Archive for the 'current events' Category

12
Aug
14

Riots are NEVER a good thing

A few blocks from where I once worked selling cars in Ferguson, Missouri, a young man was shot and killed by a policeman which in turn has triggered ongoing and increasingly violent riots in the whole St. Louis area. Demonstrations are perfectly legal and entirely understandable but rioting, stealing, looting and destroying property is NOT.

It is interesting that the things going on in my area are the very things brought up and prohibited in the New Testament. Obviously the idea of people using a situation to justify rioting is not a modern phenomenon for it has been a part of cultures for thousands of years.

We need look no further than the mob action relating to the apprehension, “trial” and sentencing of Jesus to see that when leaders (especially religious leaders) stir up the people into a frenzy, the results are predictable and unpleasant. Is it not possible that the reason Pilate gave into the demands of the people to crucify Jesus was his fear that if he did not, the people would break through the Romans guards and crucify him?

On more than one occasion, the Apostle Paul was caught in public riots that nearly cost him his life. In Acts 19, while Paul was at Ephesus, people upset with losing money making idols of the goddess Diana, caused a riot that would have killed Paul if the disciples had not restrained him and safely took him away from the upheaval. An excellent definition of a mob is recorded in Acts 19:32 where it says:

Some therefore cried one thing, and some another: for the assembly was confused: and the more part knew not wherefore they were come together.

Most people who participate in a riot have no clue why they are rioting. The confusion of the situation leads to lack of communication which in turn leads to clamor and mass destruction. While in Jerusalem, Paul went to the temple to purify himself in Acts 21. What happened next defines a riot and almost claimed Paul’s life:

26 Then Paul took the men, and the next day purifying himself with them entered into the temple, to signify the accomplishment of the days of purification, until that an offering should be offered for every one of them.

27 And when the seven days were almost ended, the Jews which were of Asia, when they saw him in the temple, stirred up all the people, and laid hands on him,

28 Crying out, Men of Israel, help: This is the man, that teacheth all men every where against the people, and the law, and this place: and further brought Greeks also into the temple, and hath polluted this holy place.

29 (For they had seen before with him in the city Trophimus an Ephesian, whom they supposed that Paul had brought into the temple.)

30 And all the city was moved, and the people ran together: and they took Paul, and drew him out of the temple: and forthwith the doors were shut.

31 And as they went about to kill him, tidings came unto the chief captain of the band, that all Jerusalem was in an uproar.

32 Who immediately took soldiers and centurions, and ran down unto them: and when they saw the chief captain and the soldiers, they left beating of Paul.

33 Then the chief captain came near, and took him, and commanded him to be bound with two chains; and demanded who he was, and what he had done.

34 And some cried one thing, some another, among the multitude: and when he could not know the certainty for the tumult, he commanded him to be carried into the castle.

35 And when he came upon the stairs, so it was, that he was borne of the soldiers for the violence of the people.

Acts 21:26-35

Mob action is dangerous and many times leads to a full blown riot. A riot is a violent disturbance where angry and out of control people damage property and physically injure others. Rioting, reveling, clamoring etc are specifically forbidden numerous places in both Paul’s and Peter’s epistles. God’s people should NEVER be lured into a riot or mob action. There is absolutely no justification for anyone claiming to know and love God to participate, incite or take pleasure in anything resembling a riot.

My heart aches for what is happening in the St. Louis area for innocent and gullible people are being lured into doing things both illegal and dangerous. I pray that calmer heads prevail and the vultures descending on the area from other states fail in their attempts to incite the people to even more dangerous and damaging actions.

28
Apr
11

These are times that are trying many souls

Over the course of the past year or so, we have witnessed catastrophic earthquakes in Haiti, Chile, New Zealand and Japan.  We have seen a tsunami suddenly kill thousands of people and cause turmoil and anxiety even unto this present hour due to the problems at a nuclear power plant in Japan.  We have seen volcanoes erupt in Iceland and ice storms in places that rarely see them.  Through it all, the United States of America was basically unscathed.

Over the past few weeks, the forces of nature have unleashed their fury upon the very heart of America.  Through wildfires burning in Texas, flooding along the Mississippi and Ohio Rivers and the current incredible outbreak of tornadoes; there is no longer any feeling of invincibility in this land.  As if the current situation were not bad enough, a very active hurricane season looms just ahead.

In due time, all the damage being done by all these natural disasters will act as a financial stimulus as people will find jobs rebuilding houses, businesses, churches and other facilities.  But, in the short term, the current situation is too much for many to bear.  Losing one’s home or business is a traumatic experience that leaves deep scars in someone’s hearts for years to come.  Obviously there are many hurting people around right now.

The frustration people go through dealing with insurance companies, government agencies, financial institutions and employers is hard to understand unless a person has lived through a major disaster or worked with those who have.  People can talk about “trusting God” all they want, but when your home is a pile of debris, your place of employment is demolished and your creditors want payments NOW; the pressure many times literally breaks people and demolishes families.

In 2006 I took a very long and difficult trip to Cameron, a little town on the coast of southwestern Louisiana, which had been utterly destroyed by hurricane Rita the previous year.  The area was a ghost town as it had been literally forgotten due to most of the emphasis being placed on Katrina damage.  As I trudged through the sand looking at the destruction I came upon a few very haggard people hanging around a white tent.

When I inquired as to what was going on, I was told of how there used to be a church ministry that brought food to that tent twice a week but had run out of resources and had to stop.  My heart ached for these poor people who received no aid from FEMA, the Red Cross, Salvation Army or any other group except one lonely ministry who could no longer find the resources to get food to them.

I was not able to do much but the pictures I took of the people and their plight did make their way to some agencies which in due time were able to get some resources down there.  The town had literally fallen through the cracks due to all the other needs.

As people attempt to put their lives back together in Texas, Oklahoma, Arkansas, Louisiana, Mississippi, Alabama, Georgia, Missouri, Illinois, Kentucky, Tennessee, the Carolinas and Virginia; I pray that those of us unaffected by the current onslaught of floods and tornadoes remember those whose lives have been turned upside down.

These are very troubled and turbulent times and many of our brothers and sisters are hurting right now.  If ever they needed a friend to lend them a hand or a shoulder to cry on it is NOW.  If there was ever a time to redouble our prayers and “stand in the gap” it is NOW.  If there was ever a time to intercede on behalf of those who are struggling to stay sane and alive, it is NOW.  Truly this is a time to pray for and reach out to all those engaged in the worst battles of their lives.

26
Apr
11

There is plenty to be nervous about

I would not say that I am afraid, for I am not; but I will readily admit that the incredible things happening with the weather and economy make me very nervous.  There is a huge difference between being afraid and being nervous.  One is counterproductive and the other is the natural reaction to uneasy situations.

Just four years ago I would have been working 20 hours per day finding relief supplies for tornado victims in the St. Louis area and flooding victims in southern Missouri.  I know my days of trying to “save the world” after every disaster ended some time ago, but I am still deeply impacted as I see images of destruction and hear reports of catastrophic flooding soon to cause untold problems in many areas.  Throw into the mix some of the worst wildfires Texas has ever seen and you have a truly troubling situation building.

I study weather and I have seen from multiple sources that the upcoming month of May will be MUCH COOLER than normal throughout much of the USA except along the Gulf coast.  The last two times this happened were 2005 and 2008 which were years that produced hurricanes Katrina, Rita, Wilma; and 2008 which produced hurricanes Gustov and Ike.  Many experts are already warning of the imminent possibility of multiple strikes by huge hurricanes along the United States coastline this summer.

For a very long time I used to study and try to understand economic concerns.  What is currently happening is so distressing that I no longer have the desire to try and figure out what is happening and about to happen.  Contrary to what media outlets are saying, there is a period of hyper-inflation just around the next bend.  We are already seeing it in the constantly rising prices for gasoline and food.

