Gambling Destroys the Spiritual Link

The thrill of winning is exciting and it is addictive. That is what draws people back to gaming tables, poker or slot machines, the races, and so on. They are overwhelmed by the thought that they can win money and meanwhile most of them lose and some very heavily. In my neighbourhood there are many who are so addicted to gambling that they forget everything else. They can even forget that they left their children boiling in a hot car outside the building.

The spiritual link is sensitive and it was given to a group called the children of Israel at the start of the day of the lord. That is a period shown to me of around 4,000 years. We are at the end of it as the vision described it as a line drawn out and the middle was NOON in large capital letters and there on a cross was a man, Jesus Christ, whose presence came about some 2,000 years ago.

This figure is an invention of Constantine who established the Catholic Church in 325 AD and he is called the second beast of Revelation and 666 in chapter 13:12-18 of that part of the bible. He also put Mary, the Mother God of Babylon in it as the Mother of God and he reinforced the wall put up to hide the real God and to sever the link with the Spirit that the people of God were given.

All types of temptations were allowed to be put before them to test their loyalty and strengthen their commitment. Gambling is one such test as too are all the other false gods, including money and commerce. Constantine is the brains behind the World Order and the systems that support it.

The so-called establishment runs on commerce and industry and the making of money is more important even that survival of human life. This is the trap that is taking those not of the Spirit away for good. Those who can avoid the pit-falls and who remain true to the Spirit are part of the in-gathering taking place now. Those who have lost their link through gambling or anything else are now discarded.

Gambling Addiction Basics

The coming age has brought with it numerous new pathological addictions, one of them being addiction to gambling. Pathological gambling was conferred with the status of a disease by the American Psychiatric Association back in 1980s. Robert L. Custer, M.D., is a pioneer in this field of problem gambling.

People who fall prey to this addiction are usually those who secure an income by means of blackjack, poker or other gambling activities. They are professional players who visit casinos not for fun sake, but to employ their skills and earn.

Based on their way of playing and the driving force behind it, gamblers can be categorized. For example, while professional gamblers are skillful and good in their game a casual gamblers plays merely for recreation.

The symptoms of gambling addiction are usually hard to identify. Since this disease is different from other substance related addictions like drug or alcohol abuse, the indications of this sickness are subtle. The nearest possible way in which the symptoms of this addiction can be stated is through the “Custer three Phase Model”. According tot his model, the gambling addiction can be characterized by three phases: the wining phase, the losing phase and the desperation phase.

In the wining stage, the compulsive gambler is ecstatic and overexcited with this earnings and is unwilling to quit gambling. Therefore, the addict usually increases his intensity of gambling . However, losing being the other half of gambling, his wining streak is short-lived. Nonetheless, recurrent losses do not deter him as he wants to win again and get his money back. Addicted gamblers suffer from financial stress, loss of sleep, and mental fatigue in this phase. They face problems at the family front. The patient also tends to borrow huge amounts or avail some money making schemes. As the gambler continues to face loss on every alternate day, he finds it difficult to stay away from gambling. Compulsive gamblers may resort to any means to raise funds for their obsession. They become desperate, with their debts becoming unmanageable. Loss of jobs, fight with friends and family, committing crimes or suicidal tendencies define this phase.

The question as to why does one gamble, can not be answered in definitive terms. One of the dominant reasons is the mental health of the gambler. For some people gambling serves as a n escape route from their lives. A compulsive gambler plays for kicks. He is just unable to stay away from it. Many researchers also blame the easy accessibility to casinos. The government and its lottery fund is also widely condemned.

Treatment programs and centers exist to treat this disease. Regular therapy and counseling is an effective and a widely used technique to cure this disease. Various support groups have also cropped up, where the addicts share their experiences and strengthen each others desire to quit gambling. Some groups that fund such programs include casinos and state lotteries. Some casinos lay stress on responsible gambling and have taken steps to make the people aware about his addiction.

However the first step, before undertaking nay treatment would be to acknowledge this disease. With very slight symptoms and effects this addiction is difficult to catch and acknowledge. Hence it helps to be aware to act wisely.

Dealing With Gambling Debt

More often than not, those who have gambling problems or an addiction to gambling fall deep into debt. The debt becomes a major problem when it transcends owing money to casinos. Instead, gambling addiction can rack up major credit card debt, loan debt, and even extremities (though not completely unheard of) such as home equity debt. If this sounds like you, whether you own $500 or $5000, there are ways of dealing with the debt that follows the addiction.

