Posts tagged Maranatha

Sadness in France…and elsewhere

I think most of the world or those who watch TV have been transfixed by the utter cruelty that happened several days ago in Paris.   I can’t even imagine what the families are going through after 13 French people were shot.  The two gunmen are still at large but the law and the rest of the country have them isolated to a certain area.  Their time on this earth is fixed.  However, once caught, the justice that will be served to them, because that is what a civil and decent society does, is not deserved.  They do not deserve justice at all.  However, in their minds, they have gone about using violence to make their puny voices heard.  I don’t think their radical “religion” is something to follow…violence only begets violence.

Seventy years ago, France had to stomach the WWII. They have been grateful to American servicemen who came to fight for the Allied cause against Nazi aggression. The sad thing is that we don’t have leaders in our high places who speak the truth as it stands anymore.  They instead would be the first to comment that it was NOT terrorism but simple violence.  It doesn’t matter how you want to phrase what happened in Paris, the truth is known by the whole nation, this was radical terrorism in its cruelest form.  Their goal is to make French people afraid and to NOT say things that are true.  That is what terrorism does to win, they put fear into people so they NOT follow through with the logical form of punishment, they instead tolerate it.

Sadly, our universities are a breeding ground for wanting everyone to get along and not to bring out the opposing views to what is EVIL.  The smart and intelligent people with Ph.D.s  have thrown God out and replaced it with mushy thinking.  We are expected to follow those who are NOT leaders, who care nothing about the standards of truth. Thus, we have the blind leading the blind.

Indeed, the terrorists will win by people feeling cowed to not speak up against their tyranny of horror. Recently I was told by someone who regularly watches the Hallmark channel on TV that they are bleeping out the word “God” from phrases like “God bless you,” or  “I promise to tell the truth, the whole truth, nothing but the truth, so help me God.”  That latter phrase is used at the swearing in of an office with a hand over the Bible, but for some people, the word “God” is considered offensive.  Yet, they will have elsewhere on the network or in movies words like the “firetruck” word and not even care how offensive people like me find that!

What have we become?  Are we to agree with the direction that the pagans want to go?  Are we to be intimidated by those who don’t believe in God or by others who believe in Allah?  Neither is a religion, it is a dogma.  The first want us to be tolerant of ALL other religions and faiths, the other is intolerant of anything else but their own belief in what Mohammed started one thousand years ago.  As Christians, where do we stand?  We believe that Jesus died on the cross for ALL of our sins and that He rose again, two thousand years ago.  He is coming back soon, I pray He does. Maranatha!

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Pink Helium Balloon and Ascension

My photo from yesterday’s blog of a clear blue sky with a pin prick of a floating balloon may seem inconsequential to my dear readers.  However, my reflections about this balloon have a metaphorical meaning for me while living life in Almaty, Kazakhstan.  BTW, it is Russian Orthodox Easter this upcoming weekend so all the more reason my thoughts were spinning in a spiral direction upwards.

After seeing all the wedding limos, I can sympathize with a young man (from U.K. I think) who recently proposed to his girlfriend by handing her a helium balloon with the engagement ring inside it.  Somehow it escaped their grasp.  He drove two miles in his car following the balloon before he realized he had lost his costly investment.  Apparently, he lost the girl too. (sigh)  Anyway, it was several blocks later that I saw the helium balloon in the sky but I was also pondering matters of Ascension from my morning devotional.

The following is what C.S. Lewis wrote in his book Miracles, ch. 16:

“It is at this point that the modern reader becomes uncomfortable.  He becomes more uncomfortable still at the words, ‘Don’t touch me, I have not yet gone up to the Father'(John 20:17).  For voices and apparitions we are, in some measure, prepared.  But what is this that must not be touched?  What is all this about going UP to the Father?  Is He [Jesus] not already ‘with the Father’ in the only sense that matters?  What can ‘going up’ be except a metaphor for THAT?  And if so, why has He ‘not yet’ gone?  These discomforts arise because the story the apostles actually had to tell begins at this point to conflict with the story we expect and are determined beforehand to read into their narrative.”

Then, what do you suppose our sermon yesterday concentrated on?  The Ascension of Jesus from Luke’s narrative in Acts 1:9-11.  Check it out and carry on with the promise the angels gave Jesus followers, “This same Jesus, who was taken up from you into heaven, will so come in like manner as you saw Him go into heaven.” Maranatha!!!

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