Meet the Dating Professor

But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, longsuffering, kindness, goodness, faithfulness…   Galatians 5:22

Dating ProfKerry Cronin is a professor of philosophy at Boston College, but she is better known as The Dating Professor. Twelve years ago she offered students a chance for extra credit by asking someone out on a date. There were a couple contingencies: no sex and no alcohol. She found to her surprise that her students hardly followed through.

‘I realized at that point that the social script of dating was really long gone,’ she told the Washington Post, adding that dating has turned into ‘a weirdly counter-cultural thing to do.’  Those words shocked me! Dating has become a counter-cultural thing? She goes on to explain that dating is much more intimate than simply getting drunk and having sex. That’s why dating has “become so taboo.”

Then I had to remind myself of the article I just wrote a few days ago: Off The Rails! That was about how colleges and universities don’t really educate students anymore so much as let them “punch their tickets.” True education is gone, and so is morality as campuses have become a collection of modern Sodoms and Gomorrahs.

Dating is dealing with people on a personal level without alcohol as a protective barrier. Even impersonal sex has gotten to be easier than a meaningful conversation! I think that this is further evidence in a breakdown of social skills altogether that began with cell phones, texting, and email as opposed to actually getting in touch with people.

Dating CouplesToday, she explained, people exist in ‘hypersexualized’ cultures that focus more on getting laid than ‘the foibles and the hard work and the joys and the despair of just casual dating.’  Social media and dating apps have simply made people disposable. Bad date? Ghost them, as the current vernacular goes. Never mind common courtesy or consideration of someone’s feelings, just run away like the cowards we have apparently become.

Come to think of it, I guess that’s why no one so much as gets an acknowledgment or a thank you for applying to a job. Last year I was ghosted by a hiring manager who flew me across the country for a job interview. When I finally got hold of him he told me he thought I might have heard through the grapevine that they’d hired someone else from my company! And to this day, the guy who recruited me in the first place, a former colleague, has not returned one email or phone message.

Part of the dating assignment consist of asking for a date face-to-face. She tells them to stop texting; it is the devil! Furthermore…

‘This is mostly not about meeting your soul mate; it’s mostly about social courage and challenging yourself to be a little countercultural, to do something you know you want to do.”

I would add that it’s also about social skills!

Forget about your electronic cocoon, hiding under the covers of apps and texts. Starting treating people, start treating yourself like a person!

Off the Rails!

Woe unto them that call evil good, and good evil; that put darkness for light, and light for darkness; that put bitter for sweet, and sweet for bitter!   Isaiah 5:20

It’s been more than 15 years since I started having serious concerns over the direction of education. In the early 2000’s there was a lot of anticipation over education and training going completely digital. I preached against it, because I know that learning is about interacting face-to-face with other students in addition to the professors. It’s that give and take that really gets the ball rolling. Anything else is just rote learning and checking a box.

Online-Education-Master-Degree

Advertises Better Than it Delivers!

Online schools have proliferated; get your MBA online and get that raise! Little to no value is placed on seasoning and experience. While most of that tends to come on the job, having a prof who can relate personal anecdotes is invaluable. That inevitably gets lost in online learning. Get through the curriculum and get the sheepskin!

 

It would be nice to have been proven wrong, but I find myself vindicated in my claims back then when people thought I simply needed to get with it. In Slutty sheep: Veteran academics warn college students are going off the rails, we find that students are lost:

College students have no passions today and “aren’t trained to pay attention to the things they feel connected to,” former Yale English professor William Deresiewicz told the gathering on the “crisis” in American higher education at the Veritas Center for Public Ethics.

In fact, higher education has become “profoundly unintellectual” and student life has become about “accumulating gold stars,” said Deresiewicz, who publicly disavowed Ivy League education several years after leaving Yale.

Education Makes MindsBeing educated is NOT knowing a lot of things! Being educated means knowing how to think! The things we learn en route to being educated are a combination of mental exercises and facts needed to process other information and provide background for educated thinking.

