FORGIVE US

The moon is hidden behind the dark clouds of the night. The sounds of the jungle scream of danger as men crawl on their bellies through thick brush and brambles, mud and bugs. One man looks to his right to see if his comrade is still beside him at a short distance. The comrade gives him a slight nod letting him know he’s okay.

Slowly, methodically they inch their way forward, not knowing what the next second, minute, or hour will bring. Their heavy gear weighs them down as they tighten their grip on the big gun held tightly in their hands. The crack of a twig sounds like a bomb has exploded and both men stop, hold their breath, and close their eyes praying this is not their last breath.

At home their children are in their beds and dreams of Daddy float through their minds. Women are kneeling beside their beds praying fervently that their husband, brother, father is safe and that the Lord has His hand upon them keeping them safe and will bring them home soon – alive.

The city lights are glowing across the streets of downtown in the big cities as angry shouts fill the air. The young people who have been indoctrinated to hate all that is good, all that is sacred, have gathered in protest against those who are sacrificing their very lives to give them that freedom to spit on those who are fighting for them, those who race to the scene of their car accident to render them medical help, and when facing down the barrel of a gun they quickly dial 911, and yet tonight they are yelling to de-fund those very men and women who race to save their lives.

The men and women who sacrifice their lives are being demonized as the great enemies of our country. How sad, to know that lives are lost in war, in crime, in accidents due to careless drivers, and yet what is good is now evil. What a shame that we, as Americans, have lost sight of how God has blessed our country, our people, our businesses, our education, children, and families. How sad we have stepped aside and forgotten those who have died to keep us free and safe, how they and God are being tossed aside by political agendas of greed for power and money.

Our country was founded on Christian values and yet it is the Christians that have stood silent through the making of laws that allows murdering our babies. Laws that have thrown traditional, God ordained, marriage out the window, laws that have given man power to regulate and deregulate our very rights to believe and practice our beliefs.

Oh how those families of all who died for our freedoms must grieve, oh how God must shed many tears in the face of the atrocities that His children and mankind are blatantly promoting, doing, and ignoring. Oh how, we as His church, need to hang our heads in shame for we are accepting the atrocities of the world and shrugging our shoulders while whispering, “Not much I can do about it. It’s just the way things are.”

For the families, the soldiers, all who serve to guard, protect, and respond, and who serve, I ask for your forgiveness for the lack of appreciation and gratitude for all you do to keep us free and safe, and that may our Lord and Savior keep you safe at home, in the streets, and afar. May His peace and love fill you throughout today and all your days. May His mighty hand be upon you. In Jesus name, Amen.

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Suicide Prevention – Information everyone should know

WHY IT MATTERS?

  • One person dies by suicide every 15 minutes.
  • A suicide attempt occurs every 40 seconds.
  • Over 40,000 deaths by suicide each year, and the rate continues to increase.*

What are the warning signs?

  • Depression/feeling down, appetite loss, increased sleeping, loss of interest in life activities.
  • Feelings of helplessness, hopelessness or feeling unworthy
  • Talking about hurting or killing him/her self.
  • Substance misuse (cocaine, crack cocaine, alcohol, marijuana, etc.)
  • New/old mental health diagnosis, hearing voices, loss of touch with reality.
  • Chronic, debilitating or severe pain.
  • Severe anxiety that will not go away.
  • Severe overreaction to good or bad circumstances.
  • Feelings of rage, hostility or revenge.
  • Repression of angry feelings.
  • Severe internal conflicts, such as overwhelming guilt or anbivalence.

What are the risk factors?

  • History of abuse (sexual, physical or emotional.
  • Access to weapons
  • Previous suicide attempts or threats.
  • Family problems.
  • Any type of significant loss
  • Relationship difficulties (loss or breakup of relationships)
  • Legal problems or criminal involvement.
  • Severe financial problems.
  • Experiencing social isolation or having no emotional support from friends or family.
  • Family history of suicide.

What can you do to help?

  • Call for help if you’re concerned that the person may harm his/her self.
  • Listen in calm, unhurried manner.
  • Let the individual talk about their feelings.
  • Prevent self-injury
  • Plant the seeds of hope.

*Statistics courtesy of the Centers for Disease Control

Offered by Northside Hospital – Behavioral Health Services

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The Cold Within

Six humans trapped by happenstance

In black and bitter cold.

Each one possessed a stick of wood

Or so the story’s told.

