Here is an 0ld friend who thinks he has the right to talk to me straight from the heart, rough and tough, lol.... and I will listen to him, out of respect for our 20 years of close friendship-- and I knew him well BEFORE he knew Christ...lol, and what a wild man. I also know that he has my best eternal interests at heart. We have watched each others families and kids grow up, have tragedies, heart break, financial woes, ups and downs, and we always there for each other, ready to help break the falls assist and encourage each other thru good years and bad. Many years ago, Steve taught me how to improve my aim with pistols and he and Barb always had me over for New Years Eve parties-- but I had to jump in Lake Michigan the next morning as a Polar Bear member in Kenosha, WI. Brrrrr! Thank you, Steve! I wish you were here right now--- and I guess I will have to give you a phone call to express myself better and thank you personally.
Your Brother in Christ,
You sound very angry and frustrated with the world today. You seem angry with your lot in life. It sounds as if you would like to be in charge. I am familiar with those thoughts and feelings as I have them too. But as the time is drawing nearer I realize that GOD is still in command and that all of this was foretold in the Bible. As you read 2 Thessalonians 2:3 we realize this is all part God's plan. 2 Thessalonians 2:3 tells us that there is going to be a "falling away". This is not a small thing. This is a great falling away from the church of Jesus Christ. We see this happening now as millions of Americans profess to be Christians but refuse to walk the straight and narrow path. We see everybody putting their own twist on everything in an effort to exalt themselves instead of GOD. These people are falling away and they shall pay when the time comes. The greedy, the corrupt, the sexual deviants, the murderers etc...will all receive their just desserts. But it is not us who will give it to them. It is our Lord Jesus Christ who in his time will take care of business. Yes it is extremely frustrating to see criminals and amoral people get away with their sins but it is because we are not looking at the whole picture and keeping our eyes upon JESUS. Do not worry and fret about them because you have no control over it. What you do have control over is YOU. Take care of yourself. Make sure of your own end. Pray for those that oppress you. Pray that the evil people will see the true light before it is too late. And after you pray for your enemies and the greedy and the corrupt and the amoral sit down and count your blessings. Count your many blessings, count them one by one and see what the Lord has done. You complain about your many ailments and I am reminded of the Apostle Paul where in 2 Corinthians 12:7-9 where he says "and lest I should be exalted above measure through the abundance of revelations, there was given to me a thorn in the flesh, the messenger of Satan to buffet me, lest I should be exalted above measure. For this thing I besought the Lord thrice that it might depart from me. And he said to me, My grace is sufficient for thee: for My strength is made perfect in weakness. Most gladly, therefore, will I rather glory in my infirmities that the power of Christ may rest upon me." The point is that we should keep doing God's work here on Earth with complete faith that God is in control. At the end of Paul's second epistle to the Corinthians, he tells them to 1) be perfect, that is to aim for perfection by following the path of Jesus, 2)be of good comfort or comfort those in need, 3)be of one mind, that is to say be like minded to those in your congregation, believe in the Gospels and the Bible, do not let false prophets or ideas enter your church, discern truth of everything with the bible, 4) live in peace, which is not only outer peace but inner peace. Paul's promise is that by doing these things the God of love and peace will be with you.
As far as America is concerned, do not worry about it. America as well as every other country in the world is man-made. It was man who drew the lines. It was man who fought to keep their land.. I am proud of those who fought so bravely so that so many more could enjoy the freedoms won by their efforts. I served in the USN during Vietnam and I served almost 21 years with the Wisconsin State Patrol. I know what it is to serve and to sacrifice. But in the end the whole world and everything it belongs to God who created it and it will all pass away. When that happens, where will you be. We are not allowed to judge others, we can only judge ourselves. We cannot control others, we can only control ourselves. We cannot know the hearts of others, we can only know our own heart. Therefore let us examine ourselves and prove ourselves. There is only Heaven and Hell and every man, woman and child must decide for themselves where they want to spend eternity. Yes there is a great falling away that is going on right now but it is not our job to condemn people but to pray for them and to encourage them to make the right decisions. Even after the Rapture, there will be those that reject God. In 2 Thessalonians 2:11 it says that "God will send them strong delusion that they should believe a lie". Those people will have already have had the judgment of God fall on them. I do not want be one of those people. I want to go to Heaven. I am sure you want to go to Heaven. That is what we need to concentrate on. We need to walk with Jesus daily, we must spread the gospel of Christ daily and we must help save as many as possible. Start small by getting straight with Jesus, then get your house in order. As Joshua said " as for me and my house, we will serve the Lord". Others will see the inner calm and peace that you have and they will want it. You can explain to them how to get it and lead them to the Lord. Refresh yourself with the Fruits of the Spirit listed in Galatians 5:22 as these things will be reflected by you and your attitudes.
I love you Tom but you have to calm down. Remember the serenity prayer. I also understand about people not wanting to get out of the comfort zone. Most Christians have not fully given themselves over to the Lord. They are holding back just enough to keep them in their comfort zone. Much like Ananias and Sapphira held back a portion. And Tom I must confess that when I read the part about the comfort zone, that I felt a twinge of guilt. I therefore fully intend to come to your house weekly and to help you with your lawn and other things. Barbara has also said that she would come and help Sharon ( who we are praying for by the way). I do not want to be a false friend. And yes we will enjoy steaks on the grill every now and then. Until then, be of good cheer and God bless.