8 Things to Consider Before Watching Tonight’s Presidential Debate

dog-watching-tvThe nation will be tuning in to watch the first Presidential Debate tonight. Chances are most of us have already chosen who we will vote for. For many of us the debate is more like a boxing ring to see how well our candidate of choice will dominate the floor.

There is a segment of the population that will be chagrined at the election of either nominee. Their candidate of choice will not be on the platform tonight. Others are fearfully voting one way to avoid voting another. Some people are firmly aligned with one candidate or the other.

Regardless of what group we are a part of, we can apply a few guiding principles when watching the Presidential debates. Continue reading “8 Things to Consider Before Watching Tonight’s Presidential Debate”

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Rekindling Hope in a Dark World

light-of-the-worldThe Western world has run amok, but I am not going to react to it. We have all heard of the violent acts in Florida, Dallas, France, Baton Rouge, Germany, and now Florida again.

The best thing I can do in response is to stay the course that God has called me to travel. I will continue teaching people to honor those in authority and to respect all people regardless of race, class, gender, or religion. I will not become reactive, distracted, or intolerable in response to current events.

Before the families have been notified, social media surges with political opinions and demands. We can denounce such violence all we want, but it will not stop it.

Frankly, I am more concerned with the responses and lives of Christians in this nation than I am the damage wrought by terrorism. Continue reading “Rekindling Hope in a Dark World”

Restoration of America: The American Way

constitution-founding-fathersWhen the Founding Fathers forged the Constitution our identity became better solidified against foreign ideas. As time passed the geographical divide between competing national worldviews has all but disappeared. One need not live in another land to adopt the culture and beliefs of that land. Many watch in horror as American-born citizens align with foreign terrorist groups. The market place of ideas has grown to include ways of thinking that are destructive to America’s future.

The Founding Fathers placed safeguards in the Constitution against elected leaders being influenced by the ways of foreign nations. James Madison argues the point in Federalist Paper 62: Continue reading “Restoration of America: The American Way”

Breaking Free of Facebook

a.aaa-Even-The-Cats-Use-Facebook-Facebook is not real. It does not give us a real picture of real life. It is manufactured. It is an imitation of socializing. It provides a false sense of community. It provides a daily dose of drama. It can also provide amusement, social networking, and helpful information. But it often takes more than it gives.

Topics of great import fade away as quickly as a summer thunderstorm. They clamor for attention with mighty displays of hype and drama only to be replaced by the next storm unleashing its fury against our walls. One day it is threats of missiles from North Korea, the next day it is the war in the Ukraine, then it is the horrific acts of ISIS, then it is the sale of baby parts by Planned Parenthood, then it is Cecil the Lion, then bathroom laws, then a Gorilla takes center stage for a few days. Now it’s Orlando and with it the hotly debated Second Amendment. As each matter demands our attention the last one fades into obscurity. Continue reading “Breaking Free of Facebook”

Thinking that leads to Repentance

fe1bc295-65ce-4931-81e4-bbec4c63baf1I once thought along hard lines. If you pushed against one of those lines, I pushed back. If your thinking did not fit inside my lines, it was wrong and you were wrong. I believed in absolute truth. There was no margin for error. If my truth was in error, I was in error, and maybe all of Christendom. I had to hold the fort and hold it I did.

I admired the sharp lines of my thinking. I sought to perfect those lines with study. I read all that supported my thinking and nothing that would threaten it. Then one day I ran into people. These people became my friends. And these friends thought differently than me. These friends were good strong Christians, yet they did not see the world the same as I. Continue reading “Thinking that leads to Repentance”

Why Are We All Arguing?

cookie-cutterIf we all thought the same way, we would be in trouble. When we are free to think for ourselves, we are free to think poorly as well as rightly. We are free to think sideways, backwards, or not at all. If we are not free to think worse, we are not free to think better.

When I watch debates raging across social media, I think we have all gone mad. We seldom debate to reach truth. We debate to dominate and stamp out the opposition. I’m free to share my opinion, but your opinion should not exist. This is proven when we are angry at someone for saying something we interpret as stupid. Continue reading “Why Are We All Arguing?”

Restoration of America: The Evangelical Movement

30305-flag-bible-facebook.800w.tn.jpgEvangelical is a term rightly applied to a large spectrum of Christians. Some Christians embrace this identity, some are ignorant of it, and others want to distance themselves from it. No matter our category of preference, we are all, most likely, in the dark about its history. Knowing this history can reconnect our present to our past heritage, and sure up the foundation of something that has become more defined by modernity than by its history.

Evangelical Christians have deep roots dating back to the middle of the eightieth century. The first evangelicals were Anglican Church members who had a conversion experience which resulted in their becoming serious about living out their Christian faith. As a result, they began to change the way they lived to conform to a new serious life devoted to applying the Bible to their lives, and serving the community in which they lived.

Instead of sending their children to boarding schools, as was the custom of the day, they began to educate them at home. Households, which included the family and servants, met together to pray daily. Devotions became a central part of each day. Sundays were dedicated to become a day of rest to such an extent that children had Sunday games and toys designed to teach them the Bible. Evangelical gentlemen kept strict accounting of their days noting the hours spent in prayer, Bible reading, and constructive work. Women gave themselves to raising their children, tending their families, and taking up the cause of the poor.  Continue reading “Restoration of America: The Evangelical Movement”

Religion & American Politics

light-vs-dark-sideDuring the political season it is easy to adopt an us versus them mentality. Such a mentality leads to polarized thinking where “we” are the good guys and “they” are the bad guys. All “their” ideas are hogwash and all of “our” ideas are the hallmark of wisdom. Soon the ideas themselves are sacrificed to the greater cause of party politics. We demonize the “other” and glorify the one we identify as the only wise choice.

Though in this political season, some feel that no one candidate is the wise choice and all are sorely lacking as leaders. Regardless, when all the dust settles one of these candidates will be chosen as President. The one that is chosen will need to be respected as President.

On one hand, this political season has brought voters out of the woodwork and interest in the political process has soared compared to what has been normal. This is a very good thing. America needs her citizens to be interested and invested in the political process. The Republic is strengthened the more citizens become active participants in choosing their representatives. Continue reading “Religion & American Politics”

Truth and Facts: What’s the Truth?

Uchitel-1The first day of my Advanced English class, my professor announced to the class that we needed to get one thing straight before we commenced the semester. She then declared unequivocally that there is no absolute truth. She asked if that was settled or if anyone objected. My hand shot up. My heart was pounding as she and the class turned their attention on me.

“Ok then give me a fact, any fact,” she challenged.

“The earth is round,” came my response.

“Have you measured it?” She taunted.

I stared at her confused as to her retort.

“Give me another fact,” she persisted. Continue reading “Truth and Facts: What’s the Truth?”

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