Unbelievable Love

I just saw the TV special about David Berkowitz, the Son of Sam serial killer. Mr. Berkowitz says that he has accepted Jesus as his savior and has repented of his many sins. I know, I know... another jail-house conversion! But the key word here is conversion. Many a muderer or rapist has confessed belief in Jesus after being caught and sentenced to prison. But how many of them really changed? How many were truly converted? After seeing this TV interview and reading about Mr. Berkowitz further, I see that it has been 23 years since he confessed his faith in Jesus and there really has been a change. He is a different man.
Some people have a hard time believing that God can (or is even willing) to forgive someone who has been so evil and caused so much pain. I understand completely the difficulty the families of his victims have in believing that he has changed. I understand their reluctance to believe that he has truly repented and given his life to Jesus. I even understand the unbeliever who cannot see how God could possibly forgive and love such a man. Many a prisoner has confessed belief in Jesus to escape the death penalty. It seems awfully convenient to drop the name of Jesus when you're facing death.
But I believe that God forgives anyone who comes to him in faith and humbles himself and repents. I believe it because the Bible says it and because I myself have been forgiven of more than I would want made known publicly. I've never murdered anyone or raped anyone or molested anyone, but I have done things that I am so ashamed of that I can't even bring myself to think about them. I dare say that most of us, if we were completely honest, would say the same. We Christians are just a bunch of horrible sinners who are overcome by the miracle of God's love, mercy and grace. We have been forgiven much and therefore, we love him much. I am glad that God can forgive David Berkowitz and change him and make something useful out of him. I am glad that God is bigger than any sin I could ever commit. I'm glad that God is willing to hear the prayer of repentance and the desperate cries for help coming from the most despicable sinner that has ever lived.
Yes, I know that many (if not most) of these prison confessions of faith in Jesus are bogus. But when you see that change.... that change that only God can make in a person, how can you not believe? And how can you not be happy; happy that a soul has been saved and happy that God has proved the boundlessness of his love once again? Yes they deserve the life sentences they are serving and I'm not saying we should let them out of prison. There are consequences to our actions and we must pay for what we have done. But to see the willingness of God to forgive and heal and change broken lives makes me happy and gives me great peace! We were all sinners and we all needed God's forgiveness and mercy. It took just as much of Jesus' blood to wash away your sins as it did to wash away David Berkowitz's sins!



Who exactly are they and why do we let them tell us what to do? You know what they say, but why is what they say any more important than what any of us say? Why does someone in France get to tell the whole world what they should wear every year? Why does some TV show host get to tell us what books we should read? Why does some movie star get to tell us what we should think about abortion or gay rights or world affairs?
Peer pressure didn't stop after high school! We're still letting people pressure us into thinking like they think. We, as free people, need to start thinking for ourselves! What you think is just as important as what anybody else thinks!! You matter! I matter! Just because we're not famous or rich or "beautiful" doesn't mean we're ignorant or unimportant! We don't need some anyone to tell us what we like or what we should think!
It has always amazed me the way we hang on every word of some movie star as if we thought they were all-knowing gods. This same person was probably a waitress or garbage truck driver six months ago and no one cared what they thought about anything! But now that they're famous, suddenly they are omnipotent and whatever they wear, we should wear; whatever they eat, we should eat; whatever they think, we should think! How ridiculous! Shame on us!
You should wear whatever is comfortable and whatever you think looks good. You should eat whatever food you think tastes good and drink whatever brand of cola you think is best. You should read whatever book sounds interesting to you. You should watch whatever TV show or movie that you think you would enjoy. You should stand for whatever you decide in your own heart is worth standing up for. You should stand against whatever you decide in your own heart is wrong. You can do it!


The Whole Armour

Ephesians chapter 6 talks about the armor of God.  There's the armor of truth that girds the loins, the armor of righteousness that is our breastplate, the armor of the preparation of the gospel of peace which protects our feet, the shield of faith which quenches the fiery arrows of the evil one, the helmet of salvation for our minds and the sword of the Spirit which is the Word of God. There is, however, no mention of armor for our backs.
I've heard many theories about why there is no mention of armor for our backs and each of them made sense to me. I suppose there could be more than one reason for it. Allow me to add my opinion to the mix. I believe that the reason no mention is made for there being armor for our backs is that we are the armor for each other's backs. I believe that as Christians, you have my back and I have yours! At least, that's how it should be. I believe that the reason the devil sneaks up and overtakes our brothers and sister so often is because we are not covering each other's backs as we ought! One of the last verses in Ephesians says that we should be watching thereunto with all perseverance and supplication for all saints. 
When we pray, we should always make mention of our brothers and sisters all around the world. Some of them are literally dying for the sake of Christ! The Bible says all perseverance  and all saints! Whatever blessings we ask from God for ourselves, we should ask for our brothers and sisters also. I'm expecting you to cover my back and you can count on me to cover yours! 


Workers in the Harvest

" "On earth as it is in heaven"; that is our number one prayer. We should not pray for the rapture. We should not pray for retreat. We should not pray for rescue. We should pray for revolution. Every time we pray for God to take us out of the world, we are praying the wrong prayer. Instead, we should pray for Heaven to come to Earth - for His Garden to spread until it fills the planet." God's Big Idea - Myles Monroe
We spend an awful lot of time teaching Christians how to get ready to go. I think we need to spend more time teaching Christians how to stay. I believe in the rapture of the Church and I'm ready for it anytime God is and I understand Christians getting fed up with all the evil and suffering that's going on down here. I understand the longing to go home to be with Jesus and we should certainly continue preaching about Heaven and the hope of eternity with God. But, Jesus taught us to pray that God's Kingdom would come to Earth and that His will would be done here just as it is done there!
God's plan for us is more than just salvation. If it was God's whole plan to just save us, He would have saved us and then killed us! Why did He leave us here even after He saved us?; to affect this world for Him! We are ambassadors for Christ! We are change agents! We are salt and light and leaven! We are here to preserve morality and goodness, to expel the darkness that blinds people to the truth and to permeate this world system and transform it by our presence! We shouldn't be praying to go; we should be praying for His Kingdom to come!
When the Romans conquered a country, they didn't ravage it and take all it's people back to Rome to be enslaved. They sent a few good Romans into that country to mix in with the locals and teach them how to be Romans. They taught the conquered people how to be Roman just by living among them as good Romans. They taught by example! We should be teaching people how to be Christians by living here among them as good Christians! We are their example!
I have those days just like you do when I would hop on the next bus to Heaven if that were possible. But I would be doing a disservice to my fellow man and to my God if I did that. There is work to do and we're the only ones who can do it! God is counting on us! Jesus sent his Holy Spirit to empower us to spread the good news of the Kingdom of God. There is no plan B!  Luke 10:2 says "So He instructed them, "The harvest is vast, but the workers are few. So ask the Lord of the harvest to send workers out into his harvest.".



There was a time in this great country when a person could disagree with someone or something without having "phobe" attached to the end of what they disagreed with and then the whole (whatever)-phobe attached to their name. For example, if I disagree morally with the gay and lesbian lifestyle then I'm branded a homo-phobe. I'm not afraid of homosexuals, I just morally disagree with their lifestyle. Doesn't the United States Constitution give me the freedom to disagree with anything I want to? Do I not have the right to be the most disagreeable person on earth if I choose to?! (I'm not, but don't I have the right to be?!)
I'm not afraid of homosexuals nor do I hate them; I just reject their chosen lifestyle as unnatural and I believe the Bible teaches that it is an abomination to God. He judged that lifestyle, not me. I'm just agreeing with His judgment! Did I lose that right and no one told me about it? Did someone whack off a big chunk of the Constitution and I didn't hear about it?! Or is this all pressure to make me say that "anything goes" just so that I'll fit in? Ain't gonna happen!! Everybody has an opinion and mine is worth as much as anybody else's, even if mine isn't a popular one!
I don't call homosexuals derogatory names. I'm not their boss nor their nanny. They choose the lifestyle they want and they have the right to do that. They have the right to make their case for gay rights, gay marriage and anything else. But don't I have that same right?! Sure I do and you do as well! If anyone wants to be a homosexual then let them be a homosexual, but don't try to force me to agree with it! I'm an American! I'm free to think and say what I feel is right! I certainly don't have the right to harm anyone, but I do have the right to disagree with them! Why do homosexuals get to call me derogatory names just because I disagree with them? Do I lose my right to express my opinion if that opinion is unpopular?
Call me anything you want to, you have the right to free speech. The only thing I'm afraid of these days is that we Americans have lost our moral compass as well as our backbones. And if we're not careful, we'll be robbed of our right to think for ourselves and express those thoughts in the public forum.


True Deterrent

Someone once said "If there is no God then nothing matters, but if there is a God, nothing else matters." That statement touches believers and non-believers alike. It gives us insight into things that are happening all around us these days.
If there is no God, nothing matters. The liberal thinkers in this great country are trying to convince our children that there is no God. Humanistic theories are in the newspapers, magazines and even schools books! Faith is belittled, people of faith are scorned and anyone who doesn't buy into the outright lie of evolution is condemned as ignorant, superstitious and maybe even dangerous! If there is no God, then nothing matters. If someone believes there is no God, no afterlife, no judgment or punishment in eternity, then what keeps them from killing 8 or 10 innocent people at a mall and then killing themselves?! They would be dead and therefore escape punishment from the judicial system and, since there is no God, they wouldn't be punished after their death and the bonus is that they go out with their faces plastered on every news show on every TV screen in the world! To someone who is dejected, depressed, mentally disturbed or just plain mean, what part of that scenario wouldn't sound inviting?! If you're tired of living and there's no God to answer to after death, why suffer here any longer when you can just kill yourself!; and why not take a few other folks with you just to show the world how unfair it's been to you! These liberal, would-be God-killers aren't killing God, but they're sure doing a number on society!
I'm not saying that we should use the fear of a non-existent, fairytale God or the fear of a non-existent, fairytale place called Hell as a crime deterrent. The fact is that there is a God and there is a Hell! I'm saying that when we tell people the truth about God, Heaven and Hell and final judgment, that knowledge will be a deterrent to crime! It is common knowledge that most people will not do something they know for sure they will be punished for doing! On the other hand, if there's no God, no Heaven or Hell, no life after death and no punishment for doing evil, then what difference does it make what we do?! If I kill you and you die, then I kill myself and I die and that's the end of it, so what? I'll be dead forever and you'll be dead forever and neither of us will be aware of it! If there is no God, then nothing matters!