Visitation Of The Ghost Of Christmas Past

Scrooge-ghost-of-Christmas-past Visitation of the ghost of Christmas Past

Ebenezer Scrooge was visited by the Ghost of Christmas Past in “A Christmas Carol” by Charles Dickens. I received a lesser visitation of the Ghost of Christmas Past during this Christmas season.

Visitation of the ghost of Christmas past

The New Message from God has a teaching called “The Meaning of Christmas.” I have written blog posts about this teaching in January of 2014 and December of 2014. While I am happy with what I have written in those posts, something has changed between December of 2014 and now. What has changed? The New Message from God has released the teaching “Jesus and the New Message from God,” received in April of 2013. I consider this teaching to elaborate on ideas introduced in “The Meaning of Christmas,” which was received in December of 1994. I have found it helpful to read these two teaching side-by-side.

I have happy memories of thinking of Christmas as not just an earthly event, but a cosmic event. I have happy memories of performing Handel’s Messiah, and not just singing with my voice, but with my heart crying out each word. I have happy memories of being part of the choir backing up John Michael Talbot in a performance of Light Eternal. I have happy memories of the worship of Jesus in word and song. This is my visitation of the Ghost of Christmas Past this Christmas season.

But the teaching “Jesus and the New Message from God” is telling me that maybe I need to think all this out again. Consider the following paragraph.

“From what little is known of Jesus’s life, it was clear that he was overtaken by a Greater Power. But regarding his birth, that is a complete fabrication. Regarding most of his miracles, that is a fabrication. That is the story that has been created apart from the life.”

Some people believe Jesus never existed. We certainly don’t go there. Some who could not receive Jesus for whatever reason claimed Jesus was illegitimate. We certainly don’t go there. But we reject the virgin birth narrative as a story that has been created apart from the life. It is as if the story creators observed the numerous virgin birth legends that were in that region at that time, and thought “we need one too!” It is as if there was a case of “virgin birth envy.”

Scrooge-Extinguishing Visitation of the Ghost of Christmas Past

I realize that there will be people who read these words and consider them as an affront, a denigration of their faith. It is as if this teaching has reached into my past and undermined it, just as Scrooge “extinguished” the Ghost of Christmas Past when his memories became too painful. My 20-year-old self reads these words and pities my present self for my unbelief. This is my visitation of the Ghost of Christmas Past. This is what I tell my 20-year-old self:

“It is difficult for people to have their ideas so challenged. They have invested so much in them. To have to reconsider these things requires real courage and integrity. Who amongst you has this courage and integrity?”

My 20-year-old self rockets his hand into the air and exclaims “I do!” My present self isn’t so sure. I would very much like to have this courage and integrity. And yet, and yet…

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Welcome to Mystery of Ascension! Добро пожаловать в Тайну просветления! We document the study of the New Message from God in general, and the book Steps to Knowledge in particular. Мы тут делимся своим опытом изучения Нового Послания от Бога, в общем, и книги Шаги к Знанию в частности. Find out more about us here. Узнайте больше о нас здесь. Find out how to contact us here. Узнайте, как связаться с нами здесь.

How Did You Do On Your Resolutions?

Weighing-the-harvest-Musi-010 How did you do on your resolutions?Since I was so bold as to share my New Year’s resolution with you at the end of 2014, I feel a certain obligation to share with you how successful I was at keeping that resolution.

How did you do on your resolutions?

What? You don’t remember my New Year’s resolution? It was to complete the study of Steps to Knowledge for the second time. Steps to Knowledge is the book of spiritual practice of the New Message from God. It has 365 steps to follow. I took about 4 years to do Steps to Knowledge the first time. I started again in April of 2014. I am currently on Step 184, “My questions are greater than I had realized before.” I was on Step 85, “I find happiness in small things today” at the end of 2014. I therefore will have done somewhere between 99 and 118 steps in 2015. This is a downstat from the 128 steps I did in 2014.

How did you do on your resolutions? It’s not like I was being slothful. I was definitely engaging with Steps to Knowledge in various ways. I just wasn’t practicing the steps as they were given. I didn’t do any steps for the first six months of 2015. I did a certain amount of thrashing and flailing, thinking that maybe I needed to start over. Other people assisted me in getting unstuck, resolving ambivalence and obsessions, getting restarted. I did 14 steps in July, 25 steps in August, 24 steps in September, 17 steps in October, 12 steps in November, and 7 steps in December so far. The 25 steps in August is the greatest number of steps I have done in a month since I started studying Steps in 2010.

How did you do on your resolutions? I didn’t come anywhere close to fulfilling my 2015 New Year’s Resolution. However I made a certain progress in Steps to Knowledge in 2014. I also made some progress in the Four Pillars, particularly in the area of my health. Should I make a New Year’s Resolution for 2016? I don’t know. I know I would like to be a little more consistent. I would like to do a certain number of steps each week and each month. But will I? I don’t know. I’m not willing to bet my life on it at this point.

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Welcome to Mystery of Ascension! Добро пожаловать в Тайну просветления! We document the study of the New Message from God in general, and the book Steps to Knowledge in particular. Мы тут делимся своим опытом изучения Нового Послания от Бога, в общем, и книги Шаги к Знанию в частности. Find out more about us here. Узнайте больше о нас здесь. Find out how to contact us here. Узнайте, как связаться с нами здесь.