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Pastor's Commentary

What Is My Purpose of Being
Sunday, April 07 2019
When I was a kid growing up we didn’t have TV at first, as it was a new item on the market, and, as poor as we were, we couldn’t afford one anyway. My brothers and I would often lie out under the stars at night and be amazed at all the stars and patterns they created - maybe a meteor from time to time passing by. It might have been at that time I would begin to wonder, “where am I in all the vast space of things?” I seemed so insignificant, and truth be known, still am. I had questions that were beyond me, as they say; “inquiring minds want to know.”
So, I determined my dad would be the first one I would consult in my mystery of life questions. I was just a kid, it’s been a long time since that time, but I can remember it well. So I said, “Dad, I have a question for you?”  He said, “what’s you got boy?”  “Why was I born and what is my purpose for being?” He didn’t know what to say, but finally said, “I don’t know,  go ask your mother.” It didn’t take me long to find mom, so I said to her, “Mom, I have a question dad didn’t know the answer to so he sent me to ask you.” As most of us know growing up, our folks were some of the smartest people around. So I asked mom the same question as I asked dad, which was, why was I born and what is my purpose for being?  She said; “where do you come up with this stuff anyway?” I didn’t know the answer to her question any more than she knew the answer to mine. I can say this, something deep down inside of me had questions, and I would continue to seek the answer until I found it.
In my studies over many years I was amazed at the number of folks that have shared having almost the exact same questions I had. In time I would find the answer - it would be quite liberating, and I was privileged to be able to go back and tell my folks before they passed away the truth of the matter.
I must admit, I didn’t come from a powerful Christian home where the answers I sought could have been addressed from anything other than a worldly point of view. I had heard about God, but I never knew God. In school it was popular to teach that we are a product of evolution, our ancestors, many thousands of years ago, were primates, monkeys, before that we climbed up out of the mud. With their reasoning, we just consume 60 or 70 years worth of natural resources on a depleted planet and eventually die, like a rat or dog, that’s it. No record of your value or worth, and who cares if you are gone, for the masses anyway. I thought there had to be more to life than that. That just didn’t seem to fit some kind of on board feeling that life is higher than that, it has value, more than something temporal.
Everything that happens has to have reason,  it’s the law of “cause and effect.” It is the foundation of science, logic and reason. Every effect has to have a cause. There are no small amount of books and papers written on this logic. Nothing can exist without a cause behind it. It would go against science, reason and logic. As previously mentioned, I used to look up into the night sky and observe all the star patterns …  like who hasn’t seen the pots and pans, aka, “the big dipper or little dipper?” As I found out years down the road from Zodiac Charts, there were many patterns/pictures - all of great significance.
As it turns out, the Gospel message is written in the stars. Before the Word of God was placed in the book we call the Bible, the star patterns revealed the plan of God and of salvation to the multitudes in ancient times. This is an enormous piece to the puzzle, for those stars to be in a pattern like that is not, and cannot be, an accident. I think, this cannot be ignored, who wouldn’t admit someone of great intelligence is at work here? And with that, my interest in whom He is also piqued. I must say the stars weren’t the only thing that got my attention, I was blown away at the myriad of different species of flowers, birds, animals, you name it, this just can’t be an accident. To be truthful about it, anyone able to create a universe seems too big to care for someone like me, or anyone for that matter. Nonetheless, I determined if He authored a book called the Bible, then I am going to search it to try to find the answers to my questions.
The quest for truth concerning life’s very important questions would not be found in man’s logic, the deification of man, (making oneself god), nor in trying to ignore the evidence of God’s vast creation. What do you think? Where there is a vast creation, there must be a vast Creator. Consider, the sun gives light to the earth, and the moon’s light is a reflection of the sun. This reveals a great picture of Christ, as He is the Light of the world, and we, like the moon, are illuminated by the Lord  -  spiritually speaking.
In the end, it would be in the pages of God’s Word that I would find these words; “therefore let your light so shine before men, that they may see your good works and ‘Glorify your Father’ which is in Heaven,” (Math. 5:16). By taking advantage of His great plan of salvation, I would find out what my purpose on earth was, and why I was born as well. When we give our life to the Lord and accept His plan of salvation, we no longer have to live in sin’s downward spiral. I can live a victorious life for God. I now make it a point to do those things that please and lift Him up. My life has meaning and value, not just now, but eternally.
I am happy to report that my folks would be pleased in my quest to find out what the purpose and meaning of life was all about. It amazed me they never gave it as much a thought as I did. A lot of folks are like that, they just operate out of some personal code of ethics they were most likely taught, and hope it all pans out in the end. What a blessing it was/is to be able to share Christ with the family. So, if you are looking for life’s answers, you might consider looking up into the stars, connect the dots, and get a copy of the Bible to explain it all to you. After all, these patterns aren’t just an accident.
Pastor Thomas Nosworthy
Light the Way Ministries.
lightthewayministries.org
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Special Guest Commentary

101 BODACIOUS QUOTATIONS

TO

INSPIRE PATRIOTISM

Introduction

You might be wondering what prompted the writing of this bodacious quotation book? What better time than now to be reminded of how both essential and fragile our country is. America is experiencing one of its darkest periods in recent history.  For over three years, we have witnessed some truly vicious and ugly political unrest.