Their dying fire in need of logs

The first woman held hers back,

For on the faces around the fire

She noticed one was black.

The next woman looking cross the way

Saw one not of her church,

And couldn’t bring herself to give

The fire her stick of birch.

The third woman sat in tattered clothes.

She gave her coat a hitch.

Why should her log be put to use

To warm the idle rich?

The rich woman just sat back and thought

Of the wealth she had in store,

And how to keep what she had earned

From the lazy, shiftless poor.

And the last woman of this forlorn group

Did naught except to gain,

Giving only to those who gave

Was how she played the game.

The logs held tight in death’s still hands

Was proof of human sin.

They didn’t die from the cold without,

They died from the cold within.

Anonymous

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Freedom Through Empowerment

Freedom Through Empowerment

The Other Virus: Learned Helplessness

Below is a post from Peckford42 that provides an excellent summary of the corroding nature of learned helplessness and how the giant Covid PSYOP of this past year has shoved us in to a societal wide, curled fetal position. Give it a read, ask yourself some tough questions and then check out Peckford’s excellent site.What is a culture of compliance, and ever-shifting rules, doing to us?Why would any American allow the government to deny him a final goodbye to the person who raised him? Why would anyone allow grandma to die untouched in a hospital room without fighting back? In the post-vaccination era, why don’t people remove their masks? Learned helplessness, employed as a control tool.

Learned helplessness is well documented. It takes place when an individual believes he continuously faces a negative, uncontrollable situation and stops trying to improve his circumstances, even when he has the ability to do so. Discovering the loss of control elicits a passive reaction to a harmful situation. Psychologists call this a maladaptive response, characterized by avoidance of challenges and the collapse of problem-solving when obstacles arise. You give up trying to fight backAn example may help: You must keep up with ever-changing mask and other hygiene theater rules, many of which make no sense (mask in the gym, but not the pool; mask when going to the restaurant toilet but not at your table; NYC hotels are closed while Vegas casinos are open; Disney California closed while Disney Florida was open) and comply.You could push back, but you have been made afraid at a core level (forget about yourself rascal, you’re going to kill grandma if you don’t do what we say) and so you just give in. Once upon a time we were told a vaccine would end it all, yet the restrictions remain largely in place. You’re left believing nothing will fix this. Helpless to resist, you comply, “out of an abundance of caution.”

American psychologists Martin Seligman and Steven Maier created the term “learned helplessness” in 1967. They were studying animal behavior by delivering electric shocks to dogs (it was a simpler time). Dogs who learned they couldn’t escape the shock simply stopped trying, even after the scientists removed a barrier and the dog could have jumped away.

Learned helplessness has three main features: a passive response to trauma, disbelief that trauma can be controlled, and stress.

Example: You are being stalked by a killer disease which often has no outward symptoms. There is nothing you can do but hide inside and buy things from Amazon. The government failed to stop the virus initially, failed to warn you, failed to supply ventilators and PPE gear, and failed to produce a vaccine quickly enough. You may die. You may kill your family members along the way. You have lost your job by government decree and are forced to survive on unemployment and the odd stimulus check—manufactured dependence. It is all very real: WebMD saw a 251 percent increase in searches for anxiety this April.

Americans, with their cult-like devotion to victimhood, are primed for learned helplessness. Your problems are because you’re a POC, or fat, or on some spectrum. You are not responsible, can’t fix something so systemic, and best do what you are told.The way out is to allow people to make decisions and choices on their own. This therapy is used with victims of learned helplessness such as hostages. During their confinement all the important decisions of their life, and most of the minor ones, were made by their captors. Upon release, many hostages fear things as simple as a meal choice and need to be coaxed out of helplessness one micro-choice at a time.

Example: You cannot choose where to stand, so follow the marks on the floor. Ignore the research saying three feet apart is as useful or useless as six feet apart. Don’t think about why the rules are the same inside a narrow hallway and outside in the fresh air but don’t apply at all on airplanes.Kin to learned helplessness are enforcers. Suddenly your waitress transitions from someone serving you into someone ordering you to wear a mask, sit alone, eat outside, etc. Flight attendants morph from delivering drinks to holding the power to have security haul you to jail for unmasking when not actively eating. Companies once run by entrepreneurs are today controlled by the harassment-stalking undead from HR. We’ve become a republic of hall monitors. And there it is. The wrong people are in charge.

