WISDOM AND JUSTICE

Wisdom and JusticeMy child, if you accept My words and treasure up My commandments within you, making your ear attentive to wisdom and inclining your heart to understanding….then you will understand the fear of the Lord and find the knowledge of God. Proverbs 2:1-2,5

 

King Solomon wrote the Book of Proverbs, with insight from God, advising how people should live among each other. Verses 6 through 8 remind us that “the Lord gives wisdom…knowledge and understanding…. guarding the paths of justice and preserving the ways of his faithful ones.” We obtain the wisdom of God by seeking, reading, and studying His holy Word.

 

God’s wisdom, when applied to our lives, leads to integrity, which has been defined as doing the right thing even when no one is watching. Integrity requires us to care about other people, sometimes more than we care about ourselves. Christ called this “laying down one’s life” for others (John 13:38). He didn’t mean so much that we must actually die for others (which we could only do once), but that we must be willing to consider the needs of others whom we routinely encounter. Justice is what occurs when we act out the principle of performing the right action at the right time. And that seems to bring us back full circle, to having knowledge about what is happening to our fellow human beings, using that knowledge to make wise decisions with integrity about how we can serve God in our lives.

 

It is hard for most people, as it is for me, to watch the nightly news and be bombarded with the “shock and awe” in those broadcasts. The broken world is on full display, in very real and lightning fast time, relentlessly streaming into our homes and our lives every minute of every day, if we choose to watch and listen. How can we sort it all out and determine what each of us should do—each small, single human being with brokenness of our own to resolve? What are we to do about the sad state of affairs in our world? The answer is not necessarily to go out and “save” the whole world. The answer lies in listening carefully to God and using our knowledge, wisdom, faith, and ability to do the next right thing where we are now.

 

Jesus, Redeemer, show us how to help where we are able. Amen

 

Meg Blaine Corrigan tells stories of wisdom, strength, fear, joy and risk-taking. Daughter of a raging alcoholic mother, and survivor of sexual assault at gunpoint, Corrigan has shaken a dismal past and flung herself into the arms of Christ, Who sustains her in her daily walk of grace. She shares with her listeners her incredible story of surviving and thriving through many trials during her seven decades walking this fragile earth. She has been described as a Renaissance Woman, integrating her formal training in psychology and counseling, an enlightening experience as a percussionist for a Polynesian show troupe, and most recently as an inspirational author and blogger. Her exposure to many life experiences has enriched her passion for spreading Christ’s word and helping other trauma survivors. She has a Master’s Degree in Guidance and Counseling and thirty-plus years of experience in the field of counseling and social work.  She lives in Lake Elmo, Minnesota, with the love of her life, Patrick, and their formerly disenfranchised rescue dog Ginger. www.MegCorrigan.com    MegCorrigan@comcast.net

KEY WORDS

Key WordsLet My teaching fall like rain and My words descend like dew, like showers on new grass, like abundant rain on tender plants. Deuteronomy 32:2

 

In this day and age, most of us are familiar with the concept of “key words.” Searching Google is possible because, for almost any topic known to humans, key words have been linked on the Internet to that subject in a logical way. If you want to learn about climate change, for example, you can enter a few words you already know about that topic—such as global warming, ice melt, rising sea level and greenhouse gases—and you will find a long list of resources about the subject. Enter words like tropical paradise, warm weather destinations and winter getaway to begin planning your next cold weather vacation. As an author, I use key words to interest people in reading my weekly Christian blog. Courage, daily living, faith, grace, gratitude and humility are just a few of the words people might search to land on my blog site. Key words are a marketing tool, but they are also an easy way to help us navigate the vast information highway and find answers that used to take us many hours perusing the Encyclopedia Britannica or the card catalog at our local library.

 

One might say that every single word in the Bible is one of God’s key words. In the Deuteronomy passage I used today, I love the visual of God’s teaching falling “like rain” and His words “descending like dew, like showers on new grass” or “rain on tender plants.” I just searched through Google for Isaiah 55:11 by entering the words, “My word will not return to me.” I didn’t know the entire verse, but a Bible commentary showed this: “My word will not return to me empty but will accomplish what I desire and achieve the purpose for which I sent it.” In this passage, God clearly says that His word will find its mark, in many unpredictable ways and for many divine purposes. Those who study Scripture find that there is a message for everyone, in every circumstance, and not one of God’s words is wasted. The Bible is more than just a “marketing tool” for God; the Good Book has just the right “key words” for each of us.

 

Lord, we marvel at Your book of key words! Amen

 

Meg Blaine Corrigan is the author of three books: Then I Am Strong: Moving From My Mother’s Daughter to God’s Child; Perils of a Polynesian Percussionist; and Saints With Slingshots: Daily Devotions for the Slightly Tarnished But Perpetually Forgiven Christian. She holds a Master’s Degree in Counseling from the University of New Mexico and has over thirty years’ experience working with survivors of domestic violence, sexual assault, war veterans, and other trauma survivors. Her books may be purchased through her website, www.MegCorrigan.com or from www.amazon.com .

YOUR BRAIN ON JESUS

Fried EggDo not conform to the pattern of this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind. Then you will be able to test and approve what God’s will is—His good, pleasing and perfect will. Romans 12:2

 

This Is Your Brain on Drugs was an anti-narcotics campaign launched in the United States in 1987. According to Wikipedia, the first public service announcement (PSA) shows a man in a kitchen asking if anyone out there still doesn’t understand the dangers of drug abuse. He takes an egg and says, “This is your brain,” raises a frying pan, adding, “This is drugs.” He cracks open the egg, fries the contents, and says, “This is your brain on drugs.” After a pause, he says, “Any questions?” The campaign was revived, with modifications in 1997 (“This is your brain on heroin,” showing not only the egg being fried, but the entire kitchen being destroyed by repeated blows from the frying pan.); 2016 (After the narrator says, “Any questions?” teens mount several queries, prompting the narrator to say, “They’re going to ask; be ready.”); and finally a 2018 version about the brain on cannabis (followed by a montage of skillful chopping and advanced chef techniques, prior to a reveal of a gourmet egg dish).

 

The campaign’s impact was mixed. “This is your brain on drugs” became part of the American lexicon, but parodies abounded. Homer Simpson declared, “This is your brain on donuts.” Saturday Night Live produced a “This is your brain on drugs, with a side of bacon” skit, winning the Fifty Best Commercials of All Time Award in 1997. And who could forget the Beverly Hills 90210 episode with the friends acting out the PSA in their favorite diner, with Jason Priestley delivered a serious anti-drug message of his own.

 

Why not a “This Is Your Brain On Jesus” PSA? Romans 12:2 says we should abandon our fascination with worldly things and allow Christ to transform our minds. Then we would understand the Lord’s “good, perfect and pleasing will.” Instead of the image of an egg dropping into a pan, how about a brain growing and morphing into a perfectly formed, intricate flower? Or a brain becoming a beautiful sunset or mountain scene? Can you write your own PSA depicting your brain as Jesus would transform it?

 

Lord, transform our brains…and the rest of us too! Amen

 

Alone on a Colorado mountain, Meg Corrigan faced the unthinkable, a situation that almost ended her life. Hear the details of her astounding rescue from the hands of a gun-wielding attacker and how she walked off that mountain. Hers is a story of tragedy turned holy, a journey of sorrow and healing, a powerful message of hope in the darkest hour. In her memoir, Then I Am Strong: Moving From My Mother’s Daughter to God’s Child, Meg credits her resilience to the grace of God. She is also the author of Perils of a Polynesian Percussionist, tales based on her years as a drummer in a Hawaiian show band; and Saints With Slingshots: Daily Devotions for the Slightly Tarnished But Perpetually Forgiven Christian. The sequel, Saints With Slingshots TWO, will be released by the end of 2020. Meg is a retired college counselor, author, speaker, trainer and sexual assault survivor. She speaks to churches, civic groups, college students, mental health professionals and law enforcement personnel, as well as youth in juvenile facilities. Corrigan lives in Lake Elmo, Minnesota with her husband, Patrick and their formerly disenfranchised rescue dog Ginger. She loves to coax seemingly dead plants out of the soil in her yard. The couple have four daughters, ten grandchildren and two great-grandchildren. Contact her at MegCorrigan@comcast.net or www.MegCorrigan.com .

