Tuesday, November 30, 2010

Somali-American Indicted in Plot to Blow up Oregon Christmas Tree Ceremony

(Fox News) A federal grand jury has indicted a Somali-American in an alleged plot to blow up a car bomb at a Christmas tree lighting ceremony in Portland, Oregon.  The Indictment filed Monday charges 19-year-old Mohamed Osman Mohamud with attempted use of a weapon of mass destruction.  The teen was arrested Friday evening near the crowded Pioneer Courthouse Square in downtown Portland, amid a FBI sting operation that followed months of investigation.  The indictment comes as Attorney General Eric Holder defended federal agent's action in the case.  The FBI set up a sting operation to investigate Mohamud after receiving a tip.  Holder rejected the suggestion that Mohamud was a victim of illegal entrapment by the FBI.  Once the undercover operation began, the suspect "chose at every step to continue" with the bombing plot, said Holder. 

"He was told that children--children--were potentially going to be harmed," the attorney general added.  Also Monday, information surfaced about a 2009 investigation of Mohamud on rape allegations, but he was never charged.  The Benton County District Attorney's Office didn't find a reason to charge Mohamud with a crime after a woman whose name was redated in the documents filed a sexual assault complaint against him.  Mohamud had sex with the woman in an Oregon State dorm room on October 31, 2009.  An analysis of the woman's urine failed to show any controlled substances or common pharmaceuticals.  Mohamud claims he and the girl were "a little tipsy" when they left a fraternity party and returned to his dorm room.

It would boggle our minds if we knew how many potential homegrown Muslim terrorists we have in America, such as Mohmud, for example.  America has allowed refugees from Somali to come to this great country with the onset of the Somali Civil War in 1991.  Tens of thousands of Somali refugees have emigrated to America since that time.  Now we have a teenage man of Somali descent that tried to blow up a car bomb at a Christmas tree lighting ceremony in Portland.  How many more potential homegrown Muslim terrorists are there waiting to commit an act of jihad for the sake of Islam?  I believe it's insane to allow refugees to come to America that espouse the Islamic religion.  There needs to be major changes in America's immigration policy concerning what nationalities we allow into our country.  Our government shouldn't allow refugees from the Middle East that are Muslim to emigrate to this country any more.  As a result of U.S. policies in allowing refugees from Somali, for example, there's a great possibility that America will become a breeding ground for terrorists.

Monday, November 29, 2010

Mary Did You Know?

Mary did you know that your baby boy would someday walk on water?
Mary did you know that your baby boy would save our sons and daughters?
Did you know that your baby boy has come to make you new?
This child that you have delivered, will soon deliver you.

Mary did you know that your baby boy would give sight to a blind man?
Mary did you know that your baby boy would calm a storm with his hand?
Did you know that your baby boy has walked where angels trod?
And when you kiss your little baby, you have kissed the face of God.

Oh Mary did you know-----

The blind will see, the deaf will hear, the dead will live again.
The lame will leap, the dumb will speak, the praises of the lamb---

Mary did your know that your baby boy is Lord of all creation?
Mary did you know that your baby boy would one day rule the nations?
Did you know that your baby boy is Heaven's perfect lamb?
This sleeping child you're holding is the great---I-----AM--.

Sunday, November 28, 2010

Jesus Was Born of a Virgin

(Matthew 1:18-25) "Now the birth of Jesus Christ was on this wise: When as his mother Mary was espoused to Joseph, before they came together, she was found with child of the Holy Ghost. Then Joseph her husband, being a just man, and not willing to make her a public example, was minded to put her away privily. But while he thought on these things, behold, the angel of the Lord appeared unto him in a dream, saying, Joseph, thou son of David, fear not to take unto thee Mary thy wife: for that whicdh is conceived in her is of the Holy Ghost. And she shall bring forth a son, and thou shalt call his name JESUS: for he shall save his people from their sins. Now all this was done, that it might be fulfilled which was spoken of the Lord by the prophet saying,

"Behold a virgin shall be with child, and shall bring forth a son, and they shall call his name Immanuel, which being interpreted is, God with us. Then Joseph being raised from sleep did as the angel of the Lord had bidden him, and took unto him his wife: And knew her not till she had brought forth her firstborn son: and he called his name JESUS."

One of the grave injustices many of the modern translations commit is to substitute the word "young woman" in place of the word "virgin". That changes the entire meaning of the birth of Jesus. Why is that so? Simply because not all young women are virgins. In today's society there are 12 and 13 year olds that aren't virgins. The King James had it right when it said that Jesus was born of a virgin. Some of these modern translations such as the NIV will substitute "young woman" with virgin. That could cast into dispute whether or not Mary was a virgin when she conceived the Christ child. The King James is explicit in its language. It doesn't use ambiguous language. As something as serious as the virgin birth of Christ, the King James Bible wouldn't use the phrase "young woman" in place of "virgin". It would be crystal clear in its usage of language. Something as profound as the virgin birth it would definitely use the proper word virgin to signify that Mary was indeed a virgin when she conceived Jesus. She knew no man before she was impregnated. That's something in itself that is an impossibility according to the laws of nature. There's no woman that's living in this world that could become pregnant without the aid of a man or without his sperm. A man must be involved when it comes to a pregnancy. A pregnancy without a man involved is against the laws of reproductive nature.

However, when we read about the account of Mary being impregnated, we read about an incident that has never taken place before in the history of mankind nor has since. Mary became pregnant without the aid of a man. On top of that she was still a virgin. That's two contradictory terms. No woman could become pregnant without the aid of a man as well as no pregnant woman could be a virgin. A woman that's a virgin is a woman that's never entered into any kind of sexual relationship with a man. Once a couple are joined together and become one, they aren't considered "virgins". However, in the case of Mary we see two contradictory things that were a reality in her situation. Mary was a virgin and was pregnant with the Christ child. Also, Mary had known no man. Even after Mary and Joseph wed the Bible says that Joseph knew her not until she had brought forth her firstborn son. When Joseph knew that she was pregnant, he being a just man was going to put her away privily and not make her a "public example." However the angel of the Lord appeared unto Joseph and told him that it was no problem for him to wed Mary because the child that's in Mary was conceived of the Holy Ghost.

