God designed the womb to be a safe shelter for unborn babies.
Psalm 139:13 (CEV)
You are the one who put me together
inside my mother’s body.
Let’s be honest. Many women are distressed by their pregnancies, and abortion looks like the solution to their problem.
Hundreds of pregnancy centers offer encouragement instead of an easy out, compassion instead of condemnation. Many of these centers are affiliated with Care Net. They offer pregnancy testing, parenting classes, car seats, clothes, diapers . . . plus the love of Christ and the good news of the Gospel:
“We do this because we are not only pro-life, but Pro Abundant Life. This means supporting women and men before, during, and after birth with the resources and information they need to raise children in an environment where they can thrive.”
Abundant life—mom, dad and baby. Let it be, dear Lord, let it be.
I learned this little ditty early on. Some folks must have missed that lesson.
“O be careful little tongue what you say
O be careful little tongue what you say
For the Father up above
is looking down in love
So, be careful little tongue what you say”
Careless words can cause a ton of trouble.
Matthew 5:33 (MSG)
Don’t say anything you don’t mean.
Years ago, when Haiti was going through a change in government, I asked a Haitian friend which ones were the good guys. He answered, sadly, “there are no good guys.”
Sometimes, here in my own country, I wonder which ones are the good guys.
Lord God, send in the good guys.
I heard last week that not one of countries with the worst quality of life for their citizens is governed by Christians. I haven’t researched that statement, but it lines up with Scripture.
Psalm 33:12 (NIV)
Blessed is the nation whose God is the Lord.
It appears that our President spoke negatively, even crudely, about certain nations. His words aside, what about those places?
- Not my nation, not my problem
- If I lived there, I’d leave
- What can I do to help?
Bring to mind the parable of the Good Samaritan and the question Jesus asked the teacher of the Law:
Luke 10:36-37 (ESV)
“Which of these three, do you think, proved to be a neighbor to the man who fell among the robbers?” He said, “The one who showed him mercy.”
Back to these troubled nations. What can I do?
Go. Send money. Pray.
Niger is back in the news, thanks to nasty words attributed to our President. Samaritan’s Purse is at work in Niger, helping local churches. More than 50 churches were burned in January 2015.
“‘In my heart, I felt a lot of sadness. It’s a day we can never forget,’ said Hassane Hamadou, pastor of Emanuel Baptist Church in Goudel, Niger. ‘But we also prayed for the people who did this.’”
Last November, Nigerian Christian leaders and Samaritan’s Purse celebrated the rebuilding of 52 churches.
“The persistent prayer of church leaders has not been for protection from persecution but for the salvation of people blinded by lies.”
Let us join with our beloved brothers and sisters and pray that many Nigerians will find the safe shelter of eternal life in Christ Jesus.
In the Old Testament, there is a connection between gossip (Hebrew: lashon hara) and leprosy (tzara’at–probably not what we know as leprosy or Hanson’s disease, but rather a very contagious skin disease). In Numbers 12, Miriam speaks against Moses (lashon hara) and is struck with tzara’at, a serious skin disease. For this, she was banished outside the camp for seven days.
Old Testament rules required isolation of anyone with tzara’at. If anyone came near, the leper had to call out, “Unclean! Unclean!”
Imagine a banner declaring “Unclean! Unclean!” scrolling over over every fake news story. Wouldn’t that be great?
Let me be honest, Lord. I don’t love the folks on the other side of the political aisle. I confess that I take pleasure in their troubles. And that’s not right. Forgive me.
And teach me to love.
Jesus was clear:
Matthew 5:44 (NIV)
Love your enemies.
We miss the mark when we gleefully read and share fake news because we hope it’s true. God calls us to want his best for our enemies. Who is behind our desire to see the guy we don’t like disgraced and shamed?
You belong to your father, the devil . . . there is no truth in him. When he lies, he speaks his native language, for he is a liar and the father of lies.
Stop and think: whose side are you on?