Happy Birthday to the UNITED STATES of America!

The United States of America is 241 years old this year! Wow! We have been a nation a long time! But the truth is that when compared to nations like Greece, China, Portugal, and Iran we as a nation are very young. Nations do rise and some fall. I got to thinking, why have nations like Greece and China been around so long…what keeps them united all these centuries? If you look at the history of China, you will find they have experienced many dynasties during their centuries of existence as a country but only became the Republic of China in 1912. Still they have remained united these many centuries. They like us have had problems with civil war and divisions since their existence but have remained united.

The Divided States of America?

In the United States’ short existence, we have had divisions and civil war and have remained united as well. I have heard many folks say we as a nation are destined to fall as the division becomes sharper and violent. Do you think that is where we are now?

 

Our nation is divided by beliefs and different thinking but, in my opinion, we are still united with a common thread of values. Values that the United States of America were founded on regardless of what you think now. Values based on the Judea-Christian faith originating from the Bible. That is a historical fact. We are a nation of laws…we know what is right and what is wrong. Laws based on our value system that is in turn based on the Bible.
I know we are divided when it comes to beliefs but I believe we all value freedom! The freedom that came from the blood sacrificed on the battle fields.

I sure do value this freedom just as the “Free Thinker” or the Jew or the Atheist or the Buddist or the Muslim…and so on. We all should value the freedom we have to practice our faith freely. As a Christian, it is my job to go to these religions and share what Christ did for them and how He loves them. It’s not the government’s job but mine as commanded by Jesus Christ. We may disagree on many beliefs and thoughts but one thing is common…our value of freedom!  Freedom of religion, speech, and assembly are worth a lot to me as a Christian.  If you are not a Christian I know you value those freedoms as well.

The NHL, fighting, and United States?

This past hockey season, the Nashville Predators’ run to the finals of the Stanley Cup playoffs was exciting!  I became a fan even though I never have liked hockey.  I have never grasped the rules of the game and the fact that in the NHL players are allowed to fight during the game.  During one of the broadcasts of the playoffs I heard a commentator state the reason he loves the game so much is that that can fight each other and then, when the game is over and in the books, they shake hands and congratulate each other.  It does look good for the players to do that after the game (even if their heart is not in it).

So I guess we as a nation are liken to a hockey game!  We can’t stand each others’ guts and fight a lot but when it is all said and done (usually during a crisis)  we can come together and unite with a common goal.  If only our elected legislators could grasp this concept!  Just saying…

Anyway, believe what you may about America and the division we have…I am so thankful I live in the United States of America!  Happy birthday and may she have many more!

God bless America!

Enjoy the Good Life! Get Out There!

Do you enjoy your life?

How sad to go through life and not enjoy the short time we have on this earth! I have been teaching a Sunday School men’s class on preparing for our family if and when we die. I have learned a lot during my research. But I was reminded again during my research that life is very fragile and short…especially when compared to eternity!

That’s why I asked at the beginning of this blog if you enjoy life. It seems the closer we get to each other in the world through technology the more unhappy we are as a human race! I know many people are dealt some terrible circumstances and are challenged each day to just survive or to live a purposeful life. I have been inspired by many of those people who are experiencing cancer, or some physical difficulty or even a mental or social challenge. These people have overcome their circumstances and chose to rise above and to make the most of their life everyday! They have chosen not to be unhappy, but enjoy life. The Bible is (I believe) the authority on life. In Philippians 4:11, Paul wrote, “Not that I speak in respect of want: for I have learned, in whatsoever state I am, therewith to be content.” The Greek root used for “content” means “to be possessed of unfailing strength.”  In every change Robin and I have experienced in our life together we have learned the truth of this verse!

I have chosen as my 2017 personal theme “To make the most of every day”. It comes from a sermon series our pastor brought to our church in 2016 “On purpose I chose to…” He spent a few Wednesday nights on “to make the most of every day.

Enjoy this Summer with your family!

Stress stifles the fun out of life. Is your job stressful…(check out a my blog one year ago http://wp.me/p7qqnh-A)…is your family life stressful?…many times I remember my mother telling me that it seemed to her that daddy would always be happier while he and her were camping on vacation. I remember some of those times and certainly saw that happiness. Vacations are good. Getting away for a time of refreshment is good. Daddy was a dairy farmer…wouldn’t you call that a stressful occupation? He would get stressed…some times it was me that would bring it on him…but the farm was always a stressful place when weather was rough, or prices were down. So he and mama enjoyed going camping in their rv…just getting away.

So get away this summer and enjoy life…grand kids!…your spouse…your family…yourself! Refresh yourself, turn off the tablet, phone, and computer and enjoy God’s creation and time with the family.

Surveys show that most young adults believe that obtaining wealth and fame are keys to a happy life. But a long-running study out of Harvard suggests that one of the most important predictors of whether you age well and live a long and happy life is not the amount of money you amass or notoriety you receive. A much more important barometer of long-term health and well-being is the strength of your relationships with family, friends and spouses.

 

 

So, “Get out there and enjoy life!”