Wednesday, August 20, 2014

Sometimes People Hate You Because of the Color of Your Skin

Our son playing percussion for his Brazillian Band leader.

Chris had just graduated with honors from microwave electronics school at Keesler Air Force Base in Biloxi, Mississippi.  He had been hired at an electronics firm in San Jose, CA.  I wanted an apartment, which had a washer and dryer hook up, and also would allow kids, and animals.  We found a place in an all black apartment building in San Jose.  As we moved in, some of the people rolled their eyes and looked like they were thinking, “There goes the neighborhood.” Shortly after the move someone stole our four year old son’s tricycle, trashed it, and threw it in the dumpster.  Someone spit on our door.  Someone tried to break in to our apartment.  We borrowed a motion sensor burglar alarm but had to low crawl around the apartment because we kept setting it off.  After three months we decided to move to an all white apartment complex in Redwood City, thirty miles from San Jose. 

We had enjoyed attending San Jose Covenant Church but would have to leave that church, where several of the women had befriended me. Because of this move Chris would have to commute in our ancient Ford, our only car.  I would have to get a job to pay the rent on a more expensive apartment.  There was no washer and dryer hook up.  The apartment did not allow animals.  We left our dog and cat at my parent’s house several miles away.  They were out of town but my youngest brother was living there.  He kindly took care of our animals for us.  I walked to the nearest church and inquired about a job within walking distance of our apartment.  I was told that a church seventeen blocks away needed a secretary.  I walked to the second church and was hired.  Each day I walked our four year old to a babysitter and then walked to the church for the thirty-two hour a week job.  The salary was just enough to pay the rent. 

On Sundays, after services at Peninsula Covenant Church, I managed to put a chicken and some vegetables in a crock-pot for dinner, but during the week we ate TV dinners, as I was in too much pain, because of the flare up of my fibromyalgia, to do more.  Cooking and grocery shopping added more pain.  Any type of exercise caused a toxic build up of lactic acid in my muscles.   A chiropractor was recommended to me but he was not able to help me.  Finally, because I couldn’t sleep, my pain escalated. I told the Lord that I would have to quit my job, as I couldn’t stand the pain.  We had just paid the rent for one month and would have to move out at the end of the month. I made plans to live in our car.

Meanwhile, Chris, present at his air guard drill one week- end a month,  decided to teach the new recruits the math that they would need when they arrived at the same school he had just finished.  One of the senior NCO’s was impressed with his ability to solve math problems.  (He even found a mistake in a textbook they were using.) As a result of his efforts his fellow Non Com asked him for his resume to give to someone he knew at Hewlett Packard in Santa Rosa, CA.  In one month Chris was interviewed on the phone, (I also had a phone interview with his potential boss), we traveled to Santa Rosa where he was interviewed by multiple people, he was hired, and Hewlett Packard moved all of our 1000 lbs. of household goods to a house in Rohnert Park.  We once again had a washer and dryer hook up, and were able to have our kids, and animals with us.


I could continue on with our story and how God helped us, but all I wanted to say in this blog was that I experienced hatred because of the color of my skin.  But that hatred was only for three months.  I can't imagine that people could live with that hatred all of their lives.  We had a lovely Christian Liberian women who attended our church. When she first moved to the United States she lived in New Mexico.  When she went to church a woman said to her, "Why are you at this church?" She implied that this young lady wasn't welcome at their church.  I hope and pray that the people of the United States will love one another and especially that Christians will love one another. I will never hate anyone, by God’s grace, and especially not for the color of his or her skin!


Monday, August 18, 2014

If ya' ain't got Jesus then ya' ain't got nuttin buddy!


God is patient with me and so I pray and ask God to help me to be patient with others.  I know that God isn’t finished with His molding and shaping me and I realize that He is not finished with my brothers and sisters in the Lord.  But the media, politics, or Satan has led some Christians astray.  I will be guilty before God if I don’t tell them the truth.  That is why I am writing this blog on who the scripture tells us is and is not a brother or sister in the faith.  This week Denny Burk wrote this blog: http://www.dennyburk.com/who-are-my-brothers-and-sisters/.  Because of his blog I decided to write one of my own.

There is a different spirit in the “social justice Christians.”  You may ask what do I mean by “social justice Christians?”  They are those who say they believe in Jesus but believe food, clothing, and shelter for the poor are more important than the killing of millions of babies in the womb, supporting the immorality of homosexuality, distancing ourselves from Israel, as well as saying that it is the military that causes terrorists to attack us.  I do not hear God’s voice when I listen or read what these types of people say or write.  I cannot relate to their way of thinking.  Malcolm Muggeridge would call their worldview “The Great Liberal Death Wish.”

But in this blog I will discuss the problem of homosexuality.   We are told in I Corinthians 6:9-10 that homosexuals will not inherit the Kingdom of God. 

 Then in Romans 1: 26 For this reason God gave them over to degrading passions; for their women exchanged the natural function for that which is unnatural, 27 and in the same way also the men abandoned the natural function of the woman and burned in their desire toward one another, men with men committing indecent acts and receiving in their own persons the due penalty of their error. 28 And just as they did not see fit to acknowledge God any longer, God gave them over to a depraved mind, to do those things which are not proper, 29 being filled with all unrighteousness, wickedness, greed, evil; full of envy, murder, strife, deceit, malice; they are gossips, 30slanderers, haters of God, insolent, arrogant, boastful, inventors of evil, disobedient to parents, 31 without understanding, untrustworthy, unloving, unmerciful; 32 and although they know the ordinance of God, that those who practice such things are worthy of death, they not only do the same, but also give hearty approval to those who practice them.

We are also told in Hebrews 10:26 For if we go on sinning willfully after receiving the knowledge of the truth, there no longer remains a sacrifice for sins, 27 but a terrifying expectation of judgment and THE FURY OF A FIRE WHICH WILL CONSUME THE ADVERSARIES. 28 Anyone who has set aside the Law of Moses dies without mercy on the testimony of two or three witnesses. 29 How much severer punishment do you think he will deserve who has trampled under foot the Son of God, and has regarded as unclean the blood of the covenant by which he was sanctified, and has insulted the Spirit of grace? 30 For we know Him who said, "VENGEANCE IS MINE, I WILL REPAY." And again, "THE LORD WILL JUDGE HIS PEOPLE." 31 It is a terrifying thing to fall into the hands of the living God.

So what I am saying here is that our brothers and sisters in the Lord will not support homosexuality.  Those who support it are not our brother or sister in the Lord.

If we do befriend a non- Christian homosexual we must love them enough to pray that they will come to a saving knowledge of Jesus.  We will pray that God will turn their eyes from darkness to light from the power of Satan to the power of God.  We do not hold them accountable for their behavior until they dedicate their lives to Jesus.  Then we must tell them the truth.  Following and obeying Jesus is not easy.  Everyone must choose if he will follow Jesus or the evil one.  The time is short.  Jesus will be coming back soon and then it will be too late to make a choice.


Thursday, August 14, 2014

Why?


At my church Pastor Bill has been encouraging us to spend time reading the Bible every day.  We are studying I John this summer so he suggested that, since there are five chapters, we read a chapter a day. 

Here is how my friend Kay and I are following his suggestion. Every morning along with her prayer time and Bible reading, she reads, “That’s My King” by Dr. S.M. Lockeridge, http://across2u.com/ThatsMyKing.html. For my devotional time after I pray, I read “Our Daily Bread”, a devotional to which our church subscribes.   I pick a new one up at church every three months.   During the school year I work on my Precepts Bible study for my Bible reading. (Last year we studied Old Testament books.  We learned about Solomon’s Temple and the Shekinah Glory, see the picture above.)

But in the summer I either read a chapter in Proverbs, (there are 31 chapters so I read one a day for a month, and then start over at the first of the month,) and a Psalm a day, or I follow a Back to the Bible reading program, http://www.backtothebible.org/index.php/Bible-Reading-Guides.html
I'm also reading a chapter a day in I John.

But even though we seek God every day in prayer and in reading His Word, we still won’t have all of the answers to our questions.  Here are some questions that I have had in the past.

·      Why did God choose Samson, who was narcissistic and proud, to be a judge?  I asked my dad this once and he didn’t know.  Andy Lewis, of Mitchell Road Presbyterian Church in Greenville, SC, says that God chose him to bring glory to Himself.

Here are some verses about God’s glory:

  Solomon learned all about God’s glory in II Chronicles 7:1 Now when Solomon had finished praying, fire came down from heaven and consumed the burnt offering and the sacrifices, and the glory of the Lord filled the house. The priests could not enter into the house of the Lord because the glory of the Lord filled the Lord’s house. All the sons of Israel, seeing the fire come down and the glory of the Lord upon the house, bowed down on the pavement with their faces to the ground, and they worshiped and gave praise to the Lordsaying, “Truly He is good, truly His loving kindness is everlasting.”

Isaiah 48:11 For my own sake for my own sake I do it, for how should my name be profaned? My glory I will not give to another.

Psalm 79: 9 Help us, O God of our salvation, for the glory of Your name; And deliver us and forgive our sins for Your name's sake. 

More questions:

·      Why does Israel always have people bullying her?  Why are Jews persecuted? It’s all in God’s plan and for God’s glory.

·      Why did God tell us what will happen to the unbelievers in Revelation after the Christians are gone from the earth?  Dr. Hitchcock, of Faith Bible church, says so that we will know how urgent it is to tell unbelievers about their need for salvation. So this is all for the glory of God.

·      Why do I have chronic pain from fibromyalgia?  Why hasn’t God healed me? Because of the pain I’m more sensitive to those who are suffering. So this is also for God’s glory.

·      Why are there so many suffering today?  Why are Christians being persecuted around the world?  Jesus was hated and so will his followers be hated --all for God’s ultimate glory.

In the end God will work everything out for His glory. (What is glory you may ask?  Webster’s says this—Great honor and admiration won by doing something important or valuable; fame; renown.)  And also we know from Romans 8: 28 And we know that God causes all things to work together for good to 
those who love God, to those who are called according to His purpose.

But meanwhile this is true:

Romans 8: 17 and if children, heirs also, heirs of God and fellow heirs with 
Christ, if indeed we suffer with Him so that we may also be glorified with Him.









Thursday, August 7, 2014

The Way To Somewhere Else


When world or local events in the news overwhelm my nervous system I love to watch Hallmark Christmas movies to calm myself.  Usually I can catch them not only in November and December but also in July.   Speaking of Christmas I love Christmas music any time of the year.  Then that brings to mind my music radio stations on Pandora. I enjoy every type of music from Christian to classical and even some jazz and reggae.  Since country music includes more pop I like country now. 

The other night there was a country music TV show on that wasn’t an award show, so I decided to watch some of it.  One song that was sung was called “Day Time Drinkin.”  I don’t drink so it wasn’t the words I liked; it was the drumline that backed up the singers that impressed me.  Our son played in a drumline when he was in high school.  

I sent him the You Tube link.  He said that possibly they got the idea for the drum line from Peter Fox who is a German rapper.  Check out his You Tube: 


He speaks about wanting to no longer do bad stuff but to become new. 

Andy Lewis, Pastor of Mitchell Road Presbyterian Church in Greenville, SC, in a recent sermon, mentioned another young musician who wants to be better.  Here’s the You Tube: 


I like both of these songs—they have a good beat and you could dance to them!  What else do they have in common?  I think they are saying that they no longer want to be involved in anything sinful but they want to do what is right.  But as humans nobody, except Jesus, can live a perfect life.  We need a Savior because God says that if we sin we deserve death.  He made a way for us to be saved from death and that is by Jesus taking our sins upon Himself. 

Following Jesus isn’t easy but He sent the Holy Spirit to help us to live righteously.  And so we trust Him to complete the good work He has started in us!