Checking boxes online – and now apparently on campus – does not get students educated. It barely gets them informed!

But the problem has grown even more serious than a matter of education. It has become a matter of morality and decline of meaningful relationships.

"... And I also have a daughter from a previous 'one night stand'."His Christianity Today article “Dorm Brothel” launched a wave of attention for the professor, then teaching at Loyola College in Maryland. Readers flooded Guroian’s inbox with stories of their experiences with the collegiate sexual free-for-all.

“I believe that the college experience has an impact on the marriages our children make” and has probably affected the divorce rate, he said

Courting and marriage have been replaced by the easy hook-up in unisex dormitories, leaving young adults without an education in people too!

I can see the results almost every day through work, where younger people who think their MBA is the be-all and end-all are doing incredibly stupid things. They don’t problem-solve. They don’t really engage a situation and think critically about what they are doing and the ramifications of decisions.

The same thing is happening at customer companies where my contacts are lamenting the same conditions taking stronger hold every week.

The article ends on a hopeless note, believing that colleges are now “unreformable.”

I would have to agree, but I also think that rebuilding for the long term is possible. It starts with God. It starts with His morality of interpersonal relationships, whether with friends or potential mates. It begins with His selflessness, which He exhorts us to copy.

It is the selfishness, you see, that has been taught to younger generations that has produced the result we now see. They are so lost, so unguided, they cannot even see it!

End of the Traditional Family in America

Less than HALF of children grow up in a home with a mother and a father, study reveals. Follow this link for the entire article: http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-2908012/End-traditional-family-America-HALF-children-grow-home-mother-father-study-reveals.html

“Less than half of U.S children under the age of 18 live at home with two married, heterosexual parents in their first marriage, new research has revealed. The figures reveal the ever-changing make-up of the family structure. In the 1960’s, 73 per cent of children had what is considered a traditional family structure but by 1980 that figure had dropped to 61 per cent.”

This according to the article. Wha’ happened?!?

Filling+out+FormWhen my wife and I first went to enroll our kids for school back in the late 80’s, there were a number of forms to fill out. When I got to the Emergency Contact forms, I was shocked to see some extra blanks that weren’t there when I had gone to school. “Mother, Father, STEP mother, STEP father…”

I was staggered by the implication: divorce and fractured families had become so commonplace that it was documented in school contact forms! I knew divorce was an element of society, but this was a wake up for me that the world had changed a lot more than I thought.

As they grew, our girls saw more and more of their friends coming from divorced parents and hostile home environments. That was the new normal going through grade school and high school.

Here’s the real clincher in this story: our daughters felt very lucky to have a home with both biological parents instead of what their friends had. They got to see both ways of doing it, and they could tell the difference. Even more so, they knew which was better.

Kids make choices all of the time. They know what they like and don’t like. They know when this chair is more comfortable than that chair. They know what tastes good to them and what doesn’t.

kids-table

Not at my house!

They also saw that their friends sort of envied them their home life. They had a real ,whole family that didn’t use them as weapons between spouses. They weren’t shunted off, out of the way to the kid’s table at holiday dinners, but were included and got to talk with the grownups (Yeah, I know all families seem to do this, and that’s a topic for another blog).

 

The point is that both our kids and their friends got to see both sides of the railroad tracks, so to speak. They all had a good idea where it was better living. They recognized, instinctively, what God put in place as a good thing for His creation: one man, one woman, having kids, and bringing them up in the knowledge of God.

“For this reason a man shall leave his father and mother and be joined to his wife, and the two shall become one flesh”   Matthew 19:5

But not today. Today:

“The biggest shift in family structure, the research center found, was that 34 per cent of children were now living with an unmarried parent. In 1960 the figure was just 9 per cent and in 1980 it was 19 per cent. In most cases, these unmarried parents are single…And the share of children born outside of marriage has jumped to 41 per cent, compared to just 5 per cent in 1960.”

