Showing posts with label Depression. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Depression. Show all posts

Thursday, June 1, 2023

River of Dreams - 28 Day Joy Challenge – Day 1 – Purity 1057


River of Dreams - 28 Days Joy Challenge – Day 1 –  Purity 1057

Purity 1057 06/01/2023 Purity 1057 Podcast

Purity 1057 on YouTube: 

Good morning,

Today’s drawing of canoe docked on a river that reflects the beauty of a multicolored sky comes to us from “our man in the UK”, Philip Hand who shared his latest work of art to me personally via FB messenger, reporting that he was inspired to put pencil to paper to reproduce this scene that he saw in a photo that he spied on social media. He also reported that he believes that God is helping him in his situations as he shared that he has made a turn for the better mentally as of late as he seems to be finding hope as he emerges from a persistent struggle with grief.

Philip’s simple testimony shows us that “when all is lost” we can find hope by looking to the beauty that surrounds us, to the good we can experience even in our grief, and to our heavenly Father who provides all of it – our world, our talents, our lives – and who reminds us and encourage us to look to His truth – that where there is life there is hope and where there is faith in Christ – there is everlasting life and hope that never fades away.   

Well it’s Thursday and I share Philip’s drawing, which I have taken the liberty of calling – “The River of Dreams”, because of its artistic beauty and because its “water pathway” visually represents a pathway to hope, a pathway to dream for more in this life and I know the only pathway that leads to meaning and purpose is the One that Jesus set before us – The pathway of Christian discipleship – and so I encourage all who read or hear this message to get on or to stay on that path that leads to the abundant life that Jesus calls to – a life of walking in the Spirit.  

Today is a beginning of a new month and I have decided to be intentional about promoting and cultivating the fruit of Joy this month, corporately and personally, by beginning a new series of sorts on developing our capacity for joy by sharing and taking part in’s “28 Day Joy Challenge”  .  ( which is based on Dr. Marcus Warner & Chris Coursey’s latest book, The Four Habits of Joy-Filled People.

You can sign up for the 28 Day Joy Challenge for free and purchase a variety of books from Warner and Coursey on topic of Joy, by going to  

As for the 28 Day Joy Series on the blog– I haven’t looked ahead too far but what I intend to do is to actually “do the practices” that the 28 Day Joy Challenge instructs and to share my experiences with them.  

So for day 1:    The 28 Day Joy Challenge instructs:


Today starts the beginning of your journey toward a more joy-filled life.

Today’s Encouragement:

“I've noticed some really great shifts since I started practicing last summer—changes in life-long ways of responding to things! These are TANGIBLE differences.” – Cindy

Growing joy takes time and practice, but growing joy doesn’t have to be boring. We can have fun while we practice exercises that make joy the default setting for life and relationships!

Today’s Practice: Exercise 1

For today’s exercise we focus on calming our mind and quieting our body.

- How This Exercise Will Benefit You:

Learning to rest charges our batteries for more joy. Calming is about quieting our bodies from upsetting emotions, and deep breathing is a proven method for calming our bodies. Even if quieting doesn’t feel easy at first, with practice we can get to the point where quieting feels natural. Let’s practice!

- Exercise Steps:

Find a comfortable position and practice Box Breathing. Count to four with a deep breath in and hold to the count of four. Then exhale to the count of four and pause for a count of four. Continue this sequence for three minutes. Notice how your body feels when you are finished.”  (


 Well, as I have set aside time in the mornings for prayer, I jumped into today’s challenge by setting a timer on my phone and playing some “sleep music” on the Abide App called “soothing Relaxation” – its free – which just happens to be perfectly designed to go with the 4 second cadence of box breathing. 

So, I set the timer – breathed in 4 seconds, held it 4 seconds, and exhaled 4 seconds, held it 4 seconds and repeated the process with my eyes closed.

To be honest, counting 4 seconds is a little mentally distracting for me and that is why I will use this “Sleep music” to breathe by – otherwise when I practice “box breathing” I try not to focus on the time and just take deep breaths and try to remember to hold it in between exhaling and inhaling.   

And so I just focused on my breath and relaxed until I decided to peak to see where I was.  I was surprised to discover that I had unknowingly “crushed” the 3 minute goal for Day 1’s challenge as my timer revealed it was 3 minutes and 49 seconds, which inspired me to continue on for a full 5 minutes.  

And to answer the challenge’s query, I can report that I noticed that my body was very relaxed after this simple quieting practice.  

Spoiler alert: One of the 4 Habits of Joy-Filled People is Calming (Learning to quiet the mind), and box-breathing is a simple practice we all can do to do that.  

It’s a new month, so take the 28 Day Joy Challenge, and see where it takes you.  

