Discussing
A Little Grace for Oprah

Mary Hulst

Leanne
December 18, 2008

One of the better Think Christian articles I have read in a long time.

Jerod
December 18, 2008

I'm glad to see Mary has a new fan. What is it about this topic that interested you?

Bob K
December 18, 2008

I can soooo empathise with that.

Moe_NYC
December 18, 2008

I agree. One of the best posts in quite sometime. Honest, transparent, full of grace and love. <br><br>Well done!

Abspoel
December 19, 2008

It's so frustrating to look at ourselves and see how we fail again and again and again... Oprah is scrutinized because she is a public figure, but she deserves our respect for being open about her own weaknesses (although it is hard to hide the facts as you are gaining so much weight!). I agree 100% with this post and this is how we must look at ourselves and at others: with God's grace.<br><br>

John
December 19, 2008

People have addictions far worse than diet coke or eating to much. I eat to much and I once for many many years smoked. It, the ashes got over everything and on everybody. It took somone I know who was having heart problems to pull me away from the cigaretts. I still think about them and love to smell the smoke even today and it's been ten years. Now to the fat I packed on after I quit smoking is my next addiction I have to get rid of. I'm not just over weight, I'm xxxxxx over weight. I know that diet and excercise can and will help me get through this, but I seem to always run up against the time factor and fall short of my goal. You see I am but human and I need someone to help me, so I pray and ask for his strength to get me through one more day. Oh, I'll get there, but it won't be easy, however I have a friend in Jesus who will help me through. In God's Grace John

Danny
December 19, 2008

It's probably safe to say that most people have fought an addiction at sometime in their life, myself included. Very good article, but oprah? Maybe if Oprah would believe in the one true God, she would have God on her side and wouldn't have to go it alone.

Arshield
December 19, 2008

But isn't that part of the point here. Most people do try to go it alone, we have grace to help them see that they don't have to. On the other hand, you seem to almost be insinuating that Christians can't be addicts, that just isn't the case. Christ can and has taken away people's addiction, but he chooses to not take away addiction much more. It is through grace and community that most people that I know have come through addiction, not through Jesus and me. Yes Oprah is not a poster child for a true Christian, but she still needs grace and we still need to give it.

Danny
December 19, 2008

It is through grace and community that most people that I know have come through addiction, not through Jesus and me.?????? Where did the grace come from?<br><br>GRACE:<br>1 a: unmerited divine assistance given humans for their regeneration or sanctification b: a virtue coming from God c: a state of sanctification enjoyed through divine grace<br><br>My main underlying point is I can't believe someone would subscribe to and support the religion of Oprah. Granted I know she is a sinner and has needs just like me but I wouldn't give her financing for her cult. What's the difference in subscribing to playboy because you think Hugh Hefner is a good person and the magazine has good articles. And no I'm not insinuating that Christians can't be addicts, we're sinners and humans too.

Jacqui
December 19, 2008

I've never seen this area but I think God allowed me to find just this article to allow grace for my self today. Thank you

Moe_NYC
December 19, 2008

Oprah is a religion? She has gained great influence, but a religion? I wouldn't go that far. Maybe people have "made her" their god. But she never claimed to be anybody's God. Hey, I can say the same about Obama. He has become a religion.... See where I am going. Chill out and enjoy the article for what it is. An example of transparency from a sinner... just like you and me.

Sharon Young
December 19, 2008

WoW!!!!!! I think that this article was well put i beleive that you said it all and left no strings attach. I could have not put it in better words myself if this is not a postive impact on those who read this i don't know, because this is so moveable that one can not move what has been said . To me if you are a god fearing person a bell should go off in all of us. We should love each other inspites of our weakness because none of us are made perfect only god love is made perfect in us.

