Why do we like successful people? There the best. They want something, they go for it, they give it their all. That is why the Olympics is exciting.
Jesus knew this. He sent his disciples out by twos and told them to change the world. Our heroes are Football players, Tennis players, those folks who gave it their all. Sorry, no Jesus there. Sadly, helping the poor and denying yourself is just not heroic. Or is it?
Every religion believes that in the end, it is self denial and service to those in need that will win the race, the award, the prize. However, we spend our day talking about everything else.
What did Jesus say that pleased God. Do you know? Do you take verses from the Bible and make role models of people that look nothing like Jesus.
Jesus came to …. buy his own airplane? I know it sounds ridiculous but then why do we honor, worship, esteem those that do? Stepping over the poor, needy and hungry, we do what Jesus told us not to do? Help me. Something is wrong.
When you are sick and in need, send 1000.00 to someone with a Rolls Royce, Rolex and a private airplane. They must be closer to God, look at what they have.
Do not look at Jesus, he was a failure and not a good example of God’s goodness on earth. He was a looser bound for prison and hell and he told everyone he was. For you. Yes, he did it for you.
So go ahead, make this life the best you can. Ignore God and the commands of Christ. Everybody does it, don’t they?
If I die today, I would be sad. I have done so many things that I do not want to talk about with God.
I want to give the father something to make him proud but am such a failure. Perhaps you can help me do something good, something noble, something to make life better for someone who has nothing to live for.
Perhaps going home to be with the Father would be better than another day of mistakes.
For me to live is Christ and to die is gain.
I am stupid. Really, I am not kidding. When I study I find myself learning something new and different each and every day. I am amazed at the arrogance of Christians, especially here in the USA and more importantly, here in New York.
I am meeting many people from around the world and thought that ethnic arrogance was reserved for nations where a major people group suppresses indigenous. The world is not made up of countries divided by lines, but people groups, tribes and nations. Shocking though it seems, two people from the same nation, lines drawn by men, may not be able to speak because they are not from the same people group.
Fortunately, there are many who do know better and who travel to the ends of the earth. People who do what Christ said and go to the ends of the earth, often find that people on one side of a mountain do not speak the same language or are the am ethos as those on the other side of the same mountain though man may have included them within the boundaries of one or another nation. In China, there are many different groups of people, which are included in a homogeneous group, designated by man. Hmong are actually many different peoples and though they are from the same mountainous area do not speak the same language, nor do they dress the same either. When you go to the market in Sa Pa, the mountains of Vietnam, you are struck by the colors and languages of the people from the area. They are of the same ethnos, people group and are often grouped for translation by governments and then, to their chagrin, find the people do not know what they were given, nor understand what is told them.
So, in order to speak the things of importance to a people, it behooves you to find out what language they use, how they talk to each other and if they understand you. The Holy Spirit came upon the believers, as written in the book of Acts chapter 2, in the Bible: And there were dwelling at Jerusalem Jews, devout men, out of every nation under heaven. Now when this was noised abroad, the multitude came together, and were confounded, because that every man heard them speak in his own language. And they were all amazed and marveled, saying one to another, Behold, are not all these which speak Galilaeans? And how hear we every man in our own tongue, wherein we were born? Parthians, and Medes, and Elamites, and the dwellers in Mesopotamia, and in Judaea, and Cappadocia, in Pontus, and Asia, Phrygia, and Pamphylia, in Egypt, and in the parts of Libya about Cyrene, and strangers of Rome, Jews and proselytes, Cretes and Arabians, we do hear them speak in our tongues the wonderful works of God. And they were all amazed, and were in doubt, saying one to another, What means this? Others mocking said, These men are full of new wine.
According to this account, God deemed it necessary to speak to the people in the language wherein they were born. God did not seem to think that a general proclamation in the language of the day was sufficient but went to the languages of their hometowns. Therefore, seeing that God deemed it necessary, perhaps we could use the same care when sharing the Gospel of Jesus Christ.
Today, we are blessed to have organizations that specialize in tongues of nations and have tried to reach people groups in their own language. http://grnusa.net/ is a fine example of a place to go when you need to share the Gospel of Jesus Christ with someone who you might think understands English or your native tongue. You might be delightfully surprised that they have a language or idiom that needs a translation which speaks to their heart.
