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Saturday, July 30, 2016

Fiction Review: Broken Windows

Broken Windows, by Deb Brammer is the first in her Keyhole Mystery series. It’s a delightful book for teens, even young teens. It’s basically about four young adult friends who end up living in close proximity one to the other.  The two young men become roommates. The protagonist is Jordan, who goes to Boise, Idaho in order to study bronze sculpture with his artist hero. His boss, Texas-dressing Monte Mayer, is temperamental and hard to work with, and he falsely accuses Jordan of theft. Jordan is determined to find out who is really taking things, and his search leads him into life-changing adventures.

Who is the Zaxx (like Banksy street artist) copycat? Why does his work show up in places related to Jordan? Why do the boss’s possessions keep going missing? And, who's framing Jordan? Who took a shot at Zophie, and who drove the dark van? What is going on?

When police question Jordan’s friends about breaking and entering, things get interesting.

All the while, the four friends are involved in a children’s Bible club outreach. They become concerned for a needy little boy while they face trials of their own.

Jordan thinks his missionary parents have wasted their lives on the mission field, and he questions God. He writes his thoughts anonymously on an online forum.

Follow Jordan and Zophie as they grow and change and Matt and Alison as they accompany their friends. Matt, born with spina bifida and in a wheelchair, demonstrates how a real Christian needs to act and react. Logan, who works with Jordan, is confined to a wheelchair too, but he’s the exact opposite. He’s sarcastic, cruel, and resentful.

I had a difficult time getting into this book at the beginning. There were so many characters and backstories, and I had trouble keeping the two similar names, Jordan and Logan, straight in my somewhat dyslexic head.

Also, there are two young men in wheelchairs, and Jordan gets injured and temporarily uses a wheelchair. So then, there are three wheelchair-bound people in a story with six main characters. I felt that was a little exaggerated, but at the same time, I appreciated Mrs. Brammer showing that a person can accomplish a lot of things even when he can’t walk. (Sorry to be vague here, but I don’t want to be a spoiler.)

I also felt that the author took on too much for one book. It covers many varied themes. They are good ones, though, and her didacticism is effective. Teens will glean a lot from this book, even while following the rabbit trails.

This book is marketed for adults, but I think it’s more applicable to teens. The young adults of the story drive (a ’69 Mustang and a van), and they get into adventures similar to the old Hardy Boys and Nancy Drew stories. There is a hint of romance and absolutely no bad language or sensuality. Broken Windows is clean and Christian. It also emphasizes the need for both home and foreign missionary outreach.

Once I got into the story, it was fun, and I was fast flipping pages on my Kindle. Broken Windows is a good book, exciting, and one that will be especially profitable for teens who are struggling with Christian commitment.

Wednesday, July 27, 2016

"O Be Careful Little . . ."

There’s a children’s song, “Be Careful Little Eyes,” that has quite a few verses to it. One of them goes like this:
   O be careful, little tongue what you say
   O be careful, little tongue what you say
   For the Father up above
   He’s looking down in love
   So, be careful little tongue what you say.

It goes with motions and is very cute, but the message is profound. 

God knows what we say. He cares how we say it.

As you all know, I read a lot. I've limited myself mostly to “Christian books,” classics, and books written long ago. I might give a modern writer a chance, but if I discover that the moral tone and/or the language isn’t right, I put it down, recycle it, and make a mental note to myself. It’s not that the writer isn’t gifted, but the content isn't helpful.

There’s a disturbing trend, though, and even pastors aren’t immune. I’ve read some excellent books that I can’t recommend—non-fiction, about the Christian life—because they use crude language. I’m not referring to curse words. I’m talking about crude words. They’re the kinds of words my own parents would never have let us say!  

My question is why? Why do Christians—especially Christians in leadership—think it’s okay to use crude, rude, and vulgar words?

