Daddy's Hands

          For ground that drinks the rain which often falls on it and brings forth vegetation useful to those for whose sake it is also tilled, receives a blessing from God; but if it yields thorns and thistles, it is worthless and close to being cursed, and it ends up being burned.  But, beloved, we are convinced of better things concerning you, and things that accompany salvation, though we are speaking in this way.  For God is not unjust so as to forget your work and the love which you have shown toward His name, in having ministered and in still ministering to the saints.”  Hebrews 6:7-10

          My daddy’s hands were most hands that did hard work.  Broad fingers, callouses, skin of leather.  I have watched those hands hold a hammer and drive in many nails.  Those hands utilized saws, drills, screwdrivers, and plenty of other hand tools.  They were tough with a sure, solid grip.  They could also play a six-string guitar with ease and dexterity.  With those broad fingertips, I had often pondered how my daddy managed to hold those single strings down without overlapping onto another string, but he did it.  There was power and control in those hands. 
          As rough and tough as those hands were, there was also tenderness in them.  They comforted me when I needed it most.  They were soft on my shoulder when he was helping me to understand what to expect in life.  There was love in them, to give equally to all his children.  Those hands had many qualities to them.
          During my study of Hebrews, I noticed how the writer shifted tones.  The one tone showed the seriousness of the consequences that would befall those Christians who were allowing themselves to fall away from God’s grace, choosing to follow a path of sin.  God, through the writer, makes His message clear enough that those choosing this life will not receive His inheritance.  The writer also makes it clear of God’s disappointment in those that were not committed enough to stay on the heavenly path.
          As we see in verse 9, the writer shifts into a very loving and compassionate tone.  Referring to the readers as “beloved”.  The writer continues to state that they are convinced that good things are bound for these people that have been falling short of their faith.  This is a sign of God’s mercy.  He stands willing to take His children back when we stumble and fall.  He will always stretch His hand out to us, to lift us back to our feet.  We just need to be willing to except His help and guidance. 
          God’s hands will be harsh at times.  We must expect this when we choose to push His loving nature and disobey Him.  To expect anything else, would be to show a lack of respect to our Creator.  We can only receive the gift of the kingdom IF we accept His will, fully, in our hearts.
          If you feel that you have been straying down the wrong path, take this moment to ask for God’s forgiveness and His guidance to help find your way again.

Pray, Don't Hate


     “Exhort therefore, that first of all supplications, prayers, intercessions, and giving of thanks be made for all men, for Kings, and for all that are in authority, that we may lead a quiet and a peaceable life, in all godliness, and honesty.  For this is good and acceptable in the sight of God our Savior.”     - 1 Timothy 2:1-2 1599 Geneva Bible

     Elections come.  Elections go.  Not everyone gets their candidates.  In the past, we have managed to keep moving forward, despite an electoral upset, and just hope that the other guy doesn’t screw things up.  That’s why this country WAS great.  We continued moving forward, regardless.  It wasn’t about “getting our way.”  It was about a fair selection of a candidate for a political office.  While I may have been unhappy with the winner (I won’t deny that I have been unhappy for the last eight years), I accepted the defeat and I moved forward.  I didn’t hate on people for voting this last guy in office.  Yes, I didn’t agree, but I didn’t hate. 
     Today, I’m seeing many in the liberal party, throwing fits because they did not get their way.  For the past eight years, they have been telling the conservatives to “suck it up and deal with it.”  Sadly, they are showing the classic symptoms of “do as I say, not as I do.”  Are they, in turn, “sucking it up and dealing with” the results of this election?  No.  They are throwing public riots.  There have been school walk outs (failure in parenting skills).  Many have “threatened” to leave the U.S. (enjoy life in your future country).  In other words, they are acting like spoiled little children that didn’t get their way, as if their way was the ONLY way.  Wake up, folks!  I have lived with utter disappointments within our government for the past few years.  I didn’t cause any riots.  I didn’t “unfriend” someone because they chose the ways of the liberal party (and yes, I knew several that are liberal democrats).  I didn’t go and publicly attack them for their decisions on social media.  How sad that they can dish it, but can’t take it.  

     Let us not seek the Republican answer or the Democratic answer, but the right answer. Let us not seek to fix the blame for the past. Let us accept our own responsibility for the future.” – John F. Kennedy

     “My fellow Americans, ask not what your country can do for you ask what you can do for your country.” – John F. Kennedy

     “As Americans, we go forward in the service of our country, by the will of God.” – Franklin Delano Roosevelt

     “I know there is a Supreme Being who rules the affairs of men and whose goodness and mercy have always followed the American people, and I know He will not turn from us now if we humbly and reverently seek His powerful aid.” – Grover Cleveland

      “The separation of church and state is a source of strength, but the conscience of our nation does not call for separation between men of state and faith in the Supreme Being.”
– Lyndon B. Johnson

     “A rioter with a Molotov cocktail in his hands is not fighting for civil rights any more than a Klansman with a sheet on his back and a mask on his face.  They are both more or less what the law declares them lawbreakers, destroyers of constitutional rights and liberties and ultimately destroyers of a free America.” -Lyndon B. Johnson

     Strong, powerful, and true words from……yes, DEMOCRATIC presidents!  Isn’t it peculiar how people assume what a party or political issue is based on, without ever consulting the past?  The results might just shock you!  I remember reading and hearing words of Robert Kennedy (also a Democrat), speaking to the public after the assassination of Martin Luther King, Jr. asking them not to divide themselves by racial differences, but unite as King wanted them to do.
     What is wrong with us now?  Why are we so bent on dividing ourselves even more than we have in our past?  Have we learned nothing?  This is not pleasing to God.  This is not following His commands on living in this world.  If anything, this is Satan dipping his hand into the works of humans, and corrupting them.
     To the liberals, you can hate.  You can oppose others for being conservative.  You can publicly cause problems, riot, refuse to go to work or school.  Or, you can help.  The President of the United States is working for ALL of us.  You can be part of the solution, instead of the problem.
    To the conservatives (like myself), don’t be hot-headed.  Understand that yes, the Republican Party is the majority of our government; that doesn’t mean we are “saved”.  The presidency is more than a “party”.  It is more than one person.  It is for all of GOD’S PEOPLE that live in this country.  The choices that the President is required to make for the country, will also be held accountable before God.  Saying it isn’t won’t make it any less true.
     As we are instructed in the first book of Timothy, we need to pray for our leaders.  We need to pray for our government.  We need not to pray that they do “what we want”.  We need to pray that God uses them as He sees best and that they open their hearts to Him, to lead this country.  If you are a Christian, regardless of your political party, you seek God’s disapproval for doing any less.

Think about it.