THE POWER OF FOOD

Dessert BuffetNow the serpent…said to the woman, “Did God really say, ‘You must not eat from any tree in the garden’?” Genesis 3:1

 

According to the most recent reports from Market Data Research, the number of active dieters is estimated to have fallen 10% since 2015, to 97 million, due to a “growing size acceptance movement” and “dieter fatigue.” About 80% try to lose weight by themselves, but many fail. This fits in perfectly with where I am: the harder I try, the harder it is to keep the weight off. I am definitely in the “dieter fatigue” category. Just the thought of dieting wears me out!

 

Then I read a book called Naturally Thin: Lasting Weight Loss Without Dieting by Jean Antonello. The author says that restrictive calorie dieting causes out bodies to go into starvation mode, protecting to every calorie we eat. No wonder people hit a “plateau” when they try to diet! And the minute we end a restrictive calorie diet, the body wants to put back on the weight to stop starving our bodies! Antonello’s book confirmed one thing for me: if I just eat sensibly and don’t obsess about food, I am in a much better frame of mind than if I try to lose weight because I might look/feel/function better. I have not counted a single calorie since I read her book, and guess what? I have not gained any weight! Would I like to lose some weight and look like I did when I was twenty? Sure. But I’m not twenty anymore and maybe I’m okay the way I am. I know there are life-saving reasons to keep our girths smaller than the circumference of a small planet, but starving ourselves and paying some program to help us do that is something I think needs some serious scrutiny.

 

The serpent was already busy in the Garden of Eden making people feel guilty about food. And thousands of years later, diet programs pull in an astounding $72 billion dollars a year in the United States (AP News). The Apostle Paul admonishes, “Do you not know that your bodies are temples of the Holy Spirit, Who is in you, Whom you have received from God? You are not your own; you were bought at a price. Therefore honor God with your bodies” (1 Corinthians 6:19-20).

 

Lord, help us stay healthy in sensible ways. Amen

Meg Blaine Corrigan finds ideas for her devotional blogs in everyday places and events, from comic strips to magazines and books, comments on the fly from people she meets, ancient memories of her childhood, and nigglings from God. Meg has written a Christian devotional blog for several years that has been read in over 40 countries by 9000 people. A compilation of blogs, Saints With Slingshots: Daily Devotions for the Slightly Tarnished But Perpetually Forgiven Christian, was published in 2015. Meg is working on a second book (Saints TWO) which she has hopes of completing by Christmas, 2020. Her first book, Then I Am Strong: Moving From My Mother’s Daughter to God’s Child, is a memoir about her childhood with an alcoholic mother and a co-dependent father. The book also chronicles Meg’s astounding rescue from the hands of a gun-wielding rapist, a tragedy turned holy, a powerful message of hope in her darkest hour. Meg is a retired college counselor and former social worker. Meg enjoys spending time with her husband, their four daughters and spouses, ten grandchildren and two great-grandchildren, as well as their rescue dog, Bassett/Beagle mix Ginger. Meg and her husband Patrick play and sing in the contemporary worship band at their church, Christ Lutheran in Lake Elmo, Minnesota. She also volunteers with sexual violence/sex trafficking prevention and education. She speaks to groups whenever she if offered the opportunity. She is a voracious reader of other people’s writing, which gives her lots of ideas for more devotional blogs. Read more about her at www.MegCorrigan.com or contact her at MegCorrigan@comcast.net .