It is estimated that nearly 15% of all Americans have had to raid their retirement accounts to find resources for emergencies.  I know this is true for I am one of those 15% and am not proud of it.  But, when all other sources of income are removed, and expenses pile up; there is no place left to go but to the IRA or 401k that was supposed to provide income for 25 years or more after retirement.

Recent studies have indicated that the housing market for super expensive properties is rebounding and doing fine.  Those with plenty of money are spending it on lavish homes that cost well over a million dollars.  Those homes in foreclosure are also being purchased by people with money and then rented out to desperate people who have lost their homes.

Meanwhile those homes in the $100,000 to $600,000 range just sit there.  No one qualifies for a loan and no one has the money to pay the huge down payment to move up or down.  Most of us live in these kinds of homes and are stuck in them for many years to come.

I cannot do nothing about the weather or the economy so all I can do is pray for wisdom for those deeply impacted by both.  May God grant us all great patience and understanding so as to make the right decisions and have the means to help our neighbor, brother, parent or child in need.

04
May
09

The train has left the station and the wreck in right around the corner

This slow death by strangulation is too much to bear.  I would rather simply be knocked unconscious and awakened when it is all over.  I cannot stand this Chinese water torture any longer.  Why can’t they just play their trump card and end this madness?

Anyone on the Republican or conservative side knows the end is near.  The only reason their pundits keep talking so much is to make their big bucks on talk radio before it is shut down.  Can you blame them for wanting to make a few more millions before taxes take them all away?

My guess is that the powers that be are simply waiting for the official declaration of Al Franken as winner of the Minnesota Senate race before the fireworks begin.  Once the Democratic super majority is in place, the Republicans are relegated to the status of troublemakers, whiners, obstructionists and permanent minority party.

We all know what is coming , so why drag it out?  Nationalized health care, cap and trade policies for the environment, dismantling of the military, strong arm tactics against those opposing all this stuff, fairness doctrine and countless moves to legalize sin of all kinds are on the horizen.  With no one to stop all this stuff, it will shortly become law along with the nationalization of business after business and the systematic stripping of wealth from the old rich to give to the new poor.

The train has left the station and all the blockades in the world are not going to stop it.  They may temporarily slow it down, but this train won’t stop until it reaches its duly appointed station which is the turning of the United States of America into just another socialistic state under the control of the UN, the IMF and whatever other international agency that wants what is left of this once proud land.

Did you notice the Chinese have pretty well stopped buying Treasury Bonds?  If that isn’t a sure sign that the end of America as it has been known for the last century is near, I don’t know what is.  I hope you like train rides and ultimately train wrecks, for that is where we are heading very soon.

24
Feb
09

For what purpose are we here on this earth?

I have not posted on this site for quite awhile due to physical problems which had to be addressed. Now, after spending ten days in a hospital waiting for my blood to thin enough to allow the three new stents placed in my heart to not clog up; I am finally ready to again post on this site.

I have had ample time to consider many things over the past few weeks, not the least of which is attempting to answer the greatest question anyone can ask, which is “why are we here?” If a survey were taken of 1,000 people asking them why they are on this earth, I am sure there would be little agreement on an answer. In other words, the true answer to this question lies in the individual views of the one answering the question.

For many people, the main reason they have to “carry on” is either financial or family oriented. Many times these two things are so intertwined that they become one and the same. Millions upon millions of people wake up every morning to go to work to earn a paycheck to pay the mortgage and provide food for their family. This goes on for 50 years or so and then they retire to go play with their grandchildren.

Is our purpose in this life really only to make money to in turn spend it on spouses, children or ourselves? Is this really the grand design and reason for our being? Does every child born into this world have nothing else to look forward to in this life than 12 years of school (or 16 or more), 50 years of work and a few years of golf before the wheels fall off physically? Is the greatest reward to be earned in this life really only a nice house and a big family?

