Lift Off

Lift Off

Lift Off

 

My friend Charlie lifted off from this planet and universe in the very early morning hours November 17th, in the arms of his wife.

By all indications, from the telemetry, the launch went smoothly without a hitch.

He soon touched down into another set of arms that were patiently waiting for him.

That touchdown also went without a problem, after all, he was caught by the Creator of the Universe.

This Creator, who so carefully designed time and space, in His infinite wisdom, made our universe so vast in size, that all the grains of sand on all the beaches on planet earth would not add up to all the sun’s in our Milky Way Galaxy. 

To top that off, He made more galaxy’s in this cosmos that we live in, than all the grains of sand on our little blue planet’s beaches.

Wrap your head around that!

 

I would say, Charlie, is in very good arms and hands indeed.

What Are the Benefits of Being Grateful?

A very proud Charley as he walks down the aisle with his daughter Mary. 

Lift Off

 

Charlie knew this was the location he wanted to end up in when he took his last breath and many breaths in-between.

He has moved on from this boot camp called life, leaving behind a legacy of life that touched many people.

A wonderful wife and three precious children and grandchildren were his main contribution to this legacy.

 

Charlie was the Star Wars Mandalorian when it came to the Christian faith.

 

He was always ready to defend this faith and to spread the hope he had within himself when he accepted Jesus Christ as his Lord and Savior.

He knew where his treasures were stored.

Charlie was a huge success in this life by the mere fact of accepting Christ.

That alone is something that heaven celebrated beyond all measure.

I can just imagine when he touched down in his new existence, what he must have felt and seen with all his new senses.

All the things he read about and studied from church and the Bible came to life in an instant.

I wish I could have been there to see his face and soul upon meeting Jesus face to face.

I will soon enough in my own time, and most of all, in God’s time.

What Are the Benefits of Being Grateful?

Charley presenting his daughter Mary to his new son-in-law, Josh, at wedding. 

Lift Off

 

For the time being, I have been reflecting on the times, my family shared with the Atwell family.

What a historic life we celebrated together.

“Papa, papa, please help me” Charlie’s oldest son, Jimmy would cry out with a big smile on his face when he was small. “Shaun and Jason are picking on me.” Charlie would laugh as he watched his son fly through the air from one of my boys to the other, and always reply “I am not getting in the middle of those two. You’re on your own”

I imagine, my two sons picked on Mary and Jack the same way.

 

Mr. Atwell, was how I would address Charlie from time to time, loved to fish and he loved taking his family on these adventures to different lakes.

I took my small boat one time to one of these adventures, with my son Shaun and my wife, Monica, to Lake Mary in Northern, Arizona.

We wanted to catch something bigger from what you could hook into from shore. We left our wives sitting onshore waving at us.

After fishing for a period of time, a storm started to move in. The waves started to grow large and were lapping at the edges at the top of the boat.

Out of safety and concern, we dropped my son off on the other side of the lake to lessen the load in the boat.

Charlie and I were NOT small people, so this baby road low in the water, even in calm conditions.

By the time we made it halfway across the lake, Charlie and I were in some serious prayer and having a conversation with the Almighty.

To this day I still do not know how we made it with only a trolling motor for propulsion.

When we landed on shore, I thought I could see Charlie’s hand impressions of where he had squeezed the front of the boat on each side.

When he placed both feet on the rocky shore, he bent down and kissed the ground.

 

Big, bad, fisherman we both were.

What Are the Benefits of Being Grateful?

Charley dancing his daughter Mary with his wife Susan dancing with Jack in the background. 

Lift Off

 

There were many stories like that we all have replayed in our heads in our time with this interesting, creative, and funny individual called Charles August Atwell.

One of the best memories for me, was sharing his daughter Mary’s wedding with the Atwell family, friends, and relatives.

What a blast that was for my whole family, including grandchildren.

My daughter-in-law, Candace, and my son, Jason, took the wedding photographs that you see here on this blog.

My grandson, Zeke was the ring bearer and my granddaughter Fran Cesca was the flower girl.

It was a weekend we will never forget! 

 

Our families were not perfect by any means, and if it were not for forgiveness that our Christian Faith believed in, and Jesus made the forefront of His message, I have no idea how our families would have survived.

I think the restoration of the rebellious human spirit is God’s greatest miracle He can perform.

With everything else in the universe, God can just breathe into existence, material things out of nothing.

 

He is the Word!

What Are the Benefits of Being Grateful?

