“And ye shall hear of wars and rumours of wars: see that ye be not troubled: for all these things must come to pass, but the end is not yet. For nation shall rise against nation, and kingdom against kingdom: and there shall be famines, and pestilences, and earthquakes, in divers places. All these are the beginning of sorrows.” — Matthew 24:6-8 KJV
I recently wrote that nowadays the world seems on fire and I just can’t watch it burn. I believe in being informed. But, it’s also important not to be misinformed and it’s also important not to fall in the trap of getting emotionally worked up and either angry, fixated or hopeless. I mean that’s what the donkey and the elephant want. It’s what the ‘news’ media and social media want. But, it’s not what I want. It’s not what Jesus wants for us either.
I was raised to pay close attention to society, religion and politics. For many good reasons. however, that was long before the 24/7 instant news-tainment was a thing, much less a hand held device to keep it coming constantly, right?! I have to turn my phone face down at night or the flashing ‘urgent’ notifications wake us up at night! Lol.
I started pulling back from the news November 2018. But, at the turn of this year I felt the Lord encourage me to keep my eyes on Him, so that I don’t get distracted from what’s most important. For me, too much news crowds out what, for me, is most important to my assignment. (I believe we all have assignments, more on this another day!)
I stay informed. But, I keep it short. And I move on. The verse He put on my heart, I come back to over and over, it’s a commonly quoted verse on social media, because it’s bulletproof! — “Thou wilt keep him in perfect peace, whose mind is stayed on thee: because he trusteth in thee.” — Isaiah 26:3. Says it all for me. And it’s so true!
I particularly like in the Matthew 24 verse above, that He tells us ‘See that ye be not troubled’. It means we have a choice in whether we get upset or not. By His grace we can relearn how to respond to the news. I have to try to not be shoved, mentally, into the quick reaction the media is hoping for, (and the political parties as well). I’m learning response is measured and I control it. Reaction is volatile and it controls me. That’s not going to work. It’s not what we are made for. Self control is my favorite fruit of the spirit. Now, I’ve come a long way in this regard, but of course, I still have far to go! It’s ok though! I’m learning and the Holy Spirit is a great teacher.
Here’s another fool proof verse for keeping our focus so that we are most effective at being salt and light wherever we are and whatever we do! — “Finally, brethren, whatsoever things are true, whatsoever things are honest, whatsoever things are just, whatsoever things are pure, whatsoever things are lovely, whatsoever things are of good report; if there be any virtue, and if there be any praise, THINK on these things.” — Philippians 4:8
For me, my goal is to not dull my shine, not waste my salt. Train my mind to respond, mentally to what I learn, pray and move on, not react and get emotionally worked up, which leads to (in my case) unhelpful attitudes, and words. It’s tricky. Because I do believe there’s a lot of evil in this world. And evil can cause a reaction for obvious reasons. But, in the darkness light shines the brightest! We have His light if He lives in our hearts, so I’m going to respond. In faith. And move on.
I’m learning. Like Robert Frost said ‘And miles to go before I sleep, And miles to go before I sleep.’
This might be the start (or might not, we will see!) of a Tuesdays are for Thinking series!
I hope your day is filled with His peace and thoughts of virtuous, lovely and ‘good report’ things!
Some thoughts on 4 things I’ve learned. Being a parent is such a great gift. It teaches you so much about how we are supposed to live and our relationship with our Father. And the kids themselves teach you beautiful things, too.
Free Will: As a parent, the Lord taught me the power and purity of free will. We really don’t give Him enough credit for that one. It’s huge. And it’s like a boomerang, because you get to choose, every day, all the time, all these things. And you are attached to these choices, so you will own them, and He has grace for you to overcome and make more wise choices, and it just goes on and on. It’s a strong Father that can do that. No cajoling, no pleading, just free will. Because only what we WANT to do, with a glad and happy heart is what He longs for. ❤️
Unconditional Love: I’ll never forget learning this lesson. It was so painful. When our oldest son moved out (a longgggg time ago) the Lord showed me, that while I loved our son unconditionally, I had not shown that love to him unconditionally. It was a crushing realization, but we learn our most from our mistakes. It’s not enough to love unconditionally. You must communicate that love in a manner that shows it’s unconditional. People on the outside looking in, will judge. They will think they know better. They don’t. Nobody but you and the Lord really know. You live before Him. And Him alone. And He’s the best teacher of love and parenting. Anything I ever get right as a parent or grandparent it’s because I listened to the Lord. Anything I miss. Anything I get wrong, well, it’s because I went my own way, even though unintentionally.
