Categories
love

Genuine gratitude is not a bargain with the almighty universe

Our intuition always shows us what does us good. So it isn’t surprising that gratitude has become a lifestyle in the world of today that is all about seeking ways of living a happy life.

But gratitude is first and foremost to God. It stems from a life-changing relationship with Him when He calls us and we surrender to his eternal love. Because who else would we go to? It is Jesus who has the words of eternal life. Even knowing this comes as a revelation from God.

We become grateful to God for everything in our lives, including what we perceive as bad, because God gives us the understanding that all things contribute to our good in as much as we love Him and want to do His will.

This gratitude does not seek rewards. It does not seek happiness as the materialization of the “enlightened state” of being “grateful”. In fact, it is simply a humble attitude before God that naturally unfolds in us because we trust that He is giving us every experience necessary to transform us into the perfect and eternal expression of Himself.

What does this gratitude have to do with the trendy “gratitude” of nowadays? Nothing. Because being grateful now comes with the expectation that if we are grateful for what we have, greater things will happen in our lives.

In other words, this trendy “gratitude” is nothing but a bargain. A bargain with an “almighty universe” where cause and effect lord it all along with its pagan spirituality derivates: karma, law of attraction, quantum physics etc.

Is that really gratitude? Far from it. It is easy to be grateful when everything is going well or if there is the prospect of turning things around in a direction that we desire to go when things are not going well.

Here’s the thing: genuine gratitude does not seek rewards. Were we called to live our lives being grateful for what we have and at the same time look at it as milestones towards what else we can get?

In the pursuit of worldly riches, we end up losing our spiritual (true) selves and finding death. It is the same death Jesus saved us from, but that we keep seeking through our material wants again and again and again.

Why pursue worldly riches that leave us feeling empty, meaningless and hopeless, when we can enjoy an eternity of peace through God? All we have to do is want it. And His grace will fill us up with His love until we overflow with it and become His lights in this world of darkness.

Categories
faith love

Our mouths speak of what our hearts are full of

Our mouths speak of what our hearts are full of. Allow yourself to be filled with love and your words will come out gentle and gracious.

Let only loving, gracious words come out of your mouth everyday.

When we use harsh words, that is not love and will only sting others and poison ourselves.

Loving words are gentle – they build us up and give grace to those who hear us.

❤️Like & Follow us on GraciousWay ❤️

Categories
love

Are you forgiving?

There are two fundamental things about forgiving others that most of us overlook:

1. Forgiving is not about merit
2. Forgiving is unilateral

So if a person has hurt us, we forgive her even if we don’t see any sign of repentance. We also don’t need that person to ask for our forgiveness, we just go ahead and give it.

When we forgive, we make a conscious decision to let go of that person without wishing for her punishment.

If there is mutual willingness to rebuild what was broken, with genuine love, we can invite her back into our lives.

The same way God has forgiven our sins without us meriting that, we forgive one another also without us meriting that.

Forgiving others “by default” is one of the wonderful fruits of God’s love in us.

With the beginning of a new calendar year, I invite us all to think about our ability to genuinely love and forgive others.

We must forgive everyone, including ourselves. 70 x 7 = always!

I pray for God to keep nurturing love and forgiveness in our lives going forward.

Categories
love

Christian friends

I made three new friends this year through a church and it makes a huge difference when I talk to them compared to when I talk to other friends who are not Christian.

These Christian friends understand me, support me in spiritual ways and just generally make me feel connected.

It is such a relief to have a conversation with people who genuinely approach life with love. Who don’t engage in hatred. Who easily forgive. Who place God above everything and everyone else.

I am so grateful for their friendships. I feel so peaceful in their company.

This has been such a challenging year for me. And yet it’s also been the year where I’ve experienced love and God’s grace at the very depths of my soul.

Everything about this year reveals to me that it is just as Paul said it: the message of the cross is foolishness to those who are perishing, but to us who are being saved it is the power of God.

Need a Christian friend to talk to? I’m right here. 🙂

Categories
faith love

Are you feeding your spirituality with ‘fast-food’?