Seek Help for the Gambling Addiction

Before you begin dealing with debt, it is imperative you get help for your addiction. It’s been proven in many cases that gambling addicts are less willing to admit their problems than someone with a substance abuse problem. Not only should you get help for yourself, but for the ones who love you; your family and your friends. Take the time to really evaluate your situation, and how it has affected you, your family and the general quality of living surrounding it all.

Cut Off Funding

It could be half to all of your paycheque, a credit card, or maybe you’ve been dipping into your savings. In either case, put a complete halt on any money put towards gambling. Cancelling a credit card is never a good idea, as it worsens your credit situation and lowers your credit score. But in the grand scheme of things, putting a stop to it now rather than racking up another large amount of money is probably for the best.

You Won’t Win Back what you Owe

Statistically speaking, the chances of you winning back what you owe are next to impossible. In fact, you’re only damaging yourself even more by putting yourself further in debt, and deluding yourself into believing something along the lines of “well I’ll win back what I owe, and then some for good measure!”

Seek Treatment

If you find doing your best and trying your hardest toward helping yourself isn’t working at all, you may need to seek a professional. In some cases, your health insurance provider may cover some or all of the treatment necessary to cure the addiction.

Pay Off Your Debt!

When you’ve controlled your addiction, begin focusing on your debt. Recognize this won’t be easy. You’re going to have to work hard, and do everything in your power to get the debt off your back. Write out a list of everyone you owe. You may have overdrafted bank accounts, or past-due credit cards. If you’re in real trouble, you may even owe a bookie or loan shark. In either case, it’s incredibly important to get your debt paid off.

Borrowing money from a loved one or a friend is a huge shot to your ego, even more so that you’ll have to fess up about your addiction and your debt. If they’re willing to help, not only do they trust you and love you enough to help, but they trust and love you enough to support you. Make note of the close friends and family who really help you; if you ever feel the urge to indulge in your former (or current) addiction; talking it out with them might help.

You could also start by selling your valuable assets. While undesirable, it’s even more undesirable to carry a debt on your shoulders, especially a gambling debt. Furniture, electronics, jewellery and even your care can bring in some money to put toward the debt.

Getting a second job could help as well, even short term and part time. Any penny counts when it is as important as a gambling debt.

In the last and extreme case – file for bankruptcy. Gambling debt can be discharged by bankruptcy, though if you incurred the debt under false pretenses, or through fraud, you will not be able to file for bankruptcy.

Compulsive Gambler’s Journey To Day One Stop Gambling

Its day one and this was the most exciting day in Justin’s life. He made the choice to stop gambling. It’s been a long exhausting journey that he thought would never end. His journey towards self destruction began five years ago. A simple few bets cost him his future financial freedom. He lost all of his retirement money and all of his savings. The only things left in his life were his wife, two kids and a dog. He was just about to lose his job due to poor attendance and performance. He was at bottom with no where to turn. His wife had also been emotionally distraught due to his lies, disappearance, lack of interest in the kids and their personal intimacy. No one was really very happy at this point in time.

Justin’s wife realized he had a problem a year earlier and she didn’t know what to do. She contacted various programs through the internet and then found I Stopped Gambling So Can You http://www.istoppedgambling.com/ website. There she began to educate herself on gambling addiction. At the website she found something for everyone. She showed the site to friends and family and finally her husband.

Justin read through the manual and found out he could relate to it. He remembered how many times he wanted to stop gambling, but couldn’t stop. He even thought about going to a Gamblers Anonymous meeting because he heard a lot of good things about them. He finally decided that the I Stopped So Can You website was going to help him stop gambling. On day one he had a lot of thoughts running through his mind. He remembers that first morning when he woke up and realized how gambling had controlled his life for way to long. He was not going to allow this anymore. He was nervous because he remembered all the other futile attempts at stopping. This time was different. He had a calm feeling about the direction he wanted to take his life and he was now in control of his destiny. His goal was to take one day at a time. This will help him to succeed in his quest to stop gambling.

Day one Justin changed the direction of his life for the better. He will always remember that this is his life and there’s no reason to spend his hard earned money on gambling. Gambling was a self destructive part of my past.

In one day Justin accepted his situation, made a plan and followed through. He believes that his life for the first time in five years is headed in the right direction.

Congratulations Justin on day one!

The 8 Cardinal Rules Of Gambling Responsibly

Being hooked to online casinos is easy, but getting out or being in control is difficult. Yet, with these tips, one can ensure that they are having a good time without being addicted.

