Saturday, November 12, 2016

 A Current Prayer Directive from 1Chron.29

“Furthermore King David said to all the assembly: ‘My son Solomon, whom alone God has chosen, is young and inexperienced; and the work is great, because the temple[a] is not for man but for the Lord God.’” 1Chron.29:1

I was reading 1Chronicles 29 this morning and was struck by the parallel that could be drawn between the transfer of power from King David to Solomon, and the extraordinary election of Donald Trump as President of the USA.

It’s not a perfect metaphor of course, and there are places that really don’t apply at all, but it really stood out to me this morning as a directive for God’s people to pray, if nothing else.

Solomon and The Building of the Temple
In V1, King David is speaking to “all the assembly” about his son Solomon, about whom he says he “alone God has chosen.” It’s been widely reported about this election that evangelical Christians made a huge difference, helping Trump to win because they came out en force—through prayer and voting—believing that Trump was the one God has chosen for the job, even with all of his many flaws.

King David describes his son as “young and inexperienced” in that verse. While Donald J. Trump—at 70-years-old—isn’t exactly young, he IS young and definitely inexperienced when it comes to being the President of the United States, and the leader of the free world.

Verse one continues with David saying, “the work is great, because the temple is not for man but for the Lord God.” As Christians, we know that because of Jesus’ work on the Cross, God does not limit Himself to the walls of a temple, but that each Believer’s body is now a temple for the indwelling of God’s Holy Spirit.

America was formed by people who believed that God was directing them, and they acknowledged this at every step in the crafting of this country’s foundations and Constitution. Even within America’s ‘Declaration of Independence,’ the dependence upon God the Creator is spelled out. This is also depicted in the more recent text of our National Motto: “In God We Trust.”

Because of America’s dedication to God, the last part of V1 comes into play, that this country is indeed not for man’s glory but that of “the Lord God.” Also, the position of this country’s Commander-in-Chief IS great, and really a monumental task.

The Remarkable Contributions
“Now for the house of my God I have prepared with all my might: gold for things to be made of gold, silver for things of silver, bronze for things of bronze, iron for things of iron, wood for things of wood, onyx stones, stones to be set, glistening stones of various colors, all kinds of precious stones, and marble slabs in abundance. Moreover, because I have set my affection on the house of my God, I have given to the house of my God, over and above all that I have prepared for the holy house, my own special treasure of gold and silver: three thousand talents of gold, of the gold of Ophir, and seven thousand talents of refined silver, to overlay the walls of the houses; the gold for things of gold and the silver for things of silver, and for all kinds of work to be done by the hands of craftsmen. Who then is willing to consecrate himself this day to the Lord?” 1 Chron. 29:2-5

In the following verses, 2-5, King David lists all the gold, silver, wood and precious stones that he has accumulated for the work of building God’s Temple, and then later on in this chapter it mentions how others gave for the work. In this, one can draw a loose parallel to the surprising way Americans supporting Trump gave to the cause, and his campaign was able to raise enough money—including that of his own—to help him win the office.

“Then the leaders of the fathers’ houses, leaders of the tribes of Israel, the captains of thousands and of hundreds, with the officers over the king’s work, offered willingly.” 1 Chron. 29:6 

In V6, it mentions how the leaders, captains, officers—and in the previous verses, the craftsmen—“offered willingly” to help Solomon build the Temple. The last few days we’ve heard of how President-elect Trump is putting together his cabinet, and the many good people who have stepped up to help.

“Then the people rejoiced, for they had offered willingly, because with a loyal heart they had offered willingly to the Lord; and King David also rejoiced greatly.” 1 Chron. 29:9

In V9 I see a parallel between these people who had “offered willingly” and with a “loyal heart offered willingly to the Lord” and those who came together and prayed for this election. It truly was inspirational the way God’s people from all denominations, religious backgrounds, and ethnicity joined in prayer and intercession—some even fasting—for God’s results in this 2016 election.

Praise and Dedication to God
In V10-17 King David offers praise and thanksgiving to the Lord, acknowledging that He reigns over all, and that all of this wealth, land position is His in the first place and that “we are aliens and pilgrims before You, as were all our fathers; our days on earth are as a shadow, and without hope” if not for God.

