Sunday, September 26, 2010

Our Sunday Shout! ~ Pastor James Jackson

O Lord, O Lord how majestic is Your name in all the earth. You rebuked the Red Sea, and it dried up; and led the children of Israel through the depths, as through the wilderness and saved them from the hand of him who hated them and redeemed them from the hand of the enemy.

Even so, we will never forget that You rescued us from the power of darkness, and re-established us in the kingdom of Your beloved Son, that is, in the kingdom of light. For it is by Your Son alone that we have been redeemed and have had our sins forgiven.

Darkness has no power over us. We believed Your Word and sang Your praises. May we never forget Your works and always seek Your counsel. We will remember Your name Lord God, our Savior, Who has done great things for us and loved us with a great love. Awesome are You. Lord! Wondrous are your works. 

So everybody lift your hands up, lift your hands up, lift your hands up! He is worthy of praise.

(Excerpt from Psalm 106, Colossians 1) 

Wednesday, September 22, 2010

The Cross of Christ

The Cross reminds me of the time I know without a shadow of doubt that I wasn't let down, betrayed or unloved. Amazing! Others have loved me since, but none has ever nor ever will love me like the Bearer of the Cross.

This Life of mine ...

I was blessed with the opportunity to go to the Dallas Cowboys/Chicago Bears game (wherein the Bears won 27-20) with my virtual little brother, Aaron Williams, and his wife and spent time with other friends in the Dallas area.

I was invited, able to sit on and participate in a panel discussion on alternatives to sending our youth and young adults to adult prisons, designed to kick off a Campaign for Youth Justice Project ( in the state of Missouri.

But... I've also had an "old friend" threaten me and attempt to extort me for $30,000 + dollars.

This life of mine is blessed...bitter sweet, but blessed.

2 Corinthians 4:7-9

7~But we have this treasure in jars of clay to show that this all-surpassing power is from God and not from us. 8~We are hard pressed on every side, but not crushed; perplexed, but not in despair; 9~persecuted, but not abandoned; struck down, but not destroyed. 

Exodus Cry: The Call to Battle by Exodus Cry

The following link was sent to me, by a friend of mine, in response to the article I posted on the issue of underage sex trade in America. Please take the time to watch it.

Tuesday, September 21, 2010

7 Things You Need To Know About the Underage US Sex Trade by Evie Pless

To post your thoughts on the issue raised in this article, go to the bottom of this blog entry and click "comments". In addition, visit . You could also follow the various links spread throughout the article. Let your voice be heard. Speak up. Whether you agree or disagree with the conclusions made in this analysis, it's important that you say something. This issue is important. Our kids are important.

7 Things to Know About the Underage US Sex Trade

posted by: Evie Pless 8 hours ago
7 Things to Know About the Underage US Sex Trade

1. It exists. Americans tend to associate sex trafficking of minors with distant countries and often don't realize the same problem is serious and growing within the United States. Nicholas Kristof, whose masterful and heartbreaking reports illuminated human trafficking in Cambodia, recently shone the spotlight on the tragedy's American twin, and two bills pending in Congress will hopefully give the US a chance to better understand and address domestic trafficking.

TAKE ACTION: Urge Congress to pass legislation combating human trafficking within the United States.

2. The number of children forced into prostitution is high, and the average initial age is low. Within the US, more than 100,000 children are victimized through commercial sex and prostitution each year. The average age at which girls first become victims of prostitution is 12-14 and the average age for boys and transgender youth is 11-13. That's a pretty harsh reality check for people who advocate on behalf of some form of "voluntary" prostitution.

3. American street-kids are one of the most vulnerable groups. According to Kristof, "There's a misperception in America that "sex trafficking" is mostly about foreigners smuggled into the U.S. That exists. But I've concluded that the biggest problem and worst abuses involve not foreign women but home-grown runaway kids."

4. There have been cases of human trafficking in all 50 states and D.C, and your favorite city could easily be a center for sex trafficking. It's worth being informed, and there are probably local shelters where you can volunteer or lend your support.

