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Webdef: Otaku

O·ta·ku /ō·tä·ko͞o/– Noun (from Japanese): A youth whose obsession with computers and other aspects of pop culture are a detriment to their social skills.   If someone calls you otaku, are they putting you down, or giving you a compliment? Like always, context is king. When English speakers use the Japanese word, they often simply mean someone who […]

Posted in May 24, 2018

Webdef: Health

Health /helTH/ – Noun: Well-being, including freedom from injury or illness. Wellness. Wholeness.  Health. Wellness. It’s all wrapped up together, and our scripture has a lot to say about how to get from here to wellness, and how we walk as ministers along a healer’s path.   We invite you to get to know our Spiritual-Holistic-Inquiry-Process, or […]

Posted in March 7, 2018

Webdef: Pantone

This webdef page includes examples of the colors of the Spring 2018 season with their hex codes. We’ve also created a lovely montage of images taken from nature for you to download and enjoy.

Posted in February 27, 2018

Webdef: Bach Flower

Bach Flower /baCH·flou·(ə)r/ – Noun:  A self-help collection of tinctures The original Bach Flower Remedies comprise a safe and natural method of wellness self-support that was originated by the British physician and homeopath Dr. Edward Bach (September 24, 1886 – November 27, 1936). Dr. Bach, who was born in the village of Moseley, studied medicine at the University […]

Posted in January 19, 2018

Webdef: Homeopathy

Homeopathy /hō·mē·ä·pə·THē/ – Noun:  An advanced, effective, gentle system of holistic medicine that has been used for over two centuries on every continent.  Homeopathy should not be confused with herbal medicine, nutritional therapy, or any other practice. It is a distinct and integral system, unto itself, with a set of guiding principles. The North American Society of Homeopaths […]

Posted in January 19, 2018

Webdefs: BitDaf, Bitcoin

Bitdaf /bit·daf/ – Noun: Contributing highly appreciated bitcoin to a public charity. Bitcoin /bit·koin/ – Noun: A type of digital currency. Specified in units, bitcoin is considered a cryptocurrency because of the encryption techniques used to regulate the generation and transfer of the units.    Bitcoin was created in 2009 after being described in a White Paper […]

Posted in November 13, 2017

Webdef: Karoshi

Karoshi / ka·rō·shē/ – Noun: A Japanese word meaning death by overwork.   The bible cautions us to have a day of rest, but there are many reasons why this can be difficult or impossible, given the pressures for survival.  Overwork can harm our health, to the point where it can actually lead to an early death. In […]

Posted in October 29, 2017

Webdef: Blasphemy

Blas·phe·my /ˈblasfəmē/ – the act of purposefully reviling or ridiculing sacred things, often with the purpose of giving offense.  From Late Latin blasphemia (speaking contemptuously or impiously). In one of the most historically misused passages, Mark 3:22-30, Jesus states, “he that shall blaspheme against the Holy Ghost hath never forgiveness, but is in danger of eternal […]

Posted in August 2, 2017

Webdef: Post Traumatic Growth

Post Traumatic Growth / pōst trəˈmatik grōTH/ – Noun: The process of emotional, psychological or spiritual development that occurs in response to distressing or disturbing experience.   The Bible is filled with references to trauma, and very human reactions to this trauma. Many times, the result was great spiritual growth.  This is why Paul, in his […]

Posted in May 10, 2016

Webdef: Takotsubo

Takotsubo /tä·kō·tso͞o·bō/ Noun: A transient cardiomyopathy also known as broken heart syndrome. The Japanese word Takotsubo refers to an atypical (unusual) ballooning syndrome, or stressed induced cardiomyopathy where there is a sudden, yet temporary, weakening of a portion of the heart muscle (the pumping chamber in the left ventricle). It has been popularly christened “broken heart syndrome” because […]

Posted in May 1, 2016

WebDef: Causistry

cas·u·ist·ry /kaZHəwəstrē/ — Noun: The use of clever, perhaps intentionally subtle and often unsound reasoning, especially in relation to moral questions.  A person engaging in causistry can have the intention to deceive, or to defend an action or feeling as morally just.  A theoretical rule is chosen that appears to resolve some particular instance of a moral […]

Posted in April 16, 2016

Webdef: Podfade

Podfade /pädfād/ – Noun: The experience where a podcast that started strong begins to have episodes appear less frequently, or the content of the podcast grows less compelling. Slowly, the podcast fades into obscurity or oblivion. We’ve just launched our first podcast, featuring The Lord’s Prayer in many languages. We are working hard in hopes we don’t […]

Posted in April 6, 2016

Webdef – Yarnbombing

Yarnbombing / yärn’bäm’iŋ/ – Noun:  A form of street art where objects in the public eye are cloaked, at least in part, with yarn of any form. Yarnbombing, also known as yarn storming, or graffitti knitting, is a relatively new, viral street art that’s found in cities large and small, all across the world.  It is […]

Posted in March 30, 2016

Webdef: Labyrinth

Lab·y·rinth /lab’ə’rinθ/ — Noun: A maze of paths or passages with symbolic or impenetrable borders, as in a garden. In Christian practice, the labyrinth leads inward to the center, then outward again, and the path itself is winding, echoing life. Ever wonder how to walk a labyrinth?  The pilgrim walking the labyrinth often removes shoes […]

Posted in February 3, 2016

WebDef: Theodicy

Theo·di·cy /θiēˈädəsē/ – Noun: Arguments in light of the presence of evil that vindicate God as  forever good, loving, and powerful. For ideas on how to wade into these waters, see also our handy How2 entry on Theodicy/Apologetics and on “What Not to Say to the Suffering. What are WebDefs? WebDefs – simple definitions of key terms relating to […]