 

FIRST CHURCH OF THE SINS OF THE FATHERS

Dysfunctional FamilyI, the Lord your God, am a jealous God, punishing the children for the sin of the parents to the third and fourth generation of those who hate Me, but showing love to a thousand generations of those who love Me and keep My commandments. Exodus 20:5-6

 

I know a wise and compassionate young man whom I will can Ben, who was raised in a household of horrors. His father drank non-stop and was cruel to his wife and children. The mother tried to raise her children the best way she knew how but failed because of her own fears, anxieties, and poor behavior. Ben remembered his grandparents, uncles, aunts and cousins all seemingly caught up in a sick family dynamic that never improved, leading Ben to eventually become addicted to alcohol and drugs himself. Thankfully, Ben saw the light as a young man, went through drug and alcohol treatment, and began attending Alcoholics Anonymous on a regular basis. He said it was as if his family had forced him to “wear a dirty suit,” and he no longer wanted to do that. It was necessary for him to separate completely from his family of origin in order to survive.

 

Ben’s situation reminds of the passages in the Bible which say in several ways, “the sins of the fathers are visited on the children to the third and fourth generation.” Ben’s family certainly seems to fit this description. But neither Ben nor I believe children are destined to turn out like their wayward parents. Ben and I broke the pattern. We both decided, for a variety of reasons, not to live as our parents had lived. Ben’s situation was far worse than mine, and I admire this young man greatly for the courage it took for him to change his life.

 

But does God really mean he will “punish the children for the sin of the parent?” In today’s Scripture, Exodus 20:5-6, the next few words are critical: “of those who hate Me.” Ben and I were able to seek our “Higher Power,” and we admitted we were powerless without Him. We chose to love and trust God and we are now reaping His “love to a thousand generations.”

 

Lord, I’m so glad to know You and to know Ben and others who have chosen You instead of death and destruction! Amen

 

Both candid and humorous, insightful and ponderous, Meg Blaine Corrigan’s memoir, Then I Am Strong: Moving From My Mother’s Daughter to God’s Child, takes the reader through her chaotic childhood with an alcoholic mother and enabling father to a violent assault that nearly ended her life. She populates her tale with vivid descriptions of her parents, other influential adults, the attacker, and her disastrous first marriage. But this story has a happy ending, when Meg finds solace in a God she didn’t think she’d ever believe in, when He gently helps her heal from her past lives and move into the best times of her life. Meg has also written a novel, Perils of a Polynesian Percussionist, about said first marriage, as well as a Christian devotional, Saints With Slingshots: Daily Devotions for the Slightly Tarnished But Perpetually Forgiven Christian, comprised of blogs from this site. Stay tuned for sequels to her last two books! All of her works may be purchased through her website, www.MegCorrigan.com or from www.amazon.com .

LET’S EAT!

Jesus Cooking BreakfastJesus said to them, “Come and have breakfast.” None of the disciples dared ask him, “Who are you?” They knew it was the Lord. John 21:12

 

I do almost all the cooking for my husband and me. I love to cook, and I try to make special meals when I have the ingredients and the time. When I tell my husband it’s time to eat, he is often reading, watching television, or tinkering in the garage. “I’ll be there in a minute,” he’ll say, and I know he’s in the middle of a chapter or a show or a project. I don’t mind holding the meal a bit. I’ve learned to expect him to come as soon as he is able. Mealtimes are special for us as a couple, and we always thank God for the food that nourishes us.

 

Following His miraculous resurrection, Jesus was full of surprises. He appeared to the women outside the empty tomb on Easter morning (John 20:16). Later He walked right through the wall into the Upper Room. And He came again to see Thomas who was not among those He had seen before (John 20:19-29). Then, when the disciples finally thought they’d seen the last of Him, they all went fishing. And there was Jesus again, on the shore, telling them where to cast their nets to catch fish. Then, He call to them to come join Him on shore for a breakfast of fresh fish (John 21). The passage in John says the disciples knew right away it was Jesus, but it still must have been a surprise to witness Him doing something so ordinary and mundane as making breakfast for His friends. Although John’s Gospel is silent on the transfiguration of Christ, Matthew 17, Mark 9 and Luke 9 all record Jesus ascending up to heaven in the presence of Peter, James the son of Zebedee and his brother John the Apostle.

 

What a whirlwind those days must have been! The Creator of the Universe was brutally executed, buried in a tomb, conquered death and rose again. How precious were those hours when He spent ordinary, “quality” time with the men He loved before being raised to sit at His Father’s right hand for eternity.

