Tuesday, March 31, 2009

Father's Love

My father spoiled me. He loved me, and he showed it. I don’t remember, but I’ve been told that he kept his hand in the bassinet and I slept gripping his finger. He was there whenever I needed him and he attempted to protect me through perils I could not see. That’s a father’s role.

My great-granddaughter’s father is doing as well. He carried her all over the church Sunday morning, even taking her into the choir. Fortunately she slept through the majority of the service and her one little fuss ceased with a binky. There is no question that he loves her, and he wants the world to know it. He professes it with his life.

There’s a website that speaks of a father’s love. A friend sent me this link (http://www.fathersloveletter.com/), which can be shared with their permission:

At the close of their introduction to our heavenly Father, are these suggestions :

Steps To Help You In Your Walk With God
1. Get a Bible and read it each day.
2. Begin to cultivate "talking to God" in prayer each day.
3. Go to a church that believes and teaches the Bible.
4. Share your decision with a close friend

Want an example of our Father’s love?

For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life. For God sent not his Son into the world to condemn the world; but that the world through him might be saved. (John 3:16-17 KJV)

The very best gift He gives is Himself.

If ye then, being evil, know how to give good gifts unto your children: how much more shall your heavenly Father give the Holy Spirit to them that ask him? (Luke 11:13 KJV)

Monday, March 30, 2009


It was a very personal moment. Our pastor asked the young father to step forward with his daughter, then her mother joined them. Grandparents and great-grandparents joined them behind the pulpit. Three generations of members of one congregation, each full of prayers that the fourth would follow in their footsteps.

It might appear a tribute to a family who believed in God’s commandments, given:

That the generation to come might know them, even the children which should be born; who should arise and declare them to their children: That they might set their hope in God, and not forget the works of God, but keep his commandments: (Psalms 78:6-7 KJV)

But there was much more to the story. The pastor mentioned the life the young father had left behind when he accepted Christ as his Savior and the ministry as his calling. The young wife had some teen issues, too. Though not mentioned, so did the grandparents, great-grandparents ad infinitum. Only the correct term for it is sin. Each, in their own way, had ignored God’s call, turning their back on Him for a while.

For all have sinned, and come short of the glory of God; (Romans 3:23 KJV)

Wherefore, as by one man sin entered into the world, and death by sin; and so death passed upon all men, for that all have sinned: (Romans 5:12 KJV)

These three generations are among those who have both heard and believed:

For the Son of man is come to seek and to save that which was lost. (Luke 19:10 KJV)

They join generations of many who have determined to:

Study to shew thyself approved unto God, a workman that needeth not to be ashamed, rightly dividing the word of truth. (2 Timothy 2:15 KJV)

They have reached freedom:

And ye shall know the truth, and the truth shall make you free. (John 8:32 KJV)

They are grateful to the Lord God:

Who hath saved us, and called us with an holy calling, not according to our works, but according to his own purpose and grace, which was given us in Christ Jesus before the world began, (2 Timothy 1:9 KJV)

So, why write of both the sin and the forgiveness?

This shall be written for the generation to come: and the people which shall be created shall praise the LORD. (Psalms 102:18 KJV)

Sunday, March 29, 2009

Did you get the message?

There are times when a preacher wonders if his message reached anyone in his audience. This Wednesday, I saw an example of one congregation’s member who felt as though the message was prepared and delivered specifically for their situation.

It would be such a blessing if an audience, each individually but the entire audience, was moved to action by a single sermon. I don’t know if it has ever happened that way. I’m not even certain it should. God saves us individually, God knows us individually, surely He speaks to us individually.

It would help if we prepared ourselves to listen. You and I both know that going into the service in an attentive, attuned, prepared by prayer attitude helps. Sounds simple, doesn’t it. Wouldn’t take more time than getting dressed on Sunday morning. Just a few moments to bow in prayer and ask Him to open our hearts to His message. To ask Him to speak through our pastors.

Do you pray for your pastor each Sunday morning? Go ahead and pray for yourself, too. You are as much a part of God’s Sunday message as your pastor.

How then shall they call on him in whom they have not believed? and how shall they believe in him of whom they have not heard? and how shall they hear without a preacher? (Romans 10:14 KJV)

See, those who call upon Him, those who believe in Him, those who have heard of Him – we are the preacher’s audience. Without us, why would he preach? We are the ones who need to hear the Word of God.

So – next Sunday morning, as you prepare to attend your church, take a few moments to prepare to hear God’s word.