The Atwell Family. (from left to right) Charley and Susan in front. Along the back, Jack, Jimmy and Mary.  

Lift Off

 

When it comes to us humans, it’s a different story when you consider freewill in the mix of our existence.

God is the perfect gentlemen and will not go unless He is invited.

What patience He has for the human race and us as individuals.

He keeps setting up scenarios for us to connect with Him over and over again.

Some are very hard scenarios that are absolutely heartbreaking in the human mindset, but God will use everything in our lives to bring us to Him.

 

Eternity is in the balance.

 

Most people will not embrace God throughout their lifetime which is very sad, and I can only imagine how God Himself must feel.

We did not have this problem where Charlie, me, and our families are concerned.

As it says in John 14:6, our families have all embraced The Word, The Way, The Truth, and The Life.

See you soon my brother, save a spot for me.

Do not forget the lunch date we made to have in heaven, out on one of many planets in the universe, and we can watch as a distant sun goes supernova.

What Are the Benefits of Being Grateful?

Charley with his wife Susan, my wife Monica and me (John) after one of the many photo shoots we shared every year at the Salvation Army Christmas event in Phoenix.

He loved doing this event and got so much joy bringing happiness to people less fortunate with the gift of a family portrait.

Lift Off


 

We have written many articles from a Christian Apologetic perspective that you might like to read here Two Measures Foolish Blogs

Follow Us On Facebook

Two Measures Foolish: Foolish to God for we sin – Foolish to the world for the cross.

Casting My Dice with Jesus

Casting My Dice with Jesus

Casting My Dice with Jesus

This may sound a bit corny, but you only have one chance at eternal love.

You know that any human that you love will eventually die, but the only other option that I have seen offered by anyone or anything is an Eternal God who loves you, who created you and who wants to have a relationship with you for the rest of eternity.

That is your only good option. All other options are finite and temporary. I believe that Jesus Christ took on the form of a finite human man so that he could unite us to the possibility of infinite love in Him.

Imagine having a relationship that only got better and better and better for the rest of eternity.

I’m casting my dice with Jesus.

I’m putting all my eggs in one basket.

I am willing to choose Jesus.

It’s like winning the ultimate lottery and Jesus’s work, obedience and sacrifice made it possible.

When they had crucified him, they divided up His clothes by casting lots.

Check us out, we have written blogs all over the spectrum from the Christian Perspective and Apologetics

Follow Us On Facebook

Two Measures Foolish: Foolish to God for we sin – Foolish to the world for the cross.

What Are the Benefits of Being Grateful?

What Are the Benefits of Being Grateful?

What Are the Benefits of Being Grateful? 

When I had set out to write this article, I already had some idea of my limitations about this subject of being grateful. Gratitude has not come easily to me.

I have never really had a mind set that would help me to think this way. You see, I was an atheist until I was 30 years old so being grateful was an abstract thought for most of my life. If I worked hard and fulfilled my dreams my accomplishments had nothing to do with anything or anyone else but me.

Once I became a Christian that changed but I was still not in a good mindset of being grateful. Maybe I expressed gratitude when I prayed but not in my daily dealings with life, and certainly not when I was angry, in a bad mood or depressed.

A very good friend of mine opened this bag of worms (bag of gratefulness) in a phone call a month ago. He said he suffered from sadness or depression most of his life and was trying to kick that habit.

As we talked, I think God spoke to me and said, “How can you be sad or depressed when you are grateful?” I told my friend this and we talked at some length about the subject.

A few weeks later my friend Randy was leading the Men’s Hope Group at our church that I belong to and his subject for the night was being grateful.

He opened the discussion for everyone to participate in.

Listening to the different men explain their thoughts was eye opening but one thing that was repeated many times was that the other men were also having the same problem of being grateful as I was.

My cousin Ellen said to me when I told her I was writing a blog on this topic.

“We think of our struggles as punishments. Could it be that God is trying to help us grow beyond our finite perspectives? Gratitude during our trials helps build character from God’s perspective.”  

We Think of Our Struggles As Punishments

That response from her was very powerful and hit the nail on the head.

I then decided to contact family and friends and find out their thoughts on being grateful. I wondered if, perhaps, we all could learn from each other.

Below are many of the comments they wrote me when I asked them What Are the Benefits of Being Grateful”

What Are the Benefits of Being Grateful?

Blessing & being content!!!!” — Rosie

Gratitude makes you believe you have a responsibility to give back to the others. Entitlement makes you believe others have a responsibility to give back to you.”

