Katrina and Charlie Chaplin
While Katrina makes us spectators roll our eyes in dismay and those that have lost so much hug one another in speechless hurt we hear of generosity that beggars belief. We hear of families taking whole families of strangers into their homes. We hear of thousands who make their way to the places where refugees huddle, carrying with them blankets, sheets, clothes, food, toys and offers of money, vehicles and jobs. They whisper assurances, offer up prayers, hug and hold weeping people and weep with them, sharing their pain. Churches throw their buildings wide open, already busy people turn up to cook and clean and feed the needy. It’s all done without patronising or insensitivity—there’s no arrogance or superiority, just hearts full of compassion. Black and white are serving black and white, the educated and ignorant are serving the educated and ignorant, the upper-crust people and the lower-working class are ministering to the upper-crust and lower-working class. Differences are obliterated; race, education, status, age and gender matter nothing! There are people in need and people dived in over their heads to do something about it!
Samwise Gamgee was absolutely right. "There’s some good left in this world Mr. Frodo…and it’s worth fighting for." (click here)
Charlie Chaplin wrote a beautiful song extolling human love. He called it, This is my Song. One of the lines in it says, "The world cannot be wrong if in this world there’s you." Chaplin—like so many others—knew what the pain of the world was but he also had an abiding sense that along with wrong and loss there was love and that gave meaning to a world that we would have utterly despised if it had been loveless.
So looking at the cross reminds us of the world’s great wrong but looking at the One on the cross reminds us of something else. The cross itself, as an instrument of torture, should shake us till our teeth rattle—how can such a thing be in a world under God? But the One on the cross should seize us till we can hardly breathe—how can there be such a One as this on a cross in a world without a Holy Father? Katrina should cure us of our over-the-top pursuit of and dependence on mere possessions and momentary happiness; but the profoundly lovely response to Katrina should cure us of ceaseless gloom and a slanderous view of humanity that dismisses it as self-serving vermin.
But the people that responded so splendidly to the needy and devastated of Katrina didn’t grow like mushrooms in the night—they were shaped over the years by something that it has become fashionable to despise. Thank God the cynical rhetoric can be overwhelmed by the heart response of thousands.
©2004 Jim McGuiggan. All materials are free to be copied and used as long as money is not being made.
Many thanks to brother Ed Healy, for allowing me to post from his website, the abiding word.com.
"THE FIRST EPISTLE TO TIMOTHY" Family Matters (5:1-2) INTRODUCTION 1. In his instructions to Timothy as a minister of the gospel, Paul counsels him on how to treat the members of the congregation - cf. 1Ti 5:1-2 2. The figures used in this passage presuppose that we... a. Are indeed a family b. Should act accordingly [In this lesson, I would like to expound upon that thought. First, as Christians and members of the body of Christ...] I. WE ARE INDEED THE FAMILY OF GOD A. THAT WE ARE THE FAMILY OF GOD... 1. Was alluded to earlier in this epistle - 1Ti 3:14-15 2. Was taught by Jesus during His ministry - Mt 12:46-50 B. WE BECAME MEMBERS OF THIS FAMILY... 1. By doing the will of the Father - Mt 12:50 2. By faith and baptism - Ga 3:26-27 3. By being "born again" of water and the Spirit - Jn 3:3-5 4. By being "adopted" (to use a different figure) - Ep 1:3-5 C. WHEN WE BECAME MEMBERS OF THIS FAMILY... 