Some writers make a great effort to keep their work squeaky clean.  They never use crude words—even in action fiction and thrillers. They may refer to someone swearing without putting the words on the page. They don’t use ugly language for body parts. I love reading their books, because I never have to worry.

Why do others—including Christians—think it’s okay to use vulgarities? I’m not sure, since most of our parents taught us right. 

Years ago, as my husband and I were trying hard to learn Spanish, I said a Spanish word that caused the hearer to stop and stare. It was a word I'd learned by listening to the people at church. I had heard the pastor and his wife say it. I thought it was the way you said it in Spanish! The person who heard me said, “That sounds terrible coming from your mouth.” I was mortified and explained that everyone says it that way. He said, “True, but when someone has studied the language and learned it correctly, he shouldn’t use crude words.” Okay . . . . So, I asked him for a better word for the concept and he taught it to me. Lesson learned! From then on, if I had a doubt, I opened my trusty dictionary. Oh my! What surprises were in store! 

So, we strive to use better words, educated talk, the terms that describe things delicately.

I thought about making a list of offensive words in this post, but that would be stooping. I also don’t want to plant any of them in your mind.

Instead, here are eleven biblical tips for filtering your words, writing, and general vocabulary: 
  1. What is the most pleasant or delicate way you can say what needs to be said? The words of the pure are pleasant words (Proverbs 15:26b).
  2. Do your words uplift and encourage your hearers? Pleasant words are as an honeycomb, sweet to the soul, and health to the bones (Proverbs 16:24).
  3. Are your words offensive to other Christians? (Would the elderly people in your church be put off by them?) For in many things we offend all. If any man offend not in word, the same is a perfect man, and able also to bridle the whole body (James 3:2).
  4. Are you being tactful even when counseling or with constructive criticism? A soft answer turneth away wrath: but grievous words stir up anger (Proverbs 15:1).
  5. Do you gossip? Speak not evil one of another, brethren. He that speaketh evil of his brother, and judgeth his brother, speaketh evil of the law, and judgeth the law: but if thou judge the law, thou art not a doer of the law, but a judge (James 4:11).
  6. Are your words the most refined word choices? A word fitly spoken is like apples of gold in pictures of silver (Proverbs 25:11).
  7. Are there any particular words in your vocabulary that should be gotten rid of? (Ask the Lord to make you aware of your speech. This is a process.) Hear; for I will speak of excellent things; and the opening of my lips shall be right things (Proverbs 8:6).
  8. Do your words bless God? Bless the LORD, O my soul. O LORD my God, thou art very great; thou art clothed with honour and majesty (Psalm 104:1).
  9. Do you always speak truth? A faithful witness will not lie: but a false witness will utter lies (Proverbs 14:5).
  10. If the Lord were to hear the last sentence you said or to read the last sentence you wrote, would He approve? The eyes of the LORD are in every place, beholding the evil and the good (Proverbs 15:3).
  11. Are you actively spreading the gospel? But as we were allowed of God to be put in trust with the gospel, even so we speak (1 Thessalonians 2:4a).

I’m sure all of us have been offended at one time or another by careless words. We might have been offended by crudeness or cursing. We may have used less than fine language ourselves.

Today, with all of our connectedness—social media, instant messaging, etc.—it’s easier than ever to use an inappropriate word and offend. Let’s be very careful. 

Let's also remember that it’s most important to please God!

Let the words of my mouth, and the meditation of my heart, 
be acceptable in thy sight, O LORD, 
my strength, and my redeemer. 
(Psalm 19:14)

Sunday, July 24, 2016

Reconnect: How to Spend Quality Time in Your Family

I have an idea for spending after-school time more effectively in your home. This works for families where both parents work and the children go to school. It works if you homeschool. It especially works if you make it a tradition in your home. I’ve gleaned my “novel” idea from different media sources. One was a teacher in a secular school. Another was a man who recently wrote a bedtime book for children. I formulated an idea that I believe will work in your home. I hope you’re curious enough to give it a try.

