Tuesday, July 16, 2019

The delicate balance of trusting in God and obtaining a masterpiece life

Almost everyone is too far to one side of ideal when it comes to trusting God and following the path to the desires of your heart.

On the one side are the people whose distrust of God is manifested in not doing enough. These people constrain what God can do for them by refusing all but the most normal packages it might come in. They expect a magnificent life but aren't willing to do what it takes to get it. God fills their lives with opportunities for growth by showing them the shortfalls of status quo life again and again, but they ignore these signals and continue in their blind march forward. They do what everyone else does, then are surprised when their life turns out like everyone else's--fragile and miserable and devoid of meaning and joy.

On the other side are the people whose distrust of God is manifested in their trying to do too much. These people believe God can do great things in their lives but rely too much on their own understanding of how that will come to be. They are impatient and believe they know better than God the how and when of their lives. They shoehorn the eventual promises of God into second-rate fulfillment, like a driver who insists on taking the next exit instead of completing the road trip, then pretends they have arrived at their destination until they can no longer fool themselves. They then get back onto the highway, having wasted precious time and gone through unnecessary suffering. These people rarely learn to trust God, in spite of his showing them the consequences of their foolish pride. As soon as he redeems them from one situation, they jump right into another one just as fast as they can.

Humans crave completion. They like the idea of retiring. They like the idea of finishing a game. No one ever finishes during life. Until you die, you are not done. If you seek God with all your heart, might, mind, and strength, you will find yourself in a never-ending cycle of giving everything you have in exchange for something better: debasement followed by ascension. That is the price for something better: all that you have.

While we are reasonably good at envisioning the end (mostly because the light inside of us whispers it to us), we are really awful at envisioning the means. That is probably a good thing. The means seem to always be orders of magnitude more difficult than we imagined. Almost everything of value seems to cost so much more than we originally thought. Those who get furthest in life are those who choose their paths based on alignment to God instead of the perceived cost and benefit, which are necessarily outside of our awareness at the beginning of the journey. In The Hobbit, Bilbo accepts the wizard's invitation to go on the journey not because of his understanding of how important it is or his confidence in his ability to overcome challenges far outside his awareness, but because of his faith in the wizard who clearly desires him to go. This is how it is with us and God. It is our faith in his character and this alone that is sufficient for us to courageously walk into the challenges for which we were born. Unfortunately, so few develop this level of faith. We fritter our lives away swimming in the gentle outskirts of the pond and never experience the treasures that lie in the deep.

The Lord's way exists not for some arbitrary reason, but because he has perfect knowledge and knows there is no other way. Every single situation and every moment of time is absolutely precision designed by God to get you to the destination of greatest joy possible for you. You need to submit completely to him. You need to completely recognize that you don't and won't know the way. Only the Lord can shepherd you to the pastures you seek. Trust in him. Lean into him.

While you are anxious, pressured, stressed, etc., you can know with a full assurance that you aren't ready to receive what he has to give, you do not trust him, and you don't yet have faith. While in this state, you can rest assured that the barrier to what you seek isn't your situation, but your heart.

Do you know what men of God mean when they say, "I can do all things through Christ which strengtheneth me"? They do NOT mean "if I wish hard enough, God will give me what I want in the way I want it." What they mean is that if they submit to God fully, God has the power to direct them in the path required to obtain the desired outcome. This requires both unrestricted effort and unrestricted submission. It means you are willing to pay any cost as well as accept any format of fulfillment. You willingly deliver your life into the hands of the master, trusting fully that he is able to bring about better outcomes than anything you can imagine, even if the path requires you to walk through things more awful than you can imagine.

Thursday, July 11, 2019

"Master, when will the end be?"

In Matthew 24, the disciples asked Jesus when the end would be and what would be the sign of his coming.

The Lord has shown me that the United States will be utterly destroyed before that. On one occasion, I asked him when that will happen. He said "once I have done everything I can to prevent it." This sort of thing is described in Jacob 5.

I sought for elaboration on what he meant, and will try to explain it here.

The Lord has promised that he will make a clean sweep (total destruction) of America if its inhabitants become "ripe in iniquity" or reach a "fulness of iniquity":

8 And he had sworn in his wrath unto the brother of Jared, that whoso should possess this land of promise, from that time henceforth and forever, should serve him, the true and only God, or they should be swept off when the fulness of his wrath should come upon them.

9 And now, we can behold the decrees of God concerning this land, that it is a land of promise; and whatsoever nation shall possess it shall serve God, or they shall be swept off when the fulness of his wrath shall come upon them. And the fulness of his wrath cometh upon them when they are ripened in iniquity.

10 For behold, this is a land which is choice above all other lands; wherefore he that doth possess it shall serve God or shall be swept off; for it is the everlasting decree of God. And it is not until the fulness of iniquity among the children of the land, that they are swept off.

11 And this cometh unto you, O ye Gentiles, that ye may know the decrees of God—that ye may repent, and not continue in your iniquities until the fulness come, that ye may not bring down the fulness of the wrath of God upon you as the inhabitants of the land have hitherto done. (Ether 2)

What do these phrases mean? To become "ripe in iniquity" or reach a "fulness of iniquity" means to hate the light so much that nothing can convince you to accept more. It is to cut ones self off from any teaching, any chastisement, and any improvement.

What does this look like in practice? Do you know any person like this? A person who has removed themselves from any form of persuasion due to their unbelief? A person who is so stuck in their ways that they absolutely hate all forms of correction? A person who rages at the thought of something they do not agree with? A person who is so prideful that their self-identity is completely coupled to their belief system, and therefore they can't modify any part of it without risking ego death?

I know several of these people, and it is shocking to behold. What is more shocking is to see the societal forces institutionalizing these attitudes. There are churches that are teaching reprobate culture. They believe themselves to be the only ones who are right and they ingrain their members with an aversion to critical and independent thought. "Just follow us and you'll be ok." There are political parties teaching reprobate culture. They believe morality and reality are whatever they say they are, and they teach that anyone who disagrees with them is deplorable. The universities teach this same attitude through a supermajority of faculty who feel this way. The public school system cranks out kids indoctrinated in this culture.

Our society is cutting itself off from correction. Our society is cutting itself off from critical thinking. Our society is disallowing words, phrases, and ideas that are crucial to communicating the lessons required to keep us out of jeopardy. It will soon disallow any institution that does the same.

God only has so many tools to reach people. His principle tools are persuasion, long-suffering, kindness, etc. When society as a whole has cut itself off from receiving these, he uses war, famine, plague, and natural disaster. However, even these can be ineffective.

Recently, California was rattled by two earthquakes that were bigger than anything seen there in 20 years. Did anyone repent? Did anyone turn to God? Did anyone second guess California culture? Nearly 20 years ago, 9/11 caused a significant national repentance, albeit for a limited time. If the same thing happened today, how long would we mourn and repent? A month? A week? A day?

We have become insensible, past feeling, and we are drawing towards being past feeling. Everything we have seen to this point is just the dregs of God trying every tool he has to call all who will listen to come to him. When he runs out of tools, we will see all hell break loose in the United States. In one day, Babylon will fall.

The Coming Persecution of Christians

Currently, a massive scandal involving sex trafficking of underage children among the elite has become news.

This is nothing new. It's just that a) people haven't been paying attention to it and b) it has (steadily) become completely pervasive.

Secret combinations exist in the IRS (where subjective judgments were recently used to target Christian groups), in the military (where, in my experience, high ranking officers knew full well that their vocation was, to put it lightly, a farce designed for the power and money it gave the political and financial elite), in law enforcement, in the university system, in corporate culture, in Hollywood, and pretty much anywhere else you see a power or wealth hierarchy.

While this does not mean that every person who is in the upper echelons of society is in some sort of secret society, it does mean that the higher up you go, the less likely you are to not know about these arrangements.

These societies are not one united society. They look and act uniformly due to the source of their tactics. The men and women in these groups are inspired and instructed by Satan and his minions to do what they do how they do it.

[The devil] transformeth himself nigh unto an angel of light, and stirreth up the children of men unto secret combinations of murder and all manner of secret works of darkness. (2 Nephi 9:9)

They use:

  • Coordinated lies
  • Intentional psychological tricks
  • Blackmail and extortion
  • Violence
  • Oaths
  • Promises of power, sex, and money in exchange for loyalty
You might be absolutely shocked to know what pillars of our society are wholly founded and controlled by these tactics. I won't get into it here, but suffice it to say that things are not what they seem, and our society is fully infiltrated.

And there are also secret combinations, even as in times of old, according to the combinations of the devil, for he is the founder of all these things; yea, the founder of murder, and works of darkness; yea, and he leadeth them by the neck with a flaxen cord, until he bindeth them with his strong cords forever. (2 Nephi 26:22)

This would be horrific enough of its own accord, but I have to tell you it will get worse.

Until now, these groups have been like a garden weed growing alongside the rest of the crop. The time is at hand where it will bear and spread its seed. I am referring to the true, long term objective of these societies: the persecution of Christians.

The ultimate goal of these societies is to make people deny the faith, and to prevent them from accepting it in the first place. 

In a sense, the secret combinations that surround us are like caged tigers. They are about to be set loose. While they've inflicted a great deal of damage, to date the only damage targeted towards Christians has been a few isolated cases of, for instance, the IRS targeting faith groups. Get ready, because it will get a lot worse both in intensity and breadth. It will be systemic, and the persecution will rise even to include the death of Christians. This is already happening in other countries, but it will also come to the developed world.

