Cancer: We had the cure but we killed it!

As I was praying this morning for a friend who is having bladder cancer surgery today, I asked God why hasn’t there been a cure for cancer? With all the bright minds and God given talent and intellect, why hasn’t the cure been found? Then I felt God telling me, “I have given you the cure for cancer as well as cure for all the dreaded diseases! Mankind in their finite wisdom and selfish ways have murdered the ones who had the knowledge and intellect to develop the cure for all the dreaded diseases! Mankind has murdered over 54 million babies through abortion, therefore killing the very people that I gave the gift and talent to end cancer.” This was such an impression in which I felt God was speaking directly to me.

The facts are the over 54 million babies have been brutally torn apart out of the womb because of the belief of “Pro Choice!” The Bible is very clear in God’s Sixth Commandment, “You shall not murder” (Exodus 20:13). We have been a selfish society, who have murdered well over 54 million babies. I can almost imagine hearing the cries of the innocents! Cries of over 54 million children. Some of these children had the knowledge and intellect and the key to the cure of cancer. Many were great leaders who had God given talent of discoveries which would have made the world a better place to live. But mankind killed their own and destroyed most of the God given talent.

We live in such an evil society where many of the leaders in our nation do not “truly” believe in God. Many say that they are “Christians,” but this is only because they want votes from whoever they can please. These leader’s lives and their choice in how they make laws does not match up to the plumb-line of what God has given mankind as a guide to live holy lives. They cater to what their constituents want as opposed to leading in a godly manner. There is no value in Biblical truth since the Ten Commandments or any image thereof has been ordered to be removed because man does not want to be reminded of God’s laws and requirements. The Political Correctness movement has been authored by Satan himself. Followers of Political Correctness assert that pastors who preach and teach against political correctness are inciting hatred. What was considered deviant behavior is now considered normal and what was once considered Holy is now considered hate. We live in a world where mankind has rebelled against God and His ways. The Politically Correct will no longer tolerate God or any of His teaching. The evil one is alive and doing very well in the United States as well as throughout the world. Our politicians are not hearing God but listening to the voice of the prince of this world.

God gave us the cures and the very best talent. Unfortunately for mankind, we killed it through over 54 million abortions. Over 54 MILLION INNOCENTS, destroyed in the most horrific ways imaginable. The promoters of abortion are likened to the NAZI Regime of World War II, where over SIX MILLION Jews were murdered. Since the world found out about this horrific war crime against an entire race of people, they attempted to put an end to genocide. Margaret Sanger was the first woman to start an abortion clinic in the United States. Yes, mankind in their finite wisdom, thinking that abortion and the killing of innocents is their god given right and been misled by the voice of the prince of this world!

We had the cure, but didn’t give it a chance to develop and grow up into the woman and man that God had given us. These babies would have grown up to be the very best leaders, doctors, and researchers. Their lives and talent, lost forever. We had the cure but we killed it!

Copyright © March 15, 2019. The Lantern & Shield Times, a Division of Marketplace Evangelism Ministries Inc. All Rights Reserved.

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The Ugliness of Christian Politics

Most recently, our beloved Commonwealth of Virginia has experienced political controversy of our Democratic Governor, Dr. Ralph Northam, who just endorsed the most aggressive late-term abortion bill. This bill was defeated, but the fact that a Pediatric Neurologist, who is also the Governor of Virginia, is not sitting well with Christians on both the Republican and Democratic sides.

Our Governor proclaims to be a man of faith, a Christian, and a member of a Baptist church. It is concerning that man who proclaims to be a Follower of Jesus Christ then endorses an aggressive abortion bill. Most recently, while being interviewed on WTOP, Northam said, “When we talk about third-trimester abortions, these are done with the consent of obviously the mother, with the consent of the physicians, more than one physician, by the way…And it’s done in cases where there may be severe deformities, there may be a fetus that’s non-viable. So in this particular example, if a mother is in labor, I can tell you exactly what would happen. The infant would be delivered. The infant would be kept comfortable. The infant would be resuscitated if that’s what the mother and the family desired, and then a discussion would ensue between the physicians and the mother.” This statement enraged both Christian Democrats and Republicans.

