A Nurse With Attitude

Where Dark Cynical Humor, Nursing Issues, and Politics Seem to Merge

Archive for the month “April, 2017”

Happy Easter

 

What did you do today? Did you go to church?   Did you even think about the sacrifice and the deeds, as well as the miracles done by our savior, Jesus?

In America we’re so blasé about religion. We’re so set in our ways about secular thought that we frequently miss the power of the Gospel. The teachings, morals, lessons, parables, and laws of the Judeo-Christian Bible (Old and New Testaments) hinge on one fact that prove their exclusive claim to truth. If Jesus did not die and rise from the grave, then nothing we preach is more than someone’s personal opinion.

Nonbelievers offer the same argument the Apostle Paul addressed in 1 Corinthians: “we do not believe in the resurrection of the dead.” From a purely naturalist viewpoint, it’s impossible. Paul wrote to a group of Christians who expressed faith in Christ but not in a resurrection of the dead.

Now if Christ is preached that He has been raised from the dead, how do some among you say that there is no resurrection of the dead? But if there is no resurrection of the dead, then Christ is not risen. And if Christ is not risen, then our preaching is empty and your faith is also empty. Yes, and we are found false witnesses of God, because we have testified of God that He raised up Christ, whom He did not raise up—if in fact the dead do not rise. For if the dead do not rise, then Christ is not risen. And if Christ is not risen, your faith is futile; you are still in your sins! Then also those who have fallen asleep in Christ have perished.

1 Corinthians 15:12-19

If this event did not occur, there’s little difference in Islam, Buddhism, Hinduism, and countless other religions from Christianity. The power of Zeus and Apollo to save would be no better than Jesus Christ were it not for the resurrection. The Bible would be nothing more than myth, which is exactly what many humanist/secular/atheist nonbelievers believe it to be.

But Paul also gave an answer to them (before he addressed resurrection in general).

For I delivered to you first of all that which I also received: that Christ died for our sins according to the Scriptures, and that He was buried, and that He rose again the third day according to the Scriptures, and that He was seen by Cephas, then by the twelve. After that He was seen by over five hundred brethren at once, of whom the greater part remain to the present, but some have fallen asleep. After that He was seen by James, then by all the apostles. Then last of all He was seen by me also, as by one born out of due time.

1 Corinthians 15:3-8

Christ has also appeared in dreams to thousands of people, most of whom are forever changed by the encounter. Large numbers of Jews and Muslims have become (and continue to this day) believers in Christ following these dreams, some after reading the New Testament confirming their own witness. Some never read the Bible before this, because the book is banned in many countries.

If the Bible is a myth, why is it considered so dangerous in so many places that it’s banned? Why is proselytizing banned in most Muslim-dominated countries, and in Israel? Why, despite the bans, are thousands of Jews, Muslims, and those living in officially atheist countries such as China coming to Christ?

The Bible is banned in more countries than any other single book–even Mein Kampf. In contrast, the Koran is only banned (uncensored) in Russia. That was in 2014…since then Vladimir Putin has cracked down on Christians harder than practically any other religious group.

Why does this happen? If the Bible is so easily disproved and cast aside as myth, why is reading that particular book considered to be so dangerous?

It is dangerous because they know in their heart that it is, in fact, true. God is real. Jesus did rise from the dead, and we, as members of the Christian faith, are the only people on earth who have real hope and an unobstructed clear path to the promised land.

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Why Survive?

