Tag Archive | Faith

Hold the Line

And that line is faith. At the end of the day our just and loving God is only one we can truly lean on. He saved us from the tyranny of sin and death in a way we can barely comprehend, and loved us and still loves us, though we are wholly undeserving of it.

These days, for many who love America, times are bleak. It appears as if all the forces of darkness are aligned against anything good, free, or true. And in many ways, that’s a legitimate assessment. But that does not mean all is lost. God is for us and always will be, and he wants us to trust in him now more than ever. If we get out of this, it will be God’s doing, not man’s, and that is exactly what all those people Q, Gen Flynn, Powell, Wood, etc., have been saying for awhile now. Look to God. Pray to God. He hears our prayers.

Also, know that things aren’t always what they seem. Even if the cheaters seem to have won, they’re certainly not confident in their power. They have to censor and rule by fear because otherwise they couldn’t rule at all. They don’t have the people on their side and they know it and we know it. In all of those totalitarian/dystopian movies we grew up with, they are the real life representation of those bad guys and they know it. Deep down, they know it. The people gleefully turning in their family, friends, and neighbors for going to a political rally, all we can do is pray for them and pity them.

No news is good news. Yes, it’s a trite cliche, but it’s true, especially these days. Most news is bad news and sometimes one just doesn’t want “news” at all. If we’ve learned anything from President Trump it should be that the “news” doesn’t really matter, because all too often it’s just a pack of lies. He’s shown us time and time again that journalists are often just liars. No news means also no facts to be twisted out of proportion.

Something big is coming, we can all feel it. And as great as it might be, it may also be awful to behold for our country. Whether the something will come from those above or from the people, I cannot say, but our leaders who love America continually say look to God. There is nothing more important than holding the line of faith right now. Faith in God and freedom to worship him is at the core of our country. If we do not hold that line, then our country will truly be lost. Pray, praise, and give thanks. God will work everything and anything out for our good. He can enact moves we can barely imagine. He became flesh in his Son Jesus Christ, and suffered hell for we sinners, a spotless, innocent, lamb punished for our sins. Now, that’s a crazy kind of love. But God didn’t stop there, because death had to be defeated too or everything that came before wouldn’t have mattered. Jesus descended into hell, and on the third day, rose from the dead, signaling his complete and utter victory and domination over sin, death, and our accuser, the devil, the father of lies.

Even in these dark, uncertain days, we Christians have so, so much to be thankful for, and we should be continually comforting those around us with God’s words and promises. He will never leave us or forsake us. God uses tribulation and hardship in our lives for mostly one thing: to get us to turn to him in prayer. He wants us to lean on him and to ask him for things, and to ask for his intervention. Our prayers are heard and God is just waiting to bless our lives in ways we cannot comprehend. Hold the line of faith, and no matter what happens, God will not disappoint. He has told us in his word that all the world is against us, against the light, against the truth, and at no other time in at least my forty some years has that felt no more true than today. We have trouble and will have trouble in this world, but Jesus asks us to take heart, for he has overcome the world.

Much love,

Pixie

The End of the Story: Good wins.

Evil has a foothold. This is evident in the daily news stories from all parts of the world highlighting one atrocity after another. The beheading of journalist James Foley by ISIS (Islamic State) in Iraq is just another in a long list of disheartening news stories. Some days it seems like all the love has gone out of the world and that the love of most has grown cold.

The truth, however, is that evil doesn’t stand a chance against good. As a Christian, I already know the end of the story, and it’s that good wins. Love wins, hope wins, peace wins, joy wins. God created the human race knowing that we would turn to evil. The only explanation we have for why he did this is love. He wanted to create something to love. And if you read the Bible, you can see throughout history that although evil exists and although Satan is trying to take everyone down with him to hell, that evil has been used time and again to further God’s plan for Jesus to die on the cross, and after that time, to hasten the footsteps of those Christians spreading the message of the Gospel throughout the world.

