Deeper Waters Podcast 9/1/2018: Allie Peters

What’s coming up? Let’s plunge into the Deeper Waters and find out.

Life is a beautiful and sacred gift, but sometimes it doesn’t seem like that. We all have times where suffering enters into our lives. Christians aren’t immune. Unfortunately, even Christians can be tempted to make awful choices when that happens. Even Christians can be tempted to throw in the towel. Even Christians can actually attempt to give up, and sadly some will succeed.

Some will not. Some will live on to tell the tale. Life can still be a battle for them, but they will tell the tale about what happened. They can talk about the impact they saw on the people around them and how it affected them. They can talk about what they have learned.

September is suicide awareness month. It is a time of the year when we try to remember that this is a real problem and it’s still with us. Whenever a celebrity has successfully committed suicide, unfortunately, the suicide rates make a spike after that. Sin breeds sin after all.

My wife is one person who has been affected by this greatly seeing as she is herself a suicide survivor. This is after more than one attempt. Her parents have found her after an attempt and I have found her after an attempt. Both of us were left devastated by such events. Indeed, to this day, I cannot hear the siren of a first responder without thinking about it.

We’ll be talking about Allie’s life some as bullying definitely played an impact on her as she was growing up. We might look at this as “kids will be kids” but it is getting worse and social media isn’t helping. I personally place a lot of blame on the self-esteem movement as I am not convinced we can stop all bullying, but we can certainly equip kids to be better able to respond to bullying.

But how can a Christian ever feel this way or even do this? Doesn’t this contradict what we are told in Scripture? If we really think this, is it proper to talk to someone about their salvation status if they are really considering the choice of suicide?

What about other people out there listening? How should we respond if we think someone around us could be contemplating suicide? Are there any warning signs to look for? What do we do if we think that there is someone around us or even on social media who we think could be suicidal? How should we respond to such a claim?

I hope you’ll be listening. As is no doubt known, my wife is my favorite guest to have on the show and we will be here together to talk about this important topic. September is the month for suicide awareness and if you are considering this awful choice or know someone who is, I really hope you’ll listen and please don’t do this choice. All of life is sacred and that includes you.

In Christ,
Nick Peters

Deeper Waters Podcast 4/7/2018: The Fairest Of Them All

What’s coming up? Let’s plunge into the Deeper Waters and find out.

As the host of the Deeper Waters Podcast, I constantly get asked the question about who is my favorite guest I’ve had on. I’ve never been able to answer that question. I’ve had on so many great guests that I don’t think I could have easily pinpointed one and said, “Yes. This is my favorite guest.”

At least, that was the case, until now.

As you should know, this month is Autism Awareness Month. It’s a month that is near and dear to my heart. I always try to have guests on that know about Autism and have them speak on the subject. This Saturday I kick it off by having the best guest I can think of on to talk about Autism.

This is someone who knows about Autism from personal experience of having to live with it. Not only do they have to live with it, they have to live with someone who lives with it as they are married to someone with Aspergers. By the way, this guest that I am having on is someone who is incredibly awesome and is a real knockout to boot.

This Saturday, my wife has agreed to join me on the Deeper Waters Podcast. You all have heard me talk about Allie before many times. Now this time you’re going to get to hear from her yourselves.

My experience with Aspergers has been very different from Allie’s. We’re going to look into that. What was it like growing up? What was it that made her realize that she was different from everyone else? How is it that she came to be diagnosed with Aspergers? What did that mean for her? Was it good news or bad news?

As many of you know, Allie got a very different sort of traits than I did from Aspergers. She is actually incredibly high on the empathy scale. Her main language is also not logic but art. Believe it or not, while she does agree that apologetics is important and needed, she does not really enjoy talking about it. (Please remember that all my Facebook friends who think she shares a deep love for the field. She doesn’t.)

She doesn’t want to focus on this, but we will have to talk about married life some. What’s it like not only being on the spectrum yourself, but being married to someone on the spectrum? Are there any hurdles that you face that you think other couples don’t face?

What about church? Is there anything you wish churches knew about how to communicate with people with Aspergers? What are some steps that could be taken if there is room for improvement?

I am really looking forward to this interview. (Although Allie is a bit apprehensive about it) I can now say my favorite guest would be getting to have my wife on my show. Please be looking for this episode and please also go on iTunes and leave a positive review of the Deeper Waters Podcast.

In Christ,
Nick Peters

Celebrating Valentine’s Day

Why do I think today is a special day? Let’s plunge into the Deeper Waters and find out.

I used to hate Valentine’s Day. Back then, I was one who called it Singles’ Awareness Day. It was a depressing time because I always wondered if I would ever find someone who would love me and who I would love. Really, the prospects of that happening did not seem good.

