“If men set a small goal each day to do something for themselves, it can make a big difference in helping to relieve the stress in their lives,”
-Dr. C. Claiborne.
THEN & NOW
Thoughts from Associate Pastor Doug Harris
As I look back on my 78 years and try to put the state of our nation in perspective, I am reminded of Ecclesiastes 1:9b, which reads… and there is no new thing under the sun. Even the latest developments about our president, COVID, police brutality, racism, and injustice are not new. I remember an hour-long weekday bus commute I shared with a co-worker between NYC and Princeton, NJ in the early ‘70s. We’d discuss (and often argue) the unfolding Nixon probe all the way home. Every day there was something new to talk about, and be amazed at, much as it is today. In my late 20s at the time, I wondered how this could happen in our country and whether we’d survive a scandal of such magnitude. Of course we did, and now I take comfort in knowing we can do it again. The United States, the Constitution and our institutions survive. We are a resilient nation. We bounced back from the Great Depression of the 1930s as well as the War of 1812; the Civil War; World Wars I and II; plus entanglements in Korea, Vietnam, Iraq and Afghanistan—not to mention 9/11.
However, I continue to have grave concern about the direction and division this nation is experiencing in regard to healthcare, race relations, criminal justice, our economy, and care for those at the bottom of the economic ladder who face the brunt of the fallout from COVID. A couple of decades ago, we enjoyed the world’s highest standard of living. I question whether we can continue to think so highly of ourselves when we fall short of other developed nations in so many areas. How can we continue to be the greatest nation on earth when smaller, poorer nations have responded to COVID with greater efficacy?
America’s role on the world stage is in decline. We are no longer seen as powerful, wealthy, or the world’s moral compass. How can we lead while falling behind? Democracy, freedom, justice, equality, protection for the weak, and care for those in need were once the definition of American way. We need to redeem, restore and reinvigorate our nation’s reputation.
I am reminded of Martin Luther King’s quote: “The arc of the moral universe is long, but it bends towards justice.” In my mind, this translates as “in the end it’s going to be all right.” The Bible says something similar in Romans 8:28 , “…we know that all things work together for good to them that love God, to them who are the called according to his purpose.” Therefore, I am hopeful and believe this nation will bounce back stronger and a little wiser if we choose to align with His purpose. God IS in control. But we must do our part be being obedient, wise and exercising our right to VOTE!
10 HEALTH TIPS for MEN
Get regular checkups – even if you feel okay! Schedule an appointment with your doctor when something doesn’t seem right. Know your family history – and share it with your doctor.
Ask your doctor about cancer screenings--NOW!
Get some exercise. Maintain a healthy waist.
Eat healthy foods.
Take your vitamins.
Give yourself permission to take a break.
Break unhealthy habits.
- Check your head: Mental Health