SSB Sunday Gathering – November 9, 2014

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Spiritual Sounding Board – This is your place to gather and share in an open format.

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But thanks be to God, who always leads us in triumph in Christ,

and manifests through us the sweet aroma of the knowledge of Him in every place.  

For we are a fragrance of Christ to God among those who are being saved and among those who are perishing;  

to the one an aroma from death to death,

to the other an aroma from life to life.

And who is adequate for these things?

For we are not like many, peddling the word of God,

but as from sincerity, but as from God,

we speak in Christ in the sight of God. 

2 Corinthians 2:14-17

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Feel free to join the discussion.
You can share your church struggles and concerns.
Let’s also use it as a time to encourage one another spiritually.
What have you found spiritually encouraging lately?
Do you have any special Bible verses to share, any YouTube songs that you have found uplifting?

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photo credit:  changing leaves from JA’s yard 

65 comments on “SSB Sunday Gathering – November 9, 2014

  1. Thanks for this. I had a tough week. My supervisor shamed and scolded me. And guess what- I’m a volunteer. I’m still hurt and confused. This is soothing! Ann

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  2. Boy, Ann, that’s tough. That would make me want to respond, “Did you forget that I’m not getting paid for this?” Actually, shaming and scolding has no place in a paid job, either. I hope you are able to get this situation worked out. Praying for you! I’m glad you found the post soothing.

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  3. Ann- Your supervisor sounds like a jerk. Hope this doesn’t come across preachy, but keep your eyes on your glory, you are made in His image, and you are the beloved. That said, I know how hard it is for me to remember that when I am hurt & confused. Praying for you today.

    “If we can share our story with someone who responds with empathy and understanding, shame can’t survive.”
    ― Brené Brown,

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  4. Ann, I’m so sorry to hear that you were treated disrespectfully. Always remember that you are a valuable, precious woman who is deserving of the respect and kindness of others. When I am in a situation like that, I am always torn between just letting it go or standing up for myself. I’m not very good at confrontation and generally avoid it. I’m also afraid of responding with emotion rather than firmness. Unfortunately, our silence is often taken as acceptance by those who are abusive. I’ll be praying for you. If you feel led to say something, I pray that you have the strength to let your boss know that how he/she treated you was inappropriate, and the wisdom to say the right words.

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  5. Ann, These are the situations I would have a hard time with. Growing up as a union electrician, I learned how not to take any crap from anyone. I applaud you as you have the ability to be able to not quit on the spot. I have learned through being mistreated to take my eyes off from the jerks and micromanages of the world and focus my eyes and thoughts to Jesus Christ. In this case, just bask in the arms of Jesus, but I would remind her/him that what you are doing is unto the Lord (even if the job you are doing is a secular job) and really would like to be treated with a little more respect.
    Jim

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  6. It’s getting crazy scary around here in St. Louis. The latest news here is that if the Grand Jury doesn’t indict Darrin Wilson, the white Ferguson cop who shot and killed teen Michael Brown, when they reach their decision this month, the protesters will go on a rampage in several predominately white neighborhoods and set homes on fire and go on a killing spree. My daughter, at that time, plans to take my grandkids to the home of their other grandparents out in a rural area about an hour away from here. Both my daughter and son-in-law are armed and ready if the rioters head this way. Please pray for God’s intervention and safety for all of us in this area.

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  7. Waitingforthetrumpet, you cannot seriously believe that people are planning a killing and arson spree in white neighborhoods. When has that ever happened?

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  8. I’m serious. They’ve recruited the Black Panthers, hired activists from New York down to California and Al Sharpton has been here throughout this ordeal ever since the first protest erupted shortly after the shooting. It was on the news and is spreading on facebook.

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  9. Marsha, there was actually a random violence spree here last year. It was random on purpose: to instill fear. Attack families in parks, etc. Several people were hospitalized as it was quite serious. One was an older man out at a walking park with his grandkids. It was nothing but a hate spree. No one was caught. They wore hoodies and were non descript. It was played down by the media and police because of bad publicity. In fact, they made a big deal of putting more police out so that people would go to those places again. They very much feared where it would lead if they allowed the story to go viral so it was played down and the “race” factor was totally ignored. Again on purpose. But it is considered politically incorrect to mention it now. So no one does. Even the African American leaders who were furious over the lack of police investigation and media accountability were silenced.

    Al Sharpton and others like him are no different from the right wing evangelical charlatans taking many for a ride for their own benefit.

    Liked by 1 person

  10. Marsha is correct in noting that most of the time we’ve seen riots by African-Americans–Watts, Detroit, Rodney King riots, and the like–they are rioting in their own neighborhoods. Sometimes (King riots targeting Korean shopkeepers, Crown Heights targeting Jews) non-African-Americans are targeted, but as far as I can tell, rioters are generally soiling their own nest, so to speak.

