Wednesday, August 16, 2017

time to hit the rails, there's a train a comin'











My parents never seemed to be rich to me, as a school teacher and my mother staying at home, we very rarely if ever ate out.  It seemed that whenever we did, it was visiting my Grandparents, which meant eating at Keenan’s in Bangor, which said Iris Lunch on the outside.  It took me well into my teen years to figure out Phil Keenan owned the place, and the reason we ate there was because my Grandma and him were friends back in high school.  So many a Friday night was spent at Keenan’s, where the two would talk old times, they were maybe in their late forties at the time, and it meant an extra bowl of ice cream for me.  But the real treat for me was my Grandpa taking me next door to the roundhouse, where the trains were stationed.  In the pre-Chinese clothing manufacturing days, the area was covered with small mills that made everything we wore, plus towels, sheets and blankets.  But the real reason was the coal region they lived in, and coal was big back then, and hand in hand with my Grandpa, we would be allowed into the roundhouse, where the big engines seemed bigger than life.  A brakeman would wave us up into a caboose, we looked into boxcars, knocked on the side of tank cars, and climbed up without trying to get too dirty looking into the coal cars.  It was just like our train set in his basement, and many times I would compare what Lionel had made against the real thing.  Seeing the real thing made the train set layout come to life, the names on the box cars seem real, and add in the diesel smell, the coal burning, and all the other roundhouse smells, it was an hour on Friday nights well spent.  Grandma had her old stories, Grandpa and I were making ours.
Bangor Park used to have a train, a long train around the public park, and many a summer evening was spent riding on it.  A scaled down version of the real thing, I always sat in the last seat in the last car, at 10 cents a ride, I know many dollars were spent on me, and even though he was too big, sometimes my Grandpa would join in, then I knew it was time to go home where the train set in the basement waited.  We were always the last ones to bed, being quiet not wake anyone, a special time for both of us....
So when Christopher, my older son turned three, on his first trip back east, his Great Grandpa took him on his first train ride.  Squeezed together in the last seat in the last car, saved just for him, another generation of Mohns was riding the rails, and home to a special HO set made just for him in the basement.  Our old Lionels had long gone into storage, I still have some in my attic, but this set was their set, just like ours had been ours.  Today Phil Keenan is long gone as are my Grandparents, she and Phil were the last ones in their class circa 1920, almost 100 years ago.  The trains pulled out long ago before that, the Park is not what it used to be, the train gone, but the tracks still there, and Iris Lunch, well five years ago the building was still there but empty.  I never knew Friday nights and trains would still be precious memories some 50 plus years later, as a new Grandfather I only hope to do as well, just gotta find me some trains, I know where the motorcycles are....
It wasn’t until I came to Jesus that I understood how special relationships were.  And are.  We all take things for granted, I did, and so many good times growing up were normal to me.  I thought all kids rode trains, all kids had cool Grandpas, and all ate at Keenan’s where your Grandma knew the owner.  It was the joy of the Lord that brought it all home to me, how special those times were, and how special times spent with him are.  Many times we seek happiness outside of Christ, and find it to be cheap thrills just for a moment, and the moment passes.  Too many times our selfishness overwhelms others, “why don’t they like what I do?  What’s their problem?”  Joy is confused for happiness, based on the emotion of the moment, and soon, like the Bangor Park train ride, it is over, the park closed and dark, the train empty, and so are we.  My first description of joy was “joy is not the absence of suffering, but the presence of God.”  And it seemed the harsher the suffering, when I looked to him, the greater the joy.  It was personal, not taught, and as I began to see things through God’s eyes, his spirit dwelt in me, and I saw things his way.  I let his joy in, and began to heal the wounded areas, so much I wanted to see him heal others’ wounds too.  So much that when I was not in his will, I felt lonely and alone, like I was missing someone, and I was.  But I had turned from him, he never turns on or from us.  Looking back a simple meal out with my family, an hour at the trains, a few train rides, and hours spent in the basement were all supplied by God, for all of us.  A time to relax and enjoy being together, not all holy and churchlike, but where we could relax and enjoy each other.  Just like God wants us to be with him, ourselves, and to share that joy with others. 
Life has taught me we will have many tough times, but his joy is always there, and if you think being a Christian is tough, face eternity without Jesus, now that’s tough!  And stupid, because you don’t have to, and his joy is available right now, no matter where you are or what you have done.  His forgiveness allows us to love him, to love others, to bring joy with us, and when walking with him, you just have to share him.  Don’t worry about the words, he’ll supply them, just as he supplies the joy of the Lord, and the strength we find in it.  When we start to put others first, when we care more about them, when we mourn with them and then rejoice, we see a side of joy that without Jesus you cannot have.  Sometimes I only want to look back, Jesus gives me the hope to look ahead.
Today may be the time to hit the rails you have been dreaming of, to experience Jesus and all the joy of him first hand.  He just isn’t in church on Sunday, but available walking, riding, running, or sitting.  His joy knows no bounds.  Climb up in the caboose and sit a while, look at all the power the locomotives have, consider how much the rail cars hold, and see how it all compares to his love for us.  “All Aboard!”  And like the old Negro spiritual says “there’s a train a comin, you don’t need no baggage, you just get on board!”  Jesus and trains, no wonder they both seem so much to me....
love with compassion,
Mike
mattehw25biker.blogspot.com
 

