Archive for November 2008

Giving Thanks

November 27, 2008

The Word says,

…in everything give thanks; for this is God’s will for you in Christ Jesus.”

 I Thessalonians 5:18

This morning, as I get ready for a day full of family, food, and football, I want to thank the Lord for:

  • His love for me and His grace by which I am saved
  • His Son Who gave His life on the Cross for the forgiveness of my sin
  • My hope – confident expectation – of eternal life
  • The promise of abundant life today
  • My wife and children
  • Our health
  • The basic necessities of life: shelter, food, clothes
  • Family and friends

Giving thanks to the Lord for everything in life should be a daily part of my life. But, I have to admit that life gets extremely busy and I often fail to remember and praise God for His activity and blessings in my life and the lives of my wife and children.

So, as I reflect on His goodness today, may I commit myself to remember and praise Him daily for Who He is and for His grace, love, and blessings.

Happy Thanksgiving to you and yours!

 

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Help End Poverty and Homelessness

November 15, 2008

ts21Back in October I wrote several posts about poverty and homelessness. In them I shared numbers and statistics about poverty around the world as well as in the United States. Using some very helpful fact sheets from the National Coalition for the Homeless, I tried to help us understand who the impoverished and homeless in America are.

As followers of Christ we know that we have a responsibility under God to bestow mercy on those less fortunate than we are and seek to meet their needs in any way that we can. In serving the poor, homeless, and margainalized, we are serving Christ Himself.

But, what can we personally do to help end poverty and homelessness, or at least help lessen its effect and impact in the lives of people?

Individually and collectively, we can support and vote for legislation at the local, state, and national levels that seek to bring relief to the poor and help them better themselves, legislation that addresses public services such as medical care, childcare, food and shelter needs, adult education, and job training.

On a more personal note, each of can be the hands and feet of Christ in three different ways.

Educate yourself and others about poverty and homelesseness, their causes and effects on people and society, and the poverty and homeless population and needs in your community.

Participate in meeting needs by:

  • Being a friend
  • Working at a shelter and doing clerical work, serving food, washing dishes, sorting and distributing clothes, and providing transporation to those needing rides to job interviews
  • Joining a volunteer construction crew and helping repair houses and shelters
  • Offering your technical and professional skills to assist in job training programs in your community
  • Giving an unemployed worker a job if you are an employer
  • Working with the children of the poor and homeless and conducting after school programs, play days, and field trips
  • Contributing good, clean clothes and household and kitchen items to those on need

Advocate for the poor and homeless. As the NHC says,

Advocacy is critical to creating the systemic changes needed to end (poverty) homelessness. Advocacy means working with people experiencing (poverty) homelessness to bring about positive changes in policies and programs on the local, state, and federal levels. It means wotking with various sectors of the community (e.g., city/county officials, members of Congress, direct service providers, and the business community) to develop workable startegies for responding to (poverty) homelessness. It also means changing your language and behaviors in small ways that may contribute to larger changes in the way people experiencing (poverty) homelessness are seen and treated in our society.”

The number of the impoverished and homeless in our nation is great and their needs are immense and seemingly overwhelming. With the current economic situation in our nation and world, and the promise that it is going to get worse, the number of the poor and homeless is going to increase and the needs to meet will continue to grow in number and complexity.

So, its time for us to recognize the need and our responsibility to address it. It is time to educate ourselves and others about poverty and homelessness, to participate in meeting people’s needs, and to advocate for those in need.

Romans 13 Prayer

November 5, 2008

The 2008 presidential campaign season is over and voting America has cast its vote and expressed its will.

Barack Obama is our President-elect.

As we now move from this point toward the swearing in of Barack Obama as the 44th president of the United States, I am mindful of what Scripture says about governements and their elected offcials:

Every person is to be in subjection to the governing authorities, For there is no authority except from God, and those which exist are established by God.

Therefore whoever resists authority has opposed the ordinance of God; and they who have opposed will receive condemnation upon themselves.

For rulers are not a cause of fear for good behavior, but for evil. Do you want to have no fear of authority? Do what is good and you will have praise from the same;

for it is a minister of God to you for good. But if you do what is evil, be afraid; for it does not bear the sword for nothing; for it is a minister of God, an avenger who brings wrath on the one who practices evil.

Therefore it is necessary to be in subjection, not only because of wrath, but also for conscience’ sake.”  (Romans 13:1-5)

Let us, as Christ-followers, be faithful to pray for and support our newly elected president and vice-president as they prepare to assume their offices in January. May the LORD bless them with wisdom for leadership and safety as they serve.

God bless America.

Election Day – Vote!

November 4, 2008

Exercise your right and privilege – Vote! 

 

 

Vote!

November 3, 2008

Tomorrow, Tuesday, November 4, is presidential election day.

Regardless of your political party affiliation, or your position on the very important issues facing our nation and our people, please make every effort to exercise your right and privilege to vote for our next president as well as the other positions and issues on the ballot where you live.

The lines may be long where you cast your vote, so take a book to read, some fruit to snack on, and a bottle of water to help make your wait more enjoyable.