A place to find Hope

Tag: sad

Ukraine Needs Our Prayers and Love to Sustain Them

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It has been very frightening for the people of Ukraine. They have a huge Army trying to defeat them. So far they are hanging tough, but there are thousands of Russian military heading for the capital.

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It is easy to sit here in the United States and think, I feel badly for them, but I am safe here. We should never forget them. There are thousands of Christians there that will severely be persecuted and killed.

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Pray for God’s intervention. Pray that He will protect the people of Ukraine. We may have to defend our own country some day.

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How is your world turning? Do you want it to stop so you can get off? This hotel called earth, is become very hostile and sad. Many would want to check out.

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Rest on the love of God. He knows what is happening. He knows our fears. The shortest verse in the Bible says, “Fear not!”

Don’t let the dark side overcome you with fear. God is in charge. We just have to be faithful and abide in Him.

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Remember:

You are never alone.

You are never forsaken.

You are never unloved.

And above all…never, ever, give up!

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Life Seems to be Very Tough and Then You Die

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I went to have a blood test today. My doctor wants to check how I am responding to a new prescription. (News at 11:00pm) ;-0

I just read an amazing book, God Comes Through the Soldier. It is the story of John Baker. He is the author and he has taken on an amazing task of sending out hundreds of care packages to our heroes in the Military. It is a huge success, and many soldiers got the lives brightened up. John is a member of my church and He loves to support our troops.

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Here is another excerpt from my first book, Signs of Hope: Ways to Survive in an Unfriendly World.

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Life Is Tough and Then You Die

Weeping may remain for a night, but rejoicing comes in the morning.

Psalm 30:5

God didn’t promise us a rose garden—besides there are thorns in a rose garden. He allows us to go through the storms. He wants us to learn from them and grow.

We question if God is still there for us when we have a crisis. Things pile up and we wonder, Where are You, God? He allows things to happen that are very hard to understand. Why would He let bad things happen to us?

The psalmist wondered the same thing. In the psalms, crying and wailing come out with a vengeance. Psalms can be also joyful and uplifting, but some of them are not joyful, and they teach us that it is OK to question God. It is OK to voice your true feelings to Him. He knows how to handle your feelings—even your anger.

Despair and anger are combined in Psalm 89:46–47:

How long, O Lord? Will you hide yourself forever?

How long will your  wrath burn like fire? …

For what futility you have created all men!

In our world today there is much despair and anger. There are gang wars, school shootings, sex abuse, battered wives, seniors getting scammed, racists and terrorists.

All of these could cause even the strongest Christian to act on that anger. You have choices. You could seek justice like a vigilante. You could forget it and let it build up inside you, or you could turn it over to God, who is the only Supreme Court Justice in heaven. He will judge those who have wronged others.

We should never stop being angry or sad about what happens in the world, but we need to turn it over to God, and let Him bring peace in your life.

            Too many people have decided that acceptance of wrong is much easier than trying to fight it. Some live in their own little world and go on as if nothing were happening around them.

I saw this in action when I was in the military. Uncle Sam had me stationed in Korea, and we were traveling through Seoul, Korea. I saw an old woman sitting and leaning against a wall. She was begging for help because she was ill and starving. No one stopped. They just kept on walking by.

All military personnel had been instructed that under no circumstances were we to get out of our vehicles—just keep going. This was because if you tried to help someone they could claim you were the one that caused the problem and then get a big settlement from the government. There were rumors of Korean parents throwing their children in front of army trucks to collect a settlement. We retraced our route on the way back to camp. By then, the woman had fallen over and was dead.

I was very angry. I felt helpless. I wasn’t allowed to help the woman, and she died because of that.

I didn’t know if I could make any difference in life. Could one person out of the billions of people on this earth make a difference?

My mother once remarked that she didn’t know why she should get out of bed anymore. She has macular degeneration (partial blindness) and has to use a walker. Her two main loves (besides my brother and me, of course!) were reading and working in the garden. Now she cannot do either of them. I could understand completely what she meant, but it hurt me deeply that she felt that way. I again felt that same helplessness because I wasn’t able to help her.

Why keep going on? The rich get richer and the poor get poorer. The weak fall by the wayside. You spend your whole life trying to have a good retirement, and the cost of living eats up all of your income. Evil seems to win—and good seems far away.

