Sunday, February 9, 2020

Is Donald Trump a Man of God?

    There are many opinions about our President, Donald Trump, and they cover both ends of the spectrum.  Some hate him with a passion, and others think he is the greatest man. But what does God think about him?  Is Donald Trump a Christian?  Is he a man of God?
     Good questions, and I'm afraid I don't know all the answers, but God does.  I have done my fair share of reading and research on Donald Trump, covering his life, both before he was elected, and after.  I don't claim to know everything about him, and I don't really need to.
     I think Mr. Trump has led a life that has taken him on some winding paths before he ended up where he is today.  I remember when he was running for President, and how some thought there was no chance of him being elected.  I voted for him. And I'll do it again in 2020.  He wasn't a politician, which was a plus for me.  He was a successful businessman, another plus.  And he wasn't afraid to be obnoxious if he needed to, plus plus.  I knew that after watching President Obama bow to leaders of other countries and embarrass America on several occasions, I wanted someone who would be a patriot for America, and a respecter of Americans above all else.  And that's the main reason I voted for Donald Trump.
     Has he done some less-than-upstanding things in his past? A resounding YES!  Have I done some less-than-upstanding things in my past?  A resounding YES!  We all have, and while we need to weigh a person's general reputation when considering them for such an important position, we also need to consider all other aspects of their lives, as well.
     I have watched the things that have transpired since Donald Trump ran for, and was elected as our President.  I believe he knew the Republican votes were the ones he needed to win.  I believe he knew the potency of conservative voters across America.  He hopped on the conservative train, and that was a smart move for him.  Was he a dedicated, loyal conservative?  I highly doubt it.  But he is a smart businessman, and that was smart business.  He knew that uniting himself with Christians and pastors was a great way to attract the votes and endorsement of Christians all around the United States - another smart move.
     The question as to whether he is a Christian, is one that only he and God can answer.  I know many people who are just the nicest, kindest, etc., but they are not Christians.  I also know many people that I believe are Christians, but who don't always act accordingly.  On the day that he stands before God Almighty, the truth will be known.
     But here's what I DO know.  God uses all kinds of people.  In biblical times, Moses, who had a speech impediment, and was likely introverted, led a multitude of people under the hand of God.  Paul, whose mission was to persecute and kill Christians, was turned around by God and used to bring many souls to Him.  Fortunately, God isn't so much concerned with our past as He is our future.  He uses many people for many things, all working together for good in His will.
     I believe Donald Trump is a man being used by God, and a man being changed by God.  I don't know him personally, so I can't speak about his relationship with God.  But I truly believe that the times he is surrounded by people praying over him and our country, he feels the presence of God in a mighty way.  I believe God is using him to bring conservative, Christian people together in unification for the good of our country and to further the gospel.  When our president speaks openly to the public about the grace and blessings of God, it does something to those who hear it.
     Our country has hatred and division like I have never seen, and there are many who are trying to spread that hatred far and wide.  I don't believe they will succeed.  I think many people mistake our silence for weakness, and our calm for agreement with their beliefs.  I feel when it's time to cast our votes and spend our dollars, our voices will be heard, loud and clear.  I believe there is a Christian wave gaining strength and speed throughout our country, led by God, where our President plays a big part, that is winning this country through love and patience.  I believe we have more people fervently praying for our President and government than ever before.
     So, YES! YES!  I believe Donald Trump is a man of God!  I believe we live in a country that God has blessed immensely. I believe when Donald Trump is no longer President, he will feel and know the love and power of God for the rest of his life.  I think he has seen many things during his time in the White House, and I think he will be forever changed in his beliefs and values.
     God Bless America, and God Bless Americans!

Tuesday, May 21, 2019

I Am Pro-Life!

With all the protests and controversy surrounding this topic, I must speak my mind.  It will not be agreed with by all who read this blog, and that's okay with me.  If my opinion offends you, feel free to unfriend me on Facebook, don't speak to me ever again, or whatever you deem appropriate socially.  I don't have to answer to you on the day of judgment.

