Man of lawlessness

There have always been those who are disobedient in society but is there anyone who does not sin? No. We all have sinned but there are those among us that determine not to, though we all fail at some point. However, the majority of people strive to live a moral and upright life. For others crime is a way of life and there seems to be more adopting that way too. Below is one very small sample of what we read in the newspapers or see on the television almost every day………..

English: A Merseyside Police patrol car.
A Merseyside Police patrol car. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

A Crime Alert for the residents of North Sefton from Merseyside Police.

Residential Burglaries

During the Christmas and New Year period burglaries have taken place in the following locations:

Bath Street, Lord Street, Pitts House Lane ( caravan), Talbot Street, The Causeway, Braemar Avenue (shed), Portland Street, Nolan Street

Possible Bogus Caller                                                                                                 

There has been a report that a male knocked on doors of houses in Merepark Drive Southport and stating he was from the Council and was collecting soft toys. Enquiries were made with the Council and they were not aware of anyone collecting toys in the area. The male is described as white, approximately 50 years old, bald, wearing a black coat and scarf with a lanyard around his neck saying ‘Sefton Council’.

SCAM WARNING From Lancashire Police

We have received reports of 2 males knocking on house doors claiming to be from BT and stating that they need access to the property immediately to fix a phone line problem.

These males do not represent BT, have no ID cards on them and appear to be targeting vulnerable individuals who are living alone. A card has been pushed through a letterbox promising to return.

Please make your loved ones aware and remind them that they do not need to let strangers in to their house. Always ask for ID, and if in doubt, call the company which they claim to represent (But don’t call any phone numbers they give you themselves).

If you have someone trying to gain entry to your property, you can call the Police on 999, or report any other suspicious sightings on 101.

Man arrested after injury shooting in Southport town centre

04 January 2018

Update – Friday 5th January

The man has been released under investigation while enquiries continue.

Detectives are continuing to appeal to anyone with any information on this incident or any gun crime issues, to please contact the Merseyside Police gun crime hotline on 0800 230 0600 or speak to the independent charity Crimestoppers anonymously on 0800 555 111.

Original Release

Merseyside Police detectives investigating an injury shooting in Southport in December have arrested a man today, Thursday 4 January.

This morning, two warrants were carried out in the Southport and Walton areas.

At an address in Wyresdale Road, Walton, a 21-year-old man from Walton was arrested on suspicion of attempted murder and Section 18 assault. He has been taken to a police station for questioning by detectives.

The arrest is in relation to an incident in Eastbank Street on Thursday, 21 December in which a man was shot in the head and a member of the public received a back injury.

——

Don’t these offenders realise there is a price to pay? Ask them and they will probably not care, they have lost all sense of moral standards, all they think about is themselves.

2 Thessalonians 2

The man of lawlessness

1 Concerning the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ and our being gathered to him, we ask you, brothers and sisters, 2 not to become easily unsettled or alarmed by the teaching allegedly from us – whether by a prophecy or by word of mouth or by letter – asserting that the day of the Lord has already come. 3 Don’t let anyone deceive you in any way, for that day will not come until the rebellion occurs and the man of lawlessness is revealed, the man doomed to destruction. 4 He will oppose and will exalt himself over everything that is called God or is worshipped, so that he sets himself up in God’s temple, proclaiming himself to be God.

5 Don’t you remember that when I was with you I used to tell you these things? 6 And now you know what is holding him back, so that he may be revealed at the proper time. 7 For the secret power of lawlessness is already at work; but the one who now holds it back will continue to do so till he is taken out of the way. 8 And then the lawless one will be revealed, whom the Lord Jesus will overthrow with the breath of his mouth and destroy by the splendour of his coming. 9 The coming of the lawless one will be in accordance with how Satan works. He will use all sorts of displays of power through signs and wonders that serve the lie, 10 and all the ways that wickedness deceives those who are perishing. They perish because they refused to love the truth and so be saved. 11 For this reason God sends them a powerful delusion so that they will believe the lie 12 and so that all will be condemned who have not believed the truth but have delighted in wickedness.

‘They perish because they refused to love the truth and so be saved.’ 

What more can be said?

Shirley Anne

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No sleep

I hadn’t done particularly much on Thursday (11) and had in fact arisen quite late that morning as I mentioned in the previous post but I still expected to nod off to sleep that evening. However, I had been watching a movie late in the evening which ran until one forty-five. Even then I wasn’t ready for bed so I watched some more television. Before I knew it was almost four o’clock and still I wasn’t feeling tired. I ended up not going to bed at all, not even taking a nap on the couch. I expected I would definitely sleep on Friday night though. Sometimes it goes like that but usually I have at least a couple of hours sleeping. Once many years ago, not long after I had qualified as an electrician I was involved in a job with a couple of colleagues carrying out alterations to the main electrical panels and supply cabling in a factory which took us around forty hours to complete. We all of us worked right through for the full forty hours taking only breaks for meals. Of course I was much younger and took it in my stride though it is said that younger people need more sleep than the rest of us. You could argue that older people require less sleep because they do less work and that could be true. I know that if I lounge about all day I am not going to feel the need for sleep. Whatever is said we do need sleep as it allows our bodies to rest, or does it? Many people have researched the reason why we sleep but as yet there is no definitive answer. Our brain just switches us into a different state and there we are, asleep. Have a look at this site….http://www.theatlantic.com/science/archive/2018/01/the-mystery-of-sleep-pressure/549473/   . Fascinating isn’t it? There is no escaping the Sandman too long unless there is something wrong with us. We are simply made that way it seems. No doubt an answer will be found sometime in the future but in the meantime I wi…l…l….yawn!

