Tucky Jo and Little Heart

Tucky Jo and Little Heart
Tucky Jo and Little Heart

A heart-warming tale by Patricia Polacco, Tucky Jo and Little Heart shows the power of caring for those in need.

Set during World War II, Johnnie Wallen enlisted in the army and was sent to the Pacific.  He was a great shooter from hunting back home in Kentucky so was recruited as a marksman and explosives training.  His nickname was “Kentucky Kid.”  He fought and travelled all over the Pacific.

On the island of Luzon he was clearing jungle for an airstrip.  He was attacked by every bug imaginable in the tropics and had welts everywhere.  A village girl showed him a leaf he could rub on the bites as a relief.  The village girl who wouldn’t speak to him began coming around everyday during Johnnie’s work. He called her Little Heart because she had a heart-shaped birthmark on her arm.  She called him Tucky Jo.

He began sharing food with her and he made her a doll.  He began to give her village rations as well.  The village was just old folks, women and children as all the young men had been taken as well as all the food.  Tucky Jo took them in as family as well as the rest of his unit.  One day the forest was to be fire-bombed as the enemy was heading their way.  Tucky Jo had the village evacuated and that was the last he saw of Little Heart.

Johnnie survived the war and went on to get married and raise a family, but he always wondered about Little Heart.  In his old age, he needed a hearing aid and cataract surgery but the waitlist at the Veteran’s Administration was impossibly long.  One day a nurse told him he was being bumped to the top of the list and the cost had been taken care of.  The nurse turned out to be Little Heart who had searched for Johnnie all these years to thank him.  She had come to the US and became a nurse.  Her kids were doctors and one was an engineer.

Johnnie Wallen was a decorated soldier but the silver heart chain Little Heart whose name is Nurse Zaballa was his most precious gift of all.

Great story about the human heart and caring for others in need.  Great example of caring for our veterans who gave so much for our freedom.  Awesome how Little Heart was able to repay the kindness so many years later.  One never knows how little acts affect other people and this is a great story of how one kindness multiplies tenfold.  Highly recommended.

Advertisements

Christmas Poem

POEMS SHALL RETURN ON JANUARY 8TH 2018

MERRY CHRISTMAS AND HAPPY NEW YEAR TO ALL!!

CHRISTMAS

When Jesus was born in Bethlehem
Very few knew what it meant
Today I know more than they did then,
History’s greatest event

It is still hard for me to grasp
How deep a love He had to have
To leave the life He had with God
Knowing the plan–what it would cost

He knew we would not survive
Unless He came and paid the price
It had to be a sinless life
The lamb of God, the sacrifice

At Christmastime as we reflect
What God did when He sent His son
How could I possibly neglect
To love
To praise
That Christmas, Christ agreed to come

He left us the great gift of love

By:

Lissette Trahan

Mary

MARY

Have you ever thought of Mary
What she was told that day
It must have been so scary
To have been told that way

You are to be a Mother, Gabriel announced to her
How? I am still a virgin, was how Mary replied
The Holy Ghost shall come on thee, is what it says she heard
She must have been in wonder, completely mystified

Then comes more bewilderment, Gabriel was not yet through
You will bring forth a son, He’ll be the Son of God
What trust God had in Mary, He knew what she would do
Behold the maiden of the Lord, she said without a doubt

Mary, already had a spouse, what was to be her fate
In those days it was a crime, she could be stoned to death
When God plans your life you know He’ll keep you safe
Mary could have said no, but willingly said yes

Mary said yes to a future, not knowing what it would be
I want to follow that example, and let God work through me

By:

Lissette Trahan

Peace

PEACE

Your Word talks about a peace
A peace that passeth understanding
It seems like such a mystery
All of life is so demanding

I had been seeking every day
I was about to give up hope
But first I stopped and had to pray
“Lord, are You there? I cannot cope”

My heart leaped surprising me
It happened so unexpectedly

That was the day I felt that peace
That was the day I felt that joy
Your love became so real to me
Nothing that this life could destroy

All I can say on this long journey
Peace doesn’t come so easily
But You have been right there with me
That peace no more a mystery

The “peace of God, which passeth understanding”
Phil 4:7

By:

Lissette Trahan

BSF Study Questions Revelation Lesson 14, Day 5: Revelation 8-9

Summary of Revelation 8: Jesus opens the 7th seal and heaven becomes silent. 7 angels who stand before God were given 7 trumpets. Another angel with a golden censer came and stood at the altar and offered up prayers with incense for all the saints. The prayers and smoke went up to God. The angel took the censer, filled it with fire, and threw it at earth, causing thunder, rumblings, lightning, and earthquakes.

