Freedom of religion

Freedom of religion which is guaranteed in our Constitution concerns the freedom to practice the religion of your choice or none at all. So why do many in our country want to get rid of any shred of Christianity that they can and yet any other form of religion beyond that is Ok?

I suppose it is because of the truth which we claim to follow in our churches and preach from the pulpits was given to the Jewish people as the Word of God through His prophets. Therefore it is True and indisputable which makes many people very nervous and jittery about a book with absolute Truth in its pages. They question its Truth and they question the validity of those who wrote the words down.

In many parts of the world there is no freedom of religion at all, you either believe and practice the religion of the state or, in some cases, you are killed for being a heretic. If you aren’t killed, then you are put in jail so you can’t spread your “lies” to other people.

All of this division has been orchestrated by Satan from eons past or since Adam and Eve were in the Garden at least. Our world, not just America, has many religions which worship things and ideas which have been written down in recent memory and some which were taught many hundreds of years ago. The religions or people and their ideas that are worshiped are not gods and they are not God, but it seems that many are deceived by their leaders to believe that they are.

Don’t give your heart or your mind to these ideas or people because that path leads away from God and away from eternity in Heaven. It doesn’t lead “to the dark side” but it does go to a dark place from which there is no escape. God loves you regardless of what you may have heard or read because He is your Creator. Seek Him out while there is time and try to have an open mind doing so. Learn about Him from the Bible and a Bible teaching church, not some of this “prosperity new age” junk!

 

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Instant conclusions

In our society, we draw conclusions about everything and most of the time we do it immediately. Especially when it comes to violence in a public place. Writers for many publications are disavowing any responsibility when it comes to owning the reason for any crime which has a violent outcome. In spite of our collective ideas of terrorism, whether it is done by a person of color or not, we still tend toward segregation of blame.

If you are of a certain religion then you are radicalized. If you are African-American then you are angry, about what doesn’t seem to matter, but that is what the pundits on “news” programs label people as. But when the person is white, they are labeled as insane and a gun nut or even disturbed because of PTSD. Yet, many of them bought their weapons legally with background checks and apparently passed those checks multiple times.

Why do we or at least some in America make these snap judgments about each other and about people who buy firearms and use them. It is true that we only think these things when some person uses a firearm to take lives in a way that is inconsistent with society or its norms. But honestly, any life taken is one which was taken too soon! Murder is against the law of man and God as well! It doesn’t matter if you kill someone with a knife or a gun or a bomb, murder is still against God’s law!

What can make someone snap to the point of shooting at people just because they are convenient targets? I will never understand the kind of crazy that sounds like!

Was God there? Yes, in the first responders who came to the aid of those in danger. He was there with the police who stormed the hotel and found the killer who was taking lives like targets on a range. Yes, God was there and He is still there giving comfort and strength to families and friends and to those who are recovering! We all need to pray for the victims and for our country because there could be another person who may snap and begin to do this somewhere else.

Seek Him out in all things and look for God in every place where you are because He is there, sad though He may be because of our intent and because of the apathy that is in our society today.

 

A friend of mine…

TrueFriendshipCould we be friends?

Sometimes people get so caught up in life and living until they forget about the friends they have. Friends put up with all sorts of behavior that even your family won’t put up with, but that doesn’t mean that you should forget them. True friends are those that even when it has been years since you last spoke to each other, you can just pick up where you left off. How many friends like that do you have?

This is the type of friend that we all have available in Jesus.

When you give your heart to Jesus, He becomes your Savior and friend but HE also introduces you to many other people who can be your friends. Your brothers and sisters in Christ! They know Him and through their spirit and your spirit you can become close friends. I am not saying this is automatic because that is not how friendships work, but it can be.

God created us all to be as close as friends no matter where we live or what our life may be like. Could you be friends with God? Of course you can, if you will just decide to follow Him and His Son, every day not just once or twice per month. Walk with Him in life, daily…even hourly, because HE gives your breath to you and your heart beats because of His grace too!

