People are humans

Job 11:12  For an empty-headed man will be wise when a wild donkey's colt is born a man. 

Can't you just hear the exasperation? I can and it makes me laugh. It reminds me of Solomon saying "Living with a contentious woman is like incessant, dripping rain." (Loose paraphrase). 

And here is another one, Prov 11:22  As a ring of gold in a swine's snout, So is a lovely woman who lacks discretion. That is so true and said with such a twist of humor I can't help but laugh at the image it draws into focus.

And this one, Prov 21:9  Better to dwell in a corner of a housetop, Than in a house shared with a contentious woman. Solomon liked this one so much he said it again in Prov 25:24.

We are not so different from the people of biblical times. We have the same frustrations, the same things bother us, things like nagging, and worrying. We have the same kinds of temptations and the same temptations also drag us into the mud. Prov 19:3  The foolishness of a man twists his way, And his heart frets against the LORD.

People are humans, so why are we so surprised when we discover a leader has feet of clay? Pastors sin just like regular people; and government officials sin and it's called making a mistake. The difference is that pastors repent, and government officials make excuses.

Tax dollars spent on murder of innocents

Marjorie Dannenfelser,President of the Susan B. Anthony List, repeated in a recent email Speaker John Boehner's remark in response to Vice President Biden's comments, "No government on Earth has the authority to place quotas on the value of innocent human life, or to treat life as an economic commodity that can be regulated and taken away on a whim by the state."

Amen to that!

I have been appalled at what China has been doing to women for the past decades simply because they wanted more than one child. Did you know that seek out pregnant women and even if they are within weeks of delivery, they forcibly abort the pregnancy, treating the infant as if it were trash? 

I have no idea where this photo came from.
Psalm 139:13  For You formed my inward parts; You covered me in my mother's womb.

How can we possibly think that a baby, an infant, is nothing more than tissue and mother's blood? It moves, and wiggles, and jumps for joy at the sound of Daddy's voice, and calms at the sound of Mommy's voice.

Dannenfelser also quoted Congressman Chris Smith:

Congressman Chris Smith, a longtime critic of the One-Child Policy, put it best when he said:
[The One-Child Policy] is hideous. Women are hunted down if they evade these family planning cadres into the ninth month. They are forcibly brought into a clinic and aborted…this is the most pervasive act of violence against women anywhere in the world. It is systematic and state-sponsored, and the United States, under Obama, Hilary Clinton – and now Vice President Biden in this outrageous statement – is showing the world that we do not care about Chinese women and babies.
I'm wondering how much longer our tax dollars will be spent on things that citizens are directly opposed to both ethically and morally. When will all our representatives and all our senators will stand up to the strong-arm tactics that our Demorat leaders have chosen to use in their agenda-driven world and domestic policies.

I agree with the current statement floating around the internet. "That earthquake felt in Washington, D.C. was our forefathers turning over in their graves!" Wake up American Christians... the legacy we will leave our children is turning rank. 

Do you believe in science?

Texas governor, Rick Perry, was asked by a boy (with his mother shouting behind him) about creationism and evolution. I thought his answer was really good which went something like,  "Son, in Texas we learn about creationism and the theory of evolution." Then the mother behind the boy started shouting, "Do you believe in science? Ask him why doesn't he believe in science!"

Science isn't something you have to "believe" in. Science doesn't ask for faith. In fact, evolution isn't even a true theory because a scientific theory has to have been created in the lab first and then recreated for it to be considered a theory. If evolution was created in a laboratory, then it wouldn't be evolution, would it?

At best evolution is an assumption, or the scientific term, hypothesis. Evolution as described by Darwin is merely a concession for the sake of argument, not proven science or proven theory.

Ann Coulter has a marvelous post on flash mob mentality which has never been logical to me whatsoever. Why would anyone blindly show up at a particular address just because it flashed on your phone? How stupid can the public get? Oh, I guess this is why our forefathers set up the Electoral College. Does anyone even know what that is anymore?

I do believe that our society is becoming brain dead. We have people asking if our candidates believe in science when the only thing that requires more faith than belief in God is believing in evolution which has never been recreated in the science lab unless someone wants to claim manipulation the gene pool is evolution. But then that is actually intelligent design rather than happenstance, isn't it?

Do you believe?