Shirley Anne

First for a while

Formby Station ...
Formby Station … (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

It had been some time since I last remembered a dream I’d had but a few days ago I awoke during the night after dreaming this, another of my weird dreams. I used to live in Freshfield which is the northern part of a small township called Formby eight miles south from my present residence. Freshfield actually occupies almost half of the total combined township. There are two train stations, one in Freshfield and the other in Formby and they are around one mile apart on the same rail network line from Liverpool to Southport. I lived around a mile away from each of them. The one at Freshfield has a level crossing whilst the one at Formby has a road bridge over the tracks. Both stations are surrounded by housing estates. However, in this dream I was walking across a park toward the Formby station and I could see various people walking up and down the sidewalk that was on the road bridge. I was on my way to catch a train into Liverpool but I had spoken to my then boss who told me I would be able to join with him on the next train if I could get there in time. I had twenty minutes spare as I approached the road bridge. On the bridge I could see an ex-colleague who having seen me suddenly decided to increase his step hoping I wouldn’t see him. Why he did that I wasn’t sure for I hadn’t wronged him. I reached the bridge and walked over to the other side to take the train going south to Liverpool but instead of turning into the station I carried on walking as if unable to stop until reaching the bottom of the bridge. I had to turn and walk back but on the way I stopped at an open bar which sold fast food, something fried on a griddle like pancakes for instance. There isn’t such a place in Formby and never was. Anyway I was second in the queue for service but the woman behind the counter deliberately chose to ignore me and served the next customer instead. She knew I was trying to board the next train which happened to have turned up at that moment. It wasn’t a passenger train but one of those service trains used to carry out repair work on the lines. My boss was standing atop of the engine and called me to join him. I hasten to add he was never a train line worker in life and neither was I. He gave me a minute or two to collect my fried snack and I turned to the woman who refused to serve me. She was crying because she knew she was being nasty toward me but didn’t apologise. I turned away and boarded the train with the snack that someone else had served me. I woke up at that point.

Shirley Anne

A walk

Walk It Out
Walk It Out (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

I had arisen from my bed three times during the night but ended up finally getting up at almost ten o’clock! By the time I was downstairs it was almost eleven o’clock and not feeling in the least hungry I decided to skip eating and go for a short walk. It was Thursday morning. E would be going to the shops with her mom to do the weekly shopping together as they usually do after lunch, so I thought. She had decided to do the shopping before lunch instead. I put on my outdoor clothing and boots and off I went for a walk. I hadn’t been for a walk outdoors for quite a number of days due to my leg muscles’ injury and although I had been using the treadmill for some exercise I didn’t want to push my luck by going too far on the walk. As it happened I managed to go just over two miles with ease. I had missed the outdoor walks but now I knew I would be able to resume taking them. I am happy too that I can resume more serious exercising on the equipment though for the elliptical trainer I will need to take it very slowly. I had taken the route along the coastal road but stayed off the beach, that is the path through what passes for a beach alongside but well below the level of the road. There was an enormous amount of seaweed and all sorts of things washed-up together with many plastic bottles of various sizes mingled within it. It is such a shame that today’s society discard their waste anywhere they want instead of disposing it in one of the numerous waste bins provided. There seems to be little respect for the environment, their environment. I wonder what their homes are like. When I had walked over a mile I turned inland to return home, first through a local park then on through the streets to home. E was still out shopping when I returned. After taking a snack I sat watching television whilst waiting for her to return. I didn’t have to wait long and it was time to bring in the shopping. As she cannot carry much due to her condition I more or less bring it all indoors myself. I only mention that because carrying those heavy bags of shopping was making my leg muscles ache a little. It would be so easy to hinder the healing process and end up having to start all over again. I was careful not to let that happen.

Shirley Anne

Daft ‘apeth.

