Loving Much

Luke 7:36 – 50 (emphasis on 7:47, 48, 50)

“Her sins which are many have been forgiven because she loved much . . . and I love my Jesus!” Her name is *Carolina Toscani. On 29 Sep 1981, she came to understand there was someone who loved her regardless. Allow me to give you a brief summary of why love is an important factor in her life.

Outraging remembrances of abuse self-medicating at an early age to make feelings and memories go away, it is no wonder why by 1981 her weekly alcohol consumption was enormous and her pharmaceutical usage was monstrous. Having seen death up close and personal, along with wondering why almost all those she loved died before her, it was not surprising when some young ladies from a metropolitan church knocked on her door she was passed out on the floor. Hearing the knock, she opened the door, inviting them in; they proceeded to discuss Jesus and various scriptures, along with a testimony of someone who attended the church.

You see Carolina was what was known as a functional addict. Able to work, take care of herself and appear “responsible” to all those around her. Talk about Jesus, certainly! She had been brought up in the church always being taught one needed to be a “Christian.” The sad thing was that no one had ever told or shown her she could have a “personal relationship” with the Lord; nor had they shared there was a man who loved her unconditionally . . . . regardless . . . period . . . end of statement.

(In her own words) “You see, I never knew there was someone I could trust and love without having to “perform” for him.”

Well, to make a long story short, about a month later she called the church on a Sunday night from a payphone, insisting she be allowed to speak to the man. (The man, we’ll call Jim for his privacy) She would not hang up the phone until she talked with him. You see she had been trying to make a drug connection. Unable to do so, she “was at the end . . . out of men, out of drugs, out of booze.” Jim agreed to a home visit the upcoming Tuesday. At that time Jim shared about a personal relationship with Jesus Christ. Jim shared if she confessed with her mouth Jesus was Lord, believed in her heart God had raised him from the dead, (and ask forgiveness for her sins) she would be saved, changed, become a new creation, old things having passed away, all things becoming new; “well I did and I am.”

Her life changed dramatically. It has not always been pleasant. No, she faced many challenges, also, magnificent joys. She would love to tell you nothing bad or taxing has entered her life in those 32 years. That would not be the truth, nor would it be reality. One thing however never changed . . . the fact – Jesus loves us and is consistently faithful to His word. He has never left her, nor forsaken her. He will do the same for you. She is now retired and ministers to others as often as possible. The most important things in her life are being devoted to the Lord Jesus Christ and obeying Him.

 

cjm

Losing Hope While Maintaining Faith

As I sit, trying to regain the passion to speak out about the death of America that we are facing , I cannot grasp what is occurring. I love this country but I don’t think we will stand strong enough to hold her up much longer. My fire is slowly burning out and I am honestly ready for the next chapter already.

I turn to a second hand firearm sight to see if there are any deals worth looking at and all I see is fighting, price gouging and a lack of intellectual conversations taking place there. Like children fighting over toys, these grown men are making the worst arguments over sighting and zeroing a scope. We are headed for the end of times and we are going to go down over a scope?

Many fear the bombing of Syria will start the destruction of America and this will be the case, so the answer some individuals are posting is to NUKE the Middle East on every site I see. Sure, secure our death sentence. The Middle East is not going to take us down, but their allies are sure to do it for them. Using Nuclear weapons in a region so shattered from blood shed would probably be a blessing in disguise for them, but the end for us. When Russia and China storms our shores, who do we have to lean on? Nobody anymore, because we allowed our tyrannical government to seal that deal all while fighting amongst ourselves.

In my news feed, friends who are against immigration reform and amnesty make comments about marijuana usage. The hypocrisy of stating that if the world had more pot smokers, it would be a calmer place is the dumbest I have heard for a while.  If there were even more pot smokers, the drug cartels would have a larger market and more reason to kill each other. The illegal aliens that we do not want here are the same people smuggling in the drugs.

And that leaves us with the patriotic groups themselves that set out for monetary gain, using a time of crisis to profit the largest sums they have ever seen. Between T shirt sales and donate buttons all in the name of “growing” to spread the message. What message are they spreading? They are only spreading hate and hypocrisy. You try to exercise your right to free speech, it works fine until you say one thing they disagree with and see if they let you play along anymore.

I have heard too many times, we should sit and wait until midterms. Our government must have heard us calling upon that also and will take midterms out of the equation now by striking Syria. We are doing what we claimed we were tired of doing since the 1960’s and don’t even realize it do we? Did many of us not set out, vowing to never let us be pushed aside again? Did we not say we will now stand and fight these tyrants? I sure haven’t seen that happen.

Peaceful demonstrations they said, that will wake up the masses. Many set out to do that, just to be blindsided by attacks from “fellow patriots” who said the ideas and times were wrong. From February until current, we have allowed some PATRIOTIC GROUP to spoil any hope we have made to reverse these evil times. I have stated many times in many writings that we would sit and watch destruction, some of us out of fear others out of ignorance, wanting to try peacefully, but that isn’t working. Responses range from “give it time”, to “who will lead us?” Jesus would lead us if we were ready, but we cannot purify our hearts and allow him in no matter how many times we say we will.

War is a terrible thing. Some wars are more “just” than others, but war is always the result of sin (Romans 3:10-18). At the same time, Ecclesiastes 3:8 declares, “There is…a time to love and a time to hate, a time for war and a time for peace.” In a world filled with sin, hatred, and evil (Romans 3:10-18), war is inevitable. Christians should not desire war, but neither are Christians to oppose the government God has placed in authority over them (Romans 13:1-4; 1 Peter 2:17). The most important thing we can be doing in a time of war is to be praying for godly wisdom for our leaders, praying for the safety of our military, praying for quick resolution to conflicts, and praying for a minimum of casualties among civilians on both sides (Philippians 4:6-7).