          A ceaseless cacophony of accusations, innuendo, and intrigue have kept those in Washington and the media ever busy. Before the Coronavirus pandemic, to watch the daily news and social media, one would never know that the stock market had hit all-time highs numerous times in the last 54 months, or we’d had the lowest unemployment numbers in decades, and the lowest unemployment rate among blacks ever!  President Trump also renegotiated trade deals that  were fairer to America.

          Then, in January 2020, our nation was rocked when the Coronavirus landed on our shores and ended our way of life as we know it. Soon there were daily press briefings from the White House and various doctors. Each day virus information was plentiful, contradictory, and confusing. People were dying. We heard that hospitals were going to be overrun with COVID cases.

          The army set up hospital tents in various cities to handle the tens of thousands that were expected to land there. It didn’t happen. Hospitals were going to be inundated and unable to care for all of the sick. The army hospitals were never used – not one patient was seen in many of these. They were eventually dismantled. What happened? All non-essential surgeries and doctors’ visits were canceled. Hospitals were virtually emptied. And now? Many health care workers have been terminated or furloughed because the hospital's operating capital has vanished.    

           Now, thousands have died! Our elderly, who were not adequately protected in nursing homes, have had the most significant number of deaths. The actual numbers of COVID deaths cannot be relied upon because of highly questionable methodologies for assigning the cause of death. The rationale for this might be related to government funding to hospitals for each COVID case.     Time will tell as we compare data from previous years for various causes of deaths to see if the other numbers are in line with past years, OR if there's been a sharp decline in other categories, and they have been pushed into the COVID category.  And, suddenly, in the last several weeks, cases have begun to spike again. There is substantial debate on if it’s because many more people are getting tested. There is so much information out there – unreliable at best, that there’s no sense in discussing it at this point.

          Governors in many states issued draconian lock-down orders threatening people with arrests and the closure of businesses, or cancellation of necessary licenses if they didn’t abide by these rules. Masks and gloves were donned, not in hospitals, but stores and any public places. We even saw a parent handcuffed and arrested in front of his little girl because he dared to play ball with her in an empty field. A salon owner was arrested and jailed for opening her salon to pay her bills and put food on her table. Many other Gestapo tactics, such as these, were used to keep people in line. YES, I am talking about America!

            Americans have turned against one another. Some believe everything that the CDC, World Health Organization, and government say. Others believe there is a conspiracy to subjugate the people as a test to see how much they'll tolerate and for how long. It's been, in my opinion, a phenomenal success. People hate each other more than ever. Make no mistake; the various powers have observed very carefully to see how we've all responded. Unfortunately, it's been too much for many, and suicides have skyrocketed. Prescriptions for mood-altering drugs to cope with the crisis have also gone up dramatically (as if we didn't already have an opioid epidemic.)

          Younger Americans seem to be suffering more than most from deep depression, isolation, and loneliness.  I find this completely paradoxical since they are the generation that is so disconnected from one-on-one relationships, and so completely connected to their phones and other electronic devices. You can’t sit in the same room, or at the same table with them, without sharing their time with their hand-held devices! And yet, they are  the ones suffering from their own self-created lack of meaningful relationships with others.  

           The mainstream media, who now chooses to cherry-pick what they report, excluding vital details, has become an op-ed machine rather than a fair and unbiased media. What was once the actual news is now a daily dose of propaganda. And fear mongering. I once believed everything I heard on the evening news! I now question absolutely everything I hear on the evening news! I have no faith in the honesty, integrity, or intentions of what is being "reported." Who exactly can we turn to for the facts and not opinions? I don't know.

           Just when we were beginning to see the light, and the states were opening things back up, one rogue cop, caught in the horrendous act of murdering a black man by kneeling on his neck for almost nine minutes, captured the country’s attention.  The anger and outrage at this injustice rocked every corner of our nation. But, within the black community, it ignited a firestorm of rage and anger. That moment symbolized, for many, both black and white, the brutality of a small percentage of police that has unfairly tarnished ALL police officers. To believe this of an entire segment of people is blatantly untrue and unfair.

           That was the tinderbox that erupted into the scenarios we are now witnessing, hour by hour, day after day, that could be right out of the movie “Escape from New York.”  Cities are burning. Businesses looted. People are being shot, and armed citizens are patrolling their neighborhoods to keep looters out and their areas safe with their weapons.

          A six-block area has been taken over by anarchists. Checkpoints have been established for entering and exiting, and there are check-points to allow people in or out. They are extorting business owners, and the Mayor of Seattle seems to think it’s a “summer block party.”  I guess she is not aware that a new country has been set up in a six-block area now known as CHAZ/CHOP – Capital Hill Autonomous Zone. You can’t make this stuff up!

          All across our country,  statues and monuments are being defaced and torn down – while those in charge sit on their hands and let the anarchists destroy America, insisting there is nothing they can do. Every day the frenzy continues as the calls for changing names of military bases, schools, colleges, sports teams, etc., escalates. It is complete insanity.

           Right on cue, the media and politicians have seized upon the opportunity to stoke the coals of division and hatred. I cry for our nation and what we have allowed ourselves to become.  I don't know the people seen on T.V. I don't come in contact with the level of black, or white,  Americans seen on there – they don't represent those with whom I daily interact.  People with thinking brains understand that these broad generalizations are not only untrue, but inherently harmful to us individually, and collectively as a nation.    

          Many officials of these large cities have refused to address the rioters and insist upon calling them, protesters. They seem to have limited knowledge of vocabulary for no one in their right mind would equate a protester and a rioter who burns, loots,  and harms people, as the same thing.        The very thing that the black community, what all communities need, are jobs and businesses. Now, thousands have seen their streets and businesses burned and destroyed, some of which will never return. Those jobs are permanently lost.  Those black communities will again know the pains of hopelessness and living in burned-out hulls of their former cities.

           But take hope. While all of this has happened, America's elite have raised over twenty million dollars – wait for it – not to help rebuild those cities, but to bail out the “protesters” who have destroyed those cities. Yes, this is where we are. There seems to be no help for those who work and play by the rules. No support is arriving from Hollywood elites and wealthy athletes for those people. One must question why?

           I’m watching this and feeling astounded, and at times utterly hopeless. The Washington leadership (can we call it that?) is still dividing us, still trying to rush through bills that are an atrocity, and I'm thinking to myself, has pandering and appeasement ever gotten anyone anywhere?'  Has that given people jobs and hope? Has that lifted them out of poverty? And, I feel, most importantly, has that increased their self-respect and self-reliance?  That I can answer with a resounding NO! To deny any human being the chance to work and produce, to feel a sense of accomplishment for a job well done, is to deny a basic human need – to feel valued.

          I don’t understand all of the machinations of politics (I couldn’t sleep at night if I did). I do know one thing as a person who loves their country – that we can’t, we must not give up on America. Too many people have given their lives for our America. We are in a fight for the very soul of this country. That might sound dramatic, but it is a fact. Many want to tear it apart – rebuild it into what they “envision” would be a better place. The founding fathers had a profoundly inciteful vision for the greatest country that the world has ever known. They knew history, and they sought to use their knowledge to create a more perfect union. (Where have we heard that before?)

            There are days when I question everything. At moments I give up hope and want to surrender. Times when I think if that is what THEY want, then they can have it. But it is not ours to give away! We owe a debt to our country to protect it from enemies, both foreign and domestic. That is our duty as a patriotic American who is willing to speak up and stop the insanity.

           I call upon my strong faith in God, knowing that whatever He has in store, He is with us. When America turned Him out of their schools, their homes, and their hearts, our decline began.  That is what happens when we shrugged our shoulders and said, “Oh well, what can you do?” Or, “Live and let live.” Now you can see the left doesn’t want people to live and let live. They want to control us. There seems to be no middle ground. This indeed is something new.

            I have seen the thousands of crosses marking graves of our soldiers who fought for democracy around the world and paid the ultimate sacrifice. I mourn with families who have known the pain of losing those heroes. I remind myself that I will do everything humanly possible to ensure that America is a country of citizens who deserve to live in peace and prosperity, fellowship, and understanding. Abraham Lincoln was well aware, as our country teetered on the brink of civil war, that "A house divided against itself cannot stand."  (Mark 3:25)

            America is equivalent to a marriage. Sometimes we see all the best she has to offer, and we're starry-eyed and optimistic. Other times, we see everything as irreconcilable and dark. Then, it's as though we would like a divorce.  But saving America is worth the fight. We have a lot of work ahead of us. A great deal of understanding and healing needs to be done.

          We need to commit to providing more opportunities for all. And, more of a commitment to make each person responsible for their actions. We must step up to the plate and take personal responsibility – stop pointing the finger and passing the buck. Even though it seems impossible through the lens of the current crisis, I do believe in miracles. It's going to take courage, strength, consistency, fairness, rules for all, and laws that everyone must follow - not just a few. It will also necessitate a commitment from those in Washington to come together and serve America – not themselves. I don’t believe they will do that willingly. Their strength lies in our discord!

            How could I express all of these thoughts and feelings in a small book? I've always been enamored with quotations! With just a few carefully chosen words strung together like a beautiful strand of pearls, they present a profound concept. These BODACIOUS quotations have been hand-picked for an important point or reminder about freedom, honesty, politicians, government, personal duty, economics, liberty, and above all else, man's responsibility to think for himself. History has gifted us with brilliant people, whose insightful reasoning and words of wisdom have proven ageless. They deserve to be heard once again as valuable reminders to each of us.

          It is my sincere hope that you will become even more bodacious in your patriotism. I hope that you will find meaningful ways to become a better, more involved citizen. I pray that this will stimulate conversation and inspire each of you to understand your unique "Power of One" and step into your new bodacious life! America is depending upon you.

 

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Land O Lakes, Florida 34639

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