    So it would make some perverse sort of sense that those wanting to make a point might soil somebody else’s nest for once. Except for the fact that the perpetrators would be (a) once again hurting the innocent to punish those perceived to be guilty (just a different group of innocents I guess), (b) telling every employer (like Emerson Electric) that they’d better get the **** out of Ferguson before more things are destroyed and employees are hurt, and (c) kicking of a possible race war against a more numerous and generally better armed opponent.

    In other words, if they want to turn Ferguson into a more screwed up Gary in a heartbeat, they can go ahead. I am hoping and praying that Waiting’s sources are suffering from paranoia for obvious reasons, and I’d guess waiting is as well.

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  11. They’ve gone beyond Ferguson during these protests. Ferguson is in north county. They have been spreading all the way to the city, west and south counties 25-30 miles away from the Ferguson area. Rioters were shooting in south city, mid-town and protesters were right here in my area in south county, and schools closed out of fear recently. It’s crazy. Now they’re planning on sending more civil rights public figures over here and even Harry Belafonte who is now a civil rights biggy. The activist group, Anonymous, is spearheading another group from Washington DC to send over here.

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  12. I don’t see anything wrong with peaceful social protest. I think that there is a great deal of racism in this society. It is naive to think that African Americans only think that there is racism because they are stirred up by Al Sharpton or Harry Belafonte.

    The militarization of the police is an alarming trend in this society. Thanks to cell phones and surveillance tapes, we now see police beating and sometimes killing unarmed unresisting citizens and lying about it in reports. Young black men, the mentally ill, the deaf, people having seizures, people with involuntary movements and cerebral palsy are especially vulnerable.

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  13. I’m also from, and still live in, the St. Louis area, and the entire Ferguson dilemma has just saddened and frustrated me on all sides. I’m certain the majority of Ferguson residents just simply want to live in peace and be able to live a normal life, but there are agitators and opportunists there making things worse.

    Marsha’s point about the militarization of the police is also a good point.

    I just don’t know what to think about it anymore…

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  14. I am an advocate for people with a particular neurodegenerative disorder. I do not know one family who hasn’t had at least one family member harassed and/or falsely arrested for being ‘intoxicated.’ And then because their processing is slow, they are often treated roughly for perceived noncompliance. One poor young girl was harassed by an officer who failed to recognize her symptoms as disease related and not intoxication even though her late father who had the same disease was the former police chief.

    There is an over reaction by police officers who try to get immediate control of a situation instead of trying to figure out what is going on and de-escalating. If someone has a weapon that is different of course but if someone is just standing there looking confused and trying to get their words out, why knock them to the ground?

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  15. My concern is for the innocent bystanders who are stuck in the middle of this. My mother lives a mere 2 blocks away from the riot that took place on West Florissant back in August. She’s terrified. My grandchildren are having nightmares and my grandson who has Aspergers cries himself to sleep because of this. One protester this morning threw a full bottle of beer at a motorcyclist, hitting him and causing a crash. Protesters marched down to south county wreaking havoc just last month. I don’t like the militarization either. I also don’t like the lawlessness and thuggary. There are over 3 million residents in the metro area, and most of us are worried.

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  16. Nothing wrong with peaceful protest at all, but there’s now a list of demands being written up by the Ferguson protesters that include being allowed to throw water bottles at police officers without being arrested. So suffice it to say that things are already in the “decidedly not peaceful” realm.

    To draw a picture, let’s hope and pray that Belafonte, Glover, and others involved emulate Dr. King and not Rev. Sharpton.

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  17. A big problem is a shift in philosophy from community policing to the ‘broken windows’ philosophy. With community policing, the same officers work a particular beat, get to know the people. They don’t arrest for minor things like noise violations or verbal arguments (Hey guys, let’s keep it down, break it up, etc.). They are trusted and residents will come to them about serious crime they see going on. This model works well when done right. I know because I saw the data when it was being tracked in our community.

    Thst has changed. I was dismayed when a group of elderly black men (in their 80s) were arrested for illegal gambling. They were playing for pennies on a picnic table outside their apartment complex!!! Of course wealthier white men play poker for higher stakes all the time without being arrested but they have air conditioning and larger living spaces and play inside.

    In the days of community policing those elderly men would have sat outside, kept an eye on things, and helped the police reduce real crime.

    Liked by 1 person

  18. The change in policing is driven by money, not data on effectiveness. With budget crunches, police departments are making up the difference in citations and fines. Poorer communities are targeted disproportionately since they have less political power. Often they cannot pay the fines immediately, and a relatively small fine compounds quickly to a level they cannot ever pay and they wind up in jail. I read that this has been happening in Ferguson.

