Thursday, January 17, 2008

Be Like Christ

If you are a Christian, then why are you not following Jesus Christ? Christians mean followers of Jesus Christ. If so, are we not supposed to be like Christ so that people will see our good works (our sweet fruits) and glorify our Father in heaven?

We can not be Christians and still immersed ourselves in the licentiousness and rapacity of the world. "What has God have in fellowship with Belial." We can live in this world but but not of this world.

We can not use other people as standards of spirituality. We will become vain or bitter because of that. If we have to compare ourselves, we have to compare ourselves with Christ. In any situation that we may face, especially if we are in doubt, let us ask ourselves this question. "If Christ were here, what would He have done in this situation?" Then we can be assured that our decision will be right and in accordance with His will.

Before He ascended to heaven, Jesus Christ promised His disciples the coming of the Holy Spirit and He indeed came and changed their lives forever. If we believe in Jesus Christ and are in filled by the Holy Spirit, we have been promised that we will be transformed from glory to glory until we reach the whole measure of the fullness of Jesus Christ.

How can we do this? The answer lies in Romans 12:2 which says, "Do not conform any longer to the pattern of this world but be transformed by the renewing of your mind. Then you will be able to test and approve what God's will is- His good, pleasing and perfect will."

The will of God is for us to be holy like Him and to dissociate ourselves from the sinfulness and carnality of the world. We can not have our cake and eat it too. The verse above said that we are transformed by the renewing of our minds. That means, our minds must think only godly and sublime thoughts, thoughts that edify, thoughts of loving unconditionally, thoughts of selflessness, thoughts of hope and joy, and thoughts of peace.

Let us not run our races to win worldly prizes, they are like steel weights that chain our souls. Instead, let us run our races to win the heavenly prize- to be with the Lord forevermore.

You want to be a good Christian? Be like Christ and follow Him.

Posted by Mel Avila Alarilla

Monday, January 14, 2008

Helen Keller - The Miracle Worker

Helen Keller

Helen Adams Keller

Deafblind American author, activist, and lecturer.
Born June 27, 1880(1880-06-27)
Tuscumbia, Alabama, USA
Died June 1, 1968 (aged 87)
Easton, Connecticut, USA

Helen Adams Keller (June 27, 1880June 1, 1968) was an American author, activist and lecturer. She was the first deafblind person to graduate from college. The story of how a remarkable teacher broke through the isolation the lack of language had imposed on the child, who blossomed as she learned to communicate, are staples of American folklore. What is less well known is how Keller's life developed after she completed her education: she became a radical campaigner for workers' rights and an advocate for many other progressive causes.

Early childhood and illness

Helen Keller, age 7
Helen Keller, age 7

Helen Keller was born at an estate called Ivy Green[1] in Tuscumbia, Alabama, on June 27, 1880, to Captain Arthur H. Keller, a former officer of the Confederate Army, and Kate Adams Keller, a cousin of Robert E. Lee. The Keller family originates from Germany, and at least one source claims her father was of Swiss descent.[2] She was not born blind and deaf; it was not until nineteen months of age that she came down with an illness described by doctors as "an acute congestion of the stomach and the brain," which could have possibly been scarlet fever or meningitis. The illness did not last for a particularly long time, but it left her deaf and blind. At that time her only communication partner was Martha Washington, the six-year-old daughter of the family cook, who was able to create a sign language with her; by age seven, she had over 60 home signs to communicate with her family.

In his doctoral dissertation, "Deaf-blind Children (psychological development in a process of education)" (1971, Moscow Defectology Institute), Soviet blind-deaf psychologist Meshcheryakov asserted that Washington's friendship and teaching was crucial for Keller's later developments. [3]

Helen Keller and her teacher Anne Sullivan
Helen Keller and her teacher Anne Sullivan

In 1886, her mother was inspired by an account in Charles Dickens's American Notes of the successful education of another deafblind child, Laura Bridgman, and traveled to a specialist doctor in Baltimore for advice. He put her in touch with Alexander Graham Bell, who was working with deaf children at the time. Bell advised the couple to contact the Perkins Institute for the Blind, the school where Bridgman had been educated, which was then located in South Boston. The school delegated teacher and former student Anne Sullivan, herself visually impaired and then only 20 years old, to become Keller's instructor. It was the beginning of a 49-year-long relationship, eventually evolving into governess and companion.

Sullivan got permission from Keller's father to isolate the girl from the rest of the family in a little house in their garden. Her first task was to instill discipline in the spoiled girl. Keller's big breakthrough in communication came one day when she realized that the motions her teacher was making on her palm, while running cool water over her hand, symbolized the idea of "water;" she then nearly exhausted Sullivan demanding the names of all the other familiar objects in her world (including her prized doll). In 1890, ten-year-old Helen Keller was introduced to the story of Ragnhild Kåta, a deafblind Norwegian girl who had learned to speak. Kåta's success inspired Keller to want to learn to speak as well. Sullivan taught her charge to speak using the Tadoma method of touching the lips and throat of others as they speak, combined with fingerspelling letters on the palm of the child's hand. Later Keller learned Braille, and used it to read not only English but also French, German, Greek, and Latin .

Formal education

In 1888, Keller attended the Perkins School for the Blind. In 1894, Keller and Sullivan moved to New York City to attend the Wright-Humason School for the Deaf and Horace Mann School for the Deaf. In 1896, they returned to Massachusetts and Helen entered The Cambridge School for Young Ladies before gaining admittance, in 1900, to Radcliffe College. Her admirer Mark Twain had introduced her to Standard Oil magnate Henry Huttleton Rogers, who, with his wife, paid for her education. In 1904, at the age of 24, Keller graduated from Radcliffe magna cum laude, becoming the first deafblind person to graduate from a college.


Anne Sullivan stayed as a companion to Helen Keller long after she taught her. Anne married John Macy in 1905, and her health started failing around 1914. Polly Thompson was hired to keep house. She was a young woman from Scotland who didn't have experience with deaf or blind people. She progressed to working as a secretary as well, and eventually became a constant companion to Helen.[6]

After Anne died in 1936, Helen and Polly moved to Connecticut. They travelled worldwide raising funding for the blind. Polly had a stroke in 1957 from which she never fully recovered, and died in 1960.[5]

Winnie Corbally was Helen's companion for the rest of her life.[5]

Miracle Worker - Final Scene (1962)

Posted by Mel Avila Alarilla
Brief Biography/Wikipedia/YouTube

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