Posted in August 15, 2015

WebDef: Dedication

Dedication  /ˌdedəˈkāSH(ə)n/ –  Noun: The quality of being wholeheartedly committed to a purpose. The following song, by the band A Moment’s Worth illustrates dedication beautifully:Start Where You Are by A Moment’s Worth Grateful thanks to A Moment’s Worth for allowing us to embed this content. Ten Biblical Examples of Dedication Jesus – was willing to live and die for us because of […]

Posted in July 19, 2015

WebDef: Martial Art

Martial Art /märSHəl ärt/ – Noun: Codified systems hailing from combat practice using physical skill and coordination, often without weapons. Tai Chi Chuan /tī CHē CHwän/ – Noun: A Chinese martial art approximately meaning “supreme ultimate first,” emphasizing meditative calm and overall physical health. It exercises mind and body, with a series of slow, controlled […]

Posted in July 11, 2015

WebDef: CINO

CINO  /sē nō/ – Acronym: This acronym stands for “Christian in Name Only.” It is used as a perjorative term, to describe self-avowed Christians who don’t live up to the speaker’s standards as a Christ follower.   A Word to Those Hurling Epithets Are you, yourself, a Christ follower? If so, you will understand how it’s not possible to […]

Posted in June 19, 2015

Webdef: Posidemic

Posidemic  /päzəˌdemik/ – Compound Noun: The contagious spread of something beneficial. The idea of a posidemic is the similar to an epidemic, in that it refers to contagion, but differs in that it specifically refers to the spread of something positive. Often, the term is used to relate to ideas, which also can take hold and spread. The spread […]

Posted in May 18, 2015

Webdef: Umuganda

Umuganda – /o͞o’mo͞o’gändə/ – Noun a “day of global service.” The word literally means “coming together towards a common outcome,” and is expressed as compulsory cleanup effort by citizens in their home towns. Implemented as a tool for reconciliation and strengthening societal ties, the practice is now embraced at all levels. Although some choose to […]

Posted in May 11, 2015

WebDef: Word Cloud

A Word Cloud is an often beautiful representation of the ideas contained in a document.  Words that are mentioned most often are represented in a larger font size than words that appear less often. Here, a few examples of word clouds, created at wordle.net, from the textbook for our forthcoming class, The Healer’s Path.  Does […]

Posted in May 10, 2015

WebDef: Acceptance

Accep’tance /əkˈseptəns/ – Noun: The quality of being received as adequate or suitable, typically to be admitted into or remain a part of a group.  To provide, or to feel, a  sense of welcome or favorable reception. The following quote by American author Mark Twain spotted on the side of a bus, in San Francisco: “I have always […]

Posted in May 6, 2015

WebDef: Public Trust Doctrine

Public Trust Doctrine  /pəblik trəst däktrən/ – Compound Noun: The principle that the government has a fiduciary responsibility to maintain certain resources for the public’s reasonable use. The public trust doctrine holds that governments can and must protect vital resources for the whole of the public. The doctrine can be traced back to ancient Roman times, when the emperor […]

Posted in April 22, 2015

WebDef: Revenge Porn

Revenge Porn  /rəˈvenj pôrn/ – Compound Noun: The abusive act of  posting (or blackmailing with threats of posting)  images of a sexual nature, without the subject’s consent.  Any image that would threaten a person’s honor or inspire shame would fit this definition, even if it isn’t explicit. So, in some cultures, even unveiled hair or […]

Posted in April 17, 2015

Webdef: Pride

Pride /prīd/ Noun: Preoccupation with self. One of the seven deadly sins. We live in interesting times, when words gain new meanings. For some, the word pride is associated with dignity, and standing up for one’s rights as children of God.  It’s good to recognize your worth and not allow yourself to be trod upon. […]

Posted in April 16, 2015

Webdef: Mastery Glimpse

Mastery Glimpse /mast(ə)rē glimps/ – Noun: A partial, momentary, shepherded experience of excelling beyond current attainment that helps a person envision self as future master. A gift from master to beginner. Mastery Glimpses allow a beginner to taste what it might feel like to be really successful at something, in the future.  As we envision […]

Posted in November 7, 2014

WebDef: Pentecost

Pen·te·cost /pentəˌkôst/ – Noun: The Sunday marking the descent of the Holy Spirit on the disciples of Jesus after His Ascension.  Pentecost Sunday is observed ten days after Ascension Thursday, and seven weeks after Easter, concluding the Easter Season.  The word hails from the Greek, Πεντηκοστή (literally fiftieth), referring to the fiftieth day after Easter. It coincides with the […]

Posted in June 8, 2014

WebDef: Exegesis, Eisegesis, Hermeneutic

Bib·li·cal Ex·e·ge·sis /eksiˈjēsis/- Noun: Structured method for analysis and interpretation of biblical text.   From the Greek ἐξηγητής.  Ei·se·ge·sis /ˈīsəˈjēsis/ – Noun: To draw in purely subjective interpretations unsupported by the text.  <<Note: avoid doing this>> Her·me·neu·tic /hərməˈn(y)o͞odik/ – Adj: Objective, explanatory, esp. regarding texts. The study of methodical principles of interpretation. By biblical exegesis, we […]

Posted in May 10, 2014

WebDef: Grief

Grief /grēf/ – Noun: The keenly felt sorrow over a loss, separation, or death. Elisabeth Kübler-Ross’ famous book, On Death & Dying, identified stages of grief: denial, anger, bargaining, depression, and acceptance.  However, not everyonegoes through the same stages in the same order. We all suffer, but our experience is uniquely our own. Select Bible Verses […]