One of the better examples of learned helplessness is One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest, a great book made into an impressive movie starring a lean Jack Nicholson. Nurse Ratched cows a group of mentally ill men into complete learned helplessness, encouraging them to rat each other out for small offenses, and to follow her every order no matter how absurd. The kicker comes near the end when we learn all of the men (except Nicholson) are free to leave the hospital at any time. They just…can’t.

It is amazing how fast people stepped into the Nurse Ratched role. Within moments of COVID’s arrival in the national conscience, officials like California’s Gavin Newsom, and New York’s Andrew Cuomo and Bill De Blasio raced to assume fat emergency powers. They spent not one moment assessing the impact of their decisions to lock down against the effects of the lock down. They ignored information questioning the value of lock down. 

They turned topsy-turvy the idea that in a free society the burden of proof is on those who would restrict freedom and not on those who resist such restrictions.

They were aided in manufacturing learned helplessness by the most sophisticated propaganda operation ever created. Already engorged with the coin of three years of fake news, the legacy media saw the value of a new crisis in working toward their two real goals: making as much money as possible garnering clicks, and defeating Donald Trump. Previous shows—Russiagate, with a hat tip to 9/11 when Americans demanded fewer freedoms to feel safer—illustrated the way. On a 24/7 basis Americans were injected with the message: You are helpless and Donald “COVID” Trump will kill you; your only hope is to comply fully with the people at CNN who are administering the electric shocks.

Truth is useless to propagandists, actually a threat. 

Look at what turned out to be false (in addition to Russiagate): We never ran out of ventilators or PPE or nurses or ICU beds or morgues. Masks are not needed outdoors. We did in fact develop a vaccine, several for that matter, in less than a year. Almost everyone who died was elderly or had serious comorbidities (a distinct class) but we salivated over “new case numbers” as the primary metric anyway because they went up so much faster. When people questioned the real-world view against the media portrayal, they were told about “asymptomatic COVID” or shunned as hoaxers. Everyone makes mistakes. But just as with Russiagate, all the media mistakes swung one way.

It worked. Condo boards boarded up their gyms. Restaurants forced diners to eat outside in the rain. Entire industries, such as tourism and hospitality, disappeared overnight. New groups were shoved into poverty and unemployment. Children were denied education, criminals released from jails. People were told not to hug their loved ones or celebrate birthdays or attend church. We were told to fear our neighbors as potential carriers.

Every time dissenting information popped up—Florida opening its beaches for Spring Break, for example—the media rushed in to declare everyone was going to die. Texas was declared dead, South Dakota was declared dead, and Americans believed it all even when reports of survivors started drifting out of Disney World.

Americans are not comfortable accepting that their lives are being manipulated at this level, the way for example many Russians assume it to be so. We tend to dismiss such things as conspiracy theories and make an Oliver Stone joke. 

But ask yourself how many of the temporary security and surveillance measures enacted after 9/11 are still controlling our lives almost 20 years later. Is the terror threat still so real the FBI needs to monitor our social media in bulk? Was it ever?

Nothing here is to say vaccines don’t work, or are themselves dangerous. That’s another debate. 

This is about the politics of mass control. Add up the “doesn’t really make sense but we do it anyway” COVID rules and try to make sense of them. Why would otherwise smart leaders implement such rules, for example in New York’s case, purposely impoverishing a city or seeking to defund the police in the midst of triple digit rises in crime? Every time your answer is, “it just doesn’t make sense,” consider a scenario beyond coincidence where it would make sense, however out there that might be. It might be the most important thing you can do.

Then look out the window. Remember “15 days to flatten the curve?” With no voting or debate, a system based on a medical procedure capable of controlling our travel, which businesses we can visit, which hotels we can stay in, what jobs we can hold, what education we can access, at which point it is no more “voluntary” than breathing, was put into place. We no longer need to ask what is going to happen. 

Remember the real question is always why.

Peter Van Buren is the author of We Meant Well: How I Helped Lose the Battle for the Hearts and Minds of the Iraqi PeopleHooper’s War: A Novel of WWII Japan, and Ghosts of Tom Joad: A Story of the 99 Perc

In the Blink of an Eye

By Sue Cass

The streets are filled with people going about their every day tasks. Children are in school with teachers that are as disillusioned as the rest of society. The government has stepped in and set the rules for teaching, preaching, and living, leaving faces downcast, empty stomachs growl, groceries are scarce, the homelessness fill alleys, depression is prevalent, suicides are up, and hopelessness permeates the homes, schools, streets, and businesses.

