Sunday, October 26, 2008

A King Saul for president?

I’m not a political expert, but it appears that this country is looking for a King Saul to lead us. Every day and into the night I pray about the election. I fear our country is about to make a grave mistake.

I’m reminded of the story of King Saul who was king of Israel for a time. And although he looked like and acted like a king, God wanted David, a shepherd, to lead His people. He sent Samuel to choose a replacement for Saul and in 1 Samuel 16:7 it says, But the Lord said to Samuel. “Do not consider his appearance or his height, for I have rejected him. The Lord does not a look at the things man looks at. Man looks at the outward appearance, but the Lord looks at the heart.”

God wanted David, a shepherd, to rule over Israel. If the choice had been left up to men, they would never have chosen David—he didn’t look or act the part.

And so you may wonder what does this have to do with our present election? We have two men and their running mates standing before us. It is up to us to choose who will lead this country. Do we look at appearance or do we look at the heart?

It is not so difficult to see the heart of the men and the one woman in this race. Although we do not have the clear vision of God there are things we can look at. What does the record say? How have these people led and voted in the past? Who have they stood with and supported? What good have they done for our country? Do they honor humanity, hard work, and accountability?

We need a man of honor, a man who has the courage to stand up to evil. Stop listening to the press. Go to the many reliable sources and look at the voting records of these candidates.

Which of these men/woman honors life and which does not? The answer is clear. Barack Obama, not only supports partial birth abortion (a detestable act) he also refused to vote on legislation to stop infanticide. What is more despicable than allowing a child born alive to die without any attempt to save its life or even make it’s dying breaths more bearable?

Do we want transparency in our government? Which of these candidates openly displays their life and decisions and which does not? And if not, why? Know this, if they refuse to be transparent now the power to conceal will only increase after the election.

I will not tell you how to vote, but I will tell you how I’m voting.

We are at a crossroads in this country. As Americans we can feel it; we know it.
We have the opportunity to place an honorable man in office as our president. John McCain is not a perfect man by any means; in fact I have some issues with him. However, he has a servant’s heart and he would make a good president. Look at the record.

We’ve all heard about the power of the press. In this election cycle that power has been demonstrated unlike anything in our past. The press chose who it wanted for president and then set out to make it happen. I am reminded of similar situations in countries like Russia and China. The people don’t hear the truth because the news sources present what their leaders want the people to hear.

Because Sarah Palin stands as a powerful woman who is also a conservative, the press has laid into her unrelentingly. I’ve never seen anything like it. The American press, for the most part, have smeared and slandered Governor Palin and her family. They’ve attacked her ruthlessly, told half truths and outright lies. And yet, she’s still remains strong, determined, and gracious.

She is a conservative who believes in standing up for the rights of the unborn, who believes in accountability and honor in our government. Is she perfect? No. But if we’re looking for perfection, then we’d better be prepared to accept a delusion. There is a man who is more illusion than reality. When I think of him and those serving with him, I’m reminded of a snake charmer.

Please do not shun a real leader just because she doesn’t look, talk or act like the elite. She’s plain folks like you and I, but she’s smart and courageous and she believes in good old fashioned decency. Governor Palin wants transparency and accountability in Washington. Isn’t that what Americans have been saying they want? It feels like we’ve lost our compass and are wandering around lost in the desert. If history can be trusted to provide lessons, we best prepare to drift for many years.

I will continue to pray, knowing that God has not made mankind puppets to be controlled. He gave us free choice a long time ago. But my prayers will include that Americans make a wise choice on November 4th.

May the Lord hold us close.

Grace and peace to you from God.


If you'd like to read a great article by a Democrat Journalist who wonders what's become of honest journalism look here

Wednesday, October 22, 2008

Tips For Triumphant Living--Don't Hang On Too Tightly.

Life changes without warning, sometimes in ways we never could have imagined. Some changes are “good” and some not so good. I find peace in knowing that God is never caught unaware and that He will hold me tight while I weather storms.

As I mentioned in an earlier blog, I recently discovered that I must let go of the home I’ve lived in for twenty-eight years. Sorrow was my first reaction, then anger, and then the dreaded question of “Why?” set in.

God is so good. He gently led me through my emotional muddle. He didn’t reign me in, but kept reminding me that He loved me and that He knew how much it hurt to move on.

I’ve found my way to the truth, at least what I can see of it thus far. (God is never done with refining) So much of my sorrow came from the sad fact that I’m hanging onto a possession rather than clinging to Him.

God gave my husband and I our home on this beautiful piece of land. We’ve had many wonderful years here. But this place doesn’t really belong to us. It is God’s. I love living in the Oregon foothills with the wild flowers, towering evergreens and wildlife, but for reasons I don’t yet understand, and don’t need to, it’s time to move on. Clinging to a place will only hinder me. It’s time to get excited about what God has in store for me now.

