Friday, May 27, 2011

Reliance

I subscribe to the blog of someone on a life-changing mission trip (though I hear they all are, I'll soon find out!!).  This particular adventure takes them to eleven countries in eleven months.  It's very interesting to read about and see pictures from the places these people go.  It also helps me to  appreciate the material things that the majority of us take for granted.  I was just reading from a recent post in this blog and felt the need to share an excerpt.  Enjoy.

"I can't believe that we are actually in India. This is exactly what I pictured when I thought of the World Race. We have been spoiled for the last 4 months, well as spoiled as missionaries in 3rd world countries can be. To be honest, India was the country I least wanted to go to. At training camp when I heard there were some changes in our route I was hoping India would be taken off our list. I was the one who prayed that our India visas would be declined. But God called us to India so here we are. And now being here I'm looking forward to it. I imagine that this country will have me totally relying on God, and that now excites me."
SOURCE

"Look to the LORD and his strength; seek his face always." 1 Chronicles 16:11

Thursday, May 26, 2011

Rabboni

I won't bless you with the earlier pic.  You're welcome.
I'm typing with one less thumb.  I am already having problems because I generally use that specific thumb for the space bar... This isn't going well!


I feel very passionate about what I'm going to write.  Some of this I wrote in a journal a little while back, and I'm sure more will come to me as I'm typing.

We all know Jesus was crucified and that he rose from the dead.  After His resurrection he appeared to Mary Magdalene who was weeping at His tomb.  I want to stop there because that's where the scripture begins to grab me.


John 20
15 "Woman," he said, "why are you crying?  Who is it you are looking for?"
Thinking he was the gardener, she said, "Sir, if you have carried him away, tell me where you have put him, and I will get him."
16 Jesus said to her, "Mary."
She turned toward him and cried out in Aramaic, "Rabboni!" (which means Teacher).NIV

I have to stop reading there.  When I read over those verses in church one Sunday night, I started to get emotional.  I felt what Mary Magdalene was felt.  I'm sure that throughout my years in church I'd read over that before, but never had I felt emotions like I did the other night.  She thought he was dead and only wished that He have a proper burial.  I got a little emotional, but I'm sure it was nothing compared to when she looked up and HE was standing there.  I can only imagine.  Her Teacher, her Savior, and her Lord.  The way I imagine it is that she screamed and cried all at the same time with a passion and intensity that I may never know.  Could you imagine thinking that someone you hold dearly in your heart had died, then three days later, they show up at your doorstep?  Well compound that by any large number of your choosing.  Not only did Mary love our Lord Jesus, but he died for her sins.  And my sins.  And your sins.  This is a powerful moment.  I can't express through my writing how she must've felt.  Very powerful.  I think the most significant thing we can do with our life on earth is given to us in the last sentence of verse 16.  "She turned toward Him..."

Last weekend...

was great.

Monday, May 2, 2011

Here's the Thing

I don't really know who this is aimed towards, but I feel the need to vent.

The majority of people who found out last night or this morning about Osama bin Laden's death were overjoyed.  But, there were people who are not overjoyed.  They're not at all happy about it.  They wish the United States had let him live peacefully in his house with no electricity or phone lines.  Love, not war.    I mean come on, he's not hurting anyone, right?

Sorry, I have a huge problem with that.

Here's the thing...

I wish the United States had found him after the 1993 attack of the World Trade Center (I say 'after' because he wasn't on their radar before the attack).  I think that loved ones of the lost since would agree.

Hypothetically, if Osama were taken out after the 1993 attack, some of these things would not have happened:

