Tuesday, May 28, 2013

Autumn Sun

One of the things I miss is the sun. Particularly the autumn afternoon sun, say 3pm - 5pm. Man, I loved it. The warmth, the beauty, the crisp smell in the air.

See, school let out around that time. (That probably has something to do with it haha) I would come home to a sanctuary, The Father, The Son, and The Holy Ghost smiling down on me, their radiance filtering through the trees. The leaves splashed with oranges, reds, and yellows. "Magic isn't real", you would answer if I just asked, right?

I'm telling you, there was magic in that air... A feeling like Gabriel and Michael were flanking me. I wasn't a Christian then, so maybe they really were there, trying to get through my thick skull.

I love this land, I really do. From the time I followed my dad around the woods, the time electric wheelchair wheels started snapping twigs, to the time now when I miss the days I took for granted. Especially that autumn afternoon sun.

Thursday, April 25, 2013

A Commitment Before God


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I am sorry that I haven't posted a message in a long time. Thank you to those who haven't given up on me :). The truth of the matter is, I wasn't listening to God. I have been too wrapped up in my issues, I couldn't hear Him. That isn't good for a man of God. I always keep on a brave face, but I have times of vulnerability just like everyone else.
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I was watching a TV show, I forget which one, and a couple forgot their love for each other because of neglect, and were considering divorce.
Why do so many people just give up, instead of finding the problem and putting in the time to fix it? If a couple goes through dating, an engagement, and then a wedding, they once loved each other a great deal. Isn't it possible to find that love again?
I know, I haven't been married or divorced. But I do know a great deal about not appreciating the things we have until they are gone.

In my opinion, any marriage can be fixed, providing the couple truly wants to stay married. With children in the mix, things can get confusing, but it's also an extra incentive to get a marriage back on track. In cases of adultery, even that trust can be mended again.

Someone once told me that it's best if Christians date people they can see a future with, not just a person to hook up with for awhile and have fun. I attended a public high school, I know some of the stuff that goes on behind the scenes. Secrets don't stay secret for long. "Hooking up" or "Going out" just for the sake of it usually doesn't end well.

What I am getting at is following God and trusting Jesus is far more than a ticket to Heaven. Christianity is more like a lifestyle. Our mandate is to witness to our non-believing brothers and sisters. To help others along to Christ. How can we do that while our own lives are in shambles?

We all need to look in the mirror from time to time and ask ourselves, "Are we following God? Are our lives everything God would want them to be?" Obviously no one can be perfect, but what matters is that we strive to be. Marriage has become trivial. It's not taken as seriously as it should be. It is not "just a piece of paper." It's a commitment before God.

Divorce breaks that commitment. It's sad to see the divorce rate in America. It's even sadder when you know the children always have to deal with the ramifications. Hostile custody cases,  shared custody, the emotional torture to see their parents one step away from killing each other. God is heartbroken, seeing His children fight day and night.

Marriage is a big thing, there is nothing trivial about it. But I still believe any marriage can be fixed, depending on how much the two parties want it. It's very easy to find marriage councilors. Most Pastors and Priests can also help. But the first step is to want to be with your spouse. Communication. Romance.

Take my word for it, being alone without anyone is not fun at all. When marriage becomes trivial, so does divorce. You can only have so many do overs until you run out.

Wednesday, November 7, 2012

My Message To Fellow Americans


Well, it happened. Barack Obama won re-election and will remain our President. I was in less shock than most. I expected Obama would use fraudulent means if he didn't like how the election numbers were going. That's just the kind of man he is. Most of us are fully aware what kind of man Obama is, so I will move on.

As Christians, we may feel some heat, but we don't have to worry about ourselves. Our names are in the guestbook at Hotel Paradise and we know the manager quite well. I understand worrying about those we care about who don't know the Lord. I share that worry as well, unfortunately. We need to pray for them as much as we can. Build a foundation to become closer to them, show them by your actions who Christians really are. Just be careful not to push them, or you might lose any ground you made with them.

Some may believe this is just an era our country has to go through until America gets another Lincoln or Reagan. Others believe Obama is paving the way for the Antichrist and the end times. I believe "King" Obama will take the gloves off and much persecution will happen to many people. But there is something he, nor any man, can take from us: our faith! Jesus Christ is the Lord of Lords and King of Kings.

Stay strong, my friends. Trust in the Lord.

P.S. A lot written in this post is my opinion. November 7th was an emotional day for non-Obama voters.

