Was it November, 2015 when Paris erupted in violence because a handful of human beings decided god was on their side and therefore against the people of that great city? Was it April, 2016 when Brussels became a place of death and destruction because the same handful of human beings decided god was on their side? Was it September, 2001 when that same group of human beings decided god was against the United States of America?
A long time ago and yet today, Jesus said that if a violent man comes against you to strike you, do not resist. In fact, offer him a new target — your other cheek. (Other than Jesus, the only person I know who has done this well is Mahatma Ghandi. Martin Luther King is a close second.)
In the light of human beings who hate so much that they…
Not long ago and not far away, I got lost in central Indiana along with my parents. We were in my rental car, driving to Hanover, Indiana from Nashville, Indiana. The night was dark — of course — and the hour was late. We were eager to get home earlier than the previous night. We’d made the same drive from Nashville to Hanover in the same car at almost the same time of night. We’d had no problem getting from point A to point B. On Friday evening after attending the play HEROES at the Brown County Playhouse, we drove east on Hwy. 46 to discover the entrance and exit at I-65 was closed. We took Hwy. 11 south to a flashing light — or perhaps a stop light — and turned right there to find a more southerly entrance to I-65. The rest was a breeze. On Saturday night, we made the same turn south on Hwy. 11 in that the I-65 entrance was still closed. When we reached the flashing light, we turned right. Somehow, even though we were watching for I-65 we either went over it or under it without seeing it. We wound up on the west side of the interstate and on Hwy. 58 west. I suggested we’d missed the interstate and that we might want to turn around. But we didn’t. We drove into corn fields.
On Saturday night, we made the same turn south on Hwy. 11 in that the I-65 entrance was still closed. When we reached the flashing light, we turned right. Somehow, even though we were watching for I-65 we either went over it or under it without seeing it. We wound up on the west side of the interstate and on Hwy. 58 west. I suggested we’d missed the interstate and that we might want to turn around. But we didn’t. We drove into corn fields. Yes, we make crop circles. We drove through Mount Healthy — I didn’t even see a town! Then we drove through Waymansville — again, I didn’t notice a town. We reached a small county road called Seymour Road and since Seymour is a city which lies along I-65 we turned left to take Seymour Road hopefully to Seymour. My mother got her iPhone, brought up its trusty compass. She began to tell me, “We’re going south, oh, now we’re going east, now we’ve turned a little north…” Looking at a map of Bartholomew County, Indiana one can see that Seymour Road wiggles and actually dead ends in what appears to be a neighborhood. However, other branches of other roads come off the small highway. Eventually we must have reached Hwy. 11 which crosses I-65 from east to west in a southerly direction. We turned right — south — on Hwy. 11, reached Hwy. 50, turned left on it and drove right up to I-65, taking it south to Hanover.
Somewhere in the corn fields, we were abducted by aliens.
Stephen King stirred me with his tweet about the odd behavior of some evangelical Christians — an almost schizophrenic behavior. Supposedly evangelicals believe God is love and know Jesus warned not to prevent children from coming to Him. Jesus said something akin to “better to put a giant grinding stone around your neck and fling yourself into the sea than to keep one of these kids from getting close to Me.” Yet, some evangelical ( or fundamentalist or conservative Christians ) are up in arms to keep destitute, desperate South American children from crossing our borders.
Well, you might argue, that doesn’t keep these kids from coming to Christ. Really? Are you sure about that?
So, let’s look at another story Jesus told.
Remember the poor man who was fell upon by robbers along a road and left for dead? Remember the supposedly decent human beings who walked right by…
If the Law ( or laws ) could make us holy, then Jesus would not have needed to die on the Cross. No state-appointed law is going to make us clean for Him. He is SO HOLY that we don’t stand a chance. If we could make ourselves holy, then Jesus died for nothing. I think Paul says that quite eloquently. At any rate, think on it. It IS extremely tempting to think that finger pointing and condemnation will make another person BETTER, but it doesn’t work. Only the BLOOD of JESUS CHRIST can make any one of us WHOLE again. Without Him, not one of us is CLEAN.
At the bottom of enmity between strangers lies indifference. ~ Kierkegaard
“They have problems,” my wife notes as I pump our Ford’s tank full of fuel. I look the direction of her gaze to find a young lady holding an infant in one arm and a young child with the other hand. An obvious grandparent stands with them, she with the responsibility of guarding the empty gas container.
I tear the receipt from the pump and make my way back to the truck. “Do you need some help?” I start to respond but then realize my wife’s question is directed to the strangers on the sidewalk. “Desperately,” echoes back in the place of her interrogation.
Mind on our date night and far from TC’s conversation with strangers, I inwardly groan when I hear, “Can we buy you some gas?”
The life story begins; the story that is chiseling away at my…
The foolish partridge sits on eggs in a nest which does not belong to her – she labours to bring forth fruit that is not her own and so she is a fool.
Yesterday, I listened to Donald Trump on NPR tell the Scots how to manage their energy. He also threatened that if they pursue the clean energy source, they will “go bankrupt.”
Mr. Trump has decided to use his nearly unlimited resources to sue indefinitely the Scottish government to keep wind technology from going up near his new golf course. If he prevails, Mr. Trump will singlehandedly manage to upset an entire country’s pursuit of cleaner energy. Additionally he will tie up taxpayer monies for years while Scots attempt to push this foolish partridge out of its nest.
9 The heart is perverse above all things, and unsearchable, who can know it?
10 I am the Lord who search the heart and prove the reins: who give to every one according to his way, and according to the fruit of his devices.
11 As the partridge hath hatched eggs which she did not lay: so is he that hath gathered riches, and not by right: in the midst of his days he shall leave them, and in his latter end he shall be a fool. ( Jeremias 17: 9-11, DRA )