People resist the Bible because they can’t get the paradoxes. They feel like God is going to rip them off, that He’s a tyrant, a killjoy, a cruel taskmaster whose greatest delight is to snoop for mistakes and send lightning bolts — or pestilence, famine and bad luck.
If you don’t have a mind prepared to understand paradoxes, you’ll have a tough time. You’ll be snapping at God about “catches” and raw deals.
One of the great paradoxes is that we are in warfare. But the irony is that the way to WIN is to LOSE. When we surrender to God, we obtain victory on other fronts. When we fight against God, we lose on other fronts.
Hail, Mary, highly favored of God! That’s how the angel greeted Mary in Luke 1:26.
Though she was favored to carry in her womb the Son of God, she was also in for some bad trials — like the loss of her “normal” life and dreams for a perfect marriage with Joseph. Her son would be crucified in front of her eyes. Yeah, a lot of trials.
But what I want to say here is that we are all favored of God. He loves us all. We all have a unique destiny. God has good things for us.
For Christmas, just realize how special you are to God. You are a gift to Him!
The Contras slipped in during the wee hours of the morning and slit the throats of sleeping Sandinistas, sometimes 30, sometimes 50, sometimes the whole battalion of 350 before they disappeared undetected into the forbidding jungle.
Not so with Alex Delgado’s battalion. His lieutenant had received training from the strictest military specialists in communist bloc East Germany, and Tito Castillo never let a guard fall asleep.
Alex didn’t join the Sandinistas, the former Marxist government of Nicaragua that the Contras sought to topple, because of ideology. As a matter of fact, Alex really had no idea about the meaning of communism and capitalism.
He was just an 18-year-old, the seventh child in his family, ignored among the many mouths to feed. With no one pushing him to study, with no future in sight, Alex got swept up in the euphoria at the beginnings of the Sandinista government with hopes of eradicating the corruption of the former regime.
But the decision to join what seemed like a winning cause turned into two years of sheer misery. He trudged 10 hours a day, in danger of ambush, in danger of trip wires, gathering energy from inadequate food (they once made soup with roots and tree limbs).
His commander voiced vivid dreams of finding the enemy and decimating them in combat. Inside, Alex prayed to a God he didn’t yet know to never find the enemy – and God granted his wish. The only deaths in his battalion were from an ambush on a supply pickup and a friend while fording a river.
Body bags from other battalions flooded homes; sometimes they were left on the doorstep to be found by parents after soldiers rang the doorbell and fled at midnight. For the rest of the article, click here.
Atheists deny the final destination. They affirm only what they can see and perceive immediately in front of them.
Hedonists try to enjoy the ride as much as possible because they’re not sure if there’s anything afterward.
But the airplane trip is just an airplane trip. Compared to eternity, life is short, uncomfortable and unpleasant. You can pay for more amenities. But the final destination is where the enjoyment really begins.
In Oliver Stone’s biopic Alexander, the Great Greek conqueror rules the world but despairs when his only friend dies and then willingly imbibes poisoned wine.
His mother’s boast that he would rule the world due to her conniving (she arranges the murder of her husband when he gets a second wife — which threatens Alexander’s chances at the throne). But having the world proves hollow for the successful general. He can trust no one.
It’s lonely at the top.
Friends are better than riches and accomplishments, which all remain here on Earth and convert into dust when our immortal souls pass into eternity. Friendships alone remain.
As we deboarded in The Gambia airport on our recent medical mission.
When most of the requests are already answered by God, there comes a moment of great joy like a graduation.
When your relationship is almost entirely healed. When your children come back to God. When you finally get out of debt. When you finally get into ministry. It may take months or years. But when that day comes, tear up the list and celebrate with a cappuccino.
They were happy just playing with two sticks, smacking them together like drumsticks.
Then make a new list. We’re moving forward and making progress. Today’s satisfactions fill us with hope and faith for tomorrow’s needs. Christianity is a forward-looking faith. Your petitions become praises. You get new petitions. It’s never stagnant, not static, always dynamic.