My idea has to do with the cell phone dilemma. What do you do with kids who always have gadgets in their hands? What if you need yours, too? This isn't about "check your phone at the door." That doesn't quite do it in a world where kids actually do their homework research online. 

I haven't tested this out myself. Why? Believe it or not, my kids never had a cell phone while they lived at home. We didn’t have Internet access until our youngest was either in his senior year or was already gone. (I don’t remember.) Sooooo, we simply didn’t have disturbances to connecting with our kids. Plus, I homeschooled, and I was my kids' taxi-driver—in Spain, you need to be eighteen to drive. We ate all meals as a family, too. Believe me, we connected well with our children! 

But, now is now, and things—life—is different. Many children, especially teens, have cell phones, and they are always connected—or are playing games. It’s hard to break through and communicate with them. “Helloooooo, Johnny, are you there?”

So, how can we improve life at home? I believe I’ve come up with an easy way to do so without ruining your child’s homework or social life. Hang on for my suggestions, and I’d love to hear back from you if you try this.

The Reconnect Method 
  1. Establish family times. For sure, they should include dinner, commutes in the car, and the thirty minutes before bedtime. You can include others, too, of course. During “family time,” no one in the household may hold a phone or tablet. Some families have a special basket for phone collection. Do what works for you. Phones need to be in silent mode during family time. Every member of the family switches off at this same time every day. If friends always call at dinnertime, for example, your kids can advise them that Mom and Dad insist on dinner without phones.
  2. Make sure bedtime is special. Some people pray with their children during this goodnight time. It's important to kiss each child goodnight and tell them you love them. (I confess; I often ended my tender goodnight with my teenage son with a pillow fight. But, to this day, he caught the love as well as the pillows!) Even big children need a sweet goodnight.
  3. Talk during your family times. Your talking doesn’t have to be about anything special. Your family needs to be a safe place where kids and parents can express opinions without recriminations. You can laugh, share, enjoy, and discuss. Do not have the TV on during family time! Around the table for meals and afterwards is a great time to discuss the day and have fun together. Our family used the time after our main meal—middle of the day in Europe—for reading the Bible together and prayer. Again, do what works for your family, but talk!
  4. From time to time, schedule a Family Fun Time. A lot of people do these on Friday nights, but I can imagine that many working women are absolutely worn out on Friday evenings. How about Saturday noon? A picnic—or playing board games, if it rains? How about doing something together, like biking, walking along the beach, hiking . . . something outdoors, but close to home? How about playing badminton or kickball in the yard? I know you’ve already thought of something your family would enjoy. Again, no cell phones for anyone during Family Fun Time. It needs to be a regular time, every week (if possible). 
By the way, expect to go through a week or two of adjustments. Kids might forget to put their phones in the basket, or they might carry the phone to the table, or they might get six texts from friends during meals. These things are normal. Soon, their friends will get used to your schedule—and so will your kids.

I would love for your family to enjoy the same kind of connection we had/have with our kids. I would love for you and your kids to be close, too. Try my suggestions, and see how they work for you. If you think of it, come back and leave a comment about how the "Reconnect Method" worked for your family.

 He will bless them that fear the LORD, both small and great.
 The LORD shall increase you more and more, you and your children.
(Psalm 115:13-14)


Thursday, July 21, 2016

"The Sky is Falling" and the "New Normal"

This know also, that in the last days perilous times shall come (2 Timothy 3:1).

And ye shall hear of wars and rumours of wars:
see that ye be not troubled: for all these things must come to pass,
but the end is not yet (Matthew 24:6).

A man in a huge truck runs over adults and children, who were enjoying fireworks in Nice, France. The comment on the news? “We need to get used to the new normal. These attacks are going to happen.”

There's rioting and police killings in the United States. The comment on the news? “I’m afraid this is the new normal.” The comment on social media? “The sky is falling!” (Not exactly in those words, but there were lots of doomsday responses.)

