This morning’s reflection is inspired by a recent reading of Isiah 58: 13 and 14.
I started reading to prepare a sermon about the importance of keeping the Sabbath sacred. But as is often the case, the longer I meditated on the passage especially in the context of all Scripture, my thoughts expanded to identifying other sacred things that are important to keep holy. From the musings, three categories emerged: Sacred Places/Spaces, Sacred Times, and Sacred Things (I’m still contemplating a more fitting title for the third category.).
My developing thoughts on the importance of recognizing sacred things and keeping them consecrated are noted on the attached chart. Double click the link below to view the chart.
Comfort and remove despair from those submerged in pain.
Let consciousness of your Spirit penetrate and permeate their existence.
Empower them to overcome adversity.
Anoint them to do the right things for the right reasons.
Remove the partition that keeps them from recognizing, acknowledging, and basking in your great love.
Lord, in your mercy, hear our prayer!
I made this video as a keepsake of my first trip in a sleeper car. The crew on Train 49 were professional, courteous, and downright friendly. The roomettes are incredibly tiny, but I saw several in which two and three adults were crunched up. I valued the privacy this car afforded. Also, the bed was relatively comfortable. Next time, God willing, I’ll book early enough to rent a larger room.
Train rides are long, but in my opinion, they are a great alternative to flying. I hate flying and don’t always have the time to drive then relax when I reach my destination before heading back home. So, I’ve made up my mind to travel by train when time permits.
I hope you guys enjoy the video. I’ll get better with practice.
Lord, call me.
Your servant I want to be!
Show me your way!
Send me, I say!
What! You’re calling me to love those who hate me?
Wait a minute! Hold on, I have neither the desire nor will to complete that task.
Give me something more pleasant. I ask!
You want me to bless those trying to destroy me?
What you require is too hard for little weak-kneed me!
I don’t want to help my enemies!
The degree of goodness it takes to do that is not rooted in me.
I will do good when it benefits me.
Please don’t ask me to do it anonymously!
For you see, others won’t laud me.
I want to serve you by doing things that gratify me.
I will testify about your goodness to everyone I see.
Just give me the grace to humiliate anyone who dares cross me.
Against such people, I will fight.
I will sing of your power and might.
Just purge my critics and compel them to take flight.
In them, my sin, I see.
Please, God, help me!
Condon me not helping those whom you’ve sent to me.
They are not the ones I choose.
In helping them, there is no glory for me.
I reject them until they are of immediate benefit to me.
Preaching, I will gladly do.
Prison ministry, I will humbly and proudly do that too.
Praying, I will pray loud and long day and night night and day, I shall pray.
Please help me, Lord, is my plea!
Almighty, don’t you see!
I want to serve Thee!
But the things you require are too hard for me!
If I do what you ask, people will see you; not me!
They will criticize, isolate, shun, and vilify me.
That burden is too much for me.
Let them see me in you, not you in me!
But, call me!
Cable companies charge too much and offer limited programs. They have lost most younger viewers to Netflix, and now they are on the verge of losing baby boomers.
Until recently, I was a baby boomer addicted to cable television. The television in my bedroom played all day and night, even when I wasn’t watching it. That changed after I picked up the remote and began exploring the APPS on my television.
Initially, it was the joy of seeing and hearing Youtube on a big screen that drew me away from cable. I spent hours relaxing while listening to the Audio Bible unfiltered and listening to a wide range of Gospel music. I even listened to old time radio shows like Nightbeat, Dragnet, Johnny Dollar, and Have Gun Will Travel. I was like a kid turned loose in a candy store.
Then I branched out and tried Netflix (not Netflix originals) followed by Amazon Prime. I was amazed by the BBC content offered by these two services. Once I started watching, I knew my television viewing habits were forever changed. Between the three services, Amazon Prime T.V, Netflix, and Youtube there is a wealth of good programming. Also, the cost of all three services is cheaper than what I pay for cable.
Cable companies are good at providing news coverage, but their prices are too high and the variety of programming they offer is limited. If cable companies are to survive, they must lower prices and expand the kind of programs they offer. Otherwise, they are going the way of landline telephone service – out of step with the times.
Following is a list of the shows that had me temporarily spellbound.
- Scott & Baily – This crime television series has a female-led cast with dynamic characters and interesting and believable storylines. The series explores complicated family, workplace, and other intimate relationships. It shows women in the workplace supporting each other and it also highlights sexism in the workplace.
- Doctor Foster– This series is a soap opera about an aging physician who is forced to cope with the complications associated with a two-timing husband, divorce, and sharing custody of her son. The stories explore the complexity of divorce when young children live at home, and it amplifies the theme that divorce can adversely affect every area of one’s life. Good acting makes this show worth watching.
