Is there a line between right and wrong? Will anybody stand and say “NO!”

We all get to decide for ourselves. So choose wisely!

Imagine a world where there is a stage for people to go and shine before the entire world. Imagine a place where the athletes prepare for years in order to compete and prove they are the best in the world. Imagine what would happen if that stage ended up being unsafe or unhealthy for those athletes. Do you think they would change the venue? Do you think they would change the location in order to ensure the health and safety of those athletes? Do you think they should change the location in order to ensure the health and safety of those athletes? What if it would actually go further and also impact the spectators? If it would impact them too, do you think they would consider a change of location? Do you think if it would impact so many more people that they should change the location?

What is the state of the world? What is the state of the character? What is the courage to do what is right? What is the courage for people to say “NO!”? Do people know there is such thing as right and wrong? Do people know that there is such a thing as going too far?

What if it wasn’t a game of pretend and it was real people? It is every day! It is something that is being seen more and more as the world seems to slip farther and farther down the hill.

Before I start my morning reading, consider this situation and the news as it is being reported…

Is this a sign? Is this a symptom? Is this a cause? Is this an effect? Did someone speak up? Will someone say something? Will anyone take a stand? Will people just go along with it and how many lives could be at risk? Is it the press that is over inflating this or is it the organization that is overlooking the situation?

Take a look around the world today and what do you see? Do you see situations, environments, places, people who are living in ways that are wrong? Does anybody say anything or do they keep quiet because they don’t want to become a target? Do you see what is taking place all over the world? Pick a country that isn’t going through some type of turmoil! Pick a country that doesn’t have some event that seems so strange, so out there, so wrong and yet people are doing nothing, are keeping silent, or are being kept silent or told they are crazy!

So what is going to happen? Does anyone have a choice? Is there anything that can be done? Will there be justice? Will there be integrity?

Ever heard the saying that all it takes for evil to win is for good people to do nothing?

Choose wisely!…

The Peaceful Kingdom

1  The royal line of David is like a tree that has been cut down; but just as new branches sprout from a stump, so a new king will arise from among David’s descendants. 2The spirit of the Lord will give him wisdom and the knowledge and skill to rule his people. He will know the Lord’s will and honor him, 3and find pleasure in obeying him. He will not judge by appearance or hearsay; 4  he will judge the poor fairly and defend the rights of the helpless. At his command the people will be punished, and evil persons will die. 5  He will rule his people with justice and integrity. 6  Wolves and sheep will live together in peace, and leopards will lie down with young goats. Calves and lion cubs will feed together, and little children will take care of them. 7Cows and bears will eat together, and their calves and cubs will lie down in peace. Lions will eat straw as cattle do. 8Even a baby will not be harmed if it plays near a poisonous snake. 9  On Zion, God’s sacred hill, there will be nothing harmful or evil. The land will be as full of knowledge of the Lord as the seas are full of water.

The Exiled People Will Return

10  A day is coming when the new king from the royal line of David will be a symbol to the nations. They will gather in his royal city and give him honor. 11When that day comes, the Lord will once again use his power and bring back home those of his people who are left in Assyria and Egypt, in the lands of Pathros, Ethiopia, Elam, Babylonia, and Hamath, and in the coastlands and on the islands of the sea. 12The Lord will raise a signal flag to show the nations that he is gathering together again the scattered people of Israel and Judah and bringing them back from the four corners of the earth. 13The kingdom of Israel will not be jealous of Judah any more, and Judah will not be the enemy of Israel. 14Together they will attack the Philistines on the west and plunder the people who live to the east. They will conquer the people of Edom and Moab, and the people of Ammon will obey them. 15 The Lord will dry up the Gulf of Suez, and he will bring a hot wind to dry up the Euphrates, leaving only seven tiny streams, so that anyone can walk across. 16There will be a highway out of Assyria for those of his people Israel who have survived there, just as there was for their ancestors when they left Egypt.
–from Isaiah 11
Would we want a world of real peace? A peace that goes beyond understanding? Then it takes more than just people not fighting and not arguing, it takes people doing what is right! It takes people to step up and stand up for those who can’t speak up for themselves! It takes people stepping out for the orphans and the widows, for the poor and the downtrodden. It takes good people not doing nothing, but doing what is right! It’s not too late, we can do something! Be it in your community or around the world, you can make a difference! And see how it will be! Let’s celebrate the victory of God by standing up for what is right!

Hymn of Thanksgiving

1A day is coming when people will sing, “I praise you, Lord! You were angry with me, but now you comfort me and are angry no longer. 2God is my savior; I will trust him and not be afraid. The Lord gives me power and strength; he is my savior. 3As fresh water brings joy to the thirsty, so God’s people rejoice when he saves them.” 4A day is coming when people will sing, “Give thanks to the Lord! Call for him to help you! Tell all the nations what he has done! Tell them how great he is! 5Sing to the Lord because of the great things he has done. Let the whole world hear the news. 6Let everyone who lives in Zion shout and sing! Israel’s holy God is great, and he lives among his people.”
–from Isaiah 12
Imagine a world where people are treated right. Imagine a world where people are allowed to make good choices. Imagine a world where people are able to stand up not only for themselves, but also for others. Imagine the transformation that would and could take place if people were able to do what is right without fear. God’s Word says … Fear Not, Just Believe.
God doesn’t want us to be walking our lives out in fear! Faith is the antidote to fear!
There will be consequences, maybe not today, maybe not tomorrow, but one day we will all face the judgment seat. How do you want to be when you get there? What do you want to be your explanation for what happened? In whom will you put your trust? Are you afraid? What’s holding you back from becoming everything you were created to be? You were created on purpose for a purpose! It’s true! So what are you going to do? Do you want to be on the winning or the losing side? I read the end of the book and I know who wins and we all have to make a choice! It’s personal! It’s real! It’s up to each of us to choose for ourselves. And we can make a difference in the lives of those around us! But it means we have to step out of our comfort zone to do the extraordinary. It means we have to be willing to give a hand up rather than just a handout. It means we have to get dirty and get involved! It means more than just giving money, but also being able to go and to do!
Let’s stand up for those who can’t. Let’s speak up for those who can’t. Let’s make a difference today, before it is too late!
Today’s reading continues with …

God Will Punish Babylon

1This is a message about Babylon, which Isaiah son of Amoz received from God. 2On the top of a barren hill raise the battle flag! Shout to the soldiers and raise your arm as the signal for them to attack the gates of the proud city. 3The Lord has called out his proud and confident soldiers to fight a holy war and punish those he is angry with. 4Listen to the noise on the mountains—the sound of a great crowd of people, the sound of nations and kingdoms gathering. The Lord of Armies is preparing his troops for battle. 5They are coming from far-off countries at the ends of the earth. In his anger the Lord is coming to devastate the whole country. 6Howl in pain! The day of the Lord is near, the day when the Almighty brings destruction. 7Everyone’s hands will hang limp, and everyone’s courage will fail. 8They will all be terrified and overcome with pain, like the pain of a woman in labor. They will look at each other in fear, and their faces will burn with shame. 9The day of the Lord is coming—that cruel day of his fierce anger and fury. The earth will be made a wilderness, and every sinner will be destroyed. 10 Every star and every constellation will stop shining, the sun will be dark when it rises, and the moon will give no light. 11The Lord says, “I will bring disaster on the earth and punish all wicked people for their sins. I will humble everyone who is proud and punish everyone who is arrogant and cruel. 12Those who survive will be scarcer than gold. 13I will make the heavens tremble, and the earth will be shaken out of its place on that day when I, the Lord Almighty, show my anger. 14“The foreigners living in Babylon will run away to their homelands, scattering like deer escaping from hunters, like sheep without a shepherd. 15Anyone who is caught will be stabbed to death. 16While they look on helplessly, their babies will be battered to death, their houses will be looted, and their wives will be raped.” 17The Lord says, “I am stirring up the Medes to attack Babylon. They care nothing for silver and are not tempted by gold. 18With their bows and arrows they will kill the young men. They will show no mercy to babies and take no pity on children. 19 Babylonia is the most beautiful kingdom of all; it is the pride of its people. But I, the Lord, will overthrow Babylon as I did Sodom and Gomorrah! 20No one will ever live there again. No wandering Arab will ever pitch a tent there, and no shepherd will ever pasture a flock there. 21 It will be a place where desert animals live and where owls build their nests. Ostriches will live there, and wild goats will prance through the ruins. 22The towers and palaces will echo with the cries of hyenas and jackals. Babylon’s time has come! Her days are almost over.”
–from Isaiah 13

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