I myself only blog 6 days a week (skipping Sundays) – so My 28 Day Joy Challenge will end on July 3rd, and I can’t think of a better way of going into the Fourth of July holiday to celebrate our nation’s independence and our own personal freedom than by being filled with Joy!eis


For those who want more evidence for Christianity than my simple apologetic will provide, I offer apologist, Frank Turek’s website, .


Today’s Bible verse comes to us from “The NLT Bible Promise Book for Men”.

This morning’s meditation verses are:

Ephesians 2:10 (NLT2)
10  For we are God’s masterpiece. He has created us anew in Christ Jesus, so we can do the good things he planned for us long ago.

Today’s verse tells us the purpose behind our lives and specifically why God would choose to save us through our faith in Jesus Christ. 

The previous verses tell us that our salvation isn’t because of anything we have done, it is because of God’s grace alone, and our faith in Jesus Christ along that we are saved – our salvation is a free gift from God.  

So why would God give us the gift of the forgiveness of our sins and eternal life in His kingdom?   As today’s verse tells us, God did it so we could do “the good things He planned for us long ago.”  That’s our purpose: to do good things for and to represent God’s kingdom – to give Him glory and to something good in a world corrupted by evil.   

So, if you don’t know what you should do with your new life in Christ, ask the Lord for guidance and follow Him into the good things He has prepared just for you to do, and do it with joy, knowing that this pleasing to your Heavenly Father and that this is your purpose in life and was made just for you to do.


As always, I invite all to go to where I always share insights from prominent Christian theologians and counselors to assist my brothers and sisters in Christ with their walk.

Today we continue sharing from  The Holy Spirit By A.W. Pink.

As always, I share this information for educational purposes and encourage you all to purchase A.W. Pink’s books for your own private study and to support his work.  This resource is available online for $0.99 (  

A.W. Pink’s The Holy Spirit  

6 - The Holy Spirit During the Old Testament Ages

In Relation to Creation

Let us first consider, though very briefly, the work of the Spirit in connection with the old or material creation. Before the worlds were framed by the Word of God, and things which are seen were made out of things which do not appear (Heb. 11:3), when the whole mass of inanimate matter lay in one undistinguished chaos, “without form and void,” we are told that, “the Spirit of God moved upon the face of the waters” (Gen. 1:2). There are other passages which ascribe the work of creation (in common with the Father and the Son), to His immediate agency. For example, we are told, “by His Spirit He hath garnished the heavens” (Job 26:13). Job was moved to confess, “The Spirit of God hath made me, and the breath of the Almighty hath given me life” (33:4). “Thou sendest forth Thy Spirit, they are created: and Thou renewest the face of the earth” (Ps. 104:30).

In Relation to Adam

Let us next contemplate the Holy Spirit in relation to Adam. As so much darkness now surrounds this subject, we must enter into it in greater detail. Three things were required to render man fit unto that life to God for which he was made. First, an ability to discern the mind and wisdom of God with respect unto all the duty and obedience that God requires of him; as also for to know the nature and properties of God, as to believe Him the only proper object of all acts and duties of religious obedience, and an all-sufficient satisfaction and reward in this world, and to eternity. Secondly, a free, uncontrolled, unentangled, disposition to every duty of the law of his creation for living unto God. Thirdly, an ability of mind and will, with a readiness of compliance in his affections, for a regular performance of all duties and abstinence from all sin. These things belonged unto the integrity of his nature, with the uprightness of the state and condition wherein he was made. And all these things were the peculiar effects of the immediate operation of the Holy Spirit.

“Thus Adam may be said to have had the Spirit of God in his innocence. He had Him in these peculiar effects of His power and goodness, and he had Him according to the tenor of that covenant, whereby it was possible that he should utterly lose Him, as accordingly it came to pass. He had Him not by especial inhabitation, for the whole world was then the temple of God. In the Covenant of Grace, founded in the Person and on the mediation of Christ, it is otherwise. On whomsoever the Spirit of God is bestowed for the renovation of the image of God in him, He abides with him forever” (J. Owen, 1680).

The three things mentioned above by that eminent Puritan constituted the principal part of that “image of God” wherein man was created by the Spirit. Proof of this is seen in the fact that at regeneration the Holy Spirit restores those abilities in the souls of God’s elect: “And hath put on the new man, which is renewed in knowledge, after the image of Him that created him” (Col. 3:10): that is, the spiritual knowledge which man lost at the Fall is, potentially, restored at the new birth; but it could not be restored or “renewed” if man had never possessed it!

The “knowledge” with which the Holy Spirit endowed Adam was great indeed. Clear exemplification of this is seen in Genesis 2:19. Still, more conclusive evidence is found in Genesis 2:21–23: God put Adam into a deep sleep, took a rib out of his side, formed it into a woman, and then set her before him. On sight of her Adam said, “This is now bone of my bones, and flesh of my flesh.” He knew who she was and her origin, and forthwith gave her a suitable name; and he could only have known all this by the Spirit of revelation and understanding.

