Tag Archive | freedom

I Hold the Truth

Today (and always) I’m thankful for my very own Bible.  What a commodity!! A priceless gift and treasure!

I’m guilty blessed to have more than one.  My favourite, and most used. is the New American Standard Version, because that’s where I started when God opened my eyes to His Grace in 1972.  But many others fill our library of treasured books: KJV, RSV, ESV, NIV, The Living Bible, large print versions, parallel versions, Spanish and French Bibles, and more.  Each one shouts:

“From everyone who has been given much, much will be required…”
Luke 12:48

In spite of such increased responsibility, I am extremely thankful!   There are countless believers in other countries who don’t have any Bible to call their own.   Or if they do, they’re breaking the law.  Voice of the Martyrs  presents maps/media displaying countries which either restrict or are hostile to the Bible and Christianity.  Check it out here:

http://www.persecution.com/public/restrictednations.aspx?clickfrom=bWFpbl9tZW51

When you read your Bible, whether in print, online, on your Ipod, or whatever, thank the Lord for the Truth you hold in your hand.  And pray for those who don’t or can’t.

Monument of Grace Update

A monument of grace, a sinner saved by blood:
The streams of love I trace up to the Fountain–God!

Mohave Cross

Mohave Cross

 

Several months ago after using the above Google image in my post, Monument of Grace.  I received a couple of inquiries about the photo.  In order to answer those questions, I researched a bit on the photo and discovered that the ‘monument’ was being taken to court by…who else, the ACLU.  

It’s called the Mohave Cross and was built 70 years ago as a memorial for World War I veterans.  The beautiful monument was enjoyed for nearly 60 years uncontested, but now, here’s what it looks like:

What's wrong with this picture?!

Forgive us, Lord

The matter is before the US Supreme today.  Focus on the Family’s, Citizen Link  takes a hopeful tone about the case in the following article:

Mojave Cross Case Heard at Supreme Court 

“The U.S. Supreme Court heard oral arguments today in the Mojave Desert cross case.  The cross is a memorial to World War I veterans.

Hiram Sasser, director of litigation for Liberty Legal Institute and one of the attorneys for the VFW in the case, said the justices asked many questions.

‘The court is probably going to say that this veterans memorial is allowed to stay and that there was never a problem to begin with,” he said, “And that the transfer of state-owned land to the veterans so they could keep the memorial was OK, and that this veterans memorial is going to continue to stand as it has for 75 years honoring those World War I veterans.'”

The photo above, and more detailed history of  Mohave Cross case, is available at ABC online–just click  HERE. 

 

When I survey the wondrous cross on which the Prince of glory died,

 my richest gain I count but loss and pour contempt on all my pride.

Pray for the Persecuted

Yesterday, November 9th, was “International Day of Prayer” for the Persecuted Church.  Though I had hoped to post this earlier, I’m acutely aware that God’s listening heart and loving responses are not limited to a single day.  With that in mind, let us continue daily in prayer for Christians around the world who suffer persecution for their faith in Jesus Christ.  As we pray for them, may we not neglect to express thankfulness for our abundant blessings and freedom to worship.  Lord, keep us from complacency and discontentment!

Here’s some guidelines for prayer, gleaned from the Voice of the Martyrs:

PRAY that:

     The Lord will give courage to His people who are enduring persecution for His Name
     The Lord will place His restraining hand on those who seek to harm His people
     Churches facing government opposition will stand firm in their ministry
     Christians will have opportunities to reach out with the Gospel without fear of intimidation or harassment
     Servants of the Lord will be able to deliver Bibles and Christian literature to places where they are most needed
     Christians who have been left without pastors and teachers may be kept strong in their faith
     Christians who have been imprisoned for their faith will be released safely
     The Lord will restrain the callousness and brutality of prison guards in their treatment of Christians in prison
     Pray against the increasing problem of young Christian girls being kidnapped, raped and forced to marry
     Those who have lost loved ones by martyrdom will be comforted and strengthened by God during their grief
     Christian pastors will be kept from danger and strengthened in their faith as they care for the people of God
     New converts may be protected and provided for should their family turn against them.
     The current laws in many restricted nations forbidding evangelism, missionary activity and religious instruction, will be repealed.

We can also help these precious believers in more tangible, physical ways.  Open Doors and Voice of the Martyrs websites share a variety of means in which we can assist the suffering, such as buying Bibles for those in restricted nations, writing letters to those in prison, sending blankets and other needful items for families (called “Action Packs”) and so much more.  And with Christmas around the corner, there’s gift ideas available, like contributing towards a bicycle for itinerant pastors, etc.  

Prayer is still the greatest need….

