The Ignorant White Man: Institutionalized Oppression of Women.

To start off with, this is not a completely fleshed out piece that I was hoping for. However, it is a piece that I hope with get some men out there to realize reality. Reality in many areas, some you may not even know I was going to come at you with. Eventually I’ll get that well formed piece of work with all the notations, citations, and other tions, but for now, here you have it, from a man in the middle of his worst Fibromyalgia Flare in years.

Sexism image

Society is a bunch of institutionalized isms. I hate the word ‘institutionalized’ these days. But, it’s a fact and we can’t avoid it and shouldn’t. Avoidance is one of the ways we are the way we are now.

Depending on whether you believe in some type of faith or you’re an atheist that believes in the evolution of man from molecules to man, at some point man flexed his muscles and put woman in her place. Okay, he put her where she couldn’t do him any harm and couldn’t have power over him.

In the beginning, as soon as there was both male and female on this planet, they were partners. One hunted, the man, and the female gathered, probably because she was smarter and was stuck taking care of the kids because men didn’t want to be bothered by the task, and thus couldn’t really travel to far. So, right there is the first sign of sexism and the oppression of women.

Many scientist and historians don’t think of men exerting authority until agriculture became a reality. At that time, men wanted to make sure the kids that would inherit his lands would have his DNA and not the neighbor’s.

Being a man of faith, the Christian faith, I believe God intended man and woman to be partners. After all He said;

26 Then God said, “Let Us make man in Our image, according to Our likeness. They will rule the fish of the sea, the birds of the sky, the livestock, all the earth, and the creatures that crawl on the earth.”

27 So God created man in His own image;
He created him in the image of God;
He created them male and female. —Genesis 1:26-27

The word man here is not speaking of a male, but of people, human beings. Then you see God created human beings in His own image, male and female. You see God doesn’t look like us, at least not as far as I know. When we are made in His image, I believe this speaks to the aspects of God, the characteristics of God. After God has created male and female, saw everything he had created, and it was very good. He didn’t say this before Eve was created, but afterward. This means it all wasn’t very good without female, without Eve, the female characteristics of God.

And before anyone decides to jump to the comments and say God is a man and not a woman, I’m not saying anything to the contrary. What I am saying is that God is the mother and father of us all. He has all those characteristics in Him.

Eve was created to be Adam’s mate, his partner in taking care of everything. God gave everything to man, human beings, to have dominion over, not just the men. But once humans were kicked out of the Garden of Eden, that’s when things began to change.

People have used religion to oppress women for as long as there has been religion. In the Old Testament of the Bible, you see multiple wives, selling and trading women and daughters, and a lot of demeaning things. God didn’t approve of the idea of the whole multiple wives thing, it’s just what was happening so that’s what was written in the Bible. Then since the Ten Commandments apparently wasn’t clear enough he gave a set of laws for the Jews to follow, which included some pretty bad things. I’m just happy Christians don’t have a reason to look to Leviticus as a guide for our own way of handling things. The sad thing is, some Christians use the Old Testament to put women in a subservient role in the household.

I think in those very early days, like when Adam and Eve were first out of the Garden, the dividing of duties was simply a case of what made sense. Adam could travel farther to hunt, while Eve was able to breast feed the children and stay in the same area while she gathered, which research says provided as much as 70% of the calories for ancient human beings. Yep, women were the boss in that aspect.

As the centuries past, men exerted their strength over women to become more and more in control, to the point there was no questioning what was happening. It was all seen as a given. Oppression of women was part of the fabric of society, part of the institution of society.

In ancient Rome, during the 1rst Century AD, women were not even allowed to speak in public gatherings, which is in part commented on in Paul’s letters to the Corinthians in the New Testament of the Bible. Some men in Christian churches these days look to these letters to show that women are not supposed to speak in church, or even to teach. The fact was Paul was responding to a letter he had been given about problems in the church of Corinth. They had all sorts of people speaking at the same time, trying to take control of the church meetings. Not only women, but people speaking in tongues, which meant they were speaking in foreign languages. Paul basically said for everyone to be silent while whatever leader had been given the most recent incite to the teachings of Jesus took the lead for that meeting.