And that latter figure has jumped astronomically in the African-American community. That, right alongside of a proportional jump in drugs, violence, crime, and jail populations. If you want a model for where things go when you disrupt God’s definition of family – and it’s His idea in the first place – you need look no further than that. Black community leaders talk about it, and the numbers show it.

I was going to say that you don’t see the same sort of thing in white communities to the same degree, but after some thought, I realized that, observationally, it seems to me that we’re seeing the same trend in non-minority communities too as fractured families become more and more prevalent. Again, this is my observation, and I have no statistics to back that up, but there you are. Think for a moment whether you agree.

Chinese FoodHere’s another observational piece; Asians have a reputation for being brainiacs, right? Those little kids know how to read, spell, do math, etc. You see them in engineering, physics…the sciences in general. Do you really think they are smarter than other ethnic groups? Look closely, and you’ll see that they have strong families with hard work ethics.

My wife and I enjoy Chinese take-out a few times each month. The place we frequent is a shining example of family and work ethic. Their kids are almost always there, either doing homework in a booth or helping out at the counter. The one little boy, not much taller than the counter, sometimes is back there, taking money and making change. It’s fun watching him, because he looks like he’s getting a kick out of it himself. This is a FAMILY working together, making their livelihood, and showing their children how to do that.

Yet again, here we are, thinking we know better than God, aborting children, divorcing, not even getting married, fracturing and perverting what God put together for our own good.

Why are we doing that? Our selfish, sinful, me-first nature is the reason. We love only ourselves, and that is not True Love. Come to think of it, take a read at my very first posting ever: True Love, from April 13, 2014.

Love others, especially your spouse and children. Love God and do what He says. He made us. He knows how we work best.

Spring Break

Now the works of the flesh are evident, which are: adultery,[a] fornication, uncleanness, lewdness, 20 idolatry, sorcery, hatred, contentions, jealousies, outbursts of wrath, selfish ambitions, dissensions, heresies…   Galatians 5:19-20

Spring Break

Pretty tame compared to pics I found

I read an article this week about a spring break location on an island off Texas. The community braced themselves, knowing full well what would happen. Police presence is beefed up, but not to prevent crime. Oh, no! It is simply to keep some sort of handle on violence that breaks out. Drunkenness? Drugs? That’s why the kids are there! They even have a SWAT team on standby!

 

Spring Break 2Not to mention a mobile hospital that’s been setup to handle the minor problems – minor being a relative term, I guess – and avoid overloading the main hospitals. The residents welcome this whole party! The violence, property damage, and injuries are simply calculated as the cost of doing business! The cash that is made runs into the millions! What are a few broken bones, unwanted pregnancies, or nightmare memories that can last a life time?

And I say shame on the parents who facilitate this, who foot the bill for this “rite of passage!” Shame on the parents who didn’t raise their kids better, take them to church, or so much as stay married!

But shame also on the kids, who may have been raised right and chose badly! Shame on the kids for having no self-respect!

Spring-Break-FightBut I’m saving the worst for last. Shame on you and me for every time we could’ve stood up for Jesus. Shame on you and me for every time we were afraid to share the Gospel, afraid to say that abortion is wrong, or that drunkenness is wrong!

Shame on us all for letting the haters have the microphone and not saying and doing what’s right! Shame on us for yielding ground to Satan and all those he has deceived! Shame on us for holding the Good News of Salvation through Jesus Christ tight to our chests, because we think faith is a strictly personal matter!

I used the word “community” above very loosely, because they really aren’t a community. They are just deplorable, ugly scavengers, living off the droppings of sin, broken lives, and even aborted lives that they actually sponsored!

A community doesn’t do that sort of thing. A true community understands that they do not stand alone but are part of the world community. A true community understands that yielding their front to the enemy for profit and thinking that they affect no one else are both abominable acts!

But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, longsuffering, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, 23 gentleness, self-control. Against such there is no law.   Galatians 5:22-23

Passion of ChristWe must do better! Because isn’t it a shame that Spring Break generally falls during the time when we celebrate Jesus suffering and death to forgive everything any man, woman, or child has ever done?