A teen takes an axe onto a train in Germany and kills some, wounds many more.

The truth is:
  • There are horrendous things happening all over the world today.
  • You really can’t know when a catastrophe might affect you and your family.
  • You can’t depend on politicians or governments—anywhere—to be completely truthful and aboveboard.
  • Information is shared very quickly these days. You can know about killers almost as soon as they finish doing their crimes.
  • There is nothing new about the world today. It is “normal,” but it’s not a new normal. It’s the same old sinful world as it has always been.
  • The sky isn’t really falling, and it won’t until the very end of the earth. (See 2 Peter 3:7.)

Truths from the Bible:
  • Every day, you need to be prepared for eternity. Boast not thyself of to morrow; for thou knowest not what a day may bring forth (Proverbs 27:1). For the wages of sin is death; but the gift of God is eternal life through Jesus Christ our Lord (Romans 6:23).
  • Your trust should be in the Lord. Trust in the LORD with all thine heart; and lean not unto thine own understanding. In all thy ways acknowledge him, and he shall direct thy paths (Proverbs 3:5-6).
  • Your thoughts should be different. Finally, brethren, whatsoever things are true, whatsoever things are honest, whatsoever things are just, whatsoever things are pure, whatsoever things are lovely, whatsoever things are of good report; if there be any virtue, and if there be any praise, think on these things. Those things, which ye have both learned, and received, and heard, and seen in me, do: and the God of peace shall be with you (Philippians 4:8-9).
  • Jesus’ return is imminent. Be ye therefore ready also: for the Son of man cometh at an hour when ye think not (Luke 12:40).
  • There is hope in Jesus. Now our Lord Jesus Christ himself, and God, even our Father, which hath loved us, and hath given us everlasting consolation and good hope through grace, Comfort your hearts, and stablish you in every good word and work (2 Thessalonians 2:26-17).

We don’t need to tolerate or get used to murders and tensions and wars. They’re not a good "normal.” If we can do something about it—especially prevent it—we need to do that. Anyone in a position of leadership needs to work towards a better world. The rest of us need to be vigilant and vote for leadership that will try to protect the citizens of the country where we live. We need to help our communities, show God’s love, and be lights to the lost. We need to share the gospel, so that hearts and lives will be transformed.

Ye are the light of the world.
A city that is set on an hill cannot be hid.
Let your light so shine before men,
that they may see your good works,
and glorify your Father which is in heaven.
(Matthew 5:14, 16)

Moreover, brethren, I declare unto you the gospel . . .
By which also ye are saved . . . For I delivered unto you first of all
that which I also received, how that Christ died for our sins
 according to the scriptures; And that he was buried,
and that he rose again the third day according to the scriptures.
 (1 Corinthians 15:1a, 2a, 3-4)

The sky isn’t falling, and we don’t need to get used to any new normal. God is still on the throne, in charge, and cognizant of everything going on, everywhere in the universe. Let’s trust Him—and spread the Good News of salvation in Jesus Christ to everyone we can!

Monday, July 18, 2016

The Ladies of Matthew, Chapter 1

Photo courtesy of LUMO Project, Free Bible Images

I am one of those rare people who enjoy reading the genealogies in the Bible. I’m always looking for something new, something important. Why did God include them in the Bible? They have to be good for us! All scripture is given by inspiration of God, and is profitable (1 Timothy 3:16a). So, reading Matthew 1, I noticed again the women in the genealogy of Jesus. I looked twice. That first one’s husband isn’t even famous! Why is she named?

