MONDAY MORNING REFLECTIONS – STILL A DANGEROUS WORLD; BLACK FRIDAY; CS LEWIS IS BACK; HOMELESSNESS

Yoenpyeong Island is a non-descript piece of real estate off the coast of South Korea. It contains a tiny fishing village and a few South Korean Marines.  But last Tuesday a war that has never really ended was reignited with civilians in the cross-fire. North Korea, in a dispute over military exercises, rained down shells on this village effectively ending a quiet life for simple peasants.  Once again the unending enmity between North and South Korea reared its ugly head and threatened world peace.  No one seems to be able to control the brutal and paranoid leaders of the North who believe that if they threaten others enough we will rescue their devastated ecomony and insure their stranglehold on their people.  Once again, we are reminded that this is still a dangerous world where terror – either state-sponsored or religion-fueled – can shatter lives. Advent began yesterday, when Christians celebrate the birth of Jesus, the One who will be called the Prince of Peace. The reality is that only when He reigns in the hearts of humanity will this stop being a dangerous and deadly world. 

Black Friday came and went and once again Americans celebrated a “holiday of consumption.”  Because I really would like to own a flat screen TV, I entertained thoughts of appearing at the nearby Walmart to try and capture one of a very few sets that would have been available for $179 at 5:00 am.  Somehow, camping out in a cold, darkened parking lot with a lot of sleep-deprived strangers, seemed a little over the edge even for a man who is generally awake each day between 3:00-4:00 am.  People claim they endure Black Friday because they want a bargain and to save money; but does our Christmas celebration really require new electronics and toys in order to be complete?  There is a movement afoot in some churches called the Advent Conspiracy, to try and change the emphasis of the season from a culture of consumption to a culture of compassion. Maybe the nasty state of our economy is God’s nudging reminder that this is His preference for a season that will celebrate the birth of His Son.

CS Lewis’ Chronicles of Narnia return to the wide screen in a week.  “The Voyage of the Dawn Treader” is another of the great story of good and evil and redemption and Aslan. This will be well worth your family’s time and may help keep their focus on the “reason for the season.”

Advent has begun and we proceed towards the celebration of the Nativity, when the Savior of the World entered the world essentially as a homeless person. Between 2.5 and 3.5 million people in America do not have a place to call home, to sleep at night.  This remains one of the glaring problems that our nation has failed to find a solution for. 1.35 million of these are children and at least 300,000 do not have a place to sleep each night.  There are five myths that actually keep us for doing more about homeless than we do.
1. Homelessness is a long-term problem.
2. Most homeless people have a severe mental condition.
3.Homeless people do not work.
4. Shelters are humane solutions to homelessness.
5. The poor we will always have with us.
To learn more about these “myths” and some solutions I would encourage you to go to this link: FIVE MYTHS. I would encourage to learn more and maybe help with some of these solutions. I am sure that “the One who did not have a place to lay His head” would smile favorably upon you.

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