What’s This Button Do? Oops. #ThreatNoThreat

In the immediate wake of Hawaii’s false Ballistic Missile threat, news agencies began reporting that the “wrong button” had been pressed. Not true. Actually, the wrong link was clicked on a drop-down menu. Nevertheless, it was a big mistake!

In addition, it took 38 minutes to notify the public that there was no threat. By then, thousands had sought shelter, entered manholes, or called loved ones and waited. After all, there is no running from an inbound nuclear missile on an island.

Now, if you’ve seen the drop-down menu, you know it was very confusing! (See Picture)

Needless to say, the system is being updated and new, clearer options have already been added. We simply can’t allow false reports of impending doom being spread to millions of people or we will have “boy who cried wolf” syndrome.

It would be nice if a warning system was 100% accurate and never had fake notifications, right? Well, did you know that the Bible has that? It has a 100% track record of prophecy and fulfillment!

Jesus warned His followers not to be deceived by false alerts. More than three decades before the Temple was destroyed, Jesus gave specific warnings about what would happen, where to go, and when to go. Because Jesus’ followers listened to His words in Luke 21:20-24, historians confirm that not a single Christian lost their lives when the Romans sacked Jerusalem.

And Jesus’ followers know that there will be no false alerts when He returns.

“The Lord Himself will descend from heaven with a shout, with the voice of the archangel and with the trumpet of God, and the dead in Christ will rise first. Then we who are alive and remain will be caught up together with them in the clouds to meet the Lord in the air, and so we shall always be with the Lord” (1 Thessalonians 4:16-17).

There won’t be any accidental “clicks” in that day. It is a day that the Father set aside from the foundation of time. Accept the forgiveness He freely offers and live faithfully for Him today!

Reset – It’s Not Too Late!

So, maybe you are a New Year resolution person and maybe you aren’t. Of course, we all know the statistics. Only 8% of people are able to successfully stick to their resolutions. That is a 92% failure rate.

Additionally, if you have a vague goal such as “losing weight,” or “exercising more,” and you fail consistently, you’ve probably gotten stuck in a rut. These kinds of failures can lead to year after year of sedentary life. You may be thinking there is no turning it around – “why even try?”

But thanks to work by doctors at Texas Health Resources and UT Southwestern Medical Center in Dallas, a study was recently published showing some very good news. You can actually undo the effects of years of sedentary life! It isn’t too late!

Of course, it is going to take some effort. But researchers showed that the 45-65 year-old age group could undo the effects of decades of sedentary life on the heart and lungs. Two years of light exercise (30 minutes a day, 4-5 days a week) changed lives substantially.

You see, when we make general resolutions like, “exercise more,” or “eat less,” we will generally fail. But when we know that victory is attainable, and we are truly committed, great things can happen. We can “reset” the clock in many ways.

There is no greater way, certainly, to reset the clock though, than in our spiritual disappointments. No matter where you are in life, no matter how sedentary you have become spiritually, you can be renewed by the saving grace of the gospel. It isn’t too late.

The amazing news is that the hardest part is done! Jesus already died on your behalf. He did the heavy lifting! Because of His righteousness, we can start over today, a new creation, undoing the judgment for sin in our lives.

But it will take some effort on your part: a dedication to life in faith of His saving grace (Revelation 2:10). This could be the day you recommit yourself to following Christ. It isn’t too late…and the benefits are amazing!

Do You Call Yourself A Hero? Be Careful!

I need a hero…I’m holding out for a hero ’til the end of the night…He’s gotta be strong…And he’s gotta be fast…and he probably just stole that lady’s purse! Wait, what? That’s not how “Holding Out For A Hero” goes. Heroes don’t steal from people they are saving, do they?

Well, you might have heard the story of Chris Parker by now. He was hailed as a “hero” following the terrorist attack in Manchester at the Ariana Grande concert. In the moments after Salman Ramadan Abedi’s suicide bomb killed 22 and injured over 100 others, Parker sprung into action. He helped comfort several victims, and he even held one woman as she was dying.

At least that is what he told the media. Parker, who is homeless, said he was begging in the arena when the blast went off. His instincts were to run, but he headed in to help people. His story made the news, and a GoFundMe campaign was started to reward him. Approximately $71,000 was raised.

The money was not handed over, though, before the Closed Circuit TV (CCTV) cameras showed what really happened that day. Chris Parker rushed in to help all right, just not the victims. He “helped” himself to a purse, a phone, and several other items, and then used their credit cards in the following days!

It can be hard to know who the real heroes are. “Even Satan disguises himself as an angel of light” (2 Corinthians 11:14). But we would all do well to remember that God judges each of us for our deeds (Romans 2:6). Chris Parker had great things to say about himself, but when the truth was revealed, it was a very different story.

Do you “spin” your behavior as heroic when you know it really wasn’t? Beware.

“For it is not he who commends himself that is approved, but he whom the Lord commends” (2 Corinthians 10:18). Look to the true hero, the Lord Jesus, today. God commends those who remain faithful in Him, saying, “well done, good and faithful servant” (Matthew 25:21).

Hypnotists and Hackers Can Help Your Bitcoin, But Remember This Password! (pssst…it’s “Jesus”)

Weird stories about Bitcoin are everywhere. With so many people wanting to cash in on the Bitcoin craze, that’s no surprise. Personally, my favorite is the fake story about a guy making a million dollars by selling Chuck E. Cheese tokens as Bitcoin. Yeah, if you haven’t heard, that was fake news.

But there are some stories that are both true and instructive. For example: if you’ve been following the Wall Street Journal and the New York Times, you know there is a new industry growing around Bitcoin. It includes hackers, hypnotists, and psychics who are being hired to help people remember complicated security codes to access their cryptocurrency!

You see, many people bought Bitcoin as a highly speculative investment. And, Bitcoin tanked. But then the strangest thing happened – Bitcoin made a comeback. And, you guessed it; people who had forgotten all about their failed investment were clamoring to access old accounts that might hold a fortune!

The application here is priceless. After all, how long has it been since you became a Christian? Here’s the real deal – many Christians took a chance; they chose faith and invested in their eternal soul. Then, over time, they decided their investment wasn’t worth much and forgot all about their investment!

If we assume our investment has no value, we will set it aside. But one day we will realize how valuable that soul is, and we will want to regain access to salvation. And if you’re reading this, it isn’t too late!

Here’s some awesome news: the password hasn’t changed. After all these years, it remains the same. It’s Jesus.

No psychic needed. No hypnotist. No hacker. Just an enduring faith in Jesus.

So, if you bought some Bitcoin back in the day, good luck cracking into that old account. But if you forgot your password, remember Him today – He’s waiting with open arms!

“you were sealed in Him with the Holy Spirit of promise, who is given as a pledge of our inheritance, with a view to the redemption of God’s own possession, to the praise of His glory” Ephesians 1:13b-14