I speak about Christianity because that is my faith. Other faiths also oppress women, but they are not my area of expertise so I don’t feel I have a right at this time to comment on them.

As the centuries have past and scholars have been enlightened about many things regarding genders being equal in all the ways that matter, the Ignorant White American Man somehow believes that all things are equal in the systems of America. They should be, but, there are men who don’t want to give up their power to women. They are afraid of women for some reason. I suppose they think women may take some type of revenge on men of today for the millennia of mistreatment of women. Those men in power, in control of changing things for equality are basing women’s reaction on what they would do.

The Ignorant White American Man looks at Supreme Court Justices being female, governors, Senators, members of the House, Cabinet members, CEOs of major corporations and other positions where women are still in a very small minority and say, “see, things are equal.”

In the 2018 Fortune 500 list of CEOs, only 4.8% were women, a drop of 25% from 2017.

23% of the Senate are women.

19.3% of the U.S. House are women.

12% of the U.S. State Governors are women.

23% of the 100 largest cities in the U.S. have women as mayors.

Just these numbers alone show that we, as a country, are not equal.

In music 2017:

16.8% of artists are women.

Of 2,767 songs 12.3% were credited female, a 6-year low.

https://www.billboard.com/articles/news/8096196/new-report-shows-major-lack-representation-women-music-industry

2018 © Copyright-All rights reserved-RonovanWrites.wordpress.com

Be still … know … breathe.

I’m tired. It’s been a long year in many ways. Many years ago, I went through a phase like this. At that time, I had a good support system in place. I was heavily involved in ministry. The type ministry and how many types don’t matter.

One night there was a gathering of the church leadership for prayer. We divided into small groups in the sanctuary, and within the group, each one of us had to pray for another person, and pray specifically. My partner was the youth minister and worship leader I had help bring to the church.

My problem was I didn’t know how to say no. I was the young and willing man in the church as well as business. In church if you are in your 30s your consider one of the young folk, that can even extend into the 40s. This inability to say no and wanting to help ended up with a very frazzled and sick Ronovan.

The youth minister prayed for peace to come into my life. The next week I was leading the youth on a concert trip to see Steven Curtis Chapman, arguably the king of contemporary Christian music. He sang a song that night, and I knew it was no coincidence.

Ever sense that night, one of my life verses has been Psalm 46:10

He says, “Be still, and know that I am God;
I will be exalted among the nations,
I will be exalted in the earth.”

We forget sometimes and worry about things way beyond our control. Stress hits us from every angle. Do you ever think, after the fact, of how insane some of the things we worried about were? Life is too short to worry about everything. What the Psalmist means is to remember God is in control of the ultimate outcome of the world. Bad things happen because of bad people and being in the wrong places at the wrong time. Put your eternal life in his hands. Nothing can take you from the hand of God once you give yourself to Him. When you pass own, you are with God. Nothing here on earth can stop that. Hurt me, harass me, do all types of damage to me, and I will still end up fine because I know God has me.

I may stress for a moment, but then I center myself, shake the stress off, and get back to my core.

John 16:33 Jesus speaks to the disciples.

 “I have told you these things, so that in me you may have peace. In this world you will have trouble. But take heart! I have overcome the world.”

Jesus never said life would be easy here on earth. He never said that to his disciples or anyone that ever heard him speak. He said the exact opposite. Christians would be persecuted because of him. “Blessed are you when people insult you, persecute you and falsely say all kinds of evil against you because of me.” Matthew 5:11. As part of the beatitudes from the Sermon on the Mount, you know it must be serious.

Philippians 4:6-7

“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.”

I try to take away something good with every situation. My son and I were throwing the baseball a couple of weeks ago, as I am sure some of you saw the picture. Man did it get bad. I never got upset. I thought it was funny. I even looked at it as a learning experience I could use for my writing. I never had a black eye before. I now knew the pain of it, the coloring, and all of the things that goes with having a black eye.

My lack of stress helped with my son handling it as well.

Working on a positivity habit is tough sometimes. Habits take time to acquire. Eventually they take. I’m almost back in my zone now, and can breathe again. Now for the creativity to start up and have fun.

I don’t often speak about my faith here on the site lately. Life’s been busy. I do try to live my faith through what I do on my site. My faith is important to me. It’s important in every aspect of my work I do. Even in books I either plan to or have published, my goal is and was to put out something that has a core to it that will show the humanness of people and the war they wage with life and how sometimes they can’t win alone but need upbringing they have had, lessons they have learned, to turn to that will help them succeed.

Have a great Sunday, week, month, year, life, and eternity.

Ronovan

© Copyright-All rights reserved by ronovanwrites.wordpress.com 2016

The Call Home: a #haiku by @greg_wolford

This weeks Haiku Family Reblog is @greg_wolford with The Call Home. Stayed true to his blog’s theme and himself and didn’t give in to that thought of having to go another direction. That’s being Real folks. Remember to click to to the original to show support.

Potholes in the Road of Life

Okay, I tried. But I couldn’t not write this one; it was the first in my mind.

clearly ringing out
Heavenly harps are sounding
the call to come home

Besides, I imagine that’s more what you expected from me anyway! 🙂

Also linked to Ronovan’s weekly prompt.

View original post

Paul and Don’t Judge the Non Christians.

Yesterday I wrote a somewhat controversial article. Reactions have varied but I have found them to be of the expected so far as of the writing of this article. I removed the article because I decided I don’t think it quite got my message across the way I wanted to and it has affected me a bit. Now after some thought I decided to put it back up. I figure, my blog, my thoughts, so why not? 🙂

Thus, I am taking my time for my Sunday Thought to make some things clear to Non Christians and Christians alike. Because I think both need to understand something that has not been emphasized enough in churches and the public domain.

1 Corinthians 5 NIV
12 What business is it of mine to judge those outside the church? Are you not to judge those inside? 13 God will judge those outside. “Expel the wicked person from among you.”~Paul to the Corinthians

The only people Christians are to hold accountable to New Testament teachings are other Christians. Paul’s verses above followed a section where he had to explain something.

I wrote to you in my letter not to associate with sexually immoral people— 10 not at all meaning the people of this world who are immoral, or the greedy and swindlers, or idolaters. In that case you would have to leave this world. 11 But now I am writing to you that you must not associate with anyone who claims to be a brother or sister but is sexually immoral or greedy, an idolater or slanderer, a drunkard or swindler. Do not even eat with such people. (Purple text refers to a fellow Christian.)

Don’t get these verses wrong. Not associating comes a long time after Christians attempt to help the fellow Christian to see what they are doing and get back on track. It’s not like, oooo we caught you at something and now you are to be gone from us you bad boy you.

Now, don’t get me wrong about not judging Non Christians, that doesn’t mean a Christian should say, “Hey, that’s awesome,” when seeing something that is against our faith.

Just like Non Christians may say, “It’s fine for Christians to believe what they want, but don’t expect me to applaud what they believe.”

A commenter mentioned it was offensive for Christians to proselytize and tell people they are wrong and bad. I think Christians understand the feeling when we are told we are wrong and bad daily in the media and by our government.

And please, don’t confuse Jehovah ‘s Witnesses’ dogmatic ways of Saturday morning door-to-door knocking and telling you that you are wrong with how Christians are supposed to do it. They even tell Christians they are wrong. Most of my family are Jehovah’s Witnesses so I get it. They and I have had some interesting talks in the past.

I taught my youth group to simply listen to people and if a reason came up to share their faith then do so, otherwise don’t. Forcing never works.

But back to the verses mentioned. Paul had a great way of bringing the focus of the early Christians back to where they belonged. Whenever the early church began whining about everyone else, he always said don’t worry about them right now, worry about yourself and the church first.

Romans Chapter 1 is one of the most misrepresented chapters in the Bible. Why? Because a letter was divided into chapters. Paul talks about what certain things are sins in Chapter 1, then in Chapter 2 he points out that the church members are doing those things so shut up and take care of yourselves instead of yelling about others. But because of the Chapter break people tend to study that first Chapter as a separate piece instead of looking at the whole.

Romans 2:1 NIV
1You, therefore, have no excuse, you who pass judgment on someone else, for at whatever point you judge another, you are condemning yourself, because you who pass judgment do the same things.~Paul to the church in Rome

Gotta love it, right? Paul sure had a way with words. So Christians, the next time you begin to judge a Non Christian by our Christian standards, think about these verses in this article today. 

For Non Christians I hope there is an understanding that the majority of Christians don’t have problems with anyone. In fact our very faith teaches us to love everyone, no matter who or what they are. Sometimes Christians forget that part, I think it’s partly because it’s not taught enough or mentioned enough in the churches. And I hope people understand that more and more Christians are being told they are bad and wrong as a whole because of a vocal minority that gets the attention and brings negativity to us.

In closing I will say this, do not tell me I cannot speak my my beliefs. I don’t ridicule others, and I expect the same in return. Learn the difference between hate speech and a belief. I may say something is a sin but it does not mean I hate someone who does that sin. You shoplift, you are  a thief, you have stolen, you have sinned. I tell you that you have sinned. That is not hate speech. Oh, sorry, the government says it’s bad, so I guess I am covered…for now.

Much Love, Success, and Respect

Ronovan

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Say it on Saturday! I am Blessed but you call me Bigot.

Welcome to the first Episode of:

Say It On Saturday!

The post where I share my honest feelings about an issue that’s really bugging me of late and possibly lose some readers along the way. Rant? Hopefully not. But I do hope it will be informative to people on both sides of whatever I end up talking about.

It was difficult to pick just one topic this week, there are so many after all. I think my main annoyance with things are when situations are misrepresented against one side so far that it becomes ridiculous.

The Phobics

Have you ever been called gossip-phobic?
How about adultery-phobic?
Or maybe slanderer-phobic?

I think we all agree those are sins. Okay, okay, I know some of you don’t like that word but I’m a Christian and according to the Bible those are some sinful things. And who among us has not probably committed every one of them. Remember, adultery to Jesus was even thinking about it.

But I’ve never been called liar-phobic or any other phobic about sins mentioned in the Bible. So why does a Christian who says the sexual act between same genders is a sin called homophobic?

Notice what I said. The sexual act, I did not say the act of love. I want to make that clear. I have been adamant here on my blog that any sexual act outside of the God identified marriage of man and woman is a sin. It doesn’t matter who the partners are, no marriage plus sex equals sin.

Am I a Phobic?

Now do I fear anyone that is gay? Not unless they are planning to beat me up or shoot me or something like that. So I fear a gay person as much as I would fear anyone. You see I am, and I would like to say most Christians are, not afraid of gay people or their engaging in sex with their own gender. Believe me, most of us are of the opinion of do with your life as you want to. It’s just there are some vocal idiots out there that make problems and use God and Jesus as their battle cry hoping to get some support and people opposing the noise makers end up saying or doing something that includes something Christians can’t support.

It’s kind of like when the political parties try to pass a bill that is for one thing but includes something else and because of that something else the other political party votes no.

It’s not that the political party is against the main point of the bill, but they can’t pass it because the minor point is against what they are for.

Being a Christian

Part of being a Christian is not forcing our faith on people. We should love our neighbors as ourselves. Part of that loving is not butting into their bedrooms and the like. There is nowhere that it says we do anything like that.

But then we come to some political issues where a Christian who believes in the Bible as written is faced with having to decide to vote or support something that goes against what the Bible says. Now if the Christian says no to that issue then they are said to be a bigot or something like that.

And we are actually not surprised by any of this. Consider the environment the first Christians were in with Rome. At least we haven’t been used as torches yet. I tell you, that was some serious faith back then. You have to really believe to go through what those people did and not back down.

What About Me

I don’t think anyone can say anything bad against me from what they have experienced on my blog. I believe I have been respectful and hopefully informative about my faith so everyone can better understand what I think a Christian should be, what I think Jesus meant for us to be.

We are not to judge. We are not support what the Bible says is a sin. But we are also not to apply our Biblical laws to those who are not believers. God will handle that later.