November 13, 1995: A car bomb explodes in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia in front of a building of the Saudi National Guard where US military advisers work. Five US soldiers and two Indian nationals are killed. 
June 25, 1996: A truck bomb at a US military base in Dhahran, in Saudi Arabia, kills 19 US nationals and wounds 386. 
August 7, 1998: Near-simultaneous bomb attacks against US embassies in Nairobi and Dar-es-Salaam kill 224 people, most of them Africans, and injure over 5000.
October 12, 2000: A suicide attack on the destroyer USS Cole, one of the most modern ships in the United States' arsenal, kills 17 US Marines and injures 38 in the Yemeni port of Aden. 
September 11, 2001: Two hijacked US airliners crash into the twin towers of the World Trade Center in New York, which burn and collapse shortly afterwards. A third hijacked plane crashes into the Pentagon outside Washington, while a fourth comes down in rural Pennsylvania. The attacks kill around 3000 people in all.
April 11, 2002: A suicide truck bombing at a synagogue on the Tunisian island of Djerba kills 21 people, including 14 Germans.
October 12, 2002: Bombings on the Indonesian holiday island of Bali kill 202 people, many of them Australians. The attacks are carried out by Jemaah Islamiyah, a Southeast Asian extremist group inspired by al-Qa'ida.
May 12, 2003: A triple suicide attack on a residential complex in Riyadh, Saudia Arabia kills 35 people, amongst them nine Americans.
May 16, 2003: Five almost simultaneous bombs explode in restaurants and hotels frequented by foreigners in the Moroccan city of Casablanca, killing more than 30 people.
November 15 and 20, 2003: A Turkish cell of al-Qa'ida sets off truck bombs at two synagogues, the British consulate and a British bank in Istanbul, killing 63 people, including the British consul, and leaving hundreds injured.
March 2, 2004: Around 180 people are killed in a series of attacks on pilgrims in the Iraqi cities of Baghdad and Karbala.
March 11, 2004: Four commuter trains in and around Madrid are hit by explosions that kill 191 people and injure around 2,000 during morning rush hour in an attack authorities said was inspired by al-Qa'ida.
July 7, 2005: Four British Muslim suicide bombers detonate devices on London's public transport system, killing 56 people as they destroy underground trains and a double-decker bus.
July 23, 2005: A series of suicide bombings hit the Egyptian tourist resort of Sharm el-Sheikh, killing 68 people.
November 9, 2005: Three suicide attacks on hotels in the Jordanian capital of Amman claim 60 lives.
April 24, 2006: Twenty people are killed and 90 injured as suicide bombers hit the Egyptian coastal resort of Dahab.
August 14, 2007: More than 400 people are killed when four truck bombs explode in northern Iraq in an attack US authorities link to al-Qa'ida.
December 11, 2007: Two suicide blasts in Algiers kill at least 41 people, including 18 UN staffers, three of them foreign nationals. The attacks are claimed by the Maghreb branch of Osama bin Laden's al-Qa'ida network.
September 17, 2008: An attack on the US embassy in Sana'a, Yemen, kills 16 people.
September 20, 2008: A huge explosion brings down a large section of the Marriott Hotel in Islamabad, killing at least 60 people.
December 25, 2008: A Nigerian man is arrested after a failed attempt to detonate a bomb on board a flight between Amsterdam and Detroit.
November 24, 2010: A suicide car bomber kills 23 Shiites at a religious procession in Yemen, an attack linked to al-Qa'ida.
SOURCE

It's not outlandish to think that some of these things would have still happened.  However, it's feasible to think that some of these would never have happened, lives would have been saved.

This isn't a "hindsight's 20/20" diatribe.  I'm thinking more of the future.  How many United States citizens did Navy Seal Team 6 save on Sunday?  Scratch that.  How many lives across the world did Navy Seal Team 6 save on Sunday?  How many more attacks would bin Laden have authored?  I don't think al-Qa'ida will rest now that their leader is deceased, I believe there will be retaliation.  But, this is a huge blow to their organization.

It's sad, really, that he is going to "ROT IN HELL!" as the front page of the New York Daily News so lovingly reads.  He's not enjoying whatever number of virgins he was promised.  He's not hanging out in AllahLand, or wherever they're supposed to be going.  He never found Jesus, and that is truly sad.

Was it really a good thing that David took out Goliath?  I think so.

Sunday, May 1, 2011

Preciousness

Last night I went to my cousin Brandon's house, where he lives with his wife Britta and their two girls Kylee and Dakota.  Several people were there, including my Dad, Step-Mom, and my nephew Devlin.  Brandon cooked on the grill and after the kids' plates were made, Britta went outside to find Devlin initiating a blessing over their food:

I love this picture.
"Do you hear what these children are saying?" they asked him. "Yes," replied Jesus, "have you never read, "'From the lips of children and infants you have ordained praise'?" - Matthew 21:16