That really changed in August of 2009. I found out about this girl named Allie who lived in Atlanta. She had Aspergers like I do and she was going through a hard time and wanted a friend. I said I could be that friend and started communicating with her. Before long, it was more than communication and we were a hot item. Everyone knew exactly where we were heading and this only after a couple of months. I proposed to her in December and we were married in July, but I did get to spend Valentine’s Day with her.

Since then, every Valentine’s Day has been special. I always make sure to celebrate the day by doing something really special for her. You see, when you go through life and you doubt that you will ever find that love, you want to celebrate it when it comes along. You never want to take it for granted.

Something theological about this is that love is now something we do celebrate. When you read Plato, the whole dialogue of the Symposium is all about a celebration of love because that really wasn’t as much celebrated as it is today. Romantic love was often the exception and not the norm. Many times, a wife would often be just the woman that the man chose to have his main heirs with.

Today, romantic love is the norm. We can’t picture any other cause for marriage than love. At the same time, we often don’t think about what love is. What does it mean to love someone?

Many times, we think that love means we have warm feelings for someone. That can be good when it comes, but that’s not what love is. Love is not about what you feel so much as what you do. The best definition of love I know is seeking the good of the other for the sake of the other.

This means love is in the giving. It’s in the giving of oneself for what is genuinely good for the other. It might not even be what the person wants. A loving thing to do to a recovering alcoholic seeking to overcome is to NOT give him the alcohol he desires. Love can be painful in that sense, but love is there because it is the person seeking the good. There’s always the possibility that one is wrong in the action they think loving, but they are still at least trying to be loving.

As a husband, I am called to give of myself to my wife regularly and sacrifice for her, but with love, it is not often a sacrifice. It is a joy. My greatest joy many times is in knowing I am making Allie happy and knowing she can rely on me and trust in me. If you hear me talking to other men about marriage, what you will often hear is that I wish I could do more.

Today, I will be celebrating the love I have for my Princess. If you are married, I encourage you to please celebrate it today, but remember also that Valentine’s Day is not meant to be a once a year event. Celebrate the love you have for your spouse every day. If you are single, you can still celebrate love you have in your life. You can have the love of friends, the love of family, and of course, the love of God. If you want to find romantic love, be assured it can be found. I never thought it would happen for me and now we’re working on year eight of our marriage.

Happy Valentine’s Day to you also Princess. I love you dearly.

In Christ,
Nick Peters

Happy Birthday Princess

How do I celebrate the birthday of my Princess? Let’s plunge into the Deeper Waters and find out!

One of the benefits of having my own blog, while an apologetics blog, is that I can write about what I want. Today, my Princess happens to be turning 27 so I’d like to write about her. I think this is something all apologists can relate to as Chesterton said each of us is a great might-not-have-been. That my wife is is something that I can celebrate.

Princess. I am so happy to see you working to bring about better life changes. I don’t always understand the choices, but I know you want to be the best you can be. I am also thankful for the changes you’ve been making with me and your desire to be an even better wife than you already are.

I’m thankful when I’m sharing the Gospel with people, you can be by my side and can support me so well in it. Everything I do in this world is easier because you’re right there supporting me in it. I tell people that I think my ministry started going better and better once you came along. You inspire such great confidence in me and motivate me so much.

There are so many men in this world you could have been chasing after, but for some reason, you chose to chase after this nerdy little apologist. I don’t understand that. As we often joke about, I was not the type that you wanted at the beginning. Somehow, I found my way into your heart and for that I am grateful.

It is your birthday, but it looks like I am getting the gift. The gift is that I get to be with you. I get to love you and celebrate you. I get to be with you throughout this whole day. One of my greatest joys in life is getting to bring you joy. I want very little for myself these days. What I want is to get to be the best that I can be for you.

Please never take yourself for granted. I don’t care what the rest of the world says about you. You are my Princess. You are my gift. You are the one that I cherish and celebrate.

I am thankful to be your knight in shining armor, your Superman. If anyone messes with you, I am right there. No matter how close that person may be to you, I am there to protect you. I think many people have seen on Facebook that the unwritten rule is that if you insult Allie, you’d better be on your guard because her husband will have no mercy on you.

I don’t know what all else is in store for you today, but today I definitely want you to have a happy birthday. I am happy just getting to be with you and getting the honor of being the man in your life. It’s amazing to think that you’re 27 and I’ve been there through 8 years of your life and been your husband for 7 of them.

I love you, Princess. Happy birthday!

In Christ,
Nick Peters

Seven Years

Is today a special day? Let’s plunge into the Deeper Waters and find out.

When I was growing up, July 24th was a day like any other day. Nothing special today. One never thinks it will have any special significance at that point, but it’s amazing how time can change things. The one day that was nothing really special suddenly becomes extremely special.

It was seven years ago my wife did something absolutely insane. She gave herself to me in holy matrimony. She promised to be with me till death do us part. That is quite a big promise to make and an even harder one to follow, especially to a guy like me since marriage has really helped to show me what a sinful human being I really am.

