I spent three hours this week with a NY Times
award-winning investigative reporter. She came to Enid to do a feature story on the increased Asian population in Enid and Garfield County (Oklahoma). She messaged me, "I found a story about you online. You said in that article that you believe your greatest legacy as pastor of Emmanuel Enid has been to raise the awareness of the needs of Pacific Islanders and to lead your church to do something about it. I'd like to meet you and interview you." She to Enid and spent three days researching for her soon-to-be feature story.
It seems that Garfield County is in the top five counties in the United States of America for the largest percentage increase in Asian population from the 2010 Census to the 2020 Census. Our church sent a pastor, Yohanes Arwakon, to the Marshall Islands to live for two years. Yohanes was trained by the U.S. State Department in helping immigrants and underprivileged communities to assimilate into the national culture. Our Pacific Island ministry, led by Pastor Yohanes, is superb.
I really liked this reporter. She is an intellectual, a compassionate human being. She identifies as a political liberal. She asked great questions, and I could tell she was at times a little confused by my answers.
Today's interview (08.26.2021) took a surprising twist. Rather than talking about the Asians and our church's ministry to this community, she asked me questions related to my opposition to "mask mandates, mandatory vaccines, and other related Covid-19 issues."
Why was she confused with my answers? She has believed the official narrative that only "red-necks, unscientific, and ignorant people" speak out against mask mandates or mandatory vaccines. She said, "Wade, to be honest, I'm struggling. Help me out. Why did you oppose the wearing of masks in July 2020? What's the big deal to you about wearing a mask?"
I smiled, and said, "No. You misunderstand. I am not opposed to anyone wearing a mask. When you first met me this past Tuesday, you got into the front seat of my car, with Yohanes and Yenni (Yohanes' wife) in the back seats, and you politely asked, "Do you mind if I wear a mask?" I responded, "Of course not!" Then you told me about your elderly parents that you will be visiting in Massachusetts next week. You were wearing a mask for them. Had you then asked me to wear a mask, I would have put on a mask. I am NOT opposed to masks. I am opposed to government MASK MANDATES."
"But why?", she said. "I don't understand. It's just a mask."
"Do you know anything about the Enneagram?" I asked.
"No," she responded. "What is it?"
"It is a personality test that really helps us understand other people. I think you may be a ONE on the Enneagram. Details, facts, truth, and contemplative thinking are very important to a ONE."
I continued, "I am an EIGHT. I am a big picture guy. I see the big picture and I act the way I do because I look far ahead to the consequences of actions today. I took my stand against government MANDATORY MASK MANDATES in 2020 because I could see that when any government (local or national) is allowed to force every citizen to wear a mask, then that government will most likely begin to MANDATE other things, infringing on citizens' individual liberties. You give an inch, the government takes a mile. The immigrants that have come to this country love the United States because of our enjoyment of personal LIBERTY. I opposed MASK MANDATES in 2020 because I could see it was the beginning of a massive government overreach and an infringement on our individual liberties. Social fascism - i.e. "communism" - is becoming rampant in the United States. At some point, Americans must say, "Stop!"
The reporter then asked, "So you opposed mandatory masks because you could see that our country was headed toward becoming a socialist/fascist country? I just don't see it, Wade!" she said, and continued, "Our government is interested in public health. That's all. This is a pandemic. Can you give me some examples of government overreach that illustrate your concern that we are losing our liberty in the United States of America?
She asked me, so I answered.
My answer startled the reporter. I could tell that I had gotten through to her with my illustration. Here is what I said.
"Two weeks ago, a Pacific Islander that our church has helped came to see me. We had assisted him, his wife, and his kids in multiples areas. He had learned some financial principles through us, his wife had been helped by our English as a Second Language ministry, and we ultimately worked to successfully obtain legal United States citizenship for this entire family. He came to me in tears:
"Pastor Wade, I am about to go bankrupt. Three years ago I began investing the money that I had save from my two jobs to purchase small rental homes. My wife and I worked to restore those homes and then we rented them out. We only bought, remodeled, and own FOUR HOMES, but it was enough to pay for our son's college education. However, since February 2020, I have NOT BEEN PAID ANY RENT by those living in my homes. The United States' Centers for Disease Control (CDC) came out and told our RENTERS that they did not have to pay RENT for their residence (OUR homes) because of COVID-19. They have extended "No Rent" for eighteen months. We are going broke!"