Fiction is fiction, right?

Well apparently it isn't. In a story from the Sun Herald today

Civil rights infringed?

Reading the newspaper Sunday is sometimes like treading quicksand. One used to be able to rely on AP reporters for absolute correctness of word usage. Lately it is not so.

I have found simple slips such as "alleged shooting" and "alleged gun". Either there was a shooting or there was not and it was carried out with a gun. What kind of gun is the question, not if it was a gun or not.

Sometimes the way people use words brings a smile to my face, and other times I just have to grimace and mentally stop from inserting commas or removing them. Grammaticals haven't been a major peeve of mine, but grammatically incorrect verbiage is the clog in story flow for me.

Such is the AP story in yesterday's paper by Holbrook Mohr (usually a very good wordsmith and grammatician--aren't you impressed by all these made up words?). The FBI is investigating the alleged murder by pickup truck incident in Jackson, MS to discover whether the murder of the black man was an infringement of his civil rights by the white teenager driving the truck.

Really? I believe that anyone who takes the life of another is infringing upon that person's civil rights. We have the inalienable right to live given to us by God Himself since He did create us, knitting our most intimate inwards parts together within our mothers' wombs. Of course, I understand the civil right Mohr is referring to is the Hate Crimes Act. However, it seems to me that murder is a most uncivil act regardless of the legal definition of civil right.

We should always remember that Jesus said if we harbor anger against a brother we are guilty of murder. Anger of the unrighteous kind is also an uncivil act of the mental kind.

If we could only let people be people in this world... If we could only pursue happiness instead of trying to scrub out another's happiness... If we could just try to love our neighbors as ourselves, what a different world we would inhabit.

Pedophiles are victims???

In a recent report by Charles Butts, the American Psychiatric Association's presenting professionals are urging their peers to establish pedophilia as something close to normal behavior when they remove it from the list of mental disorders in their manual.

Matt Barber of the Liberty Counsel said he "felt as if I were on a different planet". He also reported that the discussions centered around the victimization of pedophiles.

I'm with Matt. Where are we and what have the psychiatrists done with our planet?

Something has gone incredibly screwball in the minds and hearts of Americans. That is a given, because we have essentially gone back to the days just after Hezekiah when Manasseh was king and babies were being sacrificed.

Thankfully, abortions have decreased in numbers but even if there was one abortion it is too many in my book. The APA voted 157 to 0 in favor of endorsing same sex marriages, and now they are seriously discussing children are not victims of pedophiles, but the pedophiles are the victims. I'm sick to my stomach!

This didn't just happen. Back in the 1990s, the APA endorsed a report that children at the age of 13 should be considered consenting adults in sexual encounters with pedophiles. The growing inclination to rob children of their innocence is a growing world trend. See my post on a United Nations report. If that gets implemented, then our children will be sexually awakened long before God intended them to.

If we do not wake up and voice our outrage, then the world will sink deeper and deeper into the muck and mire of Satan's plans. Of course, God won't hold back judgment. However, when we stand up for our Christian morals, standards and ethics, then we are aligning ourselves with God Almighty. That is exactly where He would have us be. WE are the restraint holding back the evil of Satan's rage. If we do not speak out, then we get what we deserve. Oh, Lord Jesus, come quickly!

I had to hunt for it, but I finally found the article I was thinking about and here it is...
Here is the article
Sunday, March 28, 1999
THE AMERICAN Psychological Association's Psychological Bulletin released a study of 59 other studies last year that concluded that college students who had been sexually abused as kids were ``slightly less well adjusted' than other college kids. Authors Bruce Rind, Phillip Tromovitch and Robert Bauserman urged psychologists not to assume that sex between nonrelated adults and minors is abusive, as children often deem the experience to be positive. ``In short,' they wrote, ``the self-reported effects data do not support the assumption of wide-scale psychological harm from CSA (child sexual abuse).'

The authors want to dump the term ``child sexual abuse' when children consent to sex with adults. Better, the three argue, to call such relations ``adult-adolescent sex.' Or when the ``willing encounter with positive reactions' involves a 9-year-old and an adult, call it ``simply adult-child sex, a value neutral term.'

