Overcomer

Overcomer 3

 

Revelation 2.7, “He who has an ear, let him hear what the Spirit says to the churches. To the one who conquers (overcomes) I will grant to eat of the tree of life, which is in the paradise of God.” (ESV)

 


 

What I will miss most,
Are the stories your soul sings,
Filled with struggles, joys, blessings,
The overcoming of life’s stings. 

You bore an elegance of character,
An intellect sharp as a tack,
Joy flowing from your eyes;
The graciousness you extend had no lack. 

Your laugh was the best!
Joyous vibrations reverberating around,
Chuckles shaking your body through and through,
While the room’s atmosphere shook at the sound. 

 

Overcomer 4

 

Indeed, your stories joys and laughs,
Will truly be sorely and wholly missed,
And yet your smile lives on,
Through each soul your life kissed. 

Yet the greatest lesson that I have learned,
Is to double down in tenacity yearned,
To learn and grow no matter how life has burned,
To the righteous path, continued to be turned. 

Hardships can’t keep you down – this I saw in you,
As your soul sings, “And Still I Rise”, like Ms. Angelou;
And now, you are free, to Mt. Zion you flew,
And we look forward to seeing you when we’re all made new.

 

Overcomer 5

 

We carry your life within as we strive to win,
May we flee from sin and ascend the mountain. 

As we navigate dark days laden with haze,
Indeed, may we remember your laugh of joy, through the strife,
The truth; we are closer to God’s grace feeling ablaze, lost in maze,
So we, like you, shall be overcomers! Now GG, enjoy the tree of life!

 

Overcomer 1

 

Rest in the peace of His presence GG! Love & miss ya!

© Joshua Curtis, 2019

Published in: on 7 PMpWed, 04 Sep 2019 13:47:46 -040047Wednesday 2016 at 1:47 pm  Comments (11)  
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W.P. | Installment 4 | “Historical Game Changers”

This week’s writing prompt: What event in history do you wish you could have witnessed? Write a story about it.

Prompt Source: reedsyprompts

This is my attempt at two separate 50-word stories (like the Dr. often does!) on two different historical events (I’m a history major, so this intrigues me a lot).


 

 

The enigmatic roar of powerfully rushing water; a blessing used as for a sinister purpose. The water crashing into young dark bodies, throwing them to the payment with fervent expectation. Bones break; flesh rips; blood oozes. K-9s rip denim, grip forearms and drag protesters. The attack of Bull on teenagers… 

 


 

The city is ablaze with activity! Whispers are echoing from each corner with deafening vibrations. The religious and civil leaders keep retreating to the shadows with heated debates among violent expressions. There’s talk the dead are rising, walking in the city! Rumor is: Death is defeated!  The – grave – is – empty!

 


 

Story 1
Story 2

© Joshua Curtis, 2019

Published in: on 7 AMpTue, 13 Aug 2019 11:27:10 -040027Tuesday 2016 at 11:27 am  Comments (6)  
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“The Golden Age of Love: Ivies of ILYs”

Poem for today: 

 

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© Joshua Curtis, 2019

 

Published in: on 7 AMpMon, 12 Aug 2019 07:23:03 -040023Monday 2016 at 7:23 am  Leave a Comment  
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Homily | Installment 4 | “The Master Speaks”

Brown Book Page

Photo by Wendy van Zyl from Pexels

 

Holy Scriptures for Sunday, 11 August 2019

  • Isaiah 1.1, 10-20
  • Psalm 50.1-8, 22-23
  • Hebrews 11.1-3, 8-16
  • Luke 12.32-40

 


 

At the outset, I must confess, this group of Scriptures is very dense indeed! I cannot presume to be able to do it justice, especially in a short blog. Truthfully this is also always the case, but seems even more the reality for this group. However, since my goal with these is not really to be an authoritative teacher, but rather to just try and pull together threads I see in an attempt to encourage you. In that case, there is something I will share that will hopefully be a blessing.  Regardless, please click on the link above and read the passages for yourself. Especially if you give them a good 2-3 readings through, they will do much more for you than what I will be doing.

Praise be to God for his Word that he shares with us!

