Let's see how the headlines have changed in a week. Today's news is as follows:

  • Qusay Hussein took a billion dollars-one quarter of the country's hard currency reserve-out of the banks just before the war started. The financial result on a country about to rebuild will be even more difficult.
  • The 100th Victim of a Rhode Island nightclub, after two-and-a-half months of suffering, has died.
  • The body count left behind by a series of tornados in the Midwest is now near 40.

Is there any good news out there? Actually, yes. GOP Activist William Bennett has openly admitted that he is giving up gambling.

Which, sadly, can only mean there was a problem in the first place. Gambling, like so many other addictions, attack even God's children. Pornography-yes, within the realms of the Church-is at an all time high. In fact, according to Jack Samad, Senior Vice President of The National Coalition for Protection of Families and Children , 41 percent of those warming the pews of our churches on Sunday and 25 percent of the pastors, priests, etc. who shepherd the flock are within the clutches of sexual immorality or in their behavior, violated biblical sexual ethics.

So why be joyous?

A Look Back At Part One

In Part One of this six-part series, we began by looking at the words of Peter in 1 Peter 1:6b, 7: "In this you greatly rejoice, though now for a little while you may have had to suffer grief in all kinds of trials. These have come so that your faith--of greater worth than gold, which perishes even though refined by fire--may be proved genuine and may result in praise, glory and honor when Jesus Christ is revealed."

The question is this: In what do we rejoice?

In this, Peter said. The first thing we looked at was verse 3, which reads: In his great mercy he has given us new birth into a living hope through the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead...

Now let's see what other areas Peter concluded we should be joyous in, as found in verse four: In his great mercy he has given us new birth into a living hope through the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead and into an inheritance that can never perish, spoil or fade--kept in heaven for you...

What Have You Inherited?

I come from two families who believe in heirlooms. Things are already marked in the homes of my mother and father. The joke is: when you come home, bring the label maker!

There are two items that have been passed down in my father's family, which my brother and I are jockeying in position for. One, an oak occasional table that at one time belonged to his "Grandmother Dubberly." Two, an old "fireside chats" radio. It doesn't work but it survived two home fires and has been beautifully refinished and I'm certain we can find someone, somewhere who can make it "sing" again.

I know that doesn't sound like a lot for a family that believes in heirlooms, but remember that nearly everything owned by my father's family was destroyed by fire. Twice.

My mother's home is a different story. Furniture, china, crystal, silver, quilts, jewelry, old bottles, antique school desks, and dinner bells.... The list goes on and on. These items are multi-generational. In fact, just in jewelry alone I personally own rings worn by my mother, grandmother, and great-grandmother.

When I received the ring that at one time had been worn by my great-grandmother, the band of it had broken apart and the gold had to be replaced. Additionally, the diamond had fallen out and it, too, had to be replaced.