God Prevails over Man Made Leadership but Choose your Leadership Wisely

It a scary time in America right now.  We don’t know what to expect from our political leadership right now.  They seem to be trying to change the system that we’ve had in America to a new system that exclusively benefits the wealthiest of the wealthy and makes it difficult for middle class and poor people to survive.  I think that the democratically elected Republican leadership in this country is downright evil and those that support it are stupid and evil as well.  Perilous times are ahead.

But the Bible tells us that there is nothing new under the sun.  The world has seen evil, self centered, arrogant, egotistical, conceited, cold hearted, foolish, greedy, tyrannical leadership before.  The Bible is full of stories of heavy handed poor leadership.  And those that were faithful to God always prevailed.

Please do not misunderstand me.  I’m not one of these passive Christians that opts out of politics because “The Lord always reigns supreme” or “God is in Control”.  I agree with these quotes but I don’t think that means you can’t have a political opinion and act in your best interest.  I can’t stand any of these flaky Christians that don’t vote because “The system is not Godly”.  I resent a lot of stupid, gullible Christians for helping to make America ground zero for future global economic collapse, xenophobia, racism, sexism, pedophilia, poor manners and general stupidity and ignorance.

At this point in human history Americans just have to take things day by day and be prayerful and have faith in God.  Take inspiration from Biblical heroes like Daniel who stood up to King Darius in the book of Daniel.  Also in Daniel, Nebuchadnezzar order three boys into a fiery furnace for not bowing down to him.   Be inspired by the stories of Moses and the Jews who were brutally oppressed by Pharaoh  in Exodus.  Remember the persecution of infants by King Herod in the Gospels.  All of those that were persecuted by evil leaders persevered with faith from God.  They were blessed because the were steadfast in their beliefs and unafraid of evil.

So remember that there is nothing new under the sun.  We live in uncertain times in America right now so have faith in God and love each other.  With that being said vote better next time and stop being so dense.  Don Don’s presidency has nothing to do with Jesus and it will not benefit you unless you are rich.  There is no need to test God like this.  I would believe in the Lord if I lived in Shangri-La so why did these fools open the flood gates of misery, poverty and pestilence.  Have faith.  Be smart.

Ecclesiastes 1:9King James Version (KJV)
9 The thing that hath been, it is that which shall be; and that which is done is that which shall be done: and there is no new thing under the sun.

2 Timothy 3:1-5New International Version (NIV)
3 But mark this: There will be terrible times in the last days. 2 People will be lovers of themselves, lovers of money, boastful, proud, abusive, disobedient to their parents, ungrateful, unholy, 3 without love, unforgiving, slanderous, without self-control, brutal, not lovers of the good, 4 treacherous, rash, conceited, lovers of pleasure rather than lovers of God— 5 having a form of godliness but denying its power. Have nothing to do with such people.

 

#metoo

I’ve been considering writing about my experience with rape for months.  I’ve thought about writing my story as a catharsis, for revenge and to help others.  The #metoo has helped me make the decision to publish my story.  I’m going to be very brief and to the point.  I don’t think all of the details are necessary.

Three years ago I met a man on OKCupid.  He and I communicated for around four months and I saw him in person two or three times within that time frame.  While I was getting to know this man that goes by the name David Gosh of Houston, Texas I told him that I was not interested in a sexual relationship.

I explained that I wanted to live my life by Biblical rules and that meant that I wouldn’t have sex again until I was married.  He told me that he respected that and sex would not be an issue in our relationship.  He traveled for work and came to Kansas City often.  On one of his trips to Kansas City I decided to spend time with him in his hotel room.  I told him that sex of all kinds was still off the table but we could kiss, hug and cuddle.

After I got off work I went to meet David.  We went to dinner and then back to his hotel room to relax and watch TV.  I brought a change of clothes, a tank top and sweat pants with me.  I changed into my comfortable clothes.  I had been to one of his hotel rooms before and that one had a couch.  This one didn’t have a couch area in front of a TV.  There was just a bed.  That was probably by design.

I got in the bed and David turned off the lights.  He began kissing me and groping me.  He began taking off my clothes and I told him no and to stop repeatedly.  Ultimately I gave in to his advances and the sex act happened.  Afterwards, David took a quick shower and told me he had to get up early tomorrow so I had to leave.

I changed my clothes and left.  After reliving the incident in my mind I felt very used and violated.  After a month I reported what happened to the Kansas City Police Department but I decided not to pursue charges for a variety of reasons.  His name was removed from the police report.