Just yesterday, a racist picture, supposedly of him, from his 1984 Eastern Virginia Medical School Yearbook, showed two people, one in a KKK hood and robe and the other black-faced, standing holding beer cans. The Governor apologized for the racist picture, and then today he is denying that he was in the picture at all. The picture was located on his yearbook page under his name. Then the Governor admitted that same year, he dressed up like Michael Jackson and put black shoe polish on his face for a dance contest in Texas. The Governor was very apologetic, but many Democrat’s and well as Republican’s have asked him to step down. The Governor states that he will not step down. Racism and the Jim Crow era slurs have no place in society. This shows a heart condition that does not match a Christian walk.

Many took to Facebook and Twitter. Professing Christian’s posted slurs towards Democrats like, “DEMONcrats” or “Democrats were acting like Demons.” Hateful, hurting, words appear to roll off many lips and yet there seems to be no remorse for what is said.

We at The Lantern & Shield do not condone abortion or racism. Although we are all conservative in our beliefs and our politics, it is troubling to us to see how professing Christians seem to find it very easy to say hateful and hurting words just to substantiate their positions in politics. We believe that Christians can take a stand for what they believe in but do it with love. Not everyone who states they are Christian are truly Christians. Approximately 79% of American’s identify with Christianity, but that does not make them a true Christian.

Jesus said in Mark 12:30-31, “Love the Lord your God with all your heart, soul, and mind; and to love your neighbor as yourself. There is no greater commandment than this.”

If you want to make a difference for the gospel and in the name of Jesus, don’t call Democrats Demons and Demon-crats. It really is very offensive and it appears that people who do this have hate in their hearts. We are to love the sinner but hate the sin. How can you expect people to come to Christ when you just basically cursed them by calling them a demon?

The Word of God also says that we are not to judge others. It’s interesting that some people are so politically inclined to crucify another Christian for their difference of opinion than to try to reason with them by having a loving conversation with them. Matthew 7:5 says, “You hypocrite! First remove the beam out of your own eye, and then you can see clearly to remove the speck out of your brother’s eye.”

I have many Democrat friends who do not support this bill. They are loving people and would give the coats off their back to help anyone. Not every person who identifies with the Democratic Party are baby killers or racists. I have known Republicans that believe that it’s okay to have an abortion. Don’t assume that just because someone mostly identifies with one party or the other believe in everything their party supports.

My point in this piece is that if you proclaim to be a true Christian, your life will exhibit love and not hate. We should be living our lives in a way that promotes love and the advancement of the gospel to the lost in our communities, state, and nation.

When people attack us, we should respond the way that Paul teaches us in Romans 12:20, “On the contrary, If your enemy is hungry, feed him; if he is thirsty, give him something to drink. In doing this, you will heap hot coals on his head.” Respond in love. They most likely will expect a hateful response, but respond with the love of Christ in your hearts.

We must also pray for our enemies as well as those who come against our faith. We do not like this recent abortion bill, which our Governor has supported and endorsed. But we must as Christian’s pray for Governor Northam, that God will change his heart, and that decisions will be made for the glorification of God’s will.

If you have participated in hateful words against others, God said that you must ask forgiveness and repent. By continuing these types of behaviors, this can separate you in your relationship with Jesus Christ. Sin will separate us from God. John 9:31 says, “We know that God listens to the godly person who does His will.”

Copyright © February 2, 2019. The Lantern & Shield Times, A Division of Marketplace Evangelism Ministries Inc. All Rights Reserved.