Remember, He loves you. Let Him tell you so.

Saturday, March 28, 2009

Got A Mote?

So often we have a favorite verse we’ve used to beat down someone’s actions, or even inaction. Matthew 7 is an excellent example. Christian or atheist can quote:

Judge not, that ye be not judged. (Matthew 7:1 KJV)

Sort of gives free reign for any individual to do as they please without judgment from another. Except that the train of thought continues:

For with what judgment ye judge, ye shall be judged: and with what measure ye mete, it shall be measured to you again. (Matthew 7:2 KJV)

So, if we judge fairly (which is very hard for people to do) we may do so, and we will be fairly judged by others. Ooops. Perhaps we need to look further – the lesson continues:

And why beholdest thou the mote that is in thy brother's eye, but considerest not the beam that is in thine own eye? (Matthew 7:3 KJV)

That’s the hardest lesson of all. Look to ourselves first.

Or how wilt thou say to thy brother, Let me pull out the mote out of thine eye; and, behold, a beam is in thine own eye? (Matthew 7:4 KJV)

Not only do we see the speck of dust that is causing our brother’s eye to blink, but we think we’re capable of fixing that for him, don’t we?

Thou hypocrite, first cast out the beam out of thine own eye; and then shalt thou see clearly to cast out the mote out of thy brother's eye. (Matthew 7:5 KJV)

There is so much tied up in that final sentence of this lesson. We have a log big enough to support a roof in our own eye, and we’re worried about a speck in another’s? That’s hypocrisy at it’s finest, isn’t it? We see past our own sins while trying to fix someone else’s.

The answer to both problems is also in that final sentence. Get the log out of your own eye, then get the speck of dust out of your brother’s.

Do not ignore either one. Do not allow the beam, that log, to remain. It will cause damage. However, do not allow that mote, that tiny speck of dust to remain, either. It may be just as damaging.

The guilty will say "Do not judge me!" The caring will say "Let us help each other."

Friday, March 27, 2009

Walk in Wisdom

Walk in wisdom toward them that are without, redeeming the time. (Colossians 4:5 KJV)

Another translation of that same verse: Be wise in the way you act toward those who are not believers, making good use of every opportunity you have. (Colossians 4:5 GNB)

But I prefer redeeming the time. Redemption has much more depth and it is our goal.

Redeeming the time, because the days are evil. Wherefore be ye not unwise, but understanding what the will of the Lord is. (Ephesians 5:16-17 KJV)

It takes much more than wisdom to walk with those who are without Christ. It takes holding on to Him.

Continue in prayer, and watch in the same with thanksgiving; (Colossians 4:2 KJV)

Pray without ceasing. In every thing give thanks: for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus concerning you. (1 Thessalonians 5:17-18 KJV)

I will therefore that men pray every where, lifting up holy hands, without wrath and doubting. (1 Timothy 2:8 KJV)

Today there are many in prayer for one specific individual. Over the span of his life decisions were made that have brought his body to the edge of death. Remaining options have been limited by those decisions. To do nothing, however, brings death even closer. And that is speaking only physically.

As for his eternal soul? Even more prayers are requesting a softening of his heart. Those who love him pray that he will decide to join them on a journey he never recognized. Yet a single decision will place him with them as they walk along. To be so far apart, yet a simple step away. We pray he makes good use of every opportunity he has.

Thursday, March 26, 2009


At a time and place where there were clotheslines in the backyards, many were stretched from T-post to T-post. Four or five lines of thin wire, strong enough to hold flapping sheets in the wind. Fitted sheets were things for the future, so there could be enough flat walls to make several rooms for children to play between.

Even when empty, the clotheslines beckoned with promise of gymnastics. A strong Tommy or even a Tomboy could clamber to the top and the structure could change into anything! Tarzan’s tree limb; Robin and Tuck’s log; a drawbridge at the castle. All it took was a bit of imagination and a knack for getting into trouble.

Once, a slip brought the Tomboy tumbling off that lofty perch and she ended up with a wire under each arm. These were thin wires. They hurt. The fall hurt. The child was scared, too.

“Daddydaddydaddydaddydaddy…” was all he heard and seconds later was at her side in rescue mode.

Some grew up without such a father figure to rescue them. Perhaps some never thought they needed rescuing. From some fathers, a child needed to be rescued. Our views of fathers vary from person to person, indelibly imprinted on our minds, impacting our interpretation of:

After this manner therefore pray ye: Our Father which art in heaven, Hallowed be thy name. (Matthew 6:9 KJV)

Paul recognized God as Father, addressing several of his church letters: Grace be unto you, and peace, from God our Father, and from the Lord Jesus Christ. (1 Corinthians 1:3 KJV)

Jesus tells us that our Father has good gifts for us: If ye then, being evil, know how to give good gifts unto your children, how much more shall your Father which is in heaven give good things to them that ask him? (Matthew 7:11 KJV)

Jesus prayed to His Father, knowing what needed to be done, praying that it would not happen, yet trusting that God’s will was right: And he went a little further, and fell on his face, and prayed, saying, O my Father, if it be possible, let this cup pass from me: nevertheless not as I will, but as thou wilt. (Matthew 26:39 KJV)

He prayed in pain and suffering for those who inflicted it: Then said Jesus, Father, forgive them; for they know not what they do. And they parted his raiment, and cast lots. (Luke 23:34 KJV)

So, I shall follow Paul’s advice in Giving thanks unto the Father, which hath made us meet to be partakers of the inheritance of the saints in light: (Colossians 1:12 KJV)


Because I love my father and my Father and wish to Let your light so shine before men, that they may see your good works, and glorify your Father which is in heaven. (Matthew 5:16 KJV)

Wednesday, March 25, 2009

Peter, Peter!

I do enjoy Peter. He’s so much like most Christians I’ve known. When we’re good, we’re very, very good. But when we mess up, it’s a doozy.

Maybe we like him because he was a working man. Not one of the Pharisees, not a publican, but still a man of substance, at least part owner of a fishing ship. Perhaps he was much as his ship – sturdy, capable, sustaining.

Like us, he wanted a sign from God: And Peter answered him and said, Lord, if it be thou, bid me come unto thee on the water. (Matthew 14:28 KJV)

Aren’t we just as Peter was? “If you’re real …” and what is it we decided would be the proof? For Peter, it was just to hear His voice saying “Come.”

And he said, Come. And when Peter was come down out of the ship, he walked on the water, to go to Jesus. (Matthew 14:29 KJV)

Many of us respond to His call. For a while we, too, are capable of faith sufficient to uphold us. Within a few feet, though, we realize that we cannot sustain ourselves. We cannot do it alone. Why did we ever think we could do it at all? Peter reached that conclusion very quickly.

But when he saw the wind boisterous, he was afraid; and beginning to sink, he cried, saying, Lord, save me. (Matthew 14:30 KJV)

As long as he was focused on reaching Christ, Peter walked on the water. Once he noticed things around him, distracting him, requiring that he consider alternatives, he was afraid. Once afraid, he began to sink.

Then he did something a lot of us refuse to do -- he cried, saying, Lord, save me.

And immediately Jesus stretched forth his hand, and caught him, and said unto him, O thou of little faith, wherefore didst thou doubt? (Matthew 14:31 KJV)

Where do we get that faith?

So then faith cometh by hearing, and hearing by the word of God. (Romans 10:17 KJV)

Why do we need that faith?

For by grace are ye saved through faith; and that not of yourselves: it is the gift of God: (Ephesians 2:8 KJV)

Tuesday, March 24, 2009


Sir, we would see Jesus. (John 12:21b KJV)

How do you see Him? A babe in the manger? The twelve-year-old in the Temple? Being baptized by John? Teacher on a mount? Healer of the blind, deaf, lame? The accused? Convicted? Nailed to a cross?

Only in memories. We can learn about Him, but when He’s seen again, it will be as King.

Which in his times he shall shew, who is the blessed and only Potentate, the King of kings, and Lord of lords; (1 Timothy 6:15 KJV)

These shall make war with the Lamb, and the Lamb shall overcome them: for he is Lord of lords, and King of kings: and they that are with him are called, and chosen, and faithful. (Revelation 17:14 KJV)

And I saw heaven opened, and behold a white horse; and he that sat upon him was called Faithful and True, and in righteousness he doth judge and make war. …And he hath on his vesture and on his thigh a name written, KING OF KINGS, AND LORD OF LORDS.

(Revelation 19:11, 16 KJV)

When I hear that I can’t help but hear strains of Handel’s Messiah in the background.

Yes, sir, I would see Jesus.

Monday, March 23, 2009

Entreat Me Not

As our church goes through the Bible in a year, we reached Ruth this week. This is such a beautiful story of love from multiple angles.

Elimelech loved his family. To feed them, he lacked trust in God’s ability to provide, so took his wife and sons to another country to sojourn. However you look at it, the thought was temporary, a short stay.

I can relate to that. My Dad loved his mother and moved to be near her, to help her. After a severe heart attack, the doctor’s did not give her much time here, and we wanted to be physically close. So we moved from California to Oklahoma, intending to be there a short while. That was in 1951. He moved away from Oklahoma in 1998. We started out as sojourners and stayed longer than Naomi did in Moab.

And Ruth said, Intreat me not to leave thee, or to return from following after thee: for whither thou goest, I will go; and where thou lodgest, I will lodge: thy people shall be my people, and thy God my God: (Ruth 1:16 KJV)

Our young people memorize scripture and repeat it before the congregation each Sunday evening. The above verse was quoted most often this evening, for it is most likely the best known of the entire book.

Some hear it and do not realize it was said to her mother-in-law. Love’s favorite verse, used often in weddings, goes beyond that between bride and groom to include the extended family.

God’s providence brought Ruth to Bethlehem, to Boaz, descendant of Judah, son of Salmon and Rahab. Now there’s another story – we picked that one up in Joshua!

Boaz? He’s the picture of our redeemer. He wasn’t first in line – there was another, closer candidate who answered "I will redeem it" when Boaz asked :

And I thought to advertise thee, saying, Buy it before the inhabitants, and before the elders of my people. If thou wilt redeem it, redeem it: but if thou wilt not redeem it, then tell me, that I may know: for there is none to redeem it beside thee; and I am after thee. And he said, I will redeem it. (Ruth 4:4 KJV)

“I will redeem it” was quickly taken back when that candidate realized what all was involved. Not only redeeming the land, taking care of Naomi, but it would be necessary to marry Ruth, raising children in her dead husband’s name – and inheritance. Too much to do, the first candidate backed out, proved insufficient.

So did the Law. Our redeemer fulfilled the requirements as Boaz did. Out of love and full knowledge of the results, Christ chose to redeem us.

Christ hath redeemed us from the curse of the law, being made a curse for us: for it is written, Cursed is every one that hangeth on a tree: (Galatians 3:13 KJV)

Awesome, isn’t it, how God tied Bethlehem and the Redeemer’s family together for century upon century?

Sunday, March 22, 2009


Touch someone, so that others may be touched. It’s a ripple, no matter how small or how slow it moves across the oceans of time, that will touch another. Often a touch heals, but not as it did those millennia ago:

For she said within herself, If I may but touch his garment, I shall be whole. (Matthew 9:21 KJV)

And besought him that they might only touch the hem of his garment: and as many as touched were made perfectly whole. (Matthew 14:36 KJV)

And the whole multitude sought to touch him: for there went virtue out of him, and healed them all. (Luke 6:19 KJV)

Thirty years ago AT&T paid N. W. Ayer for the advertising slogan “Reach Out and Touch Someone.” It was used again in 1984 and 2003 – almost a timeless communication ad, for the concept was two thousand years old.

Each time we do reach out, we leave an impact on the person we touch. Only once did Christ stop and acknowledge such a touch, and where it was made:

And Jesus, immediately knowing in himself that virtue had gone out of him, turned him about in the press, and said, Who touched my clothes? (Mark 5:30 KJV)

In that crowd of people, surely His clothes came in contact with many others, yet there was one touch that was different.

We experience such touches between lives, memorable ones though they begin as dozens of others we experience each day. One will stand out. One goes on to become a friendship. One makes a difference in our lives, or in the life we touch.

Do we have virtue to share? Can someone touch our lives and perceive excellence in morals, good habits, righteousness?

Good, or bad, there are ripples across lives when we touch. We cannot choose where the ripples go, but we do have a choice about what they say:

I call heaven and earth to record this day against you, that I have set before you life and death, blessing and cursing: therefore choose life, that both thou and thy seed may live: (Deuteronomy 30:19 KJV)

Saturday, March 21, 2009

Who, What, When, Where?

Who knew what when? Those questions are asked each time a new scandal breaks. Every once in a while, there is an answer.

Then shall the righteous answer him, saying, Lord, when saw we thee an hungred, and fed thee? or thirsty, and gave thee drink? When saw we thee a stranger, and took thee in? or naked, and clothed thee? Or when saw we thee sick, or in prison, and came unto thee? (Matthew 25:37-39 KJV)

And, every once in a while, the answer escapes those questioned.