Gamble for sheer pleasure and diversion

Play only for the sake of having fun. This should be the mantra of every potential online casino member. Indeed, winning can be addictive to some sort. But always remember that there will be rough times. Enjoy the game, nothing more, nothing less.

Setting caps or limits

Addiction begins when control falters. Online casinos can give you all the thrill and adventure that you want, yet, it can also take everything that you own. This is why observing a ceiling with regards to the amount of time spent and money used should be always practiced.

Do not be too desperate

Desperation occurs when a player desperately tries to break even or in other words-chase his or her losses. By doing this, a member breaks the second rule. Players will always have the time to visit online casinos. Losses are losses and chasing all of them is not a very smart move.

Have a break

Getting breaks is also a way of setting limits. By taking constant breaks, the attention is diverted to something else and if the other activity is taking one’s focus, being addicted can be avoided.

Do not use your emergency funds

The money that is allotted for monthly bills and other important expenses should not be used when playing in online casinos. One can allot funds for playing casino games. However, the ones that are budgeted for everyday needs should remain intact.

Assess thy self

The problem with addiction is that players often fail to check themselves or refuse to check their daily habits. Always remember, change comes from within.

Seek other forms of diversion

Online casinos are sustainable forms of diversion. But for sure, there are other activities that are worthy of one’s time and effort. Players must seek out other events that cater to their specific interests.

Seek help

Once the player sees that he or she is slowly falling into addiction, seeking professional help is a must. This is something that should be sought immediately.

There is nothing wrong with playing in online casinos. The most important thing is to know how to control one’s action and if professional help is needed, a player should be readily open to accept this fact and perform the necessary treatment and counseling.

Maori and Pasifika Problem Gambling in New Zealand

In many countries around the world, ethnic background plays a major in determining an individual’s risk of becoming a problem gambler. In New Zealand specifically, individuals of Maori and Pasifika descent are more likely to develop gambling addictions than any other local residents.

According to statistics, Maori individuals are 3.5 times more likely to become problem gamblers than any other ethnic group in New Zealand. However, this is a fairly recent phenomenon; in fact, there is no Maori word for ‘gambling’. It was not until the 1980s that gambling emerged as a popular pastime among the Maori community, but the introduction of the activity had a huge impact. The Ministry of Health estimates that 1 in 16 Maori males and 1 in 24 Maori females are problem gamblers while a third of the population is at risk.

More than 80% Maori problem gamblers were first introduced to the activity at home at an early age. Card games are quite a popular family pastime but, they can be harmful when money is involved. Studies show that children who are exposed to gambling are more likely to develop unhealthy habits later on in life – and that certainly seems to be the case in the Maori community.

It is also believed that local gambling operators have played a role in the spread of gambling addiction among Maoris. ‘Maraes’ are sacred areas where the Maori culture can be celebrated, and on display in many of these locations are plaques and signs advertising the local lottery commission and other gaming trusts. Casino operators also used their d├ęcor to attract Maori individuals, featuring carvings and art specific to the culture.

The Pasifika community (including individuals from Samoa, Tonga, Cook Islands and Fiji) have experienced the same struggle with problem gambling in New Zealand casinos. There are fewer problem gamblers in this community, but they spend significantly more money on the vice. While Maori gamblers spend nearly $2000 on the activity every year, Pasifika players spend $13 000 on gambling annually.

According to studies conducted by New Zealand’s Problem Gambling Foundation, unemployment and low-income levels were to blame for the high problem gambling rates in these communities A survey revealed that Samoans and Tongans gamble to fulfill their households’ financial needs, and that an increase employment opportunities could potentially lower problem gambling rates. Concerns have also been raised that there is a high concentration poker machines in low-income areas, encouraging more Pasifika individuals to gamble. Members of these communities agree that easy access to pokies is likely behind the increase in problem gambling rates.

Casino Gambling and The Tao

It may seem strange to equate casino gambling with Taoist philosophy, but it may be because gambling is so much a part of and widely accepted in Chinese culture.

The very first recorded history of playing cards date back to 9th century China which makes sense being that they were the inventors of writing paper. The first book written with reference to playing cards dates to the Tang Dynasty (618-907) called Yezi Gexi. By the 11th century playing cards could be found throughout Asia featuring many of the 108 heroes of Lan Shun found in the Chinese classic the “Water Margin.”

In the 16th century playing cards had made their way to France and it is there that they began using the suits of picture cards that we are familiar with today based on figures of French nobility.