Last week radio talk show host Laura Schlessinger -- a.k.a. Dr. Laura -- began a crusade against the piece and the APA for printing it. She fears the piece is part of a concerted effort to get the APA to remove pedophilia from its list of mental disorders.

APA spokeswoman Rhea Farberman thinks that it is valid to criticize the piece. She reiterated the APA position that pedophilia is ``a mental disorder, extremely harmful to children, is illegal and should stay illegal.'

Farberman criticized Schlessinger, however, for making a big issue of the piece. Maybe that's because the APA showed appalling judgment in printing this pedophilia propaganda.

Schlessinger attacks the study's methodology. It would be the equivalent of asking women who had been raped 10 years ago how they feel today. Then, if most say they are fine, concluding that rape is ``not harmful, in fact it might be beneficial.' Thus the authors culled through their data on college students, then said do away with the abuse term because 37 percent of males viewed their childhood sexual experiences as positive and that males viewed their childhood sexual experiences with adults more positively than females.

No surprise, the North American Man/Boy Love Association (NAMBLA) has posted the ``good news' about the study on its Web page. ``On average, nearly 70 percent of males in the studies reported that as children or adolescents their sexual experiences with adults had been positive or neutral,' it stated. And, ``The current war on boy- lovers has no basis in science.'

It's as if all the research about the trauma caused by adults having sex with children, all the testimony, all the tears, all the rage, never existed. Most boys liked it, or didn't mind it, which is the same to the three researchers. Some girls -- probably those they refer to as ``mature' -- liked it, too.

Heterosexual pedophiles have been making the same argument for years. The little girls liked it. The little girls wanted it.

You expect that sort of cynical excuse from a cruel pervert, but you don't expect to read it in an APA journal.

The authors had argued that their mission was to differentiate between what childhood sexual experiences with adults are most harmful -- that it is important to contrast between ``the repeated rape of a 5-year-old girl by her father and the willing sexual involvement of a mature 15-year-old adolescent boy with an unrelated adult.' Yet, they don't differentiate between boys' reactions to sex with a man and sex with a woman.

``Doesn't that make you suspicious that they have an agenda?' Schlessinger asked.

As a matter of fact, it does.

Of course, what really makes me suspicious is any psychologist who thinks that a 9-year-old can consent to sex.

Vastness of God's Grace

Photo: Tom Curtis
Being a Christian since I was six years old, I guess it was inevitable that I should take God's Grace for granted. I know absolutely that God has a purpose for everything and that includes me. So, I was sitting there feeling incredibly sorry for myself... trying to pray and realizing that my prayers weren’t even getting off the ground. Not, because there was unconfessed sin, but because I was focusing on my depression rather than on God's grace.
Have you heard of Tony Evans? He wrote a most enlightening book called Totally Saved. I think this is a must read for every Christian because we really DO need to know why we believe what we believe. He states:
A Christian can't have a casual, long distance relationship with the Savior and then expect to find grace in [the] time of need.
What? God is always there uplifting those bent beneath their loads and lifting the fallen!
Yes. But it isn't the same thing at all. Think about it a moment. The Grace we receive when we accept Jesus into our hearts is the kind that is available to all who believe the LORD. The kind of Grace that Tony Evans is talking about is the perpetual, continual coating and blessing of God to those who serve Him gladly. In a Greek way of saying it, Gracing, God graces us. Blessing He blesses us. It is the same as the continual forgiveness for our past sins, for sins of the present and sins of the future. It is a state of being action. In essence, Tony is talking about a conditional state secured only by our closeness to our LORD.
Our personal relationship with God is a Two Way street. It begins, truly, when we draw near to God. It is possible to have salvation and still be casual with God. That happens when we are still very immature in Christ. Some folks never grow up which is why Peter tells us in his last letter, his last words,
2Pe 3:18 But grow in grace and knowledge of our Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ. To Him be the glory, both now and to the day of eternity. Amen.
Grow in grace and knowledge. This is because without a solid understanding of what Grace is, we can't live the Christian life. Without Grace, we can't Live... really live.
It is impossible to try to live the Christian life under our own power. We just can't do it.
This is where freedom kicks in. Because we can't do it, God steps in with all His grace, all His power, all His might, all OUR willingness to allow Him free reign in our lives and that is the only way we can really live the Christian life.
Resting in Him is not sitting on our duffs eating bon bons and watching soaps all day. Resting in Him is letting go of the ungodliness, the worldly sirens and living through Christ's power, energy, holiness, strength, humor and blessings and Grace. Total Freedom! Is that hard to do? It is unless you decide to do it.
What does that mean, exactly?
God made an irreversible decision to love us. It had nothing to do with feelings and everything to do with a decision because we certainly were not worthy of love, didn't deserve it. Yet, while we were yet sinners, Christ decided to die for us so that we might live. He looked beyond the shame of the cross to the joy beyond (Heb 12). It was a decision.
We cannot earn it. It is a gift freely given and a gift that is offered to all.
So... what does election have to do with all this? Well, the first thing to look at is that God shut us all up in sin. (Rom 11:32). That means that there is no way out for any of us on our own. We can't work our way out, we can't jump out and if we die there, we stay in sin.
Grace happened. Grace was the plan all along. Compare Ezekiel 33:11 "God takes no pleasure in the death of the wicked," and Psalms 116:15 "God takes great pleasure in the death of the saints." [shock] Now... 2 Peter 3:9 God didn't purpose that all should perish but that all should come to repentance.
Jesus said in John 3 that the Light came into the world, but men loved darkness better than the Light for their deeds were evil. This is why they fail to believe Jesus. They just don't want to. There is all kinds of evidence God means what He says, but men love their own selves, their own pleasure more than they do the Light. The Lost are not lost because God chose for them to be lost... the Bible never says anywhere that the lost are lost because they are NON-elect. They are lost because they choose not to believe. John 3:18 "the one believing in Him is not condemned; but the one not believeing is condemned already."
That is... those who respond are placed in Christ. Ephesians 1 emphasizes this quite explicitly. The election is centered in the perfect life, the death and the resurrection of Christ. It is His work that benefits us and it came to us through God's Grace. In fact Grace is a Person, not an action or a thing or a feeling. God never sat in Heaven creating babies one for heaven and one for hell. The gift freely offered must be freely accepted.
The message of the Cross most definitely is foolishness to those who are perishing because they put their faith in worldly things rather than in godly things. They do not understand. This does not mean that God is withholding understanding, it means that the lost do not ask for understanding...actually, that isn't it, either. The Lost are not even interested in understanding because their faith is focused in a different direction. Their faith is focused on stuffing everything of this world into that God-sized hole trying to fill it and find some sort of satisfaction for the hunger and thirst that rage within them, when the only thing that will fill it is God Himself. James is explicit: if you do not have wisdom, ask for it; you do not have because you do not ask.
The Bible is unmistakable. God loves all peoples. He loved the world. He gave His Son. Whoever believes will have eternal life. The quality of life begins when one believes God. It does not begin after physical death for we are created eternal creatures (our souls are eternal) to live with Christ or to live in torment. It is your choice. Choose Life and above all choose Grace.

Links to my Motivational Gifts study

One of the most popular portions of my blog is the Motivational Gifts study. The links for each gift are here:

7 Highly Effective Motivational Gifts

Wisdom droplets

Burl Cain, warden for Angola Prison in Louisiana, once said that no earthly thing can change a man, only Jesus can. He became warden over a prison that was once called the bloodiest place on earth. Back in the fifties and sixties, no one came out of there alive, and no one served their full term. This gutsy man proved that only Jesus can change a man by bringing Jesus and Biblical principles into Angola. I learned that particular lesson the hard way.
Here’s what I have learned in the past 50 years:
Foremost lesson is what I learned from the study of Nehemiah: Bring everything to God before any action takes place. Paul backs that up, too. The second is like it: Bring anger promptly before God and lay it at His feet before the first word passes the lips. It will save lots of heart ache and keep relationships whole. I cannot say that I do this all the time. I am impetuous and stubborn. Imagine that! However, when I do follow the above, I have found that I can give God glory rather than embarrass Him.
There are other things that I have learned which seem almost obvious, yet the lessons came hard won.
1.      I do not believe the world’s assertion that there is Only one true love. Love is a choice. I know this for many reasons. (More on that in a bit.)
2.      More money only magnifies the character of a person. If the person has a bad character (lies, cheats, greedy etc) it will get worse. If he/she is generous, generosity abounds. If thrifty, then thrift abounds.
3.      The bad habits a boy has will get worse when he grows older. Once a person “gets away” with something they will get more daring stretching the envelope until caught or deeply mired in the quicksand of their own making. I watched this happen to someone who wound up in prison for his illegal escapades.
4.      Repentance sometimes brings the blessing of not having to pay the consequence of a sin, but more often than not, we do pay the consequences. Praise God we do not have to pay the ultimate price because Jesus did this already on the cross.
5.      A woman will never change a man.
6.      A baby will never change a man.
7.      The only thing that changes a man is Jesus. If a man has no discipline before he’s married, he will have less discipline when he’s married. If a man loves Jesus and lives Christ-like, then marriage will magnify that, and children will magnify that. It is more desirable to have a man like this than to have one with no discipline. In other words Bad Boys remain Bad Boys and do not make good husbands, unless Jesus changes the man.
8.      There is no bottom to the depths of a woman’s heart that is in love.
9.      Just because a person says he loves Jesus does not mean that he actually does love Jesus.
10.  Minor character flaws really do matter. If he lies to others, he’ll lie to you. If he steals from work, he’ll steal from you. If he is unfaithful to his work and to his boss, he won’t be faithful to you. If he is not a good money manager before marriage, he’ll be even worse after marriage because he’ll have your money, too. If he has bad credit before he marries, he’ll ruin yours after he marries you.
11.  When a man prays, keeps his word, reads his Bible, he may seem unexciting and dull. But, that is the kind of man most desirable for a husband, and he will be the anchor in the storms of life. This kind of man will make a terrific best friend who will remain loyal throughout life. If his jokes are kind, if he is uncritical, if his friends are kind, honest and loyal then he will be the same kind of man 30 years from now.
After marriage...
I discussed this earlier, however, I feel compelled to elaborate on the subject. Love is a choice; therefore Christians should not consider divorce an option. Getting up one morning, and looking at the person you’ve been married to for the past five, seven, or even ten years and thinking “I don’t like him much” is not a reason for divorce. It truly is a passing phase. When two people love the LORD first and their mate second, there is no such thing as “growing apart”. It cannot happen. This growing apart is the result of selfishness.
It takes hard work and total commitment to keep a marriage healthy. When a couple decides to marry there is the conscious and deliberate decision to commit to one another. The love between them comes from God and with His nurturing will continue until death. When the couple lives as two individuals with selfish attitudes that leaves God out of the equation, this is when the marriage begins to fail. When the individual comes first before the spouse, when the selfish desire takes precedence over the spouse’s pleasure, then the death throes of the marriage begin. The only way a marriage will last is when both have a greater desire to please the other in everything rather than selfishly pleasing him or her self. Much like how we are supposed to be with Jesus—being more concerned about pleasing Him than ourselves.
However, there are covenant breakers such as, lascivious behavior, adultery, verbal/physical abuse, child abuse. When counseling doesn’t help and the behavior doesn’t stop, then pack the clothes and lock the door because those things are not “as into the Lord” and God has no intention for us to continue in a life filled with that, after all, He divorced Israel over the same kinds of behavior. God intended betrothal to be like Song of Solomon, a courtship full of respect and excitement toward one person only. I believe marriage to be like Psalms. Joy in one person to the exclusion of all others in that way. Being dependent upon the LORD for all things and relying upon one’s mate to keep their covenant involves a great deal of trust.

Gasoline prices expected to lower in continuing trend

Gas pump prices have been fluctuating like kids on a playground see-saw. Remember when the price per barrel of oil was about $31? Our gas prices were about $1.90 a gallon way back then in 2009, remember that? It was February 2, 2009 and by August the price per gallon was about $3.70.

In February, the price per barrel was about $31 and in August the price was about $63. So, the barrel price had doubled and the gallon price was proportionate. It seems to me that when the barrel price goes down, the gallon price does not follow proportionately anymore, but looking at the chart, they actually have been. Surprise to me.

However, I still think the oil companies are making more money than they should just because the market will carry $3.90 per gallon price. We've become too attached to our cars and being able to go anywhere to do anything our little hearts desires.

