Sunday, May 22, 2022

What Is a Godly Woman? What Is a Godly Man? Increased Lifespan from Beans.

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What Is a Godly Woman?

What Is a Godly Woman?“What does it mean to be a godly woman? If we want to become godly women, we need to understand godly attributes and begin developing them in our lives.

Congratulations! If you’re interested in the topic, it shows that you have the heart to learn and grow and take your role as a godly woman seriously. This is a topic that is significant to me too. Allow me to share what I have learned about this subject, based on guidance from the Scriptures.

What does “godly” even mean?

Before we take a deep dive into what it means to be a godly woman, I think it is crucial that we first understand what being godly means. Is it just a cutesy phrase that some religious types throw around? Or is this an actual character trait that we can work toward attaining?

The suffix -ly attached to a root word often conveys that something is like the root word. To illustrate this: What comes to our minds when we hear the following: brotherly, cowardly, friendly, motherly and kingly?

The actual root word came quickly to our minds, didn’t it?

This is the same way we can visualize what godly means. The root word is God. Therefore, if we want to know what it means to be a godly woman, we must first understand God’s attributes. And to begin to actually be godly—be like God—we must begin developing those behaviors in our lives.

What do the Scriptures say are godly attributes?

The Scriptures are abundant with details of God’s wonderful attributes, such as:

  • God is righteous and kind (Psalm 145:17).
  • God has been and will always be reliable (Hebrews 13:8).
  • God is rich in mercy (Ephesians 2:4).
  • God never lies (Titus 1:2).
  • God is faithful and merciful (1 Corinthians 10:13; Psalms 145:9; 86:15).
  • God is loving (John 13:34-35; 1 John 4:8, 16).
  • God is slow to anger (Psalms 145:8; 103:8).

The apostle John said that whoever “says he abides in Him [Jesus Christ] ought himself also to walk just as He walked” (1 John 2:6). The apostle Paul and apostle Peter were also in total agreement with this mind-set.

In his letter to the Corinthian congregation, Paul instructed members to “imitate me, just as I also imitate Christ” (1 Corinthians 11:1). To the church at Ephesus, he stressed that they should “be imitators of God as dear children” (Ephesians 5:1).

Similarly, in his first epistle, the apostle Peter wrote that we follow Christ’s example by following in His (Jesus Christ’s) steps (1 Peter 2:21). It is pretty clear that we should follow in His steps!

Now, consider three overarching behaviors that can steer us toward becoming godly women.

1. A godly woman is a God-fearing woman.

A godly woman’s most apparent behavior trait is that she fears God. In fact, fearing God is a blessing mentioned in the book of Psalms. The psalmist begins Psalm 128 by saying, “Blessed is every one who fears the LORD, who walks in His ways.” The entire psalm makes the point that ultimately happiness is found in a proper relationship with God.

Fearing God is vital because the fear of the Lord is the beginning of knowledge (Proverbs 1:7) and the beginning of wisdom (Psalm 111:10). Fearing God means that we strive to live righteous lives, embrace truth and love others as Jesus Christ demonstrated and instructed us to do (Mark 12:30-31). In other words, God-fearing women are God-obeying women.

You probably remember the biblical account about the new king of Egypt who looked at the growing number of Israelites in his country with concern. His fear was an ungodly fear. His fear was selfish. His fear was ego-driven. He feared being outnumbered and losing power, so he inflicted horrible burdens on the Israelites (Exodus 1:8-14).

This same account noted two beautiful examples of biblical women who obeyed and feared God. In Exodus 1:15-21, two Hebrew midwives, Shiphrah and Puah, disobeyed Pharaoh’s command to kill the Israelite male newborns. How is it possible that these women resisted the orders of a king? Weren’t they fearful? Surely they knew the consequences of disobedience!

Clearly, they did know the consequences of disobedience. But their concern was not about disobeying the king, but about disobeying God. In verse 17 we learn that “the midwives feared God, and did not do as the king of Egypt commanded them, but saved the male children alive.”  Their fear wasn’t selfish or ego-driven. Why? Because they feared God. (See “What Does the Fear of the Lord Mean?”)

Fearing God means that we strive to obey His commands from the heart and in our deeds—no matter the consequences.

Additional reading about fearing God:

2. A godly woman is a mature woman.

It takes a certain level of maturity to fear and obey God. I’m not talking about the maturity of someone who has reached a particular age. Instead, the emphasis is on emotional or mental maturity.

The apostle Paul talked about this aspect to the Corinthian church, telling them to “not be children in your thinking” and instead instructing them “but in your thinking be mature” (1 Corinthians 14:20, English Standard Version).

So how exactly can maturity help us to become godly women?

We start with controlling our emotions. Yes, this is tough! We start by bringing every thought into submission (2 Corinthians 10:5) to make it obedient to Christ. What are we putting into our minds? What are we saying without even thinking—or sometimes without even caring what others think? It takes wisdom to hold our tongues and reserve judgment.

Deborah, the prophetess and judge, showed maturity in wisdom and judgment in the Old Testament. In Hebrews 11 Barak is listed as someone who “through faith subdued kingdoms” (verses 32-33), yet it was Deborah who gave Barak the motivation and help to do so. In fact, Barak hesitated and said that he would do as God commanded through Deborah, only if Deborah would go with him! And she did.

Can you imagine the maturity it would take to control your emotions to go into battle? Deborah’s wisdom and faith came from obedience to God as a spiritually mature woman.

Additional reading about spiritual maturity:

3. A godly woman is a devoted woman.

What do we call someone who is loyal, faithful, committed, dedicated, loving, caring and steadfast? If we are lucky enough to know someone like this, we might call the person devoted. Who wouldn’t want to be recognized as a devoted person?

If we take the time to sit and really think about what it means to be devoted, we quickly realize how important these traits genuinely are. Yes, it takes effort and determination to live a life devoted to following God and doing the right thing. The good news is that if we do this, God promises that He will help us (Psalm 37:3-7) and make our paths straight (Proverbs 3:1-6).

An excellent example of a devoted, godly woman is Ruth, a young Moabite, who married a man from Bethlehem. When her first husband and her father-in-law died, Ruth left her family and culture and committed herself to a new life with Naomi, her mother-in-law. That included following the true God that Naomi worshipped. Ruth declared to her that “your people shall be my people, and your God, my God” (Ruth 1:16).

Ruth’s actions—and heart—showed that she was a loyal, faithful, committed, dedicated, loving, caring and steadfast imitator of God. She was now a follower of God. Ruth’s devotion pleased God, and her offspring through Boaz continued the royal line that ultimately led to the Lord and Savior Jesus Christ.

Just like Ruth, when we put our faith in the Lord, He will bless us (Jeremiah 17:7). We can take that to the bank!

Devotion to God means that we strive to please Him, draw close to Him in prayer and fasting, study His Word and meditate on what we have learned. It also means being devoted in a godly manner to one’s husband and family.

Additional reading about being devoted to God’s way of life:

When we reflect on these three overarching behaviors, we can see how beneficial they are to living a godly life. So, let’s strive to do our best by applying these principles today!”

Check out Life, Hope & Truth’s Relationship section for additional reading about “The Role of Women” and “5 Traits Men Should Look for in a Godly Woman.”      From: https://lifehopeandtruth.com/relationships/family/role-of-women/what-is-a-godly-woman/?

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What Is a Godly Man?

What Is a Godly Man?“As a man, how will you be remembered at the end of your life? How will you be described? Will it be humble and honest—a good man? How about, a godly man?

Let’s face it, ever-changing social values make it tough to be a man in this world. I’m not talking about being just any man.

Sadly, the man I am talking about has always been scarce. He’s a man of honor, integrity and commitment. He’s a man who centers his life on the ways of his Creator. He’s a godly man.

What is a godly man? What does it take to become one? Here are some important characteristics of a godly man.

1. A godly man must be kind.

After my dad’s death, over and over, people would say, “Your dad was a kind man.” And it was true! I loved and admired that quality in my dad. Yet, in such an unkind world, could I have that same quality? Could I be a kind man as he was?

The answer isyes!