Taoist philosophy is said to be nearly 6,000 years old and came to prominence with the teachings of The Yellow Emperor, Huang Ti, the first emperor of China. With many of their scientific discoveries such as mathematics and astronomy, there was also a deep connection to astrology, symbology (a science of symbols and their effects), numerology and many forms of mysticism.

In the 7th Pillar of Taoism, “The Tao of Mastery,” The symbol for water is K’AN and states, “to be successful and fortunate, risk must be taken.” Luck to the ancient Taoists was a form of control and timing.

Clearly in all gambling, timing is an important factor. Regardless of the type of gambling, all of it’s forms tend to run in cycles, both winning and losing ones. It is the skill which one navigates through these cycles that the player conveys their level of control over the outcome.

The first serious studies of gambling in the 20th century were done by economists who expressed their confusion that gambling is a losing proposition and in effect, irrational behavior. In 1945 William Vickery, a noted economist, concluded that gambling should be measured not in expected gains but by the money a gambler doesn’t have that appears to be more valuable to them than what he does have.

The typical view is that gambling is self-destructive, undermines the work ethic and removes money that could be put to better uses in the economy. The notion that most people tend to gamble beyond their means remains unproven and was disputed in research conducted in 1966 in the “Economics of Gambling” published in London, England. In this study it was found to be an affective outlet for frustration, a relief from loneliness and a leveler of inequality among the economic classes.

Many psychologists view gambling as a normal form of recreation and destructive only to the addicted. They stated that the solution lies in treating the gambler, not in the condemnation of gambling as a whole.

The casino patron is courted with opulent surroundings, swimming pools, shops, shows, night life and “comped” amenities. The attraction is undeniable as an escape from tedious and purposeless occupations. Being confronted with the myth of success, when faced with insurmountable economic and social obstacles, makes the whole casino experience much easier to understand.

My own opinion is that people who gamble solely for the thrills and excitement, with no care of the economic results, would do better to find a more fulfilling and less expensive hobby. Gambling is an isolated activity. It will not take the place of a meaningful relationship nor will it counteract feelings of alienation or loneliness. These are not reasons to gamble.

Using any type of gambling to fill a void in ones personal life, something which it cannot do, is the type of gambling that can lead to devastating consequences.

If you’ve ever been in a casino, there is one thing you’ve probably noticed more than anything else… that one thing is seeing people lose money. This happens because the amateur gambler enters into this competition without a basic knowledge of the odds of the games, a playing strategy or even a thought to proper money management. It’s a careless way to handle ones money and does little to change the inevitable outcome.

Casinos love this type of gambler and spend a fortune attracting their business. With the odds squarely in their favor, the casino operators know that even though there are highly effective methods of playing that can shift those odds to the player, very few of them will invest the time or effort to use them.

Common sense tells us that if everyone that gambles in casinos lost, they would cease to exist. In order to attract losers you must have winners and it is just as easy to win at many casino games as it is to lose.

I do not write for the weekend gamblers who are looking desperately to have a good time at any cost. Winning is not even in their vocabulary. They consider the possibility of winning to be remote as if being left completely to chance.

It is the individual who is determined to win at any cost that I feel are most like myself. It is to these individuals that I offer the following. There does exist many ways to achieve your goal. Resolve that you will learn everything you have to in order to win consistently when risking your hard earned money gambling in casinos. To me, nothing else makes sense.

In the words of the ancient Taoist, Lao Tse

“Fortune favors the prepared.”

The Dangers Of Gambling Abuse And Addiction

So, how do you know if you or someone you love have a gambling problem?

First of all it’s important to note that compulsive gambling is a psychological condition that makes people unable to control their desire to gamble. Many crave the feeling they have when they gamble and seek this experience on a daily basis, no matter whether they’re on a winning or losing streak.

Compulsive gamblers may start betting small amounts, but sooner or later start to wager higher bets in order to get the same feelings of excitement they had when they first started playing. Compulsive gamblers often feel agitated and restless if they are unable to gamble and can feel a strong desire to gamble when other aspects of their lives are weighing them down. Compulsive gamblers may also believe that gambling is the only way to pay off debts and keep believing that it’s only a matter of time before they hit the elusive jackpot. Some compulsive gamblers may find themselves lying to friends and families and in some cases stealing money or goods to pay for their gambling habit.

Not all compulsive gamblers will exhibit each of these qualities, but if you recognise just a few of these in yourself or someone close to you then it could be time to seek help.