The one thing I really want to drive home for today’s “homily” is that God certainly speaks! He speaks to us all of the time! Most of the time, we just miss it. The reality is, he is reaching out for us. This is a great blessing, but we must not mistake what is taking place in this interaction. He does not speak to us and reach out for us as a beggar in search for crumbs, but rather as a King imploring his subjects to stop their rebellion! We make it seem as though he will have consequences if he does not stop pursing us – like a pestering beggar on the street. On the contrary, he is imploring us to put down our arms and submit again to him while he allows us to do so! He will be returning; there will be a reckoning… Let’s look at some of the passages:

  • Isaiah 1.12, 15-17 – “12 When you come to appear before me who has required of you this trampling of my courts? 15 When you spread out your hands, I will hide my eyes from you; even though you make many prayers, I will not listen; your hands are full of blood. 16 Wash yourselves; make yourselves clean; remove the evil of our deeds from before my eyes; cease to do evil, 17 learn to do good; seek justice, correct oppression; bring justice to the fatherless, plead the widow’s cause.”
  • Psalm 50.3-6 – Our God comes; he does not keep silence; before him is a devouring fire, around him a mighty tempest. He calls to the heavens above and to the earth, that he may judge his people: “Gather to me my faithful ones, who made a covenant with me by sacrifice!” The heavens declare his righteousness, for God himself is judge! Selah
  • Luke 12.33-35, 39-40 – 33 “Sell your possessions, and give to the needy. Provide yourselves with moneybags that do not grow old, with a treasure in the heavens that does not fail, where no thief approaches and no moth destroys. 34 For where your treasure is, there will your heart be also. 35 “Stay dressed for action and keep your lamps burning,”
    39 “But know this, that if the master of the house had known at what hour the thief was coming, he would not have left his house to be broken into. 40 You also must be ready, for the Son of Man is coming at an hour you do not expect.”

We see here that God indeed is paying attention to what is going on. Not only that, but he speaks into our situations. He desires and demands that we repent of our sin (any act or commission or omission that is contrary to his Law) and turn to him. To follow him and become his faithful servants that will be awake and watchful for is certain but unexpected return. He is coming back. We will all stand before him. We, all of us, will kneel before him and confess his majesty. What will be the condition of our hearts on that faithful hour? How are we living today to meet that certain reality that none will escape?

  • Isaiah 1.20 – “but if you refuse and rebel, you shall be eaten by the sword; for the mouth of the Lord has spoken.”

Yet, in his abundant mercy, he calls to us now, before that day, to participate with him in making things right! He calls us to make things right in ourselves first and then to allow that power to work through us to change the world back to how it should be.

  • Isaiah 1.18-19 – 18 “Come now, let us reason together, says the Lordthough your sins are like scarlet, they shall be as white as snow; though they are red like crimson, they shall become like wool. 19 If you are willing and obedient, you shall eat the good of the land;”
  • Hebrews 11.1-3, 13-16 – Now faith is the assurance of things hoped for, the conviction of things not seen. For by it the people of old received their commendation. By faith we understand that the universe was created by the word of God, so that what is seen was not made out of things that are visible.
    13 These all died in faith, not having received the things promised, but having seen them and greeted them from afar, and having acknowledged that they were strangers and exiles on the earth. 14 For people who speak thus make it clear that they are seeking a homeland.15 If they had been thinking of that land from which they had gone out, they would have had opportunity to return. 16 But as it is, they desire a better country, that is, a heavenly one. Therefore God is not ashamed to be called their God, for he has prepared for them a city.
  • Luke 12.32 – “Fear not, little flock, for it is your Father’s good pleasure to give you the kingdom.”

What we can plainly see, is that God is rich in mercy and calls out to us. He speaks to us! May we have ears to hear! This reminds me of a story. I was speaking to one of my friends one day who is not a Christian and she told me that while getting ready for the day she just felt like she wanted to call out to God. So she did. She said, something along the lines of, “God, if you’re real, come to me.” She said, nothing happened… I thought about this for a while before the reality struck me and I then explained to her, that the Scriptures – and our natures – teach that we do not seek God. The only way people even come to him is by his grace and he allows them to wake up to his presence (we just often hit the snooze button!). So, I tried to relate this and to not be discouraged and even though she didn’t get the response she wanted, the reality of the situation was that she was really the one who was responding. He was already there and was drawing her heart to seek him. She was responding to that pull and he was the initiator, not the other way around. May we all be perceptive and responsive.

How do you see God working around you?

© Joshua Curtis, 2019

Published in: on 7 AMpSun, 11 Aug 2019 11:30:25 -040030Sunday 2016 at 11:30 am  Comments (2)  
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I.C.E. | Installment 3

Inspiring … Challenging … Encouraging 

Blessings to you on this day. Here are my picks for this week. Again, no explanations or commentary. Not always things I agree with either, but mostly that’s the case. Just things I find that are ICE. Questions? Comment!