Who had ever heard of a woman being impregnated of the Holy Ghost? You can imagine what some of those in Jerusalem may have thought if they were to learn of Mary's pregnancy. Some probably would've said, "It's impossible, how can a woman become pregnant without a man?" However, God's ways aren't man's ways. This was a supernatural type of birth. It was called the "Immaculate Conception." This was a birth that was foretold throughout the last four thousand years. God had promised Eve as far back as the Garden of Eden that "and I will put enmity between thee and the woman, and between thy seed and her seed; it shall bruise thy head, and thou shalt bruise his heel." (Genesis 3:15) God told Eve that after she and Adam partook of that forbidden fruit in the Garden of Eden. Since that time many women in the Old Testament had desired to conceive a child in hopes that they would be the ones to give birth to the Christ child. The birth of Christ was a major event that was to change the landscape of the world. Never before would the world be the same again once Jesus entered into this world.

Why did Jesus have to be born through the Holy Ghost? Why couldn't he have been born through Joseph? Jesus is the Lamb of God. He was God and is God. He was part of the Godhead prior to the creation of the world. There are some that teach that Jesus didn't ever exist until he was born into this world. However, scripture verifies Jesus existed with the Godhead. He always was. Jesus came into this world as God incarnate: all man and all God. That's another human impossibility. Jesus would never have been born into this world as all God and all man had he been born through Joseph. Jesus couldn't have been born through mortal man and have been sinless. He would've been a sinner like the rest of us if he was born through Joseph. You read in Psalms where David said that in "sin did my mother conceive me." David was born through a human father named Jesse. All humans that are born through natual birth are born in sin. The seed of sin passes down from man to man from generation to generation. That's why the Bible says that babies are born speaking lies. They were tainted with the seed of sin. God the Father had a purpose for Jesus to be born into this world. Jesus was born to die on a rugged cross called Calvary to save man from the ravages of sin.

Jesus could never fulfill his purpose to die on a wooden cross for the sins of man if he was born through natural means. God knew this from the beginning and it was planned that Jesus be born of a virgin. That's the only way Jesus could be born without sin. The seed of sin is passed down from the male; not the female. Jesus couldn't be God incarnate unless he was born through the Holy Ghost. Not only was he born without sin but he maintained his integrity and sinned not throughout his 33 years that he lived on earth. Even when he was tempted of the Devil in the wilderness, he didn't cave into sin. He resisted Satan through scripture. He was obedient even unto death. Even when Jesus was sweating great drops of blood knowing he would have to drink of that bitter cup, he still sinned not. He was still obedient unto the father. He was obedient unto the end. And it's because of his obedience that we can celebrate the birth of Jesus and enjoy Christmas. If Jesus could've sinned and had sinned at any time while living on this earth, we wouldn't know what it would mean to enjoy the free pardon of sin. We couldn't come together and spend time with our families remembering the account of Jesus birth. If Jesus hadn't died on the cross for the sins of man, we would be all the most miserable. I'm thankful that Jesus was born of a virgin and that he died for the sins of man. One of the cardinal doctrines of the Bible is the virgin birth. Without the virgin birth, there would have been no spotless lamb to offer upon Calvary's cross. Jesus couldn't die for the sins of man himself had he been tainted with sin. Tampering with the virgin birth is heresy. We wouldn't know what it means to be saved today if it weren't for the virgin birth.

(This is a repeat of a post written last year on December 20,2009).

Saturday, November 27, 2010

South Korea Attacked: Yeonpyeong Island Shelled by North Korea

(Huffington Post) North and South Korea exchanged artillery fire Tuesday November 23, 2010 after the North shelled an island near their disputed sea border, killing at least two South Korean marines, setting dozens of buildings ablaze and sending civilians fleeing for shelter.  The clash, which placed South Korea's military on high alert, was one of the rivals' most dramatic confrontations since the Korean War ended, and one of the few to put civilians at risk, though no nonmilitary deaths were immediately reported.  Sixteen South Korean soldiers and three civilians were injured and the extent of casualties on the northern side was unknown.  The skirmish began when Pyongyang warned the South to halt military drills in the area, according to South Korean officials.  When Seoul refused and began firing artillery into disputed waters, albeit away from the North Korean shore, the North retaliated by bombarding the small island of Yeonpyeong, which houses South Korean military installations and a small civilian population.

South Korea responded by firing K-9 155 mm self-propelled howitzers and dispatching fighter jets.  Officials in Seoul said there could be considerable North Korean casualties.  The entire skirmish lasted about an hour.  Each side has threatened the other against another attack.  South Korean President Lee Myung-bak, who convened an emergency security meeting shortly after the initial bombardment, said that an "indiscriminate attack on civilians can never be tolerated.  "Enormous retaliation should be made to the extent that (North Korea) cannot make provocations again," he said.  Meanwhile, the supreme military command in Pyongyang threatened more strikes if the South crossed their maritime border by "even .001 milimeter," according to the North's official Korean Central News Agency. 

A statement from the North said it was merely "reacting to the military provocation of the puppet group with a prompt powerful physical strike," and accused Seoul of starting the skirmish with its "reckless military provocation as firing dozens of shells inside the territorial waters of the North."  Government officials in Seoul called the bombardments "inhumane atrocities" that violated the 1953 armistice halting the Korean War.  The two sides technically remain at war because a peace treaty was never signed, and nearly 2 million troops--including tens of thousands from the U.S.--are positioned on both sides the world's most heavily militarized border.  The exchange represents a sharp escalation of the skirmishes that flare up along the disputed border from time to time.  It also comes amid high tensions over the north's apparent progress in its quest for nuclear weapons--Pyongyang claims it has a new uranium enrichment facility--and six weeks after North Korean leader Jim Jong II anointed his youngest son, King Jong Un, as the heir apparent.  "It brings us one step closer to the brink of war," said Peter Beck, a research fellow with the Council on Foreign Relations, "because I don't think the North would seek war by intention, but war by accident, something spiraling out of control has always been my fear." 

Columns of thick black smoke could be seen rising from homes on the island, footage aired by YTN cable television showed.  Screams and shouts filled the air as shells rained down on the island just south of the disputed sea border.  Yeonpyeong lies a mere seven miles (11 kilometers) from -- and within sight of -- the North Korean mainland.  The United States, which has more than 28,000 troops stationed in South Korea, condemned the attack in Washington, White House Press Secretary Robert Gibbs called on North Korea to "halt its belligerent action," and said the U.S. is committed to South Korea's defense. 

China, the North's economic and political benefactor, which also maintains close commercial ties to the South, appealed to both sides to remain calm and "to do more to contribute to peace and stability on the peninsula," Foreign Ministry Spokesman Hong Lei said.  Stephen Bosworth, the Obama administration's special envoy to North Korea, said he discussed the clash with the Chinese foreign minister and that they agreed both sides should show restraint.  He reiterated that the U.S. stands firmly with its ally, South Korea. 

