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3 ramsHumility can be measured for a man when he acknowledges the significance of a younger man. It is especially stunning when it is acknowledged that the upcoming life will surpass whatever he has achieved in his own life. Even more, when personal accomplishments are described merely as preparation for the vital work to come through a new man on the scene. God chose the right man to introduce Jesus to the world. Humility! Jn1

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sheep silver ramPay attention to the one who introduces someone whom he knows is important to the rest of us. John the Baptist introduced Jesus as “The Lamb of God, who takes away the sin of the world!” Of all the images that he could have used to describe Jesus, this representation is too young to die, innocent by comparison, attractively pure, and the anticipated solution to remove sin for all. Who he was and what he was about to do was immense. Stunning! Jn1

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Israel 2008 159In the course of a religious confrontation, inquisition, or news briefing, those in authority have a difficult time masking their disdain for a targeted person. They too often believe in their self-importance and unconsciously exude their arrogance. With disrespect they caustically demand an answer that will fit into their category to file a report to their superiors.  It takes a special person to square off with aggressive interviewers. John was that kind of man! Jn1

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Unknown-2There is a uniting force behind the lives of those who died in defense of our freedom. It is impossible for me to not feel something deep in the core of my being when our national anthem is played and Old Glory is waving in the breeze.

The red, white, and blue slapping in the wind drowns out the complaints, criticisms, shouting, protesting, and haranguing of bitter angry people. Those whose rhetoric drives toward division, blame, and rancor fall into silence and give relief to the ears of very good people who mourn the loss of our brave men and women who have fallen in battle. There is a reverence that death, sacrificial death, boldly and quietly commands.

My Memorial Day observance took in the laying of the wreath at the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier. It has always been a ceremony that I try and take in no matter who is in the White House. The sounding of Taps fills a hollow part in my soul. May all of us Americans live up to the cost of these priceless sacrifices.

God bless us all and may God bless America.

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Israel 2008 428Giving a negative answer to a challenge of one’s personal identity, unmasks the secret intent of false messengers. John the Baptist knew the intent of his examiners. He was bold and courageous when he faced them. There was no back up in him. As Texans would give a high complement, “He had sand.” Jn1

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Israel 2008 223When God’s voice is spoken through one of his chosen servants, people in authority pay attention. Those in power sent an investigation team to retrieve a statement of confession from John the Baptist. You can sense the arrogance of those sent to question John’s identity. They came with the intent to intimidate. Their hope was likely to impress John with who they were not who he was. It was as much a challenge as it was an inquiry. Uh oh! Jn1

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  BEFORE                      AFTER

Unknown-16We bought our house eight years ago. At the time is was in rough shape. There were quite a few upgrades that were necessary. Some needed immediate attention. Others were eventual projects.

The front door was one of those eventual down-the-road projects. We hardly ever used it. Most of the time we make our exit and entrance through the garage door.

During the stay-at-home pandemic, we would use our front door a lot. On many days we would take a walk around our neighborhood or walk over to the post box to pick up our daily mail. That’s when the unsightly front door started to wear on me.

There was no shine to the finish. In quite a few places there was no finish left to see. Of course during our neighborhood strolls I would take note of the exquisite front doors of other homes. It was time to “get er done!”

I secured the services of a professional refinisher. It was certainly the cheaper route compared to a brand new door. He assured me that the finished job would be very satisfying.

Ten days later the transformation is amazing. I love the way it turned out. The house now boldly shines and says, “Welcome HOME!”

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Israel 2014 IFL 129Could anyone but John the Baptist been a better forerunner for the Savior? He was totally dedicated to his task of introducing Jesus. His attitude toward the Christ was built on a humble perspective. John’s theology understood the true nature of Jesus to be divine and saw preexistence as a reality. Although Jesus was younger in human age, he surpassed John because he always was. Wow! Jn1

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Canon Beach Sunrise spectacularWhen God chose to reveal himself to the world through Jesus, his decision was spectacular, accurate, precise, and worthy of immediate belief. This incarnation was a perfect depiction of who God is and the love he has for all the people of the world. This aspect of the Christmas story is spectacular! Jn1

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Motorcycle to Banff 2008 144

John was an eyewitness of Jesus on earth. What he saw with his own eyes was amazing. His conclusion describes Jesus as unique in splendor and sheer radiance of divinity. That’s what glory is all about. Sensational! Jn1

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