Whose Child Are You?

Probably one of the most famous stories in all the Bible is that of David and Goliath. Even most children can tell that story from beginning to end in flawless detail. Yet no matter how many times I hear it or read it, I'm still amazed at David's faith.

Here's a shepherd boy gearing up to face a giant of 9+ feet. Goliath is mean. He's ugly. He's fierce. He's trained and battle-hardened. He wields his sword with strength and agility. Then, there's little David who has to set aside his harp to pick up some stones for his sling. Is it just me, or does this picture seem a little lopsided?

It does to me, but it didn't to David. You see, David had enough faith to see what I often fail to see: with God on my side, all things are possible. There was no doubt in David's mind that he would succeed. He told Saul in plain language that he would kill the giant. No doubt. No worry. No anxiety. When David stepped out on faith, he stepped out running. The Bible says he ran to Goliath. Hmm, when was the last time I ran toward my giants instead of running away from them?

There's so much to be learned from this one story in the Bible. It's a story of great faith. But even more than that, it's a story of how our faith reflects on our Father. When Saul witnessed David's great feat, he asked his guard, "Whose son is this youth?" When people see us conquer our giants, don't they ask the same thing?

God's desire for us is that we will face our giants with great faith, so that all around us will look at each other and say, "Whose child is this?' At that point, it will be our great privilege to tell them all about our Father and how He is able to conquer any giants.

It's hard to be a witness for the Lord when we say we believe His word, but don't act like we believe it. Let's stop running away from our giants. Let's run toward them in faith as David did. Let's show off our Father and make him proud. After all, we are His children, and our actions reflect on Him.

Faith -- it's a powerful weapon!
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The Light of Eidon by Karen Hancock

Abramm has dedicated the last eight years of his life to becoming worthy to touch and tend the Sacred Flames of Eidon, and he expects to be blessed for his devotion and sacrifice. But on the eve of taking the vows that will irrevocably separate him from the life he was born to—as Abramm Kalladorne, fifth son of the king of Kiriath, he is betrayed by his spiritual mentor and sold into slavery by his own family.

Swept along by the winds of a new destiny, Abramm is forced to compete as a gladiator. When the oppressed masses rally around his success, he discovers his suffering has molded him into something greater than he ever thought possible—to serve a purpose he never imagined.

I really wasn't sure if I would like this book or not when I picked it to review.  The premise sounded interesting, so I figured I would give it a try.  To be honest, after reading it, I'm still not sure how I feel about it.  The premise and plot of the story were very good.  The story is set up as an allegory with Eidon being the representation of God.  The theme that seemed to run through the entire story was Abramm's unbelief that salvation could really be as simple as just accepting the offer.  He believed he had to make himself holy and prove himself worthy.  The symbolism was excellent and powerful.

That being said, I don't think I've ever spent so long trying to get through a book.  The book itself was very long (432 pages), and many times, the story was bogged down with too much detail and description.  By the time I finally reached the end of the story, I no longer remembered the characters who were re-introduced in the final chapters.  As intriguing as the plot was, I was just glad to finally be finished with the book.

Overall, I feel that the author wove an excellent story, but the story could have been told in fewer words.  The entire tale was drawn out, and to me, the story lost most of its appeal.  I believe this would be one of the few books for which I would enjoy the abridged version much more.  Less fluff; more meat.

This book was given to me as part of the review program for Waterbrook Multnomah.  The opinions expressed herein are my own.  I was not required to write a positive review.
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The Hidden Meaning Behind the 12 Days of Christmas

People often think of 'The Twelve Days of Christmas' as the days preceding the festival. Historically, Christmas is the season of the Christian Year for the days beginning on December 25 and lasting until January 6 (the Day of Epiphany) when the church celebrates the revelation of Christ as the light of the world and recalls the journey of the Magi. From 1558 until 1829, Roman Catholics in England were not allowed to practice their faith openly. During that era someone wrote 'The Twelve Days of Christmas' as a kind of secret catechism that could be sung in public without risk of persecution. The song has two levels of interpretation: the surface meaning plus a hidden meaning known only to members of the church. Each element in the carol is a code word for a religious reality.

The "partridge in a pear tree" is Jesus Christ.

The two turtledoves are the Old and New Testaments.

The three French hens stand for faith, hope and love.

The four calling birds are the four Gospels.

The five gold rings recall the torah (Law) the first five books of the Old Testament.

The six geese a-laying stand for the six days of creation.

The seven swans a-swimming represent the sevenfold gifts of the Spirit.

The eight maids a-milking are the eight beatitudes.

The nine ladies dancing are the nine fruit of the Spirit (Gal.5).

The ten lords a-leaping are the Ten Commandments.

The eleven pipers piping stand for the eleven faithful disciples.

The twelve drummers drumming symbolize the 12 points of belief in the Apostles Creed.

There you have it... the hidden meaning of "The Twelve Days of Christmas" and the secret behind the song.

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