The prisoners in the holocaust had all the reasons to be depressed and to commit suicide. They didn’t do that because they kept clinging to their faith in God.

Is that the secret? By just turning our hurts, frustrations and failures over to God, we can have peace? Of course we can. God is the key. If there is no God, anything goes, but everything is meaningless.

If you stay the course, and always let God hold your hand, everything will have meaning, things will come into focus, and everything will fall into place.

As of this writing, my mother is still alive. She is 93 and lives in an assisted living home. She has trouble understanding why she has to be the way she is as far as her health. The world is coming to the stage where 100-year-old people are more common than ever. But many of them are clinging to life assisted by a machine, or they do not have a quality of life that they prefer.

We have developed many new drugs to help people live longer, but we haven’t invented ways to make them happy. We spend millions to help the poor in our country and other countries, but the number of starving children in Oregon alone is growing at an alarming rate.

We allow sexual freedom in our country go to the point that there is an AIDS epidemic. School drop-out rates are at an all-time high. Pornography can be found for free on the internet. We thought that we sent racism away in the 70s, but it is still staining our society today.

It is no wonder that we feel depression, despair and apathy. This world is not a rose garden anymore. The thorns are tearing at our skin, and leaving scars that won’t go away.

Let me make something very clear: God will take the world as you see it today and make it into the world He wants. I’ve read the end of the book—and we win. The end is all set, and it is up to us to believe it.

So—can you make an impact on the world? You are just one grain of sand on the beach. Can you make a difference? God thinks you can. He made you with a purpose in mind. Yes, I said you. As you read this book, God has a plan for you. God just needs you to ask Him what it is. You can make a difference for others in this tough world.

I used the Psalms as an example of despair and anger. Now let the psalmist soothe you and let you know God is there for you and will carry your burdens for you.

Trouble and distress have come upon me,

but your commands are my delight.

Psalm 119:143

Give your burdens to the Lord, and he will take care of you.

He will never let the righteous fall.

Psalm 55:22

Look to my right and see; no one is concerned for me. I have no refuge;

no one cares for my life. I cry to you, O Lord; I say,

“You are my refuge, my portion in the land of the living.

Listen to my cry, for I am in desperate need: rescue me

from those who pursue me, for they are too strong for me.”

Psalm 142:4–6

(Think of the Korean woman dying on the street.)

When I said, “My foot is slipping,” your love, O Lord, supported me.

When anxiety was great within me, your consolation brought joy to my soul.

Psalm 94:18–19

(This should be our prayer any time we are depressed or sad.

We can read it to God and let Him comfort us.)

Further Adventures

There are times when you feel so low that you are not sure you can make it through the day. Use this time to pray. Sit quietly with God and share your deepest feelings. Do not hide anything. (God knows even your inner thoughts.) Let Him know that you need to lean on Him completely right now, and He will pick you up and carry you the rest of the way.

Something to Ponder

Isn’t it funny that God knows our every move, but we go on like He is not watching us?

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Have you lost a loved one? Does it seem like everything is happening to you at once?

FEAR NOT!

God is just a prayer away. He loves to listen to your pleas. Tell Him about your sorrows and ask Him to find you comfort.

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Remember:

You are never alone.

You are never forsaken.

You are never unloved.

And above all…never, ever, give up!

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It is So Hard to Lose a Loved One

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It was so very sad to hear that a Navy Seal Officer was killed while training. My prayers go out to his family.

I have been there. I have lost several dear people in my life. My mother and father have passed. One of my brother-in-laws has passed. A friend, who was a groomsman at my wedding has passed.

I lost four students I had while teaching. I was very close to each of them. One was a suicide, which struck my heart even more.

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We may ask why God has taken them away from us. I can’t give you a good answer except that God is in charge, and He chooses when we go to meet him in heaven. The loss is hard, at best, to accept, but we must carry on in this earth. We are only here a short time compared to the eternity we will be living in heaven.

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Be strong. Stay the course and enjoy each day God has given you. You will see all those you lost again in heaven.

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Never be angry at God for His choices. Praise Him; love Him: and obey Him. He loves you more than you can ever know.

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Remember:

You are never alone.

You are never forsaken.

You are never unloved.

And above all…never, ever, give up!

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How Sad it Seems Our Country is Going the Wrong Direction.

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What a wild week last week. I had surgery done on Friday. It was to replace a battery in my defibrillator. Went well, but the recover is going slow. That is why I didn’t have a Friday post.

