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Once forgiven, I can still remember my sins — but God cannot!

There are several passages in the Bible that shows how deeply God’s mercy goes. Here at two:

Isaiah 43:25 says, “I, even I, am he who blots out your transgressions, for my own sake, and remembers your sins no more.”  Hebrews 10:17–18 says,  ‘Their sins and lawless acts I will remember no more.’ And where these have been forgiven, sacrifice for sin is no longer necessary.”

Obviously, God is all-knowing.

However, He chooses to not just forgive, but to forget our transgressions.

 

James DobkowskiJames Henry is the author of Corporation YOU: A Business Plan for the Soul, ‘Twas, and the new book series Hail Mary. To contact James or book an interview, please contact Mark of Goldman/McCormick PR at (516) 639-0988 or Mark@goldmanmccormick.com.

 

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Source: Pixabay.com | bingngu93

 

The story of Charlie Gard held the Western world captive for several weeks this summer.  Even the Pope got involved.

The Twittersphere appeared to explode with hashtags and opinions – especially after it was revealed that the infant was baptized before he died.  One Tweet stuck with me:  It was from a gentleman who questioned how a merciful God would allow such suffering – especially when it’s congenital.

That can be a valid argument for many.

Often, Believers lose Faith because of the suffering of a Loved One – especially when it’s a child or a grandchild.  So, it is not a surprise when a non-believer confirms his or her disbelief through the use of tragedy.

God did in fact co-create this infant, did He not?   

He is also the creator of all things – including miracles, isn’t He? 

 So, why didN’T God save baby Charlie?

“Many men,” St. John Chrysostom explained, “when they see those who are pleasing to God suffering anything terrible, as, for instance, having fallen into sickness, or poverty and any other like, are offended, not knowing that to those especially dear to God it belongs to endure these things; since Lazarus also was one of the friends of Christ, and was sick.”

It’s difficult to understand that the suffering we endure is not a punishment from God.  It is sometimes a sign of Love.

In times like these, I am reminded The Modern Parable of the Pious Precant. (If you heard it, skip the paragraphs below in italics.)

A man of God took to prayer when he heard a weather report of an oncoming storm with flood warnings.  “God save and protect me,” he prayed.  I have nothing to fear.”  

Moments later, the Sheriff came and asked him to evacuate, but he stayed put. 

“I’m a God fearing man,” he told the Sheriff.  “I’ve prayed for God to save and protect me.  I have nothing to fear.”  So, the Sheriff left to save others.

Soon the storm came and the floodwaters rose.  So, the man moved to the second floor of his home and continued to pray.  Soon, there was a knock on his window and he opened it only to find a rescue boat.  He was ordered to get it the boat and evacuate, but he stayed put.  

“I’ve prayed for God to save and protect me.  I have nothing to fear.”   So, the boat left to save others.

The floodwaters continued to rise.  So, the man moved to the roof of his home and continued to pray  Soon, a helicopter hovered over his home.  A lifeline was dropped from the helicopter and he was ordered to grab the rope so he could be airlifted to safety.  Again, he stayed put.   

“I’ve prayed for God to save and protect me.  I have nothing to fear.”  So, the helicopter left to save others.

The floodwaters, however, continued to rise and the pious man continued to pray as treaded water.  Eventually, this faithful individual could no longer keep his head above water and drowned.

In Heaven, he met his Creator and quickly questioned Him.

“Lord God, I dedicated my life to you.  Why did You not answer any of my prayers?”

“I did answered them, My child,” Lord God replied. “First, I sent you a Sheriff, then a lifeboat, then a helicopter.”

The world had a potential cure for Charlie’s disease.  However, he was denied access to this cure because of the cost.   So, donations flowed forward.  However, Charlie was still denied access because the cure was experimental and in America.   So, the U.S. Congress granted Charlie American residency.  However, Charlie was denied access to travel.

He died July 28, a week before his first birthday, after a judge ordered he be taken off a ventilator.

It appears to me God continued to answer the prayers for Charlie Gard.  Like the Pious Precant, the world response was sanctimonious, self-righteous, and pompous.  In other words, it was pious.

So then, if God didn’t kill Charlie Gard, then who did?

The answer is clear:  Charlie Gard was killed by the same people whose actions led Christ to the Cross and drove the nails into His hands and feet.

 

It was you and me.

 

 

James DobkowskiJames Henry is the author of Corporation YOU: A Business Plan for the Soul, ‘Twas, and the new book series Hail Mary. For six years, James taught At-Risk kids in Los Angeles. Today, he lives in New York where he continues to write — and teach. To contact James or book an interview, please contact Mark of Goldman & McCormick PR at (516) 639-0988 or Mark@goldmanmccormick.com.