I looked at the reporter and said, "THAT is why I opposed mask mandates in 2020. When the CENTER FOR DISEASE CONTROL (CDC) begins to make UNILATERAL DECISIONS (approved by a President) as to what a "landlord" in the United States can and cannot do, then we have a government gone berserk. The United States is becoming a communist government. I opposed mask mandates in 2020 because I could see back then that our government overreach on masks could become government overreach on vaccines, rent, work, and other things."
In short, the United States CDC has become strikingly similar to the CCP (Chinese Communist Party).
I make no apology for opposing government mandates on health. Winston Churchill once said,
"Our inheritance of well-founded slowly conceived codes of honor, morals, and manners, the passionate convictions which so many hundreds of millions share together of the principles of freedom and justice, are far more precious to us than anything which scientific discoveries could bestow."
When did the United States turn to scientists to run our country? I'll tell you: When the World Health Organization became dominated by members of the Chinese Communist Party.
Wade, I am stunned by the comparison of the CDC to the CCP. But when the CDC mandates mask-wearing, lockdowns, businesses closing, schools going virtual, and it summarily limits group gatherings... You've made a point!ReplyDelete
Shocking isn't it?Delete
Yep. Crazy days.ReplyDelete
Anybody else see Biden’s ridiculous usage of Isaiah verse today…well here you go:ReplyDelete
Sure did. And don't care to hear any more tripe from "Evangelicals for Biden" and the ridiculous ERLC or TGC about the evils of "Christian Nationalism".Delete
it's a 'Catch Twenty-two'ReplyDelete
'temporary' measures are put in place pending the coming of a vaccine and the 'end' of the pandemic
the vaccine comes, but too many no-takers and wham! another 'surge', this time driven by a powerful variant which attacks younger people as well
reaction to the surge? more 'temporary measures', more thoughts of the end of the pandemic in 'eighteen' months (give me a break) and we come around full circle
the upside of freedom and liberty is that we are able to live according to our consciences;
the downside? we are responsible for the consequences of our decisions
in THIS country, I anticipate that there will be a cycle of hope, surges, mitigating responses, hope, surges, etc, etc. etc.
unless of course the next 'variant' is not responsive to the current vaccines,
IF this happens
THEN the whole scene may go into a hyperphase of panic and many changes will flow, most not comfortable,
Right now, the Covid virus comes in butt naked last on my top five list of concerns.Delete
Iremember the first week or two of 'panic buying' when the whole country was preparing for mitigation when the hospitals were filling up with patients needing oxygen and eventually the 'portable morgue' refrigerated trucks were called and parked outside of hospitals in the Northeast cities and elsewhere . . .ReplyDelete
it was a time of the clearing out of shelves of certain items: COFFEE (my one addiction) was going fast, toilet paper (you had to get to the store the minute they opened and it was 'rationed' in amount sold to one customer) and paper towels . . . they were just plain hard to find. So it began. And for a time it was all like watching something in slow motion, until my sister in law got sick and the Family were on the phone daily checking on her just to see if she was still alive, for goodness sake, and the news was 'yes', but she is unable to breathe without the tubes still . . .
If 'the virus' becomes 'personal' to people who have not worried much in the ways that the rest of us have worried; it may be that they might begin to have 'empathy' for all those who suffer, or at least to begin to understand what 'the rest of us' are concerned about.
The ONLY thing I cannot sort out is how a PARENT, knowing the Delta Variant is making young children ill, would want their child to go to school without wearing a mask and distancing. That seems inhuman to me, against 'nature', as most parents would do ANYTHING to protect their beloved little ones from harm. This, I cannot understand. This is unnatural.
The thing is people worry about side effects from 'the vaccine', but are not concerned for the long-term effects of a covid viral infection. If covid could take down my strong, healthy sister-in-law, a pediatric nurse-practitioner to a shell of a person who goes around carrying her oxygen with her, I can be very fearful for how a stronger variant of the virus might impact on the future health of a young child.
