He executes justice for the oppressed and gives food to the hungry. The LORD sets prisoners free, the LORD gives sight to the blind, he lifts up those who are bowed down, the LORD loves those who live justly. The LORD watches over the immigrant and sustains the fatherless and the widow, but he frustrates the ways of the wicked. -Psalm 146:7-9

Monday, April 20, 2009

10 Minutes

I got a phone call today saying there was a shooting in our neighborhood, next block over to be exact. A friend of mine called my husband to warn him that the block was full of police and detectives so that he could properly prepare himself to take another route to drop kids off at home. My initial reaction at first was not fear but, "Oh LORD, not again, not another shooting". The concern was overwhelming thinking about the chances of it being one of the many kids that are in and out of my home everyday. One teenager who was over today was caring around a b-b gun that looked JUST like a real gun. A friend and I after seeing it was immediately concerned that someone out in the streets could easily mistake it for a real one and you know how the story goes after that..not good.

Tonight at the dinner table Kevin and Keisha ( our new female staff) begin to tell me about all the things that they witnesses in less then 10 minutes riding around our neighborhood.
They came down one block and see police on the scene of the shooting of a 18 year old. One block they noticed many people outside arguing over what they don't know, my husband hears one guy yell, "if you got it pull it out!!!" ( of course he is referring to a gun) repeatedly. There was a girl slapping a guy upside the head, she was upset about something. They proceeded to the last block and this girl is walking by on the phone apparently she is angry as well because she is yelling at the person on the other end of the conversation. Just Wednesday the news reported a 20 year girl shot in the chest. Her boyfriend was cheating on her and the woman and cousin came to confront her by killing her.
Any other day these and past circumstances might have thrown me off of my rocker a little bit, but let me tell you something...
TIME IN THE WORD is the weapon that will kill all fear, & doubt. Today as I was reading the scriptures, the LORD graciously brought Nicodemus to mind. We are talking about a member of the Jewish council ( which was powerful back then).The significant thing about this Pharisee was how he was attracted to Jesus character and miracles. Then there is Paul the Apostle. A trained Pharisee who persecuted and killed Christians. Reading about these two men today reminded me tonight of God's GRACE. My study notes in my bible said ( which I could not have agreed more) "God specializes in finding and changing people we consider out of reach." I am thankful,yet amazed that God's grace through FAITH in CHRIST are available to ALL PEOPLE even those I spoke of above and even those you know personally and feel they don't deserve a inch of justice or grace. Though I have never killed anyone, I have done my share of sin ( and the saga continues) and does not the LORD look at all our mess as sin. One is not more sinful then the other. Sin is sin and all is offensive to the LORD.
I go to sleep tonight in the midst of chaos around me. Yet, I go to bed with
HOPE, hope that the LORD can change all that happens in the light as well as the dark areas of my hood.
As I have
read, "God does not waste our time; he will use our past and present so we may serve him with our future." I hope to one day hear of many stories of thugs, prostitutes, rapist,ect.. be transformed by the power of the GOSPEL. This same Gospel that transformed men such as Paul and Nicodemus. I believe that the gospel is just that powerful! My LORD, what a example I am of that!!!

John 3
19This is the verdict: Light has come into the world, but men loved darkness instead of light because their deeds were evil. 20Everyone who does evil hates the light, and will not come into the light for fear that his deeds will be exposed. 21But whoever lives by the truth comes into the light, so that it may be seen plainly that what he has done has been done through God."