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Dream or Nightmare

By Ken and Jan Merop

Cleveland, TNken and Jan Merop


“Mommy, Mommy, help!”

Between soothing words, warm hugs, and a prayer for peace…maybe even a song…my child returned to sleep peacefully.  But, at that particular moment between sleep and wakefulness, his fear was palpably real.  Upon awakening, he could see the truth.

July 4 commemorates the birth of our nation.  We remember truths from our heritage.  It’s a patriotic day of fun get-togethers and celebratory fireworks. We’re wowed by the radiant bursts of light illuminating the sky and the accompanying boom in our chests.

With thanksgiving, let’s honor God who bestowed his bounty on our nation.

The American dream is still hope for all citizens of this great land.  But, if we don’t wake up soon and recognize that we’re turning our backs on what made us great, we may be caught in a nightmare from which we can’t awaken.

When the fifty-six courageous men signed the Declaration of Independence on July 4, 1776, they declared by solemn oath to firmly rely on the protection of Divine Providence and pledged to each other their lives, their fortunes, and their sacred honor.

These men were well-respected prosperous, wealthy landowners who took a huge step of faith together.  Freedom meant more to them than their possessions.  They paid a high price and won freedom that was based on the laws and principles set forth by God in the Holy Bible…self-government and freedom to worship.  The government was given enough power to serve along with checks and balances.

But today the lines of right and wrong are blurred.  As we see in Judges 17:6, NIV, “…everyone did what was right in his own eyes.”  Chaos reigns without adherence to absolute truth and a standard by which everyone can measure themselves.  As the God of the Bible has been maligned, a new definition of tolerance has emerged.

So let’s ask ourselves if we vote intelligently and with our values in mind.  Do we live according to Biblical principles displaying God’s attributes?  Are our churches proclaiming the whole truth of God?

“For the time has come for judgment to begin at the house of God;” says 1 Peter 4:17, “and if it begins with us first, what will be the end of those who do not obey the gospel of God?”

The American dream of our forefathers was not a nation of self-indulgence, but a godly republic of self-restraint based on God’s laws that allowed its citizens to live “in liberty and justice for all.”

How I pray we might awaken and return to the truth of the original dream.  Selah


            Blooming Sparklers

There’s nothing like Fourth of July celebrations

to get our hearts pounding.

The chorus of ‘ooh’s and ah’s’ is like

an unrehearsed choir naturally blending.

But, it doesn’t have to happen once a year.

Let your garden colorfully explode with blooms

that nurture that same delight…yet without a sound.

Let your heart explode in the wonder of God’s creation.

Let the ‘ooh’s and ah’s’ begin!

“In the beginning God created…and God saw that it was good.”

Genesis 1: 1 and 12b, NKJV


After six years in the mountains of Avery County, Ken and Jan Merop are now living in the hilly Tennessee countryside of Cleveland, TN…just outside of Chattanooga.  Ken’s photos can be seen at

Read more Christian news from Ken and Jan HERE.