Lest we forget that God watches over his own, even when it seems that all hope is lost, this story serves to remind us as the 2015 Easter weekend approaches. South Carolina sailor Louis Jordan, aged 37, had set out back on January 23rd of this year from the boat marina at Conway, on a short fishing trip. He had recently finished painstakingly restoring a sailboat, he had named it, and now he wanted to take his restored rig out to sea for a short fishing junket. He never returned.
Louis describes falling asleep one night in his sailboat, and waking up realizing that he had been thrown out of his boat, and was now tossing and tumbling about in the cabin of his boat, with all of his gear, including his electronics and GPS unit, flying through the air around him everywhere. His boat’s mast had broken overnight in a rough storm. The boat then capsized. Most of his electronics gear was compromised as well. He had no way to radio for help. After struggling in the open sea, Louis eventually clambered up onto the overturned hell of his boat, where he would now be living indefinitely, until or unless someone could find him. There was nothing he could do but try to stay alive, and pray.
“I was running out of water. I had been drinking captured rainwater, a pint a day. I had been rationing that rainwater, and it was almost gone. Finally God answered my prayer.” – Louis Jordan describes his 66 days ordeal at sea
His family worried, wondered, began to pray of course, and eventually grieved his death and loss after 10 days of searching by the Coast Guard yielded nothing. The Coast Guard called off the search. They all gradually began to fear the worst. More than 2 months went by. Then comes a remarkable phone call, a gift from God, the voice of Louis Jordan, greeting his father by phone.
After 66 days lost at sea, Louis had drifted more than 500 miles from where he had set sail. He was now drifting about 200 miles off of the southern shore of North Carolina, in the vicinity of Cape Hatteras. Louis was spotted yesterday on April 2nd, sitting on the overturned hull of his now disabled but beloved sailboat by a German freighter ship passing by. His ordeal was soon to be over. Dramatic video below shows Louis Jordan being hauled up into a rescue helicopter, where he was whisked away to a nearby hospital for medical assessment. He actually walked into the hospital on his own strength, after living on nothing more than net caught raw fish and captured rainwater for over two months. His story is nothing short of remarkable. Never, never lose faith. Louis Jordan’s sailboat has a name: he had christened it “Angel” after he finished restoring it months ago. The boat lived up to it’s name.
Tags: Louis Jordan, sailboat Angel, lost at sea 66 days, amazing survival stories, lost and found at sea, stories of faith and perseverance
“Across the country, 50 police officers were killed by guns in 2014 compared to 32 in 2013, according to National Law Enforcement Officers Memorial Fund, which aims to increase safety for law enforcement officers.”
In August of 2014, the killing of a black youth by Ferguson Missouri police officer Darren Wilson would ignite simmering tensions between sectors of American youth and local law enforcement, setting off a firestorm of civil unrest and protests which became increasingly violent as the weeks wore on.
Now, in the closing days of 2014, each evening newscast brings viewers new and increasingly uncomfortable scenes of unhappy angry protesters in confrontation with local police and body armored swat teams on the streets of cities across America. What began as a troubling confrontation between 18 year old black teenager Michael Brown and a Ferguson Missouri police officer this summer, ended seconds later with the teen’s death and the sudden fury of the Ferguson suburb where he lived.
Even though it’s been months since the Ferguson event, public outrage over people dying during police confrontations has only escalated. Many news outlets have certainly played their part in keeping America’s young people whipped up and heading to the streets, covering every protest with ample coverage which often continued for days on end without ceasing.
More people have been shot since the seminal “Ferguson” event, both civilians and cops. In fact, a quick perusal of any given day’s news stories will produce so many new reports of deaths by gun violence occurring between the general public and police officers, it’s a struggle to keep up.
I was still compiling this report when the story appeared on evening news broadcasts. These are the numbers and they are not good.
(Reuters) – Gun related deaths of U.S. law enforcement officers rose by 56 percent in 2014 compared to the previous year, with about one-third of officers killed in an ambush, the National Law Enforcement Officers Memorial Fund said on Tuesday.