Daft Club
Daft Club (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

For those not familiar with the saying (title above) the second word is an abbreviation of ‘half penny worth’ as far as I can gather. It was used for many a year in my circles as a child growing up in Liverpool and I suppose it was used in many other parts of the land too. I still use the phrase sometimes even now. It is used in jest in response to someone’s foolish act, usually someone known personally of course. ‘You daft ‘apeth’. Having checked to see the origin of the phrase I drew a blank but I’m sure it will be listed somewhere. E often calls me a daft ‘apeth whenever I do something silly and I often call myself the same after doing something silly too! With lots of time on my hands lately I am able to do things I haven’t done for a while, making cakes is one and I baked a lovely cake a few days ago. That has all been eaten of course, they don’t last long in our house! On Wednesday morning last week I had the idea of making a curry for a change. It had been many years since I last prepared a curry. I had to check to see if we had any ingredients, that is spices in store. E and I checked for any that might be stored in the cellar for we have a room there in which we store many foodstuffs as it is a cold and dry room. We found several containers with spice in them but not all could be used because of their age. However we did have some spices in the kitchen cupboard too, spices such as cumin, coriander, chilli powder, ginger and a few others and of course black pepper. We had enough of the correct spices with which to make a curry. Now as it happens E and I have a small collection of cookery books and one of them is dedicated to Asian recipes. She brought them into the kitchen thinking I was going to use one of the recipes. There are recipes from Japan, China, Indonesia, Vietnam, Thailand, Myanmar (listed as Burma), India and Sri Lanka in its pages. I was spoilt for choice though I didn’t wish to prepare anything special. Turning to an Indian recipe in order to jog my memory as to amounts of spices to use I was reminded how much and which spices to use. What I hadn’t realised was how hot the recipe would be. Daft ‘apeth! So I prepared the curry and yes, it was hot! Gosh it was hot and I don’t really like hot curries. Out came more cream to quench its potency but it wasn’t enough, I had to dispose of some of the liquid until finally I had it right. E also reminded me I was a daft ‘apeth too. I’ll know better next time. The (chicken) curry was delicious by the way.

Shirley Anne

Appointment day

By Appointment Only (2007 film)
By Appointment Only (2007 film) (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

There is something about appointments, well some of them, they can fill you with an air of expectation or one of dread. Appointments however should be kept and not shied away from. On Tuesday (9) E had an appointment which she had asked me to attend with her. Whether that was for support or to bolster her stance I am not quite sure but I went along with her. The appointment was to meet with a representative for the local government who was to assess her eligibility to receive PIP (Personal Independence Payment). Our Government has decided to rationalise many of the old departments in order to streamline public services and improve efficiency. Naturally they hope this will reduce costs in the process. For instance they have implemented an across the board payment for the State Pension whereby all eligible people receive the same amount, in other words they have eliminated the old tiered system. People who are disabled receive a disability payment in accordance with their level of incapacity and were assessed to determine their eligibility. Because of the changes E will no longer receive her payments under the old scheme but to continue to receive payments she had to undergo an assessment by the new department. It was for this assessment she had the appointment. Just to make it difficult the appointment was to be held in another town over ten miles away at one-thirty. We drove there and arrived well in time and were ushered into a waiting area and waited for only a couple of minutes before being called. A young woman carried out the assessment asking questions and testing E’s physical ability to do some minor tasks. I of course was only there to observe and support though I was asked one or two things regarding assisting E in certain areas. The assessment took an hour and the information received would be passed to the relevant department for consideration. Nothing should change but with government anything is possible. E will know in due course if she is to continue receiving the payments or not. As it was by now after two-thirty and we hadn’t eaten lunch we drove to a restaurant for a belated meal. E and I hadn’t enjoyed dining out together for quite some time so it was nice to do so especially as it was late in the afternoon and with few other diners there, quiet. We arrived back home just before six o’clock for an evening of rest.

Shirley Anne

Today’s the day

Today's Another Day
Today’s Another Day (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Today, Monday (8), I managed to do a little exercising on the treadmill after many days of abstinence due to muscular pain in my legs. All mentioned previously. Anyway after breakfast I took the plunge and tentatively stepped on the machine. A slow walk to begin then gradually increasing the speed to see how it went. A mile and a half later and I stopped. I was so happy to begin my exercising once again not only for the benefits but for the enjoyment too. After a lifetime of always being on the go having to rest from it is difficult for me even for short periods. I could have simply taken a walk outdoors but had I found it a problem I might have been too distant from home to make it back comfortably. Why take the risk?
Today I managed to take a few photographs of E who is notorious for not wanting her picture taken. I have never understood why that is for she takes a lovely picture. She wanted to submit an up-to-date picture of herself to the issuing authority for her vehicle parking permit. It enables her to park her vehicle, anywhere that is legal to do so, for free because of her health condition. The story was that she couldn’t transfer the picture she took of herself on her tablet and transfer it to her computer. I was sure she was mistaken but I offered to do it using mine and in the process of course I could save them to my own files. I actually have few pictures of her and it is the same for her. We neither of us have taken many pictures over the years, even of places we’ve visited. What really is the point? The best memories are those in our heads, we don’t need pictures to stir them up. You will notice that my gallery holds very few pictures.
Today I saw the progress of the sun against the garden walls and watched the squirrels prancing about on the still frozen lawn where the sun couldn’t reach. I can feel the approach of Spring in my mind but the picture through the window tells a different story just at the moment. It is cold but not extremely cold but it is bright and sunny, just as it is in my heart. I hope yours is too.

Shirley Anne

Forget me not?

''Note that in this diagram, sensory memory is...
”Note that in this diagram, sensory memory is detached from either form of memory, and represents its development from short term and long term memory, due to its storage being used primarily on a “run time” basis for physical or psychosomatic reference. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Do you have a good memory? Is it a good short-term memory, a good long-term memory or are you the sort of person who is fortunate in having both? In reality short-term isn’t very long so I suppose I should say medium-term memory. I also suppose I can say along with many others that I major in one but not so much the other. It is my long-term memory which is the better though I do possess a reasonably good short-term memory. The problems I have with my short-term memory are two-fold, on the one hand I often forget things and on the other hand I can remember some things but not when they occurred. During the last couple of years the second aspect has been more noticeable. For instance I would do a job of work for someone and a week or so later would receive a call from them regarding more work. I would ask who was calling of course but after being told I had been there only a week or two earlier I still had to ask where that was and sometimes even what I was doing! I could make excuses for that by saying I had a lot of work and couldn’t always remember but that would be a lie. The truth was I simply couldn’t retain the information. Yes, it was stored in my memory but I was being denied access would be a nice way of putting it. It would be true to a point. If the information wasn’t critical then it was lost. For serious and pertinent  information I would remember most of the detail. When it comes to long-term memory I remember events which happened to me and things said to me because they are personal to me. They are my experiences both good and bad and I can remember them in great detail. Nowadays and because of my age I tend to be a little absent-minded which is something quite different. I find I am doing silly things, because of a lack of concentration I suppose. Putting sugar in E’s cup when I have already done it in preparing a coffee and then attempting putting the sugar in the fridge before realising it goes in the cupboard is one example. These are minor in the great scheme of things, as long as it doesn’t get worse. I could put them down to simple absent-mindedness due to age but there are people who for them being absent-minded is normal. I remember, it must have been twenty-five or more years ago, I was sitting near the front seats in an auditorium in my then workplace. We were there for instruction regarding a new working practice the company were introducing. Just prior to the speaker addressing the audience one of my colleagues, a young man, came rushing in and sat down in the front row of seats. The room was quiet for a minute as we listened to what was said to him. It wasn’t the speaker, oh no, as he sat there someone tapped him on the shoulder and said, ‘Mick, you’re sitting on my knee’! He had sat on someone’s knee and hadn’t realised it! I call that being absent-minded and indeed the young man did fit the bill. I can even remember the look on his face as we all began to laugh, even the speaker couldn’t contain himself but that was Mick.

Shirley Anne

69th Generation…….etc

The following end passages are taken from the online book I mentioned in a post labelled ‘Me reading?’ two days ago. The book can be downloaded free of charge for anyone interested…..and I sincerely hope many will take up the offer. I make no excuses for that because I know myself how important it is for people to understand the times and having read the book I thoroughly agree with the author. Steven Medley is a man whose life has changed dramatically since……well I’ll let him tell you in his own words written at the end of that book….

If you are among those who have followed along closely in
this study, then I believe you have been blessed, and privileged
to behold, and to understand the time-line of God. You have
been given an extraordinary gift and it has not come to you
accidentally. You have come to the knowledge of I Chron.12:32
“And of the children of Issachar, which were men that had
understanding of the times, to know what Israel ought
to do…”
Notice that the understanding was given to them for the
benefit of all of Israel. It was God’s instrumental method for
guiding and directing His people. At the same time it served to
give an advanced notice and warning so that the people could
prepare for what would lie ahead.
And unless we forget, this also is the ministry of the Holy
Spirit. Jesus Himself spoke these words in John 16:13 “…when
He, the Spirit of truth, is come, He will guide you into all
truth; for He shall not speak of Himself; but whatever He
shall hear, that shall He speak, and He will show you things
to come.”
If you have been awakened through this study it is only
because the Spirit of God has revealed it to you. Neither you
nor I have the ability within ourselves to see these things, let
alone the ability to understand them, or even to believe them
for that matter, this is the work of the Spirit of truth.
And if you’re wondering “why me?” Jesus Himself explains
it best in John 14:29 “And now I have told you before it come
to pass, that, when it is come to pass, you might believe.”
This is a call to faith my dear friends, it cannot be mistaken
for anything else.
I can look back at my own life and see clearly the various
stages of faith and relationship that God has brought me
through, and continues to do so. Early on I spent decades as
a devout follower of drugs, alcohol, sex, violence and rage,
cursing, lying, and stealing. I was loud, and arrogant, and cruel,
unthankful, selfish, and unloving. There was no sin that I am
aware of that I did not readily engage in, and I cared little about
religion, let alone a person called God. This was the horror
that my life had become over the many years of committed
practice of every type of evil. I had become a street animal,
sleeping anywhere, eating anything, and doing everything,
while barely resembling a man. My mind was a sewer, a pit of
disgust and torture, and there was no way out for me.
I was continually haunted in my alone time by my many
failures and inadequacies, and the many people that I had
hurt. I had turned my back on a dying father, I had totally
abandoned an innocent young daughter, I had scammed and
abused every relationship I had ever known, and I had injured
many physically as well as those I had scarred emotionally.
I had never owned anything, never held on to any job, never
married, never even had a driver’s license; I was a throw away,
and the worst part of it, was that I knew it. Year after year
was passing, decades rolled painfully by, and as no surprise
to me I was actually growing worse. Imprisonments and
incarcerations, attempted murders, and those that attempted
to murder me. Drug overdoses, some intentional, others were
not, house fires, car crashes, gun shots nearly missing, home
invasions and armed robberies, you name it, this was my life.
And one night I laid broken and shattered on a cold kitchen
floor in the dark, crying shamelessly, and I said “God, I have
heard about the people that you have changed their lives. If you
can do this for them, why can’t you do this for me? You know
that I cannot change myself, if you don’t change me I will die.”
That was it. No great theological prayer, no one there to hold
my hand and lead me through the dos and don’ts of petitioning
God properly. Just a crushed and hopeless heart giving up,
tired and beaten down, crying out on a naked kitchen floor in
the dark. I didn’t even know if He had heard me. There was no
lightning or thunderbolts, no visions, no appearance of angels,
no heavenly voice, no anything. I remember eventually getting
up and wiping the tears from my face and moving on to
whatever the next thing was. But I tell you this, from that
next day and forward I did feel something, something new
and strange, but unmistakably real. For the first time in my
life I could feel within me an opposing presence to the evil
that was my life. I didn’t know what this thing was, but it
was actively resisting me on every wicked front that I use to
perform so freely before. There was a wrestling match going
on so violently within me, it was impossible not to feel, or
notice it. I knew nothing about a Holy Spirit, or the Word of
God, but I now know this much, that night God did hear me,
and I was saved by His mercy, and the road to change had
begun for me.
I would like to say that from that moment on my life was
completely changed, externally I mean, but that did not happen
for me. It would be over many years still that this progression
would take place, even at times as it would seem to be at a snail’s pace. But for me, none of that matters now, as I have come
through it to be the man that I am now, as I sit at this keyboard.
Not perfect by any stretch of the imagination I can assure you,
but unquestionably and undeniably forever changed.
For several years now I have been drug and alcohol free,
no longer a slave to either. Additionally I have been sexually
abstinent now since 2009 since I am still remaining unmarried.
At the same time, I no longer fight, steal, lie, or curse, among
many other things that were so common to me, but these are
but the beginning of the change that God has done in me.
The greater changes have occurred, and still occur within the
hidden recesses of my heart and mind. Today I love God, and
I am an addict to His Word. The knowledge of Him has stolen
me away from this world, and it is the sweetest and most
pleasant thing that I could have ever imagined. Consequently,
I feel a deep abiding love and concern for others, and it is for
this reason that I have written this book for you.
My heart bleeds for you to know Him, my soul pleads for
you also to cry out to him, as I once did, and still do. I tell you
as truthfully as I know how, He is loving, and merciful, and
forgiving, and patient, and He is anxiously waiting for you. He
will hear you, and He will answer mightily all the pain that is
in your heart. You only have to ask. Yes time is short, so think
of it this way, every second that you do not call upon Him is
another second that you have to go without Him, and equally
as important, He without you.
Perhaps you may already be saved, but over time and
circumstances you have fallen victim to the many landslides
of life, seemingly separating you ever farther from your Father.
To you I would say this: He has not been moved away from
you, neither has His opinion changed, or His heartfelt desire
concerning you. Past guilt is behaving as your enemy, give
that also to Him. Let us not ever forget that Jesus died to bear
your shame and your guilt, in addition to your sin. Run back
to your Father just as the “prodigal son” was so wise to do.
He is forever looking over the barren landscapes of our lives
hoping only to see us in the distance as we approach. With
arms spread as wide as the beams that fastened wide the nail
pierced hands of Christ, He welcomes you to come home to
His certain embrace. I beg you not to walk, run my beloved,
run hard and fast to your God and Father, and King. Run now!
And lastly, for those of you who have and do know Him
well, all blessings and mercy, and peace and grace be to you.
To you I say, reach farther, go deeper, seek more, grow, stretch,
change, learn, and mature. Never become complacent, nor
comfortable within this world. Yearn, thirst, and hunger, for
His presence, to hear His voice, and to serve.
Ask yourself earnestly, what does this message mean for
you? What is the appropriate response given all that we have
learned? Where do you go from here? Do not do as the servant
that hid his lord’s “talent” in the ground as he awaited his
lord’s arrival, but rather be as the faithful servants that put
their “talents” to use and did produce an “interest” to present
to their lord at his return.
Take the message and make it your own. Study it, meditate
on it, speak it and teach to others. Become that “watchman”
that sits on the wall alerting the others to the seriousness of
the times in which we live. Be bold and courageous, stand up
and work for the good. Be fearless in your faith, and open wide
your mouth and testify “in season and out of season”. Be the
“salt” and the “light” that you were created to be. The God
of all creation has chosen you to live in this, the most crucial
time in all of human history. You are stronger than you know
you can be. Launch out in faith, and trust God to lead you and
direct you in all of your paths. Jesus is coming, and God has
preordained that you should be His welcoming committee.
Blow the trumpet and sound the alarm, the King is coming!
So there it is, the cold hard facts staring you in the face.
The future doesn’t hold a new and better career for you simply
because God desires to bless you. For that matter, you know
that mystical debt cancellation you’ve been waiting on from
God, or that new home, or that new husband or wife that God
has been planning to get to you, none of this is as high on His
priority list as it is on yours.
The truth is difficult times are ahead of us all. And until
we face that, we are as far away from being prepared for it
as we could possibly be. We are not here for God to bless us,
were actually here to be a blessing. We’re not here to take but
to give. We were never meant to serve self, not while there’s a
great King to serve.

About the author

Steven Medley was born in 1961 in the inner city of Chicago.
Born to a middle-aged father and a young but alcoholic mother,
it would be less than a year before his maternal mother would
abandon them both. The next nine years would be spent being
shipped around from various foster homes, and from one
school to the next. At age 10 he would finally come home to
stay with his quickly aging father. These would be the happiest
years of his life.
At seventeen Steven would enlist in the U.S. Marines and
four short years later he would receive an honorable discharge.
Upon his return home his father would die of lung cancer only
a short single year later. This would begin the darkest time
of Stevens life. Alcoholism, drug addiction, and a wide array
of criminal activities would eventually land him in the state
penitentiary where he would serve a total of forty-two months
behind bars. It would be there behind those same bars that he
would give his life to Jesus in 1991.
This would begin years of cultivating a personal and
intimate relationship with his newly discovered Savior. It
would be during this period of his life that he would uncover
the ever-present gift of prophecy lying previously dormant and
undetected within him.
Since then Steven Medley is a dedicated student and
researcher of the Word of God, with more than over 40,000
hours of collective study in the field of biblical prophecy.
Medley was born in Chicago Illinois, and currently resides
there with his newly gained wife and teenage daughter. He is
also the father of another daughter, and grandfather to three
young grandchildren.

Copyright Steven Medley

Shirley Anne

Bad habits

Bad Habits (The Monks album)
Bad Habits (The Monks album) (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Over the past few days (I write on 5th) I have been rather lazy but it has been caused by my current muscular pain in my upper legs. It has been difficult moving around the house let alone anywhere else which meant I was and still am pretty much house-bound. I haven’t been completely inactive but I have had to leave exercising on the gym equipment alone for a while, though I did spend some time on the treadmill a couple of days ago. My problem is I cannot take the medicine so to speak! I know I have to rest my muscles or I will only end up prolonging the recovery process. It is said we are our own worst enemies and that seems to be true in my case. For many people taking time out comes naturally and for some it is even a way of life! I though am not one for relaxing as I know I probably should but there is one area of my life where I find it so easy, when in bed. Yes, if I have been tired or if I have overdone things sleep comes easily and if I have no commitments I like to extend my time in bed occasionally. That luxury comes very infrequently for me because I usually arise early even if there is no real reason to do so. It’s just the way I am wired. So once in a while I slip into the bad habit of repeatedly turning over in bed when I should be jumping out of it. What worries me is my ‘bad habit’ becoming so regular it ends up being the norm. It won’t happen, I won’t let it but while I am resting my muscles the temptation remains. On reflection I begin to think how fortunate I am when all I have to be concerned about is whether I take that extra hour or two in bed! What luxury, what privilege, I could be permanently bed-ridden after all. So I put off the feelings of guilt, embrace the gift of general good health and enjoy the occasional extra time in a warm and cozy bed. Soon enough I will be my own self again……..and I do hope it will be soon.

Shirley Anne

Me reading?