Two things I learned from our sons:
Don’t rush. Be still, be slow, enjoy the moment, take it all in. Take your time. Breathe. Kind people are not in a hurry all the time. Gentle people are not rushing around. That’s it.
Acceptance: accept people for who they are, just like they are. Not as we’d like them to be. Or how we think they ought to be. But, just as they are, just like that. It might sound strange, it’s so simple a thing. Just accept. Here’s part of the dictionary definition: “the action or process of being received as adequate or suitable, typically to be admitted into a group. “you must wait for acceptance into the club” – this is a quality of children, right? We tend to lose it as adults, but I don’t think either of our sons ever lost it. I think they got that from their Dad, and I learned it from them.
This is what happens when you’ve had the virus and been having too much time in your head! 😅💚
Young men used to lie about their age to be able to fight for this country. Now they are offended by certain cartoons 🙄 We as parents have failed to protect our kids from society’s idea of what’s right and what is wrong …the world according to Batman
“…I PLEAD WITH YOU TO WALK holy, IN A WAY THAT IS SUITABLE TO YOUR HIGH RANK, given to you in your divine calling. WITH TENDER HUMILITY AND QUIET PATIENCE ALWAYS DEMONSTRATE GENTLENESS AND GENEROUS LOVE TOWARD ONE ANOTHER, especially toward those who may try your patience. BE FAITHFUL TO GUARD THE SWEET HARMONY OF THE HOLY SPIRIT AMONG YOU in the bonds of peace…” — Ephesians 4:1b-3
A wise woman who I miss very much, taught me when I was very young, that when we become elderly, and are at or near the finish line, we can at times, become sort of caricatures of ourselves, depending on the choices we make in our lives.
Sometimes, as the end is in sight, we may not have all the strength of our reasoning in its normal state. Our reasoning, or our governing of ourselves, I should say, may be a bit relaxed or off balance from in our younger days.
Whatever we have fed in our lives may end up holding the larger sway. All the more reason to each day, walk in the Spirit, because when we do, then we do not “fulfill the lusts of the flesh”, Galatians 5:16b, as each decision makes a path in our heart and in our mind. The Word tells us, to not to be “conformed to this world” but instead to be “transformed by the renewing” of our mind(Romans 12:2).
The wise woman I knew, she worked in healthcare, and had seen a lot of this latter stage of life for people, who were not feeling themselves. It was a cautionary tale for sure.
I guess I have had some cause to think about the culmination of the daily little choices we make, and what those choices do to us in the inside of us, the most real part of us. Those things we choose to think about, and either appreciate or fester over. I don’t want to be one who festers. I want to be one who appreciates. The sunshine, my husband, our good health, our children and grandchildren, our siblings, that we have had good parents, greatest of all our salvation and relationship with Jesus!
I don’t want to waste time on the real (hurts) or imagined (worries). I want to process them, somewhat like laundry, learn from them, forgive myself or others, give it to Jesus, move on. —“Casting the whole of your care [all your anxieties, all your worries, all your concerns, [once and for all] on Him, for He cares for you affectionately and cares about you watchfully.” — 1 Peter 5:7
I know some hurts are monumental, and it’s easy to say. “But, you don’t know how badly they have hurt me” and to that, I say you are right. But, I also know you deserve to live and love, and enjoy what is here right now. Don’t let them rob you, not one more day. Not one more minute.
