The poverty problem in America is not about jobs and it is not about racism.

Oseola McCarty is a 75-year-old African-American cleaning woman from Mississippi. From working all her life she accumulated enough savings to donate $150,000 to a student scholarship program at the University of Southern Mississippi. In short, a black woman, living in the most racist and poorest state in the union (almost half her life under segregation), can earn enough money washing other people’s clothes to save $150,000 and give it away. If Oseola McCarty can do that, what American cannot?

Oseola McCarty’s example tells us that the poverty problem in America is not about jobs and it is not about racism. Poverty is about individual failure. It is about family dysfunction, character disorder and self-destructive behavior. That is what Oseola McCarty’s achievement means. It is no surprise that, while most self-appointed spokesmen get tongue-tied when asked if African-Americans have gained anything from the civil rights revolution of the last 30 years, Oseola McCarty had no hesitation.

She said the world is a “much much better place” than when she was a child. So it can be for anyone liberated from the philosophy of liberalism. The new mantra would be this: Spare us from the kindness of those who would cripple us with excuses for attitudes and behaviors that can only destroy us. Keep us from the charity of those who would chain us to their benevolence with lifetime handouts. Spare us the compassion of these saviors who secretly despise us, who think that we cannot compete on our merits, or live up to the moral standards they expect of themselves. This is the creed of true equality. It just has taken me a long time to understand.

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Jesus … the world, the flesh, and the devil … and us.


Jesus Christ … since he is God … and absolutely incapable of committing sin … lived only to die … so that sin would not totally and forever, consume us all.

Yet, for more than thirty years, Jesus’ human flesh was exposed to myriad forms of earthly temptation.

Hebrews 4:15  For we have not a high priest who cannot have compassion on our infirmities: but one tempted in all things like as we are, without sin.

So it remained always necessary for Jesus to anticipate, contend with, and repeatedly overcome the wicked snares of the devil, in order to successfully complete a mission of redemption that required nothing less than perfection.

Since we all seem to agree that absolute power tends to corrupt, absolutely … it’s my personal opinion that Jesus’ battle with the world, the flesh, and the devil took on staggering dimensions that were never suitably developed or completely revealed in the Gospels … simply because no mortal man could possibly imagine (or properly describe) their full extent.

But Jesus knew precisely who he was, why he was sent, how he was supposed to live, and what he was expected to do. As Christians, so do we … even though we tend to get more easily confused and side-tracked.

In the words of the late Pope John Paul II … powerful words, which shortly resulted in the spectacular and totally unexpected fall of the Soviet Union:

“You are not who they say you are.
Let me remind you who you are.”

If you’ve been baptized, you’re already an adopted child of our loving God. Your eternal soul has already been indelibly marked for salvation. You’re meant to be a living temple of the Holy Spirit. You’re a citizen of Heaven, and once completely initiated and confirmed in the faith, you’re a full-fledged member of the Church. A co-heir with Jesus Christ, to all that God is, and all that God has
to give, you’re already destined for eternal glory.

That’s what we’re called by God to live “up” to. And that’s no lie!

It remains true for you, true for me, and true for every Christian everywhere, for all time.

And while we don’t all bear the same type of temporal, earthly “cross”, there’s no doubt that the eternal rewards and the glory always go to the overcomers (link).

Stories of people who have overcome enormous obstacles and who live full and rich lives

We must declare with great certitude that there is no such thing as a life not worth living. We say this not as some politically correct slogan but rather with firm conviction that every human life is willed by God. We were willed before we were made for the Scriptures say, “Before I ever formed you in the womb I knew and I appointed you…” (Jer 1:4). None of us is an accident nor are our gifts and apparent deficits mistakes. We exist as we are, the way we are for a purpose, a purpose for us and for others. We all have an irreplaceable role in God’s kingdom and show forth aspect of His glory uniquely. Every human life is intended and is worth living because God says so by the very fact that we exist.

If this past week has taught us anything it is that the human person is sacred and that life is something worth living and worth fighting for. There was death, but there was also heroism. There are also those who, despite serious injury, have fought to come back and seek recovery. Further, there are those who join them in the medical profession and in their families who also struggle and fight to bring them that healing. This is resilience, this is strength, this is the truth that life is worth living.

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The Book of Revelation lists a number of divine “rewards” that will be bestowed on those who manage to overcome the world, the flesh, and the devil, by voluntarily cooperating with God’s grace.


Eternal life

Revelation 2:11  He that hath an ear, let him hear what the Spirit saith to the churches: He that shall overcome shall not be hurt by the second death.

Ruling and Reigning

Revelation 2:26  And he that shall overcome and keep my words unto the end, I will give him power over the nations.

Divine Honor and Recognition

Revelation 3:5  He that shall overcome shall thus be clothed in white garments: and I will not blot out his name out of the book of life. And I will confess his name before my Father and before his angels.

Holiness – Being Set Apart by God for His Express Purpose

Revelation 3:12  He that shall overcome, I will make him a pillar in the temple of my God: and he shall go out no more. And I will write upon him the name of my God and the name of the city of my God, the new Jerusalem, which cometh down out of heaven from my God, and my new name.

Theosis – Becoming like God

Revelation 3:21  To him that shall overcome, I will give to sit with me in my throne: as I also have overcome and am set down with my Father in his throne.

Relationship – As God’s Tried and True, Sons and Daughters

Revelation 21:7  He that shall overcome shall possess these things. And I will be his God: and he shall be my son.

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