Civil War – Are you ready and whose side are you on?

Folks, many of you like my conservative political posts on Facebook, many of you (mostly liberals) don’t, but still tolerate them (thank you for not unfriending me but some have unfollowed me for sure), and many of you are sitting on the fence not sure what to believe. This message is for you. So, if you are wondering what motivates me to post messages the way I do here, read on. I think you will see my motives just and reasonable.
In case you are suffering from cranium-rectum-osis, here’s a news-flash for you. Our great republic is on the verge of a national civil war. Currently this is a war of ideas in the battle for our minds but there are pockets of physical violence that will become very widespread if this insidious, orchestrated rebellion is allowed to continue. The instigator of this current crisis is the Left (i.e. liberals, PC, Democrats, socialists, etc.) manifesting in such groups as — Workers World Party, Color of Change, Onward Together, Indivisible, MoveOn.org, Antifa, By Any Means Necessary (or BAMN), UltraViolet, Industrial Workers of the World, Organizing for Action, and this is just the short list (see link below for more detail on these groups).
These groups are hell-bent on destroying and eradicating every vestige of conservative dialogue and political control in this country by pushing an overtly socialist agenda – the creation and promotion of delusional malcontent and victimization in various classes of people. Moreover, they are determined to dismantle our constitutional way of life, liberty, and pursuit of happiness at the individual level and place everything under socialist government control. This, my friends, is the TRUE FASCISM that will destroy us, not, as the Leftists claim, the current conservative administration.
Under the Obama administration (or shortly thereafter) they began to flourish and have recently evolved into a loose rebellion or resistance network where they work together or at least are sympathetic to each other’s causes. But they all have one unifying factor and that is Leftist ideology. The power behind that ideology can unite these groups in a heartbeat should they ever attempt an overthrow of our current government under Trump and other conservatives.
Still not sure what side to be on? Let’s ask some fundamental questions in the event the Left (or Socialism) wins the hearts of the American people. Are you for having our great Constitution eliminated or amended to the point of being unrecognizable? This also includes having all your current amendment rights eliminated as well. Picture this – you can no longer say whatever you like but must be PC always. You can no longer freely practice your religion or live according to the Gospel of our Lord Jesus Christ. You can no longer own your own house, or automobile, or any other private property. You will be assigned where to work and the money you generate from your labor will not be yours but will belong to the state who doles it out to everyone, more or less equally. The only morality is that which the state defines. Resistance is futile because, . . .. your guns were taken away from you at the very beginning of the new socialist order.
Do you *really* want to live in a Communist state (which typically starts off as a Socialist state) where your personal freedoms or liberties are all but removed? Have you taken the time to look at historical instances of how socialism was implemented (often violently) and the social and economic consequences many years after implementation where people are living in miserable poverty and either chaos and/or rigid, oppressive control?
Getting back to the consequences of a socialist economy here’s my personal bottom line. I have the good fortune of living an upper middle-class lifestyle, the result of not only the fruit of my labors, but those of my parents and grandparents which have accrued over time. Does that make me the recipient of multi-generational privilege? It depends on how you define privilege. If the privilege comes from faith, right thinking, right living, right morality, right reinvestment, among other things, then so be it. I am grateful for my God-given wisdom and that of my forefathers.
But if the socialists have their way, then the successful accrual of my family wealth will no longer be mine. It will be taken from me and given to those who did not earn or wisely invest it. And that is unacceptable to me and to millions of other Americans who are also living “the dream”. About those less fortunate than me, I freely and willingly support those I can through charitable giving, but that’s my choice alone, and not the choice of others who would dictate to me what I can or can’t do with my personal assets.
Therein lies the crux of the situation. Freedom vs. slavery. Prosperity vs. poverty. Faith vs. atheism. Freely elected officials vs. dictators. Free volition vs. brainwashing. Choice vs. restriction, and so on. Why anyone would choose the latter of these scenarios is beyond me. But to my great sadness millions of Americans are being deluded toward a society like this and unfortunately it will affect me and others as well. Come on people, lets KEEP AMERICA GREAT!! Do the right thing and avoid, no, resist socialism in all of its various forms. Your very life and the lives of those you love may depend on it.
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School Shootings