That Adam was, originally, made a partaker of the Holy Spirit is quite evident to the writer from Genesis 2:7, “The Lord God formed man of the dust of the ground, and breathed into his nostrils the breath of life.” If those words were interpreted in the light of the Analogy of Faith, they can mean nothing less than that the Triune God imparted the Holy Spirit unto the first man. In Ezekiel 37 we have a vivid parabolic picture of the regenerating of spiritual Israel. There we are told, “Prophesy unto the Wind, prophesy, son of man, and say to the Wind, Thus saith the LORD God, Come from the four winds, O Breath, and breathe upon these slain, that they may live. So I prophesied as He commanded me, and the Breath came unto them, and they lived” (vv. 9, 10). Again, we find the Savior, after His resurrection, “Breathed on them (the Apostles), and saith unto them, Receive ye the Holy Spirit” (John 20:22): that was the counterpart of Genesis 2:7: the one the original gift, the other the restoration of what was lost.

Rightly has it been said that “The doctrine that man was originally, though mutably, replenished with the Spirit, may be termed the deep fundamental thought of the Scripture doctrine of man. If the first and second Adam are so related that the first man was the analogue or figure of the second, as all admit on the authority of Scripture (Rom. 5:12–14), it is clear that, unless the first man possessed the Spirit, the last man, the Healer or Restorer of the forfeited inheritance, would not have been the medium of giving the Spirit, who was withdrawn on account of sin, and who could be restored only on account of the everlasting righteousness which Christ (Rom. 8:10) brought in” (G. Smeaton, 1880).[1]

---------------------------more tomorrow------------------------

Join our “Victory over the Darkness”, “The Bondage Breaker”, "Freedom in Christ" series of Discipleship Classes via the mt4christ247 podcast!

at, You can also find it on Apple podcasts

( The mt4christ247 podcast is also available on Google Podcasts, Amazon Podcasts, Spotify, iHeartradio, and 

These teachings are also available on the MT4Christ247 You Tube Channel:

Email me at to receive the class materials, share your progress, and to be encouraged.

My wife, TammyLyn, also offers Christian encouragement via her Ask Seek Knock blog ( ),  her Facebook Group: Ask, Seek, Knock ( ) and her podcast Ask, Seek, and Knock on Podbean (

For those who require the assistance of a Deeper Walk International Prayer Minister to experience healing or your freedom in Christ, I highly recommend Christy Edge’s Life on the Edge Freedom Prayer Ministry. You can schedule a session by going to :     

“The views, opinions, and commentary of this publication are those of the author, M.T. Clark, only, and do not purport to reflect the opinions or views of any of the photographers, artists, ministries, or other authors of the other works that may be included in this publication, and do not necessarily reflect the views or positions of any entities the author may represent.”

Encouragement for the Path of Christian Discipleship

[1] Arthur Walkington Pink, The Holy Spirit (Bellingham, WA: Logos Bible Software, n.d.).

Wednesday, February 8, 2023

What to do in a World of Sadness - Purity 961

What to do in a World of Sadness - Purity 961

Purity 961 02/07/2023 Purity 961 Podcast

Purity 961 on YouTube: 

Good morning,

Today’s photo of a multicolored ribbon stretched out in front of a view of the Hudson River from the vantage point of Henry Hudson Riverfront Park in Hudson NY comes to us from my phone’s photo archives and an unnamed AFSP volunteer who captured this scene back on September 15, 2018 at the Columbia-Greene Out of the Darkness Walk.  

The American Foundation for Suicide Prevention seeks to help prevent suicide and to support the community of people who have been directly affected by suicide.  During the Walk’s ceremony of remembrance and support people are encouraged to tie a colored ribbon to a large ribbon that acknowledges their loss or their part in the community of support.  

The AFSP’s Out of the Darkness ceremony gives people a way to grieve, to heal, to remember their loved ones, and to encourage others to get help when they are contemplating suicide.  If you have thoughts of suicide help is a phone call or text away. Call 988 or Text the word “HOME” to 741741to get help.  

Well, It’s Wednesday again, and don’t worry I am not contemplating suicide this morning but I have to be honest and say that there were many times in my life where I was in deep despair and wanted to die to stop the pain and thought about taking my own life.  However, I was too afraid to die because I must have realized that even though I was suffering that ending my life was not the answer.  I was afraid of death and the unknown more than facing the pains and frustrations of living, I guess.  So. I lived to face another day and it’s a good thing I did because it eventually led to my finding salvation in Christ, and a meaning and a purpose for my life.  

And that purposed is to let people know that their lives are of immense value because God Himself, through the person of Jesus Christ, came to earth to die in order to save us and to give us a new spiritual life that goes from here to eternity.  

