I wake in deep thought… dear God, save me as my life is riddled with missing parts. An eternal flame burns for my father whose life was cut short, fifty-five years ago today, by carelessness. Though I am a product of divorced parents, no one can take the place of your biological Father.
I think of all those special moments in life I wasn’t afforded the luxury of my father. We couldn’t build a model together, fly a kite, or throw a ball. He couldn’t teach me to hunt or fish. He never taught me to drive, yet it I became the chauffeur to his own loving mom and dad. My dad never experienced my graduation day, though I pray he looked down upon me from heaven. He didn’t meet my important first date. Late at night, I cried myself to sleep for the many times I missed his love.
void I tried to fill was grander than a canyon. Nothing can fill the shoes left
behind of my six-foot-two, father. This morning, an eternal flame still burns
inside me, and I memorialize the father, I did without, in my entire life.
God, I know it is He that connects the bridges of all the days of our lives. My
time on earth is limited, too, as I look at my own son and ask God to watch
over him. Someday, maybe, he will understand the meaning of picking up the
phone and giving his dad a ring. Our moments are too short to waste on regrets.
listen to the busy world as it is getting underway, but I feel the warmth from
the Son shining down from heaven. It is God who has saved me in all my lonely days.
Many children grow up in a happy home, and I, too, wish I could claim the same.
sun is now covered by a swirling storm system. Still, an eternal flame for my
father will forever endure whatever weather arrives today. I pray God grants me
the moment I can stand by my Father again someday. I’ll give him a hug, he so
richly deserves, for making me the son I became in his honor.
was once said, “You can’t miss something you never had.” I strongly
disagree! You can’t imagine what it’s like to walk a mile carrying your own
father’s shoes. Yet here I am… throughout my life, without him here, beside me.
“God, my Father, I so pray Your holy hands will guide me all the rest of my weary days alone. Never lead me astray. I pray that not another child will experience the pain I’ve suffered and endured by the loss of my Father. Lord, let me be an example of Your love to other children who has had a parent pass to be with You. Hear my thoughts, on this day of memorial, and tell my father I said hello.”
I love you, Pop. May you rest in peace till the day we will walk in God’s light together.
Last weekend the world suffered an incredible loss of talent. As Kobe Bryant’s helicopter lay smoldering at the foothills of the mountains, people gasped in disbelief and choked back tears. Social media and our television sets covered the headlines to report on the death of nine great lives. It will forever change the surviving families as the Lord anoints them with hope and peace.
And the God of all grace, who
called you to his eternal glory in Christ, after you have suffered a little
while, will himself restore you and make you strong, firm and steadfast.
1 Peter 5:10
Facebook posting caught my attention about this tragedy, and it sparked me to
write today’s message. The posting spoke of the horror Kobe must have felt in
those last seconds when he recognized they would all die.
is the inevitable destiny of mankind. It’s not a pretty sight or an engaging
act for those left behind to pick up the pieces. Most people never want to
think about this unpleasant topic until faced with a funeral or a deadly
illness. Yes, it’s scary to think only Jesus could conquer death as He rose
from the dead. Our loved ones submit to their fate, and we are assured their
body will never walk on this land again, unlike Jesus… yet the irony is
not sure of the other passenger’s backgrounds on the helicopter, but I know
Kobe Bryant was an active Catholic. He attended mass and Holy Communion hours
before the crash, at an Orange County church. Much of his tumultuous past was
shaded in gray. Marital discord and loss of sponsorships plagued him for many
years. But, just like of all of us, he had sins to conquer before the Lord. He
knew only God could forgive him, so in 2003 he turned to the church for
consolation and hope.
love for the welfare of mankind surpassed all dignity. In December, he
witnessed a horrible car crash in Newport Beach, California. Videos captured
the moment he ran to the cars and pulled everyone to safety. He stayed by their
side, speaking comforting words of love until paramedics arrived at the scene.
supported seven charities and fourteen causes. His dedication to children and
their future was always at the front seat of his life. There is a lesson to be
learned from Kobe about compassion and spreading God’s love!
