Recycled Misfits

August 2, 2019

Reverend Paul N. Papas II

July 30, 2019

 

 

 

Let’s start by looking in the mirror….I’ll let you know when to turn away from the mirror.

In the Christmas story of Rudolph: Rudolph and his elf buddy Hermey don’t fit in with the others. Rudolph looks different than the others. Hermey is not interested in making toys. In an odd plot twist, Hermey wants to be a dentist. Not surprisingly, his elf supervisor is upset with the unproductive Hermey. So the two misfit outcasts set off to find their fame and fortune.

In the mirror you see the times on the playground or gathering where you did not fit in and felt like an outcast, a misfit.

Who among us doesn’t occasionally feel battered, bruised, broken? And sometimes it’s because of something we’ve done to ourselves.

Feeling battered, bruised, and broken can lead to fear of the future, fear of success, anxiety, depression and even suicide.

Thankfully God has perfect vision, unlimited resources and doesn’t give up so easily on battered and broken people. Psalm 85 describes people who were perfect candidates for restoration and God is able to restore. God is the God of restoration and forgiveness; those who humbly come to Him are never without hope.  He remarkably and wonderfully made us, He does not make junk.

Crime victims, First Responders, and Combat Veterans may have suffered different traumatic events leaving them feeling battered, bruised, and broken and suffering the same Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD), feeling like a misfit.

Then there is Eponine who seems the most like a social outcast misfit. She belongs to a gang of wretched people, and she is very poor. She has been through so much in her short life, things she should not even have experienced. She has abusive parents who don’t give two hoots about her, and she feels as if no one loves her and she is alone in the world. In the song on my own she talks about how the man she loves is I love with someone else and how she wishes he would love her. She knows he will never love her like that and sadly comes to terms of being alone because the single man she loves does not love her back. She is like the social out casts of today, because she is in a very bad group of people and usually people that are just looking for directions now a days end up in bad situations like her. Many people feel alone just like she does and many people these days go through though times where the person they love does not love them back. She has no where to go and no one good in her life to help her. She is in a hopeless situation of having terrible parents loving a man that will never love her and she abused by her father. No doubt she has lived a terrible life, and her situation is worst than most social out cast of our world today.

Often victims of abuse, domestic violence, sexual assault become the abusers.  It does not have to be that way. Breaking the cycle of abuse can be accomplished saving medical bills and lives.

Throughout life you can be a misfit because you look or dress differently or because you don’t think or talk like others around you. Just because you may look or dress differently or because you don’t think or talk like others around you it does not make you wrong, just different. Being different just may even bring to light a better way.

How many times did you recognize yourself as a misfit in the mirror? Still looking in the mirror? How many times did you overcome those situations you were a misfit? What do you still need to overcome?

If you have had more than one boyfriend or girlfriend, more than one job or overcome a misfit situation – you have been recycled. Being recycled in this manner means you still had plenty of good days ahead.

Continue to recycle your misfit situations for healthy growth. Stay looking in the mirror as long as you need.

 

Reverend Paul N. Papas II is a Pastoral Counselor with Narrow Path Ministries (MA and AZ) and Founder of the Family Renewal Center (AZ) www.narrowpathministries.org and www.familyrenewalcenteraz.org



Story Behind The Scars

July 5, 2019

By Reverend Paul N. Papas II

July, 2, 2019

 

 

Unless you have been exceptionally lucky (hint, I don’t believe in luck) then you have a scar or two. Some scars are visible and some are not. Do you remember the time you bumped into the table when you were three, probably not.

We get scars from accidents, surgery, combat wounds, or perhaps from being a victim of a violent crime. Physical scars can heal faster than emotional or psychological scars.  Emotional or psychological scars may need assistance from someone else. That assistance could come in the form of a listening ear or by way of trained individuals.

Scars can be tender or sensitive to the touch especially when fresh. Once healed, tapping the healed scar and deep massage around the scar are two excellent ways of speeding up the scar desensitisation process.