One of the constants in the school shootings of the last two decades is that virtually all perpetrators (or perps) gave indicators (some more than others) that they had personal or emotional issues evident to their friends and teachers and should have never been allowed to be near any type of weapon. Instead of focusing on all encompassing gun control, in deference to honest and law-abiding gun owners who have a constitutional right to own them, we need to focus on kid control including the families they come from and their potential weapons. Kids who display the indicators mentioned above should be called out and given psychological evaluations. Here is my suggestion:
  1. Train staff AND students how to recognize and report suspicious behavior from (negative physical and verbal clues toward people) and toward (targets of bullying, negative home environment, etc.) potential perps.
  2. Once potential perps have been identified require them to take a psych eval from school psychologists.
  3. After the evals if there is a clear and present danger remove all guns, explosives, and other weapons of potential mass killings from the homes of the potential perps. Sorry      parents, but you may have helped bring this on yourselves.
  4. Recommend or in some extreme cases require targeted families to take parenting classes and/or counseling with measurable progressive progress for potential perps.
  5. Also, hold bullies accountable for their behavior and impose the same above mentioned steps on them and their families.
This is just a suggestion and admittedly rather simplistic and more than likely flawed. But something like this would be a start in the right direction. If anything, it will provide more accountability to each other with the possible result of less shootings or other violent behavior.
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Has the U.S. Lost Her Protective Covering?

The horrors of 9/11 were the first of several wake up calls God has given our great nation, the Sony Pictures hack being the latest affront to our sense of security and invulnerability. Yes, there were other attacks against the U.S. abroad and to a lesser degree at home but 9/11 literally brought us to our knees. And all of the terrible trials we have experienced at the national and state levels in the 13 years since then are constant reminders of our need to look past ourselves and seek a Power greater than our own for protection and unity. In that light, what is it that God wants us to wake up from and what does He want from us?

Ever since the ‘60s the moral fabric that built our country into the post WWII greatness it once experienced has now in the last five decades begun to slowly and surely unravel. The American people have been subjected to numerous radical social experiments, some by choice, others not, some institutionalized, others on a more personal level. These experiments have challenged long-held beliefs and world-views that were more or less God-centered and whether people actually believed in them or not they were at least living under the social infrastructure of such world-views. This raises a huge question for me; are these experiments even necessary and what exactly do the perpetrators of these experiments hope to accomplish? Do people’s lives need to be destroyed in order to test the supposed merits of radical theories?

One major example began with the disintegration of the family unit and that has affected every other institution directly or indirectly (religion, government, education/schools, social services, etc.). How and why these institutions are affected by the family breakdown is food for another discussion but I think it doesn’t take much effort to recall the natural consequences to these institutions especially from past and recent news sources. Taking this into account, it is both natural and traditional for a family to consist of a mother, father, and children. Anything other than that is dysfunctional for the normal development of children and its secondary and far-reaching effects on society. Not that a traditional nuclear family consistently experiences functional perfection because we all know that anytime you have imperfect people living together there will be some degree of dysfunction. It is in our nature. But, in most cases, when that dysfunction has run its course, usually in relatively short periods, a rebound to functionality is put back in place due to the overall functional structure of the family unit. That rebound effect, starting with the family, also has secondary and far-reaching effects on society in a positive way.

Having said all this, history is replete with the consequences of the breakdown of morality, family structure, and the inevitable consequences to all because of the failure of people and their social experiments, people who live outside the revealed will and authority of God. The God ordained wake-up call eventually turns into self-fulfilled prophecy and we as a nation are on the precipice of fulfilling many such prophecies. This reminds me of the butterflies and bears analogy. God has for the last couple centuries sent us butterflies to get out attention (i.e. evangelists, street preachers, and family and friends who are unashamed to speak the truth). Now he is sending the bears (terrorism from within and without, mass shootings, race wars, and cyber-attacks, just to name a few).