Including Spring Break…

Wild at Heart

Bride and GroomWives, submit to your own husbands, as to the Lord. 23 For the husband is head of the wife, as also Christ is head of the church; and He is the Savior of the body. 24 Therefore, just as the church is subject to Christ, so let the wives be to their own husbands in everything.

25 Husbands, love your wives, just as Christ also loved the church and gave Himself for her, 26 that He might sanctify and cleanse her with the washing of water by the word, 27 that He might present her to Himself a glorious church, not having spot or wrinkle or any such thing, but that she should be holy and without blemish. 28 So husbands ought to love their own wives as their own bodies; he who loves his wife loves himself. 29 For no one ever hated his own flesh, but nourishes and cherishes it, just as the Lord does the church. 30 For we are members of His body,[d] of His flesh and of His bones. 31 “For this reason a man shall leave his father and mother and be joined to his wife, and the two shall become one flesh.”[e] 32 This is a great mystery, but I speak concerning Christ and the church. 33 Nevertheless let each one of you in particular so love his own wife as himself, and let the wife see that she respects her husband.   Ephesians 5:22-33

The above passage gets a lot of people’s ire up. Feminism has generally got a lot to say about the whole submission line. “Obey” is usually omitted from marriage vows nowadays.

But read the whole thing, slowly, deliberately, and dispassionately. You’ll see that the majority of this passage is directed at the man and the sacrificial manner in which he is to treat his wife. Wives’ submission to their husbands is characterized as the loving response for husbands’ devotion to them. This is how marriage symbolizes our relationship to Christ.

So each, the man and the woman, have a role to play in their relationship and as a family.

Wild at HeartEnter Wild at Heart by John Eldredge. This book was an eye-opener to me when I first read it many years ago. Eldredge shows us how the sexes are wired to assume their roles as adults. Clichés about the damsel in distress and the heroic knight are clichés simply because they are based in reality. That’s how clichés become clichés! The woman wants to be cared for. The man wants to be heroic.

Here’s my take on what Eldredge has to say. God is definitely masculine, but He also possesses the feminine nurturing qualities as well. The Holy Spirit has a feminine expression in the original languages. God symbolically split Himself in two when He created Adam and Eve. Their marriage – and every marriage since – is a symbolic reunion of those two essential parts of God. The union of a man and woman in marriage and producing children is our act of creation, symbolically showing God and His creation in earthly acts.

Do you see now why marriage is so important to God? Do you understand now why sexual sins are especially abhorrent to God?

This is also why Satan is so keen to destroy the family unit on earth. His greatest servant of modern times, Alistair Crowley, founded the modern day Church of Satan. Consider the following:

  • He wrote The Book of the Law, which he claims was dictated to him by “…a disembodied voice that claimed to be that of Aiwass, the messenger of Horus…”1960s
  • Crowley wrote “Do what thou wilt shall be the whole of the law.” This became the 60’s mantra, “Do your own thing.”
  • He claimed to be The Great Beast, 666
  • “I was not content to believe in a personal devil and serve him, in the ordinary sense of the word. I wanted to get hold of him personally and become his chief of staff.”
  • Following a mountaintop sex magic ritual, Crowley also performed an invocation to the demon Choronzon involving blood sacrifice, considering the results to be a watershed in his magical career.
  • “Let me seduce the boys…and the oldsters may totter unconverted to their graves. Then these boys, become men, may bring about the new Heaven and the new Earth…but without an army I am useless…give me my army, young men; and we will sweep these dogs into the sea.” Calling for a sexual revolution and destruction of the family.
  • He declared family to be public enemy #1 in his book, Magick Without Tears, saying of family, “Think what horrid images it evokes from the mind. Not only Victorian; wherever the family has been strong it has always been an engine of tyranny…curse them! They are always in the way…to the performance of this work (the New Age) the nearest obstacle and the most obvious is the family.”

Crowley did everything he could to subvert Christian living, including perverted sex, drug use, and rock and roll. If Crowley could see what society has become, he would be proud!

