Sunday, September 14, 2008


Today's Link
Before the Throne

Saying for the Day: To forgive is to set a prisoner free and discover that the prisoner was you. ~Lewis B. Smedes,

Picture of the day
(Archives-Pennie week)

This week all week pictures
of my daughter Pennie.

Today we start as close to the beginning as we have pictures.

Some people wonder why I watch my soap opera. I have to tell you that my soap opera is like a series of parables showing the result of sin. First there was the lie that got discovered and did all kinds of horrible damage to the family including causing one of them to die.
Now in the aftermath of those tragic events comes the problem of forgiveness. Because the family can’t forgive it is being torn apart. Unforgiveness is even causing one family member to consider killing another. At the same time a half crazed criminal who can’t forgive a perceived act by another part of the family is trying to punish that part. And to add to it all the marriage of a nice young couple has ended because he can’t forgive her for lying to him.
In today’s Gospel read in churches using the revised standard lectionary Jesus tells us that Christians have been forgiven by the Father and are obligated to forgive.
The soap opera shows us what happens when people don’t forgive.
In some ways it helps us to understand why Jesus thought forgiveness was so important.

News from Pigeon Falls
The little town in my basement where the trains still run, dragons fly, and life is back to normal.
Pastor Joan had an interesting sermon this morning. Here is part of it:
“ When I was much younger I had a friend who got into an argument with her brother and he said some very unkind things to her. People do that when they are angry or upset. She came to me and told me what her brother said. I agreed with her that it was terrible. I reinforced her anger. I and other friends said to her that she had a terrible brother. At the same time friends of the brother were telling him how terrible it was that his sister had caused such a fight. Then they stopped speaking to each other. None of us though we all claimed to belong to Jesus said to them you should forgive her or him. None of us reminded them of Jesus call even though they were both church members. We all helped to maintain the unforgiving attitude. But God in his goodness eventually broke through to them and they reconciled, no thanks to their friends.
I am ashamed of how I( acted then even though it is the way most people act. We tend to support the one’s we ;love even when we know better. But now I know better. Now I know we need to remind fellow Christians of Jesus’ call to forgive. WE need to remind them that Christ didn’t ask us to do something without a good reason.
Because we failed my friend lost two years of fellowship with her brother. She can never get it back. She wasted countless minutes being angry and feeling bad. She can never get them back. It is essential that we forgive.
On September 11th I read the blog of a lady named Raven. She understands the need for forgiveness in all of life. We can not allow ourselves to hate Arabs. We must find it inside ourselves to forgive. The war in Iraq may be the result of a national need to get revenge on somebody. The inability to forgive. Now it has become a new place to lay blame and find new people we can’t forgive.
Over it all stands Jesus telling us if we belong to him we are expected to forgive. But then the good news is he forgives us.”
Wrap Up
Went to Church this morning and took pictures of the Confirmands. My daughter and a friend did the children's sermon. She did a great job. That makes me a bit sad because she doesn't need me any more. Pastor Steve had another good sermon . This one on forgiveness. Coming home my son Patrick settled into the easy chair and watched the Packer game. Pennie and Betty played my grandson Alex and I in canasta. Alex and I won. Then I upgraded the St. Mark's website and visited most of my links. Nopw I need a breathing treatment.


Blogger Dragonstar said...

If you love you must forgive. If you forgive, you're that bit closer to love.

Your photos are beautiful.

6:42 AM  
Anonymous noble pig said...

I never thought of soaps as parables, but you are so right! I haven't watched them for year's & year's.

7:31 AM  
Blogger William ~ The Old Fart said...

I just hope the ones who watch the soaps get the same message as you are telling us Dr John.

A Blessed Sunday is wished for you and Betty.

12:02 PM  
Blogger Carver said...

I love the shots of Pennie. The black and white one is a classic.

Forgiveness is so important and sometimes so hard. I find that I am happier when I can forgive.

3:19 PM  
Blogger Lori's Minute said...

I loved the saying for the day...I had not heard that one before but it is so true.

Pennie will always need you...

4:18 PM  
Blogger Janvangogh said...

Hopefully Willie, Russell and Nancy were at church this morning. Nancy has got some 'splain'n to do.

5:07 PM  
Blogger Melli said...

Hm. I haven't read Raven's post ... yet... but I do agree with the need for forgiveness and that the majority of Arabs are GOOD people! (as are the majority of ALL people!) UNfortunately I find it a lot harder to forgive siblings than I do to forgive a country or a race spotted with terrorists.

8:54 AM  
Blogger ProclaimingSoftly (PSanafter-thought) said...

I've learned that to forgive 7 X 70, as some translations say, is to be taken literally rather than figuratively or symbolically. I find that trying to forgive, even with the help of prayer, almost always takes repetition of the conscious act and thought of forgiveness. I need to forgive over and over, and after awhile, the poison that come up when the "hurt" resurfaces in my mind, comes farther and farther apart, yet still resurfaces. Then I forgive again, and eventually, there is forgetting of the event or sometimes the event is still in the memory but the hurt is gone. In any case, forgiveness is liberating for the forgiver.

7:23 AM  

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