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Beautifully Modest: My New Vlog!

Hi there! Come check out my new vlog on dressing modestly. This will be a new series with tips on how to dress modestly yet beautiful, not drab. I will be updating as often as I can, with a range of topics all related to modest fashion. Theology and lifestyle thoughts will remain here.

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Patience, Discouragement, and Prayer

Today James posted in his Morning Meditation about his efforts and discouragement in the Tent of David project. It can be hard sharing news about the Jewish Messiah, and most churches do not want to hear it.

I know exactly what James means. I am not in the position that I may have an impact on a church, because I’m still just a young adult. But I have been working in my college ministries. And by working, I mean that I try to have God-focused conversations, and if I feel someone is ready I will share awesome stuff about Hebrew studies. I receive a variety of responses which is probably analogous to what you find among working adults. Some students are interested in the sense that they say “Oh, that’s cool, I didn’t know that,” but it does not actually inspire them to go deeper. A few people will argue with me, but they are the minority. But those few people are usually closer friends.

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Music

How Holy do You Want to Be?

Music is very important to me. I know a lot of people will tell you that, and for me it is true. (Not to say that it is not true for others.) I’ve been playing piano since I could talk, so I jokingly consider it my second language. I have learned many instruments, and I love to sing. I sing almost all day long.

We need to be careful what we listen to.

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Food Philosophy

Hello! It’s been a while. I study literature, so I’ve had lots of papers to write in the past month–a total of about 65 pages! Now that I’m on break, I’ll have more time for writing. Plus, I’d like to add to the content here. From the beginning I wanted this to be about living a “Hebrew” lifestyle, but it’s turned into mostly theology. I say “Hebrew” because it is my own interpretation, or rather, what Papa has lead me in, not an accepted definition. Of course my theology is important to my lifestyle, and I will not stop posting theology. But I want to write more about how my love for YHWH has manifested in more than just how I read the scriptures.

So today, I’m starting with my food philosophy.

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Real

Brave New World, front

Brave New World, front (Photo credit: jrambow)

“I think [Bernard]’s pretty harmless.”

Pretty Harmless, perhaps; but also pretty disquieting. That mania, to start with, for doing things in private. Which mean, in practice, not doing anything at all. For what was there that one could do in private. (Apart, of course, from going to bed: but one couldn’t do that all the time.) Yes, what was there? Precious little. The first afternoon they went out together was particularly fine. Lenina had suggested a swim at Toquay Country Club followed by dinner at the Oxford Union. But Bernard thought there would be too much of a crowd. Then what about a round of Electro-magnetic Golf at St. Andrew’s? But again, no: Bernard considered that Electro-magnetic Golf was a waste of time.

“Then what’s time for?” asked Lenina in some astonishment.

Apparently, for going [on] walks in the Lake district; for that was what he now proposed. Land on the top of Skiddaw and walk for a couple of hours in the heather. “Alone with you, Lenina.”

“But, Bernard, we should be alone all night.”

Bernard blushed and looked away. “I meant, alone for talking,” he mumbled.

“Talking? But what about?” Walking and talking–that seemed a very odd way of spending an afternoon.

I’m rereading through Aldous Huxley’s Brave New World for the first time since high school. I find that this work of art speaks to our culture even more so now than it did 80 years ago. But then again, society doesn’t change much, do they?

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Why Torah?

I shared James’ post, Christianization of Acts 15, on Facebook, and a friend commented and it turned into a small exchange. First, he asked about the purpose of the Law, and why observe it if it’s a shadow of Jesus? After my response, he asked about whether or not I am Jewish, and if not what is my reason for following Torah. He also asked about going to a priest for certain functions, and such. I don’t want to quote his entire comment, but below is my response. It was something that I had been pondering anyway, so his question hit me at a time when I was prepared. Thanks Papa!

I am a gentile, and proud of it! Thank you for your questions. The question of why I observe Torah is something I am often asking myself, to make sure I’m on the right track. Why would a gentile who has salvation through Yeshua need Torah, or even WANT Torah?