AND

“You could also argue all worship is a form of gratitude for what God has done or is doing. At the very least, gratitude is one of if not the primary vehicle of worship.” Justin

Gratefulness is a gift from God. It rewires the human brain for good, lifts the spirits, cheers the heart, cancels greed and entitlement mentality and brings a sense of peace and well-being to one’s soul. Gratitude acknowledges the goodness of God.”Randy

Being grateful to GOD should in turn make you more humble and then turn into obedience to His will in your life.”Erik

Gratitude is an open awareness of our finite abilities and God’s ultimate authority and sovereignty. It is the recognition of God’s renewed mercies every day. Gratitude is also having the ability to pause and give thanks for all of God’s creation both large and small, and our interactions within it.  It is a form of surrender and appreciation of God’s influence and work in our lives. Gratitude means taking nothing for granted, or seeking from an entitlement perspective, as no living thing is worthy or deserving of God’s love and mercy, yet He gives it freely. Every day we have the opportunity to be grateful for each breathe of life we are given, and the fact that God sustains all things.”Ellen

The more grateful we are, the more people see Jesus shine in you. The more grateful we are, the joy of the Lord is in us. A grateful heart is a humble heart.”Connie

Gratefulness reflects appreciation. It reflects humility. It acknowledges the giver. It also reflects graciousness. Who doesn’t like the person who lives their life from a place of gratefulness?” — Lynwood

What Are the Benefits of Being Grateful?

Gratitude promotes a feeling of kindness and love for the giver and receiver. In other words, when someone gives you a gift or shows you kindness, you both walk away with a warm fuzzy feeling in your tummy.”Tom

Being Grateful, helps keep you humble and thankful for everything and everyone in your life!”Shaun

Becoming grateful – or looking around for things to appreciate & be thankful for – brings incredible amounts of joy & peace & fulfillment, where there used to be misery, cynicism, restlessness.”Ariel

When you are feeling truly grateful, it pushes all sinful attitudes out. There’s no room for feeling bitterness, covetousness, anger, jealousy etc. —  It re-focuses our hearts on the gifts that God has blessed us with and helps us to truly love God and the people He has placed in our lives.”Candace

The main benefit of being grateful for me is to concentrate on something that is good in my life and not think so much of what is negative.”Kathy 

Being grateful….

  • Feelings of dissatisfaction with what you have.
  • Lends to being a more forgiving person.
  • Improves appreciation for the blessings frequently taken for granted
  • Reduces stress and improves your health.
  • Grateful people are more cheerful.
  • Grateful people handled success better.
  • Being more concerned for others than yourself is a byproduct of gratefulness
  • Grateful persons are a joy to be around
  • Being grateful supports other fruits of the Spirit
  • Grateful people are less condemning of themselves and others
  • Grateful people are not bitter people”
  • Steve

Being grateful is one of the few times you get to understand the value of anything, if you are never grateful then you can never understand what it is you have or what someone else has done for you. It means your outlook on life will most likely be pitted against you instead of for you. Being grateful provides not only a happier moment but a much stronger and durable guide to happiness, don’t we all want to be happy? Then we should all also be grateful no matter how little we feel we have.”Jacob

Benefits of being grateful is that it helps you to be happy and content with what you have. If you are always looking at what somebody else has that is better than what you have, you will not be satisfied. It keeps you from allowing yourself to be happy.” — Jason 

What Are the Benefits of Being Grateful?

I can’t see God clearly unless I am grateful. I am only truly grateful when I am humbled. I am only ever truly humbled when I recognize the depravity of my heart. I only see the depravity of my heart when I am transparent and in community. When I am transparent and in community, I see my need for God which brings me right back to being grateful!”Paul

Hope in the future is built on a foundation of recognizing our blessings and being grateful for them.”Pam 

One benefit of being grateful is an attitude change. If you are grateful your attitude is positive, and it will affect those around you.”Freya

Early in our marriage we sat under a much-loved pastor who constantly admonished his flock, “Have an attitude of gratitude,” and he consistently modeled that in his own life and speech. Another good friend speaks of the difference between an “abundance mentality” and a “scarcity mentality.” When we recognize that God’s provision for us really is enough, we will respond with gratitude, and that gratitude begets generosity.”Rhonda

Everything I have is a gift from God, my life, my family, my next breath. In living with this knowledge, I have peace that God provides.” Jim

Some of the benefits of being grateful: a more positive attitude and outlook, and helps my relationships go better too.”Jack

When thinking of this I was overwhelmed at the benefit of having a grateful heart. The first thing that came to mind was the overwhelming feeling of peace. A peace that only God can give and is the One to whom having a grateful heart belongs… His constant love and care in my life is only a portion of the gratefulness because the benefits are for me, too numerous to count. Hope being one of them. Joy and a sense of well-being. Sensing His constant care and concern for my life always keeps me in a mindset of gratitude on a daily basis, which for me, is life sustaining. I am so GRATEFUL for the benefits of GRATITUDE as it is also from the very Heart of God.” Monica

Being grateful stings the devil and takes him out of the equation.” — Keith

 

What Are the Benefits of Being Grateful?