Posted in May 3, 2014

WebDef: Admonish

Ad·mon·ish /ədˈmäniSH/ – Verb: To remind, reprove, or urge to right action, in a mild and good-willed manner, for a person’s well-being. First among the spiritual works of mercy, along with instructing the ignorant, counseling the doubtful, comforting the sorrowful, bearing wrongs patiently, forgiving injury, and praying for the living and the dead, is admonishing […]

Posted in May 3, 2014

WebDef: Light

Light /līt/ – Noun: A form of energy known as electromagnetic radiation; the quality of illumination that shines in contrast to darkness.  A friend is one on whom you can rely, and a close friend is one in whom you can trust. While the electronic age has accustomed us to using the word friend quite loosly – some folks […]

Posted in April 21, 2014

Webdef: Friend

Friend /frend/ – Noun: One who shares a connection of affection, regard, support or trust. The difference between a friend and a friendly acquaintance is that a friend is someone whose connection is stronger. You can rely on a friend in a way you would not rely on an acquaintance. While the electronic age has […]

Posted in April 20, 2014

WebDef: Thoughts, Thunks

Thought /thôt/ – Noun: an idea, opinion, or picture formed in the mind about the past, future, or present.  Thunk /thəngk/ – Noun: a pre-thought thought. An idea that is not original. A.N.T. (Automatic Negative Thought) /ant/ – Noun: gloomy, cynical, negative, complaining and depressing thoughts that are self-defeating in nature. Common ANTs include: guilt-trip, fortune-telling, mind-reading, catastrophizing, filtering […]

Posted in April 20, 2014

WebDef: Gluttony

Glut·ton·y /glətn-ē/ – Noun:  Habitual overindulgence; the inordinate consumption of more than is needed or healthful. Gluttony  is one of the Seven Deadly Sins, and traces its roots back to pride. See also our other topical WebDefs, such as the comprehensive post on sin, as well as the other “deadly” sins, including pride, greed, envy, […]

Posted in April 20, 2014

WebDef: Traffic

Traffic / ˈtrafik/  – Noun: to trade in something illegal. In “human trafficking” this is to treat humans as possessions and as subject to involuntary abduction, transport, or exploitation, or sale.   Human Trafficking. It’s almost unthinkable that it still exists, in the 21st century. Yet sadly, it does. Some would wrongheadedly argue that the Bible […]

Posted in April 19, 2014

WebDef: Isolation

I·so·la·tion /īsəˈlāshən/ – Noun: The experience of being set or placed apart; out of contact; detached or separated so as to be alone. We all experience isolation from time to time. Since the dawn of history, societies have used isolation as a means of removing a perceived problem from their midst. The experience of painful aloneness is […]

Posted in April 14, 2014

WebDef: Education

Ed·u·ca·tion /ejəˈkāshən/- Noun: the act of sharing knowledge, skills, or experience. Mis·ed·u·ca·tion /misˈejəˈkāshən/- Noun: the communication of information that, while believed to be true, is actually misleading.  We participate in education whenever knowledge, skills or experience is passed along from one to another in any formalized manner, whether through a school, an apprenticeship, or a group study or […]

Posted in April 13, 2014

WebDef – Nosegay

Nose·gay /nōzˌgā/ – Noun: A small, sweetly scented bunch of flowers, used to offset unpleasant odors. The word “nosegay” is from Middle English, meaning “ornament for the nose.”  The little, fragrant bouquets were  customary in Europe in the middle ages, before the widespread installation of plumbing. They were helpful in offsetting the often overwhelming “scent” of […]

Posted in April 11, 2014

WebDef: Hunger

Hun·ger / həngər/– Noun: discomfort or weakness caused by lack of nourishment. Related Definitions Food / fo͞od/ – Noun: material taken for nourishment. Food in·se·cur·i·ty – /insiˈkyo͝oritē/ -Compound Noun: inconsistent access to adequate food, due to lack of money or other resources. Select Bible Verses on Spiritual Hunger Blessed are they which do hunger and thirst […]

Posted in April 7, 2014

WebDef: Homelessness

Home·less·ness /hōmlisnis/ – Noun: the state of lacking fixed, adequate shelter.  Select Bible Verses on Homelessness And if thy brother be waxen poor, and fallen in decay with thee; then thou shalt relieve him: yea, though he be a stranger, or a sojourner; that he may live with thee.  Take thou no usury of him, or […]

Posted in April 7, 2014

WebDef: Sensitivity

Sensitivity /sensiˈtivitē/ – Noun: quality of having awareness or responsiveness to the feelings of others. Care with our communications is becoming more and more crucial, as WWW brings these communications across the globe in nanoseconds, and all the world becomes one small interconnected global village. This category includes: a gentle art of nonviolent communication, stigma […]

Posted in April 6, 2014

WebDef: Sustainable

Sus·tain·a·ble /səˈstānəbəl/ – Noun: Practice that can be upheld or defended, and is viable over the long term. Top 10 Bible Verses on Sustainability And God called the dry land Earth; and the gathering together of the waters Seas: and God saw that it was good. And God said, Let the earth bring forth grass, the herb yielding […]

Posted in April 6, 2014

Webdef: Wisdom

Wis·dom /wizdəm/ – Noun: The nature of having true understanding and discernment. The Bible is replete with wisdom. Some have mused that its letters could stand for Basic Instructions Before Leaving Earth. That said, The Bible isn’t always easy to crack open.  Here’s a little biblical wisdom on how to delve into biblical wisdom:   Take Rev. […]

Posted in March 29, 2014

Webdef: Haiku

Hai·ku /hī’ko͞o/ – Noun:  Minimalist poetic form  following a 3-line, 5-7-5 syllable structure, hailing from Japan, often evoking nature to point to universal truths. In the traditional Japanese form, Haiku often included a surprise juxtaposition in the last line. One of Haiku’s most famous master practitioners was Matsuo Kinsaku, popularly known as Basho (1644-1694). Basho lived in Japan’s […]

