Top 5 places I never want to visit

I’m planning to go on a long-deserved holiday in a few months to see my sisters, friends and relatives in the UK. It got me thinking about other places I would like to visit but I felt it would be more fun to write about places I would never, ever want to set foot on…for the sole reason that I would be scared shitless.

At No.5  we have Alcatraz. Even though it has become a tourist attraction (or so I saw on action flick , ‘The Rock’) I shudder at the thought of being trapped on a remote island which comes nothing close to the ambience of the blue lagoon. Put me in Alcatraz and I’ll be that disturbed black kid with the sixth sense going “I see bad people”.

At No.4, nothing can ever persuade me to go to Mississippi (yes, as you may well have imagined, I also watched ‘A Time to Kill’). Things have probably changed a whole lot now but my curiosity ends with a Mississippi Mud Cake.

Cruising at No.3 is the Grand Canyon. I can’t understand people’s fascination with a gigantic hole in the ground. There’s nothing to see down there. I’d probably fall into it as a result of high anxiety…and after that, not even an ambulance helicopter would be crazy enough to rescue me; dead or alive. Visiting the grand canyon would be for me a grand mistake.

Peaking at No.2 is Mount Everest. Where do I begin? It’s cold; it’s incredibly windy; there’s lack of oxygen as you get higher and higher; you run the risk of suffering from injuries like frostbite; and most importantly, IT IS TOO DAMN TALL! Even after climbing to the top I have to ask myself, ‘Hoo! Ha! What is it good for? (absolutely nothing, that’s what)’. There’s no one at the top to congratulate you on almost killing yourself. There’s no elevator to take you back down (and don’t think it’s as easy as ‘tumbling down the hill’ like Jack and Jill). Per chance Gravity fails to keep me at the base of the mountain, my mountain gear will surely finish me off.

And taking the top spot at No.1 is Hell. Though rumoured to be a mythical place, Hell is not a place for the physical but for spiritual beings. I couldn’t do more justice to its description than the Book of Revelations in the Holy Bible. Any place with Fire, Brimstone, Weeping and Gnashing of teeth for all eternity, is hard to comprehend but I bet you wouldn’t want to go there if given a chance to decide between Heaven and Hell. Now, why is that? Could Hell be good and Heaven be bad? Is Heaven for geeks and Hell for cool kids? Is it all one big conspiracy? When you die let me know via Twitter!

Entry #55 – Ashamed

Today as I sat down in my local church and listened to the bible study teachings, I pondered on the theme which was ‘Being ashamed of the gospel’. What I found it to mean was not necessarily detaching oneself from hearing or believing the word of God but shying away from telling someone else about Him. As a Christian it’s a hard-hitting truth to be reminded that if I deny Christ on earth then He will deny me in Heaven. Surely, it wouldn’t cost me anything to just open my mouth and tell someone close by that there’s more to this life and that we need to be repentant so that we can live a life (an after-life) eternal. But it’s not as easy as that and I’ll tell you why.

Society dictates what is the norm, what is cool, what is acceptable, and as a result Christians sometimes seem to be treading on eggshells when it comes to speaking up about Christ. If we always worried about what people would think about us based on our actions then we would never act. It goes with everything else and not just religion. If I worried about what my friends would think then I wouldn’t go for salsa classes (well, I’ve stopped now but only because it’s too damn expensive, honest!). It’s a big barrier that could mean the difference between saving a soul or leaving that soul to be tormented in the depths of hell. How about skeptics or agnostics who challenge Christian beliefs? They appear to be obstacles too and they sometimes put up really good, factual arguments that could even make the most fanatical Christians doubt their faith a teeny bit.

All that’s required of Christians in sharing the gospel is to do just do that – Share it. There’s no need to worry about how the other party will receive it or if they will give their lives to Christ that minute – It might be the next day, a fortnight or even a year after before they finally surrender their lives to Christ.

For those who do not believe in any religion whatsoever my question is this: Just what IF (and notice this is a big ‘if’) there is life after death, there is a Heaven and a Hell, there is a Judgement day…would you want to take that chance and reap the consequences for the rest of your life? I wouldn’t.

Some doubt that God can do such things as allow His children to suffer in Hell because He created us. What about the victims of the great flood in the time of Noah? Fast-forward to 2010 and you have the 8.8 magnitude earthquake in Chile which at the last count took 300 lives and affected 400,000 others. There are more and more disasters each year, some natural and some man-made: The World Trade Center attacks in 2001 took close to 3000 lives including 800 of the rescue workers. The Tsunami of 2004 took nearly 250,000 lives a day after Christmas. Where are all their souls right now. Is it just a case of ‘Ashes to ashes, dust to dust’?

I believe the reason why a lot of us are still alive today is just by the Grace of God. He gives us more than a second chance to surrender our lives to Him. He loves us. He gave us free will, otherwise he could just as easily have created us such that we serve Him by default like robots. Ironically He knows which way we’ll sway though He gives us (limited) chances, put His message in the media, talk to us through people who are ready to spread his word, etc. This way no one can say they didn’t know or they didn’t hear.

The end times are already in progress and with the pace of Global warming we’re set to see even more radical changes in weather and probably a shift to the Ice Age – I think Washington got its first glimpse of what Obama coined as ‘Snowmageddon’. If what happened in the 2012 movie were to happen today then I bet the churches across the world would be packed to full capacity but would it be too late by then?

So now what can little old me do to share the word? The Bible study teacher said every time you do something nice for someone or give to those in need and they say ‘thank you’ you could respond with ‘Jesus loves you’ – that drives the message home. The art of Giving is so powerful, rewarding and therapeutic: The more you give, the more you receive (in Heaven and Earth).

Other ways of spreading the gospel would be through distribution of tracts or daily devotionals. You just might touch someone’s life without even knowing it. Blogs are another fantastic way to share the Word and you could reach a worldwide audience. I’m no saint but I hope I’ve lived a life so far that would want to make someone say ‘Hey, I want to be happy like him. What’s his secret?’ It’s simple – I know that Jesus loves me…and I’m not ashamed to say it 😀