A Journey Toward Perfection: Deny Yourself, Take Up Your Cross, And Follow Me

A Journey Toward Perfection: Deny Yourself, Take Up Your Cross, And Follow Me

by Helen Kamenos

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Overview

The disciple John often referred to himself as the “disciple whom Jesus loved” (John 13:23, John 19:26, John 20:2, John 21:7, John 21:20) because he knew the love of God personally. It was John who wrote the most quoted verses in the Gospels concerning God’s love: “For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life” (John 3:16) “He that loveth not knoweth not God; for God is love” (1 John 8) Paul also wrote extensively about God’s love, including the well-known chapter (1 Corinthians 13) on the “greatest gift” we have received from God, where he declared that if he does not have love “I am nothing.” What kind of love is this? What is required to experience this kind of love? To truly grasp God's love for us, we must understand the essence of Christ’s nature. The disciples and the early Christians knew God’s divine love intimately. This was the fire that ignited the Christian faith. The Good News is that God loves us infinitely! A Journey Toward Perfection is a comprehensive study of the attributes recorded in the Beatitudes of Matthew 5, the attributes God bestowed upon us when He created us in His image. He created us to love. These are the traits necessary to experience the love of God and crucial in learning how to love others as God loves us. These characteristics are central to our Christian spiritual growth. Learn how to cultivate an intimate experiential relationship with God, how to communicate with Him in a two-way dialogue, not only speaking to God, but also being attuned to His voice. Discover how these attributes can sustain you through the many trials and tribulations of your life. Comprehend how love truly conquers all. Experience God’s true presence in your life. Jesus called the lost, the oppressed and the broken-hearted. He called the sick, the forgotten, and the sinners. Christ called you to enter into His love. He encouraged us to take A Journey Toward Perfection, toward a loving God who extends His open arms to us even as Christ’s arms were extended on the cross. He gave us a road map to follow through the Beatitudes. By following this path toward Christ, God is revealed to us in an unprecedented way and becomes a beacon in our lives. Two thousand years ago, a fire humbly and meekly exploded into our reality, which changed the world. That fire was Christ. Take the Journey Toward Perfection and be transformed. By knowing the love of God, you will undergo a metamorphosis. You will become the butterfly that God always meant for you to be.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9781483584744
Publisher: BookBaby
Publication date: 10/22/2016
Sold by: Barnes & Noble
Format: NOOK Book
Pages: 346
File size: 506 KB

About the Author

Helen Kamenos has been an educator for over 26 years. She graduated from California State University, Northridge with a Bachelor of Arts in English. She earned her Master’s Degree in Educational Leadership. She served as a middle school teacher, high school counselor, and principal of a private school. She dreamed of writing a book one day, but never imagined she would write a book about God. Throughout Helen’s life, her passion for learning and her fervent Orthodox Christian faith have always guided her toward seeking a greater understanding of God. When she faced several years of life-changing challenges, including a battle with cancer, Helen sought the comfort of her faith. This pursuit led to an in-depth study of the Beatitudes, which set her on a journey of discovery. In the process, she experienced Christ in a more personal and intimate way. This extraordinary journey provided her with a deeper understanding of God and His divine love. In A Journey Toward Perfection, Helen shares her new found insights of living the Christian life by following in the footsteps of Christ and participating in a real, experiential relationship with our Creator.

Table of Contents

Chapter 1 Lights of the World 1

Chapter 2 The Excellency of God's Ways 7

"Be ye therefore perfect, even as your Father which is in heaven is perfect." 13

The Journey 16

Chapter 3 Being Humble 23

Comparing Ourselves to Christ 29

Denying Ourselves 31

Thanking God 35

Admitting We Are Not Always Right 37

Avoid Judging Others 39

Chapter 4 Being Mournful 43

Recognizing When We Have Sinned 47

Confessing Our Sins 50

Asking For Forgiveness 53

Repentance 56

Chapter 5 Being Meek 59

Being Submissive 61

Patience 64

Self-Control 67

Gratitude and Contentment 71

Chapter 6 Hungering and Thirsting For Righteousness 77

Perfection through Justification 80

Knowledge and Wisdom 83

Faithfulness and Courage 87

Honesty and Integrity 94

Chapter 7 Being Merciful 99

Empathy 104

Compassion 106

Reconciliation 108

Chapter 8 Being Pure in Heart 113

Examining Our Hearts 118

Prayer 124

The Lord's Prayer as a Model 128

Worship 132

Chapter 9 Being a Peacemaker 137

Ambassadors of Christ 140

The Peace of the Holy Spirit 142

Chapter 10 The Beatitudes as Levels of Christian Maturity 147

Stages of Christian Maturity According to Peter 155

The Spiral Journey toward Perfection 159

Chapter 11 Persecuted for Righteousness 163

Subtle Forms of Persecution 166

Responding to Persecution 174

Strength in Adversity 178

Convictions 180

Chapter 12 The Battle Against Evil 185

Justice 193

Desires and Passions 198

Fears and Anxieties 206

Despair and Condemnation 210

Overcoming Temptation 215

The Whole Armor of God 219

Chapter 13 Love and Charity 229

Friendship and Brotherly Love 231

Charity 232

Sacrifice 236

God, Our Father 239

Chapter 14 Faith and Hope 243

Faith in Action 246

Developing Faith 248

Trusting God 251

Waiting for God's Timing 255

Faith in Prayer 256

Faith Produces Hope 259

Chapter 15 Cultivating a Relationship With God 263

Listening to the Holy Spirit 269

Recognizing the Voice of the Holy Spirit 282

Chapter 16 Christ's Church 285

The Unity of the Church 288

Remaining Faithful to God's Teachings 289

The Church Triumphant and the Church Militant 300

Christ's Warnings to the Churches 303

The Bride of Christ 307

Liturgical Worship 309

Rewards for the Faithful 314

Chapter 17 Our Journey Revisited 321

Appendix 329

Nicene Creed 329

Communion Prayer 330

The Lord's Prayer as a Template for Our Prayers 331

References 333

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