For the vast majority of this world’s population, there is really nothing else to explain life than the daily ordeal of doing what is needed to survive. Those of us living in the superficial prosperity of the West fail to understand that billions of people wake up each day not knowing for sure where the means will come from to live another day. Truly the biggest motivation for most people to live is the will to survive. That is why in many countries and cultures those who are weak are quickly forgotten and left to die.

The great scheme currently being promoted is one of “spreading the wealth around”. Through socialism and communism, the idea is to take from the rich and give to the poor thus creating a level playing field for everyone. Of course this sounds fantastic to those at the bottom of the socio-economic pile but for those at the top, it is the worst of all scenarios.

Whether it is right to force those who have succeeded in making a lot of money to share it with those who have not is open to debate. If those with the means would simply give to those who don’t, then there would be no problem. But, those with the means many times hoard what they have and not do not share but continue to get more and more. Yet, is the answer really to tax or otherwise force those who have an abundance to subsidize those who have little?

The only fair and equitable way of collecting money to run a government of other organization is to impose the same flat rate on everyone the way sales tax does today. If everyone paid the same rate, then no one could claim they are being singled out to give more than anyone else. If everyone had to pay 8% of their income in taxes, then the playing ground would be level for all.

What difference does it make to tell the wealthy to pay 35% of their income and then allow shelters and other ways for them to hide their assets so they end up paying less than many at the 15% rate? Why not simply tell everyone they must pay a set percentage of their income and provide no shelters or credits or other silly ways to provide escape routes for those who can afford good accountants or attorneys to find them.

No one likes paying sales tax, but as long as everyone has to pay it, then one can complain that much. Those who make little buy little and pay little in tax. Those who make much, buy much and pay much in sales tax. Certainly the sales tax on a 5 million dollar yacht is just as much of a burden to the one with the means as the sales tax on a 50 dollar item is to those without.

There must obviously be something greater to account for life than just making a living. That purpose is of course, in my mind, to love God and share His love with others. Herein lies the great reason for drawing breath. All else is vanity and shortsighted to say the least.

28
Jan
09

The Last Charge of God’s Light Brigade is Mounting Up–Are You In?

It appears by all indications that 2009 is the year something of profound importance spiritually is going to take place in this world. With leaders handpicked by those in the upper echelons of power, the world reeling under the pressure of recession and more and more people feeling like finally a man is in control in the United States who can change everything for the better; it certainly looks like a classic case of the enemy getting ready to play his trump card.

If this is true and the enemy is planning to implement his longstanding plan to institute a one world government, financial system and religion; those who know the truth from the Bible better get their heads screwed on straight quickly for there will not be time once events start happening at breakneck speed.

Neither I nor anyone else knows for sure what is going on in the hallowed halls of Washington, the plush offices of New York or the stuffy enclaves of Europe; but it certainly appears that all the individual pieces of the puzzle have been put in place and now it is time to start putting the puzzle together. Never before, in modern recorded history has there been such a confluence of power brokers along with crisis after crisis in need of someone to diffuse them as the present.

Without question and with no hesitation I can say with full assurance that the man governing the United States gives every indication of being the perfect candidate for the antichrist. Up and down the line, he measures up to the criteria laid out in the Bible for this ultimate powerbroker. If he continues to succeed in what he has managed to get done the first week in power much longer, then I believe anyone who believes we are living in the “end times” must awake and honestly evaluate who this man may REALLY be.

In trying to put together the records given by Paul, Peter, John and Jesus along with the Old Testament prophets, it is very hard to develop an ironclad timeline of specific events which are to take place leading up to and during the final week of Daniel’s prophecy. There are certainly some things which are undeniable and indisputable, but there are also many other things which are very difficult to assign a specific time and place as to their occurrence.

Last March I had a dream which shook me to the very depths of my soul. I rarely receive dreams which have any spiritual significance, but this one did. The basic elements of this dream were that a cloud of darkness would overspread the United States and cause panic and fear and finally immobilize the masses and turn them into subservient subjects. I honestly thought at the time this cloud of darkness was either weather related or the effects of a nuclear attack.