“Brethren, I count not myself to have apprehended: but this ONE THING I do, FORGETTING THOSE THINGS WHICH ARE BEHIND, and REACHING FORTH unto THOSE THINGS WHICH ARE BEFORE, I PRESS TOWARD THE MARK for the prize of the high calling of God in Christ Jesus” — Philippians 3:13-14
Love either near (those in your now circle) or from afar (those in your past), pray for them all, every day, but that doesn’t mean they get to sit in prime real estate in your head carving their initials. Evict them from your heart, as well as the well rehearsed pain.
“Finally, brethren, whatsoever things are TRUE, whatsoever things are HONEST, whatsoever things are JUST, whatsoever things are PURE, whatsoever things are LOVELY, whatsoever things are of GOOD REPORT; if there be any VIRTUE, and if there be ANY PRAISE, THINK ON THESE THINGS.” — Philippians 4:8
Remember, our Father God sees our end from our beginning (Isaiah 46:10) He has good for us, if we will accompany Him to the future He has yet ahead for us!
“This is what the Lord says: “You will be in Babylon for seventy years. BUT THEN I WILL COME TO YOU AND DO FOR YOU ALL THE GOOD THINGS I HAVE PROMISED, and I will bring you home again. For I KNOW THE PLANS I HAVE FOR YOU,” says the Lord. “They are PLANS FOR GOOD AND NOT FOR DISASTER, TO GIVE YOU A FUTURE AND A HOPE. In those days when you pray, I will listen. IF YOU LOOK FOR ME WHOLEHEARTEDLY, YOU WILL FIND ME. I WILL BE FOUND BY YOU,” says the Lord. “I WILL end your captivity and RESTORE YOUR FORTUNES.” — Jeremiah 29:10-14
What inspired this? The passing of time, the loss of relationships, the finality of the passing of a good and precious life and the vacuum that has made. The choices we who remain make now, to hopefully live leaving a trail of love, hope, joy, affirmation, faith, and much grace, for our loved ones to follow. May our trail be clear, filled with good things to help them along their way!! — “Be ye followers of me, even as I also am of Christ.” — 1 Corinthians 11:1
Thank you for stopping in!! It means so much to share these thoughts in hopes it might encourage you along your way!!
I leave you with the closing of a favorite poem of mine, by Robert Frost, who I so enjoy!
Not what you think I am willing to bet, unless you are in tune with the way my mind works and honestly, not many are (including me sometimes).
Sitting in a restaurant, when suddenly you get the “feeling” someone is watching you, walking down a street, there it is again. Late at night at home, you get the impression that something isn’t quite right, what is really going on? Wander along with me while we explore the possibilities of what these things could mean, and how we can handle them, be it a figment of the imagination, or something else…
First and foremost, I am not nor have I ever clamed to be an “expert” or doctor of ANY kind, the best I can do is Army first aid, and first responder first aid training, never been a fan or believer in “head doctors” Psychiatrists or the likes, that’s just me. I was brought up to believe in God, and I have NEVER waivered from that belief, anyways, wanted to point out that the ramblings here are from a person not trained in mental anything.
So back to those “feelings”, the ones that make us feel uncomfortable, or unsafe, what are they really? For this old boy, they are indicators of something dangerous, something unsafe or amiss. See, I am from the school that believes that the human body and mind can sense things, like danger prior to actually seeing it, can “feel” a dangerous person in the room or area. This can also be animals or areas, that for some reason the mind knows are dangerous even though there are no outward signs. I haven’t fallen off the deep end, I do not believe in the ability to read minds, or the like. But I do believe that some of us have learned not to suppress the abilities that God gave us to sense danger or harmful events, people, or animals. While eating out with your friends or family, I honestly believe everyone at one time or another has been effected by the sudden “feeling” something was wrong or someone was staring at them , I know I have on several occasions. Why is this? What is occurring that causes this “feeling” and why do some people get it more than others? Bigger question is, why do more people NOT react, instead they put it down to anything else, and continue with whatever they were doing.
