Wednesday, August 24, 2016

A Poem entitled Still Thinking

Still Thinking by Daniel Stevenson I, Like in a latter day think away my things. Time ebbs on because that is what it does. With tears that surface-coat scars that drive me more than they should, I reach for a tomorrow guaranteed In the hand of the master, But framed in the thinking, too common to yesterday’s reality. Time ebbs on ever-closer to that unsealed future, The image in the rear view mirror is fading but I lean in straining. Service and tears but even today’s events seem distant. I am without torment but sometimes wondering why my scars, drive me more than they should. Thinking through things like in days past, when my thought should simply be of one certain tomorrow… The thoughts I think may be of today. The scars I bear, some I thought forgotten, drive a present seemingly based on an old life. This new life, it is somehow more real, Eyes open, I, like Lot, live vexed, Moved to certain action, I work though I wonder. My help is eternal, my pain is temporal. One day I’ll stop thinking, but apparently not yet.

Thursday, April 14, 2016

Fwd: URGENT! You are invited. Exposing the lies. Help Support Mississippi!

I believe in unilateral protection from discrimination and so does the governor of Mississippi.

P. Dan

Sent from my Verizon Wireless 4G LTE DROID
---------- Forwarded message ----------
From: Citizens for Community Values Action <vvresponses@fuse.net>
Date: Apr 14, 2016 2:39 PM
Subject: URGENT! You are invited. Exposing the lies. Help Support Mississippi!
To: Daniel Stevenson <afamilyofgod@bex.net>
Cc:

 

This is from our friends at Alliance Defending Freedom. Hope you can join the Live Feed tonight on Facebook. Please share with family and friends. Blessings, Phil

NOTE:  You must have a Facebook account to participate in this Live Feed conversation.


Dear Friends,

As many of you have heard, two weeks ago, Mississippi passed the most comprehensive bill to date protecting the freedom of conscience as it pertains to citizens' beliefs about marriage.  The law preserves the freedom of all Mississippians to peacefully live, worship, and work according to their religious or moral beliefs about marriage.  It ensures that the government does not discriminate against or punish churches, and other organizations, such as adoption agencies, schools, and charities, by denying them tax exemptions, contracts, accreditation, or licenses simply for following their deeply held beliefs about marriage.  It also safeguards against the government forcing citizens to surrender free speech and religious freedom in order to run their businesses. I've attached the language if you're interested.

Per usual, there's been significant misrepresentations and attacks on both the law and Governor Bryant since its enactment. To expose some of those mischaracterizations and to tell the truth about the bill, who it protects, and diffuse common attacks (isn't this just a license to discriminate?), we are doing a Live Feed conversation on ADF's FB page this evening.  We will go live at 6:30 pm EST tonight. Please consider sharing the Live Feed from ADF's page through your FB page.  You can also encourage people to ask questions @alliancedefends #MSliveandletlive.

Please help us spread the word so we can help people understand the good of this bill and how courageous Gov. Bryant was in signing it—championing freedom and ensuring that in Mississippi tolerance remains a two way street.  We would love to partner together to create national momentum about the good of this bill.

What: Alliance Defending Freedom Attorneys Kellie Fiedorek and Casey Mattox on Mississippi's Protecting Freedom of Conscience from Government Discrimination Act. Learn the truth and get your questions answered.

When: Today, Thursday, April 14, 2016 at 6:30 pm EST

Why: To explain the bill, and tell the stories of who it protects

If you have any questions, please feel free to reach out to me or Bob Trent (btrent@adflegal.org).

Blessings,
Kellie











 


   


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Wednesday, April 13, 2016

Fwd: Mississippi's Religious Freedom Law Signed Today Gives Fresh Momentum to Legislative Efforts

Praise God there is still a political avenue to protect the rights of American citizens to believe in Biblical concepts. The fight continues.

