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



Missing Them Is A Hard Thing

May 3, 2019

By Reverend Paul N. Papas II

April 30, 2019

 

 

The loss of a loved one can bring a pendulum of emotions. It is expected that a child will bury their parents. Parents care for, raise and guide their children while they shape their values.

One of the greatest traumas imaginable is when parents have to deal with the death of a child.   Producing greater stress than dealing with the death of a parent or spouse, a child’s death is especially traumatic because it is often unexpected as well as being in violation of the usual order of things in which the child is expected to bury the parent.

If you have never experienced the death of a child, it’s extremely difficult to know what to say to someone facing this type of loss. The death of a child is unnatural, unfair, and tragic.

Although the circumstances can be different, death is a permanent change of address from this side of eternity to the other. Your loved one is no longer available to call or hug. Your loved one, however, is still with you in your heart.

A remembrance of the good times is very helpful. Focusing of missed opportunities can lead to depression.   While words can never fully express how much someone means to us, language can still provide comfort, solace, hope, and even inspiration following the death of a loved one.

A parent being deployed brings a different set of anxiety and fear than a child going off to war. Parents are expected to protect their children and normally the parents are easily accessible. When children go off to war, they are protecting their parents.

There are times when elderly parents need the assistance and protection of their children. Be good to your children as they may one day make decisions for you.

Upon the death of a loved a final, a funeral service fills several important needs.

  • Funerals help us acknowledge that someone we love has died.
  • Funerals allow us to say goodbye.
  • Funerals offer continuity and hope for the living.
  • Funerals provide a support system for us, friends, family members and the community.
  • Funerals allow us to reflect on the meaning of life and death

A funeral comprises the rites, rituals, ceremonies and/or other meaningful observances that human beings conduct in order to honor or memorialize a person who died, whether held with or without the physical presence of the deceased’s remains.

Even if you never experienced it, I’m sure you can understand that the death of a child is especially painful. Everyone grieves in different ways. Sometimes celebrating the life of your departed loved one is the best way to heal.

Former Boston Red Sox relief pitcher, Rich Hill, revealed to the media on March 6, 2014 that his infant son, Brooks, passed away on February 24, reports CBS Boston. The nomadic Hill had signed with the Red Sox in January 2014 so that he could be close to his family and son, who was being treated at Mass General. Rich Hill, his wife Caitlin, and son Brice have a wonderful storey at https://www.theplayerstribune.com/en-us/articles/rich-hill-mlb-dodgers

Children are a Blessing of the Lord.  There are plenty of couples who are looking for the Blessings of children. My question is not judgmental but why would anyone choose to end the life of a Blessing of a child?

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


Related 

https://narrowpathministries.wordpress.com/2019/05/02/video-born-debate-very-much-alive-in-left-abortion-attempt-survivor/

https://www.breitbart.com/politics/2019/05/01/democrat-on-abortion-some-kids-are-unwanted-so-you-kill-them-now-or-you-kill-them-later/

https://www.breitbart.com/politics/2019/05/02/rep-bradley-byrne-condemns-horrific-abortion-comments-from-alabama-democrat/

https://www.cnsnews.com/commentary/grazie-christie/judge-issues-injunction-against-trump-title-x-rule-offers-expectant

https://www.cnsnews.com/news/article/cnsnewscom-staff/huckabee-abortion-violates-unborn-childs-5th-and-14th-amendment-rights

 


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

 

 


Talking Past or Real Conversation

November 30, 2018

By Rev Paul N. Papas II

November 26, 2018

 

 

If we don’t communicate we can’t get anything accomplished. At one time we all spoke the same language making easy to get our point across.  Many problems today can be traced back to our failure to communicate.

At one time we all spoke the same language, then came the idea to build a tower to reach the heavens.  The tower of Babel story is one of the saddest and most significant stories in the Bible. It is sad because it reveals the widespread rebellion in the human heart. It is significant because it reshaped the development of future cultures.

The descendants of Noah were living in the area of Mesopotami in Babylon. They settled in a land named Shinar. The population was growing and they all spoke one language. The people decided to build a tall, proud symbol of how great they had made their nation. The Babylonians wanted a tower that would “reach to the heavens” so that they could be like God and that they would not need Him. They began to construct a great ziggurat.

God did not like the pride and arrogance in the hearts of the people. God caused the people to suddenly speak different languages so they could not communicate and work together to build the tower. This caused the people to scatter across the land. The tower was named The Tower of Babel because the word Babel means confusion. This story is a powerful reminder of how important it is to obey God’s Word and to not think that we can build a successful but godless life on our own! (1)

We do like to hear ourselves talk and receive a physical boost when we do. Rejection could send us into a fight or flight mode. It was found that executives used “telling statements” 85% of the time, leaving a mire 15% for questions. On top of that, almost all the questions they asked were actually statements in disguise. For the most part no one was being convinced except the speaker.

