Henry and I flew back to the U.S. two weeks ago. He injured his knee in January and due to the cov-idiocy (is that a word?) among the docs at the local clinic, he was only able to secure two useless telephone consultations. In case you were wondering, it's pretty much impossible to diagnose and treat a knee injury via the telephone. Medical care in the UK has sunk to new levels. Fear and sloth have brought out the very worst in many 'healthcare' workers.
It was an expensive trip. In addition to airfare and hotels, the required C-testing cost nearly 1,000 pounds (the equivalent of $1380.00). Restrictions on international travel forced us to file an official "declaration" detailing our legitimate purpose for traveling. Had our purpose for traveling been found "illegitimate" we might have faced fines up to 10,000 pounds and possible jail time. Welcome to the "Covid 19-The Great Reset."
Thankfully the report from the doctor was good! The growth in his knee is not a malignancy, but a benign, painful cyst that should resolve with the help of a cortisone injection and a bit of time. We took the opportunity to see family and a few friends before traveling back to Scotland. We also relished the fearless enjoyment of several restaurant meals and maskless, joyful singing in WORSHIP (for the first time in more than a year).
Several minutes later she called to inform me that recording the call was not optional. I then assured her that I understood quarantine and did not have any questions. There was, therefore, no need to continue the conversation.
Within five minutes a threatening email arrived in my inbox, demanding that I contact Scotland's NHS Track and Trace within 48 hours. If I did not comply I would be reported as "uncontactable" during quarantine. Police Scotland would be notified. This, after having had two telephone conversations with a Track and Trace officer!
We left the United States almost seven years ago. Serious, prayerful studies in Revelation 17-18 as well as correlating passages in Isaiah, Jeremiah and the minor prophets convinced us that we were living in "Babylon the Great," a nation whose sorcery (Greek: pharmakeia) deceives the world in the last days prior to Jesus' return.
Revelation 18:4 specifically instructs:
lest you share in her plagues; for her sins are heaped high as heaven
and God has remembered her iniquities.
Pay her back as she herself has paid back others...
As she glorified herself and lived in luxury,
So give her a measure of torment and mourning."
Have we jumped from the frying pan into the fire???
Frustrated and confused, I have angrily lashed out at the Lord. Thankfully, in confessing this to a dear friend, she assured me: "Don't worry, He can take it!"
He knows we see only the tangled threads, the underside of the tapestry He is weaving in our lives.
"We have no need to answer you in this matter...WE WILL NOT SERVE your gods or worship the image!"
Of course, their courage landed them in a fiery furnace, heated SEVEN times hotter than normal...not exactly the reward one would expect for faithful obedience! What I observed though, is and will be a GREAT encouragement to me:
Their chains were loosed in the midst of the flames.
The power of God is greater than the fire of the furnace.
Their courageous witness humbled one of the greatest kings of all time.
THE HOTTER THE FIRE, THE GREATER THE GLORY!
What of my FIGHT OR FLIGHT impulse???
God cannot help me until I stop running away.
I must be willing to stand somewhere and trust Him!
"Fear Not!" is the first step!
Lord, keep me from turning back.
Soli Deo Gloria.