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Parents as Reading Role Models: Eliminating Distractions and Building Stamina

This is the third and final installment of our series Parents as Reading Role Models (Part 1 and Part 2, if you are catching up). Let’s talk openly and honestly about all of the distractions in our lives and how they often prevent us from modeling good reading behaviors for our kids. Whether you’re the parent or caregiver of a newborn or a teenager, it’s so easy to become distracted by dings, vibrations, and alerts. We are very guilty of this ourselves. Flip on CNN and you’ll see 4 scrolling bars at the bottom of the screen, as if our bodies were built to absorb a constant stream of stimuli. Newsflash? They’re not.

Tips For Building Reading Stamina and Eliminating Distractions

This process will help both you and your child learn to minimize external distractions and devote a part of your day fully focused on reading:

  1. Have a plan. Designate what part of your day you will read. Keep it sacred, even if it’s at a different time each day. Put it on your calendar and give yourself reminders. Tell your family about it. Example of something you might say to your family: “After we clean up dinner, I’m going to read in the living room for 10 minutes if anyone wants to join me.”
  2. Remove distractions. Put anything that might disturb you in another room, whether it’s your phone, laptop, new nail polish, TV, pets, spouse, children, vacuum cleaner, food, or a cold beer. Ask yourself, “Would I use/do this if I were praying or meditating?” If the answer is “no,” put it out of reach.
  3. Make it really appealing. If reading for pleasure is new to you, pick something to read that you know you’ll really like. People magazine. A romance novel. The latest best-seller. Your daughter’s All About Me book from 2nd grade. A research article for your job that you’ve been meaning to get to. Content or format doesn’t matter, as long as it is enjoyable enough that you know you’ll stay put.
  4. Start small. You are going to retrain your brain to be distraction-free in your home. If this is something you struggle with, start small, like for 5 minutes. After a few days of success, increase the time and gradually build your stamina to read distraction-free for longer periods of time.
  5. Reflect. How do you feel after you’ve read distraction-free? Does it impact other areas of your life? (For example, many people report sleeping better if they spend a few minutes reading before bed.) How does this relate to behaviors you’ve noticed in your children? Do you find yourself wanting to read or be distraction-free more?
  6. Share your process. Talk to your family about what you’re reading, what you’re enjoying about it, and what struggles you’re experiencing. Even if your family doesn’t join in at first, you’re setting the stage and making yourself the role model. You’re also demonstrating to your children that even when reading feels hard, you persevere.

Many teachers complain that despite their best efforts to teach mandatory content, student performance on tests indicates otherwise. A huge reason for this discrepancy? Lack of stamina. In an age full of distraction, children haven’t spent the needed time practicing sustained concentration for longer than 5-10 minutes at a time. And this isn’t just an issue with state tests or other issues at school. The effects of this constant distraction are long-term, and lead to poor work performance later in life.

We worry that we’re raising children who won’t be able to focus during important moments long enough to hold necessary conversations and build solid relationships.

Once you’ve tried building stamina in your reading life, apply the above process to other common scenarios:

  • family game night
  • sustained conversation on specific topics during mealtime
  • screen-free time in the car
  • time spent outdoors observing nature
  • putting together a jigsaw puzzle
  • building with Legos, blocks, etc., or pursuing other hobbies
  • “power hour” where the whole family does chores together

These shared experiences will not only practice building stamina, but will enhance family bonding, providing priceless opportunities to make lasting memories.

If this is a topic that interests you, or that you struggle with, read these posts for more information and advice:

How to Talk to Your Child About Reading
Productive Struggle: What It Is and Why Your Child Needs It
Parents as Reading Role Models: Finding the Time

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129 thoughts to “Parents as Reading Role Models: Eliminating Distractions and Building Stamina”

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  7. Hi,

    This is a very important public service announcement concerning our future well being. I found this information very interesting and should be viewed by everyone. Please take the time to look it over:

    We are heading towards a future in which they will mandate us to have an RFID microchip placed in our body. This chip will contain all our personal information, and we will lose much more of our privacy because of the tracking capabilities.

    Did you know this microchiop matches exactly with Biblical prophecy? Please read on!

    “He causes all, both small and great, rich and poor, free and slave, to receive a mark on their right hand or on their foreheads, and that no one may buy or sell except one who has the mark or the name of the beast, or the number of his name.

