Maturity or Age?

Since coming to college, I've realized something that to many may perhaps can come across as a fact, but when it pertains to dating in college, people don't necessarily look at age; they look at maturity. Especially when it's at a small school (or not a state college), people often look at maturity levels, not age. Because, let's face it, people that are old are not necessarily mature or wise. Some people are more mature than others, which is why age should not be a stumbling block in that regards.


Survive or Thrive?

Recently, a peer posted on his Facebook that the body of Christ should survive, not thrive. Now, I looked at it, stared at it for a while, and pondered responding to it. Then, I concluded, he wouldn't care. I mean, sometimes, I think people say stuff just to say that they're saying philosophical words without really taking the time to mull over their words.
"And so the body of Christ should survive, not thrive."
Okay, first of all, I hope you realize that there are countless Scriptures regarding the blessings God promises to His children (the Abrahamic covenant, the Mosaic covenant, and the Davidic covenant are a few prominent ones). People that survive aren't given blessings to be lavished, because when you think about, why are we given blessings? Do they serve a greater purpose? To present a political standing? To rebuff popular opinion? It's neither. It's to show love. Ergo, God loves us and subsequently blesses us. Now think of people who need to survive. What usually comes to mind? In North America, it's people below the economic quota (such as the homeless, the sick who aren't able to receive the proper medical attention, immigrants [if you wonder how I can this, you should know that my family was immigrants in Canada and lived less than what people make in one day's work on minimum wage], and sometimes, foolish and reckless people. They resort to desperate measures to make ends meet. People that thrive rest in promises and certainty. That being said, is that really what the body of Christ wants to paint to the world, that we are people desperately trying to make ends meet? That we are the average, if not below the status quota, and that we are the people that need people's help? Or should be rival Donald Trump's assets, give abundantly to those who need help, and stretch our hands and help because we have the financial possibilities? Survival is often an adapted mindset, forced by uncomely circumstances. Serving Jesus isn't adapting to unmerciful circumstances and being forced to deal with it. Perhaps the reason why people don't give Christians a time of day in regards to financial matters is because we ourselves don't believe it first. How can we portray something we don't believe in? The problem starts with the Church. If they first change the way they perceive certain things, then they will have a greater chance of witnessing to people because when you have tangible facts backing up your belief, it's hard to argue with it.


5 Myths About Christianity

Readers, whether or not you worship Christ, or even another religious deity, it's unfortunate to say that there is a misconception regarding Christianity. There are so many myths and fallacies that people wonder why it's such a heavily scrutinized religion. And while there are plenty other reasons (another post, another day), part of the reason is that there are certain presumptions about Christianity that make people second guess. And, to be perfectly clear, since I am a Christian and love Jesus, I want to highlight them to expose that while there are imperfect people, God is a perfect God who can take even the most immalleable clay and make something beautiful with form.

1. Christians are perfect and have no need to lean, depend, and trust God once they make Him Lord of everything. That is the most incorrigible rubbish! In fact, that is perhaps the biggest lie people have about non-believers. Let me be perfectly clear: The process of receiving Christ does not make your problems "magically" disappear. In fact, it may arouse the opposing effect; you may encounter more problems because you pose a threat to the devil. The reason why people need and want God is because they realize that without Him, things are never going to go smoothly, life will never be not chaos, and that pit will never grow smaller unless they seek Help, Help that is much bigger than the problem itself. Christians are imperfect people and God works and molds that imperfection to create something beautiful, to put it on display. A Christian are an imperfect person that recognize their flaws and sees the need to change that flaw. The main point is that while everyone has problems, it's how they rise above their problems that counts...and who ends up victorious in the end.

2. Your theology is not your God. There is a big one. Theology, according to a definition, is the study of God and religious belief. Your theology is not whom you serve. Theology allows you to understand the nature of God. For example, in the Christian theology, God is depicted as a Father (to show His kind nature), as a King (to show His holiness and sovereign standard), and Creator (who divinely created the universe for human inhabitation) are a few that allow mere humans to understand the essence of God. It's difficult to wrap our minds around a sovereign and holy being, but, with tangible metaphors, such as father and ruler, one can begin to grasp the character of God. However, that does not mean you worship your theology. It's difficult to differentiate between the two, but one must be able to distinguish what's one theology and what is the God that he serves.

3. (Unfortunately) Christians do speak Christianeze. In case you're wondering, there is a "special" language in Christianity that allows Christians to speak worldly without appearing so. Let me give a scant list:

We should pray together = I want to gossip
Would God approve of that? = [a condescending way of saying] That is not okay
I have an impression upon my heart = I have a problem/thought
As I was praying for you, I had a feeling/thought. Is there something on your mind/heart? = a subtle way of asking personal matters
We should band together = We need to band together to appear as the majority

It's an unfortunate reality. So, be warned.

4. All Christians are the same. Au contraire, depending on the denomination, you will be led to believe certain things that other denominations do or not believe. For example, Baptists do not believe in the moving of the Holy Spirit while Pentecostals are more liberated to activate the presence of the Holy Spirit. Presbyterians lean more towards on the traditional/conservative side, while Pentecostals are much more liberal. It really all depends on the denomination, which in turn, depends on your personality and which suits you better, but I assure you that every Christian is not the same.

5. Christians are not cool. As a Christian, I can defend that position by rebuffing and saying that Christians are, in fact, cool. If a person bases Christianity based on people, rather than who that person serves, then it's not a proper assessment. Christian people are the coolest people ever because not only do they go to Heaven, but they also get access to God's covenant and blessing. What isn't cool about that?

I hope this enlightens you and that you all see Christianity not fundamentally as a religion with regulations, rules, and commands, but as a deep, intimate, and personal relationship with Jesus Christ.


