Friday, March 28, 2014

Speaking in Boscobel Wisconsin

This coming Sunday, I will be speaking at the Boscobel Assembly of God, where else but in Boscobel Wisconsin. Service starts at 10:30.

The address is as follows:

Boscobel Assembly of God
301 Chestnut St. 
Boscobel WI

With love in Christ,
Michael Boldea Jr.

Monday, March 24, 2014

The Follow Thru

I grew up in what one might call tight quarters. There were seven of us living in a scaled down version of a two bedroom apartment, with one bathroom, a kitchenette, and a living room that doubled as the ministry headquarters. As such, discipline was a necessity, especially as my brothers and I grew.

Of all the adults in the house, all three of us feared grandma. It wasn't because she was meaner than the rest, or had a shorter temper. It was because grandma followed thru. Whenever she warned us of impending consequences for a certain continued action if said action was not summarily terminated, the warned of consequences were always forthcoming.

Grandma would not relent, and when she promised something, she was true to her word.

Although grandpa tried to be a disciplinarian in his own right, all three of us knew he didn't have the heart to spank us if it came to it, but because we loved him, and he was grandpa, we tended to obey him more thoroughly than we would grandma and her switch, or wooden spoon.

One either obeys out of love or out of fear, and since there is no love lost between Russia and the United States, love will not be the catalyst that compels the Russian Federation to acquiesce and give up their plans for expansion. Make no mistake, a plan for expansion is exactly what this current foray into Crimea and Ukraine is, and they started with Crimea because the Russians knew they needed the access to the Black Sea that Crimea offers.

This isn't over by a long shot, and the best tool we had to dissuade the Russians has been rendered null and void by the idiotic bluster of men who think themselves more powerful than they really are.

The best tool in our arsenal when it came to dealing with the Russian kind of mindset was the follow thru. If you say you’re going to do something, then do it. If you draw a line in the sand, when your adversary steps across it, don’t just shrug your shoulders and say, ‘oh well, I guess that didn't work’. It only takes one show of weakness, one instance wherein your adversary discovers you have not the stomach to follow thru on your threats for him to understand that all there is is hot air and empty threats.

Words are only words when there is no action forthcoming, and as the old rhyme so aptly reminds us, sticks and stones may break my bones, but words will never hurt me.

At this point our weakness is on full display, and this only serves to embolden those who up until now were still weary of the legend of American might. With every misstep, with every failure to act, and with every instance we don’t follow thru on our promises, we further alienate our allies, and embolden our enemies. 

With love in Christ,
Michael Boldea Jr. 

Friday, March 21, 2014

Speaking in Oconto Wisconsin

I will be speaking at the Harvest Assembly of God in Oconto Wisconsin this coming Sunday. It's the first meeting I'm scheduled to speak at since I've returned stateside, and due to the wife's advanced stages of pregnancy, I don't know how many more outings I can realistically commit to.

When the one you love needs you to put on her shoes, take off her shoes, and help her out of bed, you kind of want to be there because you love them.

Anyway, the date and location are as follows:

Sunday March 23, 10:30 AM
Harvest Assembly of God
161 McDonald St
Oconto WI 54153

With love in Christ,
Michael Boldea Jr.

Saturday, March 15, 2014

The Deadline Paradigm

The first time I heard a man singing about playing chicken with a train I was about halfway to Georgia, sitting in a truck stop diner. If you have no idea what I’m talking about, count yourself fortunate. It’s a silly tune, but one that sticks with you for some reason, and though I’d only heard it once I’d find myself humming I played chicken with a train for a few days afterwards.

What we are doing at this juncture isn’t so much playing chicken with a train as it is playing chicken with a charging bear. The best one can hope for under these circumstances is that the bear just barrels into us, knocks us to the side, and continues on its merry way, but chances are better than good that after knocking us over he’ll take his time in mauling us for good measure.

Of all the things we could have done to assuage the escalating crisis with Russia, setting a deadline was by far the most uninspired and unintelligent thing.

From what our esteemed politicians have said, Russia has until Monday to reverse course as pertains to the Crimea region, or face repercussions and consequences.

Setting a deadline, especially with one such as the current Russian leader is a horrible idea because there are only three possible outcomes to the scenario.

The first possible outcome, and unfortunately one that is highly unlikely, is that fearing any further verbal tongue lashings from our Secretary of State, the Russians will blink, tuck their tails between their legs, and recall the troops they’ve already dispatched to the region.

The second possible outcome is that Monday comes and goes, the Russians call our bluff, we do absolutely nothing, and our impotence is on full display for the whole world to see. The danger in this is that like any apt predator Mr. Putin can sense weakness, he has an innate ability to detect fear, and he seizes the aforementioned moments of weakness and fear to capitalize and exploit his rivals.

We’ve been caught off-guard, but rather than admit it to ourselves and think things through, we think bluster and empty threats will save the day.

What we must realize is that we are not threatening some banana republic, we are not threatening some island off some coast that’s no bigger than a hamburger patty, we are threatening a nation with almost twice the landmass of our own, with at least equal if not superior military forces, and enough of a nuclear arsenal to make the entire planet an uninhabitable sandbox a thousand times over.

No, they might not be as surgical when it comes to the more finite details of delivering warheads and such, but whether by a chainsaw or a scalpel, dead is still dead. Think blunt object if that helps. Their philosophy is not so much being able to get a rocket through a keyhole, but making sure that if said rocket lands anywhere on your continent it’ll do the job.

The third possible outcome, and one I dread even contemplating is that in trying to save face we do something truly stupid like declare war, and if this occurs, come Tuesday morning we will be waking up to a new world, more readily likened to the stuff of nightmares than anything heretofore known as reality.

With love in Christ,
Michael Boldea Jr.