practicing Christians should always be ready for their inevitable destiny. If I
were a betting man, I’d place a wager Kobe prayed, like never before, in those
last few seconds of his life. God heard his prayers because He, too, grieved
the unjust execution of His Son, Jesus. He understands our pain. But, the Lord
is rich in mercy, and He opened His arms to all those passengers on the
is part of living – it is our fate set in stone by Adam and Eve. In my opinion,
though, nothing is sadder than the death of an adult who never accepted Christ
into their life before their mortality. As Jesus taught us, we are to confess
our sins, pray for forgiveness, and never return to them. If we commit these
deeds, we are assured of living with our Father in heaven. Christians should
rejoice in knowing God has lovingly addressed our need for forgiveness. It
clears the way for those we leave behind, and they can celebrate our eternal
life with Christ.
comfort in knowing God is the one in full control of our lives. He pre-planned
our birth and death. Nothing and no one on earth can change our fate. It is
futile to place blame for a person’s death because it was our destiny from the
very beginning of life. Take solace in knowing physical death is just the start
of our spiritual journey with Jesus Christ. I can’t think of a better way to
celebrate a good Christian’s life!
May the surviving families of Kobe Bryant, his daughter Gianna, John, Keri, and Alyssa Altobelli, Payton and Sarah Chester, Christina Mauser, and pilot Ara Zobayan rest in peace in the arms of our Lord.
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Don’t be the greatest fool ever;
The greatest fool
Who ever lived;
And anyone who lives
Ohnly for now
And cares less about eternity;
How foolish is such a one!
To say there is no eternity
Because you don’t understand
Is foolishness of the top rank;
Who knew there was
A world like ours
Before they came to live here?
You found yourself here;
And you will find yourself leaving at a time you least expected;
Be wise and accept
What millions have believed
Down the centuries:
That there is life after death;
Maybe you died in one world
Before you were born
Into this world;
What stops you
From being born
Into another world
When you die and leave
There’s life after life.
Or should I say
I believe in life after death?
Every life has its calendar; One you do not master; Neither do you control; Illnes is not death; Don’t pity someone Who is ill, And believe they will die Before you, Because they are ill, And you are well and strong; It doesn’t matter How critically ill they may be; Someone may be very ill; And another not; There is no certainty Who will die Before the other; Life and death Both come from God; And their secret, He alone knows; He alone determines The calendar of our lives; He determibes when we are born; And when we die. We have to leave all In his almighty hands. As his decision is final, And the best that can ever be taken.
Much is written about
joy in the Bible. Jesus spoke of being joyful unto His Father, later
transcribed to, “Be joyful unto the Lord.” As we face disillusions and fears,
of either, we endure many hardships. I, too, have these familiar symptoms, but
God always remains constant in my mind. These words resonate in my mind, “Bring
Me your woes and do not worry for I will help you with your inspirational
problems arise in the worldly pressures and obligations that meet us, not greet
us, at every doorstep. Life, sometimes, can appear to be short-lived… unless
your faith asks God for a special blessing and miracle. Some have experienced
God at His best as unfortunate events end with a silver lining.
I often write of
my sordid past life, but I glance back at those times and realize God intervened
in my life. Today’s blog, however, is not about me, but the one I’m closest to,
my wife. This young, vibrant, and outgoing woman, plagued with a virtue of
grief and sadness in the past few months, almost lost her life in a car
accident twenty-five years ago. The doctors just diagnosed her with heart
failure as a repercussion of the injuries.
In disbelief, we took part in many tests and things seemed questionable, but nevertheless, okay… until the last test screening. It confirmed her life might be terminal. I can’t say how one prepares to die, except to “live life like there’s no tomorrow”… and so we did, in apprehension. With no other choice, I fought for the spiritual happiness of both of us. I walked on pins and needles, often hearing the crunch of eggshells. I was too frightened to speak much, so I stayed in constant prayer. Following my blog called Faith for Two, I knew only God would see us through this dilemma.
25 “Therefore I tell you, do not worry
about your life, what you will eat or drink; or about your body, what you will
wear. Is not life more than food, and the body more than clothes? 26 Look at
the birds of the air; they do not sow or reap or store away in barns, and yet
your heavenly Father feeds them. Are you not much more valuable than they? 27
Can any one of you by worrying add a single hour to your life?
The day arrived
for her medical procedure, and hopefully, it would not become an open-heart
decision. I watched the love of my life that morning, and I observed her quietly
whispering, “Goodbye, mommy loves you” to her favorite parrot of twenty-seven
years. I read her last words, “No food or drink after midnight,” as she
prepared herself for a procedure which could end her life. It would have been
easier to move a mountain than to keep her spirits positive. I maintained my
strong convictions and stayed where I knew God wanted me to be – in prayer. Only
my Lord Jesus could restore that which would destroy her many years ago.