Yeonpyeong, famous for its crabbing industry and home to about 1700 civilians as well as South Korean military installations.  There are about 30 other small islands nearby.  North Korea fired dozens of rounds of artillery in three separate barrages that began in the mid-afternoon, while South Korea returned fire with about 80 rounds, South Korea's Joint Chiefs of Staff said. 

The Korean War between North and South Korea ended in a truce in 1953.  However, North Korea doesn't recognize the western maritime border drawn unilaterally by the United Nations at the close of the conflict, and the Koreas have fought three bloody skirmishes there in recent years.  South Korea holds military exercises off the west coast like Tuesday's about every three months.  In March, a South Korean warship went down in the waters while on a routine patrolling mission.  Forty-six sailors were killed in what South Korea calls the worst military attack on the country since the war.

Admiral Mike Mullen, Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, stated the attacks may be tied to the leadership succession, in which Kim Jong Il is going to hand over the reins of power to his son.  Mullen said in an interview that Kim is generating these kinds of high profile and dangerous confrontations to coincide with the ascension of his son to power.  A senior U.S. Military official told Fox News that the attack was "nevertheless unprovoked".  The Obama administration is looking to China to restrain North Korea from further provocative acts.  Kim Jong Il and his Communist regime should have been dealt with during the George W. Bush administration.  Instead Bush just played patty cake with Jong Il.  North Korea was named along with Iraq and Iran as the three countries that constituted the "axis of evil" during the Bush administration.  Consequently, Bush never put Kim Jong Il in his place and President Obama isn't handling this situation much differently. President Obama needs to place Kim Jong Il on notice and tell him that if he (Kim Jong) decides to fire at South Korea again, then he's going to regret doing so because the U.S. will give South Korea nuclear weapons to fire at North Korea, if North Korea launches another attack.  Instead our elected elites are wimps and won't stand up to North Korea. 

Tom DeLay Convicted of Money Laundering

Oct. 26, 2010: Former House Majority Leader Tom Delay answers media questions during a break in jury selection for his money laundering and conspiracy trial.

(Fox News) Former U.S. House Majority Leader Tom DeLay, who was at one time one of the most powerful and feared Republicans in Congress, was convicted Wednesday on charges he illegally funneled corporate money to Texas candidates in 2002, which could send him to prison possibily for decades.  Jurors deliberated for 19 hours before returning guilty verdicts on charges of money laundering and conspiracy to commit money laundering in a scheme to illegally funnel corporate money to Texas candidates in 2002.  He faces up to life in prison on the money laundering charge, although prosecutors haven't yet recommended a sentence. 

After the verdicts were read, DeLay hugged his daughter Danielle, and his wife, Christine.  DeLay whispered into his daughter's ear that he couldn't get a fair trial in Austin.  DeLay tried to have the trial moved away from Austin since it's one of the most liberal cities in one of the most Republican states.  DeLay's lead attorney, Dick DeGuerin, said they planned to appeal the verdict.  "This is an abuse of power.  It's a miscarriage of justice, and I still maintain that I am innocent.  The criminalization of politics undermines our very system and I'm very disappointed in the outcome," DeLay told reporters outside the courtroom.  He remains free on bond, and several witnesses were expected to be called during the punishment phase of his trial, tentatively scheduled to begin on December 20.

Prosecutors said DeLay, who once held the No. 2 post in the House of Representatives and whose tough tactics earned him the nickname "the Hammer", used his political action committee to illegally channel $190,000 in corporate donations into 2002 Texas legislative races through a money swap.  DeLay and his attorneys maintained the former Houston-area congressman did nothing wrong as no corporate funds went to Texas candidates and the money swap was legal.  The verdict came after a three-week trial in which prosecutors presented more than 30 witnesses and volumes of emails and other documents.  DeLay's attorneys presented five witnesses.  Travis County District Attorney Rosemary Lehmberg said prosecutors will decide in the next few weeks what sentence they will recommend in the case to Senior Judge Pat Priest.  DeLay chose Priest to sentence him rather than the jury.  He faces five years to life in prison on the money laundering charge and two to 20 years on the conspiracy charge.  He would also be eligible for probation.

Prosecutors say DeLay conspired with two associates, John Colyandro and Jim Ellis, to use his Texas-based PAC to send $190,000 in corporate money to an arm of the Washington-based Republican National Committee, or RNC.  The RNC then sent the same amount to seven Texas House candidates.  Under Texas law, corporate money can't do directly to political campaigns.  Prosecutors claim the money helped Republicans take control of the Texas House.  That enabled the GOP majority to push through a DeLay-engineered congressional redistricting plan that sent more Texas Republicans to Congress in 2004--and strengthened DeLay's political power.  DeLay's attorneys argued the money swap resulted in the seven candidates getting donations from individuals, which they could use legally in Texas.  They stated that DeLay only lent his name to the PAC and had little involvement in how it was run.  Prosecutors, who presented mostly circumstantial evidence, didn't prove he committed a crime, they said. 

DeLay contended the charges against him were a political vendetta by Ronnie Earle, the former Democratic Travis County district attorney who originally brought the case and now is retired.  Lehmberg, who replaced Earle, claims this trial wasn't about criminalizing politics.  She claims it's about holding public officials accountable and that no one is above the law and all persons have to abide by the law, no mattter how lofty of a position they hold. 

The 2005 criminal charges in Texas, as well as a separate federal investigation of DeLay's ties to disgraced former lobbyist Jack Abramoff, ended his 22-year political career representing suburban Houston.  The Justice Department probe into DeLay's ties to Abramoff ended without any charges filed against DeLay.  Ellis and Colyandro, who face lesser charges, will be tried later.

Friday, November 26, 2010

Tis the Season

"Tis the Season to Be Jolly, Fa La La La La La La La la!"  It's that time of year once again.  The Christmas season is now in full swing!  After a day filled with turkey, dressing, ham, and all the trimmings, millions of shoppers will be shopping today, which is classifed as Black Friday in the business world.  Retail stores and shopping malls will be jammed with shoppers purchasing Christmas gifts at bargain rates.  It's a very busy time.  I, for one, don't participate in the early morning shopping spree the day after Thanksgiving.  It's not worth it. 

Christmas is one of my favorite holidays of the year.  For one thing I like the Christmas tree and all the various Christmas lights and decorations you see displayed before the public.  I love to decorate for Christmas.  I also love the opportunity to reflect on the real meaning of Christmas, which is God the Father sending His son to be born of a virgin to die for the sins of the world. Jesus was born in humble surroundings in a lowly manger.  He didn't enjoy the comforts that we enjoy today as Americans.  Yet he left the splendor of Heaven to come into this old sinful world to become a mortal man.  He was God incarnate.  He was perfect and sinless.  He fulfilled His father's will on earth.  He fulfilled the law of God, which is something man wasn't able to do in their sinful state.  Jesus was obedient unto death.  Thank God!  It was because of what Jesus did on Calvary why we can celebrate Christmas.  I remember years ago the late Dr. D. James Kennedy of Coral Ridge Presbyterian Church in Fort Lauderdale, Florida, co-authored a book entitled, "What if Jesus Had Never Been Born?".  Just imagine life without the Savior coming to this earth and dying for the sins of man.  What a mess mankind would be in.  Man would spend eternity in the Lake of fire.  Also, the world would never have the opportunity to experience the grace of God.  Man could never know what it means to have their sins forgiven and experience God's peace. 

As usual there will be all kinds of Christmas activities cranking up such as Christmas parades, cantatas, musicals, gift-giving, the Messiah musical, and the list continues.  Third Baptist Church in Owensboro has been performing the Messiah since December 7, 1941, when the Pearl Harbor attack took place.  Ever since that time, the musical has been performed on or close to December 7.  The Messiah will be performed at Third Baptist Church this year on Sunday December 5, 2010. 

As usual, I will be featuring Christmas posts between now and Christmas this December, the same as last year.  One thing I will also be doing this year is repeating a few Christmas posts written last year.  "Jesus Was Born of a Virgin", which was originally posted on December 20, 2009, will be re-posted on November 28, 2010.  There are a couple of other Christmas posts I'll repeat this Christmas season.  As usual, I'll be featuring Christmas songs and I'll be writing posts entitled, Christmas Traditions, just like last year.  I'll mention about the different Christmas traditions that have been passed down from generations past.  I'll also continue writing posts about the history of Christmas as well.  I'm eagerly looking forward to the Christmas holidays.  Let's celebrate this special occasion with joy in our hearts and thanks to the Savior for His coming to this earth to be born of a virgin so that one day He would die for the sins of man.

Thursday, November 25, 2010

Happy Thanksgiving!

I want to take the time to wish all Americans a very Happy Thanksgiving today.  The Lord is very good.  Many Americans will be traveling to visit with their families and stuff themselves with turkey, dressing, ham, mashed potatoes and gravy, dinner rolls, and pumpkin pie, etc.  Thanksgiving is known for Thanksgiving parades such as the Macy's Thanksgiving Day Parade, which first began around 1924.  It ties America's Thanksgiving Parde in Detroit for the second oldest Thanksgiving Day Parade in America.  The oldest Thanksgiving Day parade in America is in Philadelphia.  Also, the NFL's Thanksgiving Classic, which predates the formation of the league itself, hosts three football games every Thanksgiving Day.  Both the Dallas Cowboys and the Detroit Lions host football games on Thanksgiving Day.

The event in which Americans commonly refer to as the first Thanksgiving was celebrated in 1621 in Plymouth, Massachusetts by the Pilgrims and the Native Americans.  The Pilgrims celebrated that day to commemorate surviving the first harsh winter in New England.  They set aside that day to thank God for his goodness upon them.  The first Thanksgiving feast lasted three days consisting of fish, shellfish, wild fowl, dried Indian maize, corn, squash, venison, berries, peas, and pumpkins, to name a few.  They didn't have turkey for their first Thanksgiving, but they did have a feast.  And they displayed their thanks to the Lord.  There have also been days set aside to celebrate Thanksgiving since that time.  It wasn't until 1863 that President Abraham Lincoln proclaimed the fourth Thursday as the time set aside to celebrate Thanksgiving annually.  It wasn't until December 26, 1941 that Thanksgiving was made a federal holiday when president Franklin Delano Roosevelt signed the law mandating the fourth Thursday of every November as the day to celebrate Thanksgiving.  Americans have been celebrating Thanksgiving on the fourth Thursday ever since that time.  Consequently, Americans have forgotten the historical significance behind the celebration of Thanksgiving.  With our nation becoming rapidly secularized since 1962, Thanksgiving today is known as simply a day of feasting with family and friends.  Many public schools today don't even celebrate Thanksgiving. Thanksgiving has become a marginalized holiday in our schools and our society.  We forget about the Pilgrims that gave thanks to God for His goodness and for protecting them from a harsh winter.  Some refer to Thanksgiving as "Turkey Day", which is tragic.

I want to encourage Americans to set aside some time to thank the Lord for his bountiful blessings tomorrow.  As I've said in recent posts, America has enjoyed unprecedented prosperity since the end of World War II.  America has manufactured all kinds of goods and gadgets like never before in our nation's history.  We've also become a very spoiled nation with the generations ranging from the Baby Boom generation down to the youngest generation today.  We possess so many modern conveniences today, which were unheard of many years ago.  I'm very thankful for all the conveniences of life.  I'm thankful for the technological innovations that have been made in the last 50 years.  Sadly, we've become a very ungrateful generation.  We've taken much for granted.  We're a generation that whines and complains about anything and everything.  We probably complain more today than generations past, and we possess more material goods than generations past.  We've forgotten the Creator.  We've forgotten the God of Heaven who created us and loves us.  We've forgotten what the meaning and purpose of life is.  Ecclesiastes 12:3 says that we are to fear God and keep his commandments: for this is the whole duty of man.  Life is about serving the Lord.  We're so wrapped up in all the materialism and commercialism that takes places in our society.  We've forgotten what the meaning and purpose of life is.  The purpose of life is to serve the Lord and follow Him. 

For the last few years, I've been seeing the signs that America is headed for some dangerous times.  There are many Americans struggling economically as I speak.  I'm afraid it's going to get worse.  One of these days the dollar will take a tumble as a currency and become worthless.  I'm afraid there are many people that are going to regret taking life for granted.  I know I've taken life for granted many times.  I want to encourage all Americans to give thanks to God tomorrow for his goodness in our life.  He's blessed this country abundantly.  We need to learn how to be thankful while we have it good.  I want to learn to appreciate life while I have it good.  I don't want to wait until the bottom collapses to realize that I should've been more thankful.  The Lord is Good.  Happy Thanksgiving!

