Sunday, December 25, 2011

Merry Christmas!

Christ is born!
Glorify Him!

To all who read here, I wish you a Merry Christmas and much love, joy and peace in the coming
New Year :)

and to share my favorite Byzantine hymn (with English subtitles) with you:

Tuesday, December 20, 2011

Izzy Update from her Mother

If you note some tension in my sister's words here, it's due to the fact that lies and misinformation persist on the internet regarding her daughter, Izzy.  I'm hoping those who continue to Google about Izzy will find themselves here to read the truth:

"Ok ~ Here it goes ~ Izzy is doing VERY WELL. She's going to school each week and walking with 2 legs like a pro. Not that it's anybody's business, but Izzy IS NOT getting hospice care nor has she been at the hospital recently. For those who didn't quite understand my post before ~ I'm gonna say it one more time ~ My Almighty God from up above is taking extremely good care of Me and My Daughter. Izzy has no tubes or IVs running through her, no doctors or nurses giving chemo, no wheelchairs to depend upon and no excuses to prevent her from living the life she wants to live. Each day the Lord takes her hand and gives her the strength, happiness, and faith she needs to lead a good life. Please don't destroy that by letting pure ignorance take over your mouth. Understand?!"  JC McManaway, Izzy's mother, posted on Facebook this evening, 12.20.2011

If you are one wishing to learn the truth, please share this with your message boards and community outreach groups.  Also, for those who have inquired about sending Christmas cards, thank you for your goodwill, but receiving 1,000,000 cards was never Izzy's request.  They currently have enough mail to go through for a year : )

Friday, December 16, 2011

The Gift of Grace Among Tangled Webs: An Izzy Update

“The sword of our soul does not acquire a keen sharp edge unless another’s wickedness hones it.” 
-St Gregory the Great
I write not because there is new information to share about Izzy, but because it is necessary to put into perspective the chaos occurring on some fronts of this spiritual battle.  Yes, spiritual battle.  Whether you believe it or not, all things of this earth have a spiritual component;  we are either striving for the Kingdom of Heaven or the Kingdom of Self while walking this earth.  Some are on the front lines of such battles, while others like to believe they live in the void, totally removed from any religious belief or inclination*.    
For those on the front lines, this post is for you because you’ll understand what I’m talking about, knowing that Ephesians 6 belongs to you personally.
Any Christian who walks a path close to God is bound to encounter the attack of satan and his legions, indeed this is one indicator that you’re walking a path of faith.  It’s the high road, the narrow way in which the saints walk and beckon you who love God and the Kingdom of Light.    It’s the proverbial path less traveled, the one that takes effort, self-control, patience and perseverance, but offers greater rewards than our feeble minds can fathom.
This is the path my family treads, or attempts to tread every day.  We know it’s the way and yet we’re aware of the tangled webs looming at every curve.  We know that every good gift is from above and the wicked twisting of those gifts by our enemy.  The internet can be a tool of God, bringing people together in prayer and thanksgiving...touching lives for good in a matter of seconds, connecting many parts of the world in less time than it takes to say morning prayers.   It can also be a tool in satan’s arsenal; never doubt he knows and preys upon the weakness of men.
I will confess and tell you that one of my greatest faults is a short temper, giving in to anger that causes me to say and do things I shouldn’t...and then falling on self-righteousness to justify my actions.  I struggle with it... I’m aware of how my enemy will use this characteristic against me.  It’s a sticky web to fall into because when I cave to anger, I am no longer serving the Kingdom of God, I’m only serving my own chaos.
Another of those consuming webs is inherent in Facebook, the unleashing of the tongue that causes much harm (Psalms 39:1 and Proverbs 12:18).  The tongue of the wise brings healing, but reckless words pierce like a sword!  I could write ad nauseam about the anger I feel when reading audacious words about Izzy’s health and my sister’s beautiful family, but do you see what this accomplishes?  One sin feeding into another perpetuates chaos, the black cloud of hell.  God is the author of peace and clarity, conversely, satan is the author of lies, confusion and chaos.  When you write on Facebook, take just a moment to consider which Kingdom you are extending.

