For to me to live is Christ, and to die is gain. But if I live in the flesh, this is the fruit of my labour: yet what I shall choose I wot not. For I am in a strait betwixt two, having a desire to depart, and to be with Christ; which is far better: Nevertheless to abide in the flesh is more needful for you. (Php 1:21-24)
I don’t know if you have a good grip on this truth, that you are not permanent…here. You are permanent but not here. You will never cease to be alive throughout eternity. But here, on this launching pad we were never meant to be for long. I realize I’m a party pooper but we need to live every day with eternity in view. God made us with an innate determination to get the next breath and to preserve our lives on earth if possible. Self-preservation is built into God’s creatures. You can’t step on a house fly on the floor. It’s hard to smack a mosquito to his death. It’s hard to catch a lizard. Everything is geared toward prolonging earthly life. Where does everything go to school to learn that?
Job, the writer of the oldest book in the Bible, said: Man that is born of a woman is of few days, and full of trouble. He cometh forth like a flower, and is cut down: he fleeth also as a shadow, and continueth not. (Job 14:1-2) These are the words of a seasoned, older man. A young man would not be saying these things.
As we consider Paul’s words: “to die is gain,” he was not an old man but he was an experienced man. He had seen the best and worst of the Jewish system of religion. He had seen the best and worst of the Roman Empire. He condenses his earthly life:
Of the Jews five times received I forty stripes save one. Thrice was I beaten with rods, once was I stoned, thrice I suffered shipwreck, a night and a day I have been in the deep; In journeyings often, in perils of waters, in perils of robbers, in perils by mine own countrymen, in perils by the heathen, in perils in the city, in perils in the wilderness, in perils in the sea, in perils among false brethren; In weariness and painfulness, in watchings often, in hunger and thirst, in fastings often, in cold and nakedness. Beside those things that are without, that which cometh upon me daily, the care of all the churches. (2Co 11:24-28)
We now see how Paul might have thought Heaven was better than what he had experienced. We do not want to discourage young people who are full of zeal and hope of thrills with few chills and spills. They do not need someone to tell them things may get bad or sad. They will learn that soon enough. What is needed now is to turn all eyes heavenward and learn how to hope in God. Why art thou cast down, O my soul? and why art thou disquieted within me? hope thou in God: for I shall yet praise him, who is the health of my countenance, and my God. (Psa 42:11)
There comes a day when smart and seasoned Christians can sing joyfully: “My home is up yonder, where I’m going. Savior, gently take me home”. Recently, at church, a lady shared with us how her daddy, when he lay dying, was able to see the flowers and smell them. Such beautiful flowers that smelled so sweet and wonderful. There are thousands of stories told to the family gathered around a saint at home-going time. Many stories! They could see Jesus and family members who were there to greet them.
Thank God for the good times on earth when you have been blessed. But, dear friend, please realize that it’s not all here in this place. It is said so well in the song: “This world is not my home, I’m just a passing through. My treasures are laid up somewhere beyond the blue. The angels beckon me from Heaven’s open door and I can’t feel at home in the world anymore.” I hope you like the song: Steal Away, by the male quartet at Calvary Memorial Church in Southern Pines, NC. Ω
READ THROUGH THE BIBLE IN A YEAR
FEBRUARY 28, 2017 – TUESDAY (Double reading for today. Covering a 29th day.)
A.M. Numbers 21-25 P.M. Mark 7:14-8:21
(Bible Gateway will read this to you if you like. Look for the speaker icon.)
MEMORY VERSE THIS MONTH:
My people are destroyed for lack of knowledge: because thou hast rejected knowledge, I will also reject thee, that thou shalt be no priest to me: seeing thou hast forgotten the law of thy God, I will also forget thy children. As they were increased, so they sinned against me: therefore will I change their glory into shame. (Hos 4:6-7)
SONG FOR TODAY:
Male Quartet: Steal Away Home (Calvary Mem.So.Pines,NC)
Vitamin C (Ascorbic Acid) – Famous for sneezes and sniffles but underused. (There’s no way to shorten this to two paragraphs.) We take a 1,000-mg capsule of Vitamin C every morning, along with our other whatever. That’s a base minimum. Dogs and other animals produce Vitamin C. We humans don’t. Vitamin makers make and package man-made single-name vitamins. But, God rarely makes a single vitamin by itself. It always comes with one or more 1st cousins. For example, the Vitamin C in oranges comes with bio-flavonoids and this makes it more powerful than plain Ascorbic Acid. Natural Vitamin C can be reduced or destroyed with heat. Ascorbic Acid can be boiled and it’s still Ascorbic Acid.
For 40 years, I’ve kept a container of Vitamin C on hand, waiting for Flu season. If sneezing or raspy throat comes on, I start upping the C to 2,000 mg (two capsules) on the hour with an 8oz glass of water. When a virus attack is in full swing, the body will deplete its store of Vitamin C in a hurry until there is none left in the body. Instead of taking something for a runny nose, just lob in the C. Within an hour, you will notice that the runny nose stops running.
If the 2,000 mg per hour is continued for 3-4 hours, it will begin to produce gas. When it reaches what is called: “bowel tolerance” (loosening of ΩVitamin C will not cure the common cold but it may lessen its severity and length. For me, it does so regularly. It’s more effective if you get on top of it at the first sign of viral infection. If you wait until you can hardly walk, you won’t be helped as well. It is an acid: Ascorbic Acid.
There is a bulk powder in a canister commonly sold that is not acid, but alkaline. You can take a lot more of that without so much bowel disturbance. I don’t know which is most effective. If I need more C, I dig into the alkaline C powder and stir it in juice or water. Each body is different in how much is needed and how effective C may be. I experiment a bit to see how much I need and how bad the infection is.
Beyond the highest dose by mouth is the practice of a few doctors of injecting Vitamin C into the blood stream. Some have given as much as 50,000 mg to flood the body. That is strictly a doctor’s decision and not for laymen to consider. Most doctors will not do that because they have no training in it and do not want the liability. Some really bad stuff has been pushed back with the high doses of C as an IV.
During the days of sailing vessels for commerce and war, the sailors got scurvy, lost their teeth, and bled to death because their blood vessels would break down and let them hemorrhage to death. British sailors are called “Limeys” because they found out that a few barrels of limes on board would prevent the dreaded scurvy. Vitamin C is essential to keep strong blood vessels. Old people are famous for collapsed blood vessels so that the nurse can’t find an artery to inject a needle. Some of it is from a deficiency of Vitamin C. You can read further by asking Dr. Google. Ω