 


 

“some memories are a haze
no recollection of the first kiss
nor school graduations
it was like a tasteless fog” (Ms. Cassa Bassa)

 

“A person caught in a firestorm praying for supernatural rescue will be heard. If they live or die, they live, but they may have been taken out of the earth before their time is due because of the chaos of evil set in motion by a corporate lack of obedient watchful response to a rising unmet situation. But many people praying for peace and righteousness to be flourishing in a given area can possibly see a total transformation in the circumstances.” (McLean, Clay.  “The Mystery of Prayer.” McLean Ministries. Nightlight 308.)

 

[Christianity on racism and sexuality] — “The reason we believe that discrimination ethnically is wrong is because the race and ethnicity of a person is sacred. You do not violate a person’s ethnicity and race. It is a sacred gift. And the reason we believe in an absolute nest of sexuality is because we believe sexuality is sacred as well, and that’s why we make our choice that same way. I said, ‘You would help me if you would tell me why you treat race as sacred and de-sacrelize sexuality.’ … Marriage, as God has given it to us, and if you take the whole corpus of the world view, is the most sacred relationship into which you will enter.” – (Zacharias, Ravi   “Christian View on Homosexuality” [video])

 

“Here’s what I mean: This is God’s world, and he is present and active in it. He is setting everything right through his Son Jesus Christ, and we are his church, filled and empowered by his Holy Spirit to be about our Father’s business. Our Bishop Todd Hunter often quotes Dallas Willard to us priests: ‘Humanity remains God’s project, not ours, and his initiatives are always at work among us.’ This week a friend sent me a quote from Wendell Berry, who said that the big problems we have now won’t be solved with “big solutions,” but rather “by hundreds of people accepting local responsibilities for small problems.” It’s hard to argue with Wendell Berry. So we have a part to play. There are actions we can take as faithful witnesses to the beautiful Good News that has been unleashed on the world.” – (Sternke, Ben, “Responding to the Shootings in El Paso and Dayton.” http://www.thetableindy.org)

 

“…The world, knowing how all our real investments are beyond the grave, might expect us to be less concerned than other people who go in for what is called Higher Thought and tell us that ‘death doesn’t matter’; but we ‘are not high minded’, and we follow One who stood and wept at the grave of Lazarus – not surely, because He was grieved that Mary and Martha wept, and sorrowed for their lack of faith (though some thus interpret) but because death, the punishment of sin, is even more horrible in His eyes than in ours. The nature which He had created as God, the nature which He had assumed as Man, lay there before Him in its ignominy; a foul smell, food for worms. Though He was to revive it a moment later, He wept at the shame; if I may here quote a writer of my own communion, ‘I am not so much afraid of death as ashamed of it.’ And that brings us again to the paradox. Of all men, we hope most of death; yet nothing will reconcile us to – well, its unnaturalness. We know that we were not made for it; we know how it crept into our destiny as an intruder; and we know Who has defeated it. Because Our Lord is risen we know that on one level it is an enemy already disarmed; but because we know that the natural level also is God’s creation we cannot cease to fight against the death which mars it, as against all those other blemishes upon it, against pain and poverty, barbarism and ignorance. Because we love something else more than this world we love even this world better than those who know no other.” (Lewis, C.S. “Some Thoughts”, God in the Dock. Cambridge: William B. Eerdmans Publishing Company. 1970. pgs. 159-160)

© Joshua Curtis, 2019

Published in: on 7 AMpSat, 10 Aug 2019 09:30:00 -040030Saturday 2016 at 9:30 am  Comments (2)  
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7-Word Story | Erev Shabbat

 

 

As Friday dwindles, may worship be sweet!

 

© Joshua Curtis, 2019

Published in: on 7 PMpFri, 09 Aug 2019 16:32:22 -040032Friday 2016 at 4:32 pm  Leave a Comment  
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7-Word Story | Politics

 

 

Today’s esteemed,

 

 

brilliant,

 

 

cutting edge,

 

 

political system!

 

 

© Joshua Curtis, 2019

Published in: on 7 AMpFri, 09 Aug 2019 07:23:28 -040023Friday 2016 at 7:23 am  Comments (3)  
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Her Body, Her Choice; His Heart

We are faced with so many issues currently. One of those issues that really gets to me relates to the “Her Body, Her Choice” movement. I am not getting into the many arguments of what’s good and what’s bad about this, however just want to focus on one of the biggest issues this movement. That issue is this: There is always one silent victim in abortions. Many other times, there are two.