Mary Lou slowly walks through a park. She’s doing all she can to stay hopeful and filled with joy in spite of all that is going on around her. She stops and watches a small bird fill it’s beak with grass clippings. It stops for a moment and looks at her before flying up to a tree branch and busily adds to the small nest she’s creating. Her home for when the babies are to come.

Mary Lou smiles and thinks of the verses she read in the Bible that speak of how if God takes care of the birds and they have no worries and how much more will He take care of His children. She watches as the little bird flits back down to the ground and hops near the grass edge. It fills its beak with dried grass and flies back to her nest to add her treasure.

Walking along she feels a little better. A squirrel darts across her path and stops to look at her. Standing on its hind legs it chatters at her and she hears whispered in her ear, “Stop worrying.” The squirrel then darts off and up a tree trunk. Mary Lou whispers, “You’re right Mr. Squirrel. I need to stop worrying.”

Late in the day as she ponders more birds, squirrels, and even a duck gliding across the lake with her ducklings. She gazes at the duck, smiles at the cuteness of the seven or eight ducklings following their Mama and then looks up at the sun going down through the trees. She steps to the edge of the lake to get a better view of the sunset and stands in awe of the beauty God has created.

Stepping over to a park bench she takes a seat and lowers her head with eyes closed and prays, “Lord, thank you for showing me your creation and the beauty you have created. You have shown me that whatever is going on in this crazy world that you still care, that you are still with me, and that I’m not to worry and to trust you. You promised to take care of your children and I am one of your kids, so please keep your promise. You said we are to look to eternity, not the present.”

As Mary Lou prays, her prayer is suddenly disrupted by a loud trumpet sound. The sky has turned dark, the air is filled with a power she has never felt before, and suddenly a white horse with a Rider appears high in the sky.

Whoosh!

In the blink of an eye Mary Lou is standing on streets of gold. Her hopes, dreams, and faith has ushered her into the very presence of the Most Holy High God.

~~~~~~~

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Your Chuckle for the Day


Kathryn Leake
The Funny Pages 😂 by SilverElephant

May be an image of animal and nature

The Presbyterian church called a meeting to decide what to do about their squirrel infestation. After much prayer and consideration, they concluded that the squirrels were predestined to be there, and they should not interfere with God’s divine will.

At the Baptist church, the squirrels had taken an interest in the baptistry. The deacons met and decided to put a water-slide on the baptistry and let the squirrels drown themselves. The squirrels liked the slide and, unfortunately, knew instinctively how to swim, so twice as many squirrels showed up the following week.

The Lutheran church decided that they were not in a position to harm any of God’s creatures. So, they humanely trapped their squirrels and set them free near the Baptist church. Two weeks later, the squirrels were back when the Baptists took down the water-slide.

The Episcopalians tried a much more unique path by setting out pans of whiskey around their church in an effort to kill the squirrels with alcohol poisoning. They sadly learned how much damage a band of drunk squirrels can do.

But the Catholic church came up with a more creative strategy! They baptized all the squirrels and made them members of the church. Now they only see them at Christmas and Easter.

Not much was heard from the Jewish synagogue. They took the first squirrel and circumcised him. They haven’t seen a squirrel since.

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Heaven’s Dolphin

The sun is bright, the breeze is warm as a woman smiles up at the sun and lets the sand sift through her toes. Casually walking along the beach she sees a dolphin surface a short distance from her in the sea. She stops to admire its beauty. The dolphin sees her, does a flip out of the water and comes closer to shore. It surfaces and appears to stand up in the water facing her as though beckoning her to come closer.

Stooping down she unbuckles her sandals and leaves them on the pure white sand. Wading out she keeps her eye on the dolphin. The dolphin watches her, seemingly smiling at her, and making its sweet chatter as though talking to her. Wading out closer and closer she reaches out and the dolphin moves closer. Excited, she takes another step closer and suddenly a wave washes over her. The sand beneath her feet gives way as it is sucked out from under her. She’s being pulled and the undercurrent suddenly sucks her down under the water.

The dolphin flips and diving beneath the water it swims lightning speed toward the woman. The water has sucked the woman out to sea and slowly she has little breath and is being tossed and sucked farther and farther into the depths of this watery grave by the undercurrent. Her eyes are open and as her lungs expel the last bit of air she sees a light, a light so bright she has to close her eyes.

“Come unto me all who are weary” is whispered in her ear. Her body goes totally limb and as though being transported at a high rate of speed, the speed of light, she finds herself standing before a huge gate made of solid pearl.

Standing and looking up at the gate in awe she can’t figure out how she got here. Turning slightly she see’s a light shining brightly in the distance and takes a step through the pearl gate toward the light. Suddenly people are gathered; cheering, smiling, motioning toward her to come closer. A huge banner floats by with the words, “Welcome to Paradise,” written in gold.

Her mind begins to clear a bit and she looks at the gathering of people. Sucking in a deep breath she’s surprised to see her cousin Fred, her friend from grade school, Amy, and oh my gosh! Her husband, that was killed on a fishing expedition, steps out of the crowd and walks toward her. Love is beaming from his face as he approaches her and says, “I have been waiting for you. Let me show you around.”

Taking her hand her husband leads her to a Throne, a Throne like nothing she has ever seen. Angels are circling the Throne and a giant of a Man sits upon it. She immediately falls to her knees and praises her heavenly Father. “Holy, Holy, Holy, is the Lord God Almighty, who was and is and is to come” is being song by thousands upon thousands of angels. Tears stream down her cheeks as her heart is so filled with love she feels it will burst.

Leaving the Throne her husband walks her through meadows so green, the green cannot be described. Flowers that seem to be iridescent are in flower beds, lining the streets of gold, scattered throughout pastures, seemingly everywhere. All she can do is stand and look in awe at mountains so grand that gleam in the Light that permeates everything.

“Come,” her husband says, and leads her to a humongous nursery. Stepping inside there are millions of babies. What looks like one time mothers, maybe they’re angels, she can’t really tell, are cradling some, playing with others, and feeding even more. She turns to her husband with a questioning look and doesn’t have to voice her question. “These were killed in the womb,” her husband states.

Tears slide down her face as a woman picks up a child and cuddles it closely to her breast as the baby smiles brightly. She can’t speak and watches as these children are cuddled, fed, played with, and cared for with such love she can barely comprehend it. Her husband leads her away and finally they sit beside a river so grand she can’t imagine its depth or length.

The sparkling water is so clear and fresh that she wants to wade out in it. She wants to lower her body down into it and feel the renewal it offers. Taking her hand gently her husband leads her to the edge but before she can step into the clear sparkling water she hears a calm and loving voice. “Not yet My child. You have more work to do.”

Suddenly she realizes she has been lifted by the dolphin and gently placed in the caring arms of the life guards that have come out to rescue her.