Throughout my life I have never been one who took much interest in reading unless it was something factual or was supposed to be. Remember we have to read untruths too before we discern those things which are true. Knowledge is a fine thing but truth has to be supported by evidence. There are many things purporting to be true but they lack supporting evidence. We may read something which is the truth yet we don’t recognise it as such. We even reject the truth when the evidence is plainly there to see! Preconceived ideas and beliefs hold back the truth from us. I never read fiction, it has to be real for me. My earliest interests centred around astronomy. Beginning with the solar system and extending out to the stars and galaxies my interests grew so much I could digest huge amounts of information and still hunger for more. The more I discovered the more deep my interest. You might guess therefore that I possess many books about astronomy though these days I seldom read any of them. With the advent of The Internet there is little point as any information is out there to be had at the touch of a keyboard button. I still take an interest in the subject and probably always will. During my search for God in the years 1987 and 1988 my focus had been in reconciling the vastness of ‘space’ with the God who made it and it was somewhat of a stumbling block to my becoming a Christian believer. There was a yearning in my heart to know the truth and in my simplicity I asked God to reveal Himself to me. At this point I could diversify and write about my conversion but that isn’t the subject of this post. Save to say, I was converted and as I grew in my understanding things began to make sense. My Bible studies drew as much if not more interest as did my study of astronomy and so all my reading was in that direction. One can only learn facts by what is read, spoken or seen. There are many folk who think they know it all though they neither read, listen or look. They deceive themselves and the truth evades them. Since becoming a Christian in 1989 I have done much in the way of studying my faith and still continue to this day. As with any study we have to discern what is truth and what isn’t. For the Christian there is an assistant, a helper to guide us to the truth….The Holy Spirit. It is He who reveals the truth of the matter in our hearts as we study, for He reveals His own truth, God’s truth. After all The Bible is the inspired Word of God, The Holy Spirit inspired the writers to write what they did. Without a knowledge of anything anyone else wrote! It isn’t an instinctive awareness, for that is something we all have both believer and unbeliever alike. So I read a lot about my faith so that my understanding will grow. At the moment I am reading a book (online) about ‘The End Times‘ or more accurately the years preceding Christ’s return as prophesied in Scripture. The web site is  https://in-gods-service.com/   and specifically the article named ’69th-generation a biblical commentary on Daniel 9 (Book of) and the generation of Christ’s return.’ There is a link where the book may be downloaded free of charge for anyone wishing to read it. Having read the Bible around thirty times through and many isolated passages many times it never ceases to amaze me when new things are revealed to me from its pages. The particular article mentioned above draws out some very interesting facts otherwise passed over when being read as it links these facts together. The information is there for all those who seek it but remains hidden from those who don’t.  Even though the information is in plain view, God, The Holy Spirit, has presented it in such a way as not to be obvious to the casual reader. The book is well worth reading for any Christian who is serious about their faith and who wishes to understand the times. It is all there in The Bible……

Shirley Anne

Priorities

Do you remember the time when the most important thing in your life was in deciding what games to play with your siblings and friends or what you fancied doing just by yourself? Then later perhaps how you would go about swatting for the next examination? As we grow older our priorities change in-line with what we have to do rather than what we wish to do. As adults there are many more priorities we have to contend with and in which order we deal with problems and situations becomes important. As children if something fails to keep us interested we simply move on to something else. Adults don’t always have that choice, some things require immediate action and failing to act can bring dire consequences sometimes. Other people rely upon our actions too at times and inaction on our part can prove dangerous or costly  in some circumstances. We are often under pressure to respond or to accommodate to the needs of others. Even when we think the problems in life have by in large shrunk or have become non-existent we are often faced with unexpected  event to deal with. When in full-time work I was faced with all sorts of problems to do with my job and prioritising was simply an automatic thing. Now that I have retired those problems are in the past, or are they? Not really, they are just different and I still find myself prioritising in sorting them out. There is one unique difference though, I get to choose how I prioritise or even if I want to deal with a problem. Well, that’s the theory but I find I cannot often leave the responsibility to someone else unless I really need to. That means I continue to accept the responsibility, the problems and how to deal with them, which all leads me to providing the solution too. I fix things…..if I can. There are few things around the house which I won’t try to fix when they go wrong but in which order do I do them? They sometimes number quite a few!

Shirley Anne

Doubting generation

Many a time I have been told by people not believing in God that The Bible is a fairy story, a book filled with nonsensical thoughts and ideals, a man-made text. God they say was made up, invented by men to keep people under control, someone they could be fearful of if they didn’t tow the line. Well naturally they would say that from their standpoint of unbelief and their uneducated minds. Who can possibly make comment on something they know little about or refuse to look into? The evidence for God is all around us, there isn’t a real excuse for not believing. Many approach the subject with closed minds or preconceived ideas and simply stubbornly refuse that the idea they are wrong is possible. Maybe they have experienced troubles in their lives, hardships and poor health. There are many reasons for them not to put their faith in God, in their minds that is. What they don’t know or are willing to accept is that God, apart from Him being real, loves them dearly. ‘If God loves me so then why do I suffer? Why is there such hatred in the world? Why doesn’t He step in and change things? Why does He withhold nice things for me?’ is often asked. Well the truth is this, if  God didn’t love you He would give in to your requests. Sounds a stupid answer at first glance but if God didn’t allow suffering how would we benefit in understanding what suffering was? When we understand that God doesn’t always answer in the way we expect then we understand just how much He loves us. We learn from suffering, we learn from being refused, we learn from discipline. What father doesn’t teach us in the same way? He loves us this way so that we know that when we receive from Him it will only be for our good. Why did He allow Jesus Christ to suffer for our sins? He did it to show just how much He really loves us. In this life we are here to learn and to love our Creator. He died that we may be set free. He left us not alone but gave us His Spirit to guide and teach us, to help and support us and He gave us His Story in the written word, The Bible. Everything we need to know about life and how to live it is in there. Everything we need to know about our Creator is in there, Father, Son and Holy Spirit…..

Shirley Anne

A bible from 1859.
A bible from 1859. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

How Do We Know the Bible Is True? (Hebrews 4:12)

According to the Bible, all Scripture is God-breathed (2 Tim 3:16). Peter confirmed this when he said that those who wrote the Bible were not speaking on their own but spoke from God as they were carried along by the Holy Spirit (2 Pet 1:21). Many parts of Scripture are directly attributed to God through use of phrases like This is what the Lord says (e.g., Ex 4:22). Finally, Jesus often quoted from the Old Testament and affirmed it as being God’s Word.
Prophecies that were later fulfilled are corroboration of the accuracy of the Bible’s claim to be God’s Word. For example, the vision recorded in Daniel 7 correctly predicted the rise of the Medo¬Persian Empire, the Greek Empire under Alexander the Great, and the Roman Empire.
Archaeological discoveries are also important evidence of the Bible’s accuracy. For example, for many years King David was believed by some to be a fictional character. But recently a composition from a king of Syria referring to the “house of David” was discovered at Tel Dan. This writing provides tangible evidence that ancient rulers indeed recognized the dynasty of David in Judah.
Another reason for confidence in the Bible’s authenticity is its internal consistency. The Bible is actually a compilation of 66 books written over a period of 2,000 years by more than 40 different authors, and yet there is a unified message and a striking theological coherence—something that clearly speaks of God’s guidance throughout the process of writing, transmit¬ting and assembling the Biblical texts.
It is important to remember that the original Biblical documents no longer exist. We are dependent on copies, and copyists can make mistakes. However, scholars have carefully tracked the accuracy of ancient manuscripts from different centuries, and their consistency gives us good reason to be confident in the Bibles we read today. Furthermore, rigorous standards were applied to determine the canon—both by the Jews, who determined the collection of books that make up the Old Testament Scriptures, and by the early church, which decided the books to be included in the New Testament.
Taken from NIV Quest Study Bible

Shirley Anne

….and a new beginning

I was in bed by ten-thirty after which I remembered nothing until I awoke for a little trip along the landing at five in the morning. It was new year’s eve but not that I’d noticed, I was too tired. On waking I should have done some exercising but my limbs were aching. Whilst I had been collecting stones from the beach the day before I noticed my posterior thigh muscles were beginning to ache. It had to be the elliptical cross trainer, well not the machine but my lack of experience on it! It isn’t as though I have been doing much on it but even the small amount of time I have spent was enough to cause my injury. Latterly I had been spending only a couple of minutes on the machine and even then with the supply switched off, in other words using it at its absolute and lowest settings. It is more the movement the legs go through rather than the resistance level though I suspect. Until I can get used to it I will have to ensure my time on it is kept to a minimum. Anyway the long and short of it was that I decided to once again take a short break from my regime. My day, new year’s day was therefore spent relaxing and doing nothing for once, oh sorry, except for taking out the trash! I don’t make resolutions for the year as you may remember which means I am not setting myself goals which I probably would find difficult to maintain anyway. If I do set myself a goal it can be anytime throughout the year and it usually involves a project of one sort or another. Those things I do keep. See last year’s posts! I do have one or two things I would like to do but whether they will come to fruition remains to be seen. In the meantime one of my aims is to get used to that damned cross trainer!

Shirley Anne

A fine end

Sunday, the last day of the year turned out to be bright and sunny, The temperature hovered around 9 deg C all day though a stiff breeze made it feel colder. Still, it was nice to be outdoors when sheltered from that wind. I had deliberately arisen early so that I could drive to the beach to collect some more stones. I left the house around seven-thirty and by the time I had parked the van in the car park near to the beach it was beginning to enter the twilight zone. Twilight for me is the best part of any day and I am glad I live in a place where we have a period of twilight twice a day. Anyway, the wind felt stronger down on the sand but I persevered and collected quite a few stones while it was still quite dark. I made three short trips to and from the van to collect the stones in a plastic bag to then place them in a large bucket I had stored in the van. I should have taken a couple of more trips at that time but I was beginning to feel tired and cold. I could always return later. Before returning indoors on my arrival back home at eight-thirty I decided to make an attempt at sliding the hard neoprene strip back into the guide on the garage door. If my readers will remember it had slid out a couple of weeks ago and I informed the installer to have it repaired. At the time of writing this on the last day of the year there has been no follow-up from them. I will have to inform them it has been repaired. After doing that small job I took a parcel we had received on behalf of our neighbour across the road to give it to her who at the time it arrived wasn’t at home, then I went indoors for my breakfast. E came into the kitchen just as I had finished eating. After breakfast I donned my overalls and went into the garden to empty out the stones and to dig out a couple of montbretia plants.

Still not enough stones to cover the soil so I would have to do some more collecting. With that in mind E and I drove down to the beach in the afternoon and whilst I went to collect more stones she sat inside the van admiring the sea view. From her vantage point however I was invisible because of the intervening sea wall. I collected a small bucket full of stones which I placed in the empty space when we returned home…..

It looks full now but in fact there is space for a few more. I plan to put some other plants in the area later so some of the stones will move to create a space for them. It should then look fuller. (Click on pics to magnify)

Shirley Anne