Something To Live For

If you look around to the craziness around you, you could easy get depressed and say, “What’s the use?” People in every era and in most lives lived could say at one point, “What’s the use?”

Throughout every point of history there have been people who have given up even though they had it relatively easier than most people around them. The difference was their lack of hope and purpose.

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Pain Hurts!!!

We have a skillet with a removeable rubber grip on the handle so you can use the skillet in the oven. This week we cooked some garden fresh yellow squash with slices of onion sprinkled in olive oil in that skillet. Shortly after it was removed from the oven, I was going to move it and without thinking I grabbed the hot handle without a pot holder. Ouch! It took a nano-second for me to let go. I put my hand under tap water and I was fine. Pain hurts but it helped me to let go!

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Suffering and the Kingdom

I remember some of the old timers from our valley and ridges talking about folks who were going through difficult times and using the rhetorical phrase, “I don’t know how they have ‘walkin’ around sense?”

That’s the truth. When you look at the suffering of some folks, you think, “How do they keep their senses about them?” I am amazed how some people go through horrific things and seem to weather the storm with supernatural strength. Well, it is with supernatural strength. God gives the that extra “Umph!” to get them over the line.

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The Executioner’s Dream

A Story of the Executioner at Golgotha by Harry L. Whitt

After their scourging, we herded the three men through the jeering streets to Golgotha. The citizens of Jerusalem hate us only a bit less than we hate them. Being assigned to the occupation force of Judea is a good point for a possible promotion but today the city is set on edge. One of the three is a popular prophet to the common people but hated by the elites of their counsel.

Finally, we are out of the bustle of the city streets and bring the three miserable souls to the top of the hill, the place of the skull. The rock outcropping resembles a skull, and today it the place of execution for all to see.

The schemer who devised the crucifixion is to be congratulated. Nothing puts the fear and dread in occupied people as the crucifixion. It is an agonizing death to endure and to witness. I have killed countless men in warfare with sword and spear, but this is the most gruesome of all.

The poor creatures are hammered on the cross with hand forged spikes which tear flesh and sinew. We set their knees at a bend, so they can push up to catch a breath of air, and then hang by their arms until they began to smother. This reeling up and down until their last life fades from their bodies takes sometimes days. It is a wretched sight for wretched souls.

We put the so-called prophet in the middle as he is the most renown. The other two are common thieves. The middle one gets the most attention as some of his mourners are at the foot of his cross. Some say his mother is present along with mostly women and a few men. Why do they come to see? I do not know.

His scourging left his back nothing but ribbons of flesh with clotted blood. He cried out as we laid him on the splintered wood. Then we raised his cross and the jar of the upright going from empty hole to solid earth left him with a quiver in his body that took some time cease.

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How to Make Sense of Nonsense?

The short answer to my title question is, “You can’t!” We all have spent time racking our brains about something so absurd and coming to no conclusion to our question of “Why?”

A stranger with whom you have no quarrel keys your car with a long scratch. You watch the news where a young child was playing in their room when a stray bullet sends the child to Heaven and the perpetrator to jail and perhaps to Hell. The horrors of war fill our screens and you and I collectively scream, “WHY??”

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Persecution from a Christian Perspective

On a typical Sunday morning in the United States, as we ease into our comfortable pews if someone were to ask us, “Are you comfortable?”  Our response may be about the pew or the temperature level in the church.  While in other places of the world “comfortable” is not a consideration in their Christianity.  They may have looked over their shoulder as they turned down the street leading to the gathering of the saints.  The cramped quarters or the temperature level is the least of their concerns. Continue reading “Persecution from a Christian Perspective”