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Tag Archives: Washington D.C.

Evicted

After retiring from his Lutheran church, a pastor and his wife felt called to begin a ministry for seniors, for people their own age.  The most logical place to start was a local retirement home.  Ken and Liv Hauge reside at the Evergreens, a senior living community in Fredericksburg, Virginia.  A suburb of Washington D.C., this area has strict regulations, something the Hauge’s found out when they wanted to start a Bible Study.

The wicked flee when no one pursues, but the righteous are bold as a lion, Proverbs 28:1.

According to the civic association, the Hauge’s were required to call their meeting a book club.  Initially, they agreed even though this event was in fact a Bible Study.  To avoid this rigid restriction, this couple decided to move the group to their own apartment.  When word got out that the Hauge’s were hosting a Bible Study, they received a letter from their residential complex stating “stop holding Bible studies or face eviction.”  Why you may ask?  The apartment complex defines a Bible Study as a business which is illegal in a private residential unit.

Proclaiming the kingdom of God and teaching about the Lord Jesus Christ with all boldness and without hindrance, Acts 28:31.

The Hauge’s have turned to a lawyer to fight this legal battle.  I haven’t heard an update on this battle for religious freedom, but this case is an eye opening for the kind of persecution active Christians may face in the future.  The apostles endured similar threats during the first century.  Paul was arrested, beaten and nearly killed a couple times during his ministry trips throughout the Mediterranean.  Despite these trying times, Luke implores believers in Jesus to boldly proclaim the kingdom of God whatever the cost, even if it means eviction.

by Jay Mankus

The Real Heroes Didn’t Make It Home

A father recently brought his daughter to visit Washington D.C. to see the National Mall and the various monuments throughout the city.  During a stop at the Vietnam Memorial, a man in full dress uniform decorated with medals stood by a wall.  This girl turned to ask her father, “daddy is that man a hero?”  Curious, the father replied, “let’s go find out.”  A few minutes later, this girl pulled on this stranger’s arm, “excuse me sir, are you a hero?”  Pausing for a moment, this solider responded, “No, the real heroes didn’t make it home.”

For even the Son of Man came not to be served but to serve, and to give his life as a ransom for many,” Mark 10:45.

In response to the horrific events of September 11th, 2001, Pat Tillman was cut to the heart.  As a member of the Arizona Cardinals, this rising star in the National Football League felt compelled to serve his country.  Thus, in 2002 Pat Tillman retired from professional football to enlist in the United States Army.  After basic training, Tillman joined the Army Rangers serving several tours of combat while serving overseas.  Unfortunately, Pat Tillman was killed during an incident in the mountains of Afghanistan.  This hero never made it home alive.

And if it is evil in your eyes to serve the Lord, choose this day whom you will serve, whether the gods your fathers served in the region beyond the River, or the gods of the Amorites in whose land you dwell. But as for me and my house, we will serve the Lord,” Joshua 24:15.

Last week, the National Football League introduced one of their new rules changes for the 2018-2019 season.  After a series of players began to kneel during the National Anthem last season, fans began to boycott causing a drastic decline in viewership.  Thus, owners decided to fine players in the future for kneeling as all players must now stand.  Players can opt to remain in the locker room until after the anthem is completed if they wish.  Perhaps, some of these millionaires need to be reminded of Pat Tillman’s story.  The least these current athletes can do is honor and respect one of their own.  As the United States of America celebrates Memorial Day, make sure that you remember that most of the real heroes never make it home alive.

by Jay Mankus

 

Putting on Price Tag on a Life

On the day before Palm Sunday, survivors of the Stoneman Douglas High School shooting took center stage at protests across the country.  Fighting for stricter gun laws in America, students sitting on a stage in Washington D.C. placed visible price tags on their clothing.  According to reporters, these prices were suppose to symbolize the campaign contributions senator Marco Rubio has received from the National Riffle Association.  Suggesting this representative from Florida cares more about guns than children, this political stunt put a price tag on a life.

For whoever would save his life will lose it, but whoever loses his life for my sake will find it, Matthew 16:25.

According to the Guttmacher Institute, 1.21 million lives were ended prematurely in 2008.  The culprit of this suppressed killer were abortions performed in the United States.  Typically, two to four percent of these unwanted pregnancies are due to rape and incest.  Based upon a 2016 article written by Robert Johnston, 30 % of abortions occur due to socio-economic conditions.  The number one reason why abortions took place two years ago was for a quick fix, birth control.  This is the unseen price placed on unwanted babies in the United States.

For the wages of sin is death, but the free gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord, Romans 6:23.

