Friday, January, 13 2023 - My birthday
We had our usual morning session, then early on birthday wishes began to pour in from all over the place. I immediately began to think how I was going to respond. There was no way that I could respond to all of the calls, posts, cards, gifts in one sitting or one way. I wish I could gather everyone in one place, but that’s impossible. There is no place large enough to seat everyone.
The Lewisburg Document
As is my custom, I read, study and reflect on the 10-page Lewisburg document. This is a
document which Jesus Christ gave me to write in 1957. It spells out the mission that I was called to implement. The heading is to convert the world to Jesus Christ. I am amazed and inspired everytime I read the document. Much of what I am doing today and have been doing since 1958, the substance of which was written in 1957 in Lewisburg Federal Correctional Facility. Starting in 1953, however the document was written in 1958 it spelled out the mission that I had been on and will be on in greater detail.
In fact, I keep constant reminder that the God through Jesus Christ who has brought me this far in the journey will surely give me grace to complete the mission.
Saturday, January 14, 2023
I was awakened thinking about age and aging and the divine dilemma. I think I posted about aging. One of the major pieces in my mission is to redeem aging. Unlike other cultures in other countries America has made aging an unwanted experience - almost a curse to be aging. I have had conversations in which I very openly talk about, “I am x number of years old” and people have responded – shh! don’t use the old word. People have felt the need to lie about their age and to dress in apparel that attempts to show youthfulness. Products manufactured, particularly cosmetics, have a subtle sometimes and sometimes very conspicuous youth emphasis. After all it is the Pepsi generation. I believe that God would not make aging a curse, but a blessing. I believe we should age gracefully enjoying life, excited about living and when we have lived our allotted years to die peacefully.
But because we disobey health laws and in other ways, our bodies deteriorate and begin to be a burden of aches and pains, sicknesses, immobility.
The other thought that occurred to me was how does God deal with prayers that ask for
things in direct contradiction to each other. For example, I remember watching two Catholic colleges playing each other. The game comes down to the end with one school, say, Team A with the football kicker attempting to make a field goal which would have won the game. Team A supporters were kneeling on the sideline praying that the kicker would make the field goal and win the game.
Across the field on the other side was praying just the opposite, that the kicker would miss the field goal and they would win. And in the stands, thousands of fans were divided. Some praying for Team A, some praying for field B. How would God deal with this dilemma?
Well, I believe this is where God works in all things for the good. Whether losing a game, which Team A would consider a terrible thing, and whether winning the game as Team B was hoping is a good thing. In my experience I have thought some to which I was passing was a bad thing, but it turned out to be a blessing. That is why I believe Jesus said in his model prayer to always include thy will be done. We really don’t know anything about anything and especially about the future. So when we commit ourselves to doing the will of God we trust the decision making to God’s hands.
Now, however, Jesus said “whatsoever things you desire when you pray believe that you have them, you shall receive them.” We reconcile these two statements, I believe, by desiring not even what you need, but what you desire, we make the request. But we always say, thy will be done.
We spent time together as a family celebrating my birthday. It is a family practice of
gathering us no matter where we are so we can see each other's faces and hear each other's voices via another act of genius by the human minds.
Sunday, January 15, 2023
Today, it was the usual Sunday basketball 8:45am, Men’s prayer and Sunday worship. We were scheduled to be worshiping inside the building but because of a mix-up in the leasing arrangement, we were denied the opportunity to worship again in person. So we had to avail ourselves of our Sunday worship via conference call. My theme for Sunday was still on the question of aging. I used it for basketball, my weekly words of wisdom, that we create the future from what we did in the past and what we are doing in the present.
In the Sunday worship, I spoke to the mystery of the three time zone reality:
1. Creating the future while in the present. The past has helped to make us what we are in the present. The present helps to create the future.
2. Because as I have stated in other places, America has a disdain for aging. We strive with all our might to stay young except in doing the things that would perpetuate youthfulness. I discussed how I defined my age chronologically 92 (although I age up one, so I’m 93). Physically, I feel around 30-40, psychologically 21, philosophically I am forever, spiritually I am eternal. That’s how I define my age, how do you define yours?
3. I am often asked how I act and look so good at 92? I ask myself, how is it that my mind is sharp, I have physical mobility, energized most of the time and excited. What have I done to reach this stage? First of all, I am what I am by the grace of God. After saying that there are 9 principles which I’ve striven to live by:
Give and Receive Right
Enjoy Life Right
Worship and Serve God Right