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And miles to go before we sleep

Robert Frosts 1922 poem, Stopping by Woods on a Snowy Evening, does not identify the speaker, nor does it tell us of the pull of responsibilities yet to be satisfied before resting for the night. However, it is clear that those promises are important enough to keep the traveler moving in spite of the temptation to remain a while and rest.

The woods are lovely, dark, and deep, But I have promises to keep, And miles to go before I sleep, And miles to go before I sleep.
What are our responsibilities? What talents have we been given (according to our abilities) and what interest are we prepared to return to the Master before it is time for us to rest? Consider the following, not as a report card, but as a wake-up call theres a lot of work yet to do

According to the Center for Disease Control, over 9% of those 12 years and over are using illicit drugs. The National Center on Addiction and Substance Abuse at Columbia University states the following: Half of college students binge drink and/or use other drugs and almost a quarter meet medical criteria for addiction. 1 in 4 Americans will have an alcohol or other drug problem at some point in their lives. 40.3 million people (16%) in the U.S. 12 and over meet the medical criteria for addiction -- more than the share of the population with cancer, diabetes or heart disease.

Nearly 1 in 5 births to teen mothers, ages 15 to 19, are repeat births and about 183 repeat teen births occur in the US every day.

The Guttmacher Institute (http://www.guttmacher.org) reports that the United States has the highest levels of teen pregnancy among developed nations and that approximately 75 percent of teenagers have had intercourse by the time they are 20. The report adds that only 15 percent remain virgins until the age of 21. The Institute also reports that, Teens in the US are more likely to have sex before the age of 15, and to have more than one partner in a year, than teenagers in Sweden, France, Canada and the United Kingdom. The divorce rate among Christians and non-Christians (Protestant or Catholic) is statically the same.

Atheist or agnostic 30% All born again Christians 32% Protestant 34% Catholic 28%

Regular church attendance in the US has remained around 40-45% for the last 20 years. However, according to a Pew survey, the fastest growing religious group in America is made up of people with no religion at all. In other words, the number of people affiliated with Christian religions continues to drop while those with no religious affiliation are on the rise. When asked if they believe in God, over 90% of Americans respond positively. However, when pressed, approximately 20% of those express some level of doubt.
Yeshua said that when the Son of Man comes in His glory, He shall say: Come, you whom my Father has blessed, take your inheritance, the Kingdom prepared for you from the founding of the world. For I was hungry and you gave me food, I was thirsty and you gave me something to drink, I was a stranger and you made me your guest, I needed clothes and you provided them, I was sick and you took care of me, I was in prison and you visited me. Then the people who have done what God wants will reply:

Lord, when did we see you hungry and feed you, or thirsty and give you something to drink? When did we see you a stranger and make you our guest, or needing clothes and provide them? When did we see you sick or in prison, and visit you? The King will say to them: Yes! I tell you that whenever you did these things for one of the least important of these brothers of mine, you did them for me! The world is in trouble! Our country is in trouble! Our families are in trouble! Are we using the talents the Lord gave us to feed the hungry, to give drink to the thirsty, clothes to the naked and aid to the sick? Are we visiting those in prison? Perhaps we are as best we can. However, Yeshua was not simply talking about food, water and clothes. He wasnt only talking about brick and mortar prisons. He was talking about the Bread of Life and Living Water. He want us to help clothe people in the Armor of God and to visit those help captive by the bondage of sin. Are we doing that as well? Are we casting the beam out of our own eyes so we can see clearly to cast the mote [speck] out of our brother and sister's eye? If so, why does the Christian world look so much like the outside world? Let clean up our own houses, drive the money changers out of God house, and stand strong for the Lord. Lets do away with disagreements and discord within the Body of Yeshua, and set our minds and hearts on doing the will of God until the day of His return.
Your servant,

Pastor Ron
Let your attitude toward one another be governed by your being in union with the Messiah Yeshua. ~ Philippians 2:5 (CJB)