To borrow a quote from James A. Baldwin:
I love America more than any other country in the world, and, exactly for this reason, I insist on the right to criticize her perpetually. I think all theories are suspect, that the finest principles may have to be modified, or may even be pulverized by the demands of life, and that one must find, therefore, one‘s own moral center and move through the world hoping that this center will guide one aright. I consider that I have many responsibilities, but none greater than this: to last, as Hemingway says, and get my work done.
I want to be an honest man and a good writer. (James A. Baldwin)1
In that same spirit I love the Church. Not that I wish to criticize her, but instead encourage her through love back to the true mission for which Jesus left for her. To encourage her to consider even her finest actions may have to be changed, or even dismissed so she can again find her true direction and commission fulfilling it and bringing hope to a dying world. I consider that I have many responsibilities, but none greater than this: to last, to encourage the Church to finish her work. I want to be the Church’s greatest encouragement and defender of the faith.
I do not take issue with those that oppose what I write and create as I have, as carefully as I know how, written exactly what I believe Jesus has given me to write. It is not me but Jesus that they criticize, and most likely they have issue with the Bible itself. It is only to Jesus that I must answer for what I have written here.
When I write, I do so simply for my own pure joy and reflection to discover Jesus more intimately. He is my constant companion as I journal how I can apply His truths. I am privileged to have the creator of the universe and His intimacy as we work together day by day. If you should want to include yourself when the text refers to the reader, feel free. However, these treasures are written only for myself, family, and those that want to read along. I am content in that. I write to know Jesus better and discover His plan for my life which is worth every second.
Let the words of my mouth and the meditation of my heart
be acceptable in your sight,
O Lord, my rock and my redeemer. (Psalms 19:14)
I love what Theodore Roosevelt said to the critic:
It is not the critic who counts; not the man who points out how the strong man stumbles, or where the doer of deeds could have done them better. The credit belongs to the man who is actually in the arena, whose face is marred by dust and sweat and blood; who strives valiantly; who errs, who comes short again and again, because there is no effort without error and shortcoming; but who does actually strive to do the deeds; who knows great enthusiasms, the great devotions; who spends himself in a worthy cause; who at the best knows in the end the triumph of high achievement, and who at the worst, if he fails, at least fails while daring greatly, so that his place shall never be with those cold and timid souls who neither know victory nor defeat.
I count it a plus that I am able to post this resource for those who find it valuable. I am not a grammarian or an English major, so there will be grammatical errors. I do have those who donate their proofreading expertise. I welcome your help in that area if you wish to donate it.
However, if you have an unfavorable opinion concerning the content I write please move on and disregard these works as a bump in your road.
Explanation Of Spelling
Last, throughout this book I have purposely not capitalized the name of satan. I understand that it is a name and in the English language the rules say to capitalize all names. I do not consider satan to be worthy of a capitalization and choose to break the grammar rule in order to not capitalize the enemy of which he is.
- James Balwin, Notes of a Native Son (Boston: Beacon Press, 1955), 9. ↩