The 1st angel sounded his trumpet, unleashing hail and fire mixed with blood upon the earth. One third of the trees and earth was burned up and all the green grass burned.

The 2nd angel sounded his trumpet, unleashing a mountain on fire into the seas. One third of the sea turned to blood, one-third of the sea creatures died, and one-third of the ships were destroyed.

The 3rd angel sounded his trumpet, unleashing a burning star (named Wormwood or Bitterness), which fell from the sky onto a third of the rivers and springs, turning the waters bitter and killing people who drank the water.

The 4th angel sounded his trumpet, striking one-third of the sun, moon, and stars, turning them dark, eliminating one-third of the day and night.

Then an eagle flew over the earth, calling out to the inhabitants warnings that the last three angels were about to sound their trumpets.

Summary of Revelation 9: The 5th angel sounded his trumpet and a star that had fallen to the earth opened the Abyss from which smoke rose which darkened the sky and unleashed locusts who tortured those without the seal of God on their foreheads. They suffered severe agony–so much so they wished for death but were not granted it.

The locusts had human faces, wore crowns, had hair and lions’ teeth. They wore breastplates and their wings were loud. They had tails like scorpions and tortured people with them for 5 months. Their king was Abandon or Apollyon or Destroyer.

The 6th angel sounded his trumpet, releasing 4 angels who were bound at the Euphrates and killed 1/3 of mankind. Troops came forth with breastplates. The horses had lions’ heads and they spewed fire, smoke, and sulfur. They had snakes’ tails.

The rest of mankind who survived this still did not repent.

Questions:

12a)  Trumpets are associated with the theophany at Sinai (Exod 19:13-19; 20:18). The first trumpet judgment is similar to Exodus 9:13-25, hail and fire fell upon the Egyptians. The third trumpet resembles the plague of the freshwater in Exodus 7:20, except that there the waters turned to blood.  The locust in Rev 9:3 is an apocalyptic version of the eighth plague (Exod 10:12-20).  The fourth trumpet and the ninth plague both use darkness on the earth.

b)  The obvious difference is the number:  10 in Egypt and 7 here.  Egypt’s Plagues:  Nile to blood, frogs, gnats, flies, livestock, boils, hail, locusts, darkness, firstborn.  Revelation:  Hail and fire mixed with blood, mountain thrown into the sea, bitter water, darkness as well, demons unleashed for torture, demons unleashed for death, and a dragon unleashed.  The Exodus plagues are mostly using God’s creations on earth to send a warning.  The Revelation judgments are using supernatural forces such as demons and are bent on destruction.  All initiate from heaven.  The Exodus judgments are perpetrated by Moses and are of the earth.

God is saying, “This is it, guys.  Take heed or forever pay the penalty.”

c)   Pharaoh of the Exodus refused to repent (Ex. Ex. 7:13, Ex. 7:23; Ex. 8:15, Ex. 8:19, Ex. 8:22; Ex. 9:34), the earth dwellers will refuse to repent during the Tribulation (Rev. Rev. 2:21+; Rev. 6:16-17+; Rev. 9:20+; Rev. 16:9+, Rev. 16:11+, Rev. 16:21+)

13a)  Personal Question.  My answer:  Don’t like the wording of this question.  I don’t believe my heart was “hard” to begin with so therefore it hasn’t softened.  I have, however, grown in my relationship with Him as my knowledge of the End Times has increased and my love for Him and others has increased.

b)  Personal Question.  My answer:  Flippant words, hasty actions, selfishness

Conclusions:  Not the best lesson.  Could have done without question 13.  Admittedly, I was lazy on Question 12.  I just didn’t feel like doing it myself, so I googled the answer.

End Notes:  See HERE and HERE for Revelation 8 and 9 respectively.

Full comparison of the plagues of Egypt with all of Revelation HERE

The Plagues Compared
Plague Egypt Tribulation
#1 – Water becomes blood. Ex. Ex. 7:20; Ps. Ps. 105:29 Rev. Rev. 8:8-9+; Rev. 11:6+; Rev. 16:3-6+
#2 – Frogs Ex. Ex. 8:6; Ps. Ps. 105:30 Rev. Rev. 16:13+3
#3 – Lice Ex. Ex. 8:24; Ps. Ps. 105:31 Rev. Rev. 11:6+?4
#4 – Flies Ex. Ex. 9:6 Rev. Rev. 11:6+?5
#5 – Food source (livestock) destroyed Ex. Ex. 9:6 Rev. Rev. 8:9+6
#6 – Boils Ex. Ex. 9:10 Rev. Rev. 16:2+
#7 – Hail Ex. Ex. 9:23; Ps. Ps. 105:32 Rev. Rev. 8:7+; Rev. 16:21+
#8 – Locusts Ex. Ex. 10:13; Ps. Ps. 105:34 Rev. Rev. 9:3+
#9 – Darkness Ex. Ex. 10:22; Ps. Ps. 105:32 Rev. Rev. 8:12+; Rev. 9:2+; Rev. 16:10+
#10 – Death of Firstborn Ex. Ex. 12:29; Ps. Ps. 105:36 –