I had wonderful nurses taking care of me. There were three of them in my room at one time. They were very caring and attentive.

This is always important when you are about to go to the operating room.

The staff in the operating room were all men. They also were funny and attentive. This seems to be the routine to calm down a patient. Worked for me.

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The vaccine shots are going well. There are many more people that are able to get the first shot. It is now down to 70+. My wife and I have both of our shots, and wondering what happens next. I am sure I am not able to hug yet. That is one of my trademarks.

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The climate of our country is at an all time low. Lots of fighting verbally. I am saddened on how our country seems to be going in the wrong direction. There needs to be something happen to change the course.

I got an idea….how about God? Very creative don’t you think? God can calm the waters. He can move mountains. I think if everyone let Him be in charge there would be a tremendous change in the whole world.

No matter what we do, God is still in charge. He knows what we need and when we need it, so we just need to pray and be patient.

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If you are struggling with what is happening in our world today. You certainly are not alone. Be strong and cling to God’s robe. He will guide you through the muck and mire of life.

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Remember:

You are never alone.

You are never forsaken.

You are never unloved.

And above all…never, ever, give up!_

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We Must Always Remember What the Christmas Season is For

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Just two more days until Christmas. Are you ready? Did you buy all the presents you wanted?

If you did, time to stop and think about the season is really about. It is nice to get presents, but that isn’t what Christmas is about. It is nice to see loved ones, but that isn’t what Christmas is about. It is nice to donate to our favorite nonprofits this time of year, but that isn’t what Christmas is all about.

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Christmas is about a little baby being born, that changed the world. It is about Jesus Christ laying in a manger is smiling at the wise men. He is our biggest gift ever.

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Back to my poor me stories. Today one of my grandsons stopped by so we could give him his present. We all had our masks on, and talked for a few minutes and then he was gone. I hadn’t seen him in months! I will so miss all my family not being here in person, but we are doing a Zoom gathering tomorrow night. Just not the same though. I am a hugger. How can you how hug someone on a screen?

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The vaccine is finally flowing. I know it will take a while to get to me, but I saw on the news that people with my health risks will next after the first responders. That will be great.

One thing that caused my blood to rise greatly was the fact that our governor had the prisoners in the prisons of our state to get their shots before even the assisted living people. The inmates complained that they can not social distance, so the governor felt pity for them. I am a very compassionate man, but this is a real stretch.

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We must ALWAYS remember that God is with us. He is with you when you are sad, and He is with you when you are happy. Let Him guide you through this awful storm we are all facing. He wants to best for His children.

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Remember:

You are not alone.

You are not forsaken.

You are not unloved.

And above all….never, ever, give up!

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There Needs to be a Change in what we Think About

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I am very tired of reporting post after post, about rioting, looting, the Pandemic, shootings, wild fires, etc. It is hard, at best, to dicuss them.

What I want to do today is just give each of us hope and contentment. So if all of this is going on, how am I going to be able to do that??

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I have a huge amount of notes from church and books I have read. I am going to share some of them and let you decipher what they mean to you:

  1. If you still struggle with sin after you are saved, you are still saved. No one can take that away from you.
  2. C.S. Lewis once said, “We have to be against the world FOR the world.”
  3. We must rejoice no matter what we face.
  4. God rules! He is control of your destiny.
  5. Pray for the well being of those who have no thought of following the Lord.
  6. We are wine to God, and God breaking new ground in us. He is making new wine.
  7. Am I really comitted to God? Am I a true light that shines so others can see it?
  8. Our fear doesn’t stand a chance when we stand in God’s love.
  9. Wise in your own eyes, is worse than a fool. (proverbs)
  10. You come to a crossroad, one way is wisdom and the other is folly, which way would you choose?
  11. Like a river wash me over, and fill me to overflow with your love.
  12. Do not judge others. That is God’s job to do.
  13. During this awful time, think of those who have what they need.
  14. Break the walls around your heart.
  15. Jesus said, “Fear not!
  16. I will trust only you God.
  17. Am I just living, or am I living well?
  18. Am I trusting the Lord to lead me, or am I wanting to do it my way?
  19. Are you desparete to read Gods word? If not, why Not?
  20. Anger comes from envy.
  21. If I fall I am going to need all of you around me.
  22. In this world, some are rich, some are poor, some struggle with health, others are healthy. Some are sad, some are happy.
  23. We need to come together as one to reach out to others.
  24. If one of us suffers, we all suffer. If one is honored, we are all glad.
  25. The weight is not on you to prove you are worthy.

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I hope these notes and thoughts helped you in some way. Think about each statement and how it pertains to you.

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Remember:

You are never alone.

You are never forsaken.

You are never unloved.

And above all…never, ever, give up!

Finding Encouragement in Discouraging Times

We have had a rough road to ride on for the last several months. The COVID-19 virus is causing havoc on our country. It seems to be getting worse then getting better.

The rioting, burning of businesses, shootings, beatings, that are going on in our big cities is not only frightening, but very sad.

It seems the all these cities are run by democrats. Don’t know if that means something.

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Encouragement for the discouraged.

The Pastor of my church had a message on this. The title was From Brokenness to Blessings.

He said he understands all of us who are fearful, and frustrated. We have battles every day, and to have this be on top of it all is hard, at best.

What are his answers?

  1. God guarantees victory. Pretty simplistic right? However, we often forget that. We forget that God is in charge and He won’t give us more that we can handle.
  2. The best is yet to come. Hard to see that right now, but I bet we look back at this a few years from now and feel we are so blessed at that moment.

Do not go into hiding.

We do not need to hide in our basements. We need to be out there helping those who are overcome with fear, and depression. This is the perfect time to show our love for them.

We have the love of God in our hearts. We need to let others know how that feels.

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How do we hold on?

How are you doing? Are you having trouble getting up every morning because the world is crazy right now? Do you dread turning on the TV, because there is so much negativity? Are you struggling because the virus is closing down your work?

You certainly are not alone.

I feel your pain.

I am in total lock down. Haven’t been in retail store in four months. No restaurants. Only drive up, and take out. Can’t see my children. I text them and call them a lot.

Why am I in lock down? I am afraid I have three underlying problems with my health. If I was to get the virus, I am gone.

Am I crying and frustrated? At times I am close, but I am suppose to be the father figure, and show strength and perseverance.

Again, God is with you. Jesus is with you. They are just a prayer away.

Lean on them for your strength. They are you fortress. They are your protectors.

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Remember:

You are never alone.

You are never forsaken.

You are never unloved.

And above all…never, ever, give up!

Don’t Let Others Define Your Faith

This is the second of a series of discussions on Faith. My last post mention the sadness of thinking there was no hereafter. They who have no faith feel that they die and then turn into dust.

For those of us who believe and have faith, there is a bright path we are walking on. We know where we are going. We know because we saw the last chapter of the book.

One mistake we all make is to try to keep calmness around us, because there are many who will persecute us for our beliefs. We fear we can’t come up with the right things to say when we are challenged.

Here are some thoughts on that.

  1. You never have to try to convince anyone about their own lives being wrong. They already know it, and will probably attack if you mention it.
  2. My thought is to just share why I believe without out judging the other person. I share what my life was before I believed and the after I believed.
  3. Let them ask you questions. Don’t worry about getting the answers wrong. They are now in a different level. They are inquisitive.
  4. Just show other about your faith by your everyday actions. I have had more people ask me why I am so optimistic all the time. Boom! I can open up my heart. Many times They say they want some of that.
  5. Don’t hide your faith, but you also don’t need to stand on a corner and shout, “You are going to Hell, if you don’t believe!”I have gone to big sporting events, and sure enough there are always one or two people outside who are screaming at you. To many they are driving people away not bringing them closer.

The bottom line is that you just need to be you, and show others your love and caring way. That is a living testimony.

Remember:

You are never alone.

You are never forsaken.

You are never unloved.

And above all….never, ever, give up!!

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This is where I share some more about my upcoming book.

Today I am going to share how the book is laid out.

  1. The book starts out with me sharing my life while I was in the military.
  2. I share some funny and not so funny things that happened to me in basic training.
  3. I then share my advanced training school time.
  4. After that I was deployed to South Korea. Many stories. Some scary.
  5. Then I will share my time at Ft. Bragg. My scariest moment happened there.

This is the best part:

The rest of the will be actual interviews with veterans who have been in the trenches. I can guarantee you some of the stories will be very scary, sad, and tense. They will be some humor as well.

The appendix at the end will have several pages for jobs and careers for the military. Very extensive.

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