I make it a practice to NOT brag about my giving. Not that I never do it, and certainly when I do it, I use a pseudonym so as to minimize the self-aggrandizement. But today I gave some coats and blankets to some homeless people in the park. This just before the next cold snap […]
Years ago a popular song by Boy Dylan heralded out the biblical passages that rang out the changing times of the era with “The Times they are a’changin’”
For those hanging around on the social economic bottom feeders, these words are encouraging and at times, dismaying.
I remember reading a report some years ago concerning the economic progress thousands of Valedictorians. Disturbingly the study indicated that more than 80 % of these high ranking graduates’ were in fact, UNEMPLOYED.
My experience reveals to me where once popular kids ended up either dead, in prison or as outcasts and oftentimes, druggies or alcoholics: whereas as a kid I loathed the rich and all their phony clicks and activities. In those days, I thought the poor had it over the rich guys, but now I’ve learn to pity the pressures installed on those who grew up with wealthy families: the hard demands and expectations of those among the elite.
I’ve learned that quite simply, people are just people no matter their background: rich or poor or educated or not. We are all the same.
Yet, Jesus encourages us for those of us on the bottom will one day be on top. This probably will not happen in this world, but we have hope for the future in the world beyond with Jesus and as part of His kingdom.
So yes, the first now may be winning. And often it may even be the bad guys that seem to advance ahead. But in the end, we’ll all be winners with Jesus. In the end, it won’t even matter at all who’s either first of last as long as we are home with Jesus.
Much can be said about the glory of God and all His goodness. For those of us, whenever we are showing off our glory we go far beyond the crowns of our hair. As parents, our glory is indisputably our children.
Moses had a desire to witness God’s Glory. He was unable to see God directly and thus, was regulated only to view a form of Him in passing as it represented His holiness. The big thing back in those days among others was that no man had ever seen the face of God. Among the Hebrews, they were even forbidden to speak His name.
In the New Testament, Jesus makes a strong case in declaring God. For he said that if we had seen Him we had seen the Father. And so that is true.
Another truth I will avow: Jesus’ Church is His offspring, His children and thus in turn, His Glory.
Amazing, isn’t it? We as members of Christ’s church are part of His glory for we know that He delights in us. We are His body or at least part of His body where He is the head.
This is indeed a special designation: one of which we should be proud. We are far greater in Job in that sense for Jesus is always putting us on in display. This is one more reason we are to remain stainless in our sins and in all that we do.
As a parent, we’ve all had our children embarrass us in full company in the public view. And we all know how shameful it is to view it when our kids misbehave, knowing that they know better.
And so it is with Jesus with us. When we screw up we make Him and His Holy Spirit sad. I would suppose we even make Jesus weep.
At other times, I’m sure we even make Him angry when we are defiant. And in the end, just as natural parents, He still claims us even though we are dirty with all our flaws. In the End, Jesus will still point to us before the entire Universe and State: There is My Glory.
For verily I say unto you, That whosoever shall say unto this mountain, Be thou removed, and be thou cast into the sea; and shall not doubt in his heart, but shall believe that those things which he saith shall come to pass; he shall have whatsoever he saith.
Truly in one very real way, Jesus meant what he said literally. In another way, however, we have other implications. I say this for just as in Jesus’ day, today we still have our mountains.
Our mountain might be an ego problem. Perhaps we have feelings of inferiority. Rather maybe we have megalomania issues instead or an anger control problem, Even still, maybe we suffer from depression or poverty or have difficulty establish friends. Whatever the problem, these are mountain issue for us to tackle.
We have all heard accounts of those who kicked drugs or alcohol after years of misuse. For others there are testimonies of those who overcame health problems and found victory after an army of prayer.
Folks. These are mountains. They are ‘human’ mountains to be sure but worthy of faith for removal with Jesus nonetheless. Either literal, or analogous, the miracle process is the same. In lifting up mountains we eliminate a debt of pain and frustration. And of course, this is all to the glory of God through His son, Jesus Christ.
Anyone who writes a simplistic thematic formula for dealing with difficult people really doesn’t have a clue about what they are talking about. In dealing with ‘difficult’ people we are really speaking about impossible people, period. Many are nothing more than snakes or vipers as Jesus might have said it. There is NOTHING easy about loving them.
In fact, a case could be made that for some, we are not to love them at all. Remember, there are instances where God actually HATES people. That is not love.
Take the Devil for example. Are we told to LOVE him? Nonsense. (Yes, we are told not to rail against him) Yet for most folks, their personal status might be for ponderable purposes only.
To sort this out: how about John Wayne Cagy or a Jeffrey Dahmer? Loving these two guys would be more than a handful for sure. Personally, that is beyond me so I won’t even try.
Can you imagine some innocent Christian taking in someone like the likes of Charles Manson? In fact, now that he’s dead I find him much easier to love.
Okay, all kidding aside. Jesus made it clear and concise. We are to love as He loved as we love one another. There is nothing confusing about His words. And we are to love as He loved. Again, right to the point. And thus when it comes to the difficult people issue: obviously, this requires a power greater than man. We must go directly to God through Jesus where the power of love is greater than man. And in this process, there is nothing simple about it for the creator is far greater than the creation: in this example they are either a snake or a man.
The local TV news featured a story on Lubbock’s panhandling last week, and if true, accurate, and representative of panhandling in general, it was a revealing story. http://www.everythinglubbock.com/news/klbk-news/lubbock-police-homeless-outreach-team-tackles-panhandler-cases-in-lubbock/972626021 Panhandling, in Lubbock becomes illegal when the beggar steps of the curb into the street to accept the alms from passing motorists. That is my understanding of […]
Most people when they look at an ex-con believe a person was served justice while in prison. I bet most never even consider that some in prison are innocent and victims of circumstance and not even criminals at all. They were simply at the wrong place at the wrong time. And if you don’t believe that can happen in our society, then you are on the wrong spectrum of society and don’t see it plainly and in full view as others who reside in more improvised areas.
And even if these guys are in fact, BAD GUYS aren’t we supposed to love them too? Didn’t Jesus tell us to visit prisons: isn’t this part of the list of the least of these?
What about the families of those who are left behind? How about the wife and the kids? Do these people count?
Don’t we love them too?
And okay, and so I spoke of guys. This includes women prisoners too. Crime really isn’t gender oriented, but opportunities might assist one into temptation. Depends on where you are if you can commit the crime or not, i.e., if you handle money you might be tempted one way but if you are not in that situation your crime might be presented differently.
Nonetheless, as Christians we are to love everyone. We are to see Cons as brothers and sisters and ones to assist, visit and for our prayers and resources.
Rather than build prisons out of sight, out of mind, we should embrace the idea that people need guidance, mentorship and resources. Above all, they need our presence to know there really is hope in a world that cares so little. Our concern for them should elevate them as Christ elevates us and all for the good of the Kingdom of God.
In order to confront the dark forces of the world one really doesn’t have to ponder long or go too far beyond our own mind.
For out of the heart proceed evil thoughts, murders, adulteries, fornications, thefts, false witness, blasphemies:
We are good at looking elsewhere and pointing our fingers in every direction but back to our own self. Jesus makes it abundantly clear the origin of sin: it begins with people and continues with people. The call for salvation is us: not Satan.
Yeah, I know. Some are going to jump on me because of this, but once again, we are to remain vigil in what WE do and what WE say. We really have nothing to say outside of what WE do.
I could read all of this wrong, but I believe WE are called into repentance. WE are the ones marked by death resulting from sin and it is WE who are saved: those who call upon His name.
My statement through this post is that evil is transformed into actions by us. WE are those who are the bad guys who can be the good guys if we elect to believe in Jesus.
In other words, the only answer that satisfies the penalty of sin is Jesus and those guilty of sin are people. So where do we look when we see all the bad things in this world? We look back to us. And we look to Jesus if we ever want that to change.
When it comes to people like that idiot in south Florida that killed 17 people and injured many others, I’m just like the next guy. I want justice. I demand Justice!
Of course, that statement is an overstatement. Justice? Where or how is there justice? You can’t undo what has been done and that’s the only way I know justice could be served.
You can’t undo Christ on the Cross and I’m sure the disciples wanted justice. They wanted it against the Romans, against the people of the temple and even themselves.
As people we are going to judge. And sure enough as Jesus told us, we are going to be judged according to how we judge.
And so then, where is the justice. Where is the justice when the penalty for sin is death? Are we going to receive death?
Not for Christians there won’t be. For Christians there will be no justice, only mercy.
And what happens if we don’t forgive? We screwed, that’s what happens and so when we shout our lungs out demanding justice. We need to label it for what it really is and that is vengeance. Vengeance belongs solely to the Lord.
On the surface, it doesn’t appear fair that the rich and famous get so many things free. Movie stars are flooded with free stuff as the idea is if other people see them wearing or using their products then the masses will as well. The entire concept sucks as those most able to afford things get it free. As a side note even the rich but not famous get the greatest discounts as a mechanism to lure their business.
Centering on name-branding is most prevalent in the actual movie video where one can detect the brand name or logo of the item worn or displayed by the movie. Watches are also prominent so the camera finds a way to zoom in on the wrist of the movie star to give it its 5 seconds of fame and glory.
In a very real way this ‘slick’ advertising and selling are by-products of subliminal appeal and we know that this tactic works. People like to copy goods and behaviors by the rich and famous, no doubt about it.
This is also true for the bad-guy or the Christian. People will emulate behavior if they believe it is either self-serving or popular. Most people want to be in the ‘in’ crowd. And most will even sub-consciously repeat witnessed behavior as a model for their own.
What this means for Christians is if people view our bad behavior, we become their model. Naturally, it’s also true for good behavior.
What’s important here is that eyes are always on us. We are extremely conscious of it for fear of being called a hypocrite, but more often than not, people desire to see Christians as mere humans the same as they are so they can reinforce their idea of ‘good’ behavior or talk.
All of this brings us back to the monkey thingie. Most susceptible as we should all know are kids.
Even if our behavior or words are laid back or subtle, folks find a way of picking up on it. True enough, it might be subliminal such as a father ogling a woman as she walks down the sidewalk, but nonetheless, the communication takes place and we have an effect on everyone.
This warrants the Christian to be careful and emit only signals that are reflective of Jesus. As hard as this is, it really means we have to be serious about what we do. In the end, no matter what ‘messages’ we transmit to others, the ‘monkey’ is going to hone in on it and at one point in time—do it the same as you.