In the light of day, a spot of darkness can scarcely be seen, but in darkness a spot of light shines brightly. This is how God works. We don’t always understand it, but the troubles and worries of this life often toughen us up to endure and conquer even worse troubles and worries. History repeats itself. Eugenics and anti-semitism are on the rise. People are exchanging freedom for the illusion of safety. Propaganda is more important than telling the truth. But these events have a purpose. Those who have studied history are waking up faster and faster to what’s happening around them. They are building a mindset to face what’s coming. They will be candles in the growing darkness and will frustrate the darkness as they continue to burn brighter and brighter the more the darkness accosts them. This is why evil can’t win, why it never wins.

God is love. God is holy, and as the creator of the universe, so much more powerful than the devil, the world, and our own sinful flesh. He uses everything, including evil, to fulfill his purposes. He is a long-term thinker in a way we can barely imagine. His goal is to shower us with love forever in a place outside of the time and space of this universe that He created. Satan’s goal is rather dumb in comparison. Satan has already lost. The place called hell was created first for satan and his followers. It is hell, because it is a place where God is not. It is a place of torment because in hell there exists no love, no mercy, and no relief. Satan’s goal is simply to take as many humans beings with him to this hell as possible. That’s it. That’s his only goal because that’s all that he has. And the most power he can have in this world is to be a prince of it, but never a king.

It’s kind of pathetic when you think about it. ISIS may rule the world someday, but that’s all they have, all they’ve got. They will rule the world and find no delight in it, no joy, no peace, and no prosperity. Their own deaths will gain them nothing, and many of their victims will be laughing as they step into heaven. Just like a candle shines in the darkness, so faith shines in an evil and depraved world. Jesus said that faith as small as a mustard seed is still saving faith. That’s all God needs to win, a tiny little speck of light that breaks the darkness. One spot of sin can damn us, but one spot of faith in salvation through Jesus saves us.

The truth of this world is that we are all living a grand story created by a being so just, so loving, and such a bright light that darkness doesn’t have a chance. And evil is merely a part of the plot, not the ending, not by a long shot. We have wonders waiting for us of which evil can scarcely conceive. Jesus is the ultimate prince on a white horse, riding to save us, the damsel who in no way can save herself from the dragon. Jesus slew the dragon a long time ago, and is now a king. All authority has been given to Him by His father the King, and He is just waiting for the time when He can take us, His bride, home to eternal bliss.

I am a huge Princess Bride fan, and my favorite scene is when Buttercup drives fear into Prince Humperdinck’s eyes, simply by telling him the truth: “You can’t hurt me. Westley and I are joined by the bonds of love. And you cannot track that, not with a thousand bloodhounds, and you cannot break it, not with a thousand swords.” Love, the ultimate Good, wins. And that is the end of the story.

And we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love Him,who have been called according to His purpose.   Romans 8:28

 

If God is for us, who can be against us? –Romans 8:32

 

For I am convinced that neither death nor life, neither angels nor demons, neither the present nor the future, nor any powers, neither height nor depth, nor anything else in all creation, will be able to separate us from the love of God that is in Christ Jesus our Lord.  –Romans 8:38-39

 

The Great Doctor (Faith) 신의 — review

Poster-the-great-doctor-aka-faith-32029441-680-1000If you have not experienced the awesomeness of K-drama, or Korean TV dramas, I highly recommend giving them a view.  The set up is a bit different than American TV shows, the episodes are an hour or more long, and there’s usually only one “season” or anywhere from 16-30 episodes in each drama.  Given that the stories have a definite end point instead of yearly “will they or won’t they” renewals and extra seasons, the writing, acting and storytelling are stellar and don’t suffer from consecutive seasons that become more mediocre after each year.

