Tuesday, July 31, 2007

No Beauty in Cruelty -- dogfighting, prayer, sin eater

Last night, my son and I watched The Last Sin Eater based on a Francine Rivers novel. Intriguing. It reminded me of our Savior’s mercy in freeing us from guilt’s heavy load —and how He continues to set us free as we look to Him.

Recent news exposed the depravity of Michael Vick and all those who, like him, brutally torture animals for their twisted, evil pleasure, electrocuting the losing dogs after they’ve lived in pain and agony perhaps for years. What they do to those animals is unthinkable. Monstrous! This sordid tragedy brings to thought many things. One is that this is a cruel world and we, the redeemed, are called to be salt and light in it. How can we be more salty and lighty? First, we can pray.

There is no doubt in my mind that prayer changes things. How, why, to what measure—those are deep theological issues and we may all bring to the table a different doctrinal slant. But prayer does change things. It is a privilege allowing us to collaborate with the divine, with God.

We can pray more for the suffering children of the world – that God delivers them, that He’d send forth laborers to release them from their plight, that He’d raise up Christians to adopt, and others to help financially…We are given the privilege to pray so let’s do it.

We can pray also for suffering animals. Why not? I didn’t say pray for them more than for humans, but we can add that to our prayers. There is no beauty in cruelty. It is not right that creatures suffer, especially from human inflictions and inhumanity. Let’s bring hope into these harsh situations by praying.

Of course, we can pray for souls, for people to come to Christ. That’s a given. What could be more important? We can also pray for nations, for ethnicities for governments, for troops, for those trapped in religion. We can pray for old people whose lives are close the end, for young people, for the wounded and needy, for the poor—and the rich who, according to Jesus, have the greatest difficulty coming to Him (perhaps because they don’t realize they need Him).

But there are other thoughts I have too. I’ve thought about the immeasurable sickness in man’s mind to perform such cruelties as dog fighting. I personally don’t understand it. But I do know this: Jesus died for the sins of all mankind. He can forgive, cleanse and give a new heart to each one who lets Him in. This is quite remarkable. The movie, The Last Sin Eater brings this out, and I recommend seeing it.

Janey L. DeMeo
Copyright©2007 (written July 31st 2007)

Tuesday, July 17, 2007

In Mortal Danger by Tom Tancredo, socio-politics & the banishing of basic ethics

News can be alarming, although necessary if one is not to become an Ostrich and lose the salt (as in salt of the earth, not some tasty dish). Apparently, Al-Qaeda has planned more strategic attacks on the USA. Not that it comes as any surprise. What did we expect? That they’d take a long vacation? Dah…! Let’s face it. America’s made it easy access.

If you don’t believe me, read IN MORTAL DANGER – The Battle for America’s Border and Security by Tom Tancredo, U.S. Congressman, Colorado (WND Books). Extremely enlightening, delightful reading, I highly recommend it. (The book reflects Tom’s integrity.)

I wish I’d read In Mortal Danger before. I’ll say more when I’ve finished reading but for now it’s triggered off several thoughts:

Today, our core Christian values are being turned topsy-turvy, justified by relativism so that it’s calling evil good is commonplace. No wonder then that illegal actions are glossed over, even endorsed. But when we accommodate those who bypass the law instead of making them accountable, we promote the belief that breaking the law is OK. (The book’s context clarifies this statement but to avoid ambiguous interpretations to any who don’t know my heart, I’m not referring to actions parallel to Corrie Ten Boom deceiving Hitler’s rĂ©gime to obey God’s higher law of compassion).

Anyone can understand why people want to come to America—especially me. But to bypass the proper channels only increases internal instability. And employing illegal aliens (who provide cheap labor) as a means to increase one’s income is not only rooted in greed, it’s illegal.

I remember being a little girl (amazing I can remember that far back), and seeing Muslim-nation immigrants pour into England like uncountable (and unaccountable) stampedes. I remember parents expressing alarm about how this would tax the national health system (it did—it rendered it practically impotant!).