For those who love the truth, you will want to know that Izzy is well.  She is at home, joyfully anticipating Christmas, going to school, enjoying her new pets... happy!    For those who do not love the truth, you probably haven’t read thus far and it doesn’t matter to you anyway.  To give truth to those who do not love truth is to only give more reason for argument.  My role is to steer clear of those webs of untruth, of gossip and chaos inasmuch as is possible.  And, as you love our Lord and Saviour, I would encourage you dear reader, to stay away from deceit, loose tongues and gossip.  Let it end with you.
Your role, as much as Izzy is concerned, is not to do constant battle with those who wish to ensnare you in rumors and gossip, it is to declare the truth in peace and let it go.   It is not your role to call or message my sister and her family with every vile action or word that you hear, see or read.  Doing this perpetuates chaos, not peace.
Make no mistake though, for those who are entertained by deceits or harmful words or the details of other people’s lives; it is by your neglect and indulgence that brings harm to yourself as well as others.  If you wish to follow Christ, listen to His greatest commandment:  “Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind.” (St. Matthew 22)  Loving God means furthering the Kingdom of Light... it means practicing self-control, praying ceaselessly and using your words to bring peace, not confusion.
I am praying for all of you reading, for you must have a love of Izzy to be sharing in this post.  My prayer today is that each of you will have peace, contentment and joy.  It IS possible to experience God’s grace even in the mire... in fact, in my own life, I’ve experienced it time and time again and it is in this way that we can rejoice for our trials because, in the big picture, they only beckon us closer to God when we persevere and seek the Kingdom of Heaven. †

*It's called Secular Humanism...the religion of our modern age.

Saturday, December 10, 2011

An Open Letter to the Demons of Hell

“The devil...the prowde spirite....cannot endure to be mocked.”  Thomas More (1779-1852, from Ireland)

Wormwood and Screwtape*, I have no idea if you’re still employed in the service of your captain, your Father Below, but I have some words for those who do his bidding in the heart of my family:
You seek to shock, to enrage, to engulf in disbelief and anger.  You think yourself so cunning and clever in driving the hammer between fatigued hearts.  You think to torture and prod and bend the undead to your twisted will.  And in the grand show of your malice and contempt for those who love your Enemy, you would send your dark ranks to lace the battle with mockery, lies and hot tongues to seal your prize.
You would have us within your snares, believing we are incapable to withstand such assault, taking gladness at pain amidst chaos and lies.  You laugh at the ease of your task,  being deceived of your absolute slavery to a consuming hate.  For Your Father Below will have no equal, no individuality; you are a chained slave to one singular wickedness as you grin at a seeming victory so near.
Except, there, in the stillness of night, when just a glimmer of star shining bright escapes the cloud covered sky.  There!   It is the Voice ringing clear on crystal notes that beckons mortal souls to strive on, to look up and see the eagles so near and reach out for the gift of GRACE.  
Give heed to that doubt ticking in the back of your skull, for while you rule this earth there is One who does not abandon His creation as they strive against you.  And oh, but the weapons in our cache, that are ever unlooked for, which come raining down at the most unexpected times.  I know it makes you writhe, I know your armies tremble at the power of your Enemy, our King.  I know your legions have quaked at the coming of Our Lord and begged for mercy.  I know of the shattering of tombs when our Lord used your strongest weapon against you!  Do you think we forget!?
Do you think us all mindless spirits, numbed from flaming arrows and vice?  Do the ranks not aim for the head of the serpent in times of war?  So it is and has ever been that your legions will assault those on the front line, those whose lives and voices are beacons on dark hills, showering light and hope to your Enemy and all who serve Him.   They come!  You cannot quench the Light,  though at times it is only a glimmer, it shall never be put asunder for you are unable to break it, unable to contain it for you cannot fathom its purity.
You may distort, you may twist and bend goodwill, but you are the fool, for every weapon you’ve made, there is one to destroy it and her name is HUMILITY.  For her earthly raiment adorns the race you hate and she was made in the light of the Heavenly Kingdom.  May the fear of her haunt you until the end of days when you shudder at your utter defeat.

Mark it well what you think is the weakness of your prey.  Close in and cast your obnoxious fumes in our face and know that your nearness advances our faith and causes the beacon flame to reach higher and burn brighter.  We know your aims and how you loathe the servants of your Enemy.  We know we are but food to you and we know what makes you glad...
            We are not as unprepared as you might think.

                                             Your lifetime adversary
                                              and servant of your Enemy.

©2011Amy L. Thornton
*If you've never read C.S. Lewis' The Screwtape Letters, I highly recommend you do so.

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