5. Your words matter. A new language is emerging that more accurately and sensitively reflects the realities of sex trafficking and prostitution. For example, popular culture has rendered the word "pimp" almost cool and, therefore, useless. Activists recommend it be replaced with the word "trafficker," and similarly, a person who is a "John" is better described as "a man who buys sex from young girls." Anyone forced into prostitution or exploited by traffickers is a victim or survivor.

6. Exploitation, not violent coercion or physical movement across borders, is the common factor between all cases of sex trafficking.This is according to an eye-opening report by Dr. Raymond and Dr. Hughes. Exploitation, and therefore sex trafficking, comes in many forms: subjection to physical coercion, harassment, or threats; an addiction to drugs; an inability to speak the local language; economic necessity; etc. Since prostitution is inherently exploitative, it is intricately linked to trafficking. According to the report, "trafficking should not be separated from prostitution. Anti-trafficking policies and programs must address organized prostitution and domestic trafficking. Most trafficking is for prostitution, and operates within the context of domestic sex industries."

7. Every child involved in the sex trade is a victim. Under the Trafficking Victims Protection Act of 2000, any child selling sex in the United States is, by definition, a victim of human trafficking. However, according to the Department of Justice, 1,600 children were arrested for prostitution and commercialized vice in 2006.

Revitalizing our fight against sex trafficking will take changes in funding, laws, and enforcement, but it will also require society to take a fresh and thorough look at what the problem is and who it is hurting.

If you'd like to help combat sex trafficking within the United States and support the crime's victims, please sign the Care2 petition.

Read more: slavery, human rights, sex trafficking, human trafficking, sex trade

Tuesday, September 7, 2010

In Response to Hawking: "The fool has said in his heart, "There is no God" (Psalm 14:1; 53:1)

You may have heard talk of Hawking's new book, 'The Grand Design', wherein he concludes that the Christian God or even the idea of a Supreme Being is unnecessary. In researching my response to this, I came across some sources I'd like to direct you to. The first of which is an article written by an author I was unable to trace. 

Stephen Hawking, the famed British theoretical physicist and cosmologist from the University of Cambridge, is considered to be a very bright person. If that's the case, why would Hawking make the terrible error of seeking to explain away the existence of God? Hawking apparently forgot that believing in God is an act of faith. In fact, not believing in God is also an act of faith.

In his new book The Grand Design, Hawking is said to have established an idea called "m-theory," which basically explains that the universe sprang from nothing. That's a very neat place to start if one wants to say God doesn't exist. This blogger doesn't believe it.

There's no reason to write a long tomb of an explanation for something I figured out at 15 years old, while arguing Evolution versus Creation with my good, long time friend Craig Pryor during our time at Bret Harte Junior High in Oakland. That is, what you believe is what you chose to believe, and over time, you shape your intellect to fit your belief system.

Stephen Hawking apparently forgot that, because The Grand Design does not lay out, in detail, what his psychological reasons are for what he choses to believe and how those reasons evolved over his life.

Indeed, one paragraph does give an indication of something I suspected when this news of Hawking's claim was first brought to my attention: that Stephen Hawking has a God Complex. Hawking writes:

"Thus our presence selects out from this vast array only those universes that are compatible with our existence. Although we are puny and insignificant on the scale of the cosmos, this makes us in a sense the lords of creation."

See? In other words, it's vitally important to Hawking that we have some kind of look of a God. Being God is not a role I prize one bit. To have faith that I'm the center of all things is narcissistic. I believe in God.

I chose to believe in God and that rather than nothing, it was God who created the universe. What's nothing for Hawking is God for me.

There's nothing to argue about.


*** I believe in God and in the existence of The Devil. In fact, that Hawking forgets or perhaps elects to avoid any mention of The Devil indicates that The Grand Design just may be the work of The Devil.

I chose to have faith in God. God Bless you, Stephen Hawking. ~ Author Unknown


In response to Hawking's atheism, it would be a good idea for people to reference Ravi Zacharias. Zacharias has written several books over the years that address this very issue and is a skilled "defender of the faith".

Consider his work 'The Grand Weaver'.

I'd also like to encourage you to read 'The End of Reason' by Ravi Zacharias. It was written a few years ago in response to another atheistic book and would work as an efficient and effective rebuttal to Hawking's book as well.

