Feeds:
Posts
Comments

Posts Tagged ‘news’

prayer invite

Sunday’s horrifying attack was the worst mass shooting in America’s history and it is the worst terrorist attack on American soil since 9/11.

Pray for the injured in this tragedy and the families of all the victims who lost their lives. Ask God to comfort those who mourn the loss of family and friends.

May Christian men and women rise up to support each other in this time of tragedy. Help us to remember that you are the strong tower we seek when times are tough. Guide our hands and feet to respond in a Christ-like manner.

Advertisements

Read Full Post »

prayer invite

Today a terrorist took the life of a Canadian soldier who was guarding the War Memorial in Ottawa.  The gunman later ran to the Parliament complex and opened fire at innocent bystanders.  Over thirty shots were fired in the chaos.  Several people were rushed to the hospital with injuries.

Please pray for all the families, friends, and loved ones of those injured in this tragedy.

Read Full Post »

Reports are sharing that an American Stratotanker crashed in Kyrgyzstan.  The Wichita Eagle reported on its website the plane was a KC-135 refueling tanker, which was based at Wichita’s McConnell Air Force Base.

A search is underway for members of the crew.

Little is currently known and updates will likely be slow.  Right now the unknown is a heavy burden for military families across the Midwest as they are dealing with the “what ifs” of this situation.

One thing that we can do is pray for all the families at McConnell Air Force Base.  May the peace of Christ sustain them and minister to their needs during this difficult time.

Read Full Post »

The tragic events of April 15th continue to unfold.  Today, two bombs exploded in the packed streets near the finish line of the Boston Marathon, killing two people and injuring more than 130.

Please continue to pray for the families who are mourning the loss of a loved one.  Boston area hospitals also reported at least 134 injured, with 15 of them critically.  We also need to pray for the wounded who are in critical condition.

While not immediately apparent, we should also praise God that more were not injured in this senseless act.  The Boston Marathon routinely has some 23,000 runners and countless supporters along the way.  It is one of the world’s oldest and most prestigious marathons that draws participants from across the globe.  It is held on Patriots Day, which commemorates the first battles of the American Revolution, at Concord and Lexington in 1775.

As people continue to compile their prayer lists, we should also remember first responders like the EMS, police, firefighters, and National Guard.  Their efforts today, though bloody and traumatic, helped to preserve life and provide emergency care to the wounded.

Cry out to the Lord and share the concerns of your heart, no matter how heavy it may be.

Read Full Post »

hero

Where are the heroes?

The sports community took some big hits this week and last.  It has disappointed many in America and across the world.

Last week the Baseball Hall of Fame announced that no candidates received enough votes for entry into Cooperstown.  This year’s ballot included 37 candidates, 24 in the lineup were first time nominees.  Several of these athletes were tied to performance-enhancing drugs, greatly diminishing their chances of ever entering the Hall of Fame.  This class includes Barry Bonds, Roger Clemens and Sammy Sosa, all of whom posted Hall of Fame-worthy numbers during their careers but were clouded by PED suspicion. Clemens earned 37.6 percent of the vote, Bonds got 36.2 percent and Sosa got 12.5 percent.

Recently, Tour de France winner, Lance Armstrong admitted to using PEDs.  Last year, he lost all seven of his Tour titles due to a 1,000 page report from the US Anti-Doping Agency.  The massive report exposed his extensive drug use and multiple methods of trying to circumvent sports cycling rules.  The agency deposed 11 former teammates and accused Armstrong of masterminding a complex and brazen drug program that included steroids, blood boosters, and a range of other performance-enhancers.

While athletes and sports stars are frequently viewed as heroes, these events should remind us what heroism truly looks like.  A hero is a person of distinguished courage, bravery, ability, and noble qualities.  The heroes have not left our nation, we just forget what they look like and how they behave.

Courage is shown through the service of Soldiers, Sailors, Airmen, and Marines everyday.  They demonstrate the meaning of sacrifice through their actions and dedicated service.  Bravery is shown through the actions of police officers in every community.  They run into buildings that crowds exit when trouble rears its ugly head.  Ability is shown by countless firemen.  They react to emergencies and execute teamwork in order to save lives and property.  Honesty, integrity, generosity, and kindness can be seen through the daily actions of mothers and fathers across our nation.