Tuesday, August 15, 2017

bedside manners are no substitute for the right diagnosis









I was reminded yesterday that not only doctors, but hospital personnel practice medicine.  And some need more practice than others.  I was out riding, it was a beautiful, cool morning, when I got stung, again, for the third time in four weeks, and about the 20th time in five years.  No one can explain to me why, but bees love to sting me, the last two in the face, this on the back of my neck.  So off to Palomar I go, reluctantly, because I know of the questionable care they give, we usually drive 20 minutes to another hospital if needed, but I was very close, so in I went.  Now I am allergic to bee stings, and have almost died from them before, one visit spending time in the ER cardiac ICU, not my favorite place.  So in I go....and I wish I hadn’t.
It was slow, only one person in front of me, I went directly to a male nurse, told him my condition, and he waved me through to the receptionist.  Who signed me up, then told me to have a seat.  He obviously didn’t think I was serious, he explained the chest pains of true anaphalaxia, and so I sat.  No blood pressure, no vitals taken, I sat.  After 20 minutes I finally went to him, my hands were starting to itch, I also told him I had a plastic aorta and look at my history, he went to get someone in triage, after checking my lungs.  Who five minutes later took me in.  Neither one looked at the sting, or looked to see if the stinger was still in.  By now over 30 minutes had passed since I was stung, no treatment offered or rendered.  I asked multiple times for a Benadryl, he finally went to see if he could fine one, returning almost 10 minutes later, unable to locate one.  BP was 133/87, high for me, nothing mentioned, or treated still.  He kept looking at my arms, they are bruised, I bruise easily from a puppy playing and from a hail storm I was in in June,which left my left arm black and blue.  Add the scars from pre-cancerous skin tags being removed, my arms looked like a junkie. And then it dawned on me, they were blowing me off, as a junkie, and had no intention of dealing with me.  I was never offered to see a doctor, nor did I ever see one!  But when I left he insisted I sign a sheet saying I left on my own, which I read later,it stated, they offered to have a physician see me.  No they didn’t!  I wasn’t even triaged properly!  From the meds I am on, I can get sleepy, I told him to check the records, and I needed to eat, or I get faint.  No treatment, no food offered, I told him I was going home and getting a Benadryl, eat, and if the problem got worse, I will call 911 as I had before, they take things more seriously.  Last time I had an IV and meds from them before I reached the hospital, all of three miles away!  After the Benadryl and meal, I laid down, my neck hurt from the sting, it had swelled, my eyes were glassy, so I slept.  I did what they should have done, and they are supposed to be trained.  What if like one time my tongue swelled and couldn’t swallow?  Or breathe?  Or if my eyes swelled shut again while riding home?  The only thing I was offered was to stay a half hour to see if it changed, no way, and by the way, per doctor’s orders I am to stay out of hospitals because I am ripe for infection.  Both nurses never listened....Never go to the hospital alone!  Take an advocate if you can, and avoid Palomar!
We need an advocate for our sin, and God sent his only son Jesus to make the way.  While many are looking for God or the way, Jesus is the way, and his spirit understands exactly what it takes to see you saved.  He is personal, comforting, and a friend, shows you the way, and leaves the decision up to you.  He stands in for you, and pleads your case, for when judgment day comes, we will need that advocate, for all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God.  But on that day, Jesus will stand in for us, for we belong to him, and we will hear “enter in my good and faithful servant,” all others go to hell.  They neglected to take the advice of the spirit, rejected Jesus, and stand alone, and will be forever alone in torment.  Sadly knowing why without an explanation, their knew bowed confessing Jesus as Lord, but having none of the benefits.  They rejected him on earth, he will not represent them in heaven, they will never get there.  And it doesn’t have to be that way.
When leaving the hospital I complained and a Lead Nurse talked with me, admitting they had screwed up, their fault,and offered assistance.  His bedside manners were caring, but a poor substitute for the right diagnosis.  So often well meaning people come in after someone else has created a problem, he and I should never had to meet under the circumstances, if only they had done their job.  After a rough night of sleep, the side effects are different each time, I still hurt today, but am alive and doing well enough to ride and be stung again.  Why, I don’t know, but I know that although doctors practice medicine, I have an advocate who knows what is best for me and cares.  From the start, who listens and diagnoses the problem, not just treating the symptoms.  Not all who practice medicine lack, sadly I met two at once, I hope you never have to.  But God got me through, sometimes it is better to go the extra mile to Pomerado than to go to Palomar.  Jesus goes the extra mile for us, and he is a place of healing.  I only wish Palomar was.....
love with compassion,
Mike
matthew25biker.blogspot.com
 

