From Our Readers

Kidnapping I am writing to convey my special thanks for the series “Kidnapping—Why a Global Threat.” (December 22, 1999) Last month there was a robbery at the supermarket where I work. Two masked men came in, one pointing a gun. Because the articles showed that kidnap victims should do as they’re told, I didn’t resist as they taped my hands, feet, and eyes and made me sit on the floor. They stole 9,500,000 yen (roughly $90,000 U.S.). But I remained calm and was not hurt. The article came at the right time!

S. H., Japan

Enjoys Awake! Being a member of the Assembly of God church does not prevent me from reading Awake! I have yet to read a magazine of such high quality and with such a variety of subjects. I do not have a television at home, but I can often discuss current topics with my friends because I have read about them in your magazine.

A.B.A., Brazil

Close Shave The article “A Close Shave” (January 22, 2000) came at just the right time for me. My husband is now in need of constant care and can no longer shave himself. The four tips on shaving were a great help. Now he wants me to shave him every day!

L. D., Germany

Lying I found the article “The Bible’s Viewpoint: Lying—Is It Ever Justified?” (February 8, 2000) to be thought provoking. But by any reasonable definition, does not the Bible condemn all deception?

D. S., United States

In the Bible, lying generally involves saying something false to a person who is entitled to know the truth and doing so with the intent to deceive or to injure him or another person. God-fearing individuals such as Abraham, Isaac, Rahab, and David thus engaged in forms of deception but were not condemned as liars. Of course, they did so under extraordinary circumstances. Their actions therefore do not justify needless deception. For example, if a Christian has sworn to tell the truth in a court of law, he will either tell the truth or remain silent.—ED.

Fatherless Families The February 8, 2000, issue addresses the cycle of fatherless children. (“Fatherless Families—Breaking the Cycle”) I cannot express in words how disappointed and angry I was after reading this. You sanctioned the conduct of absentee fathers by addressing their various concerns such as visitation rights and their economic plight. Where is the reprimand? Where is the encouragement for men to rectify their errors?

S. L., United States

We can well appreciate how painful it must be for some to consider such material, especially if they have experienced abandonment. But the article was not intended to serve as a reprimand to men. Rather, we endeavored to promote an understanding of both sides of the complex issues involved. We also gave practical counsel to victims of abandonment. Interestingly, the concluding article, “Fatherless Families—Breaking the Cycle,” made the statement: “Current family trends will be halted only if people are willing to make profound changes in their thinking, their attitudes, their behavior, their morals.”—ED.

When I saw the cover with its picture of a girl with her father, my eyes filled with tears. I had always wanted to have a relationship like that with my father. The article enabled me to try to understand why things happened the way they did in my family. It was like a ray of sunshine penetrating my past and illuminating dark questions that have been there for so many years.

M. M., United States