1 Corinthians 5 NIV
12 What business is it of mine to judge those outside the church? Are you not to judge those inside? 13 God will judge those outside. “Expel the wicked person from among you.”~Paul to the Corinthians

Matthew 5 NIV
11“Blessed are you when people insult you, persecute you and falsely say all kinds of evil against you because of me. 12 Rejoice and be glad, because great is your reward in heaven, for in the same way they persecuted the prophets who were before you.”~Jesus, Sermon on the Mount

The following has been added after posting:

Now if this has been a bit confusing and you don’t get exactly what I am saying which I have a feeling a lot of people aren’t, visit the comment below by Florence. The link will take you right to it.

https://ronovanwrites.wordpress.com/2015/07/18/i-am-blessed-but-you-call-me-bigot/#comment-14511

Much Love, Success, and Respect
Ronovan

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Peacemaker to Positivity.

One way to help others is to be honest with yourself, and that’s also a step toward a positive life.

There are situations you will find yourself in where if you have been honest with your past you will be able to identify with the situation and then give advice. Too many of us like to deny our past and our less than admirable deeds. We run from it instead of accepting it, owning it, and turning it into something useful.

God uses everything He can to make things better, if we choose to work with Him. A horrible experience you had can help another person by your being able to give them support in your having made it through that same kind of event.

I’ve had horrible things happen in my past that I could let turn me into some hateful man, but I choose not to do so. I choose to work with God and use my past to help others.

I’ve been fairly honest in my writings, perhaps overly honest at times, but by doing so I think people realize that when I do speak about something I know what I’m talking about. That’s one reason I may sound like I talk about some things several times. I don’t really like to talk about things I don’t know about just to get a blog article out that I know will make a lot of blog traffic.

The episodes of life we go through help lead to the spiritual gifts each of us have. People have said I have certain gifts but I don’t dwell on that. I do as I do and take each moment as it comes. I’ve known pastors who talk about having a spiritual gift only for me to discover they are wrong and that is one reason I don’t like to focus too much on a certain gift idea. Focusing on one at the exclusion of all else weakens what you already have.

Think of a body builder who likes to work on his arms the most. When he gets up there you see how odd he looks. His arms are too large for the rest of him. You can see he takes pride in one thing over the others.

But I will share with you one of the spiritual gifts another pastor said I had, the gift as a peacemaker.

“Blessed are the peacemakers, for they will be called children of God.” Matthew 5:9 NIV (Jesus, Sermon on the Mount)

Peacemakers to me are sort of jacks-of-all-trades. They pull from several of the gifts to accomplish a mission. I am not saying I am a peacemaker but that I have been identified as one. And I am not saying I have all of the gifts. I don’t think anyone has them all.

Really what a peacemaker does is study the Word of God, has consistent prayer, and lives a life habit that helps them see clearly in times of need. For me, I do what I can. No one is perfect.

Here is one example of peacemaking:
I have been helping lately in some conflicts by being an opposing side’s views and thoughts in a situation. I give the thoughts of a side in a unique way that is honest and helps the person realize what is happening or might happen. I don’t soften what I share. That does not help the person.

How does this bring about peace? By knowing and then acting upon that knowledge to not react to what might happen, you have already won. You don’t become entangled in the strife. You are prepared to maintain a peaceful place. That is one example of a peacemaker.

I do these same things for myself. A peacemaker needs to keep peace within in order to help others.

Having the spiritual gift of faith is also something that goes along with that of peacemaker. By faith I mean the unshakeable kind. I don’t mean the ignoring of the world kind. I enjoy learning everything I can and pulling fact from opinion. Perhaps that is a gift as well. And even Christians have opinions in some areas just as much as non-believers. Those are the opinions you have to watch out for.

People may notice how my faith sneaks in to my articles at times. Or you may not notice at all. The fact is my faith has been in just about every article I’ve written lately. I’m guided to a place of positivity and peace by my faith. Teachings of Jesus are a wonderful thing. Polluted through time by man, they have taken on meanings that Jesus never intended. That’s why I always encourage people to read the words for yourself. You don’t need a denomination or even a non-denominational church (They are really a denomination at this point in time.) or a church of any kind.

You and the Words of Jesus. Great advice for the world. He’s been recognized as a great teacher by many. Even those who don’t believe in him think the teachings are good. And believe me, they help so much.

My Christian blog speaks about many things and I intend to have it be a place for people to learn about what the Bible says without the pollution.

For today, be a peacemaker. That may mean you are silent when you want to speak out, or speak out when you want to be silent. You may need to overcome a fear, or overcome a false pride. So many things to learn and be aware of, and sometimes within a split second. But it is possible. It’s possible with learning, with practice.

