Thought For The Day 09/05/13

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One Tin Soldier

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From the equality of rights springs identity of our highest interests; you cannot subvert your neighbor’s rights without striking a dangerous blow at your own.

Carl Schurz

http://www.brainyquote.com/quotes/keywords/neighbor.html

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I was on my way to court yesterday, when a song came on the 60’s radio station in my car. It was a song that I will always connect with a small-budget anti-war movie that I have loved since I first saw it on television in the early 70’s. Now “Billy Jack” was a product of the turbulent Viet Nam war era, but no matter which side of the fence you sat on during this period in our history, the visceral draw of this movie remained palpable proof that none of us has ever really wanted conflict or war as part of our lives! And yet, it remains. War is an almost a constant presence of our world.

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Now fast forward 45 years from the unrest of the 60’s and 70’s to 2013. Yes, the Viet Nam war era has passed, but since then, we have dedicated military forces in Iraq, Nicaragua, Libya, Bosnia, Afghanistan, and a host of other countries. And why? Well, like it or not, Satan has always had and will continue to have, his own plans for the fracturing of humanity. So, he plants the seeds of unrest and greed and other vast temptations that our weak spirit is drawn to, and dangles them alluringly in front of our noses. And yes, God sits polar opposite, and offers us the promises of life, love and salvation, if we but allow Him to enter our hearts. He knows what our choice will be and yet, He does not force His will upon us. Think about this verse from Revelation 3:20 ESV, “Behold, I stand at the door and knock. If anyone hears my voice and opens the door, I will come in to him and eat with him, and he with me.” You see, He wants us to weigh both sides and then willing choose which one we will follow. Unfortunately, we do not always choose what God hopes we will! And unless we can move beyond our baser wants, and rise above our sinful natures, I have no doubt that it will be we who will be the cause of the annihilation of humanity.

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It is this fear that brings me back to the song that I heard on the radio. And the moment I heard it, I knew that perhaps it’s time we force ourselves to question whether we can solve our problems by the sword. Remember Jesus words from Matthew 26:52 NIV, “Put your sword back in its place,” Jesus said to him, “for all who draw the sword will die by the sword.” Yes, we fight and battle and kill to obtain the treasure that we believe lies within the grasp of others whose ideologies differ from our own. But I suspect that what we will find the moment we finally reach the perceived prize, if it even exists, will be a mirror that forces us to see within ourselves. And I doubt we will like the image that we find reflected back into our eyes.

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We are our own worst enemy and the healing, if it is to ever take place, does not begin with the many. It must begin with the one! It begins with each of us crying out that we will not allow our differences and misplaced ambitions to define us. It cries out that we will not live and die by the sword. Instead, it must be the voice of one that starts the cry, until it becomes billions, united, shouting out the words “…and on earth peace…” Luke 2:14 ESV.

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“One Tin Soldier”

written by:

Dennis Lambert and Brian Potter

first recorded in 1969 by:

The Original Caste

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Listen children to a story
That was written long ago
Bout a kingdom, on a mountain
And the valley folk below
On the mountain was a treasure
Buried deep beneath a stone
And the valley people swore
They’d have it for their very own

Go ahead and hate your neighbor
Go ahead and cheat a friend
Do it in the name of Heaven
You can justify it in the end
There won’t be any trumpets blowing
Come the judgement day
On the bloody morning after who…
One tin soldier rides away

So the people of the valley
Sent a message up the hill
Asking for the buried treasure
Tons of gold for which they’d kill
Came an answer from the kingdom
With our brothers we will share
All the secrets of our mountain
And all the riches buried there

Now the valley cried in anger
Mount your horses
Draw your sword
And they killed the mountain people
So they won their just reward
Now they stood beside the treasure
On the mountain dark and red
Turn the stone and which beneath it
Peace on Earth
Was all it said

Go ahead and hate your neighbor
Go ahead and cheat a friend
Do it in the name of Heaven
You can justify it in the end
There won’t be any trumpets blowing
Come the judgement day
On the bloody morning after who…
One tin soldier rides away

Go ahead and hate your neighbor
Go ahead and cheat a friend
Do it in the name of Heaven
You can justify it in the end
There won’t be any trumpets blowing
Come the judgement day
On the bloody morning after who…
One tin soldier rides away

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To view the YouTube video of this original recording, click the embed arrow below.

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Owe no one anything, except to love each other, for the one who loves another has fulfilled the law. For the commandments, “You shall not commit adultery, You shall not murder, You shall not steal, You shall not covet,” and any other commandment, are summed up in this word: “You shall love your neighbor as yourself.” Love does no wrong to a neighbor; therefore love is the fulfilling of the law.

Romans 13:8-10 ESV

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Copyright © 2011-2013 “MandysPath” Ministry

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About Mandy Bruscella

Mandy's Story: As a Registered Professional Nurse with Certification in a number of specialties including home care, I was afforded the opportunity of working closely with various Social Service Agencies in NY and NJ. ~ A lifelong Christian, I was ordained as a Presbyterian deacon in 1993 and, after relocating to SC in 2000, elected to become ordained as a non-denominational minister. ~ I established "MandysPath" Ministry in 2011. "MandysPath" Ministry is a member of Pacific Life Church, El Sobrante, CA, network of ministries. ~ I direct an outreach ministry in an alternative setting, providing spiritual care to a congregation of more than 500 people from around the world via the Internet. ~ As part of this outreach, I write a daily faith based blog. In March, 2012 I was asked to become a board member of Heroes For Children which is a non-profit foundation, established to assists the Guardian ad Litem program of Horry County, SC. Guardians ad Litem are a group of court appointed advocates who represent the best interests of children in Family Court proceedings involving allegations of abuse or neglect. Working closely with these men and women who make a difference in the lives of children, I completed training and have been sworn in to serve as a Guardian ad Litem for the state of South Carolina . ~ I have been married since 1975 to a wonderful man, Daniel. I have a son Daniel and his wife Melissa who live in NYC. My daughter Sabrina and my grandson Landon live here in SC. ~ My father Harold continues to share his wisdom with me and is responsible for many of the ideas I write about!

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