As a hunter, and I have hunted wild animals, and men (still do as a Police Officer) I have been “hunted” as a Soldier and as a Police Officer, and it is, to put in plain speak, scary to know someone is “hunting” you with the intent to harm you, until you have been there, its a “feeling” you cannot understand. As a relatively normal person (shush Peach) I like to enjoy my time out with Peach and with family and friends. But because of being hyper-vigilant most of my adult life, I have developed the “feeling” for danger, and it helps keep me on my toes. Chances are that you will go through your entire life and never be confronted with a dangerous situation or person. This does not mean it won’t happen, but the chances are pretty good it won’t, and to my dismay, this is why people ignore or suppress the “feeling” that comes over them at times. This “feeling” is suppressed so often by the average person that it does not even get recognized anymore. This is a shame, and may lead to unnecessary events that could be avoided if they would only pay attention to what they “feel”.
Gong back to the previous post about Human Trafficking, and using your eyes and ears for danger, if you allow your sense of “feeling” danger develop and do not block it out or ignore it, it would be one more tool to use. Animals all have this sense, and all use it all the time. Granted the oblivious armadillo, or opossum, or raccoon wander into the roadways and get taken out on an hourly basis, but observe them in the wild and you will see a side of them that is pretty interesting. Here, let me give you a personal example; I was in a ground blind last year, hunting deer with a bow. It was a slow morning and the woods were still, birds were all over singing and flying around and there were a couple of squirrels playing around 15 yards or so away. I suddenly “knew” a predator was around, I hadn’t heard anything, or seen anything but I knew without a doubt that I was not the only hunter in that immediate area at that time. The hairs on the back of my neck felt like they were standing straight out on my arms to, and I became hyper-alert. The squirrels and birds were still feeding and playing and then everything stopped. It was as if someone threw a switch, birds melted into oblivion, the squirrels froze in place and it was apparent they could “sense” the danger I felt seconds prior. I looked down at something in my blind and when I did I heard a thump out in front of me, as I looked up a bobcat (seen a lot of bobcats in my time this one was HUGE) was coming down from the tree he had jumped into chasing one of the squirrels. Flabbergasted is the only way I can describe my thoughts, there was less that 2 seconds before NOTHING around for 40-50′ in a pretty wide open area, and “poof” there was the largest bobcat I have ever seen coming down from an unsuccessful “pounce” after a squirrel. I “felt” his presence 20-30 seconds before his beaming down from wherever (how else he got there without me seeing his approach I cannot explain), the animals also picked this “feeling” up and acted upon it. Over my years as an outdoorsman and hunter, I have had this “feeling” numerous times, I sometimes suppress it if I am with others so as not to frighten them, but I remain on alert.
What does all this mean, why the ramble and why all the fuss about a “feeling” that most people will deny they ever get? Because I feel in todays time and atmosphere that people need to be extra careful of danger. People need to trust their instincts about people or situations, their senses should play a part and not be ignored. God gave us the ability to think, reason, prepare and defend, we should use ALL His gifts to help us do so.
Pay attention to your surroundings, pay attention to people, places and things. Lock your doors and windows when you are home and in your car, “listen” to that nagging voice, or feeling, listen to a trusted friend when they warn you of something. Who would warn you against a potential danger, except someone who has your interest in mind.
As a lifelong hunter of the evil most say “does not exist” my hope is none of you ever come face to face with it, as its ugly and violent and has only evil in mind. Take care of yourselves, take care of your family and friends, watch out when you have that “feeling”, it really is there to help. Myself and other “hunters of evil” will always do our best to keep you and yours safe, but do not think evil can’t find you even still.
“Put on the full armor of God, so that ye may be able to stand against the wiles of the devil” Ephesians 6:11
I’m not sure why, but I’m sure it is going on, most of the world turning a blind eye to “Human Trafficking”. Where are the outcry’s of rage? Where is the supposed “news media”, where are the family members of missing loved ones? Where are the Police? Where are the elected officials? Where for Gods sake are the red blooded American citizens who should be beating down the powers that be’s doors?
