Haim Eshed is the former head of the Israeli Defense Ministry’s space directorate. A respected professor and retired general, he made headlines recently with his claim that “there is an agreement between the US government and the aliens. They signed a contract with us to do experiments here.”
He states that extraterrestrials from a “galactic federation” are working with American astronauts in an “underground base in the depths of Mars.” The reason they have not made their existence public before is that “they have been waiting until today for humanity to develop and reach a stage where we will understand, in general, what space and spaceships are.”
White House and Israeli officials have not yet commented, but NASA states, “We have yet to find signs of extraterrestrial life.”
A perceptive question
Whatever your view about life on other planets, I can tell you how God feels about life on this one.
In a recent radio interview, I was asked a perceptive question: How is the manner of Jesus’ birth relevant to us twenty centuries later? My answer was that our Lord was born in the humblest way imaginable to show that he will go anywhere he is invited.
From tax collectors to prostitutes, lepers to Gentiles and even Roman soldiers, the early church included some of the most scorned people in their culture. Because they were welcomed in the family of God, we can know that all are welcome.
This simple fact is especially relevant to these pandemic days. Yesterday, more Americans died from COVID-19 than died on 9/11. A New York Times article warns that “the coronavirus winter will bring special challenges for our already battered psyches” as we deal with longer nights, indoor isolation, and holiday-related stress in addition to the escalating pandemic and loss of loved ones.
A teacher donates a kidney to the school custodian
And yet, as St. Augustine famously stated, “God loves each of us as if there were only one of us.” What does it mean for us to love each other as he loves us? Consider some examples in the news:
- Michael Jordan donated $2 million to food banks in the Carolinas and Chicago.
- A FedEx driver saw an eleven-year-old boy playing basketball on a bent and rusty hoop, so she bought him a new one.
- Nuns in Tennessee are operating a mobile medical clinic for those of any and no religion.
- A congregation in South Carolina is creating a tiny house village to help local homeless women find community and shelter.
- A third-grade teacher in Minnesota donated a kidney to her school’s custodian.
The best response to the challenges of our day is to respond to the challenges of our day. Edward Everett Hale’s oft-quoted maxim is nonetheless true: “I cannot do everything; but I can still do something; and because I cannot do everything, I will not refuse to do the something that I can do.”
As we do the “something” that we can do, we discover this paradoxical fact: when we help others, we help ourselves. We find a significance in serving that we do not find in being served. We experience peace when we make peace; we feel God’s presence when we share his grace.
In these difficult days, meeting needs in Jesus’ name is a direct path to the purpose and power we need.
“You will deal bountifully with me”
Here’s the catch: it is hard to give what we don’t have. I can’t pay your debt if I don’t have enough money to pay my own.
To that end, consider this story. King Saul was pursuing David in the Judean wilderness, seeking to put him to death. At one point, David found himself hiding in a cave from the most powerful person in the nation (1 Samuel 24).
In the depths of fear and despair, he grieved, “There is none who takes notice of me; no refuge remains to me; no one cares for my soul” (Psalm 142:4). So, he turned to the One he knew still cared for him: “I cry to you, O Lord; I say, ‘You are my refuge, my portion in the land of the living.’ Attend to my cry, for I am brought very low! Deliver me from my persecutors, for they are too strong for me!” (vv. 5–6).
When he had pleaded with God in this way, he could then respond with confidence, “The righteous will surround me, for you will deal bountifully with me” (v. 7, my emphases). And God did. Saul eventually fell to his enemies and David became the most venerated king in Jewish history.
“My heart is an altar, and Thy love the flame”
Who is your King Saul? Where is your cave?
No matter how difficult your days, remember that the Son of David who was born in a cave is ready to hear your next prayer (Matthew 7:7), meet your next need (Philippians 4:19), and heal your next hurt (Luke 4:40).
And he is ready to do through you all that he does in you. But like all Christmas presents, his gifts must be opened.
John Baillie prayed, “My heart is an altar, and Thy love the flame.”
How hot is your altar?
NOTE: For more, see my latest video, “What does the Bible say about grace?“