Life is too short – Give thanks for your blessings

How many times we keep praying to God I need this, I need that? This constant asking really takes our minds off what we really have. We’ve been blessed when we really take our inventory. In our contemporary culture, many of us look into how much money we have or looking to get more or larger in our material world. Dreaming bigger homes or bigger cars, or making large sums of money, or hit it big in stock market, etc. Many of us fail to recognize what makes us whole and the necessities we already have. In an environment we are bombarded with TV and online commercials and advertisements to buy and spend. Does possessions make our hearts happy and bring joy? By getting bogged down to materialism gives us inner contentment?

I recall while I was in the Aerospace corporate world working as a Financial Analyst, many of my associates and other administrative professionals constantly seeking advancement and promotion to move up in ranks. I too got involved in that mind-set of “rat race” to advance myself. In this process, instead of thanking God for what I had and count the blessings, we were involved in office politics of getting ahead. There are other things I’ve observed with rich businessmen. As the saying goes “rich getting richer”. Sure, the business owners are working hard, and so doing, they totally dwelling in the business of making money and lag giving thanks to God for what they have. No wonder many working for others or business owners lack inner satisfaction or contentment.

Making money is not the only way to experience inner contentment. Ofcourse, we need money to pay for our daily living expenses and some savings for unforeseen circumstances. We must not lose sight counting our blessings such as good health, loving family relationships, loving of our neighbors, having a job or a business, being conscious and helping the needy such as stamping out hunger and homelessness. When we give thanks to God and count our blessings, we sure feel happy, joy, peace and inner contentment.

Blessings,

Rev. Ernie Martin, The Reverend of Love, Las Vegas, Nevada

 

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We all are Stewards

How are you living your life financially, managing your health, your spiritual growth, your emotional needs, food, family and friends relationship networks, etc? It’s all about managing wisely God has bestowed upon us. Since we are blessed with free will, and with choices to make decisions, we have the dominion to lead a life that fulfills us to be loving, happy, joyful, peaceful and harmonious. It all boils down to how we interpret the resources God has provided us or at our disposal. Sometimes the ego dictates “how much” to hoard money, food and even hold out emotional love that can be shared. Have you realized why “others” have money problems? In US  many consumers seem to have credit card problems with too much debts.

The best way to resolve when faced with tension and pressure regarding money and ill-health or bad relationships is to take a step back and do some soul-searching via prayer and meditation. Prayer is communicating with God, and meditation is listening to your inner voice. Many just don’t trust their own instincts. I recall when I was working as a credit financial counselor at a non-profit credit agency, the clients with debts needed constant reinforcement to trust themselves to control their spending habits and live within means. The clients and I celebrated by cutting up the credit cards and threw them in the air. I kept bunch of tissue paper on my desk for their joyful tears.

In a spiritual and our physical world, God has given us dominion over our everyday resources and interactions, and it is up to us how we take responsibilities and be accountable for our actions. As stewards, we must pass it on to our children, and we have the duty and obligation to teach them with love, stewardship for their everyday life as they get older. Imagine when we manage food and reduce waste, we will be solving our communities hunger problems. Multiply them thousand folds across our nation, we will eliminate hunger and have a healthy population to be productive in their walk of life.

Blessings,

Rev. Ernie Martin, The Reverend of Love, Las Vegas, Nevada

Love Heals

There is so much going on in many parts of the world. Constantly, there are political problems in the Middle East. There are problems in some countries, where minorities are not treated well. We also have problems in some communities in US, which needs to be solved. God is Love. We are made in the image of God. We do accept the fact that through love from the heart, we touch others. When we acknowledge and aware of God’s love in us, we are aligned to share it with others. Others do also have the capability to give and share love, when they do accept and acknowledge it.

Love is not something that is hoarded. It is meant to be shared with others. Imagine,when love is shared all over the world, we won’t have animosities or hatred towards each other. My observation in the Middle East, where things are very fluid and dangerous due to inequalities and to gain power, love sometimes becomes illusion. It’s through faith in God, and understanding our human circumstances and conditions, love has a way of conquering fear. I am very optimistic that love surrounds us. When I see myself and people around me with love, it’ bound to heal and touch others. What I’ve also discovered and recognized that love must be accepted in the heart and acknowledged. Without acknowledging, it just merely received as an observation, rather than immersing in it.