Today, Britain is paying. Hearing Dad talk about Britain’s present socio-political front is scary. (No, it’s not scary to talk to Dad—he’s a sweetie—but it’s scary to hear what’s happening). Still, England’s instability may prove to be childplay compared to what could well happen in America—if we don’t wake up.

Today I received a comment from a missionary-pastor friend, James, who wrote this with regards to a NY Times article entitled “Small Donors Give Big to Obama” by Dan Morain and Doug Smith, Times Staff Writers, July 16, 2007. (Check it out online). Sez Missionary James: “…I read the following article and was truly shocked. How can a Muslim get this far in the campaign for the highest office in the USA? This is a very disturbing news article to me. America needs to wake up now instead of after the election. Many people were shocked when an unknown like Bill Clinton was elected. I hope we are not asleep this time. Obama attended Wahabi school in Jakarta. Wahabism is the Radical teaching that is followed by Muslim terrorists who are now waging Jihad against the western world. His recent move to join the Church of Christ is nothing less than “political candy.” Don’t swallow it. Be assured, a stomach ache is soon to follow. James”.

That’s not hard to digest, James. You wrapped it up well.

However, I'd still like to know more on all the candidates before casting judgment. I know better than to believe what media say -- whether good or bad. Best to check out the facts thoroughly first. After all, there are a lot of alarmists out there, and they only serve to distract us from our true focus, make Christians look like idiots, and keep us from the essential. Let's pray diligently and ask God to really lead us in truth and illuminate the facts.

Now, how do we prepare our children for this kind of unpromising future? A friend recently interviewed me with regards to my book, Heaven Help Me Raise These Children - Biblical Direction for Practical Parenting Issues

Meanwhile, I believe that there’s never been a needier time to better equip ourselves as parents—for the sake of our children’s future. May God give us grace to obey.

Janey L. DeMeo
Copyright © July 17th, 2007

Tuesday, July 03, 2007

Post Vegas, July 4th post -- homeless or not?

Post Vagas Trip -- Las Vagas may be sin city but it’s also where God abounds. I guess He just has a weak spot for the lost because, believe me, He was there—amidst the poor and the rich, and with His heart yearning to reach those caught up in temporary, veneer distractions.

Undoubtedly because of your prayers, our time in Vagas was God-driven, God-given. Every second was jam-packed with activities magnifying Christ including several radio broadcasts, services, meals with awesome folk. How adventuresome it is to walk with God, led by Him. One minute we were with the homeless, the next with high-profile people and we could pour into both. Oh, and the women’s study was a great blessing… Thanks for praying.

We also met an amazing man, Josh, who lives on the streets of Vagas—by CHOICE. In other words, he’s a respectable citizen, a Math teacher, but 5 years ago, he gave up everything to live on the streets and minister to the homeless. Check out his website: http://www.geocities.com/servingjesus99212

The homeless hold a special place in my heart. And God’s.

So many children have no homes—like Lena who I’ll feature in this month’s Orphans First newsletter – www.orphansfirst.org

Still, many who have homes are really homeless since they’ve not yet secured their Heavenly abode. Their home here, and all the rest that takes place here, keeps them from reflecting on the eternal. They think they’re independent, free from needing outside help, but in fact, they’re entrapped by dependence on temporality.

July 4th -- America celebrates independence. Me too. I celebrate being free. Free to follow Him as the Newsboys sing. And I celebrate living in a free country—but with a zeal to see America return to basics and not plunge deeper into the mire of filth, amorality, compromise, luke-warm-ness…etc.

Sweet America
Sweet America, land of dreams, you have been blessed.
Do not caste away your blessing,
As worthless waste for glitter that isn’t gold.
Rather, hold fast to the dream of pure gold.
Pure gold—that lines the streets above,
Golden pure from trials’ mold.
Purified gold because you chose,
To flee from what glitters to embrace the Gold.

Copyright©July 3rd 2007, Janey L. DeMeo