For behold, they murdered all the prophets of the Lord who came among them to declare unto them concerning their iniquities; and the blood of those whom they murdered did cry unto the Lord their God for vengeance upon those who were their murderers; and thus the judgments of God did come upon these workers of darkness and secret combinations. (Alma 37:30)



And it shall come in a day when the blood of saints shall cry unto the Lord, because of secret combinations and the works of darkness. (Mormon 8:27)

And whatsoever nation shall uphold such secret combinations, to get power and gain, until they shall spread over the nation, behold, they shall be destroyed; for the Lord will not suffer that the blood of his saints, which shall be shed by them, shall always cry unto him from the ground for vengeance upon them and yet he avenge them not. (Ether 8:22)

Wherefore, the Lord commandeth you, when ye shall see these things come among you that ye shall awake to a sense of your awful situation, because of this secret combination which shall be among you; or wo be unto it, because of the blood of them who have been slain; for they cry from the dust for vengeance upon it, and also upon those who built it up. (Ether 8:24)


It is interesting that the prophecies all say that this is the end goal of secret combinations: to kill the prophets and those who believe in them. You may be scratching your head saying "there are prophets in America? In Europe?" Yes, there are. And many of them will be killed. And many who believe them will be killed. Go re-read the Book of Revelation. Note how sustained and widespread martyrdom is described before the Lord comes again.

So what can you do about this? Prepare yourself. Develop sufficient trust in God that you will stand as a witness to him at all times and in all places. While this may include something explicit, such as saying "Yes, I believe in Jesus, and I will not deny him," odds are that the less explicit "witness" opportunities will be more numerous. You witness or deny Jesus every time you act in accordance or against your sincere understanding of how he would act in your place. 

There are too many who erroneously believe that they would die for Jesus when they won't even live for him in the smallest of things. If you believe something is wrong, and for convenience you continue to do it, how can you believe you would die for the Lord, or that if you did, he would accept your sacrifice? 

The time is fast approaching when it will not be possible to both maintain your faith and live a "normal" life. However, the time is already at hand where it is no longer passively flow with society without violating our obedience to God.

Already these secret combinations are pushing for changes that cause you to compromise your principles. The little things are the big things.

And there are also secret combinations, even as in times of old, according to the combinations of the devil, for he is the founder of all these things; yea, the founder of murder, and works of darkness; yea, and he leadeth them by the neck with a flaxen cord, until he bindeth them with his strong cords forever. (2 Nephi 26:22)

Are you aware of the flaxen cords and what are you doing to avoid them and break them? Are you passively allowing them to ensnare you and your family? Or are you reacting when it happens by changing peer groups, hobbies, jobs, towns, etc. to maintain your character? Are you challenging it in conversation and political action?





Wednesday, July 10, 2019

The parable of the two cities

There were two cities. One city formed in the way that most do, with the rich people congregating in one area, and the poor in another. The second city was designed to intentionally interleave the apartment complexes and mansions. The second city had a very different dynamic than the first. On a daily basis, the rich people saw the plight of the poor. They not only had opportunities to give of their substance to alleviate the suffering of others, they also had the opportunity to mentor others out of their poverty. On a daily basis, the poor saw the difference wealth made in living conditions. They had opportunities to learn what it took to accumulate wealth. Each group could learn more about the other by comparing and contrasting beliefs, desires, and activities. The rich suffered much more in this city than their counterparts in the first city. Some of the poor decided to avail themselves of their proximity by robbing the rich. This caused some of the rich to move to the first city, where they would no longer need to worry about being robbed. The rich transplants to the first city seemed to be much happier than those who had started there. They better appreciated what they had.

Our existence in this life is like the second city. We are surrounded by all types of people. We can learn things that we would not be able to learn if we were not in proximity to other types of people. We can react to this opportunity by squandering it or by benefiting from it.

Two ways God turns our weakness into strength

27 And if men come unto me I will show unto them their weakness. I give unto men weakness that they may be humble; and my grace is sufficient for all men that humble themselves before me; for if they humble themselves before me, and have faith in me, then will I make weak things become strong unto them.

28 Behold, I will show unto the Gentiles their weakness, and I will show unto them that faith, hope and charity bringeth unto me—the fountain of all righteousness.

37 And it came to pass that the Lord said unto me: If they have not charity it mattereth not unto thee, thou hast been faithful; wherefore, thy garments shall be made clean. And because thou hast seen thy weakness thou shalt be made strong, even unto the sitting down in the place which I have prepared in the mansions of my Father. (Ether 12)

How does God make weakness strong?

1. My eyesight degraded through high school, but I didn't realize it. I thought the chalkboards were dirty. I kept moving closer to the front of the class so that I could see. Only when the front row failed to suffice did I realize that maybe I needed glasses. After all, there was a vision test in my annual physical, and according to that I had normal vision. I received glasses, and was astonished at how clearly I could see chalkboards and faces.

2. In high school I joined the wrestling team. The first year I wrestled, I was always the last person when we went on runs, and I struggled to complete the fast pace calisthenics. After two weeks, I quit the team because I didn't seem to be doing any better and I was sick of seeing everyone else do better than me. Quitting really bothered me. In the following year, I rejoined the team with a resolution that I wouldn't allow the difficulty of the situation to convince me to quit. I made it through a few weeks of practice and noticed significant improvement. Later, I joined the Army. At basic training I ran the diagnostic test so slowly that I was assigned to the slowest running group which was mostly overweight women. I refused to give anything but my best, and found myself promoted through two more running groups, where I ended in the second fastest group (the first were elite track runner types). Later, I was selected to attend Airborne school, which essentially consisted of three weeks of running nonstop. I fell behind on one of the first days, and was warned that if I did it again I would fail the course. I prayed for strength, and managed to keep up on the next run. Unfortunately, I injured my knee significantly. Having a lot of running ahead of me and knowing from previous revelation that it was God's will for me to complete the course, I prayed, pushed through the intense pain, and was miraculously healed. After returning, I found myself the fastest runner in my unit. Years later, I returned from a deployment to Asia with a significant lung problem. My commander sent me to a pulmonologist who, instead of telling me something about my lung problem, revealed that I had textbook asthma and probably always had. All of the sudden I saw my previous cardio problems in a different light. I was unwillingly discharged from the Army because my lung capacity was below the requirement, but that had not stopped me from outperforming many people with healthy lungs for a decade. To this day I am able to push it out. Just last year I won a large neighborhood race that included several early-twenties men in good shape.

If you want God to make your weakness strong, you must:
1. Allow him to show you your weakness. We all automatically assume that our vision is fine, and it is the chalkboards that need improvement. We trust in the opinion of experts who tell us our vision is fine. We need to listen to life as it smacks us over the head with evidence that what we currently have is insufficient to handle reality. This never feels good. It can feel indescribably awful to see what you think are you strengths revealed to be weakness. As long as you refuse to allow God to show you your weakness, he can't show you how you can overcome your weakness in him. If you want something better, you have to be willing to let go of what you currently have and understand. You have to make room for something better by letting go of what you already have, even if you see what you already have as good.

2. Submit yourself to his process. The path to what we desire is almost always longer and harder than we imagine. Stop worrying about the journey, just focus on the destination. God knows the way, you do not. You are as naive as a sheep is compared to the shepherd who leads it to lush pastures. All you know is what is right in front of your face, which is precisely what you seek to leave behind. How silly is it to pretend to know the way when you are utterly clueless of it? Trust in him. Submit to him. You will be astonished at where he can lead you.

Sometimes God will make your weakness strong by giving you something that will make up for what you lack. I didn't make my glasses, they were given to me. At other times, the solution will be for you to just try harder than those who do not have your weakness. He didn't take my asthma away from me, he just gave me the opportunity to work harder than others without asthma to be able to outperform them.

God's commandments are meant to teach us about him

Every fixed commandment’s purpose is to facilitate a greater understanding of God’s character. Very few are used this way, but that is the intent.

For example, consider this arcane-seeming commandment given through Moses:

11 And the Lord spake unto Moses, saying,
12 Speak unto the children of Israel, and say unto them, If any man's wife go aside, and commit a trespass against him,
13 And a man lie with her carnally, and it be hid from the eyes of her husband, and be kept close, and she be defiled, and there be no witness against her, neither she be taken with the manner;
14 And the spirit of jealousy come upon him, and he be jealous of his wife, and she be defiled: or if the spirit of jealousy come upon him, and he be jealous of his wife, and she be not defiled:
15 Then shall the man bring his wife unto the priest, and he shall bring her offering for her, the tenth part of an ephah of barley meal; he shall pour no oil upon it, nor put frankincense thereon; for it is an offering of jealousy, an offering of memorial, bringing iniquity to remembrance.
16 And the priest shall bring her near, and set her before the Lord:
17 And the priest shall take holy water in an earthen vessel; and of the dust that is in the floor of the tabernacle the priest shall take, and put it into the water:
18 And the priest shall set the woman before the Lord, and uncover the woman's head, and put the offering of memorial in her hands, which is the jealousy offering: and the priest shall have in his hand the bitter water that causeth the curse:
19 And the priest shall charge her by an oath, and say unto the woman, If no man have lain with thee, and if thou hast not gone aside to uncleanness with another instead of thy husband, be thou free from this bitter water that causeth the curse:
20 But if thou hast gone aside to another instead of thy husband, and if thou be defiled, and some man have lain with thee beside thine husband:
21 Then the priest shall charge the woman with an oath of cursing, and the priest shall say unto the woman, The Lord make thee a curse and an oath among thy people, when the Lord doth make thy thigh to rot, and thy belly to swell;
22 And this water that causeth the curse shall go into thy bowels, to make thy belly to swell, and thy thigh to rot: And the woman shall say, Amen, amen.
23 And the priest shall write these curses in a book, and he shall blot them out with the bitter water:
24 And he shall cause the woman to drink the bitter water that causeth the curse: and the water that causeth the curse shall enter into her, and become bitter.
25 Then the priest shall take the jealousy offering out of the woman's hand, and shall wave the offering before the Lord, and offer it upon the altar:
26 And the priest shall take an handful of the offering, even the memorial thereof, and burn it upon the altar, and afterward shall cause the woman to drink the water.
27 And when he hath made her to drink the water, then it shall come to pass, that, if she be defiled, and have done trespass against her husband, that the water that causeth the curse shall enter into her, and become bitter, and her belly shall swell, and her thigh shall rot: and the woman shall be a curse among her people.
28 And if the woman be not defiled, but be clean; then she shall be free, and shall conceive seed.
29 This is the law of jealousies, when a wife goeth aside to another instead of her husband, and is defiled;
30 Or when the spirit of jealousy cometh upon him, and he be jealous over his wife, and shall set the woman before the Lord, and the priest shall execute upon her all this law.
31 Then shall the man be guiltless from iniquity, and this woman shall bear her iniquity. (Numbers 5)