Wednesday, November 24, 2010

Expressing Thanks

Psalms 100:4 "Enter into his gates with Thanksgiving and his courts with praise: be thankful unto him, and bless his name."  God is so good to us.  We have so much to be thankful for.  We are to bless his holy name.  Thanksgiving is the day in which we give thanks and praise to God for his goodness in our lives.  We should thank him for who He is, for what He's done in our lives as far as being saved, and the bountiful blessings that he's bestowed upon us.  We have so much to be thankful for.  Tomorrow will be Thanksgiving Day.  We'll be headed to our families' houses to participate in a great feast which will consist of turkey, dressing, ham, cranberry sauce, dinner rolls, green beans, corn, and pumpkin pie, etc.  We will be feasting until we are stuffed.  Many people will be watching NFL football on television, which has been a Thanksgiving pastime for years.  There will also be Thanksgiving parades taking place such as the Macy's Thanksgiving Day Parade in New York City.  Americans will be spending their time with their friends and family. 

While we participate in all the celebrations that accompany Thanksgiving tomorrow, let's remember to give thanks unto the Lord for his bountiful blessings upon our lives.  We should express our thanks and adoration towards the Lord for being good to us.  We are so blessed.  Words can't even describe how blessed we are as a nation.  There are so many areas in which we are to express our thanks to the Lord.  What are some of the things in which we should give thanks unto the Lord?  There are numerous things we should thank the Lord for.  First of all, we should thank him for who He is.  We should thank him that He's a God that never changes; He always remains the same.  Secondly,  we should thank him for saving us from sin.  We should thank him for salvation.  Thirdly, we should thank him for the church.  Hebrews 10:25 tells us not to forskake the assembling of ourselves when it comes to the House of God.  Where would we be without the church?  We are to thank him for the brethren--those we can fellowship with.  We're also are to thank God for good health, our jobs, our own immediate family, and the opportunity to live each day.   We should also thank God for America and those that gave their lives on the battlefield so we can enjoy the freedoms we possess today.  We should thank him for all the bountiful blessings He's given us.  We have so much in which we can express our thanks toward him.  We could spend eternity praising him.  The things we are to praise him for are too innumerable.  He is good!  Praise the Lord!

The First Thanksgiving

There have been some disputes by many historians concerning whether or not the Thanksgiving feast at Plymouth actually constituted the first Thanksgiving in the United States.  Historians have recorded other ceremonies of thanks among Europeans settlers in North America that predate the Pilgrims' celebration.  In 1565, for example, the Spanish explorer Pedro Menendez de Avile invited members of the local Timucua tribe to a dinner in St. Augustine, Florida, after holding a mass to thank God for his crew's safe arrival.  On December 4, 1619, when 38 British settlers reached a site known as Berkeley Hundred on the banks of Virginia's James River, they all read a proclamation designating the date as "a day of Thanksgiving to Almighty God."

On this Thanksgiving Day many Americans will be traveling to nice, warm homes of their friends and loves ones to participate in a very nice Thanksgiving feast.  The menu will consist of turkey, dressing, ham, cranberry sauce, mashed potatoes, corn, green beans, dinner rolls, and pumpkin pie, to name a few items.  People will feast until they are stuffed.  Then once they finish their traditional Thanksgiving meal, some will sit back and watch NFL Football on television, which has become a Thanksgiving tradition for decades.   There will also be Thanksgiving Day parades that will take place today such as the Macy's Thanksgiving Day Parade which began in 1924.  Thanksgiving Day has become a day of feasting.  The tragic part is we forget to thank God for his bountiful blessings on this earth.  We've forgotten what Thanksgiving is all about.  We're a very spoiled people in this generation.  Our early forefathers didn't enjoy the nice warm homes and the conveniences of life we enjoy today.

Today we'll be focus on the feast the Pilgrims had with the Native Americans in what is traditionally  considered the first Thanksgiving meal in the New World.  The menu for their first Thanksgiving meal probably didn't include turkey.  However, they were thankful and they gave thanks to God for protecting them from a brutal winter.  The Pilgrims that sailed to the New World didn't come to an America that possessed the conveniences of life like we enjoy today. They didn't sail to an America which possessed nice homes, vehicles, an abundance of food, material wealth, electronic gadgets, etc.  America was a wilderness land in 1620 when they arrived on the Mayflower Compact.  America was an undeveloped land.  They had to labor for everything they had.  We can learn a lesson from this time in history.  Let's take a stroll down memory lane to learn about this famous Thanksgiving meal.

According to History.com, which is the source where the information is coming from, a small ship called the Mayflower in September 1620 left Plymouth, England and set sail for the New World.  The Mayflower carried 102 passengers--an assortment of religious separatists seeking a new home where they could freely practice their faith and other individuals who were lured by the promise of prosperity and land ownership in the New World.  After a treacherous crossing that lasted 66 days, they dropped anchor near the tip of Cape Cod, far north of their intended destination at the mouth of the Hudson River.  One month later, the Mayflower crossed Massachusetts Bay, where the Pilgrims, began the work of establishing a village at Plymouth.

Throughout the first brutal winter, the colonists remained on board the ship, where they suffered from scurvy and outbreaks of contagious disease.  Only half the Mayflower's original passengers and crew lived to see their first New England Spring.  This goes to show the price the Pilgrims were willing to pay for the taste of freedom.  Freedom was precious to them and they were willing to sacrifice for it.  Today's generation of Americans treat freedom as cheap goods willing to sell it for a false sense of security.  In March 1621, the remaining settlers moved ashore, where they received an astonishing visit from an Abenaki Indian who greeted them in English.  Several days later, he returned with another Native American, Squanto, a member of the Pawtuxet tribe who had been kidnapped by an English sea captain and sold into slavery before escaping to London and returning to his homeland on an exploratory expedition.  According to History.com Squanto taught the Pilgrims, weakened by malnutrition and illness, how to cultivate corn, extract sap from maple trees, catch fish in the rivers and avoid poisonous plants.  He also helped the settlers forge an alliance with the Wampanoag, a local tribe, which would endure for more than 50 years and tragically remains one of the sole examples of harmony between European colonists and Native Americans.

In November 1621, after the Pilgrims' first corn harvest proved successful, Governor William Bradford organized a celebratory feast and invited a group of the fledgling colony's Native American allies, including the Wampanoag chief Massasoit.  This is classified as the "first Thanksgiving".  The festival lasted for three days.  While no record exists of the historic banquet's precise menu, the Pilgrim chronicler Edward Winslow wrote in his journal that Governor Bradford sent four men on a "fowling" mission in preparation for the event, and that the Wampanoag guests arrived bearing five deer.  Historians have suggested that many of the dishes were likely prepared using traditional Native American spices and cooking methods.  Because the Pilgrims had no oven and the Mayflower's sugar supply had dwindled by the fall of 1621, the meal didn't feature pies, cakes, or other desserts, which have become a tradition in contemporary Thanksgiving celebrations in America.