These are the four women mentioned in the genealogy of Jesus:

1. Rahab (spelled Rachab, here)—And Salmon begat Booz of Rachab (Matthew 1:5a). The very first woman is Rahab, who used to be a harlot! We find her story in Joshua 2 and 6:22-25. The whole city of Jericho was annihilated, except for Rahab and her father’s household—those who were with her in her home when the walls tumbled down. God rewarded her faith with salvation, later giving her a good husband and progeny. Booz (Boaz) is one of her children, and he becomes the great grandfather of King David. Rahab appears in the New Testament in God’s “Faith Hall of Fame” in Hebrews 11:31, By faith the harlot Rahab perished not with them that believed not, when she had received the spies with peace. I believe she was included in Jesus’ genealogy because she was a woman who became a strong woman of faith. Even so faith, if it hath not works, is dead, being alone. . . . Likewise also was not Rahab the harlot justified by works, when she had received the messengers, and had sent them out another way? (James 2:17, 25) In Rahab’s life, we watch God’s grace in action—how He perfectly redeems prostitutes and all sinners, and how He uses the most unlikely people in His sovereign plan for the world. Rahab’s transformation is an encouragement for everyone!

2. Ruth—The next woman is Rahab’s daughter-in-law, Ruth: and Booz begat Obed of Ruth (Matthew 1:5b). The biblical book of Ruth tells the story of Naomi, Ruth, and (Name) who lived in Moab. All three women lost their husbands, and Naomi decided to go back to her family in Bethlehem. Ruth decides to go with her mother-in-law, and (Name) chooses to stay at home in Moab. Ruth puts herself under the leadership of her mother-in-law and obeys her. She also works hard in the fields to bring home food for them to eat. We know that Ruth had believed in God when she says, Intreat me not to leave thee, or to return from following after thee: for whither thou goest, I will go; and where thou lodgest, I will lodge: thy people shall be my people, and thy God my God (Ruth 1:16). God was watching over both women. He provided for them, and Boaz, the second kinsman in line to be able to redeem Ruth, just “happened” to be the owner of the field where Ruth gleaned. She asked him to buy her father-in-law’s land, and he asked the first in line, who declined. Boaz bought back—redeemed—Elimelech’s property and the right to marry Ruth and raise up children for the family name. Boaz and Ruth had the privilege of being the parents of Obed, King David’s grandfather. Ruth’s story is one of faith, obedience and Christ-like redemption. No wonder God put her in the direct ancestral line to His Son!

3. BathshebaDavid the king begat Solomon of her that had been the wife of Urias (Matthew 1:6b). When I think of Bathsheba, all I can think about was how wronged she was. King David saw her bathing on the roof of her house. (Was this a bad decision on her part? I don’t know. We aren’t told any more about it.) David lusts after her, “invites” (commands) her to visit him, and they have intimacy that leaves her pregnant. In order to cover his sin, David makes sure her husband Uriah is sent to the front lines, in the heat of battle and dies. Now, to cover adultery, David is guilty of murder. Now, Bathsheba is carrying the King’s baby and mourning her fine husband Uriah at the same time. (Does she know or suspect that David was responsible for Uriah’s death?) That baby dies—part of God’s judgment on David’s sin. Bathsheba has lost her beautiful baby boy. Such grief! David adds Bathsheba to his wives, and later, Bathsheba has Solomon. Later, he will be king—the wisest man that ever lived. We really don’t know a lot about Bathsheba besides that she went to bat for Solomon before King David. Her story is full of sadness, yet she must have had some consolation in Solomon.