The commandment ceases to seem arcane when you realize that what God is demonstrating here through a ritual is his relationship to each of us. He is meant to be our husband, and we are meant to be his bride. We commit adultery against him through allowing our hearts to be drawn out to anything else but him or by limiting our desire toward, trust in, or belief in him. When we commit adultery, we are not breaking some arbitrary law that he has provided. Rather, we are exposing ourselves to the full weight of reality, removing the shield he provides and the convenient path he provides for us to overcome it. Under the law given through Moses, a woman guilty of adultery would suffer clear physical pain and anguish through being exposed to bitter water. The water represents the chaos of reality without the protection of God. If the woman is faithful, she will not be afflicted by the bitter water. As we are faithful to God, we acquire the trust in him and knowledge from him to overcome all things. To the degree that we have been faithful, we will not be overcome when we are exposed to previously unknown chaotic elements of reality.

Monday, July 8, 2019

"I'll take the house, but not the foundation": A vision

A week ago I had the following dream:

I was in my house looking out the back window, first thing in the morning. Overnight, someone had cut windy roads into the grass all over the yard and close to the house. There were workmen everywhere. Then people started crowding into my house by my sides. I said, "who are you? Get out of my house!" They said they were there to watch the work. The workers were converging on a house maybe 700 feet behind mine and up a hill (there is no house there in reality). The chief worker was right outside my window, so I opened and asked him what they were doing. He said they just discovered they could turn houses on their foundations, and that they were going to turn that house. I said "isn't that dangerous?" He said, "absolutely not. It's completely safe." Then they started rotating the house. Almost immediately, the foundation crumbled, and the house came sliding down the hill towards mine. The people watching started screaming in terror. As the cascading soil and structure subsumed my house, people were sucked into it. I pulled several children, including one of mine, out of it as I escaped.

I woke up and asked the Lord what this dream meant. I could perceive the dream was negative and was worried that perhaps there was amiss in my life of which I was unaware and that I needed to repent of.

He told me that the dream wasn't about me, but was about our society and culture. He explained to me that people today have incredibly little awareness of the benefits of the cultural foundations put in place by people better than them. He said we do not appreciate the benefit or the sacrifice it cost for them to do what they did. We live in a world where the worth of one's ideas cannot be considered absent a clean bill of health from the pseudo-moral outrage mill.

This applies to almost every aspect of modern life, including our country, our technology, our spirituality, our morals, and so on.

We really really don't get it. Modern society refuses to believe that some people are better than others. One consequence of this belief is that we must minimize the contributions of great people. We do this historically when we pretend that human history is an unbroken line of constant improvement. This is, of course, a lie.

Another historical lie is to dismiss an individual's positive contributions as a result of some real or imagined offense that they committed at some point in their lives. Interestingly, when we excommunicate someone from history, we don't seem to have any interest in exiling their contributions to our culture. Instead, we want to recreate reality in our modern image of what is good, attributing those contributions to who-knows-what instead of their actual founder.

This is precisely the problem Jesus faced among the crowds that at one point followed him. Having been given free food and free fish, the mob wanted to make him a king. He tried to explain to them that the point was not the effects of his teachings, but the cause. He wanted to help them become more like the Father, they merely wanted a slice of what would come if they actually did.

We live in a world where something becomes verboten merely because it existed in a time where someone did something offensive.

If we have come to the point where we refuse to take the good out of situations that include less-than-ideal circumstances, we are in big trouble. This means:
1. We are complete hypocrites, as we are implying that we have no faults today.
2. We are fools, because we assume we know better than generations past, in spite of being demonstrably poorer in character and arguably worse off in almost every other way.
3. We must remove nearly everything (if not everything) of worth from our lives, because what source do we have that is perfect?

MLK was a serial adulterer and Ghandi was a voracious racist. Does this invalidate their principles of nonviolent resistance, Indian independence, and black civil rights?

Henry Ford was anti-Semitic, does that mean no one should use the assembly line or drive a car?

Because Hitler was a Nazi, should we abandon the use of synthetic oil, which his regime created?

The Greeks had slaves. Should we abandon logic, which they developed? Geometry?

The atomic bomb killed people. Does this mean we shouldn't have nuclear power plants?

There is no end to the culling of culture when we insist that every source be perfectly pure from our current lens.

Please realize something: when a society is ready to burn someone at the stake in absence of any consideration of the good they have done, and when they become willfully blind to the actual cause of the benefits we enjoy:

1. They will come for you, too. Just like any citizen of an overly-legislated society has committed some crime, but has not yet been discovered, all citizens of an overly-offended society are guilty, they just haven't yet been discovered. Even the most angry social justice warrior has offended someone at some time. As a funny example of this, consider one actual situation where when I was accused of being sexist by a "woke" woman for sitting on a side of a conference table where no women were sitting. With fake outrage I cooly responded, "did you just assume my gender?" She ashamedly said "I guess I did..." and backed off. This is a fool's game where everyone has already lost, they just don't know it yet.

2. They will cease to create anything of value. When you lose the capability of evaluating worth in ideas, you will lose the capability of generating them in any but the most random processes. Great ideas are not generated at random. They are the result of hard work, sacrifice, deliberation, and generally risky investment. People do not do these things at random. They are contrary to human nature, and certainly not the easy road.

Ironically, the social justice warriors fail to realize that their very existence is possible only because of surpluses generated by men and women living according to the very higher principles they find offensive. By eating the bread and fish Jesus provides while also sentencing him to death, they will shortly find themselves without both.

Everything they think they understand is the product of a very tiny slice in time loaded with illusions and perversions that would be impossible to entertain except for massive surpluses of cheap energy. As this continues to deplete, they will find themselves in an environment much like humans have known throughout history, one that does not provide an environment where humans can indulge in such vain perversions without immediately realize the harmful effects of doing so.

These fools will watch in horror as they realize just how much of their modern existence is inextricably tied to the very people and ideas they demonize. Don't be one of them. Learn how to think critically and have the courage to think for yourself. Separate yourself from their foolishness.

Tuesday, July 2, 2019

The vision of the cave, fire, and light

The Lord recently showed this to someone I know, I share it with their permission:

I saw a primitive society who lived in a large cave deep in the side of a mountain. To these people, it was not a cave, it was the only world in which they knew. They lived in complete darkness from the moment they were born until the time they died in their old age.

The people never left this cave, neither did they know they could leave. The means of their survival from generation to generation is not important. Suffice it to say, they lived this way (in darkness) for centuries. There was a man among these people who began to be curious about their circumstance. He would touch his eyes and ask, “why do we have no use of our eyes? Why do we live our lives in darkness? Why do we never explore further into the darkness of this world we live in? What if there is something more that we don’t know?” The people laughed at and mocked this man, and so he left on his own.

The man man ventured off into the depths of the cave, feeling with his hands along the walls. After many days, his hands felt something strange. He felt detailed carvings, etched into the cave wall. He was fascinated with these carvings and he studied them. He eventually realized they were a type of instruction. After some time, he was confident he could do what the instructions were telling him to do. He found two stones with a certain texture, smell, and weight. He gathered a pile of dried roots and set them on a stone slab. He took the two stones and struck them together. He watched as several sparks flew from the stones and into the pile he had made. A bright flame appeared. The man was astonished by what he saw. He had never seen light. He had never felt the warmth of a flame. Tears filled the mans eyes as he realized that he finally knew what his eyes were meant for. He could finally see for the first time.

The man picked up the stone slab which had the fire on it and kept searching (supposing that there must be more he could learn). This new light made searching the cave much easier. He no longer relied on his hands to feel his way through the darkness. As the man continued his search, he saw a small light far off in the distance. As he walked towards the light, it grew brighter and brighter within the cave, to the point where the light exceeded the light from his flame. He set the fire on the ground and continued walking. He finally reached what appeared to be a large opening from his world, into a new, light filled world. As he walked outside, the man was completely overwhelmed by what he saw. He squinted his eyes for he had never seen such bright light. He looked out and saw colors that he had never supposed existed. He saw blue lakes, green grass and trees. He saw birds flying through the sky. He saw the sun shining its light over all creation, and he felt its warmth on his skin. The man fell down on his face and cried out for hours. He never supposed such beauty His heart was filled with immense joy. At this moment he remembered his people. He felt great sadness for them, and a desire to share all that he had experienced with them. He felt in his heart though that he should not just bring them to this new world, but instead he would show them the fire, and with that fire, he hoped they would make the journey on their own. He did not want them to be too overwhelmed.

The man journeyed through the cave back to his people. He gathered all of them together, and built a fire for them. The people were astonished, as he was when he first saw it. They could finally see. Their lives were completely changed by this new light. All they ever knew was darkness, and now they had the use of their eyes. The people lifted the man on their shoulders and celebrated. They worshiped him and they worshiped this new light he had brought to them. This celebrating went on for days, and then months. This is not what the man was hoping for. He wanted the people to use this light as a means to find what he had found. Instead, these people were fixed on the new light they had received and assumed there could be nothing so brilliant as going from from total darkness, to receiving their sight. They did not realize however how much more potential their eyes had if exposed to greater light. The dim light is all they knew, and they loved it. Their love for it blinded them from searching for what was just outside their dark world. The man grew tired of these people and their unwillingness to use what he had given them. He had tried urging them to pick the fire up and use it to explore. Only a few listened to him, but the majority were content with what was given to them.

Finally, the man and the few who listened to him, left the people in the darkness and went out to find again, the beautiful light filled world the man had found months before. The people in the cave went on living in darkness, only living by the light of this small fire that they had been taught to make. They set up daily and weekly rituals, and yearly celebrations to honor the fire and the man that had given it to them. Their entire lives were centered around this new light they had. If only they knew the brightness and beauty of the world that existed just outside of their cave. If only they realized what the light they were given was truly intended for.

So few a child could count them

Regarding this country, we are told:

And now, we can behold the decrees of God concerning this land, that it is a land of promise; and whatsoever nation shall possess it shall serve God, or they shall be swept off when the fulness of his wrath shall come upon them. And the fulness of his wrath cometh upon them when they are ripened in iniquity. (Ether 2:9)

What does it mean to "be swept off"? There are many references to sweeping in the scriptures. It is a severe descriptor, indicating complete, instant, violent removal:

The Lord reserves this term for events such as: the destruction of all but 8 humans in the flood, the destruction of all but Lot and his family in Sodom and Gomorrah, the destruction of the house of Jeroboam, the sweeping of dust from the floor, etc. (See Genesis 6:7, Genesis 6:13, Genesis 7:14, Genesis 18:24, 1 Kings 14:10, Psalms 18:4).

The United States will be "swept off when the fulness of [God's] wrath shall come upon them." Don't doubt it.

It is hard to imagine the population of the United States suddenly dropping from over 300 million to very few. How few?

4 That which the palmerworm hath left hath the locust eaten; and that which the locust hath left hath the cankerworm eaten; and that which the cankerworm hath left hath the caterpiller eaten.
5 Awake, ye drunkards, and weep; and howl, all ye drinkers of wine, because of the new wine; for it is cut off from your mouth.
6 For a nation is come up upon my land, strong, and without number, whose teeth are the teeth of a lion, and he hath the cheek teeth of a great lion.
7 He hath laid my vine waste, and barked my fig tree: he hath made it clean bare, and cast it away; the branches thereof are made white. (Joel 1)

3 When Ephraim’s defense comes to an end,
so shall the sovereignty of Damascus: as with the glory of the children of Israel,
so shall it be with Aram’s remnant, says Jehovah of Hosts.
4 In that day Jacob’s glory shall wane,
and his fatness of body become leanness.
5 After being like a harvest of ripe grain, whose ears are reaped by the armful,
he will become like ears plucked in the Valley of Rephaim
6 when only the gleanings are left, or when an olive tree is beaten,
having two or three berries in the topmost bough, or four or five in its most fruitful branch,
says Jehovah, the God of Israel. (Isaiah 17, Gileadi Translation)

And if the time comes that the voice of the people doth choose iniquity, then is the time that the judgments of God will come upon you; yea, then is the time he will visit you with great destruction even as he has hitherto visited this land. (Mosiah 29:27)

13 this iniquity will be to you as a perilous breach exposed in a high wall which suddenly and unexpectedly collapses. 14 It shall shatter with a crash like an earthenware vessel ruthlessly smashed, among whose fragments shall not be found a shard with which to scoop lit embers from a fireplace, or dip water from a tank. 15 For thus says my Lord Jehovah, the Holy One of Israel: By a calm response triumph; with quiet confidence gain the victory. But you would have none of it. 16 For you thought, Not so; we will flee on horses! Therefore shall you flee indeed. We will ride on swift mounts! Therefore shall your pursuers be swifter. 17 You will flee by the thousand at the threat of one, by thousands at the threat of five, till you are left as a flagstaff on a mountaintop, an ensign on a hill. (Isaiah 30:9-17)

“Your land is ruined, your cities burned with fire; you native soil is devoured by aliens in your presence, laid waste at its takeover by foreigners. The Daughter of Zion is left like a shelter in a vineyard, a hut in a melon field, a city under seige. Had not Jehovah of Hosts left us a few survivors, we should have been as Sodom, or become like Gomorrah.” (Isaiah 1:7-9)

15 Whoever is found shall be thrust through;
all who are caught shall fall by the sword.
16 Their infants shall be dashed in pieces before their eyes,
their homes plundered, their wives ravished.
17 See, I stir up against them the Medes,
who do nor value silver, nor covet gold.
18 Their bows shall tear apart the young.
They will show no mercy to the newborn;
their eye will not look with compassion on children.
19 And Babylon, the most splendid of kingdoms,
the glory and pride of Chaldeans, shall be thrown down
as God overthrew Sodom and Gomorrah.
20 Never shall it be reinhabited;
it shall not be resettled through all generations.
Nomads will not pitch their tents there,
nor will shepherds rest their flocks in it.
21 But wild animals will infest it,
and its buildings overflow with weasels;
birds of prey will find lodging there
and demonic creatures prance about in it.
22 Jackals will cry out from its palaces,
howling creatures from its amusement halls.
Her time draws near;
Babylon’s days shall not be prolonged.
(Isaiah 13:15-22)

Lo! Jehovah will lay waste the earth and empty it;
he will disfigure its surface
and scatter its inhabitants.
2 And it shall be with priest as with people,
with master as with servant,
with mistress as with maid,
with seller as with buyer,
with borrower as with lender,
with debtor as with creditor—
3 when the earth is sacked,
it shall be utterly ravaged.
Jehovah has given word concerning it.
(Isaiah 24:1-3)

And the trees left of his forest shall be so few,
a child could record them. (Isaiah 10:19, Gileadi Translation)

11 And I replied, For how long, my Lord? And he said,
Until the cities lie desolate and without inhabitant, the houses without a man,
and the land ravaged to ruin.
12 For Jehovah will drive men away, and great shall be the exodus from the centers of the land.
13 And while yet a tenth of the people remain in it, or return,
they shall be burned.
But like the terebinth or the oak
when it is felled, whose stump remains alive, so shall the holy offspring be what is left standing. (Isaiah 6)

Two olives left of 5,000. Far less than a tenth. So few a child could count them. "Utterly ravaged." Left as a flag posted on a hill after the army who carried it has been killed to the point where no one is left to carry the flag. "Clean bare."

100 million? 10 million? 1 million? 100,000? Fewer?

Do you believe God? Do you believe this is going to happen?

Possible scenarios

We know from the scriptures that the following things WILL happen in the United States:

  • There will be a foreign invasion where the invading army with ruthlessly kill or enslave all they come across.
  • There will be a plague.
  • There will be a famine.
  • There will be earthquakes.
  • There will be massive floods (tsunamis and otherwise).
  • There will be other natural disasters.


These things seem so far away. We have been so protected by God that we have lost track of the fact that there are a million different ways this could come to pass, and the probability of some subset of them happening is very high, even before you consider that God can do anything and all his words will be fulfilled.

Perhaps it is helpful to imagine some possible ways they could happen, in an attempt to cause people to humble themselves unto repentance. Any one of these scenarios would result in the United States being "swept clean":
1) Power grid. There are many ways in which the US power grid can be taken down. If any of these were to happen, the US Government has said that 90% of the population would be dead within a year. These include: strategic takedown of ~4 critical power stations, activation of viruses already in the grid network, EMP bomb, or a solar event. Among the consequences of a grid-down scenario is the fact that any land east of the Mississippi would be deadly due to nuclear fallout from meltdown power plants.
2) Invasion. Russia and China have military forces that are numerous enough for them to literally sweep the nation from one coast to another in tanks (15 per mile), helicopters, and other vehicles, even without any of these other events.
3) Earthquakes. The west coast has sufficient fault lines to devastate the entire coast. The New Madrid runs along many populated cities.
4) Famine. The US government only has 30 days worth of food stockpiled in some cities. If there were a significant crop failure due to weather or a new disease (most of the food in the US is monoculture), many would die.
5) Plague. Most biological weapons being actively developed have a kill rate as high as 90%.
6) Tsunamis. Many of the most populous cities on both coasts lie within range of tsunamis that could occur for a variety of reasons, including a Canary Island landslide, Cascadia Subduction Zone earthquake, and the use of special underwater nukes designed to cause mega tsunamis.

Do not doubt that God's word will be fulfilled.

For behold, this is a land which is choice above all other lands; wherefore he that doth possess it shall serve God or shall be swept off; for it is the everlasting decree of God. (Ether 2:10)

You might die too

If more than 90% of the country were to die (and they will) do you think that you have lived in such a way that the Lord would choose to preserve you? Your spouse? Your children?

Trust in God does not mean you trust in him as long as he is doing what you want him to do. Your trust in God has to reach the point where, should he choose to inflict suffering on you or those you love, you submit to him without any complain, to the point of seeing it as evidence of his goodness.

It is unlikely you are as righteous as you think you are (but maybe you are). It is even more unlikely that, even if you are righteous, you will make it through the fires that are coming without seeing at least some of those around you suffer, even unto death.

“It is a false idea that the Saints will escape all the judgments, whilst the wicked suffer; for all flesh is subject to suffer, and ‘the righteous shall hardly escape;’ still many of the Saints will escape, for the just shall live by faith; yet many of the righteous shall fall a prey to disease, to pestilence, etc., by reason of the weakness of the flesh, and yet be saved in the Kingdom of God.” (Joseph Smith, History of the Church 4:11).

Live unto God and die unto God, for whatever God requires of you is perfectly and specifically orchestrated for your maximal eternal happiness.

Don't succumb to nihilism

Also, avoid the tendency to dismiss this away by saying, "oh well, if that happens, I'll die anyway." This is a lot like a chronic smoker who uses the time between now and when they get cancer to say "well, that won't be that bad." Yes, it will. If you knew the difference between walking through that with perfect faith in God and quaking through with uncertainty and trembling, you would immediately reconcile your life to God and do everything in your power to grow in your trust in God.

It isn't all bad

We frequently sabotage our ability to obtain the desires of our hearts by placing limits on the means God can use to achieve them. Because reality is things as they are, it contains certain bounds on how things can be accomplished. Even though with God all outcomes are possible, he is constrained by law, meaning that not all means will lead to the desired outcomes. If you want a certain effect, you must live according to the cause ordained before the world was created.

Zion is no different. The only way to bring about the last days Zion is to destroy Babylon. Part of the contradictory experiences in the gospel is that those who walk through the fire will be faced with the dual feelings of overwhelming loss from the death and suffering of so many contrasted with the unimaginable joy and peace that they will experience to live in a concentrated group of people who have unconditional trust in and obedience to God.

The co-existence of immense sorrow and immense joy is not specific to the last days. Anyone who has greater joy than another will also have greater sorrow than that person. Rather than see this as two opposites that cancel each other out, realize that extreme sorrow exists whether you have yet become aware of it or not. You will become aware of it, whether you like it or not. The awareness will come to you here or hereafter. The difference is not whether you will experience more or less of the sorrow, but whether or not you will acquire the tools to be able to feel commensurate joy in spite of that sorrow. The purpose of the gospel is to give you those tools. But it can't force you to accept them.

Inasmuch as you acquire and live according to God's light, you will be empowered to feel joy exceeding your current understanding in that day, in spite of the sorrow. How great will the joy be? So great that if you comprehended it, you would pray incessantly for these events to come, even if it meant that you or others that you love had to die and/or suffer so much that you wish you would die.

Conclusion

Now is the time to repent. For those who are appointed to die, what awaits you will be determined by how much trust you obtain in God prior to your death. For those appointed to live, you will experience an existence that differs from what you know now in ways that are hard to imagine. Because righteous people are so rare, it is very hard to imagine how it would be if you could live in a world where all of your associations are in an environment of people like that. In that day, all who survive will understand the wisdom in God's plan, and also will consider everything they have gone through as more than worthwhile.

Thursday, June 27, 2019

Like gears turning in a clock

Yesterday was a somber day for me.

Like the gears in a clock, we march towards the total annihilation of the United States. It has been decreed. It has been appointed. Unlike a clock, there are many mechanisms for sounding the chime.

The Lord, in indescribable mercy, is holding back his judgements. Those judgements are not arbitrary. They are the natural consequences of our behavior, according to laws of cause and effect that existed before this world was. Because of these laws, he can't hold back the judgements we deserve without compounding them, like flowing waters held back by a dam. There is no dam capable of holding back all water. Eventually, it will crack. When it fails, does it matter exactly where the crack first appeared on the dam?

So it is with the United States. The cracks are innumerable, and the failure of the dam is assured. The only question is which of the cracks will be the first to rupture, but in the scheme of things the answer to that question does not matter in the least.

For those with eyes to see, it is before them already. When the spirit is upon me, and I walk through normal daily life, I am filled with incomprehensible sorrow, because I see the walking dead. Even worse than that, I see the small percentage of survivors will live through the initial collapse. They will wish they had died with the others, not understanding that a worse fate awaits them after death. I used to look at these scenes and ask the Lord why these people would die, but now he has shown me their hearts, and I can't argue with him about it. They do not see as they are seen, but if they could, they would be forced to admit to God that his judgements are just, and that this was absolutely the only way.

I asked the Lord when it would happen. He said it won't happen until he has done everything he can to prevent it. That day is fast approaching. Our culture is reaching the point where light cannot penetrate it. The moment we cut ourselves off from him, when what is most beneficial is to end our society, he will do it. We are reaching the point where people can't overcome the wickedness of our environment without force, and that is the moment he will pull it down. It will come like a thief in the night. From one day to the next. It will be a surprise. Our so-called way of life (which is actually the way of death) will fall in a day.

What he is about to do (and is already doing) is not about survival. It is about submission. Subdue everything in your life to his will as far as you understand it. Do it today. Stop waiting to listen to him. 

You absolutely have to trust him. Trust in him when times are good, and also when you can't see their goodness. Don't judge by what your eyes see. I have interacted with several people recently who have been faced with what they thought were sacrifices, but only because they could not see what God had prepared on the other side of their choice. He showed me what was on the other side. 

There are too many so-called Christians who fool themselves by thinking they trust God. They don't. There are many things in their lives that, if touched, would cause them to question the love of God. Is your understanding of God's character sufficiently correct and strong enough to withstand anything he could put into or remove from your life? If the answer is not a resounding yes, you are not yet prepared for what is right around the corner.

There is never a reason to doubt him. Anything he asks and anything he puts us through is exactly and precisely what is required to obtain more joy and greater happiness. Trust in him with all your heart. Doubt nothing and fear nothing.

As part of your submission to God, please listen to him if he is telling you to move. He showed me that there are some of you who are reading this who have been told to move, but you have responded in your hearts by saying it would cost too much to do so. What is your life worth? More than that, what is your soul worth? If he tells you to move and you don't, you will lose both.

Repent. With all my heart, I plead with you to repent while there is still time.

=====
After writing this, the Lord told me to add these points:

1. Moving to places of refuge is as much (if not more) about spiritual nourishment as it is about temporal sustenance (this was new to me!). The times ahead will require far more light and truth that the average person possesses or has the capability of acquiring themselves.

2. It is a gross error to believe that anyone will get through what is coming without loss--excruciating loss. The fire is coming for everyone, universally, to a greater degree than we are generally presently aware (you can opt to go through it early and alone, which is wise).

You may die immediately. You may die later. Many, many people who you know will die, including your neighbors, your friends, and your family members. This will probably include one or more of your spouse and children. These people might die immediately. They may die after going through many tribulations successfully. They may die slowly, they may die all at once. This will happen among the righteous and wicked alike.

The fire purges everything that isn't pure enough to go through it. Almost everyone has something that will not go through it. Some have nothing within them that will withstand the fire. Among those are they who say "if these things are true, I'd rather die now."

3. The difference between being in a place of refuge (defined as wherever it is God tells you to go) and somewhere else is not the guarantee of safety, or even the likelihood of less suffering. The difference is that those who follow God's guidance without reservation will have the ability to confide in him without reservation. That is a requirement in order to have peace and even joy in the midst of greater suffering than you are probably aware exists.

4. Suffering is necessary for growth in every case where one could learn something through it, even if "all" that is learned is how much the person does not yet trust God in all things. One of the chief contradictions in the gospel is that blessings are only ever permanent in cases where the person is completely willing to let them go at any moment. Until then, everything and anything is subject to loss.

Wednesday, June 26, 2019

Dance to the music in your heart

Everyone has God's light within them, although each person is more or less aware of it. One way of describing this light is like a song. We can be in situations where there is background noise that we are unaware of. For instance, imagine if we were sitting in a kitchen talking and I pointed out the hum of the refrigerator. Until someone points it out to you, you may be unaware of what is actually a significant and constant sound.

This song is the song of your heart. If you follow its influence, it will lead you to understand more about God and act more like him, which will in turn lead you to greater joy and happiness.

The Bible contains records of several occasions where King David danced. This wasn't merely a celebration. David knew the Lord's influence within him, and he was adept at tuning his whole being into that music. One one occasion:

14 ...David danced before the Lord with all his might...
16 And as the ark of the Lord came into the city of David, Michal Saul’s daughter looked through a window, and saw king David leaping and dancing before the Lord; and she despised him in her heart. (2 Samuel 6)

Why did David dance? And why did David's dancing cause his wife to despise him? These questions matter.

Hearing and dancing to the music in your heart--the music from God's light--is not easy. It certainly isn't the default state. It isn't the most obvious path to joy. It happens despite the world. It happens in opposition to what the world calls happiness.

Life hits you right in the music. It cuts the volume. It takes out the melody and leaves you with a lonely baseline. You have to fight back. You have to learn to listen to the music. You have to go out of your way to get to quiet places to hear it. You are not designed to be defined by your life. You are designed to define your life by following the music within you, the song of your heart.

Eventually, through seeking it and living by it, you will increase the volume of your song sufficiently that you can broadcast it out into the world, the positive version of the inconsiderate people in public places that blare their awful music as if the world were created just for them.

Anyone can be happy on a sunny day. Your objective is to tune your ear to hear God's music so well that you can not only dance on a rainy day, but project light into the darkest night so others can dance, too.

When you dance to the song of the light in your heart, you will look like a fool to some. Others will resent you. Some will hate you. If you persist in dancing, some will even try to kill you. Why? Because your living according to God's song in you is living proof that they could do the same, but chose not to. You show them what it is possible to be, and they will hate you for it.

Just keep dancing. Dance even harder. Drown out the noise of everything else in this world, and dance to the song of God's light within you. If you lose your friends, dance anyway. If your spouse resents you, dance anyway. If your work colleagues hate you, dance anyway. Dance in poverty and dance in plenty. Dance in sunshine and in rain. Dance with all your heart, even if no one else hears the music.