These seven years have been full of ups and downs. We’ve had many many struggles, and yet we’ve still stayed together. I think it’s a great testimony to our love because I honestly think many couples might not have undergone all the changes that we have had to undergo as successfully. It’s not because we’re so special though, but because our marriage is rooted in Christ. We have had a Christian marriage from the beginning.

Loving a woman is something very special. Many guys think it consists of what you do on the dates such as showing up well-dressed and with cologne and a gift like flowers and chocolates and other such things. It is that, but it’s more. In marriage, it’s the day to day things. It’s things like being the official bug killer around the house. It’s things like managing a budget and compromising on what to watch on Netflix that evening. Sharing a bed means more than sex together, but it also means sharing a trust with each other and knowing you’re going to for the most part wake up next to each other the next day. (There are times of sickness where we sleep apart and of course, one of us is usually the first to get up the next day.)

And Princess, you have changed my life in so much. You have changed my diet and my confidence level. I couldn’t be doing what I am doing without you. I couldn’t be doing apologetics as well as I am without you. I wouldn’t be learning from the school of hard knocks what it means to be holy without you, because now that you’re here, I see the direct result of my actions.

If anything, I always wish I could do more for you. I shudder when I think about how imperfect my love for you is. As you know, whenever I do anything, I like to do the very best I can, and that includes loving you. It’s always a delight to me when someone compliments me on how much I love my wife. Anyone can study hard and be an academic, and there’s nothing wrong with that, but being a person of character and loving your wife is something different.

Princess. You are worth everything. I often think now that I have so much in life and it requires little to keep me busy. I have books coming in for my show and so that’s taken care of. The next thing I want in life is to keep you feeling loved and happy. I would love to someday take you to Japan like you want or get you all the art supplies that I can. Hopefully some day I will get to do these things.

Princess. I hope today I do more and more to amaze you and leave you feeling immensely loved. I want you to know what a treasure you are and everything I do I don’t think can adequately express the desire I have to please you immensely and show what you really mean to me. Aside from salvation in Jesus Christ, you are the greatest gift that I have ever been given. I love you immensely. Happy anniversary Princess.

In Christ,
Nick Peters

 

Happy 25th Princess

How now shall we live? Let’s plunge into the Deeper Waters and find out.

I held off on writing this blog today because I wanted it to be a surprise. You see, as many of you know, my family doesn’t exactly have a lot of money. My wife Allie was quite sure I would not be able to do anything to celebrate her 25th birthday today, and she was quite depressed about that. I took her that evening to the local mall where a friend wanted her to go shopping. Well, that was the story at the time. In reality, that’s the same mall where our church meets us and it was at that mall that we had a secret surprise party waiting for her. She loves me now, but she’s also a bit upset I left her miserable throughout the day.

It really is good to be alive. Birthdays are a reminder of that, but they can also be a time to ask what we are doing with the time that we do have. The time that we have been given is a gift, and are we really using it on the most worthwhile pursuits? Oh I know there is time for fun and frivolity, but we have to ask what life really is all about. When we stand before God, we will have to give an account of all that we have done. In fact, we’re told we will give an account for every word and action and if more of us spent more time thinking about that, we’d probably take matters a whole lot more seriously. Let’s face it. Many times, the last thing we take seriously is God.

Yet if we celebrate our birthdays, does not God celebrate them more? Does not the giver of life and the source of life and the God of life Himself celebrate life? There is a point where our culture is very self-centered where we talk about how much God loves us over and over, but we are right in saying that He does. The place we stop is usually we see that as something we joyfully receive instead of realizing that we are to respond with our very lives. Our lives should be seen as examples of the love of God, and not love in the sentimental touchy-feely sense, but in the idea of a seeking of the good. Marriage is a great example of this. Marriage is one relationship where both persons are to live for the good of the other and when both do this, both will be pleased.

Birthdays are some of the days we take to celebrate each other because while we give gifts on that day to the person, we do so because we believe that the person is already a gift to us. We want to celebrate them and their life. I am thankful today for 25 years of life that Allie has been given and I’m thankful that I have known her for so many of those years. I look forward to all that the future has for her. Love your Princess. Happy Birthday!

In Christ,
Nick Peters

Debunking 9 Truly Evil Things Right-Wing Christians Do: Part 9

We are going to let Allie conclude her series today.

We are at the last part of debunking the arguments in the articlehttp://www.alternet.org/belief/9-truly-evil-things-right-wing-christians-do?page=0%2C2 .  9. Trying to suck vulnerable people into your poorly researched worldview is evil.

