We do not want to open this Pandora’s Box

Because of the Covid-19 pandemic, the government at all levels wants to and has started the process of “contact tracing.”

I urge everyone to go to this link and please read it carefully and completely.

We are about to lose many of our liberties and ONCE it starts, it will be nearly impossible to stop it.

The danger of the government making lists of its citizens and non-citizens is that once they have our information, they can use it any way they wish.

Once you get on a list, it will be nearly impossible to get removed if you were somehow incorrectly put on that list. Furthermore, they could invent lists, like those who have been convicted of a crime, say shoplifting, not being able to enter a store, or convicted (even wrongfully) of some type of sex crime and prohibited from being around children (even your own family).

Here is an excerpt:

To be clear, those who have completed “contact tracer training” confirm that you will be compelled to self-isolate; one way or another. If you have children and can’t prove that you’re properly “distancing” yourself (even though children are virtually immune to COVID-19), social services will intervene to “care” for your children while you isolate.

https://thetruthaboutcancer.com/contact-tracing-dawn-soviet-america/

Heaven forbid, they could start grouping us according to our religious beliefs and decide which religions could not gather together, have services, etc. Or the party in power could decide to ostracize those who don’t think the same way they do, believe in the same causes, etc.

Farfetched, it seems so, but did you ever think we would have government agencies deliberately lying to entrap citizens to change the results of a legitimate election?

https://thetruthaboutcancer.com/contact-tracing-dawn-soviet-america/

Probable anterior cerebral artery aneurysm! What Now?

So, I had some tests done last week and one was a CT scan with contrast. I won’t bore you with the details, but this was one of the findings: “Probable anterior cerebral artery aneurysm.”

My primary care physician gets the result and refers me immediately to a neurologist. So what do I do now?

Well, the first is to pray and acknowledge that God is in control and that I am dependent on Him even for my next breath (which we all are, by the way).

Then I called the neurologist and from there it gets confusing. It seems the Doctor is not available, so I need to make an appointment with the Nurse Practioner, his assistant. But I am still confused because I don’t know what to do, go to the hospital, just wait, do some research?

Well, I just waited and did some research, then called my PCP to ask them what the Doctor recommends until I can see the neurologist.

“Don’t do any heavy lifting and don’t drink alcohol” was the response. No, problem, I rarely drink anyway, but I need to mow the lawn and now, that’s not an option until I know more.

Well, today I had my appointment and it seems possible I might not have an aneurysm at all, because CT scans don’t really tell the whole story.

I need to have a CTA scan. CT angiography is a type of medical test that combines a CT scan with an injection of a special dye to produce pictures of blood vessels and tissues in a part of your body. The dye is injected through an intravenous (IV) line started in your arm or hand.

“Treatment for brain aneurysms is more promising than it was several years ago. There are more effective and less- invasive treatment options for patients who in years past may have been told they had inoperable aneurysms. Doctors consider several factors when deciding which treatment option is best for a particular patient. Some factors include patient age, size of aneurysm and location of aneurysm.

Options for treatment are:

  • Open brain surgery (clipping) 
  • Endovascular therapy (coils, stents, flow diversion device)
  • No treatment: observation, with control of risk factors and possible repeat imaging”

Source:  https://bafound.org/treatment/

So, I am waiting to schedule the CTA scan and TRUSTING God, who has taken very good care of me so far.

“Rejoice in the Lord always. Again I will say, rejoice! Let your gentleness be known to all men. The Lord is at hand.
Be anxious for nothing, but in everything by prayer and supplication, with thanksgiving, let your requests be made known to God; and the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and minds through Christ Jesus.” (The New King James Version, (Nashville: Thomas Nelson, 1982), Php 4:4–8)

The Sailor’s Decision

FROM The Daily Encourager

After a few of the usual Sunday evening hymns, the church’s pastor once again slowly stood up, walked over to the pulpit, and gave a very brief introduction of his childhood friend. With that, an elderly man stepped up to the pulpit to speak, “A father, his son, and a friend of his son were sailing off the Pacific Coast,” he began, “when a fast approaching storm blocked any attempt to get back to shore. The waves were so high, that even though the father was an experienced sailor, he could not keep the boat upright, and the three were swept into the ocean.”

