Thursday, December 23, 2004

A LONG RANT AND A MERRY CHRISTMAS....

To all who read this blog whether you agree with me or not I wish you a Merry Christmas. I thank you for coming to this site and reading and thank you to those who post messages and send emails, it is much appreciated.

This year I am looking at the coming holiday with a new fervor and appreciation for what it really means and what it is actually about. Given all of the so called controversy over the use of the spiritual terms of Christmas and it's symbols, I think this is a necessary point. We who are men and women of God through the salvation of Jesus Christ must be ever vigilant in living and speaking for God in our everyday living. We must push ourselves to never waver or falter on our responsibilities, both natural and spiritual. Next week the emphasis will go from Christmas to New Years and the whole banter around making year end resolutions for the following year will be the center topic. Let us move beyond empty year-end resolutions and start right now in making a change. Lets turn away from those bad habits that cause us to doubt, procrastinate or simply be lazy and lets start being single minded and focused on truly living what we believe. I've heard it said that change happens in an instant, a single moment, we move from sinner to saint, from evil to good, this is the power of God and the ability He has given us in the natural world is similar. We are able to choose, in an instant, whether we are going to continue along the same path, walking in circles, or if we are going to start being active Christians being a force for good within our communities. This is not just my resolution for the end of the year, it is my life goal, to live for God. To do exactly what he is calling me to do. I pray that you will do the same, make living for God your life goal. Make all that you do, say, and think be for His glorification.

For those men out there especially, I am compelling you to begin to stand up in your communities, churches, jobs, and schools to speak up for God's truth. Stand up for what is right, be real men and not cowards. Do not let this world define what you are but be defined by what God says you are. You, who believe on our Lord and Savior Christ Jesus, are men of God, mighty warriors armed with the two-edged sword of truth, that being God's immutable, unchangeable, infallible Word. Use it mightily, with authority and purpose and do not be ashamed of the gospel for in it there is power and salvation for those who believe.

I had a conversation with a cousin of mine who is a member of the Merchant Marines. He works on oil tankers doing maintenance and repair. Needless to say he has traveled all over the world over the past several years. We got into a discussion about the AIDS epidemic in Africa and the states. He told me that he has seen some of the sufferers first hand and it is gruesome. He then went on to tell me that he believes it is the "white mans" fault for bringing that disease over there. Amazing! I immediately disagreed with him and told him that we cannot put the blame for the spread of an STD on one group of people, who for all intents and purposes, has nothing to do with the current crisis. I then shared with him the truth, that AIDS is rampant in Africa and this country as well because of one simple truth, the lack of moral character. Much of the spread of AIDS in Africa is perpetuated through the sinful actions of the people and their leaders, i.e., corrupt governments who neglect the needs of their own people, men raping young virgins believing that by doing so one can be healed from disease, as well as a continued emphasis on contraception rather than abstinence. Here in the U.S.A. it is the same, too much emphasis on "safe sex" and an all too liberal perception of sex and marriage. Needless to say, he did not agree. I say this to point to an unfortunate fact, there are still many men, especially Black men, who do not know the truth. Who continue to perpetuate the group think of blaming society on a whole rather than holding individuals accountable for their own actions. I know that I didn't change his mind from that one conversation, but I do know that a seed was planted and I earnestly pray that more good men of God will do the same when confronted with false ideology. We must speak the truth in love, not hating or resenting but hoping that the power of God will take hold on those who hear.

I hope your holiday will be warm, festive and full of God's blessings! Merry Christmas!

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