I’m going to go ahead and quote the first paragraph of this part of the article:

“It’s one thing to latch onto the supernatural worldview you were raised in or the one that first triggered for you some radically cool temporal lobe micro-seizure or similar altered state. But then failing to do your homework before using your position of adult American privilege to foist your religion on kindergarteners, or families who live in desperate poverty, or people who just got hit by a natural disaster—in other words people who trust you because you are older or richer or more powerful or have more access to the very information that you have failed to use—now we’re talking about a violation of ethics. Just because something is legal doesn’t make it right.”

Woa now!  Altered state?  That may be how it is for the Word of Faith movement but as for most Christians, it’s not an altered state!  We’re not on drugs!  We’re not high, in fact, we have many lows!  It’s not easy being a Christian!  People think it’s easy to be a Christian but it’s not, and I think that’s part of the reason why so many people leave the faith.  They expect everything to go well and hardly any problems to head their way, but that’s just not the case at all.  We face many obstacles, many obstacles that people who aren’t following Christ don’t face in fact.  Christ never promised life would be easy following him, he instead said it would be harder when following him:

(John 15:18 NLT) “If the world hates you, remember that it hated me first.”

Failing to do our homework?  Writer (of the article), I’d say you’ve failed to do much of your homework and have done mostly personal complaints instead of actually researching the other side.  I have both read your sources and defended the Christian side giving Biblical and outside sources.  As for the American privilege, everyone has that.  Living in the US is a privilege, whether you think so or not.  Yes, this country has it’s problems, but what country doesn’t?  One of the greatest privileges of this country that many countries don’t have is the freedom of religion and speech.  Writer, just as you have the freedom to antagonize us, we have the freedom to worship the Living God and tell the truth about him.  In the US, everyone has the opportunity of getting a job and working hard.  Now, in this economy, it is much harder.  But it isn’t easier for a Christian to make money or get a job than it is for someone who isn’t a Christian to do so.  Everyone has an equal chance if they try and work hard.  The problem is the economy has made it so difficult and the government has babied people so much that people are either too hopeless or too lazy to try.  There are people who go on Welfare just so they don’t have to get a job and that’s abusing the system!

We are to help people in poverty and who are hit by distasters.  We are to educate our children, just as much as everyone else.  The problem is, you don’t want us to do it the way we are supposed to do it!  If you knew the truth about something, and you knew it gave people hope, wouldn’t you want to tell it to people?  Then why prevent us from telling this truth to people?  As for education, there are a lot of people who say the US was never a Christian nation.  This is nonsense!  Take a look at this website that discusses the earliest Bibles published in the US (http://www.greatsite.com/timeline-english-bible-history/colonial-bibles.html).  Even Congress had produced Bibles for our schools, people in Congress such as George Washington and you know those people who were so anti-religious like Benjamin Franklin and Thomas Jefferson.  They all endorsed these Bibles to be published at every home and school in the US!  As for being, older, richer, and more powerful.  I’m almost twenty-four years old, so I’m not old.  My husband and I are broke and without jobs, as well as disabled, so we are not rich, but poor.  I have no power in any sense.  I have a brain injury and only a high school diploma, yet I have done better research than you’ve done.  All you have done is throw empty accusations with little to no facts behind them.  Moving on now.

The next paragraph the writer says is:

“Some reader is bound to say that without God anything goes and so as a nontheist I have no basis for calling anything evil. A short snarky retort has been making its way around the internet: If you can’t tell right from wrong without appealing to an authority or a sacred text, what you lack is not religion but compassion. The long answer, meaning the evidence showing we really can recognize evil and good without gods, is available in neuroscience, sociology, developmental psychology, and in the lives of individual atheists including the Dalai Lama.”

I’ve got one, single, verse to answer that paragraph for you, Romans 2:14 (NLT) says:

Even Gentiles, who do not have God’s written law, show that they know his law when they instinctively obey it, even without having heard it.

So yes, you do know God’s laws like you shouldn’t murder or steal because God wrote that in our hearts.  It has nothing to do with how great we are, but because of how great heis.  Just because you know his laws instinctively doesn’t mean there is no God though.  You can breathe air, but just because you can’t always feel it or see it doesn’t mean there isn’t any air.

The writer concludes by accusing Bible-believing Christians to be trying to go back to the Iron Age.  We’re not trying to go back to the Iron Age.  We don’t want to go back in time!  We want to move ahead in the future as much as you do!  The difference is we have a different path to the future than you do.  Your path leads to more destruction and we’re trying to steer you away from that path!  We see the path you’re heading because some of us have actually gone down that path and know what’s down there.  We hate watching people destroy themselves and God hates it even more than we do!  You are his precious children!

(Ezekiel 18:23 NLT) “Do you think that I like to see wicked people die? says the Sovereign LORD. Of course not! I want them to turn from their wicked ways and live.”

We have to tell the truth!

(John 8:32 NLT) “And you will know the truth, and the truth will set you free.”

