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Jewel Sins [EXCLUSIVE]

STORY XV. The Man who boasted that God did not punish him for his sins, and Jethro's answer to him.That person said in the time of Shu'aib (Jethro),"God has seen many faults done by me;Yea, how many sins and faults of mine has He seen,Nevertheless of His mercy He punishes me not."God Almighty spake in the ear of Shu'aib,Addressing him with an inner voice in answer thereto,"Why hast thou said I have sinned so much,And God of His mercy has not punished my sins?"Thou sayest the very reverse of the truth, O fool!Wandering from the way and lost in the desert!How many times do I smite thee, and thou knowest not?Thou art bound in my chains from head to foot.On thy heart is rust on rust collected,So thou art blind to mysteries.Thy rust, layer on layer, O black kettle!Makes the aspect of thy inner parts foul.If that smoke touched a new kettle,It would show the smut, were it only as a grain of barley;For everything is made manifest by its opposite,In contrast with its whiteness that black shows foul.But when the kettle is black, then afterwardsWho can see on it the impression of the smoke?If the blacksmith be a negro,His face agrees in color with the smoke.But if a man of Rum does blacksmith's work,His face becomes grimed by the smoke fumes;Then he quickly perceives the impression of his fault,So that he wails and cries 'O Allah!'When he is stubborn and follows his evil practices,He casts dust in the eyes of his discernment.He recks not of repentance, and, moreover, that sinBecomes dear to his heart, so that he becomes without faith,Old shame for sin and calling on God quit him,Rust five layers deep settles on his mirror,Rust spots begin to gnaw his iron,The color in his jewel grows less and less.When you write on white paper,What is written is read at a glance;But when you write on the face of a written page,It is not plain, reading it is deceptive;For that black is written on the top of other black,Both the writings are illegible and senseless.Or if, in the third place, you write on the page,And then blacken it like an infidel's soul,Then what remedy but the aid of the Remedier?Despair is copper and sight its elixir.Lay your despair before Him,That you may escape from pain without medicine."When Shu'aib spoke these aphorisms to him,From that breath of the soul roses bloomed in his heart,His soul heard the revelations of heaven;He said, "If He has punished me, where is the sign of it?"Shu'aib said, "O Lord, he repels my arguments,He seeks for a sign of that punishment."The Veiler of sins replied, "I will tell him no secrets,Save only one, in order to try him. One sign that I punish him is this, That he observes obedience and fasting and prayer, And devotions and almsgiving, and so on, Yet never feels the least expansion of soul. He performs the devotions and acts enjoined by law, Yet derives not an atom of relish from them. Outward devotion is sweet to him, spirit is not sweet, Nuts in plenty, but no kernel in any of them. Relish is needed for devotions to bear fruit, Kernels are needed that seeds may yield trees. How can seeds without kernels become trees? Form without soul (life) is only a dream."

jewel sins

Dear brothers, our joy in today's feast is heightened by our joy in the glory of Easter, just as the splendor of a precious jewel enhances the beauty of its gold setting. Saint George was a man who abandoned one army for another: he gave up the rank of tribune to enlist as a soldier for Christ. Eager to encounter the enemy, he first stripped away his worldly wealth by giving all he had to the poor. Then, free and unencumbered, bearing the shield of faith, he plunged into the thick of the battle, an ardent soldier for Christ. Clearly what he did serves to teach us a valuable lesson: if we are afraid to strip ourselves of our worldly possessions, then we are unfit to make a strong defense of the faith. As for Saint George, he was consumed with the fire of the Holy Spirit. Armed with the invincible standard of the cross, he did battle with an evil king and acquitted himself so well that, in vanquishing the king, he overcame the prince of all wicked spirits, and encouraged other soldiers of Christ to perform brave deeds in his cause. Of course, the supreme invisible arbiter was there, who sometimes permits evil men to prevail so that his will may be accomplished. And although he surrendered the body of his martyr into the hands of murderers, yet he continued to take care of his soul, which was supported by the unshakable defense of its faith. Dear brothers, let us not only admire the courage of this fighter in heaven's army but follow his example. Let us be

We must now cleanse ourselves, as Saint Paul tells us, from all defilement of body and spirit, so that one day we too may deserve to enter that temple of blessedness to which we now aspire. Anyone who wishes to offer himself to God in the tent of Christ, which is the Church, must first bathe in the spring of holy baptism; then he must put on the various garments of the virtues. As it says in the Scriptures: Let your priests be clothed in justice. He who is reborn in baptism is a new man. He may no longer wear the things that signify mortality. He has discarded the old self and must put on the new. He must live continually renewed in his commitment to a holy sojourn in this world. Truly we must be cleansed of the stains of our past sins and be resplendent in the virtue of our new way of life. Then we can be confident of celebrating Easter worthily and of truly following the example of the blessed martyrs.

Highland Fire (Guardians of the Stone) by Tanya Anne Crosby (Oliver-Heber Books). Scotland, 1125, the Legend Begins ... For two centuries, Aidan dún Scoti's kinsmen have guarded Scotland's greatest secret, the real Stone of Destiny. Now King David seeks an alliance with the mountain Scot. But only one woman will tempt him--the accursed beauty whose father once betrayed his clan... Tempted by Revenge Cursed by Aidan's people for the sins of her father, Lìleas MacLaren is the one woman Aidan believes he is immune to ... she is also the one woman who may bring the fierce chieftain to his knees.

Loving Lady Lazuli by Shehanne Moore (Etopia Press). Only one man in England can identify her. Unfortunately he's living next door. Ten years ago sixteen year old Sapphire, the greatest jewel thief England has ever known, ruined Lord Devorlane Hawley's life. Now she's dead and buried, all the respectable widow, Cassidy Armstrong, wants is the chance to prove who she really is.

If your brother sins against you, go and tell him his fault, between you and him alone. If he listens to you, you have gained your brother. But if he does not listen, take one or two others along with you, that every charge may be established by the evidence of two or three witnesses. If he refuses to listen to them, tell it to the church. And if he refuses to listen even to the church, let him be to you as a Gentile and a tax collector. 041b061a72


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