He Is (at 32:45)

Old notes taken mostly from my personal time with God. We're moving house again, so, I guess we're back to being, literally, pilgrims on the Rough Roads of Planet Earth. (Photo taken on a road to the Waitangi Treaty Grounds, North Auckland, NZ, Dec 2009.)

Wednesday, October 26, 2016

Happy Resurrection Sunday 2016!

Yup, I was away for some time. I only had funny clips added to the “Lighten Up” section of this site in the past month or so. Truth is, I hurt my right hand and it was in a cast for five weeks and now I’m on my 12-week physical therapy phase. I couldn’t use my right hand much, including typing on a keyboard, thus, I took a break from blogging for a while. I can type now but my hand gets tired really fast. Hence, will keep this short, and sweet. :-)
My purse was snatched on the first week of last month (February). I drove to the ATM one dark cold night, the day before the snow was forecast to fall. I was the perfect crime victim - I parked on the side of the road because I thought, “Wow, so few people out on a cold night in a usually bustling corner! Might as well make use of the parking space - it’s all mine tonight!” I was also in a hurry leaving the house and mistakenly grabbed my daughter’s beanie which had a bright pink pom-pom at the top. Looking back now, if I had parked at my usual pharmacy parking the carpark cameras may have scared the thugs away. If I was wearing my usual black non-descript headgear they probably would have had more trouble singling me out and following me from the ATM to the drugstore and to my car. But then, you see, I was being the perfect crime victim that night. On my way back home, at a traffic light, I thought there seemed to be a car which was much in a hurry behind me. But then again I didn’t give much thought to it. Must just be some young people out late at night, I thought. When I got home I took my usual sweet time to park and straighten my car. Our house has no fence and our front light wasn’t on, as usual. If ever I sensed an “impatient” driver behind me at a corner on the way home, that car seemed to have gone further on after I turned at our corner. When I got out of my car I saw a teenage-looking guy about to pass in front of our house and he was wearing only a thin hoodie. I thought, "That's was pretty under-dressed for an unusually cold night like this." He looked like he was one of our neighbors living just down the road from us. I thought, "Oh well, young people. They would rather be cold but look nice." Was I wrong! Before I reached the steps of our front door he came up to me and yes, that was when the snatching happened. When he finally wrenched the bag off me I fell backwards on the pavement and I saw a car rev up to go, right at the corner, when the robber ran towards it together with my bag.

Well, what did I learn from that incident? So many things, of course. First, forget about using ATMs. Now I understand why people use “cash back” at the drugstore. After I was made to view at least 1000 faces of suspects I also realized you really can’t judge a book by its cover. Some of them looked so innocent, just like any guy sitting next to you on the bus.

Was I mad? Well, at first I thought, next time I should be carrying a satchel that would teach a snatcher a lesson; very much like this one:

Or better still, lug a nightmare knapsack like this one:

What d'ya think? Tsk, tsk. Nah, instead, I decided not to carry any pouch at all, at least for a while, until the trauma dies down. :-)

And then again, it's Resurrection Sunday. What better time to forgive and move on! At the cross, despite His suffering and sorrow, Jesus prayed to His Father for His crucifiers. He said, “Father, forgive them, for they know not what they’re doing.” If only we fully understand the repercussions of every mindless did we do or worthless thought we entertain, I guess we would think a million times before we do them. If Adam had known all of mankind, from his generation down through the ages, would suffer the disastrous consequences of him and Eve eating the forbidden fruit in the Garden of Eden, he probably would never have given a second thought to the serpent's suggestion. Or, would King David have bothered to take a second glance at bathing Bathsheba if he had known it would result in the decline of his kingdom and ruin of his children? When people try to make light of divorce and remarriage they always cite David’s sin of adultery as if saying it’s acceptable because even a great king like David did it and he was still what God considered “a man after God’s own heart” ! They always forget that that adultery he did weakened the foundation of his dynasty and posterity. It brought catastrophic events into his very own household, resulting in the rape and murder committed by his children against one another, his son raping his own wives in public humiliation on the roof of his palace, and he himself and his personal guards running away for fear of his life from his own son! Nathan the prophet declared to him: "This is what the LORD says: 'Out of your own household I am going to bring calamity upon you. Before your very eyes I will take your wives and give them to one who is close to you, and he will lie with your wives in broad daylight. You did it in secret, but I will do this thing in broad daylight before all Israel." (2 Samuel 12:11,12) If David had known all those events would follow, he wouldn’t have dared take another glance at his neighbor’s wife, would he? How about Moses? If he had known that giving in to his anger by striking the rock instead of talking to it, would result in his being barred from the Promised Land, would he have struck the rock still? I doubt it. If barren Sarah had known her act of impatience - giving her Egyptian servant Hagar as wife to her husband Abraham to fulfill God’s promise for an heir - would result in the cataclysmic chasm between the descendants of Hagar’s son Ishmael and the descendants of her son, the promised heir Isaac, for all time (thank God, not really, but until "Shiloh comes"), would she have been more patient? And would Abraham have persuaded her to wait if he had known what they were doing? Adam, David, Moses, Sarah, Abraham (and many others) - all pillars of the Bible story. Yet, they did not know what they were doing! How much more us? Do we know what we are doing? Have we learned from the mistakes of these heroic personalities yet? So yes, most likely, we all have done wrong and we knew it not. We all have sinned and did not know what we were doing. So, no, I actually did not feel resentful towards the robbers. In fact, I prayed they read the books I had in my bag - a New Testament and a Christian biography - besides spending the cash and throwing away my cards, my low-tech cellphone and other personal effects! I felt more like how-silly-of-me-to-have-played-the-dumb-sitting- duck-that-night. But then again, I did not know what I was doing. So, yeah, I had to forgive myself, too. And yes, I was able to turn aside to gaze on the Burning Bush. When we fall sick or get into some accident or mishap I believe it is God calling us to pull aside, take stock and reflect. What an opportune time - the true essence of the Lenten Season! And praise God, we have Resurrection Sunday at the end of it - the Resurrection of Jesus Christ which gives us hope for a new life and new beginning! It's the apt time to reflect, forgive, repent and live again. Happy New Beginnings! So there, "Happy Resurrection Sunday!"

All Scripture references are from the 1984 New International Version, unless otherwise specified.

This is a re-blog, a really late post originally posted on March 27, 2016.

If you wish to cite this blog, citation is as follows: PureJoyLand. (2016, Mar 27). Happy Resurrection Sunday 2016! [Blog Post]. Retrieved from http://purejoyland.com/2016/03/resurrection-sunday-2016

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The Many Versions of Love Stories 1. Boy meets girl, they fall in love, kiss and marry. They live happily ever after. 2. Boy meets girl, they fall in love, kiss and marry. The marriage sours, they part, and live happily ever after. 3. Boy meets girl, they fall in love, kiss and marry. Then boy finds out it's more fun to be girl... or girl finds out it's more fun to be boy, they part, change sexes and live happily ever after. 4.Finally, boy or girl meets God. It's love at first sight... The roads went rough, the tides rose high, the strong winds blew and the quake shook the ground... but they truly live happily ever after, forever and ever. 5. Try God's love... it's always happy forever after, and the story never ends. :-D