4. Mary, Jesus’ motherJoseph, the husband of Mary, of whom was bon Jesus, who is called Christ (Matthew 1:16). The Bible says Mary was a virgin, espoused to . . . Joseph, highly favoured, and that the Lord is with her. Gabriel said, blessed art thou among women (quotes from Luke 1:27-28). God was very specific when He chose Mary to bear His Son. I don’t think any human being could have fully understood the miracle of the Incarnation. But, Mary sees proof after proof that God is doing something so awesome through her Son. She feels unworthy, yet she is willing. The Holy Spirit conceives Jesus in her body, and even before Jesus is born, God gives her consolation and confirmation through her elder cousin Elisabeth. And she (Elisabeth) spake out with a loud voice, and said, Blessed art thou among women, and blessed is the fruit of thy womb. And whence is this to me, that the mother of my Lord should come to me? For, lo, as soon as the voice of thy salutation sounded in mine ears, the babe leaped in my womb for joy. And blessed is she that believed: for there shall be a performance of those things which were told her from the Lord. And Mary said, My soul doth magnify the Lord, And my spirit hath rejoiced in God my Saviour. For he hath regarded the low estate of his handmaiden: for, behold, from henceforth all generations shall call me blessed. For he that is mighty hath done to me great things; and holy is his name. And his mercy is on them that fear him from generation to generation (Luke 1:42-50). How did Mary know all of these things? Through Divine revelation. She rejoiced in her Savior, her Son—the God-Man, Jesus.

Let’s look back over our list. In the lineage of Jesus we see:
  • A transformed harlot
  • An obedient, redeemed widow
  • A wronged wife
  • A pure, godly virgin

All placed their faith in the Lord and were blessed. But, there’s more here. God purposely put all kinds of people in the lineage of His Son. Rahab and Ruth were gentiles, yet God put them in Jewish families and ultimately into Jesus’ ancestry.

Every woman can identify with these four women. Perhaps you chose a sinful lifestyle, like Rahab. Maybe you came to saving faith after being taught something completely contrary to the Bible, like Ruth. It’s possible that you identify with Bathsheba, who lost a husband and a child and was abused. Or, you might have had a godly youth and trusted the Lord from a young age, like Mary.

God used all of these women in His plan to bring us Jesus. May we be challenged by their faith!


Friday, July 15, 2016

Fiction Review: The Tomb of the Honey Bee

The Tomb of the Honey Bee: A Posie Parker Mystery, by L. B. Hathaway is the second book in this series. Posie Parker is a detective who lives in London in the 1920s. Lady Violet hires Posie to find her brother, Alaric.

First, Posie goes to Boynton Hall to meet the family. What a nasty bunch of people! It’s obvious that husbands, wives, brothers, and sisters don’t get along, and the atmosphere is absolutely evil. So, Posie leaves as soon as she can—after a writer is murdered in the house. She stays in touch with Scotland Yard, and continues her search for Alaric.

It leads her to France, where she’s in for a surprise, and then to Sicily. She knows someone is following her, but she’s not sure who it is. She's successful in finding Alaric in Sicily, but she tries to keep it a secret while she unravels the rest of the mystery.

Before she knows it, she and Alaric flee danger and go to Egypt, where an amazing archeological find is made in the Valley of the Kings. Disaster and death follow, and Posie finds a clue that leads her back home to London and to Stowe in the Cotswolds to solve the mystery.

There’s more to the story, of course. What does the coin with the honeybee mean? Why did Alaric leave his home? Where is his sanctuary, and why does he need to go to Egypt? What is the golden find? And, who murdered Ianthe and the archaeologist? Most important, why is the murderer trying to kill Alaric?

L. B. Hathaway is an authentic Englishwoman who writes wonderful period drama. I love the British speech, references to places I’ve actually visited, and the distinctly British feel to her books. Even though this novel takes place in varying points on the globe, the reader feels rooted in England and British customs. I also love her book covers, fittingly illustrated in Art Deco style.

I am not sure this is considered a “Christian book,” but it's absolutely clean. There are no ugly words, no sexual innuendo, and no negative moral tone. It's perfectly suitable for teens and adults.

It’s a delightful read, and I can assure you I’ll be reading more of Mrs. Hathaway’s books. (In fact, I already have several lined up on my Kindle!) 

Tuesday, July 12, 2016

Is the Media Fair? What You Can Do About the News

Two black men are killed by police officers. One black man takes it upon himself to get retribution and kills five police officers and injures more, including a civilian. News coverage lasts two days, even on international news stations.

