Tag Archives: Peace

Robert Mugabe Resigns!

Just the title of this post should bring jubilation to your hearts! The people of Zimbabwe have been praying for years for this day to come, and now it’s here!

Praise God!

Oh, now we must pray for a peaceful and democratic transition of authority. The people of Zimbabwe – my friends – my brothers and sisters in Christ who treated me with so much love – have been under such a heavy burden for so long, with the world governments shunning them, the people starving, with unemployment over 80%. Today is a new beginning!

And it came peacefully!

Now may God grant Zimbabwe another chance at peace and prosperity, just government, and a new standing in the world.

And may God be praised!

https://www.google.com/amp/s/amp.cnn.com/cnn/2017/11/21/africa/robert-mugabe-resigns-zimbabwe-president/index.html

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“Till the Storm Passes By”

A Word of Encouragement 

I was trying to think of something clever to write: either something funny or entertaining; something profound and theological; or just something encouraging as many Americans stare down the barrel of the strongest storm on record, Hurricane Irma.

That’s when the lyrics of a song came to mind, a song written many years ago by Mosie Lister entitled “Till the Storm Passes By.”

My mom and dad used to sing this song in church. I grew up singing it, especially one day when I was lying on the floor of my school bus as tornadic-like winds came through unexpectedly and trapped me inside, making me think the yellow box was going to flip.

In the words of this song there is clear sense of dread, but at the same time a sense of security and hope. Storms do come, whether they be literal meteorological events or spiritual/emotional battles; yet, there is One whom we know will hear our cries and keep us safe in the hollow of His hand.

Immediately I hear someone say, “But what about those Christians who die in storms? Did you God keep them safe?” First, what about the ones who didn’t die? Secondly, and most importantly, what about that “peace that passeth understanding”? True safety will be seen “when the long night has ended and the storms come no more,” and we stand in His presence on “that bright, peaceful shore.”

Regardless the size or consistency of the “storm,” knowing I am held fast in the hand of the One who will keep me eternally safe gives me peace. I pray that those stuck in this coming storm, and others to follow, will find that same peace in Jesus Christ.

“Till the Storm Passes By”

In the dark of the midnight,
Have I oft hid my face;
While the storm howls above me,
And there’s no hiding place;
‘Mid the crash of the thunder,
Precious Lord, hear my cry;
“Keep me safe ’til the storm passes by.”

‘Til the storm passes over,
‘Til the thunder sounds no more;
‘Til the clouds roll forever from the sky,
Hold me fast, let me stand,
In the hollow of Thy hand;
Keep me safe ’til the storm passes by.

Many times Satan whispers,
“There is no need to try;
For there’s no end of sorrow,
There’s no hope by and by”;
But I know Thou art with me,
And tomorrow I’ll rise;
Where the storms never darken the skies.

‘Til the storm passes over,
‘Til the thunder sounds no more;
‘Til the clouds roll forever from the sky,
Hold me fast, let me stand,
In the hollow of Thy hand;
Keep me safe ’til the storm passes by.

When the long night has ended,
And the storms come no more,
Let me stand in Thy presence.
On that bright, peaceful shore.
In that land where the tempest
Never comes, Lord may I
Dwell with Thee when the storm passes by.

‘Til the storm passes over,
‘Til the thunder sounds no more;
‘Til the clouds roll forever from the sky,
Hold me fast, let me stand,
In the hollow of Thy hand;
Keep me safe ’til the storm passes by.

– Mosie Lister

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Filed under America, Christianity, current events, Life/Death, Weather

Amaze me again

yo-yo-312175_1280I was watching a kid at my school doing some pretty amazing things with—are you ready for this??—a yo-yo!!  It was eye-popping cool!  Not just because of his skill, but because it was so retro as to be, not just “low-tech”, but “no-tech”.  (Never mind that the toy cost $150; that’s just wrong.)

I’m waiting breathlessly for the return of the hulu-hoop…but no personal videos will be posted for readers’ enjoyment.