Some parents need to re-think their politics before sending their children into harm's way, yes.
some more thoughts, on 'freedom' and its consequences in an imperfect world
I have the sense of there being a global power of "Babylon" running things and that individual nations are no longer in sovereign status but rather simply pawns being played by "Babylon". It is driven by mad scientists who have placed themselves as gods who engineer and create new, man-made, strains of deadly viruses, release them to create plagues and then create the remedies they control as a means for limiting the global damage. All for the means of control and assertion of world domination.ReplyDelete
We now know that this Corona virus source is not one nation but that the United States sources were complicit with the China forces centered in Wuhan labs to engineer the "gain of function" Frankenstein monster which has now become an on-going reality in today's world. Not only has it been exposed that Fauci's stealth funding through National Institution of Health but Federal grants being given to the NIH for its participation with the Wuhan labs years prior to the release of the Corona virus.
It is foolish and naive to propose that what has taken place was due exclusively to the Chinese and their Wuhan labs given that US virology and epidemiologist scientists were working hand in hand to create the global plague that has taken place. Those Babylon power players have succeeded in implanting themselves in control over all the propaganda and media hype that has transpired as well as manipulating national politicians and health systems throughout the world as they serve as unwitting pawns used to implement their strategy of global domination.
"And upon her forehead [was] a name written, MYSTERY, BABYLON THE GREAT, THE MOTHER OF HARLOTS AND ABOMINATIONS OF THE EARTH. And I saw the woman drunken with the blood of the saints, and with the blood of the martyrs of Jesus: and when I saw her, I wondered with great admiration." Rev.17:4
The fulfillment of the prophecies of the final generation are upon us.
Good news: Today, my sister, Ann, and I talked of old stories for an hour in her hospital room. She will be released tomorrow. The hospital had a machine that you held your head against. It took your temperature and picture that was printed on a sticky paper. Required to have it on your shirt.
Coming home, a large highway sign had three words: FINISH THE WALL.
Coming home today saw this:ReplyDelete
The train was a mile long.
Today is "Day 12" for me (wife on "Day 8", some steps behind but doing okay). I am almost feeling "normal" and ecstatic! Even drank a cup of coffee, first time interested since this began, and it was great!ReplyDelete
Feel so liberated! And without having that "thing" in me!
Great word, RB.ReplyDelete
Made my day. Continued prayers.
FANTASTIC news about your sister Ann!
on prayers of thanksgiving for healing, comes this from the orthodox:ReplyDelete
" "When I prayed I was new," wrote a great theologian of Christian antiquity,
"but when I stopped praying I became old."
Thanks; you’re rejoicing about my sister’s improved condition made my heart feel good.
Today’s newspaper told of a mother years ago of seeing three marines and a Chaplain coming to her house. She knew her son was dead.
Now that Biden has let the Taliban win, she feels her son has died in vain.
so sad, thisReplyDelete
"25 For I know that my Redeemer liveth,ReplyDelete
And that He shall stand at the latter day upon the earth:
26 And though after my skin worms destroy this body,
Yet in my flesh shall I see God:
27 Whom I shall see for myself,
And mine eyes shall behold, and not another;
Though my reins be consumed within me."
(Job, chapter 19)
"They shall grow not old, as we that are left grow old;
Age shall not weary them, nor the years condemn.
At the going down of the sun and in the morning
We will remember them."
(Lawrence Binyon, 'For the Fallen')
Excellent article, Wade. We are also benefiting from listening to your sermon on Daniel and looking forward to the following series.ReplyDelete
I would like to comment on your citing of the enneagram. Please see Marcia Montenegro who deals with the questionable source of the enneagram. She is a former new age astrologer who has a site called Christian Answers to the New Age (CANA ) . She is highly respected and has several in depth articles showing that the enneagram is actually false.
This comment has been removed by the author.ReplyDelete
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'THE HEALING GARDEN'ReplyDelete
You spoke of the Talban that killed many by his suicide bombing. He believed his death would insure him with 21 virgins after he died. Don’t you know his surprise of being in the flames of hell?
We use the book of Job for much information how to live life; (Though he slay me, yet I will trust in him.” (Job 13:15 KJ)
I believe it’s great literature, but it never actually never happened because Jesus said: “I saw Satan fall from heaven like lightning!” (Luke 10:18 NLT)
HOW DID SATAN GET BACK TO HEAVEN?