We read and see it on TV, suffering of minorities through religious persecution or going to bed hungry or homelessness in our communities. When we pray with love in our heart to heal the shortcomings, our vibrations and waves touch the ones we are thinking about them. Also, this is where we can apply prayer and meditation to pray to God for the welfare of the less fortunate. Many times, more people are influenced by their own devotion and faith, and strengthen the cause for hope and healing for those that are experiencing persecution or conquering hunger or homelessness.

Blessings,

Rev. Ernie Martin, The Reverend of Love, Las Vegas, NV

Walk the talk

Giving bread I am surprised. Just under a week ago, I’ve written a blog on ministering and serving and I mentioned to carry some energy bars and canned soup in the car for distribution. Today I went to a local ATM bank. Just as I was leaving the ATM, a woman in her 40’s with a push cart, approached me and asked me for a quarter (25 cents). First of all I did not have any change with me. 2nd, I’ve energy bars and a vegetable soup can in my car. So, I offered her an energy bar and the soup can. She took it. But, when she left with her push cart, she lighted up a cigarette.

Giving soup Maybe God is testing me to see if I am walking my talk. Perhaps this woman changed her identity and came as a hungry individual as a God’s messenger to approach me. She was receptive of the food I gave her. This scenario was a great lesson for me in action. I did not judge this woman in a critical way. She went on with her push cart  lighting her cigarette. God bless her. In our walk of life we are bound to face some challenges and we have to use our God-given mind and compassion for our fellow human beings, regardless of their circumstances they are in.

Giving to homeless man in suit I also carry with me some phone numbers of local help organizations, such as homeless shelters, food banks and other groups. The list of phone numbers are just next to my drivers car door storage area. Be prepared to give and serve. Never know who will come out the thin air and ask for food or small change. I also keep a public bus schedule at the driver door storage area. If somebody is lost on a major boulevard, I can help them take a right bus to their destination if they seek help. A nice way to help is to suggest calling non-emergency number for sleeping and eating meals.

Blessings,

Rev. Ernie Martin, The Reverend of Love, Las Vegas

Claim your ministry

Ministering serving Everyone in this world is a minister or capable of being a minister. What I mean is we are all ministers helping and serving each other. Unfortunately, many in the faith and belief world, think preachers, ministers, pastors, spiritualist teachers, priests, etc are the ones ministering to others in need. God has put you on earth to help yourself and help and serve others. There are some who do take action to cure homelessness and hunger. or other causes such as praying for the sick for healing and blessings. Human problems are solved by humans with Gods guidance communicated from within. Many times it takes self-awareness or recognition to help others in need.

Ministry Hospitality Next time when you see someone asking for money or saying he or she is hungry, see what you can do eliminate or reduce their suffering using common sense. In recent months, I’ve been carrying energy bars and canned soup in my car. So, while I’m driving in town or going out-of-town, and meet some one who is asking for money or food, I’ll offer energy bar or soup. I also encourage carrying phone numbers of social community help agencies, such as local homeless shelters, soup kitchens, teen runaway agency, etc. Be aware that most states in USA have a non-emergency number 211 for shelter and food needs. Help the person on the street by calling the 211 number, while the help seeker is standing next to you. The help state agency will come for aiding the person. In many states, it’s a 24 hours service.

Ministry elderly Praying for friends when they ask for prayers is wonderful. Sometimes they are at a hospital or at home. Either way pray for their healing. You can even start a discussion group on several spiritual and community issues on-line or phone webinar discussions . There are several topics for discussion. Maybe start something on world hunger, domestic violence, healing, forgiveness, prosperity, gratitude, etc. In my own experience, I started free phone webinars discussions on several spiritual discussions. Friends from all over the country. Serving others with compassion will bring inner contentment and serving God as well.  People appreciate the service as well and are grateful.