“Across the country, 50 officers were killed by guns in 2014 compared to 32 in 2013, according to National Law Enforcement Officers Memorial Fund, which aims to increase safety for law enforcement officers.”
The most deadly states were California, Texas, New York, Florida and Georgia, the group said.
“Fifteen officers were shot and killed in ambush, more than any other circumstance of fatal shootings in 2014,” the website said.
The deadly ambush of two New York City policemen as they sat in their squad car in New York on Dec. 20 was a flashpoint in a deepening rift between the city’s police department and Mayor Bill de Blasio.
The mayor had expressed qualified support for protests sparked by the deaths of unarmed black men in confrontations with white officers, and said he warned his biracial son of the “dangers he may face” in encountering police officers.
The shooter who killed the two policemen and then himself had written online that he was avenging the deaths of two unarmed black men last summer in Ferguson, Missouri, and New York.
Altogether, 126 law enforcement officers died in the line of duty in 2014, a 24 percent increase from 2013, when 102 officers were killed, the fund said.
The number of firearms-related fatalities matches 2012 statistics, when 50 officers were killed by guns,” the fund said.
The second most common cause of death for officers in 2014 was traffic-related incidents.
(Cited article re-posted from Reuter’s News on 12.29.2014: Original reporting by Barbara Goldberg in New York; Editing by Bill Trott)
Re-posted from the Wall Street Journal on December 29th 2014
I feel as though I have waited for decades for cynical secular humanism to catch up and face the preponderance of raw facts proving that a loving, benevolent, super intelligent force is at the heart of this far-flung universe. I have stated many times in private discussions regarding Deity, that science itself would someday come to the very same conclusions that many Theologians, pastors, the Pope, and millions of faith led souls have already arrived at through their own personal searching and private spiritual experience: that there is a God and that the vastness and beauty of His intelligent design for diverse life forms in the universe boggles human comprehension.
Any scientist who has observed the inexplicable life forms of the deep ocean bottoms on earth must have paused to ponder that if life could thrive under those kinds of oceanic pressures, with 98% absence of any source of light at all, in sea water supposedly devoid of nourishment and nutrients, then blunt logic itself should point out that life could exist on other worlds as well. From that point on, one just does the math of probabilities based on the sheer number of worlds that we now know are out there. And I am only talking about the Milky Way galaxy, our home pinwheel of light, not the others. When you try to imagine the numbers of worlds which might hold life in the entire expanse of creation, you run the risk of passing out from the effort. My own soul has always felt that the universe we live in must be literally teeming with life, based on what we find at the bottom of the oceans, under our microscopes and the ever-expanding number of new planets which might hold life that astronomers are discovering every year.
So imagine my delight when I found this article today. I could not have said it better myself. Enjoy.
The odds of life existing on another planet grow ever longer. Intelligent design, anyone?
Corbis By Eric Metaxas
Dec. 25, 2014 4:56 p.m. ET
In 1966 Time magazine ran a cover story asking: “Is God Dead?” Many have accepted the cultural narrative that he’s obsolete—that as science progresses, there is less need for a “God” to explain the universe. Yet it turns out that the rumors of God’s death were premature. More amazing is that the relatively recent case for his existence comes from a surprising place—science itself.
Here’s the story: The same year Time featured the now-famous headline, the astronomer Carl Sagan announced that there were two important criteria for a planet to support life: The right kind of star, and a planet the right distance from that star. Given the roughly octillion—1 followed by 27 zeros—planets in the universe, there should have been about septillion—1 followed by 24 zeros—planets capable of supporting life.
With such spectacular odds, the Search for Extraterrestrial Intelligence, a large, expensive collection of private and publicly funded projects launched in the 1960s, was sure to turn up something soon. Scientists listened with a vast radio telescopic network for signals that resembled coded intelligence and were not merely random. But as years passed, the silence from the rest of the universe was deafening. Congress defunded SETI in 1993, but the search continues with private funds. As of 2014, researches have discovered precisely bubkis—0 followed by nothing.