Posted in March 5, 2014

WebDef: Religion

Re·li·gion /riˈlijən/ – Noun: Set of beliefs about the nature of the world and one’s relation to it; the way a person relates self to the greater picture. At its best, religion offers insights into the deeper meaning of life itself, shedding light on the reason we are here, helping to provide a sense of purpose and sacred belonging.  At […]

Posted in March 3, 2014

WebDef: City

City /sitē/ – Noun: An area of dense human population that has mass and permanence and that meets basic human needs, such as for work, housing, education and recreation. Cities are as diverse as flowers.  Some cities, such as Los Angeles, sprawl so widely that most residents depend on cars. Others are so compact that […]

Posted in February 23, 2014

WebDef: Justice

Jus·tice /jəstis/ – Noun: Moral rightness, fairness. The Bible is replete with stories and teachings about justice. There are enough, in fact, that an edition of the Bible exists, pointing them out in orange (see povertyandjusticebible.org). The Old Testament: Widows and Orphans When reading the Old Testament (Hebrew Bible)  you might notice the term “widow and orphan” […]

Posted in February 21, 2014

WebDef: Grace

Grace /grās/ – Noun:  seemingly effortless beauty of form and motion. In Christian contexts, an outpouring of loving-kindness, mercy, favor, and blessing unrelated to effort or merit. Amazing grace is the stuff of many a Christian song.  We may find the concept amazing simply because it bears no relationship with anything we’ve done for ourselves. It’s entirely unmerited.  It’s a gift from […]

Posted in February 21, 2014

WebDef: ichariba chode

ich·a·ri·ba chode /ē’chärēbəˈchōd/ – Phrase: Okinawan phrase meaning “having met, we are as siblings.” Rarely will you find an entire phrase as a WebDefs entry. However, this phrase from Okinawa is worth our attention.  In contrast to members of Japanese society as a whole, Okinawans are among the longest lived, happiest people on earth.  A documentary […]

Posted in February 20, 2014

WebDef: Karoshi

Kar·o·shi /käˈrōshē/ – Noun: Death by overwork. Karoshi, 過労死,  is a Japanese term relating to the occupational sudden death due to job-related exhaustion. Generally, the cause of death is reported as heart attack or stroke, but the deaths are commonly thought to arise from the workplace culture of “voluntary” unpaid overtime and a process known as Japanese Production […]

Posted in February 19, 2014

WebDef: Scripture

Scrip·ture /skrip’chər/ – Noun: The sacred writings of a religion. In a Christian context, scripture refers to text from the Hebrew Bible (Old Testament) and New Testament. Taken together, they form what we commonly refer to as The Bible. Scripture is not all alike; there are various genres of scriptural writings in the Bible:  Genres in Christian Scripture History – […]

Posted in February 18, 2014

WebDef: Canonical

Ca·no·ni·cal /kəˈnänikəl/ – Adj: officially accepted into the list of recognized scripture.  From the Greek κανών, for measuring stick. The Christian Bible is made up of a number of distinct books, beginning with Genesis, Exodus, Leviticus, Numbers, Deuteronomy, and so on, through Revelation.  This collection of books that gelled gradually in a process that took hundreds of years, […]

Posted in February 18, 2014

WebDef: Omnipresence

Om·ni·pres·ence  /ämnəˈprezns/ – Noun: Existing everywhere, on all planes and at all times. God is always with us, at once transcendent – greater than us – and also immanent – nearer than our very breath. God is everywhere, and at every time: past, present and future. This is what we mean by the omnipresence of God. Select […]

Posted in February 18, 2014

WebDef: Miracle

Mir·a·cle /mirikəl/ – Noun: A spontaneous, wondrous, and unexpected event expressing God’s divine will and transcending human understanding. When any event, big or small, inspires awe and wonder, and turns our attention to God, that event might be considered a miracle, by some definitions. By other definitions, the only true miracles are events that transcend the very laws of […]

Posted in February 18, 2014

WebDef: Strife

Strife /strīf/ – Noun: Angry, painful disagreement; bitter conflict. Few of us enjoy strife, yet so often our own actions can play a part in disturbing the very harmony we profess to seek. The following biblical passages discuss strife, and provide guidance about how to live a more tranquil, peaceful, harmonious life. Select Bible Passages […]

Posted in February 18, 2014

WebDef: Discord

Dis·cord /diskôrd/ – Noun: a combination that is antagonistic and displeasing, confused or harsh. Although discord is unpleasant, it is sometimes necessary. This is never more true than when it disturbs a false peace or an unjust status quo.  Jesus may have recognized this disruptive influence when He said that He came to bring not peace but […]

Posted in February 18, 2014

WebDef: Abuse

A·buse  /əˈbyo͞oz/ – Noun: To use improperly, unjustly, or to harmful effect. The Bible is clear in teaching love, kindness and respect, and refraining from harm of self or others. Its pages admonish against abuse in any forms, such as the abuse of authority, the abuse of another person, or the abuse of drugs and alcohol that harm your […]

Posted in February 17, 2014

WebDef: Suffering

Suf·fer·ing /sʌfərɪŋ/- Noun:  the experience of distress; a part of the human condition. So universal is suffering, so much a part of the human condition, that the late Irish poet Seamus Heany entitled one of his poems, simply, “Human Beings Suffer.”1  We all experience distress when our body feels pain or when we suffer loss or  unwelcome change in our lives. But […]