Blessings,

Rev.  Ernie Martin, The Reverend of Love, Las Vegas

 

We are in a spiritual world buffeted by the physical world

Spiritual energy As spiritual beings we are pure. Pure in spirit and everything is perfect. No need to fix it or correct it and it is eternal. In the physical world as humans, its temporary experiences on this earth. As humans, we are here on earth to learn, grow and teach. Ever notice how we are accustomed to live on a daily basis? Man made belief systems (religions), obeying rules and regulations, man-made laws to govern societies (by the way, there are 613 commandments in Judaism), parents, siblings, grandparents, friends, strangers, communities, etc. We are also measured by how much money we earn to make a living and driven by ego to excel in some life directions. Ofcourse in physical world, we are judged by our looks as well.

Bank for physical experience When I am saying about “buffeted” by the physical world, ever notice how we for example open checking or savings accounts at a bank? Ever notice how rules and regulations about banking is applied for us to “behave” and “act” when we adhere to money matters in an “organized” settings? Sitting in a bank with the bank representative demands patience, and provide all the information necessary to open an account after qualifying. Next time when you rent a car, first thing a rental car agency will ask is for a credit card and a driver’s license. We are connected to protect banks investments and laws governing streets and highways.

War and soldiers Ofcourse as physical humans, and depending within a society (country), we are governed by security authorities such as police and military for safety and protection. No such governing as spiritual beings. Egos play a greater role in human authority such as power. As humans and in advanced and developing nations, we have more fear to live by. Fear of  our “fellow” human beings, from “other” nations or cultures or tribes. I am talking about living in fear by amassing nuclear weapons. Even though we will not use them ( I am sure we will not use it), otherwise, we all will be in trouble facing very hardships just to breath and drink water or cultivate food for sustenance.

Love you with a flower Somehow in our walk of physical existence, we are endowed with free will and choices and learned behaviors from others, societies/communities. In a way, we are tamed.  We are here to experience love, joy, peace, happiness, harmony, kindness, compassion, gratitude, well-being, blessings, reverence to God. So, it all depends how we use our free will by way of making decisions with enormous choices to choose from. Isn’t it something, with one or two wrong decisions from the choices we have, can also develop anger, hatred, selfishness, greed, neglect, rudeness, ethnocentric, bossing, harmful, isolated, hunger, homeless, fights, wars? So, we are put on earth to experience the physical being and learn, grow, get along and transition (physical death) to our spiritual being after some time. What an adventurous journey!

Blessings,

REV. Ernie Martin, The Reverend of Love, Las Vegas

Are our Religious beliefs short on actions and deeds?

Interfaith on tree Our man made religions have a purpose. Devotion, faith, love, helping oneself and others, loving God (Son of God, Almighty, Lord, Higher Power, Universal God, Universe, God Is etc), beliefs, unity, adhering to laws of our societies, the list goes on. These beliefs in religions serve as a foundational in our physical and spiritual world by means of theology or spiritual literacy that are handed down by our predecessors going back thousands or hundreds or even decades ago. What I see and observe about beliefs is, its application in everyday living. I believe one’s faith is important in their own spiritual life. The tenets of these beliefs summarize as: Love, kindness, warm, helping, see God in action, unity, peace, respect for each other, respect for law, doing the right thing without harming others, reaching out, understanding, tolerance, so on.

Interfaith symbols in black Are we applying the tenets of our belief system to create “heaven on earth”? In other words,  are we coming short of joy, happiness, comfort, in our own communities? Considering great challenges our nation faces as well as other nations are facing? Immigration (recently ongoing problems with children being transported to US borders from Central America), US facing immigration reform and is at stand still in congress, hunger in our own communities, homelessness, “excessive” materialism, families being separated or in disarray, financial distress due to job loss or business setbacks or illness, obesity, high school dropouts,  and the list goes on.

Interfaith in words Since, the religions or belief systems serve as anchor in our lives, we can do better by reaching out and taking action and see positive changes in our lives and in the lives of others. Its the application of the tenets of our belief system that must be tapped. The belief systems serve as a base or foundation in our lives. As individuals and society, we must move and be a testimony and example to others. To start: practice prayer and meditation (pray for our leaders to make right decisions),  share own gratitude and blessings with others, forgiveness, share own miracles, reach out with love, and so on.

Blessings,

Rev. Ernie Martin, The Reverend of Love, Las Vegas