 

Jesus, we thank You that You became a mortal being just like us so we could remember You when we say “Let’s eat!” Amen

 

Meg Blaine Corrigan tells stories of wisdom, strength, fear, joy and risk-taking. Daughter of a raging alcoholic mother, and survivor of sexual assault at gunpoint, Corrigan has shaken a dismal past and flung herself into the arms of Christ, Who sustains her in her daily walk of grace. She shares with her listeners her incredible story of surviving and thriving through many trials during her seven decades walking this fragile earth. She has been described as a Renaissance Woman, integrating her formal training in psychology and counseling, an enlightening experience as a percussionist for a Polynesian show troupe, and most recently as an inspirational author and blogger, to the delight of all who read her work and hear her speak. Her exposure to many life experiences has enriched her passion for spreading Christ’s word and helping other trauma survivors. She has a master’s degree in Guidance and Counseling and thirty-plus years of experience in the field of counseling and social work.  She lives in Lake Elmo, Minnesota, with the love of her life, Patrick, and their formerly disenfranchised rescue dog Ginger. www.MegCorrigan.com    MegCorrigan@comcast.net

CELEBRITY BABY NAMES

BabiesShe will give birth to a Son, and you are to give Him the name Jesus, because He will save His people from their sins. Matthew 1:21

 

Celebrity couples seem to think they must choose the strangest and most unique baby names, as if the monikers they give their children will help them follow their parents’ path to fame more quickly. Gwen Stefani and Gavin Rossdale named their second child Zuma Nesta Rock. The parents are mum on where the name came from. Bronx Mowgli is Pete Wenz and Ashlee Simpson’s son’s name. The middle name is the main character in Disney’s movie Jungle Book. Elon Musk and Canadian singer Grimes take the strange prize with their new son’s name, X Æ A-12. Grimes, whose real name is Claire Boucher, tweeted an explanation of the child’s name. The X is a math reference to the “unknown variable” in every formula. Æ is Grimes creative spelling of AI, which can refer to the couple’s love for each other (?) or “artificial intelligence” (take your choice, I suppose). And A-12 is a reference to the couple’s favorite aircraft, the Lockheed A-12 Archangel 1960’s spy plane. “No weapons, no defenses, just speed,” she wrote. “Great in battle but non-violent.” But their home state of California has a law requiring names use only the letters in the English alphabet. So the child might never be able to get a Social Security card or a driver’s license or find a personalized backpack. So much for fame and fortune.

 

I greatly prefer the divinely inspired names we find in the Bible. The most important one is Jesus, which means “Savior.” God’s angel told both Mary and Joseph (Jesus’ stepfather) to give the Child this name. “Christ” is a title more than a name, from the Greek word “Christos,” meaning “the anointed one,” also called the Messiah. Jesus is referred to as “Wonderful Counselor, Mighty God, Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace” (Isaiah 9:6); “the Almighty One” (Revelation 1:8); “the Alpha and Omega, the First and Last, the Beginning and the End” (Revelation 22:13).  My favorite references is Hebrews 12:2, where Christ is described as “the Author (or Pioneer) and Perfecter” of our faith. There are many more names for Jesus, and all of them fit Him perfectly.

 

Holy Father, remind us of the meanings of Jesus’ many names as we praise You! Amen

 

Alone on a Colorado mountain, Meg Corrigan faced the unthinkable, a situation that almost ended her life. Hear the details of her astounding rescue from the hands of a gun-wielding attacker and how she walked off that mountain. Hers is a story of tragedy turned holy, a journey of sorrow and healing, a powerful message of hope in the darkest hour. In her memoir, Then I Am Strong: Moving From My Mother’s Daughter to God’s Child, Meg credits her resilience to the grace of God. She is also the author of Perils of a Polynesian Percussionist, tales based on her years as a drummer in a Hawaiian show band; and Saints With Slingshots: Daily Devotions for the Slightly Tarnished But Perpetually Forgiven Christian. The sequel, Saints With Slingshots TWO, will be released by the end of 2020. Meg is a retired college counselor, author, speaker, trainer and sexual assault survivor. She speaks to churches, civic groups, college students, mental health professionals and law enforcement personnel, as well as youth in juvenile facilities. Corrigan lives in Lake Elmo, Minnesota with her husband, Patrick and their formerly disenfranchised rescue dog Ginger. She loves to coax seemingly dead plants out of the soil in her yard. The couple have four daughters, ten grandchildren and two great-grandchildren. Contact her at MegCorrigan@comcast.net or www.MegCorrigan.com .