In the lobby, in
front of the doors to the operating room, I kissed her goodbye. Keeping up our
spiritual happiness, I told her,” I’ll see you for lunch.” With tears
in her eyes, we prayed it was not our last forever kiss. I needed to go to God!
Father bless her and keep her in your arms, my dear Lord.
wait seemed like an eternity. I took a seat beside a minister, and we shared
our own hearts. The door at last opened, and a doctor in scrubs called out my
name, “BICKS.” He took me into a quiet room and invited me to sit beside him on
the couch. I had my faith until the moment he elected to move closer to me.
“She’s all clear,
Mr. Bicks,” he said. “We found no blockages, and she’s as good as new.” My
sweet love, who worried for five months of dying, was born again to the
likeness of the sweet, little girl I remembered thirty-two years ago. She
will live! Thank You, Jesus!
thought crossed my mind. Two weeks ago, the cardiologist saw the blockage in a
scan, and now it doesn’t exist!? Was this one of God’s miracles? You decide…
has been six days now, and I see a glow where worry over-shadowed her face. A
renewed life called spiritual happiness far exceeds a biblical joy. Saved by grace,
quite literally, His miracle child is born again. There is no greater gift than
the gift of life; and when death comes calling, defying Satan’s force is a
Living in a
spiritual realm of happiness, where no pressure or problems exist, can be
conquered when we reach out in faith. A great example of this in the bible was
the story of Jesus feeding 5,000 people on five loaves of bread and two fish (Matthew
14:15-21 and Luke 9:12-17). It is called the marvel of God’s healing hands,
just as He did to my wife.
We read the miraculous
stories of defying doctors’ diagnoses, but until it happens to you, we shun it
with some other explanation. The Lord’s greatest feat was saving my wife’s
life, and not once but twice; she put her heart and soul close enough for Him
to heal her with His touch.
May I suggest we armor ourselves in prayer each morning to maintain spiritual happiness? Don’t identify with suffering, loss, or sickness. Remain steadfast in our Lord’s word, and He will calm every facet of your life. Today, my wife and I wake with a smile and a good-morning kiss, for God came to bless us with another anointed day. Our spiritual happiness is more than we ever asked for, and it is all because we serve our Almighty Savior.
FROM ANNE BICKS:
I would like to sincerely thank everyone for your cards, love, and support through this difficult time. Your kindness means the world to me! God bless you all!
A man just died: I wish it had not happened; It was not a natural death, As we know natural death To be; We call it untimely death; A cruel death; A sad situation Indeed; A flying spear Injected death into the man’s head; On the spot, he died. Many hearts were torn apart; Anger was rife; Yet, that is just one Of many who are dying; Innocently they are dying; Cruelly they are dying; Dying before their time. My heart bleeds indeed. I am in tears.
“A mistake many of us make is we often think only other people can die suddenly through an accident or heart attack; that we are exempted from such unexpected death. This is wrong. Death can come to anybody at any time. This is true for all human beings on earth including you. You may not die the next minute but you could also die. Hence, you must always be ready.” (Romilia Quote)
These days…Relationship means… Any where without you is better than any where with you
How individual lives are changing ,relationships are thrown into the dust bin,people forgetting the meaning and value & sacredness of ‘LOVE’,
Thanks to addiction to social media & smart phones !
Relationships are harder now!
“Conversations became texting,
Arguments became phone calls,
Feelings became subliminal messages,
Sex became easy,
The word ‘love’ is used out of context.,
Insecurities became a way of thinking,
Getting jealous became a habit,
Trust is hard to come by,
Being hurt became natural.
Leaving became the only option,
Sad but true,
So if you have something…that is worth it,..don’t take it for granted,
Fight for it,don’t let it go” pinterest
Be selfish,thanks to the inventions. indulge in your likings,Drink till you drop dead,fight without any reason,Ego is your life,jealousy is your partner, Greedy is your nature,Killing innocent is your taste,care not anybody,you owe the happiness you deserve,forget about dieting & exercises which are all money-making machines,,cheating is your mantra,money is everything and enjoy dying your own death,you owe nothing to anybody!