Healing could include forgiveness for someone who harmed you. Forgiveness does no mean forgetting.

“Most psychologists recommend mustering up genuine compassion for those who have wronged us and moving on from the past, instead of allowing bitterness and anger to perturb our emotional well-being.

It is critical to remember that forgiveness doesn’t automatically mean a reconciliation. We don’t have to return to the same relationship or accept the same harmful behaviors from someone who has hurt us.

Although burying the hatchet usually brings peace to the soul, there may be some exceptions to that advice, such as a case of sexual abuse. Sometimes a victim becomes more empowered when they give themselves permission not to forgive.

Equally, and perhaps more important, is learning to acknowledge your missteps and forgive yourself. Self-forgiveness is often the first step toward a more loving and positive relationship with yourself, and therefore with others.” (1)

“One reason we resist forgiving is that we don’t really understand what forgiveness is or how it works. We think we do, but we don’t.

Most of us assume that if we forgive our offenders, they are let off the hook — scot-free — and get to go about their merry ways while we unfairly suffer from their actions. We also may think that we have to be friendly with them again, or go back to the old relationship. While God commands us to forgive others, he never told us to keep trusting those who violated our trust or even to like being around those who hurt us.

The first step to understanding forgiveness is learning what it is and isn’t. The next step is giving yourself permission to forgive and forget, letting go of the bitterness while remembering very clearly your rights to healthy boundaries.” (2)

We have a two hundred and forty plus year old relationship I want to discuss.  This week we celebrate the birth of our country. Just like any family, group, town, state or country we have had some bumps along the way. Yes, we have accumulated some scars along the way. Despite the scars or perhaps because of the scars we are the greatest country that ever existed, warts and all.  We have the greatest country that ever existed because we have a good foundation, and because people have defended her against enemies both foreign and domestic.

Not everyone in our country agrees on defining the issues or how to address them. We have the right to disagree and peacefully air out our differences without becoming disagreeable. Violent protests are an end in and of itself and rarely produce willing converts. Violent protests create greater divisions.

My fellow veterans and those currently serving did so and do so in order to preserve our hard fought freedom and liberty.  May I suggest that we as a country look for more ways to heal our scars rather than reopening or opening new wounds?

Healing our wounds and scars will lead to glorious birthday celebrations. We can accomplish more healing by working together than we can by being at odds with each other.

What is the story behind your scars?  Do you have any scars that need to be healed, if so today is a good day to begin the healing?

Would you stand with me to help heal the scars?

Facing the Challenge (60s)

 

Reverend Paul N. Papas II is a Pastoral Counselor with Narrow Path Ministries (MA and AZ) and Founder of the Family Renewal Center (AZ) www.narrowpathministries.org and www.familyrenewalcenteraz.org

 

(1) https://www.psychologytoday.com/us/basics/forgiveness

(2) https://www.focusonthefamily.com/marriage/divorce-and-infidelity/forgiveness-and-restoration/forgiveness-what-it-is-and-what-it-isnt



Fair Play

June 7, 2019

By Reverend Paul N. Papas II

June 1, 2019

 

 

Fair play seems to be a complex concept that comprises and embodies a number of fundamental values that are not only integral to sports but are relevant in everyday life.

Fair competition, respect, friendship, team spirit, honesty, integrity, care, excellence and joy are part of fair play that can be learned, experienced and exhibited.

Fair play is really conformity to Godly rules. Cheating is obtaining advantage by unfair or fraudulent means; dishonest behavior; deception; trickery.

If you have to win by cheating you have not won.

If you alter official documents to win; you have in reality proved you are on the loosing side of the issue.

If you have hidden certain relevant information to win; you have in reality proved you are on the loosing side of the issue.

Altering official documents and hiding certain relevant information could find you in need of a good criminal attorney.

