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Friday, October 11, 2013

The Lost Can Be Found!

Unless you live in a deep, dark, cave in remote America, you see our country struggling with morality, violence, disrespect, and a new normal. Everyone seems to want what they want, no matter the cost, no matter who is hurt. Our world is steeped in selfishness and in disregard for what is right. If it feels good, or if it makes me look good and have power over others, it is right. As a result those new normals as the world goes, drift down to our children. If these are their examples, then that is how they will deal with their world. When something or someone gets in the way, people will fight for their rights. If violence, injustice, rage, and disrespect is what they know, that is what they will use. Before I came to know Jesus as my Savior, I was terrible to others. It didn't matter if they were in a car messing up my schedule, or a clerk or waitress that wasn't perfect like me. I reacted with unjust rage, nasty words, and the worst bad attitude you have ever seen. If you messed up my day, my time, my plan, you were going to be run over by my nasty temper! I honestly do not know how I had any friends, much less a wonderful man, John, who wanted to marry me.

Unfortunately, we pass this on to the next generation, and then the next. As satan blinds us to these actions as being wrong, the more we become desensitized to our behavior. The behavior then increases in frequency and intensity. That is where our world is today. People want total power, total control, and if they can't have it, they will do whatever they have to to get their way. Our society has become so prideful they see no fault in themselves. It is much easier to blame someone else or something else for our action. That lets us off the hook. When I was so mean to others, I blamed my mother, because she was like that, and It wasn't my fault they messed up my day and valuable time. How silly that sounds.

We humans do not automatically come with patience, kindness, respect, and humility. It has to be learned and passed from generation to generation. Now out of all this, I have been shown frequently by God lately, that those in our country, our world, our cities that are so angry, so disrespectful, and so mean spirited, simply are lost. They are living like I did, before Jesus came into my heart and life, and changed me. I look back, and I can still feel those feelings that were so miserable, and so hate filled that I lashed out at anyone who crossed me. I know now that those people did not intend to make me mad, they did not purposely set out to make my life difficult. Since I can still project those feelings, I know I never want to feel that again. I may still feel hurt by others, and I still hate injustice, but the Spirit of God is in me now, and how I react is how He would have me react. It is by no means a done deal. I still can get angry and frustrated, but how I handle it reflects Christ in my life.

God has been impressing on me a lot lately that I need to really realize that I need to love even my enemies, and that includes enemies of my country, my city, and my neighborhood. That is so hard for my human skin form because it goes against what that skin, and the world tells us. Jesus died on a cross for me, my family, my friends, neighbors, and even my enemies. Jesus died for the lost, the angry, the violent, the evil, and the bullies of this world. He keeps showing me that it is because they are lost, just as I was, that they act with anger, violence, and immorality. I have been trying to pray for the lost. I can't change them, I can't let myself get upset by their actions. I can pray they find Jesus, and that their lives are turned around just as mine was.

I am also praying that parents and teachers can teach children to respect others, and to learn to take responsibility for their actions. When I grew up in the 40s and 50s, we were taught that grown ups, and police, teachers, parents had authority over us, and our job was to respect that, and obey. We didn't always like it, and in small ways we rebelled, but we also knew that disobedience came with swift and sometimes heavy consequences. Most of us were not willing to cross that line. We got in trouble sometimes, but we knew if we got caught, it would be dealt with. No one worried about our sensitive feelings, or how fair it was. Right was right, and wrong is wrong! Children are naturally self-centered, so teaching them God's word, respect for others, including all living things, is vital. If disrespect and hate is the legacy left, it will be the legacy passed on. If left unchecked, each generation becomes more resistant to the rules. Following Jesus is the first step to putting theses values back into America's framework. Matthew 7:12 says to treat others as we want to be treated. If we are going to teach it, we had better be living it! God's values are always applicable. Our job is to know Him, know His word, apply it, and pass it on, the next time you hear about someone doing something mean,nasty,  or violent....hard as it is! PRAY for them, and know they are lost. What they need is Jesus as their Lord and Savior!