A Nation in Crisis: Illegal Immigrant Attacks Young Boy on School Bus

I love people and have a heart for ministering to immigrants who are in our nation and trying to make a new life for themselves. As a Christian, my heart goes out to people who are less fortunate than myself. My wife and I have helped people from buying groceries for them to praying and helping them at worksites by handing out water on hot days and giving them Spanish Bibles. We both have a heart to help people. Many of these people are here in the United States legally. From time to time, we cross paths with people here illegally and we encourage them to apply for legal citizenship and do it the right way. I mention all this beforehand so that people will know that we really do love people and want the best for them.

At the same time, we consider ourselves to be good citizens of our local community, state, and nation. We obey the law and we expect others to do the same. I have personally been a victim of a violent crime, so I understand the fear when someone is trying to assault you or kill you! I most recently heard of a young boy right here in Virginia who was bullied on a school bus and was beaten in his face to the point that his nose was broken. The school bus driver did not stop the bus to render assistance. The boy bled profusely from his nose and face until his blue jeans were soaked with so much blood that even his underwear was soaked with blood. The victim had to ride injured on the school bus for over 20 minutes, no assistance given by the bus driver, and no assistance to break up the assault. The bully was a high schooler and he received a ten-day suspension. I found out this evening that the bully was an illegal immigrant who was from Honduras.

This is just one circumstance of many being reported across the nation. I am not releasing the name of the victim to protect him from any retaliation. Any recourse against the perpetrator’s parents are drastically diminished since they are illegals. The school district has allowed these illegal immigrants into the school’s and they cannot even protect our own children. With this migrant caravan approaching, I cannot even fathom what may happen if others who do not have good intentions for Americans are allowed in our communities.

It is my understanding that the immigration laws in the United States must take these people in, but to what expense? Not every immigrant is a bully or a criminal, but how does a nation vet these people? Our nation is changing and quite frankly, becoming a more dangerous place to live. The attack on the young boy that I have written about was in a rural area of Virginia. I am not going to tell people how to vote in the upcoming mid-term elections, but when you cast that vote, think about the safety of your children. If this happened in rural America, it could happen anywhere in the United States.

As a Christian, I will continue to be a good neighbor, help those who are less fortunate than me, love my neighbor as I love myself, and share the gospel to all who will hear. I will also encourage all illegal immigrants that if you want to honor God, then obey the laws of the land. That means that if you are here illegally, then you need to apply for citizenship, even if it means that you go back to your own country and do it the right way. There is no honor or respect in breaking the law. If you want American Citizens to respect you, then obey our laws and come to the United States legally.

This is an opinion story of The Lantern & Shield Times. Copyright © October 24, 2018. The Lantern & Shield Times, a division of Marketplace Evangelism Ministries Inc. All Rights Reserved.

Reflections on Virginia Governor’s Race

Prior to moving to Georgia this Spring, I was a Virginia resident for about a half-a-century. I was born at the Medical College of Virginia and other than living several years in Ohio and North Carolina, I lived in Virginia and know its history very well.

The Democratic party was king for over a century, dating back prior to the Civil War. The well-known Byrd Machine was made up of Democrats.

The state flipped red for a few decades after voting for Lyndon Johnson in 1964. Linwood Holton was the first Republican Governor elected, which occurred in 1969. In the governor’s race, usually there would a reaction to the President’s party for several decades. After Jimmy Carter’s election in 1976, Governor John Dalton, a Republican, was elected in 1977. When the U. S. would elect a Republican, Virginia would follow with a Democratic Governor in the next year’s election.

In recent years Virginia has been a much bluer state, partly due to the influx of people into Northern Virginia. But in addition to those factors, I think something else was at work in this election. Governor elect Ralph Northam is a real Virginian. His eastern shore accent gives him away.

Northam is not the wild-eyed liberal that is frequently seen today. Northam, according to Huffington Post, voted twice for President George W. Bush.

Northam is a U. S. Army veteran and a graduate of the Virginia Military Institute, where Stonewall Jackson taught and Robert E. Lee is buried.