Tuesday, November 23, 2010

God's Vote is For Life

Pete and Alisha Arnold

(LifeNews.com)  In the latest news from LifeNews.com, Pete Arnold, the husband behind the website BirthOrNot, admitted that the website he created sometime back asking the question whether or not the couple should seek an abortion for their 17-week old unborn baby was just a hoax.  Pete and Alisha Arnold put up the website claiming they were conflicted over whether or not to abort their 17-week old unborn baby or to keep it.  He said they didn't have any intentions of having an abortion.  Pete also admitted what bloggers of both sides were saying and that he bought the BirthOrNot.com web domain four months ago--before Alisha was pregnant.  He claimed they put up this website to engage people on the subject of abortion because many people feel it's an issue that doesn't affect them personally.  Pro-life nurse and blogger Jill Stanek believed this website was a hoax.  She said she could see "scam" written all over it.  She said her reaction to seeing that website was they were trying to "punk pro-lifers."  Many who claim to be pro-choice thought it was an attack against them, esp. with the ultrasound pictures the couple displayed on the website. 

Prior to their admitting that this website was a hoax, of the 44,000 voters who cast their vote last Thursday, 80% said to keep the baby on the website.  However, in the last few days it swung the opposite direction, esp. in a 30-hour period.  On Monday with 959,000 votes in, 70% voted that she should terminate the pregnancy.  Pete said that Alisha is pro-choice, but they weren't about to consider an abortion.  They wanted people to think about this issue, which many people don't like discussing.

That was a very pathetic trick they pulled on the website.  First of all, God has already voted on the issue of life before he created man.  God always chooses life.  God is the one who gives like and takes it away.  God is never in favor of murdering an unborn baby in the womb.  Second of all, the internet shouldn't be used for foolishness such as casting a vote on whether a couple should obtain an abortion.  The issue about what should be the role of the internet is for another post which I will write sometime soon.  I will say very briefly we've allowed things to go on the internet that have no business being on there.  The internet is increasingly being used more and more as a social networking tool with the advent of MySpace in 2003 and Facebook in 2004.  Many Facebook and MySpace users utilize it to share very personal and private things on it.  Many people will air their dirty laundry on it--even many who claim to be born again and love the Lord.  There's a lot of foolishness that's taken place as a result of these social networking tools.  When you advertise your dirty laundry or your private life, you are being put on display before the whole world to view.  Anything that you place on these social networking tools will always be on there--even if you attempt to erase what you've place on there.  You can get hooked with the wrong kind of company on these social networking tools.  There are many predators on the internet.  I will elaborate more about this on another post.  I will say that I believe the internet should be used for the proclamation of the gospel of Jesus Christ, news, good songs, and information that's beneficial to the public at large. 

Even though the couple admitted that this BirthOrNot.com website was a hoax, that was in very poor taste to say it mildly.  I believe it's wicked to put for a vote before the general internet audience on whether or not a couple should keep a baby that's in their womb.  First of all, abortion is murder.  God's already voted before the dawn of time that it's a sin to murder.  Secondly, you don't use the internet as a means to ask personal questions from internet users.  I'm like anyone else in life, I have decisions I have to make.  I will seek advice from only a select group of people from church. I don't broadcast any major decisions that I'm considering on the internet.  Those decisions that I consider is private and I don't advertise them before the world. 

This particular blog that was started in June 2009 wasn't created for the purpose of sharing personal and private information.  I share information that's newsworthy and information that will benefit the public-at-large.  I share general things on the internet ranging from Biblical topics to news.  I share things that are of public interest.  I do admit that I have written posts about individual people that I know personally that have made great achievements in certain areas of their lives.  However, I try to be cautious in what I share.  There are some things that have no business being advertised on the Net.  This issue was one of them.  There are other ways you can engage the public about the subject of abortion without being deceitful before the public.  There are some issues that are never to be placed on a website for a vote.  This is one of them!  When it comes to the issue of life--God's already cast his vote.  We aren't to vote on issues that God's clearly stated His position on.  Abortion is murder.  God's answer is LIFE!

Beck's Take on Soros: Dead On--Ellis Washington (World Net Daily)

(World Net Daily) This is an article from Ellis Washington of World Net Daily.  He was critiquing Beck's analysis of George Soros.  Washington said Beck was on target. 

Is is a sort of disease when you consider yourself some kind of god, the creator of everything, but I feel comfortable about it now since I began to live it out.  George Soros, June 3, 1993

Fox News host Glenn Beck has been doing a masterful job over the past few weeks in his series exposing the man that gave American President Barack Obama, the radical socialist billionaire George Soros. 

George Soros (born 1930), like many European Jews of his generation, had his life personally and indelibly affected by the horrors of Hitler, the Nazis, and the Holocaust.  Soros was 13 years old in March 1944 when Nazi Germany occupied Hungary.  Soros worked for the Jewish Council, which had been established durign the Nazi occupation of Hungary to forcibly carry out Nazi and Hungarian government anti-Jewish measures.

After World War II, Soros would further observe firsthand how post-war joblesness, hunger, fear, uncertainty led to riots and anarchy, leading to the establishment of communist dictatorships throughout Eastern Europe in the 1950's and '60's. 

Soros immigrated to England in 1947 and, as an impoverished student, attended the Fabian Socialist London School of Economics where he received a Bachelor of Science in Philosophy in 1952.  After working as a trader in New York in the '50's and '60's, in 1970 Soros founded Soros Fund Management with Jim Rogers and for the next 30 years made billions in the hedge fund market.  In 2000, the Quantum Group of Funds was reorganized, and the Quantum Endowment Fund was established.  The fund has assets of approximately $27 billion.

On September 16, 1992, Black Wednesday, Soros' Quantum fund sold short more than 10 billion worth of British pounds, profiting from the Bank of England's reluctance to raise its interest rates to levels comparable to those of other European Exchange Rate Mechanism, devaluing the pound sterling, earning Soros an estimated $1.1 billion.  He was dubbed "the man who broke the Bank of England."  Other nations that Soros purposely profited from by devaluing their currency include:  Russia, Thailand, Malaysia and currently America.  According to Beck, these are the five steps Soros uses to economically deconstruct nations while profiting from the effect:

Step 1: Form a shadow government using humanitarian aid as cover.  Remember, the symbol of Fabian Socialism is a "wolf in sheep's clothing."  Lies and deceit are their modus operandi.  Here are just a few of the Soros-created/funded cover groups:

*Open Society Institute (OSI)
*Tides Foundation
*Sojourners (Rev. Jim Wallis)
*Center for American Progress (CAP()
*Institute for Policy Studies (an adjunct of CAP)
*The Apollo Alliance
*Human Rights Watch
*La Raza

Step 2: Control the airwaves.  Fund existing radio, TV, media outlets and take control of them, or start your own outlets.  Soros has done both: Media Matters, National Public Radio, Faith in Public Life and Huffington Post ("Investigative Fund") are just a few of the Soros-OSI funded front groups.

