Cell Provider

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Wasted Time

Wheat field gate

 

All his family and friends took turns in the hospital room, waiting for the inevitable. Death. Outside the family, looking in, most everyone who knew, read about, or worked with Stanley Robinson were certain his life of wealth and privilege was ending well. After all, he was responsible for so many innovations in the publishing industry. His combination of paper and electronic media revolutionized how news and information was broadcast. Stanley seemed to have a sixth sense about when to divest or invest. He invested millions in electronic news gathering equipment against the advice of all his fellow corporate moguls. As usual, he proved to be on the cutting edge. The money poured in faster than anyone expected or even dreamed.

And yet…what are those expressions on his family’s faces? Stanley’s wife seems disinterested, chatting on her cell phone with one of her attorneys. "Yes, Randolph. I wish to sell those stocks. I understand your hesitation but I am turning a new page in Stella Corporation’s history. No, future. Stanley is nearly gone and my signature is all you need."

Three children, Daniel in the room reading a novel, Priscilla and Sarah in the cafeteria, sipping coffee drinks, absently checking their watches. Not one of those faces carried emotional distress or even sadness on this final day.

"Mom. Would you like a coffee or tea?" Daniel asked. "I’m off to the cafeteria. I’ll send Sarah or Priscilla up."

"Excuse me, Randolph," she said to the phone. "Yes dear. I’d love an iced tea please." Back to the phone, "Go ahead Randolph. What about the Archimedes Yacht Company?"

And so it went on Stanley Robinson’s final day on earth. His last few breaths were ebbing now. His vision fading. His thoughts nearly obscure. And then he spoke to his wife, "Stella? Can you hear me?"

"Stanley. Did you speak dear? Was that you? Phillip," she called to her personal secretary, "get the children up here please. Immediately."

"Stella listen to me. I don’t have much time now. Please express my great sorrow to Daniel, Priscilla, and Sarah." He paused to catch his breath here. "Tell them that I am so sorry to have ignored them in favor of this business empire I’m leaving." At this point Stanley raised himself up onto his elbows. "Stella please forgive me for ignoring you as well. If only I’d had more time…"

Stanley Robinson fell back down on his bed, stared up at the ceiling and exhaled his final breath. Stella stared transfixed at the single tear falling down his face.

Moments later, the children entered his room. They looked at their father and then their mother. "He’s gone. He did have some final words for us." They looked at her, waiting for the conclusion. "He apologized for not spending enough time with all of you. He said he was sorry for just making lots of money instead of spending time with you. Oh, and he also asked me to forgive him based on the same failing."

As one, the Robinson family turned their eyes on Stanley, their absent father/husband. In an odd, eerie sort of way, he was once again absent from his family.

Book Review: The Jesus We Missed by Patrick Thomas Reardon

If The Jesus We Missed were the biography of an ordinary man who walked across the pages of history, a clever and intense man, I would say, “Good job and entertaining.”

 However, Jesus is more than a clever human, he is, after all, God–who came as a man, leaving His indelible footprints across the pages of history.

 In some of Reardon’s  scenarios I kept looking for the application of divinity and the movement of God’s Holy Spirit guiding Jesus but Reardon seems able to divide from God, leaving us with a loving normal Middle-Eastern family, experiencing typical behaviors, absent the Spirit’s moving.

 Even a cursory reading of the New Testament gives the reader absolute assurance of God’s communication with Mary and Joseph as they prepared for the upcoming blessed event. I have no reason to think that God dropped out of sight until later. Let us not forget the 12-year-old Jesus and his disappearance.

 I don’t think Reardon successfully made a case for anything Bible readers may have missed about Jesus’ personal life. The point of studying about the Lord is to enhance our spiritual being, to experience His magnificent gift of salvation at the cost of his own life. BookSneeze® has provided me with a complimentary copy of this book.

STRANGE FIRE: OPINION

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A friend asked me if I had read John MacArthur’s latest book, Strange Fire. What follows is my answer:

Well, I read bits and pieces but finally gave up. I have been in Baptist, Assy. Of God, 4 Square, Nazarene, Non-Denominational and Presbyterian churches since I’ve become a Christian and find that within each one, there are some precepts or dogmas that I do not line up with. I’ve also discovered that no matter which denomination we talk about, there are extremes. And that is what MacArthur has focused on in this book. Of course the people he listed are loose cannons, idiots, charlatans, heretics, etc. God will certainly sort the Wheat from the Tares on that final day or perhaps before that final day.

I do not understand devoting an entire book to this issue. It is clear that the Gifts of the Spirit has caused dissention and sides to be drawn over the years but has it taken away someone’s salvation? I think our time is better spent pointing people to the elements of Christianity that will shore up our faith, increase our love, teach us to pray and remind us of the fact we are new creations in Christ Jesus.

