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............."Oh, the gallant fisher's life, It is the best of any 'Tis full of pleasure, void of strife, And 'tis beloved of many." ..........[Piscator's Song, "The Compleat Angler" by Izaak Walton] "The fishers also shall mourn,and all they that cast angle into the brooks shall lament, and they that spread nets upon the waters shall languish." [Isaiah XIX:8]

Tuesday, June 21, 2011

Sad But True

An Associated Press article appeared in our local paper yesterday, June 20, 2011, entitled
"NC Grapples With Legacy of Sterilization Programs". The article began as follows:

Nearly 35 years after ending the country's most active post-war sterilization program, North Carolina is the only state trying to make amends to thousands of people who cannot have children because of eugenics-inspired theories about
social improvement.

It went on to say
Eugenics programs gained popularity in the U.S. and other countries in the early 1900s, but most abandoned those efforts after World War II because of the association with Nazi Germany's program aimed at racial purity. However, North Carolina's expanded, with sterilizations peaking in the 1950s and early 1960s. About 70 percent of the state's 7,600 sterilizations occurred after the war, state figures show.

Here are my thoughts;
While the state of North Carolina may be the only state in America "trying to make amends to thousands of people who cannot have children because of eugenics-inspired theories about social improvement”(June 20, 2011), all of America has been strapped with the legacy left behind by such theories and programs. It is hard to believe that the theory, that the less desirables of society ought not to be permitted equal opportunity to reproduce as others, gained a foothold in America. It is sad but true that it did. It may seem hard to believe that eugenics is still being implemented in the world today as a means of population control, again it's sad but true. Beware if you happen to be conceived and born a female in some countries. Your right to life may not be protected either in or out of the womb. Consider, for example, China’s brutal one- child per family policy, Closer to home, let us consider the well-documented fact that Margaret Sanger, the founder of Planned Parenthood, was highly involved in and influenced by the eugenics movement in America in the post-Civil War era. It is no accident that the abortion industry flourishes in America or that abortion clinics are often situated in poorer, often black communities. Yes, it’s quite a legacy we have been handed. But it is not too late to make amends.If we repent, will God be yet merciful to America?What shall we pass on to generations yet to come?

Saturday, January 15, 2011

Do you love Me?

He said to him again a second time, "Simon, son of John, do you love Me?" He said to Him, "Yes, Lord; You know that I love You." He said to him, "(Shepherd My sheep.")
17He said to him the third time, "Simon, son of John, do you love Me?" Peter was grieved because He said to him
the third time, "Do you love Me?" And he said to Him, "Lord, You know all things; You know that I love You " Jesus said to him, "(Tend My sheep.)
18"Truly, truly, I say to you, when you were younger, you used to gird yourself and walk wherever you wished; but when you grow old, you will stretch out your hands and someone else will gird you, and bring you where you do not wish to go."
19Now this He said,
signifying by what kind of death he would glorify God And when He had spoken this, He said to him, "(Follow Me!" [John 21:16-19].
Following the resurrectionJesus appeared to HIs disciples on the Sea of Tiberius.At His command they let down again their empty net. They brought it up so full of fish they could barely get it to shore.Does this not speak of the upcoming apostolic ministry of these men whom Jesus called to be "fishers of men"? Jesus has promised a great worldwide catch. After breakfast, Jesus there spoke to Peter, three times asking the question, "Do you love Me?"Peter affirms and reaffirms his love for Jesus his Lord. Meanwhile,Jesus presses home Peter's ministerial responsibility to feed Jesus' sheep and also as the text makes clear, He speaks of what kind of death by which Peter 'would glorify God.'
THis text has been much on my mind recently.The fly tying desk lies idle this winter, and the keyboard at the computer collects dust. SOMEONE ELSE MUST HELP ME DRESS AND TIE my shoes in the morning. My stroke at the end of October has left my left hand limp and my left foot fitted with an orthotic device. No longer do I simply walk wherever I wish to go, although the quad cane certainly helps.My heart yearns to be man-fishing and to be feeding Jesus' sheep, but providence has indicated I needed a seaon to learn something about dying. Shall I be able to return to the woods or to the streams or to full ministerial labor? God knows. BUT, oh to follow Jesus and to glorify God in our death! Lord, help us.
Dear readers, As a dying man speaking to dying men, allow me to exhort you to greater love and greater service to Christ. Together, Let us redeem the time that remains for us, making the most of every opportunity to glorify God.Amen.