    Here is wisdom. Let him who has understanding calculate the number of the beast, for it is the number of a man: His number is 666” (Revelation 13:16-18 NKJV).

    Referring to the last days, this could only be speaking of a cashless money society, which we have yet to see, but are heading towards. Otherwise we could still buy or sell without the mark among others if physical money was still currency. This mark could not be spiritual, because the word references two different physical locations on the body. If it was spiritual, it would only say in the forehead.

    We can see throughout the history of society how we are being conditioned through the process of convenience. More specifically with how we make payments. We went from physical currency to credit and debit cards containing digital money, to these cards having a chip in them, to now being able to place your card near a device that will read its data. As well as self check-out lines in our market places and the cryptocurrency industry making a rapid climb in such form as bitcoin. These are all stepping stones for the powers that run this world to bring about their ultimate goal, that is to place a microchip in each and every one of us.

    RFID microchip implantable technology is on the rise and will be the future of a one world cashless society.

    Continue on to see how it matches perfectly up with Biblical prophecy!

    From a YouTube video titled, “Warning From Man Who Designed RFID Microchip”

    Here are some notes from the video:

    “Mr. Carl Sanders attended seventeen New World Order meetings with heads-of-state officials such as Henry Kissinger and Bob Gates of the C.I.A. to discuss plans on how to bring about this one-world system. The government commissioned Carl Sanders to engineer a microchip for identifying and controlling the peoples of the world-a microchip that could be placed under the skin with a hypodermic needle(a fast, convenient method that would be gradually accepted by society).

    Mr. Sanders, along with a group of engineers behind him, with U.S. grant monies provided by US tax dollars, took on this project and designed a microchip that is powered by a lithium battery, rechargeable by the temperature fluctuations in our skin. Without having knowledge of the Bible(Carl was not a believer at the time), these engineers spent one and a half million dollars doing research on the best and most convenient place to have the microchip inserted.

    These researchers found that the forehead and the back of the hand(the two places Revelation says the mark will go) are not just the most convenient spots, but are also the only viable locations for rapid, consistent temperature changes in the skin to recharge the lithium battery. The RFID microchip is around seven millimeters in length, .75 millimeters in diameter, about the size of a grain of rice. It is capable of containing pages upon pages of information about you. All your general history, work history, crime record, health history, and financial data can be stored on this chip.

    Mr. Sanders believes that this chip, which he regretfully helped engineer, is the “mark” spoken about in Revelation 13:16-18. The original Greek word for “mark” is “charagma,” which means a “scratch or etching.” It is also interesting to note that the number 666 is actually a word in the original Greek. The word is “chi xi stigma,” with the last part, “stigma,” also meaning “to stick or prick.”

    Carl Sanders spoke with a doctor asking what would occur if the lithium contained within the RFID microchip leaked into the body. The doctor answered by saying a terrible sore would appear in that spot. This is what the book of Revelation says: “And the first(Angel) went, and poured out his vial on the earth; and there fell a noisome and grievous sore on the men which had the mark of the beast, and on them which worshipped his image” (Revelation 16:2).

    WHAT IS THE NAME OF THE BEAST, THE NUMBER OF ITS NAME? THE MYSTERY OF THE NUMBER 666 REVEALED?

    What I first want to explain, before I share my thoughts on the number of the beast, is that God confirms in threes. We can see this all throughout scripture: “For there are three that bear witness in heaven: the Father, the Word, and the Holy Spirit; and these three are one” (1 John 5:7 NKJV). “and that He was buried, and that He rose again the third day according to the Scriptures” (1 Corinthians 15:4 NKJV). “…Holy, holy, holy, Lord God Almighty, Who was and is and is to come!” (Revelation 4:8 NKJV). There are many more examples, but I thought I would just share three of them to make the point.

    Looking at Revelation 13:16-18, the first group of three I would like to point out is that the mark of the beast is described in three separate verses, 16, 17 and 18. The next three I see is in verse 16, “He causes all…” is followed by three contrasting categories of people, “both small and great, rich and poor, free and slave…”. Then unto verse 17, it opens with, “and that no one may buy or sell except one who has…”, followed by three explanations of what one must have to buy or sell, “…the mark or the name of the beast, or the number of his name”. Now in verse 18, we read “Let him who has understanding calculate…”, which is followed by, “the number of the beast, for it is the number of a man: His number is 666”. The last three I see is the number 6 being used three times in a row. The reason I’m making this point is because of the number 666, as you will read below.

    “17: even that not any could buy or sell, except the one having the mark, or the name of the beast, or the number of its name” (Literal Greek Translation).

    Here we see the mark being identified as having the name of the beast, and that name being identified as being a number. We can conclude that these attributes being described in verse 17 are all in one thing because the Bible warns of us about receiving the mark, singular. It is clear in verse 17 that we cannot buy or sell without the mark(being previously identified as a microchip), but why cant we buy or sell without the name of the beast, or the number of its name? What does that have to do with us buying or selling if the number of the beast only applies to identifying the Antichrist, as the common thought has been? So we need the number of the beast to buy or sell. What does this mean?

    “here the wisdom is, the one having the mind let him calculate the number of the wild beast, number for of human it is, and the number of it 666” (Revelation 13:8 Greek Translation).

    “Here is wisdom. Let him that has understanding count the number of the beast: for the number of man; and its number is six hundred sixty-six” (Jubilee Bible 2000 translation).

    “In this situation wisdom is needed. Let the person who has insight figure out the number of the beast, because it is a human number. The beast’s number is 666” (GOD’S WORD translation).

    The Greek word “anthrōpos” being used in verse 18 where it says “of human” is the Greek strongs concordance G444. The first two definitions of the word are “a human being, whether male or female”, and, “generically, to include all human individuals”. Could the number of the beast apply to all mankind? In the Greek, and other translations, you will notice the beast is described as an “it”, instead of “him”. The reason I’m making this point is because when a translation says “His number is 666”, this would imply a singular person, the Antichrist. But by saying “the number of it 666”, implies that it is of the beast system as a whole.

    Throughout the years there have been people trying to calculate numbers based on titles and names that calculate to the number 666 to identify one person. But from verse 18, I do not see where God is telling us to count up to 666, but rather to count the number of the beast. This number is revealed as 666. So the verse is telling us to count the number 666.

    What does it mean to count? It means to add up. So how could we add up 666? Remember my previous point about God confirming in threes. So logically, what would be the best way to count the number 666? To count it equally in threes based off the number. We cannot count it equally as 600+60+6, this would also bring us back to the start. We cannot count it as 600+600+600, or 60+60+60, because there are no zeroes in between or at the end of 666. The only option is 6+6+6=18. What is interesting is that the verse that reveals for us to count the number itself is verse 18, being the third verse out of three verses that describe the mark of the beast. What is 18 divided by 3? 6. So 3×6=18, or 6+6+6=18.

    Another interesting point is the only two other combinations(making a total of three possible combinations) for placing a “+” symbol in between the 6’s are 66+6=72, and 6+66=72. Adding 7+2 and 7+2 equals 18. Add both 72’s together and you get 144. Why the number 144 is interesting is because the verse following Revelation 13:18 is the first time in the Bible where the 144,000 are being described in detail: “Then I looked, and behold, a Lamb standing on Mount Zion, and with Him one hundred and forty-four thousand, having His Father’s name written on their foreheads…” (Revelation 14:1).

    Now if you add up all three numbers by counting 666 by moving the “+” symbol around, it would be 72+72+18=162. What is interesting about the number 162, is, if you divide 144,000 by 162, you get 888. The name of Jesus in Greek gematria adds up to 888. Revelation 14:1 not only mentions the 144,000, but also the Lamb who is Jesus.

    Applying the same format that I used with calculating the number 666, in which I got the numbers 144 and 162, they also bring interesting results bringing us to the number 18:

    – 14+4=18*

    – 16+2=18*

    – 1+4+4=(9), 1+6+2=(9), (9+9)=18*

    – 1+44=(45), 1+62=(63), (4+5)=9, (6+3)=9, 9+9=18* | (45+63)=108, 10+8=18*

    – 14+4=(18), 1+44=(45), (1+8)=9, (4+5)=9, 9+9=18* | (18+45)=[63] | 16+2=(18), 1+62=(63), (1+8)=9, (6+3)=9, 9+9=18* | (18+63)=[81] | [6+3]=9, [8+1]=9, 9+9=18* | [63+81]=144

    – 1+4+4=(9), 14+4=(18), 1+44=(45), (9+18+45)=[72] (any two combinations of (9, 18, 45, and 72 will add to 18*) | 1+6+2=(9), 16+2=(18), 1+62=(63), 9+18+63=[90] (any two combinations of (9, 18, 63, and 90 will get you 18*) | [7+2]=9, [9+0]=9, 9+9=18* | [72+90]=162

    Now what is interesting about the number for Jesus, 888, is that if you apply this same formula, you get 8+8+8=24. Why the number 24? Revelation chapter 4 tells us there are 24 elders seated around the throne of God. This is the same throne where Jesus sits.

    Now if you take 8+8+8=24, and 8+88=96, and 88+8=96, you get 24+96+96=216. Take 144,000 divided by 216 and you get 666. Remember that this was the same exact formula to get the number 162 out of counting 666 that brought about the number 888 when dividing 144,000 by 162. It is perpetual.

    With using the same formula of counting by adding the “+” symbol in between the numbers, why do all these numbers relate in such a way?

    Another interesting point to note is that if you add up all the numbers from 1 to 36, it totals 666. The number 36, as in three sixes? Could this be a hint that we should add up three sixes instead of perceiving the number as six-hundred sixty six?

    So what could this mean? Well we know in this world we are identified by numbers in various forms. From our birth certificate to social security, as well as our drivers license, being labeled based on a structure of rulership. Therefore it is plausible that the RFID microchip will contain a new identification that has a total of 18 characters. Could this be the name of the beast, the number of its name? The beast system that is identified by 18 characters? This would fit with scripture that speaks of a mark that we need to buy or sell in our right hand or forehead, and that it also contains the number of the beast, during a future cashless society.

    Revelation 13:11-15 tells us that a false prophet will rise up deceiving many to take the mark because of the miracles he does before men. At all costs do not take it!

    “Then a third angel followed them, saying with a loud voice, “If anyone worships the beast and his image, and receives his mark on his forehead or on his hand, he himself shall also drink of the wine of the wrath of God, which is poured out full strength into the cup of His indignation. He shall be tormented with fire and brimstone in the presence of the holy angels and in the presence of the Lamb. And the smoke of their torment ascends forever and ever; and they have no rest day or night, who worship the beast and his image, and whoever receives the mark of his name” (Revelation 14:9-11).

    Did you hear about the woman from a major media outlet who reported a major event occurring approximately 20 minutes before it actually happened?

    It’s time we know the truth.

    A reporter from BBC reported the fall of World Trade Center 7 on September 11th 2001 approximately 20 minutes before it fell!

    Remember, WTC 7 did not get hit by anything, so there would be no reason to assume it would collapse. But she didn’t report on assumption, but that it in fact did collapse!

    What can we conclude? The only logical explanation is that the power that orchestrated 9/11 is the same power that controls the major media outlets!

    Don’t believe me? View the broadcast for yourself uploaded on YouTube titled: “BBC Reports 911, WTC 7 Collapse BEFORE it Happens”

    It gets even worse…

    Did you know there is other footage they don’t want us to see twice? I’m speaking of footage on the day of September 11th 2001 during the time the planes hit both Trade Towers. Eye witness reports say the following concerning the planes:

    – “No, it wasn’t a commercial airliner”
    – “…but it didn’t have any markings on it that I saw”
    – “no emblems, no logos”
    – “It definitely did not look like a commercial plane”
    – “I did not see any windows on the sides”
    – “It was a black plane, it looked like a fighter jet”
    – “It was black, it looks like a military plane”
    – “It was a military plane”

    This video also shares testimonies from firefighters who share their story being in the trade towers as bombs were exploding(to weaken the structure of the trade towers to allow the free fall collapse).

    As a terrorist, how could you smuggle bombs into the trade towers with all of its security systems which includes bomb sniffing dogs? Also, if terrorists did plant the bombs, then why weren’t we told about the bombs?!

    You can watch a video of this on YouTube by titled: “9/11 – THE FOOTAGE THEY DIDN’T LET YOU SEE TWICE (9/11 2001 Documentary)”

    What about the attack on the Pentagon? Was it really a plane that hit it, or something else, maybe a missle?

