We at Closure for Jesus feel that this series is so vital for all who will hear to hear, that we are sharing the entire six part series in this one post. If you do not believe that the end is near, watch these and we are certain you will change your mind. May the Lord help us to humble our hearts before Him and make our calling and election sure. We pray that all will be awakened who will awake!
Looking at the future of this world can be scary. As we consider it in the light of Bible prophecy, it can be even more scary. But do we have no anchor? Nothing certain? We do! We certainly do! Listen to learn more:
“Mercy runs toward you when you want to come back to God, and it runs faster that judgment.” The Father’s Embrace pg 80 by Danilo Montero
I want to share with you a few old words of wisdom that prompted me to quit some things.
It’s a quick excerpt from an old book on agriculture that was given to me.
“Some people seem to think they must accomplish in a
few years what their grandparents spent half a lifetime
doing, namely, carving a comfortable home out of the
wilderness….I see no sense in turning a potentially
satisfying and rewarding experience into a period of
nerve-shattering frustrations. Why would you choose
to live in the country? Most likely because you crave
the peace and quiet of the ‘good life’ close to the soil.
It is entirely possible that you could spend half of your
lifetime trying so hard to make yourself “comfortable”
on the land that you never have time to enjoy the peace
and quiet that you have around you.”
(from The Country Way by Lloyd Eighme)
That hit me between the eyes and has prompted me to make some revolutionary changes.
Perhaps a quick bit of background is in order.
This is our first summer on a new (to us) homestead. While we feel so blessed to
finally have our own piece of dirt after all these years, here’s the stark reality…a
mountain of things are piling up that need to be done–yesterday! At least it seems
that they are all urgent.
The fire season is looking grim this year and our forest would go up in flames like a
match box if it was ignited. We need to thin it out and remove “ladder fuels” and
we need to do it–yesterday. We need to set up the water tank and fire pump that
will be needed if we do have a small fire pop up in the area, and we need to do that–
yesterday. We need to establish a sizable garden plot–yesterday. We need to plant
an orchard–yesterday. The current off grid power system in this homestead, while it
is operational, it’s old and needs some major overhauling before it disintegrates–
yesterday. The gophers have taken over the entire area and need to be brought under
control–yesterday. And the list goes on… (that’s without mentioning making a living :-0 )
Does my list sound familiar to you? Maybe not the specifics, but the long list of super
urgent things that must be done before…before…before what? Before something happens.
For many years I operated in what I call “crisis mode” moving from one “fire” to the next.
I never had time to do anything particularly well because there were always more pressing
items on the burner. And there was an overarching concern that these things get done
before…well, you know what. After years of this, I finally came to realize that operating in
crisis mode is liable to catch up with you in the form of hundreds of unfinished projects or
jerry-rigged short term fixes that had to be redone periodically. And that’s not to mention
the physical and mental stress it creates. Are you with me?
I’m just as concerned about the future as ever, and that’s one of the many reasons I live
this wonderful lifestyle. But I’ve come to realize that we can’t let our concern over possible
impending events lure us into decisions that we will regret later on. You see, I believe that
if we do things for the right reasons, we’ll not only be thankful for those choices now, but
we’ll be glad in the future as well.
So when making decisions, I’ve started to think further in the future than I used to. I now
believe it’s the better part of wisdom. Think back to the 1990’s. Back then, I couldn’t imagine
life going on as usual in 2…0…1…5! That was unthinkable! But here we are, and how I wish
I had thought about 2015 when making so many decisions over the years. I think it boils
down to a healthy mixture of being ready for “things” to happen now, but yet planning for the
future (ever heard the phrase “keep planting”?).
What I’m Quitting
So here is what I’m quitting. I’m quitting the band-aid approach to solving problems on the
homestead. If it’s worth doing, it’s worth doing right. But even more important than that,
I’m quitting the ever-present stress that goes along with living in “crisis mode”. God has
placed us on this earth for a few short years, and why not make the most out of each one of
them and enjoy them for what they are? Enjoy the blessings we have been blessed with, and
use those blessings as a means to prepare for the future.