If there is one thing that our technological advances have done to us, it’s the removal of a sense of awe from our children.  Not our younger ones, the little guys not yet totally exposed to the marvels of their i-phones, i-goggles, and whatever other virtual realities are bombarding their brains.  But certainly by the time I get them in middle school, it takes quite a Continue reading

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Filed under Guest Posts, ministry, Parenting, Witnessing, worship

Normalcy 

“Normalcy” is that ever-elusive goal sought by those who refuse to accept the here-and-now as their normal.                    

– A. Baker

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Filed under General Observations, Life Lessons, Struggles and Trials

I Saw and Perceived. Will You?

θεωρέω

The word is theōreō (θεωρέω), and it is translated as “saw” and “perceive” in two different verses in the book of Acts.

Now while Paul waited for them at Athens, his spirit was stirred in him, when he saw [G2334] the city wholly given to idolatry. … Then Paul stood in the midst of Mars’ hill, and said, [Ye] men of Athens, I perceive [G2334] that in all things ye are too superstitious. – Acts 17:16, 22 KJV

The Apostle Paul had not only been a spectator, but had discerned and considered the idolatrous condition of the city of Athens, and it broke his heart. That led him to take action.

Pray for Us

When I was in Zimbabwe I was able to see for myself what was going on. I was able to discern the painful conditions under which the people live. But even more, my heart was broken and convicted, for here was people who had a determination to survive, no mater what. Here was a body of Christians who were determined to share the gospel on one hand, and work for better conditions with the other.

Today more protesters concerned with unemployment (over 80%) and government corruption went to the streets, court approval in hand, yet were arrested by police. The people live in poverty because of leader who will not listen to the people of his country, and they are growing weary.

But what did I hear from the people I met? “Pray for us,” they would beg. “Pray for peace, for a peaceful election, and a change for good.” They want better relations with Western countries, not North Korea or Russia. They don’t want a coup, but fair and honest elections. But things are getting very tense, so they beg for us to pray.

Real People

It’s one thing to read about it in the news, but something totally different when you know the people involved. I went there…I met them…I lived and ate with them… The people of Zimbabwe are real people, a people of whom many love God and want Zimbabwe to be a Christian light on the continent of Africa.

I saw. I perceived. Now, will you take just a moment and look a little closer? Would you please intercede for this nation and our fellow believers caught in the middle of such turmoil?

All they want us to do is see them, and pray.

image

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Filed under Countries, current events, places

Standing Sure In a Crumbling World

imageOriginally written in 2014, I’m re-posting this in memory of the innocent lives lost in France on Thursday.

World Events

Let’s get real for a moment, shall we? The world seems to be coming apart at the seams right now. Russia and Ukraine are fighting; Israel and Hamas are fighting; ISIS is trying to take over the world; airplanes are crashing or being blown out of the sky; new diseases are popping up everywhere; and more former Disney child stars are choosing to cry out, “I don’t want to be a role model!” while exposing their bare behinds.

Face it, the world is going to hell in a hand basket and Toto has already jumped.

But seriously, as bad as the world is, it’s not like we have Nero for a president. Oh, but wait! America isn’t the only country in the world, you know, and Christians are being killed as often today as they were in the first and second centuries (along with anyone who refuses to yell “Allah Akbar!” as he beheads his sister).

Life Goes On

But even as we look around at a world in turmoil, does that mean we must forget about living? Sure, the temptation might be to down a bottle of Prozac and curl up in a ball, all the while waiting for the first warhead to hit your town.

However, kingdoms rise and fall and nations come and go, yet children still need moms and dads, strangers still need a kind word, and the way we live is still important.

As a matter of fact, right before another group of people’s world was about to be turned upside down, Jesus Christ gave some timeless instruction on living from a hillside (The full text can be found in Matthew, chapters 5-7). His words still apply today. Below are a few excerpts:

“Blessed are the merciful: for they shall obtain mercy.”

“Blessed are the pure in heart: for they shall see God.”

“Blessed are the peacemakers: for they shall be called the children of God.” 

“Blessed are they which are persecuted for righteousness’ sake: for theirs is the kingdom of heaven.” 

“Let your light so shine before men, that they may see your good works, and glorify your Father which is in heaven.”

“Love your enemies, bless them that curse you, do good to them that hate you, and pray for them which despitefully use you, and persecute you.”

