What a week, Huh?
I would like to lift up in prayer Fallen Milwaukee Police Officer Matthew Rittner, who died Wednesday in the line of duty. Officer Rittner was serving a warrant for drug and gun sales Wednesday in the Polonia neighborhood on the city’s south side when a suspect opened fire, hitting the officer. He was rushed to Froedtert Hospital in Wauwatosa, where he later died If this sounds familiar, the same thing occurred last July when Officer Michael Michalski was killed in the same manner.
You know, when something like this happens, one of my first thoughts, to be completely honest, is “Maybe it’s time to move!” I think about heading out of Milwaukee, my home for the last 53 years, to some small town in Northern Wisconsin until I realize…
Wisconsin is NUTS!
Wisconsin has Polar Vortexes and Frizzle (Freezing Drizzle). We pay obnoxious heating bills, in addition to auto repairs from the salt on our roads rusting our vehicles and the potholes shattering our tie rods.
We have been in the news for various heinous crimes The nation watched the ordeal of Jayme Closs who was kidnapped for 88 days by Jake Patterson after he brutally murdered her parents.
They followed the story of Joseph Jakubowski who sent President Trump a manifesto, took 18 weapons and triggered a 10-day manhunt.
We made headlines for underhanded lame-duck politics when an outgoing Governor signed legislation to limit his successor’s position.
With those depressing facts I then think about leaving my home and settling my family in a new state (somewhere where the air doesn’t hurt my face), but then I realize…
The United States is NUTS!
The USA has had a Government shutdown over a policy issue. We are investigating people in power about how they got there. We are ignoring climate changes in favor of Pro Sports. In other words, we are divided people who have given up working through our problems.
So, then I ponder about moving abroad, but, of course, I soon realize…
The World is NUTS!
We have election meddling by foreign powers. We have state-sanctioned murder of Journalists. We have terrorist threats, food shortages, and human trafficking on an unimaginable scale!
So, my only choice is to get off this planet but…
Elon Musk is NUTS!
And he is the only one who is talking about colonizing other planets. In the meantime, NASA sent a probe to the sun – not exactly a habitable environment!
So I am stuck here. I am a citizen of Milwaukee, The United States, and the Planet Earth and I ain’t going anywhere!
Or AM I?
Paul writes to us in Philippians 3:20-21 “But our citizenship is in heaven, and from it we await a Savior, the Lord Jesus Christ, who will transform our lowly body to be like his glorious body, by the power that enables him even to subject all things to himself.”
This means that we are just passing through this place. No matter where we go or how long we stay, we will never reach our final destination in this lifetime. But we have been given a heavenly passport that allows us access to God’s throne room. That is my home, the place where I really long to be. I echo Paul when he wrote in Philippians 1:21-23 (ESV)
21 For to me to live is Christ, and to die is gain. 22 If I am to live in the flesh, that means fruitful labor for me. Yet which I shall choose I cannot tell. 23 I am hard pressed between the two. My desire is to depart and be with Christ, for that is far better.
I long to return to my heavenly Father’s side! I often say that there are three things I want to do when I get to heaven. First thing I want to do is play basketball. Being born with Cerebral Palsy, the simple act of executing a layup is equivalent to, in the words of Steve Martin, “sticking a Cadillac up your nose!”.
Next, I want to question Noah on his decision to allow Mosquitos on the Ark.
Lastly, I want to have a long talk with my son, Jon. Jon has a severe case of Autism and communicates in Yes or No responses. Although he essential non-verbal, he has demonstrated that he is very smart. He has a wicked sense of humor and loves to tease his father every chance he gets. I want to have a full blown conversation with him!
One of the most theological thoughts about heaven came from Barry Mann of the rock group, The Animals in 1965
So, yes, this place is nuts, but this is not our home. We look forward to the day when we are called home to see all of our brothers and sisters who have gone before us.
And, on that day, I want to give Matthew Rittner and Michael Michalski a big hug and tell them Thank You!
Let us Pray.