Many scriptures warn us of the necessity of war, but we are stuck on Jesus turning the other cheek. God will not come down and resolve the evil from our eyes, but he has made those who accept him in their hearts strong enough to do it. David, small in size was given the power to take down Goliath. God led a small army against outnumbering oppositions to victory. Our founding fathers have spelled out in easy to read instructions about tyrants and the need to rid them.

I honestly do not know if I would want to be considered a patriot or a constitutionalist from this day on. I want to be a soldier for my savior Jesus Christ and to do so, the next chapter will have to begin I believe. It will take an invasion before any army, but mainly God’s army, to right the wrong.

I do not want to sit any longer, wondering when the next opportunity to exit poverty will be, or how long I can put clothes on my kids and food in their stomachs. The anticipation is exhausting and disheartening all at the same time.

We sit and wait for an easy to see sign while ignoring all the signs before it. If the poisoning of our children through vaccinations, fluoride in our water, chemtrails in our skies or GMO’s in our food hasn’t been enough; and death from cowardly attacks from hijacked planes, endless war, or the persecution of Christians all over the world hasn’t been enough, we will never understand the sign of the times until we are all on our knees finally trying to flood our hearts with true purity and the love of our savior.

God promised to never flood the lands again and many have taken that as a false thought of God never ridding the earth of his creations but make no mistake, God can be an angry god, and we know Revelations speaks of fire on earth. God will not flood us, he will burn us alive and he will do so without remorse for us not understanding the signs. He has already spoken of the signs through John, the ones we ignore while waiting to see our God come down and speak to us himself.

I am ready, whether or not God sees me fit to live eternally in the New Jerusalem or not, I am ready. I would rather be judged heavily by my Lord than spend years in hypocrisy. While we continue going backwards and doing circles, remember evil is on a straight forward path and many steps ahead of us.

Bryan

Walking the Walk: The Spiritual Testimony of Daniel P. O’Rourke

My Dad, Daniel James O’Rourke Jr. and me (Daniel P. O’Rourke) shortly before his death.

Where do I begin? This is going to be long winded…I guess I would like to start by saying that the person in the Bible that I identify with the most is Paul the Apostle, who was once Saul, a hunter and murderer of Christians, who God struck blind on the road to Damascus, Syria, and who God told in that moment that he was to become Paul and the Lord’s greatest Apostle and testament to God’s power to change people. Paul also went on to write 2/3 of the New Testament. While I cannot claim to have written anything that amazing, or say that I am anywhere near Paul’s status, something I have in common with Paul other than that I used to be a violent and hard man is the fact that even after I was saved, I am brash, opinionated, and in your face. I used to not be able to stand Paul’s attitude in the Bible sometimes. Knowing myself, I understand that when I do not like that quality in someone, it is because it reminds me of myself. Well, I guess I better get started on my testimony and stop beating around the bush. Here it goes…

I was born on the Marine Corps Logistics Base in Barstow, California. For those of you who are not familiar with the area, it is smack-dab in the middle of the Mojave Desert, you know, Death Valley? Anyway, it is a hot, miserable little place with not only the heat to contend with, but rattlesnakes, tarantulas, scorpions, and all manner of things that creepeth and crawleth across the land.

My mom did not like it there. On top of that, she was only 19 when she got pregnant with me and was a young bride to my father who was much older than my mom, and a man who had joined the Marine Corps late in life (28 is old to go through Marine Corps Boot Camp). My mother did not like the desert, did not like the heat, and did not like the boring life of a new mother and house wife to a Marine that lived a very structured life. She informed my father that she was leaving with me when I was three months old to move to my grandmother’s house in the San Francisco Bay Area. My dad did not put up much of a fight and we moved.

My parents were divorced when I was two years old. My Daddy still wrote me almost everyday and came and saw me when he could on leave. My mom was not done sowing her wild oats, so she left me with my grandma and aunt most of the time, while she got into the Biker Lifestyle and drug, and bar scene in the 80’s era of California’s most violent time in modern history. While my mom was out doing her thing and I did not see her for months at a time, I was being sexually molested by my grandfather. My grandmother knew what my grandfather was doing, but she looked the other way just like she had done with her daughters a generation before.

Sometimes, my mom would come and get me and take me into these crazy situations in the Biker World that she was involved in (not all bikers are bad people and I just want to note that here), and I do not remember much but some flashes and glimpses of craziness. Anyway, my mother got involved with my father’s old friend, and was married to him by the time I was three. He was a Vietnam Veteran of the 101st Airborne, having spent his time in the Mekong Delta. He was now a long-haired Biker, with a Cocaine habit and a drinking problem, on top of severe PTSD. I remember flashes of my early childhood with them. Some good, some bad, the most memorable was my step-father chasing my mother around a truck in the middle of the night with a knife, the blade flashing in the moonlight, my mother yelling at me not to unlock the doors no matter what. I do not remember what happened, but apparently, no one got killed.

Then my real dad got shot and killed in an accident in the middle of the Mojave Desert’s Owl Canyon Area. He succumbed to a single gunshot would to the base of the spine from a .22 Long Rifle that ricocheted and came out the top of his head. His last words as he put his hand to the top of his head and then looked at his hand covered in blood was, “Oh, shit. I’ve been shot.” Then, for all intents and purposes, he died. I have been told that his body fought to live for hours, but that he was brain-dead almost immediately. The San Bernardino County Sheriffs did not keep very accurate records back then as it was all paper. He was still in the Corps, but it happened off base, so it was wrapped up as an accidental shooting. I have never gotten the whole story and probably never will. But that is not the end of it. Continue reading