From the post:
“If you have not had a decent earthly father in your life, it might be much more challenging for you to grasp God’s love for us a Father”
That is so true, Elihu. The lack of positive fathering, or any real fathering at all, has set entire generations of men into spiritual and life tailspins.
All we can do is try to pass our own legacy to the generation we raise. Since I didn’t do so well the first time, I was blessed to get to raise another family. My own parents didn’t do much in the way of showing me how, but God has certainly shown me the second time around. He’s even shown me how to restore the damage from the first time.
Before I launch into this post, I must apologize for being MIA over the last few weeks. Between wrapping up our school year and taking our family vacation, my writing time has been severely limited. Lord willing, I will continue the series on “Teaching the Truth With Love” next Friday!
Last week, my family visited Arches National Park for the first time. What I treasured most about this trip was not the awesome landscapes, but something far more priceless: a deepening trust and affection between my husband and our children.
The above photo was taken on our first hike. We ascended the somewhat steep trail to Delicate Arch—one of the most famous landmarks in Utah—and two of my three children wanted to skirt the basin and in order to stand beneath the arch.
If you look closely, you might see my family members under that huge arch!
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Salvation is Man’s greatest need
For all have sinned, and come short of the glory of God;
This is my Father’s Day post from previous years. Nothing to add to it, so here it is again. So many today either didn’t have a father, or had a dysfunctional one. Just remember, we can all have the best father, our Heavenly Father.
I’d love to post a nice, happy Father’s Day Post, but I fear this won’t be it. But here it is in all its sadness. But, there is a wonderful positive here also that I hope you all will see, and a lesson to father’s everywhere.
My father had more positive qualities than could be possibly listed, in many ways. First of all, he was quite handsome, in a very classic way. He was truly the epitome of tall, dark and handsome. He was about 6’2″, olive-skinned, slender, and very well built. He apparently was one-quarter Native American coming from his mother’s side of things. The rumor was his mother was half Cherokee or Reelfoot. Nobody really knows, as his side of the family was rather shrouded in mystery and rumor. Lot’s of talk various and sundry crimes on the Fry side of the family.
He was quite charming and engaging as well and could sell the proverbial snow cone to the proverbial Eskimo. In fact, sales was what my father did for his entire life, and was very successful at it.
My father was extremely gentle and kind. I am not sure I never heard him express anger at a person in my life(other than my mother), and made quite a big deal about always being nice to other people. He was a real “golden rule” kind of guy. He had been a Marine right after WWII but was very anti-war. In fact, the only conflict we ever had was when I decided to join the Army. He really thought I had become some kind of jackbooted Nazi. I remember still the one and only time my father ever spanked me, he cried the whole time.
My father was literally the smartest man I ever knew. He had no degrees or formal education outside of school but was the smartest and most well-read man I ever met. Read all the classic philosophers during his lifetime. He was also quite a gifted writer as I discovered after he died. The man was a literary giant in the making, to tell the truth. Found out he fancied himself a real Earnest Hemingway type of person. My father was simply put a genius.
Now, the dark side of my father.
My Father was a cheating, unfaithful womanizer. That handsomeness and charm, combined with his profession as a traveling salesman produced very bad results. He didn’t, however, have to travel to philander, he was perfectly capable of that locally.
My father went broke. He sold and serviced dry cleaning machinery. The rise of polyester literally ruined my life. In a matter of what seemed like months, we went from great success to utter lack.
My father was an alcoholic. Apparently, he had been for years, but the financial ruin brought it to the forefront in bad ways. In the midst of great financial setback, my father chose to abandon us instead of staying. Things worked out okay for him for a while but for me and my mother, the result was years of poverty and struggling. He never recovered from that addiction, and it ultimately took his life. We reconnected while I was in college, but that was only because everybody else had given up on him. The most vivid memories of our reconnection were mostly me driving somewhere where he had failed to pay rent and was drunk in a bed, picking him up, and dropping him off at the VA Hospital for another stint in recovery. We did, however, during that time come to know each other better than we ever had. That all finally ended with a deadly, perhaps intentional, combination of pills and booze, and he was gone at the age of 54.