“But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, longsuffering, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, self-control. Against such there is no law” (Galatians 5:22-23, emphasis added throughout).

Kindness is a quality of God that every godly man must have. It is a fruit of God’s Spirit—an aspect of a converted man.

But to whom do we need to be kind? Our closest friends? Our family? Well, being kind to them isn’t too difficult for most of us. But the truth is, God is kind to everyone.

Jesus said, “But love your enemies, do good, and lend, hoping for nothing in return; and your reward will be great, and you will be sons of the Most High. For He is kind to the unthankful and evil” (Luke 6:35).

According to Psychology Today, “Kindness is defined as the quality of being friendly, generous, and considerate. Affection, gentleness, warmth, concern, and care are words that are associated with kindness. While kindness has a connotation of meaning someone is naïve or weak, that is not the case. Being kind often requires courage and strength.”

Sadly, kindness in the 21st century seems to be slipping through our fingers.

In a piece published in The Guardian, Julia Unwin, chief executive of the Joseph Rowntree Foundation, states, “As a society, we appear to have lost the instinct for kindness and the willingness to extend the hand of friendship.” This statement is sad, yet true.

The 32nd president of the United States, Franklin D. Roosevelt, is credited with saying, “Human kindness has never weakened the stamina or softened the fiber of a free people.”

The apostle Paul got right to the point. He said, “And be kind to one another, tenderhearted, forgiving one another, even as God in Christ forgave you” (Ephesians 4:32).

  • Don’t know how to be kind, or want biblical help to learn to be more kind? For more information, please see our article “The Fruit of the Spirit: Kindness.” And for an explanation of the broader topic of conversion, please read our free, downloadable booklet Change Your Life.
2. A godly man must think like Christ.

In December 1999 Time magazine named Albert Einstein “Person of the Century.” The article states, “The touchstones of the era—the Bomb, the Big Bang, quantum physics and electronics—all bear his imprint.”  He was as brilliant as his hair was messy!

Albert Einstein, however, was not alone. Mental giants like Isaac Newton and Stephen Hawking also had gifted minds. So, this begs the question: What if you could harness their intellectual firepower? What if you could think like them? Whose mind would you pick?

But beyond IQ, there are more profound issues.

A godly man desires spiritual knowledge, wisdom and understanding—things that academia cannot teach and IQ alone cannot grasp.

A godly man wants to think like his Creator. A godly man strives to think like Jesus Christ!

You may be thinking to yourself, How can a man think like Jesus Christ? It seems as if it’s not possible! Well, with God, anything is possible.

One time when Jesus’ disciples were amazed at what they heard, “Jesus looked at them and said to them, ‘With men this is impossible, but with God all things are possible’” (Matthew 19:26).

Paul said something extraordinary in his first letter to the congregation in Corinth. He said that if you have the gift of God’s Spirit in you, you can begin to discern spiritual things! “But he who is spiritual judges all things” (1 Corinthians 2:15).

He quickly followed up with an astounding claim: “But we have the mind of Christ” (verse 16).

Paul was clear. With the gift of God’s Spirit, it is possible to think like Christ! Is this too good to be true? No! Paul confirms this incredible blessing in another passage: “Let this mind be in you which was also in Christ Jesus” (Philippians 2:5). How remarkable!

3. Godly men draw strength from God.

Imagine you’ve been away, traveling on business. Nearing home, you’re happy to get back into familiar territory. Yet, off in the distance, something doesn’t look right. Is your mind playing tricks on you? Is that smoke you see?

You begin to panic! Picking up speed, you move toward your home, only to have your worst fears confirmed. Your house is a total loss. Where it once proudly stood is nothing but charred rubble and debris!

There are many qualities that make a man godly. Being kind, striving to have the mind of Christ and going directly to God for strength are good places to start. Your mind immediately goes to your family. Your wife—your kids! Where are they? Did they die in the fire? Were they kidnapped? Your mind whirls out of control. Overcome with grief, you are locked up in despair. Eventually, even your strength to cry escapes you.

Dazed and hopeless, you collapse near the smoldering heap that once was your home.

This story describes the horrific scene David and his men encountered as they returned to the city of Ziklag. Their families and all of their possessions were gone!

David and his men were overcome with emotion. “Then David and the people who were with him lifted up their voices and wept, until they had no more power to weep” (1 Samuel 30:4).

These combat-hardened soldiers who had seen the horrors of the battlefield cried until they couldn’t cry anymore.

Their strength was gone.

No doubt they asked themselves, How did this happen? Then, as if things couldn’t get any worse, David’s men turned on him. This band of brothers who had fought by his side now blamed him for this tragedy.

David was in trouble! They even talked of killing him.

Tormented and filled with anguish, David found himself alone. There was nowhere else to turn, no one to offer him words of encouragement and strength. Except One!

“Now David was greatly distressed, for the people spoke of stoning him, because the soul of all the people was grieved, every man for his sons and his daughters. But David strengthened himself in the LORD his God” (verse 6).

This was not the first time David had asked God for help. He regularly called on God for strength. He was no stranger to staring down his fears.

David, the youngest of his brothers, did not lack confidence that God would deliver him in battle. After all, God had done it many times before.

For example, David’s chances of defeating the giant Goliath had been slim to none. The contest was not even close!

Undeterred, David courageously turned to God for strength. David said, “‘The LORD, who delivered me from the paw of the lion and from the paw of the bear, He will deliver me from the hand of this Philistine.’ And Saul said to David, ‘Go, and the LORD be with you!’” (1 Samuel 17:37).

  • David—a man after God’s own heart (Acts 13:22)—continually turned to God for strength. Likewise, a godly man must turn to God for strength! Please read our article “Depending on God.”
Set your standards high

Desiring to be a godly man is an admirable goal. Yet our adversary, Satan the devil, will stop at nothing to derail your efforts.

However, there is no need to fear. As James, the half-brother of Jesus, tells us, “Draw near to God and He will draw near to you” (James 4:8).

There are many qualities that make a man godly. Being kind, striving to have the mind of Christ and going directly to God for strength are good places to start.

Paul said to Timothy, “But you, O man of God, flee these things and pursue righteousness, godliness, faith, love, patience, gentleness” (1 Timothy 6:11).

To be a godly man—this is God’s desire for you!

Study more about this subject in these articles and blog posts:

From: https://lifehopeandtruth.com/relationships/family/role-of-men/what-is-a-godly-man/

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Increased Lifespan from Beans

“The intake of legumes—beans, chickpeas, split peas, and lentils—may be the single most important dietary predictor of a long lifespan. But what about concerns about intestinal gas?

TRANSCRIPT of https://youtu.be/KVYmfTTw7_g

Below is an approximation of this video’s audio content. To see any graphs, charts, graphics, images, and quotes to which Dr. Greger may be referring, watch the above video.

“Legumes may be “the most important…predictor of survival in older people” from around the globe. They looked at “five [different] cohorts in Japan, Sweden, Greece, and Australia.” And, of all the food factors they looked at, only one was associated with a longer lifespan across the board: legume intake. Whether it was the Japanese eating their soy, the Swedes eating their “brown beans and peas,” or those in the Mediterranean eating “lentils, chickpeas, and white beans,”…”[o]nly for legumes intake was the result plausible, consistent, and statistically significant from [the] data” across all the populations combined. We’re talking an “8% reduction in risk of death for every 20 grams increase in daily legumes intake.” That’s just like two tablespoons’ worth! So, if a can of beans is 250 grams, and you get 8% lower mortality for every 20 grams, maybe, if we eat a can a day, we’ll live forever? Let’s find out!

If you want to increase your lifespan, eat beans. If, however, you’re suicidal, and want to decrease your lifespan, “A bean-free diet” may increase the risk of death.

So, having arrived at the one dietary fountain of youth, what’s the #1 reason people aren’t clamoring for them? Fear of flatulence. So, is that the choice we’re left with? Breaking wind or breaking down? Passing gas or passing on? Turns out that “[p]eople’s concerns about excessive flatulence from eating beans may be exaggerated.”