Monday, August 14, 2017

what it takes to belong
















“For the LOVE of money is the root of all evil,” scripture tells us, not just money as it is usually misquoted.  God does not hate the rich and love the poor more, as some think, but it seems even in some churches and denominations money makes the world go round.   When God was moving my heart to full time ministry, I was told by some experienced men I needed to establish a donor base, I had given to many before, so it seemed like a good idea.  At least to me, but no one wanted to contribute, so I wondered if God really wanted me to minister.  Was that the proof I needed, no one wanted to support me?  And one afternoon on my front porch, I was seeking an answer, and God answered.  I had prayed “I like to work, I had a good work ethic, had a good record, and felt the desire to serve, but without an income, how would I get by?  I had a mortgage, a family, and bills.”  And I can still hear the answer he gave me, “I will provide manna for your mortgage, in your refrigerator, and for your garage.  If you have to ask it is not a gift, and I like to give good gifts.”  And so he has, and so we have never solicited any money, nor will we, as God provides, my Jehovah Jireh, my provider.  Which has upset a few church men....
One man who has a national radio program advised me that without a donor base, I will fail.  When I told him how God had answered, he looked at me like I was crazy, and couldn’t wait to get away, I wouldn’t back down, and he finally cut me off.  One other man who does professional fund raising for churches, had his booth set up to sell his gift of fundraising to those who needed it.  Again I shared my story, and was blown off, it seems I was cutting into his income, obviously the manna from  heaven was different than the man who was selling it.  One more experience had me wondering, when I was part of a national ministry, and they told me I had to tithe to them.  Or I couldn’t play their game, and then later denied it when I called them on it.  It was in their handbook, was I the only one who had read it?  Does it take money to belong to the elite in God’s kingdom?  Or had I confused his kingdom for the kingdom of man, on earth known as the church?  Or had they...
Until a story got back to me this week, how a man wanting to fill a position in a church as worship leader was told he “didn’t tithe enough to earn the position.”  It seemed money again reared its ugly head, the sad thing being at all three churches, they teach the Bible verse by verse, they are known as Bible teaching churches, yet each one depended more on the income from man instead of the outcome from God.  The spirit was not in them, I wonder if it ever had, and questioned God to make sure I was in the spirit.  His answer was simple, “these things shall follow those that believe,”  and I could look anyone in the eye and no owe them anything but love.  No one had a stake in my ministry and any success except God himself.  I had built my house of ministry upon the rock of Jesus, and it withstood.  While these men and their types were out begging for money, I was out spreading the gospel, with God providing every need.  He did then, he does now, and he will continue if I seek him, so I do.  With the blessings of seeing how the Lord uses our little to do much, and we get to see him at work, instead of doing it by ourselves.  Sadly the pastor of one of the above churches when asked how their year was, he readily admitted “we have met all our financial obligations.”  To quote a line from Seamus in True Confessions, he tells the Cardinal, “I thought we were supposed to be in the business of saving souls?”  To which he is answered, “don’t tell me my job.”  The same answer we give to God many times...
Last year when a friend was in he hospital, I encountered his wife and two of her friends.  Her friends had just spent a weekend at a conference on heaven, taught by the radio personality who had never been there.  They knew my story, and all but called me a liar, because this man told them anyone who has seen heaven is a liar, for no one has ever seen it.  Paul records seeing it, and he denies it?  I have seen it, I know of others, and it is up to God, not man to make the rules, his first rule being love.  At least they didn’t ask for me to contribute...
So beware of pay to play Christians, who maybe really aren’t.  God says seek him first, then all things will be added unto him. Today he still loves to give good gifts, as a couple dropped by a truckload of clothes and a bed that is needed.  We have a pastor who gives us free food we distribute each week.  Where others see money, we see needs, and see Jesus meeting them one on one.  Either Jesus is the way or he isn’t, so beware of men and teachings that twist scripture for their benefit.  No one robs God and gets away with it, yet they are offered the same forgiveness as we all are.  Maybe a quick question will remind you of how temporary money is, but grace is eternal.  John D. Rockefeller was once the richest man in the world, with inestimatable wealth.  How much did he leave when he died?  Everything!  So why hang onto something that will flow through your fingers, and have no value in heaven?  You cannot take it with you, but you can send it ahead.  Love that is, the gift that keeps on giving.  God loves a cheerful giver, if interested ask him how he feels about a bitter tither.  And if you have to ask, it isn’t a gift, and he still loves to give good gifts. And yes he is still in the business of saving souls!
Psalm 37:25  I was young and now I am old, yet I have never seen the righteous forsaken or their children begging bread. Amen to that.
love with compassion,
Mike 
matthew25biker.blogspot.com