The Boy Who Always Won

There was once a boy who liked nothing more in the world than to win. He loved winning at whatever it may be: football, cards, video games… everything. And because he couldn’t stand losing, he had become an expert in all kinds of tricks and cheating. He could play tricks in practically every situation, without being noticed; even in video games or playing alone. He could win without ever being caught.

He won so many times that everyone saw him as the champion. It meant that almost no one wanted to play with him; he was just too far ahead of everyone. One person who did play with him was a poor boy, who was a bit younger. The champion really enjoyed himself at the poor boy’s expense, always making the boy look ridiculous.

But the champion ended up getting bored with all this. He needed something more, so he decided to apply for the national video games championship, where he would find some competitors worthy of himself.

At the championship he was keen to show his skills but, when he tried using all those tricks and cheats he knew from a thousand different games, well… none of them worked. The competition judges had prevented any of the tricks from working.

He felt terribly embarrassed: he was a good player, but without his cheats, he couldn’t beat a single competitor. He was soon eliminated, and sat there, sad and pensive. Finally, they announced the name of the tournament champion. It was the poor boy from home. The one he had always beaten!

Our boy realized that the poor boy had been much cleverer than him. It hadn’t mattered to the poor boy if he lost and got a good beating, because what he was really doing was learning from each of his defeats. And from so much learning he had been transformed into a real master.

From then on, the boy who had loved winning gave up wanting to win all the time. He was quite happy to lose sometimes, because that was when he would learn how to win on the really important occasions. (1)

Today’s news shows a few boys and girls who believed they were entitled to always win. They were used to cheating and covering for each other. They believed they were going to get away with their hoax that almost destroyed our Constitutional Republic. I don’t see evidence they have given up wanting to will all the time.

These few boys and girls caused a lot of good people to become anxious and fearful. These few boys and girls who ruined lives and reputations in their quest to always win continue their spiral into marginality. These few boys and girls simply can not accept the will of the people and the fact they lost. Perhaps a closer look at these few boys and girls will find they exhibit antisocial personality disorders.

Sooner or later, cheating is always uncovered. I believe these few boys and girls are headed for a great uncovering.

If you find you always have a need to win at all costs it is time to reevaluate yourself before you run into a rude awakening.

 

Reverend Paul N. Papas II is a Pastoral Counselor with Narrow Path Ministries (MA and AZ) and Founder of the Family Renewal Center (AZ) www.narrowpathministries.org and www.familyrenewalcenteraz.org

 


(1) https://freestoriesforkids.com/children/stories-and-tales/boy-who-always-won


Chick-fil-A Derangement Syndrome

April 5, 2019

By Reverend Paul N. Papas II

April 1, 2019

 

The disease has been spreading across the country with the latest outbreak being found in the San Antonio Airport area. The symptoms include HIGHsteria over false impressions and false reports of certain beliefs attributed to Chick-fil-a owners and workers.

In today’s society there is a noisy group that has lost or never learned the art of debate, instead they bully those who disagree with them. For some unknown illogical reason the noisy group mistakenly believes noise, assaults, and violence will change someone’s point of view, this is known as Chick-fil-A Derangement Syndrome.

If the Founding Fathers had Chick-fil-A Derangement Syndrome we would not have our Constitution and we would be subjects of the Queen. If the Founding Fathers had Chick-fil-A Derangement Syndrome there would not have been a War of 1812. If the Founding Fathers had Chick-fil-A Derangement Syndrome members of the military could commandeer any housing it wished without recourse by or compensation to the property owner. If the Founding Fathers had Chick-fil-A Derangement Syndrome police would not need a warrant to search your property. If the Founding Fathers had Chick-fil-A Derangement Syndrome cruel and unusual punishment would be legal.  If the Founding Fathers had Chick-fil-A Derangement Syndrome there would be no civil rights acts or equal rights.

Chick-fil-A Derangement Syndrome was on display in the Decline and Fall of the SPLC Empire (One Conservative Group Fought Back).

Chick-fil-A Derangement Syndrome was on display in the Jussie Smollett case.

Chick-fil-A Derangement Syndrome was on display after the Pennsylvania State Rep opened the House in Prayer: “At The Name of Jesus Every Knee Will Bow”

I think you get the idea.

Chick-fil-A Derangement Syndrome is not helpful to enjoying our Rights “endowed by [our] Creator … certain unalienable Rights that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness.”

It is good to keep Chick-fil-A.

It is time to eradicate the Chick-fil-A Derangement Syndrome.

It is time to practice the age old art of debate where we discuss a question by considering opposing arguments.

Here is one example of a popular debate format called “traditional” in an academic debate setting:

Stock Issues Case:
• Demonstrate that there are serious problems with the status quo
• Show that these problems are inherent to the system
• Present a specific plan (implementing the resolution)
• Show that this plan will help solve the problems without creating serious new ones

Longtime readers may remember I served on a Charter Commission for a town. The voter registration for the town was 3 to 1 Democrat. The Charter Commission make up was five Democrats and four Republicans The membership age range was from the early twenties to late sixties.  The GOP Party town chairman and Democrat Party town vice chair were members of the Commission. All members ran town wide. The Chairman of the Charter Commission sold caskets, the rest of us worked in various fields.

The Charter Commission was authorized by voters and the membership was elected at the same election. We had one year to work together to write a Charter which is akin to a Constitution. The charter needed to resolve conflicts in town laws, bylaws and state laws as they affected the town specifically, as well as provide for town boards and commissions structure and function.

The Charter Commission held weekly open meeting and several public hearings where sections of the proposed new charter were debated by the voters and commission members.

One year after the Charter was authorized and the members elected the finished product of the printed new proposed town charter was in hands of every voter to be voted up or down as a whole.  The voters approved and accepted the new charter by a comfortable margin.

The point is we volunteered to serve one year on the town Charter Commission to write from scratch the document which outlined the operation of the town and we succeeded. We succeeded because we worked together, debated, and came to agreement in full view of the public and press.

The Charter Commission is but one example of how this country of ours became great. We can do it again.

Let’s keep Chick-fil-A.

Let’s eradicate the Chick-fil-A Derangement Syndrome.

 

 

Reverend Paul N. Papas II is a Pastoral Counselor with Narrow Path Ministries (MA and AZ) and Founder of the Family Renewal Center (AZ) www.narrowpathministries.org and www.familyrenewalcenteraz.org

 

 


Problem Bigger Than The Answer?

March 1, 2019

 

By Rev Paul N. Papas II

February 26, 2019

 

 

Temporary solutions to permanent problems are never temporary or a solution.

If you always do what you always did you will always get what you always got.  Just because you do not know the answer right now, it does not mean there isn’t one.

Ever had a time when mountain dropped right down right in front of you while the walls around you closed in? Did you immediately have a panic attack or work your way out?

Are you dealing with a broken marriage? Is your spouse filing for divorce? Do you want to save your marriage but right now feel helpless? I know the answer to your problem.

Have you been dealing with significant health problems? Have your problems negatively impacted your career, marriage, parenting, finances, and your desire to be active at church? I know the answer to your problem.

Have a child who is going astray?

Just lost your job?

Got cancer?

Struggling with depression?

Not sure what to do with your life?

Now what?

Will you curl up in a corner, snivel, and cower in fear?

How do you deal with STRESS?

There is no such thing as a stress-free job in  the  world.  Everyone in his/her work is  exposed  to  tension, frustration and anxiety as he/she gets through the duties assigned to him/her. In order to make our work experience and environment as pleasant as possible, it is better that we learn the technique of moderating  and  modulating  our  personal  stress  levels

Your reaction depends upon your view.

Are you like the ten spies who came back scared and afraid of the giants in the land or are you like Joshua and Caleb?

Remember what happened when the Israelites reached the Promised Land?