Be set free from your bondage and your destructive paths!

 

In Christ,

Nick Peters

Debunking 9 Truly Evil Things Right-Wing Christians Do Part 8

We now turn the blog over to Allie again for part 8.

We’re almost done with going through this article http://www.alternet.org/belief/9-truly-evil-things-right-wing-christians-do?page=0%2C2 .  We’re now at part 8. Destroying Earth’s web of life and impoverishing future generations is evil.  The writer of the article didn’t write much on this section, so I’ll go ahead and quote them:

“The book of Genesis may say that only man is made in the image of God and that God gave man dominion over everything that grows or walks the earth. The book of Matthew may say that the return of Jesus is imminent and that his disciples shouldn’t worry about tomorrow, which will take care of itself. The book of Revelation may teach that this world is just a prelude to streets of gold.

But some of us think the lives and loves of other species have moral weight of their own. And some of us think that the intricate web that gave us birth is both precious and precarious, and that the wellbeing of future generations matters. And we think those verses in Genesis and Matthew and Revelation reveal more about the hubris and flawed humanity of the Bible writers (and of Bible believers) than they do about divinity.”

The verses they are using from Matthew are 16:28 and 6:34 –

(Matthew 16:28 NLT) “And I tell you the truth, some standing here right now will not die before they see the Son of Man coming in his Kingdom.”

(Matthew 6:34 NLT) “So don’t worry about tomorrow, for tomorrow will bring its own worries. Today’s trouble is enough for today.”

Yes, Genesis does say man is made in God’s image and they have dominion over the creatures of the world.  Genesis 1:26 (NLT) reads:

 Then God said, “Let us make human beings in our image, to be like us. They will reign over the fish in the sea, the birds in the sky, the livestock, all the wild animals on the earth, and the small animals that scurry along the ground.”

There’s more to that than just ruling.  It’s not like ruling with an ironfist.  We are to care for them as well.  God created everything and saw that it was good – including all the animals.  Even though man is most precious to him, he loves animals too or why would he have created them and wanted us to care for them?  You do have corrupt people who will abuse their power of ruling over the creatures – that’s because of sin, not because God said that it was okay to do that.  A king rules over the people in his kingdom, but a good king doesn’t abuse his power in ruling over them.  He takes care of them.  We may have dominion over the animals, but we are to take care of them, not abuse them.  

Yes, we’re not supposed to worry about tomorrow.  It’s not necessarily because Jesus could be coming back any day now though!  In Matthew 24:36 (NLT), Jesus says:

“However, no one knows the day or hour when these things will happen, not even the angels in heaven or the Son himself. Only the Father knows.”

We don’t know how soon Jesus is coming back.  People have waited for him to come back ever since he ascended into heaven.  He could come back today or he could come back 2000 years from now.  We don’t know.  Only God knows.  Plus, when Jesus said this, he didn’t die yet.  He had told his disciples more than once before he said this that he was going to die, but they didn’t understand.  When Jesus told people not to worry, he was just starting his ministry.  There was no predicting his death or anything like that.  If anything, the people who believed in Jesus thought he would lead them as their king in defeating the Roman Empire – not being the King of the universe!  But Jesus was not out to destroy the Roman Empire.  What Jesus was saying here is “Why are you worrying about tomorrow?  Doesn’t today have enough problems already?  Why add more problems on your plate when you already have enough on there?”  The reason we don’t have to worry is because we know that Christ is with us.  We aren’t going through our problems alone.  (Psalm 23:4 NLT) Even when I walk through the darkest valley, I will not be afraid, for you are close beside me. Your rod and your staff protect and comfort me.

As for the Book of Revelation, there are different interpretations of it and what’s going to happen in the end.  I agree, writer (of article), if people are just waiting for Jesus to return and for the world to be destroyed, that’s not right.  If people are thinking, “Well everything is doomed anyway,” even if you’re under that opinion, you still do the best you can to save it!  We are supposed to take care of the world, so do it!  Whether you’re a Christian or not, do it!  Of course, there are things only God can take care of, but do your part too!  God doesn’t condone laziness, which is something I even need to work on.  God approves of working hard, not laziness, so do it!

Our final part will be 9. Trying to suck vulnerable people into your poorly researched worldview is evil.

 

In Christ,

Nick Peters

Debunking 9 Truly Evil Things Right Wing Christians Do Part 7

Do Right Wing Christians want to abuse homosexuals? Let’s talk about it on Deeper Waters.

Today, I turn the reins of the blog black over to my wife Allie. Please let her know what you think.

