Days after the churches celebration of the Wise Men worshipping the new born King, the people who run the place they probably came from are trying to “do something” to retaliate, or set a new agenda, or create a safe space for terrorism, or what ever apocalyptic cult leaders do when they don’t get their way.  There are fascinating things going on.  Missiles are flying hither and yon. A Ukrainian Boeing aircraft crashed after takeoff in Tehran leading some to wonder if, with all the missiles flying, they may have shot the aircraft down.  They won’t release the black box, the Iranians, so the mystery ensues. 15 missiles were shot off, four disintegrated, and the rest seemed to have done little more than bounce a bunch of sand.  I do not take lightly the gravity of having troops in harms way wherever they may be.  I don’t take lightly the pollical issues that cause havoc in our missions and ministries around the world.  What I have problems with is the lack of perspective we are given in these situations and if there is perspective it is strange.  Of course I would be attacked if I suggested that the folks who dropped off the pallets of cash at the Tehran airport years ago should publicly demand their money back if that’s the best ballistic missiles the money could buy.  That would be mean, so never mind.  That would bring up John Kerry and others including James Taylor and of course we are not allowed to criticize.

In the cold light of day some perspective might be in order.  The stock market that used to fall like the thermometer in North Dakota in January (it is – 10 right now) when a lunatic half way across the world sneezed, hit new highs this morning.  Nancy Pelosi, that sober and contemplative master politician who is so concerned about our march to war, was seen at a posh and tony D.C. restaurant shortly after the announcement of the attack.  Our President was accused of a wag the dog scenario but maybe the Iranian mullahs are doing the same.  Fire off some US sponsored, Kerry backed missiles, bounce some sand and call it a day.  Take the attention off the fact that your citizens can’t even handle a funeral, since fifty of them were trampled to death at the last one, and claim victory.  Remember, a sign of a civilized people is their ability to carry off a dignified funeral. (Minnesota readers – remember Paul Wellstone) I am cognizant of the fact that Persia was a pretty civilized place back in the day with astronomy and higher math and science and all, but Islam came around and they are back in the 4th century.  An Iranian funeral is a more lethal place obviously than being the target of an Iranian missile strike.

Some will say that for a mercy blog I am pretty unmerciful, snarky, mean, and not taking seriously a serious issue,  I am sorry but I have a hard time putting on my solemn face and setting my hair on fire at the “latest crisis”, when everything is a crisis in the media, including the size of Trump’s pepper shaker at the latest State dinner.

So are these scary times?  Absolutely.  But think about the families back in the day around Bethlehem after the Wise Men left.  It has always been a scary world and the world is usually controlled by poltroons and fools.  The prophecy of a virgin conceiving and bearing a Son who would be Immanuel, was given in the middle of a tremendous international crisis, at least that is what Kind Ahaz thought.  It was the existential threat to Judah that was coming from the area, once again around Iraq and Iran, that caused Judah’s neighbors to seek it’s undoing.  In the middle of that political mess the birth of the Messiah is predicted.  One of the things that should be a part of perspective is the sovereign reign of God.  The true God and Savior, who gives men their allotted places and time.

Pray for our military folks and thank them and God for their service and then thank God for his care and control of the whole world.