We must cling to what is good, to the teachings God gave mankind from the beginning! History shows that societies who have taken the path we are now on will destroy themselves from within.

I strongly recommend Wild at Heart by John Eldredge. I encourage everyone to not listen to secular, Crowley-influenced teachings about human relations, sex, and family. Remain grounded in God’s Truth and share it with all you know!

King James Bible

Defending the Faith and Living the Faith

jesus-on-cross…for all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God.   Romans 3:23

I read about man who set very high ideals for his company to operate under. He was challenged in an interview as to whether they were attainable, realistic goals. He admitted that they were not, but he added a phrase that caught my attention.

“It’s in the trying that we succeed.”

Sporadic failure is acknowledged, even anticipated in the piece-by-piece tactics of operations, but by maintaining direction, strategic victory is achieved.

franklin-graham-featured-712x475We might think it sounds like so much double talk when Franklin Graham recently said that President Trump is a great defender of the faith even though he might not be the best at living the faith. It seems many, especially the media, are comfortable with holding Trump in judgment over his many transgressions.

Before getting too comfortable sitting in the judgment seat, we might consider shining that spotlight on ourselves.

“I might not be perfect, “ we bluster. “I’m not divorced! At least not as many times as Trump! I’ve never (fill in the blank.)”

But all have sinned.

I’ve heard people say that Christianity is about hypocrisy, and I can understand that, but it really isn’t. We’re all admitting to striving to the perfection God asks us to do. That’s our loving response to the incredible sacrifice and suffering of Jesus. We aren’t saying we’re perfect. We’re saying that we’re trying, know we’ll fail, and we thank God continually for His forgiveness.

But it’s in the trying, in making the loving-response effort that we succeed.

When we point out the failings of others in correcting, loving ways we are helping them with their loving response, helping them keep their focus. That does not make us hypocrites!

wheelchair-old-peopleMy best visual of true Christianity comes from an Atlantic City gambling casino. I saw two very old and frail gentlemen making their way to the slots. The guy with the oxygen tank was pushing his friend in a wheelchair.

That’s us; people on oxygen pushing others in wheelchairs. No one is healthy. No one is perfect. We just keep moseying on as best we can, pointing the way as we stagger out of line from time to time.

Or, as Franklin Graham put it, we can defend the faith even if we don’t do very well living it.

About the Guns

About the guns and last week’s horrid murders in Florida, please allow me to remind everyone…

Magnum 44It most certainly is not about the guns!

Let’s be clear; if it was about guns, these stories would have peaked and plateaued decades ago here and around the world. They haven’t. Events like Florida’s are a more recent development in American history. Guns have been part of America since before we freed ourselves of the crown over 200 years ago. They have been a matter of self-defense and food.

I used to teach a corporate course on problem-solving and decision making; the Kepner-Tregoe model for those who are familiar. It is essentially paint-by-number Aristotelean logic, using wall charts and forms to lay out the facts and draw a conclusion. The defining moment is when you can accurately answer the question, “What changed?”

If guns have been a part of our culture since before our independence from Britain and yet the problem is recent, blaming guns is simply nonsense. One might argue that technology has changed, but that is only so much noise. Technology in gun design has been ongoing for centuries.

I submit the only meaningful change happened when the country as whole followed the words of someone who earned the designation of The Most Hated Woman in America: Madeleine Murray-O’Hare. It was her pushing and bombast that led the charge to abolish prayer in school and remove Christianity from a nation founded upon Christian principles. Why an entire culture would follow the rants of the person IT designated to be Most-Hated is quite beyond me.

Simply, what changed is that The United States of American told God to bugger off. We stopped doing what is right. What stopped so much as caring what is right. We started caring less about objective truth and more about what we decided we wanted our own personal truth to be, all the rest be damned.

We. Stopped. Loving.

Would you shoot someone you loved? Would you shoot someone if you thought you were loved?

Gun control? A fool’s errand. I’ve said so for years, and I’ll say it again here.

GUN CONTROL IS A FOOL’S ERRAND!!

Facts bear me out. An article in the Washington Post showed quite conclusively that gun violence has declined in the last few decades in proportion to an increase in gun ownership. The only places where gun violence has increased have been where gun ownership is severely restricted. You can say anything else you want, make any emotional plea, and parade any number of teary survivors, but those facts stand. Anything else is just noise.

Facts made a believer out of a gun control advocate:

Leah Libresco is a statistician and former news writer at FiveThirtyEight, a data journalism site.

She decided to use her resources to do a massive study of gun violence. The facts she herself accumulated convinced her, much to her dismay, that gun control is ineffective.

I used to think gun control was the answer. My research told me otherwise.

I urge you to read her article for yourself.

Other articles I’ve written that address the core of the whole problem:

I sometimes quip that if you are day-dreaming during Bible class and you’re asked a question, you can simply answer, “Jesus” and likely be right.

Truth be told, it isn’t as funny as it is correct. Whatever the problem, Jesus and the love He taught us and commanded us to practice is always the solution!

Jesus Smiling

God’s Ambassadors

And Jesus came and spoke to them, saying, “All authority has been given to Me in heaven and on earth. 19 Go therefore[a] and make disciples of all the nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, 20 teaching them to observe all things that I have commanded you; and lo, I am with you always, even to the end of the age.” Amen.    Matthew 28:18-20

Billy GrahamThis has been a week, death being the headline whatever way you turn. Tomorrow I’ll write about the shooting in Florida, but today I want to talk about Billy Graham. And us.

I was born in the ‘50’s, so I grew up knowing who he was even if I was a bit young to fully appreciate his preaching. One of the many articles this week filled in some of the blanks I had missed in my childhood. Dr. Graham was every bit the preacher his reputation said he was. He had the ear of many world leaders; US presidents for generations, popes, kings, queens, as well as the many millions he inspired and led to faith in Jesus.

He was also a flawed man. He fell out with Martin Luther King Jr. over the Viet Nam war, siding with Nixon. Simply, he wasn’t always right. But then who of us is?

I recall reading St. Paul not always being a model Christian either. He writes a line desiring God’s justice, not mercy, against an enemy in his second letter to Timothy:

Alexander the coppersmith did me much harm. May the Lord repay him according to his works.   2 Timothy 4:14

He called for God’s judgment, not God’s mercy and healing. After all the beatings, floggings, shipwrecks, and persecutions, by individuals, the Synagogues, and Rome itself, he wants a pound of flesh, as it were, from a coppersmith.

I would like to be as the Apostles were, as Billy Graham was; ambassadors from God. My faults, my sins tell me I’m not good enough. Satan whispers through them that I am not worthy of being God’s spokesman to the world…or even my small corner of it!

Then I read that Billy could be spectacularly wrong! I read what sounds like a desire for revenge from St. Paul, and I am encouraged by that!

Their failings tell me that it was never them that accomplished so much, but Jesus who strengthened them and equipped them to do His work! Despite my own sins, Jesus continues to forgive me and strengthen me to be His ambassador, if not to the world, to my small part of it.

He equips and strengthens you too. You, me, all of us are God’s Ambassadors to the world! St. Paul. Billy Graham, Dr. King and more were blessed to see their “home run” ministries blasting balls over the fences. You and I might not see the full effect of our ambassadorships, but by faith we know our efforts are not wasted. They are perpetuated well beyond our vision.

I am far from the most read blogger! My readership is not deep, but it is broad. My numbers might not be huge, but I am read by people from every continent on earth, excepting Antarctica; one here, two there, etc. Like pebbles dropped in ponds, like seed that grow and produce more seeds, I am confident that a single grain of my witness of Jesus will produce a plant and more seeds I’ll never see. Africa, Asia, Europe… I might only have an article read by one or two in India or Botswana or some other place, but that’s all it takes to get something started.

You are an Ambassador of God’s wherever you are. I encourage you not to despair of your “posting” as being too small or to remote to make a difference. Indeed, the more bare the field, the greater the opportunity!