Much Love, Success, and Respect
Ronovan

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Return to Focus: My Sunday Thought

This week’s Sunday Thought is going to be a little more direct in nature. I have strayed in recent months in my writing from what I most enjoy and have delved more into some serious and gray area topics. I think this is a reflection of my creative energy being low. I don’t talk about my low creative energy because people always say, “Oh, I’ve been through that.” No, they haven’t. Not in this way. I always have creative ideas going through this whacked out mind of mine, I just can’t physically do anything about it at times.

But I’m taking steps to get back there to where I belong. Baby steps, if you will. Today I wanted to talk about my faith. That’s what my Sunday Thoughts is supposed to be. Hang with me here as I talk about it.

return-focus

I’ve been watching a lot of interviews on youtube of various types. For one, I used to be a huge wrestling fan, professional wrestling. I go back to the days of the old Memphis wrestling with Jerry “The King” Lawler and “Superstar” Bill Dundee. Don’t worry, this article isn’t about wrestling.

Watching these interviews of wrestlers telling the truth of how things were led me to two things. One was the wrestler Sting’s movie Moment of Truth about where at the height of his popularity and with his personal life in shambles he turned to God and became a Christian. The other thing I discovered was how incidents and even people are viewed so differently depending on the person telling the story and that you have to be careful of who you listen to for the truth because the most convincing ones can turn out to be the ones with the worst views and personal agendas in the telling.

Being led through all the chaos of professional wrestling to a Christianity movie was interesting. I knew Sting was a Christian. I also knew one thing, with the same information, can be interpreted two or more different ways depending on the interpreter. Somewhat confirming in many ways and refocusing for me.

I’ve been wondering about the purpose of my blog. I know it is to share my thoughts and creative output but we each have something about us we want to share. I tend to share everything. But it’s how we share that makes each of us different.

When I speak about being a Christian I can sense the wincing of some, the flinch here or there, and the shutting of doors in others. And I actually understand all of that. If I didn’t know me and had to go on most of the in-the-spotlight-Christians, I might do the same.

But my goal here in sharing my faith and how I present myself, although I don’t do it intentionally, is to show people what a Christian can be. Just another person who is like everyone else. A person with problems. A person who is not perfect, and doesn’t claim to be. A person who has ups and downs and way way lows.

A person who can lose focus and find it again. Also a person who sees people as people and nice people as people to be friends with, regardless of beliefs, locations, or lifestyles. A person who says here I am, here is what I believe, take it or leave it, but I’m not forcing myself or my beliefs on you. Be my friend if you like, just the way you are.

Not everyone understands a Christian can be like that. That in fact a Christian isn’t supposed to be a judger of others or a forcer of beliefs. In fact we are the last ones to be judgers and forcers if we follow the teachings of Jesus. Too bad not enough Christians do that.

But I get the extremist Christians’ point of view at times in feeling they have to get out and cause some noise. Every movement or cause does that. For some reason when it comes to Christians it’s seen as some vile hate thing. Okay, maybe it’s because some of those, okay one of those churches out there that likes to call itself a church protests funerals and goes against everything God says about Christian behavior.

Great way to get people to turn to God!

Notice I don’t mention their name. I don’t want to give their church site any traffic or have there name pop up on searches because of me anymore than they already do.

As you visit my site, I hope you find a person that is fair, friendly, welcoming, and loving to all who are nice to him. Be mean to me and I’ll ignore you. I’ve decided to refuse to waste the little physical and mental energy I have on mean people. I’m focusing on the positives of life. I think if we do that and build more and more positives, that some day we will overcome and overpower the negatives.

Emotionally, mentally you will get what you focus on. If you expect negatives you will see the negatives and ignore any positives. Focus on the positives that happen in your life. You will find the negative people in your life will find your positivity repulsive and slowly drift away. Then you will discover even less negative things are happening around you.

Well, that’s it for today. Returning my focus where it belongs. Now to see what comes out of that.

Mush Respect

Ronovan

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Tolerance or Support, What do people really Want?

tolerance-support

Tolerance. One of the most misunderstood words in language, or at least in the English language.