Danny
December 21, 2008

It's just sad that Oprah doesn't believe that the only way to the Father is through Jesus Christ, His only son. John 14:6

Marc
December 22, 2008

It's weird how God uses our own failings to awake compassion for others. Imagine if Christians would look on those classed as "Sinners" (capital "S") and say: There's no difference between us, we both need Grace, and then love them as Jesus would and does.

Wblack
December 22, 2008

Chill out"? (mvivas) Danny, thank you so much for being here. My first response to this was deemed by the editor too sensitive in some regards. LOL It started "Oh throw up!" So the edit had merit by most posters standards here, it seems. You can imagine how the rest of the post went.<br><br>1) I'm obviously with Danny. Grace doesn't come form me or any mortal. I know where my Grace comes from. (The Cross)<br>2) Grace and community? Seriously? My God's Grace is sufficient. It doesn't need to be followed with an "and"........<br>3) Absolutely, I am no different from Oprah in one regard; I am a sinner.<br>4) It is really sad that some of us that call ourselves Christians could hold someone like Oprah in such high regard to defend her. She has done some wonderful things to help many people. The one thing that she hasn't ever done is acknowledged Christ for who He is.<br><br>Why? It would be occupational suicide, because Christianity is the only offensive religion in the world. Why? Because many Christians will not waiver on Biblical principles; thus condoning such hypocrisy, albeit very, very subtle and call it compassion.<br><br>Guys, gals........my point is: Why is this a “remarkable” article when we have children in our own country that will be hungry tonight, in our own communities even? Oprah is very, very wealthy. But I doubt that she has people feeding her. I am sure that she uses her own hand to lift utensils.<br><br>So.....yes, Grace is to whoever accepts Christ for whom and what He is. For those that don't.....grace is not available. Not even from posters or authors on: <a href="http://www.thinkchristian.net" rel="nofollow">http://www.thinkchristian.net</a>.<br><br>Oh....I am qualified on addictions: recovering crack addict and alcoholic since 10/21/89. Quit smoking cigarettes some 10 years ago and most recently quit chewing Copenhagen after using for over thirty years. Do I still have things that get in the way of my relationship with Christ? Of course. Do I blame them on stuff like; "a thyroid condition and the resulting fatigue and depression and changes in her metabolism led her to return to food as a comfort source." No. I take complete and full responsibility for MY actions. <br><br>Unlike Oprah, I know definitively where my grace, mercy and strength come from. Not even a portion is derived from community…no matter what Obama and mvivas say.<br><br>Thank you Danny.<br>

Nans
December 22, 2008

I have a friend, married to an abusive drug addict, who left her husband for a time to find safety in a women's shelter. We poured a lot of time and energy--and money--into helping her restart life in a new apartment. Less than one week later, she invited her husband to move back in with her because he promised to "change". Again. We were so angry at her! And him!! Yet, God convicted me on this issue of grace. How will he change if those who have access to God's grace refuse to give it to this man? I'm not saying it's an easy or simplistic answer. Addiction and abuse and codependence are ugly. Sin is ugly--mine included. Thank you for reminding me about grace. In my life and in the lives of my friends who are struggling to make their marriage survive. You helped turn my anger to prayer.

Moe_NYC
December 22, 2008

wblack. Did not Christ come to build a community of redeemed people to uphold each other in his grace? You can't be a Christian without community. There is great strength in community. Christ himself walked with disciples, a community that He himself built. Paul, always had a band of brothers that helped him with prayers, financial support and gifts. I can go on and on. My point is this. I don't care whether it was Oprah, any political figure or even you, wblack. The point of the article is that X person was transparent in her issues with weight loss. You yourself mentioned some of your struggles. <br><br>Be careful how you define grace, because the sun does rise on unbelievers as well as believers, and that is grace, whether you want to call it otherwise. This blog is a community that uses the power of the internet to help us think. Sometimes when we think, we make rational decisions, and others well, should just chill out!

