Tag Archives: Middle East

Home Again, Home Again

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It’s the middle of the night, and we just got back from the airport. At half past midnight, our daughter’s flight arrived after her soccer camp.

With all my kids I’m amazed at how I enjoy seeing them learn and do new things while simultaneously knowing that they’re so close to growing up and being on their own.

As we read in Ecclesiastes: The words of David’s son, Qoheleth, king in Jerusalem: Vanity of vanities, says Qoheleth, vanity of vanities! All things are vanity! What profit has man from all the labor which he toils at under the sun? One generation passes and another comes, but the world forever stays.

Each generation wants the next to be a little better. Better educated. Better positioned for a successful career. To do well.

However, the most important thing we really want for our kids is for them to do good. To know that God has a plan for them that is better than anything they could ever imagine for themselves. To know how to trust Him.

I don’t have the talent to convince them by logic or clever arguments, so my wife and I have to try to teach by example. Examples like showing up together (complete with her brother) at the airport in the middle of the night with a small (Walmart) bouquet and her favorite Tropical Smoothie.

I figure that if we show them what love is, it cannot lead anywhere but to God.

Who Is This Man, Jesus?

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It’s surprising how little we know about Jesus the person. He was named Yeshua, the Aramaic for Joshua, the loyal scout and military leader who was allowed to pass into the Promised Land when even Moses was denied entry.

His public ministry was only for a few years. Except for His last two days, the scriptures tell us little about Him. We don’t know if he was tall or short. Nowhere do the Scriptures describe Him physically. However, it’s a pretty good bet he looked like we see Him in paintings and sculpture, with white skin and long flowing hair. Men native to the Middle East tend to have darker skin, and St. Paul in his first letter to the Corinthians is quite critical about men with long hair. An unlikely comment if that was how Jesus looked.

What the scriptures do tell us is His message and his purpose. Look at the beautiful beginning to John’s gospel, “In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God.”

He taught us to love God and to love one another. To extend that love to even the least among us. To be willing to give up life itself out of love.

It was a good message, and just as He subjugated Himself to the Father’s will, He placed the message first. After all, He was, and is the Word.