“Lay not up for yourselves treasures upon earth, where moth and rust doth corrupt, and where thieves break through and steal: but lay up for yourselves treasures in heaven, where neither moth nor rust doth corrupt, and where thieves do not break through nor steal. For where your treasure is, there will your heart be also.” 

Jesus then concluded his sermon with the following encouragement…

“Therefore whosoever heareth these sayings of mine, and doeth them, I will liken him unto a wise man, which built his house upon a rock: And the rain descended, and the floods came, and the winds blew, and beat upon that house; and it fell not: for it was founded upon a rock.” – Matthew 7:24-25

Though the world might be falling apart, we don’t have to. 

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Filed under America, Christian Living, current events, the future

Netanyahu and Purim

My Stand

Let me be very honest…very honest. For that matter, let me be so honest that some of you reading this will want to unsubscribe, write a hateful comment, or even threaten bodily harm (which is not uncommon nowadays with those who supposedly celebrate free-thinking and tolerance).

I stand with Israel. That’s right, I stand with Israel.

No, it does not mean that I agree with everything Israel’s government does. No, it does not mean that I am happy that Israel’s Prime Minister denies Jesus Christ. But what it does mean is that I stand with the one nation in the middle east which is not tied to a bunch of fanatics who want to cut my head off, burn me alive, or rape my wife and children in front of me until I renounce Christianity and embrace Islam – and then cut my head off.

Hate me, yell at me, curse me, or whatever; I don’t care. You can take the side of Hamas, the Ayatollah’s, Hitler, or Haman of old, but I will stand with Israel.

Bibi’s Speech

Last night the Prime Minister of Israel, Benjamin Netanyahu, made a speech to the joint houses of Congress in the capital building in Washington, D.C. Our president chose to act like a teenager who’d been “dissed” and avoided the speech, along with his staff and a lot of Democrats. However, others were there, including a truly-deserving Nobel Prize winner, award-winning author and holocaust survivor, Elie Wiesel. (All I could do was cry when I read his book, Night)

So many have taken the opportunity to condemn Netanyahu for coming to America and speaking. They have called his speech “worthless” and “political,” even dismissing it as ineffective for not even making a dent in the current negotiations that the Vietnam veteran and French-serenading John Kerry is currently conducting with Iran.

Big deal.

What Benjamin Netanyahu’s speech proved was that he does not trust his current enemy to behave any differently than any number of previous enemies, including one who signed a 1938 agreement in Munich which was supposed to bring “peace in our time.” As a matter of fact, he sees this attempt to appease a border-thirsty, caliphate-seeking nation as nothing more than starting the countdown clock toward nuclear war.

Another prime minister who spoke to congress three times, Winston Churchill, was laughed to scorn by the leaders of Europe and America when he suggested a future treaty signer was nothing but a wolf in sheep’s clothing. Who was proven to be correct?

Purim

It amazes me that in such a short time so many people forget what happened in the concentrations camps. It amazes me even more that there are idiots and psychopaths who deny the holocaust happened. But it did, and it wasn’t the first time, either.

In the 4 century BC, another leader within another Persian empire, a man named Haman, sought to utterly destroy the Jews. Long before the Ayatollahs of Iran came on the scene, even before Nazi Germany, this ticked off noblemen decided to pursue a plan to kill the Jews in one day. By God’s grace a young woman named Esther,  who later became queen of Persia, was raised up “for such a time as this” to deliver her people. In one day the tables turned and the Jews were allowed, by another declaration, to defend themselves – which they did.

One of the most brilliant things Prime Minister Netanyahu did was link the intents of an ancient Persian anti-Semite with the intents of modern Persian anti-Semites: the leaders of Iran. How many other countries in the world today have been battling for survival for over 4,000 years? How many times will we have to go down this road before we understand that those who say they want to destroy Israel aren’t joking?

Tonight I will also celebrate the festival of Purim. No, there will be no feast or gifts exchanged (except at a birthday party for my daughter we are also going to), but I will tell the story of Esther and her people’s miraculous deliverance from destruction. I will also pray that more leaders will have the wisdom and foresight Esther’s uncle, Mordechai.

Somebody needs to call the free people of the world to stand with courage, to stand with Israel, and to stand against those who seek her destruction…for such a time is now.

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Filed under America, Countries, current events, Future