Friendship is a relationship and being a child of God, saved and sanctified by the atoning blood of Jesus, is also a relationship which needs to be a lifelong one! Your relationship with Jesus should be one which is even closer than just friends and in order for that to be, you need to learn as much as possible about Him! This can be done by reading and studying the Bible and attending a church which teaches from it.

Consider that your relationship with Jesus is a friendship. Mainly because He already knows you far better than you know Him, so pursue Him like you would if He is the only Life that you have…because after this one He truly is your Life or your Judge, it is your choice which one He will be ultimately.

Addiction

You hear a lot about opium addiction and its derivative drugs from opium/heroin, so why is it so addictive? Because of the high that it gives, being such a euphoric feeling, even with a small amount of drug such as four milligrams of hydrocodone. It is a very easy and very much addicting group of substances.

Why am I bringing this up? I took a dose of cough medicine which had hydrocodone in it last night. I may have taken a little bit more than the amount the doctor told me to take, but I wasn’t expecting the reaction, the outcome, the high that just a little more put into my system. I didn’t take it to get high, I wasn’t taking it to “try it out”. I won’t be taking it ever again.

My point in this is: why would you do such a thing when it makes you feel terrible afterward? My entire day was blown yesterday and I was ill for almost the whole day. Did it feel euphoric while I was “high”, yes, but not worth doing it again that’s for sure!! Please read this as a warning, it is addictive and some of these new opiate drugs are even more addictive than what I took. Please seek out some other form of “high” if that is what you need!

Praying for all who read this. Seek out Jesus and His Salvation in your life, eternity is a better and LONGER high than anything here on this Earth! Amen?

Hello?

Hello there,

Years ago, when I was much younger, I would “talk to the dark”. I may have been praying, I may have been voicing concerns which I had no idea how to handle at the time, mostly I did it because I didn’t have anyone else that I could talk to about everything or even nothing in particular. I grew up as an “only child”, that condition which psychiatrists say breeds monsters like pedophiles and axe murderers. Thankfully, I didn’t fall into those categories later on.

I would lie in my bed, talking, not really to myself but to someone or maybe it was Someone. It could’ve been the wrong “someone”, like Satan, but at the time I don’t remember feeling a terror about it…I wasn’t afraid of talking to them or Him. Of course, I didn’t tell anyone this because I didn’t want to be labeled as crazy or weird, that label came too easily anyway.

My parents had divorced when I was young, like five years old, so I didn’t know what a “normal” family life was like. By the time I could remember anything about my Mom and Dad, they weren’t together anymore. This condition seems to be the norm today, but at the time that it happened fifty years ago it wasn’t the norm at all. Growing up, I felt like an outsider, someone who didn’t belong anywhere and wasn’t accepted by anyone. That feeling of being outside never really went away, it just faded because I didn’t pay much attention to it as I got older.

Why am I writing this? I don’t know really. Maybe it is because I need to get it out of my head or maybe just writing it will somehow help me to feel like I am not “outside” anymore. I have tried to fit in, but that doesn’t seem to work very well. I even felt called to preach at a local church and I have been for over five years, but it seems that there are fewer people willing to hear or listen anymore. I feel more like the prophet Jeremiah who preached and told his people about the coming judgement on Israel for many years but they didn’t want to hear it.

I pray that someone may read this and look into God’s Word for their answers, like I should’ve done so many years ago. It has only been in the last twenty years or so that I have begun to learn from God’s Word about Him and who I am because of Him and His sacrifice. Thanks for reading and I hope that maybe this may help someone.

What do you want?

I think many people are asking this question or they are being asked by those who are going to give them something for Christmas. Have you thought about it yourself? There are so many “deals” out there today because it is Cyber Monday and of course last Friday was Black Friday! I try not to participate in either one if I can help it. Go one step farther than just a gift at Christmas and think about a gift that has been provided for us all…and it doesn’t cost us anything!

Jesus came down from Heaven to be born as the Christ-child in a human body and from the very beginning, before the Earth was formed, He was chosen to be slain on a cross to pay for our sins! Blood from animals paid the price before He came, yet they were an imperfect payment because their sacrifice had to be performed each year, every year. His sacrifice was perfect, since He did not have a sin nature and didn’t sin during His life, yet He gave His life to the Father’s will so that we can come to the Father through belief in Jesus the Christ!

As Hebrews 7:27 says:  27 Unlike the other high priests, He does not need to offer daily sacrifices, first for His own sins and then for the sins of the people; He sacrificed for sin once for all when He offered up Himself.

Jesus gave His life so that we might have eternal life with Him. It is a gift which cannot be bought by us, but it had a high price. The price of the Son of God and His life, death and resurrection to purchase our pardon if we will believe in Him. This is a story which has been told through thousands of sermons over the years since His ascension to be with God, a story which many have believed in and on for their salvation.

Today it seems that we have many who have been in the church all of their lives, hearing this message, sitting in the church week after week, who have not taken the steps to finalize being a Christian! Many believe wrongly that because they have been in the church and heard the message and read the Bible that they are saved. They may even be fine upstanding members of the church, volunteering for all kinds of selfless positions and committees in the church. But…are they saved?

Are you sure?

Why do I bring this up now? Because, you and I need to be absolutely sure of our salvation! Why? Because, there are no second chances! If you left the church one Sunday morning or evening and just before you get home, you had a terrible accident which took your life. How would you feel standing before God and seeing your life and your opportunities shown before you, yet you are not saved. You didn’t act when the Spirit moved you in the revival meeting or when you felt Him touch you during a service because you thought you were OK. What a terrifying feeling it will be to hear, “Depart from Me, I never knew you.”

Your eternity lies before you, but it won’t be an eternity in Heaven. It will be one where you feel the burn of loss and the frustration and anger which can only be turned upon yourself because you thought that you already had something and you really didn’t. Nothing can change that now because your decision was made before your death.

Have you decided which direction that you want to go? Most everyone you ask on the street thinks that they have been a good person and they deserve to go to Heaven. How will you feel if your righteousness is not covered by the Blood of Jesus? Is your righteousness better than that of the Pharisees or about the same?

Think about it and consider doing something about it! If you felt the call of the Spirit and didn’t act, make sure that you do…soon!

What is about to happen…

Many people seem to be wondering about this and searching for the answer. Nobody knows what is about to happen except God. Haven’t you thought about this during this election cycle? We all have to some degree. But, with all of the pundits and players leaning one way and then the other from day-to-day, how can you know which candidate would be the right one?

Truly, you and I can’t know the answer to that until after the election and we find a winner. Many people are saying one thing about this candidate and how the future will turn out if he or she wins, when in the real world..nobody knows for sure except God.

Will America be a great republic like it was sixty years ago or one hundred and sixty years ago? Nobody knows. Will it turn into a socialist state and disintegrate into a chaotic anarchy? Nobody knows. If you don’t vote in the election, you won’t have a say in either outcome, so don’t complain when it doesn’t go the way you wanted it to.

Voting for a third-party candidate who has absolutely NO chance of being elected is as bad as not voting at all, so don’t cry about it when things get really bad if you didn’t have the guts to vote for a candidate which could do something for us. Why is this post so politically loud and not pointing out which person to support? Because I don’t have that answer and nobody else does either.

I do know that God already knows who will be elected and it will be the person that He has chosen to either bless this country once more or it will be the person who will bring America to its knees once and for all. We will either enjoy God’s blessing or we will feel and be subjected to His judgement, there is no middle ground, it is either one or the other.

Seek God’s wisdom in this election, pray about your decision and ask God which person you should vote for. Be in prayer about this every day until the election is over, then you can relax and say that you did all that you could and God has chosen because ultimately it will be God’s choice who will be our next President.

I am getting off of my soap box now. Thank you for listening and please be in prayer about this election, our future and your children’s future depends upon the outcome.

Truth, what is it?

In today’s society what is the truth? Many people seem to think that it is relative to each individual. What is true for me may not be true for you.