This is a true story that reveals this issue.

 


One day at work, I was speaking to one of my coworkers. We were catching up on our lives and the topic of abortion came up. This lead him into telling me a story of recent events in his life. He was driving down a familiar road past a familiar building. Outside of this familiar building, he saw a lot of protesters. He wasn’t sure what was going on and one of his family members, sitting in the back of the vehicle, informed him they were protesting the abortion clinic that was there. He had no idea it was an abortion clinic.

He also had a male cousin in the car with him who also didn’t know that it was an abortion clinic. This cousin went quiet for a while. Then he went into a story about how, a few years before this, he took his then girlfriend there. She simply told him that she had an appointment and did not go into any details. A few hours later, she finally came out and he was very concerned about her because the appointment took so long. He pressed her for a bit, but she did not discuss any details and just related that she was fine.

This young man, found out on this day, a few years after this had happened, that he had taken his girlfriend to an abortion clinic. He found out this day, that he lost his baby. He found out this day he was a father and that this opportune privilege was taken from him by someone’s choice and he had absolutely no say in the matter. He found out this day that he was one of three victims, and for years, the second silent victim. 

Fathers matter too.

© Joshua Curtis, 2019

Published in: on 7 AMpWed, 07 Aug 2019 07:23:37 -040023Wednesday 2016 at 7:23 am  Comments (2)  
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W.P. | Installment 3 | “Gluttony”

Looks like I’m finally back! Hope you all have been well. I have missed being on here and seeing the amazing work everyone has been doing. I’m hoping to catch up soon!

I am going to just pick up where I left off, which was a Tuesday (writing prompt day). I got this writing prompt from my blogging buddy, Dr. Suchie. Her prompt to me was, “In poetry form, write about Gluttony,” so this is my attempt.

It’s good to be back and I hope you enjoy!


“Gluttony”

Stress,
Upon my mind,
With fists of fury,
Irately beating!
My peace it’s clawing, eating and gnawing;
A frenzied feast.
Blood upon his jaw;
Giving into this beastly fiend, as I smash more sweets,
My flaw!

~~~

“I don’t feel well,
And my weight, much overdue for
Forgone numeric fell!”
‘Come on, just eat another piece,
It’s just cake! This is who you are my friend!
A lover of sweets – just like compelling beats,
Peppery meats and epic feats –
Just get one more.
Besides, you have to feed that beast,
Stress will have his feast! AND, you work hard,
You deserve that extra piece!
Don’t be fake! That piece with extra frosting; partake!’
I fail, I falter, eat to appease my take
On being pleased.
Out of shape, breath wheezed
As I regret each wrong decision I make…

~~~

I’m tired; seeking a break.
This stress and heartburn
Are eating away at me.
I hop on social media,
See what’s going on in the world.



Just more toxic garbage
Being gobbled up in large poisonous portions,
Guess whose dating such and such…
Never interested me too much,
Blah blah blah; this is why everyone who doesn’t
Agree with me is a stupid, ignorant bigot!
“Well, have you ever considered…
Shut up you racist! Your only a product of
White privilege you white male supremacist!
Whelp, there the … Trump Card …
And to further the discombobulating stump,
Besides, I have more followers than you, so you’re irrelevant!
As I continue strolling,
Consuming preservatives and dyes, wasting precious time,
Even after my eyes realize…

~

Gluttony!
© Joshua Curtis, 2019

Published in: on 7 AMpTue, 06 Aug 2019 07:23:02 -040023Tuesday 2016 at 7:23 am  Comments (6)  
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Absence …

Hello writing community! For those of you who follow me regularly, I want to say thank you again for your support! I have been gone most of this month.

At the beginning of the month, I bused up my finger pretty badly at work. I had to get four stitches on the tip of one of my fingers and thus, having been typing much.

 

 

I have missed writing and, since I haven’t been on here, I haven’t been reading much either. I am hoping to catch up … at some point! Lol

I am hoping that in a week or so, I will be getting back on track! I will be picking up where I left off on my schedule – Tuesday, writing prompt day.

 

 

Blessings to you all!

Published in: on 7 PMpSun, 23 Jun 2019 14:55:35 -040055Sunday 2016 at 2:55 pm  Comments (7)  
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