Building Bridges

Building Bridges, Issue 13, January 20, 2020

April 08, 2020 by John Maurice

“I have a dream that my four little children will one day live in a nation where they will not be judged by the color of their skin but by the content of their character.” Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Growing up in the 1960’s I assumed that my experience was a universal experience. When I would go to the doctor’s office, there were two waiting rooms – one for “whites” and one for “colored.” When my family went to Sears, there were two bathrooms for men and two water fountains outside of the restrooms, again, one for “whites” and one for “colored.” I did not understand why this was the case. I only knew that I sat in one waiting room at the doctor’s office and drank out of one water fountain at Sears. The elementary school that I attended was all white. There were no black teachers in my school. The only black person I saw at school was the janitor.  When it was time to go to our high school, we had a few black students, but not very many. My eighth grade shop teacher, C.B. Hall, was black, and he genuinely cared about...

 

Building Bridges, Issue 12, January 7, 2020

April 08, 2020 by John Maurice

“Church, we must remember that God isn’t calling us to just hate abortion. He’s calling us to value the life of a baby. God isn’t calling us to simply make abortion illegal. He’s calling us to make abortion unthinkable . . . ." (Christians, Being Anti-abortion Doesn’t Make You Prolife, by Dale Partridge, www.relearnchurch.org) “Children are a gift from the Lord; they are a reward from him.” Psalm 127:3 January is “Sanctity of Human Life” month. There is probably no more controversial or divisive issue confronting society than abortion. The subject of abortion has been a political hot-button issue in every election since the Roe v. Wade decision of 1973. Roe v. Wade was a landmark legal decision issued on January 22, 1973, in which the U.S. Supreme Court struck down a Texas statute banning abortion, effectively legalizing the procedure across the United States. The court held that a woman’s right to an abortion was implicit in the right to privacy protected by the 14th Amendment to the Constitution. The landmark decision has been controversial and since the 1973 ruling, every nominee to the Supreme Court has been scrutinized over their views concerning abortion....

 

Building Bridges, Issue 11, November 27, 2019

April 08, 2020 by John Maurice

“In November, people are good to each other. They carry pies to each other's homes and talk by crackling woodstoves, sipping mellow cider. They travel very far . . . to share a meal with one another and to give thanks for their many blessings - for the food on their tables and the babies in their arms." Cynthia Rylant   This Thursday is Thanksgiving. The original Thanksgiving was celebrated in 1621 as the Plymouth colonists and Wampanoag Indians shared an autumn harvest feast that is acknowledged today as one of the first Thanksgiving celebrations in the colonies. For more than two centuries, days of thanksgiving were celebrated by individual colonies and states. However, in 1863, in the midst of the Civil War, President Abraham Lincoln proclaimed a national Thanksgiving Day to be held each November. Sarah Josepha Hale, a prominent writer and editor (and probably most recognized as the author of the children’s poem “Mary Had a Little Lamb” [originally known as “Mary’s Lamb], was the driving force behind the Thanksgiving proclamation. For 36 years Sarah Hale wrote to and lobbied politicians to declare a national day of thanksgiving. Because of her efforts she was given the nickname “Mother...

 

Building Bridges, Issue 10, November 11, 2019

April 08, 2020 by Marty Riley

“The soldier above all others prays for peace, for it is the soldier who must suffer and bear the deepest wounds and scars of war." Douglas MacArthur November 11 is Veteran’s Day. Title 38 defines a Veteran as anyone that has served in the Armed Forces and was discharged under honorable conditions. Today there are nearly 22 million veterans in America that have served from WWII to the present. War is a horrible thing and in a good and decent society, it is a last resort. But due to the evil in the human heart, hatred and war are a part of the human story. James 4:1 says, “What causes fights and quarrels among you? Don’t they come from your desires that battle within you? ”In the late 1800’s many mistakenly believed that humankind was inherently good and that enlightened and educated people would never wage war again. Then came World War I. WWI was called “the war to end all wars.” The devastation experienced in this horrible warwas so unsettling that the nations of the world wanted to prevent such a slaughter from ever happening again. Sadly, the harsh terms of the Treaty of Versailles in...

 

Building Bridges, Issue 9, September 4, 2019

April 08, 2020 by Marty Riley

“Christians experience grief but without despair, sorrow but without defeat, sadness but without hopelessness.” Tim Challies, "How to Grieve Like a Christian" All of us must face seasons of life that bring a time of separation, grief, and pain. People that we love are injured or killed in accidents. Others are diagnosed with terminal diseases, and the process of dying ensues. Women experience miscarriages and grieve the loss of a child they have dreamed of and for whom they have prayed. The Scriptures show that death is universal and that its cause was the Fall, as Adam and Eve disobeyed God. Romans 5:12 says that “sin entered the world through one man, and death through sin, and in this way death came to all people, because all sinned.” In fact, this was the punishment that God had declared to Adam and Eve when he told them that “on the day that you eat of the fruit of the tree of knowledge of good and evil you will surely die” (Genesis 2:17).  Death is not merely physical death, however; death can also be spiritual or eternal. Spiritual death is why we must be raised to life through faith...