Step 3: Destabilize the state, weaken the government and build an anti-government kind of feeling in the country.  You exploit an economic crisis or take advantage of an existing crisis--pressure from the top and the bottom.  This will allow you to weaken the government and build anti-government public sentiment.  Soros has done this through front groups like: People for the American Way, MoveOn.org and the Tides Foundation.  Tides also supports the Apollo Alliance, Color for Change (Van Jones), Service Employees International Union (Andy Stern's SEIU) and the charitable arm of the radical 1960's student anarchist group, Students for a Democratic Society, of which the Weather Underground is a spin-off group (i.e., Bill Ayers and Bernardine Dorhn, who launched Obama's political career).

Step 4: Provoke an election crisis.  And during the election, you cry voter fraud.  Remember Obama, Hillary, and Rahm Emanuel's mantra: "Never allow a good crisis to go to waste."  At the Shadow Party's "Take Back America" conference in Washington on June 3, 2004, following a glowing introduction from Hillary Clinton, Soros gave the decree: "Do something about the distortion of our electoral process by the excessive use of TV advertising." 

A few months later, two progressive politicians took up this cause, aggressively funded and lobbied by Soros, and eventually passed the McCain/Feingold Campaign Finance Reform law, which launched a new era of 501(c)(3) and 527 nonprofits.  In a revealing 2004 article by David Horowitz and Richard Poe, "Shadow Party: Part III," the authors wrote: "By pushing McCain-Feingold through Congress, Soros cut off the Democrats' soft-money supply.  By forming the Shadow Party, Soros offered the Democrats an alternate money spigot--one which he personally controlled."  That why Beck calls George Soros President Obama's puppet master.

Step 5: Take power.  You stage massive demonstrations, civil disobedience, sit-ins, general strike; you encourage radical activism.  You promote voter fraud and tell followers what to do through your radio and television stations.  OSI and Soros front groups like ACORN, SEIU (whose union membership program the voting machines), Color for Change (Van Jones) and the Ruckus Society, an environmental justice group known for their aggressive tactics, causes untold havoc in our election cycles every two years.

George Soros is a very evil man and has perfected the economic deconstruction of nations, which he learned firsthand as a child in Nazi-controlled Hungary and later throughout Communist-controlled Eastern Europe--except Soros needs no bullets for his revolution; he has a much more treacherous and inconspicuous weapon: money and propaganda.

Because George Soros is an atheist, he has no allusions about a heaven beyond the grave.  Therefore, like most socialists, progressives, Darwinists and atheists, he is trying to establish a utopian society here on earth--a one-world centralized government without borders, religion or culture, one currency, one language and one puppet master to pull the strings of the useful idiots in power...while controlling the world from beyond the shadows.

Monday, November 22, 2010

The 100th Anniversary of Southern Gospel Music (Part 2)

This is round two of several of the greatest hits in gospel music.  I hope you enjoyed the selection of songs in the last post.  These should be just as great. 

The Singing Rambos "He Looked Beyond My Fault and Saw My Need"

The Singing Rambos "The Holy Hills of Heaven Call Me"

The Singing Rambos "I Still Believe"

Dottie Rambo with the Imperials 1965 "I Must Tell Jesus"

Gaither Reunion "Sheltered in the Arms of God"

Lauren Talley and the Talley Trio "His Life for Mine"

The Sego Brothers and Naomi "Hallelujah Square"

The Sego Brothers and Naomi "Sorry, I Never Knew You"

The Sego Brothers and Naomi "A Beautiful Life"

The Blackwood Brothers "Learning to Lean"

The Florida Boys "When He was on the Cross, I was on His Mind"

The Florida Boys "I'm Standing on the Solid Rock"

The Floriday Boys "He is Mine and I am His"

The Florida Boys "I Have Returned"

The Florida Boys "Bible Loving Man"

The Florida Boys "Palms of Victory"

The Cathedrals "Wedding Music"

The Cathedrals "The Touch of the Master's Hand"

The Cathedrals "Nearer My God to Thee"

The Cathedrals "There's a New Name Written Down"

The Cathedrals "The Old Rugged Cross Made the Difference"

The Cathedrals "How Great Thou Art"

The Cathedrals "Rock of Ages" (from their first album in 1964)

The Cathedrals "Pearly White City" (from their first album in 1964)

The Cathedrals "Beyond the Sunset" (from their first album in 1964)

The Cathedrals "Sweet Hour of Prayer" (from their first album in 1964)

The Cathedrals "Whispering Hope" (from their first album in 1964)

The Cathedrals "Amazing Grace" (from their first album in 1964)

The Cathedrals "Abide With Me" (from their first album in 1964)

The Cathedrals "An Old Convention Song"

The Cathedrals "Room at the Cross"

The Cathedrals "We are so Blessed"

The Cathedrals "Standing on Holy Ground"

The Cathedrals "Then Came the Morning'

The Cathedrals "Boundless Love"

The Cathedrals "What a Meeting"

The Happy Goodmans "Living in Canaan Now"

Vestel Goodman "I'd Do it all Over Again"

Howard and Vestel Goodman "I Hold a Clear Title"

The Happy Goodmans "There's a Light Guiding Me"

The Happy Goodmans "I Shall be at Home With Jesus"

The Happy Goodmans "It's a Wonderful Feeling"

The Cathedrals "Canaanland is Just in Sight"

The Happy Goodmans "Jesus Said it, I Believe It"

The Speers (featuring Ben Speer) "In the Midst of it All"

The Cathedrals "The Longer I Serve Him"

The Gaither Trio "The Old Rugged Cross Made the Difference"

The Inspirations "It's Still the Blood"

The Inspirations "My Anchor Still Holds"

The Inspirations "On the Sunny Banks"

The Inspirations "I Have not Forgotten"

George Beverly Shea "I'd Rather Have Jesus"

The Cathedrals "The Prodigal Son"

The Youth Chorale Central Minnesota "Children, Go Where I Send Thee" (Negro spiritual)

The Cathedrals "Let Freedom Ring"

Sunday, November 21, 2010

The Meaning of Thanksgiving

(Philippians 4:11) "Not that I speak in respect of want: for I have learned, in whatsoever state I am, therewith to be content." 