We have arrived at part 7. Abusing and killing queers is evil.  (http://www.alternet.org/belief/9-truly-evil-things-right-wing-christians-do?page=0%2C2)  To me, I find this honestly kind of silly to even discuss, but apparently it’s an important one to discuss.  We all know abusing and murdering any person is evil, and that is why I honestly find this rediculous that we need to talk about this.  But let’s get to this:

So first the article complains about these particular verses:

(Romans 1:26-27 KJV)  “For this cause God gave them up unto vile affections: for even their women did change the natural use into that which is against nature: And likewise also the men, leaving the natural use of the woman, burned in their lust one toward another; men with men working that which is unseemly, and receiving in themselves that recompence of their error which was meet.”(

1 Corinthians 6:9-10 KJV with their emphasis) “Know ye not that the unrighteous shall not inherit the kingdom of God? Be not deceived: neither fornicators, nor idolaters, nor adulterers, nor effeminate, nor abusers of themselves with mankind, nor thieves, nor covetous, nor drunkards, nor revilers, nor extortioners, shall inherit the kingdom of God.”

(1 Timothy 1:9-10 KJV with their emphasis)  “Knowing this, that the law is not made for a righteous man, but for the lawless and disobedient, for the ungodly and for sinners, for unholy and profane, for murderers of fathers and murderers of mothers, for manslayers, For whoremongers, for them that defile themselves with mankind, for menstealers, for liars, for perjured persons, and if there be any other thing that is contrary to sound doctrine.” 

(Jude 1:7-their emphasis) “Even as Sodom and Gomorrah, and the cities about them in like manner, giving themselves over to fornication, and going after strange flesh, are set forth for an example, suffering the vengeance of eternal fire.”

Apparently these verses are called “clobber verses.”  I don’t understand why they’re called clobber verses.  No where in these verses do I see anything about “clobbering.”  I don’t see anywhere about beating homosexuals and killing homosexuals.  All these verses are doing is explaining that homosexuality is as much of a sin as any other sin.  It’s just saying it as it is.  You don’t like it’s a sin, then tough!  I’m sure when you’re angry you wish it was okay to murder sometimes, but you know that’s wrong.  Just because you want to do it doesn’t make it right!  The writer of the article says

“For much of American history, the common term for queer was the biblical “sodomite,” implying that gays are so offensive to God that they pose a threat to society as a whole.”

Yea, homosexuality is offensive to God, just as offensive as any other sin!  As I have explained in another part of this series in responding to this article, I have struggled with bisexual tendancies.  Whether you struggle with tendancies like me, or you have it full-blown, it is a struggle, just as every sin is a struggle that we deal with.  It makes it even harder when everyone around us are telling us, “It’s fine!  It’s just how you are!  You’re born that way!  It’s normal!  Be who you are!”  People, I’m not asking you to not be true to yourself, but your sexuality doesn’t make you who you are!  It’s a part of you, but it’s not your identity!  It’s like my Asperger’s Syndrome.  It’s a part of me, but it’s not my identity!  I have AS, but it’s not me!  You are born into a sinful world and in this sinful world you are exposed to sin constantly.  Your innocence is continually being stripped away – some are stripped away quicker than others due to abuse.  As much as you may not want to hear it, you were born with a sin nature.  We were all born with a sin nature.  Our sin natures are different, but we all have them – even Christians.  Some lean on sexual sins (homosexuality, pedophilia, even cheating on a marital spouse), others lean on kleptomania (stealing), even others lean on hatred and murder.  What do you think addictions are?  They are placing things above God.  I have a very addictive personality and get addicted to things very easily.  I have struggled with different addictions for years (from pornography to eating constantly).  But I read something today that said, “Jesus is a friend of sinners.”  It’s so true!  I have friends, but I have no greater friend than the Lord of the universe!  He is my truest friend as cliche as that sounds.  I know if everyone abandoned me – my friends, my husband, my family, I would still have my God by my side, and he’s never going to leave me nor forsake me.  So yes, homosexuality is offensive to God, but so is every other sin!  All of my sins are just as offensive to God as all of your sins!

The writer then says, “Thanks to Christian missionaries, African and Latin American queers also have now lived for centuries now under the threat of violent death.”  Not all Christian missionaries are supporting this, I would go as far as saying very few Christian missionaries support this.  Christians who are out to kill homosexuals have their own agenda’s and a real problem with hate – and that in itself is a sin.  God doesn’t want a homosexual killed just as much as he doesn’t want anyone else killed.  The majority of Christians don’t want homosexuals killed.  Christians may not support homosexuality, but they do not wish for them to be killed.  Christians who kill homosexuals are shameful and I believe are even more responsible for their sin than those who don’t follow Christ because they know the truth; they are to show the love of God!  Murdering people is NOT showing God’s love!  As Christians, we are to be ambassadors of Christ, we are to represent him, and if we kill someone due to hate, we are even more responsible than those who don’t follow Christ!