I thought I could prove something by looking up all the back info about barrel prices and gallon prices. It was an eye-opener, though. Our economy fluctuates  with supply and demand. This is how capitalism works best. Trying to artificially manipulate the market only does more harm than good which anyone who's studied Keynesian economics knows. The stock market may be low today, but it will bounce back. Look at what it did after 9/11. It dropped from almost 11,000 to just above 7,000. We may have staggered, but we didn't fall and we won't now.

Well, here's a hoot.

Thirty years ago Paul Harvey gave a "rest of the story" while I was on my way home from work. It seems these two friends were quite happy in their respective jobs and were bragging back and forth about their own efficiency. One told the other that in the course of his job he could deliver a letter much quicker than the other fellow in the course of his job. The one who challenged, we'll call him Hank, declared his way was much faster and much more reliable. His friend laughed at him and said, "Hank, you drive a wagon behind a slow horse, how can you possibly beat me? I drive a jeep!" He banged his hand on the table declaring they should test it.

The two decided that their homes being 10 miles apart would be an excellent challenge so they asked each wife to write a letter to the other and mail them on a specific day at 9am.

At 9 am on a crystal clear morning, he took the letter from his wife's hand and stuffed it in his shirt pocket. Then he did his morning chores, tidied up the barn, took an inventory of supplies needed then climbed up on his wagon. He met a friend on the road and chatted. Then it was time for lunch so he drove home and ate with his wife. He took a load to town to deliver to the feed store, bought some things for his farm and took them home. He milked his cows and did the evening chores and by that time it was supper time. He stretched out in his easy chair and slept through the news and went to bed.

The next morning bright and early, he set out to his friend's house to deliver the letter. His horse wasn't Speedy Gonzales so he didn't get ten miles down the road very fast. Around lunch time, he stopped in the diner and had the Blue Plate Special and chatted with a number of fellow farmers and friends. He headed down the road about 1:30 pm and finally arrived at his friend's house at 2 pm. He handed the letter to his friend's wife and said he'd call when his wife's letter reached their house.

The letter didn't come that day, but the following day at 4 pm, Hank's wife heard the jeep in the drive way and walked out. There was Hank's friend with her letter. He was driving  the U.S. Mail jeep.

Wot's it all about, Alfie?

London is experiencing riots in an all weekend long bout that is still boiling today. According to the AP...
Though the initial unrest was sparked by Duggan's shooting, some blamed unemployment, insensitive policing and opportunistic looting for the worst violence the city has seen in years. Police and politicians insisted the disorder was the work of a criminal minority and not a sign of social tensions or security lapses ahead of the 2012 Games. Daily Record
It would seem that those living where everything escalated feel it is outright greed through criminal actions that caused the escalation of the riot after a man, father of four, was shot in Northern London, a place called Tottenham. 

I can certainly appreciate hard feelings from people who have little to nothing being treated abominably by the police (look at Rodney Whosit in Los Angeles), but the perpetrators are young people who have been helping themselves to new shoes, clothing and electronics. It seems to me that Glenn Beck said something about this, in fact warned about it, a few months ago. 

Paul warned about it, too, to Timothy. I love how the Message words it.

2Ti 3:1  Don't be naive. There are difficult times ahead.
2Ti 3:2  As the end approaches, people are going to be self-absorbed, money-hungry, self-promoting, stuck-up, profane, contemptuous of parents, crude, coarse,
2Ti 3:3  dog-eat-dog, unbending, slanderers, impulsively wild, savage, cynical,
2Ti 3:4  treacherous, ruthless, bloated windbags, addicted to lust, and allergic to God.

Treacherous people allergic to God, and to His ways I might add...

Thought for the Day by Alan Smith

I have been receiving TFTD since 1997. Here is one of my favorite ones from Alan Smith...

     A young Marine and his commanding officer board a train headed through the mountains of Switzerland.  They can find no place to sit except for two seats right across the aisle from a young woman and her grandmother.

     After a while, it is obvious that the young woman and the young soldier are interested in each because they are giving each other "looks."  Soon the train passes into a tunnel and it is pitch black. There is a sound of the smack of a kiss followed by the sound of the smack of a slap. When the train emerges from the tunnel, the four sit there without saying a word.

     The grandmother is thinking to herself: "It was very brash for that young soldier to kiss my granddaughter, but I'm glad she slapped him."

     The commanding officer is setting there thinking:  "I didn't think the young Marine was brave enough to kiss the girl, but I sure wish she hadn't missed him when she slapped and hit me!"