I’ve been taken advantage of in other ways before.  I’ve had my purse stolen, a credit card number stolen on a separate occasion.  I had a window busted out of my car and the radio was stolen.  In those situations after the window was fixed, I got a new purse and the credit card company was notified of the theft I felt whole and I was no longer affected by the crime.  But it is very difficult to get past a violation against your body.  I don’t know if this was made worse because I trusted the wrong person.

I never saw David again after that night.  Once I got home I texted him and let him know that I was upset and thought he was a rapist.  He doesn’t believe he raped me.  He said “I knew you wanted to fuck me when you said you brought different clothes”.  I brought the same type of clothes that I would have worn if I had gone home after work.

I also sent him a few hateful threatening e mails months later.  He asked if we could be friends again.  I laughed out loud when I read that.  That was my last contact with David Gosh of Houston, Texas.  I hope his home flooded.  If he even really lives in Houston or if David Gosh is even his name.  I don’t really know because my entire brief relationship with him was a lie.

 

 

Joel Osteen is a Victim of His Own Success

Earlier this week Hurricane Harvey his the Gulf Shore of Texas.  This storm has caused major damage and flooding to the city of Houston.  Harvey is being called a once in five hundred year storm.  After the hurricane weakened Houston received record rainfall.  Roads are impassable, homes are damaged and people have been displaced.

Houston is the home of televangelist Joel Osteen’s church.  The church was closed for the storm and upcoming services were cancelled.  Shortly after Harvey hit a young man went to Lakewood church and made a video which posed the question as to why the church was not open to the public.  It is unclear to me why the young man made the video.  I can’t tell if he was there seeking shelter or just there to complain.

The video circulated the internet and Twitter user spent the evening casting stones on Joel Osteen and his ministry.  The internet was mad that a church as prosperous as Lakewood was not open to serve the public during such a time.  They felt like it was hypocritical that the church would not be anxious to serve during a natural disaster and they were not buying that the church was flooded.

I think the criticism of Osteen and his church is unfair.  I am not a Joel Osteen fan and I don’t know much about his ministry.  But I think people need to give the man a break.  For goodness sakes he was in the same hurricane.  Do people think that the wealthy or pastors don’t get rained on?  Besides that churches are volunteer organizations.  All of those people were hit with a hurricane and flood.  So there may not have been adequate staff to serve anyone seeking refuge.

I also think it may have been unsafe to have a facility as large as Lakewood Church open during a big storm because it would draw a lot of traffic to it’s location.  It wouldn’t be wise to put a bunch of people on the roads when some roads are flooded.  There are logistics to be considered when trying to organize a relief effort.

I haven’t followed Osteen’s ministry over the years but from what I hear about him he is Christianity lite.  He’s all of the feel good, come as you are stuff and none of the discipline or fire and brimstone stuff which is pretty typical of modern American Christianity.  Modern Christianity treats Jesus Christ as if He were a genie in a bottle that is here to serve us.  When we are asked to served Him many of us think that the church is being too pushy and demanding.  If we are asked to discipline ourselves and be obedient many of us think that we are being controlled and that  our freedom is being restricted.

This is why I think Osteen is a victim of his own success.  It sounds to me like he preaches a self centered gospel that does not ask worshipper for a sacrifice.  That creates self centered Christians that feel that they need to be served by the church but the church shouldn’t ask service of the community.

And that’s what we’ve seen this week from people that have bashed Joel Osteen and Lakewood Church.  They instantly became angry when the community’s needs weren’t being met by this church but very few people asked what they could do to help the church.  No one asked it the pastor and his staff was OK.  The criticism was very self centered.

But I have to wonder if Osteen caused his own problem by preaching a gospel that is acceptable to the masses.  If churches are going to preach a me, me, me gospel be prepared to serve a demanding self focused congregation.

 

Donald Trump is NOT a Christian

Donald Trump is not a Christian.  There is absolutely no way.  Even if you only go to church around Christmas and on Easter you should know enough about our Lord and Savior to know that Trump is not patterning himself after Him.  We all fall short, we all stumble and I think we are all hypocrites but Trump isn’t even trying to act like a Christian.  This can’t possible be his best pious act because there isn’t that much failure in the world.  That is unless he doesn’t even know how a Christian should behave.

If you don’t believe me here are a few Bible verses that should lead you to believe that Trump is no more Christian than a snapping turtle.

 

Matthew 7 :15-20

“Watch out for false prophets.  They come to you in sheep’s clothing, but inwardly they are ferocious wolves.  By their fruit you will recognize them.  Do people pick grapes from thornbushes, or figs from thistles?  Likewise, every good tree bears good fruit, but a bad tree bears bad fruit.  A good tree cannot bear bad fruit, and a bad tree cannot bear good fruit.  Every tree that does not bear good fruit is cut down and thrown into the fire.  Thus, by their fruit you will recognize them.