A majority of Virginians want Confederate monuments left in place. Whom would voters trust?

The out-going governor, Terry McAuliffe, was born in New York State. McAuliffe had New York values, not Virginia values. Southerners are cultural conservative. It certainly rubbed Southerners the wrong way when McAuliffe would assert his liberal Northeast values as Virginia values.

The Republican candidate for governor, Ed Gillespie, is a native of New Jersey.  Knowing that, whom would traditional Virginians be more likely to trust. Another Northeasterner, or a true native born Virginian.

Virginia did not go for President Trump in the election last year. The gubernatorial election certainly was not a reaction to that.

Things are not always as they seem. I don’t know how Governor elect Northam will govern. Some liberals may be very disappointed with the man who opposes sanctuary cities. And governors are not as ideological on average as those who are elected to serve in Washington, D. C.

Copyright © June 10, 2018, The Lantern & Shield Times LLC. All Rights Reserved.

 

Profanity and Foul Language Should Never Be Used

Profanity and foul language should never be used in a public setting whether business or in everyday life. It is offensive to many people. It seems that the liberal left has now become the moral police where they criticize President Donald Trump with using offensive language and yet Trump’s accusers use language that is very similar.

To me, as an American Christian, I find it very offensive to hear people saying my God’s name in vain, GD, Holy S***, MF, Sh**, as well as other foul words. Yet many of those who accuse President Trump has used the very same language. I find it very offensive that any one use that language. If the President did use the language that he was accused of using calling poor countries S*** Holes, then that is unacceptable. That is very offensive!

But folks, here is the problem. When God and prayer have been removed from public schools and the government, and parents are no longer teaching their children the way of the Lord, with Biblical principles, then this is what we can expect. Morals are not being taught because the population does not know what is moral or immoral.

What is really ironic is that the immoral people who may become offended, are being offended by a mirror of themselves. They do not see the huge log in their own eye, only looking at the speck in their offender’s eye. You know, there is a Scripture in the Bible that addresses this, but many may not know the verse because many of the American people have fallen away from God and the Holy way of life. But for those who may want to know, the verse is found in Matthew 7:3-5, “Why do you see the speck that is in your brother’s eye, but do not notice the log that is in your own eye? Or how can you say to your brother, ‘Let me take the speck out of your eye,’ when there is the log in your own eye? You hypocrite, first take the log out of your own eye, and then you will see clearly to take the speck out of your brother’s eye.” What a bunch of hypocrites!

Of course, many say there should be a separation of church and state. But here is the issue for those who use that as there excuse, don’t even open your mouth in accusations until you clean up your own wretched life!

Personally, whenever I hear the President use curse words, I cringe and I do not like it! I cringe whenever I hear profanity used in public and in business. And using it towards employees is a form of abuse and is not acceptable.

Within my own business, if I have a client that uses foul language, I ask them not to use it. If they do not respect me enough to stop, then I do not need them as a client. I don’t want my mind filled with hatred and disgusting thoughts from foul language. Plus, cursing shows the true condition of the heart. For those who love the Old Testament, In Psalm 109:17, a person who delights in cursing will not be blessed. Psalm 10:7, “His mouth is full of curses and deceit and oppression; Under his tongue is mischief and wickedness.” Proverbs 15:1, A gentle answer turns away wrath, but a harsh word stirs up anger.”

If the President did call poor countries S#@* Holes, then his words did stir up anger. But for all involved who uses foul language, in order to be respected themselves, they need to have a transformation of the heart and come to Jesus Christ as their personal Savior. One cannot change their own heart by themselves, it takes a spiritual and supernatural conversion only found through Jesus Christ and the Holy Spirit. I know personally because Christ changed my own black and offensive heart, who used to spew out filthy words.