 

To learn more about Charlie Gard and TK2 go to:

Charlie’s instagram page
Charlie’s army Fb page
www.Charliesfight.org

Some people think that just because I’m an inspirational author and a Christian, I have it all together  Well, I don’t.

I have a problem. I suffer from “Krazy Imperfect Dad Syndrome”.

Recently, I lost it.

I wasn’t not proud of it. Frustration got the best of me — and, I unloaded on someone.

Afterwards, my pastor took me to the side and told me that he believes I have anger issues.

I have issues — but anger is not one of them.  I just have “K.I.D.S.”

(Oh, I forgot to mention that this incident happened at church — not during.  I can keep my K.I.D.S. under control during Church.)

So, what happened? It doesn’t matter. If you have K.I.D.S., you know what I mean.

To the person who had to bear the brunt of my frustration, I’m sorry — but my K.I.D.S. makes me over-protective.   Suffering from embarrassment every now-and-then because I’m protective of my K.I.D.S. is something I’ve just learned to live with.

Maybe you’re not buying any of this.

What can I say?  But, you probably don’t know anything about having K.I.D.S.

 

James DobkowskiJames Henry is the author of Corporation YOU: A Business Plan for the Soul, ‘Twas, and the new book series Hail Mary. For six years, James taught At-Risk kids in Los Angeles. Today, he lives in New York where he continues to write.  To contact James or book an interview, please contact Mark of Goldman & McCormick PR at (516) 639-0988 or Mark@goldmanmccormick.com.

Photo: Pixabay.com

“Wow, you are Blessed.  You are truly Blessed.”

I’m sure you’ve heard that say or have stated it yourself.

Personally, I’ve described my life as being “Blessed.”  And often, when I take account of my life — my wife, my children; my job — I truly feel “Blessed” … but am I?

The Gospels are pretty clear on what it is to be “Blessed”. The text of St. Matthew runs as follows:

Blessed are the poor in spirit: for theirs is the kingdom of heaven.
Blessed are the meek: for they shall possess the land.
Blessed are they who mourn: for they shall be comforted.
Blessed are they that hunger and thirst after justice: for they shall have their fill.
Blessed are the merciful: for they shall obtain mercy.
Blessed are the clean of heart: for they shall see God.
Blessed are the peacemakers: for they shall be called the children of God.
Blessed are they that suffer persecution for justice’ sake, for theirs is the kingdom of heaven.

So, do you still believe that you’re “Blessed”?

 

James DobkowskiJames Henry is the author of Corporation YOU: A Business Plan for the Soul, ‘Twas, and the new book series Hail Mary. To contact James or book an interview, please contact Mark of Goldman/McCormick PR at (516) 639-0988 or Mark@goldmanmccormick.com.

Photo: Samir | Preemptive Love

When ISIS came for his grandmother, 10-year-old Samir stood between her and the militants. This is his heroic story.

Learn more go to: http://preemptivelove.org/seebeyond

Wikipedia defines Crowdfunding as the practice of funding a project or venture by raising monetary contributions from a large number of people. Crowdfunding is a form of crowdsourcing and of alternative finance. The USCCB calls for the New Evangelization, a ‘re-proposing’ of the Gospel in a special way.

Combine these two trends with a bit of apostolic succession and a pinch of infallibility and you have Crowdfunding for Christ or simply Missio.

Launched by Pope Francis, Missio offers you a direct connection with his Missions and with those helping our mission family. Missio is an opportunity to choose how to put your faith into action, and a way to answer the call to each one of us who are baptized to be missionaries ourselves, through prayer and sacrifice, in word and deed.

Missio offers you a place to encounter the Missions whenever and wherever you are.

Every project on Missio is led by a change-maker half a world away. These change-makers, many of them religious Sisters and priests, offer help to the most vulnerable communities of our world. They provide essential education and health care, social outreach and advocacy, and pastoral service. In every moment, they also offer spiritual comfort to the suffering and marginalized.

Join the world’s change-makers.

 


Download the app on iTunes: http://bit.ly/MissioiTunes
Download the app on GooglePlay: http://bit.ly/MissioGoogle

 

James DobkowskiJames Henry is the author of Corporation YOU: A Business Plan for the Soul, ‘Twas, and the new book series Hail Mary. To contact James or book an interview, please contact Mark of Goldmanand McCormick PR at (516) 639-0988 or Mark@goldmanmccormick.com.

 

Full disclosure: I’m a Nikola Tesla nut!

So, when I heard that there was a musical about Nikola Tesla, I quickly added the play’s performance to my bucket list.

Source: Facebook | Design by Lauren Machlica

However, with two young kids, getting out to see anything is never a sure thing. And with family hundreds of miles away, my wife and I have to pick and choose our date nights carefully.

