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Lost and Found

We’ve been thinking about the unfolding drama that gives meaning to every word in the Bible, and that, in turn, every word, subplot and supporting person (i.e. Caesar Augustus and Pilate) helps to tell the story… from many different perspectives.

Something similar is true of our lives. Every word we speak, every purpose we pursue, and all of those who contribute to our lives in either helpful or hurtful ways are helping to explain who and what we are about… from many different perspectives.

Just as the human story of Jesus does not begin and end in a “Once upon a time” scenario, neither do our lives begin and end apart from a series of defining moments.

Yet, because of the way our minds and bodies interact with our place in changing times,  it is not just running fugitives who get lost in their own story.

Even the most devout person of faith can easily forget in the best and worst of times, or even in the most uneventful, that it is the way that the story of Jesus intersects with the unfolding drama of our lives that gives meaning to everything we think, feel, and do.


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40 Responses to “Lost and Found”

  1. SFDBWV says:

    If you think about a lifetime of any character found in scripture; what you see is a small segment of their life recorded.

    Usually only concerning the purposes God is using them or showcasing a point in time for His purpose of exposing.

    When we think of our own lives and every moment of it for as long as we have been alive; were we to have every moment of it recorded it would be volumes long and some, very embarrassing for us to read, remember, or share with others.

    If we were able to write our own biographies many embarrassing and failures of moral action would probably be omitted.

    The Bible doesn’t tell every detail of the characters lives, but enough for us to get the basics of their personality.

    As for getting lost, well most of us I am sure, live for the moment, as even Jesus said for us to live one day at a time and concentrate on this one day; for the troubles of this day are enough to deal with.

    Learn from the past, live for today and hope for tomorrow.


  2. remarutho says:

    Good Morning Mart & Friends –

    At this season (waiting for Jesus to appear), I read the Gospels again. As the Gospel of Luke opens, we meet an older Levite who goes to Jerusalem to perform the temple duties he is assigned. He was a righteous man – serving God day in and day out. But, the Romans were occupying his nation. Under a police state, perhaps he had resigned himself to a joyless existence as a subject of the foreign Caesar in Rome. Perhaps he and his wife Elizabeth took comfort in their Hebrew religion. Being childless for many years, they did not see a future in the way their neighbors did with little ones running around the house.

    He was worshiping God in the temple and offering the prayers prescribed by Judaism as he approached the altar of incense. He was afraid when an angel appeared and announced, after so many years, that he and Elizabeth would have a son! He did not kneel down and accept the supernatural visit. No, he argued with Gabriel the archangel. He claimed the great good news was impossible.

    Mart, you wrote:
    “Yet, because of the way our minds and bodies interact with our place in changing times, it is not just the wandering agnostic who gets lost in their own story. Even the most devout person of faith can easily forget in the best of times, in the worst of times, or in the most uneventful, that it is the way that the story of the Bible intersects with the unfolding drama of our lives that gives meaning to everything we think, feel, and do.”

    I think of times I have experienced great good news – only to have it roll off like water on a duck’s back. I could not take it in at first. Zacharias was hearing an answer to his and Elizabeth’s long, seemingly unfruitful prayer. Yet, he had trudged in a ditch of disappointment so long he did not receive it at once. Not only was his news – the birth of a son they were to call John – brought by the angel – but his own son was prophesied to be the very prophet of the Messiah, the Christ. (Luke 1:13, 17)

    Zacharias was struck dumb (made unable to speak) on account of his disbelief. So, he and Elizabeth spent a quiet nine months awaiting the miracle birth. Just as Sarah and Abraham had done and as Rachel and Jacob had done, and Hannah and Elkanah before them. Surely, the old priest went over many Scriptures in those days – piecing together again the message of hope – the Good News – God has given us. (Isaiah 54:1)


  3. SFDBWV says:

    It is very difficult to be encouraging while in the depths of discouragement.

    It isn’t a smile but more of a grimace when we try and put on a happy face while our hearts are broken.

    For the most devout among us sometimes we just can’t pick up the Bible and read a word because it feels as if there is no use.

    Sometimes for us as we are lost in a moment of time living a nightmare and not seeing a way out, is when God shows up and gives us just what we need to go on if only for a few moments more.

    Sometimes it is unexplainable as why we just keep going on.