Read the following article for further illumination.
Religion exists because there are so many people that make their living at it, so they have to find some way to justify their existence. The one group is the liberals, who accept the philosophy of humanism and try to find some relevance by saying, “Ha, Ha….we don’t know there’s a heaven; we don’t know there’s a hell. But we do know this – that you’ve got to live for 70 years! We know there’s a great deal of benefit from poetry, from high thoughts and noble aspirations. Therefore it’s important for you to come to church on Sunday, so that we can read some poetry, that we can give you some little adages and axioms and rules to live by. We can’t say anything about what’s going to happen when you die, but we’ll tell you this, if you’ll come every week and pay and help and stay with us, we’ll put springs on your wagon and your trip will be more comfortable. We can’t guarantee anything about what’s going to happen when you die, but we say that if you come along with us, we’ll make you happier while you’re alive.” It has simply nothing more than to try and put a little sugar in the bitter coffee of their journey and sweeten it up for a time.
Jesus left his home and family to go to the streets. They tried to get him back in the harness of work and be happy and when he did go to the Church of the day, he did not sit quietly and accept the garbage, but fought and died so you would know God wants to work with you to save the lost.
You will not go to those in need so God uses hurricanes and tsunamis and disease to get your attention. Listening? Perhaps not. Perhaps the only way you will deny yourself and follow Jesus to hell and help people is when you have been smashed, squished, destroyed and watched your friends and family dissected, blown up or mutilated. When will you come to know that life is not given us so we can enjoy ourselves but so we can serve others.
When reconing comes, and it must, those in need as you practice your foolish religious holiday will ask why you did not care. You will say “I, … My, … Our, … We, …” And perhaps, God will just say, go to hell. Matthew 7:21 and…. Matthew 25:31-46. I watched people celebrate Halloween while people died in Hurricane Sandy. Enjoy yourself. Deny yourself. Your choice.
God is good. God wants the lost to come to know Him. Jesus died for His beliefs and lots of folks who work for Him; end up chewed up and hurt. Easter is all about Him getting killed and coming back to minister and not going with the flow. I am currently in a place that is very comfortable and it would be great but for the stroke. After the stroke, my whole life was grinding to a halt. The stroke took out feeling and control of my left hand, movement of my left leg and balance. I kept falling down and there was nothing I could do about it. I felt so horribly helpless and quit working for God but God wouldn’t listen. I left New York and felt sorry for myself. A good friend caught up with me in Richmond Virginia and told me it was important to go back to La Guardia. Back to work. My body is a mess but I can type and work on web sites and the truck is back into disaster work.
Ok, Aaron, the guy from China who came to help, visited a grunch of churches in Staten Island and we ended up at: The Movement Church, 370 Clawson Street Staten Island, New York, 10306 718-216-9416 themovementsi.com
They are heavily involved in disaster relief work and it is goooood to be involved. Aaron and I went from church looking for a place to work and ended up here. Aaron was reading through the book of Matthew, learning English and he was full of questions. His sister-in-law is a Christian and does house church and this place hit an accord with his heart. They minister cross culturally and Aaron got a chance to minister in Chinese. He spoke at 4 churches got to share in Chinese as well.
So, I will hang here. Aaron goes back to China Monday morning, April first. He met some folks and that is good. He came closer to the Lord and that was better. They gave him bibles; encouragement and he joined the church as well. They will ordain him with the church and he will talk about Jesus in China (as well as the other 50 countries he travels to).
I will be working with the church street ministry here doing evangelism and outreach. Not actually the street, but the homeless kids ride the Staten Island Ferry (free) at night to sleep in the warmth. They take igloo containers full of food and coffee; hot chocolate as well as info about Jesus to the homeless kids and street people. So they were involved in the helps and evangelism ministry and when the disaster struck, they started by serving coffee and food. They morphed into a hub, distributing food, clothing and supplies. They now have an office here on the street by the beach and have teams of volunteers coming from around the world. Aaron came and is working from China so they are getting help from around the whole world.