Add a half-cup of beans every day to people’s diets for months, and what happens? What’s the #1 symptom? Nothing. The vast majority of people experienced no symptoms at all—though a few percent did report increased flatulence. So, it may occur in some individuals. But, “not all people are affected.” Even among those that were, “[s]eventy percent or more of the participants who experienced flatulence felt that it dissipated [no pun intended] by the second or third week of bean consumption”. So, we’ve just got to stick to it.

And, you know, a small percentage reported increased flatulence on the control diet without any beans. People have preconceived notions about beans, such that “just the expectation of flatulence from eating beans may influence their perceptions of having gas.” They didn’t actually measure farts in this study; they just asked people what their perception of the amount of gas they had was. And, we know from previous studies that you give someone a product labeled to contain something that may cause intestinal distress, and it causes more intestinal distress whether it actually contains the ingredient or not. In other words, “just thinking they were eating [it] caused digestive distress, or the perception of it, to a proportion of persons.”

So, people thinking beans are going to cause gas may just be more likely to notice the gas they normally have. Either way, it tends to go away; “after a few weeks of daily bean consumption, people perceive that flatulence occurrence returns to normal levels.”

In this other study, where they added more than a half a cup of kidney beans to people’s daily diets, the research subjects reported that the discomfort they initially felt within the first day or two of adding beans “quickly disappeared.” So, again, stick with it.

Bottom line (no pun intended!): “An increasing body of research and the [latest] Dietary Guidelines…supports the benefits of a plant-based diet, and legumes specifically, in the reduction of chronic disease risks.”  In some people it “may result in more flatulence initially.”  However, doctors should emphasize that it “will decrease over time” if we just keep it up.

And, “the nutritional attributes of beans in the diet outweighs the potential for transitory discomfort. The long-term health benefits of bean consumption are great.” And, indeed, eating beans in the long term may make your term—on Earth—even longer.”    From: https://nutritionfacts.org/video/increased-lifespan-from-beans/

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Sunday, May 15, 2022

How to Parent a Teenager. You Can’t Give Too Much Love! Fighting the Ten Hallmarks of Cancer with Food.

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How to Parent a Teenager

How to Parent a TeenagerThe years in which a young person transitions from childhood to adulthood can be challenging. How should we deal with our children during the teen years?

Teenagers.

Just mentioning the word can cause anxiety for some people. Perhaps it’s because of memories of their own trip through the teen years, or perhaps it reflects experiences with their own children during that stage.

For many, those years of not being a child—but not quite being an adult either—are years of uncertainty, insecurity, learning, pushing boundaries and sometimes outright rebellion.

While adolescence has probably always been a challenging transitional time, it was faced very differently in the past. As the world has changed, the teenage experience has changed.

A better understanding of what those changes are can help us and our children better navigate this developmentally important time.

Adolescents in centuries past

Throughout much of history, adolescents were workers. In fact, children as young as 7 years old were often brought into the workforce. In both towns and farms, children worked beside their parents, doing what was necessary to support the family. As the age of industrialization spread in the 18th and 19th centuries, children began working long hours in factories.

As the standard of living rose in the developed world, educational opportunities began to change. Families were able to survive without their children’s financial contributions, so adolescents often stayed in school longer. Young people could now spend leisure time with peers, and this growing sense of freedom affected the way average teens viewed themselves and the world.

And this brought profound changes to the family.

Evolution of the teenager

It may come as a surprise to some, but prior to World War II, the term teenager was rarely used. In fact, many trace the view of adolescence as a distinct developmental stage to this time period. This newly defined stage of life, combined with a greater level of family income, resulted in other societal changes.

One of those changes in the U.S. and much of the Western world was the availability of the automobile, which provided a degree of freedom and autonomy previously unheard of. Beginning in the 1950s, teenagers suddenly became trendsetters in music, fashion, film and dance.

It became the norm for teenagers to focus on experimentation rather than labor. Teens of the 1960s and 1970s were known for rebellious attitudes and a proclivity for risky behavior that included illegal drugs, abuse of alcohol and a high rate of sexual activity. Parents faced new challenges in helping their teenage children navigate the world and avoid destructive decisions.

But over the last 20 years, the behavior of the average teenager has changed. Recent studies by psychologists like Jean Twenge, professor of psychology at San Diego State University, have revealed profound changes in teenage behavior.

Parents, grandparents and guardians need to be certain they are modeling the kind of behavior they want to see from their teens! According to Dr. Twenge’s research, when compared with teenagers from past decades, 17- and 18-year-olds today are slightly less likely to have tried alcohol and drugs or to have had sex. They are also waiting longer to get a driver’s license or move out of their parents’ homes. On average, they are waiting longer to get married and to have children as well.

Commenting on these findings, the BBC article “Why Teenagers Aren’t What They Used to Be” states, “By many measures, adolescence now continues until around the age of 24 to 25” (Feb. 1, 2022).

What does the modern teen face?

According to studies, the rates of sexual activity and drug and alcohol use among teens have declined since the early 2000s. Smoking has declined by nearly 70 percent among teens. Of course, all of this is good news for teen and parents!

But does this mean modern teens are choosing to refrain from all risky behaviors? Not necessarily.

A slew of studies in recent years reveal teen behaviors have changed, but not always for the better. The reality is that today’s teens have the ability to be involved in activities that didn’t exist for previous generations. The digital age has dramatically changed the fabric of adolescence and is forcing parents to worry about new challenges.

While smoking has declined across all age groups, we can’t ignore the alternative that has appeared: the e-cigarette (commonly known as vaping). Between 2011 and 2019 the use of e-cigarettes among teens rose by 1,800 percent!

With the dramatic rise in vaping, the medical community is now reporting a similar rise in lung problems, heart disease, gum inflammation, and negative impacts on brain development directly tied to use of e-cigarettes.  

The more we learn, the clearer it is that e-cigarettes are not a healthy alternative to smoking.

The impact of smartphones on teens

According to an August 2019 Pew Research Center report, 95 percent of U.S. teenagers have access to a smartphone. These mobile electronic devices have single-handedly revolutionized teenage life. Social media platforms like Facebook, YouTube, Instagram, Twitter, Tumblr and Snapchat—which didn’t exist a generation or two ago—now dominate the life and time of today’s teens.

The cell phone is so embedded in teenage life that an earlier (2018) Pew Research survey found 45 percent of teens say they’re online on a near constant basis!  A 2018 Common Sense Media survey found that 60 percent of teens said they would rather socialize with friends online instead of face to face.

The artificial world of social media has created a heightened obsession with beauty and glamour that the average teen feels unable to attain. This has been linked to increased feelings of discouragement and depression among teens. As a result, a Science Daily study connected the unrealistic images of life shown on social media with a rise in suicides among teenage girls.

Smartphones have also contributed to automobile accidents. Studies show that a texting driver is 20 times more likely to have an accident, and yet 35 percent of teen drivers report responding to text messages when they are behind the wheel!

Access to smartphones has also increased access to pornography. It’s not an overstatement to declare pornography one of the greatest pandemics of our time. The U.S. Department of Justice recently stated: “Never before in the history of telecommunications media in the United States has so much indecent (and obscene) material been so easily accessible by so many minors in so many American homes with so few restrictions.”

Other studies reveal that 93 percent of our sons and 62 percent of our daughters have been exposed to online pornography before the age of 18, with more than half of boys and nearly a third of girls having their first exposure before they’re 13. Over a third of teenage boys reported viewing pornographic videos “too many times to count.”

This issue recently came to the forefront when musician Billie Eilish acknowledged she had viewed explicit content starting at 11 years old and had been negatively affected by it. She described her brain being “destroyed” and suffering nightmares because of it.

Considering that the digital world is only expanding, and creating new challenges as it does so, it’s worth noting that it’s never been more important for parents and teens to be grounded in the eternal standards of God.Another new challenge associated with this is the rise of sexting, or “self porn.” Different studies show different statistics about teens who have sent nude images of themselves by text, email or app, but all of the estimates are alarming. Laws against child pornography seem to have a limited impact.

These are just some of the many challenges that teens face today.

How can a parent respond?

The world of a typical teenager suddenly seems far more complicated than in previous generations. So where does that leave parents and teens who desire to live a godly life? There are several important points for us to keep in mind.

1.  God’s standards don’t change. Parents must keep in mind that no matter where societal trends might go, the solid truth of the Bible never changes! God told the prophet Malachi, “For I am the LORD, I do not change” (Malachi 3:6). And the book of Hebrews declares, “Jesus Christ is the same yesterday, today, and forever” (Hebrews 13:8).

What was sin in the past is still sin today. Our responsibility is to understand the principles our Creator gives us in Scripture and understand how to apply them to modern challenges. Though none of the challenges cited in this article are directly mentioned in the Bible, the core principles of moral purity that they break have always been there.

Considering that the digital world is only expanding, and creating new challenges as it does so, it’s worth noting that it’s never been more important for parents and teens to be grounded in the eternal standards of God.

2.  Stay connected with your children. God instructed Moses to tell the Israelites to teach their children about God’s ways “when you sit in your house, when you walk by the way, when you lie down, and when you rise up” (Deuteronomy 6:7). This instruction must be a constant part of our relationship with our children. Proverbs 22:6 instructs parents to “train up a child in the way he should go, and when he is old he will not depart from it.” 

But when our own lives are flooded with so much to do that we can hardly find time to stop and catch our breath, how can we possibly keep up with what our children are doing? School and a wide range of social activities are only a few of the items on their plate. Is it possible for parents to keep up with all of that?

The number one key is open communication. 

It’s critical to be involved and informed about their lives, their friends, and where and what they do. Although our relationship with our children evolves over time, we must never forget we are first and foremost parents who have their best interests at heart.

If we want to provide counsel and guidance, we must know what they’re facing.

3. Set appropriate boundaries. Teenagers are almost adults, but not quite. So, they will continue to require rules and the motivation to follow them. You will naturally adjust your rules depending on the age and maturity of your teen, but it is essential to establish limits and curfews for them. There are also a wide variety of parental control apps for computers, tablets and smartphones. It would be wise to do research and eventually invest in a program that will set proper boundaries for your teen.

4. Pray for discernment and wisdom. James wrote, “If any of you lacks wisdom, let him ask of God, who gives to all liberally and without reproach, and it will be given to him” (James 1:5). Parents of teens know how much they need wisdom to properly guide and teach their children!

5. Set the right example. In addition to taking the important steps listed above, parents, grandparents and guardians need to be certain they are modeling the kind of behavior they want to see from their teens! We should ask ourselves if we are being honest, if we are trustworthy, if we are living by the moral standards we want our teens to hold. “Do as I say, not as I do” doesn’t work with child-rearing, and it most certainly will not work with teenagers!

The teen years are something everyone must go through. The way society has viewed these years has changed over the centuries, and the influences teens face today are different from those past generations faced. But these years need not be so dreadful for teens and parents.

We all need to focus on the never-changing truths of God to form the foundation for our values and behaviors. There will be challenges, detours and difficult times, but parents can use the Bible as their guide to help their children navigate through their teenage years.”

From: https://lifehopeandtruth.com/relationships/parenting/how-to-parent-a-teenager/?

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You Can’t Give Too Much Love!

You Can’t Give Too Much Love!“At one time or another most parents will hear warnings of “don’t spoil your child!” It’s helpful to know the real cause of spoiling—and it isn’t love!

Sometimes relatives or acquaintances express concern that parents are giving too much to their child. The feared result is a child who is demanding, pampered and self-centered and expects everyone to cater to his or her whims.

Spoiling happens!

We parents take such admonishments seriously. We’ve all seen spoiled kids, and we know they’re no fun to be around! As well, we realize that, for all they might rake in, spoiled children do not have happy lives.

Many followed the sad (and outrageous) case of Ethan Couch and his “affluenza” defense—that his family’s wealth was responsible for his poor choices that caused the deaths of four people when he drove drunk in 2013 at the age of 16. Couch was sentenced to 10 years of probation and mandatory treatment, which he violated in 2015.

Another case in point: Steven Miner II and his sister Kathryn Miner were raised in a $1.5 million home in a wealthy Chicago suburb. But it seems they didn’t feel they were treated well enough.

In 2009, when Steven was 21 and Kathryn was 18, they filed a lawsuit against their mother for the “emotional distress” they suffered as children from her alleged abuses, such as “failing to take her daughter to a car show, telling her then-7-year-old son to buckle his seat belt or she would contact police, ‘haggling’ over the amount to spend on party dresses and calling her daughter at midnight to ask that she return home from celebrating homecoming.”

A third example would be the sons of Eli, Israel’s high priest before the nation had its first human king. Reading the description of them in 1 Samuel 2, one can’t help but imagine that they were used to getting everything they asked for.

Eli’s timid rebuke had no effect on them at all (verses 23-25), and ultimately God gave this evaluation of Eli’s parenting: “You honor your sons more than Me” (verse 29).

Overindulged

So, yes, we parents should take care not to spoil our children. But what is spoiling caused by? Is it caused by too much time, attention or love?

Is it even possible for us parents to give our children too much time, attention or love?

Child development professionals have concluded that spoiling does come from overindulging, but it is overindulging in permissiveness, low standards and lack of restraint.  Child development professionals have concluded that spoiling does come from overindulging, but it is overindulging in permissiveness, low standards and lack of restraint. It comes from parents giving children material things and privileges as a substitute for their time, attention and love.

As Laurence Steinberg Ph.D., author of The Ten Basic Principles of Good Parenting, writes, “I can think of plenty of children who have suffered because their parents were too busy, too selfish, or too preoccupied to attend to their needs. But I’ve never met a child who was worse off because his parents loved him too much. It is simply not possible to spoil a child with love” (2004, p. 27).

Madeline Levine Ph.D., a clinical psychologist who works with teens in prosperous Marin County, California, has written a book outlining the danger affluence poses to families. Titled The Price of Privilege, the book’s subtitle says a lot: “How Parental Pressure and Material Advantage Are Creating a Generation of Disconnected and Unhappy Kids.”

Levine writes, “Study after study shows that teens want more, not less, time with their parents, yet parents regularly overestimate the amount of time they spend with their teenagers. … Nor a son grieve for gifts not received—except, perhaps, the gift of time and love.”

Let your children know every day that you love them, that they are special to you and that you appreciate them. There’s no danger of spoiling them with love.”  From: https://lifehopeandtruth.com/relationships/parenting/you-cant-give-too-much-love/?

For more foundational principles about parenting, see “Helping Our Children Grow” and “Raising Children: The Early Years.”

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From me:  As I was deserted at age 4, I never knew what it was like to be loved by parents and I was sent from place to place until I got out on my own at age 15.  So unfortunately, I didn’t know how to show my children that I loved them.  I figured surely they knew that because I was working so hard trying to support them.  Love is something that should not be quiet, it needs to be told out loud!!   Thank the Lord for your parents and tell them you love them.

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Fighting the Ten Hallmarks of Cancer with Food

“The foundation of cancer prevention is plants, not pills

Transcript of YouTube: https://youtu.be/HcAN8BjPjuE

Below is an approximation of this video’s audio content. To see any graphs, charts, graphics, images, and quotes to which Dr. Greger may be referring, watch the above video.

“The vast majority of cancer research is devoted to finding cures, rather than finding new ways to prevent disease.” And the results of these skewed priorities are plain to see: 2021 is the 50th anniversary of Nixon’s declaration of war on cancer, and the death tolls from the most common forms of cancer in the United States have continued unabated.

“We have been looking at the very nature of cancer in the wrong way.” Breast cancer doesn’t begin when a lump is first detected. All the common cancers like lung, colorectal, breast, and prostate (which account for the majority of deaths) have a long latency period—often 20 years or more. So, it’s not like you were healthy, and then one day you got cancer. You haven’t been healthy—you’ve had cancer growing in you for decades. Indeed, there’s a bizarre misperception that people are “healthy” until they have actual symptoms of invasive cancer. But “[t]he barn in which hay is smoldering before it bursts into flames is not a safe place.”

So, what does this professor of pharmacology recommend? Drugs, of course—chemoprevention: putting people on drugs to prevent cancer. Hey, the pharmaceutical industry spends huge amounts of money to promote chemoprevention of heart disease and strokes with statins and blood thinners. So, why shouldn’t people take drugs every day for the rest of their lives to protect against cancer? There has to be a better way.

What about using diet and nutrition to prevent and treat cancer? Okay, but what kind of cancer? There are more than 200 types of cancer. Ah, but they all share the same hallmarks. In a series of papers cited more than 40,000 times in the biomedical literature, ten hallmarks of cancer have been identified.

Increased sensitivity to growth factors; evading your body’s tumor suppressors; dodging your immune system; being able to grow forever; tumor promoting inflammation; the ability to invade and spread and hook up its own blood supply; the accumulation of DNA mutations; disarming the self-destruct mechanisms in place; and hijacking the cell’s metabolism. And yes, of course, there are classes of drugs to try to counter each one—chemotherapy agents designed to target each piece of the cancer puzzle.

Now ideally, there would be drugs able to target multiple hallmarks at the same time, but that’s not how drugs tend to work. And this is one of the major reasons why, in the context of cancer research, there are so many proponents of investigating plant foods, as they can deliver a cocktail of bioactive compounds—bioactive compounds that may target most, if not all, of the hallmarks of cancer. Here’s a sampling of compounds found in fruits and vegetables such as berries, greens, and broccoli, shown to be able to target each of the ten hallmarks of cancer––at least in a petri dish.

Moreover, they fit the characteristics of an ideal chemopreventive agent. If you were to design the perfect candidate, you’d want them to be selective for cancerous or precancerous cells while leaving normal cells alone, be side effect-free, target most types of cancers, be able to be consumed as a part of a daily diet, be conveniently available almost everywhere, and be relatively inexpensive to boot. And plants have all of these. No wonder those eating more plant-based tend to have lower cancer rates.

However, it should be understood that we’re not talking about taking supplements containing extracts or purified phytochemicals, but rather eating whole plant foods themselves; more of a food-system based approach to targeting the hallmarks of cancer.

Foods contain many thousands of substances that lead to vast numbers of possible interactions, yet much of nutritional science has long been directed towards the impact of single dietary components. Yes, this kind of ‘reductionist’ approach can reveal the role of individual nutrients or foods in the development of disease, but let’s think about what the optimal research strategy would be to study the effects of bioactive natural plant compounds on disease prevention. Instead of using isolated phytochemicals in the management of cancer, how about using whole foods, because sometimes the whole can be greater than the sum of its parts, a concept known as food synergy.

Check out this study. The simultaneous inhibition of a series of cancer stages in breast cancer cells using a phytochemical super-cocktail. Two breast cancer cell lines were treated with six different plant compounds individually, and then altogether, at the level you might find in your bloodstream after eating foods like broccoli, grapes, soybeans, and turmeric. And while the compounds were ineffective individually, in combination they significantly suppressed breast cancer cell proliferation by more than 80 percent, inhibited cancer cell migration and invasion, stopped the cancer cells in their tracks, and eventually killed them all off. The plant compounds did all this without having any deleterious effects on the normal noncancerous cells used as control.

No wonder the foundation of cancer prevention, based on an update of the most extensive report on diet and cancer ever published is not pills, but plants. Cut down on alcohol, soda, meat, and processed junk, and center your diet around whole grains, vegetables, fruits, and beans.”   From: https://nutritionfacts.org/video/fighting-the-ten-hallmarks-of-cancer-with-food/?

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Sunday, May 8, 2022

What Are You Worth? Why Were You Born? When Nitrites Go Bad, Like Hot Dog Consumption!

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What Are You Worth?

A young man looking out over a lake. “The value we place on ourselves is often reflected in the things we do. 

Be sure to evaluate the price of your goals and count the costs before it's too late.  

They say everyone has a price. In other words, people believe that if offered enough money we will even sell our "souls." It is doubtful that anyone knows what that saying means—but it is clear that people will often not hesitate to do almost anything to achieve a goal.

The value we place on ourselves will always be reflected back to us one day. We will live to enjoy our good decisions and to rue our bad ones. When we are able to wisely assess our actions and make good choices, the benefits are enormous. The Bible tells about Judas Iscariot who arranged to betray Jesus for thirty pieces of silver (Matthew 27:3-5). The money was attractive to Judas, but it was himself that he sold for the silver. He put a value on himself for an act of the betrayal of One who trusted him. That act made him hang himself once he realized that thirty pieces of silver was all he was worth.

Be sure to evaluate the price of your goals and count the costs before it's too late.

https://www.ucg.org/beyond-today/blogs/this-is-the-way/what-are-you-worth#comments

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Why Were You Born?

Booklet cover: Why Were You Born?Table of Contents: Request Free Copy or Download:

“What is your destiny? Why do you exist? Is there a reason, a purpose, for human life? These questions have baffled the greatest thinkers and philosophers down through the ages.

The Question of the Ages

What is your destiny? Why do you exist? Why were you born? Is there a reason, a purpose, for human life?

The Spirit in Man

The spirit in man imparts human intellect to our physical brains. It is what makes people vastly more intelligent than animals.

Destination and Course Correction: Planned From the Outset

Through Jesus Christ's sacrifice, human beings can be reconciled to God, and God's forgiveness of their sin will remove the death penalty.

God's Own Literal Children

That family relationship of becoming children of God the Father is the heart and core of God's incredible plan for humanity!

The God Family

The human family was meant as a lesser model or type of this greater spiritual reality, that God is a family.

Adoption or Sonship?

Scripture makes clear that God actually begets us spiritually in His own image, with the intention that we ultimately become the same kind of beings He and Jesus Christ now are.

Early Theologians on Becoming Divine

While the biblical concept of deification or divinization, exaltation to godhood, is commonly ignored or dismissed in modern Christian teaching, this doctrine was well established among early theologians of mainstream tradition.

Life in God's Family

Never underestimate the value of your life. You were born to become one of God's divine children. You were born to receive His very nature and character and, eventually, eternal life on His level of existence.

The Likeness of God

When fully in God's likeness, we will be able to fulfill our awesome responsibility of exercising dominion over, of assisting Him in managing, the vastness of His creation.

https://www.ucg.org/bible-study-tools/booklets/why-were-you-born?source=weeklyupdate

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When Nitrites Go Bad, Like Hot Dog Consumption

Transcript of YouTube: https://youtu.be/_3081X9q0VE

“Nitrites in processed meat form nitrosamines, a class of potent carcinogens found in cigarette smoke, which may explain why hot dog consumption has been associated with the two leading pediatric cancers, brain tumors and childhood leukemia.

Our story begins on a Norwegian fur farm in 1957. Mink were dropping dead left and right from a malignant new liver disease. The clue came when livestock starting dying from liver cancer as well. What tied all the cases together was the use of fish meal in their diets—fish meal that the country had just started preserving with sodium nitrite.

Subsequent research discovered nitrite, under certain circumstances, can form nitrosamines, which directly attack DNA, and are universally condemned as one of the key carcinogens in cigarette smoke. The occurrence in food was raised as a matter of gravest concern nearly a half century ago. Now, we know the nitrites added to processed meats can form these carcinogenic nitrosamines—now recognized as among the most potent chemical carcinogens.

For example, pregnant women who eat hot dogs risk having children with brain tumors—the #2 pediatric cancers. Then, children, who eat lots of hot dogs, have nearly ten times the odds of developing childhood leukemia—the #1 pediatric cancer.

Last year, in Meat Science, an article about the role of ham in a healthy diet breathed a sigh of relief: “[A]spects relating to health and wellbeing are increasingly important factors in consumer decisions, although the great palatability of ham largely outweighs such considerations.”

To see any graphs, charts, graphics, images, and quotes to which Dr. Greger may be referring, watch the above video. This is just an approximation of the audio contributed by MaryAnn Allison."  From:  https://nutritionfacts.org/video/when-nitrites-go-bad/

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Sunday, May 1, 2022

Hope in the Bible. What’s the Bible For? Do You Consume These Foods That Ruin Your Liver.

