Tag Archives: Live Your Life

On the Surface

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1 Samuel 16:7
English Standard Version (ESV)
7 But the Lord said to Samuel, “Do not look on his appearance or on the height of his stature, because I have rejected him. For the Lord sees not as man sees: man looks on the outward appearance, but the Lord looks on the heart.”

I love that God finds my beauty on the inside and not on the surface. Sometimes it’s not a pleasant experience to look in the mirror because time is not forgiving and gravity takes it’s toll. Some people are blessed to have a good genes and they retain their figure and youthful look but for most of us, it’s a daily struggle to be one of ‘the beautiful people’.

Often, a thought builds in my mind and I feel led to share what ends up becoming a full article. Sometimes, I am fueled by outrage at a current event and have to address it immediately. There are times though, where a subtle conversation or comment shared in passing is repeated over the course of time. When this happens, I know I have received a prompting from God to share what He is revealing to me.

I spend some time, not by choice, at the dermatologist several times a year reversing sun damage in the hopes to prevent skin cancer from surfacing. As a teen, I spent hours soaking in the sun as I tried to obtain a golden tan. Unsuccessful in most attempts, I would end up suffering from burns and the resulting peels that revealed only freckles and no tan. Unfortunately, I never learned and repeated this process so much over the years that now I have to reverse the damage that took years to build. Frequently, the damage to cells in your body take place years before the evidence of the resulting skin cancer can be seen. I’ve been told that typically, the length of time from initial damage to visible results can span ten years. I think there’s a lesson to learn here….(besides the obvious of avoiding sun damage). How long does it take for damage to reach the surface?

In casual conversation, I mentioned to a friend that she has flawless skin and she looked really great. After thanking me for the comment, which was genuine admiration, she clouded for a second before she said that my compliment made up for years of feeling ugly because she couldn’t tan. She was always more pale than her friends and didn’t feel like one of the “beautiful people.” I can relate because I’m so pale that I can literally blind people from the sun’s reflection off my skin. I felt immediately humbled to receive a glimpse into what had been years of suffering that my friend had experienced. In her case, she has emerged as the recipient of flawless and youthful skin because she avoided the sun. The feeling of beauty is only skin deep though because the feeling of inadequacy runs deeper than the surface.

Later, the same week, I was talking to another friend and somehow the conversation turned to her years of feeling invisible. In her youth, she had been heavier and always felt as if she was completely invisible to the world. As she matured, she lost weight and became more comfortable with herself so that people started noticing her. The attention she received could have easily gone to her head but she knew that regardless of what she looked like, the real person could only be known from the inside out. She said it was eye opening to see that people want to associate with those they perceive to be beautiful, so much so, that sometimes it’s hard to know who your real friends might be.

How many other people feel like this? How many neighbors, co-workers or relatives are suffering from what lies below the surface? If it takes ten years for some skin cancers to surface, how long does it take for emotional scars or feelings of inadequacy to become apparent? How many people do you know who are suffering in silence? Are you someone who has a hidden hurt? It’s such a comfort to know that there is One who looks past the surface and not only knows the real you but who can also hold and heal those secret scars. God knows you and He loves you! Psalm 139:13 New International Version (NIV) says, “For you created my inmost being; you knit me together in my mother’s womb.” How awesome is that! Not only does God see you and know you, He is the one who created the inner most you. He formed your soul and knows your secret thoughts and painful past. Turn those hurts that you have held on to for years over to Him and let Him free you from long held feelings of inadequacy.

“For man looks on the outside but God looks on the heart!”