Friday, August 11, 2017

I miss LA














If you want to go anywhere north from San Diego, and the desert is not in your plans, you will eventually come upon Los Angeles.  30 years ago San Diego was distinguishable from Orange County as it was from LA, now it is one large multi lane parking lot at times.  No matter how you choose it, you encounter LA traffic, but there are ways to avoid LA.  When my friend Nick stopped by last night, he is riding to San Francisco Saturday, and his first trip out of San Diego, I told him I would put together a route to miss LA.  He is leaving at 6 in the morning to get an early start, sadly most of our metro areas start the same time, so here goes.  Any time I go that way I try to miss LA. 
For awhile we had commuter lanes that motorcycles were welcomed on, now too many are becoming toll lanes, where those who used to travel them but don’t anymore, are stuck in the traffic jam with the single car occupants, and sadly us bike riders, too.  No more free pass for us, and as we split traffic and look at the sparsely populated toll lane, we are worse off than ever before.  The HOV lane that was supposed to free us up now requires pay, the same as a car or truck.  So for now we lane split....Unfortunately I only found this out last Christmas on the 110 going into LA, where their multi-lane HOV lane suddenly without warning goes from free to pay as you enter the city downtown, with little or no chance to get off.  $100 fine or toll bill, but they were nice enough  to cut it down to $20.  Great folks at these toll roads....So I try to miss LA whenever I can, too much traffic, too much toll, not enough lanes.  It’s on its way to Orange County and Riverside, wake up San Diego, or part of our legacy will be “remember when we travelled the freeways for free?” 
But as much as getting to LA can be expensive, parking can be worse.  At a local event at Qualcomm here last week, parking for it was $38!  Valet parking at the hospital yesterday was $5, plus 50 cents an hour, and no one gets in and out on time.  A scam to me, and insurance won’t cover it.  My last trip to the ER I went by ambulance, I live three miles from the hospital, and it was over $1800!  Maybe the tolls on the HOV lane aren’t so bad after all...and so I try to miss LA, but also Orange, Riverside, and San Diego counties too.  And the ambulance.  Don’t even get me going on San Francisco, where last time there a few years ago it was $8/hour at a meter, and bikes couldn’t share a space!  It used to be you left your heart in San Francisco, now you leave your wallet too!
When CSN&Y sang about “and we’ve got to get back to the garden,” or their song Woodstock, they talked of escaping the city and its pressures, to get back to the country where it all began.  Before it became urban, then suburban, and the malling of America took over.  A physical place with emotional ties, but also spiritual ones.  For after the fall in the garden, after sin entered and we were banished, we have been looking for that Nirvana that once existed.  To the hippies is was free love, to developers it was homes in the country turning it into the suburbs, but to Christians it is heaven.  Getting back to the way it was before sin, and the only way back is Jesus.  Where upon death we will arrive face to face with God, how I long to walk with him as Adam did in the cool of the afternoon.  And there will be no temptation, as no sin can abide in heaven.  A far cry from here on earth, but maybe not as far as we think.  Or want to think.  Woodstock went from a peaceful farm to a major city without police, sanitation, or medical facilities overnight.  It turned into the one thing that everyone was trying to escape, and left a trail of disaster in its wake.  The music was great, but it rained, no it poured, and the mud and trash and limited toilets left a mess that took the few volunteers months to clean up.  I missed Woodstock, but went to Summer Jam at Watkins Glen, and I can testify it was horrible.  People ruining yards, 20-30 miles of traffic jams, some just abandoning their cars and walking.  We escaped on our bikes barely, and missed the show, but did see the Grateful Dead land in a helicopter where we were sitting.  At least I can say I saw them as they walked past and nodded to us...
But as for the garden, nowhere on earth will it be found, for as soon as you find that place, others will follow.  If only it worked that way with heaven.  The short time we spend here on earth in no way compares to the eternity in heaven or hell, and we get to choose.  But we don’t want to choose the only way to heaven, we want the things of God, we just don’t want God.  So many go to hell in rebellion, sad but even sadder are those who are stuck in religion or churches where the gospel is not shared, pick a theme from being good to good works to my parents are saved, they still miss heaven, because they deny Jesus.  Who still stands at the door knocking, if only they heard the call.  But while here on earth, we can have the things of heaven, as Jesus promised it to be “on earth as it is in heaven,” in the Lord’s Prayer.  Which we immediately try to change for our own goods, and miss out.  We come to Christ, but deny the spirit he has left us to get by here on earth.  We miss the love, the joy, and the peace.  We think peace is when everyone gets along, but true peace is only found via the spirit in Jesus Christ.  Don’t fall for the CO-EXIST bumper sticker, what it really means is agree with them, and compromise your values.  Which leads to denying Jesus.  God is love, more than a bumper sticker, but to those that don’t believe.....
The Interstate Highway System we travel today was an outcry from President Eisenhower, who after seeing how bad our infrastructure was, called for a better system.  God is interested in our infrastructure too, he calls it our souls, and so provides a free way to heaven.  No commuter lane, no lane splitting, no tolls along the way.  FREE, as in free.  But to get in you must get on, and Jesus is the only way.  No GPS headings to lead you astray, although we need to beware of false teachers, he made it one way.  Not multiple choice, and no essay to answer.  The next time you are stuck in traffic and wonder “is there a better way?” think of Christ, the only way.  Avoid the tolls of religion and the traffic jams of those who tell you there are many ways.  There are many ways to miss LA, don’t miss out on Jesus.  And you can come to him where and just as you are, sitting in traffic, or lane splitting.  Where the spirit of the Lord is there is liberty, a free pass to heaven, and all the benefits now.  I miss LA whenever I can, when I die I am glad I will not miss heaven.  I made the right choice, I’m going back to the garden.  Where I will walk with God, and I won’t need a commuter lane when I get there. 
Something and someone to ponder as you sit in traffic....so I miss LA, what do you do?
love with compassion,
Mike
matthew25biker.blogspot.com