They had just been rescued out of 400 years of slavery. They had walked through the Red Sea and had watched the Egyptian army drown. They had been miraculously guided through the wilderness, and been promised a land flowing milk and honey.

Eleven days after God gave them His Law and His promises, the children of Israel arrived at the border of the Promised Land. Moses chose 12 men – the top leaders out of hundreds of thousands – to explore the land and see if God was telling the truth.

After 40 days they returned with evidence: “We went into the land to which you sent us, and it does flow with milk and honey! Here is its fruit” (Numbers 13:27).

Is there evidence in your life of God’s promises fulfilled? A job, education, home,  relationship, circle of friends? Maybe you should be divorced – and God healed your marriage. Maybe you should be in jail – and your case was thrown out. Maybe you should be dead – and you were healed.

Or on the other hand, maybe your life is proof that NOT believing God’s promises is fruitless. Maybe you’re still addicted, or angry, or sad and hopeless. Maybe you’ve forgotten God’s character and God’s promises and have accepted second best – which is just what the evil one wants us to do.

Joshua and Caleb saw the same scary things as the other ten spies. Joshua and Caleb trusted God, encouraged the Israelites to believe God’s promises: “Let us go up at once and take possession, for we are well able to overcome” (v. 30).

The other 10 spies got scared by the scary things and doubted God (v. 31-33): “We are not able to go up against the people, for they are stronger than we.” They said they saw giants “and we were like grasshoppers in our own sight …”

That lack of faith spread like an infection through the entire congregation of Israelites, who promptly forgot all the miracles they had seen and doubted the nature of God – plus had the nerve to try to stone Joshua and Caleb!

Throughout human history, God has communicated His promises to us over and over, but still we demand “proof.” It’s our fallen nature to doubt, to hold off from trusting until we see everything in place in a way that makes us feel comfortable. Of course, that’s not trusting. That’s saying, God, You aren’t who You say You are.

Today, if you’re more like the 10 spies than like Joshua and Caleb, you may feel like a “grasshopper” facing a giant. All you need to do is trust. It’s as simple as that.

Enter your promised land – your daily walk with God and wherever He takes you – and watch God bless you! Now you know the answer also.

 

Reverend Paul N. Papas II is a Pastoral Counselor with Narrow Path Ministries (MA and AZ) and Founder of the Family Renewal Center (AZ) www.narrowpathministries.org and www.familyrenewalcenteraz.org



Salad Country

February 1, 2019

By Reverend Paul N. Papas II

January 29 2019

 

 

What is a salad? That is not easy to answer. It is easier to say you’ll know when you see it.  The definition of a salad includes: a usually cold dish consisting of vegetables, as lettuce, tomatoes, and cucumbers, covered with a dressing and sometimes containing seafood, meat, or eggs. any of various dishes consisting of foods, as meat, seafood, eggs, pasta, or fruit, prepared singly or combined, usually cut up, mixed with a dressing, and served cold: chicken salad; potato salad. any herb or green vegetable, as lettuce, used for salads or eaten raw. I would venture to say most people think of a salad as a part of a meal with a lettuce base. A salad is more like an incongruous mixture, a hodgepodge.

When taken as a whole a salad can be healthy, colorful, pleasing to the eye, and tasty. When some on the ingredients are eaten separately they may not be pleasing, however together they present a tasty morsel.

Toppings such as bacon bits and croutons contain unhealthy fats and can add a serious number of calories to the meal.

Additionally, nuts and seeds are a healthier option but also contain a lot of calories. If you are not particularly worried about losing weight, then there is no cause for concern, as nuts are a good source of protein and essential polyunsaturated fats that the body needs.

Furthermore, watch out for ingredients such as cheese, cured meats, and fried chicken for example, as all of these ingredients will load up the calories and they also contain unhealthy saturated fats that if consumed in excess can clog up the arteries with cholesterol and lead to serious heart problems amongst other things.

