Friday, December 24, 2010

numero deux

james 2.

vs. 1-13
james speaks mostly on the sin of partiality here. but though he mainly addressed the judgment of the rich vs. the poor, i don't think that's where the sin ends. he contrasts the sin of partiality with the law that says "you shall love your neighbor as yourself". therefore, it seems that the ignorance of this law produces and is evidence of partiality. then there are many ways that i can NOT love my neighbor that have nothing to do with their state of finances. and when i do this i am no longer speaking or acting as "those who are to be judged under the law of liberty", but living as though we have not all been given the same mercy; that in some way i deserve it more than my neighbor. hence the last verse: "for judgment is without mercy to one who has shown no mercy. mercy triumphs over judgment".
this statement should bring us joy. it should fill us with thanks and humility because it means that God allowed His grace and mercy on us to triumph over our sin.
why, then, does it not instill in me this attitude toward my fellow sinners? why, then, do i have such a hard time granting mercy rather than placing judgment? my pride has convinced me that my sin is not so great. that i was easier to forgive and show mercy to than my neighbor. how twisted.

vs. 14
"what good is it, my brothers, if someone says he has faith, but does not have works? can that faith save him?"

what's the answer to that question? what kind of faith does not produce work?

"so also faith by itself, if it does not have works, is dead." (vs. 17)

is dead faith saving faith? can dead faith save us? save me? is it still counted as faith?

some questions i've been thinking about.

Love, krystal.

Thursday, December 16, 2010

the beginning of a beautiful friendship...

james 1
i spent about a week or so on this chapter alone, so i'm gonna share just a little of what i experienced as i went through it.

vs. 5: "if any of you lacks wisdom, let him ask God, who gives generously to all without reproach, and it will be given him"
what do those words mean in the context of this verse/passage? i spent a lot of time dwelling on them, trying to find a connection and an explanation for the wording.
the only cross reference in my bible is to prov.28:5 which says "evil men do not understand justice but those who seek the Lord understand it completely"
which made me think that maybe the key in the verse was not so much the without reproach, but the generously.
the idea that our God would not hold back any wisdom, but grant it to us completely and without reproach, or without any thought to our underservedness.
the word REPROACH is defined as:
1. To express disapproval of, criticism of, or disappointment in (someone).
2. To bring shame upon; disgrace.
the second definition is the one that jumps out at me. the idea that my God does not show wisdom with the intent of producing shame, but in a generous and complete way as if it were His will to grant it.
anyway. those are my thoughts on that. :) and hopefully NOT just my thoughts.

throughout the first chapter, i found a theme of sorts. every time i read another paragraph or section, it came back to this thought. that of CONSTANCY vs. FICKLENESS.
"let steadfastness have its full effect, that you may be perfect..."
"the one who doubts is like a wave of the sea that is driven and tossed by the wind"
"he is a double-minded man, unstable in all his ways"
"like a flower of the grass he will pass away"
"blessed is the man who remains steadfast under trial..."
"each man is tempted when he is lured and enticed..."
"from the Father of lights with whom there is no variation or shadow due to change"
"but the one who...perseveres, being no hearer who forgets but a doer who acts, he will be blessed..."
it seems to me that there is blessedness and honor for him who remains constant. not tossed by the wind or easily persuaded, but one perseveres under trial.
my biggest question was, what is the problem with fickleness? sure, it's not a very pretty word, but what makes it that way? and why does james say that one who doubts is double-minded and unstable in all his ways?
perhaps because the one who is fickle has placed his own opinions, feelings, comfort level, and sense of truth above God's. he has decided to lean on his own inclinations which tell him to move one way and then another. he has placed his own wisdom above God's. God who DOES NOT CHANGE.
it talks about the man who asks for wisdom without faith but with doubt, expecting to receive it. he has placed his methods and ideas on a pedestal, in his own pride believing that he can have each foot on opposite ground. he can pick and choose truth without having to take a stand. i don't think God likes that...

okay. i know that was kinda long, and i might have gotten a little carried away, but i think this is good stuff. feel free to comment on whatever. especially if you think i might have said something weird or even wrong. :/ or to provide further insight...

Love, krystal.

Wednesday, December 15, 2010


been reading james.
there's so much stuff in there and i wanted to share some of my questions and thoughts and discoveries and emotions as i go through it.
this is just a pre-blog, i guess. a promise of more to come.
i'm excited.

for now, i leave you with this: "Know this, my beloved brothers: let every person be quick to hear, slow to speak, slow to anger; for the anger of man does not produce the righteousness of God." (ch.1:19-20)

Love, krystal.

Monday, December 13, 2010

sir,sir, can you hear me?!

currently sitting in my ACLS (advanced cardiac life support) class.
please don't collapse around me...i don't think my nursing skills would kick in fast enough to overcome my "oh no don't die!" instincts

also thinking about not spending christmas at home for the first time ever. it's kinda sad. and new. mostly it sucks to think that my gifts won't be opened til i see my family at new years. not my gifts as in their gifts to me, but my gifts to them. to be honest, i'll be working through christmas eve and sleeping through the day, so i don't think i'll actually miss much. except the food. no posole for me.

i'm finished with my new grad program on friday...gonna be on my own with 5-6 patients!! crazy. pray for me. :)

Love, krystal.