Posted in February 16, 2014

WebDef: Solidarity

Sol·i·dar·i·ty /sälə’dəritē/ – Noun: Purposeful unity. Also, like-minded cooperation to promote a common cause. You are not alone. The Bible makes it clear: God will never abandon nor forsake us. Even so, it is part of the human condition to feel alone and abandoned, from time to time. From the quotes below it becomes clear: God loves you, […]

Posted in February 16, 2014

WebDef: Cult

Cult (kŭlt) – Noun: A group misled from truth, often by a charismatic leader. Cults come in many shapes and sizes, and some of their tell-tale attributes may not be immediately apparent.  They tend to be easy to enter and hard to leave, and use techniques such as mind control and friend bombing to persuade new people to […]

Posted in February 3, 2014

WebDef: Temptation

Temp·ta·tion /tem’tāshən/ – Noun: An urge to pull away from what is wise, right, and good. Temptation is seemingly everywhere. Even Jesus, after his baptism and before his public ministry, suffered temptation. His temptations, like our own, spanned three realms: comfort, status, and power. Each time, the devil used crafty language and planted seeds of doubt. Each time, Jesus responded […]

Posted in February 1, 2014

WebDef: Wrath

Wrath /raθ/ – Noun: extreme and vengeful anger. Wrath is one of the Seven Deadly Sins, and traces its roots back to pride (wounded pride, or pride involved in taking vengeance). See also our other topical WebDefs, such as the comprehensive post on sin, as well as the other “deadly” sins, including pride, greed, envy, […]

Posted in February 1, 2014

WebDef: Apocryphal

Ap·o·cry·phal /əˈpäkrəfəl/ – Adj: Of dubious authenticity or questionable authorship. Apocryphal texts are considered entirely outside the scope of the canon. That is, they are not accepted as a part of the divine scripture.  These apocryphal writings should not be confused with deuterocanonical (secondary) writings, which are found in some versions of the Bible, or biblical Apocrypha, which in some […]

Posted in February 1, 2014

WebDef: Theology

The·ol·o·gy /θēˈäləjē/   – Noun: The study of the nature of God and religious belief.  Religious beliefs and theory when systematically developed (e.g., Judeo-Christian theology). The•o•log•i•cal   /θēəˈläjikəl/ – Adj: Of or relating to the study of theology.   What are WebDefs? WebDefs – simple definitions of key terms relating to ministry and healing arts – are a regular feature […]

Posted in January 24, 2014

WebDef: Generosity

Generosity /dʒen·əˈrɑs·ət̬·i/ – Noun: A habit of giving what is needful for another’s well-being, without expectation of reciprocity. Generosity is a healthy habit that, when practiced regularly, brings greater joy, peace and wellness. Generosity isn’t the same as giving, which is why our definition is specific: whatever is needful.  Sometimes, what is needful can be painful to give, such as when […]

Posted in January 23, 2014

WebDef: Armor

Armor /ˈɑr·mər/ – Noun: Strong covering. From a biblical perspective, that which provides spiritual protection. In the difficult and embattled world, how can we protect ourselves? Is it even possible?  According to the bible, we can… with spiritual armor.  The armor has a quality of light, and every piece of spiritual armor provides a distinct sort of protection: truth – […]

Posted in January 23, 2014

WebDef: Prayer

Prayer /preər/– Noun: A state of being where the focus is on the connection with God. Prayer takes many forms, including conversation, contemplation, and action. Healing Prayer /hēliNG·preər/ – Noun: A solemn request to a transcendent Power for relief from some suffering or restoration of wellness. It involves a requestor, one whose behalf the request is made, One(s) being addressed, […]

Posted in January 23, 2014

WebDef: Joy

Joy  /dʒɔɪ/ –Noun: A deep feeling of exuberance. An inner attitude of rejoicing that is experienced more deeply than happiness and can abide even in the presence of difficult emotions or circumstances.  Joy, or an inner attitude of rejoicing, is experienced more deeply than happiness. Unlike happiness, Joy is not an emotion tied to our current, personal state of […]

Posted in January 23, 2014

WebDef: Parables

Parable /pær·ə·bəl/ – Noun: A relatable story that contains a deeper meaning. Jesus did much of his teaching using parables, explaining to his disciples that those who sought God would get the deeper meaning, while the truth would be hidden from unbelievers (Matthew 13:10-17).   By stating that the truth is hidden more deeply, the Gospels […]

Posted in January 23, 2014

WebDef: Sin

Sin /sɪn/– Verb: Moral failing, missing the mark, or falling short. Turning away from what is good and right in a way that distances us from the joyful experience of the presence of God. While some would define the noun, we chose to define the verb. We did this in order to highlight the volitional nature of sin: sin involves […]

Posted in January 23, 2014

WebDef: Hope

Hope /hōp/ — Noun: A deep and abiding positive orientation; a firm and flexible trust, resting squarely on faith (the substance of things hoped for). The ability to hold on to hope – to have resiliency of hope in light of changing circumstance – is a mark of spiritual maturity and strength. For this reason, we say […]

Posted in January 23, 2014

WebDef: Life

Life /lɑɪf/ – Noun: Existence, being, animation, the ability to grow and change. Eternal life: a transcendent reality that can be experienced now has an indestructible nature stretching beyond death and the grave. Life’s Source: the breath of God. Select Bible Verses on Life In the way of righteousness is life; and in the pathway […]

Posted in January 23, 2014

WebDef: Kosher

Ko·sher /koʊ·ʃər/ – Adjective: Anything genuine, acceptable, and legitimate. The word originally meant food that conforms to kashrut (Jewish dietary law), first set out in the Torah, in the books of Leviticus and Deuteronomy, as well as in the Talmud. Jewish dietary law is about more than simply health and cleanliness. The practice of discernment, of […]

