Wednesday, October 21, 2015

Trying to Plan for Courage

This post may be the result of too much thinking over the past several years and too much fretting over the direction the U.S. and the entire world is taking. I hope to end on a positive note for I know that God is still in control and that He guarantees that everything for the Christian works out for good in the end (Romans 8:28). 

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A Christian is one who recognizes his or her need for Jesus Christ and understands what He did on the cross and so gives his or her life to The Lord and allows the Holy Spirit to work in and through his or her life.

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Nevertheless, this post is not a pretty one — read at your own risk. 

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On a hot day last August, 2015, a grandmother, who was selecting ice cream treats for her grandchildren, had her throat slit by a transgender person identifying as male, though being born female. (You can't make this stuff up.)
 
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 Yes, right there in the grocery store; right here in Maine. The reason? "She looked at me funny." 
Well, I would have been equally guilty of that "crime" for the perpetrator is, indeed, one unusual looking creature. (Update: The person who committed this crime has confessed her guilt and waived a trial. She would like to spend the rest of her life in a women's prison and, to that end, has stopped taking medication to change her gender. She has also written letters of apology.) 

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Have you heard the term 0bamaville? Apparently, there are quite a network of these "settlements" right across the country. We have one in our corner set up behind a local Wal*Mart. Seems that a location behind strip malls or behind big box stores can be ideal because the campers/hoboes/homeless can simply walk into the store and use the restrooms, get water or whatever.

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John and I were shopping one day when we ran into a group of these people. They were dirty, emaciated, hollow-eyed, and smelly, as you might imagine. We surely looked at them funny. When we left the building, the rest of the group were seated outside the building. One young man was wearing bloody antlers on his head. He looked ill and deranged.

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Honestly, I did not know what to do or think. I hope that if, God forbid, I ever see a similar scene, I will call 9-1-1. Instead, we did nothing. I still can't believe that I did nothing. If ever a group of people needed help, they did.

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Oddly enough, I have seen a number of unusual things since 9-11. One Friday afternoon, just days after the terrorist attacks on the Twin Towers in 2001, my sister and I were grocery shopping when we saw two middle eastern men with darting eyes, wearing cargo pants, and not shopping. They were standing just inside the entrance looking all around. Lots of people looked at them funny. Profiling? I'm sure! She and I had no cell phones in those days, but today, I'd probably park my cart, get out of there, and make a call. (You may remember that some of the terrorists began their American journey in Maine.)

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Actually, I have known of, but not understood (at the time) other related unusual events. A girl I graduated with married a middle eastern man who, when their daughter was four years old, kidnapped the child and returned to his homeland. This was in the 1980s. My classmate hired rescuers who found the little girl living with her paternal grandmother. The child was very nearly unrecognizable wearing full covering. If you are a certain age, you may remember all the 20-20 type programs that featured similar events. Somehow the memory of those stories has been swept aside. The point is that, for a period of time, these students infiltrated campuses across the country and married Western women. It was not for love; it was an agenda. 

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This people group is very wily and uses all manner of evil tricks. The current one is another trojan horse and you can see it played out in Germany today. We will probably be seeing it played out here soon as the president has agreed to accept thousands to this country.

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Grocery shopping can be a veritable nightmare anymore. This past week, I was shopping when I became aware of a person wandering. Thing was, he was wandering wherever I wandered. Believe me, I had a bad vibe about this person who was unkempt,  behaving oddly, and avoiding my gaze. Once I turned and nearly knocked him over he was following so closely. Okay, beeline alert, got away from him as fast as possible.

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Then, same shopping trip, same store, I pulled to a stop in the middle aisle by the frozen meats. I was looking for some chicken breasts. Suddenly, a woman, about my age, began yelling. Seems she had appointed herself the traffic cop of aisle 7 and points beyond. She said to me, "Why don't you move?" (I was not in her way or anyone else's. I was pulled over and parked.) I smiled at her and said, "You seem to be in the bigger hurry, you go first." She clucked her tongue and took off full tilt. As I watched her retreat up the aisle, I noticed that she was walking very stiffly and I determined that she was probably in some pain. But still, I stayed well out of her way. If she was in aisle three, I wasn't.

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I have told these little stories, some may say odd and unrelated little stories, to say that we are living in odd times. Things that I would never have dreamed of not very long ago are happening. This old world is growing darker and even I can see it almost daily in my own sphere. I can't be alone.

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The big stories, which are truly horrific, where Christians are being targeted, whether in Oregon or around the world, are ongoing. What is any darker than killing people because they are Christians or because they won't deny The Lord? What is any darker than lopping off fingertips and crucifying children? Our president could do so much more, but he is either a weak man supportive of the radicals who commit these crimes or he is following his own personal agenda. He says nothing in opposition to these killings, except to support gun control. 
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My ultimate point is this: be prepared; pray continually; ask God for wisdom; be discerning; ask for safety; stay alert; do not be distracted; have an intent. It's a bit reminiscent of defensive driving. Don't just float along. The luxury of such days is long gone. My current intent is to chirp when I see something that is "off." Most recently, I should have reported "my shadow" to the main desk. He may have been a risk to some other shopper. On the other hand, the bossy shopper probably was a risk to no one. I would rather "chirp" and be wrong than not chirp and be right.

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This is a wonderful post found recently. The title of the post is *Planning for Courage.* It is profound food for thought.

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As mentioned in my last post, I am closing comments. I do this to protect my readers from inadvertently getting themselves into hot water with more liberal-minded bloggers. I have seen it happen more than a few times; It has happened to me. If you'd like to comment on this post, you know where to find me.

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