What Are the Benefits of Being Grateful?

I personally thank each and every one of you that participated with this important question. I am Very Grateful (I knew I would get that in there at some point) that you took time out of your busy schedule to sit and reflect on this topic and then send me your answers.

I know many of the quotes are similar, but people did not have access to what others have said until now.

One last thought as I close.

I am personally grateful to the Christian God that created me and that He has the character qualities that He has, and that Jesus exhibited throughout His life. Loving, forgiving, humility, compassion, gentleness, self-control, patience, obedience, honesty and prayerful are just a few. 10 qualities of Jesus.

His amazing patience with me before I accepted Jesus into my heart and also the years afterward.

All my gratefulness radiates from Him.

If after reading this blog, if you would like to contribute to this discussion, please comment below so everyone can see what you have to say or maybe go to our Facebook page for a lively discussion once this blog is posted.

This is what Two Measures Foolish is all about—digging deeper into the things of God and our world that He made for us to live and grow in.

Please sign up for future Blog Posts and we will send them as they are published to your email.

 

What Are the Benefits of Being Grateful?

Follow Us On Facebook

Two Measures Foolish: Foolish to God for we sin – Foolish to the world for the cross.

Our Personal War in This Life

Our Personal War in This Life

Our Personal War in This Life

The truth is Jesus is with us and goes through life with us and we most definitely are born again into a journey that is akin to being in a war 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, year after year until we die.

The nature of the war affects many or all aspects of a human, for example, fighting against an aging body by intentionally choosing to do helpful exercise, lifestyles choices and healthier eating.

These tests, these temptations and we see them, is to self-indulge in the pleasure of unhealthy food and drink, making it an idol and habit and losing the image of God on our bodies.

The enemy supplies all the tantalizing junk food and drinks that may give us a buzz and then the meds to keep us on life support as we kill ourselves.

Most fall for this trap unless we are like the Amish in Ohio, we are surrounded 24/7 with the sirens of gluttony the little drug of pleasure in food, the look, the romance, the connection to culture, being comfortable that are artificial tranquilizers to the needy brain.

Most fall for this trap unless we are like the Amish

This is only one area. Look at sensuality, sex and pleasure, false romance and intimacy, power, control and wealth, being our own gods and taking the glory from the true Creator and Savior of the world.

We are surrounded with the same destructive temptations Christ was presented with by His enemy and our enemy.

Talk about getting ourselves in a rock and a hard place!

He prevailed over the enemy’s temptations and now He walks with us into victory if we will follow him.

Self-denial may be one way out.

Take up your cross and follow me.

 

We have written many other blog posts you might be interested in by going here Two Measures Foolish Blog Page

 

Our Personal War in This Life

Follow Us On Facebook

Two Measures Foolish: Foolish to God for we sin – Foolish to the world for the cross.

Climate Change: Is God A Fool?

Climate Change: Is God A Fool?

Climate Change: Is God A Fool?

With talk about Climate Change raging all around us and hysteria everywhere you look, several things have come to my mind as a believer in an all-knowing entity that created us and this universe. Yes, I am a Christian.

The three main attributes or characteristics of God.

Theologians say is that He is Omnipotent, Omniscient and Omnipresent. Without these characteristics God is not God at all is He? Are not all three of these essential to be the Intelligent Designer of this universe.

What These Terms Mean

 

Omnipotence means all-powerful. Monotheistic theologians regard God as having supreme power. This means God can do what he wants. It means he is not subject to physical limitations like man is. Being omnipotent, God has power over wind, water, gravity, physics, etc. God’s power is infinite, or limitless.

Omniscience means all-knowing. God is all all-knowing in the sense that he is aware of the past, present, and future. Nothing takes him by surprise. His knowledge is total. He knows all that there is to know and all that can be known.

