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Now I’ve Seen Everything

During the Clinton Administration, 1993-2001, America citizens were less intrusive.  When rumors of affairs, murmurs of  sexual misconduct and witnesses of past improprieties began to come forward, many people protested, claiming the president has a right to his own privacy.  The talking points in the media were clear, “as long as you work hard, give your all each day, everyone, including the president of the United States has the freedom to do what they want on their own time.”  As Dorothy proclaimed to her dog Toto upon landing in Oz, “we’re definitely not in Kansas anymore!”

This is how I felt last night while driving home from work when I heard the news Adrian Peterson, star running back for the NFL’s Minnesota Vikings was arrested for spanking his child.  After one of his children pushed another out of the way while playing on a swing seat, Peterson choose to discipline his son, following in the footsteps of his parents.  Maybe he got carried away, but Adrian was simply trying to practice a biblical principle, Proverbs 22:6.  Surely, the state of Texas would understand this?  At least in the past they did, yet not now and not today in this culture of chaos.

If Adrian is guilty, then maybe the authorities need to go after the founders of Scared Straight and Beyond Scared Straight?  I’m kidding!  Remember when you could tell a joke, say something funny or sarcastic and not have to worry about the social police from shutting you down.  Anyway, my point is that spanking is a form of scared straight, associating pain with punishment.  My father used a paddle with a steel insert from his college fraternity.  As a former college football player, sure my butt was paddled a few times, yet I was a quick learner, acknowledging the importance of honoring your father and mother.  I’m not sure what’s next nor can I recommend a clear cut solution.  Nonetheless, now that I’ve seen everything, I sense Jesus’ return is closer than its ever been before.

by Jay Mankus

 

Dying of Thirst

When a body does not possess as much water and fluids as it should, dehydration sets in.  Dehydration can be mild, moderate or severe, life threatening if not replenished with liquids.  According to Men’s Health, there are 6 stages of dehydration, traced by the color of one’s urine.  When exercising in the summer sun, dehydration can lead to symptoms of heat exhaustion or heat stroke.  In a worst  case scenario, death can occur like the tragedy of Korey Stringer, a former Minnesota Viking who passed away on August 1st, 2001 following an NFL training camp practice.

There are others who are dying of spiritual thirst, unable to find the living water Jesus promises in John 4.  I spent the first 15 years in isolation, using my stuttering as an excuse to avoid intimate relationships.  Whenever you can’t communicate, express your feelings or make an emotional connection with someone, a part of you begins to die inside.  Spiritual dehydration commences once an individual is cut off from meaningful conversation which enriches one’s life.  If this separation continues, souls become cold and numb, on the verge of dying of thirst.

This is where we find a Samaritan woman, who had become a social outcast even among her own people.  After 4 broken relationships, the word on the street wasn’t kind.  Terms such as adulterer, prostitute or whore were likely whispered behind her back.  John 4:7-26 records an interesting conversation between 2 polar opposites between a prophet and someone searching for meaning in life.  Hot and thirsty, Jesus breaks the ice, then changes the topic of conversation from the weather to eternity.  Before the day was over, this lost soul is introduced to living water which quenched her thirst.  May this story quench your spiritual thirst and give you assurance for eternity.

by Jay Mankus

 

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