    As my own son asks me many times a day, “Dad why do I keep going on, what’s the use?” My answer is always the same; “you go on for me son, it is love that keeps you going.”

    None of us should be living just for ourselves, but rather for someone or many someone else’s’. Our purpose should be for the needs of others not for ourselves, their troubles should be our troubles, their needs our goals to administer to.

    In living like that we find we are living as God intended for us to, and in that there is no violation against God.

    It is that heart of Christ that empowers us and enables us to live a selfless life, God will give such a heart to you, all it takes is *belief* that He will when you ask it of Him.

    There is only one way and His name is Jesus of Nazareth, ask and you will find light in the darkness and a way back home, peace in worst of circumstances and hope when all else seems *lost*.


  4. BruceC says:


    Could I make a suggestion? Is it possible to make a post informing us of when a new topic is to be put up?
    Please don’t misunderstand me. I am not at all upset, but I just spent some time compiling and typing a response for the last topic and stopped in to see if anyone responded and a new post was already up. I think this may have happened before.

    Anyway I will be back later, wifey and I are to our church and then food shopping.

    Soli Deo Gloria!

  5. Mart De Haan says:


    Just read your reply to Steve on the last post and can see that you put time and thought into it. Can understand that it is frustrating or at least disappointing to see work shoved aside by a new post.

    I wish I could be more predictable about when I post. So far, because of schedule, and thoughts that either do or don’t come, I haven’t been able to give you a heads up.

  6. SFDBWV says:

    Bruce I have a movie I bought several years ago titled “Time Changer” staring Gavin Macleod. It is an interesting little piece of fiction that takes place between 1890 and today in the board room of an American Seminary in 1890 and in a church and within the culture of today.

    Clearly the attitude of the people in 1890 and now are so radical in difference and as shown in the movie it is due somewhat in part to theological differences put forward in 1890 that create the culture gap in the present day.

    The writers of this little movie seen the present day’s escalation of indifference toward Christian ethics and embracement of worldly views as the beginning of the end; so do I.

    If it helps concerning the posting problem of new and old topics, this happens to us all, especially we early posters.

    Mart sometimes does say he is going to put up something new and that helps keep me from saying any more on that particular line of comments and sometimes if I think the topic has run out of steam as I write my thoughts on a word processor and then before posting make sure I have a fresh page of BTA and then can see if the subject has changed or not and post accordingly.

    Also sometimes I just go ahead and post my comments on to the new topic as they most often are following a train of thinking any way.

    I think what all of us has to say is important and needs attention from each of us, so if you feel what you wanted to say gets lost on an old topic, just copy it and bring it forward to the new one, your friends here are going to understand and no one is going to tell you that you are out of sequence for doing so, if someone does, just smile and forgive them for their lack of understanding.


  7. AmazedbyHis grace says:

    James 1:2-4 is a hard pill to swallow in the midst of excessive trials. (Consider it pure joy, my brothers and sisters, whenever you face trials of many kinds, because you know that the testing of your faith produces perseverance. Let perseverance finish its work so that you may be mature and complete, not lacking anything. James 1:2-4)
    However, when we focus and apply God through the storms, we can see how we have grown, how God’s Spirit, His strength was evident. We can also be thankful that His grace that He cares to conform us in His likeness.
    Having tremendous times such as these, I think God allowed me to know that things were about to get rougher and to just hold on. I found myself thinking, oh please, no more, can’t I learn the easier way? I questioned the roughest times in the last two years.(Late spouses intense sufferings, multiple near deaths and the happenings leading to along with other terrible things happening, we were bombarded.)It was also without any other support other than “we’re praying for you.” I believe my answer came. FB people saw God’s strength was in me as I joyfully picked up my mat and walked with it. Psalm 19:7-11 in ODB didn’t really grab me today as it did when I was in the depths. I was bothered that it didn’t but know it’s because I’m still struggling with a stronghold. However, this is the key that will open a pathway to joy if we apply with prayer, focus, deeper study and application.

  8. swwagner says:

    God does give meaning to everything.

    The life and the times we live in are safely in God’s hands. The wonderful pleasures & the thorns in our sides are equally resonsible for who we are and the way God shapes our lives. He is a living God who interacts with us daily…guiding us without taking away our personal choices.

    The older I get, the less afraid of the unknown I become…a true blessing.

  9. poohpity says:

    Bruce, on the left hand side of this page under the “Recent Posts” is another section called “Recent Comments” so when anyone writes something new no matter the current post we can see that a new comment was posted then go and read it with just the click of the mouse.

  10. poohpity says:

    I so very much agree Mart that the ” story of Jesus intersects with the unfolding drama of our lives that gives meaning to everything we think, feel, and do.” My life before had no meaning just running around trying to find fulfillment in relationships, material things, personal desires. I used to have a dream every night before I fell into a deep sleep about running and running with someone chasing me never going anyplace but feeling fear then I would wake up startled.

    My doctor just told me last week that I needed a new knee (11th leg surgery) and then on top of that Sunday night I injured my rib again on the chair reaching over to pick up a piece of paper. So this week has been one filled with so much pain. Each morning as I read God’s Word there is always hope found in those pages.

    Those words hold me to account of my trust in the Lord that through all this I can be an effective comforter to others (2 Cor 1:3-4,8). So there is purpose in adversity and can be used to serve God. Remembering God is in control (Psalms 103:19) and can turn anything around to good (Rom 8:28). There is meaning in everything because of Christ. That does not mean I do not cry, or have sorrow or pain but I can carry it all to Him and He can be strong for me.

  11. foreverblessed says:

    In the real world I have been going out, meeting people who I believe God wants me to go to, so I have less time to post here. The topic of the Greenland shark is the one I was still meditating on, a very helpful post, very deep meaning, how victorious we already are, in Christ, He has overcome the evil, the sin, and we stand in Him and are saved secure form the evil, even if it harms us bodily, it cannot harm us in spirit if we hold on to the faith, if we do not waver. But we often do, and that makes us weak. 1 Peter 1:5
    So in the bad God is with us too.
    God is in our ups and in our downs. Corrie ten Boom used to say, there is so trouble so deep, Jesus goes deeper. She was in a nazi camp, and had experienced that fact, she knew Jesus was walking next to her in the camp.
    God is the same today with us, if only we could put all the noise in our heads to a stop, and listen to the quiet voice of God. Last night I was in a down, or in a trouble, in my church house group someone had lectured me to do a certain thing which she thought God wanted me to do, but I had different understanding of what God wanted me to do. She pressed me, and would not let go. I wanted to confront her about it, and prayed to God from very early in the morning onwards, leaving it is His hands. But then before I could move a step, someone called me to go out in the woods, as the world was white with snow, and the sun started to shine. Come immediately,she said. And I knew this was God speaking. We went out in the woods, and there she showed me two trees, beech trees, standing between many upright douglas firs. She showed me the trees, and she said: Do you see these beeches? Normally they would grow bending, being hindered by all the straight firs, but these trees aren’t their branches are spread all over just as in the open field, around all these straight trees.
    I looked at the trees, and was indeed amazed how beautiful they thrived in that limited space. All these branches growing wide around all the other trees.
    And it was as if God was saying to me;”See, that is how you can be, just grow free in my leading, no matter how straight people around you want you to be” The Psalm 19:7-11 is beautiful, just listen how God has instructed me, and do not be disturbed what other well meaning people want to tell you.
    Even in the chaos of all voices, ‘wise’ council, around us, God is with us. It takes some time to get acquinted with His voice,
    and some disciplining of my myself not to get irritated, “how dare they tell these things to me”. Which only brings unrest. With God there is peace, and grace, if I fix my eyes on Jesus, no matter the circumstances Hebrews 12:2

  12. foreverblessed says:

    Pooh, I wanted to tell of my own experience today, that when we give our worries to God, He will be strong for us, He will show us the path to walk. I left the thought to confront, and let it rest in God’s hands, He is the one to deal with it. I just walk behind Him, He gives me grace and peace in my heart, it is a miracle, Jesus strengthens our lives in all situations, good or bad.