Who you are, deep down inside, is not the rut of life that your environment has produced. It is what your song is. This is the light God has given you. It expands and develops as you heed it. Transform what is outside by listening to what is on the inside. Don't let the world act on you, you act on the world.

There are situations and people that act as a filter for the song of your heart. They will make it harder to hear the melody or the bass line. It will significantly affect who you are.

The song in your heart can be temporarily drowned out with busyness, drugs, alcohol, or any number of other things. No matter what you do, it will always whisper back to you in the quiet moments: this is not right, you were meant for more than this, others need you. It will never cut you a break, it will never let you make excuses for yourself. It will point out your self-deceit and your rationalization.

Find situations and people that resonate with your inner song. When light interacts with other light that has the same wavelength and phase (called coherent light), it amplifies in strength (this is how a laser works). Alternatively, light that interacts with other light that has a different wavelength or phase is attenuated--the waves cancel each other out. Find people and situations that add to and amplify the song in your heart, like a cellphone signal booster. Avoid people and situations that tune out, diminish, or obstruct the song in your heart.

For example, I have found value in certain scenes in certain movies. The themes of sacrificing everything for a greater cause, of standing up for what is right in the face of opposition, of discovering latent capabilities that were dormant until unusual circumstances were encountered, etc., have caused my song to resonate within me.

I remember an experience while watching "Wonderwoman" in the theater. I asked God why I feel the way I do when scenes like the one where she walks out of the trench and towards the enemy line happen in movies. The Lord told me that the desire I was feeling was a righteous one, and the resonating experience in these movies was good, but I should note that the fulfillment is much different because his kingdom is not of the world. He showed me that the real fulfillment of that impulse was in doing what was right in private sacrifice: in stopping what you are doing--no matter how important--to consider the needs and wants of those around you as if they were your own, in standing up for truth even though it is unpopular, in telling people what they need to hear even if they don't want to hear it, in forgiving those who have offended you seventy times seven times, in suffering for those who will never notice or appreciate it, in giving to those who have no ability to pay back.

Unlike in the movies, these actions can be taken by completely normal people on a consistent basis. You don't need superpowers or special events, you just need to love God and go about seeking to reflect his goodness in you daily walk.

These actions are not typically outward, extreme one-off actions, like charging across no-man's land or killing the bad guy. Instead, they are more like an inchworm's next tiny slug forward. God's work tends to happen as a very normal person stares into the darkness and decides to take a single step forward in spite of it all. It is one of the great contradictions of reality that the everything good and grand in creation is the result of an infinite number of single small steps forward into the darkness by otherwise normal people. It is a soul-crushing contradiction. You step forward, you regain your breath from the shock of greater realization of sorrow and evil, and you decide anew whether to do it again.

There is a popular idea that when you die you sit through a flashback of your life. This isn't exactly correct. What you have is a complete, constant awareness of your life: everything you did and everything you didn't do. Our situation will be much different than we imagine it. In this life, we have a fantastic ability to lie to ourselves about why we do what we do and how we feel about it. There, we will know why we really did what we did, and why we didn't do what we didn't do. We will lack the ability to cover our failings, fears, unbelief, and selfishness with lies. We will be stripped naked of our excuses, and we will see ourselves as we are seen by God: in truth.

In that day, we will feel joy to the extent that we reconciled ourselves to the song in our hearts, and indescribable pain and regret to the extent that we did not. This life is the time we have been given to learn to listen to that song inside of us. This life is the time we have been given to live in a way that amplifies its volume. This life is the time we have been given to lose ourselves in dancing to the song of God's light. In doing so, you will find yourself in the person you become. Like a caterpillar transforming into a butterfly, become the reason you were born.

Sunday, June 23, 2019

Adultery is not just sexual

What is adultery?
To illustrate this condition, we will rely heavily on Hosea, a book that deals principally with the adultery of Israel from the Lord:

The beginning of the word of the Lord by Hosea. And the Lord said to Hosea, Go, take unto thee a wife of whoredoms and children of whoredoms: for the land hath committed great whoredom, departing from the Lord. (Hosea 1:2)

We incorrectly associate our blessings to our own ingenuity instead of recognizing that God himself has cushioned us from the natural normality of earth life--wars, pestilence, famine, earthquakes, fires, lightnings, floods, etc--and that this miraculous "hedge" is given to us to allow us to worship and serve him more.

Adultery is not just about sex. It is a condition of the heart. We commit adultery from God when we turn our hearts from him: when we fail to seek him with all our heart, might, mind, and strength. We commit adultery from God when we fail to see the blessings he has given us. We commit adultery when we assume we know better than God. We commit adultery when we convince ourselves that somehow we know what is right independent of God. We commit adultery when we seek for happiness in something other than the way he has appointed. We commit adultery when we act contrary to our most sincere understanding of his character, in any way and at any time. Even in those moments when no one would know, when we choose to act against our understanding of his character, it is just as severe and damning as a spouse having sex with someone who is not their spouse. The symptoms may be different, but the disease is the same!

How do we do it?
We spent our resources on the works of our hands instead of on building the kingdom of God:

2 And now they sin more and more, and have made them molten images of their silver, and idols according to their own understanding, all of it the work of the craftsmen... (Hosea 12)

We hate truth; we hate correction; we trust in man's fallen understanding of right and wrong:

1 Run ye to and fro through the streets of Jerusalem, and see now, and know, and seek in the broad places thereof, if ye can find a man, if there be any that executeth judgment, that seeketh the truth; and I will pardon it.
2 And though they say, The Lord liveth; surely they swear falsely.
3 O Lord, are not thine eyes upon the truth? thou hast stricken them, but they have not grieved; thou hast consumed them, but they have refused to receive correction: they have made their faces harder than a rock; they have refused to return.
4 Therefore I said, Surely these are poor; they are foolish: for they know not the way of the Lord, nor the judgment of their God.
5 I will get me unto the great men, and will speak unto them; for they have known the way of the Lord, and the judgment of their God: but these have altogether broken the yoke, and burst the bonds. (Jeremiah 5)

We fail to recognize God as the source of our blessings:

8 For she did not know that I gave her acorn, and wine, and oil, and multiplied her silver and gold, which they prepared for Baal.
9 Therefore will I return, and take away my corn in the time thereof, and my wine in the season thereof, and will recover my wool and my flax given to cover her nakedness. (Hosea 2)

We kill, we lie, we steal, we cheat, we seek understanding of right and wrong in all the wrong places:

1 Hear the word of the Lord, ye children of Israel: for the Lord hath a controversy with the inhabitants of the land, because there is no truth, nor mercy, nor knowledge of God in the land.
2 By swearing, and lying, and killing, and stealing, and committing adultery, they break out, and blood toucheth blood.
12 My people ask counsel at their stocks, and their staff declareth unto them: for the spirit of whoredoms hath caused them to err, and they have gone a whoring from under their God.
13 They sacrifice upon the tops of the mountains, and burn incense upon the hills, under oaks and poplars and elms, because the shadow thereof is good: therefore your daughters shall commit whoredom, and your spouses shall commit adultery. (Hosea 4)

What are the consequences?
4 And the Lord said unto him, Call his name Jezreel; for yet a little while, and I will avenge the blood of Jezreel upon the house of Jehu, and will cause to cease the kingdom of the house of Israel.
5 And it shall come to pass at that day, that I will break the bow of Israel in the valley of Jezreel.
6 And she conceived again, and bare a daughter. And God said unto him, Call her name Lo-ruhamah: for I will no more have mercy upon the house of Israel; but I will utterly take them away.
7 But I will have mercy upon the house of Judah, and will save them by the Lord their God, and will not save them by bow, nor by sword, nor by battle, by horses, nor by horsemen.
8 Now when she had weaned Lo-ruhamah, she conceived, and bare a son.
9 Then said God, Call his name Lo-ammi: for ye are not my people, and I will not be your God.
10 Yet the number of the children of Israel shall be as the sand of the sea, which cannot be measured nor numbered; and it shall come to pass, that in the place where it was said unto them, Ye are not my people, there it shall be said unto them, Ye are the sons of the living God.
(Hosea 1)

2 Plead with your mother, plead: for she is not my wife, neither am I her husband: let her therefore put away her whoredoms out of her sight, and her adulteries from between her breasts;
3 Lest I strip her naked, and set her as in the day that she was born, and make her as a wilderness, and set her like a dry land, and slay her with thirst.
4 And I will not have mercy upon her children; for they be the children of whoredoms.
5 For their mother hath played the harlot: she that conceived them hath done shamefully: for she said, I will go after my lovers, that give me my bread and my water, my wool and my flax, mine oil and my drink.
6 Therefore, behold, I will hedge up thy way with thorns, and make a wall, that she shall not find her paths.
7 And she shall follow after her lovers, but she shall not overtake them; and she shall seek them, but shall not find them: then shall she say, I will go and return to my first husband; for then was it better with me than now.
10 And now will I discover her lewdness in the sight of her lovers, and none shall deliver her out of mine hand.
11 I will also cause all her mirth to cease, her feast days, her new moons, and her sabbaths, and all her solemn feasts.
12 And I will destroy her vines and her fig trees, whereof she hath said, These are my rewards that my lovers have given me: and I will make them a forest, and the beasts of the field shall eat them.
13 And I will visit upon her the days of Baalim, wherein she burned incense to them, and she decked herself with her earrings and her jewels, and she went after her lovers, and forgat me, saith the Lord. (Hosea 2)