My looking back to 2018 for the photo of the day this morning was inspired by one of the Freedom in Christ course participant’s comments last night who admitted that seeing the suffering that is happening in the world today sometimes fills him with sadness and frustration to the point that he doesn’t feel like reading the Bible or going to God in prayer.  The suffering that he sees in the world and in the various people he encounters in life makes it seem that he is in a world of sadness and it cause him to question God’s goodness, presence, and power. The hurt, pain, and suffering he sees causes him to feel sad and angry at the suggestion to draw close to God.  

Which is exactly what the spiritual forces of darkness would want us to do! Satan and demons seek to destroy us and their goal is to do anything to keep us from going to the Lord or from helping others to find life in Christ.   Deception is their primary strategy, to make us believe a lie about God or about ourselves to separate us from Him.  

So in this man’s case, the enemy is causing him to acknowledge the suffering of the world and to doubt God’s goodness or power because of the evil, pain, and brokenness he sees in the world.  Because of the suffering he sees he is a little jaded as the idea of a good God while there is this world of sadness doesn’t compute.   

However, there are several lies and misconceptions and basic ignorance of life as it really is that comes into play to view the world in this way and to cause us to separate ourselves from God.  

So what do we do in this world of sadness? People are really suffering! This is not good!

No it is not.  However, there are some things we need to realize about reality that will put things in their proper perspective and that could help us to see beyond the veil of the “world of sadness.”  

Please forgive me, for this might be a little too real or seem harsh in light of the questions asked about suffering which really amount to “Why do things have to be this way?”   But if we are going to accuse God of not being good, we need to see the truth.   

1.    We didn’t make ourselves. 

God is creator. He makes us and He will call us into eternity. The life we have is a gift and our purpose in life is to be in relationship with the Creator and to represent Him.   Whether we are representing the Lord or not, one day we will die. Our suffering on earth will end someday. 

However, our eternal destiny and possible eternal torment, will be determined by whether or not we make peace with God by putting our faith in Jesus.

We have no rights to our life. God gives it and He takes it away. But He offers us new life to all who trust in Him.

2.    The world is broken by sin.

God’s original plan for mankind was Eden and paradise was lost when Adam and Eve chose to disobey the Lord’s one commandment because they were tempted to believe that that God was holding something out on them and they chose to act independently of Him, causing their spiritual death and separation from God.  Since the Fall, every person born is spiritually dead and lives independently of God choosing to do good or evil according to their own wills and desires.  

Much of the evil in the world is the evil that men do.  Death, disease, and natural disasters are consequences of the Fall.  

Why is their suffering in the world? Sin changed the very nature of reality and we will live in the chaos of this “world of sadness” until Christ returns.  Scripture indicates that suffering will end, when God creates a new heaven and a new earth and all who put their faith in Christ will experience it.  

As harrowing as suffering may be in the here and now, it is a temporary condition that will be alleviated for all who enter God’s kingdom through Christ.

So when we see suffering in the world, we should draw close to God because He will one day prove His goodness by taking it all away for those who love and follow Him.  

When we see people suffering, we need to share this hope and encourage them to turn from their worldly ways and find peace with God.

In light of the ultimate reality of God’s kingdom coming to earth, death has lost its sting as the faithful live for ever and those who rebel and reject the Author of life, goodness, and love will get what they deserve, God’s wrath.

That might seem harsh, but God gave us life and when we waste it in selfishness and by joining in with the spiritual forces of darkness who would accuse the Lord of not being good, when the truth is that everything that is good comes from God, we have no leg to stand on – literally – if you got legs, God gave them to you!

Rather than lamenting over the suffering of this world, we should recognize the existence of the good in the world and rejoice. Seeing the world as a “world of sadness” is to believe the lie of the enemy because there is FAR more good in this world than bad but the enemy doesn’t want you to see that because if we were to acknowledge the goodness in the world, and to count our blessings daily, we would love the God who provided it and we would praise His holy name. We world abandon the world’s ways for His wisdom, because we would know that He is good and to follow Him is life, love, and peace. 

So open your eyes and see that God is good, even with the pain, even with the suffering in this world.  If you trust the Lord put your faith in Him, one day your suffering will end, forever, but until then you don’t have to choose to suffer.  Instead you can choose to see the good and thank God for it. You seek to change your ways that lead to personal pain.  You can seek comfort and help those who are suffering by telling them the truth about the God who is willing to save them and to one day take away all their pain. 

When we live in the truth of the Creator God who loved His creation enough to die for those who would believe in Him, our eyes should be open the ultimate reality that God has for us and we should rejoice.  

Therefore, keep walking and talking with God. Renew your mind with the truth of God’s word that gives us the wisdom to navigate through this world that is falling apart. Trust in Jesus and know that your new life has already happened and that you no longer live in a “world of sadness” because He has overcome the world.


Today’s Bible verse comes to us from “The NLT Bible Promise Book for Men”.