  13. BruceC says:

    Without Jesus at the helm of our ship we would go through life aimlessly. Or would it be better to say self-indulgent; with self upon the pedestal. But with Christ living within us there is a purpose; and at many times a higher purpose than we may even know about. We may not be like a “hero” of the Bible but yet we have become an important piece in God’s mosaic, by faith in Christ. There are times when we do not see Him at work in our lives or when He appears to not “return calls”. But He is always at work in us, through us, and for our own good if we yield to Him. Very often we and God disagree about what is for our own good. But He sees the total picture and we do not. When we read the Word and about those of faith in its pages all too often we may think that these people had these kinds of experiences all the time. What we really see is just a small portion of those lives and how the Lord used them. You can bet that they all had some regular and perhaps boring days as we do. How often did Abraham hear from God directly during his life? What did the Apostles do during the times that are not recorded in the Word. We don’t know; but I think (IMHO) that many of those days were like many days we experience. Some of them can be bad or disastrous, tedious, or good and joy filled; or just plain “regular” unexciting days. But Christ is always in us and working in our lives. We should never read the Word with the expectation that all our days are going to be like the kind we read of in the Bible and the people in it. We are just given enough to learn of Him, to be guided by Him, and to serve Him. Someday He may let us all see just how the pieces of the whole puzzle fit together.

    I will pray for your knee, poohpity!

    Soli Deo Gloria!

  14. bec4jc says:

    Amen, well said BruceC. I was just thinking about how the people in the Bible lived between the times we’ve read about them. Everyone here is so encouraging and edify the scriptures for me.

    I went to the ER the first Sunday in September not being able to breath well and being very dizzy like I was going to pass out. Turned out to be blood clots in my lungs not a heart attack. Well, to say the least it was very scary because I thought I was going to die and the care attendents said if I didn’t come in when I did I just might have died. The doctor on call wanted to send me to the next city because he said that they had a good lung specialist. So, I went to the ER there by ambulance and when I got better was admitted a room on the regular floor below. I was there 9 days total. One of the nurses on the lower floor said to me “Wow,you did a miracle coming down here from ER so fast.” I said to her that it wasn’t my miracle but Jesus Christ’s miracle. Later as my roommate was transferred to another room I found out that she was there battling lung & liver cancer and she would be going thru Chemo & radiation theraphys. I overheard(it was hard not to)a conversation she was having on her cell phone to one of her family members about her situation and she was saying that it would be ok because she would be with loved one’s when she died and she was trying to console whoever she was talking to on the phone. She left so quick after I arrived that I didn’t get a chance to talk to her or get to know her a little bit so that I may have had a chance to console her. I did pray for her and still do from then on though. I don’t know and I’ll never(probablly)know the outcome of her life but I put her in Jesus’ hands. I had two other roommates since her and I did get to know them a little and talked to them as well as prayed for them. Also, I don’t think I’ll ever hear about them or from them again so I continue to put them in Jesus’ hands by prayer.

    I also continue to pray for the caregivers that helped me while I was in ER in my city and ER and lower floor in that city. I told them right from the start that they were angels sent from God,they rebutted,but everytime they came in to check on me or give me meds,change my IV,or take blood(which they could not get very easily and they kept saying they were so sorry about) I reminded them that they were angels and if it were not for them(even though some of them said it was just they’re job) I would probably be dead. Praise Jesus that I had so many professionals surrounding me helping me to get better! I told them that there jobs as they called them were given to them by God Almighty & His Son Jesus Christ. What an experience it was!

  15. AmazedbyHis grace says:

    Dear Bec4jc, You had another blessing you may not be aware of. The medical team! We had mercy! We thought my late husband was just coming down with a massive lung infection or pneumonia. Our dog would lick his chest whenever he started to get a lung infection, but he began pawing at it. He could only walk about ten foot before sounding like he had run a marathon. Insistent on going to work, (Co workers had been wheeling his chair to the door and him to his desk.)I talked him into letting me drive that day. On the way, he coughed and blood was everywhere. In the ER they had said he passed a blood clot and a partial one still there. They put him on Coumadin and after a couple of days sent him home with the partial clot still there. Seven more times in the next six months the same scenario would happen. Out of breath, dog pawing, cough, massive blood. After a couple of days he was back to his norm. We never went back to the Dr because they released him with a partial clot, put him on the med and sent him home. He was still on the med so we looked at it as a waste of money. When we changed Dr’s he looked at the records and said, “Didn’t you know this was life threatening?” We felt like we were in the idiot box. No one told us and we had so much else happening it was just part of life we accepted! But you see, even though the extreme difficulties were among us, God’s joy was shining and I was growing and producing. My chapter in the book of life will reflect His glory in this matter many times. Today, I tell people I am not to be remembered, when troubles come your way you saw what God could do. He’s the one to be remembered.