Omnipresence means all-present. This term means that God is capable of being everywhere at the same time. It means his divine presence encompasses the whole universe. There is no location where He does not inhabit. This should not be confused with pantheism, which suggests that God is synonymous with the universe itself; instead, Omnipresence indicates that God is distinct from the universe, but inhabits the entirety of it. He is everywhere at once.

Of these three it is Omniscience that I want to concentrate on when it comes to Climate Change. As a Christian, I believe God created this universe with only human beings in mind. All the rest is for us to use and consume. Not just on this planet and solar system but all of what is going on in the far reaches of this enormous universe impacts us directly also.

Climate Change: Is God A Fool?

Climate Change: Is God A Fool?

 

When God pulled the trigger at one point in time through the ‘Big Bang’ or ‘Cosmological Singularity’, He put into motion all the ingredients that human life on this blue planet would need to thrive.

It does not matter if you are a young earther who believes the universe is only 7,000 to 10,000 years old or if you are an old earther that believes the universe is 13.8 billion years old, the dynamics are still the same.

Does God have Omniscience and that He is an all-knowing Intelligent Designer?

Would He have had complete understanding of what we would need from the beginning of creation until the end?

Do you think this all loving God would have put all these different minerals on this planet for humans to have access to knowing that we would kill ourselves off by using them?

What kind of God is that?

When it comes to fossil fuel of coal, oil and gas that he would have the earth go through a period that all these giant plants and animals like dinosaurs would live and die so we would have these ingredients to use later in man’s development and then kill ourselves off by using too much and causing a greenhouse effect?

Maybe God did not know about the production of carbon when burning fossil fuel? Maybe it took him by surprise? How about the burning of wood that humans have done since the begging of time to warm ourselves and cook our food? Look at all the carbon that released?

I suppose you could say the same thing about the nuclear age and creating nuclear bombs. I remember the fear that swept this country during the Cuban missile crisis. Teachers made us dive under school desks when the alarm went off.

 By all rights from many stories I have read that mankind should have killed himself off by now in a nuclear holocaust or war. Did the nuclear age take him by surprise? Does He not have control of that also? 

The hysteria around climate change has become so acute by many people that I question if they believe in God at all. The fear has become so overwhelming that it is driving many individuals to almost lose their reasoning.

Has Climate Change become their God?

Human beings have such a need to be in complete control over everything and when they do not, fear erupts like a volcano.

We see that in our daily lives when we lose a job, how are we going to pay our bills, someone close to us gets very sick or we have a car wreck. How are we going to deal with it?

Does God only deal with individuals but on a large scale like the survival of the planet and all life on it, is beyond His control?

Climate Change: Is God A Fool?

What does it say about fear in scripture?

“Do not be anxious about anything, but in every situation, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God. And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.” ~ Philippians 4:6-7

Does that say do not be anxious about anything except climate change or nuclear bombs?

“Peace is what I leave with you; it is my own peace that I give you. I do not give it as the world does. Do not be worried and upset; do not be afraid.” ~ John 14:27

Our culture has eliminated God out of everything so it no wonder they are terrified of the future and what it will bring.

They call Christians anti science but is that true or are they just pushing their godless agenda with their small-minded opinions. They like to accuse Christians of being out of touch and fools. Fools to believe in a Creator of the universe and not godless evolution.

Who and what is really behind fear and anxiety?

“For we do not wrestle against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of [a]the darkness of this age, against spiritual hosts of wickedness in the heavenly places.” – Ephesians 6:12

So, what does this tell us about this present age we live in?

That the culture that we live in does not have a clue about what is really going on this planet. Does it seem like we really have a handle on any of this? Ask yourself if it all seems like its grinding to halt. You can feel it. God’s Word confirms it.

God gave us all an owner’s manual in the Bible and also what is coming in the end times.

“Fear not!” is the most repeated command in the Bible. In fact, it’s been said that there are 365 “Fear nots” in the Bible — one “Fear not” for every day of the year! … God doesn’t want us to go a single day without hearing his word of comfort: “Fear not!”

Do not get all caught up in the hysteria and fear of climate change. Do not let mere humans with their narrow incite and opinions shout over God’s voice of reason.

He created you and I and has a hope and future for each one of us. He also created this time and space called a universe and is not surprised by anything. He knew it would come down to this in the end.

Do not let fear rule you!

Jesus walked on this planet, died and rose again so we could have a future.

That you can take to the bank!

Go here for many more Interesting Articles on Our Blog

 

Climate Change: Is God A Fool?

Follow Us On Facebook

Two Measures Foolish: Foolish to God for we sin – Foolish to the world for the cross.