As mentioned before, America’s forefathers did the same and dedicated this land to Him, acknowledging their dependence on their Creator. America belongs to God.

A Current Prayer Directive from the Ancient

“O Lord God of Abraham, Isaac, and Israel, our fathers, keep this forever in the intent of the thoughts of the heart of Your people, and fix their heart toward You. And give my son Solomon a loyal heart to keep Your commandments and Your testimonies and Your statutes, to do all these things, and to build the temple for which I have made provision.” 1 Chron. 29:18-19

King David prays that this dedication and reliance on God would be kept “forever in the intent of the thoughts of the heart of Your people” and that the Lord would “fix their heart toward” Him. This is still an excellent prayer directive for all of us to pray over ourselves and the people of this country.

And then David prays for his son Solomon, a prayer that seems applicable and important to pray now over President-elect Trump; that God would give Donald Trump a “loyal heart to keep [God’s] commandments and [His] testimonies and [His] statutes.” Remembering how the Church rose up (with the exception of some) to pray and prophesy over him, and the incredible miracle of Trump’s victory over the seemingly insurmountable Clinton machine. May our new President-elect ponder all these things and hold them close in his heart, staying humble before the Lord.

We know from later chapters of the Bible that King Solomon was definitely not perfect—a bit of a playboy even—but he was the man that God had chosen for the building of The Temple and the leading of the nation of Israel.

Solomon Anointed as King, and the New President Taking Office

In the following verses, the transfer of power is made from King David to Solomon, and the people thanked the Lord and rejoiced, as God’s hand was truly on King Solomon and his reign, with great blessing and favor.

“And they made sacrifices to the Lord and offered burnt offerings to the Lord on the next day: a thousand bulls, a thousand rams, a thousand lambs, with their drink offerings, and sacrifices in abundance for all Israel. So they ate and drank before the Lord with great gladness on that day. And they made Solomon the son of David king the second time, and anointed him before the Lord to be the leader, and Zadok to be priest. Then Solomon sat on the throne of the Lord as king instead of David his father, and prospered; and all Israel obeyed him. All the leaders and the mighty men, and also all the sons of King David, submitted themselves to King Solomon. So the Lord exalted Solomon exceedingly in the sight of all Israel, and bestowed on him such royal majesty as had not been on any king before him in Israel.” 1 Chron. 29:21-25

We must certainly be praying for this transition from candidate Trump to President Trump, and for his presidency thereafter. Trump truly has a huge task before him of leading this nation, and of bringing this now very divided country together as one.

It does seem like an almost impossible mission, but so did the idea that Donald J Trump would ever actually win this election in the first place!

And we know that “with God, nothing shall be impossible.”

Monday, August 1, 2016

So Much Ado about a Temporary Ban, but Is It Really Just "Common Sense" as One Muslim Put It?

"For some time I have been saying that Muslim immigration into the United States should be stopped until we can properly vet them or until the war with Islam is over." -Franklin Graham
[This post first appeared on Breaking Christian News] Following the Democratic National Convention, and specifically the speech given by Gold Star father, Khizr Khan, media has blown up with what Khan directed toward Republican presidential nominee Donald Trump, and how he reacted. (Photo: Reuters/Mike Segar/via Christian Post)
While I absolutely agree that Gold Star parents—who have had a son or daughter die while serving in the US Armed Forces—deserve the utmost respect, Khan was undeniably making accusatory statements that seemed designed to raise defenses and elicit a response.
How about an objective look at what Khan said...
His first statement was made regarding his son, Captain Humayun Khan's sacrifice to serve, and that "If it was up to Donald Trump, he never would have been in America."
This was directly related to Trump's call for a TEMPORARY ban on Muslim immigration from regions that are hotbeds of terrorism, UNTIL they can be properly vetted before entering the country.
Khizr Khan hails from the UAE, not on the list of terror-harboring countries, so it's likely he would not have had a problem coming to America.
(Side note: the UAE actually listed the largest Muslim group in America—CAIR—on its list of terror groups to watch)
The UAE Ambassador said back in 2014, "A successful campaign to defeat Islamist extremism in the long term must confront the transnational networks and organizations that breed and support hatred and violence in the name of religion.
"Backing these support networks and organizations is a sophisticated ideological, financial and communications complex that includes countries, charities, companies and individuals. It uses social media, religious centers, banks and false fronts. It must be choked off through an organized program of better intelligence, more-aggressive law enforcement and tougher sanctions."
Getting back to Khan's speech, he further went on the attack stating that "Donald Trump consistently smears the character of Muslims..."
To what is he referring? To the calling of that oh-so-controversial temporary ban?
Actually, if Khan really wanted to go after those smearing the character of Muslims in general, shouldn't Khan be angry at ISIS, Boko Haram, and other Islamic Terror groups whose very existence (not to mention activity) call into question the 'peacefulness' of the religion?
Look at Germany, which recently suffered four Islamic terror attacks in one week, two of which were by migrants from Syria.
Germany has had an open door policy toward those seeking asylum from the conflict in the Middle East.
Note the July 25, 2016 headline in the Daily Mail: "After four savage attacks by Muslims in one week, Germans are living in fear—and this is just the beginning..."
In light of this, doesn't better vetting of those seeking to enter our country from these terror hotbed regions sound like a good idea?
There are at least two prominent people, one a Muslim himself, and one a Christian, who do agree with a temporary ban on Muslim immigration from particular countries on a terror watch list—but perhaps you haven't heard their take?
The Muslim? President Obama's own half-brother, Malik Obama. According to a Reuters report, Malik calls the temporary ban "common sense," adding, "I'm a Muslim, of course, but you can't have people going around just shooting people and killing people in the name of Islam." (Photo: Malik Obama/Reuters/via Christian Today)
(Another side note of interest, Malik stated it was "sort of disappointing, somewhat hypocritical" that none of Obama's family from Kenya were invited to the DNC)
The other person, who actually suggested a temporary ban before Donald Trump did, is son of the Rev. Billy Graham—evangelist Franklin Graham.
"For some time I have been saying that Muslim immigration into the United States should be stopped until we can properly vet them or until the war with Islam is over," Franklin wrote in a post on his Facebook page.
"Donald J. Trump has been criticized by some for saying something similar. The new Speaker of the House Paul Ryan said yesterday that he disagrees—saying that 'such views are not what this party stands for and more importantly it's not what this country stands for.' Politicians in Washington seem to be totally disconnected with reality."
I am grateful for the great sacrifice made by Captain Humayun Khan, as he truly is a hero, along with all of our other men and women who have served and paid the ultimate price.
But when it comes to keeping this country safe, can we afford not to look at the migrant toll taken on Europe? Do we really think America wouldn't be next?
The U.S. already has 'homegrown terrorists' in our midst.
Is it wrong to take extra precautions which might help ensure we would not be overrun by terror in the future?

Tuesday, July 19, 2016

One America Again: Rudy Giuliani's Words Ring True for the USA

Do black lives matter? Of course they do! But so do ALL lives! ALL lives in America matter, because we are together—ONE people, one country and one nation under God.
There were quite a few pertinent points made with passionate deliveries at the Republican National Convention's first day on Monday, but one of the most noted speeches was that of former mayor of New York City, Rudy Giuliani(Photo: via Star Tribune)
With the recent tragic attacks on officers in Dallas and Baton Rouge fresh in mind, Giuliani thanked police forces throughout the country, noting that they protect "every race, every color, every creed, every sexual orientation."
What Giuliani said next was apparently off-script, however, it was the most powerful—and most repeated—part of his speech, as he fervidly stated what has always been what truly makes America great:
"It's time to make America ONE again. One America! ... What happened to there's no black America, there's no white America, there is just AMERICA?!..."
Our Founding Fathers said it best when they designed this country's Great Seal and motto: "E pluribus unim," which means "from many, one."
I don't recall learning this in History class, but apparently there were several ideas submitted for that official Seal during the formation of America, submitted by the First Great Seal Committee made up of: Thomas Jefferson, John Adams and Benjamin Franklin, along with artist, Pierre Eugéne Du Simitiére. (Image via
One of the artistic designs included symbols of the original countries from which they immigrated at the time; England, France, Holland, Germany, Ireland and Scotland. Those were surrounded by 13 smaller shields with initials representing the "thirteen Independent States of America."
In the end, though, the seal design that was finally chosen in 1782 was that of the American bald eagle, holding a ribbon in its beak with the Latin words: E Pluribus Unim. It's what America has always been; the common thread that unites each citizen—out of many, ONE.
Our proud heritage (from other countries or Native American) is what makes us UNIQUE—being a citizen of America is what makes us ONE. And being united as ONE is what makes us STRONG! It's what makes America strong. (Image via
Do black lives matter? Of course they do! But so do ALL lives! ALL lives in America matter, because we are together—ONE people, one country, and one nation under God.
Please, let's return to E Pluribus Unim, and when voices that highlight division are shouting, let's please shout even louder: ONE AMERICA, ALL LIVES MATTER IN ONE AMERICA!
It's true the country seems more divided than ever right now. But if we can return to referring to ourselves as simply "Americans," and embrace what unites us, instead of promoting division and defining everything by the color of our skin—then maybe this nation really can be great again.
Jesus plainly warned, "Every kingdom divided against itself will be ruined, and every city or household divided against itself will not stand." (Matt. 12:25)
There is great evil to fight, ISIS will not wait.
The USA must come together again, and stand together once again—all of us with our different hues of skin, different heritages, differing talents and giftings, even differing religions—all of us united by the fact that we are all free citizens of this remarkable country: America!

Tuesday, March 8, 2016

Why I'm Glad Women and Men are Different; a Woman's Perspective on International Woman's Day

The cry of gender-benders will ultimately only be satisfied by getting to know the One who "created them male and female."

In this age of gender-bending, and efforts to insure equality among women and men, it may be very counter-culture to express gratitude for the distinct differences between male and female. (Free photo via Pixabay)
But I—a woman—am very thankful for this creative expression from God's heart and His hands.
I would never want to lessen any hard-fought achievements made by suffragettes such as Susan B. Anthony and the like. I'm not calling into question any equality of rights, or of pay, or certainly of respect.
Instead, I would just like to highlight the simple-yet-complex characteristics of contradistinction that make our two genders unique. And which can—with the heart God intended—become beautifully congruent and harmonious.
After 30-plus years of marriage (like most couples, not always easy), I feel that I've gained a great deal of respect for the opposite gender, and have also grown in appreciation for that of my own.
Any good psychologist will tell you that men and women think differently and process things in contrasting ways. This is certainly God's design and intention.
When respect is maintained, these polar perspectives can become complimentary.
This is not to say that my husband and I don't have difficulty relating to one another's positions on occasion—we're human and that's a reality that is going to happen.
But I'm not threatened by my husband's "maleness," I have come to appreciate it. And I have come to realize that my perspective alone would be a narrow one, and likely somewhat short-sighted without the addition of his input.
My "female-ness" is also not threatened by the Word of God and the Gospel, as some women seem to be. In fact, the respect that Jesus showed to women as described in the New Testament was revolutionary in a time when their gender received little recognition, if any.
The vessels God spoke through and used for His glory and His plans, included women all throughout the Old Testament.
And what a privilege God has given women to actually carry another life—another little person—inside their bodies and bring them into the world!
Today we see the gender-bending trend being pushed and promoted all around the world, even among the very young.
I personally find the whole concept very tragic, as it seems to me its root is a soul crying out for acceptance and love.
That cry will ultimately only be satisfied by getting to know the One who "created them male and female"; by having a relationship with God who knows each of our hearts better than we know ourselves.
I'm forever grateful that the Lord, the One who created me, knows MY heart—even when I'd rather hide from Him out of shame. (Photo: Aimee and husband David)
In the end, He created my heart. He knows me inside and out, and He loves me, and what's more—because of what Jesus did—nothing will separate me from His love.
This sets me free to be who I was created to be: a woman, a mother, a partner to my husband without fear.
And for that I'm very grateful!
*This article first appeared in Breaking Christian News.