  16. BruceC says:


    I will pray for you. I have never been to the ER for my lung condition(emphysema) but I have over-extended myself on several occasions and must say it is spooky when you can’t breathe. All I could say was ‘Lord!”. Then a few puffs on my inhaler and some time struggling until it passed. Thought I was going home a few times. And I made the mistake of telling my wife. She turned white as a sheet and was worried sick. But I told her to be strong in the Lord and that compared to many others I have already lived a life blessed by God.
    It’s funny but the first three letters of your blog name are my initials; and the “4jc” I think I have figured out.

    Soli Deo Gloria!

  17. oneg2dblu says:

    Pooh… none avoid the valleys, we are either in one, coming out of one, or getting ready for another. But, each mountain top experience we have already had, secures our faith in Christ. May your next mountain top experience be but a prayer away.

    Foreverblessed… thanks for your post it really tells us all, right where you are, and right where you need to be, In Christ!

    BruceC… your posting “we may not be a hero of the bible” peace was a heavy hitter, a home run.
    We all have our every day occurences just like everyone else, from Adam in the Garden, to modern man and on.
    But our days are numbered and He who numbers them, gives us all we need right now, and to the last day.
    If we could only embrace each moment of each day knowing that He has prepared it for us in advance.
    Then we get to give to Him all Glory, Honor, and Praise!
    What a great reward we have in Christ today. Gary

  18. refump says:

    Steve, Just wanted you to know I was both encouraged & chastised at the same time by your statement “None of us should be living just for ourselves, but rather for someone or many someone else’s’. Our purpose should be for the needs of others not for ourselves, their troubles should be our troubles, their needs our goals to administer to.”
    I’ve known this in my head but reading it the way you worded it & in the context of this discussion & what I am experiencing in my life made this an ” aha” moment, so thanks. This is a lesson I need a constant reminder of. It is not about us, plain & simple. Our mission is to serve, not be served.

  19. SFDBWV says:

    Refump you are very welcome and just so you know I too need daily reminders of where my head should be with others and with Christ every day.

    Every day is a new day and every new day I should be looking for ways to make someone else’s life easier.

    It also is one of my many faults that I don’t like to ask others for help, but sometimes find that when I am pushed into that situation others are blessed for my needs to be attended to by them.

    It is a neat exchange and how I think Jesus wants us to live.

    Glad to see you are still with us.


  20. remarutho says:

    Good Morning Mart & Friends —

    Just catching up on posts this morning. Pooh! Will pray for this upcoming procedure you are anticipating. For all who struggle with breathing and lung issues, Bruce, I lift up prayers today. Always thinking of you and Glenna, Steve, as you lift Matt up and care for him daily.

    Just received Bill Crowder’s booklet, “Change: Following God through Life’s Crossroads.” Brings me back to the study of Acts that is on-going in small group here. Paul thought he was ultra-found, but he was lost. Then Jesus came to him — a stunning truth for him on the road to Damascus that day. Jesus comes to each one who hears about him with faith (sooner or later)! Jesus even finds those who violently oppose him. Paul’s story mingles with our story — in a way that supplies Holy Spirit encouragement.

    I hope to slow down this Advent Season and consider this wondrous gift: I am found because Jesus found me.

    The odds against his survival and his three years of uninterrupted ministry recorded in the Gospels were always great because of hostile forces! But, God continued to make a way where there was no way. Humans simply could not oppose God’s will in the matter. Jesus thrived in that hostile atmosphere. What a gift!

    I take great hope in the way God used Saul of Tarsus, who became the apostle Paul. How Jesus loved him — and satisfied his desire to please God. Surely he has a ministry for anybody that intends to follow him! We don’t even have to be very good at what we try to do. I pray for the health and vitality of local churches everywhere as they re-present this wonderful story to the people!


  21. poohpity says:

    Thank you for the knee prayers could you also please pray for my ribs, they hurt so bad. I woke this morning thinking of the all the things I pay attention to that I can not do, those lost things, and fail to pay attention and give thanks for all the many things that I can do. I have found in Jesus my focus is so much different once paying attention to all the negative and Christ has given us so much positive to cling to. We get to have a relationship with God.

  22. bec4jc says:

    BruceC and
    AmazedbyHis grace,

    Thank you for responding to my post so positively.