The old man hesitated for a moment, making eye contact with two teenagers who were, for the first time since the service began, looking somewhat interested in his story. He continued, “Grabbing a rescue line, the father had to make the most excruciating decision of his life….to which boy he would throw the other end of the line. He only had seconds to make the decision.

The father knew that his son was a Christian, and he also knew that his son’s friend was not. The agony of his decision could not be matched by the torrent of waves. As the father yelled out, ‘I love you, son! (more…)

Whatever Happened To Keeping One’s Word Because It Is The Right Thing To Do?

Whatever happened to keeping one’s word, simply because it is the right thing to do?

In today’s climate of trashy television, When Calls The Heart on the Hallmark Channel is a very refreshing show and last Sunday’s episode centered around the railroad’s refusal to honor its contract to construct a depot in Hope Valley because it did not seem to be a profitable investment.

Well, after the mayor and townspeople made their case, the railroad representative wasn’t convinced until one of the young people made a convincing argument at the end. It was heartwarming and genuine, based on principles and honor, not money and profit.

Sometimes it is hard to do the right thing and it costs some serious money and requires hard sacrifices to do so.

A young builder and his partner wanted to get a start building new homes for sale in a really hot market in the early 1980s in an exclusive development that featured a beautiful golf course, clubhouse, condos, and luxury single-family homes in a gated community.

They bought a lot, the young builder designed the home and drew the plans himself, the partner put up the cash (about $35,000) and they got a local bank to fund the construction loan. The home was beautiful and everyone thought it would sell before it was even finished like most of the houses had in that location. However, right before they closed on the lot, someone suggested they buy another lot on the golf course and not the one they had previously been shown. Everyone agreed this was the right thing to do. The only problem was that no one realized at the time the design was wrong for a home that backed up to the golf course.

Only after the house was sold did anyone ever point out that the great-room should have overlooked the golf course, which makes sense of course, but the original lot backed up to woods and that is why the design had the master bedroom and breakfast room in the rear.

The young builder worked very hard to make sure that everything was done just right and every day, he drove over an hour to get to work and over an hour to get home after supervising the various subcontractors.

He even did some of the work himself, including all the finish carpentry. But after the house was nearly finished there were no buyers and the interest payments were beginning to get hard to make because there were some cost overruns due to some changes that were suggested by the real estate agent. Keep in mind that this was during the time of super-inflation and interest rates were around 14% or more.

Soon the cash reserves were almost gone and the bank became very concerned because the construction loan term was about to end and there were no prospects. Things looked very bleak and it looked like it was going to cost another $30,000+ to finish the house, so work was basically stopped. The house was built, just not 100% finished.

Months went by and it appeared bankruptcy was the only option until one day about a week before Christmas the banker called the young builder and said he had a buyer for the house. The builder was thrilled! But it wasn’t good news because the price was for what the bank was owed, which meant the partners would lose their investment plus the amount of money needed to complete the house and pay all the remaining bills, a total of about $65,000 LOSS!

The young builder was very worried. He had only recently been married and had a new baby and did not have anywhere close to that amount of money in savings. Most of the subcontractors and suppliers that he used were companies and people that he had known for many years, some for decades since some were personal friends as well, and he was afraid of damaging those relationships. Another thing that complicated this was that he also worked with and for his father, who was a builder/developer with an excellent reputation.

The banker insisted that the partners accept this offer, threatening to foreclose if they did not. But since the house still needed some work to be finished and bills to be paid, if there were any liens filed by subcontractors or suppliers, the sale could be delayed.

So the young builder decided to contact all the people he owed money to and promised each and everyone that if they would help him and allow the sale to go through without any liens, he would personally guarantee payment, no matter what. Because he had a good relationship with all these people, they agreed and the sale went through.

The young builder had a rough time though and it took over two years to finally pay off all the subs and suppliers, but he did and he continued to do business with all of them for many years afterward.

This might sound like a fictional story, but I assure you, it is not because I am that young builder, and my partner was my brother-in-law. And I have not retold this story to try and build myself up, but to tell you that when you treat people honestly and keep your word, they will do the same.