Many state that the President has become a Christian. I am not judging him but wonder if this is actually true? The Bible states that we will know a Christian by their fruits. I would apply the same criteria to the President’s accusers. In Galatians 5:22, it says; “But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness.” If one does not have these fruits, I would question whether they have Christ in their heart at all?

We live in a nation where the environment is very volatile and hatred is being spewed from many different fronts. If we are to be united, then I believe that the people need to turn to God and repent of their evil ways. If they don’t, then we will never see peace in our nation. It is like the prince of this world has been released to devour what was once a great nation. This, in my opinion, is why there is so much hatred among the politicians against each other. I have never seen it so ugly in my lifetime. I pray that God will touch the hearts of our leaders and every man, woman, boy, and girl. I pray that people will turn to God. I pray that our nation will be healed.

Joseph T. Lee Copyright © January 17, 2018; The Lantern & Shield Times LLC.

 

 

 

 

Let’s Make Healthcare Great

Shortly before I got married, my mentor, who also happened to be my future wife’s employer, told me that health insurance does not cover child birth until a woman has been on a policy for 10 months. I was well aware that regular human gestation was nine months, and some births are premature. I thought my mentor could keep my wife on her employment policy beyond her employment, but he said he couldn’t.

Being a pastor, I contacted The Southern Baptist Annuity Board, now known as Guidestone, and it was confirmed that childbirth would not be covered within the first 10 months. Lori and I were obedient to God’s teaching about not having premarital sex, but I was very worried about the possibility that she could get pregnant shortly after our marriage, and we would be burdened with expensive bills. I prayed that no child would be born that quickly. God answered that prayer, and even with pleading to have the original request overturned, after 32 and a half years, we still have no child.

Lori was marrying me, so she left her job in Georgia, and we set up household in Virginia, where I served a congregation.

This predicament is just one problem with a healthcare that is primarily employment based. Government indirectly has funded this setup since typically people are not taxed on their health insurance provided by their employers.

But the employment provided healthcare doesn’t work as easily for everyone. I have served as a pastor for over 33 years. I’ve been a Southern Baptist Pastor with health insurance through Guidestone of the Southern Baptist Convention. I retired earlier this year from that. My last payment for Lori and myself was over $1600 per month. That was the cheapest plan I could get, and it included a $10,000 per year deductible.

After leaving the pastorate and moving to Georgia, I have used the Affordable Healthcare Act to get a silver plan, which I’ve paid a little over $500 a month. This plan has a much lower deductible, and my wife and I are very pleased with it. Yes, it’s going up this coming year to $581 a month, but that’s a lot better than the $1600 a month. I am sure the latter policy would have gone up too. Incidentally, anytime in the past when I received a “raise,” the increase in my healthcare more than offset my “raise.”

But this situation is not limited to pastors of autonomous churches. Small business people, who are not a part of large company, must pay rates in the range I was paying.

How many people could start a business that could eventually employ others, hesitate to start that business, because they need the insurance plan they are on with an employer? And wasn’t the Affordable Healthcare idea originally a conservative idea…at least until Obama adopted it?

Republicans profess to support small business, but make it difficult to take that step since people may be afraid to leave the employment of a large company to start that business.

And what about those people who want to work, but can’t find a job? How do they pay for healthcare? Even in the best economy, there are people who are unemployed, or can only find part time work that doesn’t provide healthcare. A lack of healthcare, when a medical emergency arises, can cause financial ruin.

I’ve helped people pay bills as a pastor and personally. I’ve bought food for people. I can easily pick up someone’s tab for lunch. But I cannot personally afford to pay for someone’s healthcare. That requires a lot of people banding together, which should be done through the government.

I’m not going to argue that the constitution requires government to pay for healthcare, other than promoting the general welfare. But the government is indirectly subsidizing healthcare by letting employers provide it without taxing the benefits of employees.

I know plenty of conservatives who look forward to age 65, when they will get Medicare. If you going to oppose government healthcare, then you need to be consistent and oppose Medicare.

I’ve paid taxes for years, writing big quarterly checks to my respective state and to the federal treasury. I don’t begrudge paying for a government that benefits me. But why should I write big checks that benefit others, and I’m not allowed to get a benefit from the government I’ve supported. Yes, taxes would probably go up to pay for government healthcare, but when you consider the value of it, I believe it is well worth it.

If companies didn’t have to subsidize healthcare, they could pay bigger wages to the workers.

And young people should have healthcare. I remember how worried I was about healthcare when I graduated from college and started to work fulltime. I had been on my mother’s policy, and was being picked up by my new employer. I was concerned about any possible gap. What if I had a health emergency as I started work, and something went wrong with the system. I feared being without coverage.

An argument frequently made by conservatives is that no one should be forced to buy it. But medical emergencies do happen, and only the most hardened libertarian would say to a dying young person, “you made your bed, now lie in it.” And when that person is treated, somebody is going to pay for it. Why not just spread the cost across a broad base of people who all paying into the system?

I know that there are Christians who use Christian programs that substitute for insurance. But they don’t have to accept you. A pre-existing condition can keep you out of their fold.

I know we have a culture where people live together outside of matrimony, and at least some companies cover live-in partners. But in such a predicament, you could not only be thrown out the door on a moment’s notice, but you could lose the roof over your head. You could lose your health insurance.

We are blessed with good healthcare. But it’s a blessing everyone should have access to.

The opinions above are not necessarily those of The Lantern & Shield Times LLC.

Ashton C. Smith. Copyright © December 18, 2017, The Lantern & Shield Times LLC

 

 

Roy Moore

I first heard Roy Moore years ago when he spoke at the Southern Baptist Convention. Listening to him was like stepping back in time, he had long, memorized quotes that he used like speakers in earlier decades.

I thought of that with the recent accusations, looking bad for him since they are multiple, and Moore had a reputation with young teenage women.

As a lover of history, I remember reading that in Colonial Times, some men had a predilection for young girls. My thought would center on how one would have a conversation, since shared experiences from life would be a background for that. Plus, when you’re older “mating” habits of the young can appeal foolish. But in that time, men talked about politics, growing crops, world affairs and business with other men, not with women.

Adding to this predicament is reports and at least one picture of senator Al Franken, democrat of Minnesota, and his escapades. In addition, congresswoman Comstock of Virginia reports on sexual harassment and assaults being widespread on Capital Hill. Her example details a young woman staffer going to a congressman’s home, who exposed himself to her. She quit the next day.

Plus, we learn, it’s a long process to report any type of harassment, taking months and requiring the victim to go through counseling first.

Additionally, liberal democrats seem to get a pass. If you support particular issues, your behavior magically becomes acceptable.

Add to that, victims are paid off. Not by their perpetrators, but by you and me, the taxpayer.

If you’re in Alabama, you’re being lectured on whom to vote for…by people who don’t have the best reputation. That could cause a response that helps Moore more than hurts him. It’s much easier to lecture than to set an example. If you’re being lectured by people you resent, how would you respond? My tendency would be to do the opposite of what I’m being asked to do.

How this Alabama election turns out, remains to be seen. I don’t expect Moore to back down. He hasn’t backed down from anything in his life. Decades ago, you had to be a Democrat to be elected to anything statewide in Alabama. That might happen again. Or, people, fed up with Washington ways, may elect Roy Moore.

Ashton C. Smith © November 19, 2017 The Lantern & Shield Times LLC

Reflections on Virginia Governor’s Race

Prior to moving to Georgia this Spring, I was a Virginia resident for about a half-a-century. I was born at the Medical College of Virginia and other than living several years in Ohio and North Carolina, I lived in Virginia and know its history very well.

The Democratic party was king for over a century, dating back prior to the Civil War. The well-known Byrd Machine was made up of Democrats.