Friday, March 14, 2014

Perverted Realities

Lately, I’ve been pondering what kind of world I will be raising my daughter in and how difficult it will be to raise her right. Everywhere you turn, it seems reality is being perverted, and all that is naturally moral is being painted in the worst of lights.

With each passing day, parents are competing for their children’s attention, and it’s a losing battle. The other side is good at getting attention, keeping attention, and fabricating a narrative that suits them out of thin air. When you call them on it, when you’ve finally had enough and call attention the undeniably damaging filth they keep trying to spoon feed your children, they just shrug their shoulders, roll their eyes, and insist you’ve misunderstood, or that you’re overreacting. When that doesn’t assuage you, they brand you an intolerant, bigoted fundamentalist, and keep churning out their depravity without missing a beat.

If one were to draw conclusions regarding reality based on what they saw on television nowadays, it would likely shock them each time they encountered a Christian with a High School diploma, never mind a College one. We are painted with the broadest of brushes, and undeniably made to look like the brightest among us is still using flint stone to spark a fire in the community cave every night.

Reality has so been distorted, that those of perverted mind are always portrayed as savvy sophisticates who enjoy the finer things in life, critiquing art in their free time, while those who believe in God are knuckle dragging Neanderthals who can barely string together a coherent sentence when their life depended on it but not before.

Sin, depravity, lasciviousness, and immorality are always presented in the best possible light, smiling faces and screaming adolescents happy to be alive and free in the midst of flashing lights and alcohol induced debauchery. Rarely does anyone show the aftereffects and consequences of some of these nights, the vomiting, the passing out in an alley somewhere, the police reports, the rape kits, the aids tests, the bruises, and the emotional scars these all leave behind.

Those who choose to embrace the notion of a monogamous, loving relationship, replete with marriage, children, and an attempt at normalcy are looked upon as prudish and off kilter, stuck in the distant past of their parents and grandparents.

Something has awakened in me, and it will not return to slumber. I plan on keeping my daughter free of the influence of the world for as long as I can with the ferocity of a wounded lion. She’s not even here yet, yet for the life of me I cannot entertain the thought of allowing her to wade through the muck of this world at will because I may find myself busy with other things, or am just too tired after a day at work to try and teach her well.

As long as we allow others to establish the narrative, as long as we allow them to sow into the lives our children and teach them their version of right and wrong instead of taking the time to teach them the truth, the world’s perverted notion of reality will continue superimpose itself on their countenance, and rather than rejoice in the offspring God has given us in our olden days, we will mourn.

With love in Christ,
Michael Boldea Jr.

Tuesday, March 11, 2014

Back in the Groove

After prolonged and overly invasive screening procedures, a couple blissfully uneventful flights, and a warm greeting from my brother Daniel and his wife upon exiting the customs area, we made it back Stateside safe and sound.

Traveling with a pregnant wife who has just entered her third trimester has its moments -  as any man who has traveled with a pregnant spouse can attest - but as I understand it it's par for the course, and will be just another happy memory on our path toward parenthood.

Thank you all for your notes of concern for not having posted in the past week. Yes, all is well, and Lord willing I will do my utmost to post more frequently in the coming weeks. Who'd have thought that nesting was so time consuming?

With love in Christ,

Michael Boldea Jr.

Sunday, March 2, 2014

Poking Bears

Seeing as what has been unfolding in the Ukraine is a skip and a hop away from where our work in Romania is currently taking place, I’ve been keeping up with the developments, troop movements, and reactions to this entire drama.

In spite of all the stern warnings from pudgy politicians who’ve never seen a day of war, and the verbal tongue lashings from European and American officials alike about how inappropriate and politically incorrect this whole thing is, if Russia wants Crimea, Russia will have Crimea, then likely all of Ukraine and there is absolutely nothing save all-out war that will deter the Russians.

Having read my fair share of analysis on this topic, one point that every writer keeps making which is utterly wrong and has no basis in reality is that the Russian military is some weak, malnourished thing suffering from the rickets, barely breathing and in no mood for any sort of conflict.

To hear them tell the tale, the Russian army is comprised of fifteen pubescent teenagers with slingshots and blowguns.

‘No need to fear, their army is unmotivated, untrained, ill equipped, and a shadow of its former self,’ they say, even though all evidence points to the contrary.

This, I think is also the most important point of all the back and forth, because if indeed the Russian military complex is weak and emaciated, it would be in their best interest to attempt diplomacy. Try as our politicians might to spin it and say that the Russians are ready to sit down at the negotiating table and come to a peaceful resolution, there is no sign of this, and though some do not see the intent of these maneuvers, for those who have eyes to see they are very clear.

Before a conflict even begins, one must analyze a situation and ask the most fundamental of questions: which if any of the two parties has the stomach for a fight?

Simplistic as this might sound, it is also very telling in regards to the possibility or probability of negotiation, and of coming to a peaceful resolution.

From what I’m seeing, one of the parties involved not only has the stomach for a fight, but is relishing the idea of it, knowing that through the years while they’ve kept lean and hungry their enemies have grown soft, comfortable, and complacent.

In order to understand the true magnitude of what we are facing one must understand how the mind of one such as Vladimir Putin works. This is a cunning, disciplined, and forward thinking individual whose actions have purpose, and whose plans will remain cloaked and hidden until the last possible moment.

You cannot underestimate a man who’s been the head of the KGB, and has held the reins of power in a country like Russia for the better part of fourteen years. You don’t hold that kind of power in that kind of country if you are not ruthless, cutthroat, and extremely cunning. It just doesn’t happen!

The bear is awake, and poking it will just make it angry. It’s not as though God hasn’t warned, His people were just too busy to listen.

With love in Christ,
Michael Boldea Jr.