I am a prepper. I have been into the survival thing for many years. I collect ammo, supplies, emergency equipment and all sorts of survival stuff. I read, practice and train for the event of a zombie apocalypse or whatever you would call an apocyplical event. I read an article this morning that got me thinking about why I prepare. Let’s face it, we all have our idea of what we want our lives to be. We want to survive to support our children, prosper, and be ahead of the poor schmuck who didn’t take the time or effort to prepare. Then out of the blue, I really started thinking about what I really want as the final result of my worldly existence. What reasons do I personally feel make life worth living? My fondest memories of growing up don’t revolve around gifts or things I received as a child. I no longer remember, with some very few exceptions, what I unwrapped on most Christmas mornings of my youth. I do however still remember the anticipation as I waited for the big day to arrive, waking early, and knowing I couldn’t wait to open my gifts. But one particular Christmas morning stands out in my memory. As one by one my family awoke, we gathered around the tree, and just sat quietly. Then mom said how much she loved us all. Her smile beamed. I gave her a hug and we had some coffee and savored the moment. For a short time we were just glad to all be together, all healthy, and life was quiet and serene. There are very few days during my school years that stand out in my memory. But I can still picture in my youth every day my dad would take the time to give me undivided attention teaching me how to do man stuff, using hand tools to create something really cool from a pile of leftover scrap lumber. Things like teaching me to use a gun, set up a fishing line, to throw a cast net, and enjoy nature while tromping through the swamp is what I really remember. It wasn’t any special or even expensive. It was the little things, the every day things that my family did to show their love.

Now I’m not reminiscing on my childhood to put you to sleep. I simply wish to set the stage as I leisurely get to the point of this post. I love life to the fullest. I mean, I don’t really want to die. I quite frankly have no intention of doing so anytime soon. I’ve always been contrary, and with everyone trying to tell me that I ‘have’ to die sometime, it makes me more ornery and determined to prove them wrong. But why? What do I want to live for? America and the quality of all our lives has been constantly degraded by more and more regulation and violations of our rights. Liberal and socialist constructs continuously intrude into our private lives. So what is it that keeps me getting up every morning to face yet another day? I’ve given this a great deal of thought.

My oldest son brought his daughter (our granddaughter) over to babysit the other day while they went to a movie. When I look at her I wonder, as she gets older, how to keep her “entertained” when she’s here. I have only the basic of TV, only the most basic of internet.  In competing with modern day electronics, and what they teach in school now a-days, I worry how am I going to keep her enthused about spending time with this broken down old man. And I realized the answer lies in the things that gives my life meaning. All of my fondest memories from half a century revolve around creation. Taking scraps that would otherwise go to waste, and using skills my dad patiently taught me, making a house for a family of birds to nest in. Understanding the ring of life. Both in the birth of plants from the soil and animals from the womb. And so many small things. Painting a picnic table with my dad. Making home-made charcoal. Playing a game of baseball with the neighbor kids at the little community schoolhouse. Sitting in the woods, waiting for the squirrels to get used to my presence in their domain, and then NOT shooting one because they all seemed to be having so much fun. Then picking blackberries for my mom to make a cobbler for dinner.

I realized this morning I’m not prepping to survive, I work to live. If I can instill even a tenth of my reverence for the quiet life I prefer in my granddaughter, my life will not have been wasted. As a career nurse, I try to help people and do what I can to make life better. Life is not about getting more toys, more material goods or stuff to have. It’s about what you do, that counts. It’s also about who you spend your time with that counts. It’s about your family and your loved ones. And most of all, it’s about a healthy relationship with your maker.

So for my new 2017 new year’s resolution, I’m going to focus on my family. I’m going to call mom more. Go see my sister and my dad more. I’m going to spend more time with my three sons and my new granddaughter. And most of all, I’m going to pray more. I’m going to give up on the prepper thing. I’m going to put my trust in God and see what happens.

So basically, with the babysitting issue, I’m not going to entertain my granddaughter. I’m going to let her entertain me as I try to instill in her that it’s not he who dies with the most toys who wins. It’s he who has a great relationship with God, and who has worked to obtain an enriched life while working to the enrichment of others that wins.

When the World is on Fire, Be thankful.

For years, I’ve watched the news and kept up to date with the local and national political scene.  If you review this very blog, you can see how I’ve felt.  In this last year, I’ve made a commitment to work on only those things that I am able to make a constructive change.