    Why did the FBI go around and confiscate camera footage from the surrounding buildings not releasing them to the public when they clearly showed us the planes that hit the world trade towers?

    Why was the only footage presented to the public from one of the most heavily guarded buildings in the world low quality footage showing only five frames at about one frame per second?

    The U.S. Secretary of Defense Donald Rumsfeld admitted the day before the attack that the Pentagon was missing 2.3 trillion dollars. Could this attack on the Pentagon have anything to do with covering up that information?

    So where is this all going? What is the agenda of this major event that occurred on 9/11? Why did we go to war with Afghanistan and Iraq?

    David Rockefeller is quoted to be saying:

    “Some even believe we are part of a secret cabal working against the best interests of the United States, characterizing my family and me as ‘internationalists’ and of conspiring with others around the world to build a more integrated global political and economic structure–one world, if you will. If that’s the charge, I stand guilty, and I am proud of it.” – David Rockefeller, Memoirs

    Another video to watch is an infamous interview done with movie producer Aaron Russo titled, “Aaron Russo RFID Human Implant Chip”

    Aaron Russo produced such movies as Mad as Hell, Trading Places, and America: Freedom to Fascism. He gained the attention of a man named Nick Rockefeller who saw the movie Made as Hell and knew Aaron was running for governor of Nevada. Knowing the impact Aaron was having on society, who being a freedom fighter standing for the constitution of the United States, Nick sought to befriend him to subtly recruit him into his secret society.

    Aaron shares what Nick had told him:

    “He’s the one who told me 11 months before 9/11 ever happened that there was going to be an event. He never told me what the event was going to be…and out of that event we were going to invade Afghanistan to run pipelines from the Caspian Sea. We are going to invade Iraq to take over the oil fields to establish a base in the middle east, and make it all part of the New World Order…”

    “I remember he was telling me how he was going to see soldiers looking in caves for people in Afghanistan and Pakistan and all these places. And there was going to be this war on terror, where this is no real enemy, and the whole thing is a giant hoax. But it is a way for the government to take over the American people…”

    Aaron asked Nick, “What’s the end goal? And he said the end goal is to get everyone chipped to control the whole society. To have the bankers, the elite people controlling the world…”

    Visit http://WWW.BIBLEFREEDOM.COM to see all the proof! It is at the point where it takes more faith not to believe that the Bible truly is the word of God!

    You will see proof for Noah’s Ark, the Red Sea Crossing, Sodom and Gromorrah, scientific evidence the Bible is inspired by God, testimonies from all walks of life concerning Jesus, and much more!

    “EITHER HUMAN INTELLIGENCE ULTIMATELY OWES ITS ORIGIN TO MINDLESS MATTER OR THERE IS A CREATOR…” – JOHN LENNOX

    For some time, the dominate theory in the scientific community was that the universe was eternal, without a beginning. As progression was made, the final conclusion came to be that the universe is expanding from a single point known as the Big Bang, in which space, time and matter all came into existence at that single event.

    This troubled scientists who’s worldview was purely naturalistic, as this notion concludes that what caused the universe to come into existence must be spaceless, timeless, and inmateral, favoring the Biblical God.

    The non-biblical religions tell us that god or god’s create within space and time that eternally exist. The Bible stands alone and says that time and space don’t exist until God creates the universe.

    The Bible tells us that God is a Spirit who fills the Earth, the heavens, and the Heavens of Heavens cannot contain Him. That He dwells in unaproachable light, being eternal with no beginning. This is the type of being who could cause the universe to come into existence. This also fits with reason that there must be an uncaused cause, otherwise you are left with an infinite regression in which idea is not logically coherent.

    The Bible also states in multiple places that God stretches out the heavens, thousands of years before scientists discovered an expanding universe.

    Ask yourself, if there is a God, wouldn’t He be personal, because we as His creation are personal? Wouldn’t He have reached out to us by now? Wouldn’t His word be the most read and translated in the history of the world, full of predictive prophecies? The Bible is that word!

    “For the scientist who has lived by his faith in the power of reason, the story ends like a bad dream. He has scaled the mountains of ignorance; he is about to conquer the highest peak; as he pulls himself over the final rock, he is greeted by a band of theologians who have been sitting there for centuries.” – Robert Jastrow, astronomer

    Jesus says we must be born again to enter the kingdom of God (John 3). In our sins, we are spiritually dead. Therefore we must be born from above by the Spirit of God to be made alive again.

