Saturday, July 04, 2015

250 and Free?

Happy 239th Birthday America! Even with the desensitizing of some of the greatest strengths any kingdom on earth has ever known, it is the freedom of speech and the right to worship without dictatorial interference that has brought about the most satisfied and prosperous of people. As Soviet-born comedian Yaakov Smirnoff often quoted after observing some of the antics Americans engage themselves in without fear of repression, “What a country!!” And that it is! I for one will refuse to allow anyone to suppress my thoughts and ideas in the name of “hate” or “prejudice” calling it a crime. All crime is a hate crime and performed with prejudice. I’m not out to deny anyone their rights as an American but I am getting a little tired of seeing the courts tweaking and adjusting my rights compromising my liberties. Think about it America.

“God Bless the U.S.A.” by Lee Greenwood: “If tomorrow all the things were gone, I worked for all my life; And I had to start again, With just my children and my wife; I thank my lucky stars, To be living here today, 'Cause the flag still stands for freedom, And they can't take that away; And I'm proud to be an American, Where at least I know I'm free, And I won't forget the men who died, Who gave that right to me; And I'd gladly stand up next to you, And defend Her still today, 'Cause there ain't no doubt I love this land, God Bless the U.S.A. From the lakes of Minnesota, To the hills of Tennessee, Across the plains of Texas, From sea to shining sea; From Detroit down to Houston, And New York to L.A., Well there's pride in every American heart, And it's time we stand and say, That I'm proud to be an American, Where at least I know I'm free, And I won't forget the men who died, Who gave that right to me; And I'd gladly stand up next to you, And defend Her still today, 'Cause there ain't no doubt I love this land, God Bless the U.S.A. And I'm proud to be an American, Where at least I know I'm free, And I won't forget the men who died, Who gave that right to me; And I'd gladly stand up next to you, And defend Her still today, 'Cause there ain't no doubt I love this land, God Bless the U.S.A.” Songwriters: WEISMAN, BENJAMIN / KARGER, FRED / WAYNE, SID © Warner/Chappell Music, Inc., Universal Music Publishing Group Publishing Group

[Romans 13] In an address to military leaders, John Adams, our second President said, “We have no government armed with the power capable of contending with human passions, unbridled by morality and true religion. Our constitution was made only for a moral and religious people. It is wholly inadequate to the government of any other.” John Jay, our first Court Justice stated that when we select our national leaders, if we are to preserve our Nation, we must select Christians. “Providence has given to our people the choice of their rulers and it is the duty as well as the privilege and interest of our Christian Nation to select and prefer Christians for their rulers. Calvin Coolidge, our 30th President wrote, “The foundations of our society and our government rest so much on the teachings of the Bible that it would be difficult to support them if faith in these teachings would cease to be practically universal in our country.” In 1782, the United States Congress passed this resolution: ‘The Congress of the United States recommends and approves the Holy Bible for use in all schools.’ In 1963, the Supreme Court ruled that Bible reading was outlawed as unconstitutional in the public school system. Has society or our schools benefitted without God’s Word?

Saturday, June 27, 2015

Equality For Me Too!

As I contemplate all the facets of justice being tossed about lately, it’s hard to pass judgment on my feelings without looking inward for a closer examination of ones self. Would I forgive a young man for murdering members of my own family, as well as members of my church family, after I sat and shared the Word of God with him for over an hour in Bible study? I believe I could, but really don’t look forward to the opportunity to prove it. I honestly believe that the statements directed at Mr. Roof by the bereaved are heartfelt and truly full of forgiveness. I also believe the same bereaved have turned the judgment of this man over to God, that His will may be done. But, I have a hard time blaming it all on a flag or a gun. Neither have a selfish conscience nor the power to perform any act of violence for the betterment of mankind. I don’t wish to get into a political rant about the direction our government officials are taking this country, but I feel compelled to make a few observations. These United States were founded on the morals and equalities found in the Word of God, the Bible. Reject or deny this premise if you wish, but it doesn’t change the fact that the strength of this country has been maintained by the faithful, God-fearing families and churches, across this nation. As the morals of the people, and the demands of equality based on the continual erosion of Godly morals, are being “justified” by our over-amended and appended constitution, the God-fearing strength of this country is waning. This may be okay with the self-centered, give-me-more it’s my right portion of our populous, but I have to insist upon your observing the condition of our ever increasing criminal status. It’s the results of immorality and the abuse of “anything goes”. The hardest thing for me to witness was the White House cloaked in the LGBT colors as if it represented the approval of all Americans. Mr. President, it may represent your home, but not mine! It may show support to your agenda and the decision of the Supreme Court, but not the majority of the citizens of this nation. Did I just hear another freedom being flushed?