Just as I would not read a book telling me I have to be Baptized in the Spirit with the evidence of speaking in tongues, I don’t want to read MacArthur’s book pointing out the fallacies in what we call the Charismatic movement. Let’s write books and preach sermons that will unite the Body of Christ. 

Promises or Feelings

 

 

            God’s Biblical promises never change! In our world of confusion, deceit, fraud and disappointment, the ONLY absolute is God’s word. Many times we “feel” a negative emotion regarding our lives. To some, elusive success or fear of failure dog them, while to others misguided decisions bring negative feelings. Because those feelings are strong, they can override God’s absolute word in our minds.

            The solution that never fails is diving into the Bible to right your sinking ship and restore your course to His settings. Satan roams the earth, looking to destroy and maim all who fall for his lies. However, satan’s fiery darts will be deflected by your shield of faith if you choose to strap on the armor of God every day!

            1 Peter 5:8-9  Be clearheaded. Keep alert. Your accuser, the devil, is on the prowl like a roaring lion, seeking someone to devour. 9 Resist him, standing firm in the faith. Do so in the knowledge that your fellow believers are enduring the same suffering throughout the world.

            2 Corinthians 9:8  And God is able to make every grace overflow to you, so that in every way, always having everything you need, you may excel in every good work. 

            Philippians 4:19 And my God shall supply all your needs according to His riches in glory in Christ Jesus.

            Psalm 84:11-12  For the LORD God is a sun and shield; the LORD bestows favor and honor; no good thing does he withhold from those whose walk is blameless. LORD Almighty, blessed are those who trust in you.

            We must take Him at His word! Believe what He has said to us. When you are discouraged, filled with doubt, cannot see how your life will ever work out–trust in His promises even though it seems impossible. Cast your negative, defeatist feelings aside, clamp on God’s armor and hide His word in your heart.

            Psalm 119:11  I have treasured Your word in my heart so that I may not sin against You.

            Psalm 23  The Lord is my Shepherd; I have all that I need.

            Psalm 40:8  I delight to do Your will, my God; Your instruction resides within me.

            Ephesians 3:14-21  When I think of all this, I fall to my knees and pray to the Father, 15 the Creator of everything in heaven and on earth. 16 I pray that from his glorious, unlimited resources he will empower you with inner strength through his Spirit. 

17 Then Christ will make his home in your hearts as you trust in him. Your roots will grow down into God’s love and keep you strong. 18 And may you have the power to understand, as all God’s people should, how wide, how long, how high, and how deep his love is. 

19 May you experience the love of Christ, though it is too great to understand fully. Then you will be made complete with all the fullness of life and power that comes from God. 

20 Now all glory to God, who is able, through his mighty power at work within us, to accomplish infinitely more than we might ask or think. 21Glory to him in the church and in Christ Jesus through all generations forever and ever! Amen.

            James 1:2-8  Dear brothers and sisters, when troubles come your way, consider it an opportunity for great joy. 3 For you know that when your faith is tested, your endurance has a chance to grow. 4 So let it grow, for when your endurance is fully developed, you will be perfect and complete, needing nothing.

5 If you need wisdom, ask our generous God, and he will give it to you. He will not rebuke you for asking. 6 But when you ask him, be sure that your faith is in God alone. Do not waver, for a person with divided loyalty is as unsettled as a wave of the sea that is blown and tossed by the wind. 

7 Such people should not expect to receive anything from the Lord. 8 Their loyalty is divided between God and the world, and they are unstable in everything they do.

            Ephesians 6:10-18 Finally, let the mighty strength of the Lord make you strong. 11Put on all the armor that God gives, so you can defend yourself against the devil’s tricks. 12We are not fighting against humans. We are fighting against forces and authorities and against rulers of darkness and powers in the spiritual world. 13So put on all the armor that God gives. Then when that evil day comes, you will be able to defend yourself. And when the battle is over, you will still be standing firm. 

14Be ready! Let the truth be like a belt around your waist, and let God’s justice protect you like armor. 15Your desire to tell the good news about peace should be like shoes on your feet. 16Let your faith be like a shield, and you will be able to stop all the flaming arrows of the evil one. 17Let God’s saving power be like a helmet, and for a sword use God’s message that comes from the Spirit.

18Never stop praying, especially for others. Always pray by the power of the Spirit. Stay alert and keep praying for God’s people.

            The power given to satan, is given by God. The life and death spiritual battle conducted in the unseen world is not between equals whereby we hope and pray that God wins. No. 

God is all-powerful and all-knowing but He has a time table that only He knows. Until Jesus returns, our lives will have struggles. 

However, we have read the final chapter and we know the outcome. We are victorious because of the blood of the Lamb. Just as that little scrawny sheep herder destroyed the gigantic Goliath, so we too can fight the good fight of our faith every day by seeking God first and walking in faith.

            Matthew 6:33  Seek the Kingdom of God above all else, and live righteously, and he will give you everything you need.