“Now there was a day when the sons of God came to present themselves before the Lord, and Satan came also among them.” (Job 1:6 KJ)
“One day the members of the heavenly court came to present themselves before the Lord, and the Accuser, Satan came with them.” (Job 1:6 NLT)
Hello REX RAY, apparently the Book of Job is not to be taken 'literally', but more as a teaching parableReplyDelete
I did find some info on the Book of Job, this:
'satan' is often referred to in Scripture as 'the enemy', the 'divider' (diabolos), the devil who stirs things up and divides people with his lies, 'satan's' downfall was the sin of pride
Do you have the Book of Job in your bible? I thought it was in all of the KJV versions. I am not certain what is in the fundamentalist-evangelical Scriptures to be honest, as I am aware of the great number of different translations of Scripture that are sold these days.
Hope you had a good Lord's Day.
I thought Job was in all Bibles.
WOW! Your reference sure adds a lot to why Job never happened.
It doesn’t make since that God would have a ‘contest’ with Satan. I used to play tennis with a friend; I’d never have a contest with someone I didn’t like.
Also, Job would mourn the death of his children forever regardless of more children.
Yes, it was a good Lord’s Day. We had our first deacon’s meeting in many years. It was decided to have more deacons to replace the ones that have left the church. Also, the type of songs got hammered as the people won’t sing the seven eleven songs. (That’s seven words repeated eleven times.) The song leader that’s responsible doesn’t notice because his guitar’s so loud and he sings with his eyes shut.
REX RAY, your Church (at least the older people) might be happier with some good old-fashioned shape-note singing (sacred harp music):ReplyDelete
I'm familiar with the articles on the origin of the Enngeagram. Like anything, something can be taken to the extreme and misused or abused. I think it's a good tool to understand personality, but like you, ultimately I believe the fruit of the Spirit is what is necessary in each of us.
On Post 8-8-21 is this comment to God by Rex.ReplyDelete
Have you ever thought about why Martin Luther believe the Book of James shouldn’t be in the Bible?
Maybe because James didn’t get close to being ‘saved’ by John 3:16 but said:
“There will be no mercy for those who have not shown mercy to others. But if you have been merciful, God will be merciful when he judges you.” (James 2:13 NLT)
I’ve been told several times that I talk too much about my brother.ReplyDelete
James didn’t have that problem as in his book he referenced God 64 times and his Brother six times.
My main beef about James is Paul taking the advice that led to his death:ReplyDelete
“Here’s what we want you to do…” (Acts 21:23 NLT) “Do therefore this what we say to thee…(KJ)
In a few minutes, its been announced Biden will tell what he thinks on the present condition of Afghanistan.ReplyDelete
NO, we will hear what his speech writers have written.
It's liberating to have had Covid, recovered, and now have a sense of having a measure of immunity.ReplyDelete
Things are very weird. My close friend's 8 year old daughter now has it.
Forgive me, but given that this was a man-made, engineered and deployed viral infestation, I tend to attribute any and all subsequent distorted versions as being of the same wicked, vile, evil, sources at work to accomplish whatever perverted, un-godly purpose they are about.
Why would I not?
I went in to the clinic on Sunday to get a follow-up COVID test thinking that it was necessary that I get one to show I was "negative" and therefore cleared to be back in circulation.ReplyDelete
The doctor said that they do not give "follow-up" tests because I would test "positive" for at least 90 days following having had COVID! She said testing would be useless. When I asked if I was expected to wait 90 days she said no, I am free to go out as soon as my symptoms subside.
Then she said, "You need to get the vaccine."
"What? Why would I get the vaccine when I am immune?"
She responded, "You don't know how long you will be immune."
I said, "Isn't it true that the vaccine gives you immunity for only 6 months?"
"Yes, but you still need to get the vaccine."
Then, I pushed the envelope a bit too far:
"Given that this entire virus was intentionally created by American and Chinese epidemiologists/scientists and released into the public and those same sources are the ones who created and are promoting the vaccines, why would anyone trust anything that they come out with or say? You are a doctor and have more access to all of this information than me but even a simple lay person like myself has access to the information that is public knowledge and has been exposed by Congressional hearings."
At this point, the poor doctor had no response but just jerked the paper I was holding out of my hand and said, "I've had enough of this." and went to get some post Covid instructions for me.
When she returned I apologized for upsetting her and assured her how much I appreciated her devotion and hard work and how I praised God for her and all of those many front-line medical people who were working tirelessly to do the best job they could.
I did learn that apparently the entire medical community is functioning under the pressure of conceding to the hype and propaganda by the immensely powerful players in control of the system today. Doctors are not allowed to sincerely considered any proposals that might be in opposition to what is being forced upon them. Their hands are tied, whether they admit it or not.
Please pray for the hurricane victims in Louisiana.ReplyDelete
Anybody heard anything about the "100+" Americans reportedly abandoned in Afghanistan by the US Government?ReplyDelete
Oh, just heard. Our US regime is negotiating with the Taliban for the release of the Americans. How encouraging.ReplyDelete
Just how do those who voted in this regime reconcile their decision each day?
Truly we are living in the Twilight Zone.
RB, I got into a horrific conversation at work re: mandatory vaccination. Although I am vaccinated, I very much believe in a person's right to choose whether they take the vaccine. Recently, a person who sits beside me went out with COVID. To be honest, I had no fear of infection. The conversation re: mandatory vaccination (including forcing those previously infected to take the vaccine) morphed into "punitive measures" such as refusing to pay for health insurance. I find that odious.ReplyDelete
At my place of employment, we pay the usual supplement to health insurance for those who smoke, for those who are obese, for those who are diabetic, for those who have a multitude of other health problems, many of which are related to individual health choices. Yes, we do give a discount to those who earn it via a program that tracks healthy choices (like blood pressure control, cholesterol control, exercise, etc) . This idea that we become punitive for a failure to vaccinate is, in my mind, a very slippery slope, yet one that people are gleefully putting forth. It comes from the nat
As Americans, we are falling victim to our own echo chamber. Other countries are using vaccine passports (which are likely misguided), but natural immunity counts towards the passport (get vaccinated or have proof of previous infection) (look re: Israel's green pass.....). I do not think vaccine passports should work, but I would have more faith in the elites if they acknowledged the power of natural immunity.
After having this very odious conversation Monday evening, I had a second similar conversation yesterday evening, yet so different. The infectious disease doctor in our area was frustrated. He looks at every COVID death as a unnecessary death. He thinks everyone should be vaccinated. I pointed out the fact that we allow people to choose unhealthy lifestyles every day. I pointed out the smoker with their subsequent cancer, or COPD, or heart disease could have avoided disease had he or she chosen differently, yet we still take care of them without blame (just resignation that bad choices of caught up with them). He suggested that smoking doesn't hurt those around them....I suggested that it does, through second hand smoke. Smoking just kills people over a longer duration of time. Although he had the same basic discussion as the person the previous night, he listened to me, and we left each other acknowledging that each had a point and that this current state was a tragedy that seems never ending.
For my infectious disease doctor friend, his perspective is not shaped by media, it is faced by watching people die daily. For him, it is a loss of life that he has never seen before, and he has an incredibly different perspective than most. During the first wave, we mainly lost the old.....now we are losing people in their 40's and 50's. Many thought they were healthy, but perhaps, we would have gotten more vaccinations in people at risk if we talked about the significant risk factors that obesity and diabetes creates. For some reason, there has been a narrative that we shouldn't "fat shame" yet obesity is a risk for significantly poor outcomes from COVID as well as a host of other disease processes.
Anon E Moose, thank you for sharing your experiences and your openness to others making choices as they personally feel led.ReplyDelete
I return to church this Sunday after being out sick with COVID and begin teaching on the writings of John. I will touch upon 1 John, which in effect tells me that "the love for another brother and sister in Christ trumps any an all other issues, whether political, personal opinions, or doctrinal differences."
For me to compromise my love, respect, support, for my born-again brother and sister in Christ due to the personal devotion I have to my own opinion or persuasion and refuse to acknowledge they they have the indwelling of the same Holy Spirit of God that guides and directs me is an affront to my heavenly Father and positions myself in the substitute position of being lord over my own life. NOTHING is worth that.
I am dismayed at the manner in which internal controversy, division, and conflict among the collective body of Saints today is being instigated by Satan in a manner that diminishes the one attribute that Christ mandated to prevail as the identifier of His Church; that is "love for one another". That is to be the one distinguishing mark that sets the Saints apart from all the rest of this dying, wicked, and un-Godly world.
Anon E. Moose,ReplyDelete
You mentioned cholesterol control as being good. Have you read the books by Doctors Kurt A. Oster and Doctor Nicholas Sampsidis?
I’ll quote some of what they wrote:
“In 1900, heart disease did not rank as one of the six leading causes of death. Fifty years later it was the number one killer.”
Homogenization of milk started in 1932. 12 years later, people started having heart disease.
Cow’s milk contains a substance called xanthine oxidase (XO). If it has not been homogenized, it passes through the body with no harm.
Milk that’s been homogenized has such small molecules, they pass through the walls of the intestine into the blood circulation carrying XO that begins to ‘eat’ causing damage to arteries.
Cholesterol is manufactured by the body, and is not made to clog up its own arteries to start heart disease.
If a person gets cut, the healing process starts with a scab. The same with damaged arteries; cholesterol acts as a ‘scab’. But because it’s found at the scene of the ‘crime’, it gets the blame.
Dr. Oster’s book list 13 countries showing:
Heart attack per 100,000.
How many pounds of milk per person was drank.
What percent was homogenized.
Finland: 244.7, 593, 90%
America: 211.8, 273, 95%
Japan: 39.1, 48, 5%
Please pray for the hurricane victims who are in crisis.ReplyDelete
RB, I have been amazed at how COVID has torn the "church" apart. One of the blogs that I read was reporting about mega churches still holding services despite government edicts to shut down.....but the reporting wasn't friendly reporting. Recently, there have been reports of COVID cases being "covered up" in these same churches -- reporting akin to the reporting on sexual abuse in the church. In my mind it is not the same thing at all. My local church closed the doors and hid behind computer screens because of the mandates.....all the while people have been suffering and dying without the support of the church. Because I respect those that make those decisions (perhaps trying to respect my brother and sister in Christ), I voice my frustrations in places like this blog, yet I fear that we have given up to easily and it is a short jump before the government tells us that we can not meet in the church at all.ReplyDelete
Rex, I am not familiar with that author, and would like to suggest that my company (not me) has chosen to reward for controlled cholesterol. Playing the devil's advocate here.....it is hard to compare heart attack rates from the 1900's to current day illness since so many people died of infectious disease early on. Many did not live to the age that their coronary artery disease or peripheral vascular disease could be appreciated.
However, I will grant you that the standard American diet (SAD) is quite sad (literally) and potentially the root cause of much current day illness. Just as the marathon run to "COVID Zero" is going to be strewn with people dying of other illness and succumbing to other diseases/states because of (so many different things.....), our attempts to control health via drugs and supplements will never be as good as taking care of the body that God gave us through good, non-processed foods (or at least less processed foods) and exercise. I grew up in the day when eggs were bad and if you had to eat an egg, just eat the white. Recently eggs-- the whole egg have come back into vogue as a food that has a lot of good fats. I am NOT suggesting that medications and vaccines are not good AND helpful (they have expanded our life expectancy so that we can suffer other diseases), but as a society we have leaned to hard on those "fixes" to the exclusion of taking care of ourselves and our diets.
Anon E. Moose,ReplyDelete
You mentioned eggs being good to eat.
Eating food that can be eaten raw is better because ‘heat’ kills the good and the bad.
For over 20 years, I’ve ground in a blender, one cup of pecans, one orange, and six raw eggs for breakfast. (I’m 89.)
Rex, sounds like you have found the perfect meal (for you)......not certain I could stomach that, but you are correct, foods that can be eaten raw have more nutrients when eaten raw. Some of us need the denaturing process of heating to make some foods palatable.ReplyDelete
Rex Ray, I just decided not to spend the night at your house unless I bring my own box of cereal.ReplyDelete
RB and Moose,ReplyDelete
If I tried to swallowed a raw egg, it’d come up faster than it went down.
You can’t drink it like water since the blender only runs one second. Pecans have to be chewed which helps digestion. I add liquid chocolate for flavor.
People that don’t know, like it because it tastes delicious.
RB, you’re funny.