Raoul’s 2 Cents:
Turn It On!
[This article is a little religious so skip to the jokes if it makes you nervous please.]
Some look at the world today and it can be really doom and gloom. It’s COVID, it’s politics, it’s the environment. I was just on a zoom session with some friends in the Philippines where COVID is still spreading unabated. However, instead of sadness, they were laughing and joking around and sharing experiences from their corner of Manila.
“How can you be so happy?” I asked.
They looked at each other and then one of them said, “what else can we do?”
It’s the old wisdom from the pub: “In heaven there is no beer, that’s why we drink it here,” right? Indeed, what else can they do? I love their positive attitude and I’d probably do the same thing if I were there: Do what you can and just wait. But if you had the power to correct the troubles of this dark dark world, where would you start?
According to the action-packed book of Mark, Jesus waited to start His mission when he was already a grown man and one of Jesus’ first call to order was removing a demon from a man inside the synagogue. Why? I imagine Jesus looking at a scene from a horror movie. The world from His spiritual glasses was dark, misty, gloomy, and sickeningly polluted. He needed to start cleaning up the mess and he started where the pollution was oozing out. Ironically, it was coming from the synagogue, the Jewish house of worship. Instead of a factory of beautiful angels, it was churning evil. It was so bad that a demon had no qualms about being in there. It’s possible he was the priest in charge. In fact, the demon-possessed man said: “Hey, I know you! You’re Jesus, the son of God! What brings you to my place of business? Wanna buy a watch, Joe?”
“Whatever!” — Zap!! And the demon screams out of the man.
The zombie onlookers go: “What’s the buzz man? Is this a new teaching? Was that in the program?”
The cleanup campaign had begun. And it was one synagogue after another. The city was lighting up. Crowds followed Jesus with curiosity and left with new hope. How cool was that? And this all happened in Chapter 1 of the gospel of Mark.
Two words caught my attention — “demon-possessed.” How do you tell if someone is demon-possessed? I’m thinking of some politicians and tycoons who seem to fit the description. I did a little research and Jeremy Myers (I don’t know who is) made a lot of sense in his article: What are the signs of Demonic Possession?
“There is no sure and certain list by which to determine if someone is possessed by a demon, nor is there a step-by-step guide to follow if we think someone is possessed … instead of worrying about a demon behind every corner … we should be filling our minds on Christ … look for signs of God at work in the lives of others.” And he ends with this: “Look for glimpses of glory shining through. Look for evidence of grace, mercy, and hope. Look for healing, redemption, and forgiveness. As we look for these signs in the lives of others, we will inspire them to live in these ways, and in so doing, expand the rule and reign of God on earth.”
Sure, it’s a broken world we live in but living in fear and desperation is exactly what the devil wants. Let there be joy. Let there be hope … a real hope founded in the light of the Gospel.
Let’s get out our cell phones and turn on that light. All together now! “This little light of mine … I’m gonna let it shine. Let it shine. Let it shine. Oh, (praise God!) let it shine.”
Of course, this is just me … hope you agree.
Joke of the Week
Remember my college buddy Rodney from Alexandria, VA? I mentioned him last week. Here’s one of the jokes we always laughed at.
Delightful Video of the Week
Thanks to Naomi of North Hollywood. This may be the solution to all our problems.
Thanks to Debbie of Moreno Valley, CA
Thanks to Mel of Washington, DC
Thanks to Jeff of Pasadena, CA.
Thanks to Peter Paul of South Pasadena, CA