    I hope this information has convinced you of the truth of the Gospel of Jesus Christ for the salvation of your soul. All religion is man-made, and the Bible warns that there will be many false doctrines that will spread throughout the world. Jesus calls us to pick up our cross and follow Him. Not any religion or denomination. He wants us to have a relationship with our Father in Heaven, to worship Him in spirit and in truth.

    Jesus says narrow is the way that leads to life, and few be there that find it (Matthew 7:13-14). Will you humble yourself before the Lord tonight in prayer, acknowledging that you need a savior? He is faithul to forgive. Keep asking Him for the Holy Spirit, so you may receive the Spirit of Christ, giving you a new heart, and He will lead you into all truth.

    “He who covers his sins will not prosper, But whoever confesses and forsakes them will have mercy” (Proverbs 28:13).

    Place your trust and hope in Jesus Christ. Today is the day of salvation, for you are not promised tomorrow!

    Jesus said to him, “I am the way, the truth, and the life. No one comes to the Father except through Me” (John 14:6).

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  29. Hey, how’s it going?

    I want to pass along some very important news that everyone needs to hear!

    In December of 2017, Donald Trump made history by recognizing Jerusalem as the capital of Israel. Why is this big news? Because by this the Jewish people of Israel are now able to press forward in bringing about the Third Temple prophesied in the Bible.

    Jewish Rabbis have publicly announced that their Messiah will be revealed in the coming years who will be a leader and spiritual guide to all nations, gathering all religions under the worship of one God.

    Biblical prophecy tells us that this Jewish Messiah who will take the stage will be the antichrist “who opposes and exalts himself above all that is called God or that is worshiped, so that he sits as God in the temple of God, showing himself that he is God” (2 Thessalonians 2:4). For a time he will bring about a false peace, but “Therefore when you see the ‘abomination of desolation,’ spoken of by Daniel the prophet, standing in the holy place (Matthew 24:15)…then there will be great tribulation, such as has not been since the beginning of the world until this time, no, nor ever shall be” (Matthew 24:21).

    More importantly, the power that runs the world wants to put a RFID microchip in our body making us total slaves to them. This chip matches perfectly with the Mark of the Beast in the Bible, more specifically in Revelation 13:16-18:

    “He causes all, both small and great, rich and poor, free and slave, to receive a mark on their right hand or on their foreheads, and that no one may buy or sell except one who has the mark or the name of the beast, or the number of his name.

    Here is wisdom. Let him who has understanding calculate the number of the beast, for it is the number of a man: His number is 666.”

    Referring to the last days, this could only be speaking of a cashless society, which we have yet to see, but are heading towards. Otherwise, we could still buy or sell without the mark amongst others if physical money was still currency. This Mark couldn’t be spiritual because the word references two different physical locations. If it was spiritual it would just say in the forehead. RFID microchip implant technology will be the future of a one world cashless society containing digital currency. It will be implanted in the right-hand or the forehead, and we cannot buy or sell without it. Revelation 13:11-18 tells us that a false prophet will arise on the world scene doing miracles before men, deceiving them to receive this Mark. Do not be deceived! We must grow strong in Jesus. AT ALL COSTS, DO NOT TAKE IT!

    “Then a third angel followed them, saying with a loud voice, “If anyone worships the beast and his image, and receives his mark on his forehead or on his hand, he himself shall also drink of the wine of the wrath of God, which is poured out full strength into the cup of His indignation. He shall be tormented with fire and brimstone in the presence of the holy angels and in the presence of the Lamb. And the smoke of their torment ascends forever and ever; and they have no rest day or night, who worship the beast and his image, and whoever receives the mark of his name” (Revelation 14:9-11).

    People have been saying the end is coming for many years, but we needed two key things. One, the Third Temple, and two, the technology for a cashless society to fulfill the prophecy of the Mark of the Beast.

    Visit http://WWW.BIBLEFREEDOM.COM to see proof for these things and why the Bible truly is the word of God!

    If you haven’t already, it is time to seek God with all your heart. Jesus loves you more than you could imagine. He wants to have a relationship with you and redeem you from your sins. Turn to Him and repent while there is still hope! This is forever…God bless!