Compulsive gambling is treatable and there are a number of wonderful organisations set up to deal specifically with this problem.

Gamblers Anonymous is probably the most well-known and widespread and is based on a 12-step program similar to that of Alcoholics Anonymous. Members meet on a regular basis to share experiences and listen to each others stories and you will find that there are literally hundreds of Gamblers Anonymous groups situated all over the world. Go to the Gamblers Anonymous website for more information (www.gamblersanonymous.com) or check your local newspaper.

Gam-Anon is another well-respected self-help organization whose motto is “serenity, courage, wisdom. “Their website provides a solid resource into the issues surrounding compulsive gambling and meetings are held regularly. (www.gam-anon.org).

The National Council on Problem Gambling is a government sponsored organization with branches across the USA. The website also has a lot of information which you may find useful. (www.ncpgambling.org).

Other countries will also have their own groups and organizations which may be publicly or privately run. Again check your local newspaper or phone book for more information.

Remember, compulsive gambling is a mental health issue for which there is help and support. If you feel that gambling is dominating your life in a way that is harmful or unhealthy, then perhaps its time to talk to someone about it.

Addictions To Gambling on The Rise!

Over the past five years addictions to gambling have grown at an accelerated rate. Not only adults, but teenagers are gambling with out realizing the consequences. Most States including Connecticut have created agreements with Indian reservations for self gain. The states are now realizing the negative impact the Indian casino reservations are having on their taxpayers.

Gambling is a silent addiction. Most people can go years with out anyone ever discovering that they gambled. Besides the local Casino’s people can now even gamble online.

With today’s modern technology, if you want to gamble you can so long as you have the resources. Once your resources are depleted and you’re in debt, you will begin to seek help. This is where many states are taking notice due to people claiming bankruptcy, not paying their state taxes, getting caught committing petty crimes and even suicide.

The I Stopped Gambling So Can You website continues to receive alarming emails from friends family and the compulsive gambler. The site was developed to help people associated with compulsive gambling addiction.

The alarming rate in the rise of addicted individuals has caused the states to rethink what they are doing and how to help this segment of the population. The individuals who sought help through various programs now know they are not alone. The unfortunate part is in most cases they are starting all over. If the States would reach out and help these people then the outcomes may be different.

If a person goes into a bar and is apparently drunk, the bartenders are not going to serve this person any alcoholic drinks and may even recommend a cab. At a casino, people use the cash machines until they are unable to take out any more money. People cash checks and even take cash advances from their credit cards, but no one at the casinos is willing to step up to the plate and help these people out.

I have talked with hundreds of people who excessively gambled. These people knew they were addicted and always planned to spend a specific amount of money. After being at the casinos with all the lights, bells and whistles they fell into a trance and no longer had any control.

Once the gambler leaves the casino reality sets in. They now realize they’ve lost a lot of money. They ask themselves: How did this happen? They themselvesthey will never due this again only to repeat the same behavior patterns over and over until they hit bottom and lose everything. These people were spending anywhere from $100.00 to $5,000.00 per week on their addiction. In a majority of these situations they realized they lost everything. Even after filing bankruptcy they still owed a significant amount in back taxes.

The State of Connecticut receives revenues from their two Indian Run Casinos. If a taxpayer wins a Jackpot equal to or greater than $1,200.00 and resides in Connecticut they will be subject to Connecticut State Tax. The Internal Revenue Service lets you deduct your winnings against your losses but not in Connecticut.

The various states are now realizing they created a major problem, but are not willing to discuss it openly. Various news stations have been reporting the negative impact, but due to the revenues generated, no one is willing to step up to the plate and help these people out.

Until the local authorities take action, many lives will continue to be destroyed.

Future articles will address the compulsive gambler, gambling addiction and a search to find a solution to this growing problem.

You may find the following websites helpful:

I Stopped Gambling So Can You

http://www.istoppedgambling.com/

Compulsive Gambling Addiction

[http://www.compulsive-gambling-addiction.org/][http://www.compulsive-gambling-addiction.org/]

Gambling: Fun That Leads To Addiction?