What happened? As our knowledge of the universe increased, it became clear that there were far more factors necessary for life than Sagan supposed. His two parameters grew to 10 and then 20 and then 50, and so the number of potentially life-supporting planets decreased accordingly. The number dropped to a few thousand planets and kept on plummeting.
Even SETI proponents acknowledged the problem. Peter Schenkel wrote in a 2006 piece for Skeptical Inquirer magazine: “In light of new findings and insights, it seems appropriate to put excessive euphoria to rest . . . . We should quietly admit that the early estimates . . . may no longer be tenable.”
As factors continued to be discovered, the number of possible planets hit zero, and kept going. In other words, the odds turned against any planet in the universe supporting life, including this one. Probability said that even we shouldn’t be here.
Today there are more than 200 known parameters necessary for a planet to support life—every single one of which must be perfectly met, or the whole thing falls apart. Without a massive planet like Jupiter nearby, whose gravity will draw away asteroids, a thousand times as many would hit Earth’s surface. The odds against life in the universe are simply astonishing.
Yet here we are, not only existing, but talking about existing. What can account for it? Can every one of those many parameters have been perfect by accident? At what point is it fair to admit that science suggests that we cannot be the result of random forces? Doesn’t assuming that an intelligence created these perfect conditions require far less faith than believing that a life-sustaining Earth just happened to beat the inconceivable odds to come into being?
There’s more. The fine-tuning necessary for life to exist on a planet is nothing compared with the fine-tuning required for the universe to exist at all. For example, astrophysicists now know that the values of the four fundamental forces—gravity, the electromagnetic force, and the “strong” and “weak” nuclear forces—were determined less than one millionth of a second after the big bang. Alter any one value and the universe could not exist. For instance, if the ratio between the nuclear strong force and the electromagnetic force had been off by the tiniest fraction of the tiniest fraction—by even one part in 100,000,000,000,000,000—then no stars could have ever formed at all. Feel free to gulp.
Multiply that single parameter by all the other necessary conditions, and the odds against the universe existing are so heart-stoppingly astronomical that the notion that it all “just happened” defies common sense. It would be like tossing a coin and having it come up heads 10 quintillion times in a row. Really?
Fred Hoyle, the astronomer who coined the term “big bang,” said that his atheism was “greatly shaken” at these developments. He later wrote that “a common-sense interpretation of the facts suggests that a super-intellect has monkeyed with the physics, as well as with chemistry and biology . . . . The numbers one calculates from the facts seem to me so overwhelming as to put this conclusion almost beyond question.”
Theoretical physicist Paul Davies has said that “the appearance of design is overwhelming” and Oxford professor Dr. John Lennox has said “the more we get to know about our universe, the more the hypothesis that there is a Creator . . . gains in credibility as the best explanation of why we are here.”
The greatest miracle of all time, without any close seconds, is the universe. It is the miracle of all miracles, one that ineluctably points with the combined brightness of every star to something—or Someone—beyond itself.
Mr. Metaxas is the author, most recently, of “Miracles: What They Are, Why They Happen, and How They Can Change Your Life” ( Dutton Adult, 2014).
An earlier version understated the number of zeroes in an octillion and a septillion.
Originally posted on News247-365:
In a moment which can only be called sickening, chilling and utterly bizarre, another large jet has been reported missing over Indonesia, with 162 persons on board. This story is breaking and I will update it frequently as I learn more.
Re-posted from ABC News Online:
An AirAsia Airbus A320-200 has gone missing on a flight from Surabaya, Indonesia, to Singapore, according to the National Agency Search and Rescue Republic of Indonesia.
The plane, flight QZ8501, which reportedly had 162 people on board, lost contact at 7:24 a.m. local time near Belitung Island, Indonesia, according to a statement from AirAsia. It was scheduled…
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