“Remember the prisoners, as though in prison with them, and those who are ill-treated, since you yourselves also are in the body.”  Hebrews 13:3

God, Our Founding Father

 “We are endowed by our Creator with certain inalienable rights…”

The Declaration of Independence

 

“Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise therof; or abridging the freedom of speech or of the press; or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the Government for a redress of grievances.” 

 The First Amendment of the US Constitution

Today, the 232nd anniversary of our Nation’s founding, I thank the Lord for the freedoms we have, and earnestly pray as I witness their erosion.  Our country is tiptoeing on the edge of destruction, because it has forgotten God.  It’s popular to ridicule and malign Christianity, in a country where all other beliefs and cultures are protected.  Jesus Christ has become “a byword” i.e., a common curse word.  Prayer has become a ‘moment of silence’, and God is whoever we want Him (or Her) to be–or not to be. 

Over the years, orators, philosophers, founders, and presidents have not been silent about Who is the source of our freedoms, and their concern of abandoning Him.  Here’s food for thought and prayer as we celebrate the undeserved grace of God towards America, the food on our tables, the ‘waves of grain’, the shining seas, and what freedoms remain.

“And have we now forgotten that powerful Friend?  Or do we imagine we no longer need His assistance?  I have lived…a long time, and the longer I live, the more convincing proofs I see of this truth–that God Governs in the affairs of men.  And if a sparrow cannot fall to the ground without His notice, is it probable that an empire can rise without His aid?  We have been assured, sir, in the Sacred Writings, that “except the Lord build the house, they labour in vain that build it.’  I firmly believe this; and I also believe that without His concuring aid we shall succeed in this political building no better than the builders of Babel.”   Benjamin Franklin, 1787, addressed to those at the Constitutional Convention in Philadelphia

“All attempts to find a way out of the plight of today’s world are fruitless unless we redirect our consciousness, in repentance, to the Creator of all: without this, no exit will be illumined, and we shall seek it in vain.”  Alexandr Solzhenitsyn, Templeton Address, 1983

“As unpopular as it is to say, biblical values–thoroughly ingrained in our Founding Fathers and unmistakably incorporated into our founding documents–are what has made these United States of America utterly unique in history…..Our culture–including our unparalleled tradition of freedom–has declined and will continue to decline in direct proportion to our rejection of biblical values.  Of course, Christians want no part of established [state-run] religions, but neither do we want, no can we afford, the excommunication of our founding values from the public square or our culture.”  David Limbaugh, “Purging Christianity from our Culture,” Worldnetdaily.com,  July 2, 2002

When men stop believing in God, the danger is not that they will believe nothing.  The danger is that they will believe anything.”  G.K. Chesterton, Orthodoxy: The Romance of Faith

God’s Word also reflects this perspective:

“Behold, the nations are like a drop from a bucket, and are regarded as a speck of dust on the scales: Behold, He lifts up the islands like fine dust.  Even Lebanon is not enough to burn, nor its beasts enough for a burnt offering.

“All the nations are as nothing before Him, They are regarded by Him as less than nothing and meaningless…

“Do you not know? Have you not heard? Has it not been declared to you from the beginning? Have you not understood from the foundations of the earth?

“It is He who sits above the circle of the earth, and its inhabitants are like grasshoppers, who stretches out the heavens like a curtain and spreads them out like a tent to dwell in.

“He it is who reduces rulers to nothing, who makes the judges of the earth meaningless. Scarcely have they been planted, scarcely have they been sown, scarcely has their stock taken root in the earth, but He merely blows on them, and they wither, and the storm carries them away like stubble.

“‘To whom then will you liken Me, that I should be equal?’ says the Holy One.”  Isaiah 40:15-26 (portions)

“There is none like you, O Lord, You are great, and great is Your name in might.  Who would not fear You, O king of the nations?  Indeed it is Your due!  For among all the wise men of the nations and in all their kingdoms, there is none like You!”  Jeremiah 10:6,7

“Righteousness exalts a nation, but sin is a reproach to any people.” Prov. 14:34

“The fear of the Lord is the beginning of knowledge..”  Prov 1:7

As Solzhenitsyn and Ben Franklin said, we must not forget our Creator.  Even though we are soujourners and pilgrims in this world, looking for a better country, a heavenly one, let’s not neglect to pray that our freedoms will endure; the freedom to speak, to gather to worship, and to live for and share the message of Jesus Christ’s death and resurrection to this generation, and those to come.  May we give God His true place in our hearts and pray for continued blessings on America.

Unless the Lord builds the house; they labour in vain who build it;

Unless the Lord guards the city, the watchman keeps awake in vain.” 

Psalm 127:1

Memorial Day

TAPS

This is dedicated to any and all touched by the loss of a servicemember, whether in WWI, WWII, Korean War, Vietnam, the Cold War, Desert Storm, Operation Enduring Freedom, Operation Iraqi Freedom, to losses during “peacetime.” 

Thank you! 

Battle Hymn of the Republic