Premiere of THE CHOSEN, Season 2, Episode 2–and (SURPRISE!) Episode 3!

Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment

Premiere of THE CHOSEN, Season 2, episode 1

If the video does not appear, type into your browser “The Chosen Global Live Event: Season Two Premiere.” From now on you will have to get episodes on YouTube, Facebook or through The Chosen app through which you can stream episodes free to TV, computer, or whatever you want to watch it on. This episode is available (so far) in 19 languages (sub-titles) with more coming daily!

The Chosen is a television drama based on the life of Jesus Christ, created, directed and co-written by American filmmaker Dallas Jenkins (son of Jerry Jenkins, author of Left Behind series). It is the first multi-season, episode-based series about the life of Christ, and season one was the highest crowd-funded TV series or film project of all time…The series portrays Jesus “through the eyes of those who met him.” (Wikipedia)

Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment

THE CHOSEN: SEASON 2 – TRAILER

The Chosen is a television drama based on the life of Jesus Christ, created, directed and co-written by American filmmaker Dallas Jenkins (son of Jerry Jenkins, author of Left Behind series). It is the first multi-season, episode-based series about the life of Christ, and season one was the highest crowd-funded TV series or film project of all time…The series portrays Jesus “through the eyes of those who met him.” (Wikipedia)

SEASON 2, Episode 1 premiered at 8:00 ET Easter Day. I hope to post it at midnight PST. Meanwhile it should be available on YouTube and Facebook. Just Google “The Chosen Season 2 Episode 1.” See you there!

Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment

AN EASTER HALLELUJAH – AN ETHEREAL RENDITION OF THIS SONG BY CASSANDRA STAR AND HER SISTER CALLAHAN. HAPPY RESURRECTION DAY, EVERYONE!

Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment

POEM: Tomb break

Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment

BINGE WATCH: THE CHOSEN, Season 1–episodes 5-8, leading up to Season 2 premiere on Easter!

The Chosen is a television drama based on the life of Jesus Christ, created, directed and co-written by American filmmaker Dallas Jenkins (son of Jerry Jenkins, author of Left Behind series). It is the first multi-season, episode-based series about the life of Christ, and season one was the highest crowd-funded TV series or film project of all time…The series portrays Jesus “through the eyes of those who met him.” (Wikipedia)

The Wedding Gift/ Indescribable Compassion
Invitations/ I Am He

Next: Season 2 trailer

Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment

BINGE WATCH: THE CHOSEN, Season 1–episodes 1-4, leading up to Season 2 premiere on Easter!

The Chosen is a television drama based on the life of Jesus Christ, created, directed and co-written by American filmmaker Dallas Jenkins (son of Jerry Jenkins, author of Left Behind series). It is the first multi-season, episode-based series about the life of Christ, and season one was the highest crowd-funded TV series or film project of all time…The series portrays Jesus “through the eyes of those who met him.” (Wikipedia)

I Have Called You By Name/ Shabbat
Jesus Loves The Little Children/ The Rock On Which It Was Built

NEXT: BINGE WATCH: THE CHOSEN, Season 1–reruns of episodes 5-8, leading up to Season 2 premiere on Easter!

Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment

“IS THIS MY HEART?” HOLY MOMENTS IN THE HOSPITAL

I have often told God, ‘I don’t mind dying. But I don’t want to have to go to the hospital. All those needles. All those procedures. Getting sucked into that system of ‘medicate and operate’ until it kills you…’ Last week I told Him, ‘Okay, I’m willing to go anywhere for You–even to the hospital.’

On Thursday I went to urgent care with chest pains. Urgent care called an ambulance and had me transported to the hospital.

Before I was even taken into ER–while I was still lying on a gurney in the hall–they took blood to start checking my enzymes. In ER, they did an EKG, a chest X-ray and an ultrasound of my carotid arteries, besides constant checking of my blood pressure (registering in the 150’s and 160’s) and taking of blood. They also gave me my first-ever COVID test.

During the ultrasound of my neck I thanked God for my body. I thought how amazing it is that its billions of parts EVER work together the way they are supposed to. I silently instructed my circulatory system to pump blood freely and effectively. I have no reason to believe my instructions made any difference since I don’t know what baseline we were working from but I wanted to assist if I could. Since my brother’s arteries had shown significant blockage I was sure mine would, too.

I heard what I thought must be healthy surging. but when the tech was finished, I looked up at the screen and saw a long series of bright red lanes.