As fate would have it, my mother-in-law decided to visit last minute, so I quickly bought two tickets to a recently added Saturday matinee and scheduled a date – with my wife, of course.

The play was hyped as Hamilton meets Tesla.

So, I mentally prepared to be disappointed, but still hoped to be entertained.

Thankfully, Nikolas Tesla Drop The Beat was not only entertaining; it also did not disappoint!

For starters, I didn’t expect to see Hamilton in any shape or form. Nor did I expect to see something ready for Broadway. I expected to see a play in its infancy – and that’s what I saw.

I very much liked Act I, especially the Westinghouse Open Mike Night with its elements of beatnik trope.   I found the Marie Curie presence at the cafe and characterization both creative and hilarious.

However, I felt short-changed after Curie sat down.

I expected at least two other iconic historical figures to follow the Nobel Prize winning Polish scientist — say Darwin, Einstein or even Joseph Gayetty, the inventor of toilet paper — to keep the comedy going.

The Second Act was a downer, however, it didn’t let me down.

I was well aware what was to going to happen to Tesla, historically.  However, I could see how those not so familiar with the fall of the Serbian immigrant inventor would find Act II a bit drab.

If I could give one suggestion to the playwrights, it would be to watch the 2006 film The Prestige.

It’s a story about two 19th-Century magicians locked in a bitter battle of supremacy, much like the Tesla-Edison rivalry depicted in The Beat. In fact, Nikola Tesla, played by Rock-legend David Bowie, has a small, but integral role in movie’s storyline.

In The Prestige, Tesla inventions more than just props. They were an important part of Tesla’s character.

Still to this day, these radical inventions give Tesla his true essence and only add to the mystic qualities that defined the man.

Nikola Tesla reading in his laboratory in Colorado Springs circa 1900. Wikimedia commons

I kept envisioning The Beat’s Tesla, played masterfully by Issac Powell, surrounded by life-size coils and their colorful corona discharges. I kept imagining how captivating Powell’s already powerful portrayal of Tesla would be if he was surrounded by wireless lightning and 10-foot streamer arcs of electricity.

I also wanted to see more Edison, played by the extremely talented Jon-Michael Reese.

Though the Act II romance between Tesla and Kat Johnson, played by Kaylen West, was well done, I would’ve enjoyed seeing more Reese, more of the War of the Currents in Act II — and much less Marconi and Pupin. (It ain’t personal).

Source: Facebook | “War of the Currents” — at Adirondack Theatre Festival.

Edison was never soundly defeated by Tesla, as the closing scene in Act I seems to suggest.   So, highlighting the bitter rivalry more in the second half might make The Beat more palatable to those in the audience members who were not Telsa Geeks, like me.

Edison’s consolidation of power and his purchasing of Tesla’s patents would, in turn, become  The Beat’s historic fatal shot.

And though I’m still on the fence with the play’s custom design, I have to give kudos to the casting. Issac Powell, Jon-Michael Reese and Jared Loftin were artful and entertaining.

Issac Powell as Tesla | Source: Facebook

I especially enjoyed Powell’s vocals and seamless breakout performance, Loftin’s comic timing, and Reese’s Cabaret-style portrayal of Thomas Edisonwhich, for me, seemed more like an homage to the great Ben Vereen than a tribute to the Wizard of Menlo Park.

I’ll be the first to admit, being old school, the casting of a female as J.P. Morgan, at first, irked me some. However, Brook Wood changed all that for me the moment she took to the stage. Her performance was, without a doubt, the high note of the Second Act!

And, though I am aware that Nikola Tesla spent his remaining years penniless feeding – and reportedly communicating with – pigeons in the park, the last number What My Wings Are For may have lost most people.   A simple tweak is all that’s needed here.

So, like I said, I expected to see a play in its infancy. That’s what I saw – and with that I expect to see Nikola Tesla Drops The Beat grow and mature over time, if given the chance.

Nikola Tesla maybe died underappreciated, but he never stopped inventing.

Likewise, playwrights Nikko Benson and Ben Halstead need to keep moving this play forward. Given the means, they, along with Director Marshall Pailet, could turn this low-budget production into a Tony Award winner.

Hopefully, much like J.P. Morgan did so long ago, someone will have to take a risk and invest in this Tesla. If that happens, Nikola Tesla Drops The Beat will certainly make it to Broadway and Light It Up!

 

 

James DobkowskiJames Henry is the author of Corporation YOU: A Business Plan for the Soul, ‘Twas, and the new book series Hail Mary. His play Faith Ties, which he co-created and directed, is presently in development to be a motion picture. For six years, James also taught At-Risk kids in Los Angeles. Today, he lives in New York where he continues to write — and teach. To contact James or book an interview, please contact Mark of Goldman & McCormick PR at (516) 639-0988 or Mark@goldmanmccormick.com.

 

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