Halfway through June already. Time is flying by, and I have little to show for it.
Might be a bumpy few days (like we really needed that). Dear Wife was feeling ill most of yesterday, meaning illness in addition to her "normal" conditions. And was up in the night several times. There's no "M.D." after my name, or hers, but our guess is that she's into yet another sinus infection. She's prone to them, gets one or two every year. Complicating that is that, as previously noted, our Primary Care doctor, a truly great one, suddenly pulled out of the practice as of last Friday. We have an appointment set with what we hope will be a new one for us, but that's nearly three weeks away. Making it even worse, is that under the terms of our current insurance plan, we're not covered for a visit to one of these "urgent care", A.K.A. "doc in a box" offices that were invented to address situations like this, (or so we were once told). Not covered at all. The alternative is to head over to the Emergency Room, which they will -- partially -- cover. So a visit that previously had $0 co-pay, trends into a $200 out-of-pocket (or so) and then meds on top of that. Ain't life grand??
So she's still in bed, running a fever, we're hoping that her "normally" over-active immune system might work in her favor, for once.
This is our life these days.
The Old Testament passage is chapters 9 and 10 of the book of Ezra.
The project of returning the people from captivity, rebuilding the Temple in Jerusalem, restarting the system of worship and life ordained by the Lord, and dealing with all the "stuff" continues. Not without some bumps in the road. Not only had the culture degenerated terribly before the Captivity, but some of those bad things were transported into the Captivity and metastasized there. Nor had things necessarily gotten better during the return. And the rot extends through all levels of the nation. Sound familiar? It should.
And another note, one that will give some people hives. Let us take up the nearly radioactive term "discrimination". We are regularly and loudly commanded to eschew any form of "discrimination". Well, personally, when it's time to eat, I "discriminate" against cow plop, preferring a hamburger instead. Strictly speaking, that is discrimination, drawing a distinction and valuing one class of that as more worthy than another.
I have, in the course of a life that's had many twists and turns and worse, had dealings with some people that a better man, or perhaps one in a better line of work, would never have met. I didn't share the activities or attitudes or lifestyles, but I did and still do know some people who slid into elements of it. Druggies, prostitutes, contract killers, swindlers, pimps, power-brokers, "cut-outs" for corrupt public officials, heavy drinkers, adulterers, and a lot else. After a while, it becomes VERY tempting to say, "that's not so bad" or to be tempted to "try it, you'll like it". Getting chummy with evil is tempting and dangerous and all too many fall into that. Wiser to avoid it. And, yes, you'll be at risk for people accusing you of being "judgmental", with the ever-popular use of the most commonly misused verse in all the Bible.
The Lord himself, in His Law given to Moses and the people, had some VERY specific commandments against being joined to the people in the area surrounding -- and then residing in -- the Promised Land. Do not marry them, do not serve their gods, do not adopt their culture, be separate from them. Laws broken almost immediately, and the tendency increased throughout. With the predictable result that they became very much like the people in the region. Which is NOT what the Lord had commanded. That gives some people the hives even today.
For our New Testament reading today, a change of gears. We've spent the last 5-1/2 months in the Gospels. Now Jesus is going to the Father (for a while) and now His disciples, empowered (soon) by the Holy Spirit, are commissioned to preach the Good News and to make disciples. Those marching orders have not changed, we have inherited them, which is quite an honor and quite a responsibility. He provides the power, then and now, if we will but allow Him.
So, we take up the Acts of the Apostles, chapter 1.