians 4:8 - "Finally, brothers and sisters, whatever is true, whatever is noble, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is admirable--if anything is excellent or praiseworthy--think about such things."

Friday, 12 September 2014

Pledge #13 - Seek Understanding

To seek understanding in the places that I lack.

Particularly so that I may understand people, and avoid the previous point of judging people on things that I don't understand. And also because the more you understand people, the better you can empathise with them, see where they're coming from - or maybe it's the other way around. They're related, anyway. And people are just interesting.

But it's also broader than just that - it's about learning, but going deeper than just knowing facts; understanding the way things work, the why and the how of it, that's what's really interesting. Getting into it and having a go for yourself. Doing it. That's often how we grow our understanding.

This is, of course, an ongoing process; you can never understand everything, and chances are you don't understand a lot of the things you think you do. It's just the nature of things, as it were. There's always a lot more to them than we can get.

Thursday, 4 September 2014

Pledge #12 - Judging Slowly

To never judge another on something that I do not understand.

It's something that is very easy for us, as people, to do. Because we often think that we do understand, when in reality we don't. And so we make these snap decisions, thinking that we know the best - but actually, we have no clue. We're judging people; and doing so unjustly. As such, it's so important that we really think before we judge others; because there's always more to the story than we know. Often, there's more to it than they know as well, but one thing at a time.
You always hate it when people make snap decisions about you - so don't do it to others.

Tuesday, 2 September 2014

The Hope Diaries.

I've started a little project that I've called the Hope Diaries. I got the idea because I was wearing my Hope 103.2 beanie when I did the first one, so I thought, "Why not call it that?" Because it actually works really well.

This probably isn't something that I'll be putting up anywhere. I don't know. Maybe. But I thought I'd put up the idea, anyway.

Essentially, there are things we can do that aren't so great. But, because we're human, we tend to do them anyway. Some aren't that bad. Some really are. Each person struggles with a few of them. There's one in particular I'm working at that maybe I'll talk about at some point, but not in this post.

But I was in a place again today where I wanted to go back there. And then the thought came to me, to instead of doing that, play a song. A song that brought me hope. Rather than doing something that would diminish it. And so that's why the name works nicely.

Now, because I'm a 4 (the Tragic Romantic, for those not yet familiar with the Enneagram), a lot of them will probably be love songs, to some degree. Maybe I'll have a couple of my own, not sure. Hopefully there will be a few Christian ones in there as well. But basically, it will be the first one I see that works.

So yeah. That's the project. Knowing me, it could either happen very sporadically/barely at all, or maybe for quite a while. Guess we'll see.