I now know this dream of impending darkness dealt with the collapse of the American economy as it had been known. I now know that the darkness that is overspreading this land is that which is being caused by the deliberate dismantling of the free enterprise system (otherwise known as capitalism) and replacing it with a forced version of socialism and/or fascism. All that has gone on is going on and will go on is not by accident but by deliberate design to break down American families and businesses to the point they must abide by government dictates in order to survive.

All the trash talk about “economic stimulus” packages and the like is all a smoke screen to cover up the truth of what is really happening. All symbolic meetings such as went on yesterday in Washington are part of a cleverly conceived plan to convince the public that what is being debated and voted on in Congress is legitimate when in reality it is as contrived and illegitimate as anything promoted and developed by the devil and his human associates.

There is no doubt in my mind that we are eyewitnesses to the events which are ushering in the “last days”. There is no doubt in my mind that there is about to be a rapid fire succession of events which will appear to produce unparalleled peace and prosperity for a season in this world. There is also no doubt in my mind that those of us who wholeheartedly believe in the rapture of the church will soon be taken from this cesspool of iniquity called the world and transported to our eternal home in the heavenlies.

I am fully aware of the controversy surrounding statements such as I just made. I am fully aware that merely saying them arouses pure venom and hatred within some who vehemently deny any of these things will ever take place. I understand that others feel just as strongly that all is going to be fine and God will establish His Kingdom on earth via the hard work of His people preaching the gospel and building churches. To each they must establish what they believe and then abide by it.

As for me and my household, I look at the unrelenting trials and tribulations which have befallen so many good and honest believers recently as the final testing by God to establish who is worthy to be considered the remnant which will participate in the marriage supper soon to start. Those whose trust and confidence is in this world and/or their church or themselves will never receive the call to appear before the Lord in the air to be taken to the place where we will enjoy the wedding feast.

While the overwhelming majority of Christians will be somewhat aware that a few “freaks” have vanished from their company, they will go on living the same as before assuming their own abilities or the power of their government will save them from any horrible things that might arise. They will rejoice as they see apparent peace in the Middle East, harmony among nations and the restoration of prosperity again. To them, all will indicate they were right all along.

But, just when they say “peace and safety” sudden destruction will come upon them as labor upon a woman with child. Seemingly from out of the blue, peace will turn to war, harmony to discord and prosperity to poverty. As the world collapses around them, they will only then remember the words of those “freaks” who warned such a thing would happen. But, alas, it is too late and they must come to grips with the realization the great tribulation is upon them.

It is not too late to get your heart right with God and totally commit yourself to Him. It is not too late to once and for all break away from the systems of this world and find the freedom that comes to those who fully and totally trust in the Lord and not in man. It is not too late to bow down before the Lord and repent once and for all of everything that has prevented you from living in the presence of the Lord. It is not too late to fully turn your heart, soul and life over to Him who saved you and called you with a holy calling.

I beseech you to consider these words carefully and weigh them in your heart against the sense knowledge “hope” that somehow things are going to get better in this world through the works of men and women sold out to those who control this world. What takes place in this world in the days and weeks ahead is exactly what God will allow to happen which in turn will lead to the most dramatic seven years in the history of mankind.

As for me and my household, we are committed to doing whatever it takes to speak the truth in love so others can hear of what is coming. We are committed to no longer compromising with the world on matters of heart and loyalty. We are committed to placing our faith totally in God and with full confidence yielding to His sovereign will. We are committed to never turning back to the weak and worthless elements of this world. We are committed to serving Him with all our hearts until He calls us home.

I pray you take stock of your situation and make sure your heart is right before God and that the affairs of this life have not so beaten you down that you have unconsciously compromised your faith by yielding to the demands of this world. I pray you return to your first love and allow your heart to rest in the everlasting loving arms of your Savior and Lord. I pray you lay aside every weight and the sin which does so easily distract us and weigh us down.