P. Dan Stevenson

Sent from my Verizon Wireless 4G LTE DROID
---------- Forwarded message ----------
From: Citizens for Community Values <vvresponses@fuse.net>
Date: Apr 5, 2016 1:42 PM
Subject: Mississippi's Religious Freedom Law Signed Today Gives Fresh Momentum to Legislative Efforts
To: Daniel Stevenson <afamilyofgod@bex.net>
Cc:

 
   







April 5, 2016

   
 

It is time Ohio elected officials stood up to the bullies and liars and protected our freedom of beliefs the way they have done in Mississippi and North Carolina.  Anyone who is opposed to these laws has not read them.  Protecting one's freedom of beliefs is fundamental to being an American. More than 22 states have passed Religious Freedom laws. Ohio is not one of those states. Why are you waiting? Blessings, Phil Burress
 


FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: April 5, 2016
CONTACT: J.P. Duffy or Alice Chao, (866) FRC-NEWS or (866)-372-6397

Mississippi's Religious Freedom Law Signed Today Gives Fresh Momentum to Legislative Efforts in Other States

Mississippi Joins North Carolina, Texas in Protecting the Freedom to Believe

Washington, D.C. -- Today, Mississippi Governor Phil Bryant signed into law HB 1523, the "Protecting Freedom of Conscience from Government Discrimination Act." Family Research Council President Tony Perkins released the following statement:

"This new law gives fresh momentum to efforts on the federal and state level to stop government discrimination against people who believe that marriage is between a man and a woman.

"We applaud Governor Bryant, Lt. Gov. Tate Reeves, and House Speaker Philip Gunn, for standing up for the fundamental freedoms of the people they represent. No person should be punished by the government with crippling fines, or face disqualification for simply believing what President Obama believed just a few years ago, that marriage is the union of a man and a woman.

"Big business and Hollywood have engaged in economic blackmail in Mississippi just like they have in Indiana, Georgia, North Carolina and Texas to try to force government discrimination of those who support natural marriage. However, unlike Indiana and Georgia, leaders in Mississippi, North Carolina and Texas have chosen to defend the fundamental freedom of their citizens to believe and live according to those beliefs, rather than capitulate to the economic threats of big business and entertainment.

"Long-term, political leaders who refuse to sacrifice fundamental freedoms under the threats of big government, big business and big entertainment are rewarded with support of voters as their states find such policies promote stronger families, stronger communities, which lead to stronger economies," concluded Perkins.

A poll released on Friday shows nearly two-thirds of Mississippi voters want to protect pastors, churches, schools, and businesses from government discrimination.

-30-



 

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Tuesday, April 12, 2016

Blind Luck?