This morning’s meditation verses are:

Matthew 12:34-37 (NLT2)
34  You brood of snakes! How could evil men like you speak what is good and right? For whatever is in your heart determines what you say.
35  A good person produces good things from the treasury of a good heart, and an evil person produces evil things from the treasury of an evil heart.
36  And I tell you this, you must give an account on judgment day for every idle word you speak.
37  The words you say will either acquit you or condemn you.”

Today’s Bible verse is a discourse from Jesus Christ, himself, on how our words will reflect the condition of our hearts and warns of the judgement that is to come that will consider every word we speak.  

In another passage of scripture, Jesus tells us that we will know His disciples by their fruit and obviously from today’s verses we can see that one of the things that we can use to gauge whether someone is good or evil is the words we speak.  

And I hate to say it biut, any argument, philosophy, or comments that one would make that doubts, denies, or contradicts God’s word are not just controversial or a diverse point of view, they are evil. 

If the things we say would cause someone to sin or to not to put their faith in Christ, those words will one day be rightly judged as evil as they will be seen to be evil and unloving as they convinced ourselves or others from trusting and following God. 

Treason are acts are words that seek to go against or destroy the government and is usually punished by death.  And the words we speak, will show whether our hearts are for God’s kingdom or against it, so as the rapper Ice – T said of his album’s – Yes, you have freedom of speech, but watch what you say be cause your words can and will be used against you, and in the final judgement they will reveal what you really believe in your heart and they either condemn you or acquit you.  

So speak the good news of the gospel of Jesus Christ. encourage people to trust and obey the Lord who loves them, and show the love of God to everyone with the things you say.


As always, I invite all to go to where I always share insights from prominent Christian theologians and counselors to assist my brothers and sisters in Christ with their walk.

Today we continue sharing from A.W. Pink’s “The Sovereignty of God.”

As always, I share this information for educational purposes and encourage all to purchase A.W. Pink’s books for your own private study and to support his work.  This resource is available on many websites for less than $20.00.






Once more we would avail ourself of the language of Calvin: “But, as I have hitherto only recited such things as are delivered without any obscurity or ambiguity in the Scriptures, let persons who hesitate not to brand with ignominy those Oracles of heaven, beware of what kind of opposition they make. For, if they pretend ignorance, with a desire to be commended for their modesty, what greater instance of pride can be conceived, than to oppose one little word to the authority of God! as, ‘It appears otherwise to me,’ or ‘I would rather not meddle with this subject.’ But if they openly censure, what will they gain by their puny attempts against heaven? Their petulance, indeed, is no novelty; for in all ages there have been impious and profane men, who have virulently opposed this doctrine. But they shall feel the truth of what the Spirit long ago declared by the mouth of David, that God ‘is clear when He judgeth’ (Psa. 51:4). David obliquely hints at the madness of men who display such excessive presumption amidst their insignificance, as not only to dispute against God, but to arrogate to themselves the power of condemning Him. In the meantime, he briefly suggests, that God is unaffected by all the blasphemies which they discharge against heaven, but that He dissipates the mists of calumny, and illustriously displays His righteousness; our faith, also, being founded on the Divine Word, and therefore, superior to all the world, from its exaltation looks down with contempt upon those mists” (John Calvin).

In closing this chapter we propose to quote from the writings of some of the standard theologians since the days of the Reformation, not that we would buttress our own statements by an appeal to human authority, however venerable or ancient, but in order to show that what we have advanced in these pages is no novelty of the twentieth century, no heresy of the ‘latter days’ but, instead, a doctrine which has been definitely formulated and commonly taught by many of the most pious and scholarly students of Holy Writ.

“Predestination we call the decree of God, by which He has determined in Himself, what He would have to become of every individual of mankind. For they are not all created with a similar destiny: but eternal life is foreordained for some, and eternal damnation for others. Every man, therefore, being created for one or the other of these ends, we say, he is predestinated either to life or to death”—from John Calvin’s “Institutes” (1536 A.D.) Book III, Chapter XXI entitled “Eternal Election, or God’s Predestination of Some to Salvation and of Others to Destruction.”

We ask our readers to mark well the above language. A perusal of it should show that what the present writer has advanced in this chapter is not “hyper-Calvinism” but real Calvinism, pure and simple. Our purpose in making this remark is to show that those who, not acquainted with Calvin’s writings, in their ignorance condemn as ultra-Calvinism that which is simply a reiteration of what Calvin himself taught—a reiteration because that prince of theologians as well as his humble debtor have both found this doctrine in the Word of God itself.

Martin Luther in his most excellent work “De Servo Arbitrio” (Free Will a Slave), wrote: “All things whatsoever arise from, and depend upon, the Divine appointments, whereby it was preordained who should receive the Word of Life, and who should disbelieve it, who should be delivered from their sins, and who should be hardened in them, who should be justified and who should be condemned. This is the very truth which razes the doctrine of freewill from its foundations, to wit, that God’s eternal love of some men and hatred of others is immutable and cannot be reversed.”