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Hope in the Bible

Hope in the Bible“Life today can be sorely lacking in hope. But there is a timeless source we can turn to. The hope in the Bible is guaranteed not to disappoint!

When I feel hope fading or even feel hopeless, I know where to turn.

In the world of men, apart from God, there is no real hope (Ephesians 2:12). And this world desperately needs hope! We need hope not just to make it from one challenge, trial or disappointment to another, but to lift our heads and give us direction and meaning.

Real hope empowers us, encourages us and makes life worth living. But where can we find this hope?

God is called the “God of hope” (Romans 15:13). And He gives that hope to us through His inspired Scriptures.  Our go-to source of godly hope is the Holy Bible.

Meaning of hope in the Bible

The Greek word elpis, translated hope in the New Testament, has the connotation “desire of some good with expectation of obtaining it” (The Complete Word Study Dictionary, New Testament, 1992). Hope based on God and His sure promises is vastly different from the fleeting hope of this world.

Human, natural hope “is transient and illusory,” and the “majority of secular thinkers in the ancient world did not regard hope as a virtue.”

“But for the most part the hope with which the Bible is concerned is something very different; and in comparison with it other hope is scarcely recognized as hope.” It is closely tied to faith. Because of what God has done and promised, “the Christian dares to expect future blessings at present invisible (2 Cor. 1:10). The goodness of God is for him never exhausted. The best is still to be. His hope is increased as he reflects on the activities of God in the Scriptures (Rom. 12:12; 15:4)” (New Bible Dictionary, “hope,” 1982).

“That we through the patience and comfort of the Scriptures might have hope”

Paul points to the Bible as our source of hope.

“For whatever things were written before were written for our learning, that we through the patience and comfort of the Scriptures might have hope” (Romans 15:4).

The stories and teachings of the Bible were recorded for many reasons, but here Paul highlights how God inspired them to give us hope.

William Barclay noted about this passage: “The Christian fellowship should be marked by hope. The Christian is always a realist, but never a pessimist. The Christian hope is not a cheap hope. It is not the immature hope which is optimistic because it does not see the difficulties and has not encountered the experiences of life. It might be thought that hope is the prerogative of the young; but the great artists did not think that. When [the painter George Frederic] Watts drew ‘Hope’ he drew her as a battered and bowed figure with one string left upon her lyre. The Christian hope has seen everything and endured everything, and still has not despaired, because it believes in God. It is not hope in the human spirit, in human goodness, in human achievement; it is hope in the power of God” (Daily Study Bible, note on Romans 15:1-6).

Examples of hope in the Bible

Consider the story of Rahab, the harlot in Jericho who had come to believe in the power of the God of Israel. She and all the people of Jericho realized it was hopeless to fight against Israel (Joshua 2:11). But it seems only Rahab chose to believe in the God of Israel. She risked her life to save the Israelite spies, and in turn they promised to protect her and her family, if she put a scarlet cord in the window of her home on the city wall (verses 18, 21).

Interestingly, the word cord is from the Hebrew word tiqva, which is most often translated in its figurative sense as “hope” and “expectation.”

“By faith the harlot Rahab did not perish with those who did not believe,” we’re told in the Faith Chapter. Instead, God gave her hope and a place in the lineage of Jesus Christ (Matthew 1:5).

God’s plan includes saving us from our deadly and deceitful enemy. Instead of death, God offers us the amazing opportunity to become members of His family and to inherit everything with Jesus Christ. The book of Job, which tells the story of a man bereaved of nearly everything he held dear, mentions hope (tiqva) 15 times, but can hardly be considered a hopeful book. Until the last chapter, that is, when God reverses the misfortune.

Mourning for the loss of his children, his possessions and his health, Job cried out, “My days are swifter than a weaver’s shuttle, and are spent without hope” (Job 7:6).

Yet even in the depths of despair, Job expressed hope for the next life:

“If a man dies, shall he live again? All the days of my hard service I will wait, till my change comes. You shall call, and I will answer You; You shall desire the work of Your hands” (14:14-15). Interestingly, the phrase I will wait is from the Hebrew yahal, which is often translated as hope.

Growing in hope—the hope that does not disappoint

Paul tells us that followers of Christ are able to “rejoice in hope of the glory of God” (Romans 5:2). Here again hope is translated from the Greek word elpis, which means “to anticipate, usually with pleasure” (Strong’s Definitions).

Then he outlines the steps that produce more hope.

“And not only that, but we also glory in tribulations, knowing that tribulation produces perseverance; and perseverance, character; and character, hope.

“Now hope does not disappoint, because the love of God has been poured out in our hearts by the Holy Spirit [that] was given to us” (verses 3-5).

Growing in this way is not easy. Enduring troubles in order to have the character of Jesus Christ hurts. It stretches us, toughens us and strengthens us. And it produces hope—real, 100 percent satisfying hope enlivened by the love of God.

God’s loving plan is what gives hope its power.

“As a helmet the hope of salvation”

God’s story for your life is epic and dramatic. God’s plan includes saving us from our deadly and deceitful enemy. Instead of death, God offers us the amazing opportunity to become members of His family and to inherit everything with Jesus Christ. He wants us to live forever in His close, loving family.

Understanding this amazing plan serves as part of our protection from Satan the devil.

“But let us who are of the day be sober, putting on the breastplate of faith and love, and as a helmet the hope of salvation” (1 Thessalonians 5:8).

In his famous list of the armor of God, Paul called this the “helmet of salvation” (Ephesians 6:17). But to the Thessalonians, Paul wrote the more complete description “the hope of salvation.”

Transforming the wonderful promise of salvation into armor to protect our minds requires a healthy dose of hope. We must truly believe that God will save us from eternal death and give us eternal life. That kind of hope can deflect the blows of our enemy who wants to discourage us. The hope of salvation protects our minds.

This helmet allows us to fully engage in the process of transformation God has called us to.

“Christ in you, the hope of glory”

Paul calls God’s plan a mystery that has now been revealed to the saints—to all those God has called out of this world. (For a look at the biblical meaning of saints, see “How to Become a Saint.”)

God wants all those who have been baptized and received the Holy Spirit to understand the transformation He has called us to.

“To them God willed to make known what are the riches of the glory of this mystery among the Gentiles: which is Christ in you, the hope of glory” (Colossians 1:27).

On the night before His crucifixion, Jesus encouraged His followers. He told them, and He tells us, “I will not leave you orphans; I will come to you” (John 14:18). He adds, “If anyone loves Me, he will keep My word; and My Father will love him, and We will come to him and make Our home with him” (verse 23).

Studying the rest of Jesus’ Passover teachings shows that the Father and the Son live in us through the Helper—the Holy Spirit (verse 26).

What does the Bible say about how to receive the Holy Spirit? “Repent, and let every one of you be baptized in the name of Jesus Christ for the remission of sins; and you shall receive the gift of the Holy Spirit” (Acts 2:38).

This process of conversion changes us from the inside. It helps us think and act like Jesus Christ as it writes God’s laws on our hearts and minds (Hebrews 10:16).

Hope is also part of our witness to those around us. If someone wants to understand how we can have hope in these hopeless times, Peter encourages us to be prepared to share the reason. In 1 John 3 the apostle John also points to the transforming power of the hope we have been given. After describing the incredible love the Father has shown us by calling us “children of God” (verse 1) and explaining that when Jesus returns, “we shall be like Him, for we shall see Him as He is” (verse 2), John says:

“And everyone who has this hope in Him purifies himself, just as He is pure” (verse 3).

God’s holiness and purity are major themes throughout the Bible. To truly become like Jesus Christ, we must pursue purity.

William Barclay commented on this verse: “John has just said that the Christian is on the way to seeing God and being like him. There is nothing like a great aim for helping a man to resist temptation” (Daily Study Bible, note on 1 John 3:3-8).

Faith, hope and love

The Bible connects faith, hope and love many times (1 Thessalonians 1:3; 5:8; Galatians 5:5-6; 1 Corinthians 13:13; Hebrews 6:10-12; 1 Peter 1:21-22).

Faith and hope work together, hand in hand. It takes faith in God to have real hope, and it takes godly hope to have real, lasting faith.