Taken from http://www.biblestudytools.com/commentaries/revelation/introduction/the-plagues-of-egypt-and-the-tribulation.html

Conclusions  to Lesson 14:  We see God’s mercy.  He has the right to destroy us for our sin; yet, He never gives up and keeps trying to bring back his creation.  We see God’s wrath as justice and judgment must come.  Yet God preserves the faithful and gives us hope in the midst of destruction.

Overall, good questions.  Would have like to have seen more questions in Revelation 9 on the angels, the star, the army, the locusts, and more possible meanings thrown in.

BSF Study Questions Revelation Lesson 14, Day 4: Revelation 9:1-21

Summary of passage:  The 5th angel sounded his trumpet and a star that had fallen to the earth opened the Abyss from which smoke rose which darkened the sky and unleashed locusts who tortured those without the seal of God on their foreheads.  They suffered severe agony–so much so they wished for death but were not granted it.

The locusts had human faces, wore crowns, had hair and lions’ teeth.  They wore breastplates and their wings were loud.  They had tails like scorpions and tortured people with them for 5 months.  Their king was Abandon or Apollyon or Destroyer.

The 6th angel sounded his trumpet, releasing 4 angels who were bound at the Euphrates and killed 1/3 of mankind.  Troops came forth with breastplates.  The horses had lions’ heads and they spewed fire, smoke, and sulfur.  They had snakes’ tails.

The rest of mankind who survived this still did not repent.

Questions:

9)  The first four seals and trumpets are judgments against the earth.  In the first four seals, these were the four horsemen bringing tyranny, war, famine, and death on the earth.  In the first four trumpets, these were ecological destruction of the vegetation, seas, fresh waters, and sky.

The last three seals focused upon heaven: the cry of the martyrs, cosmic disturbances, and the heavenly prelude to the seven trumpets.  The last three trumpets will speak of hell and the demonic.  These judgments are against man himself.

10a)  The people who had the seal of God on their foreheads.  Believers marked for salvation or the remnant.  “Servants of God” Rev (7:3).

b)  Part personal Question.  My answer:  They were to be tortured for five months and the agony would be like the sting of a scorpion.  Unbelievers need to repent now or face misery ahead.

11)  They were worshiping demons and false idols of gold, silver, bronze, stone, and wood.  They were killing others, doing magic arts, being sexually immoral, and stealing.  It’s everywhere today.  People worship themselves, other people, material items, their jobs, their kids, spouses, or other religions and their gods.  We still have murder, black magic, the occult, immorality, and stealing.  Man’s nature does not change.  This includes his sin nature as well.

Conclusions:  Surprised on questions on the identity of the Star or the king.  No questions on what the locust represent or the Abyss or the demons.  From previous lessons and this one, BSF is only asking questions that probably have a straight-forward interpretation.  They are avoiding any questions that are up for debate or speculation.

In one way that’s good because it simplifies the study and avoids conflict amongst different viewpoints.  However, in another way it’s bad because it’s good to think about these things, their possibilities, and what exactly is God saying through John.  Knowing God’s Word and Him is the point of bible study and trying to figure out what He is trying to tell us enables our growth with Him.

Please see all of my End Notes which explore the passage and possible explanations.  I do my best to include all the possibilities but feel free to add more if I miss something.

One more caveat:  Beware of commentaries that assert something absolutely.  That is more likely the writer asserting his point of view than exploring the whole text.  Remember a lot of these symbols have different interpretations.

End Notes:  This is the 5th and 6th Trumpets.

5th Trumpet:  Scholars suggest this is not a literal star but a person.  Who is the star?  Suggestions are Nero, the devil, Satan, an angel, or even Jesus.  Some believe it’s an angel.  Whether the angel is good or bad depends on if the angel is the same angel at in 9:11.  If they are the same, then the angel is evil.  If not, then the angel could be a good angel sent to administer the judgments on earth.

Because the star is fallen, this suggests its Satan.  However, because the star is given the key to the Abyss, it can’t be Satan because Satan is not the ruler of Hell, God is.

What is the Abyss?  Probably Hell.  The abyss is a prison for certain demons (Luke 8:31, 2 Peter 2:4, and Jude 6).  It is located inside the earth (Eph.4:9) and as we will learn it serves as the holding cell for all unsaved disembodied spirits (Rev.20:13-15).

Fun Fact:  The Greek word means “very deep” or “bottomless” and the Hebrew word means “primeval deep”.  This word occurs 9 times in the New Testament and 8 times in the book of Revelation.

Smoke represents divine judgment used as well in the destruction of Sodom and Gomorrah (Gen 19:28).

The key is the power over the Abyss.  Since Jesus possesses the key (Rev 1:18) some scholars see the star as Jesus handing over the key to Satan to unleash his demons upon the earth in judgment.  Jesus is described as the morning star (Rev 22:16).

These demons probably won’t be seen by mankind (Ephesians 6:11-22).  John sees them only because they are revealed to him.  Thus, man may only see the destruction of the demons which would be natural disasters.  Hence, it’s easy to see why at the end the survivors still don’t turn to God.  They just don’t “see.”

The locusts are symbolic as evinced by their resembling something other than locusts.  They are symbolic of the demons that will be allowed to enter earth.  Locusts are agents of God’s judgment (Exodus 10:4-14, Deuteronomy 28:38, 1 Kings 8:37, 2 Chronicles 7:13, Joel 1:4, 2:2-9; Nah.3:15-17, and Amos 4:9).  They will be an army.

The people are tortured to bring them to repentance (verse 20-21).  They will not die.  Scorpions stings rarely kill.  Why not?  Perhaps in God’s infinite grace, He is giving them a foreshadow of death in hopes some will still repent.

Why 5 months? The lifespan of a locust is 5 months.  Hence, for as long as the locusts live, they will be tortured.

The repetition of “like” means it was hard to describe and therefore not exact.  This is the time of the Great Tribulation.  Locusts have no king (Proverbs 30:27)–another reason they aren’t literal.

The king is Satan.

“Woe” is from Rev 8:13.

Preterist interpretation:  The suffering represents the Roman siege against Jerusalem from 66-70 AD.   The locusts is the Roman empire (crowns on their heads).  The beast represents the Roman Empire (Rev 11 & 13:1-8; 17:7-11).  This concludes that the object of God’s wrath is the Jewish nation and has already taken place with no future meaning.

The three woes are:

1) invasion of the locust-demons torturing rather than killing man

2)  Another demonic invasion and an earthquake that destroys a tenth of Jerusalem following the death and resurrection of God’s two witnesses (Rev.11:14)

3)  The inhabitants of the earth will experience Satan’s fury as he is banished (Rev.12:12).

The servants of God (those were the seal) are only exempt from the first woe.

6th Trumpet:  The horns of the golden altar are the prayers of God’s people.  In the tabernacle, the golden altar was of incense or the people’s prayers.  Those fleeing judgment could seek mercy by taking a hold of the  horns (1 Kings 1:50-51; 2:28).

Are these the 4 angels from Rev 7:1?  Scholars are unsure.  We do know they are divinely appointed to carry out God’s will.

The Tigris and Euphrates River was the cradle of civilization and the first place nomads settled down.  In the Bible, it’s probably where the Garden of Eden was located.  Here, the firsts occurred:  first settlement, first sin, first murder, first revolt against God, first war, etc.  Here, it marks the boundary of Babylon and was the extent of the Promised Land.  The Assyrian and Babylonian empires centered around Mesopotamia and were the historic enemies of Israel.  In fact, they still are today as Syria and Iraq are now the name of the countries.  Note the people never changed; just the name.

God works on a specific timetable (verse 15).  We just don’t know it.

Again, the horsemen are demons.  The number is meant to be infinite.  Most scholars agree this is a demon army sent to kill humans, released by the 6th angel on the command of the voice (God or Jesus).

Amazing how man never learns and keeps right on sinning.  Scary too.  How much we rely on our eyes and when we can’t “see”, we don’t believe.  Why God calls us to believe;  it’s the hardest thing we will ever have to do.

How Did it Happen

HOW DID IT HAPPEN

Blessings so many and so great
Where do I start, how to relate

When I awake the sun is there
How did it happen? Do I care?
Do I ever stop to think
If one day it was out of sync?

Seasons follow each other in order
Tides ebb and flow, the sun rises and sets
I look at the world and I have to say
How did it happen, this great display

Then there is life, how did it happen
Man has never a life created
I know that there had to be a beginning
Without a God? I would debate it

The fact of the world drives me to God
The order, the detail
I stay in awe

Thank you Lord, I am so humbled
You’ve shown me so much and I still stumble
But the victory I have, no one can take

I have faith

By:

Lissette Trahan