Sunday, March 13, 2011


Two scenarios:


Harold: Oh, Myrtle. I love you so much. I will follow you to the ends of the earth. I just love to be in your presence.

Myrtle: I love you, too. I am so happy that you love me so much. Harold, would you do something for me?

Harold: I would do anything for you, Myrtle. You are so amazing, so wonderful, I am not worthy of your love. I love the way you feel, the way you sound, the way you make me feel. All I am is yours!

Myrtle: I'm so glad you feel that way. Harold, I just heard from a friend that is hurt. She needs to be picked up and taken to the hospital. We both need to stay with her for a while and just make sure that she is not left alone. I'll be right with you, but I need you to get ready and drive us there now.

Harold: But being here with you is so wonderful. I don't want to go out or go away from this feeling, right here, right now! Oh how I love you and love the way it feels to love you.

Myrtle: I know. You already said that. But I need you to go do this now. She is waiting and time is of the essence. She needs help NOW.

Harold: Oh, Myrtle. The sound of your voice is like music to my soul. You are so beautiful! Just let me bask in your presence.

Myrtle: Harold, do you love me?

Harold: Yes, yes, a thousand times yes!

Myrtle: Then GO! My friend is in danger!

Harold: I think my place is here, with you. I never want to leave your side.

Myrtle: I told you I will be right with you. We need to go before it is too late!

Harold: Oh, the sweet smell of your skin. It thrills me to be so near to you.

Myrtle: Harold, I am starting to feel like you really don't love me after all. If you love me, you would do what I have asked of you. Someone I care about is in danger and all you can think about is how you feel right now. If you love me, go save my friend.


Myrtle: Harold, I love you.

Harold: I know you do sweetie. I love you, too.

Myrtle: Harold, can you some spend some time with me?

Harold: I will after a bit. I have some errands to run.

---Harold returns from his errands---

Myrtle: Harold, could you spend some time with me now? I miss you.

Harold: I know, I'm just a little busy right now. I have to clean out the rain gutters and fix the car. Then maybe I'll have some time.

---Harold finishes his jobs---

Myrtle: Harold, now will you spend time with me? I really need to spend time with you. It's been months since we had any time together.

Harold: Leave me alone! Can't you see I'm reading the newspaper? Nag, nag, nag! Why can't you give me a moment of peace and quiet?

Myrtle: Harold, please! Don't you care about me anymore?My heart breaks because you don't seem to love me anymore. You are so busy with anything and everything else that you have forgotten about me. Please, just come spend an hour with me. Let's talk, just be with each other, no distractions. Please? Just once? Set aside some time for me?

Harold: I don't have time for your whining right now. I'm too busy. The guys and I already planned to go out tonight. They're waiting for me right now.

Do either of these sound familiar? Both are out of balance. The Lord wants us to make time to build a relationship with him, to worship him, to get to know him, but he also wants us to not just hear the beautiful sound of His voice, but to obey it, to act, and to go reach out to others instead of make our time of worship a feel-good grave of self-indulgence in the name of God. We can get stuck in what feels good to the point that we never want to leave it to go reach out to the lost. When we do that, we become no good to anybody else and become useless to God. We need to realize that he follows us wherever he sends us. He will still be there as we are obeying his voice. When he says to go, he is going with us. We can worship and live a life of true worship and show him how much we really love him by obeying him, not just giving him lip service.

We can also become so busy doing, doing, doing, that we neglect our relationship with him, putting him aside, taking for granted that he will always be right there, and in so doing, our relationship grows cold, hurting him, hurting ourselves, and making our busy lives meaningless.

The key is to find balance between the extremes. Know God personally. Spend time with him constantly. Know his voice, and obey. The Bible says to be doers of the Word and not hearers only. It also tells of Mary and Martha. Mary chose to sit at the feet of Jesus and hear his teaching, while Martha kept herself busy serving. Mary made the wiser choice. We need to know when to do, and when to be. Don't get stuck in one or the other, but balance them out evenly. They are both vital to a healthy relationship with God.

Sunday, February 27, 2011


I have noticed an interesting thing happens while I vacuum the floor at the church. Something often comes into my mind, usually from in the past--a hurt, an offense, or some painful memory, and I end up thinking on it as I clean. Now there are two ways to think about these memories, and I guess you could say that while I vacuum a battle between good and evil goes on. Do I dwell on these offenses and let the root of bitterness deepen, or do I examine the situation, realize how it has negatively or positively it has affected my life, and give it over to God? I have both won and lost in these battles. Some wounds run deeper, and if I have held onto them, then they are going to be brought up again for me to face until I make the right decision to let them go.