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Torah and Campus

Hi there! I haven’t posted in a while. School is busy! And this won’t be a full post either.

I’m working on my series on holiness, or rather, set-apartness. Being set-apart is so important that it can’t be summed up in a soundbyte. But also, as I write it, I realize how little I know.

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Antisemitism

Are you antisemitic?  Of course you’re not, right? You love Jewish people. Of course you do.

But really, ask yourself. Are there aspects of your interpretation of scripture that are antisemitic? We like to say that the Jews just didn’t understand their own scriptures, that their system was defunct. We joke about foolish Israelites. And of course, Jesus did away with the Law. It was really bad.

Take a hard look at the teachings called Christianity. Where do they come from? Almost all Christianity today was birthed from Catholicism or Orthodoxy, which has its birthplace in the Roman empire in the first few centuries AD. The first century of Jesus-followers were almost entirely Jewish, but from the beginning of the second century onward the faith was dominantly gentile.

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Lucky

Please, let’s eliminate this word and accompanying concepts from our vocabulary.

Avoiding “Good luck” has been a habit since before I became Torah observant. Why would I want to wish someone “good luck” when I can bless them?

If you call yourself a Christian, you really shouldn’t talk about luck at all. What is luck? OED says “Fortune good or ill; the fortuitous happening of events favourable or unfavourable to the interests of a person.” Where does that fortune come from? Who is in control of luck? Is luck just chance? Can you be lucky?

When you speak of luck, you acknowledge a source of power that is outside of Yahweh. When you wish someone good luck, you are wishing that chance will give them good fortune. ChanceWhen you say you are lucky, or you lucked out, you attribute your success to chance. Chance.

Also, when people say “good luck”, they don’t usually mean it, truly mean it. Or if someone is sick and you say “I hope you get better,” but are you really clinging on to the promise that they will get better? (Look at the definition of hope.)

Genevieve, why are you being so harsh? Sheesh, don’t be legalistic. It’s just a simple expression. What’s the big deal?

Well, I could continue to be harsh and tell you everything you’re doing wrong. And it is wrong, but I’ve got a cooler direction to go from.

What if instead of “good luck” you said “God bless you” or “Bless you”? Or even better, what if you prayed for them? And what if instead of “I got lucky” you said “God blessed me”? Really, think about it. Jacob(James) says

Every good thing given and every perfect gift is from above, coming down from the Father of lights,with whom there is no variation or shifting shadow.

By that logic, if you are in a good circumstance, it is a gift, a blessing, from YHWH your Father! How cool is that! Not by your own might, and not by chance, but by the will of the Father!!! Wow!

And when you pray for someone, or bless someone, you aren’t merely invoking chance, you are invoking the blessings of the Almighty! Your small prayer could seriously change someone’s day. Don’t be afraid to offend anyone with your “Bless you” or “God bless you.” Some may be confused, but many will thank you.

And please, don’t say it with an empty heart. A prayer without trust in the Father is empty, vapor, pointless. Don’t bless someone if you mean it. But take a moment, examine your heart, and bless your brother or sister.

I promise that if you eliminate “luck” from your thinking, and introduce blessings, it will open your eyes to the love of the Father. You will learn that your day is so so so full of blessings! And then the down parts of your day will seem insignificant. You will realize that Papa wants to bless that chemistry test, and that YHWH wants to heal that cold.

My brothers and sisters, Yeshua moves and He is alive!! He wants to work a mighty thing in your life, and He already is working mightily in your lives. Thank the Father for every blessing, and He will come alive to you. Beloved, in the spiritual realm and in our lives everything is either of God or not of God. Once you see that all the good things in your life are from Papa, you will see that all your troubles are so insignificant compared to His glory! In other words, the not of God is so small compared to the things of God.

Please please please! I beg you, I implore you. Give it one week! Maybe even one day! Bless each person you talk to, and speak of His blessings. Please don’t complain about the weather, but praise His name! Spread the love and receive the Father’s love. It is incredible!!!

Shalom Shalom,

Genevieve

PS: Sorry It’s been a while. School has been busy. I have so many things to talk about, and I pray for time to write about them.