To my brothers and sisters in Christ, it’s okay to hate the sin of homosexuality.  BUT to hate the sinner, the people, the homosexuals, this is WRONG!  Please, I beg of you, show God’s love to them, not hate.  You don’t have to support their lifestyle to show his love.  In fact, don’t!  Make it clear this is against the Word of God!  With all the lies the world tells them, they need to know the truth!  But do it all in love.  Show compassion to them.  They are as human as you and I are.  They hurt just as much as you and I hurt.  Christ died to save them just as much as you and I.  His blood was shed for them just as much as you and I.  Show God’s love to them.  Be the light to them.  For all you know, they may have no other light but the one you show them.  Our next part will be 8. Destroying Earth’s web of life and impoverishing future generations is evil.

 

 

In Christ,

Nick Peters

Brush With Death

What’s it like to come close to death and can you find hope afterwards? Let’s talk about it on Deeper Waters.

 

Many of you liked what I said about the death of Robin Williams. Today, I’m letting my wife Allie share some of her thoughts from a personal perspective.

 

I’m not sure if this is appropriate timing, but I feel like it might be a good time to share this.  This is my story of my brush with death.

 

Five years ago, I was dealing with some heavy depression.  I’ve always delt with heavy depression, but it reached a peak after a failed relationship with a guy I felt like I couldn’t take it anymore.  I felt like the greatest thing I could do for the world…was for me to not be in it anymore.  Besides…who would care?  Who would miss me?  I mean sure, my family would be upset, but surely they’d move on eventually right?  Everyone dies after all…just not by their own hands.  Of course, this is just how I thought.  I thought if I left no one would care or miss me except for my family and they’d only be sad for a little while, but would eventually get over it.  But the thing with suicide that is different from any other kind of death is that the family and friends will wonder, “How could I have missed the signs?  Could I have prevented them from doing this?  Could I have even been the cause of them doing this?”