It is common for a lot of people to feed their spirituality with ‘fast-food’: bits and pieces here and there on the Internet.

You probably know this already, but that won’t take you anywhere good.

Living with a genuine focus on our spirituality is fundamental.

Depth is a must. Commitment is a must. Deciding to close all doors that lead to everything and nothing is a must.

Spending time with ourselves on a daily basis reading the bible is a profoundly edifying exercise. Again, Jesus is the hermeneutical key to understand everything. He walks us through the testimonies with Grace.

Categories
god love

There’s just one way

I’ve known a lot of people in my life who were searching for answers to quench their spiritual restlessness. All of them tried out different things, from religion to mystic practices. Most settled with a way that seemed more graspable.

But there’s just one way: love.

This love doesn’t come in isolation, you are compelled to love and to be loved.

This love is God. And God visited us incarnated in Jesus. Jesus teaches us very clearly the way.

You don’t have to be a Christian to know this love. God reveals himself to whomever he wants – at the right time. In fact, many Christians know a lot about the bible, but little to nothing about this love.

This love is not negotiable and there’s no bargain. It’s unconditional.

You know when it’s in you, through God’s grace, because it changes you and it changes the way you look at the world.

There are other ways, ways without God, that are known and visible. They might seem exciting, but can you handle the rejection? The emptiness? The loneliness? The hopelessness? The indifference?

There’s only one way that leads you to fullness, hope and genuine love. Step into the abyss of what you don’t know yet. And let God pave the way for you!

Categories
faith love

Jim Carrey’s spiritual journey

Jim Carrey gives a touching testimony of his spiritual journey.

Categories
god love

Boutique spirituality

I have met quite a few people over the years who claimed to be spiritual, but were very protective of their so-called balance.

In a nutshell, they had built a mystic space for themselves where they could seek shelter from life challenges.

Some of those people became friends of mine in spite of clear differences in vision.

As a follower of Jesus, I attempt to reconcile myself with people who are different from me. But I also surrender to the fact that most people will not be a good fit to become a close friend or have access to the depths of my soul.

My experience with these people who develop what I call ’boutique spirituality’ has not been a positive one.

They are more than willing to share their spiritual ideas and sell them, but at moments of difficulty, they dodge you.

One thing that changed radically in me after my conversion was that I developed a genuine desire to support others. Even when I was not in a good place myself. And helping someone else always strengthens me.

As followers of Jesus, it is absolutely essential that we support others in need. We’re blessed to know that’s precisely the path to strengthen ourselves.

That doesn’t mean we’ll allow them to use us as clutches! We should aim to empower. But if we can’t support others in need, then how really are we loving one another?

It is true that there are situations where we can’t objectively help. But we can always at least reach out, listen and share kind words of encouragement.

Next time someone in need reaches out to you, don’t make it about you – your weaknesses and limitations. Make it about God.

God wants us to love him by loving others.

Categories
god

If you want to be good you must set boundaries

A lot of us believe that being good entails doing what others ask. Always being there. Always giving. Always abiding. 

But that’s not really being good. That’s being pathologically good. And that is not good.

Being genuinely good means you know when to set boundaries because going beyond them will hurt more than do good. 

Being truthfully good means you acknowledge your limits and face the fact that saying “no” can lead to growth, especially where saying “yes” would shelter others from taking full responsibility for themselves.

Anything we do that doesn’t come from the heart is false and leads us to an unhealthy path of self-glorification.

Being good is about avoiding excesses, being true to the heart and finding balance:

Let what you say be simply ‘Yes’ or ‘No’; anything more than this comes from evil. — Matthew 5:37

Categories
faith spirituality

The relevance of sharing

The most important life experience I’ve ever had is also the one that I share the least: my conversion. Why? Because the relevance of sharing is diluted in our times in a vast sea of superficial and attention seeking sharing. Nonetheless, it does seem that meaningful sharing should also happen less frequently. And that explains the 3-year gap between my last post here and this one.