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Sanctity Of Human Life Sunday

January 20, 2013 Leave a comment

I haven’t been posting on Sundays for the past few weeks, but today is different.  Today is a day that I just have to highlight.

Today is Sanctity of Human Life Sunday.  Churches across the land are using today to emphasize how precious life is to those of us who claim Christ.

Much of the emphasis is on the right to life for the unborn.  I will never apologize or mince words when it comes to what I believe.  Unborn children are not a simple inconvenience to be terminated when times get hard.  Unborn children are not just a choice to be made.  Unborn children are the result of action that results in life.  How dare us reduce them to pawns in our political games!

But we cannot stop there.

I used to be a staunch supporter of the death penalty.  If you still are, I understand.  I don’t argue against it.  I just cannot stand as strong in that position as I once did.  I won’t fight you if you are for it.  I empathize with you if you are against it.  I can still feel the strong taste of desiring vengeance when someone murders another.  That’s what stops me.  Because too often we seek vengeance rather than justice.  Too many of us almost have a blood lust when someone kills another.  We have laws that allow the death penalty, but I will never celebrate when someone’s life is ended through that means.  Instead, I will pray that the gospel will change the hearts of everyone involved, from the perpetrators to the victims to those who mete out the punishment.

Finally, life is precious until the end.  We should do everything we can to celebrate the lives of those who have gained some years and wisdom.  We should treat them with respect and learn from their lives.  They have much to teach us.  We should make their final years as good as possible.

I pray that you value life.  Not just one type of life, but all life.  And I pray that our value of it will increase on a daily basis.

Do you value life highly?  Have your views changed over the years?

First Church Year #1

January 23, 2012 12 comments

Welcome to my new series.  We are not in Church Search mode any longer.  We have found a church where we feel welcome and where we believe we can worship.  We believe that the Lord has led us here.

I’ll be honest.  I was distracted during Sunday School.  Jan stayed home due to the surgery she had Friday.  I felt just a little out-of-place without her since I still don’t know many of the people there.

I had lunch with a couple of the staff members this week.  I was told that there is another couple that wants to begin a home bible study.  I’m looking forward to getting to know this couple and seeing if this is something we can participate in.  We will need it since I will not be able to be in Sunday School for half the year.

One of the strengths of our church is the worship through music.  It is definitely planned, but there is enough latitude and spontaneity to veer off from the path if it seems right.

The sermon was about Sanctity of Human Life.  Just before the sermon began, a lady gave a spontaneous testimony about a time earlier in her life when she had an abortion.  She testified to God’s forgiveness and grace for this event in her life.  Another person came up and testified to her being pregnant as a teenager before marriage and keeping her child.  Both spoke to mistakes in their lives and how God loved them despite this.

A time of prayer at the altar continued from there.  Many people went down and prayed together.

The sermon was a good challenge to value all human life.  It ended with a video called 99 Balloons.  It was about a little boy who lived 99 days and 99 balloons were let got at his funeral.

The thing that is greatest about this church is that despite some issues and problems that have occurred recently there is a sweet spirit of love and caring there.

On a side note, we have been going there for four weeks.  A couple prepared us a meal today since Jan had her surgery.

What attracted you to your church?  What are its strengths?

Whatever!?!

January 15, 2012 3 comments

You might not have been cool like me.  You might have stayed home and watched Full House from 1987 through 1995 while it was on TV.  Me?  I was out having fun on Friday nights.

Those who stayed home on Friday night have told me that there was a character named D.J. who had a friend named Kimmy who had a boyfriend named Duane.  Those same people told me that whenever Duane was asked a question, he would answer, “Whatever!?!”  They say that Duane just had a nonchalant, not caring attitude toward almost everything.  If I had watched the show instead being out having fun, I might be able to testify to it.

Depending on what group you belong to or who you listen to, today is Sanctity of Human Life Sunday.  And you are asking, “What does that have to do with Full House, Duane and Whatever!?!

I’m afraid that many of us, like Duane,  take a Whatever approach to life.  We take the same attitude.  We just don’t care.  We don’t care about things.  We especially don’t care about people.  We, as a society, don’t seem to care about life.  Sometimes we, the Church, do the same thing.

Sure, we care about being pro-life and hate abortion.  We all want to help kids.  But do we care about life elsewhere? Do we care about life inside the church?

A few weeks ago I wrote a post called Why I Quit Being A Hater.  In it I said that I was going to quit being a “hater”.  I was going to let my love for Christ flow through and quit being negative.  Like I told my friend, David, this week, this is easier to say and write than to put into practice.

So, what does Sanctity of Human Life mean to me?  Sure, like I said above,  it means that I hate the thought of abortion.  However, it means much more to me.  It means that I want to promote a culture of life.  It means that I want to uplift others.

How do I put that into practice?

If you’re a regular reader you know that I am looking for a new church.  Perhaps we are about to zero in on that.  We are about to meet a lot of new people.  If we join this church, we are going to be gaining new brothers and sisters in our lives.  How will I live with them?

Will I live with them in unity?  Or will it be “Whatever”?

Will I let no unwholesome word proceed from my mouth and only speak good words that will edify my new brothers and sisters?  Or will it be “Whatever”?

Will I consider how to stimulate everyone to love and good deeds?  Or will it be “Whatever”?

Will I be an encourager?  Or will it be “Whatever”?

Will I speak the truth in love, with the attitude of building them up instead of tearing them down?  Or will it be “Whatever”?

Obviously, you know what I want to do.  My prayer is that I follow through on this.

How about you?  Do you take a Whatever approach when it comes to others?  Or do you look for opportunities to build them up?