Being Greatful

I got this email from a friend in Nigiria this morning;

Beloved,
Happy new year. It is important that we ask you to stand by us in thaksgiving to the Almighty God for saving me from death in the hands of Armed robbers. Just before the last Xmas, we were blessed with a car. But on the 9th of this month, armed aducted me on my way from Church. The bonddled me into the booth of the car and drove me arround while they carried out their robbery operations. However, the Lord intervened and I escaped mirqculously. Though, they made away with the car, my eventual esacpe is worth thanking God for. Stand with as we pray for it’s recovery.
Also, join us in prayer as we prepare for the D4D Foundations Training coming up between 28th January and 2nd Feb., 2008 in Warri. Pray for journey mercies and good health for the Team of Facilitators led by Scott Purser, and all the participants.
Our warmest regards to all the brthren arround you.
Your friendd, Adams
Pray for Adams that they would be able to recover his car, There is no insurance.

Comments by Jay Leno

“The other day I was reading Newsweek magazine and came across some poll data I found rather hard to believe. It must be true given the source, right?The Newsweek poll alleges that 67 percent of Americans are unhappy with the direction the country is headed and 69 percent of the country is unhappy
with the performance of the president. In essence 2/3s of the citizenry just aren’t happy and want a change.So being the knuckle dragger I am, I started thinking, ”What we are so unhappy about?”

Is it that we have electricity and running water 24 hours a day, 7 days a week? Is our unhappiness the result of having air conditioning in the summer and heating in the winter? Could it be that 95.4 percent of these unhappy folks have a job? Maybe it is the ability to walk into a grocery store at any time and see more food in moments than Darfur has seen in the last year?

Maybe it is the ability to drive from the Pacific Ocean to the Atlantic Ocean without having to present identification papers as we move through each state? Or possibly the hundreds of clean and safe motels we would find along the way that can provide temporary shelter?

I guess having thousands of restaurants with varying cuisine from around the world is just not good enough. Or could it be that when we wreck our car, emergency workers show up and provide services to help all and even send a helicopter to take you to the hospital.

Perhaps you are one of the 70 percent of Americans who own a home. You may be upset with knowing that in the unfortunate case of a fire, a group of trained firefighters will appear in moments and use top notch equipment to extinguish the flames thus saving you, your family and your belongings.

Or if, while at home watching one of your many flat screen TVs, a burglar or prowler intrudes, an officer equipped with a gun and a bullet-proof vest will come to defend you and your family against attack or loss. This all in the backdrop of a neighborhood free of bombs or militias raping and pillaging the residents. Neighborhoods where 90 percent of teenagers own cell phones and computers.

How about the complete religious, social and political freedoms we enjoy that are the envy of everyone in the world? Maybe that is what has 67 percent of you folks unhappy.

Fact is, we are the largest group of ungrateful, spoiled brats the world has ever seen. No wonder the world loves the U.S. , yet has a great disdain for its citizens. They see us for what we are. The most blessed people in the world who do nothing but complain about what we don’t have, and what we hate about the country instead of thanking the good Lord we live here.

I know, I know. What about the president who took us into war and has no plan to get us out? The president who has a measly 31 percent approval rating? Is this the same president who guided the nation in the dark days
after 9/11? The president that cut taxes to bring an economy out of recession? Could this be the same guy who has been called every name in the book for succeeding in keeping all the spoiled ungrateful brats safe from
terrorist attacks?

The commander in chief of an all-volunteer army that is out there defending you and me? Did you hear how bad the President is on the news or talk show?  Did this news affect you so much, make you so unhappy you couldn’t take a look around for yourself and see all the good things and be glad?

Think about it…..are you upset at the President because he actually caused you personal pain OR is it because the “Media” told you he was failing to kiss your sorry ungrateful behind every day.  Make no mistake about it. The troops in Iraq and Afghanistan have volunteered to serve, and in many cases may have died for your freedom.  There is currently no draft in this country.   They didn’t have to go.

They are able to refuse to go and end up with either a ”general” discharge, an ”other than honorable” discharge or, worst case scenario, a ”dishonorable” discharge after a few days in the brig.

So why then the flat-out discontentment in the minds of 69 percent of Americans? Say what you want but I blame it on the media. If it bleeds it leads and they specialize in bad news. Everybody will watch a car crash
with blood and guts. How many will watch kids selling lemonade at the corner? The media knows this and media outlets are for-profit corporations.  They offer what sells , and when criticized, try to defend their actions by
“justifying” them in one way or another. Just ask why they tried to allow a murderer like O.J. Simpson to write a book about how he didn’t kill his wife, but if he did he would have done it this way……Insane!

Stop buying the negativism you are fed everyday by the media. Shut off the TV, burn Newsweek, and use the New York Times for the bottom of your bird cage. Then start being grateful for all we have as a country. There is exponentially more good than bad.

We are among the most blessed people on Earth and should thank God several times a day, or at least be thankful and appreciative.”

“With hurricanes, tornados, fires out of control, mud slides, flooding, severe thunderstorms tearing up the country from one end to another, and with the threat of bird flu and terrorist attacks, “Are we sure this is a
good time to take God out of the Pledge of Allegiance?”

Jay Leno

Here you go Dustin

Here you go Dustin

Cass Lake

We had a great time with some new friends from Bethlehem this last week end. Sixteen of us left Friday morning and headed up to Cass Lake MN to minister to the natives in the reservation. Greg Mott, our leader, has a real burden for the people of Cass Lake. He takes his family up there about 4 times a year and tries to include others that will go. We were able to take up over 500 packages of gifts for the people. On Saturday we drove our big truck full of the gifts to a housing project parked it and started talking with people, before we knew it there was probably 25 people in line waiting for their gift, and they just kept coming till we were just about out of gifts. Later that evening we were able to attend a POW WOW, a celebration of native culture.

As I have contemplated what we did up there I am still reflecting on the effectiveness of continually giving things to those people. They seem to be given everything they need to live and have become very dependent for survival on the gifts of others. Discussions with some of the women revealed that they have learned to live and raise their children without Husbands and fathers and have actual come to prefer that circumstance. The more I think about it, I am coming to the conclusion that the thing that could help the most would be a concentrated effort toward the men. I am not sure what that might be.

The traditional family model has almost completely broken down. For a people that are concerned with preserving their heritage, culture and religion that is passed on orally by story telling, the lines of respect for fathers, husbands, elders is almost none existent.

At the POW WOW one of the Elders gave a convocation in their language.  As he spoke he was almost totally ignored.  I think it was merely a matter of formality but there appeared to be norepect for the process.   An interesting side note, I was asked not to take pictures during this part of the ceremony as a matter of respect.

Watch this one

http://theologica.blogspot.com/2007/12/why-were-not-emergent.html

MERRY CHRISTMAS

“Infinite and yet an infant.

Eternal and yet born of a woman.

Almighty, and yet nursing at a woman’s breast.

Supporting a universe, and yet needing to be carried in a mother’s arms.

Heir of all things, and yet the carpenter’s despised son.”

–Charles Haddon Spurgeon

 

That man should be made in God’s image is a wonder,

but that God should be made in man’s image is a greater wonder.

That the Ancient of Days would be born.

That He who thunders in the heavens should cry in the cradle?”

-Thomas Watson


“Mans Maker was made man

that the Bread might be hungry,

the Fountain thirst,

the Light sleep,

the Way be tired from the journey;

that Strength might be made weak,

that Life might die.

–Augustine

 

“And the Word became flesh and dwelt among us,

and we have seen his glory,

glory as of the only Son from the Father,

full of grace and truth.”

(John 1:14)

Cool Cell Phone Tips

I haven’t verified all of these yet. Let me know if you find something different.

FIRST

Emergency

The Emergency Number worldwide for Mobile is 112. If you find yourself out of coverage area of your mobile network and there is an emergency, dial 112 and the mobile will search any existing network to establish the emergency number for you, and interestingly enough this number 112 can be dialed even if the keypad is locked. Try it out.

SECOND

Have you locked your keys in the car?

Does your car have a remote key less entry? This may come in handy someday. Good reason to own a cell phone: If you lock your keys in the car and your spare key fob is at home, call someone at home on thier cell phone from your cell phone. Hold your cell phone about a foot from your car door and have the person at your home press the unlock button, while holding it near the mobile phone on their end. Your car will unlock.

THIRD

Hidden battery power

Imagine your cell phone is very low. To activate, press*3370#. Your cell phone will restart with this reserve and the screen will show a 50% increase in battery power. The reserve will get charge when you charge your cell phone the next time.

FOURTH

Free directory Service for Cell Phones

The next time you need to use the directory service from your cell phne call 800-FREE 411 or (800)373-3411 instead. It’s free. Program this number into your phone.

Conquered by Christ

December 6, 2007 | By: John Piper
Category: Commentary

The only statement Timothy McVeigh left behind when he was executed in Indiana, June 11, 2001, was a handwritten copy of the 19th century poem “Invictus” by William Henley.

Out of the night that covers me,
Black as the Pit from pole to pole,
I thank whatever gods may be
For my unconquerable soul.

In the fell clutch of circumstance
I have not winced nor cried aloud.
Under the bludgeonings of chance
My head is bloody, but unbowed.