So I grabbed whatever medicine I could.  I couldn’t grab them all because some of them were with my parents in their bathroom in the bedroom.  I remember chugging all those pills.  It was midnight.  After I took all the medicine, I called the guy and told him what I had done…he hung up on me.  I started writing out a note.  As I was writing it, my vision started become a little blurred and I became dizzy.  Suddenly my dad opens my bedroom door.  He asks me “What are you doing still up?”  It must’ve been between 1:30-2:30am at this point.  I told him I was just up writing something then I’d go to sleep.  I gave him one last look and told him I loved him and gave him a hug…thinking, “This is the last time I’m ever going to see my dad…he doesn’t even suspect a thing.”  He said he loved me too and left my room.  Even as I type this I’m getting teary-eyed.  When I looked in the mirror, I saw that I had four arms.  I knew this was going to be a long night.  At around 3am, it started getting really bad.  I couldn’t write anymore.  The room was moving.  The floor was moving, the walls were moving.  There were different colors.  I started getting a headache and there was a ringing in my ears.  I had to crawl to my bed.  Finally, I reached my bed.  As I layed flat on my bed, as still as I could, my feet felt like they were being lifted up, yet I could see they were still on my bed.  I turned off the light next to my bed.  My heart was racing faster than it’s ever raced before.  It literally felt like it was going to come right out of my chest!  I started having mild seizures.  My body would suddenly start seizing on its own every now and then, but then it would stop.  I was in a constant sweat, yet I had the chills.  I was cold…yet hot.  I was scared…I had heard that people who end their lives by their own hands go to hell because they didn’t trust God.  I don’t believe this theory today, but at the time, it was a scary thought.  I was praying and asking God to forgive me and asking God to please let me be with Him instead of being in hell.  I also asked God to be with my family and let them know they weren’t to blame for my death.  I had talked to a friend for a few hours until she absolutely had to go.  That’s when I started praying and prayed all night.  Then 8am comes.  I never fell asleep and I had still been praying.  My mom opens the door.  She says, “Allie, where is your brother’s medication?”  My vision wasn’t blurry anymore but I had a hard time focusing on her when I looked at her.  The first thought that came to mind was, “Why am I not dead yet?”  Then the next thought was, “I’ve been caught.”  I told her, “Look in my bathroom.”  She goes in my bathroom and I hear her yell my dad’s name, “Allie tried to kill herself!”  As I type this I feel nauseated, I can still taste the poison I put in my body.  I couldn’t really get out of bed.  My dad had to help me walk.  I couldn’t walk on my own.  The seizing had stopped.  My dad drove me to the hospital.  My mom told me she fainted in the bathroom.  We get to the hospital, and I feel terrible for the poor lady working at the front desk.  As we were talking with her, I just started vomitting.  I vomitted all over her and her nice suit.  My dad just barely missed my vomit.  I’ve been told my eyes were darting all over the place.  I was admitted into the hospital in-patient.  I was poked with needles seemed like every 10-15 minutes day and night for three days straight.  My heart was still racing rapidly.  Every now and then parts of my body would start shaking on their own, like my arm or my hand, or even a single finger, but then it would stop.  My parents would visit often.  They’d bring me Wendy’s since I hated hospital food.  I couldn’t sleep, partially because of the IV that was in my wrist.  Every time I started to doze off the darn thing would start beeping!  I had to drink this weird cranberry juice that had some medicine in it that would make me go to the bathroom and man did it make me go!  Even while I was in the hospital though, I had some crazy hallucinations.  The screen that monitored my heart I thought had games on it.  I thought the bed was moving and I even thought there were camera’s on the bed!  I thought I heard drs whispering about me behind my back.  I thought I had memories of the hospital, even though I had never been there before.  I thought I heard a flute being played.  Then the craziest one was I thought the room I was in was infested with red ants!  Red ants crawling everywhere!  The walls, ceiling, furniture, everywhere!  They’d bunch up in certain places and if I looked up at the ceiling, they’d fall on me!  But if they fell in my mouth, they tasted like paper.  I got so scared, it all seemed so real!  I had to talk to a neurologist and they had to reasure me what I was seeing, hearing, feeling, and even tasting weren’t real.  I heard my dad even cancelled a debate or speaking engagement he had because he wanted to stay with me during that time.  I had to have help going to the bathroom since I was hooked up to an IV and so many other stuff.  I was absolutely miserable.  I was really mad at God too.  I mean, I had no intention on surviving.  I had no intention on ending up in a hospital.  I also knew after doing a stunt like this, I’d end up going to another hospital I feared even more than going to hell – a mental hospital.  I had to go to one years prior for self-mutilation and it was one of the worst experiences I ever had.  Sure enough, a lady came in and spoke with my mom and me and said, “We have a nice hospital your daughter can be transferred at from here.”  I ended up going there afterwards.  As they were getting me off the hospital bed, I still had to have help because I was so weak.  They loaded me into the ambulance and transferred me to what I thought was going to be my worst nightmare – the mental hospital.  I was so exhausted…after having not slept for four days/nights straight.  When I got to the mental hospital, I barely stayed awake until finally I asked, “Can I go to bed?”  They thought it was odd of me asking, but when I told them, they were okay with it.  I finally got my first night of sleep that night.  They came in first thing in the morning and took some blood only one time the whole time I was there.  It actually wasn’t as bad as I thought it was going to be.  It wasn’t like the first mental hospital I had been to prior.  The staff was nice and it was kind of comfortable there.  I was in-patient there for four days.  I was then treated out-patient for a couple of weeks.  While I was there, I was still angry with God for allowing me to live, but I tried to make the best of it.  I was so hung over the guy I tried to end my life over, I thought, “If I get better, maybe he’ll take me back!”  I didn’t realize at the time I had only been a guinea pig to him the whole time – he had never given a care about me.  While I was being treated out-patient, I got an e-mail from someone saying, “I heard about you from (family friend) and heard you needed a friend.  I’m Nick Peters.  If you want to talk I’m here.”  I was intrigued to say the least.  So we corresponded back and forth.  I’ll be the first to admit, I wasn’t the nicest to him.  There were times I was pretty mean to him.  But there were times where he could’ve been really mean back at me, but he wasn’t.  There were times he showed he actually cared about me as a friend.  At one point while we were talking online, I was really quiet about something and got upset (I don’t remember what it was about).  All of a sudden I get this phone call from an unknown number.  I answer it and they’re like, “Are you okay?”  I ask, “Who is this?”

“Nick.”

“How did you get my number?”

“Facebook.”

He was actually worried about me because I got quiet.  I started seeing other things in Nick other than him just being nice to me.  I saw a joy in him about God I wanted to have.  I had drifted a bit away from God and I missed having a close relationship with him.  Instead of being angry with God, I tried to be thankful to him for rescuing me from death and tried to get closer to him again.  I also started developing feelings for Nick.  Eventually those feelings grew into something more and now we’ve been married for 4 years!  

 

God didn’t just save my life from death that day though.  My story is truly a miraculous one.  What I have failed to mention and will mention now is that the doctors thought I was going to need a new liver.  My liver and my vital organs should’ve failed.  All those drugs I took (and I haven’t said which ones I took on purpose – but they were some pretty hefty meds) were in my system for eight hours before anyone found me that morning.  I should’ve had organ failure.  My liver should’ve died…I should’ve died.  God not only saved my life, he protected my liver and my vital organs.  The only damage that was done to me was emotional and I have some brain damage that has a 50% chance of healing.  My story is one of hope, and I hope it gives you hope.  That day God showed me a portion of his power.  God said, “Live!” and I lived!  Today I am thankful to be alive!  God continues to show me his love and grace.  He had compassion on me through this difficult time in my life.  He has blessed me so much.  He is a God filled with compassion.  He is passionate for you!  Give him your burdens, for his burden is light.  He will give you rest.