I don't fully understand how a physician, who has taken the Hippocratic Oath, can perform an abortion. It goes against all they have sworn to uphold.  For the person who asked for the abortion to be performed, they may possibly claim ignorance, not fully comprehending the procedure, nor the tiny life that abides within them. But a well-educated doctor, who knows anatomy forwards and backwards, knows the timeline of conception to delivery.  They know that the "blob" is a tiny human, designed by God Almighty, and designed with a complex neurological, cardiovascular, and respiratory system, miraculously formed from the egg and sperm.  They know of the chemical reaction that takes place during a saline abortion.  They know when they are aimlessly grabbing for parts and pieces exactly what they are grabbing for.  They know.  THEY KNOW!  They can say what they want, but you can't tell me that when they lay their head down at night, they aren't haunted by their actions.  Even the most vile know right from wrong.  They just know.

The folks at Planned Parenthood know, too.  They know so well, that they have honed selling aborted baby parts down to a fine art.  They understand that aborting a "blob" means finding, identifying, and accounting for 2 legs, 2 arms, 1 head, etc.  to ensure they got all of the "blob" out.  It angers me that they have the nerve to say they are there for women's health, and that is an outright lie.  They are there for abortions.  It's a money maker when they do the abortion, and a money maker when they sell the baby parts.  Shame on them!

Our own government knows.  The same laws that say a woman can get an abortion at will also say that if you are drunk and driving and kill a pregnant woman, you may be charged with TWO counts of manslaughter.  They acknowledge that a fetus, no matter it's age, is a baby.  They acknowledge that a pregnant woman is, in fact, representing two separate lives.  How can this even be?  How can you make a law that says a fetus is a human life, and another that says it is not?

There will be those who say, "But what if it's medically necessary?"  I don't know if I think it's ever medically necessary.  But those aren't the folks protesting and holding signs on the news.  The people are using those few times when a doctor said it was necessary as an excuse to not be responsible for their own poor choices and actions.  There is one way to prevent the need for an abortion.  Abstain!  If you are choosing to hop into bed with someone, then you are choosing the possibility of pregnancy.  It seems our entire society is one that says, "It's not my fault." "It's not my fault that I wasn't paying attention and twisted my ankle and it happened to be on your lawn.  You'll have to pay for it."  "It's not my fault I got pregnant. I was on the pill."  "It's not my fault I had a wreck while texting."  "It's not my fault I got an 'F' on the test."  Everything is someone else's fault.  Isn't it time people took a little responsibility for their own actions?

Some will say, "It's my body, so it's my choice." That, my friend, is a bunch of baloney!  If a woman gets pregnant, did she make that baby alone?  What if the man wants a baby?  Doesn't he get a say in the life he helped create?  And if the choice is only up to the woman as to when she wants to be a mother, then that same choice should be up to the father to decide if he wants to pay child support and be a father, right?  Of course, that is laughable.  The father is ordered to pay child support, sometimes without even being granted the ability to see his child, and threatened with jail and fines if he doesn't pay.  How is that justified?

Some will say, "You only care about the fetus - not the child who is being neglected."  The whole system needs an overhaul.  Adoption should be more affordable and easier to maneuver through the approval channels.  Personally, I think if you have a child taken away for neglect and/or abuse, you should be forced to have your tubes tied, or if a man, have a vasectomy.  I think the government should pay for it.  It is much cheaper than forcing the government to pay for fostering children of those who continue to have one after the other taken away, only to become pregnant again.  If that person gets their life straightened out, then they can reverse it if they choose to. I also think if your baby is born addicted to an illegal drug, having your tubes tied should be mandatory.

Others will claim that a child conceived from rape or incest should be aborted.  While that must be a traumatic experience, I don't understand how killing a baby growing inside makes the trauma any better.  There are those who have endured rape and chosen to have their babies and chosen to love them and keep them.  Those children have gone on to lead happy lives.   Not everyone will choose that, and adoption is an option for them.  This ultimately goes back to people's question of how God can let bad things happen. You can see one of my past blog posts for some answers to that question.  God doesn't want bad things to happen, but we are given free will, which sometimes results in bad decisions. Tragedies are tragic, but two wrongs don't make a right.  Killing an innocent life should never be the answer.

