Breaks My Heart

syria-airstrikeI have been captured by the picture of this little boy and cannot get this image – and all that it could mean – out of my mind. It is so haunting… so inhumane, so descriptive of the capacity we have in the human spirit to do great harm even to the most innocent of God’s children. It is beyond me how anyone can see this little boy and allow such evil to continue or participate in that evil. If we see this picture and do nothing I must conclude that we do NOT have a heart.

This past week a 12-14 year old blew himself up at a wedding in Turkey and in the process intentionally killed 50 some people… 22 of whom were children. Now here is the deal; they did this evil in the name of God. That is so mixed up… so up side down… so not God. It doesn’t matter if they pulled their sacred book out of the Ark… it is STILL NOT GOD!!!

In the picture of this little boy you can’t really see his face all that well. If you look close you could see your own son, your grandson… someone you care deeply about. Close your eyes and imagine the pain and fear this little one is going through. Tell me his life is going to remain untouched by anything close to PTSD… he is just going to smile all through his life as if no one has ever tried to kill him. You do know his brother died in this same action?

So, what do we do? How do we help? How do we effect change for the good? I think at least part of it… and a big part at that… is what James Howell mentioned in his sermon Sunday; we have got to spend more time with God… so much that we start to allow change in ourselves… change so clear that others see Jesus in you and want to live a life of peace and brotherhood. Beyond that be a peacemaker and not a peace breaker… a healer and not a divider… lift up others and not put them down… come together with love.

Grace and Peace


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What A Special Time

swim1I must admit that I approached the Olympics this year with some skepticism and low expectations. After all, I had seen the reports of the filthy ocean we were warned to to swim in or open our mouths. They were reporting about many of the venues not being ready to hold the Olympics. My major concern was the thought that this would be the perfect place for some nut with a bomb to kill a lot of people – I mean thousands.

Well, thank goodness I was wrong – my fears were not realized – especially the terror part.

What we did get to see was young, dedicated, sacrificing, talented athletes compete to the very best of their abilities. Some won medals. Some did not. All won our appreciation for giving so much to their sport and country.

I think the one sport that really got to me was gymnastics. We witnessed Simeon Biles tumble through the air as if gravity did not affect her like it does us; walk, flip, spin and jump on a 4” balance beam I could not even walk on if it were on the floor. These girls were absolutely amazing… and we are so very proud of them.

Of course my second love was basketball. I still remember those years when we were limited to college athletes while the rest of the world used professional players. Well, since the playing field has been made even we have done quite well (men and women). Men won their third Gold Medal in a row while the women I believe have won six in a row.

I couldn’t – still can’t – believe how fast Bolt is… laughing as he crosses the line. Nor could I believe the little lady won blew the 10,000M World Record out of the stadium. We were all touched as one lady runner stopped to help a runner from another country who had fallen. Now, that was very special… and really what we are seeking to accomplish in these games – bring the world together to see how much alike we really are.

What can we say about the swimming except WOW!!! Phelps was his usual superman in the water. But Ledecky made them have to use a wide angle camera to be able to see the other people racing with her. Someone needs to check to see if she didn’t have a motor under the water.

There were a few hick ups… but all in all things went very well. A special thanks to all who made this such a special time. Hopefully, all people thought a little about being under the loving arms of Christ, The Redeemer.

Grace and Peace


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