 

A HARD JOB

 

Basque SheepherderThe Lord is my shepherd; I shall not want. Psalm 23:1

 

The Elko, Nevada area is home to Basque immigrants from Spain who came here in the 19th century to work as sheep herders. When I played drums in a Hawaiian band, we spent time in Elko. Many of these herdsmen would come in to hear our band play. We learned from a Basque named Mercedes Hoyos that their life herding sheep was not easy. From my book, Perils of a Polynesian Percussionist:

 

“You don’t have to know anything about sheepherding to recognize one of the northern Basques who (had) spent about three months out on the range, all alone with his sheep, until somebody finally came and relieved him of his duties so he could go into town for a few days. He would usually stay at a Basque boarding house…where he would have a long bath while his clothes were being laundered. Then, he’d be ready for a home-cooked meal of marmitako (Basque tuna stew) and Chacoli wine, maybe a Catholic mass or two, and certainly a quick confession with one of the local priests, to relieve himself of the burden of his sins…He’d had a bath and put on clean clothes, (but) there was still a strange odor about this man. He wore a long-sleeved red wool shirt, even though it was warm outside. His brown pants, also wool, were tucked into work boots and held up by suspenders. A San Francisco Giants baseball cap graced his full head of grayish brown hair.

 

“’Those mountains are called mata hombres. “Man killers is what they are! I was pretty much ready for a visit to town,’ Mercedes said….(‘I tend) ‘bout nine hundred sheep, mostly ewes. A few rams…and the ewes have dropped their lambs, since it’s summertime ….I have to stay right by the sheep, especially at night. There are lots of coyotes….I really care about each one of ‘em. If I find a dead lamb, well, I just start to cry.’”

 

Images of a fluffy lamb in the arms of Jesus disappeared as I listened to Mercedes Hoyos describe his hard life. The image we carry of our Lord as our shepherd must include the hard work, deep caring and responsibility a sheep tender brings to the job.

 

Lord, we are Your lambs and You care for us as a Good Shepherd. Amen

STRONG WILL, STRONG WON’T

Walking God's PathYour will be done, on earth as it is in heaven. Matthew 6:10

 

“We often think of God’s will as a thin, barely visible line drawn with chalk that blurs in bad weather,” writes Alicia Britt Chole, Christian speaker and author of many works including Pure Joy. This quote speaks to my heart, because I often feel I am playing a game of Hide and Seek when I try to imagine God’s will for my life or even my moments. Such an illusive thing, to be following the will of a God I can’t see with my very naked eye, One Who does not converse with me audibly on a daily basis, and all of this with my humanness and my ego blocking the way much of the time anyway. I read the Bible every day and pray with some regularity, but still I feel I don’t have a grasp on that mysterious thing called “God’s will.”

 

I know that God’s will is strong, but many times my won’t seems to be stronger! Frequently, I come back to my theory that the only way to stay really close to God and follow Him all the time is to move to a cloistered monastery where the only thing to do is worship God. But even that’s ridiculous because people who live in monasteries have to do stuff every day too. They have to cook and wash dishes and do laundry and fix the place up and take care of the animals if they have them. Even in a silent monastery, there has to be some kind of communication. Otherwise, how would they call the paramedics if one of them gets hurt? (But I digress….)

 

So when the apostle Paul says, “Pray without ceasing” (1 Thessalonians 5:17), he is really talking about learning to multitask: develop that “attitude of prayer” so well that you can do it while you are answering the phone or walking to the bus or getting gum out of your child’s hair. If we can “do” God all the time, while we “do” life, His “will” becomes ever more apparent to us.