“That looks bad,” I said to her. “Doesn’t red mean danger?”

“The red is the color of your blood.” She assured me. It looked like it was getting through just fine.

Then I was admitted to the hospital, where they took more blood, and continued the intimidating number of tests right through the night.

They woke me at midnight for a CT scan which I vigorously tried to oppose (I don’t do ionizing radiation). Afterward I was shaking so violently I couldn’t get back to sleep so I reviewed random Bible verses. A verse from Isaiah came to mind, personalized–“you,” not “they”:

“You will rise up with wings as eagles. You will run and not be weary. You will walk and not faint.” Isaiah 40:31

The middle line leaped out at me: “You will run and not be weary.” I was startled; was this promise for me personally? Was it related to the stress test I was scheduled to have first thing in the morning?

By morning I had slept a total of two hours. They had drawn more blood, vials and vials of it. I was on NPO (just one sip of water for pills) until after my stress test. I was weak with hunger, thirst, fear, stress, and fatigue. My heart felt weak, my legs felt weak. I felt incapable of stepping up onto a treadmill, much less running on it.

As morning crept toward noon I dozed, asking God to meet me at the Red Sea and make a way where there was no way. Then they came for me.

I’d flunked a stress test years ago. My blood pressure shot up so fast and so high the cardiologist aborted the test and declared the results “inconclusive.” This cardiologist was determined to get something conclusive.

He wanted to do the stress test chemically, to shoot radiation into my veins to simulate stress and induce the red face and profuse sweat of a long run.

“What if it induces a heart attack?” I asked.

“That’s what we’re trying to do,” said the tech. (His name was Koko.) “And if that doesn’t work we’ll give you a meal of fatty meats and then do an echocardiogram.” He wasn’t kidding.

I’d already had a chest X-ray and a CT scan within the last few hours. I didn’t want more radiation.

“I want to try the treadmill.”

“If we try the treadmill and you can’t do it,” the doctor warned, “we’ll have to do the other one anyway.”

“I can do this,” I insisted.

Dubiously, he gave me permission to try. I stepped on the tread and grasped the bar in front of me. It started to move and I started to walk. Almost immediately Koko cautioned, “She’s up to 145!” The doctor asked if I was having any chest pain or pressure. I had none.

“Can you do one more minute?”

“Sure.” I kept walking.

At the end of that minute I felt fine. I said “Yes” to a second minute. And a third.

He counted down the seconds left to go: “30–15–8–We’re done.”

I let go, stepped off and Koko hustled me to the cot nearby to do the ultrasound on my stressed heart.

I was panting a bit but marveling, “I did it. God did it! I DID run and not grow weary. I DID walk and not faint!” I had gone from feeling weak as a kitten, sure I would pass out and fall off the treadmill, to being only slightly winded at the end of the test! The promise HAD been for me and HE had kept it.

The test was conclusive. The doctor declared that my chest pain had “no cardiac cause.”

But that was not the most holy moment.

As Koko unsnapped the leads and pulled me gently to my feet I glanced at the screen at the head of the bed. I saw four beating hearts, in shades of gray, systematically expanding and contracting like slightly misshapen mouths. I stood watching with fascination.

“Is this my heart?”

“Yes. Your left ventricle, four views.”

I couldn’t get over it. “Do you know, that heart has been faithfully beating for me without a pause for 76 years!” I said.  

Koko looked over my shoulder and observed, “It has been beating longer than that.”

“The truth broke over me like a sweet wave. “OH! YES! For NINE MONTHS longer than that! How could anyone think chance could do this? How could anyone think there is no God!”

That day I saw my blood and I saw my heart, both doing perfectly what they were designed to do. The Bible is right: WE ARE FEARFULLY AND WONDERFULLY MADE!

Later on, back in my room, a different doctor told me I only needed to practice relaxation techniques and maybe take Pepcid in case the symptoms are caused by GERD. (I thought, I am probably having panic attacks. If he’s a Democrat he wouldn’t understand.) As he cleared me for discharge, a nurse was taking my blood pressure. It was down to 121.

YOU SHALL MOUNT UP WITH WINGS AS EAGLES

YOU SHALL RUN AND NOT GROW WEARY,

YOU SHALL WALK AND NOT FAINT.

LOVE,

GOD

Posted in Uncategorized | 4 Comments

ENOUGH (poem for Good Friday)

                ENOUGH

Seek My face, You wrote me.
My heart says, Your face, Lord, do I seek--
but I'm not really sure how to.
I can't visualize faces, even one I've just seen
on our waitress or a bank clerk.
Even my husband's, when he's out of the room.
Others can do that.
I can't...