There are an estimated 800,000 missing children EVERY YEAR and these estimates are lowballed and do not include adults. There are evil people out there, snatching kids off the streets, playgrounds, and even yards, to sell as slaves and sex objects. It is not a new thing, it has been going on for ages, in the background, silently and stealthily, people are being snatched and disappear hourly.
Where is the outcry? It makes no sense, with all the families of the missing, there should be marching in the streets. Where is the so called news media, that says they have the public’s interest at heart in their “news” stories, one would think something like this would be front and center DAILY so people would see the severity of the problem and rise up to begin to stop it. They are not reporting it because it’s not sensational enough, there are no bad cops to show, nor politicians whose ideas they don’t agree with to bash, therefore they do not care. Folks to fix the news media is another story all by itself, but emailing and writing may help, I suggest something radical that I’m sure not a lot will do, but it would work, stop watching the news, stop watching that network, the one thing I do know these people want is ratings, without you they don’t have that, then they send out polls as to why and you can express your opinion and tell them why, but this is about the missing not the biased news.
This is no fantasy story, nor something happening only in lower class places, this is something that effects us all. Human traffickers care about only one thing, money, and to get money they need live bodies, boys, girls, men and women are ALL targets. We as people have GOT to make a stand and start thwarting these (and I won’t use foul language) lowest of life forms on the planet, by EVERY means available to us.
Here are a few tips:
Moms and Dads know where your kids are at all times
Watch your neighborhood, call the Police over suspicious people and / vehicles
Go places as groups not alone
Look at your surroundings as you move about, look up, not at your feet
Always tell someone where you are going to be, and when to expect you back
Let someone know your route you plan to take.
(Where it’s legal) Carry pepper spray, mace, or a stun gun, in your hand Anytime you are walking or running.
Park your car as close to the store you’re visiting as you can get, under a light if possible.
Do not park next to a van or truck, especially if it is between you and the store front.
When you leave the store Know where your vehicle is prior to wandering all over the lot.
(Where it’s legal) Walking to your vehicle have your pepper spray / mace/stun gun in your hand until you are in your car, with the door locked. Look at your car, does it look like it’s been disturbed? Is there a car or truck or even a car with dark tinted windows around it? If so, ask a store worker to walk you to your car.
There are hundreds of things we can do to make ourselves and our children and friends “hard targets” but it takes constant vigilance to do it.
As a Police Officer, I am appalled at the lack of concern, lack of public knowledge, lack of commitment by most anyone on this subject. It’s a disgrace and should not be allowed to stand.
Folks, if you know ANYTHING at all that could lead to finding even one missing person, one human trafficker, one location, or anything, I beg you to tell a Law Enforcement Officer, or anyone you can that may be able to help…if you’re afraid or don’t want to get involved, message us here privately and we will get the right people to the right places.
Together we can stop this horrible crime and maybe rescue someone’s loved one in the meantime.
Use the tips I posted 24 hours a day 7 days a week, pass them to your friends and family, pass the word around, information and diligence is key and together we can win.
Peach and I are both available to speak to groups about personal safety, just shoot us a message and we will see what we can come up with.
God bless you all and please be safe.
“Your stun gunis fully charged Peach, is my hair sticking up?”
I see a lot of scared people theses days, some are scared of the so called pandemic, but most I see, are scared at the unrest.
I see people that are afraid to leave their houses, afraid that someone will loot their business, rob them, and or harm them. These are normal everyday people, good people that should be able to rest easy and get on with their lives without fear.
Some of these people come to see Peach and I to get trained in how to protect themselves. They want to learn how to shoot, how to defend themselves against someone who thinks they are a lesser person. These are everyday people, moms and dads, store managers, retirees, whatever. Peach and I help the ones we can with good safe training and teaching skills to improve awareness, plus shooting skills that are relevant in real daily life.
But what we really see needed is a return to Godliness, a return to following Gods teachings and more faith and grace. I’m by no means a preacher, I know I have faults but I pray every night to be forgiven and every morning that I do better than the last.
If the world would stop trying to deny God’s existence, and just for 1 month follow His word, I guarantee there would be no need for people to want firearms training, no need to be afraid, only the need to live in grace.
Till then (if it ever happens), Peach and I will teach the skills needed to defend oneself and others against the evil that exists out there.
Word to my brothers and sisters in “Blue” “Cowboy up and do your job, you took an oath to protect and defend the Constitution of the United States, an oath to protect and defend the Constitution of your state, and of your agency or department, do not let crime happen if you can stop it, millions of people are counting on us to Do Our Jobs and Protect them, if you cannot or will not do that, turn your crap in and find a different line of work”.
If this offends you, tough, we do not stand by and watch people attacked by mask wearing punks and do nothing, if you do you’re no better than they are.
Anywho, I’m climbing off my podium and gonna hang out with Peach, you all have a blessed day/night/whatever.
Sitting out on the deck early this morning before most of this part of the world wakes up, I closed my eyes and just listened. Ever do that? Just listen? Interesting what the result may be if you do. Because I was outdoors, and Peach and I live out in the country (not deep in the woods away from all sounds of man like I wish but, still country folk) I get to hear nature, sometimes mans noise butts in, but mainly nature. Early like this, there are still night creatures about but also the day crews are waking up and moving about. It’s a peaceful time, and the amount of nature that could be heard (probably could hear more, but for years of teaching shooting numbing my hearing 😳) night hawks, whip-or-wills (Chuck-will’s-widow more often) early morning Cardinals, Mocking birds and of course, the always present sound of roosters crowing, Horned owls, Barred owls, and Screech owls… you get the idea. All add their voices at one time or another, together or separate, frequent or rarely, and just listening to them relaxes me.
There are at times no sounds at all, it’s creepy still, the time of morning or night when as Sherlock Holmes put it “the powers of evil are exalted”. Times like these some get nervous or frightened, but as Don Williams sang “Nothing makes a sound in the night like the wind does, but you’re not afraid if you’re washed in the blood like I was”. Night sounds (early morning, too) can stir up fears in people, an involuntary reaction stemming back to the days when it was kill or be killed, and wild carnivores roamed everywhere, it also stems from man’s evilness to one another where certain elements prey on weaker victims. But in the here and now, the sounds I hear are stealthy, and then some are musical, neither cause fear as I have and still hunt the evil most refuse to acknowledge exists and fear little in doing so (“Fear profits no man” ..13th Warrior). Settling more in my comfy chair I hear leaves rustle, probably a mouse or mole looking for edible yummies, as I look up thru the live oak leaves to the crystal clear ink black sky with its brilliant sparkly lights (them is stars in case you didn’t get it) flashing colorful lights from far away. You can almost hear the trees talking to the wind and each other (probably wondering why we get to move around when they can’t) with soft subtle voices that you either believe in or don’t. If you believe, you can quietly hear the soft voices on the wind, maybe not understand them but you can hear them if you listen. Most refuse to hear those quiet voices from things in nature, especially those they hear when it is dark, and they do it out of fears. Fears of the unknown, fears others may not have heard it and would ridicule or belittle them, fears they would lose friendships or companions.
“Fear does not stop death it stops Life and worrying does not take away tomorrow’s troubles it takes away today’s Peace”
If you must fear, the fear should be that you have let God down by not following his word. (Squirrel ran by…apologies)
Listening teaches us so much more than talking does, and if most people would open their ears and close their mouths, they would learn tons and there would be way less conflict. So I sit, when I can, be it at home or at work (rare but I do sometimes get the chance) and I listen to what the world is trying to tell me. I hear the sunrise, I hear the wind, I hear Gods creations great and small. I don’t always understand them, but I hear them all, each has its own unique voice, some booming some barely perceptible. None of these would I be able to hear if all I did was talk. The gift of silence is often underestimated, but having the ability to let someone talk or vent, without interjecting, is a rare ability that more people need. Take the time to shut up and just listen, I bet you hear a lot and maybe learn to appreciate silence more.