Our country is full of heroes, we just fail to recognize who they truly are.

As this week will focus on stars from Hollywood and the sports page.  Teach your children to recognize a hero.  Let them know what qualities are important in life.  Show them that common folks in your community can be some of the greatest examples of doing the right thing.

Read Full Post »

Each year Gallup releases a “Confidence in Institutions” survey.  This year it reveals that only 44% of Americans have a “great deal or quite a lot of confidence in ‘the church or organized religion.'”

Organized religion has ranked at the top of the list from 1973-1985, but now it is tied with the medical system.  Bean counters will quickly point out that religion still ranks fourth out of sixteen institutions tested, but that can hardly be viewed as a prize.  Bronze medal?  Sorry church, you missed it by that much.

After I let the survey results simmer, my thoughts went to people who have been hurt, wounded, and injured by the church.  When I hear stories of people searching for a different church home it is always for a reason.  Too often families leave a congregation because of strife, bitterness, and conflict.  They leave due to splits and infighting.  They leave because of hurtful comments and negative attitudes.  Unfortunately, the pain can be so intense that many won’t even bother to look for a new church home.  Many stop looking or worse yet, stop going.  When that is the legacy, why would people express confidence?

I like it when people describe the church as a hospital for sinners.  It is the emergency room where we find comfort and peace through Jesus Christ.  But this spiritual hospital will have people who are coughing, fever-ridden, and sick.  There are varying levels of sickness due to sin.  Cross-bearing is a requirement for ministry to occur in this setting.  There will be unpleasant people in every congregation, but then again what emergency room doesn’t have someone in need of a physician?

If you are looking for a church home or stopped looking for a solid body of believers, remember that Jesus died for you and all who suffer from the pain of sin.  He died for everybody.  Congregations are made up of imperfect people who are in need of the Great Physician.  Place your confidence in the Son of God and you will never be disappointed.

Read Full Post »

Chaplains are pretty busy during Annual Training season in the National Guard.  Tuesday I gave another suicide prevention class.  It’s a requirement that Soldiers get the presentation at least once a year.  The training focuses on the magnitude of the problem, how common issues can drive anyone to the point of despair, and that everyone can watch out for your battle buddy.

While many try to pin the Army suicide issue on multiple deployments, the majority of issues that drive people to suicide are common issues:  failed relationships, financial difficulty, and legal woes.  These are typical factors that we see in the civilian population, at schools, in factories, and even in the church.  PTSD is a factor in military suicide, but it is not the top issue that Time magazine or other media outlets want you to believe.

The fundamental issue to remember is that everyone can save a life.  You probably survived a breakup, be it in high school, college, or at work.  You probably understand what it is like to bounce a check or have a tough time making your paycheck last the entire month.  We are all in the same boat.  We all have the life experience necessary to help people at risk of suicide.

Remember and apply ACE: Ask, Care, Escort.

If you believe that someone is at risk of suicide, ask him/her about the problem.  Find out what is going on in the person’s life.  Directly ask if he/she is thinking about suicide.  Care by listening to the issue.  Find out what is causing the pain and suffering.  Why is the Soldier upset?  Finally, escort the Soldier to a resource.  That can be a chaplain, a medic, a counselor, an NCO, a friend, or a family member.

Don’t leave the person alone.  Make sure that he or she gets help.  It is okay to call a suicide hotline or wake up a supervisor, just don’t ignore the warning signs.

You don’t have to be a mental health counselor to apply ACE.  You don’t have to be an expert.  But you can practice these basic steps in suicide first aid.  Do your part to reduce suicide and help your friends.

If you need immediate assistance these suicide hot lines are always available:

Military One Source – 1.877.995.5247 or National Suicide Prevention Lifeline – 1.800.273.TALK (8255).

 

Read Full Post »

Older Posts »

%d bloggers like this: