If You Falter…

If you falter in a time of trouble,
    how small is your strength!
Rescue those being led away to death;
    hold back those staggering toward slaughter.
If you say, “But we knew nothing about this,”
    does not he who weighs the heart perceive it?
Does not he who guards your life know it?
    Will he not repay everyone according to what they have done?
(Proverbs 24:10-12)

Sunday January 22nd marked 43 years since abortion was made legal in this country…

It’s celebrated by so many today, as a woman’s right to her choice, to her own decisions with her body.

It’s mourned by so many others, as a time when we as a nation said, “It’s OK – no righteous – to kill your baby”.

We argue whether or not this baby is a baby – is a life.  When it’s a life.  What determines this child is a living human being.  What determines viability.

It’s become quite the topic, of late.  Political candidates ran on this platform, as they have in the past.  But it seems the lines have been drawn harder than before.  It’s a hill many are willing to die on.

Am I?

I wrote this post in September of 2015.  I talked about not being able to stay “on the fence”.  Then – I got back on the fence…  I never stopped believing what I wrote.  But I – just hid…

I confess, I am a coward.  I am afraid to post even this.  I’m afraid to take the stand.  I’m afraid to offend so many of my friends – to lose friends…  But if what I believe to be true, is true – how can I tremble in the background in fear?  How can I NOT say something?

If you falter in a time of trouble,
    how small is your strength!

So my invitation to talk is still open, to anyone who is willing.  If you think I’m an idiot, a bigot, against women and/or women’s rights, heartless, a monster – SHOW ME why this is the case.  Come talk to me.  Reach out to me, and I will gladly meet with you.  If you think a child with a heartbeat at 18 days is not a living human being – TELL ME why.  Let’s talk about it.

See – I don’t want to hide behind politicians making decisions that may or may not affect law in this country, or in our states.  I am surely interested in that – but I know it’s not the answer to changing hearts and minds.  Hearts and minds changing might however affect law, eventually – certainly it has in that the morality of the day says a women’s right to choose trumps the life of a child.  That didn’t happen overnight.  And I think short of Jesus returning, that likely doesn’t get reversed overnight.  43 years plus of the message that abortion is necessary, a right, GOOD, will affect us as a people.  Think about that…

So – let’s talk…

But I understand that an invitation will likely be met with silence.  Or an online argument that gets heated beyond what I am comfortable with – I’m willing to go there, and I will be patient and hear you out, responding with respect.  Or the invitation will be met with me being unfriended on social media.  Or labeled.  Or all of the above.  I get it.  There is a line in the sand.  One must choose sides.  It’s just not a topic anyone can speak passively on, or really, avoid.

I fear speaking out about such a divisive topic today could hinder my ability to share the good news of Jesus Christ.  But really, Jesus – God in flesh – came to save the weak, the oppressed, the sinners (all of us).  That’s this child growing inside of you, as much as it is YOU, dear mother…

And know that I am not here to condemn you, if you have had an abortion.  Just as I have plead with those I love getting a divorce, “Don’t do it!”, only to love them and move forward with them after they still made the decision to end the marriage, I would do the same for you.  Heck – that is what Jesus did for me…  That’s what He does for us…

Rescue those being led away to death;
    hold back those staggering toward slaughter.
If you say, “But we knew nothing about this,”
    does not he who weighs the heart perceive it?
Does not he who guards your life know it?
    Will he not repay everyone according to what they have done?

That passage, has been used before in pro-life talks.  I think it is important to note, those “being led away to death”, that isn’t necessarily applying to the child growing inside of you.  It applies to you, mother.  To you, father.  To you, doctor.  To you, pro-choice advocate.  To all of us.  My Lord – that’s what Jesus did for us…

No idea who might read this.  I don’t get a lot of readers.  But if  you are in a situation, where you or someone you know are considering abortion, know there are options.  Here are just a couple, in the Twin Cities:

http://www.nlfs.org/

http://www.mypregnancychoicesmn.com/

It’s only a couple of options, I know.  I’m sure many could list other options, possibly better options.  And I would appreciate that greatly, as I would love to provide every option to those faced with these decisions.

I know that some of you are facing something I’m not.  I know that having a child will affect you for the rest of your life.  But really – the pregnancy, whether going to term or being ended prematurely – will affect you the rest of your life.  It does not go away with abortion.  You were still a mother, once…

Grace and peace…

T.

Celebrities, Our Worldview, and Jesus

There have been a few things that our celebrities have said and done, of late, that has brought on much ado in the social media realm.  QBs taking a knee, actors lamenting our president-elect, celebs pleading with our electoral college to “vote their conscience”.  We as a people have either celebrated them or lambasted them for their public displays.  I’ve read often how these people have a responsibility to us, how they shouldn’t do or say these things, or shouldn’t be allowed to.  Huh?  Wha???

Sorry to say, but it’s their platform, not ours.  They can say or do anything within the law.  Sure, there might be consequences for their action.  People have been fired, etc.  But they won’t be going to jail for it.  At least not in our country.  At least not today.

And I am fascinated at how we as a people REACT to it!  We want them to shut up and just do what we pay them to say or do.  But we didn’t buy THEM.  We bought their services, their entertainment.  I may not agree with them – I very often don’t – but let ’em say and do what they are going to say and do.  It’s ok, really it is, if your favorite actor doesn’t agree with you on everything, or really – anything.  It’s ok if they do or say something stupid – that’s not a reflection of you.

I also find it fascinating, how we will use a celeb as “social media leverage”.  I’m guilty of this myself.  Sure, if Bono says something that resonates with me, often in a way much more eloquent than I could even think, I’m all about that.  I will probably re-post.  As will so many others.

Same goes for our celebrities opinions on Trump, Clinton. Obama, Planned Parenthood, gun control, bathrooms, on and on.  It’s as if someone I like says something I agree with, now I MUST be right!  And we’ll take that and turn it into a meme, so everyone can throw it around.  Sorta like when the cool guy says something cool that put the other guy in his place.  And we are the little weenie behind them, saying, “Yeah, take THAT!”

And what about what celebs think and say of Jesus?

So often we might hear about how Jesus was a good teacher, a pacifist, almost a zen Buddhist.  Not much different than so many of us, who don’t know Him personally.  Described in impersonal terms.  Described often in positive ways, but rarely or never with a deep reverence.  Described almost never as the One True God…

An example, although a bit older, is this.  In his post, John Fugelsang describes a Jesus that seems to threaten the Jesus many Christians claim to know.  Maybe for some.  I don’t know.

But what I do know is Mr. Fugelsang, like so many others who have shared these or similar thoughts, never referred to Jesus as God.  He describes Jesus, as if He was just a man, in history, like any other.  And I don’t know John, maybe that’s what he thinks?  If so – I’m sorry to say John Fugelsang, you do not know Jesus.  I could argue that from some of your descriptions – but my point isn’t to refute your descriptions or correct your misconceptions of Jesus.  But if you don’t think Jesus is God, you simply do not know Him…  And that is so sad…

So, given all this celeb opinion talk of late, I thought I’d spend some time re-posting some comments that Jesus Himself, the ultimate celebrity, made about Himself.  These are but a handful, there are so many more.  And there are so many descriptions of Jesus in the Gospels.  But these are a small handful of descriptions of Jesus, in His own words.

“I am the way and the truth and the life.” (John 14:6)

“I am the bread of life. Whoever comes to me will never go hungry, and whoever believes in me will never be thirsty.” (John 6:35)

“I am the Alpha and the Omega, the First and the Last, the Beginning and the End.” (Revelation 22:13)

“Very truly I tell you,” Jesus answered, “before Abraham was born, I am!” (John 8:58)

The woman said, “I know that Messiah” (called Christ) “is coming. When he comes, he will explain everything to us.”

Then Jesus declared, “I, the One speaking to you—I am He.”  (John 4:25-26)

So these are just a few.  There are so many more.  I encourage you to read them for yourself.  I encourage you to get to know this God, who so loved YOU, that He gave His very life as a ransom for yours.  I don’t want you to read about, hear about, some hippie Jesus who may have said some nice things to say, who “never cared about the small stuff”, who “did not judge”.

Nor do I want you to be buried with a Jesus who tells you, “You must clean up your act”, or, “You aren’t good enough”, or, “Try harder”, or, “You know better”.  He did not say that.

I want you to know the Jesus who said He came to set the captives free,  who said He did not come to condemn the world, but to save it through Him, who says He has loved you with an everlasting love

We’ll likely be enthralled, or appalled, by the next celebrity speech, or tweet, or action.  It’s kinda what we do.  But the more we fix our eyes on the One True God, who He is, what He says, maybe – just maybe – the less we’ll focus on our worldly idols.