So now, I do what I’m reasonably able to do, and then I don’t worry about all the remaining
things that are still on the docket. I’ll get to them when I’m able to do them and do them right.
And you know what? I think I’m able to get a lot more done with this lower-stress systematic
outlook, not to mention a much higher quality of life. But it all hinges on doing what you can
NOW. Procrastination is the mother of almost all panic. Steady action is the mother of peace
So what are some things you can do right now, even if you are far from having your own homestead?
Well, I put together a short PDF that you can download for free to give you a bunch of ideas. (see www.sustainablepreparedness.com for this PDF).
Reprinted with permission from Sustainable Preparedness.
Reprinted from ADvindicate:
BEWARE OF THE SOUND OF ONE HAND CLAPPING
May 28, 2015 Gerry Wagoner
Just about halfway between dogmatic and awkward on the linear leadership scale there is a middle point that is a mixture of both. Over the last twelve months, the North American Division (NAD) of the Adventist church has spent way too much time in this unfortunate middle ground.
Before I continue, the special word for this article is gerrymandering. Gerrymandering is manipulating the boundaries of voting constituents to affect the outcome of a vote, or attempting to hijack an electoral process. In several ways, the NAD is doing the latter as it attempts to impose its agenda on the entire world church.
Unless you are a cave dweller in the Jacumba Mountains, you probably know that the Women’s Ordination (WO) issue has become the critical issue of the last decade in our church. It’s an issue that is apparently important enough to North American Division leaders to risk splitting the church over. Gives new meaning to the term “division…” And these are leaders, people we are supposed to look up to and follow.
I’m all for great leaders, in fact one common denominator of great nations, families and movements are that they usually have great leadership. Many Adventists around the world, however, are asking a question regarding North American leadership, “Uhh…who’s leading the ship?” That’s not a bad question, and it brings me to exhibit A of NAD gerrymandering.
Consider the bias of the Adventist Review magazine regarding the WO issue. The official magazine of the world Seventh-day Adventist church would surely be objective on an issue that has received as much scrutiny as WO, right? Well, no. There is a lack of any material in their magazine presenting the complementarian view of male/female roles (other than the obligatory description of TOSC Position 1 in October 2014). There is a mass of pro WO material. This says a lot about who is guiding the ship. An agenda is guiding the ship. Recently their efforts to help further the WO agenda led elder Ed Reid to write a comprehensive open-letter rebuke to the editor of the Review in March of this year. Ed Reid was spot on in his analysis of the slanted Dave Gemmel article. There are many Adventists in North America that oppose ordaining women, and they are not given the right to have their views represented in the Adventist Review. This is unethical, and an unnecessary offense to thousands of tithe-paying loyal church members in North America. To my knowledge, there has been no retraction from the Review for the factual errors in the Gemmel article. Beware the sound of one hand clapping.
Such bias causes people to seek alternative sources for news and articles regarding the issues that currently confront the church. At ADvindicate we hear from them through letters, email and in person at various venues. One venue at which we won’t hear from them, however, is the upcoming General Conference Session in San Antonio. That brings me to exhibit B.
Last August we submitted an application for a booth in the exhibit hall at the 2015 GC session. They accepted our payment and assigned ADvindicate a booth number. Within 20-days though, we received an email from General Conference Exhibit Manager Dean Rogers stating ADvindicate would not be permitted to have a booth at the session:
The operating guidelines for screening exhibitors is that we ask the Division where the exhibitor operates to give our committee a recommendation. Therefore, I sent ADvindicate’s application to the North American Division for their review and recommendation. Their recommendation was that ADvindicate not be an exhibitor.
We were not given an answer why we were denied booth space when we inquired. Not only was ADvindicate denied booth space at the session, but OrdinationTruth.com was denied as well. Gerrymandering had poked its head up again. This confirms that the NAD has not been fair and open with the WO discussion; they have a strong slant on the issue. So we accepted the decision—puzzling as it was—and our payment was refunded. Two weeks ago, I emailed Rogers at the GC with a question? “Are Spectrum and AToday going to have booths at the GC session?”
He replied “Yes they are.” Beware the sound of one hand clapping—in this case it is a slap.
Since four out of the last six GC Sessions have been in North America, giving the NAD veto power over exhibitors could place inordinate power in the hands of a biased division. Perhaps it’s time to have sessions in Manilla, Argentina, or Geneva.
So how should we respond to a division whose main agenda is the dogmatic pursuit of their premiere expectation? How can we resist the gravitation pull of such bias? I suggest three responses.
Pray for them. Seriously. We live in a fight-or-flight western culture. Some will try to ignore the gerrymandering or find a way to justify it. Others will get angry and want to lash out. None of these approaches satisfy me. We must pray, not that God puts X’s on our opponent’s eyes, but that He opens their eyes. By praying for them we learn to forgive. Some people can take a little longer to forgive than others, I’ll admit that. We can ask God’s forgiveness to cover for us while we get there. If we go to San Antonio with an open heart, we can leave it with an open heart.
Take Inventory. As a convert to the Advent movement, it has been helpful over the years for me to recount the way the Lord led me here. Go back and retrace the ways that God has led you, pausing at each waymark in wonder of His grace and goodness. It keeps things in perspective.
Stand. “Having done all, to stand.” These words of Paul remind us that we are still in a hostile world, and we must stand for truth. Those of us who desire to win the world for Christ, must be prepared to come into conflict with it, and we are given a moral armor with gospel features to protect us in the good fight. A truth-hating world may order up what it wants to hear, but God gave us ears to love the truth, and mouths to speak it. It is also helpful to remember that what is happening in the church is a reflection of what is happening in the culture around us. We have heard the arguments of those who wish to rewrite male/female roles, and have understood them. We have gone to Scripture to “see if those things are so” and concluded that they are not.
In summary, we regain ground in Adventism by making the church what it should be—true to the Word of God. When you reduce faith to politics and distraction, it loses its substance, and without its substance it is, among other things, uninspiring. Yet beyond the partisan sound of one hand clapping there is another sound—one worth listening to—it is the still small voice of God saying, “This is the way, walk ye in it.”
EDIT: In March of this year, the NAD sent out a Theology of Ordination Q&A brochure to every church in North America. Two facts: The brochure is exclusively in support of ordaining women, and the creation and distribution costs were funded by tithe dollars. I spoke with the NAD secretariat office today and confirmed that the brochure was paid for with tithe.
And consider the strong arm techniques being used by the NAD. We love our brethren, but this is really unfair. May the Lord help us to reflect His character.
Why are we sharing gardening videos on our website? And why are we sharing videos about using horses in the garden on our website? What does this have to do with seeking closure for Jesus? What does this have to do with hastening His return, or ending His pain? EVERYTHING! When God made us in the beginning, He placed us in a garden. We believe that it is in the garden, perhaps more than anywhere else, that the Lord can really speak to our hearts and teach us. Think of Christ’s object lessons of the sower and the seed! When we are in the garden, the Holy Spirit can take the lesson of the seed and really bring it home to our hearts. Further, with what is happening in the world today, it behooves us all to learn to grow our own food!
We believe it would do us all good to slow down, get our hands in the soil, and listen…
We recently had the opportunity to visit with our friend, Titus Morris, who resides in Liberty, Kentucky. Titus, a fellow Seventh-day Adventist, has adopted many of the ways and works among the Amish and Mennonite in his community. At age 23, Titus has become accomplished at training as well as shoeing horses, and uses them exclusively in his family’s garden for breaking the soil, and also works for many of the Amish and Mennonite with his horses. We believe in simple lives, and know that many are wanting to “get back to the land”, and believe this will be of interest to many. Join us for part one of this series as Titus shows us how to harness a horse in preparation for plowing or pulling a cart.