3 Therefore shall the land mourn, and every one that dwelleth therein shall languish, with the beasts of the field, and with the fowls of heaven; yea, the fishes of the sea also shall be taken away.
4 Yet let no man strive, nor reprove another: for thy people are as they that strive with the priest.
5 Therefore shalt thou fall in the day, and the prophet also shall fall with thee in the night, and I will destroy thy mother.
6 My people are destroyed for lack of knowledge: because thou hast rejected knowledge, I will also reject thee, that thou shalt be no priest to me: seeing thou hast forgotten the law of thy God, I will also forget thy children.
7 As they were increased, so they sinned against me: therefore will I change their glory into shame.
8 They eat up the sin of my people, and they set their heart on their iniquity.
9 And there shall be, like people, like priest: and I will punish them for their ways, and reward them their doings.
10 For they shall eat, and not have enough: they shall commit whoredom, and shall not increase: because they have left off to take heed to the Lord.
11 Whoredom and wine and new wine take away the heart. (Hosea 4)

4 They will not frame their doings to turn unto their God: for the spirit of whoredoms is in the midst of them, and they have not known the Lord.
5 And the pride of Israel doth testify to his face: therefore shall Israel and Ephraim fall in their iniquity; Judah also shall fall with them.
6 They shall go with their flocks and with their herds to seek the Lord; but they shall not find him; he hath withdrawn himself from them.
12 Therefore will I be unto Ephraim as a moth, and to the house of Judah as rottenness.
13 When Ephraim saw his sickness, and Judah saw his wound, then went Ephraim to the Assyrian, and sent to king Jareb: yet could he not heal you, nor cure you of your wound.
14 For I will be unto Ephraim as a lion, and as a young lion to the house of Judah: I, even I, will tear and go away; I will take away, and none shall rescue him.
15 I will go and return to my place, till they acknowledge their offence, and seek my face: in their affliction they will seek me early. (Hosea 5)


5 He shall not return into the land of Egypt, but the Assyrian shall be his king, because they refused to return.
6 And the sword shall abide on his cities, and shall consume his branches, and devour them, because of their own counsels.
7 And my people are bent to backsliding from me: though they called them to the most High, none at all would exalt him. (Hosea 11)

15 Though he be fruitful among his brethren, an east wind shall come, the wind of the Lord shall come up from the wilderness, and his spring shall become dry, and his fountain shall be dried up: he shall spoil the treasure of all pleasant vessels.
16 Samaria shall become desolate; for she hath rebelled against her God: they shall fall by the sword: their infants shall be dashed in pieces, and their women with child shall be ripped up. (Hosea 13)

6 According to their pasture, so were they filled; they were filled, and their heart was exalted; therefore have they forgotten me.
7 Therefore I will be unto them as a lion: as a leopard by the way will I observe them:
8 I will meet them as a bear that is bereaved of her whelps, and will rend the caul of their heart, and there will I devour them like a lion: the wild beast shall tear them.
(Hosea 13)

3 Now, O inhabitants of Jerusalem and you men of Judea, please judge between me and my vineyard!
4 What more could have been done
for my vineyard than I have done for it?
When I expected it to yield grapes, why did it produce wild grapes?
5 Let me now inform you
what I will do to my vineyard:
I will have its hedge removed and let it be burned;
I will have its wall broken through and let it be trampled.
6 I will make it a desolation:
it shall neither be pruned nor hoed,
but briars and thorns shall overgrow it. Moreover, I will forbid the rainclouds to rain on it. (Isaiah 5, Gileadi Translation)
6 Wherefore a lion out of the forest shall slay them, and a wolf of the evenings shall spoil them, a leopard shall watch over their cities: every one that goeth out thence shall be torn in pieces: because their transgressions are many, and their backslidings are increased. (Jeremiah 5)

1 And I stood upon the sand of the sea, and saw a beast rise up out of the sea, having seven heads and ten horns, and upon his horns ten crowns, and upon his heads the name of blasphemy.
2 And the beast which I saw was like unto a leopard, and his feet were as the feet of a bear, and his mouth as the mouth of a lion: and the dragon gave him his power, and his seat, and great authority. (Revelation 13)

4 Yet I am the Lord thy God from the land of Egypt, and thou shalt know no god but me: for there is no saviour beside me.
5 I did know thee in the wilderness, in the land of great drought.
6 According to their pasture, so were they filled; they were filled, and their heart was exalted; therefore have they forgotten me.
7 Therefore I will be unto them as a lion: as a leopard by the way will I observe them:
8 I will meet them as a bear that is bereaved of her whelps, and will rend the caul of their heart, and there will I devour them like a lion: the wild beast shall tear them.
9 O Israel, thou hast destroyed thyself; but in me is thine help. (Hosea 13)

The Lord has shown me the truthfulness of these prophecies. They will literally be fulfilled.

Specifically for the United States, we will see the hedges torn down. We will see the long period of military protection, lack of natural disasters, and other hedges come to and end.

Here is one vision I was given: I was hiking in the woods with a friend. First, I saw a mountain lion run across a stream. Then I saw a deer with a chunk ripped out of its back, with a leopard and a lion stalking it. Then I looked to my left and, at the edge of a forest, there was a hill on which apartment buildings sat. There were two moms sitting on the steps going up the hill, and maybe 15 feet from them was a huge grizzly bear and her cub. The one mom was alone sitting on the steps (closest to the bear). The other mom was tending her maybe 3 year old daughter, who was crying hysterically. I was very anxious because of the proximity of the bear. The mom said, "Oh that bear bit my daughter's hand, look it is squirting!" in a nonchalant way. The daughter's hand was bleeding from the wrist and literally squirting blood. I knew she would die very soon from blood loss, but the mom didn't get it.

Not only will we see the rise of the leopard, bear, and lion, but we will also see how the clueless masses in this country refuse to acknowledge it is coming, even as they suffer the mortal wounds they will bring.

The cause of this desolation is the adultery we have committed to the Lord. The consequences have already been ignited, and in due time they will explode in our faces. As Hosea described it, it is like putting yeast into bread, or a baker burning a fire in a clay oven all night to prepare for baking the next morning.

4 They are all adulterers, as an oven heated by the baker, who ceaseth from raising after he hath kneaded the dough, until it be leavened.
5 In the day of our king the princes have made him sick with bottles of wine; he stretched out his hand with scorners.
6 For they have made ready their heart like an oven, whiles they lie in wait: their baker sleepeth all the night; in the morning it burneth as a flaming fire.
7 They are all hot as an oven, and have devoured their judges; all their kings are fallen: there is none among them that calleth unto me. (Chapter 7)

We have sown the wind, or planted fruitless seed, and now we must deal with the consequences that are coming. It has been appointed!

7 For they have sown the wind, and they shall reap the whirlwind: it hath no stalk: the bud shall yield no meal: if so be it yield, the strangers shall swallow it up.
8 Israel is swallowed up: now shall they be among the Gentiles as a vessel wherein is no pleasure.
9 For they are gone up to Assyria, a wild ass alone by himself: Ephraim hath hired lovers.
10 Yea, though they have hired among the nations, now will I gather them, and they shall sorrow a little for the burden of the king of princes.
11 Because Ephraim hath made many altars to sin, altars shall be unto him to sin.
12 I have written to him the great things of my law, but they were counted as a strange thing.
13 They sacrifice flesh for the sacrifices of mine offerings, and eat it; but the Lord accepteth them not; now will he remember their iniquity, and visit their sins: they shall return to Egypt.
14 For Israel hath forgotten his Maker, and buildeth temples; and Judah hath multiplied fenced cities: but I will send a fire upon his cities, and it shall devour the palaces thereof. (Hosea 8)



Summary
The Lord has given me dozens of dreams showing me how he feels when we turn our hearts away from him. The dreams are absolutely awful. They take days to recover from. There is nothing I can say to convey the depth of emotional pain he feels when we turn away from him. He truly loves us. He has never done anything to cause us to doubt him in any way. He continuously blesses us. He loves us so much. And what do we do? We turn away from him in almost every way, almost every time. We refuse to acknowledge his love and his wisdom and his hand in our lives. We refuse to seek him and trust him.