[Romans 1:18 - 2:16; 1 Corinthians 6:9-10, 7:1-40] If this is still a God-fearing nation, maybe we ought lay the Bible on top of the constitution and review it before making decisions on what is best for the people and the strength of the nation. I’ll almost bet there is more discrimination among our citizens this day than there was a week ago. In one breathe we’re blessing and forgiving one another in the name of our Lord and in the next breathe we’re not sure which flag is going to be run up the pole for us to salute in the name of equality. You can be sure of one thing. God is not pleased with the direction this country is going in. If we continue on this trek, be assured God will turn us over to our own desires and be depraved of His blessings and grace. This country and its freedoms will be lost, taken away, because we have rejected God. Unless the people of this country repent of this rejection and turn again to the upright moral standards of God’s Word, all of God’s Word, what you think is hard times now will get much worse. And after thumbing your nose at God all your life, do you thing Mary Bonauto will take you on as a client when you stand before the judgment seat of God? It will take an eternity for her to be heard in heaven. Call me what you may, that’s okay. Just remember this: I also hold beliefs by which I live; I do not have to agree or engage in your lifestyle; Remember, I have rights also. Shalom!

Saturday, June 20, 2015

A Strong Faithful Father Is...

You’re going to meet an old man someday! Down the road ahead - 10, 20, 30 years -he’s waiting there for you. You’ll be catching up with him! What kind of old man are you going to meet? That’s a rather significant question! He may be a seasoned, soft, generous fellow - a gentleman who has grown old gracefully, surrounded by hosts of friends who call him blessed because of what his life has meant to them. He may be a bitter, disillusioned, dried-up, cynical old buzzard without a good word for anybody - soured, friendless and alone. The kind of old man you will meet depends entirely on you, because the old man will be you. He’ll be the composite of everything you do, say and think - today and tomorrow. His mind will be set in a mold you have made by your attitudes. His heart will be turning out what you’ve been putting in. Every little thought; every deed; goes into the making of this old man. He’ll be exactly what you make him - nothing more; nothing less. It’s up to you. You’ll have no one else to credit or blame. Every day in every way you are becoming more and more like yourself. Amazing, but true! You’re getting to look more like yourself, think more like yourself and talk more like yourself. You’re becoming yourself more and more. Live only in terms of what you’re getting out of life and the old man gets smaller, drier, harder, crabbier and more self-centered. Open your life to others, think in terms of what you can give to life and the old man grows larger, softer, kinder, greater. A point to remember is that these things don’t always show immediately, but they show up sooner than you think. These little things - so unimportant now - attitudes, goals, ambitions, desires - they’re adding up inside, where you can’t see them, crystallizing in your heart and mind. Someday, you’ll harden into that old man and nothing will be able to soften or change them. The time to take care of that old man is right now - this week; today. Examine his motives, attitudes, goals. Check up on him. Work him over while he’s still plastic, still in a formative condition. The day comes, awfully soon, when it’s too late. The hardness will have set in, worse than paralysis. Character crystallizes, sets, jells. That’s the finish. Any wise man takes inventory regularly. We all need to, in the light of Christ and his Word. You’ll be much more likely to meet a splendid old fellow at the proper time - the fellow you’d like to be. “Do not be deceived: God cannot be mocked. A man reaps what he sows” (Galatians 6:7). Authored by Richard C. Halverson, a minister of the Gospel, United Presbyterian Church 1958-81 and among other duties served as chaplain of the United States Senate from 1981-94.

[Psalm 127] “Father’s Day” is a day set aside each year to honor our fathers for a job well-done. In addition, it is a day to remind fathers of the influential impact they have on their children as well as society. “As the home goes, so goes the nation.” A strong nation is comprised of strong Godly homes; homes led by strong and faithful fathers who: …love the Lord (Mark 12:29-30); …love their wife (Eph. 5:25-26); …love God’s word and shares it with family (2 Tim. 2:15; Eph. 6:4; Acts 10:30-33); …are faithful to the Lord and His church (1 Cor. 15:58); …communicate well (James 1:19-20); …provide for their family (1 Tim. 5:8); …Pray fervently and without ceasing (James 6:16; 1 Thess. 5:17); …non-abusively discipline their children when necessary (Proverbs 13:24; 22:15). Fathers heed these teachings of scripture, building strong homes and a strong nation.

Saturday, June 13, 2015

Stop And Smell God's Roses

I am not an ornithologist, a dude that studies birds, nor do I know the names of but about a dozen birds, but I do enjoy them as a gift from God. I’ve been blessed again this year to witness the life cycle of a pair of birds who have nested just outside a door I frequently use at work when moving from one building to another. These are birds that build a mud nest on the side of a wall near the top of a structure close to the ceiling. Everybody probably has a name for them, but in Texas everything has a half a dozen names depending on whose telling the story. Anyway, the point of my blessing is, I often find myself stopping to smell the roses, so to speak. The said door is an aluminum framed glass door where I can stand and watch the goings on of two loving partners raising their young. At their arrival this spring, last years nest was nearly completely disassembled leaving only the foundation attached to the wall, whereupon the female sat as the male build a new nest around her for a perfect fit. I often wonder if the male has to deal with her perfectionist qualities. With nest built she sits and sits and sits all the while the male feeds her. Then some little heads appear, five this time, and the feeding frenzy of both parents begins. The hatchlings grow like weeds over the next month until the nest is nearly overflowing with noisy, hungry, fully winged birds. At this point the parents all but stop feeding them and start a new routine of encouraging the young birds to spread their wings and leave the nest. It’s exciting in a way to watch the young birds exercising their wings and the parents sitting on the ground chirping, “Come on! You can do it!” Then one day they’re all gone; kind of a let down in my daily activities. About a week passed and I noticed just the other day the female is once again sitting in the nest and I suspect some little heads will once again appear with mouths flying open at the appearance of a faithful feeding parent.

