Homelessness. Drug addiction. Redefined sex roles/terms. Splintered relationships. Unfulfilled hopes and dreams. Purposeless existence.
My wife and I were watching the news last night. There was a story about suicide. I believe the reporter said that around 500 people a day attempt suicide. Wow. That’s probably just the U.S. because I’m sure that worldwide the rate of attempted suicide is much higher.
We can debate politics, yell about Trump’s idiocies, bash the left, fume about the economy, worry about North Korea’s nuclear ambitions, yell at our kids soccer coach, gossip about our church secretary, and do power lunches with potential lucrative clients.
Who gives a crap? While we debate, worry, nap, and get a pedicure, another distraught, angry, frightened, despairing person – created in the image of God – slashes her wrists or puts a 357 magnum to his head and blows his brains out. Are they with God or estranged from Him? That begs the question: do YOU have time in your busy schedule to even care?
-18 If you start thinking to yourselves, “I did all this. And all by myself. I’m rich. It’s all mine!”—well, think again. Remember that God, your God, gave you the strength to produce all this wealth so as to confirm the covenant that he promised to your ancestors—as it is today.-20 If you forget, forget God, your God, and start taking up with other gods, serving and worshiping them, I’m on record right now as giving you firm warning: that will be the end of you; I mean it—destruction. You’ll go to your doom—the same as the nations God is destroying before you; doom because you wouldn’t obey the Voice of God, your God. – Deuteronomy 8:17,19 http://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=Deuteronomy8:17,19&version=MSG
There is a time for everything,and a season for every activity under the heavens: a time to be born and a time to die,a time to plant and a time to uproot, a time to kill and a time to heal,a time to tear down and a time to build, a time to weep and a time to laugh,a time to mourn and a time to dance, a time to scatter stones and a time to gather them,a time to embrace and a time to refrain from embracing, a time to search and a time to give up,a time to keep and a time to throw away, a time to tear and a time to mend,a time to be silent and a time to speak, a time to love and a time to hate,a time for war and a time for peace. – Ecclesiastes 3:1-8 http://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=Ecclesiastes3:1-8&version=NIV
We have forgotten most of this. The Byrds got it. King Solomon got it. We run around like we have no time. Oh contrare: we waste time because we utilize time unwisely. Do what you do in its time. When done, rest.
via Daily Prompt: Opaque
He owns a lumber company/home improvement center. He is well respected in the community. He is a former state representative. He is opaque (much of the time anyway).
He is a pastor of a church. For years he has faithfully served his congregation. For years he has worn his heart on his sleeve. For years he has all too often opened his mouth and inserted his foot prior to engaging his brain. He is NOT opaque.
We back packed out of Convict Lake high up the eastern side of the Sierra Nevada Mts. in CA. Although an experienced backpacker, this was a tough 6-7 mile hike – steep, rugged, unforgiving. An older friend encouraged me, “One step at a time, one foot in front of the other.” Good, helpful, non-opaque advice.
My neighbor passed away about two months ago. Where is she now? Is she in heaven? Is she in hell? Is she in purgatory? Has she entered into soul sleep? Has she been reincarnated? Is she suffering torment for all eternity? Is she basking in the light of her Lord and Savior?
Death and the afterlife (afterdeath) – you can’t get any more opaque.
Easter is over. You’ve relived the Resurrection one more year. What an awesome time. Jesus is alive!
Now what? What motivates you to get up in the morning post-Easter? The daily grind didn’t get better with the Easter holiday. It’s still the daily grind. Sickness, finances, relationship struggles, squeaky brakes on your car – they didn’t improve because of Easter.
So what motivates you to put one foot in front of the other? The new girlfriend or boyfriend? They’ll get old soon. New job? Old soon. New toy, car, boat, house, vacation home in the Hamptons? All old hat before you truly enjoy them.
So what is brand new every day and designed to inspire and motivate you? The steadfast, constant, never changing, always reliable love of God. You can bank on it and the bank will never go under and the assets are always strong. God’s mercies are also renewed on a daily basis. That is for our benefit. God’s mercy doesn’t grow or change; it is consistently perfect and always has been. For us, what we see and perceive is that His mercies are new every morning. Daily God’s love and mercy are fresh and resilient in my sometimes broken down, selfish, messed up existence. I screw up; I confess. He forgives; He pours out His love and mercy. It’s a daily, regular dance of friends. By myself, I’m messed up; with God empowering me, I can do ALL things through Christ who gives me strength. That’s encouraging because this 50 – year-old body sure feels old and weak at times. But in Christ I will “mount up with wings like eagles; I will run and not grow weary, I will walk and not faint.”
The rest of the disciples claim they have seen Jesus alive. He’s dead. Get over it. It’s done. Our Messiah was murdered. If I see Him with the holes in his hands and the hole in his side then maybe . . .
There He is. He just appeared out of no where. He is speaking to me: “See my hands and my side. Stop doubting and believe.”
“My Lord and my God.”