Our society has become a "ME" society.  Do what's right for ME.  Do what feels good for ME.  Do what makes ME happy.  While we all want to be happy and feel good about ourselves, sometimes life requires us to sacrifice a little of our wants for the sake of others.  Sometimes we skip eating out so we can buy some new shoes for the kids.  Sometimes we give up our morning coffee stop so we can give something to someone else.  This is what makes the world go around - not me, me, me.

I am not for abortion under any circumstance.  While I believe we, as humans, make plenty of mistakes and stupid decisions, I don't believe God does.  I believe He is to be thanked and praised and glorified,whether in the midst of a tragedy or among great joys.  I believe a baby is a baby from the moment it is conceived.  I believe people who want evil things from this world are more vocal and more visible than the people who want what is good and right, but I don't believe they outnumber the good.  God is truly our only hope in this world. 

Tuesday, April 16, 2019

The Answer is God...

This past week, three people I knew had their lives snuffed out for no good reason.  Two lives were ended at the hand of another, and one took their own life.  This world is a dark place.  We seem to be continually trying to improve things, and they seem to keep getting worse.  I love in the Bible where it mentions the devil, referring to him as “that old serpent”.  He is certainly that old serpent.  Working evil in the hearts of all who will let him.  Convincing people that life isn’t worth living.  Planting seeds of doubt in the minds of Christians.  Justifying evil as long as it’s for a good cause. Oh, he is at work, my friends, and working hard.  And we are letting him.  We are letting things slide when we need to stand up and shout that they are wrong.  We are justifying bad things that are wrapped up with good deeds.  

Where has our love for God and country gone?  Where are those people who, on September 11, 2011, said “We will not go silently into the night.  We will band together because we ARE AMERICA!”?  Where are the parents who sacrifice so their kids can know the meaning of true love?  Where are the parents who do what is best for their children and not what is best for the parents?  What has happened to discipline?  Believe it or not, there is good in setting boundaries and enforcing them.  A quick swat on a child’s bottom gets their attention and lets them know their behavior is not appropriate.  It is good for our kids to NOT get everything they want.  Life is not fair, and though we want the best for them, sometimes the best thing is letting them see that unfairness and helping them to deal with it.  

Where have our social skills gone?  We can talk smack about everyone on social media, but we can’t walk into a business and ask for a job.  We have lost the ability to converse with others.  We have lost good manners.  Please and thank you haven’t gone out of style.  Looking someone in the eye when speaking to them is still effective.  People still want to be valued and appreciated.  Not for what they have, but for who they are.  Kindness and doing what’s right is never wrong.  It always pays dividends.

So many people are living in desperation, searching for something to fill a void in their lives.  Some try alcohol and some try drugs.  Some can’t bear another day and take their own lives.  We are all searching for that mystery “something”.  But I can promise you it’s not in a bottle of whiskey or at the end of a straw or syringe.  It’s been here all along, but people haven’t looked in the right place for it.  God is the answer.  The only answer.  The only answer to all of the questions.  He is the father to the fatherless.  He loves beyond measure. He gives peace in your heart that you won’t find anywhere else.  

If you are searching in the darkness for something that fills your void, choose God.  He promises to give us peace and joy and eternal life in Heaven with Him, if only we’ll ask.  It isn’t hard, it doesn’t come with conditions, and you don’t have to get your life in order first.  He takes the broken, the weary, the wounded, and picks them up, brushes them off, and sets them on a path filled with love.  He doesn’t promise no rain will fall, but He promises to be with us, carrying us when we can’t walk, knowing that our reward will come in Heaven.  He promises to wipe away all tears and give us a life more beautiful than we can imagine. He is the answer.  Whatever your question is right now, HE is the answer. Don’t wait another day to ask God to forgive you, and come into your heart and save you!

Friday, October 5, 2018

Me, Tarzan! You, Jane!

Are we reverting back to caveman days?  What on earth has happened to the women in this country?

As I watch the circus unfolding while the Senate Judiciary Hearings are going on, I can't help but wonder what has happened here.  Women through the years have fought to be heard and to be valued and to be believed.  Yet this crazy drama seems to have set women back many years.

I believe women and men are both to be valued and both to be believed.  We are both valuable, but we are far from equal.  We were created differently on purpose.  We each have vital things we bring to the world and to each other in a relationship.  Different, but equally as important.