The following are Parts 1 through 5 of a speech given by Zacharias on the issue of Atheism. Here him out. Listen.

One man recently told me, " Why should it matter so much what other people think, (no matter who they are) if you believe, then you believe, if you don't, then you don't. To me it seems pretty simple."

"For God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in Him should not perish, but have everlasting life. For God sent not his Son into the world to condemn the world; but that the world through Him might be saved. He that believeth on Him is not condemned: but he that believeth not is condemned already, because he hath not believed in the name of the only begotten Son of God (Our Lord Jesus Christ). And this is the condemnation, that light is come into the world, and men loved darkness rather than light, because their deeds were evil. For every one that doeth evil hateth the light, neither cometh to the light, lest his deeds should be reproved. But he that doeth truth cometh to the light, that his deeds may be made manifest, that they are wrought in God." St. John 3:16-21, Ref. St. John 14:6

You decide. Is it that simple? Does it matter?

Monday, September 6, 2010

Dear Josh,

Hello. I saw your story on 48 hours while home recuperating from a battle with breast cancer. I am a US federal government contractor and currently live in Kuwait. I am always seeking good Christian forces for inspiration and light for my own battle but also help my friends and loved ones carry on in their daily lives as well. I guess knowing you are given a short time to live, if they can not control this monster within me, gives me notice that life is precious and too short for petty details.

I saw your story and I wanted to tell you that your strength, determination and solid commitment to be a better person even when people were persecuting you, well...its life changing. Your story gave me strength and hope that bad things can turn into blessings. I know God has a purpose for everything and I know there is a reason I am sick right now. Maybe it is to give others encouragement and show them how to be strong. I don't know but when I saw your story, I had to see if you were on Facebook and send you this message.

You inspired a soul half a globe away to keep the faith and have hope. I wanted to thank you and send you my sincerest wishes of joy and a heart felt thank you. I would be honored to call you a friend if you need one.

Take care and God Bless ♥
Kristy C Franco

Saturday, September 4, 2010

Breaking News!!!!!!!!! by Kevin Bloom

Breaking News!!!!!!!!! Sarah Palin sneezed today. We'll update this story as more information becomes available.

This just in!!!!!!!!! Our sources can confirm that Sarah Palin may have actually sneezed just after referring to members of the media as limp and impotent. There are other unconfirmed reports that Mrs. Palin may have not used a tissue, even when allegedly being offered what some say was actually a tissue during what has been reported as the second sneeze in what can only be described as a series of sneezes.

Meanwhile, in unrelated news, innocent people are in prison and a 7.0 magnitude earthquake has rocked Christchurch, New Zealand. Stay tuned for further updates.

Friday, September 3, 2010

Proverbs 22:29, When a Man's Ways Please the Lord

"Do you see a man skilled in his work? He will serve before kings; he will not serve before obscure men."

A friend of mine and I were discussing this verse yesterday.

We had flown out to Beverly Hills L.A. to meet with some business associates and developing friends, which in itself was an adventure I find... indescribable...wonderful and difficult to put into words, and were now mid-flight in Phoenix on our way back to St.Louis.

(If my associate and developing friend out of Beverly Hills [George] wasn't the private man that I believe he is, I'd tell you more of that meeting. More than likely, over time, you'll know more anyway. God's opening doors I could never open on my own.) But...

Here's the reason for our discussion...

On the flight from L.A. to Phoenix, I found myself sitting next to and building a working/Christian relationship with a man I had never meet in my life. We hadn't even bothered to talk throughout the duration of the flight. In fact, it wasn't until the closing moments of the flight that we made our introductions. I was on my way home. He was flying to Phoenix to meet a friend and client of his to attend the Arizona Cardinal / Washington Redskin NFL pre-season game. His friend? Kurt Warner.After we discussed my story and he found out that I had grown up a life long Chicago Bears, Cubs and Bulls fan, I found out I was sitting next to Michael Jordan's financial agent and the Chairman and Founder of the Celebrity Fight Night Foundation.

We exchanged information and discussed some issues. After our plane landed and right before we parted, he took me to the side and prayed over me and encouraged me in Christ.

