Posted in Great Books, Great Quotes, Hope, Inspiration, Justice

A Prayer for the Overthrow of the Wicked

While reading a news article about Trump’s ham-handed actions as the leader of the free world, I was reminded of the Psalmist’s description of “the wicked”. The description of “the wicked man” are so similar to the characteristics most appalling in Trump. Note the frustration of the psalmist. It reflects my own frustration and concerns with the current president. I frequently find myself asking: “Why Lord? Hello! Anyone up there listening to me?

Why, LORD, do you stand far off?
Why do you hide yourself in times of trouble?

In his arrogance the wicked man hunts down the weak,
who are caught in the schemes he devises.
He boasts about the cravings of his heart;
he blesses the greedy and reviles the LORD.

In his pride the wicked man does not seek him;
in all his thoughts there is no room for God.
His ways are always prosperous;
your laws are rejected by him;
he sneers at all his enemies.

He says to himself, “Nothing will ever shake me.”
He swears, “No one will ever do me harm.”
His mouth is full of lies and threats;
trouble and evil are under his tongue.

His victims are crushed, they collapse;
they fall under his strength.
He says to himself, “God will never notice;
he covers his face and never sees.”

Why does the wicked man revile God?
Why does he say to himself,
“He won’t call me to account”?

Break the arm of the wicked man;
call the evildoer to account for his wickedness
that would not otherwise be found out.

The LORD is King for ever and ever;
the nations will perish from his land.
You, LORD, hear the desire of the afflicted;
you encourage them, and you listen to their cry,
defending the fatherless and the oppressed,
so that mere earthly mortals will never again strike terror.
Psalm 10 NIV

Posted in Hope, Joy, Life, Love

You Are Worthy

Rainbow Rose

Life is full of pain and loss yet the one thing that proves life is worth living are the many and varied surprises along the way.

Like a rainbow after a dark and thunderous storm, or the simple smile of a young child, or new friends unexpectedly and serendipitously entering our lives. There are so many reasons to be thankful for this gift called life.

Still, it’s too easy to find we have somehow gotten off track. To become hyper-focused on the minutiae of our daily lives resulting in tunnel vision. Whether one’s child or sibling decides we’re just not good enough (And trust me I have experienced it and it does hurt.) there are friends and family as well as total strangers who prove daily through our interactions with them that we as well as they truly are worthy.

You are worthy.

Posted in Civil Rights, Great Quotes, Hope, Justice, LBGTQ, Love

Unity and Love In The Face of Darkness

What happened in Orlando on Sunday was an unbelievable act of hatred and violence. In times like these I feel like reacting in kind. But that is not the way to win this fight against hatred, bigotry and intolerance. A man who taught and lived a different approach to stamping out bigotry and hatred said the following.

Martin Luther King, Jr.

The ultimate weakness of violence is that it is a descending spiral, begetting the very thing it seeks to destroy. Instead of diminishing evil, it multiplies it.

Through violence you may murder the liar,
but you cannot murder the lie, nor establish the truth.

Through violence you may murder the hater,
but you do not murder hate.

In fact, violence merely increases hate.

So it goes.

Returning violence for violence multiplies violence, adding deeper darkness to a night already devoid of stars.

Darkness cannot drive out darkness:
only light can do that.

Hate cannot drive out hate: only love can do that.

Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.

Posted in Books, Family and Friends, Great Books, Hope, Humor, Love

A Timely Story of Love and Devotion

Grace Me With Your Presents by Pippa Franks
Grace Me With Your Presents

Grace Me With Your Presents is a heartwarming story full of humor and yet intensely emotional at times.

The impetus for the turbulence in Grace’s life is her daughter leaving home to attend university. Not long after Grace learns her beloved Aunt Jemima has been hospitalized due to a broken hip. Adding insult to injury her aunt is diagnosed with Alzheimer’s.

Eventually it’s decided that Grace is best able to drop everything to provide support while her aunt recovers. However, this means leaving her husband in London to attend to her aunt’s needs.

The citizens of Eskton amaze Grace when they eagerly sign on to fix up her aunt’s home which has begun to tumble down around her aunt. That’s the positive side of life in a small town. The less than helpful and more often than not annoying aspect is having everyone in town up in her business.

The people she encounters have some challenges of their own. It seems amusing at first to consider a vicar with an obvious alcohol problem. Upon learning why, it becomes understandable and yet unfortunate that he believes secrecy is the answer.

A farmer, George, is a closet cross dresser. His closet conceals the trappings and secret of who he is in total.

The secret that Grace has held close to her heart for many years eventually is revealed and what a secret it is! How can she be open and honest with family and friends all the while keeping this secret closeted from others?

I laughed with Grace. I cried with Grace. I yearned with Grace to have her greatest wish come true.

To learn more about the author you can find her on Facebook, her blog at http://pippafranks.blogspot.co.uk or her Amazon author page.

 

Posted in Civil Rights, Hope, Justice, LBGTQ, Parenting

Apologetics and Apologies

Should the Church Apologize to the LBGTQ community?

My oldest son is gay.

I suspected he was gay even at an early age. He “came out” to me when he was 15. Even so, I was in denial for a long time. Being raised in the church, there were many, many prayers that God would change my son’s belief. Like many uninformed people, I believed homosexuality was a choice and that God could change this choice if I prayed enough.

Obviously things have changed drastically since then. Major, needed changes have occurred in our society of late. The Supreme Court decision on same-sex marriages has had a huge impact. However, the Church has been left in the dust. “Christians” and conservative churches are disparaging and even hateful in voicing their beliefs on the matter.

John Pavlovitz a “17-year ministry veteran, specializing in trying to live-out the red letters of Jesus” believes the Church should apologize to the LBGTQ community sooner rather than later.

Here is his take on the subject:
Why The Church Should Save Time And Apologize To The LGBTQ Community Now

Posted in Family, General, Grief, Hope, Life, Pain

The Day I’ll Finally Stop Grieving

From the article:
“Grief doesn’t just visit you for a horrible, yet temporary holiday. It moves in, puts down roots—and it never leaves. Yes as time passes, eventually the tidal waves subside for longer periods, but they inevitably come crashing in again without notice, when you are least prepared. With no warning they devastate the landscape of your heart all over again, leaving you bruised and breathless and needing to rebuild once more.”

john pavlovitz

tears

“How long has it been? When is he going to get over that grief and move on already?”

I get it.

I know you might be thinking that about me or about someone else these days.

I know you may look at someone you know in mourning and wonder when they’ll snap out of it.

I understand because I use to think that way too.

Okay, maybe at the time I was self-aware enough or guilty enough not to think it quite that explicitly, even in my own head. It might have come in the form of a growing impatience toward someone in mourning or a gradual dismissing of their sadness over time or maybe in my intentionally avoiding them as the days passed. It was subtle to be sure, but I can distinctly remember reaching the place where my compassion for grieving friends had reached its capacity—and it was long before they stopped hurting.

Back then like most people, my mind was operating under…

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