The shooter in the Orlando nightclub killed 49 people and injured 53. International news coverage was day and night for two days.

Suicide gunmen-bombers attacked the Ataturk Istanbul Airport, and 41 people were killed. That same day, the airport reopened. International news coverage lasted one day.

In Nigeria this year, hundreds have been killed—hacked and burned to death—by Fulani herdsmen and Boko Haram militants. Did you even hear about those killings? The 300 schoolgirls from Chibok are still missing a year later. One escaped and told her story.

In Baghdad, on July 7th, 292 people were killed when a truck bomb went off in a popular place in the city. Many more were injured. It barely made the news. I saw one photo of the aftermath—gray, burnt-out buildings and cars and debris. It was a huge area!

When the terrorists attacked in Paris (both times), there was outrage and a global reaction. Remember “Je suis Charlie” and Facebook “Pray for Paris” and profiles turned blue, white, and red in solidarity? Remember the march, the candles, and the piles of flowers?

In West Virginia last month, 23 people lost their lives in floods. I personally know people who went to help in relief efforts. (Thank you, Pastor Guy and Donovan!) People from surrounding states and from farther abroad sent water, clothing, money, and went and helped with the cleanup. “Pray for West Virginia” made it to many social media posts.

That same week, the Yangtze River flooded in China, and 180 souls went out into eternity. It was hardly mentioned on international news channels.

This past week, clashes in South Sudan killed 210 people. Did you hear about it?

There’s something lopsided going on. Why does the world’s media cover in detail something that goes on in North America or Europe, but if something even more disastrous happens in Africa or Asia, it barely gets a mention? Is this fair? I watch the news and wonder. Why do multiple casualties get more coverage in one part of the world than in another? To me, it doesn’t seem fair or caring enough.

Every soul matters.

Every tragedy matters.

We need to be aware—and care.

We need to pray for people in Turkey, Nigeria, Sudan, South Africa, India, and China. We need to realize that every family that suffers loss is a real, live family—just like ours. We need to care!

Our souls need to weep for those killed in Baghdad just as they cry for Parisians gunned down at work and play. We need to care enough to help the young girls kidnapped in Nigeria just as much as we should care about trafficked young women in our own country.

As Christians, we need to learn the mind of Christ.
  • Without prejudiceFor there is no respect of persons with God (Romans 2:11). But if ye have respect to persons, ye commit sin, and are convinced of the law as transgressors (James 2:9).
  • LovingAnd the second is like unto it, Thou shalt love thy neighbour as thyself (Matthew 22:39).
  • Treating others as you would like to be treatedAnd as ye would that men should do to you, do ye also to them likewise (Luke 6:31).
  • Having compassion for the lost and confusedBut when he (Jesus) saw the multitudes, he was moved with compassion on them, because they fainted, and were scattered abroad, as sheep having no shepherd (Matthew 9:36).
  • Being missions minded and prayingTherefore said he (Jesus) unto them, The harvest truly is great, but the labourers are few: pray ye therefore the Lord of the harvest, that he would send forth labourers into his harvest (Luke 10:2).

We can’t change the world’s media, but we can change the way we look at the world. I believe we can do this by:
  1. Being more discerning and listening well to the news. Maybe we need to look online to see what’s happening all over the world—not only in our little corner.
  2. Learning world geography. It will help us have a vision for reaching the world with the gospel.
  3. Stamping out racism and prejudice, starting with us. View every person as our equal. (Every person on earth descended from Adam and Eve!)
  4. Praying for those affected by tragedies. (When we hear about them, we pray.)
  5. Help out. If tragedy occurs close enough to us to lend a hand or give material things for relief, we do it.
  6. Being soul conscious and seeing human beings as people who need the Lord—everyone, everywhere. Touch those we can, and be involved in world missions.
God, help us.

For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, 
that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, 
but have everlasting life (John 3:16).