Your face, Lord, do I seek--
I have been seeking--
But I'm not sure why.
I expect you want me to see Your kind eyes
penetrating mine, beaming into mine Your compassion.
It's kind of You to offer, Lord, but I'm not sure it matters.
I don't need to see Your face.
I know You love me...

Your face, Lord, do I seek--
kind of--only because you command me to.
Not with expectation.
Spill that tender gaze on someone else.
Don't waste Your time on me.
They're hurting more. They matter more.
Turn away, Lord. They need you.
It's all right. I can--wait.

I am not seeking Your face, not consciously.
I'm reading a book or at the computer
or lying in bed.
I am seeing something, a piece of something
in my imagination. What is it?

The upper right corner of a picture.
Part of a face. One eye, closed,
the left eye of a man.
A ridge of eyebrow, cheekbone,
parched lips parted.
a suggestion of jaw, 
a round of shoulder,
A man dark with sun and sweat.

In that one shut eye, such agony
and something else: a pleading for an end.
Even without seeing where the taut tendons lead,
I know. 
This is You, isn't it?
Your face. Part of Your face.
Not the part, the frontal view, I expected.
Profile.

Speechless, looking across my view,
You let me see Your love for me.
Not shiny feeling but birth-giving death.
Not Your love toward me but Your love on my behalf.
As evidence of that love drips into those eyes,
running from Your nose and chin,
You take on my enemy, no holds barred--
with Your hands tied.

Motionless,
You rip open the dragon's mouth,
wresting me from his jaws
and out from under his claws.
Bringing me home.

You show me all the love I can bear.
Enough to last and cherish for a lifetime.

Jessica Reynolds (Shaver) Renshaw, c)2015

  

Posted in Uncategorized | 2 Comments

HOW WE DRIFTED FROM GENESIS TO GENDER IDENTITY

We learn immutable biological, electronic and even construction principles from the very first chapter of Genesis, speaking of us: “He made them male and female.” The principle is illustrated in electronics and even in something as simple as putting a jigsaw puzzle together. Nothing is designed to function with two innies or two outies.

If you want to build anything you have to start with the right foundation. We learn that principle from the Bible, confirmed by physics and architecture. If your foundation is off, everything will be off.

What is the right foundation for a life, for a society, for a government? I submit that GOD is that foundation.

He is the foundation on which the universe is built: “In the beginning God created the heavens and the earth.”

He is the foundation on which we are built: “So God created man in His own image; in the image of God He created him; male and female He created them.”

The Bible (Romans 1, verses 18-32) says we all know there is a God, at least some kind of living divinity which is immensely powerful: “–since what may be known about God is plain to [people], because God has made it plain to them. For since the creation of the world God’s invisible qualities—his eternal power and divine nature—have been clearly seen, being understood from what has been made.” As The Passion Translation puts it, “In reality, the truth of God is known instinctively, for God has embedded this knowledge inside every human heart.”

That means every one of us has the signature of our Maker in our DNA, our very cells. We look at stars, redwoods, roses, a newborn baby. opposable thumbs–the “things that are made”–and from these we infer a Maker. Paradoxically God’s “invisible (unseen) qualities have been clearly seen” in these things, being inferred by what we can see.

We may not know anything else about Him but we know this much for sure: Something made everything and that Something has to be way stronger than we are.

This foundational truth is recorded in the Bible–our Owners Manual–the book God “breathed” into men which is unchanging truth and will last forever. “Heaven and earth will pass away, but My words will by no means pass away.”

The basic and sole premise on which we must construct our understanding of all that exists in the universe is God. He alone is uncreated. He has no equal and there is no other. God exists–eternally–and is all-powerful. He does not exist in things. We–everything–exist in Him. “In Him we live and move and have our being.” We exist for Him, to fulfill His design and ultimately bring glory to Him. “For of Him and through Him and to Him are all things, to whom be glory forever.”

The premise on which we must construct our understanding of ourselves–humanity–is that we are created in the image of that God. We are created to be like Him, with mind, emotions and will, a sense of justice and mercy, ability to love and to reason, purpose, creativity, and sense of humor. We are created to know and have a relationship with Him.