    My mother died three years ago at 86, but shortly before that she was teaching quilting to ladies at an inner city senior center. One day when she was leaving, she was pulled over and given the first traffic ticket of her life, for going 29 in a 25 mile zone. She could afford to pay the hefty fine but that same fine would have been devastating to one of the ladies at the center.

    Of course I do not condone rioting, but when it gets to the point where it happens, it usually means that problems have gone unaddressed for a long time.

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  19. How many St. Louisans must be hurt or killed before the violence is deemed wrong? How many must live in fear before it’s considered fair?

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  20. Marsha, as a soft libertarian, I share your concerns about the militarization of police, racism, and the like, but there is a relevant question here; why would one respond to injustice by trashing their own neighborhood? It is as if Tevye and his friends were to respond to the Cossacks by staging a second pogrom through their own shtetl.

    (or the Heugenots, or the Scots Protestants under Bloody Mary, or the Nonconformists under the English, any number of nationalities under the USSR, and the like?)

    Really, it’s not as if we’ve got to look very far to find examples of populations that have been oppressed in some pretty significant ways, and I submit that they in general do not do this. The million (trillion) dollar question is why.

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  21. That’s so not true. Many of us do. Many of us, myself included, feed and clothe those in need. I’ve even given my bed to someone who slept on her floor, cooked meals for several who were hungry, plus gave clothes to a homeless man who wandered our streets. And I’m not the only one.

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  22. Bubba, it’s more than just their own neighborhood that they’re trashing. They’re spread out over the entire 65 mile radius of St. Louis, from north county to south county, and from the downtown area to west county and Chesterfield areas. Many of them are also armed with weapons of various kinds including guns, bricks, bottles, knives, lead pipes, etc. And the majority of them are not even from this state. Many are from NY, TX, CA and elsewhere, so that they can join in the “fun”.

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  23. I did not think for a minute that you didn’t care about the poor and I am not surprised that you are helping. But unfortunately, those in power in this country do not care and are deliberately trying to pit the middle class against the poor, blacks against whites, native born against immigrants, etc.

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  24. I can see disagreeing with the methods used to try and help poor communities deal with violence, but when we take a look at the resources committed in terms of men, material, and such, I can’t accuse politicians of not caring.

    I won’t even accuse that of civil rights leaders, even though some of those 19 demands some of them made could make a confrontation infinitely more dangerous.

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  25. the problem cannot be solved because just like a class war it is about a race war. and who benefits from a class or race war? those who are perpetuating a class or race war.

    our country has elected a black president twice. we have had a black Attorney General for 6 years. My police chief is black as is my current wonderful boss. I am Not sure what is left because the opportunities sure are out there. there was not a medium or large company that I worked with in training that did not have some sort of a diversity officer.

    Yet we are considered racist by the left if we are white unless we say the politically correct things. . I realize how unpopular it is to say these things but they need to be said. Poor Dr King has been all but forgotten. he wanted it to be about the content of our character and not the color of our skin. there is a lot of power and money and class warfare and race war.

    there is a bright spot in all of this and the radio the last couple of days has been filled with black voices saying the left has taken them for granted. personally I think it is discrimination of low expectations for a whole group of people who should be valued more highly.

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  26. The interests of the poor and the middle class are pretty much the same. It is the power elite who wants us fighting. Same with race.

    Just because people of all races and ethnic backgrounds succeed at the highest levels does not mean that racism doesn’t persist. Same with class.

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  27. in the last 6 years food stamp recipients in my city have gone up by 40%. we are losing our middle class quickly. I want everyone in this country who is poor to take advantage of the opportunities like to grants and diversity initiatives and affirmative action and all the programs that go into helping them get out of poverty. our police force is begging blacks to apply. and we have a black police chief. Do not assume that people commenting here have not lived in poverty at some point in their lives and are well aware of what it is like,

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  28. racism will always exist in some people’s hearts. we can legislate equal opportunity but we cannot legislate equal outcomes no matter how hard we try.

    personally I do not believe in races. we are all members of the human race and created in the image of God.

    Liked by 1 person

  29. One comment about “broken windows”; it wasn’t the only thing going on in New York City, but it is worth noting that as Rudy Giuliani implemented that and other initiatives there, the murder rate dropped from 1600 per year to less than 500 per year. Fewer people are murdered in NYC than in Chicago, which is less than half the size. Chicago is, thankfully, implementing a few of NYC’s initiatives, and minorities are the ones most helped.

    Put differently, do you really want a bunch of people in your neighborhood who see nothing wrong with breaking the windows you bought with your own money? Are we truly unaware of the fact that when people see a mess, they are less likely to treat that neighborhood with respect?

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  30. There is a difference between arresting the person who deliberately broke someone’s window which I support, and 1) arresting the child playing ball who did it accidentally (in my day, kids paid for this by earning money through raking leaves etc.) or 2) issuing a citation to the neighbor who has a broken window (a squirrel broke ours) and has taped it up while saving up for a repair because money is tight.

