Just this week, the world watched in horror as one of its enduring symbols of faith, Notre Dame de Paris, burned helplessly. But we awakened the following morning to photos of a glowing cross standing amid the ashen rubble — a cross symbolizing pain and sacrifice, but also expressing an enduring hope.
Source: He Is Risen: Darkness Is Defeated and Dawn Has Arrived, by Timothy Head, writing for TownHall.com April 21, 2019
With every news cycle we hear of another example of the darkness that seems to be ever increasingly prevalent in our world, especially for Christians and the Church.
Just this morning we are confronted with news of another attack on the faithful:
A series of eight devastating bomb blasts ripped through high-end hotels and churches holding Easter services in Sri Lanka on Sunday, killing at least 207 people, including dozens of foreigners. source: News18.com
Officials in Sri Lanka have reported that the attacks were carried out by suicide bombers and have made the following request:
Sri Lanka Defence Minister Ruwan Wijewardene has urged media not to publicise the names of today’s attackers as other extremist groups could exploit the situation. “Don’t give extremists a voice. Don’t help to make them martyrs,” he says. (source: ibid)
Indeed the times are dark for the followers of Christ and his church.
But as Mr. Head wrote for Town Hall in the quote first above; Continue reading
O God, the author of all good, I come to You for the grace another day will require for its duties and events. I step out into a wicked world; I carry about with me an evil heart. I know that without You I can do nothing, that everything with which I shall be concerned, however harmless in itself, may prove an occasion of sin or folly, unless I am kept by Your power.
Hold me up O God and I shall be safe. Preserve my understanding from subtlety of error, my affections from love of idols, my character from stain of vice, my profession from every form of evil. May I engage in nothing in which I cannot implore Your blessing, and in which I cannot invite Your inspection. Prosper me in all lawful undertakings, or prepare me for disappointments.
Give me neither poverty nor riches. Feed me with food suitable for me, lest I be full and deny You and say, “Who is the Lord?” Or be poor, and steal, and take Your name in vain. May every creature be made good to me by prayer and Your will. Teach me how to use the world and not abuse it, to improve my talents, to redeem my time, to walk in wisdom toward those without, and in kindness to those within, to do good to all men, and especially to my fellow Christians. And to You, O God, be the glory.
Luke 18 New International Version (NIV)
1 Then Jesus told his disciples a parable to show them that they should always pray and not give up. 2 He said: “In a certain town there was a judge who neither feared God nor cared what people thought. 3 And there was a widow in that town who kept coming to him with the plea, ‘Grant me justice against my adversary.’
4 “For some time he refused. But finally he said to himself, ‘Even though I don’t fear God or care what people think, 5 yet because this widow keeps bothering me, I will see that she gets justice, so that she won’t eventually come and attack me!’”
6 And the Lord said, “Listen to what Continue reading
Grant, O Lord, Thy protection
And in protection, strength
And in strength, understanding
And in understanding, knowledge
And in knowledge, the knowledge of justice
And in the knowledge of justice, the love of it
And in the love of it, the love of all existences
And in that love, the love of spirit and all creation.
Our Father, we beg Your blessing for the weak, the sick and the old; all who are finding themselves being targets of the vicious attacks of the adversary; we ask that our Lord Jesus bless and protect all who stand up for the Christian dignity of persons. That you Holy Father enlighten those who are traveling down death’s highway by their involvement, in any way, with either the aspects of the contemporary culture which are emblematic of Satan, the cult of the self, relativism, or any of the new age errors of our times, we pray that you envelop our culture with Your Divine protection and help us both individually and as a nation to true enlightenment, conversion and repentance of our selves and restoration of our culture. Help us to turn from our national sin of greed and materialism, and return to, and once again, become a Christian nation, on the narrow road, that is, the path to becoming one nation under God undivided by ego, personal agenda and selfishness. Amen.
Recent statistical studies have shown that among young people there is an increasing number turning away from or were never introduced to Christianity. Astonishingly these same studies show large percentages of these same young people have a growing desire to know what lies after death. Their concerns seem to indicate that want to believe that there is something else rather than to accept the secular atheist answer that this is all there is.
Many of these youth—like their parents before them—become seekers, or those who closely examine or participate in various spiritual paths; usually outside Christianity as they have been Continue reading
Posted in Inspiration
Tagged Bible, born again, C. S. Lewis, God, Gospel, John 10:30, John 14:8, John 14:8-11, Matthew 7:21, Mere Christianity, sin
“The Emperor’s New Clothes” (Danish: Kejserens nye Klæder) is a short tale by Hans Christian Andersen about two con artyists who promise an emperor a new suit of clothes that is invisible to those who are unfit for their positions, stupid, or incompetent. 
A vain Emperor who cares about nothing except wearing and displaying clothes hires two tailors who promise him the finest, best suit of clothes from a fabric invisible to anyone who is unfit for his position or “hopelessly stupid”. The Emperor’s ministers cannot see the clothes themselves, but pretend that they can for fear of appearing unfit for their positions and the Emperor does the same. Finally the weavers report that the suit is finished, they mime dressing him and the Emperor marches in procession before his subjects. The townsfolk play along with the pretense, not wanting to appear unfit for their positions or stupid. Then a child in the crowd, too young to understand the desirability of keeping up the pretense, blurts out that the Emperor is wearing nothing at all and the cry is taken up by others. The Emperor suspects the assertion is true, but continues the procession. 
I often think of this folktale when I witness modern day people believing that which is ostensibly lies. As the above excerpt from an Wikipedia entry points out, Continue reading