If I believe He has a plan and that His ways are always best, then even if He plants me in the midst of a briar patch I should be content. The truth is that it’s not where I live or what kind of house I live in that matters, but it’s who I am in Him. God created me; He’s the one who cares for me and loves me (in spite of all my imperfections).

Life is short. We dare not waste a minute, especially if worrying about possessions fritters away precious moments. We must hold worldly goods lightly and let them go when asked. God has a plan. We can rest in that.

So love Him and know that our true treasures are heavenly not worldly.

Grace and peace to you from God.


Sunday, October 19, 2008

Quiet Moments With God--Life's Not Fair

"Life's not fair." How often have we heard this statement? Probably more times than we can count. I’ve said it many times. It rolls easily off the tongue. However, when it becomes personal, the glibness of the statement quickly fades.

Well, “life isn’t fair” and I’ve been reintroduced to that reality.

My husband and I moved into our new home just weeks ago, but we won’t be living out our lives here as we’d planned. For those of you who haven’t been following my blog I’ll explain our present situation.

My daughter and her family moved in with my husband and I eighteen months ago. They planned to purchase our family home and Greg and I would live in a new addition. We’ve been building the addition for more than a year. Finally after months of work, it’s finished and we’ve moved in. I love my new house!

However, the downturn in our country’s economy has reached into my life. My son-in-law, Fernest, is a carpenter and in our small community jobs are disappearing at an alarming rate. In an effort to care for his family and to gain an education he’s joined the Army. This is a good decision. My husband and I are proud of him. However, it comes at a cost to all of us. My daughter will live far away and will no longer share a morning cup of coffee with me. My grandchildren won’t be here to make me laugh and offer abundant hugs and kisses. And I won’t spend my retiring years in the home I’ve loved for twenty-eight years.

I’ve shed a lot of tears, but the bottom line is I trust God. He knows the beginning and the end. And no matter the situation I belong to Him. Nothing touches me without His permission. He has a plan for my husband and I, and for our daughter and her family. We are God’s children and He will not abandon us, but will see us through.

So, even when life isn't fair, God is.

Grace and peace to you from God.


Wednesday, October 01, 2008

Tips For Triumphant Moments--Dare to Dream

I’ve been reading a great book, In a Pit With a Lion on a Snowy Day. Mark Batterson makes some great points about the way we live as Believers.

Today while reading, I was struck by how many of us are uncomfortable “thinking out of the box”. We need to be more adventurous, more gutsy. We’ve grown accustomed to the comfortable day-to-day mode of living. We’ve forgotten (maybe we’ve never known) how exciting it is to be a Christian.

It’s time we dared to dream.

Mark Batterson talked about an experience he had in praying “ridiculous” prayers. He explained how foolish we sometimes look when we step out boldly. But that's how the world see us not God.

Mark was certain his church should purchase a piece of property. Not a big deal, except this property was half a block from Union Station in Washington DC. He thought that having a coffee shop in the Capitol Hill Historic District would be a great outreach.

The prayer was ridiculous for a number of reasons. At the top of the list was lack of funds. And the idea that churches build churches and not coffee houses was pervasive. Another problem he and others in his church faced, was a lack of experience. But he prayed anyway, believing God would do what God could do.

Even though he felt foolish, awkward, nervous and too young, he moved forward. The church did acquire the property and today a successful coffeehouse stands on that spot. Mark discovered later that for more than two decades God had prevented the property from being sold. Was God saving that place just for Mark and his church? We’ll only know for sure when we get to heaven, but it would seem so.

God is in the mix of our everyday lives, even when we’re unaware. Years ago, my husband and I and our three young children moved to Aurora, Colorado. While searching for a house we were living in an extremely difficult situation. Homes were scarce, at least affordable ones. We prayed and hoped, but after one particularly discouraging day of searching and finding nothing I told my husband in tears, that I couldn’t tolerate even one more day where we were.

Just about that time, a neighbor wandered over and suggested a real estate agent who handled rentals. We talked to him and he had a house that sounded perfect for us. We couldn’t get there fast enough and were stunned to discover that the “perfect” house waited for a family. It was larger than anything we’d expected, and although it was in the middle of the city a green belt with a stream and prairie dogs bordered the back (comforting for this country girl), the neighborhood was great and so was the price.

We discovered that twelve others had looked at that home and passed it by. After what we’d experienced during our weeks of searching we couldn’t imagine why anyone would pass on such a great place. It had to be God. He’d saved the house just for us.

Now, I know this is small potatoes when compared to Mark Batterson’s experience, but the principle is the same—God is in the middle of our lives. He loves us, and He cares about everything--the big things and the not so big.

So, dare to dream and then see what the God of the universe can do.

Grace and peace to you from God.

Bonnie Leon