Bonds

And as they were eating, Jesus took bread, blessed and broke it, and gave it to the disciples and said, “Take, eat; this is My body.”   Matthew 26:26

Grad school in Detroit was a tough time. Our stipend was about $175 every two weeks, which wasn’t much to live on even in the early 80’s! My crock pot was my best friend for eating healthy and yet cheaply.

My weight hovered around 155 lbs., which is a bit thin for a guy who’s 5’10”! Most of us dropped a few pounds in those years!

MeatloafOne day I had a meatloaf with carrots, potatoes, and onions cooking in the pot. Cliff, another actor in the program, and I were talking, and he was rather down. I invited him over to share my meatloaf. It was kung-fu week on channel 50, and Cliff had a black belt in one of the martial arts.

He showed up that evening with a quart of ice cream and a pie! We pretty well destroyed the most everything that was prepared or brought over. We watched Bruce Lee, shared stories and ate.

That was one of my more memorable times from my years in Detroit.

Isn’t it interesting how so many important times revolve around food? Food is how we share bonds with others. I can’t think of a holiday that doesn’t involve food, whether hot dogs and baked beans, ham, colored eggs, or a glut of candy! Eating together brings us together. There is particular satisfaction in cooking food for others.

Should it be surprising that Jesus offered his very body and blood as a spiritual meal? We bond together with other Christians in sharing that meal. We bond with Christ Himself, who prepared it for us.

Thank God He invited us to His feast! Pray that He guides you to find others to invite to His table!

communion

The Sum

Do you not know that those who run in a race all run, but one receives the prize? Run in such a way that you may obtain it. 25 And everyone who competes for the prize is temperate in all things. Now they do it to obtain a perishable crown, but we for an imperishable crown.   1 Corinthians 9:23-25

John CoffeyWe are the sum of our injuries. I know the conventional saying is that we are the sum of our experiences, but I couldn’t help being struck by several stories I’ve seen lately as well as reflecting on my own life.

Have you ever dealt with averages? Maybe you have a gas mileage monitor on your car. You’ve likely noticed that it’s easier to bring an average down than up.

I’ve found the same to be true of our life on earth. Oh, I have more experiences to draw on in dealing with life. I have more knowledge now than when I was younger, but that doesn’t mean I’m necessarily better off overall.

There is no denying that I am now less than I was. Years, injuries, and diseases have taken their toll physically. Bad decisions, calamities, and regrets have taken their toll mentally and emotionally. I sometimes am reminded of something past, something I wish I could have back, and I physically cringe.

Weariness has become much more of a companion, a more frequent and unwelcome traveler on my road. He holds the back of my coat and pulls on it, making the steps I have yet to take harder and slower.

Someday he will hold tight, dig in his heels, and prevent so much as one more step.

In that moment, when he thinks he has won, I will slip through his grasp like smoke and appear in the arms of Jesus. I have that confidence, that sure knowledge that all of the weight that has slowed me down and worn me out will be left behind in a sin-riddled husk.

www.hdnicewallpapers.comBut those who wait on the Lord Shall renew their strength; They shall mount up with wings like eagles, They shall run and not be weary, They shall walk and not faint.    Isaiah 40:31

There are still good days to be had. There are recent days of pleasure and satisfaction. Even though the weariness continues to come at me, I can keep going, because I know that “I can do all things through God Who strengthens me.”

Even better, I know that the day will come when weariness will be nothing but an erased memory as I stroll the streets of gold in the unfiltered presence of God! I know that I now struggle neither in vain nor alone.

I don’t know how anyone without that hope, without that Spirit of God residing in them can deal with the insults of life.

Are you struggling alone? Have you accepted Jesus’ payment for your sins? Have you accepted but don’t stay in touch with Jesus daily?

Just stop right now. Pray. Call out to Jesus and tell Him that you accept His gift of salvation. Ask Him to put His Spirit in your heart and power you up with His strength and love. He’s right there with you. He’s waiting, yearning for you to just talk to Him and invite Him into your life – forever.

Knocking at the Door