The Great Doctor or Faith is a historical drama and romance set in the 1300s during a time when Korea or Goryeo is under the heavy thumb of the neighboring Chinese Yuan dynasty.  The young king is returning with a new queen to his homeland after years of living as a hostage in China.  The king and queen are being transported by a small group of royal guards called Woodalchi.  They are led by weary warrior Choi Young who has been serving for royals for many years.  They are attacked during the journey and the new queen is wounded.  Only a powerful surgeon can heal her, and one of the king’s advisors suggests going to a place he knows of with a magic gateway to heaven where a famous ancient doctor is said to have gone.

The gateway still exists and Choi Young is sent on a quest to heaven to find the great doctor.  “Heaven” is actually modern day Seoul as the “gate” turns out to be a wormhole bending time and space.  In a happy coincidence, Choi Young enters the future in direct vicinity of a plastic surgeons convention and kidnaps a surgeon named Yoo Eun-Soo after giving her a practical test to gauge her surgical abilities.  The show could have easily just run with the fish-out-of-water theme that it plays up in the first few episodes, but the writers smartly kept that to a minimum and focused more on the drama surrounding the king and queen and how the two protagonists deal with that and begin falling for each other.

From the first episode to the last, the production of The Great Doctor is a stellar, movie-quality experience.  The story drags a little at the end, but it’s mostly character driven with plenty of action.  If you don’t like the characters at the beginning, they will feel like old friends by the 24th episode.  There aren’t many special effects, but what is shown doesn’t look too corny.  The magic in the world is left partly unexplained, but the character and action more than make up for that.

Much of the series reminded me of the book series Outlander in which a WW2 nurse gets sent back to ancient Scotland and falls for a younger warrior.  Except this version is far more charming and romantic and doesn’t rely on sadism as a way of furthering the plot.

At first I thought Yoo Eun-Soo played by Kim Hee-Seon was annoying and acted a bit childishly for her age, but Kim won me over especially in the second half of the series as her character begins to bloom under the love of Choi Young.  Young is played by the popular and easy on the eyes Li Min-Ho who came to fame from the comedy series Boys Over Flowers (if you love high school shows and comedies do not pass Go, do not collect $200, but go directly the Kdrama app where you can watch the series for free).  His character is my favorite simply because I enjoy exploring the plight of the “faithful servant.”  He’s killed hundreds, possibly thousands of soldiers and others all at the request of the kings that he serves and his soul (Seoul, ha, ha!  Okay, I’ll stop being so punny) hurts because of it.  He’s damaged in a way that I cannot comprehend, but that I’m sure many of those who are soldiers and good at it can.

Like most shows and films The Great Doctor wasn’t easily made.  It suffered from production delays and the lack of a lead actor after the first and second choices for Choi Young fell through.  Li Min-Ho stepped up to the plate and did a decent job.  He’s a bit younger than the age the role calls for, but Li is believable as the captain of the royal warriors because he commands wonderful screen presence…and he’s tall. 🙂  Okay, all the warriors are tall (at least to me, I’m 5’3″– okay 5’2 and 1/2″), but Li was a good choice as he’s an expert at sporting a sort of bored “I’m cool” expression well-suited to a warrior who has probably seen every atrocity under the sun.  Also, the King Gongmin played impressively by Ryu Deok-Hwan is tiny!  At least, he appears that way in this production.  Ryu does a great job portraying someone who simultaneously has a lot of power and no power and who struggles with it constantly.  The king’s personal struggles with power over his own life mirror that of his best warrior, Choi Young, and their relationship is in a way more interesting than that between Young and the “great doctor from heaven.”  Also, the king and queen’s relationship is sweet.

I love romances, and the love story in this is wonderful with lots of funny moments and many touching, endearing ones.  By the end you just want to shout out the Jerry McGuire line: “You complete me!”  Yoo Eun-Soo fills the ache in Choi Young’s heart and vice versa.

One more shout out, and that’s to the soundtrack people.  The main theme is especially addicting and reminded me somewhat of the Pirates of the Caribbean music.