The Bible says the foundation of all other truth depends on our having a healthy fear of and respect for Him: “The fear of God is the beginning of knowledge” and “The fear of the LORD is the beginning of wisdom”

We need to start with that, the fear of the LORD. He exists, He is powerful, He controls atoms, cells, time, eternity, and the affairs of men. He controls hurricanes and earthquakes, volcanoes, floods, and asteroids. He is fearful and fear can evoke awe and worship. (We cannot draw from natural law and its effects that He is also just and loving, that He can and wants to be known, to have a relationship with us–these things He reveals when we build our knowledge and wisdom on reverent fear: “He is not a tame Lion.” )

To build on any other foundation will be disastrous. Our internal knowledge of His existence and power strips away any ground for atheism or for any god other than the One He declares Himself to be in His word.

If we deny the cornerstone of all knowledge and wisdom–God–and build on materialism, a denial of the things we can’t see or sense, we will build on an illusion and nothing we build on it will last or have value. If we build on humanism, the assertion that “man is the measure of all things,” it will be like putting Earth instead of the sun in the center of our solar system and nothing we build on that premise can stand.

Yet from the beginning some of us turned away from God. (The following quotes are from Romans 1:18-32. I have personalized the pronouns): “Although we knew God, we neither glorified him as God nor gave thanks to him, but our thinking became futile and our foolish hearts were darkened…”

The surrounding context of this passage gives us the big picture: “The wrath of God is being revealed from heaven against all the godlessness and wickedness of people, who suppress the truth by their wickedness. For the wickedness of humanity deliberately smothers the truth and keeps people from acknowledging the truth about God. Opposition to truth cannot be excused on the basis of ignorance, because from the creation of the world, the invisible qualities of God’s nature have been made visible, such as his eternal power and transcendence. He has made his wonderful attributes easily perceived, for seeing the visible makes us understand the invisible. So then, this leaves everyone without excuse. For although we knew God, we neither glorified him as God nor gave thanks to him, but our thinking became futile and our foolish hearts were darkened. Although we claimed to be wise, we became fools.

We were created with an innate knowledge of God. Yet we suppressed the truth and rejected Him: 1) We refused to honor him as God. 2) We were ungrateful for His kindness. In so doing, we started a death spiral that plunged us progressively down into darkness. He kept appealing to us, reaching out to us with His love and light but we shut out His voice and rebelled all the more. Each time He “gave us over” to deeper delusion:

We exchanged the glory of the immortal God for images made to look like a mortal human being and birds and animals and reptiles. Therefore God gave us over in the sinful desires of our hearts to sexual impurity for the degrading of our bodies with one another. We exchanged the truth about God for a lie, and worshiped and served created things rather than the Creator—who is forever praised. Amen.

Because of this, God gave us over to shameful lusts. Even our women exchanged natural sexual relations for unnatural ones. In the same way the men also abandoned natural relations with women and were inflamed with lust for one another. Men committed shameful acts with other men, and received in themselves the due penalty for their error.

Furthermore, just as we did not think it worthwhile to retain the knowledge of God, so God gave us over to a depraved mind, so that we do what ought not to be done. We have become filled with every kind of wickedness, evil, greed and depravity. We are full of envy, murder, strife, deceit and malice. We are gossips, slanderers, God-haters, insolent, arrogant and boastful; we invent ways of doing evil; we disobey our parents;  we have no understanding, no fidelity, no love, no mercy. Although we know God’s righteous decree that those who do such things deserve death, we not only continue to do these very things but also approve of those who practice them.”

At the bottom of the spiral, among those things that are depraved, wicked, evil and deserving of death are perverted sexual practices. They are twisted caricatures of God’s design. God calls them “an abomination.”

Truth is simple. We make it complicated. We learn immutable biological, electronic and even construction principles from the very first chapter of Genesis, speaking of us: “He made them male and female.” The principle is illustrated in electronics and even in something as simple as putting a jigsaw puzzle together. Nothing is designed to function with two innies or two outies.

We learn immutable mathematical principles from that same verse, “He made them male and female.” God made one kind, male, and another kind, female. One plus one equals two. Not 3, 4, 5, 6, dozens, hundreds or infinity.

As deep as we have gone, He is still calling us home to Himself. His voice may be faint, drowned out by hisses and smooth seductions of the devil, but if you are disgusted with where you are and how you got there, if His voice penetrates your consciousness at all, He is offering you mercy, forgiveness and restoration. At your cry for help, He has the power to draw you out of the pit, cleanse you, set your feet on a rock and put a song in your mouth, a song of gratitude and salvation. Come back to Him. Come home. He is your good daddy and He keeps His promises.

Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment