Category Archives: God

We have a winner!

. . . for FOTM’s 164th Caption Contest!

This was a lovely contest, with so many really cute captions.

The FOTM writers duly voted, each for what he/she considered to be the best (#1) and second-best (#2) captions. Each #1 vote is worth 4 points; each #2 vote is worth 2 points.

And the winner of FOTM’s 164th Caption Contest, with three #1 votes, totaling 12 points is . . .


Here’s his winning caption:

We want to watch “Animal Planet”

Ted is in second place, with one #1 vote and one #2 vote, totaling 6 points. Here’s his caption:

Look, fellas I told the turkey not to go in there!

pigpen51 and wanderfish are in third place, each with one #1 vote and 4 points. Here are their captions:

pigpen51: “I told you Babe’s been gone too long. Those are pork chops!”

wanderfish: “Run as fast as you can! They might grab us for their next spirit cooking session!!!”

Brian Soloman, two other Larry captions, Margarita Macaria, and Smokie are in 4th place, each with one #2 vote and 2 points. Here are their captions:

Brian Solomon: “Someone turn the volume up, the TV is talking about Trump WINNING again!”

Larry: “Hey, is that old guy Colonel Sanders?”

Larry: “Did you guys notice that Tom hasn’t come back, ever since they took him inside for their special holiday?”

Margarita Macaria: “Impressed with how the machine drains the dirty dishwater? You ain’t seen nothin’ yet! Wait till the Donald’s done with the swamp!”

Smokie: “There, I told you right on the dog food bag: main ingredient…CHICKEN!!!”

Well done, everyone!

Congratulations, Larry!

Here’s your fancy-schmancy Award Certificate of Great Excellence, all ready for framing! LOL


For all the other caption submissions, go here.

Be here tomorrow for our next very exciting Caption Contest!



Unexpected Conversions to Orthodox Christianity

Russian Priest Explains Why Westerners Are Converting To Orthodox Christianity

To most of us, this is unexpected news from a foreign culture

I admit to being so Americanized that Orthodoxy seemed very strange. But one day when driving out of Boston, I noted muralists working on St. Andrew Ukrainian Orthodox Church in Jamaica Plain. Being a muralist myself I was hoping to talk to the artists, which I did (a married couple from Argentina) and received some very useful advice.

But as interesting was my introduction to an Orthodox priest there. He was as culturally American as me, and reminded me of one of the trusted Catholic and Evangelical pastors I knew. We discussed a number of topics that were important to me. At that point, Orthodoxy stopped seeming like something “other” than Christianity, and became for me a part of the large Christian family.

In this brief video we see a Russian priest, Fr. Andrey, talking about a secret movement among muslims and other Europeans to convert to Orthodox Christianity. What I take away from this is that God has many more strategies than we are aware of for reaching the world with the Good News of Jesus Christ.

Animal athletes!

Surfing dogs!

Bicycle kitten!

And an Olympics long-jump champion!


Sunday Devotional: One mightier than I is coming after me

Isaiah 40:3

A voice cries out:
In the desert prepare the way of the Lord!

Mark 1:1-8

As it is written in Isaiah the prophet:
Behold, I am sending my messenger ahead of you;
he will prepare your way.
A voice of one crying out in the desert:
“Prepare the way of the Lord,
make straight his paths.”

John the Baptist appeared in the desert
proclaiming a baptism of repentance for the forgiveness of sins.
People of the whole Judean countryside
and all the inhabitants of Jerusalem
were going out to him
and were being baptized by him in the Jordan River
as they acknowledged their sins.
John was clothed in camel’s hair,
with a leather belt around his waist.
He fed on locusts and wild honey.
And this is what he proclaimed:
One mightier than I is coming after me.
I am not worthy to stoop and loosen the thongs of his sandals.
I have baptized you with water;
he will baptize you with the Holy Spirit.”

Child Jesus with John the Baptist (right), painting in the 1600s by Bartolomé Esteban Perez Murillo

Today is the second Sunday of Advent.

The word “advent” means “coming”. Advent is a season observed in many Christian churches as a time of expectant waiting and preparation for the celebration of the birth of Jesus.

Isaiah 40:3 predicting the coming of St. John the Baptist, the voice in the desert, isn’t the only prophecy in the Old Testament which came true.

Did you know that the Old Testament also foretold, again and again, the coming of Jesus Christ? Below are some examples.

Isaiah 7:14

Therefore the Lord himself shall give you a sign; Behold, a virgin shall conceive, and bear a son, and shall call his name Immanuel.

Numbers 24:17

there shall come a Star out of Jacob, and a Sceptre shall rise out of Israel, and shall smite the corners of Moab, and destroy all the children of Sheth.

Micah 5:2

But thou, Bethlehem Ephratah, though thou be little among the thousands of Judah, yet out of thee shall he come forth unto me that is to be ruler in Israel; whose goings forth have been from of old, from everlasting.

Jeremiah 23:5

Behold, the days come, saith the Lord, that I will raise unto David a righteous Branch, and a King shall reign and prosper, and shall execute judgment and justice in the earth.

Zechariah 9:9

behold, thy King cometh unto thee: he is just, and having salvation; lowly, and riding upon an ass, and upon a colt the foal of an ass.

Zechariah 11:12

So they weighed for my price thirty pieces of silver.

Psalm 22:1, 16, 18

My God, my God, why hast thou forsaken me? why art thou so far from helping me, and from the words of my roaring?

they pierced my hands and my feet.

They part my garments among them, and cast lots upon my vesture.

How hard must one’s heart be to ignore and reject Jesus’ fulfillment of the Old Testament‘s many prophesies about Him . . . .

“Whoever hates me also hates my Father.” –John 15:23

May Advent fill you with the peace and love of our Lord Jesus Christ,


Here we go again: UK hospital applies to High Court to switch off baby Alfie’s life support

alfie evans liverpool Echo photo

Alfie Evans/Liverpool Echo photo

It’s the Charlie Gard case all over again. That’s the UK’s NHS system for you.

From Daily Mirror: The parents of Alfie Evans have spoken of their “living nightmare” after a hospital advised switching off their baby son’s life support, it is claimed.

Alder Hey Children’s Hospital in Liverpool has applied to the High Court to switch off life support for the 18-month-old in a coma, the Liverpool Echo understands.

Alfie’s dad has spoken of their “devastation” and “disappointment” after the hospital reportedly said they had exhausted all options in trying to diagnose and treat the infant’s mystery brain condition.

It comes shortly after Alfie’s parents Thomas Evans and Kate James, both 20, said that after months of searching they had finally found a hospital abroad that was willing to take him.

But a letter to them, seen by the Liverpool Echo, shows Alder Hey are opposing the move to an Italian children’s hospital – and are stepping up the battle over Alfie’s life by taking the matter to court.

The Alder Hey letter says the hospital has asked the High Court to rule that it is legal and in Alfie’s best interest for long-term ventilation and intensive care to be withdrawn.

It says: “The trust’s position is that it does not consider the provision of continued mechanical ventilation nor the move to Italy to be in Alfie’s best interests. The application also asks the court to make a declaration that it is in Alfie’s best interests to be transferred to a hospice setting and to be treated on a palliative pathway with appropriate end of life care.

Mr. Evans from Bootle, told the Liverpool Echo: “It’s devastating – we feel so disappointed. I feel Alfie is being ignored, let down and not given a chance. “Why should we take him to a hospice when there’s a hospital happy to take him? Alder Hey were watching us work so hard to get this hospital – now we’ve got an offer and a doctor willing to come over, but they’ve refused to speak with him. “Now we are starting to go through a living nightmare. They are making it 10 times worse.”

Tens of thousands of people have formed “Alfie’s Army” over the past year to support and fundraise for the family, including many supporters of Charlie Gard’s parents in their legal fight.

Charlie died aged 11 months following his family’s court battle to send him to the US for treatment.

The reported decision by Alder Hey comes after months of fraught discussions between Alfie’s parents and the hospital over what to do to help their son.

An Alder Hey Children’s NHS Foundation Trust said: “We understand that this is an incredibly difficult time for the family concerned and we continue to liaise directly with them. We are unable to comment on individual cases. Alder Hey is a specialist children’s hospital which therefore means we treat many children with often complex, life threatening conditions.

Unfortunately despite the best efforts of our clinicians, some of these children are sadly unable to recover from their illness. In such a situation, medical professionals will meet to discuss the most appropriate care plan going forward, focusing on the comfort, wellbeing and best interests of the child concerned.

The Trust will often seek advice from specialist clinicians at other trusts. The care plan is always discussed in full with the family to aim to reach agreement between clinicians and parents about the most appropriate care. We also seek input from the families concerned and this may extend to include review by experts instructed by the family.

Understandably these cases place families under great pressure. We will always seek to reach agreement with parents of the child concerned but there will be some rare situations where agreement cannot be reached and the treating team believe that continued active treatment is not in a child’s best interests. In these cases the Trust will refer a case to the Family Division of the High Court and seek a determination as to the best interests of the child. In all such cases we will also invite the Children and Family Court Advisory Support Service to consider the case and provide independent representation of the child.”


Man risks life to save wild rabbit from Southern California fire

The 2017 California wildfire season is the most destructive one on record, fueled by the copious vegetation from the very rainy previous winter. As many as 8,764 wildfires have burned more than 1,215,006 acres across the state. The most devastating fires are the ones in Northern California in October, and the ongoing fires in Southern California.

The Southern California fires began in early December, fanned by unusually powerful and long lasting Santa Ana winds from inland — burning across Los Angeles, San Bernardino, Ventura, San Diego, and Riverside Counties. The largest fire is the Thomas Fire along Highway 1 in Ventura County, which has engulfed more than 115,000 acres.

Thousands of people have been forced to flee from their homes, including so-called “celebrities” like Chelsea Handler, Chrissy Teigen, Paris Hilton, and Kim Kardarshian/Kanye West.

Evacuating from her swanky Bel-Air mansion, Chelseagolden showerHandler managed to poop out a tweet, blaming President Trump of course.

In the midst of Southern California’s raging inferno, there is a moment of kindness and grace.

While fleeing from the Thomas Fire, a young man stops to rescue a wild rabbit caught between the flames and highway traffic.

ABC7 reports, Dec. 6, 2017:

A man risked his life to save a wild rabbit as it got dangerously close to flames from the Thomas Fire along Highway 1 in La Conchita.

The daring rescue was captured by a news photographer who happened upon the scene Wednesday night. The man, who did not want to be interviewed, pulled over and was panicking as the rabbit he chased hopped right near large flames.

As the man searched for the woodland creature, he began jumping up and down with anxiety until the rabbit reappeared and ran from the flames.

The man quickly knelt down, stopped the rabbit in its tracks, gently picked it up and held it in his arms in an effort to calm it down.

God bless this kind young man.


Sunday Devotional: You do not know when the time will come

Mark 13:33-37

Jesus said to his disciples:
“Be watchful! Be alert!
You do not know when the time will come.
It is like a man traveling abroad.
He leaves home and places his servants in charge,
each with his own work,
and orders the gatekeeper to be on the watch.
Watch, therefore;
you do not know when the Lord of the house is coming,
whether in the evening, or at midnight,
or at cockcrow, or in the morning.
May he not come suddenly and find you sleeping.
What I say to you, I say to all: ‘Watch!'”

Today’s reading is another warning and reminder from Jesus that the end may come at any time, “like a thief in the night”.

Recall that in Matthew 25, our Lord sounded the same warning in the Parable of the Ten Virgins — that we must be prepared for our end by “staying awake” for the arrival of the “bridegroom,” because you know neither the day nor the hour”.

All that was brought home to me recently, when I found out that a good friend had suddenly died. Just like that, he’s gone . . . .

Christ spent only three years in public ministry, and time was precious. Why would He again and again instruct us to be prepared, warning us again and again that we simply won’t know when our end comes, unless He knows the consequences of being unprepared are dire and terrible?

Please take seriously the passages from Mark 13 and Matthew 25:

Our death may come swiftly and unexpectedly. Examine our conscience. Repent for our sins. Ask for forgiveness. Make amends. Purify our souls.

And at all times:

Love the Lord our God with our whole heart, our whole soul, our whole mind, and with all our strength.

May the peace and love of Jesus Christ our Lord be with you,


See also: