Archive for current affairs
if you are a Christian and an American…this one’s for you. the idea behind the separation of church and state was designed as a policy for government, not citizens. “the wall” separating church and state meant the law would be designed for government to stay out of our religion but the freedom that allows does not call for our Christianity to stay out of our opinions about government policy. said a different way, we should not check our God at the door before we pontificate, debate, or exercise our right to vote or speak out to our political leaders. the first thing Christians are, above all else, are followers of our God ( please see 1st commandment for more information). if our beliefs as Christians do not allow us the political courage to stand with Him…then are we really followers of God or of men? many of us will vote this week and hopefully spend the rest of the year preparing to vote again in November. this time really apply your faith and crusade for your beliefs in the process.
“when the righteous are in authority, the people rejoice; but when a wicked man rules, the people groan.” Proverbs 29:2
look around, we all see it… the silencing of the Judeo-Christian values in which our society was established. it makes people “uncomfortable” to speak out and defend Christian values while anti-Christian belief are becoming rights. our cross, our prayer, and our God have been paraded in front of the media, the courts and citizens of all faiths as unfair treatment to non-Christians. as we have been hushed around the concept that it is respectful to sit down and shut up while the values of others to have no beliefs at all have been allowed to prevail. instead of freedom of religion i.e. freedom to worship as we all choose, we are establishing freedom of no religion. the examples and teachings of Jesus that defines us all instill tolerance, understanding and compassion that should be unconditional for all including those who persecute us…but He also established his disciples to tell the story, stand up for Him and carry His cross. some among us can stand up and preach, some can inspire family and friends, other can take ownership of their own lives and become a better example just living each day with the best efforts to follow Him. but wherever we are in our abilities to witness, we are all called to defend Him. when our faith and our freedoms are under fire what role can we play to protect them? this election year, this day of transformational government and on ongoing legislation that threatens our moral fabric, speak up. speak out. speak now or forever hold His peace.
But in your hearts honor Christ the Lord as holy, always being prepared to make a defense to anyone who asks you for a reason for the hope that is in you; yet do it with gentleness and respect, 1 Peter 3:15
well, we made the news again. Christian values always seem to make the headlines as if it were a news flash that we do not want our religious freedoms taken away. doesn’t anyone remember why we started this “united states” thing? in fact the primary motivator for the founders leaving their former land was their government telling the citizens what their values were going to be. the founding of our country was based on the virtues and beliefs of individuals being a God-given right and a lot of very brave individuals fought and died for a land where that is still possible. but there is just one small catch…”we the people” have to keep our virtues in order to keep our freedom. benjamin franklin said “only a virtuous people are capable of freedom”. george washington, referring to the constitution, said that it could survive only “so long as there shall remain any virtue in the body of the people.” and thomas jefferson said “virtue is not hereditary”, “virtue has to be earned and it has to be learned”, “it has to be cultivated continually and exercised from hour-to-hour and from day-to-day.” hmmmm, maybe these dudes were on to something…maybe our passion to stand for our virtues and beliefs have become compromised and now…so goes our freedoms?
each one of us falls short of our commitment to God and living our Christian priorities from time to time. we go against His greatest ask of us, to place Him first in our days. we lose our way when we hustle from here to there and take our eyes away from the apex of our true “A” game. we find our way again when we come to our knees in prayer, as we fear our worst fears or become overwhelmed by the blessings of our lives. but it is in the “hour to hour” and “day-to-day” discipline to our faith that we are delivered His promises …gifts beyond our imagination such as real forgiveness, true peace, freedom, guidance, and virtue. each Christian should be reminded that it is incumbent on each of us as individuals to turn to Him hourly, seek Him daily and deliver to Him continuously our best each day or risk the loss of the freedom and salvation we will surely suffer in our personal little corner of the world, in our great nation and there after…
“Therefore tell the people: This is what the LORD Almighty says: ‘return to me’. declares the LORD Almighty, and I will return to you,” says the LORD Almighty” Zechariah 1:3
when we are part of an environment long enough we often times desire to take on traits associated with that place or the associated group of people. a few simple examples come to mind…taking on language styles associated with different parts of the country like “dude” on the west coast and “y’all” in the south. wearing clothing trends while in certain environments such as cowboy boots in texas or tropical shirts at the beach. these outward signs show our ability, even our instinct, to adapt and imitate what and who is around us. we liken to polar bears adapting to frigid temperatures in the arctic or fragile birds that camouflage for survival. those of us who have had pain and hard times build walls of protection and become hardened. those of us who have had support and unconditional love grow wings and fly. we can become a product of our past and the environment we are in. we say “careful who you associate with”, “choose your friends wisely” in part because we know what we are capable of and because we know how adaptable we are. when we hear and see something long enough it becomes a part of us. an environment of negative language and destructive behavior will grow like a cancer …change our path and deny our true purpose in life. think about what is acceptable these days in music and media…it is o.k. to say and hear things that use to be unacceptable because it has penetrated our society by seeping through the cracks long enough that it is now a raging river on our neighborhood streets. but we can choose where and who we stand with. God invites us to his world in prayer everyday. He asks us to associate with Him and to hear His positive language any time. God provided the role models, the story line, the ultimate goal. He offers us strength through His sacrifice to turn away from what pulls us away. go to what is good. follow His lead and walk a path to a place that is heavenly.
“the LORD will always lead you” Isaiah 58:11
o.k. if you weren’t sure about the state of the u.s. economy, hope you are paying attention now! even if you are just flipping through the channels, or walking by a news paper you might know about the never before seen 14 trillion-dollar debt, you might now know our credit rating has been downgraded for the first time in u.s. history or that the stock market fell 600+ points in one day yesterday (that’s a lot). you may be thinking “what a mess”, or “that really doesn’t affect me”, or “oh, no”! what you may not be thinking is what is our Christian obligation to our finances. on the broad scale of the u.s. economic crisis all american have contributed in the sense that we have been complacent and un-disiplined. not paying attention to the actions of our elected officials, not really dedicated to our family finances. after all, there is always tomorrow. but, individually we have to ask ourselves… have we made financial decisions in our life in accordance to our Christian faith? put another way….do we even know how God feels about our pocket-book? if we don’t know, we should. if we do know, are we taking the temptations of indulgence out of our lives and applying the Lords discipline to balancing our wants and needs? we are told the Bible speaks about money over 800 times. as one would guess His request is to put our faith above all else, so are we putting that simple request from The Creator into our financial decisions?
cross-skills mission is to ask anyone who will listen to apply faith to all aspects of life and unfortunately, since we can’t shake this money thing, it’s included. remember, “nothing is impossible with God” Luke 1:37. if you apply your faith to all challenges great and small, number one you will never be in it alone and number two your outcomes are guarateed to be as great as Him.
here is just one of the 800, see if you can find the rest…
“owe no one anything except to love one another, for he who loves another has fulfilled the law.”
well God is in the news again and we don’t mean the “Good News”. He is being shoved aside again because He’s too controversial…how can the Prince of Peace be so controversial when 76% of our country consider themselves Christian followers. well it’s the tired old story of …wait for it….political correctness. this time inside our military, at a time of war when our hero’s need their savior more than ever. the issue is that a training that has been in place for years on “the just war theory” has now been scrubbed. we have been asked again to be sensitive to non-believers. when will Christians stand up and demand sensitivity in our direction? for non-believers to look the other way instead? but again, the loud minority rules, the “squeeky wheel gets the grease” and we have to be understanding. below is a passage found on the “catholic answers” website…
“Jesus tells us “blessed are the peacemakers” (Matt. 5:9). Elsewhere in the Sermon on the Mount he tells us “if any one strikes you on the right cheek, turn to him the other also” (Matt. 5:39). From such verses some have concluded that Christianity is a pacifist religion and that violence is never permitted.
But the same Jesus elsewhere acknowledges the legitimate use of force, telling the apostles, “let him who has no sword sell his mantle and buy one” (Luke 22:36). How are these passages to be reconciled?
In broad terms, Christians must not love violence. They must promote peace whenever possible and be slow to resort to the use of arms. But they must not be afraid to do so when it is called for. Evil must not be allowed to remain unchecked.
think about it….