Wednesday, December 16, 2015

Wheaton College Professor Supports Muslims

(Please note that while this isn't a positive news piece, I felt compelled to highlight this Professor's bold and compassionate actions. I felt we should be supportive of her.)


     Today in New York Times an article about a professor at Wheaton appeared: "Wheaton College Professor Is Put on Leave After Remarks Supporting Muslims" (Wheaton-college-professor-larycia-hawkins-muslim-scarf).  Larycia Hawkins has been suspended because she decide to put a Hijab on in support of Muslim women during Advent. Saying that we serve the same God. The College took offense and now she's suspended for an indefinite period of time.  Wheaton College felt she muddied the waters of the differences between Christianity and the Islamic Faith. They couldn't perceive the virtuous action she did by putting a hijab on to symbolize sympathy for Muslim Women who have to be very courageous in this Anti-Islamic atmosphere to wear a hijab in public. She stood out by simply being kind. Now her actions are top news across the land- good for her.
 As to their accusations- yes I can understand that the God of Christianity and the God of Islam as portrayed in the individual religions is different (Are-followers-of-Judaism-Christianity-and-Islam-praying-to-the-same-God) yet historically (and they ought to know this) He is actually the same God. In the Old Testament He is the God of Abraham and therefore the God of all his descendants. The Middle East is populated by the descendants of Abraham, of Ishmael and Isaac. They technically are under the same one God. Now each version of how each God operates, or His personality is different. Kinda like if there were two children in a marriage and they both have one Dad, but they view him in two totally different ways. Well that doesn't mean there are two dads, just different viewpoints. When we stop belittling others view point towards our "Dad" and accept that we may see things differently (let God be the final judge, not us). Be accepting, be loving, be aware of the differences, but drop the attitude- for it is all possible for us to be wrong. God blesses humility. I do believe in Jesus redemptive power. Yet I also believe God favors the Jews (sorry Biblical- not "fair"), but I also note that God saved Hagar and Ishmael from death in the desert- he shows compassion on what would become many nations of Arabs today- why? God does not forget. Why was He merciful & loving and let them live? What could it be God has plans to reach them also? Let us not be prideful and think God only thinks on us and let us wait and see what He has in store for other nations and people. Please PRAY for the Islamic nation. 


I know this isn't positive News, but I felt I needed to keep track of a rebuttal I made today to someone on Facebook who made a blanket statement about "Those Muslims". I thought I nailed it and wanted to set it down elsewhere for future reference: " And this is where we as Americans get into trouble by lumping Muslims as a group to be feared- a small percentage of radical extremists are to be feared. Muslims as a group constitutes 1/5 of the world's population and the religion is the second most popular in the world. So in essence you are telling me to fear and hate 1/5th of the world!!!! Muslims are a group of people of many different sects and nationalities. YOU need to smarten up and know what you are talking about. I would love to have many Muslim friends and I do online in many countries for a few years- they are kind, polite nice people. Strangely also like any other people- go figure! You confuse a small group of terrorists with all Muslims and this is Americans problem- you incite fear out of ignorance! And that attitude can cause war!"


Sunday, December 13, 2015

Keeping Good Thoughts


                POSITIVE THOUGHTS

     I've been remiss the last year in my posts, thinking that the coming New Year would be a good time to update this blog- perhaps not everyday, but more often I want to visit this blog and share positive inspiration.


      It's a daily struggle in a difficult world to continually think on good thoughts. One gets torn to "know" the daily events of this world (and a certain feeling that you are responsible to do so). Yet with shootings, war, and horrible events that continually happen it's kinda hard to focus on the tragedies of this world.  I find I have repeatedly opted out and given myself a mental break from news- whether it's the paper or the TV (which we unconnected 8 yrs. ago). And the world hasn't come to an end because I'm not aware of it. 

Yet I do find ways to cheat- to keep a general hand on the general nature of events and as a former International Studies Major I am tempted to delve in more- but for me it is an emotional struggle.  I eternalize all these tragedies and make them my own. I talk with someone and I'm wanting to say- aren't you aware there are suffering people?  And sometimes I get a bit of an attitude thinking- how can they be so blithe and think only, their next meal, what they're going to buy, a holiday??? It's beyond me actually.  

Image result for positive thoughts images

     Anyway always striving for a balance I found getting email updates from The New York Times was a quick (unemotional update). But becoming a hermit Monk is always a temptation. I'm always asking: does my internal struggle over the pain of this world help anyone? So the former History Teacher in me tries to keep up- but more and more I retreat into peace. One day I'll find that balance- to know, yet not continually grieve.                                                      

     So the other side of the coin is focusing on the positive. Knowing there are plenty of Happy situations out there- they just don't feed the media frenzy or the constant thirst among the population to "Know" all the (bad) things going on.

So here's some sites that can reinforce your daily struggle to think positive and upbeat thoughts vs. having a cloud over you (I'll update and expand the list over time).