Friday, July 8, 2022

The Deception of the Dark Side

 


I was a teenager when Stars Wars first appeared on the big screen. I remember being in awe of the cinematography and special effects. The youngsters of today look at that movie and laugh at the special effects. But, at that time, we had never seen anything like it, so back off youngsters (saying this in my best Adam Sandler voice). Lol

As many from my generation, I was hooked on Star Wars from that point. However,  some how the 2005 movie "Star Wars: Episode III - Revenge of the Sith" escaped my attention. I guess that was a busy year. How did I miss it on TNT or on a long flights to and from Asia? 

Whatever happened, I made amends a few nights ago and watched it on TNT. The movie focuses on Anakin Skywalker's transformation into Darth Vader. As I watched it something immediately jumped to my attention. The Darkside in Star Wars is an excellent example of the dark forces of Satan.

Before you Star War fans get upset, I'm not trying to compare Star Wars to Christianity. I don't think that was the point George Lucas set out to make. There's actually more dualism in the series than anything else.

Young Anakin was supposed to be the "Chosen One" who would bring balance to the Force. Obi-Wan Kenobi trained him in the way of the Jedi. Things were going well. Anakin was learning and the Force was strong within him. He discovered his wife was pregnant and they were excited about the future.

That's when things started going in a different direction. Long story short, he becomes friends with Chancellor Palpatine. During that time, Anakin dreams about his wife dying during childbirth just as he dreamed about his mother.

Palpatine started planting seeds of deception in Anakin's mind. He began separating Anakin from his mentor and those on the Jedi counsel. He planted seeds of doubt in Anakin's mind about their commitment to him. Palpatine then reveals that he is on the Dark Side and he can give Anakin the power to save his wife's life.

As we know, Anakin succumbed to the lure of power and joined the Dark Side and became Darth Vader. His wife does die during child birth, and Palpatine, who is now Darth Sidious, tells Vader that he killed his own wife. Deception leads to death ... both physical and spiritual. 

What jumped out at me was how evil can look so good and lure us into its trap. Satan can make sin look so appealing. If we allow deceptive thoughts to enter our minds we start to focus on them until they consume us. Then we're trapped.

Satan has many weapons of deception at his disposal - lies, money, power, sex, drugs, and alcohol just to name a handful. Our appetites can quickly change to desire those things, which will eventually destroy us. Do not be deceived. Satan's desire is to destroy as many of us as he can. 

"Be sober-minded; be watchful. Your adversary the devil prowls around like a roaring lion, seeking someone to devour," God warns us through the Apostle Peter in 1 Peter 5:8. Once we slip into the darkness, we begin a journey to eternal destruction.

However, there is a way out, and it's the only way. His name is Jesus. We read in Romans 6:23, "For the wages of sin is death, but the free gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord."

Jesus will bring us into the light as He is in the light. "But if we walk in the light, as He is in the light, we have fellowship with one another, and the blood of Jesus His Son cleanses us from all sin." 1 John 1:7

Luke, Darth Vader's son, eventually saves his father by turning Vader back to the Light Side just before Vader dies. That's Hollywood. What I'm talking about is reality. We have a choice. Do we want Light or Darkness? Life or death?

"If you confess with your mouth that Jesus is Lord and believe in your heart that God raised Him from the dead, you will be saved. For with the heart one believes and is justified, and with the mouth one confesses and is saved." - Romans 10:9-10

I encourage you to confess Jesus as your Lord and believe God raised Him from the dead and be saved today. Heaven and Hell are both real, and those are the only destinations after this life. Heaven is eternal life. Hell is eternal destruction, which will be thrown into the Lake of Fire for eternity. I pray you will choose Jesus, therefore choose life. You can also click on the following link to a page on our website for more information, https://loveinactionministries.com/follow-jesus

If you have any questions or if you made that decision today, please email me at ken.tuck@loveinactionministries.com

Jesus loves you. He loves us all, and He wants to spend eternity with each one of us.

Sunday, June 12, 2022

Please prayerfully consider a financial donation


 

God always provides, and He is always right on time.
God's provision comes through His people as He touches our hearts and we respond. That's why we are able to do everything we do here at Love In Action. God touches people's hearts and they respond. That includes financially.
Simply put, it takes money to run this ministry. It's really no different than a business except we are a non-profit who doesn't sell any merchandise to receive financial support. We are totally supported by the generosity of individuals, churches, and businesses.
It's extremely humbling every time we receive a check, cash, and donations sent via PayPal and Venmo. It's one of the most humbling things we have experienced. We are so thankful to everyone who donates to support us. Over the years, we have received gifts from $2.50 to $50,000, and we thank God for each one. The fact that people give so we can proclaim the Gospel of Jesus Christ through acts of compassion is incredible. We can't say thank you enough.
The past three months have been our lowest months in years as far as financial donations. We aren't worried, because we know God is in control and we are doing well.
As we enter into the summer months, we ask that you continue to give. If you have never given please prayerfully consider becoming a giving member of our Love In Action Family. We could certainly use your support and prayers as poverty and homelessness never takes a break.
As inflation continues to rise, people's needs do as well. We expect needs to increase as much as, if not more, in the coming months than they did during the peak of the Covid pandemic. Please keep us in you prayer and please support us financially. If you can't, we understand, and we pray for God to meet your needs as well. If you can give and even become a regular monthly giver that would be wonderful.
There are three ways you can give:
- Mail checks to: Love In Action, P.O. Box 85, Dothan, AL 36302
- Via PayPal through the link on our donation web page - https://loveinactionministries.com/donate
- Via the Venmo app. Our username is:
@Loveinaction-InternationalMini and also online at www.venmo.com/Loveinaction-InternationalMini
Love In Action International Ministries, Inc., is a 501(c)3 tax-exempt, non-profit Christian organization. All donations and gifts are tax deductible. Our tax-exempt Federal ID number is 63-1274627.
As you give, you are storing up treasure in Heaven (Matthew 6:20).
Thank you. May God bless you.

Monday, April 11, 2022

Thank you Dothan Fire Department

The abandoned building next to Love In Action was engulfed in flames this afternoon. We thank the brave firefighters of the Dothan Fire Department for their quick response and for protecting our buildings. We thank God for His protection of the firefighters and our buildings.

We are blessed to live in Dothan, Alabama, for so many reasons. I often tell people from all over the US and beyond that we live in one of the best places in the world because of the people.

Today was another great example as firefighters from the Dothan Fire Department battled a fully engulfed abandoned building next door to Love In Action. Not only did they bring an intense and dangerous fire under control, but they also protected our Love In Action buildings. Thank you, Dothan Fire Department.

Martha and I were out of town visiting our parents when we started receiving phone calls about the fire. The first was Barbie Nolan from Covenant UMC. She saw the billows of spoke darkening the sky near Love In Action. Mayor Mark Saliba called  right after that, and then Dothan Fire Department Deputy Chief Chris Etheredge called me. 

I quickly pulled up our security cameras and saw what was going on. The fire was very intense. I arrived a couple of hours later and they had the blaze under control. As I sat there and looked at the scene I marveled at God's protection. There'a a large oak tree on the other property, but it hangs over the drive thru at Love In Action. It was the grace and protection of God and the hard work of the firefighters that the tree didn't catch fire and spread. Praise God!

Rumors quickly swirled that Love In Action's building was on fire. I immediately took a photo with one of our security cameras and posted to our Facebook page and reported that it was not our building, but the one next door. I then called my brother from another mother, Mark Giles at The Joy FM, and asked him if they would announce the fire was not at LIA and that we were all fine. Russ and Nancy did an excellent job announcing that. 

Martha and I are very thankful tonight for God's protection. Not only did He protect our building, but most importantly, He protected all of the firefighters. We are thankful none of them were injured.

Thank you again, Dothan FD. Y'all are the best. The brave men and women who serve our city as first responders should be thanked often and prayed for daily. May God continue to bless each one and our wonderful city.

Dothan Firefighters working hard to put out the flames. Great work guys! God bless all of you.


Tuesday, March 29, 2022

Supply chain issues hurting our food ministries


AMX Trucking is such a blessing each month for hauling supplies to us from Orlando.

We reach over 10,000 people every month with the Gospel of Jesus Christ through our food ministries. We cook food and serve it on our campus and take it throughout the community to the homeless and those living in poverty.

We provide groceries for those in need through our food pantry on campus and throughout the community during our community outreaches. We provide food for ministries throughout the Wiregrass to help them share Jesus while meeting vital needs of people in their areas.

Food is a very important part of our ministry. Jesus said He would make us "fishers of men," and food has always been the bait to bring people in to hear the Gospel, while also meeting that vital need of food for those in need. Right now, we are having a hard time getting food for all of our food ministries.

Our monthly food truck from the Southeastern Food Bank in Orlando arrived last week. However, we didn't receive one can of food. There were bulk food items we can use in our kitchen, but only chips, salad dressing, chicken bullion cubes, and some cake mixes came in for our food pantry.

It's not our food bank's fault. It is a struggle for all food banks and ministries like ours around the nation due to supply chain issues. Add to that the high fuel prices and inflation and things have gotten real tough on everyone, including us.

However, we aren't worried. We know God will provide, and He often does that through His people. So, if individuals, families, churches, or organizations would like to do non-perishable food drives to help us that would be a wonderful blessing as we head into April very low on food.

Also, if anyone has or has connections to people with perishable food items, especially meats, we could use the help there as well as we cook a lot of food to serve people each week. 

If you need to contact us about helping with any of these needs, please email Ken at ken.tuck@loveinactionministries.com or call us at 334-494-4995. You can also message us on Facebook.

Please help us with food if you can, and please pass the word to others. Thank you and God bless you all.

We want to thank the Southeastern Food Bank for all of their help over the years. Please include them in your prayers as they are a blessing to so many people, especially in Alabama and Florida.

We also thank our friends at AMX Trucking for hauling our load of food and supplies every month from Orlando. Y'all are a tremendous blessing.

Wednesday, March 23, 2022

God still performs miracles

 Have you ever heard some Bible experts talk about how miracles were only for the apostolic age? Their reasoning is since the whole Bible wasn't available at that time like it is now, God used miracles to prove the Apostles' message was true.

I agree God does work through miracles. That's one way people believed Jesus was the Messiah. Read John 7:31, "But many of the crowd believed in Him; and they were saying, 'When the Christ comes, He will not perform more signs than those which this man has done, will He?'"

The miracles we read about in the Gospels show God's love and mercy upon mankind, His prize creation. We read in Acts about the many miracles God worked through the Apostles, and it did confirm their message and people believed.

One issue I have with some Bible experts is I contend God still works miracles today. Hebrew 13:8 proclaims that "Jesus Christ is the same yesterday and today, and forever." If Jesus healed when He walked this earth, and He did, then that means He heals people today, and He does. I've seen Him do it.

When a man who is told he will never walk again after being hit by a freight train stands up and walks, you can't convince me that isn't a miracle. I knew this man very well. He was one of my best friends. I knew his condition. I also knew he believed Jesus would heal him, and He did. My friend walked the rest of his life, even in foreign lands to proclaim the Gospel.

When people have cancer and it suddenly disappears, how can anyone say that's not a miracle? I've seen it happen. Lumps disappear without medical treatment. Leukemia goes away without any medical treatment. That's the miracle wonder working power of God.

Why does God still perform miracles today? Because He loves us, and He is still confirming His message to an unbelieving world.

Unscrupulous people disguising themselves as men and women of God have made a lot of money by faking miracles. They will have to answer to God for that. Those people have caused many to doubt in miracles. That's simply Satan at work to confuse and divert people from the one true God.

Let me encourage you. Don't seek the signs. Don't seek "miracle workers." Seek after the Messiah, Jesus Christ the Son of God. When we seek Jesus first, we find Him. God tells us in Jeremiah 29:13 that when we seek Him with all of our heart we will find Him.

It's not that He is hiding from us. In fact, we see in Genesis how God looked for Adam and Eve after they sinned. He didn't ignore them. They hid from God, but God looked for them.

If you need a miracle in your life, ask God for it in the name of Jesus. Trust Him. I'm not guaranteeing you a miracle will happen. They don't always happen. I have no idea why one person is healed from cancer and another isn't. All I know is we have to trust God and believe He is doing what's right, because guess what, He is.

When we truly follow Jesus and obey His Great Commission, we will see amazing things happen. Remember, Jesus tells us in Mark 16:17-18, "These signs will accompany those who have believed: in My name they will cast out demons, they will speak with new tongues; they will pick up serpents, and if they drink any deadly poison, it will not harm them; they will lay hands on the sick, and they will recover.”

He wasn't just talking about the Apostles. He was and is talking to all of His followers. Let's be Great Commission Christians, and as we follow Jesus we will see miracles happen. But, most of all, we will see people give their lives to Jesus. That's the greatest miracle of all. Thanks to Jesus, eternities are changed from an eternity of total separation and torment in Hell to an eternity in paradise, Heaven with Jesus. 

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