I am appalled at the people I have seen who say we should believe all women and assume all men are rapists!  Who, in their right mind, would think like that?  I know plenty of liars that are women.  And I know plenty of men who would never harm a woman.  In this particular circus of flying monkeys, we are even forsaking our constitutional foundation of the country.  These people are spouting that we don't even need evidence to destroy someone's life.  How preposterous!

I would hope that no one could show up at my door with the police and claim I robbed them, having no proof, and talk the judicial system into putting me into jail.  I believe we still have the right to be considered innocent until someone proves otherwise.  Those shouting for believing the woman would certainly not be happy with the results of their future if they got their wish.

Let's examine this.  First, a woman says she was sexually assaulted by someone 36-ish years ago.  I was alive and kicking 36 years ago, and what she described was not called sexual assault.  It was called being at a party where there was drinking.  No one and nothing was safe or sacred at a "gathering" of drinking teenagers.  There would likely be a fight, some scene in a bedroom that involved alcohol, betrayal and crying, and rumors and talk the next day among all who were there and a few who weren't.  In today's world, a mere wink at the opposite sex could be called sexual assault!  Give me a break!  Has our society become such a tattletale group of easily-offended people that we have to have a legal term for every last thing that might possibly sometime someday offend someone?  The one sure way to see that nothing wild and crazy happened to you in the 80's was to stay away from wild and crazy places!  The fact that she went there means she knew what might happen. Anyone who says otherwise is a liar.

Second, she doesn't remember how she got there, where it was, who else was there, or how she got home.  I've had a few "close calls" myself, and to this day I remember those times.  And mine weren't "traumatic" as she claims hers were, yet she remembers nothing.  She claims her good friend was there and that once she escaped into the bathroom, she managed to find a way to "run" out of the house past her assaulters.  Her good friend never chased after her, or called her that night or the next day to see why she ran out or if she was alright?  That's odd.  She was supposedly 15 when this happened.  At 15, I didn't go anywhere by myself.  I went with a group of at least one other girl and most usually 4 or 5 other girls.  We went to the bathroom together, to parties together, and we knew all that went on with the other people in our group.  If there was a "near miss" at a party, we knew it, and everyone else there knew it, too.  And if someone had tried to have their way with a friend in our group, the other people in the group would have made sure to tell them what a jerk we thought they were for acting that way.  Then, it was over.  No police, no lawsuit, no tattling.  It was a risk everyone took who went to a party.  If it was rough, the other boys there took care of letting the offender know their behavior was unacceptable.  Again, no police, etc.

Third, in her story, she said she heard uproarious laughter and them ping-ponging down the stairs.  She said she heard others talking to them downstairs, and then she said she didn't hear others talking downstairs.  Which is it?  She heard or she didn't?  Most parties I went to had music so loud you couldn't hear anyone talking, anywhere.  She wasn't sure of anything, really, except that she had 1 beer and it was definitely, 100% Brett Kavanaugh.  Weird.  I remember lots of detail about parties, but how many drinks consumed would be the one detail I couldn't tell you.

Next, she said it was so traumatic, she repressed the memory and it didn't come out until 2012 in a therapy session, which was needed because she wanted 2 front doors on her house.  She also said it was so traumatic that her first 2 years of college were very difficult.  So, she forgot it for the remainder of high school, remembered it the first 2 years of college, and then forgot it again until 2012?  Is that right?  I have had some things happen that are pretty crappy.  I never forgot what happened, or who did it.  If they are reading this blog, they know who they are.  Did it affect me?  Of course!  Everything in our lives affects us.  Our experiences, good and bad, shape us into who we are.  The accumulation of life lessons teach us to be wise and act in certain ways.  Does it mean we are unable to function?  It shouldn't.  Tragedies are terrible.  When terrible things happen, we feel a host of emotions, from sadness to despair to anger, but we must live on.  The statement, "Get busy livin', or get busy dyin'" rings true.  Some days you just have to trudge on.  You can choose to wallow in the pit of being a victim of something, or you can choose to muscle on and overcome whatever it is.  That is true of everyone.  We all face trials, but we don't all succumb to despair.

Did something really happen to Christine Blasey-Ford?  I don't know, and can't say, as I haven't walked in her shoes.  Did she prove that Brett Kavanaugh was her assaulter?  Absolutely not!  She gave not one shred of proof or evidence.  She didn't have a police report from the time it happened.  She didn't have a statement by others who attended the party saying they remembered it.  In the 80's there were no cell phones.  If she ran out of the house, where did she go?  Did she walk 7 miles home?  Did she knock on a stranger's door and ask to use their phone?  And where were her parents?  Didn't she come home with her clothes disheveled and her makeup smeared, and have her mother ask what had happened?  If 2 drunk college guys tried but failed to make anything happen, didn't they tell the other party goers what a prude she was?  She didn't have corroboration of her story from the people she said could corroborate it.

There's just nothing about this whole story that makes any sense.  None of it.  And to judge a person from their behavior 36 years ago is nuts!  I'm so glad that I am not judged by my behavior in 1982.  I was a stupid teenager with no sense, and no limits to the crazy stunts I'd try.  I didn't care about the future because I couldn't see past 10 minutes.  That's called being a teenager.  Thankfully, most of us grow up and mature into somewhat-responsible people.  We leave behind the irresponsible behavior and get married and raise a family and work hard at our jobs.  And most of us know that our coworkers, friends and family went through that change, too.  We don't punish the vice president of a corporation because he had a bathtub full of beer when he was 17.

If something bad happened to Christine Blasey-Ford, I'm sorry.  She waited too late to tell anyone.  That's the long and short of this story.  If you choose not to report something that has happened that you think is illegal, then that's your choice.  Sometimes that choice means you can't report it later.  If you steal my gun and I find you with it 10 years later and it has my name carved into it, then I can still report it.  If you punch me and I have a black eye, I can choose to go to a doctor or the police where it can be documented, or I can choose to wait 2 or 3 weeks and then report it.  At that point, it's my word against yours. Waiting is a choice, and in her case, it cost her the possibility of evidence, if there was any to start with.  That may sound mean, but it's the truth.

I hope women and men can remember that our country was founded on a system for justice, and part of that is being presumed innocent until you are proven guilty.  I know this isn't a "trial", but this woman has forever tainted this man's life and his family's life.  What a terrible thing to do to another person! May God put His hand over our government and country and let the truth be known and justice be served.

Wednesday, September 26, 2018

The Fairy Tale of Innocence

    My family's nightly discussions now include Brett Kavanaugh and his accusers.  I am angry, amazed, and a little embarrassed by the stupidity of the Democratic party and the avenues they will use to try and interfere with our country's justice system.
     I feel justified in what I am about to say.  As a woman who has attended a few (ahem) parties with less-than-savory activities, Christine Blasey Ford is a total moron.  First, I totally doubt anything she said is true.  Second, if it is true, why was there silence all this time?  Brett Kavanaugh has been through several steps, hearings and investigations prior to this one.  Why didn't she say something in all these years?  Third, I believe if I intended to seek revenge on someone who had sexually assaulted me, the first people I would notify would be the police.  Isn't she claiming he committed a crime?  Why would you notify a senator and not the police?  Fourth, was she forced to attend said party?  I mean, come on.  If you go to a high school or college party where there is too much alcohol, you know going in that it will likely be a free-for-all before it's over.  Am I condoning rape or sexual assault?  Of course not.  Now, I know there will be those who disagree, and that's alright.  There are women who will say "No" is "No", no matter what.  Well, that very well may be, but if you go to a party where you are drinking and scantily clad, and flirt with boys (which is what most girls do), you are putting an invitation out there.  Maybe you change your mind at the last minute, and maybe he's a gentleman and accepts your decline.  But to a teenage, inebriated boy, they don't always accept your "No".  My point is that if you don't want to take a chance on being put in an awkward position, don't go to the party! 
     My generation grew up hearing the word "rape", and it was never linked to a party.  It was a brutal assault by a likely-unknown person.  It was never that someone went to a party, got drunk, and then cried rape.  Again, I am not excusing the behavior of a rapist, but we as a culture have become so easily "offended" by things that everything is a crime.  I've worked in plenty of offices where I got pinched, rubbed, and heard snarky comments by the men I worked with.  I never called the police.  I gave them a piece of my mind and handled it.  I never even thought what happened was "assault" or "harassment" - it was called working in the same environment as men.  Women fought and fought for equal rights, and they want to be equal with the men.  I'm sorry to say, we are not equal!  We are different.  It is human nature for men to pursue women.  Yes, some go to far, but these days men merely have to look in a woman's direction and she cries, "Harassment"! 
     So what happened to the U.S. Constitution that says people are innocent until proven guilty?  As far as I know, that is still the backbone of our country.  Yet any woman, at any time can cry assault, harassment, or abuse, and instantly the man is guilty.  His reputation is tarnished, and he is now jumping through hoops to prove he is innocent.  The burden of proof should be on the accuser, not the accused.  There will be those who say they just couldn't come forward until 30+ years later.  Well, you know what?  Maybe you waited too long.  Sometimes the best thing is not to wallow in self-pity, but to pull yourself up by your bootstraps and move forward, putting the past behind you. 
     This is the same boxing ring as fathers endure in custody battles.  Mama only has to mention abuse and the father instantly loses visitation rights while they investigate.  There is no burden of proof on the mother.  If, after the investigation, the accusation is proven false, visitation is restored and the mother faces no penalty for lying and defaming the character of the father.  Again - this is totally backwards to the rights given us in the Constitution.  This is beginning to change, but it will be a long time coming before women are punished for making false accusations.
     What about Bill Cosby?  He is doing jail time now.  Were the women telling the truth?  Did he drug them?  I don't know.  I do know that if a man said he wanted to have a "meeting" with me, and only me, up in his hotel room, I would be an idiot to think business was all that would take place.  Why did these women put themselves in that position in the first place?  And, again, why wait a million years to tattle?
     I believe all the accusers in the Kavanaugh case are lying through their teeth.  I can't imagine how much money a person would need to totally ruin someone's life.  I hope that if these allegations are proven to be false, the women are prosecuted to the fullest extent of the law.  What an awful thing to put this man and his family through!  This is a big deal for our country, and will set the stage for what will be allowed in the future.  It is a shame that the democrats have managed to turn a relatively routine event into a circus!

Saturday, March 31, 2018

How Could God Let This Happen?