Tribute to Maggie

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It was well recognized that Martha Raye endured less comfort and more danger than any other Vietnam entertainer.
Most of the old time entertainers were made of a lot sterner stuff than today’s crop of activists. The following is from an Army Aviator who takes a trip down memory lane. “It was just before Thanksgiving ’67 and we were ferrying dead and wounded from a large GRF west of Pleiku. We had run out of body bags by noon, so the Hook (CH-47 CHINOOK) was pretty rough in the back. All of a sudden, we heard a ‘take-charge’ woman’s voice in the rear. There was the singer and actress, Martha Raye, with a SF (Special Forces) beret and jungle fatigues, with subdued markings, helping the wounded into the Chinook, and carrying the dead aboard. ‘Maggie’ had been visiting her SF ‘heroes’ out ‘west’. We took off, short of fuel, and headed to the USAF hospital pad at Pleiku. As we all started unloading our sad pax’s, a ‘Smart Mouth’ USAF Captain said to Martha… “Ms Ray, with all these dead and wounded to process, there would not be time for your show! To all of our surprise, she pulled on her right collar and said ……”Captain, see this eagle? I am a full ‘Bird’ in the US Army Reserve, and on this is a ‘Caduceus’ which means I am a Nurse, with a surgical specialty….now, take me to your wounded. He said, “Yes ma’am…. follow me.” Several times at the Army Field Hospital in Pleiku, she would ‘cover’ a surgical shift, giving a nurse a well-deserved break.

Martha is the only woman buried in the SF (Special Forces) cemetery at Ft Bragg.

Two Words

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There are two words that I’ve really grown to dislike. I might even go as far as to say that I detest and resent them. Used separately they are fine and normal words, but combined they convey restrictions that God never intended to be placed upon man.

POLITICALLY CORRECT

These two words have become such a source of irritation to me that I feel the necessity to expose why we should not strive to be politically correct. When someone you know is suffering, shouldn’t you be able to pray with them or express that you are praying for them? Prayer is my first action when I hear of a loved one or friend in need, however my second thought is to make sure the expression of this action might not offend anyone within hearing distance. When a conversation at work turns to a theoretical hopefulness of eternal life, why are we not allowed to simply speak up and assure our co-workers that eternal life is not only a hope but rather a promise if we only believe in the finished work of Jesus Christ? Why are churches feeling the need to change their charters to reflect the belief that marriage is an act between a man and a woman? Why have schools taken prayer and God out of school? Why do we limit and silence the beliefs of many in order to pacify the few?

POLITICAL CORRECTNESS – that’s why. And I’ll take it a step further and say that EVILNESS is a more appropriate answer. All the good and right that God put in place when He created man has either already been or is in the process of being perverted by Satan. The spiritual battle taking place between God and His heavenly armies and Satan and his demons has moved so near and become so intense that humans can almost hear the battle sounds with our limited hearing. The feeling of immense anticipation is so strong that people across the globe are taking note. The Holy Spirit is directing Christians to speak out loudly to friends and family because it won’t be too much longer before the curtain that conceals the supernatural dimension is raised and all hell will literally break loose on earth. Satan is working overtime to move all humans to a global way of thinking. If everyone on earth were to be like minded then political correctness would be political mandate. How close are we to this? You tell me! Read the morning headlines…..we are nano seconds away from universal chaos on all fronts: political, financial, spiritual and physical. Only God’s great love for mankind is delaying this action. He could easily split the heavens wide open and demand that all acknowledge the truth in His thunderous voice yet He has given each one of us a choice to find Him. He has made His presence known throughout all of creation. Everything, seen and unseen, reflects His presence so that no one can claim ignorance of His existence. He has commanded that Christians go into the world and preach His gospel to every person. There should be absolutely no excuse for anyone not to believe, love and worship Almighty God…but for the pervasiveness of POLITICAL CORRECTNESS.

The agenda of the current White House administration is directly opposed to everything that is fundamentally right. Our founding fathers established a nation whose pursuits were life, liberty and happiness. Each day brings the uncovering of a new liberty stripped from American citizens. With rapid fire, the Constitutional Amendments are being shot into the abyss. True and genuine happiness has been replaced by temporal enjoyment of possessions. As long as the average citizen’s lifestyle is not affected, they remain lulled into passivity. Life… The lives of countless thousands American soldiers have been altered either for years or permanently and now we are being pushed into another war. When potus said we won’t be going to ground in Syria, you better know that we are already there. In spite of all of these daily occurrences, the art of POLITICAL CORRECTNESS has silenced the moral majority of this great nation. It is high time that we stand up and speak boldly for Truth – in more ways than one. Shake the liberty tree with patriotic passion and don’t let anyone prevent you from pointing eyes to Jesus. We should not be policed by POLITICAL MANDATE, which is where we are quickly headed. We answer to a Higher Authority, but it’s your choice as to how you choose to use your voice. Choose wisely, because time is running out!