hanging…in the balance

“Be not angry that you cannot make others as you wish them to be,
since you cannot make yourself as you wish to be.”

Thomas à Kempis

(Sweetgum balls hanging on the branches / Julie Cook / 2016)

Having read an interesting editorial type article this morning
(which was actually yesterday morning if you’re reading this on this particular morning)
I was struck by one sentence in particular, or actually just one part of the sentence…
Stuck such that it was one of those ‘the scales have fallen from my eyes and I can see clearly now’ moments…

…that God has given us over to ourselves…”


There is so much truth and clarity in those 8 words that I immediately felt that these past
endless anguishing months of this election misery coupled by the feeling,
from what seems to be a decades long slow demise of our western society…
as in it’s all going to hell in a hand basket and why am I the only person
who seems to feel this way sort of thoughts,
that it all became amazingly crystal clear, snapping into a steely sharp focus,
the instant I read those words…

The article was actually a commentary, or perhaps more of a personal observation,
regarding this election business of ours…
written by Michael Brendan Dougherty, a correspondent at TheWeek.com.
I’d actually found his article posted on a blog post by an Eastern Orthodox monk.
Dougherty is a Catholic…and from reading his article, he’s my kind of Catholic—
as I tend to be a more orthodox Christian.

The entire article is on point, but it was that one sentence
“that God has given us over to ourselves”
which is what really jumped out at me…
like getting hit upside the head with a giant dose of Divine revelation.

And whereas I agree whole heartedly with the opinion of Mr Dougherty,
I know that there are a ton of folks who don’t or won’t and will pooh pooh the notion of
A) that there is a God, let alone one who is holding the balance of life in His hands
B) that that opinion is merely the ramblings of some rabid Christian xenophobe who doesn’t
know his a%# from a hole in the ground….

Yes, I’ve heard enough negative Conservative and Christian
bashing as of late to last me a life time….

But the fact that God has most assuredly handed us over to our own devices, or rather,
that He allowed us to hand our own selves over,
what with all that freewill of ours you know,
is so much more true than even most Believers will be able to grasp..

For we, the family of Believers, have tolerated far too much…oh so much…
more than we ever should have…
and for that…we are certainly now reaping what we have sat back and turned
a blind eye to for so very long.

We have tried to blend the world with the Word that was set upon this Earth to live amongst us..
The Word made flesh that came to set this world upside down upon its head…
yet we wanted things to be nice and calm while not rocking any boats..

We wanted to get along and not offend.
We wanted the best of both worlds…His and our own…
So we became hard headed and hard of hearing.
We became the masters of appeasement.
We played the games…
and now the game masters have mastered us…
as we are finding that we believe everything they tell us…hook, line and sinker…

We were told…
by The Divine Word…
how to live…
how to let live…
how to love…
how to behave…
yes, very much like children…
yet we chose not to listen…
trusting rather in our own empty self-centered ideas.

And now we are left wondering how, we as a society and as a people, ever found our way
to this point and this mess.

What mess you ask?

Just look around the globe…

From these two candidates being all we had to choose between…
to the Middle East which is boiling…
To Russia once again becoming our nemesis,
or perhaps we were only fooling ourselves as they’ve never not been our nemesis….

From the earth to which now grows heavy under the weight of our toxic living…
to a seething sea of mass immigration of epic proportions…
To our embracing a culture of death…

our messes are endless…

But as Mr. Dougherty reminds his readers at the end of his editorial,
he reminds us that God’s judgment is not to be infinitely bad
nor is it to be the end of the story…
for in that judgement of our having turned away from Him
is actually our story of Hope…

“But for those who can accept it, God’s judgment is a good thing.
The same fire that consumes the chaff is used to purify gold and silver.

Here’s the full article…

And so today,this new morning, we see that life has taken yet another turn…
that perhaps not all have been prepared to take…
May we continue in our prayers for this Nation and her leaders—
that we will turn back to our Sovereign Lord…

If you return to the Almighty, you will be restored:
If you remove wickedness far from your tent

Job 22:23

21 comments on “hanging…in the balance

  1. Wally Fry says:

    He has given us over to ourselves…and we shall reap what we have sown. But, I say there is still hope. We can see that time and time again with the Isralites. Time and time again they turned away, and time and time again they were restored.

    It ain’t over till its’ over.

  2. Fantastic post, Julie! 🙂 ❤

  3. Sarah says:

    This is great, may I re-blog it?

      • Sarah says:

        I’ve been having trouble with my internet connection so I don’t know whether you already received my reply or not:
        Thank you. I’ve changed my mind though. Not about your article, but about re-blogging it. I just had a run-in with a sick and twisted man whom I had to block from commenting on my blog. He may still be reading my blog though and looking for other lady bloggers to pick on so I won’t risk drawing attention to you. I have said a rosary for his soul. May God have mercy on him. Feel free to delete my comment(s) if you want.

      • Hi Sarah, this is the only comment thus far I’ve seen—please don’t worry and know that I appreciate your thoughtfulness—you may certainly re-blog if you’d like as I am not fearful—I’ve had a few loonies show up my way from time to time—but they don’t usually stick around. I am sorry that you have had this sort of unnerving trouble—but Satan uses all sort of avenues to attack the faithful–even on a harmless blog…
        I had actually commented to you a while back on your “about” page regarding your work, your blog and my admiration of both.
        I had visited Ireland last fall and God had moved in my heart mightily during my trip—and as a retired art teacher, I had used illustrated manuscripts as inspiration for a lot of my own work when I was in the classroom–but nothing as wonderful as what you do–God has blessed you with such a talent—as well as a deep faith that is evident in your work.
        So don’t you fret—I’d be honored if you re-blog it—but understand your caution—I truly believe that faithful are coming under great attack…even here, or maybe especially here—as the times have grown very dark and very evil…
        blessings and prayers Sarah—

      • Sarah says:

        Thank you for your comforting and thoughtful words Julie. This was the first time I’d had a really disturbing visitor. I’ve had a few worrying people turn up before but not like this one.
        I think you’re right – the times have indeed grown very dark and the enemies of God are growing bolder. We must keep our lights shining. Thank you for your support.

        I don’t know how I missed your comment on my About page. I will go and look for it now.
        God bless you and yours. I will add you to my prayers. 🙂

      • Sarah says:

        Hmmm, I’ve gone back as far as July but I can’t see your comment. I wonder what happened to it. I also searched for “Julie” and “cookie” but came up empty. I’m sorry, I hope you didn’t think I was ignoring you. I answer or Like every (decent) comment I receive.

        Anyway thank you for the wonderful feedback just now. My art teachers at school weren’t so encouraging. 🙂

      • Not to worry Sarah– it’s probably glen in a spam bin or sorts– I’ll see if I see it on my end and re-offer it or will be original 🙂

      • Sarah says:

        You’re very kind.

      • Sarah, I went back and could not find my original comment so I wrote another one—it doesn’t show so I think it’s awaiting approval and that may be where the other one is–waiting your approval or in spam…
        just let me know if you find it or not…
        Thank you for your kindness—

      • Sarah says:

        It’s not showing up in my Notifications like this comment did. That’s weird. There’s some kind of black hole around my About page. I can’t remember having had any comments on it for ages. I will have look in my spam folder now and get back to you.

      • Sarah says:

        😀 I found it in my spam folder. Thanks! I’ll go and read it now.

      • 🙂 just call me spam ham 🙂

  4. SLIMJIM says:

    This post moves me so much to pray. It’s not all hopeless yet.

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