To add to the failure to communicate our brain disconnects about every 12-18 seconds to evaluate and process, which means we’re often paying as much attention to our own thoughts as we are to other people’s words.

After acknowledging the problem individually the simple fix is to remember we have two ears and one mouth. We should use our ears twice as much as we speak.

There are people who have learned to communicate effectively despite their inability to speak.

Some get frustrated, anxious, and depressed and spiral downward when they know they are not heard. People who get frustrated, anxious, and depressed and spiral downward could then be treated for mental health issues, all for a failure to communicate.

Some act out and become violent when they feel their point of view is not being heard or believed. This violent acting out can cause physical harm to others and damage to property.  The damage to property and physical harm by this group is because of a failure to communicate.

The simple fix to end talking past others for all who desire to effectively communicate is to use are ears twice as much as we use our mouths. The simple fix is healthier and safer for all concerned and the country as a whole. The simple fix can be put in place one person at a time, no votes or committees are needed.

Let’s implement the simple fix today and use our ears twice as much as we use our mouths.

 

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

 

 

(1) https://www.biblestudytools.com/bible-stories/the-tower-of-babel.html


Myth v History

November 2, 2018

By Rev Paul N. Papas II

October 30, 2018

 

 

Your foundation establishes who you are, your character, and your direction.

Those who control the writing of the history books can influence future generations. The writers of history get the opportunity to select what shows up in textbooks. The writers of textbooks are however unable to change the facts of history.

Before we had written books history was orally passed down from generation to generation. One could think that over a passing of time the oral memorization and recitation of history through the generations would have distorted the material facts.

A good example of history that was rewritten is the Exodus. Some sources still call it a myth and state there is no evidence that such an event happened.  The myth supporters use their own imagination then justify and rationalize how it was not possible for such an event to happen.

As justification for their skepticism, scholars point to the lack of references in Egyptian chronicles of the period to either the Hebrews’ sojourn in Egypt or the Exodus.

But as Jeffrey Sheler points out in the book, “Is The Bible True?,” while there may be no specific mention of the Hebrews in ancient Egyptian records, there is plenty of indirect and circumstantial evidence.

One surviving document refers to a people called the “apiru,” who were workers in an unidentified building project. And this document dates from the reign of Rameses II, the pharaoh of the Exodus.

Scholars have noted the similarity between “apiru” and “Hebrew” — there is no “h” in Semitic languages. Many consider the document a reference to not only the Hebrews in Egypt, but also to their forced labor.

Even those who don’t go that far say that this document, along with others, attests to the presence of a large Semitic population in Egypt at the time of the Exodus.

What were they doing there? Forced labor.  In fact, as James Hoffmeier, a professor at Wheaton College points out, “the practice of using forced labor for building projects is only documented for the period of 1450 to 1200 [B.C.], the very time most biblical historians place the Israelites in Egypt.”

As for the absence of references to the Exodus, Sheler points out that Egyptian chronicles were much more propaganda than history. And what ancient despot would want to memorialize an embarrassing defeat?

A writer for Biblical Review offered a humorous translation of what this chronicle of defeat would have said: ” … Rameses the Great … before whom all tremble in awe … announced that the man Moses had kicked his royal [seat] for all the world to see, thus proving that God is Yahweh and the 2000-year-old culture of Egypt is a lie …”(1)

The Exodus was one of the greatest rescues in history of an enslaved group leading to the miracle of the parting of the sea. The Hebrews were up against the sea with the Pharaoh’s Army bearing down upon them. If there was ever a time for fear and anxiety to take over the crowd and their leader Moses is was then.

The importance of the parting of the Red Sea is that this one event is the final act in God’s delivering His people from slavery in Egypt. The exodus from Egypt and the parting of the red sea is the single greatest act of salvation in the Old Testament, and it is continually recalled to represent God’s saving power. The events of the exodus, including parting and crossing of the Red Sea, are immortalized in the Bible and bring to remembrance God’s saving works in their worship

God prophesied to Abraham that his descendants would become slaves in a foreign nation for 400 years, but God promised to deliver them.

Ultimately, Moses did not allow fear and anxiety to take over and he showed courage and intestinal fortitude which allowed God to work His miracle of parting the Red Sea.

A life based on a myth is a recipe for failure; it is like building your house on quicksand.

If you have the courage and the intestinal fortitude to face your fears you will grow despite your history and help make tomorrow a better day.

 

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) Copyright (c) 2000 Prison Fellowship Ministries.  “BreakPoint with Chuck Colson” is a radio ministry of Prison Fellowship Ministries.

 


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