Tuesday, August 28, 2012

What Have You Taken Advantage Of Lately?

I have been blessed immensely with a family that has been by my side throughout every obstacle in my life. A group of hospice doctors and nurses who truly care about me, and don't treat me like a patient. Pastors who I trust that I can come to about anything. All this thanks to an amazing God putting awesome people in my life.

Do I have regrets? Absolutely. With Muscular Dystrophy, my muscles deteriorate over time. So one by one, I lose the ability to do certain activities. I had opportunities in high school to be more involved, to pursue certain girls I had crushes on. But I was too shy, when I had no reason to be.

I'm here telling you about my situation, not seeking sympathy, but begging you not to take advantage of what or who is in your life. Life is a very fragile thing and not a soul knows when our time is up. I'm not saying run out on impulse and do every crazy thing you always wanted to do. I'm talking about not procrastinating until it's too late. Is there a certain activity you always wanted to do, but keep using the famous words, "I'll do it next year?" Take a man day (or girl day) and just do it. That family vacation you and your family always wanted to take? Start planning and go. Even take your wife or girlfriend out on a romantic evening. Or, for no money at all and huge personal gain, accept Jesus Christ into your life.

Money is not always a good thing. It puts us in chains. "Can I buy this?" "If I buy that, can I still buy that power saw?" There is nothing wrong with fiscal responsibility, in fact it's a good thing. But we can't let it consume us.

God will provide. Having faith in Jesus Christ goes a long way in bettering our lives, sometimes in ways we don't even notice. Do not worry, because He WILL provide. You know, before I was saved, I always thought, "Well, I have time, I don't have to now." I see and hear that way of thinking everywhere. My friends, my family, this country. Like I said above, life is fragile. No one knows when our time is up. I just don't know why anyone would want to take that risk.

Being a Christian doesn't take away happiness, in fact it does the opposite. We aren't brainwashed cultists who can't think for ourselves. God gives everyone free will. We decided to follow Him, just like others decided not to. We still joke around with friends and have a good time. Rebel against our parents. Make mistakes. We are not so different from unbelievers, we just love Jesus, go to church, and have a good time the clean way.

This is Stephen and all I ask is for you to consider my words. Thank you.

Tuesday, June 5, 2012

America the Beautiful, Do Not Give Up on Her

I had a rude awakening the other day. I realized I was guilty of the very thing I tell others not to do - give up. Specifically on America. I have become too cynical, and that is something we can not be if we want to restore what made this country great. I have been watching Obama and his criminal administration, and I don't think this upcoming election stands any chance of being fair. My mind just shut out any possibility of the United States of America surviving.

"Silence in the face of evil is itself evil. God will not hold us guiltless. Not to speak is to speak. Not to act is to act." -Dietrich Bonhoeffer

We CAN NOT give up. We MUST speak out. We must take it upon ourselves to fix the problems facing this country. Our founding fathers never visioned an out of control government such as we have now. It was never the government's job to take care of the poor. It was OUR job. Christians, Good Samaritans, citizens with giving in their hearts.

We spend so much time complaining about the gigantic federal government, out of control spending and corruption, sending facebook notes and emails in outrage about what Obama has done and is doing. That is all well and good, sharing news that the mainstream media won't tell us. But it's time for less complaining, and more doing. Think about this. If 25 people took their day off and went into their communities, offering their skills to those in need for 6 hours, that would be 150 man hours. If we tapped into that kind of charitable giving, not just for one odd day, but spend a few hours regularly every week, just imagine what we could accomplish nationwide! And when the federal government comes knocking, waving checks they think will magically fix everything, we can tell them, "Thanks, but no thanks. We have everything under control. You can go now." Obviously we are a long way from that, but we can start.

I can not stress how important this next paragraph is. We need to pray. All of us. God listens to prayer and always answers. Maybe not how we expect, but his answers are always what we need, even if we can't see it yet. God has been absent from our country for a long while. We need to invite Him back. We need to witness to our fellow citizens. Not so much in teaching scripture, but more in leading by example. If they want to call us hypocrites, bigots, haters, etc, we will show patience and lead our lives in ways they can not call us those things without looking like fools.

Jesus did teach us to turn the other cheek, but I have to believe he would also want us to protect ourselves too. The founding fathers knew this by writing the Second Amendment into the Bill of Rights. With the citizen population armed, the government can not enslave us. That is why we MUST be diligent and keep the government from further taking away our rights to gun ownership. It is also a proven fact that cities with tight gun control laws have more violent gun crimes than cities without these laws.
You may not like guns or want them in your home, but I am a firm believer that everyone should at least be taught how to safely operate one. If I had a family, I would make sure my wife and kids, if they were old enough, knew proper gun safety. Unfortunately, In these times, there may come a time (God help us) when that skill is needed.

Above all, we need to send prayers to the Lord. Pray for our country, that our American exceptionalism of years past will return. Pray for the safety of our families. Pray for wisdom to plant seeds in the lives of those we know who need Jesus in their hearts. Pray for the sinners in our society, that their hearts will go out to Jesus, who will wash away their sins.

There is NOTHING that God can not accomplish. Let us all be prayer warriors in this fight to save our beloved United States of America from those who seek to "fundamentally change" her. America is not beyond saving if we trust in the Lord and have faith He will hear our plea.

Saturday, April 28, 2012

Yom Ha'atzmaut


(I'm a couple days late with this message, but it means all the same.)

Yom Ha'atzmaut, or in English, Happy Independence Day to our Jewish brothers and sisters in Israel. On May 14th 1948, Israel was established as a nation and recognized by the UN. David Ben-Gurion was the first to sign the Israeli Declaration of Independence and became Israel's first Prime Minister.

The picture above shows Israeli Air Force jets flying over the gates of the Auschwitz-Birkenau death camp. The image was taken nine years ago and symbolizes God's hand in transforming a helpless people, who were all but exterminated, into a nation that can defend themselves. Being a nation the size of New Jersey surrounded on all sides by much larger hostile nations, Israel is well rehearsed in defending themselves every day.

If you told the Nazi SS in control of Auschwitz that the Jews would have their own country in four years and what they would eventually accomplish, they would laugh in your face and probably throw you into the camp. Evil may flourish for a time, but Goodness will always prevail in the end.

I may be talking about Israel, but the fight between good and evil also resides in all of us on a daily basis. We may experience suffering, trouble in our lives when we just can't seem to find the exit sign. Jesus died on that cross on the hill of Calvary for us. When our sins weigh on us, Jesus forgives. When our burdens become too heavy to carry, Jesus lightens the load.

Because the Jews are God's chosen people, we have an obligation to stand up for them. But we also must pray for them. Pray that the Jews find the true identity of their messiah, Jesus Christ.

Tuesday, January 31, 2012

Put Your Trust In God

Watching the news these days, with all the GOP debate and primary coverage, can be very frustrating. So many are so caught up with beating Obama, they put their weight behind the candidate who they think has the best chance of doing so. I agree that getting Obama out of office is very important, but we also need to make sure we are endorsing candidates on their merit. Their moral integrity, their faith, and their honesty. Not how well career politicians can lie their way into office with empty promises. I will tell you right now that the two at the top right now will not fix this country. They may slow the decline, but they won't stop the decline. It's frustrating to me when the honest candidates with long histories of moral integrity and faith in God are knocked out or swept under the rug. It's like people are so cynical, they believe career politicians are the only candidates that can get elected. But if more people trusted God and had the faith to stand behind an honest Godly candidate, they would get elected and things would begin to change for the better. With a foundation centered around God, this nation could return to it's former Glory.

I believe in prayer and I will pray for our country until my last breath. The problem is we live in a sinful country full of moral decay. We have people that live by their own rules, full of sin without remorse. We also have Christians who go through the motions, but still live in sin. This is why we need to witness and minister to these people every chance we get. I've said this before, we are living a very crucial time and need to spread the word of Jesus Christ. We are living on a teeter totter. At one end is a restored America, and on the other end is a collapsed America. The scary part is that we are teetering towards collapse.

The message we need to send is this. We can not put our trust in the world and our faith in man. Man without God corrupts the world. Those not with God are with Satan, weather they want to believe it or not. And Satan is here to deceive, kill, and destroy. Ask if they really want to put their trust in a world full of turmoil, or accept Jesus and put their trust in Him, someone who loves them unconditionally and will guide them through their troubles. We have to do our best to send this message. If our country collapses anyway despite our work, we have the satisfaction of knowing we did our very best for God and went down swinging.

Never give up. I don't know God's will. But I have the peace of mind knowing Jesus is with me always, and when things get tough, I know he will see me through. My mission in life is to help others see and love Jesus like I do, so they too can feel the peace that I feel every single day.