As a group America is like a salad. When taken as the whole it can be healthy, colorful, pleasing to the eye, and pleasant tasting.  Currently some of the ingredients are not pleasing, disruptive, and toxic to the whole.

Fear, anxiety, and uncertainty are being fueled by some who are charged with insuring our safely and persist in their quest to remove all locks on our windows and doors.  May I suggest that those who want all locks removed for our windows and doors be required to tear down the walls around their compounds and remove all locks on their windows and doors?

Why do those who call walls immoral have walls around their homes?  Why do those want to disarm Americans have armed security guards? The best way to lead is by example, unfortunately their actions are speaking louder than their words, and their actions contradict their silver tongue speeches. These silver tongue speeches are attempting to drive us off the cliff and evil.

Unfortunately the silver tongue speakers underestimate the forces of good in the rest of the salad, the country. We know good overcomes evil. It is not a matter of if; it is only a question of when.  History has shown that sometimes one event changes history. I don’t know what course changing event is coming, I just know it is coming.

Be watchful, be prepared, be a good ingredient, focus on the good, and look up.

 

Reverend Paul N. Papas II is a Pastoral Counselor with Narrow Path Ministries (MA and AZ) and Founder of the Family Renewal Center (AZ) www.narrowpathministries.org and www.familyrenewalcenteraz.org

 


Bounding Forward Into 2019

January 4, 2019

By Reverend Paul N. Papas II

December 31, 2018

 

 

As we bound into 2019, delving into situations, let me remind you that there is nothing new under the sun. Sometimes it might seem as though we have heard every excuse before; then comes another one.

Everything that happened before, a minute, an hour or years ago, is history. No matter how much we’d like to change history we can not. We certainly can and should learn from history and not repeat past mistakes.

It has been said that every trial that does not kill you makes you stronger. Although it may not seem like it at the time, I would say that is generally true.

Just because we have not done something before it does not mean we can’t.  Yes, experience is a good teacher. If we only relied upon what we have already done, then we are not growing. If we only relied upon what we have already done, then we’d never invent anything, never discover cures for illnesses, and never find a better way to do things. The American entrepreneurial spirit is alive and well, bounding forward.

There will always people around you to tell you how or why you can’t do something.  You can choose to listen to the naysayers in stay stuck in neutral or bound forward after carefully considering various options.

Let’s look at the upcoming 2019 version of Congress.

It has become a big tent circus with the donkeys loudly braying over the sleepy elephants.

Break out of the act now by refusing to be their captive audience.  Do to bully politicians what they do to you.  Ignore them as much as possible and ignore the mainstream and social media which make their circus performance possible. Stop giving them what they want most which is your undivided attention.  Deprive them of a 24-7 audience and ingnore their rhetoric and broken promises.

Their entire world revolves around the hatred of anyone that they can not control, hatred of Christians, conservatives and on and on.

Unfortunately the bully politicians are trying to gaslight the majority into believing that the majority must be delusional or perhaps insane, and should be controlled by a psychiatrist and be on  medication.  Your resistance and standing up to the bullies just might be the key to your sanity.

Your world is your family, community, church and trying to keep a roof over your head in increasingly trying circumstances.

Don’t stake your future on feckless, self-serving politicians.  Stake it on doing the best for your family and in these tumultuous times, keeping it together.

As far as hopes for better days in 2019, hope for the best, and plan for the worst.

Going into 2019, don’t just talk about it, bound forward and live it!

Believe in God Almighty and put Him, your family and country first.

Go bravely into 2019.

There’s nothing new about it, because 2019 will be a repeat of 2018, but this time you at least know what to expect and be ready to handle it and bound forward.

 

 

Reverend Paul N. Papas II is a Pastoral Counselor with Narrow Path Ministries (MA and AZ) and Founder of the Family Renewal Center (AZ) http://www.narrowpathministries.org and http://www.familyrenewalcenteraz.org

 

 


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