[Psalm 145] I just flipped my calendar on the wall in my home office where I spend a lot of my free time. Here we are half way thru the month of June and it was still stuck on May. I’m amazed, at times, as to where the time goes.

A businessman, harassed and discouraged from overwork, took his problem to a psychiatrist who promptly told him to do less work. “Furthermore” prescribed the doctor, “I want you to spend an hour each week in the cemetery.” Shocked, the man asked, “What on earth do you want me to do that for? What should I do there?” The doctor suggested, “Not much. Take it easy; look around; get acquainted with some of the men already there, permanently. Remember, they never finished their work either. Nobody does, you know.”

Most of us get involved in so many responsibilities and affairs of life we fail to stop and smell the roses, neither do we feel we have the time to give to faithful worship to God… no time to study and meditate upon the Word of life… no time for anything but making a living. We find it hard to break away from our daily routine. Well, learn to break away and enjoy the blessings of God, because some day you will permanently be gone from this life. On average we only have 3,640 weeks of life in us. Tomorrow, I start my 3,397th week, but I highly plan on beating the average. Even so, the world will go right on without me as it has for countless of millions before me who never finished their work, completely. I don’t worship the creation, but I do enjoy it. No, I worship the Creator and thank Him for creation. I want to be with God one day, just not right now.

Saturday, June 06, 2015

My Greatest Find

"Pennies from Heaven" I found a penny today, Just laying on the ground. But it's not just a penny, This little coin I've found. Found pennies come from heaven, that's what my Grandpa told me. He said Angels tossed them down, Oh, how I loved that story! He said when an Angel misses you, They toss a penny down, sometimes just to cheer you up, To make a smile out of your frown. So don't pass by that penny, When you're feeling blue. It may be a penny from heaven, That an Angel's tossed to you. Author: Copyright © 1998 C Mashburn.

[Psalm 125; 128: 1-4] I found a penny on the sidewalk the other day and thought of this story. Several years ago, a woman named Arlene, and her husband, were invited to spend the weekend at the husband's employer's home. Arlene was nervous about the weekend. The boss was very wealthy, with a fine home on the waterway, and cars costing more than her house. The first day and evening went well, and Arlene was delighted to have this rare glimpse into how the very wealthy live. The husband's employer was quite generous as a host, and took them to the finest restaurants. Arlene knew she would never have the opportunity to indulge in this kind of extravagance again, so was enjoying herself immensely. As the three of them were about to enter an exclusive restaurant that evening, the boss was walking slightly ahead of Arlene and her husband. He stopped suddenly, looking down on the pavement for a long, silent moment. Arlene wondered if she was supposed to pass him. There was nothing on the ground except a single darkened penny that someone had dropped among a few cigarette butts. Still silent, the man reached down and picked up the penny. He held it up and smiled, then put it in his pocket as if he had found a great treasure. How absurd! What need did this man have for a single penny? Why would he even take the time to stop and pick it up? Throughout dinner, the entire scene nagged at her. Finally, she could stand it no longer. She casually mentioned that her daughter once had a coin collection, and asked if the penny he had found had been of some value. A smile crept across the man's face as he reached into his pocket for the penny and held it out for her to see. She had seen many pennies before! What was the point of this? "Look at it." He said. "Read what it says." She read the words "United States of America" "No, not that; read further." "One cent?" "No, keep reading." "In God we Trust?" "Yes! And if I trust in God, the name of God is holy, even on a coin. Whenever I find a coin I see that inscription. It is written on every single United States coin, but we never seem to notice it! God drops a message right in front of me telling me to trust Him? Who am I to pass it by? When I see a coin, I pray, I stop to see if my trust is in God at that moment. I pick the coin up as a response to God; that I do trust in Him. For a short time, at least, I cherish it as if it were gold. I think it is God's way of starting a conversation with me. Lucky for me, God is patient and pennies are plentiful!” (Blog: A Mother’s Wisdom) (Psalm 22:25-31) Pennies add up and with God in charge of my life, blessings add up. The greatest blessing I will treasure forever is the love of God from whom I was given salvation through his son, Jesus, the Christ. I will most likely spend my penny on myself, I may misplace it, I may even lose it, but nothing can separate me from the love of God that is in Christ Jesus my Lord, my Savior and Master; my greatest find.