The first murder that affected me was when President Kennedy was shot. I wasn’t there when it happened. In fact, I was in school and school closed for the rest of the day. As I was walking home, I saw people crying. I was only eight years old.
Since then, I’ve heard about many other murders. None of them were close to me and I was getting callous toward hearing about them. Then I heard about a murder of a child who wasn’t the target. It awakened my senses. Now I have heard about a lot of murders in my lifetime; and, yes, it is nothing new. You hear about them all over the world. And I’m sure I don’t hear about all of them. Children in school, people in church. You or I could easily be a victim. Is there any comfort? Is there an end to this type of violence?
Several years ago when I performed a funeral, I used the verse: “Then I heard a voice from heaven saying to me, ‘Write: Blessed are the dead who die in the Lord from now on.’ ‘Yes,’ says the Spirit, ‘that they may rest from their labors and their works follow them.’” Revelation 14:13
This comes after the three messages that we are continually to present and verse 12 talks about patience.
Yes, even little children teach us things about life, complete trust, being teachable, etc. I’m sure you could say something that your own children have taught you. They are spared in seeing the evils that are ahead; and when it is all over and Jesus returns in the clouds, the way He went up, they will be awakened. The Bible says it will be loud, with trumpets and a loud voice. It will not be secret.
There is a home prepared for all who have accepted Jesus. But what is scary is that the religious leaders like in Jesus’ day, “Having the form of godliness but denying its power. And from such people turn away.” 2 Timothy 3:5
Read John 16:33 and put all your faith in Jesus!
This is a true story about technology. It was told to me by the person involved in the story. I’m not a fan of all the technology we have today. This is a case in point where technology failed big time.
Sally is in her late 80’s, and her husband, Jimmy, who was still alive at that time, was bedridden. He had lost one leg to diabetes and his heart was only working at about 40 percent. Sally is not too well herself and doesn’t get around by herself; but she has one of the best families around. They are there with her and to drive her wherever she needs to go. They are the closest and most loving family I have ever seen.
On this particular day, Sally and Jimmy were alone at home. Sally gathered up the trash and went outside to put it in the trash barrel and to take a look at her flowers. When she raised up the trash barrel lid, it flew up and she lost her balance and fell down. She was wearing one of those pendants that detects a fall and calls the help line. Almost immediately, a voice came over the box asking, “Are you all right?” The box was next to Jimmy’s bed. He answered promptly, “I’m fine.” He didn’t know that his wife was lying on the ground outside and couldn’t get up. If it wasn’t for a neighbor looking out her window, Sally would have been stuck there for a long time. Sally wasn’t hurt, just a minor bruise. She laughs about the incident as she related it to us. She gave a lot of love and is getting it all back. She is experiencing God’s love and the love from her family even though things aren’t going well for her now.
Independence is a hard thing to give up, but we have to do it. Nothing in this world is foolproof or perfect, only God’s love for us and Jesus’ sacrifice. We need to give up our independence and be dependent on Him. Jesus Himself said that bad things would happen. If they didn’t, He would have been a liar. But we were told ahead of time. Things on this earth now are only temporary. Amazing real life is ahead for those who are dependent on Christ!
I didn’t write a blog last week. Things have been too busy. We had company, and my wife did a lot of cleaning and straightening up the house. Next week my sister and one of her sons will be here from California. Now our house is cleaner than usual. Our house is always clean, but now it shines! Now is the time to visit us until I start cluttering the place up. I have already brought my tackle box into the living room and have put a fishing line on the bookcase. I’m making a fishing lead to go to the pier at the end of the month. It’s too hot to tie knots outside! The weird thing about washing windows and moving things around, you discover how many spiders you have living with you!
When our company was here from Massachusetts, we went to St. John’s Church in Richmond to see the reenactment of Patrick Henry’s “Give Me Liberty or Give Me Death” speech. To me it looks like we take our liberties for granted and have even given some up. The Bible says that religious liberty will go away. We have been told about this before it will happen. When Jesus returns, we will have real liberty! We will have unlimited liberty to travel the universe and beyond!
It looks like I’m going to be a first-time Grandpa. I know that in reality it is no big deal. Everyone who has had children and lives long enough has the possibility of being a grandparent.
My daughter’s baby shower was held Sunday, and I’m thinking about my responsibility to this baby. I looked to the Bible for advice. When people used to live 900 years, they had all kinds of grandchildren. But God is really the Father of us all. The first thing I need to do is love the child and make sure I don’t spoil it. My daughter is also a first-time mother, and she will need support. We were on the older side when we had her. We will probably never live to be great-grandparents unless Jesus returns in our lifetime; but in the resurrection, we can experience being great, great, great, and so on, grandparents like in the beginning.
Did you know that grandparents are to leave an inheritance to their grandchildren? (Proverbs 13:22)
Another part of my responsibility is to help the child to have a real understanding of God and pass down family history. As the child grows, she will make her decisions based on our examples. It is important that as a child she have a relationship with God and that she sees that relationship with me.
When our daughter was born, someone gave us a ceramic duck coin bank to start saving for her future. When company came over, they sometimes added their change to the bank. As she grew into a toddler, she would bring the duck bank out for them to contribute. We emptied it whenever it became full and deposited the money into a bank account set up for her college fund. She had a good sum in there when she started college. We still have the same duck bank and have started dropping our coins into it for the expected grandchild.
Pray for me that I don’t overdo things. Raising children in this world the way it is now is scary to me. I didn’t want to have children for that reason, but my daughter turned out fine. So it can be done with a lot of love, compassion, sacrifice, and discipline. Just like our Heavenly Father!