Wblack
December 22, 2008

Christ came to build the church, not community by the definition of the term used tremendously in recent months. He did however come to redeem people.<br><br>It is a fact, my walk with the Lord is greatly strenghtened by those in my church community. However, there are christians throughout the world that are alone, no community, just Christ. <br>Biblical example: Where was Noahs community for over one hundred years?<br><br>The disciples followed Christ as He walked and taught them. That was a choice they made. As you might recall...a few chose not. Matthew 19:20-22 "All these I have kept," the young man said. "What do I still lack?" <br>Jesus answered, "If you want to be perfect, go, sell your possessions and give to the poor, and you will have treasure in heaven. Then come, follow me." <br>When the young man heard this, he went away sad, because he had great wealth.<br><br><br>Early Christians (church) supported Paul's ministry. Thank goodness they did. There is another post on tithing that discusses this in depth.<br><br>Finally, I mis-spoke about grace. You're right, it is bestowed upon us all as it states in Isaiah 26:10 Though grace is shown to the wicked, they do not learn righteousness; even in a land of uprightness they go on doing evil and regard not the majesty of the LORD. NIT<br><br>I personally won't defend anyone who denounces my Lord as one of many.......no matter how transparent they may be in whatever venue.<br>

Beckie Rogers
December 23, 2008

I HAVE A HARD TIME WHEN MY BROTHER WAS KILLED IN THE SAGO MINE I FELL INTO A VERY DEEP DEPERSSION. I GAINED ALOT OF WEIGHT. I AM KNOW SAVED BUT I HAVE TURNED MY BODY INTO SOMETHING I CANT STAND. I FIGHT MIND GAMES EVERY DAY WITH VANITY. MY HELP COMES FROM THE LORD I HAVE BEEN HONEST WITH GOD.IKNOW IF I'M FAITHFUL AND KEEP PRESSING INTO I WILL OVERCOME MY DEPRESSION AND WILL LOSSE WEIGHT.<br><br><br><br><br>

April
December 23, 2008

Just to answer one of your questions:<br>Gen 6:7 And Noah and his sons and his wife and his sons' wives entered the ark to escape the waters of the flood.<br>7:13 On that very day Noah and his sons, Shem, Ham and Japheth, together with his wife and the wives of his three sons, entered the ark.<br>8: 18 So Noah came out, together with his sons and his wife and his sons' wives.<br>9:1 Then God blessed Noah and his sons, saying to them, "Be fruitful and increase in number and fill the earth..."<br>9:8-9 Then God said to Noah and to his sons with him: "I now establish my covenant with you and with your descendants after you..."<br><br>COMMUNITY. And certainly not a perfect one, as we see if we continue reading, but one that God designed and commanded.<br><br>Wblack, I am heartened during this Christmas season that you are living the life I have been unable to do. I have bought my children Christmas presents with the abundance that God has provided me with, instead of giving it all away. I pray that one day I will have the courage and faith that you do to give EVERYTHING away and follow Him in complete faith. Until then, I still have the computer that I'm typing this on and a roof over my head and central heat. God bless you for your faithful ability to give all of your possessions away as you apparently have.

Wblack
December 23, 2008

Not sure where I stated that "I gave everything away" or how it is relevant to this discussion?<br><br>With regards to Noah and his family; thank you for the insight, but my family is my family. I do not consider my family to be part of a community in which I reside. If one does, I can see where community would be just as important as family. I hold my family in much higher regard than community.<br><br>Back to topic, here is an interesting video that supports why I simply do not/will not defend Oprah: <a href="http://www.jesus-is-savior.com/Wolves/oprah-fool.htm" rel="nofollow">http://www.jesus-is-savior.com...</a>

Wblack
December 23, 2008

Beckie,<br>My sentiments are towards the support of Oprah and what she supports by her own admissions with regards to Christianity, not my brothers and sisters in the Lord who may be struggling. <br>I am sorry for your loss and if I gave the impression that I am not compassionate towards those in need of a touch from our Lord. I too need his hand daily, there is no doubt about that. One of my favorite gospel songs says "Lord, I can't even walk without You holding my hand"; which is abundantly true in my life. <br>Stay focused on Him and what he is in you.........Merry Christmas.