You can have a tolerance for pain. Your body can tolerate medications more than they once did and thus the medications become less effective. You can tolerate someone’s behavior.

I personally have less tolerance for things than I once did. Some reasons are medical reasons. There are other things that I finally decided that I was simply tired of tolerating and therefore no reason I must tolerate.

Or should I say, not tolerate in the way the world has come to define the word. Tolerance these days is  defined as acceptance and supporting.

Before anyone begins to jump on some high horse and think I am talking about certain social issues, get over yourself and put your assumptions back in your back pocket close to where it belongs.

I had a very long post written but I decided to make this as short as I can. First of all I have two polarizing examples that will make my point clear.

  • Example: The death penalty is a law in some states in the U.S. of A.. Does that mean I have to SUPPORT it or Tolerate it? I’ll keep using the death penalty here. If you believe it should be a law in my state and you live in my state as well and there is a vote coming up, do I have to SUPPORT it just because you want me to? And if it does become a law do I have to SUPPORT it or Tolerate it?
  • If you want to go another more controversial law you can consider abortion. It’s a law. Do you SUPPORT it or Tolerate it?

So what I want to talk about today is having to tolerate what other people say about Christianity, Jesus, and God. A great many in the public eye like to speak out against Christianity while praising or supporting other faiths or even no God at all. And if someone calls them on it then the person doing the calling is called a bigot or intolerant.

If you are of another faith or don’t believe in God, that’s your deal. It has nothing to do with me. I have friends here in the blogs that believe in other faiths or no God at all. We get along just fine. So before you start calling me a bigot as I continue, I’m about the least bigoted person you will find. I figure God gave us free will. I’m not the one to take that away from anyone.

I don’t SUPPORT what people say about Christianity. I take that back. I don’t support ALL of the generalizations and negativity aimed at Christianity. Some things said may be true, about some Christians. If a specific person is being discussed and the things mentioned are true then they are true.

But if I were to get on a news program and say that I don’t like what someone says about the negative generalities I can almost guarantee you that I would end up with hate messages in various places. Why? Because I am supposed to ACCEPT and SUPPORT  the hate at me but no one is supposed to TOLERATE or PUT UP WITH my defending my faith, my beliefs.

I can hear the thoughts of some now. “Ronovan, you can’t be serious. You Christians think you have it so bad. You rule the world. You have it so easy. You can get away with anything. You are in control of everything.” Let me read my Bible at lunch in a local school, alone, in my classroom, and see what happens.

I read blogs, opinions of people, and remain friends. I don’t always support what people say but I don’t have to. I can still be friends with someone and not support every single thing they support. And I don’t go out and yell and scream about not supporting something.

Is it Tolerance the world wants from Christians or is it SUPPORT they want? There is a difference. Let’s turn it around. I want you to SUPPORT what I believe. You know, Tolerating would be good but no, I am saying now as an example, I want you to SUPPORT what I believe about something and make it a law. Do you think you can do that? The answer is no. You can’t. You want to say yes. You may comment yes, but the honesty in you should say no.

A society says they kill the first born child if it is male. It is legal in that society. Do you SUPPORT that? You are now thinking, “Ronovan, that’s not even close to what we are talking about.” Actually by saying I can’t freely act like a Christian, that I can’t fulfill my faith as a Christian as the Bible says to do so, you are saying to put my faith to death.

I tell you Jesus is the Son of God, that he died on the Cross for our sins, was resurrected so we could be saved. That I believe what Jesus said in the Bible about his being the only way to the Father.  I’m done. You can take it or leave it.

For some reason there are people that don’t like that. They think it’s forcing something on them. They think it is some form of I don’t know what. But they just can’t handle it. It’s up to you to believe me or not. I’m not going to beg, or repeat it over and over to you. I’m moving on and going to Wendy’s for a burger and fries.  And yes they are fries, not chips. Chips are thicker and not like the thin strips like American fries.

If you had questions after I said that about Christianity I would answer them, but that would be to you. No megaphone shouting in your car from me. And I wouldn’t even say that up there about Jesus being the only way unless there was some reason that came up in a conversation.

All my faith says to do is share it with others. Not force it. Some try to do that and they are wrong. I will tell you that now. If you are a Christian and reading this then you need to look what Jesus said; If anyone will not welcome you or listen to your words, leave that home or town and shake the dust off your feet~Matthew 10:14. No mention of yell or cram it down someone’s throat until they run you out of town.

I’ll tolerate things. I’ll put up with things. But just as I  don’t intend to force you to support things that you may not believe, don’t try and force me to support things I don’t believe in and use tolerance as a front to do it. It won’t work with me.  Make a law out of something all you want, but it doesn’t mean it will be supported by people.

As I’ve written this I am sure there are various things that have come to peoples’ minds. What issues could Ronovan be thinking of. Don’t try to guess because you would be surprised at how wrong you might be.

Are there things you are tired of people forcing you to SUPPORT by telling you to Tolerate? Share it below in the comments. Or fill out the form below if you don’t want it to appear in the comments. I may use the results in a future post, without names and contact information included.

much-respect-ronovan

 

 

Ronovan Writes

 

 

 

 

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My Sunday Thought: The Gift of Christmas?

gift of christmas is easter

Oh my word. I tell you I had no idea what I would write about today for my Sunday Thought. I knew for those who might visit, a Christmas tale might be expected. Well, every day is Christmas for me so, my apologies for letting you down with something holiday oriented. But if you really want to have a bit of something Christmas then here you go.

A preacher and Christian Book Store filled the pulpit one Sunday evening since our pastor was out of town for the evening.

“Everybody, would you move forward to the edge of your  seats for me?” he asked.

“Thank you. Now could you raise up your hand and say Amen?”

“Thank you, you may relax.” We all sat back in the pews with various people looking at each other strangely. Deacons were staring at deacons. I was smiling at the deacons, I was the Chairman of the Deacons at the time.

“You may all be wondering what that was about. I told the pastor I would have you all on the edge of your seats, raising your hands and saying amen before the end of the service. Now he owes me dinner.”

What’s that got to do with Christmas, right? Well this visiting preacher was a bit on the strange side. I mean cowboy boots, checkered shirt, jeans. Just saying the church wasn’t accustomed to that. I personally don’t care if the pastor is wearing shorts, Hawaiian shirt, and flip flops as long as he’s preaching the word of God and the Spirit is leading him. But he actually was a strange man. I spoke to him on several occasions after that in his store. I love books, sue me. No, don’t.

What he preached on that night left such an impression on me that I incorporated it into a Youth Lesson I taught one Wednesday night.

The Gift of Christmas is Easter

You know, a lot of people want to turn Christmas into just an economic boost. Some religions don’t even celebrate Christmas, and I mean the ones that believe in Jesus. I have a relative who doesn’t celebrate Christmas but sure does love getting a present to open. I really have no problem with any of the demoninations. Yes, I said demoninations. You see, man made the divisions. God is God. Jesus is Jesus. There you go. Dunk, sprinkle whatever. As long as they are believing in the true word of God, I’m good with it.

As you think about the baby Jesus all warm and happy in the manger, think of the bloodied and nude suffering Jesus on the cross dying for you. That little baby came here to end up like that so we could have Easter, salvation.

Part of the Trinity voluntarily came to earth in the form of  an infant to live life as a human through all the sufferings of a human child and remain perfect throughout his life in order to be beaten, flogged, scourged, humiliated, crucified, murdered for us.

“Oh, but if he was God then he could be perfect” some try to say. Let me take a nail and pound it through your wrists with you knowing I intended to murder you and see if you would forgive me for it. Do you think it didn’t hurt Jesus? Do you think he didn’t feel pain? That little baby oh so cute and lovable died a murderous death. And here is something else to think about; for it to be the ultimate sacrifice for ALL of our sins, think about how badly and how horrible he must have been beaten even before getting to the cross.

I wasn’t going to talk about a Christmas related story today. I was actually going to talk about a verse I was given from Matthew, but as I began writing different words began to form on the screen and here we are. I love Christmas. I love the feelings it brings with family. It’s not the actual day of the birth of Christ but it’s nice to have a day to celebrate it. I think we should do it every day.

In the silence of that night long ago,

The son came to earth as a gift.

Celebrate the day in the way you like,

But always and every day his name uplift.

 

 

 

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