The questions remain; what does God want us to know about Himself and what does He want us to do on both a personal and national level? In the last few years I have seen Jeremiah 29:11 quoted often and it is personally one of my favorites. Let me also add the next two verses to it as well:

For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the Lord, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future. Then you will call on me and come and pray to me, and I will listen to you. You will seek me and find me when you seek me with all your heart.” — Jer 29:11-13

Besides His desire to prosper us and not harm us, God further speaks to our hearts to repent from our godless ways which is prerequisite for any hope we might have to garner his protective cover over us, prosper us, and heal us:

. . .if my people, who are called by my name, will humble themselves and pray and seek my face and turn from their wicked ways, then I will hear from heaven, and I will forgive their sin and will heal their land. — 2 Chr 7:14-15

“Submit to God and be at peace with him; in this way prosperity will come to you. Accept instruction from his mouth and lay up his words in your heart. If you return to the Almighty, you will be restored: If you remove wickedness far from your tent and assign your nuggets to the dust, your gold of Ophir to the rocks in the ravines, then the Almighty will be your gold, the choicest silver for you. Surely then you will find delight in the Almighty and will lift up your face to God. You will pray to him, and he will hear you, and you will fulfill your vows. What you decide on will be done, and light will shine on your ways. When men are brought low and you say, ‘Lift them up!’ then he will save the downcast. He will deliver even one who is not innocent, who will be delivered through the cleanness of your hands.” — Job 22:21-30

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Why I Believe in God

Before I answer the question, let me give a little background info about me. When I accepted Christ in March of 1973 it was just a few months before my 18th birthday and my graduation from high school. My high school years were turbulent because of bad choices I made regarding the use of alcohol, drugs, the hip philosophy, including dabbling in the occult and rebellion in general. Spiritually, I was an agnostic. Eventually, a close friend of mine, who I had led into that lifestyle, blind-sided me one day with his testimony about Christ and that we were living in the last days. After about 20 minutes of listening to his talk, I curtly asked him to leave wondering what the hell happened to him. Nevertheless the Holy Spirit convicted me later on that day, I accepted Christ, and at the same time had a Pauline conversion experience (cf. Acts 9:1-19) that I will never forget. Apparently that is what it took for God to get my attention because not everyone who becomes a Christian has that experience. It worked. 🙂

The subjective experience aside, I started going to church, reading the Bible, praying on occasion, and for some strange reason couldn’t keep my mouth shut about my new-found faith. I had much zeal, but little knowledge. After serving in the military I received formal training in the Bible, business administration, and eventually Information Technology which is my vocation today.

Having said all that, and after spending the next three decades after my conversion formulating and solidifying my belief in God, it all boils down to a couple of things – natural and Biblical revelation. Whether you are an atheistic / theistic evolutionist (a belief system) or accept a literal 6-day creation (another belief system I accept) one of the deep mysteries of the physical universe is that it can all be reduced down to mathematical formulas (physics, among other things), and this strongly implies intelligence. This is cause and effect. Moreover, biological life is another clear indication of the existence of God. Only life can begat life; it has never been done in the laboratory. Moreover, it takes an extremely complex code (quaternary as opposed to binary – what our computers use) “written” at the molecular level (DNA / RNA) to create and then replicate every physical facet of every living entity. Therefore the first Cause is both living and intelligent and the effect that we clearly see and experience through our five senses is called Natural Revelation. This is a pretty simplistic explanation; there have been volumes written on it in theology and philosophy throughout history and more recently, science.

The flip side of Natural Revelation is Supernatural Revelation and over the course of 1500 years some 40+ people, mainly the Jews and a few Gentiles began to journal their supernatural encounters with this living and intelligent Being (יהוה, or YHWH, or I AM, or God) Who revealed Himself to these people in space, time, and history. In other words, these divine revelations were not products of their fertile imaginations but were real and tangible. Their collected journals became our Bible. God’s ultimate revelation of Himself to us was in the Person and Work of our Lord Jesus Christ Who, as the Bible bears testimony, lived a perfect life, died, was raised from the dead in the same (but glorified) body in which He previously lived (this is not a fairy tale but documented history), and who ascended back to Heaven, and Who promised to come again to resurrect us, and finally to recreate the heavens and earth to its original perfect state. The one Author of the Bible (the Holy Spirit through the 40+ people who journaled their experiences with Him) convicts us of the truth of His written Word, and allows us to experience Him through our “sixth sense” that is our own spirit created in His image.

Therefore, I can not help but believe in God; His existence is obvious to my six senses and I hope that all can know and experience Him the same way I do according to the Biblical formula of knowing God and His love, recognizing that our sin (falling short of God’s character and will) separates us from Him, accepting his provision for our sin (life, atoning death, resurrection of Jesus Christ), and asking Jesus to be Savior and Lord of our lives. I am walking in the Spirit, on the Path (Jesus), to the glory of the Father. Praise Him! Maranatha! Come Lord Jesus, come!!

Jesus' resurrection, our hope.Jesus’ resurrection, our hope.

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The Most Important Thing In Life

In the nearly 53 years I’ve been on this planet the most important thing I’ve discovered is to have a personal bond with the Lord Jesus Christ . . . not religion, but relationship.  Knowing that God loves me unconditionally and has provided a remedy for my own self-destructive thinking and behavior liberated me.  His remedy gave me deliverance from the past penalty of, present power of, and future presence of sin in my life.  So, what is sin?

 

Sin is what separates us from God and is the singular cause for all the negativity, pain, chaos, and suffering in the world, yesterday and today.  Yeah, I know, “sin” is an old-fashioned word but if you know its definition it begins to make sense in describing the human dilemma.  Basically, sin is any want or lack of conformity to the character and will of God and affects us individually and collectively. 

 

It doesn’t take a rocket scientist to figure out that there is something fundamentally wrong with the world.  We can’t watch TV, listen to the radio, peruse the Internet, or read the paper without seeing the results of sin in our broken world.  Man’s inhumanity to man and the animal world, our lack of stewardship to our environment, our indifference to the sufferings of others, our obsession with feeding the lusts and desires of our flesh, our inability to follow even the simplest of rules, like obeying the speed limit, well . . . the list goes on.

 

Moreover, it doesn’t take a detective to discover my own dark secrets and yours; in the eyes of God and our own conscience it is as plain as day.  And there are consequences.  “But I’m not as bad as . . . .”  OK, so you are not one of the two million plus statistics in our correctional institutions but you are not Jesus Christ either and He is the standard of truth and right living by which we are all to live.  The point is . . . we all fall short, some more than others, but still short.  Have you or I broken any of the 10 Commandments or failed to consistently love God and others?  There you go.  Case closed.

 

Earlier I mentioned the remedy which set my life right before God and is available to all who will merely believe it to be true.  It is both simple and profound.  God became one of us in the Person of Jesus Christ, lived a life that consistently pleased the Father, allowed Himself to be killed as a sacrifice for our sins, was buried, and raised Himself from the dead in the same physical body in which He died.  This isn’t religious fantasy but historical fact.  He did this as proof to the world that Who He was (and is) and what He did (and continues to do) was acceptable to God.  In other words Jesus, in our place, sacrificially died the death that we all should have died for our own sins.  The righteous for the unrighteous.

 

Why all the pain, blood, and suffering to make us right before God?  The answer is to know Who God is and what He requires of us to be consistent with His own nature.  Most people like to view God as good, loving, benevolent, patient, and forgiving.  He is all that and more.  But He also reveals Himself as holy, righteous, just, consistent, and perfect in all His attributes.  To be consistent with Himself He cannot allow sin in His presence.  However, to be consistent with his love for us He had to provide a way out for us from the sin dilemma.  He did that in Jesus Christ.  The severity of our sin required the severity of the cross for Jesus.  It is a severe love and mercy.  It is also the ONLY way a person can become right before Him.

 

So how can we become right with God?  By simple faith in believing the Good News that Jesus Christ provided the way of salvation through His life, death, resurrection on our behalf.  That’s it; nothing more, nothing less.  Many stumble over this simple truth thinking they have to do something on their own to become right with God, hence the multitude of religions.  They don’t realize that Jesus Christ already did it for them.  God has met us halfway by what He did on our behalf.  It is up to us to simply believe it to fill the other half.  If you know and believe this all you have to do is ask Jesus Christ to be your Savior and Lord.  Then you will be His for eternity.

Talk to me if you would like to be introduced to my Friend . . . Jesus.  Better yet, talk to Him if you want to be set free and have eternal life.  You will never be the same again.

 

 

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Cancun Vacation

What can we say . . . it was probably the best vacation Melinda and I have ever been on.  More to come later.
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