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  31. Marsha, I’d agree with you, and I would suspect that Rudy Giuliani would, too. The point of “broken windows” is that the community learns not to tolerate the little crimes, not that it punishes every accident as a crime.

    Tough squirrel! :^)

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  32. BB, he did it more than once! We finally solved the problem by opening the curtains, setting a bench in front of the window, and putting the cat on the bench. We told her to watch for squirrels and she did so diligently.

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  33. I don’t trust the Gateway Pundit. He links to the Justice for Mike Brown Facebook group but I reviewed post after post and I am not seeing the content he is writing about.

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  34. WFTT- I have been praying for you & your family since you asked. Of course, I am praying for peace in Ferguson & St. Lewis area… I would be frightened if I lived in your neck of the woods. It looks like a lot of bad actors who don’t live in the area are stirring the pot. Keep us posted about the safety of you & your family members. I sure the networks will be all over this if all hell breaks out.

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  35. Marsha,

    Glad you are praying Marsha, it is very serious situation. Here is (in part) of the article from link.

    “The FBI bulletin expresses concern only over those who would exploit peaceful protests, not the masses of demonstrators who will want to legitimately, lawfully and collectively express their views on the grand jury’s decision.

    The bulletin “stresses the importance of remaining aware of the protections afforded to all U.S. persons exercising their First Amendment rights of freedom of speech and freedom of assembly.”

    Within hours of the FBI issuing its bulletin, some police departments across the country issued their own internal memos urging officers to review procedures and protocols for responding to mass demonstrations.

    Still, the bulletin’s conclusions were blunt: “The FBI assesses those infiltrating and exploiting otherwise legitimate public demonstrations with the intent to incite and engage in violence could be armed with bladed weapons or firearms, equipped with tactical gear/gas masks, or bulletproof vests to mitigate law enforcement measures.”

    In interviews with ABC News, police officials said their departments have identified a number of agitators who routinely appear at mass demonstrations.

    “How many of those sympathizers are actually sympathizers?” Rick Hite, the chief of the Indianapolis Metropolitan police department, wondered. Many of them see the protests as a way to “chime in with their own personal agenda,” he said.

    In its new intelligence bulletin, obtained by ABC News, the FBI says “exploitation” of mass demonstrations “could occur both in the Ferguson area and nationwide.”

    “All it takes is one.”
    Overall, though, law enforcement officials contacted by ABC News – stretching from Los Angeles to the Atlanta area – remained confident that any protests in their cities would not be tainted by violence.

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  36. J.A.- Statistics- I can’t even spell it, nevertheless understand it. Not trying to brown nose you, but WOW, you are inspiring. I am not sure, but I think you are in your 40’s? Goodness gracious, the gears in my brain started to rust in my 40’s. It is so bad today at 60, that I often find myself reading a book and getting to the end only to realize I had already read it. Bravo, I hope your quiz gets an A or a B or a pass. ( :

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  37. Julie Anne, I generally hate math but I love statistics. I think you will like it too. It helps you interpret what is going on in the world without relying on the conclusions of others.

    ABC and NBC are fine.

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  38. Brown nose me? haha – where will that get you, Gail? I wanna know 🙂

    I just turned 50. I can tell you that I am working hard for my good grades. I’ve seen older students and young students and the difference that I’ve noticed is that most older students are taking their school very seriously. They don’t have time to waste.

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  39. Julie Anne, I generally hate math but I love statistics. I think you will like it too. It helps you interpret what is going on in the world without relying on the conclusions of others.

    I hope this is a good choice. My major requires either pre-calculus or statistics. If I went the pre-calculus route, I would be forced to take one more math class. I’m taking a specific class so I can go directly into statistics. Hannah said she did better in statistics than pre-calc and she and I think very much alike, so hopefully the apple will go back up to the tree for me 🙂

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  40. Thanks, Gail. We were pretty stressed out, couldn’t sleep much last night watching it all unfolding on the news. Now we’re all exhausted. It looks like a war zone. My grandkids are safely out of town staying at their other grandparents’ home in a rural area an hour away. My PTSD was triggered big-time knowing all the mayhem that was going on. It’s hard not to take it personally. I grew up there. My son and I were both baptized in our church on that very same street we saw the riots, burning police cars, building fires, looting, tear gas, major destruction. It’s devastating.

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  41. wftt-thanks for the update! Glad you are safe, sorry ptsd was triggered, I can only imagine how hard it must be! Sending love & prayers.

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  42. Thanks, Gail. My mom’s neighborhood is destroyed. Many places either burned to the ground or smashed and looted. Malls shutting up stores out of fear. And mom doesn’t even live in Ferguson. She lives in the neighboring subdivision, Dellwood.

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