Last Sunday I was privileged to preach again at Palm Avenue. You may remember from previous posts that I grew up and was saved in that church. As I ponder my life I realize it was quite a few years ago and in truth from my perspective a life time. The building they meet in was built in 1957. I was 6 years old and my father hung the lights in the building. I remember it was a cold winter day and he told me as I sat on the floor next to him. “One day you will bring your grandkids by this building and tell them about being here when their great grandfather was hanging lights”. By the way, I have and I did, although they may not always remember. Although as they get older I hope they will remember because memories are an important part of life.
I was reading earlier in Leviticus and there are many times when God reminds Moses to tell the people He is their God. That He is the Lord God and they are His people. It was not because they had necessarily forgotten but their memory was not always as good as it should have been. That is probably an observation we could all make of ourselves. I like to be reminded and having memories rekindled in my mind of things and people in my life.
When I look back on my life, I am just like countless others before me and countless others who will follow. I have missed some things in my life that if I had it to do over again the question is would I? You know what I am talking about. Hindsight is always 20/20. If I had known then what I know now, I would have done this or that. We can all say that about our lives.
We need to sometimes be reminded about our Creator and how great He is. We can get so caught up in this world and this life that we miss some things. I have noticed that as I have gotten older I just don’t necessarily care about something that I used to put a high value on. Consequently, I certainly value more today things that I missed early on in life.
I find that reflection is good but that you have be careful in what you do with it. That is why the Bible is such an important part of a Christian‘s life. We are not going to get all this right but think how poorly we would do without the Old and New Testament. The mistakes of God’s people in the Old Testament provide a clear picture of how we should and shouldn’t treat our relationship with God. The New Testament provides insight of how to live daily in Christ through the indwelling Spirit of God.
In the years I have lived, I have seen a lot of things. I am like Farmers Insurance “I know a few things because I’ve seen a few things”. It wasn’t always pretty or good but it was life. However, these last couple of years seems to be some of the worse in my life. Not personally, we are doing fine but the world and specifically our country.
I firmly believe that our freedom and our country are in a bad place. As terrible as Covid-19 has been, in and of itself, it is not the reason I feel this way. It is what has happened and is happening all around us. This is a complex issue and not because it started that way. It is complex because it has transformed into something it should never have become. This is not about science, health or any thing remotely related. It is about control. I am a Christian first and foremost but I am also a United States citizen, born and raised.
I want people to come to these Untied States, the right way. I want them to prosper and make a life here, the right way. I want people to make their choices, right or wrong, with the freedom to do so, the right way. I want mothers and fathers to raise their children, the right way. I want children to be educated and not indoctrinated, the right way. I want to tell others about Jesus Christ and let them decide for themselves, the right way.
I hope you get the idea of what I am pondering. I realize that not everyone believes the same way I do. Reading Scripture daily reminds me that mankind has always and will always have those who do the right thing. It has and will also have those who will not. In this country, we are free to do so. Thus, whatever decision a person makes, it is their decision and no one else’s. Yes we have laws and those laws are to promote a safe society. A place where all can live and enjoy freedom. Freedom is defined by the Merriman-Webster Dictionary as-the power to do what you want to do: the ability to move or act freely.
Are we seeing freedoms lost in our country? Yes, to what degree is still yet to be determined. Be careful, for once freedom is relinquished it is almost impossible to regain. “All tyranny needs to gain a foothold is for people of good conscience to remain silent.”– Thomas Jefferson
You may read this today and say "my, he is becoming so political". I am not in the manner in which you might determine. This is not about politics this is about how we live this life God has given us. I have said before and will say now again that Jesus Christ is the only hope for mankind. Not so that it becomes a better world, which it would. More importantly that the ones who make up mankind individually are saved and know Jesus as their Lord and Savior.
I believe there is always a road that leads to Jesus. I believe that He is always at work in intercession for us with the Father. I truly believe that He desires all of mankind to come to Him. The more that do the better this world will be.
You might think this is all my own panacea, a remedy for all ills or difficulties, and you are right. Yet, I am knowledgeable in knowing that it will not happen. As I have commented before, We are not to be disturbed by what is happening today. This is playing out exactly as God has said that it would. He is not surprised and really we should not be either.
The Gospel of Jesus Christ is for the world. We must endeavor in life and action to share the truth of Him to all. In Acts 1:7-8 we read the words of Jesus just as he prepares to be transcended into Heaven. They asked Him if He was going to establish His kingdom then on earth-
7 And He said to them, “It is not for you to know times or seasons which the Father has put in His own authority.
8 But you shall receive power when the Holy Spirit has come upon you; and you shall be witnesses to Me in Jerusalem, and in all Judea Samaria, and to the end of the earth.”
These are the words that form the foundation to which we, as Christians, share with others about Jesus Christ. He will return one day as we have shared about before. The time and date are only known by the Father and they could even be today.
As I am writing this blog today it is the anniversary of the death of C.H. Spurgeon. These are said to be his last words on earth-
"Tranquil and happy, though very weak. My theology is very simple. I can express it in few words and they are enough to die by." After a pause, he slowly said, "Jesus died for me."
In God's Grace,