Tuesday, February 12, 2013

When Guns Were Nice

When I was a kid, guns were nicer.

Sigh... Does anyone remember the good old days? You know, a few years back when life in America was simpler... kinder... less complicated? We all worked hard. We talked to each other. People could firm up a deal with a handshake.

And guns were nicer.

They really were. Guns were our friends, our playmates, part of our families. We could trust them, and they would serve us well. We could keep them openly in our house, and they never caused us any harm.

Those really were the 'good old days'.

Nowadays, so much has changed. People aren't friendly anymore. They don't trust or care for each other. We have more locks and alarms, and security cameras.

And guns have gone bad.

I don't know why, but it's true. You can't trust them any more. Guns used to be faithful friends, good for hunting or self defense. Target shooting. Fireworks and celebrations. Now, it seems they have gone astray. We hear about bad guns murdering people. They hang out in gangs, drive through urban neighborhoods and shoot innocent bystanders. Sometimes we even see one that has gone completely out of its chamber, shooting masses of people.

Where did we go wrong? We didn't raise our guns to act this way!

Our guns have left the once-familiar realms of decency and respect, and now treat people with contempt. They are aggressive, unfair and abusive. They show no concern or regard for human life. They no longer stand proud and tall, defending the American way of life. Now they lurk in dark corners, hiding from mankind like a sneaky enemy. The change is marked and alarming, and disturbing on many levels.

Who can say when the change took place, or why. It's so sad to see a simple rifle turn from a boy's first rabbit gun to a murderer, all within one generation. Even the little .22 semi-automatic I hunted with for years as a child - with never a problem - is now being called an 'assault rifle'. I still can't believe it! I loved that gun. It was my friend and we spent many an early morning or lazy afternoon wandering the woods and fields in search of a furry target... I treated it like family! Why would it turn against me now? Why?

So many others, like myself, are asking these hard questions.

Some people believe that guns are bad because of war... but most guns I have known have never been in combat. They simply couldn't be affected by that environment - they were never there. They've never left the farm or home. How did this happen, and what can we do to fix it?

It seems there are no easy answers when guns go bad.

Some might suggest gun counseling. Programs where reprobate weapons could come and attend - no questions asked - and receive the help they need. Maybe, just maybe, if we could reach out to them in the name of decency and Godly morals, we could convert them back. Maybe we could convince them that they aren't really bad, they've simply fallen into the wrong crowd. For most guns, it's the company they keep that has caused them to stray. Think about it, have you ever seen a gun perform a criminal act without an actual criminal present? I think not. If you research it yourself, you'll begin to see a pattern here. Criminals corrupt guns!

We must reach out to our bullet-laden friends before it's too late.

Will you take some time today to consider how you might help? Let's not turn our backs on these once-prized patriots of freedom. We need to rally around our lost guns, showing them the love and caring they need and deserve. Rescue the firearms! It's a call we all can herald - let's save the guns!

Save the firearms - before it's too late.

Let's show compassion and carry the torch for our lost guns. We can restore them, retrain them, rehabilitate them. Bring them back into the fold.

Just remember: Next time it could be your son instead.

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Monday, February 4, 2013

Things Unseen... In Twenty Thirteen

Ok, we're now a month into the new year, let's see how we are doing. 

First, how many have new year resolutions still hanging on? The average lifespan of most resolutions I ever made was about 30 days... pretty much the same as my attempts to raise houseplants. They both dried up and died in about the same amount of time. I learned long ago to just save the suffering and not even try.

So, resolutions aside, what about the new year... how are things going in general? I see a lot of people posting about trying to find jobs and homes in this struggling economy, as things are still tough for sure. Lots of people are sick, and bouncing between conventional medicine with its uncertainties and other more natural or faith-based methods, unsure about the best way to go. Fighting stress and pressure in this demanding life we live is a killer... relaxing is hard work.

So where do we turn? 

Here's an idea:

Every year in our ministry, we prayerfully determine a 'theme' for the new year, based on scripture. Here is our theme for 2013:

"Things Unseen... In Twenty Thirteen"

And the key verse for this year:

“No eye has seen, 
no ear has heard, 
no mind has conceived 
what God has prepared 
for those who love him - 
but God has revealed it 
to us by his Spirit. 
                          1 Cor 2:9-10

The message here is that we need something more this year... more than humanly possible. Most of us either need a special touch from God right now, or we will before the year is out. Something special. Something different. Something powerful. Something unheard of, unseen and unexpected.

Anyone here down with this?

Take a look at how that verse starts.

No eye has seen. No ear has heard. No mind has conceived. I like these verses, there is something supernatural about them. They offer hope and light in a world of deepest darkness.

There are so many unknowns in our earthly walk. The future can be exciting yet intimidating - we just don't know what is ahead. Even if we could see into the coming days we would probably hesitate, for fear of what might be on the horizon. In a world full of tragedy we pray daily for protection, provision and deliverance.

This passage offers more than hope - it gives us a concrete promise from God: He has already prepared everything we need for life and godliness. He has already seen our future, and has laid before us life and death, blessings and curses, all for our choosing. His perfect will and prepared path are there, if we will seek and choose them.

So how do we discover these preordained blessings? The key is in this part of the verse: but God has revealed it to us by his Spirit. The unknown becomes known, the mysteries are revealed, the unseen becomes seen. God reveals everything by his Spirit.

The secret to spiritual success lies in our choices: We can choose life or death, abundant blessings or the curse of sin. Many believers never discover the full life God has prepared because they do not seek him daily and listen to the Holy Spirit. God is the all-powerful, miracle-working supernatural creator of all heaven and earth. And we have this powerful anointing from God, in the Holy Spirit he has sent, to lead us and teach us as recorded in John. The future is open to anything we choose - it's up to us!

So the question is... as we move on into the year 2013, do we want to see a change, or stay in the same struggles, trials and challenges?  I've made up my mind, I want something better. I want to turn loose the power of God and seek His Will. Open the floodgates of heaven and get in the Holy Spirit. Be led, taught, directed and blessed. We can decide right now to follow him and see the unseen in 2013.

Look out 2013... we're coming on through!

Who's with me?

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