All posts filed under: z68

Surgery cancelled after tumours miraculously healed

Ken Gorman of Sheffield, England was scheduled for surgery in early July. According to an article on Assist News, Ken noticed a lump on his face in May 2013 that was starting to cause him pain. At first, doctors prescribed pain medication, but as the lump continued to grow and the pain with it, doctors eventually sent Ken for an MRI at Rotherham General Hospital in South Yorkshire, England. That test revealed that part of a main nerve in Ken’s face was now encircled by three tumours. The doctors immediately scheduled surgery in July this year. However, things took a dramatic turn after Ken and his wife Annie heard about a healing rally being held by evangelist Nathan Morris at Hull City Hall in Hull, England. With Ken’s surgery still weeks away and his pain getting worse, they decided to attend the service. But there was a problem. Because of limited capacity, the meeting required pre-booking to attend and no tickets were available. Annie decided to drive her husband to the meeting even though they didn’t …

Judas betrays Jesus by Caravaggio (1571-1610)

La agonía del rechazo

English Version: The agony of rejection Un estudio realizado en 2003 por investigadores de la Universidad de California y publicado en la revista Science reveló rechazo tiene el mismo impacto en el cerebro como el dolor físico. Los científicos crearon un programa informático que simula una pelota de juego que lanza entre un participante en vivo y dos simulaciones por ordenador. Los 13 sujetos de prueba (cuatro hombres y nueve mujeres) fueron conectados a una resonancia magnética y se les invita a jugar el juego. Se les dijo a los otros dos jugadores (operados por el ordenador) estaban efectivamente controlada por personas vivas. La simulación por ordenador involucrado un simple juego de capturas entre los tres jugadores. La resonancia magnética rastreado las respuestas del cerebro durante el juego. Inicialmente, el equipo siguió el juego, pero cuando el sujeto había atrapó el balón siete veces, el equipo ignora el sujeto vivo y sólo lanzó la pelota hacia atrás y adelante entre las animaciones. Sin embargo, los sujetos de prueba creían que estaban siendo ignoradas deliberadamente por …

Credit: LJ Mears/Flickr/Creative Commons

How strong is God’s love for you?

What picture would help us grasp the magnitude of this love? There is a verse in the Song of Solomon that describes the love between the bride and bridegroom — a picture of the love relationship between Jesus and His Church, the people of God. “Set me like a seal upon your heart, like a seal upon your arm; for love is as strong as death, jealousy is as hard and cruel as Sheol (the place of the dead). Its flashes are flashes of fire, a most vehement flame (the very flame of the Lord)! (Song of Solomon 8:6) It provides several metaphors revealing God’s unquenchable love for us: the seal, death, fire and jealousy. The Seal In Biblical times, the seal was a stamp of ownership and authenticity put on an object. In the Song of Solomon, the Shulamite woman is asking her lover to put this stamp of ownership on her heart so she can be completely and only his. Brown’s Bible Commentary describes it this way: “She was ‘leaning’ on Him, that is, her …

Mallard ducks Credit: Laura Gooch/Flickr/Creative Commons

Ducks weren’t created to act this way

My wife and I were driving down a road in Northern Saskatchewan a few days ago when I noticed a kerfuffle on the highway in front of us involving several birds, one of which was a crow. They were obviously fighting. As our vehicle approached, the crow suddenly took off with the other birds in pursuit. In the crow’s beak I could see another bird struggling to get free. I suspect it was a chick of the birds now chasing the crow. The crow had probably dropped the chick on the road and had swooped down to grab it again. I have no idea how this all ended as the birds disappeared over the ditch and into the forest that crowded the highway. But I suspect it did not go well for the chick. It reminded me of another story reported by the BBC. It was based on a report by Zoologist Silviu Petrovan of the University of Cambridge who was researching behaviour of mallard ducks on a lake in Romania. It was a typical …

Credit: Alpha/Flickr/Creative Commons

Help, I can’t get promoted!

For part of my career I worked in a large university. I also trained to be a Christian minister but jobs were just not available in churches, so I taught in a university. I was promoted to be the coordinator of the department, like a vice-principal in a school for adults. This promotion was a surprise to me, and I was supposed to be interim; our Director was going to quit and someone had to hold things together until the new Director arrived. When he finally came, he needed people like me, so he extended my tenure as coordinator. That’s when my friends started hating me and senior managers started looking at me as a liability instead of an asset. They needed to save money and I was a cost, and my friends wanted my job. On the success side, I schemed and politicked my way into a large window office, in a place where most of us worked in cubicles, with no outside light. I am ashamed to tell you that now. God never …