The state flipped red for a few decades after voting for Lyndon Johnson in 1964. Linwood Holton was the first Republican Governor elected, which occurred in 1969. In the governor’s race, usually there would a reaction to the President’s party for a number of decades. After Jimmy Carter’s election in 1976, Governor John Dalton, a Republican, was elected in 1977. When the U. S. would elect a Republican, Virginia would follow with a Democratic Governor in the next year’s election.

In recent years Virginia has been a much bluer state, partly due to the influx of people into Northern Virginia. But in addition to those factors, I think something else was at work in this election. Governor elect Ralph Northam is a real Virginian. His eastern shore accent gives him away.

Northam is not the wild-eyed liberal that is frequently seen today. Northam, according to Huffington Post, voted twice for President George W. Bush.

Northam is a U. S. Army veteran and a graduate of the Virginia Military Institute, where Stonewall Jackson taught and Robert E. Lee is buried.

A majority of Virginians want Confederate monuments left in place. Whom would voters trust?

The out-going governor, Terry McAuliffe, was born in New York State. McAuliffe had New York values, not Virginia values. Southerners are cultural conservative. It certainly rubbed Southerners the wrong way when McAuliffe would assert his liberal Northeast values as Virginia values.

The Republican candidate for governor, Ed Gillespie, is a native of New Jersey.  Knowing that, whom would traditional Virginians be more likely to trust. Another Northeasterner, or a true native born Virginian.

Virginia did not go for President Trump in the election last year. The gubernatorial election certainly was not a reaction to that.

Things are not always as they seem. I don’t know how Governor elect Northam will govern. Some liberals may be very disappointed with the man who opposes sanctuary cities. And governors are not as ideological on average as those who are elected to serve in Washington, DC.

Dr. Ashton C. Smith, © November 8, 2017, The Lantern & Shield Times LLC.

Espousing Hatred Versus Love

November 8, 2017: Just recently, a woman was seen riding by President Trump’s motorcade as he was in route to a meeting. The woman then stuck her middle finger up at the President of the United States of America. I must say, one must have a lot of guts to do that! Either they do not respect the office of the President of the United States or they are filled with so much hatred, that they just want to tell the President to go to hades!

I visited her Facebook page and she has this picture posted as her Cover Picture on her wall. She apparently is very proud of this because she appeared to enjoy the kudos from her friends and fan base. So many people congratulated her on her actions to the President. Unfortunately, we are seeing this behavior all over the nation. What is so appalling is that this woman was the former Community Liaison Officer for the United States Embassy in Riga, Lativa from September 2007 to May 2009; which was found on her Facebook “About” page.

According to Curt Autry’s NBC12 Facebook page of Richmond, Virginia; this picture was captured by a White House Photographer, which ultimately went viral. It was reported that the bicyclist posted this picture on her Facebook and Twitter accounts and then her employer found out about it. Autry reported that her employer fired her over it because they are a government contractor. She embarrassed them with this gesture. Although she may have had the right to make gestures, she embarrassed her employer, which they in turn terminated her employment.

What would make this woman do this? Hatred is being espoused and spewed from peoples lips every day. It is apparent that the ways of God are not the ways of our nation. People place their political candidates on a higher level than they place God. People have fallen away from the ways of God. I see no love being espoused from the lips of the generation we are living in today. I see  brothers turning on brothers and sisters turning on sisters. What has happened when the man or woman in the highest office on earth has become the most despised and hated?

Isn’t it wonderful that we can live in a country and can say the hurtful and mean things about the President and other political leaders and not worry about losing our lives over what we say. After all, we are protected by free speech, right? Why not vomit hatred and disparaging remarks on social media? After all, it is free speech, right? You know, I believe it just shows the true “heart” and a dark heart that has no love. I am tired of seeing people post hateful things on social media that are hurtful all for the sake of a political agenda. But I guess the people who do this feel that their political beliefs outweigh their Spiritual beliefs. You would be surprised to see what some people write.

The very freedoms a US Citizen has in America was won on the deaths and sacrifices of the US Armed Forces. Before criticizing your President and other political leaders with hateful remarks, why not consider praying for him? After all, we are called to pray! We are called to pray for our neighbors and get this, even our enemies. Regardless of your political stance, why not consider espousing LOVE as opposed to hate? It is easier to forgive than to carry the burden of a grudge.

What is even more startling is proclaimed Believers are participating in this type of behavior. This means that they still have a heart problem. Maybe they truly are not “real Christians.” Maybe they are even using “Christianity” as a political tool. Whatever their motive, by speaking “evil words” against a man or a woman means that one does not have the Love of Christ in their heart.

Last night, in Virginia, the Democrats won in all three of the highest offices, which are Governor, Lt. Governor, and Attorney General. This is what the people asked for and what most Virginians wanted. But instead of Republicans being angry and throwing hateful and mean spirited slurs at them, they must come together and pray for our leaders. We must all come together and pray. Whether you are Republican, Democrat, or Independent; prayer will make a difference.

I don’t know what kind of god you worship or affiliate with? But my God can heal hearts! My God can forgive trespasses! My God can help people to overcome! Why should we pray for a man or woman in leadership whom we do not care for? Because by praying for them, we are asking God to intervene for us that they will do the right thing. My God can change hearts and can save people from their sins.

Why pray for leaders to fear God? When someone leads and lives fearing God, they experience:

1. Wisdom
2. Knowledge
3. Understanding
4. Eternal Praise
5. Victory
6. God’s Protection

7. A Blameless Walk
8. Length of Life
9. Wealth and Honor
10. Humility
11. The Avoidance of Evil
12. Being Untouched by Trouble
13. The Saving of a Crushed Spirit
14. A Life That Lacks Nothing

(Credit: Dr. Mark Becton taken from sermon preached on 01/22/2017, The Victory Hour, Grove Avenue Baptist Church.)

These fourteen points is all the reason to pray for your leaders, regardless of whether you like them or not. We are called to pray and to show the love of Christ to those who do not know Him, even if it is the President of the United States of America, Governor, Lt. Governor, or the Attorney General.

By praying for them, we are asking God to guide them and lead them to make the correct choices. By praying for them, God can change their hearts and hopefully, they will lead the people in a way that is honorable.

James 5:16 says, “Therefore, confess your sins to one another and pray for one another, that you may be healed. The prayer of a righteous person has great power as it is working.”

1 Timothy 2:1 says, “First of all, then, I urge that supplications, prayers, intercessions, and thanksgivings be made for all people.”

Philippians 4:6, “Do not be anxious about anything, but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known to God.”

Matthew 18:19, “Again I say to you, if two of you agree on earth about anything they ask, it will be done for them by my Father in heaven.”

Matthew 6:9-13, “Pray then like this: “Our Father in heaven, hallowed be your name. Your kingdom come, your will be done, on earth as it is in heaven. Give us this day our daily bread, and forgive us our debts, as we also have forgiven our debtors. And lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from evil.”

Remember, before criticizing others, look at your own life. If you are without sin, then cast the first stone! But in reality, your life is just as filthy as the life that you are criticizing. Look at Romans 3:23, “For all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God.” We all have sin in our own lives. So, before you criticize the President, Governor, Lt. Governor, the Attorney General, or any other leader; consider cleaning up your own life before trying to straighten out the lives of others! This is exactly why we must be praying for others as well as have others to pray for us!

 

References:

Dr. Mark Becton taken from sermon preached on 01/22/2017, The Victory Hour, Grove Avenue Baptist Church.

Joseph T. Lee Blog, WordPress, “My God Can!”

Curt Autry NBC12, Facebook Page, November 6, 2017.

© November 8, 2017, Joseph T. Lee, The Lantern & Shield Times LLC.