Is this the lesson modern-day life style teaching us ? Is this the meaning of advancement in human life ? Is this what all about relationships ?
And what about ethics,values,respect,responsibilities ,family relationship ?
persecution is a never-ending battle. Innocent Christians are crucified every
day in the name of God for believing in a higher way of life. On our home turf,
distance protects us; yet examples around the world appear in our own living
room. If only everyone would come to terms with God’s peace! My heart remains
in remorse over the wrong direction we are heading today. But, amongst these
times of terror, the steadfast still walk with Jesus to praise and spread the
Lord’s words of hope. Blessed be the faithful!
may not be aware my wife did missionary work in Guinea, West Africa for the
International Mission Board. Her humanitarian efforts served the Susu tribes
where they dug wells for fresh water. She also held a Vacation Bible School for
pre-school children in the capital city of Conakry. Her living arrangement was
in a compound enclosed with a fifteen-foot cement wall and broken bottles
placed on top for safety. Two security guards stood guard twenty-four hours a
day. Amidst the 110 degree weather, lack of fresh running water, recurring
power outages, illness from vaccine shots, and contaminated foods, she and her
group forged onward; it was necessary for the Islamists to know God loves
But, months of pre-planning and training was mandatory before she could enter Africa. The World Mission Boards warns missionaries to be careful who you speak to, not to look militants in the eye, and to dress in public as one of the crowd. They could not take for granted the deep commitment the Soussou had to their own religion. Not everyone finds peace in the spirit of Christian voodoo where God is the last word. Amid the incomprehension of entering a Third World country, she boarded an airplane with a round-trip ticket and the church’s prayer for her safe return. God bless our missionaries!
such good lives among the pagans that, though they accuse you of doing wrong,
they may see your good deeds and glorify God on the day he visits us. (1 Peter
God’s mercy, my wife was one of the lucky few to serve and leave Africa without
incident. The internet is filled with stories of those murdered in the hands of
the Peace Corps and other religious affiliations. It is obvious Christians
still walk, today, in the suffering Christ paid for our sins. China and
Pakistan, for example, recently suffered mass genocides and burnings of their
churches. Bangladesh murders secular activists and Christians, more or less
with impunity. Statistics reveal North Korea, Saudi Arabia, Africa, Iraq, and
Syria persecute Christians more than any other faith group. Making matters
worse, governments in the West and the UN do not offer emergency help to
the influx of Middle Eastern immigrants and other foreigners into the United
States, the religious tide is shifting dramatically here too. Bibles, crosses,
and our churches are burned; they ban even Christmas trees and greeting cards
in some areas. I wonder what Jesus would think if He walked our world today?
biblical days, Jesus also suffered much religious persecution. He toured a
radius of forty miles around Nazareth preaching His Father’s word and often hid
in different lands for His protection. Unlike my wife, who stayed behind a
cement wall, His temporary home was in a cave or the middle of a desert. But as
in today’s times, very few people believed He was the Messiah, only those who
witnessed His miracles. What words or actions does one need to see to prove God
really exists? It’s not about color or creed, but receiving the grand prize – eternal
life in heaven!
the families who lost loved ones in the oppression of trusting in God’s
greatness, have faith knowing persecution and true Christianity are inseparable.
Jesus died on the cross for our sins – even for those who denounced His existence.
Missionaries and all other Christians must realize God warns His righteous saints
they will be persecuted for believing in Him.
are those who are persecuted because of righteousness, for theirs is the
kingdom of heaven. Blessed are you when people insult you, persecute you and
falsely say all kinds of evil against you because of me. Rejoice and be glad,
because great is your reward in heaven, for in the same way they persecuted the
prophets who were before you.” (Matthew 5:10-12)
Have solace for your loved ones, and others who served the Lord, and believe in His name because they will be forever in His presence. If I had to lose my life for someone, let it be for Jesus! It would not be in vain for mercy reigns over ignorance! For two thousand years, believers have fought the war of standing up for God. Many procrastinate changing their life’s sins for the anticipation of the return of Christ Jesus. With the love the Lord placed in my heart, I bleed for those who choose not to concede before they die. Fathers, mothers, sisters and sons, Christ sent you a personal invitation to live in heaven with Him. What are you waiting for? It’s in you! Open your eyes and listen to your soul. Let the books of the Gospel lead your spirit for they are not fiction but the genealogy of your life.