    “EITHER HUMAN INTELLIGENCE ULTIMATELY OWES ITS ORIGIN TO MINDLESS MATTER OR THERE IS A CREATOR…” – JOHN LENNOX

    We all know God exists. Why? Because without Him, we couldn’t prove anything at all. Do we live our lives as if we cannot know anything? No. So why is God necessary? In order to know anything for certain, you would have to know everything, or have revelation from somebody who does. Who is capable of knowing everything? God. So to know anything, you would have to be God, or know God.

    A worldview without God cannot account for the uniformity and intelligibility of nature. And why is it that we can even reason that God is the best explanation for this if there is no God? We are given reason to know or reject God, but never to know that He does not exist.

    It has been calculated by Roger Penrose that the odds of the initial conditions for the big bang to produce the universe that we see to be a number so big, that we could put a zero on every particle in the universe, and even that would not be enough to use every zero. What are the odds that God created the universe? Odds are no such thing. Who of you would gamble your life on one coin flip?

    Is there evidence that the Bible is the truth? Yes. Did you know that the creation accounts listed in the book of Genesis are not only all correct, but are also in the correct chronological order? That the Bible doesn’t say the Earth was formed in six 24-hour days but rather six long but finite periods of time? That the Bible makes 10 times more creation claims than all major “holy” books combined with no contradictions, while these other books have errors in them? The Bible stood alone by concurring with the big bang saying, “In the beginning God created the heaven and the earth” (Genesis 1:1); and says our universe is expanding, thousands of years before scientists discovered these things. Watch a potential life-changing video on the front page of http://WWW.BIBLEFREEDOM.COM with Astronomer(PhD) Hugh Ross explaining all these facts based on published scientific data. He has authored many books, backed even by atheist scientists.

    Jesus fulfilled more than 300 Messianic prophecies concerning His birth place, details of His life, His mission, His nature, His death, and His resurrection. He came to pay a debt that we could not, to be our legal justifier to reconcile us back to a Holy God; only if we are willing to receive Him: “For the wages of sin is death, but the gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord” (Romans 6:23).

    God so loved the world that He gave us His only begotten son, so that whoever believes in Him, through faith, shall not perish, but have everlasting life. Jesus says if we wish to enter into life to keep the commands! The two greatest commands are to love God with all your heart, soul, strength, and mind; and your neighbor as yourself. All the law hang on these commands. We must be born of and lead by the Holy Spirit, to be called children of God, to inherit the kingdom. If we are willing to humble ourselves in prayer to Jesus, to confess and forsake our sins, He is willing to give the Holy Spirit to those who keep asking of Him; giving us a new heart, leading us into all truth!

    Jesus came to free us from the bondage of sin. The everlasting fire was prepared for the devil and his angels due to disobedience to God’s law. If we do the same, what makes us any different than the devil? Jesus says unless we repent, we shall perish. We must walk in the Spirit, producing fruits of love and forgiveness, so we may not fulfill the lusts of the flesh being hatred, fornication, drunkenness and the like. Whoever practices such things will not inherit the kingdom (Galatians 5:16-26). If we sin, we may come before Jesus to ask for forgiveness (1 John 2:1-2). Evil thoughts are not sins, but rather temptations. It is not until these thoughts conceive and give birth by our hearts desire that they become sin (James 1:12-15). When we sin, we become in the likeness of the devil’s image, for he who sins is of the devil (1 John 3:8); but if we obey Jesus, in the image of God. For without holiness, we shall not see the Lord (Hebrews 12:14).

    The oldest religion in the world is holiness (James 1:27). What religion did Adam and Eve follow before the fall? Jesus, Who became the last Adam, what religion does He follow? Is He not holy? He never told us to follow any religion or denomination but to deny ourselves, take up our cross daily, and follow Him (Luke 9:23). There are many false doctrines being taught leading people astray. This is why we need the Holy Spirit for discernment. Unlike religion, holiness cannot be created. It is given to us from above by the baptism of the Spirit. Jesus is more than a religion; He is about having a personal relationship with the Father. Start by reading the Gospel of Matthew, to hear the words of God, to know His character and commandments. Follow and obey Jesus, for He is the way, the truth, and the life!

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