Love elevates faith and hope above any selfishness, producing a desire for God’s plan to provide His blessings for everyone.

William Barclay put it this way in his Daily Study Bible: “Faith without love is cold, and hope without love is grim. Love is the fire which kindles faith and it is the light which turns hope into certainty.”

Love’s outgoing nature and eternal qualities makes it the “greatest of these” (1 Corinthians 13:13).

For more on this, see the sidebar “Faith, Hope and Love” in our booklet Finding Hope in a Hopeless World.

Give a reason for the hope

Hope is also part of our witness to those around us. If someone wants to understand how we can have hope in these hopeless times, Peter encourages us to be prepared to share the reason:

“But sanctify the Lord God in your hearts, and always be ready to give a defense to everyone who asks you a reason for the hope that is in you, with meekness and fear” (1 Peter 3:15).” 

From: https://lifehopeandtruth.com/life/plan-of-salvation/hope-for-the-future/hope-in-the-bible/?

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What’s the Bible For?

2 Timothy 3:15-17

And that from childhood you have known the Holy Scriptures, which are able to make you wise for salvation through faith which is in Christ Jesus. All Scripture is given by inspiration of God, and is profitable for doctrine, for reproof, for correction, for instruction in righteousness, that the man of God may be complete, thoroughly equipped for every good work.

“The Holy Scriptures available to Timothy as a child would, of course, have been what we call the Old Testament today. The apostle Paul and the New Testament Church held the Old Testament in high esteem and quoted from it often in sermons and writings. The Old Testament revealed much about Jesus Christ, including both His first and second comings, and the salvation that is available because of His sacrifice.

All Scripture, which Peter later showed included Paul’s writings as well (2 Peter 3:16), was breathed—what we call inspired—by God. What is the Bible useful for?

  • Doctrine—teaching us God’s will.
  • Reproof—conviction or proof of wrongdoing.
  • Correction—setting us straight.
  • Instruction in righteousness—disciplining or training.

The Good News Translation puts it this way: All Scripture “is useful for teaching the truth, rebuking error, correcting faults, and giving instruction for right living, so that the person who serves God may be fully qualified and equipped to do every kind of good deed” (verses 16-17).”   For more about what the Bible can do for us, see “Why Study the Bible?       From: https://lifehopeandtruth.com/bible/blog/whats-the-bible-for/?

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Do You Consume These Foods That Ruin Your Liver.

Excerpts from YouTube: https://youtu.be/1B98PDEe4vU  

“You are as healthy as your liver. Your liver helps you in many different ways, but its main function is to detox poisons. It’s important to be aware of these ingredients in certain foods that ruin your liver, so you can avoid them and keep your liver healthy. The best type of food for the liver is cruciferous vegetables. Be sure to consume cruciferous vegetables regularly to support a healthy liver.

7 ingredients in foods that will ruin your liver:

1. Soy protein isolates Common foods that contain this ingredient: • Diet shakes • Diet powders • Protein bars • Veggie burgers

2. Fructose Common foods that contain this ingredient: • High fructose corn syrup • Fruit • Agave nectar • Table sugar

3. Vegetable fats Common foods that contain this ingredient: • Corn oil • Soy oil • Canola oil • Cottonseed oil

4. Whey protein powder Common foods that contain this ingredient: • Protein powders

5. Maltodextrin Common foods that contain this ingredient: • Protein powders • Certain vitamin supplements • Certain “keto-friendly” foods • Foods that contain fillers or drying agents • Post-workout gels • Splenda • Puddings • Protein bars

6. Aflatoxins Common foods that contain this ingredient: • Peanuts • Corn 7. MSG Common foods that contain this ingredient: • Pork rinds • Fast-food • Chinese food • Cottage cheese • Foods that contain flavor enhancers”

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Sunday, April 24, 2022

Quit Picking Stupid Fights. Let This Mind Be in You. Sugar Industry Attempt to Manipulate the Science.

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Quit Picking Stupid Fights (and Start Showing Love Instead)

Quit Picking Stupid Fights (and Start Showing Love Instead)“Few things have highlighted our human tendency to be unkind or even cruel to those who disagree with us quite like the COVID-19 pandemic. How can we do better?

 In some ways, COVID transformed the world almost overnight.

In other ways, it just gave us a glimpse of some ugly truths that we’ve been sweeping under the rug for decades.

This isn’t an article about global supply chains or epidemic preparedness. It isn’t even really about COVID—that’s just the backdrop to a far more important issue.

This is an article, first and foremost, about how Christians ought to be treating each other.

Developing a foot-washing mind-set

Hours before His crucifixion, Jesus personally washed the feet of His disciples. That included the feet of Judas Iscariot, who Jesus knew would shortly betray Him to the Jewish authorities.

“Do you know what I have done to you?” He asked them. “You call Me Teacher and Lord, and you say well, for so I am. If I then, your Lord and Teacher, have washed your feet, you also ought to wash one another’s feet. For I have given you an example, that you should do as I have done to you” (John 13:12-15).

Every year, Christians gather together for the Passover and fulfill that instruction—washing each other’s feet as our Lord and Teacher did for His disciples nearly 2,000 years ago. (Read more in “Passover and Forgiveness.”)

A key component in this ceremony is the attitude behind the foot washing. To stoop down and wash the feet of another human being can be humbling. To trade places and allow that same human being to wash your feet is beyond humbling. The whole ceremony is a powerful reminder of our interconnectedness as fellow servants of Jesus Christ—and the importance of being willing to serve each other.

After the foot washing was over, Jesus told the disciples, “A new commandment I give to you, that you love one another; as I have loved you, that you also love one another. By this all will know that you are My disciples, if you have love for one another” (verses 34-35).

Love is our proof of discipleship

There are quite a few identifying marks of the people of God. He gives us the weekly Sabbath as “a sign between Me and you throughout your generations, that you may know that I am the LORD who sanctifies you” (Exodus 31:13).

The annual feasts and holy days (Leviticus 23) are a sign. Our belief in and dedication to spreading “the gospel of the kingdom” (Matthew 24:14) throughout the whole world is another.

But love, said Jesus, is the sign. The world will know us as disciples, followers and students of Jesus Christ, when they see us showing the same love that He showed.

How do you think we’ve been doing on that front?

How we failed the toilet paper test

COVID has been on the world scene for over two years now. Two years. In that time, what have you seen more of: Christlike love or resentment, bitterness and frustration?

More importantly, what have you shown more of?

I remember when we first started feeling the impact of COVID in my little corner of the United States. But it wasn’t the virus itself that caused the initial impact—it was people.

When we let our own thoughts and opinions get in the way, it gets harder and harder to love as Christ loved. When the shelter-in-place mandates started around the world, people panicked. They started stockpiling everything they thought they might need for the uncertain weeks ahead.

Including toilet paper.

The funny thing is, we were never really at risk for running out of toilet paper in the U.S. or most other countries. The supply chain for that particular commodity is strong—but people were buying it faster than it could be restocked. And so, on April 19, 2020, half the grocery stores in the U.S. found themselves sold out of toilet paper.

That’s not to say that everyone who bought toilet paper at the onset of the pandemic was wrong. But some turned acquiring as much toilet paper as possible into a mission and other shoppers into enemies. On the whole, it seems we were afraid that someone else might buy what we might someday need—so instead, we made sure to buy it first.

Is that what Christlike love looks like?

Plenty of hills to die on. The run on toilet paper wasn’t a Christian problem specifically. It was a human problem. But it did set the tone for things to come.

In the days and months that followed, quite a few of us became experts overnight. We were experts in epidemiology, experts in constitutional rights, experts in logistics, experts in economic theory, experts in legislation. My Facebook feed was flooded with people who were absolutely certain they knew The Right Thing to Do and were furious at the henchmen of The Other Side for spreading propaganda and rhetoric to the contrary.

It turned into a never-ending shouting match. Every news item, every CDC update, every governmental mandate became one more hill to die on. Masks. Social distancing. Self-treatment methods. Vaccines. Everyone had sources. Everyone had a reason why everyone else’s sources were wrong.

So many voices were shouting.