Since I became a Christian I stopped believing in blind luck. It seems to me that God is in charge and that all things happen according to His plan but is that what the Bible says? In Ecclesiastes Solomon, the wisest man to ever live wrote the following: Ecclesiastes 9:11-12 New International Version (NIV) 11 I have seen something else under the sun: The race is not to the swift or the battle to the strong, nor does food come to the wise or wealth to the brilliant or favor to the learned; but time and chance happen to them all. 12 Moreover, no one knows when their hour will come: As fish are caught in a cruel net, or birds are taken in a snare, so people are trapped by evil times that fall unexpectedly upon them. Observing the way the world works and considering what He knew of God, Solomon who got his wisdom from God concluded that no matter how hard you work or how skillful or wise you are or are not things can still go right or wrong. It seems to us that there is no reason we should not hit on the next big thing and become rich or perhaps we are looking for a simpler victory like a month without a care repair or recognition for our hard work on the job. Sometimes we get it and we judge it makes perfect sense and other times we don’t get what we expect and our mind struggles to grapple with why things have not gone the way we orchestrated. James wrote something on this topic as well. James 4:13-17 13 Now listen, you who say, “Today or tomorrow we will go to this or that city, spend a year there, carry on business and make money.” 14 Why, you do not even know what will happen tomorrow. What is your life? You are a mist that appears for a little while and then vanishes. 15 Instead, you ought to say, “If it is the Lord’s will, we will live and do this or that.”16 As it is, you boast in your arrogant schemes. All such boasting is evil.17 If anyone, then, knows the good they ought to do and doesn’t do it, it is sin for them. According to James, all our great efforts are as mist. That doesn’t amount to much, does it? The accumulated learning of a degree in whatever and a life time’s experience and it amounts to mist. People make plans and leave God and their God given responsibility out of it and then they bemoan their situation while they struggle to understand why it worked out the way it did. So, James warns us, instead of devising clever schemes or well concocted business plans we should say, even as part of a good plan, whatever God wills. He ends by saying, whatever good a person knows they should do and does not do it, for them it is sin. Paul says something about the topic in his famous speech on Mars Hill: 26 From one man he made all the nations, that they should inhabit the whole earth; and he marked out their appointed times in history and the boundaries of their lands. 27 God did this so that they would seek him and perhaps reach out for him and find him, though he is not far from any one of us. A few quick takeaways: 1- Best laid plans go awry. Don’t not plan but don’t set your hopes on a good plan, rather trust in the God that has a plan that transcends all of ours. 2- Build yourself, get better educated, manage your health, clean up your mouth and your language because the only one that can get you better odds than a roll of the dice on the outcome of your next endeavor is God and if you want Him on your side you’d better live like your on His side. 3- If you know something you should do and you are blowing it off. If you are planning your life without giving special emphasis to those things that will make the world a better place (and you know what they are- feed the poor, care for those in need, be kind, and serve with no hope of being repaid by the person or persons you serve…) If you have a plan that leaves out any good thing that God would have you do, He calls that sin. Repent today and do the things you know you should. 4- Have hope: God can make something out of anyone at any time. He loves a reversal of fortune. He loves to bless those who don’t deserve it and realize it. Make asking God for help part of who you are. Make living for God more important than coming out on top and you can know that eternity settled and time and chance can’t touch that AND THAT”S HOPE The bottom line is: A lot of people are trying to bank on their good fortune tomorrow, they think it will eventually all come together because they work hard or learn much and while working hard and learning much are the right things to do, tomorrow’s profit is the wrong reason to do it and frankly just might not be coming because time and chance happen to all men. So, bank on God today doing the things you know He wants you to do. Start by accepting Jesus as Lord and then use all that you are and all that you can become for His glory. Do those small, good things today that you’ve been letting go because your plans or your business seemed more important. Let God take care of the outcome. If as His people we will choose to live like this, His kingdom will advance on earth, His will will be done, and that’s something so much more than mist.

Thursday, April 7, 2016

Never Quit Learning

Thanks to NAMB I am blessed to be attending Golden Gate Baptist Theological Seminary on-line. Currently I'm taking a Hermeneutics course. The course has been enlightening and that's the whole goal of education. Some get degrees so that they can make more money or get a better job, even to feel better about themselves. That's not what God gave education for. He gave it to learn, to grow, to better oneself. One could argue that all things good and bad are given for that purpose. I remember one time we were driving in the woods. Well actually on the a road that was weaving through a wood. As we drove I looked up at the tall pine trees and I could see that all their branches had been broken from the wind rubbing them together. The Spirit in me spoke up and I knew there was something more there. I thought about how damaging the wind was and considered that this is the way that people are to each other and how the growth was damaging one to another and the process of refinement could be seen in these broken branches. Now, years later I am thinking that that process had happened time and again as rough winds had come and branches had been broken away. All the while the trees were growing taller and taller and the broken branches never stopped them. Think on this. Your troubles are incidental. They may be the worst that you have yet seen but they do not have to be the worst you will ever see. You will heal, grow, and continue on. You will have broken remains where the branches were. You will have scars but like those trees you will grow well beyond so that someone might see what you are facing at any given moment and mourn the damage not even thinking about how this has happened before. You can make it. You have made it before. You will make it through many times before. So, I'm studying studying the Bible and I'm learning how little I know. It's cool really because it leaves me with a long journey ahead and equipped to take it on. Better yet, it reminds me that I have been here before, ignorant and needing to grow, and I have made it through and I will again. Pastor Daniel Stevenson New Heights Fellowship Toledo Life Station Firestorm The Moment: Blood Bowl