Tuesday, March 22, 2016

"My definition of an intellectual is someone who can listen to the William Tell Overture without thinking of the Lone Ranger!" ~ Copied

I listened in horror to the BBC feed coming into work at 3:30 a.m. this morning as they reported on what appears to be terror attacks in Brussels. My heart goes out to all those impacted by these deadly attacks. May God help. Amen.

Thinking about our cool down you have to love the Gulf Coast contrast. Record heat at near 90 last week and near freezing this week. I cast my vote for the lower temps but to each his or her own. Good Tuesday morning and welcome here on this March 22, 2016. I heard a fellow tell a joke the other day where he was sadly recounting how his uncle had been given only six months to live by his doctor. His uncle told the doctor that he was sorry but given that short period he would likely not be able to pay the doctor what he was owed. The doctor promptly gave him another six months. I thought that was funny. You might not. We all are made to laugh by different things. I see it all the time. The wife and I see the same gag on TV. She thinks it is hilarious and I can hardly manage a smile. Different. I saw some advice that I thought was humorous, "If you see someone crying don't ask if it's because of their haircut." Then we have the category that we all love: Poetic Justice. One fellow shared a real experience he recently had. "The fellow who came close to running over me, grabbed the parking spot, and made an obscene gesture towards me, well, he was just ushered into my office for his job interview." The little ditties that feature wordplay can also be amusing. "What do you call a snobbish criminal going down the stairs?" "I give up." "A condescending con descending." One last one for my diabetic brothers and sisters: "Give up carbs? Over my bread body." Some pretty cheesy stuff to get our day started but let's move on and hope for something better. Me too!

There are also things laughed about by some that are very offensive to others. I did see someone who suggested that Donald Trump should name Don Rickles as his vice presidential running mate. Here's what Don had to say about his type of humor: "You know, every night when I go out on stage, there's always one nagging fear in the back of my mind. I'm always afraid that somewhere out there, there is one person in the audience that I'm NOT going to offend!" Sounds like those two are meant for each other. No. That's not an endorsement of any sort, just an observation about this stunningly weird political season unfolding before our very eyes. Last Sunday evening a lady in our Bible study time told me that in her wildest thoughts she never could have imagined anything like what we are seeing played out each day. That got me to wondering. I've said the same thing. Many times. Does anyone stand to gain from everyone thinking that this is the most absurd campaign ever? Sorry. I hate to think that way but many people I know are becoming increasingly disgusted by the entire debacle. Disgusted people will respond in a certain way. They may throw in the towel. They may not vote. That will favor someone. God only knows. That I do know to be the truth. Other than that, I don't have any answers about what we are going through.

That little tidbit didn't do much to lift us up for today other than the truth about God being in control. It brings us to the question of what we can do about it. Pray. I remember once when I was conducting a planning seminar for a Church and a little lady put forth the premise that maybe their lack of ministry effectiveness had something to do with the status of their collective prayer life. I immediately responded by saying prayer was a good thing but we needed to come up with specific action plans to make progress. The pastor wisely called for a timeout. He said maybe the assembled group needed to talk about what the lady had mentioned. Prayer. What followed was more than two hours of discussion that led to all types of prayer initiatives to encourage individual and group prayers to God to enable their ministry efforts. I stood corrected. Whether it is us as individuals, in our families, our local congregations, or the nation itself, we need to be praying for God's intervention. Yes. He is aware and does care about what is happening in Brussels. God is the only way forward that makes sense to me. Going back to our beginning as a nation we have preserved for our encouragement this prayer offered up by our Founding Father George Washington, "It is the duty of all nations to acknowledge the providence of Almighty God, to obey His will, to be grateful for His benefits, and humbly to implore His protection and favor." That sentiment might be a good place for us all to consider as we seek God's face. Amen. .....More later.

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