Thursday, January 15, 2009

Power in the Hands of Men

It is said that it is the nature of almost all men, as they get a little authority, as they suppose, they will immediately exercise unrighteous dominion.

In Isaiah 10 we read, "aWoe unto them that decree bunrighteous decrees, and that write grievousness which they have prescribed;"

Have you ever stopped to question what is an unrighteous decree? Automatically we could state that an unrighteous decree is a decree that goes against the laws of God, that limits our liberty, or enslaves the people.

When we choose leaders for our local offices, state government, or national government, we are choosing individuals that are to protect us from unrighteous decrees. To protect us from being stripped of liberty. We choose them in order to remain a free people. It seems that too many have forgotten the proper role of government, and they expect to receive benefits from them rather then to protect liberty.

Corporations have become more important then the people, money more important then life, and power more important then righteousness. And many infringes on liberty are made under the disguise of helping the poor, making life easier or better, when in fact, they are only benefiting a few, and not all.

Liberty for all. Freedom to choose. Free will, or agency. Right to your life. Right to your property. These short, yet powerful phrases really should be at the core of decisions made on behalf of the people.

Proverbs 22 warns those who will take from others what they can expect to have happen to them, "He that aoppresseth the poor to increase his briches, and he that giveth to the rich, shall surely come to want."

This can be, and is manipulated in our current system. Using our deep desire to love our neighbor, have compassion for them, and care for them, the poor actually are being oppressed, and the rich get richer, and the poor get poorer. Whenever government tries to find solutions for the poor, they actually create more poverty, because they always design the system to benefit the wealthy in the end.

Truly lifting those that are struggling and downtrodden can only come through our personal efforts. And yes, I say this from experience. We could end poverty if we loved our neighbors as ourselves, and if we did not look to government to do it. We could end poverty through looking to God, and the word of God and what it teaches us to do instead.

We can become more productive as a people, grow gardens, and teach others to grow gardens. By doing this, we could create neighborhood food banks, where the excess that we individually do not need can be donated for those that need it. For example, one of my neighbors grows tomatoes, they have a gift for it, and another is really good at growing peppers. It they both take of their excess and give it to the food bank, then the tomato grower has access to peppers and the pepper grower tomatoes. This is a very simplistic example, but the solutions really are simple.

Does it take effort? Absolutely! But it would lift the poor and not oppress them. They could feel the benefits of being a producer, taking care of themselves, and being independent.

I grew up in a home that had financial struggles, that relied on state and church assistance many times to survive. I got to experience first hand the issues within the system of the state. When I realized how the system keeps the poor, poor, and realized the long term effects on individuals, I knew I had to get out of it.

When you first try to leave the system by bettering yourself, you discover that you are punished for progress. You lose benefits immediately, and your lifestyle becomes worse because you are not able to make enough money at first to compensate for the loss of benefits. This can be depressing, and convinces many to just give up and to just live on the system because their life is better then when they get a better job, or improve their education, because there is not a transition time. There are many brilliant people that have great innovative ideas, but they do not pursue them because their Social Security benefits will drop. I have spoken with many people that need help and have turned to the state or federal government, only to become trapped in the system. And very few people look at the other side, where does this money come from? It comes from the tax payers, it is a burden that is placed upon all of those who are working and struggling themselves, it is FORCED charity. Charity through force, creates more poverty too.

This is where good people should and will need to step in. As things worsen economically, and they will, we will need to step up and help those around us not to suffer hunger, or any other form of deprivation. We will need to help them help themselves. The national debt now exceeds all our revenue as a nation, in layman terms, we are officially bankrupt as a nation. Those programs that the poor are relying on, are not going to be able to be funded forever, and these bailouts are actually making the dollar worth less, we are unable to buy as much as we did before.

We need to be pro-active. Lay the foundations for a solution to this issue, and many others that we face here in Missouri. We may not have as much time as we think we do. It would be great to be blessed with enough time to organize these things, but I always say work like it all depends on us, and pray like it all depends on the Lord.

This is just the tip of the iceberg, there is so much more that we can do. We can buy locally, from local businesses so that our money stays in this community. We can help the small businesses stay in business, so that our city doesn't lose more revenue. We can look for solutions in schools and everywhere in ways that we can serve one another, and give of our time so that we do not face budget issues. We need to cut the fat, and replace those services with those that are willing to love their neighbors as much as they love themselves.

I want to again emphasize that we do not need government to do these things. We are free people, and we can choose to help each other. It is true that we will need to look at working with school boards and city council to have there be a friendly atmosphere for things like this to take place, but these people are local, we elect them, we can approach them and discuss these things. If we really want solutions, we can create them locally.

There are so many examples of how power is being abused today, even in this state. Where the Constitution of Missouri is being ignored, as well as the U.S. Constitution. We need to work from the bottom up. Elect officials that will protect us, and truly want to find local solutions, that are willing to make the sacrifices that we will need to make, which in turn could be lessened by our willingness to serve each other.

We can start one neighborhood at a time. We can do this as a community, we do not need to wait for the government to make it a law, or encourage them to force others to do anything. Let's choose to make a difference in our lives, and the lives of others, and let's start now.

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