There was no way that I could knowingly or willingly damage the relationships with subcontractors and suppliers that my father had with some people, that in some cases had existed for decades. Those people trusted my word because of the past relationship I had with them and I was not about to let them down.

I don’t know how I did it. Well, actually I do. It was God and only God that kept me going.

“Have you not known? Have you not heard?
The Lord is the everlasting God, the Creator of the ends of the earth.
He does not faint or grow weary; his understanding is unsearchable.
He gives power to the faint, and to him who has no might he increases strength.
Even youths shall faint and be weary, and young men shall fall exhausted;
but they who wait for the Lord shall renew their strength;
they shall mount up with wings like eagles;
they shall run and not be weary;
they shall walk and not faint.”—Isaiah 40:28–31 ESV

Is It Ever OK to Lie? Must We Always Tell the Truth?

from a post by Gary DeMar

I am a follower of Gary DeMar (AmericanVision.org) and have many of his books and DVDs on various topics dealing with Christianity. I met Gary around 2004-2005 at an American Vision Conference (when he was still the president) in Powder Springs, GA and my life has never been the same. The list of speakers that I heard included Dr. Gary North, Dr. Voddie Baucham, Jr., Joseph Farah, and of course Gary DeMar himself. The reason I mention this is that sometimes you hear or read something that challenges long-held beliefs and that conference began a 6-7 year process that radically changed a lot of my beliefs about the end-times and prophecy. More on that in the future. But this article was also one of those moments. I always believed that we should not lie. After all the Bible commands it, right? Well, not so fast!

(Click the link to read the article and it will open up in a new tab. https://garydemar.com/ever-ok-lie-must-always-tell-truth/ Then come back to finish reading here.)

This is just another reason why Christianity and the Bible are valid because it is God’s story of how He has revealed Himself to us and how we have responded, warts and all. It is not the fairy tale that many try and tell you where all of God’s “heroes” never do anything wrong, never make mistakes. We ALL have sinned and fall short of the Glory of the Lord, and we ALL need the Savior, Jesus Christ. If you are not confident about your eternal destiny and need to know the Gospel (Good News) of Jesus, please leave a comment below (your email will not be displayed) or send me an email to jay@thejoyfulchristian.net. I truly care!

The Impact of One Faithful Witness

FROM The Daily Encourager

Jesus said, “You are to go into all the world and preach the Good News to everyone, everywhere.” (Mark 16;15)

Many of you have read the story about a Sunday School teacher named Edward Kimball.  Mr. Kimball was a timid shoe salesman who gathered the nerve to share the gospel with a co-worker named Dwight.L. Moody.  D.L. Moody made a profession of faith in Jesus Christ and went on to become one of the greatest evangelists in history.

Do you know the rest of the story?  D.L. Moody went to England and worked a profound change in the ministry of F.B. Meyer.  F.B. Meyer, with his new evangelistic fervor, influenced a college student named J. Wilbur Chapman. Chapman accepted Jesus Christ as his Lord and Savior, and employed a converted baseball player in his ministry named Billy Sunday.  Billy Sunday became the greatest evangelist of his generation. (more…)

How Do You Want To Be Remembered?

by Jay Culotta

If you did not already hear the news, today Rev. Billy Graham was promoted to his eternal home in Heaven to be with his Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ.

Rev. Graham was 99 years old and “some 77 million saw him preach in person while nearly 215 million more watched his crusades on television or through satellite link-ups, a Graham spokeswoman said.”¹

Rev. Graham helped bring religion into the television age. He first put together a television show, which was eventually syndicated, in 1951 and began live broadcasts of his revival meetings in 1957 from New York’s Madison Square Garden.²

He will be remembered as possibly the greatest evangelist of the 20th Century and there are few people who do not know his name and that he preached the Gospel of Jesus Christ.

He is also famously known for never meeting alone with a woman other than his late wife, Ruth. This is something that he was mocked for many times but now isn’t it interesting how that policy kept him from any hint of scandal in this day and age of the #MeToo movement.