 

Lord, I want to do Your will, but I am weak. Help me with my “won’ts.” Amen

 

Meg Blaine Corrigan finds ideas for her devotional blogs in everyday places and events, from comic strips to magazines and books, comments on the fly from people she meets, ancient memories of her childhood, and nigglings from God. To date, she has written nearly 700 different devotions, filling one book of daily readings, Saints With Slingshots: Daily Devotions for the Slightly Tarnished But Perpetually Forgiven Christian, published in 2015. Meg is working on a second book (Saints TWO) which she had hoped would be completed by now. She posts once a week, which means in seven years, she will have enough entries to fill a second book. Sometimes life gets in the way of writing, so Meg is pacing herself, enjoying spending time with her husband, their four daughters and spouses, ten grandchildren and two great-grandchildren, as well as their rescue dog, Bassett/Beagle mix Ginger. Meg is involved in volunteer work at her church, Christ Lutheran in Lake Elmo, Minnesota, and also with sexual violence/sex trafficking prevention and education. She speaks to groups whenever she if offered the opportunity. She is a voracious reader of other people’s writing, which gives her lots of ideas for more devotional blogs. Read more about her at www.MegCorrigan.com or contact her at MegCorrigan@comcast.net .

AN ASTONISHING THING

Jesus Healing the Bling Man“Here is an astonishing thing! You do not know where He comes from, and yet He opened my eyes. We know that God does not listen to sinners, but He does listen to One Who worships Him and obeys His will.” John 9:30

 

It’s as if this blind man cannot contain his joy at having his sight restored. Some are saying this cannot be the same man who was so recently blind, begging for alms at the temple doors. “Hey, it’s really me!” he proclaims (v. 11). Later, the religious leaders question him too and he repeats his story. But it is the Sabbath, the leaders cried, so this Jesus must be of Satan because no one who believes in God and heals on the Sabbath (vs. 14-15). And they even bring in the man’s parents, but the story still doesn’t change. “Nobody has ever heard of opening the eyes of a man born blind,” he proclaims. “If this (Jesus) were not from God, he could do nothing” (v. 32).

 

I imagine John Newton reading this passage when he penned his beloved hymn, “Amazing Grace.” Newton was an 18th century British slave trader who had a soul reckoning during a violent storm off the coast of Ireland. When the ship miraculously landed safely, Newton took that as a sign from God. His conversion came slowly following such a dramatic event. He eventually renounced his occupation and wrote the pamphlet Thoughts Upon the Slave Trade. “It will always be a subject of humiliating reflection to me,” Newton said, “that I was once an active instrument in a business at which my heart now shudders.” His efforts eventually led to the British Parliament outlawing slavery in 1811. Newton wrote many hymns, the most famous one, now known as “Amazing Grace,” in 1779.

 

When John Newton, a cruel and heartless slave trader, thought his end was near, “an astonishing thing” happened. In the words that echo those of the man born blind in Jesus’ time, Newton wrote, “I once was lost but now I’m found, was blind but now I see.” Newton, the same man who took freedom from so many African men, women and children, was moved by God to help end the slave trade in England.

 

Jesus, You can make “an astonishing thing” happen in the lives of those who believe in You! Amen

 

Meg Blaine Corrigan tells stories of wisdom, strength, fear, joy and risk-taking. Daughter of a raging alcoholic mother, and survivor of sexual assault at gunpoint, Corrigan has shaken a dismal past and flung herself into the arms of Christ, Who sustains her in her daily walk of grace. She shares with her listeners her incredible story of surviving and thriving through many trials during her seven decades walking this fragile earth. She has been described as a Renaissance Woman, integrating her formal training in psychology and counseling, an enlightening experience as a percussionist for a Polynesian show troupe, and most recently as an inspirational author and blogger, to the delight of all who read her work and hear her speak. Her exposure to many life experiences has enriched her passion for spreading Christ’s word and helping other trauma survivors. She has a master’s degree in Guidance and Counseling and thirty-plus years of experience in the field of counseling and social work.  She lives in Lake Elmo, Minnesota, with the love of her life, Patrick, and their formerly disenfranchised rescue dog Ginger. www.MegCorrigan.com    MegCorrigan@comcast.net