Today in church, a scripture passage was used: John 20:21-23 Then said Jesus to them again, Peace be unto you: as my Father hath sent me, even so send I you. And when he had said this, he breathed on them, and saith unto them, Receive ye the Holy Ghost: Whose soever sins ye remit, they are remitted unto them; and whose soever sins ye retain, they are retained.

This really caught my interest. Jesus had been betrayed by one of his buddies, denied by another , killed on the cross, and raised from the dead. He met up with the disciples, and one of the very first things He tells them to do is FORGIVE.

In the wisdom of the world, Jesus had every right to not forgive those who killed him. He could have called ten thousand angels to destroy the world and set Himself free, yet He chose to forgive his persecutors. He also asked God to forgive them, for they knew not what they did. He refused to let unforgiveness take hold and destroy Him.

Jesus knew what emotions the disciples were going through. Their rabbi, their Lord, and best friend, was brutally killed---because of their friend and fellow disciple Judas, the Romans, and even the Jews themselves. Peter also had part of this because he denied Christ three times instead of serving as a witness to his innocence. They were all dealing with anguish, mourning, despair, sadness, bitterness, and unforgiveness toward others and themselves. Jesus knew that if this unforgiveness was not dealt with immediately, that it would grow into a root of bitterness from which they would never recover. This bitterness could eventually destroy them, and possibly destroy the future church before it had even become anything.

This really hit home with me today. Years ago, I witnessed a terrible thing that has forever affected me. Memory of this act has brought me pain for years. Something cruel and unnecessary happened that hurt a lot of young girls, and I witnessed it, powerless to change what happened. I guess I never forgave the person who did this, because this is what was brought to my attention as I was vacuuming the church yesterday. Forgiving doesn't make all the hurt go away, or lessen the act that was committed. But healing cannot happen until the wound has been cleansed and the root of bitterness removed. So today I forgive. I cannot control what happened, and I cannot change it, nor could I have made any difference when it happened. I cannot control what this person does or what they are like. It is not up to me to change anyone else, it is up to me to forgive and not let this act cause any more damage to my life. I will forgive every time this memory resurfaces, every time that the enemy tries to bring it up and cause bitterness to grow in me again. I will pray that somehow, the lives that were damaged years ago in this incident will not be forgotten by God, that the seeds that were planted years ago will sprout in them, that He will bring them into a relationship with Him, that their wounds will be cleansed and healed.

If Jesus can forgive, I can, too. And it is nice to know that there is no limit to His forgiveness. He has to forgive me over and over, too--I sin. I hurt Him terribly. I go to Him, ask Him to forgive me, and He never withholds it. He never remembers it against me. He knows that the best thing to do is forgive immediately. So today I choose to forgive, no matter what. I forgive. Let the restoration begin.

Sunday, January 16, 2011

A real man

This is a photo of me with my Daddy---a "real man".
What is a real man? Some would argue that going through puberty makes one a real man. So perhaps the question should be, what makes one an honorable man? Here are a few ideas:

Support your family with an honest job---even if it is minimum wage, at least it is an income. It makes more than sitting at home playing video games or drinking in the bar all day.

Put aside your selfish desires to care for others in your family. Put yourself and your wants AFTER those you should be responsible for.

When someone else is sick or in pain in your family, don't try to get everyone's attention by feeling sorry for yourself. THINK about the OTHER PERSON and what they are going through, and try to minister to THEIR needs.

Actively participate in the lives of your spouse and children. Don't ignore the kids until they are old enough to be your drinking or hunting buddies (by the time they are that age, if you haven't involved yourselves in their lives, they are not going to want to have anything to do with you), but take time to enjoy them NOW while you have the chance. Don't let them fall by the wayside and harbor resentment because Dad was never there for them. Also if you don't involve yourself with your wife except for making sure that she takes care of your own needs, your wife will learn to take care of everything herself. She will build up emotional walls, because deep down she needs her husband but knows he won't be there for her. She will one day realize that she doesn't need you and even if she never verbalizes it, she will realize you are just dead weight, and she would be better off without you.

Don't be lazy at home. What wife wants to be the mother, father, breadwinner, maid, cook, gardener, mechanic, maintenance person, and executive decision maker? It's too much for one person to carry their whole lives. Step up and take responsibility.