There is no better time to address the many tragic issues going on in the world than right now.  This weekend.  Easter Weekend!  A time when we are reminded that God has victory over everything...even death! A time for hope and joy and wonder.
I hear people say many times, "How could God let this happen?", referring to the horrible things that go on in this world.  How could God let a teenage boy enter a school and shoot others?  How could God let an adult do awful things to a child?  How could God let this person or that person get sick, suffer, and die?
Maybe we should first pose that question to the days leading up to the death and resurrection of God's only Son.  Now, for my Christian friends, this is nothing new, but to my non-Christian friends, let me elaborate a bit.  Many of us attended Sunday School as children, or Vacation Bible School.  The majority of us have heard the meaning of Easter in a nice, compact story:  Jesus died for your sins and rose again three days later. If you haven't learned anything beyond that, you are missing out on the magnitude of what took place.
Jesus didn't "just die".  The days leading up to His death were torturous for both Him and God. Can you imagine handing your only son over to a mob of crazy, radical people, knowing he is going to be tortured and beaten, and finally killed to pay for the sins of people who hate him? God knew how evil the hearts of man were, and He knew the only way to atone for the sins of man was with the ultimate sacrifice - his perfect Son, Jesus Christ, the Messiah.  He knew he would feel pain and anguish like never before, yet it had to be done.  How could God let this happen?  Honestly, I don't know.  I don't think I could do that.
For Jesus, he was spending his last days and hours with his disciples - the people who supposedly loved Him the most.  While the disciples were arguing about who was the greatest among them, Jesus knew that one of them would betray him, and the rest would run away when the time of His death drew near. How hard would it be to spend your last days with a bunch of hypocrites?  Many people say they don't come to church because it's a bunch of hypocrites, but that is exactly who Jesus chose to spend his last days with.
When Judas traded a little fast cash for turning in Jesus to the soldiers, it was more than he could bear, and he hanged himself shortly thereafter.  How could God let this happen? Once Jesus was taken over by the soldiers, he was beaten and scourged.  When we think of those words, what comes to mind?  A strap, or a stick? He was beaten with many things - straps, rods, reeds, whatever they had.  And then He was scourged.  In those days, they would tie sharp things like rocks in the end of a rope or strap, with several of them held together and lash them at someone's body, letting them penetrate the skin and then rip it open when they drew the straps back.  This happened repeatedly until he was physically drained and exhausted.  He was most likely barely recognizable.  He was so weak that the tradition of carrying your cross for your execution was impossible, and someone else had to carry His cross for Him.  Again, how could God let this happen?
The act of placing Him on the cross was just as awful. Driving spikes through His hands and feet, and then roughly setting the cross into a hole is something I can't even grasp.  Today, our world gripes because someone left a dog out in the cold.  Then, as if that wasn't enough, they stripped Him of His clothes, removing any human dignity He might have had.  They spit on Him, mocked Him, and then gambled for His clothes.  He wore a crown made of thorns, which they had roughly put on his head, ensuring that the thorns pierced his scalp.  They pierced His side with a spear to make the blood loss even greater.  They were trying to speed up His death, because by their tradition, bodies couldn't remain on the crosses on the sabbath day.  They said if He was really who He said He was, that He would save himself, and though He had that power, He chose to obey God's will and remain there, becoming the ultimate sacrifice for the world.  He even asked God if it was possible for there to be some other way...there was not. How could God let this happen?
In the final hour, even God couldn't look any more - it was too much.  He turned His back and the world grew dark.  Jesus asked why God had forsaken Him, though He knew why.  And finally, it was over.  When He died, the earth shook and trembled.  I suspect that at that very moment, all those who played a part in the death of Jesus had a scary realization that He was who He said He was.  What a frightening moment that must have been. 
They took His body down, and prepared Him for burial.  He was washed, and wrapped with swaddling clothes - the same thing He was wrapped in when He was born. Coincidence?  I think not.  He was anointed with oils and perfumes, and placed in a borrowed tomb, and a huge rock was rolled in front of the opening. The soldiers were concerned someone would steal his body and then claim that He rose from the dead, so they placed guards there day and night just to be sure no one tried to pull off a scam. 
Then, three days later, Mary Magdalene came to the tomb early in the morning, and saw the stone had been rolled away and the body was gone.  The guards had no knowledge of how anyone could have gotten past them.  She ran to tell her news to Peter and they ran back to the tomb, seeing that the linens were still there, but the body of Jesus was not.  And the napkin that was on His head was folded together and laying in a different place. Mary stood outside His tomb and cried, and leaned over to look inside one more time.  This time, she saw two angels in white, one sitting where His head would have been, and one sitting  where His feet would have been.  They asked why she was crying, and she replied that someone had stolen the body of Jesus and she didn't know where they had taken Him.  When she turned back, she was looking right into the face of Jesus!  He asked her why she was crying and who she was looking for.  She thought He was a gardener and she wanted to know if He had information about Jesus' body.  Then, Jesus said, "Mary." She looked again and knew it was Him! He told her to run and tell the disciples what she had seen. 
That night when the disciples met, Jesus came and stood with them and showed them His hands and His side, which bore scars of His crucifixion.  He showed Himself to His disciples several times in those days after the crucifixion, still performing miracles.  It is estimated He remained on the earth for about 40 days.  He wanted people to see Him and know He had truly risen from the dead. Then, He ascended to Heaven to live eternally with God, His Father. 
Those left on the earth were left with His Holy Spirit.  He left instructions for all of the generations to come.  The perfect, holy, sinless, blameless, Son of God died a horrible death on the cross as payment for all the sins of the world.  He paid a debt He didn't owe, because we all owe a debt we cannot pay. The punishment for our sins is to spend eternity in hell.  He is the only way out of that punishment. What greater news is there than this?  He left us instructions on how to live, how to die, how to conduct ourselves, and the best part - how to make sure that our souls go to Heaven when our earthly body dies. 
Before His death, paying for sins was a physical act.  People had to kill a lamb or make some other atonement, physically.  But after His death, He was the atonement, and He did it all for us as a gift!  He said that all we have to do is make a choice in our hearts.  The Bible says that if we believe that He is the perfect Son of God, and that He was crucified on a cross to pay for our sins, and that God raised Him to have victory over death, we can be saved!  All we have to do is admit that we are a sinner, and that we have no power to pay the price for our own sins, and ask Him to forgive us of our sins, and ask Him to come into our hearts and abide with us forever!  How could God let this happen?  I truly don't know, but I am so glad He did! 
To those who are not saved, there is no way I can translate to you the feeling of the Holy Spirit.  It is like the wind - you can't see it, but you know it is there, occasionally blowing this way or that, guiding us on our journey.  The inner peace is indescribable.  True joy is on the inside, regardless of what is happening on the outside.  We still have trials and sorrows, but we have the comfort of God within us to help us.  It is amazing.
Want to know more?  Just ask me. Message me. Call me.  Come to church with me.  Don't let this free gift pass you by!
Happy Easter!