Then shall they also answer him, saying, Lord, when saw we thee an hungred, or athirst, or a stranger, or naked, or sick, or in prison, and did not minister unto thee? (Matthew 25:44 KJV)

Why? That’s another question that should be asked. And the Bible gives us an answer:

When the Son of man shall come in his glory, and all the holy angels with him, then shall he sit upon the throne of his glory: And before him shall be gathered all nations: and he shall separate them one from another, as a shepherd divideth his sheep from the goats: (Matthew 25:31-32 KJV)

We’ve had plenty of time to prepare for the examination that will separate them one from another. We’ve been told what is necessary, we’ve been given the opportunities to display what we’ve learned. We’ve been given our standards of judgment:

But I say unto you, That every idle word that men shall speak, they shall give account thereof in the day of judgment. (Matthew 12:36 KJV)

What attention has been paid to the instructions? Has the Teacher been heard?

Friday, March 20, 2009


The cloke that I left at Troas with Carpus, when thou comest, bring with thee, and the books, but especially the parchments. (2 Timothy 4:13 KJV)

The Bible doesn’t say any more about this cloak. I’m free to speculate, but I cannot by any means except imagination connect it to:

Then the soldiers, when they had crucified Jesus, took his garments, and made four parts, to every soldier a part; and also his coat: now the coat was without seam, woven from the top throughout. They said therefore among themselves, Let us not rend it, but cast lots for it, whose it shall be: that the scripture might be fulfilled, which saith, They parted my raiment among them, and for my vesture they did cast lots. These things therefore the soldiers did. (John 19:23-24 KJV)

Was Paul requesting the coat that was without seam, woven from the top throughout? Maybe. Maybe not. Maybe the cloak was something he picked up as a witness:

And cast him out of the city, and stoned him: and the witnesses laid down their clothes at a young man's feet, whose name was Saul. (Acts 7:58 KJV)

Maybe it belonged to Stephen. Maybe someone who tossed a stone felt such contrition that they slunk away from the scene and left a fine cloak behind. Maybe. Maybe not.

Writers have woven grand novels on such roots and speculation. But they cannot be considered truth.

Pilate saith unto him, What is truth? And when he had said this, he went out again unto the Jews, and saith unto them, I find in him no fault at all. (John 18:38 KJV)

Pilate asked the question that continues to be asked today. Yet his actions tell us that he believed Christ was telling him truth, and found no crime had been committed.

The word truth is found more often in the book of John than any other book in the Bible. He continues relating to truth in his three smaller epistles:

And the Word was made flesh, and dwelt among us, (and we beheld his glory, the glory as of the only begotten of the Father,) full of grace and truth. (John 1:14 KJV)

My little children, let us not love in word, neither in tongue; but in deed and in truth. And hereby we know that we are of the truth, and shall assure our hearts before him. (1 John 3:18-19 KJV)

Grace be with you, mercy, and peace, from God the Father, and from the Lord Jesus Christ, the Son of the Father, in truth and love. (2 John 1:3 KJV)

I have no greater joy than to hear that my children walk in truth. (3 John 1:4 KJV)

And that, for me, is truth.

Thursday, March 19, 2009

Are You Reading For The Answer?

And a certain ruler asked him, saying, Good Master, what shall I do to inherit eternal life? And Jesus said unto him, Why callest thou me good? none is good, save one, that is, God. Thou knowest the commandments, Do not commit adultery, Do not kill, Do not steal, Do not bear false witness, Honour thy father and thy mother. And he said, All these have I kept from my youth up. Now when Jesus heard these things, he said unto him, Yet lackest thou one thing: sell all that thou hast, and distribute unto the poor, and thou shalt have treasure in heaven: and come, follow me. And when he heard this, he was very sorrowful: for he was very rich. (Luke 18:18-23 KJV)

Here he is, standing before the Lord, ready to do whatever it takes. Well, except for a few things. Except for the one thing Christ asks.

That ‘one thing’ is what he’s worked for all of his life – perhaps what his ancestors had worked for through generations. And this man wants him to give it up. Why? He’s kept the commandments since he was a child. He’s a good man, looking to do better.

Or, was he a man looked for affirmation. Asking Christ a question he already knew the answer to – knowing he had obeyed the commandments, had followed the law – the expected answer was that he had earned his eternal life.

The line “… distribute unto the poor, and thou shalt have treasure in heaven:” tells us where the ruler’s thoughts were.

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. (Matthew 6:19-21 KJV)

The other mistake the ruler made was in not acknowledging Christ’s divinity. He called Him Good Master, but Christ knew he did not think of Him as God’s promise to Israel. When he walked away, was his sorrow because of his riches, or because he felt Jesus was not the Christ? Was he expecting the easy answer – “Of course you have eternal life because you’ve been good”

That answer won’t come to us, either. Being ‘good’ without Christ is insufficient. Once we have accepted Him, are we also disappointed when He asks for our all?

Tuesday, March 17, 2009

Broken Hearted

I wish I had known Luke. His two books appeal to me in so many ways. Partly, because they are written as though addressed to an individual, by a real person who not only loves telling the story, but has interviewed his friends for its substance.

Acts is even more personal – switching from reporter to the very personal ‘we’ when he’s traveling with Paul. We can feel his acceptance when he accepts God’s will, though he is uncomfortable with it:

And when he would not be persuaded, we ceased, saying, The will of the Lord be done. (Acts 21:14 KJV)

Paul and his traveling company were at Caesarea with the evangelist, Philip, when a prophet arrived:

And as we tarried there many days, there came down from Judaea a certain prophet, named Agabus. And when he was come unto us, he took Paul's girdle, and bound his own hands and feet, and said, Thus saith the Holy Ghost, So shall the Jews at Jerusalem bind the man that owneth this girdle, and shall deliver him into the hands of the Gentiles. (Acts 21:10-11 KJV)

Paul was familiar with the process – he certainly used it during his persecution of Christians before his conversion. None of his company wondered about the result:

And when we heard these things, both we, and they of that place, besought him not to go up to Jerusalem. (Acts 21:12 KJV)

Have you felt that way when you hear of missionaries going into a troubled land? We recently listened to a couple whose mission field will be a country that currently is considered in civil war. While undeclared, the governing forces are unable to protect their citizens. Armed gangs take what they want, kill those who will not cooperate, and neither local or national governing levels are able to stop them. Try guessing which country – how many fit that description today?

Did Paul care about this companions and their fears? Enough to tell them:

Then Paul answered, What mean ye to weep and to break mine heart? for I am ready not to be bound only, but also to die at Jerusalem for the name of the Lord Jesus. (Acts 21:13 KJV)

Enough to be heart broken at their tears. Not to fear for his life in Jerusalem, or any where on earth, for that matter. But to be heart broken, for his friends.

Thank God he was strengthened to remain in God’s will, and he carried the company with him so they were able to respond:

And when he would not be persuaded, we ceased, saying, The will of the Lord be done. (Acts 21:14 KJV)

Would that we, though we be heart broken, say the same: The will of the Lord be done.

Monday, March 16, 2009

Under The Sun

“There is still time … brother”

The last shot from the movie “On The Beach” shouts the message from the doomsayers of that era. Forty years, a generation later, there is still time.

The earth-ending scenario feared from the end of World War II through most of the Cold War did not occur. In fact, none of the earth-ending scenarios put forth for serious consideration have been earth ending, have they?

I watch the movie early on a recent morning and thought of the fear evident. As a grade school student we held drills and were told if we saw the light to drop and cover. Then we practiced. Sometimes we dropped beneath our desks and covered the back of our necks. Others, we cowered in the halls.

There are places today where these drills remain a necessity.

I’ve read several stories of dire events in the future for the United States. I’m caught between understanding and ignoring. Understanding that such prophecies have been made before and come true – and such prophecies have been made before and never occurred.

The thing that hath been, it is that which shall be;

and that which is done is that which shall be done:

and there is no new thing under the sun.

(Ecclesiastes 1:9 KJV)

Yet we take it so for granted that the world is new to us each morning – that we start afresh. Both views are valid. There is no new thing under the sun because mankind continues to repeat the things from before.

We do it as a microcosm within our own lives. I firm believe that “insanity is doing the same thing over and over and expecting different results,” yet I find myself insane – doing the same thing, and expecting different results. Over and over again I’ve seen greed and corruption; wars and rumors of wars; ungodliness and dishonesty.

Still I pray, as Paul instructed Timothy: I exhort therefore, that, first of all, supplications, prayers, intercessions, and giving of thanks, be made for all men; For kings, and for all that are in authority; that we may lead a quiet and peaceable life in all godliness and honesty. (1 Timothy 2:1-2 KJV)

To what end? For this is good and acceptable in the sight of God our Saviour; Who will have all men to be saved, and to come unto the knowledge of the truth. (1 Timothy 2:3-4 KJV)