     The young woman was sitting and thinking:  "I'm glad the soldier kissed me, but I wish my grandmother had not slapped him!"

     The young Marine sat there with a satisfied smile on his face.  He thought to himself:  "Life is good.  When does a fellow have the chance to kiss a beautiful girl and slap his commanding officer all at the same time!"

     It is difficult to know exactly what is happening in the dark (as shown by three of the four characters above).  There's no light by which to gain a proper perspective.  Walking in darkness can be especially dangerous.

     It's not surprising that the apostle John frequently used the images of light and darkness to describe our walk with God.

     "This is the message which we have heard from Him and declare to you, that God is light and in Him is no darkness at all.  If we say that we have fellowship with Him, and walk in darkness, we lie and do not practice the truth.  But if we walk in the light as He is in the light, we have fellowship with one another, and the blood of Jesus Christ His Son cleanses us from all sin." (I John 1:5-7)

     I pray that your walk today may be in the light of God's love.

Have a great day!

Alan Smith
Helen Street Church of Christ
Fayetteville, North Carolina

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Lose weight by eating same ole same ole

The August issue of The American Journal of Clinical Nutrition reports on a study about the effects of consuming the same foods on a daily basis. Basically, the results show women who ate mac and cheese every day ate fewer calories than women who ate it weekly.

I could have saved them tons of money because I knew this already. Don't you? Even people who eat steak every day get bored with steak. We get bored with eating the same food day in and day out, even when it is fixed a million different ways.

Photo from Photostock
I went on a wonderful life-changing diet where sugar, flour and milk were removed from my diet. I ate more proteins, more vegetables and even removed fake sugar and sugary fruits like oranges and bananas. After about two months of the same foods over and over I was completely bored with it and even though I had lost more than 30 pounds, I broke rank and devoured some tasty wedding cake. I was immediately sorry I did so because my acid reflux came back in full burning force, and my mood swung to the morbid. Sugar does that to me, but it also gives me a high and it is so addicting.
However, the value in eating the same meals over and over -- same ole, same ole for every Sunday, same ole for Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday, Friday and something different on Saturday absolutely does make a body crave less food. I would switch foods on certain days and still the boredom became pronounced to the point that I could be satisfied with much less than before. Portions were much smaller, and that full feeling came sooner, lasting longer. It truly works. The mind is a funny thing.

Now, if only I could find some sort of motivation for exercise. I ran all night last night, but I guess a dream doesn't count. Sigh...

Q4You-- Does anyone have any suggestions for some kind of fun exercise? Low impact of course...

Taxed Enough Already--What is the true cost?

Joe Biden told Reuters that compromise is not a dirty word. He is correct; it has too many letters. However when it comes to balanced budget and jump starting the economy, the Democrats don't have a blessed clue. The debt ceiling is being raised again and again with no hope of reduction until 2013. They want to focus on making the economy strong, but at what cost?

Do we not have a very good notion on what spending means to the American family budget? What happened to those people who bought more house than they could afford? What happened to those who used credit card limits to limit their spending? How did losing their jobs effect their bill paying, and consequently their tax paying? Short answer is Bankruptcy.

I am a firm believer in that one must spend money to make money, but spending wisely is the key factor, in fact the critical success factor of good business practices. It would seem the only level heads in Washington are the Tea Party members, yet they are made out to be the bad guys, and Reuters has the opinion that they are going to cost legislators their jobs because they nixed a huge spending cut bill because it had huge tax increases in it. Poppycock! Americans have been screaming for a balanced budget and spending cuts for far too long.

What is it about the word balanced that is so hard to understand?

The only reason we do not have enough in the till for Medicare and Social Security to last to Kingdom come is because sticky fingers of legislators could not keep their hands out of the bank. It's like a spendthrift husband who sees a swelling bank account and spends until it's gone forgetting the need to pay mortgage and monthly bills. Or a housewife who gets a momentary thrill from buying new stuff all the time, but hiding credit card bills, and keeping secrets from her work-weary husband.

It all boils down to self-control, which our legislators and president have proven over and over again they do not posses when trusted with our money.

Once again we prove to the world we're excellent at placing band-aids over cracks in the egg.

Thank you to Digitalart for the photo.