So many continue to shout.

So many of those voices belong to Christians.

COVID isn’t the real problem. I said earlier that this isn’t really an article about COVID. And it’s not. It’s an article about us. About Christians in progress. About how we choose to navigate things like COVID.

There are a lot of lessons to draw from this pandemic, but for me, the most visceral one is this:

When we let our own thoughts and opinions get in the way, it gets harder and harder to love as Christ loved.

And when we start viewing our thoughts and opinions as fact, it gets almost impossible.

The danger of losing focus

The early Church had a similar problem—because the early Church was made up of fallible human beings too. There was a debate over whether a Christian should eat meat that had been offered to idols, and even though “an idol is nothing in the world” (1 Corinthians 8:4), there were those whose “conscience, being weak, [was] defiled” (verse 7) by the act.

Paul told the Romans, “If your brother is grieved because of your food, you are no longer walking in love. Do not destroy with your food the one for whom Christ died . . . For the kingdom of God is not eating and drinking, but righteousness and peace and joy in the Holy Spirit. For he who serves Christ in these things is acceptable to God and approved by men.

“Therefore let us pursue the things which make for peace and the things by which one may edify another. Do not destroy the work of God for the sake of food” (Romans 14:15, 17-20).

It is easy to get so entrenched in the ongoing debate over COVID that we become willing to “destroy with [our] food the one for whom Christ died.”

It is easy to forget that, as much as a worldwide pandemic affects every aspect of our lives, COVID is not the most important thing happening right now.

What matters is the Kingdom of God. The Kingdom of God is not eating or drinking—not debates over vaccines and masks, not heated arguments over constitutional rights and governmental authority—“but righteousness and peace and joy in the Holy Spirit. For he who serves Christ in these things is acceptable to God and approved by men.”

Keys to pursuing peace

We don’t pursue peace by trying to force those around us to share our views on the latest update from the CDC or by vilifying and shouting down everyone who disagrees with us. We pursue peace by accepting that in a developing situation like a worldwide pandemic, no one but God has all the answers, and we make a conscious effort to not destroy the work of God for the sake of our personal opinions.

Please don’t misunderstand me—there are absolutely hills worth dying on. When God’s truth is challenged, when others try to lead us away from God’s explicit instructions, we are duty-bound to plant our feet and refuse to budge (compare Deuteronomy 13).

But when it’s something less than that—when it’s a difference of opinion that has no bearing on our entrance to the Kingdom of God, no matter how passionate our feelings—then “let not him who eats despise him who does not eat, and let not him who does not eat judge him who eats; for God has received him. Who are you to judge another’s servant? To his own master he stands or falls. Indeed, he will be made to stand, for God is able to make him stand” (Romans 14:3-4).

And again, “For all the law is fulfilled in one word, even in this: ‘You shall love your neighbor as yourself.’ But if you bite and devour one another, beware lest you be consumed by one another!” (Galatians 5:14-15).

Learning to love others the way Jesus Christ loved us is a mammoth, lifelong task. But we can’t pursue that goal by tearing down our brothers and sisters in the faith who disagree with us.

We pursue it by getting on our knees and washing their feet.”  From: https://lifehopeandtruth.com/life/christian-living/christianity-in-progress/quit-fights-show-love/?

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Let This Mind Be in You

Philippians 2:3-5

“Let nothing be done through selfish ambition or conceit, but in lowliness of mind let each esteem others better than himself. Let each of you look out not only for his own interests, but also for the interests of others. Let this mind be in you which was also in Christ Jesus.

The goal of Christian conversion and transformation is to become like Jesus Christ—to think like Him, to love others as He does, to have His mind in us.

Paul lists some of the changes that are necessary for a natural, selfish human mind to become like Jesus Christ’s mind. We must remove selfish ambitions and “empty pride,” replacing them with “lowliness of mind.”  “The Greek word suggests a deep sense of humility. Although the pagan writers used the word negatively, in effect to mean abjectness or groveling, Paul did not. What Paul was calling for was an honest evaluation of one’s own nature. Such an evaluation should always lead to glorification of Christ” (NKJV Study Bible, comment on Philippians 2:3).

Elsewhere Paul says it is not wise to compare ourselves with others (2 Corinthians 10:12). But when we do assess ourselves and do consider others, we should “be severe upon our own faults and charitable in our judgment of others” (Matthew Henry’s Commentary, comment on Philippians 2:1-11).”

For more about developing the mind of Jesus Christ, see “Christ in Us: How Does He Live in You?  From: https://lifehopeandtruth.com/bible/blog/let-this-mind-be-in-you/?

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Sugar Industry Attempt to Manipulate the Science

Transcript of YouTube: https://youtu.be/TTYtuPPjSP8

Below is an approximation of this video’s audio content. To see any graphs, charts, graphics, images, and quotes to which Dr. Greger may be referring, watch the above video.

“Corporations are legally required to maximise shareholder profits and therefore have to oppose public health policies that could threaten profits.” It’s just how the system is set up. “Unequivocal, longstanding evidence shows that to achieve this, diverse industries with products that can damage health have worked systematically to subvert the scientific process.”

Take the sugar industry, for example. Internal documents showed they were concerned that health food “faddists” were becoming “an active menace to the…industry.” Sugar was under attack, “and many of the poor unfortunate public swallow the misinformation broadcast by the propagandists.” What were books like Yudkin’s Pure, White and Deadly saying?   “All of the propaganda [is] to the effect that sugar is a non-essential food.” Gasp! No! How dare they say sugar is a non-essential food? Next, they’ll be saying it’s not really food at all. And, that was the sugar industry’s line: “sugar is a cheap safe food”—and this coming from the founder and chair of Harvard’s nutrition department, Fredrick Stare, long known as “Harvard’s sugar-pushing nutritionist.”

Not only did the sugar industry try to influence the direction of dental research, but heart disease research as well, paying Stare and colleagues to write this review to help downplay any risk from sugar. Now, to be fair, this was five years before we even realized triglycerides were also an independent risk factor beyond just cholesterol. The main reason attention stayed focused on saturated fat is not because of the might of the sugar industry; there was just not as much data to support it.

In fact, “the [even] more powerful meat and dairy industries” loved the anti-sugar message. Who do you think sponsored Yudkin? In fact, on like the first page of Pure, White and Deadly, he thanks all the food and drug companies that had provided him with such “constant generous support.”  Who paid for Yudkin’s speaking tour? The egg industry, of course—to try to take some heat off cholesterol.

Hegsted, one of the co-authors of the funded review, wasn’t exactly an industry cheerleader. He recommended people cut down on all the risky stuff: “less meat, less saturated fat, less cholesterol, [and] less sugar, less salt.” It wasn’t the sugar industry that got him fired for speaking truth to power; it was the beef industry.

The sugar industry was able to conceal its funding, because the New England Journal of Medicine didn’t require disclosure of conflicts of interest until 17 years later. These muckraking researchers suggest policymakers “should consider giving less weight to food industry-funded studies.” But why is the food industry funding studies at all? When it comes to the “corporate manipulation of research,” ultimately conflicts of interest don’t just need to be disclosed and “managed,” but ideally “eliminated.”

Things may not change until public health researchers start “refus[ing] to take money from the [junk food] industry,” period. “It worked for tobacco.” Many prestigious medical and public health institutions “have…instituted bans on tobacco industry funding.”

But wait; can’t scientists remain “objective [and] impartial” even in the face of all that cash? Apparently not, as “industry funded research” has been shown to be up to 88 times more likely to produce funder-favorable outcomes. What, do we think corporations are in the business of just handing out money for free?

The classic example is the American Academy of Pediatric Dentistry, who “accepted $1 million [grant] from Coca-Cola.” Before the grant, their official position was that “frequent consumption of [sugary beverages] can be a significant factor in the…initiation and progression of dental [cavities],” which—after the grant—changed to “scientific evidence is certainly not clear on the exact role that soft drinks play.” As CSPI’s Integrity in Science Project put it, “What a difference a million dollars makes!” From: https://nutritionfacts.org/video/flashback-friday-sugar-industry-attempt-to-manipulate-the-science/?

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