In a few days we'll be celebrating Thanksgiving once again.  Sad to say, we as Americans have forgotten what the holiday and meaning of Thanksgiving is all about.  We hardly celebrate Thanksgiving today as a religious holiday.  Many public schools don't celebrate Thanksgiving.  Our society has become so secularized that we refer to the fourth Thursday in November as "Turkey Day", which is a sad indictment upon our society.  Our school systems and our government have removed the religious aspects of Thanksgiving and as a result, it's just another holiday where families gather together to eat turkey, dressing, cranberries, and sit back and watch NFL football.  Even though I don't have an issue with feasting and families enjoying themselves, we need to remember the roots of Thanksgiving.  The first Thanksgiving was celebrated in 1621 when the Wampanoag Indians and the Plymouth colonists shared a harvest feast commemorating the blessings of God on their life.  The Native Americans taught the Pilgrims how to survive in the New World.  When the Pilgrims came to the New World via the Mayflower Compact, they didn't come to America possessing all the luxuries that we possess today.  Some of the Pilgrims died on their journey to America.  America was a wilderness.  It took generations upon generations to build the America we know today.  They didn't come to America that had nice houses or motels or had restaurants in which they can eat.  They had to domesticate the land.  They had to learn how to build a place of shelter, grow their own crops, and hunt animals.  Many in our generation can't begin to understand the life they had to live.  It's archaic in today's standards.

Ever since the end of World War II, America has enjoyed unprecedented prosperity as never witnessed before in this nation.  As a result, we've raised generations ranging from the Baby Boomers all the way down to the youngest generation today who don't know what it means to travail and work like the World War II generation and before.  Many in the World War II generation lived in rural areas and they had to learn to work.  They didn't enjoy the luxuries like the younger generations know of today.  We've become a spoiled and unthankful generation.  We need a revival of the spirit of thanksgiving that was prevalent in generations past.  We need to recognize that all good gifts come from God.  What does Thanksgiving mean?  Thanksgiving means an act of giving thanks, an expression of gratitude, esp. to God.  The latter definition is a holiday which is set aside every fourth Thursday in November.  If you divide Thanksgiving into two words "thanks" and "giving" then you have two self-explanatory definitions.  Thanks means to express gratitutde to God for his goodness.  Giving means that as a result of being thankful, you give of yourself, your treasure, and your time, for example.  I know there are people that give that do so begrudgingly, but I'm not sure that you can be truly thankful and giving doesn't result from it.  If we recognize how good God is to us, it should motivate us to want to give and contribute.  We lack a giving spirit simply because we aren't very thankful in this society.

Philippians 2:14 says that we should do all things without murmurings and disputings.  How many people do you find in this generation that does all things without complaining?  You don't find that very often.  I believe it's because we lack a spirit of thankfulness in our lives.  What does it mean to be thankful?  Philippians 4:11 states that as the Apostle Paul noted that he's learned that whatsoever state he's in therewith to be content.  A thankful person is contented.  Thankful people aren't dissatisfied people.  They aren't seeking after bigger and better houses, cars, and riches.  They're thankful for the bounty the Lord has allowed them to have.  That doesn't mean that thankful people can't be rich nor own great possessions.  However, if those possessions own us, then that's a totally different story.  We're to be contented with what we have.  Don't confuse contentment with a Christian's spiritual walk or somebody who owns a business that would like to see it grow and progress.  It's appropriate to desire progression in whatever field you're laboring in or in a Christian's walk with the Lord.  But I'm speaking of the things we own or the situations we may find ourselves in our lives.  When we're content, we're content regardless whether times or good and bad.  It's easy to be content when times are good, but we fall short of being thankful when we're going through trials in life.  But when we realize that Jesus is all we need in life, then we can learn to be content.  It's how important God is in our lives.  If God is everything to us, then we'll be content. 

Thanksgiving is a time to set aside some time giving thanks unto the Lord for his goodness in our life.  Not only are we to be thankful for his bountiful blessings in our lives, but we're to be thankful for who God is.  We're to be thankful to God that he created us.  God created us because He wants us to commune with Him.  God is worthy to be worshipped.  God is holy.  He alone is enough of a reason why we should always have a spirit of thanksgiving in our hearts.  Then secondly, we should be thankful for God's provision in our lives.  Being unthankful for God's provision in our life is in essence saying that God's provision isn't sufficient.  The Bible speaks much about the last day generation and one of the characteristics of that generation is an ungrateful spirit and attitude.  God tells us to save ourselves from that untoward generation.  We definitely don't want to possess a spirit of unthankfulness.  We don't want to be a part of that untoward generation.  It grieves me when I think of Christians who are destitute in so many areas in a physical sense, but those same people are happy in the Lord.  They are contented with the state they're in.  They love the Lord and have joy in their hearts.  I recognize worldly possessions don't make people happy, but when I think of how blessed we are when it comes to all the things we desire in a material sense in life, it's a gross shame that we're so discontented and unthankful.  We need to have enough sense to be thankful for all the material blessings that have been bestowed upon us.  I don't want to have an ungrateful spirit when I think of how we've been blessed in a material sense in this generation.  I'm not trying to extol materialism because joy isn't found in materialism.  But I don't want to have more than what I need and possess an ungrateful spirit.  We're too blessed to be ungrateful. 

There are several things which we should give thanks for but I'm not going to take time to list those in this particular post.  I'll do so in a future post.  If you are saved and washed in the blood of the lamb, you have a lot to be thankful for.  Those that have been saved should be thankful for what Jesus did on Calvary when he paid the debt for our sins.  That's the most important thing we should give thanks for.  We should remember the sacrifice on Calvary.  One of the things I like about Thanksgiving and Christmas celebrated within a month of each other is both deal with the issue of giving thanks to God.  During Thanksgiving, we thank God for who he is, the debt that Jesus paid on Calvary, and the bountiful blessings He's bestowed upon us not only individually but as a country.  We thank God for the bountiful harvest during the year on Thanksgiving.  During Christmas we celebrate the fact that God sent his own son to this earth to be born in a manger so that one day he would take up the cross and die for the sins of mankind.  Hallelujah!  In a nutshell Thanksgiving is giving thanks to God and learning to be content with what state we're in.  Our churches need a revival of thanksgiving.  If our churches had a revival of thanksgiving, I guarantee you God would do great and mighty things in the midst of His people.  We just need to step aside and reflect upon God's goodness in our life.  It will change our life if we take it to heart.