27 January 2009

Why Doesn't Jimmy Just Be Quiet?

Since when does having once been elected President of the United States , make you Ambassador to the world on my behalf? And since when does one minor victory in bringing peace between two nations (that ended in the assassination of one of the two national leaders for his efforts) make you the foremost world-expert on diplomacy?

Hey, don't get me wrong, I like Jimmy Carter. As a person; in spite of the fact that he supports same sex unions, and that Stephen Hess said that "He's a person who has stuck his thumb in the eye of every president who has followed him." To serve this country's best interest, he would do well to go to his Presidential Library every day, and leave international politics to those who are duly appointed. That's why we have a President, and a Cabinet. He had a cabinet too, and no one messed in his foreign policy issues. It's time he show the same respect to our sitting President, regardless of who that may be.

Here's the trouble though; Jimmy Carter and President Obama have a lot in common in their foreign policy views. Matter of fact, had it not been for the "you scratch my back, I'll scratch yours" deal he owed to Hilary Clinton for her rousing endorsement of him after she fell short of collecting enough Electoral College votes, I think we'd see Jimmy Carter as Secretary of State today. You think Jimmy Carter was bad for this country when he was President? Just think of what he could do to this country as the 'yes man' to a leftist, socialist sitting President.

Why doesn't Jimmy Carter just be quiet? Short answer: PRIDE.

Once you are famous, or at least relevant to world politics, or even just just pop-culture, it's hard to step out of the spotlight. If former President Carter doesn't get this pride thing under control, he'll soon end up looking like Joan Rivers (who now looks more like Steven Tyler of Aerosmith than herself), and have as much public appeal as Rossan Barr. The bummer part is that because of his post-Presidential antics, Jimmy Carter will not only be remembered as perhaps the worst President of modern times, but his legacy will be more often compared to Rosy O'Donnell rather than Henry Kissinger. That's not a legacy that most people want to have. At least the sane ones.

International politics are a touchy issue. If our foreign relations policy is not set up to protect this nation, and our ability to defend and maintain our Judeo-Christian ethics infused politics, than we just need to lie down like a dog, and let the world come pick our fleas. Because if the likes of our President and his new unofficial side-kick former President Carter have their way, the United States we will be just about as useful as that worn down flea-bitten hereto aforementioned dog to the rest of the world, and to God as a nation.

A friend of mine from Texas (had to throw that in there as a caveat), has a business friend and partner from England/Britain/UK whatever we call them today. Sometimes in business things go awry. Whenever that happens and this partner from England gets his collective crumpets in a bunge, my Texas friend is always quick to remind him, "Hey, we kicked yer [rear-end] once, and we bailed you out twice. Show me a little respect!" And while those words may not be the best used lines of diplomacy ever, they are none the less, true.

Call it arrogance, call it (oops) pride, but the world owes the US a few favors. We are not the kind of nation that will walk about with our Nukes in the suitcase asking to call in those favors, but it would be nice if the thanks that so many nations were quick to give us after WWII, were still there today. If they were, perhaps we could get Jimmy Carter to mind his own business, and let those in charge, like it or not, go about theirs.


Psalm 63:3

Because Your lovingkindness is better than life, My lips shall praise You.

It is love that separates us from the world, and identifies us with Christ
I’m recovering from the post “I spent more than 5 hours in an airplane” cold. You know, the one you get after breathing 250 other people’s recycled air. But in any case, as I get back into the swing of my weekly routine, I felt the need for some spiritual encouragement this morning, and went immediately to the Psalms.

There, while reading, I came across this verse, and I immediately began to sing. You see, this verse in Psalm 63 is a line from a worship son called Kindness by Chris Tomlin. I recognized this right away, and just broke into song (probably good that you all weren’t here with me!).

Then I began to ponder the reality of that verse and just openly meditate on it out-loud:
Lord, I love my life. My life allows me to know things, and grow, and serve and to love my wife and family, to be someone that can think, act, make decisions. My life, if lived as you have lead me, can influence other people and bring them alongside you as well. My life is important to me for many reasons. I freely admit that some of them are self serving, but I try desperately to live my life in such a way that the things that I love do not become more important than the things that YOU love. My life is what makes me a child of God. My life is mine to…..

…And then it hit me…

My life isn’t mine at all. It’s Christ’s who not only created it, but bought it and redeemed it with a price. It is THAT that makes His lovingkindness so important, better than life actually.

His love really is what sustains us. No matter what we do, where we are in life or in our walk, His love is the sustaining factor of our lives. Without it, we falter and fail. Love is the key to Christianity. Love drove Jesus to voluntarily give up His life for the likes of you an me. Love drives us today, compelled by the Spirit, to do what is right, rather than what is wrong. It is love that separates us from the world, and identifies us with Christ. Who IS love, and the total picture of God Himself. Love IS better than life, because love gives life. And the love we have from Jesus allows us to gives that life to others as well.