So, though the disaster is over for many, those who have been abandoned by the government, insurance companies, FIMA, family and friends, have hope from God through the Movement Church. It is very encouraging in a troubled world. There is oppression here from religious spirits that put God in a box and many are deceived and confused.
I am here and helping people. What could be better?
No pain would be better! Probably not going to happen soon. Need to fill every day with Jesus. Take a look at the pastor’s stuff. Neat.
PastorSteveM – tweet
Steven J. Martino – Facebook,
Movement-Church – Facebook
Steven J. Martino – Linkedin
bigpappa75 – instagram
I am a missionary. I have been called to bring the Kingdom of God to those that need it.
What is the Kingdom of God? Love for one another. Righteousness based on this love and considering others in need a priority for my life. The Kingdom of God is the knowledge that you have something to give to others and that you will be held responsible for what you have been given.
Lets say that your family received a large donation. Dad decided that you needed a 60 inch TV in the den to watch football games. Mom decided you needed a new set of electronic kitchen appliances. Sis, a newer car and baby brother, a motorcycle. Now, that is the way things usually go, but the Kingdom of God requires us to look around and see what others need. Our Neighbors. The folks in Jesus time were in trouble when they asked who their neighbor was because they didn’t like him because… or her because… and they had valid reasons for hating and ignoring and not helping them. Good religious reasons.
Jesus slammed the people of his time and pointed to the people they hated. Jesus went into and lived with the ones his chosen people hated, ignored and spoke evil of in every manner.
There are many parables. Matthew 25:31-46 is not a parable. It parallels God’s plan from the very beginning of the earth through this day, today.
I am a mile away from hell and my hands are tied. Hell is when you expect something and cannot get it. Here in Staten Island, it is called the American Scream. Many people throughout the history of the USA, planned, worked, saved and believed the lie that things are important. They bought houses, partied and bought … well, things. Then God, in his infinite wisdom sent Hurricane Sandy and then the first snow storm and then another. Don’t be deceived, God is not mocked. Whatever you plan to do, God will do to you.
Right down the road, literally, there are thousands of people who live the American Scream. Taxes, Insurance and payments for this and that government project have left them squeezed till they have nothing left. Yet, on the hill, there is electricity, water and every comfort of God. The American dream is for the rich, secluded and wealthy. They get to eat what they made with their own hands. Well, actually… bread made from the sweat of people that are poor, services provided by the poor and the workers of their factories. No I am not a socialist, just a realist. God bless us so we can be a blessing to others.
I visit the homes of the fabulously wealthy. Fabulously wealthy according to the folks that have houses made of stacked mud that washes away every rainy season. Fabulously wealthy according to the grandest proportion of people on earth. Refrigerators that are full, pantries that have food and houses that are warm. When I look around I often see … well, literally a million dollars worth of… Stuff. Stuff they are certain they need. Stuff that helps them make money so that at the end of the year, they might have 1% to give to someone through their church who ends up giving .1% to someone in need.
Ok, I came here to help the poor and found that though some gave their lives to help the poor, now that it is time to wind down, people are too busy to care about those that tonight, sit in houses without heat and electricity and scream … scream and cry in to the darkness. Why… Job’s friends came to help him understand God. Too bad they did not come with gifts and medicine and help and hope and an offer to assist Job in rebuilding. Nope… They brought the word of God as they understood it and in the end, Job had to pray for them so God would not just kill them and send them to hell. Not what you read? Maybe you should read again. I see a man, chosen as an example for God, deserted by his friends and left on a trash dump. I see a man who was not surrounded by the many that he helped or the many that were religions, bearing gifts and blessings but the law. The very law they ignored coming to Job in the first place. They could have been helpful, offering to do something but no, they decided Job got what he deserved. Then, sigh… Job had to ask God not to give them what the deserved.
I am a mile away from the American Scream and what I hear is, “It’s not my problem, I got my own problems.” “Don’t help them, they will just get used to being fed. Make them go to work.” It all basically comes down to “I got mine, nya nya nya, ask God to help you.” You know, it doesn’t even make me sick any more.
Perhaps you might give some thought to what it would be like to be homeless, helpless and living on the streets. Funny, God left his home and family and got pretty angry at the church they built him when he was Jesus. Why didn’t Jesus build big buildings. He could have. Why didn’t he honor the educated and wealthy but constantly hung out with … them. Perhaps they are important?
I need, not so I can build, but so I can go to Job and say, “Dunno why God did this but here, lemee do something to help.” I need to help others. Sigh…
So, I came from Arizona without a banjo on my knee. I am watching people get sick and die because of Hurricane Sandy. Cold, constant and penetrating is turning mighty men of labor here in Staten Island into sickly cold and frustrated individuals who have lost hope. I traveled the Island when I got here, slept in my truck for a month, not taking invitations to be warm and well fed. I am not happy that I am finding that the government has abandoned the people on the beaches of the East Coast.
The rich sold the plots to themselves and to the others, the poor followed. Of course, living on the shore of the North East United States is dangerous, but when they could have stopped it, they used it to make money. When they could have required a sea wall or upgrades and helped people move, they didn’t. They simply took the taxes and the money from the poor and ran.
Then, God, in his anger, smited those who laughed at him and ignored him and threw him out of their schools and lives. I know you don’t like that part. It is easier to imagine a great fuzzy God that is always soft and kind. I don’t know that one. 35 years in mission work have introduced me to a Father that knows what he is doing, that doesn’t share what he is doing and asks for obedience.
I laugh as I see people charge God in prayer and shout at him commanding him to do things. Grace keeps them alive. He is my daddy, but talking loud to him is certainly not necessary and demanding he do what he asked me to pray for seems ridiculous.
So, an October hurricane Sandy means, punch after punch after kick in the hearts and minds of those on the beach. Listen, I heard a local church pastor say, “Give them the wet ones, they can dry them out, save the dry ones for an emergency.” My God, please help the pastor understand that this is an emergency. Sending wet blankets to cold and hungry people in the name of a loving and kind God? Please…
I know you don’t care. God knows you don’t care. Pray? Sure. Shout and sing and dance? Certainly. Bark like a dog and slobber like some insane man, that’s all easy but God knows how well you care. He looks at your check book and your credit card and sees …. Aahhhh, you bought electronics, shoes, food, movies, ….. stop.
And whatever you have done for the least of these … whatever you have done for the hungry, thirsty, lonely, naked, sick and imprisoned, … then he said, “Go to hell.”
If that doesn’t scare you, don’t worry, when you face the father, daddy, the loving kind and sole savior of the world will send you to hell because that is where you will be comfortable.
You sing, dance, hold conferences and do what you gotta do. The Bible sez, deny yourself. Don’t know what you don’t understand about deny yourself, look it up. Deny self and help others.
I am more than amazed. I get requests for help from around the world. This one is for grace and patience to replace a ball joint on a BMW, that one is for a little girl that had her arm hacked off with a machete and then she was raped, bleeding and dieing. This one is for a better job and an apartment this year so they can move away from mom who wants the house cleaned and that one for food for a village that is starving. And Jesus hears all the prayers, knows all the secret thoughts and knows what to do. I certainly do not.
God knows I am an idiot. I think I know … everything and I often get so tired wrestling God that I just pass out. I want the kids to have food, the lame to walk, the blind to see (I lost an eye in Mexico) and though I used to want everyone to live forever, I am now content if they pass on to Heaven peacefully. I am tired of war and fighting and pain and suffering and … and …
I pray that you are at peace, maybe sitting in a nice comfy chair with family around. There are so many hurting and dieing and suffering. I pray, and pray, and ask God to do things that He knows to do but often does not. Come quickly Jesus. I thought that meant for the whole world but now I will settle for folks to pass into Heaven quickly and peacefully.
Today at the church, there was a wake for a dear woman of God who served her whole life and at the same time a meeting for disaster relief agencies while Times Square Church sent volunteers to feed the poor through our food and clothing handout. So many in Staten Island are in trouble.
I am praying for you. Like a fast forwarded movie, pictures go through my head of people I know and people who need help. I pause mentally on one or two but there are tens of thousands that made it into my prayers in 35 years of missions and study. And God knows all about it and them and billions I have not even heard of.
I am praying for you as you read this. Think on good things, if you can. If you can’t, cry out to God, you are being heard.