- Father Brown– ENTERTAINING and interesting!!!! An eclectic bunch of main and recurring characters and their interconnectedness to each other make this show worth watching. Explores a wide range of social topics including immigration, racism, domestic violence, religion, classism, and infidelity. The show is thought-provoking witty.
- DCI Banks – This is an interesting detective series.
- Kavanaugh QC– Binge watch well-developed characters and believable plots.
- Miss Frasier’s Murder Mysteries- The lead character is a strong, independent, compassionate woman who uses both her mind and sexuality to get what she wants. The setting, 1920s Australia, and main character make this series interesting and fun.
- Unforgotten– Worth watching detective show.
- Midsomer Murders – Good detective show
- House of Cards – Unscrupulous politicians, their spouses, and ambitious reporters do anything to get what they want. This show is plot and character driven.
- Mad Men – Shows there was a time when advertising influenced the markets and changed people’s lives. This show is character and setting driven.
1. Anyone can excel when conditions are favorable, especially if they get a helping hand. Only those anointed by God thrive in adverse circumstances.
2. In a race neither the fastest, the smartest, nor the strongest is guaranteed victory. Sometimes the race is won by the one who perseveres in spite of adversity.
3. Do the right things for the right reasons, even when it is not popular or desirable to do so.
4. Take courage in knowing God has equipped and empowered you to overcome every hurdle. Dig deep, push hard, and watch God work.
5. Trust in the Lord with all your heart and do not depend on your understanding.
6. Pray continuously about everything.
7. Do Not deliberately cause pain!!
8. Give thanks in every situation and look for the silver lining. Once found, hold tight and remain fixated until another one appears.
9. Stay encouraged and don’t stop doing good. Remember, people look at the outward appearance, but God sees the thoughts and intentions of a person.
10. God’s timing isn’t the same as ours. Have faith and seek God’s perfect will.
To Muslims Worldwide,
Peace and prosperity!
I am a baptized, born again, Bible-thumping, Holy Ghost believing Christian. I don’t know the appropriate greeting for Ramadan, so, on the eve of Ramadan 2019, I offer my prayer for peace and prosperity to Muslims.
May the Spirit of the only authentic, wise, and living God abide with all God’s people wherever they are.
God is good and great all the time and because God is omnipotent and omnipresent, God’s people exist in every nation and speak every language. It is love for God and the desire to do good and be at peace with all people that sets God’s people apart from others.
We Christians do not celebrate Lent we observe the period, I’m assuming the same holds for Muslims observing Ramadan. Therefore, I bid Muslims peace!
Your Christian Friend
1. Great is the Lord, and greatly to be praised… (Psalm 48: 1)
2. This is a day that the Lord has made; [let us] rejoice and be glad in it. (Psalm 118: 24)
3. [Let us]enter his gates with thanksgiving [in our hearts], and enter his courts with praise, [let us] be thankful unto him, and bless his name. (Psalm 100:4)
4. Let everything that has breath praise the LORD. Praise the LORD. (Psalm 150: 6)
5. Favored by God are those who do not follow ungodly advice, nor engage in fellowship with people who have evil intentions, or who express contempt for others. (Psalm 1: 1)
6. Favored by God are those who hunger and thirst for righteousness, for they will be filled. (Matthew 5: 6)
7. Favored by God are the merciful, for they will receive mercy. (Matthew 5: 7)
Sunday, March 17, 2019
Glory to Your marvelous name!
Thank you for this glorious day among the living to magnify you in thought, word, and with good deeds!
Thank you for multiple chances.
Thank you for never giving up on us.
Thank you for opening doors that no human can shut.
Thank you for waking us up with our minds on you.
Thank you for blessing us to retain you in our thoughts.
Thank you for people of goodwill, they have existed in every time and every place.
Because of your Spirit, benevolent men and women are in every ethnic group; represent every religious tradition and every social class. They are as numerous as the sand.
Thank you, God!
Kind people make the world better, often at great personal sacrifice.
Their presence changes the culture, even if only superficially and temporarily.
Unwittingly, they inspire others to want to be better and to do good.
Once again, thank you for them!
Thank you for abolitionist, civil rights advocates, and Freedom Riders!
Many of them gave their lives and experienced significant personal loss to end slavery and institutional discrimination.
In most cases, they had everything to lose and little to gain by going against the powerful and ugly practice of institutionalized racism.
Thank you for those who work without fanfare to make wherever they are more just.
Help us all practice peace by living the Golden Rule – treat each person exactly as we want you to treat us. When we fail, forgive us and help us do better.
In the mighty name of Jesus, I pray!