Most importantly, my father was lost, He did not know The Lord, nor did he wish to. He was simply too smart, too independent, and too in love with his decadent lifestyle to ever surrender his life to Jesus. I really don’t even know if anyone ever told him to be honest. He certainly never mentioned God around me.
I miss him horribly, even to this day. He never did a thing for me, but one’s father is always their father. If only he had stayed around to see my conversion, perhaps things would be different for him now. Sadly, I won’t ever see him again.
As normal, there is a Bible lesson buried in this post; I usually have one. This is my father’s day gift to all the father’s out there, and it is this one simple statement from what I believe to be one of the greatest fathers who ever lived other than God our father. That man is Joshua. Every inch a man’s man, a great warrior, and a leader of men beyond compare. He had the following to say:
As for me and my house. we will serve the Lord
Well, now that my rather morbid title has probably made you go…”What?,” let me explain! I am actually studying body parts; I am studying for my first test Monday in Anatomy and Physiology.
Ugh. My daughter took this her first semester and it was NOT easy according to her. That was a regular semester. This is a summer term, so everything is accelerated to double speed.
It’s as if the instructor sawed off the top of student’s heads and just poured information in until it starts running from their toes. Sort of like watering a plant, actually.
This class is actually supposed to pick up where the student’s high school biology classes left off. That’s a great plan if that class was 6 months ago; it’s not quite so good when the class was 39 years ago!
I think it has pushed me over the edge. I have been walking around at work singing “Dem Bones,” and substituting the official anatomical lingo for the song lyrics. As in,
Digital bone connected to the pedal bone
Pedal bone connected to the calcaneal bone
Calcaneal bone connected to the tarsal bone
And….on it goes.
Those aren’t even the bone names I don’t think LOL. Just the geographical area of the body. We haven’t DONE bones yet.
Anyway, back to my studies now; I just needed a break.
by Robert Brock
Saturday, June 15
God Is Merciful to Those Who Seek Him
“For we have not an high priest which cannot be touched with the feeling of our infirmities; but was in all points tempted like as we are, yet without sin. Let us therefore come boldly unto the throne of grace, that we may obtain mercy, and find grace to help in time of need,” Hebrews 4:15, 16.
Paul used a double negative in this passage which canceled itself and made the statement a positive. We have a High Priest which can be touched with the feeling of our trials because, as a human, He went through the same temptations, lust of the flesh, lust of the eyes and pride of life. Just as with Adam and Eve, Satan tempted Jesus in the flesh and He overcame. He used the Scriptures to fight Satan and send him packing. Jesus promises us the same power to overcome the temptations of Satan and his minions. “Submit yourselves therefore to God. Resist the devil, and he will flee from you” (James 4:7).
Some believe that Jesus could have sinned but He did not, thus earning the right to be the perfect sacrifice. This belief is heresy. Jesus was God, and God cannot sin. He was already the Savior before the foundation of the world. Rather, He was able to overcome in the flesh making Him the High Priest and Mediator who understands our trials in the flesh first hand. He also understands God’s perfect point of view which makes Him the perfect mediator between man and God. “For there is one God, and one mediator between God and men, the man Christ Jesus; who gave himself a ransom for all, to be testified in due time” (1 Timothy 2:5, 6).
THOUGHT: Therefore, through Jesus, we have the right to come before the Judge and ask mercy when we have sinned and grace to make it through hard times and trials.
You all know I enjoy good faith based poetry, but am not capable of writing any myself. So, here is Amy to fill the gap of my inability today. Enjoy.
Lord, how do we get around all of that?
How do we turn away from anger and wrath?
Feelings and pain that run so deep
Tossing us through nights of no sleep
Ancient wounds scraped open time and time again.
Memories relived, taking us back from within
Remorse for not getting past this pain years ago
Makes a heart feel tossed to and fro
Rising above them and ourselves can be the only way
And remembering what the Almighty has to say
Love thy Lord with all thy heart
First is where we all must start
Harder yet still is the toughest asked of you and me
To love others the way we want them to love us openly
Can we do this? Can we succeed?
To kneel down in prayer for our enemy and intercede…?
Of course, more lilies.
More lilies, but what you see in the foreground is an Artemisia variety, also called Wormwood. It’s where absinthe comes from.
Liatris Spicata-Spike Gayfeather