Posted in January 23, 2014

WebDef: Repent

Re·pent /rɪˈpent/ — Verb: To sincerely turn back; to turn away from wrongdoing, and towards God. The call to repentance is found throughout the Bible. In this context, a sincere repentance is marked by a recognition that our self-centeredness is actually hurting not just others but ourselves as well. Sometimes, even when we have a sincere desire to […]

Posted in January 23, 2014

WebDef: Faith

Faith /feɪθ/ — Noun: A deep and abiding knowing, even as the mind or senses may not fully comprehend. The trust and confidence that faith inspires can enable us to act with boldness and compassion. Faith quells fear, bringing serenity in its place. Faith knows deeply even as our mind does not quite understand. It holds fast to the promise […]

Posted in January 23, 2014

WebDef: Christian

Chris·tian /krisCHən/ – Noun: One who self-identifies as a follower of Jesus Christ, specifically, and sees Jesus as more than just one of many ascendant masters or prophets whose teachings are of general positive value. Rather than merely appreciating Jesus, a Christian works to “enter a narrow gate” by turning from old ways (Matt 7:13-14) […]

Posted in January 23, 2014

WebDef: Adversity

Ad·ver·si·ty /ædˈvɜr·sɪ·t̬i/ — Noun: Event or situation experienced as difficult, unpleasant or fraught, such as sickness or loss. Adversity is a part of everyone’s life, because it is a part of the human condition. Even if we live in relative comfort, we all eventually grow old, and we all die. Although it is possible to bring some adverse experiences on ourselves […]

Posted in January 23, 2014

WebDef: Discern

Dis·cern /dɪˈsɜrn/ — Verb: To perceive a critical difference; to distinguish. “The way is broad, and the gate is wide, that leads to destruction,” Jesus teaches. It takes discernment to stay on course and keep to the narrow path.  Consider the experiences that come our way – whether they are interior thoughts or things that take place […]

Posted in January 23, 2014

WebDef: Nonharming

Non·har·ming /nɒnˈhɑːmɪŋ/ – Adj: Quality of sensitivity to harm prevention; commitment to promoting wholeness and healing through word, thought, and deed. As used at NHM Ministrants, nonharming goes beyond not causing damage or inflicting injury. It is an active stance, describing those people and ministries who are especially sensitive to harm prevention, seeking instead to bring wholeness and healing. […]

Posted in January 8, 2014

WebDef: Charity

Charity  /ˈtʃær·ɪ·t̬i/ – Noun: The voluntary provision of help or relief. By charity, we often mean acting selflessly for the betterment of others.  However, the word can also be used in to mean an institution or organization that exists to provide such help. It can also refer to an outlook, regarding the relationship between self and others. Moses Maimonedes, a Jewish […]

Posted in January 7, 2014

WebDef: Mercy

Mer·cy /mərsē/ – Noun: Kind, benevolent treatment,  especially when it is within one’s power or rights to act harshly; forbearance. It is within each of our power to show mercy, daily, in our own circles of influence. When we show mercy towards others, we help heal a hurting world.  In the Christian tradition, theologians have identified both spiritual […]

Posted in January 7, 2014

WebDef: Chanukah

Cha·nu·kah /ˈhɑː.nə.kə/ – Noun: A lesser Jewish holiday that begins on the 25th day of Kislev and runs for eight days. Also known as the Jewish festival of lights.  Chanukah, or the festival of lights, celebrates a miraculous occurrence at the rededication of the temple in Israel. The second temple had been looted, and Judaism outlawed. An altar to Zeus was placed […]

Posted in December 1, 2013

WebDef: Peace, Shalom, & Nonviolence

Peace /piːs/ – Noun: Quiet goodness and tranquility; calm, harmonious balance, free from danger and from iniquity. Non·vi·o·lence / nänˈvīələns/ – Noun: The favoring of peaceful means of advancing one’s objectives. Peace·mak·er /pēsˌmākər/- Noun: A person who works towards reconciliation, restoration, and harmony. Sec·ur·i·ty  /siˈkyo͝oritē/ – Noun: State of being free from danger. Sha·lom /Shäˈlōm/ שלומ – Noun: A […]

Posted in September 8, 2013

WebDef: Beatitudes – Jesus’ Eight Happinesses

Beatitude /bēˈati’to͞od/- Noun: State of supreme happiness or blessedness. In addition to teaching through is own example of loving, nonviolent service, Jesus’ main teaching came in the form of questions, parables and a few large public sermons.  The Gospel of Matthew sums up Jesus’ official teaching in The Sermon on the Mount. Inside this sermon are the […]

Posted in August 26, 2013

WebDef: Iconography

I·con·o·gra·phy /īkəˈnägrəfē/ – Noun: Visual imagery used to convey meaning beyond the surface level. Also, the identification, description, and classification of signs and symbols.  >>more  It is said that a picture is worth a thousand words. This is the basis of the art of iconography, the conveying of meaning through symbolic means, beyond or without the aid […]

Posted in August 23, 2013

WebDef: Death

Death /deθ/ – Noun: A permanent cessation of all vital functions; an irreversable ending. From a Christian perspective, the moment of the soul’s departure, as the breath of God no longer animates the body. Death is the separation of the soul from the body, accompanied with the permanent cessation of  that body’s life-giving (vital) functions. […]

Posted in July 29, 2013

WebDef: Perseverance

Per·se·ver·ance /pər-sə-ˈvir-əns/– Noun: Steadfastness of purpose despite obstacles, delays, setbacks or discouragement.   Perseverence, or staying power, is one of seven key pillars in our Methodology for Compassionate Work. Sometimes, our vision takes time to come to fruition. And when it does, it’s easy to grow disheartened. This is nothing new; it’s part of the human condition. The […]