~~~~~~~~~

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Written by Sue Cass and may not be reproduced or copied without the authors permission.

Story of Adam and Eve’s Dog

Adam and Eve said, ‘Lord, when we were in the garden, you walked with us every day.  Now we do not see you anymore. We are lonesome here, and it is difficult for us to remember how much you love us.’
And God said, I will create a companion for you that will be with you and who will be a reflection of my love for you, so that you will love me even when you cannot see me.  Regardless of how selfish or childish or unlovable you may be, this new companion will accept you as you are and will love you as I do, in spite of yourselves.

 And God created a new animal to be a companion for Adam and Eve  

And it was a good animal and God was pleased.

 And the new animal was pleased to be with Adam and Eve and he wagged his tail.  And Adam said, ‘Lord, I have already named all the animals in the Kingdom and I cannot think of a name for this new animal..’
 
And God said, ‘I have created this new animal to be a reflection of my love for you, his name will be a reflection of my own name, and you will call him DOG.

 And Dog lived with Adam and Eve and was a companion to them and loved them.  And they were comforted.

And God was pleased.

And Dog was content and wagged his tail.

After a while, it came to pass that an angel came to the Lord and said, ‘Lord, Adam and Eve have become filled with pride.  They strut and preen like peacocks and they believe they are worthy of adoration.  Dog has indeed taught them that they are loved, but perhaps too well.’
And God said, I will create for them a companion who will be with them and who will see them as they are. The companion will remind them of their limitations, so they will know that they are not always worthy of adoration.’ 

And God created CAT to be a companion to Adam and Eve.

And Cat would not obey them.  And when Adam and Eve gazed into Cat’s eyes, they were reminded that they were not the Supreme Beings.

 And Adam and Eve learned humility. And they were greatly improved. 

And God was pleased.  And Dog was happy. 

 And the Cat . . . 

 didn’t give a flip one way or the other…

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