The 10 Rules of Modesty

If you're like me, you wonder why there is a severe lack of modesty, why the media is determine to indoctrinate women of America that the only way to attract a man is to express more than you should, and why behaving less than comely is not only seductive but ultimately the very thing that makes you a woman. Why are all the shows so explicit that the main female protagonist meets with the main male, have a good connection and click almost instantly, and then, half an hour later, they're seen in bed. Why? Has the world lost the sense of mystery, the art of the chase, and mastering of being coy? Apparently, it appears to be so. People now assume that the woman is supposed to chase the guy. (I must state that I am belittling the rise of feminism; I'm simply stating that every woman loves to chased, to know that a guy is pining after her.) People also assume that if you dress more provocatively, you will have more guys. While that is more or less true, are you attracting the type of men you would want as a husband? Or as a father?
Here are my rules of modesty. These are simply my own opinions accumulated by a plethora of extensive reading.

1. How you dress does determine your morale.
I know this is something that not everyone likes to hear, but how you chose to clothe yourself determines a part of your identity. It reflects a mirror image of who you are. If you dress with a lot of cleavage, short shorts that may expose part of your butt, you may have males following you around like a dog pants on a hot summer day, but ask yourself: What type of man am I trying to attract when I dress like this? Is this the type of man I can depend on? Have children with? Provide for me and my family? People judge you by how you dress. It is sad and unfortunate, but it is nonetheless the truth.

2. Respect yourself.
This ties in closely with number one. Have respect for yourself. Respect yourself with such profundity that you wouldn't dare expose that much of your chest, raise the hemline that it nearly exposes your bum, or would cause older gentleman to cultivate unnatural thoughts. When you have respect for yourself, people can see. In fact, a girl that has profound respect for herself is much more attractive that a trashy slut. Why? Because she knows who she is and there is no one that can tell her otherwise. And she also knows what she can and cannot do.

3. Be confident.
Again, this parallels one and two. When you are 100% confident in your identity and who you are a person, my, it is a fearsome thing to behold. Confident girls don't need to trashy clothes to attract men; they don't need filthy language to gain attention; and they certainly do not need to behave not like themselves to receive attention. Stand with your shoulders upright. Speak clearly and with crisp enunciation. Confidence is sexy. I'm sure you've all heard that expression before. Well, it's true. When a women wears something with out. She is the type of woman who knows where she stands and will stand for it. Guys want that.

4. Be mysterious.
Less is more indeed. When you don't reveal anything all at once, a guy thinks, "Wow, I want to more," and thus initiates a chase. There is so much more to you that meets the guy and because you reveal only a handful, you are leaving in suspense and he wants to discover more of you. This is the type of chase you want to have.

5. Behave like a lady.
This is really important. Don't burp in public. Don't fart. Don't attract unwanted attention to yourself by picking your teeth, itching your bum, or something else that may potentially be embarrassing down the road. Say please and thank you. Open the doors for elders. Use flatware properly. Stand straight. Sit correctly. When you behave like a lady, a proper lady, there is an aura about you that cannot be missed. Perhaps the Victorians were onto something when they had strict rules about etiquette. Again, there are some extremes, but when you behave comely, you gain proper attention that leaves the gentlemen in the room wondering who you are.

6. Be interesting. 
Translation: be yourself. However, this comes with a twist. Do something fascinating. Take a pottery class. Skydive. Travel the world. Go to Atacama Desert in Chile. Visit the Swiss Alps. Do something that not everyone does.

7. Be a kind spirit.
This is perhaps the best thing you can do without ever using your tongue. When you are kind and warm and soft (in terms of personality), people are drawn to you. There is something about you that reins them in, akin to a magnetic pull. They want to know you. They want to spend more time with you.

8. Take pride in your looks.
This should not be taken out of context. This simply means that work with what you've got and flaunt it! If you have darker skin, wear designs with lighter colors. If you are Latin, use that to your advantage. IF you have fair, porcelein-like skin, wear red lipstick so that it stands out again your lovely complexion. Make your features stand out (in a good way!). You only have one face, one body; cherish it and illuminate beauty.

9. Do not chase the guy under any circumstances whatsoever.
This is hard because when girls have their eyes set on a specific fellow, they want to be around him, talk to him, and be with him. You should definitely show interest (smile at him, laugh at his jokes [if they are somewhat funny], compliment him), but you should not be the one who is chasing him or pursing him. You can show interest but still be indifferent. That causes the guy to wonder if you like him, sparking a series of events that often results in your favor. Leave him wondering. Compel him in such a way that he feels like he has the need to do something in order for you to clarify your feelings for him.

10. Clean language.
There is no bigger turn-off for a guy (beside hygiene) than foul language. There is no need for that. There are many other words in the dictionary that would better fit the context of your conversation.


Does Geography Define Your Identity?

I've recently struggled with this question. I was recently told, for bizarre reasons, that I am not good enough in a specific criteria simply because I am Eastern European. He didn't even take in account of my qualities, my strengths, my talents...nothing. He simply dismissed it and assessed that because I am Romanian, I'm not good enough. Now, I haven't lived in Romania since I was 2, so I can't really say that I am 100% Romanian in the sense that I've been saturated in the culture; I know the language, was born in the country, and speak fluent Romanian. Is that a good enough reason to render less than worthy? Is my geographic origin a reason why you see me less than a human being?
Jesus is a Jew; He was born in Israel. He has dark hair, dark eyes, and dark skin, and ministered in present-day Middle East. He wasn't American with light skin and blue eyes. So perhaps the next time you make a potentially racist comment, think about the fact that you not only harbour acrimony towards African-Americans and Eastern Europeans, but perhaps you don't like the fact that the Jesus you serve was a dark-skinned, eyed, and haired Jew, something that evidently clashes your theology.
Deal with that.