Okay, does the Sun come up in the East? True fact. It sets in the West. True fact. Summer is usually very warm if not hot. True fact. There are many paths to get to Heaven and be accepted by God. FALSE!! See how easy it is to narrow down what is true and what is not!

God set in motion all of the planets and stars in their orbits and in their courses. Fact. Satan is going to help you get everything that you want in this life. This is one of his promises, and it may come true for some people. The key to that sentence is “in this life”, he will not lead you into Heaven. He may make you think that is where his path goes, but when you stand before God at the end of your life you will give account of everything that you did or said. If you didn’t accept Jesus as your Savior before your life ends here, then your eternity will be with Satan.

God wants each of us to have a chance at eternal life with Him so if you have heard the gospel, don’t turn away from it.

Even Pilate, who questioned Jesus, asked Him “What is truth?” He didn’t know that he was speaking to the Creator and Author of Life and truth. God has given us much in this world, yet we look around and ask, “Where is God?”!  Really? Look at all of the LIFE that is concentrated here on this small planet! Evolution cannot explain this because there is no way that chance mutations produced all of the life on this world in the time that most scientists believe that it has been here. Even if you extend the time to include the age of the cosmos itself, moving from some single-celled organism to everything on the Earth in that amount of time has been modeled by computers as being impossible.

God has given us everything in its season and He gave us this small planet to live upon. Whether you believe it or not, truth is found only in God’s Word and in Him. Seek Him while there is yet time to do so, don’t fool yourself into thinking that mankind’s truth is better than God’s. Make sure of your salvation while there is time, while you are alive, because when this life is over, there is no chance to change what you had the time for during your life here.

Motivation

Have we become satisfied with our life, our church, our life in Christ? Many churches, not just individuals, are in the this very spot. Satisfaction with your salvation and your supposed life in Christ is something that we cannot live with! Why? Because satisfaction causes us to long for something or sometime which has already passed. Just as you cannot touch a part of a stream or river twice, memories and satisfaction with something, someone or sometime in your past cannot be brought into today.

Satisfaction and motivation are exact opposites of each other. When you are satisfied with what you have or where you are, you will never have more than you have right now. Motivation is like the escape from being slaves or having a snake in your house, it inspires you to get up and do something! Why? Because, you don’t want the snake to get comfortable! You don’t want to remain a slave to poverty and want, but until you get motivated enough to do something about it…nothing will change.

There is no huge bag of money which will fall from the sky. None of these “schemes” will make any difference in your life because 99.9% of them only take your money and give it to someone else! God loves you and even though He won’t drop a talent of gold in your yard, your eternal home sits on a street paved with gold which is more pure than any here on Earth!

Although, many people will read this (at least I hope they will), most will look at what I wrote and say that “I need the money or the blessings now, not in eternity!” God knows exactly how much you need and He can provide it but if you keep going around Him and causing more problems by spending money on things that aren’t useful or trying to “get rich quick”, then He will just sit back and wait until you decide that you can’t do it yourself!

Motivation in life is the fire which gets us out of bed in the morning, the problem is that as we get older that fire tends to become a pile of smoldering ash. This is when we lose hope in the future because we didn’t use our time or our money wisely enough in our youth so that it would be available when the fire grows cold. It is a sobering realization when you are older when you don’t have enough money to pay the bills and you can’t get a job to make up the difference.

How can I give you inspiration in this post when my own life is so out of whack? To be honest, I can’t. Yes, God loves us and He wants the best for us but when we squander our lives and our resources on things which are not eternal then there is nothing which will change in your life today, because yesterday or many yesterdays took everything that you had! Your future in Christ is assured if you belong to Him, so eternity is there to reward you. If you haven’t taken care of that part of your life, then eternity will be very different and it lasts a very long, long time.

Get motivated to do something about your life, either here or in eternity, because today is now and what you do with it will affect tomorrow. What you decide about Jesus and your life as a Christian or not will have an eternal effect on your life as well. Don’t neglect one and sacrifice the other.