Today I made the mistake of turning on the news. I found my senses instantly assaulted with stories of fighting politicians, corrupt corporations, and countless crimes. It seemed like the only news worth showing was mankind at its very worst. It seemed like the only thing they wanted to talk about was what went wrong today.

After a few minutes I turned the television back off. I poured myself a glass of wine, sat down at my kitchen table, and instead thought about what went right today. Today the sun came over the horizon and bathed the world in its golden, life-giving light. Today my little house once again kept me warm, safe, and dry. Today I had 3 meals of wonderful food that kept me healthy, alive, and energized for the work of the day. I went to my job and was able to relieve several people of their potentially devastating cancer.  Today, whenever I reached my hand down I had a furry head to pet as my cat shared his unconditional love with me. Today I got to hug and encourage my sons and see the joy that they share with the world.

Today I played with my grandbaby and was once again amazed at how beautiful she is. Today I got a call from family back in Alabama and they shared their lives and their love with me. Today I shared a few messages of love and joy myself.

Today I felt God’s warm love for me flowing through all of His creation and encouraging me to once again spread His love, tell His truth, and shine His light. When you are at the end of your days in this world,  are you going to dwell on what went wrong or rejoice in what went right? God showers this world in goodness all the time, and we need only to open our hearts to see it. Rejoice in everything that goes right in your life. Give thanks for it. And do your best to add your own goodness, kindness, and love to it as well. By doing this you will be helping God to make this Earth a lot more like Heaven.

WWJD

Matt 21:12

I had a funny exchange with my morning Bible study today.  I asked a gentleman about the prospects for the search of our new pastor.  He responded with anger saying, “you can’t rush this.  It’s a sensitive process.”  I didn’t expect this response, and because he was clearly angered saying, essentially, “hey new guy, this is none of your business”,  I continued to press, “but couldn’t we get a temp?  I mean, if he doesn’t work out, we can simply say, it’s not working out, and peruse to the next guy on the list.”  He got even more angry at my persistence saying, “when I was a minister, I once took a vacation and had a temp for the two weeks.  When I returned, it took me years to un-do the damage he had done.  He had actually talked badly about the public school teachers and the union…”

At this point, I gave up.  I decided that this gentleman was indeed working up an impossible task.  You can’t find a person to lead the church that will please everyone.  Even Jesus was controversial in his day.

Jesus didn’t walk into the temple and say, “hey guys, this is not nice doing that here. Probably not a good idea…”

It’s not all about pacifism and letting the liberals have their way. Sometimes you just have to take a stand.

What do you think would happen if Jesus were to appear in your church next Sunday and say to people what he says in the Bible?

“Hypocrites!”

“Fools”

“A brood of vipers fit for hell”

Given how most churches expect you  to be “nice” I think there would be a rush to the pulpit to wrestle the microphone  from his hand.

“Tsk, tsk, tsk” we’d mutter scornfully.  We’d wag our fingers, reminding him of the supreme importance place on manners and appearances in this holy place.

Mothers would reach for that bar of soap to wash out his mouth, while reciting the unofficial church motto: “If you don’t have anything nice to say, don’t say it at all.”

“He really should be ashamed of himself.”

Shame is a big thing in the church.  It helps keep the newer guys in line. Keeps their heads down, Keeps them humble… supposedly.

Many believe in a soft, supple, always forgiving savior that is always passive and nice.  Sermons preached in the many churches today are designed to make Jesus appear always approachable, always calm, and endlessly patient.  That’s fiction right up there with The Da Vinci Code.  The mild Jesus has more to do with Eastern mysticism than with the Gospel record.  He did not remain above it all. He  brought  both conflict and division needed to shake  things up for our own good.

I’m not sure what to do.  Leave for a different church altogether,  or stick  it out and try to facilitate change.  I need a true “Bible church” that teaches the actual scripture and doesn’t deviate.  But to try to please everyone and be true to the scripture is impossible.

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