One of the great things about living in America is free speech, having the freedom to protest.  This same thing applies to the spiritual realm, able to exercise free will.  During my wife Leanne’s third pregnancy, she had numerous complications.  After a false alarm visit to the emergency room, one doctor suggested that terminating my daughter’s life prematurely was the best option.  Without any hesitation, Leanne and I understood the gift of life is priceless.  Thirteen years later, my daughter Lydia is healthy, blessed and will play her first high school golf match on Tuesday.  May this blog remind you that you can’t put a price tag on life.

by Jay Mankus

 

A National Anthem in Crisis

Prior to the events in New York City and Washington D.C. on September 11th 2001, the relationship between sporting events and the playing of National Anthems had become a mundane ritual.  If you take away the Olympics, playoffs and the Super Bowl, anthems were rarely ever televised.  Some professional sports even played anthems while players were still in the locker room.  However, post 9/11 the singing of Francis Scott Key’s song united this nation for a minute or so daily.  I was in Philadelphia for the first National Football League Monday Night Football game following this terrorist attack.  When a flag the shape of the United States was displayed across the entire field, the crowd went crazy, setting the stage for an emotional national anthem.  Those professional athletes who have chosen to kneel or sit have forgotten what the national anthem represents.  As more begin similar displays as a protest, the future of America’s national anthem is in jeopardy.

Sing to him, sing praises to him; tell of all his wondrous works! – Psalm 105:2

As a former teacher, I understand pressure to remove the national anthem at professional sporting events isn’t the end but the beginning of an attempt to erase any trace of God from American history.  During homeroom or over a loud speaker, public schools read a daily passage or verse from the Bible up to the early 1960’s.  The reading communicated a morale, trait or value teachers hoped to instill within their students.  When a few atheists were offended, a law suit followed that removed the Bible permanently from public education.  When schools obliged others were upset about students and teachers praying for each other.  This too was banned, stripping God’s influence from the classroom.  Looking back at history, schools have never been the same as God has removed his own blessing from those who have not made room for Him.  Then, there was the 10 commandments, “surely we can’t allow human beings to read and see these rigid rules.”  Today, religious leaders are arrested if 10 commandment statues aren’t removed from all court buildings.  Finally, there is the pledge of allegiance which has been made optional for children or simply discarded all together.  If the national anthem is silenced, there’s always something else atheists, leftists and progressives will deem offensive.

Sing for joy, O heavens, and exult, O earth; break forth, O mountains, into singing! For the Lord has comforted his people and will have compassion on his afflicted, Isaiah 49:13.

I hope the owners of professional sports teams don’t cave to public pressure like weak minded republicans more interested in gaining approval from the press rather than upholding American values.  During the 2016 presidential campaign, Donald Trump vowed to drain the swamp.  When this promise was made, I don’t think Trump realized how deep and dangerous this resistance would be.  While the media continues to label the Trump presidency as the worst ever, the horizon appears to be void of any leaders willing to stand up for the national anthem.  Sure, there may be some closet defenders, afraid to vocalize their opinions.  Yet, America appears to be on the verge of a social war between the past and the present.  As someone who grew up in a military family, respect was impressed upon me.  Unfortunately, some where along the way respect for God and country has slowly faded away.  In view of this decay, may God raise someone up to carry the torch for the National Anthem so that this treasured tradition does not disappear like those now forgotten.  Stand up and sing, thanking God for all the Lord has done for this land called America.

by Jay Mankus

 

The God Hypocrisy

Earlier this week an elderly man destroyed a brand new statue of the ten commandments.  Initial media reports suggested that this might have been part of a car accident.  After further investigation it was uncovered that this destruction was posted on Facebook Live.  In fact this was the second religious statue this man had destroyed,  If this attack was aimed at any other politically correct religious symbol, the liberal media would have been outraged.  Unfortunately, the God hypocrisy caused this story to be buried or omitted completely.

I know your deeds, that you are neither cold nor hot. I wish you were either one or the other! – Revelation 3:15

Prior to the attacks on New York City and Washington D.C. on September 11th, 2001, God was being pushed out of American culture.  The Bible, prayer and religious freedom were being kicked to the curb, discarded like old possessions at a garage sale.  Following 9/11, Major League Baseball decided to let God back in by singing God Bless America during the seventh inning stretch.  Meanwhile, more people attended worship centers on the Sunday after 9/11 than ever before or since.  Unfortunately, when good times return God is usually one of the first relationships to be placed on the back burner.

So, because you are lukewarm—neither hot nor cold—I am about to spit you out of my mouth, Revelation 3:16.

If God would have a letter commissioned to the United States of America today it would be similar to the church in Laodicea.  At some point, individuals develop an on again off again relationship with God.  This unhealthy habit breeds a lukewarm spirit where people use God as a crutch leaning on Him in times of trouble.  Anyone who claims to be a follower of Christ yet exhibits an inconsistent faith results in another God hypocrisy.  Thus, unless individuals begin to live out the Christian faith, church attendance will continue to decline.  You shouldn’t have to wait until the next 9/11 like event to turn your life around.  May this blog or the Darryl Worley song Have You Forgotten inspire you to dial up your faith by trusting and obeying an invisible God.

by Jay Mankus

 

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