I pray that in these final hours of these final days that each and every one of us neglect not the gift God has placed within us and instead stir up that gift into the flame of compassionate outreach to others who are falling away faster and faster each day. I pray that no matter what the enemy does to tear down, distract or apply pressure; we all stand fast in the faith, unswerving and unashamed of the Gospel of Christ Jesus which is our very life.

We only have a little time to put on the armor of light and raise the standard of Jesus Christ one last time to this dying world. Soon, and very soon, that light will be gone as those bearing it will be taken out of the way so the son of perdition may have “his day”. Soon, and very soon, those who remain will face the full force of a world gone totally mad for a season. The hour of our message being needed is NOW and so is the hour of our decision to rise above our personal woes and move out as God’s last brigade of light and hope to a world who desperately needs us.

19
Jan
09

Misplaced and dilusional optimism running rampant in D.C. this week

In most respects, I want to crawl into a hole and come out in next week. I look forward to what is happening this week in Washington about as much as sleeping naked on my frozen pond. There is nothing happening this week that I believe is anything other than the reflection of a nation who about to reach the end of its glory. All the talk of “hope” and “change”, which will fuel exorbitant optimism that all the woes that drug this country down this past year are over, will never happen.

No one man, no matter how handsome, skilled in giving speeches and popular is able to turn the United States of America around. Many think FDR did, but his policies (if they really did any good) took years to take effect and the changes took even longer. Just because everyone is down in the dumps doesn’t make it right for them to suddenly lose all sense of rational thought and get stuck on stupid.

Surveys allegedly show that well over 70% of Americans think that somehow their new President is going to wave a magic wand and solve all the problems of the country AND all their personal ones too. What this means is that well over 70% of Americans have lost their collective minds. There are no magic wands and no President is able to talk or spend America or Americans out of their problems. Why and how so many people believe this is troubling and frightening.

Back in 2001, after the horrible tragedy of 9/11 surveys showed 90% of Americans believed their President would lead them to victory over the forces of evil which caused the disaster. Within a very small amount of time the percentage of those who believed that dropped to 60% and by the time the man leaves office Tuesday, barely 30% believe he did any good in eight years. The point is that Americans are notoriously fickle in their optimism and loyalty to their leader.

In 1991 at this time, President Bush the elder had just launched “Operation Desert Storm”. Almost the entire country was solidly behind the effort, helped along by songs like Lee Greenwood’s “Proud to be an American” and others. To most Americans at the time, the whole thing was equal to watching the Olympics. Their “team” was beating the daylights out of the Iraq team. At the time, Americans thought George Bush Sr. was the greatest President who ever lived in the White House. By November of 1992 they had voted him out of office in a humiliating defeat.

I wish President Obama all the best. I pray for him because my Bible says to. I pray he makes the right decisions and leads this country the best he can. But, he is still just a man. He is not a god and does not possess some type of supernatural ability to instantly solve all the nation’s problems or mine. Perhaps he will enter office with a 70% or greater approval rating. Perhaps the economy will turn around with all the spending and by next year he will have a 90% approval rating. If it happens, it happens.

All I know, is that realistically speaking, the odds do not favor a sudden and abrupt change in anything other than the National Debt. Things fall apart far quicker than it takes to rebuild them. Anything short of a National debt forgiveness program is bound to take months, if not years to produce the desired results. Problems which took years to develop cannot be solved overnight, no matter how much “hope” the people have.

My problems lie with the mentality of the American population and their misguided belief that their self pronounced “savior” can lead them to the promised land of financial prosperity and wealth without having to work or save for it. This entitlement and welfare state way of thinking is doing nothing but setting Americans up for an even greater disaster than the one which has taken place the past few months.

Wisdom, patience, hard work and prayer will pull this country out of the cesspool of depravity it has sunk into. Realistically speaking, I don’t think there is any more chance of these things being operated by the incoming President and Congress than the outgoing. All I see for this country is years of falling deeper and deeper in debt and only deferring to the next generation the horrible end game catastrophe such debt is bound to produce. For now, America, enjoy your misplaced and delusional “optimism” for that is all it is.