Sistersharonblcl
December 24, 2008

WOW!!!!! I needed to hear that right what you said works well with my sold i believe that we should include god in our everthing because he is our everthing thank you god wanted me to read this i believe this is my birthday gift from god today is my birthday,tomorrow is jesus. thank's alot keep pressing you way toward the mark. MERRY CHRISTMAS TO YOU AND YOUR'S.

Sistersharonblcl
December 24, 2008

wblack i had no idea about opar because finance diffculties I' get with you later on that but hear is what i want to say to you in reference to you giving things away in no where in all of your dialogs have i seen you say that you have given up everthing for christ. I see that people read and see what they want and they take what has been said and twist it god forbid we are living among a evil commuinty. I was a productiive healthy women one day i had taken ill and just about lost everthing. I lost my car,had to sell my home to try to make it with an18/10 year old child. My 18 year old is disable and i sit here today with a roof over top of my head to like anyone else but does that mean that i gave any thing away no. I understood you very well and it's call hard times/struggles. Today is my birthday and i"ve have not one dime to even buy my children one christmas card but i say this. I could have been gone four years ago and I'am so happy and graceful to be alive and my faith in god that is christmas for me that's everthing because with out life health and strenght and jesus . No disrespect to the father that we serve what is one day christmas is every day just because you woke up. as for oprah god have mercy on her i did go to that web site and i said to myself my god. talking to you right now has made my christmas I love you in jesus name. bless you.

April
December 29, 2008

No one is asking you to defend Oprah. Just offer a little grace and love like you should to anyone. <br><br>When WE start deciding who deserves grace, we deny God's power to reach all those who need his grace, including ourselves. I just get very angry when I hear Christians "bashing" non-christians for simply being non-christians. I was a non-christian once too, and if every Christian in the world had screamed at me and told me I was going to hell, I wouldn't be a believer today. Thank God there are Christians who show God's loving grace here on earth. If everyone in heaven is as hateful as many Christians, I don't blame non-believers for wanting to skip it.

Elizabeth K
December 29, 2008

I think the confusion could possibly be cleared up in the comment thread with an explanation of the difference between the terms mercy and grace. Mary, your main point was an excellent one but mercy might have been a better term than grace. Mercy is pardoning someone for their weakness or wrong. Giving grace to someone is enabling them, or giving them the strength to successfully change.<br><br>When God gives us His grace, He does not want to leave us in our sins (and their consequences) but enables us to make lasting changes although we must walk in His grace through faith and it is there that we often stumble. In the same way, we ought to not only forgive others but help them change.<br><br>Both mercy and grace are clearly bestowed upon all people, often by way of others and community, although faith in Christ is the only final means of those gifts for eternity.

Wblack
December 30, 2008

Thanks for the kind words April. You're very loving and full of grace.<br><br>However, I am not so self-consumed to beleive that I can decide who God determines to recieve grace, nor can I deny God's power reaching whomever, wherever. He does that. <br><br>I'm not bashing poor Oprah, just acknowledging facts as she states them. Can one deny those facts so clearly pronounced?<br><br>I have certainly not screamed at anyone concerning where they may spend eternity, as we all know, that is an individual choice; Oprah has to make hers. <br><br>Finally, it is strikingly odd to me that one might define choosing a side as hateful. My Lord made no bones about choosing a side, nor do I............call it what you will.

Sistersharonblcl
June 4, 2009

wblack i have not heard from you in a while as i believe that you are a great writer and you have inspired me to fulfill my dreams of becoming a better writer in the furture and you have made me laugh lol and made me think about some of the things that you say is so open/ real/ and very true and to read what you write is truly an eye opener please write soon as i will be looking forward to hearing from you in god grace amen.

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