Roman helmet Credit: Paul Morriss/Flickr/Creative Commons

Your helmet of salvation

In Apostle Paul’s description of the spiritual armor that Christians need to wear found in Ephesians 6:10-17, he refers to the helmet of salvation. 17 And take the helmet of salvation, and the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God. (Ephesians 6:17 NASV) It is generally believed that Paul wrote Ephesians around 62 AD as he sat in a Roman jail waiting his execution. His Roman guards were undoubtedly the models for this passage. The Roman helmet was made of leather and usually covered with brass. Many times it was crowned with a plume or some type of ornament. The purpose of the helmet was to protect the head from blows from a war club or sword. Obviously, believers are required to wear such protection because Satan, like soldiers of old, went for the head for the telling blow. But he doesn’t attack it physically, rather he attacks us mentally. As Paul sat in his dark jail can you imagine the thoughts that were running through his mind. Had he made a huge …

Jacob's sons show their father Joseph's cloak telling their father Joseph was killed by a wild animal Credit: Wikipedia Painting by Diego Velazquez (1599-1660)

Coat of Many Colors

We live in a world that often obsesses about the latest fashion trend.  Models and actors display top designers’ latest creations in magazines, fashion shows, movies, television and other multi-media venues. A culture of image-making has emerged causing a mass identity crisis for youth and adults alike. How tragic it is when an individual is shunned because of the clothes they are wearing, yet this happens multiple times a day.

While most of our garments are bought on a rack at a local shop, the mass production of clothing is a more recent phenomena.  At one time, all clothing was made by hand and tailored to fit an individual’s frame. Sewing and designing clothes was a skill passed down from generation to generation. Mothers were concerned that their children wore garments suited to their local climate and lovingly designed clothes which fit the environment. Proverbs 31 gives a detailed description of a virtuous woman who is known by her many good deeds and creative works.  This includes making garments for her household and her community. Her …

Hall of Supreme Harmony, Beijing, China Credit: See-ming Lee/Flickr/Creative Commons

Is the world building for a revival?

Amid news of the Chinese government’s crack down on Christianity, reports are also circulating of the remarkable growth taking place in the Chinese church. Of course, with the government being so tight-lipped it is impossible to verify the accuracy of these accounts. It is also difficult to know how many Christians there are in China. In 2010, the Chinese government officially said it had 23 million Christians. However, that only included those attending the legally sanctioned church — the one run by the Communist government. When you include the underground church, the numbers would obviously be higher.  A 2010 survey conducted by Dr. Yanga Fenggang of Purdue University put the total number of Christians closer to 33 million (30 million protestants, 3 million Catholics). However based on a 2011 survey,  Pew Forum estimated the number of Christians at 67 million. If this number is right, the underground church is nearly twice as large as the officially sanctioned church. Curiously, a recent Global Trends (GT) survey of 23 countries in September-October 2016 uncovered evidence that may …

England's Big Ben at dawn Credit: Chris Goldberg/Flickr/Creative Commons

Cuts to sex education classes in England results in fewer teen pregnancies

A recent study has stunned the liberal world of sex education. When England announced it would cut funding to its sex education classes in 2010, activists and Liberals alike warned there would be a dramatic rise in unwanted pregnancies as a result. However a recent study conducted by researchers David Paton (Nottingham University Business School) and Liam Wright (School of Health and Related Research, University of Sheffield) said the exact opposite happened. Teen pregnancies actually dropped after the cuts. In their study reported in the Journal of Health Economics, the two researchers looked at the statistics of 149 municipalities between 2009 and 2014. They discovered during this period where there were cuts to sex education that overall teen pregnancies dropped 42.6% and are now down to levels last seen in 1969. Ironically, they also noted the biggest decreases took place in municipalities with the highest cuts. The two stated in their report: “Contrary to predictions made at the time of the cuts, panel data estimates show that expenditure cuts are associated with a small reductions …

Guatemala City Credit: Carlos Reis/Flickr/Creative Commons

The elevator ride

We were on an elevator at the Canadian Embassy in Guatemala City heading up to the fifth floor to pick up the visa that would allow us to bring our adopted son home to Canada. We were passing the fourth floor when the elevator lurched and began to jerk downward. Our one year old son, who was in my arms, began to cry. Then it stopped. We were stranded halfway between the 3rd and 4th floor. The frantic pressing of buttons did not produce any movement. Our lawyer, a Christian woman, began to confidently and loudly pray in tongues.  We waited holding our breath. After what seemed like hours, but was only a few minutes, the elevator began to inch upwards to the fourth floor. I breathed a sigh of relief. Then there was another lurch. The elevator stopped and we began rapidly descending down. We watched the numbers flickering by as we passed the main floor to the basement. It seemed we were descending much faster than we should be. Just before we hit …