Trump incited violence while he was running for office.  He has exacerbated racial tension in this country.  He encouraged police officers to mistreat people in custody.  The White House is in chaos.  These are the fruits of the Trump administration so far.  I can’t think of one positive thing that the man has accomplished so far.  These are not the fruits of a man that is being lead by God.

A lot of Christians believe that Trump is a Christian but I believe he is just a wolf in sheep’s clothing that talks a religious game to gain popularity.  He’s a charlatan and a lot of Christians have been had.  He rattles off a few Bible verses as a smokescreen before putting racist policies into play.  That is the way fake, White, American Christianity works.  It’s always been used as a way to sell racism to the White masses.  It hasn’t stopped working since the Pilgrims landed on Plymouth Rock.

Galatians 3:28

There is neither Jew nor Gentile, neither slave nor free, nor is there male and female, for you are all one in Christ Jesus.

There is absolutely no Biblical basis for racism.  None!  But Mr. Trump, his Cabinet and party have been busy making racist policies.  In fact they campaigned on racism and won.  Trump and his supporters may think they are Christian but everybody talking about heaven ain’t going there.  Racists are going to burn in hell right along with their president.

Luke 16:18

“Anyone who divorces his wife and marries another woman commits adultery, and the man who marries a divorced woman commits adultery.

I’ll leave this right here.

Proverbs 31:30-31
Charm is deceptive, and beauty is fleeting; but a woman who fears the LORD is to be praised.  Honor her for all that her hands have done, and let her works bring her praise at the city gate.

Women should be honored for their works and not their looks.  What a concept.  I don’t think the Bible mentions grabbing women by the #($$% even once.

1 Timothy 6:10

For the love of money is a root of all kinds of evil.  Some people, eager for money, have wandered from the faith and pierced themselves with many griefs.

We all know Trump loves him some money.  Donny has been famous a long time and I’ve heard him mention his love of money many times.  I never once heard him mention loving the Lord until his presidential campaign.

2 Timothy 3:1-5

But mark this:  There will be terrible times in the last days.  People will be lover of themselves, lover of money, boastful, proud, abusive, disobedient to their parents, ungrateful, unholy, without love, unforgiving, slanderous, without self-control, brutal, not lovers of good, treacherous, rash, conceited, lovers of pleasure rather than lovers of God-having a form of godliness but denying its power.  Have nothing to do with such people.

My goodness this describes Trump to a t.  What does it say about a nation that would elect such a man?

 

 

 

Who is Responsible for Sexual Purity?

Who is responsible for sexual purity?  According to the cultural mores of today, which in some circles is similar to the cultural mores of Massachusetts in the 1600s, it seems as though it is solely the woman’s responsibility to uphold sexual purity.  Women are told you are worth the wait.  Women are told to save themselves for their true love and the man they will marry.  Women are told to respect themselves and remain chaste.

Well meaning folks encourage women to remain pure by telling them they are princesses and queens who should wait for their kings.  All of this preaching to women is assuming that women only have sex in order to satisfy men.  This is often the case but sometimes women have sex because they want to do it and they are seeking pleasure.

Is it possible for a woman to have self respect, dignity, value herself, want true love be a princess and satisfy her sex drive?  Women and have desires and fantasies too.  Sometimes women are tempted to sin because they find a man charming and attractive.  Women do not always have pre marital sex because of pressure from a boyfriend (that’s called rape).  Sometimes the woman wants a lover.

If we are going to preach about sexual purity we need to be honest.  Women are not always pure and innocent.  Men are not always the aggressors.  Women are not always victims that were taken advantage of in every sex act between unmarried people (that’s called rape).  Women need to learn discipline, obedience, sacrifice and self control just like men do.  I think we need to lay off all the princess wait on your man bull****.  You should practice abstinence until marriage to please your heavenly father not flawed men here on Earth that you are hoping to marry.

It also bothers me that women are taught to protect their so called purity and wait on their future spouses but men are not.  I don’t understand why the rules are different.  If a woman’s body is precious so is a man’s.  If a woman needs to protect her heart so should a man.  The Bible tells everyone that the proper context for sexual activity is marriage.  Fornication is not a gender specific sin.

If Christians want to teach abstinence they should teach men and women to trust God and be obedient to his word.  Christians need to encourage others to discipline themselves and not to do things that feed the flesh.  I don’t think it’s a good idea to teach people to wait.  Because honestly, Mr. or Ms. Right may not show up when you want.  Waiting causes a lot of frustration.

Men and women need to be taught to respect each other’s boundaries and not tempt other’s into sin.  Get to know a potential mate’s heart, intellect and soul before you bring sex into the picture.  You will have a stronger marriage later.  At least that’s what I’m hoping.  It’s not solely a woman’s responsibility to uphold sexual purity and protect marriage.  Men need to help.

1 Corinthians 6:18

Flee fornication.  Every sin that a man doeth is without the body;  but he that committeth fornication sinneth against his own body. KJV

 

 

 

 

God’s Timing

I have been very blessed recently.  Over the last six months I’ve been blessed with a new car and a new job.  I had been a little concerned over the last year or so because of my transportation needs.  My last car was a 2005 with about 140,000 miles on it and it had received a few very expensive repairs recently.  I knew that I would need a new car in the near future but I didn’t know how I could manage the payments while working as a server in a Mexican restaurant.

I received my first college degree in 1997.  I received my second in 2003.  I received a masters degree in 2012.  Despite my academic accomplishments I have held a string of low wage dead end jobs.  I struggled for years to get my foot in the door of a design or marketing career and failed.  But last month I got a job in marketing which utilizes my graphic design and writing skills.

It would take me way too long to explain how these blessings came into my life.  But I believe that God was in both situations and God’s timing put my in the right places at the right time in order to receive God’s favor.  A string of circumstances came together in order to change my life for the better.  There were times that I was afraid to make the step forward but I trusted in God and He provided for me.

As I have gotten older I have gained a great appreciation for time.  It’s very hard to even grasp the concept of time while you are young because you haven’t seen enough of it pass.  But as I live and I have more time behind me I see how God has had His hand on my life.

I am forty one years old and I will celebrate another birthday in February.  I have never married or had children.  I have a great deal of student loan debt and despite my recent career advancement I still don’t make a great deal of money.  Statistically speaking my life is half over and my child bearing years may be over.  But I have never been more excited about my future.  I am very encouraged right now to read my Bible and be in prayer.  I can’t wait to see what God is going to do next.

How Tithing Shaped My Views on Money

tithing

About ten years ago I decided to get serious about my Christian beliefs.  I wanted to be obedient to the word of God and stop picking and choosing the scriptures I would adhere to.  I wanted to submit myself to God and stop be a disciplined Christian.  I decided to fully commit to tithing %10 of my income.

Tithing is a controversial and heavily criticized practice.  I don’t understand the criticism.  Churches have bills and expenses like everyone else.  I think that if you attend a church that is ministering to people, changing lives and reaching out to the surrounding community in a charitable way you should help support the church financially.  Nothing in this world is free and I believe in putting your money where your mouth is.

You can tell where a person’s heart really is by where they consistently put their money.  If they spend money at a sporting goods store, a book store, or a store that sells designer fashions you can tell where their passion lies.  If a person spends most of their money on their child or a lover you have no doubt about how they feel about that person.  If a Christian believes in their church and trusts their pastoral staff they should financially support their mission as long as it aligns with scripture.  If they don’t trust the pastor or support the churches mission they should find a different church.

Tithing has been a great spiritual exercise for me.  It has taught me to not become too attached to money and material possessions.  I have also learned a lot about generosity, sacrifice and selflessness.  Whether you have a lot of money or a little it is very easy to exalt money in your life and make it a god.  Tithing has given me a different perspective on money.  Money is very important but it is not the end all be all.  Money is not a constant.  Money and it’s source is easy come easy go.

I have to be honest.  There have been times when I had to make a mental IOU to God because if I wrote a check for %10 of what I anticipate earning the next week the check would have bounced.  But I will also say that tithing has in no way been a detriment to me.  I’ve always gotten the bills paid.  I’ve always had money for my necessities and I’ve usually had money for things that I want (within reason).  There has always been enough.

I wish I had a story to tell you about me tithing at church and then I hit the lottery next week.  Nothing that dramatic has ever happened to me and I do not believe in prosperity Christianity at all.  However, I have always made ends meet even when money has been tight.  I have been blessed and God has always made a way for my household.  I have had several financial blessings come my way.  I believe that these blessings come from being obedient to God and the financial discipline that tithing brings.

The world we live in is absolutely consumed by greed.  People do horrible things in the pursuit of money.  The lack of money and the chase for more creates a great deal of anxiety and stress.  Tithing is a great practice because it teaches you to prioritize something ahead of your own financial gain.  Tithing teaches you to turn to God for your needs instead of your own ability to earn money.  Tithing also teaches you discipline which will help your finances in the long run.  I believe that tithing has been a blessing in my life in more ways than one.