Thursday, August 17, 2017

Is everyone in America 5 years old?

     I am so sick of hearing about radical acts by radical groups and radical people blaming everyone except the guilty parties!  If someone tears down an historic statue, they should be charged with destruction of property and sentenced.  Not the group they represented, for that group did not choose to act in violence.  Just the person(s) doing the destruction.  If someone runs over people, they should be charged with a crime and sentenced, for they purposely chose their actions, and should have to endure the consequences.
     Apparently, in this great Land of the Free, we are free to destroy other people's property, and we are free to interrupt people trying to conduct business and earn a living, and we are free to violently assemble, and we are free to publicly condemn someone and sue them for not believing as someone else does, all in the name of freedom.  Is that right?
     Isn't is possible that the people holding a "Black Lives Matter" rally do not, in fact, represent all black people?  Isn't it possible that people holding a "White Supremacy" rally do not, in fact, represent all white people?  Isn't it possible that destroying someone else's property is NEVER alright?  Isn't is possible that if someone doesn't want to do business with you, you take your business somewhere else?
     You are free to think and say whatever you like.  And I can agree or disagree with you.  But don't call me a bigot because I don't celebrate whatever your cause is.  That is my right, just as you have the right to plea approval for your cause, whatever it may be. If I disagree with you, let me alone!  Don't keep trying to persuade me not only to tolerate you and your behavior that I disagree with, but to celebrate and proclaim how wonderful it is.
     I have my own morals and beliefs and religion that I follow.  I do not pressure or demonstrate to try and force others to believe exactly as I do.  If you want to live an alternate life style, that is your choice.  I disagree with you.  I disagree with your lifestyle.  Let me have the freedom to disagree.
     I may like you or I may dislike you.  It might be because of your beliefs, actions, lifestyle, religion, etc.  And yes, it could even be because of your race.  You may like or dislike me for all the very same reasons.  There is NO RULE that says everyone must like you and celebrate your existence!  You will not be everyone's cup of tea.  That's called life.  Didn't you learn that in Kindergarten?  Not everyone is going to like you.  If someone doesn't like you, don't assume it is because you are black or white or Asian or Indian. Maybe it's because you're just not very nice.  And if someone doesn't like you, so what?  Move on and surround yourself with those who do.  Don't protest in my front yard or town just because I don't want to celebrate you.
   It seems that everyone has somehow mistaken "Freedom of Religion" and "Freedom of Speech" to mean that all others who don't agree are bigots and racists.  That is simply not true.  Be whatever it is you want to be, and be glad you live in a country where you have that freedom.  Don't infringe on my freedom, either.  I am not asking you to join my ranks of what I consider to be "normalcy". If I think you're weird or wrong or whatever, I can think that.  If I don't want to do business with you for whatever reason I choose, that's my right.
     Grow up, people!  Move on.  Devote some of that time and energy into hard work and raising a responsible, productive family.  If you want to change the world, it doesn't start at a rally or a protest; it starts at home, in your own living room.  Teach your kids right from wrong.  Teach them that they are not entitled to anything.  Teach them the value of a dollar and the meaning of hard work.  Teach them kindness and compassion for others.  Teach them to be good judges of character. Teach them and love them and care for them. THAT will change the world!