Thursday, August 10, 2017

Saturday in the Park











After a suddenly terminated stay in Florida, it was back to the Garden State for BH and me.  Having tasted the freedom of moving out at age 20, we started to look for our own place.  We both had jobs, so we began the search.  Which ended in the Riverfront Apartments, on aptly named River Road in Piscataway, New Jersey.  The name just oozes romance doesn’t it?  But upstairs on the end, we had our bachelor pad, and with a garage a place to store our bikes and bench race.  Where many times we would get to exercise our immaturity and disrespect for the law.  You would think that two young and upcoming males would have plenty to do, but one Saturday, we found ourselves with nothing to do, and riding down the road from where we lived, we stopped in to see what was going on a a park near us, with a name like Prestone or something like that.  It turned out it was a company park for the Prestone plant up the road, and this was a company picnic going on, for only company employees and their families.  Which only made the challenge greater...
Parking our bikes in the shady grove, we approached the entrance, where we were asked “what department did we work in?”  BH, ever the quicker and more devious, announced “we just started, and would be in research,” whatever that meant.   And so we were ushered in, paying attention to not draw too much attention to ourselves, but to hook up with some of the female employees that seemed to be everywhere.  We pled stupid to many questions asked, we claimed we were starting next week, and when names were mentioned, again claimed to be new and not familiar with them.  We ate their food, drank their sodas, played the games, and fit in quite well.  But somehow we didn’t fit in, and when it began to show, you can only be so ignorant, we decided to leave, wishing our new found friends and so called coworkers a good day.  No one really questioned who we were, what we were, we just gave simple, pat answers and pretended we worked there.  And it worked....
So much for a Saturday in the park.  We never got to attend again as we moved, and this was a once every summer event, but from time to time would ride by and wonder, for a time we were part of the Prestone family, welcomed in even if under false pretenses, and how we had lied our way into the hearts and lives of those who worked there.  We were right there out in the open for all to see living a lie, and we had pulled it off.  But we knew, and I suspect somehow they knew too, but had welcomed us in anyway.  BH had posed as a new executive, and who doesn’t want to impress who may be your new boss?  Based on the George Costanza rule of lying, “if you believe it, it isn’t a lie,” we saw, we came, we conquered.  Sadly, there are also those who enter into churches the same way.  Pastor Mark used to be a greeter at the door, and he told me once of a list of people who were known throughout Sand Diego county as those who would cause trouble within church bodies.  Like wolves in disguise, they talked a good game, but their mission was to disrupt, and I got to identify them with Mark.  And when at another church, would identify them there too.  From standing up and a shouting “praise the Lord” during a teaching, to finding the weak ones and challenging their walk, they would infiltrate, and try to disrupt.  We are told to be as wise as serpents, but gentle as lambs, sometimes we are stupid as sheep, and get bit by the serpent.  So beware, as one night I had to be....
When 2 John tells us to be wary of those types, not even say “God bless you,” because their God is not the God of the Bible, and they deny the deity of Jesus, after he taught one night at Dustin Arms, Jim was cornered by two men who were creating a disturbance.  He was in over his head, and when I saw, I walked over and asked “what’s going on?”  These men were expounding on the moral issues of Allah, and Jim was defenseless.  They had caught him off guard, and had him confused about who Jesus was.  And he was a Bible teacher!  So I listened as they went on, and sensing new meat, one asked me,”so what do you think?”  And the door was opened....
I told them there was a lot of truth in what they said, and they smiled, I was there friend because I agreed with them or so they thought.  But when I asked “where was Jesus in all this?”  the mood changed, and they became confused.  I mentioned forgiveness and salvation by grace, and the free gift of both.  How Jesus had proven over and over again he was God, not just a great teacher and profit.  How Allah’s grave was filled, but the tomb where they laid Jesus was empty.  How the Bible preceded their book by thousands of years, and finally asked “where is your joy, your assurance God loves you?”  And it got quiet...
For the next 15 minutes these two rabble rousers began to ask questions, and the spirit gave me the answers they needed to hear.  As the meeting broke up, they asked if they could return, they had more questions, and when I asked to pray with them, both agreed.  From time to time I would see them on the street, we would greet each other with a hug, we had become friends, they knew I cared about them, and we went deeper than just an argument.  I don’t know where they are with Jesus now, but that night I did what God showed me to do, I shared the gospel in love, and disarmed their attack.  By showing love, I had poured hot coals on their heads, not argued, but answered their questions.  The spirit guided, gave life, and I planted some seeds that night.  Now it was time for the holy spirit to provide the growth.  Salvation is up to God, it is his business.  We are just messengers, ambassadors, and representatives.  They had not fooled God, I wonder how many we had really fooled that afternoon in the park?
Scripture tells us that we can entertain angels and not know it.  Something the enemy knows as well, so be gentle as Jesus, but wise in the spirit.  Don’t be afraid to call a spade a dirty shovel if it is, but remember we all once were that dirty shovel, and Jesus cleaned us up and made us useful.  If you are out living the gospel as we are instructed, you will attract those want to know, and also just confuse.  But when in the spirit, God will give you the words and the discernment.  And if you are accused of being judgmental, don’t be afraid to reply, “I’m not judging you, I’m describing you.”  And to Mr. Costanza, even if you believe a lie, it is still a lie.  The truth will set you free.  Don’t be afraid to ask “where is Jesus in this?” and be ready, the spirit is willing, how weak is your flesh?
love with compassion,
Mike
matthew25biker.blogspot.com