Don't squander all the money drinking, gambling, eating out, or whatever else you really like to do. Make sure that your family comes first. Pay your bills, buy groceries, fill your vehicles with gas, set some aside for other needs and emergencies, before blowing any money. A little blow money is good, but take care of your family FIRST.

Be the spiritual leader in your home. Lead your family and set a good example for them. If you lead them honorably, they will follow your example.

My father is a shining example of an honorable man. My husband also does his best to follow in honorable footsteps. With the examples he has had, I believe my son will grow up to be an honorable man. I have known many men who were honorable, but I also know some who are a disgrace to their families and it breaks my heart to see the wives and children grow up with a man who chooses to be inactive in their lives, even if he is living right there with them. I am so thankful for the honorable men in my life.

Saturday, January 8, 2011

Made in China

Much of what we buy and consume here in the United States is made in China. China makes a LOT of money off of US consumers. Pick up almost any object and a large percent of the time it will say "MADE IN CHINA" somewhere on it. US companies outsourcing to other countries saves and makes a lot of money, because other countries do not pay wages and benefits that an American company pays.

This is very unfortunate for the people of the United States. The businesses themselves make a ton of money, but it puts Americans out of jobs, and makes it very difficult for the average joe to find a job that will support his family.

It is also hurtful to the people of China. You might ask how? It gives them paid jobs, and our money is going to China. Someone is getting rich off of us, aren't they?

Somebody is making money off of us, but it is not the Chinese laborers. I am not going to say that everything made in China falls in this category that I am about to describe, but a lot of it does apply. The Chinese laborers do not receive pay for manufacturing the items that are sold to the USA. Their work does not support their families in any way. They are working for free. The money that we pay for the things that are made in China goes to the Chinese government.

The Chinese government has a dirty little "secret" called Laogai--forced labor operations. Political and religious dissidents are arrested (anybody who speaks up in disagreement with communism, and anybody who is involved in religion that is not registered with the government), some go to trial, and some do not. The government figures that they should not have to pay to feed and house prisoners, but should use them productively.Make them pay their own way. Sounds good, doesn't it? Doesn't the US make their prisoners work? Yes, but I believe they have a choice, and they do receive wages, though smaller than what a non-prisoner would make.

Laogai production serves as a "means for reforming prisoners and bears the political obligation of punishing and reforming prisoners. It serves as an economic unit producing goods for society..." It is estimated that there are tens of thousands if not millions of prisoners in the Laogai system. About 1/3 of China's tea is produced in Laogai camps. 60% of China's rubber vulcanizing chemicals are produced in a single camp in Shenyang. One of the largest steel pipe works is a Laogai camp. And on and on it could go.

The Laogai system isn't just a prison system. It is a source of free labor. Slave labor. It is a double incentive to imprison people. First, it nullifies resistance to the communist party, and second, it puts them to work for the communist party, the same government that put them away. There is a Chinese law that allows them to be sentenced for three years without a proper hearing. They can be wrongfully sentenced, imprisoned and forced to work for free. They get no pay, no retirement pension, no benefits whatsoever for their family. They are treated like slaves, abused and neglected.

Laogai facilities operate under multiple enterprise names to interact in the commercial arena to avoid detection by international observers.

So to put it in a nutshell, a Chinese person can be accused and sentenced for any crime, real or imagined, without a hearing, and work in the labor camps for three years before having a hearing. If wrongfully sentenced, it does not matter, because nobody questions the communist government and survives to tell about it, and it makes the Chinese government lots of money. The laborer works long hours every day, receives no pay (it all goes to the government) and leaves his family without an income. And the US buys these products because they are at an unbeatable price---better than what we can do if made in our own country.

It's just something to think about the next time you shop for anything. Turn it upside down, check the tag, and find out where it is made. Can one person make a difference by boycotting things made in China? I don't know about that. But, by purchasing these things, does that not make us just as guilty as the Chinese government?

Maybe it is time to think about not necessarily getting the best-priced item, but to support the companies who manufacture their products in the US. It keeps us in our jobs, and keeps us from adding to the burden of those Chinese labor-slaves.

Sources: Randy Alcorn;

Total randomness

Welcome to Blah Blah Blog, my blog of total randomness. There is no common theme to this blog. It is a place for me to comment on whatever is in my head and doesn't fit in my other blogs. Some will be serious, some will not. So sit back, grab a cup of coffee or cocoa, and enjoy my random musings.