Saturday, May 20, 2017

Jesus Christ is God Almighty, and God Almighty is Jesus Christ. They, along with the Holy Spirit, are one and the same thing. Do not worry about getting your mind around it, for you can no more get your mind around it anymore than you can get your mind around the fact that God created infinity. Having faith means you are humble enough to accept these things as beyond your understanding, and because you do, God will prove, each and every day, that you are right in your faith. God is not a velvet glove, and God is not an iron gauntlet, but rather, God is both, and the Holy Spirit exist because God likes to do His business through His children. And as God tells us through His Holy Word (His Truth), there is a time for peace and a time for war. When the Philistines are on the field, it is not time for peace. When the Philistines are on the field, it is not time to go like a lamb with an olive branch in it's mouth to greet Goliath. It is not time to turn and run for Bible verses with which to excuse yourself from standing against evil. When the Philistines are on the field, it is not time to worry about your worldly securities. Rather, it is time to protect your Master's children, plain and simple. But if you refuse to stand against evil, if you use God's word to justify your cowardice while His children are handed over to evil, then how will you answer to Him when the time comes to decide how you are to spend eternity? Will you say, "But Master, I followed your word!" If so, then do not be surprised if the Lord then says, "No, you used my word to justify your cowardice, and in my Holy Name, you handed my children over to evil." Now we all know what it's like during a storm when lightning strikes so near that, our home shakes and we are jolted to our core. This will be how it is in that moment when the Lord cast a soul into eternal darkness. So make the right decision today, because it is your soul that you are deciding for. If you are not a fighter that is okay, but do not tell the Lord's soldiers they cannot go out to battle. Rather, help them in any way you can. Bring them food, water, whatever the Lord has made you good at, apply it to the cause. Do not carp and whine about peace when the enemy is on the field. There is a decision to be made, today. Not a debate to be had, but a decision to make, for the Philistines are on the field, demanding we hand our children over to them, and this time they have brought a thousand Goliaths. But what are a thousand Goliaths to the Almighty, they are nothing to fear, and so should it be for those that have faith in Him. And yet we are afraid, you, and I, all of us. Let us get over our fear together, and, as good servants of the Lord, stand and protect our Master's children.

James Sheldon, May 20, 2017

Monday, April 3, 2017




BETWEEN THE SEASONS

 
IT WAS ONE OF THOSE HAUTED DAYS THAT FALL BETWEEN THE SEASONS, a neatherrealm where sun and rain come together, and meadowlarks sing with pond frogs, while thunder fades like distant drums.
 
The long dry spell had been broken, smote by days of downpours, celebrated by the music of rivulets, running all along the roads.
 
A haunted day, not as in evil spirits, but strangely beautiful, as though the hand of God had moved over the land to calm the storm, and in His wake, nature lie aglow. Literally aglow with earth-bound clouds too bright to look upon, or at least to gaze on, like silver veils made from the sun, drifting over pastures backset by dark wooded ravines, and columns of light angling up like stairways to a heavenly sky.
 
I had just left my truck and was walking a ridge in cattle country when from out of this crazy mixed up miracle of nature appeared a large black and white horse. She was wet and wild from the storm, showing-out naturally, trotting up the hill to greet me with ears forward.
 
I hadn’t planned on riding her. The weather radar foretold a rough night and I was looking to put her in her stall. She was looking to go anywhere but her stall, two-thousand pounds of Clydesdale, a giant of a horse, dancing through the mud like a tomboy. And really, on that particular day, a man would have had to of been dead to not feel the wonder-of-creation. So I up and said, “Okay, you want to go, we’ll go.” 
 
I didn’t saddle her, the tack shed stood over yonder, she was soaking wet, and I was in a rubberized rain suit with muck boots and an IH cap. I didn’t have a bit with me either, only a halter with lead rope, so I slung the lead over her huge neck and tied it under her chin to make a pair of reins. Then with the assistance of a nearby log, I jumped on her back and out the gate we went, down the gravel road, towards the valley below. Not a rugged mountain valley, but a gentle valley set in the rolling plains of Kansas.
 
At 17, Reba was up in her years for a horse, but in exceptionally good form which made her filly-like in spirit. She was a mature horse in the best way, and over the past seven years, we had come to know one another well. Part of my mission work was to train and keep her in shape, to pull my wagon on faith-based journeys through rural and small town Kansas. Two missions to date, one coincidentally of forty days and nights (summer of  2012, hottest year on record), and again a year later, for seventy-three days and nights during an unseasonably cold autumn and winter. Such living, outdoors and without arrangements, can really bring a man and his horse together. And in no small part, that is why, with fresh brome and clover poking up along the road to drive a horse crazy; I could ride her bareback with only a halter and just one hand on the lead. But if I claimed responsibility for this goodness, I would be overstepping my bounds.
 
Presently, Reba strutted as if her every atom possessed a single desire to get at that clover, her reward, waiting somewhere down the road. We turned west on a small curvy road that ran the valley floor. There the best clover and brome grew in the ditches, and in small patches hidden in wooded areas along streams. I slid off to stretch my legs while she grazed. A lady came in a white pickup and we had a brief but pleasant conversation, then another neighbor stopped by. Evening came and I took the photo that goes with this story.
 
Growing tired and hungry, I pulled Reba from her dinner. “It’s time to go home,” I said. She replied by bulling me gently back towards the clover with her one ton mass. I snatched hold of the lead directly under her chin, “Hey!” I said in a voice that stopped her in her tracks, and continuing in earnest, “I took care of you, now it’s your turn to take care of me. I’m tired and need to eat, and I need you to take me home.”
 
Messing with my smart-phone and not paying attention, a quarter mile passed before I realized Reba was walking on a beeline, unswayed by what had to be tremendous temptation on either side. I knew she hadn’t got her fill, and would normally need some course correction. She was a good horse, but also a spoiled pet, and yet there she was trucking straight as an arrow.  Naturally I couldn’t help but wonder if she had understood what I said. It just seemed impossible, and truthfully, not one second after my thought, she stopped on a dime, brought her head around and shot me a look that unmistakably said, “I know what you said.” Then turning back to the business at hand, she continued straight down the road. It was a rare thing, and it dang near gave me chills. I seriously doubt she understood my words, but it certainly was something beyond my understanding. Perhaps in that moment, God gave her a connection to the place from which my thoughts came. All I know is this; we think we know so much, but in truth, we know so little. And knowing that, is a good thing.
 

Written by, James Sheldon
Copyright 3/29/2017