Is gambling really just innocent fun? We all know that many are addicted and that casinos make billions of dollars. Every addicted gambler started out with the idea of risking a little bit of innocent money, with the idea in the back of their mind that they might rake in a big win. After all, the winners are advertised with a big smile on their faces. Why not me? And when you have beginner’s luck, then you want to experience that again. After so many losses you know that some luck is bound to come your way. And you start liking the clinging of the coins and every time that happens, you feel, or think to feel a bit of paradise. Your money for nothing and your chicks for free. Hooray! By then you stubbornly ignore the fact that you are beginning to get hooked. You do not count what the losses amount to. You do admit that in the end the house always wins, but you keep hoping for that one big bang. Except if that should occur, you would gamble with even greater antes. This may serve to illustrate what has happened to countless poor souls.

The combination of gambling and psychological pain is the most dangerous one. People lapse into spending sprees out of pain, or into binging. Others into alcoholism or a gaming addiction, or even an innocent looking sports mania. Again others start experimenting with drugs, or sex. Many develop dependencies of several of these. Once you are trapped, you are caught by a vicious circle of temporary relief and the subsequent hangover. Only to try it again. The longer this cycle persists, the harder it is to break. Realize that you are fleeing into a surrogate and seek help to get to the causes. In many cases an antidepressant might help. But get over your shame and find professional help. Above all pray to the Lord Jesus for rescue.

Gambling on websites at home is inviting the devil. People run up high costs on their credit cards and the owners laugh all the way to the bank. They do not care about your losing your home and even your wife and children. Many gamblers develop co-morbidities such as alcoholism and drug addictions. Prostitution is a ‘normal’ thing in such circles. Most governments have legalized some form of gambling and many clubs, charities and shops offer tickets to lure prospects to their goods or services. I do not condemn these forms of gambling. I myself once won an expensive computer with all kinds of accessories. Also I won some small prizes with bingo. But at a certain moment I began buying more and more lottery tickets. And from there the step was small to try my hand at one of those one armed thieves in restaurants. The next step was to try out the casino. After a number of years I realized that I ran the danger of getting dependent permanently. So I stopped abruptly and started praying for total deliverance and having somebody else pray for that. I felt that I got out no day too soon and I have to admit that when I see one of those machines, I experience that it still attracts me. Gambling is one of the most stubborn addictions. Stop radically while you can. Or else find help.

Let us analyze gambling from a Christian perspective. We lost paradise and now we desire to compensate. This is called the pursuit of happiness. However there is only lasting happiness in a close relationship with Christ Jesus. Most gamblers develop a superstitious habit or even think that they have found a way to beat the machine. Many books have been written that advertize supposedly clever ways to turn the odds around in your favor. Except the only person to benefit from such a book is the author. Then there is the autotheistic attitude that makes you believe that you can best the odds. Also gamblers play god as if they have all the money in the world. Let the money roll, you have enough of it! One gambler ran five machines automatically by jamming the buttons after having filled them with much cash. He let them run till all his money was gone and then he went home broke to beg his mother for some bucks to buy a pack of cigarettes. Like little gods they think they can transcend chance and machinery as if they were magicians. This is the sin of the garden of Eden in which Eve was made to believe she could be like God. People get used to the surroundings and all the gambling appurtenances in casinos. This is my home. Here I belong. Here is my family. In Vegas there is even a priest that blesses the gambling machines with holy water. Unholy! Talk about surrogate religion…

Many people gamble at the stock market. Others gamble at women. Some Christians claim that a game of cards is from the devil and even that when you have it in your home, you are not a Christian family. It is the devil’s picture book and the joker represents the devil and other such tales. This is a bounce reaction of course. Some even go so far as stating that playing yahtzee is evil as one uses dice. They claim that the soldiers that gambled over Christ’s robe at the cross, used dice. Some think that the Urim and Thumim of the high priest, used to consult God, were actually dice to determine a lot or decision. In this context one can also think of the stone with seven eyes in the book of Zachariah. However that may be gamblers start believing that life is a bet and that in fact everything is. Gambling as religion, philosophy and lifestyle.

Solomon stated that “wealth gotten out of vanity, diminishes; but he that gathers handful by handful, increases.” Money should go where it should go, but society has become sick with financial buggery. Many resort to chain letters. Others to pyramid schemes or other criminal activities. We must strive to build something up patiently, for most of us will not come up with something that turns into something big overnight. Paul warns: “Love of money is a root of all evil” and “They that desire to become rich, fall into a trap and many temptations.”

Instead of all this, let us direct our hearts heavenward and seek true and lasting joy. The prophet stated that our joy in the Lord is our strength. And we need strength to make it through this world. We have a race to run and therefore must not be distracted by unnecessary business, let alone sins. Also we are called upon to fight for the faith once delivered to the saints. Let us admonish, exhort and encourage each other!