    Amazed, I am so very sorry to hear this about your husband, he should have been monitored untill the right stength of Coumadin before he was released. That’s what they did for me and I’m still being monitored by periodic blood tests to see if I need more or less milligrams for a total of six months. I also am going to phyisical & occupational therapy to build my strength. My breathing is 96% and they said it would never be 100% again. That’s ok because I don’t need oxygen anymore for a while anyway.

    BruceC, what you said…” be strong in the Lord and that compared to many others I have already lived a life blessed by God.” I believe the same. Emphysema is very serious, my girlfriend had it.

    My prayers go up for both of you with thanksgiving that God has you under His wings and has comforted you in your infirmities.

  23. BruceC says:


    Thanks for the prayers.

    I too need to remind myself to be strong in the Lord and lean on His strength and sometimes I fail miserably.
    I have an easier time dealing with my bum lungs and chronic arthritis than I do dealing with boastful, arrogant folks that think they are better than most and smarter. I have had that problem for many years and some of those people are related to me by blood or marriage. It’s something I really need His help with because it can lead to something else I need His help with: my temper. I try to avoid that type as much as I can but somehow always wind up dealing with it. So pray for me in those areas. I’m no hero. I am not perfect. And more often I am more weak than strong.
    Coming on this blog and sharing and being open with other believers; and doing the same with my family at church is a huge help. God bless you all!!

    Soli Deo Gloria!

  24. oneg2dblu says:

    Good morning all… none here escape the suffering of living in our human condition while also living in our fallen world. But in Christ, we have a divine Helper, an ever protecting Saviour, a loving Friend who will meet us any under any conditions and give us His support, His comfort, and His provision, for our every need.
    It is sometimes our own selfish wants that bring us into our worst moments, and allowing our divine helper to change them for us, into our best.

    What a victory we have in surrendering all to Him!

    Come Jesus, into every hard heart, every hurting heart, every helpless heart, every waiting heart, every waking and wanting moment, and fill us to overflowing in your Power, Protection, and your Provision, whenever and wherever, we call upon you.

  25. SFDBWV says:

    When Matt was a little fellow I had arranged for him to take guitar lessons with a music teacher at a local collage.

    The teacher, Mr. Hague, taught basic and then classical musical technique to Matt and Matt stayed with it for several years.

    Then came the day when his teacher Mr. Hague said, I have taught you all you need to know and it is now up to you to take what you have learned and apply it to how ever you want in order to play the guitar.

    This is a wall sometimes we hit here when we discuss various subjects. If we have been here for a long time we begin to repeat the same lessons over and over again, trying to fine tune them into *perfection*.

    For the most part I have seen very little of the attitudes of others changing and I myself have only slowed down a bit on hitting back as quick as when I first appeared here.

    My hat is off to Mart for feeling the pressure of coming up with new ideas for us to dissect every few days and then keep doing it over and over again. Hoping to reach new readers and comments from all over the world.

    I myself like hearing from everyone and enjoy making new friends from all around the country and even the world, then worry when we don’t hear from them for a while.

    I hate it when comments digress into squabbling as the action of strife has its effect and people lose interest and disappear from here forever.

    I keep coming back hoping that new people as well as old ones stop in to say hello and share a bit of their lives and their views of whatever topic may be up, or just to chat a bit.

    I won’t name all as of this writing, but I miss hearing from Bill as well as Jackie and a long line of people who struggle with their issues of life, Cherielyn, Claudia, Pat, Della, Royal Palm, Narrowpathseeker, Kingdomkid7, to name only a few.


  26. SFDBWV says:

    Davids you have the marvelous distinction of being American yet living in Europe, so have an edge on views from two bases, I appreciate that.

    Foreverblessed always tender and always looking for the soft side of every thought is very refreshing and often has a calming effect for me.

    When I first came to this blog I tried to keep up with a list of every blogger and after filling up two pages of legal tablet papers, quit.

    One thing most all of us have in common aside from our being Christian is that we all struggle with something that keeps us grounded and especially grounded and rooted in Christ.

    Yesterday was “Pearl Harbor Day” in the USA. The History Channel did a long detailed look at the day, but for the most part it was a side story in the papers and only mentioned on the national news.

    Each time I hear stories about the “politics” surrounding December 7 1941 I hear something new or different stated. And am reminded of how retelling of this story over and over again either ferrets out more information or presents information differently as from a different angle.