John Fox, whose Book of Martyrs was once the best known work in the English language (alas that is not so today, when Roman Catholicism is sweeping upon us like a great destructive tidal wave!), wrote: “Predestination is the eternal decreement of God, purposed before in Himself, what should befall all men, either to salvation, or damnation.”[1]

---------------------------more tomorrow------------------------

Join our “Victory over the Darkness”, “The Bondage Breaker”, "Freedom in Christ" series of Discipleship Classes via the mt4christ247 podcast!

at, You can also find it on Apple podcasts

( The mt4christ247 podcast is also available on Google Podcasts, Amazon Podcasts, Spotify, iHeartradio, and 

These teachings are also available on the MT4Christ247 You Tube Channel:

Email me at to receive the class materials, share your progress, and to be encouraged.

My wife, TammyLyn, also offers Christian encouragement via her Ask Seek Knock blog ( ),  her Facebook Group: Ask, Seek, Knock ( ) and her podcast Ask, Seek, and Knock on Podbean (

“The views, opinions, and commentary of this publication are those of the author, M.T. Clark, only, and do not purport to reflect the opinions or views of any of the photographers, artists, ministries, or other authors of the other works that may be included in this publication, and do not necessarily reflect the views or positions of any entities the author may represent.”

Encouragement for the Path of Christian Discipleship

[1] Arthur W. Pink, The Sovereignty of God (Swengel, PA: Bible Truth Depot, 1949), 112–113.

Saturday, September 17, 2022

Summer Ends Sunday - Suicidal Idols - Purity 839

Summer Ends Sunday - Suicidal Idols - Purity 839

Purity 839 09/17/2022  Purity 839 Podcast

Good morning,

Today’s photo of the countryside illuminated by the light of the setting sun just off of Waite Rd in Easton comes to us from yours truly as I took some quick picks to capture the splendor of September as I took my canine companion, Harley, for a late afternoon walk yesterday.    

Well, we are past the ides of September and it is my prayer that all my friends enjoy the  last weekend of summer as the season officially will end with the Autumnal Equinox on Thursday the 22nd.   Even though the Autumnal Equinox is used to mark the season, the weather and return to school usually give us a Fall Feeling before it arrives. This year we had an abrupt shift in the weather on Labor Day weekend in the capital district of upstate New York as we experienced sunshine and a high of 81 degrees on Sunday only to crash into Labor day Monday with heavy rains and a drop to 66 degrees.   

I remember thinking on Labor Day, “Wow, there goes summer!” and then I remembered that the previous day, while out walking under the heat of the sun, I had a real sense of the urgency that summer was slipping away and I had a decision to make in terms of what to do with the rest of the day. 

I decided to spend the day with my wife indoors and have no regrets about it but after Labor Day’s storms and relative chill, I remembered that feeling during that Sunday walk that “this was it” and I poetically thought about this “prophetic” intuition with the phrase “Summer Ends Sunday”. 

And when I came up with that, I thought that the phrase “Summer Ends Sunday” would be an awesome name for an alternative band.  

We are “Summer Ends Sunday! Good Night!”   

And all of this comes flooding back into my recollections this morning because as I finished up my Bible Study and emailed myself the photo of the day from my phone I fell victim to some “click bait” on Yahoo that teased “Rocker’s wife states husband had delirium before suicide” or something like that and so I wondered who it was referring to and discovered it led to a story about a recent interview of the Vicky Cornell, the widow of the former front man of Soundgarden and Audioslave, Chris Cornell who took his life in 2017 (  So it was recent interview, but not exactly recent news, on the rocker’s death.   

You can research the details on Cornell’s death if you like, but the recent interview by his widow and her comments about his “delirium” before his death coupled with the fact that he had a history of substance abuse, and was on some prescription medications ( which the family had alleged were over prescribed and caused Cornell to act erratically before his suicide) and one could easily speculate and make the case for demonic influence as a contributing factor to his death as well.   

Christ tells us in that the enemy want to kill us in:

John 10:10 (NKJV)
10  The thief does not come except to steal, and to kill, and to destroy. …

As Christ well knew from Satan’s temptation in the wilderness.

Matthew 4:5-6 (NKJV) tells us
5  Then the devil took Him up into the holy city, set Him on the pinnacle of the temple,
6  and said to Him, "If You are the Son of God, throw Yourself down. For it is written: 'He shall give His angels charge over you,' and, 'In their hands they shall bear you up, Lest you dash your foot against a stone.' "  

So the devil takes Jesus to a high place and tells Him to jump, to tempt God with His safety, and potentially kill Himself.       

The enemy’s mission to kill and destroy us includes tempting us to suicide.   