Posted in June 28, 2013

WebDef: Feedback

Feed·back /fēdˈbak/ – Noun: Information gathered to assess efforts as to whether they are producing a desired effect. Feedback is one of seven key pillars in our Methodology for Compassionate Work.  Imagine you are on a ship in the middle of a cold and stormy sea, trying to head for land. It’s cold, and overcast, […]

Posted in June 28, 2013

WebDef: Partnership

Part·ner·ship  /pärtnər’SHip/ – Noun:  Collaboration with others towards a common purpose or outcome. Partnership s a key pillar of the Seven Pillar Methodology for social entrepreneurship.  The following scriptural references focus on maintaining a partnership with God first, and being a good partner with others, also. PARTNERING WITH GOD Does it go without saying that we are […]

Posted in June 28, 2013

WebDef: Credit-Sharing

Cre·dit-Shar·ing  / kredit-sheər’ing /– Gerund: The act of generously praising partner efforts, or raising awareness regarding favorable project outcomes.    Credit Sharing is a key pillar of the Seven Pillar Methodology for social entrepreneurship. Credit Sharing is an act of graciously giving recognition, rather than withholding it for oneself, and it makes good common sense. Employees, partners, and congregations appreciate being noticed and given […]

Posted in June 28, 2013

WebDef: Non-duplication

Non-du·pli·ca·tion  /nänˈdo͞opləˈkāshən/ – Noun: Intentionally avoiding redundant effort.  Non-duplication is a key pillar of the Seven Pillar Methodology for social entrepreneurship.  The focus is on not adding redundant effort, but rather addressing a chasm where you are truly needed. However, non-duplication doesn’t mean you have to reinvent the wheel. If there is no minister in a particular prison, then going […]

Posted in June 28, 2013

WebDef: Expertise

Ex·per·tise /ekspərˈtēs/ – Noun: Proficiency, skill, ability, or knowledge in a particular area. Competence or proficiency in a field of operation. Your expertise, skills, giftedness and proficiencies add up to Special Skills, a key pillar of the Seven Pillar Methodology for social entrepreneurship.   Below are scriptural references relating to this pillar. They illustrate the importance of using what we have […]

Posted in June 28, 2013

WebDef: Vision

Vi·sionˈ/viZHən/ – Noun: Faculty of perception; forming a picture in the mind about the past or potential nature of things. Vision,  the ability to see something clearly, is one of seven key pillars in our Methodology for Compassionate Work. It can refer to a deep understanding of the flaws of a current situation, a recognition of a […]

Posted in June 28, 2013

WebDef: Envy

En·vy/envē/ – Noun: discontentment or resentment arising from the desire for an object or attribute belonging to someone else. Envy is one of the Seven Deadly Sins, and traces its roots back to pride. See also our other topical WebDefs, such as the comprehensive post on sin, as well as the other “deadly” sins, including […]

Posted in April 20, 2013

WebDef: Lust

Lust /ləst/  – Noun: Intense, often illicit, desire or craving, sometimes experienced as overmastering or overpowering. Lust is one of the Seven Deadly Sins, and traces its roots back to pride. See also our other topical WebDefs, such as the comprehensive post on sin, as well as the other “deadly” sins, including pride, greed, envy, gluttony, […]

Posted in April 20, 2013

WebDef: Sloth

Sloth/släth/  – Noun: Self-love resulting in reluctance to work or make an effort; laziness. Sloth is one of the Seven Deadly Sins, and traces its roots back to pride. See also our other topical WebDefs, such as the comprehensive post on sin, as well as the other “deadly” sins, including pride, greed, envy, wrath, gluttony, etc. […]

Posted in April 20, 2013

WebDef: Greed

Greed /grēd/ – Noun: Intense desire to possess that which is rightfully another’s, or more than is deserved or needful. Greed is one of the Seven Deadly Sins, and traces its roots back to pride. See also our other topical WebDefs, such as the comprehensive post on sin, as well as the other “deadly” sins, […]

Posted in April 20, 2013

WebDef: Love, The Greatest Commandment

Love /lŭv/– Noun: Tender feelings directed outwards.  Historically, the Greeks divided love into: philia (friendship), kinship (storge), passion (eros) and selfless (agape) forms.   Following is a discussion on biblical references to Love.  Many of us have heard it said that Bible stands for ‘basic instructions before leaving earth.’  If so, the greatest instruction – […]

Posted in November 19, 2012

WebDef: Worth

Worth – /wərθ/ – Noun: Intrinsic importance; a quality of having value.   You have value. As infants, we each are born with an inherent sense of worth, the knowledge that we have value in the eyes of God.  Unfortunately, life experience sometimes beats healthy self-worth that out of us, replacing it with low self-esteem. Consider what […]

Posted in November 19, 2012

WebDef: Harmony

Har·mo·ny /härmənē/ – Noun: A combination that is pleasing to experience, and works together.  The following biblical passages provide guidance about how to live a more tranquil, peaceful, harmonious life. Select Bible Passages on Harmony   (Jesus said) And whosoever shall compel thee to go a mile, go with him twain. – Matthew 5:41 Jesus said unto him, Thou shalt love the […]

Posted in February 15, 2012

WebDef: Oxymoron

Ox·y·mor·on /äksəˈmôrˌän/ —  Noun: Apparently incongruous or irreconcilable terms, appearing together in a phrase. Authors and advocates use oxymorons and non sequiturs as literary devices, to point out the patently absurd. Examples of oxymorons include “working holiday,”  “extinct life,” and “living dead.”  Some advocates for child mental health would point to the juvenile justice system as a non sequitur, because of the foreseeable […]