I was overwhelmed. How could I not be? I couldn't hold back my tears. How could I? God has been so good to me. I could say that without blinking when I was still incarcerated. Now I'm free, justified, justified in Christ, financially stable, drawing interest from a powerful and generous man in Beverly Hills and ..... it seems like its never gonna stop. Amazing! My life, to date, has resembled a magic carpet ride.

I don't know where my path leads. George and I are building a relationship and I'm learning the business in the process. This other gentleman could also help. Don't know. Only God knows. The things is...I trust God. In the end, whether this new fellow or George or another 5 to 10 men come and go with contacts and offers, my heart and faith remain in Christ. In that way, I have long stood and kneel'd before The King and my success has long been established.

Long before my life became amazing in the recent developments, it was as amazing as amazing can be in God's grace and forever will be.

God's hand has been present...without question.

"For by grace are ye saved through faith; and that not of yourselves: it is the gift of God: not of works, lest any man should boast. For we are his workmanship, created in Christ Jesus unto good works, which God hath before ordained that we should walk in them." Ephesians 2:8-10

"When a man's ways please the Lord..." Proverbs 16:7

Mom, Wrongly Convicted Man Join Forces in Justice Campaign by Kathy Sweeney, KFVS 12

To watch the televised version of this story, click the following link.


JACKSON, MO (KFVS) - With her son Jonathon's name hanging on the wall over her shoulder, Tracy McClard works out of the office she created in his old bedroom.

Two and a half years after the 17-year-old took his own life behind bars, McClard's creating a new statewide campaign to keep teens out of adult prisons.

She shows me the group logo, FORJ.

"What you see is Families and Friends Organizing for Reform of Juvenile Justice. But personally, for me, it's for Jon," McClard explained.

The longtime teacher resigned last spring to dedicate herself full time to the effort.

"I feel like Missouri has a pretty good juvenile justice system already, but there's kids like Jonathon that slip through the cracks and we end up losing them," she explained. "And so, I really think that I need a statewide campaign to educate the general public on what exactly happens to kids."

As she reached out to other parents of incarcerated teens, McClard decided to send an email to a man who lived that experience--Josh Kezer.

"I knew that he would understand what it was like to be in that situation where you have no control whatsoever over what's going to happen to you," McClard said. "Your family has no control."

"Our kids, I know it sounds cliche, but they're our future," Kezer said during a phone interview on Tuesday from Columbia. "So, why not want to help them? And when Tracy brought this to me, you know, I want to get involved."

"Naturally, whenever someone calls me regarding an issue, regarding children, and the need to reach out to them and have an effect on their lives, I am always willing to listen," Kezer continued. "But, when Tracy made her issue clear to me, it caused me to listen a little bit closer because we're talking about children still that, it's a section of our children that is often forgotten about and cast to the side because they're kids that for whatever reason have gone south. They've done something that they should not have and we then stop placing value on them."

A year and a half after being released from prison for a crime he didn't commit, Kezer says he's still getting used to balancing his new freedom with a newfound responsibility to help others. But, he says, it would be a waste not to help, especially with children in need.

"Why can't our schools try to work with one another, with the teachers, with the parents, with the local churches to give more guidance to our kids rather than you know just waiting for them to explode and then send them to prison and throw them away like trash?" Kezer asked. "I think our children deserve more than that from us."

"I think that we can start right now by educating our kids about the dangers of criminality. We can start right now by educating our kids about the benefits of living a law-abiding life, about the benefits of being compassionate and patient. We can start teaching our kids about wisdom," Kezer said.

Both Kezer and McClard accept and embrace the public attention that comes with their experiences in the system, good and bad. Back at her office, McClard realizes adding Kezer to the campaign adds not only a new perspective, but a new avenue to reach more people.

"Putting both of our names together brings the media in, gets our message out," McClard said. "And the wider our message is, the more people we can reach, the better off we are."

Kezer will join McClard at the official kick off of FORJ Tuesday, September 21 at Centenary Methodist Church in Cape Girardeau.

McClard and Kezer will field questions, along with Scott County Sheriff Rick Walter and a St. Louis father whose son also died behind bars. More information on the campaign can be found at

Kezer says he also welcomes invitations from local schools to speak to young people about making the right decisions and staying on the right path. Kezer can be reached at

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