1. Some might have been cut off by our physical family - Mt 10: 34-39 2. Yet we gained a much larger family - Mk 10:28-30 3. Included in this family are: a. God as our Father in heaven b. Jesus as our "elder brother" - He 2:11-12 c. All Christians as our brothers and sisters [This is a wonderful blessing we can enjoy now in Christ, if fully utilized. Yet with blessings come responsibilities; this is especially true when it comes to the family of God...] II. WE SHOULD TREAT ONE ANOTHER AS FAMILY A. OUR TEXT DEMONSTRATES HOW... 1. From a young person's point of view, they should treat: a. Older men as fathers b. Older women as mothers c. Younger men as brothers d. Younger women as sisters 2. From an older person's point of view, they should treat: a. Older men as brothers b. Older women as sisters c. Younger men as sons d. Younger women as daughters B. PAUL PROVIDES EXAMPLES... 1. As a father to a son (Timothy) - 1Ti 1:2,18; 2Ti 1:2; 2:1; Ph 2:19-22 2. As one brother to another (Epaphroditus) - Php 2:25 3. As a son to a mother (the mother of Rufus) - Ro 16:13 4. In teaching on family duties - Ep 6:1-4 a. Like obedient children, we should show honor to our older brethren b. Like loving fathers, tender treatment should be shown to younger brethren C. ESPECIALLY WHERE CORRECTION IS NEEDED... 1. In our text, Paul instructs Timothy on how to exhort a. When instructive criticism was necessary b. When there is to be caution against "rebuke" (an otherwise natural inclination) 1) Lit., to strike upon, beat upon - Thayer 2) To chastise with words, to chide, upbraid, rebuke - ibid. 2. This can make quite a difference in handling differences a. We would be gentle with one another - cf. Ga 6:1 b. As David wanted for his son Absalom - cf. 2Sa 18:5 [Not only is being the family of God a blessing in the best of times, it can also help when things are not going well; it can smooth the rough times in our relationships! Finally, a few thoughts on how...] III. WE CAN DEVELOP A STRONG SENSE OF FAMILY A. LEARNING BY EXAMPLE... 1. Children of loving families are more likely to produce loving families 2. As children of God, we can learn "family values" from our Father and Elder Brother a. From God we learn what love is - 1Jn 4:9 b. From Jesus we learn how to love one another -
1Jn 3:16; Jn 13:34 3. Thus we are better prepared to love another a. When we meditate upon the love of God b. When we dwell in the love of the Father and the Son -
Jn 14:21; 15:9-10 B. THROUGH SHARED EXPERIENCES... 1. For a relationship to exist requires shared experiences 2. It was shared experiences that bonded Paul and his brethren at Philippi - Php 1:3-8 3. Take advantage of opportunities to be with your brethren, and the sense of family will grow! C. THROUGH PURITY OF CONDUCT... 1. Nothing destroys a sense of family like sin a. Impure conduct caused Amnon to hate his sister Tamar - cf. 2Sa 13:15 b. Impure conduct caused Absalom to hate his brother Amnon - cf. 2Sa 13:22 2. In our text, Paul cautioned Timothy about his conduct toward younger sisters a. "younger as sisters, with all purity" - 1Ti 5:2 b. He "was to indulge in no word, or look, or action, which could by any possibility be construed as manifesting an improper state of feeling." - Barnes 3. Improper conduct between brothers and sisters in Christ: a. Has devastated many congregations b. Destroys any sense of family 4. Thus all would do well to heed a later admonition by Paul - cf. 2Ti 2:22 a. "Flee also youthful lusts" b. "Pursue righteousness, faith, love, peace with those who call on the Lord out of a pure heart" CONCLUSION 1. One of the greatest blessings of being a Christian is being in the family of God... a. To have God as your Father, Jesus as your Elder Brother b. To have an unlimited supply of mothers, fathers, brothers and sisters 2. But to fully experience this blessing, we must treat one another like family... a. In our love for one another b. In our correction of one another May we reap the fullest benefit of membership in the family of God, by heeding Paul's admonition to Timothy...!
The World English Bible
Gen 8:1 God remembered Noah, all the animals, and all the livestock that were with him in the ship; and God made a wind to pass over the earth. The waters subsided.
Gen 8:2 The deep's fountains and the sky's windows were also stopped, and the rain from the sky was restrained.
Gen 8:3 The waters receded from the earth continually. After the end of one hundred fifty days the waters decreased.
Gen 8:4 The ship rested in the seventh month, on the seventeenth day of the month, on Ararat's mountains.
Gen 8:5 The waters receded continually until the tenth month. In the tenth month, on the first day of the month, the tops of the mountains were seen.
Gen 8:6 It happened at the end of forty days, that Noah opened the window of the ship which he had made,
Gen 8:7 and he sent forth a raven. It went back and forth, until the waters were dried up from the earth.
Gen 8:8 He sent forth a dove from him, to see if the waters were abated from the surface of the ground,
Gen 8:9 but the dove found no place to rest her foot, and she returned to him into the ship; for the waters were on the surface of the whole earth. He put forth his hand, and took her, and brought her to him into the ship.
Gen 8:10 He stayed yet another seven days; and again he sent forth the dove out of the ship.
Gen 8:11 The dove came back to him at evening, and, behold, in her mouth was an olive leaf plucked off. So Noah knew that the waters were abated from the earth.
Gen 8:12 He stayed yet another seven days, and sent forth the dove; and she didn't return to him any more.
Gen 8:13 It happened in the six hundred first year, in the first month, the first day of the month, the waters were dried up from the earth. Noah removed the covering of the ship, and looked. He saw that the surface of the ground was dried.
Gen 8:14 In the second month, on the twenty-seventh day of the month, the earth was dry.
Gen 8:15 God spoke to Noah, saying,
Gen 8:16 "Go out of the ship, you, and your wife, and your sons, and your sons' wives with you.
Gen 8:17 Bring forth with you every living thing that is with you of all flesh, including birds, livestock, and every creeping thing that creeps on the earth, that they may breed abundantly in the earth, and be fruitful, and multiply on the earth."
Gen 8:18 Noah went forth, with his sons, his wife, and his sons' wives with him.
Gen 8:19 Every animal, every creeping thing, and every bird, whatever moves on the earth, after their families, went out of the ship.
Gen 8:20 Noah built an altar to Yahweh, and took of every clean animal, and of every clean bird, and offered burnt offerings on the altar.
Gen 8:21 Yahweh smelled the pleasant aroma. Yahweh said in his heart, "I will not again curse the ground any more for man's sake, because the imagination of man's heart is evil from his youth; neither will I ever again strike everything living, as I have done.
Gen 8:22 While the earth remains, seed time and harvest, and cold and heat, and summer and winter, and day and night shall not cease."
Look at the size of that "prize". It is probably enough food for several days at least. So much so, that this little fella might make itself sick trying to consume all of it. But, that is the way with riches- you just want more and more and more. Take a moment a think: What is life all about, anyway? Money? Power? Possessions? Health? Well, I guess to a certain degree we all need some of these things. But, they are will FAIL; EVERY ONE OF THEM. Just for a moment, consider this passage taken from the book of Psalms...
4 I will incline my ear to a proverb.
I will open my riddle on the harp.
5 Why should I fear in the days of evil,
when iniquity at my heels surrounds me?
6 Those who trust in their wealth,
and boast in the multitude of their riches—
7 none of them can by any means redeem his brother,
nor give God a ransom for him.
8 For the redemption of their life is costly,
no payment is ever enough,
9 That he should live on forever,
that he should not see corruption.
10 For he sees that wise men die;
likewise the fool and the senseless perish,
and leave their wealth to others.
11 Their inward thought is that their houses will endure forever,
and their dwelling places to all generations.
They name their lands after themselves.
12 But man, despite his riches, doesn’t endure.
He is like the animals that perish.
We are more than just temporal beings. Our innate sense of morality proves that. Today, think about all you are "about". If God is not in the picture- change the picture!!! The TV commerical is true: "Sometimes you feel like a nut, sometimes you don't...". But, what about after the nut- then what? That is EXACTLY where God enters the picture- HE provides your real needs; those in and beyond this life. It begins with peace of mind and ends with joy in heaven. Just think about it, OK? When you do, know that you are NOT alone, because I will be too!!!
PS. Thanks, Kate, for the helpful advice Monday evening!!! It takes a real friend to provide constructive criticism that is obviously from good motives!!! G.