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

“Here is an astonishing thing! You do not know where He comes from, and yet He opened my eyes. We know that God does not listen to sinners, but He does listen to One Who worships Him and obeys His will.” John 9:30

 

It’s as if this blind man cannot contain his joy at having his sight restored. Some are saying this cannot be the same man who was so recently blind, begging for alms at the temple doors. “Hey, it’s really me!” he proclaims (v. 11). Later, the religious leaders question him too and he repeats his story. But it is the Sabbath, the leaders cried, so this Jesus must be of Satan because no one who believes in God and heals on the Sabbath (vs. 14-15). And they even bring in the man’s parents, but the story still doesn’t change. “Nobody has ever heard of opening the eyes of a man born blind,” he proclaims. “If this (Jesus) were not from God, he could do nothing” (v. 32).

 

I imagine John Newton reading this passage when he penned his beloved hymn, “Amazing Grace.” Newton was an 18th century British slave trader who had a soul reckoning during a violent storm off the coast of Ireland. When the ship miraculously landed safely, Newton took that as a sign from God. His conversion came slowly following such a dramatic event. He eventually renounced his occupation and wrote the pamphlet Thoughts Upon the Slave Trade. “It will always be a subject of humiliating reflection to me,” Newton said, “that I was once an active instrument in a business at which my heart now shudders.” His efforts eventually led to the British Parliament outlawing slavery in 1811. Newton wrote many hymns, the most famous one, now known as “Amazing Grace,” in 1779.

 

When John Newton, a cruel and heartless slave trader, thought his end was near, “an astonishing thing” happened. In the words that echo those of the man born blind in Jesus’ time, Newton wrote, “I once was lost but now I’m found, was blind but now I see.” Newton, the same man who took freedom from so many African men, women and children, was moved by God to help end the slave trade in England.

 

Jesus, You can make “an astonishing thing” happen in the lives of those who believe in You! Amen

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

“Here is an astonishing thing! You do not know where He comes from, and yet He opened my eyes. We know that God does not listen to sinners, but He does listen to One Who worships Him and obeys His will.” John 9:30

 

It’s as if this blind man cannot contain his joy at having his sight restored. Some are saying this cannot be the same man who was so recently blind, begging for alms at the temple doors. “Hey, it’s really me!” he proclaims (v. 11). Later, the religious leaders question him too and he repeats his story. But it is the Sabbath, the leaders cried, so this Jesus must be of Satan because no one who believes in God and heals on the Sabbath (vs. 14-15). And they even bring in the man’s parents, but the story still doesn’t change. “Nobody has ever heard of opening the eyes of a man born blind,” he proclaims. “If this (Jesus) were not from God, he could do nothing” (v. 32).

 

I imagine John Newton reading this passage when he penned his beloved hymn, “Amazing Grace.” Newton was an 18th century British slave trader who had a soul reckoning during a violent storm off the coast of Ireland. When the ship miraculously landed safely, Newton took that as a sign from God. His conversion came slowly following such a dramatic event. He eventually renounced his occupation and wrote the pamphlet Thoughts Upon the Slave Trade. “It will always be a subject of humiliating reflection to me,” Newton said, “that I was once an active instrument in a business at which my heart now shudders.” His efforts eventually led to the British Parliament outlawing slavery in 1811. Newton wrote many hymns, the most famous one, now known as “Amazing Grace,” in 1779.

 

When John Newton, a cruel and heartless slave trader, thought his end was near, “an astonishing thing” happened. In the words that echo those of the man born blind in Jesus’ time, Newton wrote, “I once was lost but now I’m found, was blind but now I see.” Newton, the same man who took freedom from so many African men, women and children, was moved by God to help end the slave trade in England.

 

Jesus, You can make “an astonishing thing” happen in the lives of those who believe in You! Amen