Beyond this place of wrath and tears
Looms but the Horror of the shade,
And yet the menace of the years
Finds and shall find me unafraid.

It matters not how strait the gate,
How charged with punishments the scroll
I am the master of my fate:
I am the captain of my soul.

Henley’s life (1849-1903) almost exactly parallels that of Friedrich Nietzsche (1844-1900) who said that the modern world had rendered God irrelevant so that we could legitimately say, “God is dead.” Corresponding to God’s demise was the rise in Nietzsche’s thinking of the “Übermensch.” This was the air that Henley breathed.

Would that Nietzsche, who went insane the last 12 years of his life—and Timothy McVeigh, who claimed the rule of his soul till he lost it—had both seen the beauty of being ruled by Christ. It is fitting that a virtually unknown poet of the early 20th century, Dorothea Day, should write the counterpoint to Henley’s poem. “Invictus” means “unconquerable”. Dorothea Day’s poem is called “Conquered.”

Out of the light that dazzles me,
Bright as the sun from pole to pole,
I thank the God I know to be,
For Christ – the Conqueror of my soul.

Since His the sway of circumstance,
I would not wince nor cry aloud.
Under the rule which men call chance,
My head, with joy, is humbly bowed.

Beyond this place of sin and tears,
That Life with Him and His the Aid,
That, spite the menace of the years,
Keeps, and will keep me unafraid.

I have no fear though straight the gate:
He cleared from punishment the scroll.
Christ is the Master of my fate!
Christ is the Captain of my soul!

Nathan and Allice

Nathan became a village chief in Uganda in 1961.In 1971, when Idi Amin (a Muslim) took power, many village chiefs who were not Muslim were harassed. As a nominal Anglican Nathan often had to go into hiding in the forest. In 1973 he received word from a friend that he was to be arrested on the coming Friday and put before a firing squad the following Tuesday, so he fled to Kenya. He remained in Kenya until 1979 when the Tanzanians ran Idi Amin out of the country.

When he returned, he found things had not gone well for his family. In 1982, his wife died giving birth to their 15th child. The next four years were difficult years for him—caring for his children without a wife.
Nathan met Gary Hipp in the mid-80s, and Gary began to disciple him. As a chief, it was hard for Nathan to change, but Gary did not give up on him. After two years, Nathan finally accepted what Gary was teaching him, and he became a follower of Jesus. Gary and his family were part of the group that went with him to acquire a new wife, Alice.
Nathan married Alice in 1986/7?, and they have two children: Mary (17) and Ema (12?). She wanted some children of her own. Mary and Ema are the only two children still living with them. Some of Nathan’s children still live in the village where he originally came from. Others have made homes for themselves in Mbale or other villages. He does have one son who lives on an adjoining farm and who has also implemented the 14 points (see below).
Nathan is a community development facilitator with M:MM and a priest at an Anglican village church.
Nathan’s home, family, and small farm serve as a model to villagers. He showed us around his compound and all the innovations he has implemented as a result of the things he’s learned through M:MM.
The 14 Points he has implemented and helps others implement:

• A house with windows for light and ventilation

• Yard and grounds clean from garbage and trash

• A vegetable garden

• Plant trees for firewood and fruit trees

• Have a safe water source

• Kitchen with efficient ovens that conserve cooking wood
• Dish rack and storage
• Food storage room
• Clothes line for drying clothes
• Latrine with a cover, sprinkling ashes
• Dedicated shower area
• Rubbish pit for composting plant and animal waste
• Natural fence made of bushes
• Develop income generating activities

Nathan has tapped into the water main and pays a monthly fee for its use. He sells the water to his neighbors for 50 shillings (about 3 cents ) a jerrycan (about 5 gallons). This generates some income for Nathan and covers the cost of his monthly charge.
Nathan grows matoki (a type of banana), pineapple, egg plant, beans, potatoes, etc.
Now Nathan is testing a new strain of matoki that is resistant to a mold that has killed many matoki plants in Uganda. After he harvests, he plans to share his plants with others.

Back Home

I’m back home from my trip now. It took me longer than usual to recover from the jet lag. I have no idea why. Maybe just more tired than on the past. But all is well and I thank God for that. It seems as though everything at home and work went pretty well while I was gone. I want to thank everyone that worked really hard to make it possible for me to be gone.

I’m going to put a few stories that we gathered while I was in Uganda. I went out to the village one day with Brad and Deb Mashburn and we heard these stories as we visited a few different homes. Because it was just the 3 of us along with Nathan we were able to spend a little more time at each place and hear their stories, that was really nice. Deb did a great job making notes of the facts so that these stories could be written correctly and I got to take pictures.