1 And thus we can behold how false, and also the unsteadiness of the hearts of the children of men; yea, we can see that the Lord in his great infinite goodness doth bless and prosper those who put their trust in him.
2 Yea, and we may see at the very time when he doth prosper his people, yea, in the increase of their fields, their flocks and their herds, and in gold, and in silver, and in all manner of precious things of every kind and art; sparing their lives, and delivering them out of the hands of their enemies; softening the hearts of their enemies that they should not declare wars against them; yea, and in fine, doing all things for the welfare and happiness of his people; yea, then is the time that they do harden their hearts, and do forget the Lord their God, and do trample under their feet the Holy One—yea, and this because of their ease, and their exceedingly great prosperity.
3 And thus we see that except the Lord doth chasten his people with many afflictions, yea, except he doth visit them with death and with terror, and with famine and with all manner of pestilence, they will not remember him.
4 O how foolish, and how vain, and how evil, and devilish, and how quick to do iniquity, and how slow to do good, are the children of men; yea, how quick to hearken unto the words of the evil one, and to set their hearts upon the vain things of the world!
5 Yea, how quick to be lifted up in pride; yea, how quick to boast, and do all manner of that which is iniquity; and how slow are they to remember the Lord their God, and to give ear unto his counsels, yea, how slow to walk in wisdom’s paths!
6 Behold, they do not desire that the Lord their God, who hath created them, should rule and reign over them; notwithstanding his great goodness and his mercy towards them, they do set at naught his counsels, and they will not that he should be their guide.
7 O how great is the nothingness of the children of men; yea, even they are less than the dust of the earth.
8 For behold, the dust of the earth moveth hither and thither, to the dividing asunder, at the command of our great and everlasting God.
9 Yea, behold at his voice do the hills and the mountains tremble and quake.
10 And by the power of his voice they are broken up, and become smooth, yea, even like unto a valley.
11 Yea, by the power of his voice doth the whole earth shake;
12 Yea, by the power of his voice, do the foundations rock, even to the very center.
13 Yea, and if he say unto the earth—Move—it is moved.
14 Yea, if he say unto the earth—Thou shalt go back, that it lengthen out the day for many hours—it is done;
15 And thus, according to his word the earth goeth back, and it appeareth unto man that the sun standeth still; yea, and behold, this is so; for surely it is the earth that moveth and not the sun.
16 And behold, also, if he say unto the waters of the great deep—Be thou dried up—it is done.
17 Behold, if he say unto this mountain—Be thou raised up, and come over and fall upon that city, that it be buried up—behold it is done.
18 And behold, if a man hide up a treasure in the earth, and the Lord shall say—Let it be accursed, because of the iniquity of him who hath hid it up—behold, it shall be accursed.
19 And if the Lord shall say—Be thou accursed, that no man shall find thee from this time henceforth and forever—behold, no man getteth it henceforth and forever.
20 And behold, if the Lord shall say unto a man—Because of thine iniquities, thou shalt be accursed forever—it shall be done.
21 And if the Lord shall say—Because of thine iniquities thou shalt be cut off from my presence—he will cause that it shall be so.
22 And wo unto him to whom he shall say this, for it shall be unto him that will do iniquity, and he cannot be saved; therefore, for this cause, that men might be saved, hath repentance been declared.
23 Therefore, blessed are they who will repent and hearken unto the voice of the Lord their God; for these are they that shall be saved.
24 And may God grant, in his great fulness, that men might be brought unto repentance and good works, that they might be restored unto grace for grace, according to their works.
25 And I would that all men might be saved. But we read that in the great and last day there are some who shall be cast out, yea, who shall be cast off from the presence of the Lord;
26 Yea, who shall be consigned to a state of endless misery, fulfilling the words which say: They that have done good shall have everlasting life; and they that have done evil shall have everlasting damnation. And thus it is. Amen. (Helaman 12)

The Lord stands waiting for us to return to him. He wants to protect us, to bless us, to instruct us, and to improve us.

14 Therefore, behold, I will allure her, and bring her into the wilderness, and speak comfortably unto her.
15 And I will give her her vineyards from thence, and the valley of Achor for a door of hope: and she shall sing there, as in the days of her youth, and as in the day when she came up out of the land of Egypt.
16 And it shall be at that day, saith the Lord, that thou shalt call me Ishi; and shalt call me no more Baali.
17 For I will take away the names of Baalim out of her mouth, and they shall no more be remembered by their name.
18 And in that day will I make a covenant for them with the beasts of the field, and with the fowls of heaven, and with the creeping things of the ground: and I will break the bow and the sword and the battle out of the earth, and will make them to lie down safely.
19 And I will betroth thee unto me for ever; yea, I will betroth thee unto me in righteousness, and in judgment, and in lovingkindness, and in mercies.
20 I will even betroth thee unto me in faithfulness: and thou shalt know the Lord.
21 And it shall come to pass in that day, I will hear, saith the Lord, I will hear the heavens, and they shall hear the earth;
22 And the earth shall hear the corn, and the wine, and the oil; and they shall hear Jezreel.
23 And I will sow her unto me in the earth; and I will have mercy upon her that had not obtained mercy; and I will say to them which were not my people, Thou art my people; and they shall say, Thou art my God. (Hosea 2)

1 O Israel, return unto the Lord thy God; for thou hast fallen by thine iniquity.
2 Take with you words, and turn to the Lord: say unto him, Take away all iniquity, and receive us graciously: so will we render the calves of our lips.
3 Asshur shall not save us; we will not ride upon horses: neither will we say any more to the work of our hands, Ye are our gods: for in thee the fatherless findeth mercy.
4 I will heal their backsliding, I will love them freely: for mine anger is turned away from him.
5 I will be as the dew unto Israel: he shall grow as the lily, and cast forth his roots as Lebanon.
6 His branches shall spread, and his beauty shall be as the olive tree, and his smell as Lebanon.
7 They that dwell under his shadow shall return; they shall revive as the corn, and grow as the vine: the scent thereof shall be as the wine of Lebanon.
8 Ephraim shall say, What have I to do any more with idols? I have heard him, and observed him: I am like a green fir tree. From me is thy fruit found.
9 Who is wise, and he shall understand these things? prudent, and he shall know them? for the ways of the Lord are right, and the just shall walk in them: but the transgressors shall fall therein. (Hosea 14)

Monday, June 17, 2019

A day in the woods will help you get perspective

If you could step outside of your life for a moment, and look at it objectively, you could create a pie chart of how you spend your time and other resources. You could create another pie chart of what your output is. You would find that almost all of your resources are spent on things that are of very little worth.

Strong statement? Yes. Valid? Probably. Proof? Pack up your family (if you have one) and head to the woods. If you can, go to a place where there isn't an established campsite. Pack only what you can carry. You should be able to learn a lot from just a 24 hour trip.

Here are some things that you might learn:
1. You need water, and water is very hard to come by.
2. You need food, and food is very hard to come by.
3. You need shelter, and shelter is very hard to come by.
4. It takes almost all your time to secure what you need to survive.

REALITY BITES
Technology empowers us to do many things we could otherwise not do. It frees up time and provides many resources. Most of us use this windfall to mask who we really are instead of improve who we really are. In the woods, all the illusions are taken away, and we are left in our base state.

In the wilderness, you are perpetually:

  • Hungry.
  • Stinky.
  • Dirty.
  • Tired.
  • Cold.
  • Hot.
  • Sun-baked.
  • Sore.
  • Wounded.
  • Working.

What will this situation expose about your true character as it stands today? Odds are you will be:

  • Selfish.
  • Angry.
  • Irrational.
  • Scared.
  • Lazy.

Who are you, really? Who you think you are may be very different from who you actually are. Strip away all the illusions made possible by modern technology. Who remains? Who are you in your worst moments? How much do you really care about others? That is the real you. Unless you are exceptional, the real you is a monster. What are you doing about that?

THE TIME IS COMING
When your trip is over, you will return to your home. You may notice some of the things you previously took for granted.

The time is coming when society will be reduced to the state you voluntarily immersed yourself in for just 24 hours. There is nothing you can do to stop that. But you can prepare now for that day, and in doing so will be better equipped to appreciate it, benefit from it, and help others to do the same.

PREPARING SPIRITUALLY
Can you call down miracles? If you can't, you are very unlikely to survive. Do you know God? Are you reliant on things and people that will not be around when things collapse (church, church leaders, the internet)?

PREPARING EMOTIONALLY
Can you keep yourself together and be happy in a primitive state? Can you keep morale high even when things are tough? What do you do when someone is dying from an infection? Can you hold yourself together when someone you care about has an emergency and needs you to calmly help them?

PREPARING PHYSICALLY
Can you physically labor all day without prescription drugs, chocolate, alcohol, caffeine, or any other thing that isn't available in a primitive situation? Can you walk all day with 100lbs on your back through the woods?

PREPARING MENTALLY
Do you have the skills required to survive? Do you know how to start a fire? Do you know how to chop down a tree? Do you know how to find and clean water? Can you build a shelter without modern tools?

PREPARING GEOGRAPHICALLY
You will need to be in a place where you have access to clean water, you are away from other people, have access to food, and can create a physical environment that can sustain life. Almost all Americans live in a place where this is not possible. This doesn't mean you should move right now (though it might), but it does mean that anything you buy to prepare should be limited to what you can carry in a backpack, because you will be walking very far.

PREPARING GEAR AND ADDRESSING FEAR
Vast sums can be spent in trying to maintain the illusions of modern life through a collapse. Don't be suckered by this lie. No amount of money can buy security in that day. A good knife, a fire starter, a cold weather sleeping bag, a sleeping mat, a large pack, a camel back, a four season tent (if you have a family, you can distribute the load among multiple packs), and a water filter are all good things to have whether or not the world ends, but anything you can't carry with you is very unlikely to make a difference in the event you actually need it. The primary reason for this is geographic location: almost everyone in the United States would have to travel by foot to get away from where they presently live in the event of a collapse. If you have surplus money left after obtaining a basic gear load, the best thing to do with it is to transfer it into time. Spend that time learning what you can, developing character traits in yourself and in your family members, and helping other people.

Note: God will direct some people to specific locations and give them specific instructions when it comes to preparing a place of refuge where others will be directed to go. Do not use the above advice to serve as a reason to disregard whatever God tells you to do. Whatever God commands is right.

WHAT THIS MEANS AND WHAT IT DOESN'T MEAN
Nothing I've said here should be interpreted as a call to sell what you have, give to the poor, and go live in the woods. On the one hand, your house doesn't matter, your hobbies don't matter, your job doesn't matter--in and of themselves, anyway. All these things only matter inasmuch as they provide you with time and other resources to learn more from God than you otherwise could, become a better person than you otherwise could, and help others more than you otherwise could. But we don't use our resources this way. Instead, we use them to block out the most important things every day.

The inner voice is quiet. It doesn't normally intrude upon your attention without your desiring it. The quest of your life is to develop the song that the inner voice is singing, and conform your character to it. It is to bring about a life reconciled to the light God gave you while obtaining the additional light he wills to give you. It is to discover and walk the path God has provided for you to obtain the deepest desires of your heart. Almost all aspects of almost every life are designed to and used to block this purpose rather than catalyze it.

Here are some implications for your life:
How much of your life is spent on things that are of no worth? When the illusion is ripped away, what is left? What is your character like? What is your capacity to bless others when money, technology, and everything you've accumulated is gone? How are you using these things in the meantime?