But my question to you is how do you want to be remembered? (more…)

If I did this today, I would probably be shot!

by Jay Culotta

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While attending Tulane University in the early 1970s, I had a part-time job at First Homestead, a savings and loan located on the corner of Baronne St. and Gravier St. in the CBD of New Orleans.
My primary job was as a gopher and office boy to assist Peter, an elderly gentleman who was one of the kindest, friendliest men I had ever had to pleasure to know.
Every day we arrived before everyone else to open the door and greet the other employees as they arrived and to stand guard at the entrance. This was before armed guards were necessary, even though there were occasional, but rare robberies.
For me, this was especially enjoyable since I was young, single and it allowed me to watch all the attractive young ladies that walked by on their way to work.
Our duties included opening the mail and distributing it to the appropriate parties, collecting outgoing mail and preparing it properly to deliver to the Post Office each day by weighing and applying the correct postage with the Pitney Bowes postage meter, keeping the employee kitchen neat and tidy, making coffee, general janitorial work during the day if necessary until the cleaning crew arrived after hours (including unstopping toilets), purchasing the office supplies and keeping the storeroom organized, running errands for all the other employees, delivering legal documents to the various attorneys’ offices, etc.
However, our most important job each day was to take the daily deposits to the appropriate banks, such as the Whitney, Hibernia, NBC to name a few. They were all within a few blocks, all within walking distance. (more…)

If God Really Exists Why Doesn’t He Speak To Us?

by Jay Culotta

How may times have we heard this objection to the Gospel of Jesus Christ? “If God really exists, then why doesn’t He speak to us?”

Or another version of this is “I will believe in Heaven if someone who has died and gone there comes back and tells us what it is like.”

Well folks, guess what, both of these things happened and the same person has fulfilled both of these requests—Jesus, the Son of God literally spoke to us for over three years during his ministry on earth over 2,000 years ago and His Words are forever preserved in our Bibles.

Furthermore, not only did He come down from His place in Heaven to be born as a human being and become one of us, but He was mercilessly beaten, crucified and died on a cruel Cross before He went back to Heaven to present His body as a perfect and final sacrifice for all of us to His Father for OUR sins, not His.

I did not write this short article to be a theological explanation of why Jesus died in our place, why He became the perfect and final sacrifice for the daily and annual sacrifices offered to God to atone for sins. There are plenty of articles and books written on this subject that explain it far better than I ever could. (more…)

Thankful For The Thorns

FROM The Daily Encourager

FROM The Daily Encourager

Sandra felt as low as the heels of her Birkenstocks when she pulled open the florist shop door, against a November gust of wind. Her life had been as sweet as a spring breeze and then, in the fourth month of her second pregnancy, a “minor” automobile accident stole her joy. This was Thanksgiving week and the time she should have delivered their infant son. She grieved over their loss. Troubles had multiplied. Her husband’s company “threatened” to transfer his job to a new location.

Her sister had called to say that she could not come for her long awaited holiday visit. What’s worse, Sandra’s friend suggested that Sandra’s grief was a God-given path to maturity that would allow her to empathize with others who suffer. “She has no idea what I’m feeling,” thought Sandra with a shudder. “Thanksgiving? Thankful for what?” she wondered. “For a careless driver whose truck was hardly scratched when he rear-ended her? For an airbag that saved her life, but took her child’s?”

“Good afternoon, can I help you?” Sandra was startled by the approach of the shop clerk.

“I… I need an arrangement,” stammered Sandra.

“For Thanksgiving? Do you want the beautiful, but ordinary, or would you like to challenge the day with a customer favorite I call the ‘Thanksgiving Special’? I’m convinced that flowers tell stories,” she continued. “Are you looking for something that conveys ‘gratitude’ this Thanksgiving?”

“Not exactly!” Sandra blurted out. “In the last five months, everything that could go wrong has gone wrong.” Sandra regretted her outburst, and was surprised when the clerk said, “I have the perfect arrangement for you.”

Then the bell on the door rang, and the clerk greeted the new customer, “Hi, Barbara… let me get your order.” She excused herself and walked back to a small workroom, then quickly reappeared, carrying an arrangement of greenery, bows, and what appeared to be long-stemmed, thorny roses – except the ends of the rose stems were neatly snipped. There were no flowers. (more…)