From my volunteer work with the American Foundation for Suicide Prevention and from listening to the testimonies of survivors of suicide attempts, and the families of people who died to suicide, I know that Cornell’s widows claims of “delirium”, and surrounding factors of Cornell’s death are not unique and because of my biblical worldview, education in Christian Counseling, my training as an CFMA for Freedom in Christ Ministries, and my experience personally with addiction, depression, condemning thoughts, and thoughts of suicide, I would state that spiritual forces of darkness or the spiritual conditions in someone’s life play a part in every suicide.      

Either through direct demonic influence or simply from a worldview of hopelessness that is born out of an atheistic worldview,  people suffer and will continue to die from suicide.  

This is obviously not a popular theory to bring to the discussion of suicide prevention. Our Western Post Christian Society denies the involvement of the spirit realm in our day to day lives and seeks to silence the truth of the gospel of Jesus Christ with the confusion of “coexistence” and the proliferation of the idea that all roads lead to God.   And we suffer for it. 

The issues of mental health and suicide will continue to plague our world as we are enmeshed in a culture that refuses to offend anyone with the Biblical standards of morality, with a standard of truth that is based on the Bible,  or the solutions for negative mind states that are available through the application of Biblical wisdom to the way we live our lives.  

To state that someone is living in sin, or even to suggest that someone turn from drugs, alcohol, and sex that is outside of the bonds of marriage between a man and a woman, and to instead turn to the Lord and live according to His ways is almost laughable to our secular society or is met with stern opposition and fierce hatred that would condemn Christians as judgmental, hateful, bigots.

The world laments over it’s problems, seeks the cold comforts of better life through chemistry, and wonders why things seem to be getting worse because it refuses to accept the answer that God sent to save us all: Jesus Christ.  

So society through its rejection or separation from God, or nominal lip service to Him that says “I believe” but refuses follow Him in any discernable way is plague with the subject to the temptations and the oppression of the spiritual forces of darkness.  

Ephesians 4:26-27 (NKJV) says
26  "Be angry, and do not sin": do not let the sun go down on your wrath,
27  nor give place to the devil.

Our sin, and everyone sins to some extent, makes us vulnerable to the devil. 

However, Christians have ben set free

Romans 8:2 (NKJV)
2  For the law of the Spirit of life in Christ Jesus has made me free from the law of sin and death.

Faith in Christ not only gives us power over death with our eternal life in the kingdom of God guaranteed. It also gives us the power to say no to sin.  

We won’t be perfect but we can progress in our freedom and victory to the sins that beset us and if we stumble on the road to sanctification, because of our life giving relationship with God through our faith in Christ, we have a way to reestablish our harmony with Him. 

1 John 1:9 (NKJV) tells us
9  If we confess our sins, He is faithful and just to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness.

And so in Christ we have an advocate and a constant source of power and peace to guide us in the way we should go and comfort us and remind us of why we need a Savior when we stray from His path.   

Our American dream culture whose philosophy is centered around circumstantial happiness fails to satisfy and provide meaning and purpose to life.  The enemy uses sins and disappointments to drive to confusion and despair and to destroy ourselves.  

As I did some research about Christ Cornell, I decided to google “grunge artists that killed themselves” and discovered that the search showed that 13 musicians from the “grunge era” of the mid 1990’s to the early 2000’s, had either died of suicide or overdoses to drugs.

The grunge movement was passionate about living life to the fullest and loving others deeply but without God to give peace the fruits it produced proved to be rotten and it’s idols proved to be suicidal.

As I was in college from 1990 to 1994, I knew most of the names and were fans of quite a few of the lost and it just reminded me that I was extremely blessed to have survived because I had been well versed in the spirit of rebellion and licentious living that surrounded the alternative music genre and the utter hopelessness that results from a lifestyle that has nothing to do and nothing to believe in other than seeking to please and affirm itself. Grunge defied and distained tradition and polite society and rejected God and biblical values and the results are talented individuals lost to drug overdoses and suicide. 

And those trends are still happening, and are on the increase in our post-Covid, increasingly confused society today.

So let me encourage myself and others out there who know the Truth that has set them free, that have been saved because of their faith in Jesus: we have the answer in Christ.  

My relationship with God through faith in Jesus took me out of the darkness of depression, suicidal thoughts, and addiction and I know I am not special.  Similar testimonies to mine are spoken of throughout the history of Christianity.   So we have to let others know the way out of the darkness and into a life of peace with God that begins here on earth and follows us into eternity.  

This world broken by sin can break your heart but in speaking of God,

Psalm 147:3 (NKJV) says
3  He heals the brokenhearted And binds up their wounds.


Isaiah 41:10 (NKJV)
0  Fear not, for I am with you; Be not dismayed, for I am your God. I will strengthen you, Yes, I will help you, I will uphold you with My righteous right hand.'


Psalm 55:22 (NKJV)
22  Cast your burden on the LORD, And He shall sustain you; He shall never permit the righteous to be moved.


God is close to us and when we turn to Him, He heals us and sustains us.   


So keep walking and talking with God and when you encounter someone who has no hope let them know that the Lord loves them but the way out of the darkness requires that they make peace with Him by making Jesus their Lord and Savior and it also requires that they abide in Him by staying in His presence and casting out the spiritual forces of darkness by confessing any sin and living a righteous life based on the word of God.   


Today’s Bible verse comes to us from “The NLT Bible Promise Book for Men”.

This morning’s meditation verse is:

Psalm 18:28 (NLT2)
28  You light a lamp for me. The LORD, my God, lights up my darkness.

Today’s Bible verse speaks of the illuminating power of God.  

God is a lamp for all of us.  He lights up our darkness by showing us His love that was displayed and embodied in Jesus Christ and when we put our faith in Him, we benefit and share in the Light of the world. 

But as I have stated above, we have to let His light shine by living like Him. We can’t live in the darkness of sin if we are to claim to be a part of His kingdom. 

The enemy tempts us and seeks to destroy us subtly by forgetting about God’s perfect light and creating footholds in our lives though our sin or disbelief.  

So let the light of God shine in your life, Let Him light up your darkness to show you the abundant life that Christ came to give you.  



As always, I invite all to go to where I always share insights from prominent Christian theologians and counselors to assist my brothers and sisters in Christ with their walk.

Today we continue sharing from Dietrich Bonhoeffer’s “Discipleship”, also known as “The Cost of Discipleship”

As always, I share this information for educational purposes and encourage all to purchase Bonhoeffer’s books for your own private study and to support his work.  This resource is available on many websites for less than $20.00.

                                                                      Chapter Two

The Call to Discipleship - Continued

Following Christ means taking certain steps. The first step, which responds to the call, separates the followers from their previous existence. A call to discipleship thus immediately creates a new situation. Staying in the old situation and following Christ mutually exclude each other. At first, that was quite visibly the case. The tax collector had to leave his booth and Peter his nets to follow Jesus. According to our understanding, even back then things could have been quite different. Jesus could have given the tax collector new knowledge of God and left him in his old situation. If Jesus had not been God’s Son become human, then that would have been possible. But because Jesus is the Christ, it has to be made clear from the beginning that his word is not a doctrine. Instead, it creates existence anew. The point was to really walk with Jesus. It was made clear to those he called that they only had one possibility of believing in Jesus, that of leaving everything and going with the incarnate Son of God.

The first step puts the follower into the situation of being able to believe. If people do not follow, they remain behind, then they do not learn to believe. Those called must get out of their situations, in which they cannot believe, into a situation in which faith can begin. This step has no intrinsic worth of its own; it is justified only by the community with Jesus Christ that is attained. As long as Levi sits in the tax collector’s booth and Peter at his nets, they would do their work honestly and loyally, they would have old or new knowledge about God. But if they want to learn to believe in God, they have to follow the Son of God incarnate and walk with him.

Things used to be different. Then they could live quietly in the country, unnoticed in their work, keep the law, and wait for the Messiah. But now he was there; now his call came. Now faith no longer meant keeping quiet and waiting, but going in discipleship with him. Now his call to discipleship dissolved all ties for the sake of the unique commitment to Jesus Christ. Now all bridges had to be burned and the step taken to enter into endless insecurity, in order to know what Jesus demands and what Jesus gives. Levi at his taxes could have had Jesus as a helper for all kinds of needs, but he would not have recognized him as the one Lord, into whose hand he should entrust his whole life. He would not have learned to have faith. The situation has to be initiated which will enable faith in Jesus, the incarnate God. This is the impossible situation, in which everything is based on only one thing, the word of Jesus. Peter has to get out of the boat into the waves, in order to experience his own powerlessness and the almighty power of his Lord. If he had not gotten out, he would not have learned to believe. His situation on the tempestuous sea is completely impossible and, ethically, simply irresponsible, but it has to happen for him to believe. The road to faith passes through obedience to Christ’s call. The step is required; otherwise Jesus’ call dissipates into nothing. Any intended discipleship without this step to which Jesus calls becomes deceptive enthusiasts’ illusion.

There is a great danger in telling the difference between a situation where faith is possible and where it is not. It is clear that there is nothing in the situation as such to indicate which kind it is. Only the call of Jesus Christ qualifies it as a situation where faith is possible. Second, a situation where faith is possible is never made by humans. Discipleship is not a human offer. The call alone creates the situation. Third, the value of the situation is never in itself. The call alone justifies it. Finally and most of all, the situation which enables faith can itself happen only in faith.[1]

---------------------------more tomorrow------------------------

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Encouragement for the Path of Christian Discipleship

[1] Dietrich Bonhoeffer, Discipleship, ed. Martin Kuske et al., trans. Barbara Green and Reinhard Krauss, vol. 4, Dietrich Bonhoeffer Works (Minneapolis, MN: Fortress Press, 2003), 61–63.