    All I really know is it was a day that made and altered history from that moment forward.

    As Christmas approaches the TV is alive with Christmas stories with less and less bringing the story of why there is a Christmas and more and more about the manufactured story of good feelings toward each other and about the economy of it and the glitter of the world being *the* story, not the person of the entire matter of the holiday.
    Suppose that this was the last time the story were to be told, what do you think the story should sound like? As the birth of Messiah certainly is a day that has lived in *infamy* altered the world, effected the arts, sciences and imagination of mankind since.


  27. poohpity says:

    Thank you so much for the prayers yesterday around 3pm mst my ribs started letting up and now I will be able to go with 2 of my friends to the movie and lunch. My birthday this year will on 12-12-12 and I really wanted to celebrate but I did not see how it would come about unless my ribs stopped hurting. So thank you so much for the prayers.

    Mart, I have admired your patience with us. It seems that putting God’s principles of a found person above personalities has often been the case. I do not know how many times you have used self control over reactions to personal attacks or push backs but I am sure you have because you did not respond or if you did it was done with patience and grace.

    More times than not I react like a person who is still lost and rather than bearing with one another’s faults, I focus on them. Over the years I have noticed in myself if I react to someone with a lot of emotion mostly anger it is due to trying to defend a conviction, an area that I need to work on but it is easier to see in someone else, there is a lack of forgiveness or wanting to control others.

    There is meaning to every word that we speak, every action we take and every emotion we feel they can hurt or help someone. Jesus changes everything but often times I still act like I did when I was lost. The love God has for us is seen so much in the patience He bestows on us. It would be nice if we could impart that patience to others. Holding God’s principles above different personalities.

  28. poohpity says:

    How do we treat those who do not agree with us or see things differently or are more knowledgeable or are very hard to love or have different religions or make us angry that shows who has a hold of our hearts. Jesus said it so that it would pierce our hearts and called us to live above lost ways when He said; Matthew 5:43-48 NLT.

  29. poohpity says:

    That perfection to me is what is shown by the Father that while we were still sinners, His enemies and far from Him sent Jesus to reconcile us to the Father. That patience, love, grace and mercy that He gave all of us we need to show that to others. Not just to those who are like us or agree with us but those who make the hair on our necks rise up and the blood rush to our faces.

  30. BruceC says:

    I hope that no one here took my last post as meaning some of the folks here. It did not. It was about family and some others that my wife and I have had to deal with the last few months. And quite frankly sone of those people I have encountered in some churches.
    Bit here I feel more relaxed as folks here have been better behaving than some out in the world.
    Like I said; my previous post was not about anyone here and I am sorry if it sounded that way.

    Soli Deo Gloria!

  31. kingdomkid7 says:

    Hello everyone: I’m stopping in to say hello. I want you to know, Steve, that I appreciate the way you approach each of the topics Mart sets up, with comments that resonate so clearly for anyone who reads them with an open heart and mind. I confess, I often don’t have anything to add except Amen, and I have been thinking that only saying Amen might go against the blog’s intent. Or am I wrong about that? Either way, I will make a point of saying amen more often, when that is all that comes to mind — because I do so often agree! In that way, hopefully I can be a voice of encouragement to the kind souls like Steve who visit BTA and share so willingly and thoughtfully from the heart.

    Bruce: in no way did it seem you were talking about any of us!! Not to worry!
    Working on my final exam right now. Need the wisdom of God to make it through and make it good.

  32. bec4jc says:

    Hi all,
    BruceC, I will pray for you in those capacities also. I too, need to pray for my anger with certain one’s in my life. Jesus said we would have enemies in our own household and I have mine. He also said to pray for our enemies and I do. Everytime I feel my anger rising I try hard to bring it in prayer before I say or do something I will regret. I catch myself pretty good lately. One reason is I tell myself that if I do something stupid my enemy has yet another button to push against me. I really don’t want my enemy to be my enemy, much rather they be my friend, so I pray for that.
    I forgot to address the fact about your initials and my name-bec stands for the first three letters of my nic-name Becky,just small case, 4jc is- for Jesus Christ.

    I also just reread my last post and I had to laugh and laugh about the part where I said… My breathing is 96% and they said it would never be 100% again. That’s ok because I don’t need oxygen anymore for a while anyway. Oh my goodness, it sounds like I’m saying that I don’t need to breath for a while anyway,LOL! Of course you guys knew I meant extra oxygen thru tubes. LOL, still laughing about that. I am very glad that I don’t have to carry an oxygen tank around with me. However, if I did or have to sometime in the furture I’d still be blessed with being able to walk or ride in a wheelchair and being able to talk. I still have many blessings and so do you and all here. We should count them everyday.
    Steve and Poohpity, I enjoyed reading your posts as I do reading everyone’s post here. Thank you, Mart, for this opportunity. I keep you all in my prayers,God bless.

    OH-and Kingdomkid7, AMEN! ;o)

  33. poohpity says:

    Bruce, when you say family and those in your church, I believe it to be just that. Over time we have prayed for the hurt, immense sorrow, criticism and judgement you and your wife have had to endure. The response you have shared from your wife and yours as well, have been nothing but Godly in my opinion. I am so very grateful you have shared your honest struggles and thought enough of all of us to entrust us with your prayer requests and sharing what has truly been in your heart. As long as I have known you, I have never noticed you to speak only but directly to the person it is directed to and I respect that about you.

  34. poohpity says:

    bec4jc, I thought it was funny thinking about not needing air but I knew what you meant. I totally understand lung issues to, I think it is from the pollution, not smoking, rofl. Boy do I have myself buffaloed.

  35. SFDBWV says:

    Back during the Thanksgiving topics and posts I had said that every person and event in my life had a hand in developing and shaping me into the person I have become.

    It will always be a true statement.

    At the outset of this topic Mart states, “We’ve been thinking about the unfolding drama that gives meaning to every word in the Bible, and that, in turn, every word, subplot and supporting person (i.e. Caesar Augustus and Pilate) helps to tell the story…from many different perspectives.”

    Whether the Bible or any story of the drama of life what is a story without the likes of Caesar or Pilate, or many of the *heavies* God uses to balance out the *story*.

    What is light without darkness, what is warmth without cold?

    What is forgiveness without offence?

    In a world that is full of darkness and offence, we must be a light that shines out of that inky dark abyss and in a world full of offense we must lead the way using that light to be the first to forgive…not ignore, but forgive.

    An old adage says that “the apple (acorn) doesn’t fall far from the tree.”

    If we are children of God we should be reflecting the traits that God’s children would not those of the world.

    So in the continued story of God and man does God simply produce good results in spite of the heavies that come against the good guys, or does he also provide the heavies in order to show the contrast and so produce His desired results?

    All the while shaping and molding us, His children, into the people He wants us to be.


  36. SFDBWV says:

    Kingdomkid7 I appreciate your comments very much, thank you.

    Bruce you in no way were perceived as to directing anything towards anyone in your comments.

    Becky, some times my son Matt is filled with uncontrolled anger, I say uncontrolled because if he were of himself he would never say the things he does when he falls over the edge.

    I have grown to learn that anger begets anger and the only way to stop it is through understanding, and patience and love. Over time what once evoked anger in me has no effect on me.

    I am of course speaking of small events here in the home, not of physical or mental abuse from a spouse. As that situation is not acceptable to God and requires a great deal of action as well as healing before forgiveness and the control of emotions are realigned.

    It is a rainy morning in West Virginia; no one is concerned with wanting snow after getting that trick or treat disaster on Halloween.


  37. poohpity says:

    Mart, you stated, “Every word we speak, every purpose we pursue, and all of those who contribute to our lives in either helpful or hurtful ways are helping to explain who and what we are about… from many different perspectives.” I think at times it hard to acknowledge or except what we see from those perspectives until we understand that no matter what comes about that God already knows those things about us. Nothing is hidden from our Father although try as we might to hide, the day will come when we accept the reality of who and what we are about.

    I think God peels those layers back slowly so we will not become so discouraged at what we see. I think that recognition is what grows our humility and helps our understanding of the grace we have been shown become more apparent.

  38. poohpity says:

    OOps it should have said, “accept” not “except”. Maybe I should get my head on straight before I say anything from my fog or maybe say nothing at all. >:-(

  39. poohpity says:

    Gary, praying all is well with you.

  40. Mart De Haan says:

    Thanks to all for the conversation. Will try to post something within the hour.

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