Posted in November 19, 2011

WebDef: Celtic Ministry

Cel·tic Min·is·try  – /keltik minəstrē/ – Noun: A welcoming spirit of radical hospitality that recognizes our interconnectedness, and sets no barriers to God’s table. Celtic ministry reflects a Celtic mindset: everyone on God’s good creation is interconnected. So, a Celtic ministry will welcome everyone, no matter how long it might have been since they’ve attended, […]

Posted in December 21, 2009

Pastor Fish Russian: Tower of Siloam

School is In: Let’s Learn About Sun & Rain On Everyone Note: This page is a work in process. We’re working towards the day when all our page include not only the fully translated stories with audio, but discussions, activities, and songs that echo or reinforce an important message of the day. There’s still a […]

Posted in October 5, 2017

Pastor Fish Ukrainian: Tower of Siloam

School is In: Let’s Learn About Sun & Rain On Everyone Note: This page is a work in process. We’re working towards the day when all our page include not only the fully translated stories with audio, but discussions, activities, and songs that echo or reinforce an important message of the day. There’s still a […]

Posted in September 13, 2017

Pastor Fish Lesson: Tower of Siloam

TEACH THE STORY OF THE TOWER OF SILOAM – an entire lesson plan based around this story. Includes the story itself, with discussion ideas and suggested activities to make learning fun.

Posted in September 7, 2017

Sermon Subject: Food Waste Weekend Sep 23-25

Calling members of the faith community – why not preach on food waste during this year’s inaugural Food Waste Weekend, September 23-25 2016. Find out more…

Posted in September 3, 2016

Top Ten Fears – And Killing them Dead in 3 Easy Steps

Fear /fir/ Noun:  The unpleasant experience of threat, danger or concern there may be immanent harm.   Boo! Scared you? We surely hope not.  Yet everyone is afraid, now and again. It’s part of being human.  And some of us are more afraid of different things than others.  We polled the office very unscientifically and came up with […]

Posted in November 1, 2014

Top Ten Bible Quotes on… Death!

You’ve likely read our “WebDef” on Death…  we define it as permanent cessation of all vital functions; an irreversable ending. From a Christian perspective, the moment of the soul’s departure, as the breath of God no longer animates the body. And now, here are our “top ten” Bible quotes on the subject! Top Ten Bible […]

Posted in May 1, 2014

Celebrate Earth Day!

The heavens are Thine, the earth also is Thine: as for the world and the fullness thereof, Thou hast founded them. The north and the south Thou hast created them. [Psalm 89:11-12a] Happy Earth Day! You are One Click Away from… 1. Top Ten Easy Creation Care Steps – Take Action Page 2. Top Ten Book Picks on Creation Care […]

Posted in April 22, 2014


Death /deθ/ – Noun: A permanent cessation of all vital functions; an irreversable ending. From a Christian perspective, the moment of the soul’s departure, as the breath of God no longer animates the body.  >>more

Posted in April 19, 2014


Isolation /īsəˈlāSHən/ – Noun: The experience of being set or placed apart; detached or separated so as to be alone. >>more

Posted in April 19, 2014


Sustainable /səˈstānəbəl/ – Noun: Practice that can be upheld or defended, and is viable over the long term. Read more…

Posted in April 14, 2014

Take Action: Peacemaking

Blessed are the Peacemakers!  This page includes helpful hints on fostering nonviolence, or “waging peace.” See also: our WebDefs entries (they include scripture), e.g.,: Peace, Shalom, Nonviolence, Nonharming,  Harmony, Beatitudes,  Grace, Wrath, Solidarity, Abuse, Discord, Strife, etc., our post on Jesus & Nonviolence,  and related links pages  We define nonviolence as the favoring of peaceful means of advancing one’s objectives. Violence […]

Posted in April 6, 2014

Take Action: Feed the Hungry

See also: our WebDef on Hunger (includes scripture)   We define hunger as the discomfort or weakness caused by lack of sufficient nourishment. Food insecurity, then, is inconsistent access to adequate food, due to lack of money or other resources. According to the World Health Organization,  the three pillars of food security are: availability, meaning consistent availability in […]

Posted in April 6, 2014

Take Action: Homelessness

See also: our WebDef on Homelessness (includes scripture)   We define homelessness as “the state of lacking fixed, adequate shelter.”  The current national numbers on homelessness are much improved from their historic highs of the Great Recession. Right now, it’s between 1.5 and 2 million annually, not the staggering 3.5 million where it had been at its worst.  One might […]

Posted in April 6, 2014

Get Involved

DO YOU ENJOY THE CENTER’S WORK?  ARE YOU INTERESTED IN GETTING INVOLVED? Thank you for visiting our “get involved” page.  The Center for Nonharming Ministries is not a registered 501.c.3 nonprofit; any assistance cannot  be considered volunteering, for tax purposes.  But you will have our gratitude, and the others may be enriched by your efforts, […]

Posted in December 4, 2013

Sustainability Links

See our main CREATION CARE PAGE for easy Creation Care tips, and our WebDef entry for definition and scripture   TEN Christian Creation Care Online Resources Case4America.org – Christians for a Sustainable Economy. Center for Environmental Leadership – Empowering Christians to care for creation, and educating the next generation of Christian environmental leaders.  EarthCare – A Christian organization working […]

Posted in September 29, 2013

Take Action: Creation Care

See also: our WebDef on Sustainability (includes scripture)  and related links page Concerned about environmental impact? Thinking about reducing your organization’s footprint? Here you’ll find support for finding new and creative ways to embrace an active role in shepherding the environment. There are so many simple and cost-effective steps to take, and it’s such a joyful journey! Originally, this post […]

Posted in September 29, 2013