Wednesday, July 29, 2015

How Does My Stance on Gay Marriage Affect You?

Sometimes you just have to respond…

The Post I'm Responding to was published by the Huffington Post on line at:

I have included the address for you to read the whole article.

Everyone, everyone, EVERYONE reading this post is alive because A man and A woman came together in some capacity. Can we still see at minimum the utility in the relationship? Everyone exists because they have a mother and a father. We are human. Is it possible to dream of something more than just utility for the bringing of someone else into the world? Something more than a breeding pair? Could we conceive of a relationship that reaches into the future to lay out a stable, safe, loving, nurturing, educational, encouraging, inspirational environment to grow humans in? Maybe we had it once. What was it called?

Maybe we can place that relationship on a higher level of importance than other relationships. A relationship that creates and grows humans should be special. Is there a word to describe something that is so important it should be protected and kept clean and...what's the word...kept sacred?

There are so many biological characteristics that are complimentary between men and women. It's like we were design to "fit" together in behavior, in anatomy, in emotional make up, in reproductive physiology, in longevity. It's like we were designed for each other. Huh. Made to have a special relationship to make new humans, provide a special environment. Designed for it but seemingly incapable.

Maybe something it missing for the designed pair. Maybe the Designer intended to be a part of the design. The system has a gap in it without the Designer? Plug in the most important piece of the system and success is much more likely, maybe even ensured.

So when I see a blog ask how changing the nature of the

Just a few responses to the article.

“While a huge majority of the country celebrated this tremendous civil rights victory a minority of Americans found this to be one of the darkest days on record.”

If "huge majorities" just celebrated the Supreme Court’s decision then why go the Supreme Court Route? Why not put it to a vote (as it was done in 30 states) and let that huge majority make it legal. Then the small minority would accept the results pure and simple.

I want to begin to answer these questions with a question to the author. (The condescension in these questions would be hard for a Christian even as humble as yourself to take.) My question: If you are not practicing homosexuality then how does my stance on gay marriage “end up affecting your marriage? How does this affect your relationship with your own children?” I’ll answer for you, it does. In every way. How we define marriage and sexuality affects everyone in our society especially children. Let’s stop this “shut uppery”. Everyone, has a right to a voice in the influence of our culture. Shouting down or shaming down the opposition does not make your case stronger. Quite the contrary, it reveals your soft argument. 

It is breath taking how casually we are breaking the foundation of our society and tut-tuting those who express concern.

Now the Questions:
15. Sally and Jen move in next door to you with their two kids. How does this end up affecting your marriage? How does this affect your relationship with your own children?
Now I must have a deep, heavy conversation with a child that is too young for the subject, causing all kinds of questions and confusion in the mind of my child.  

The local school now must address this situation and how will they address it? Normal, natural, wholesome? I will be forced to withdraw my child from the school that I pay taxes to and home school, private school or let them teach my kids something I know to be harmful.

14. Greg's husband of 30 years, Jack, sadly passes away unexpectedly and there is no will written. Should Greg be able to inherit what his husband Jack leaves behind?
If there was no written will (and there should have been) the property will go through probate court just as it did before “gay marriage” and Greg could make his claim on the estate within one year of Jack's passing. The same thing happens to traditional families. Nothing new here. 

13. John had a terrible marriage with Cindy and after about a year they divorced. In a few years both John and Cindy found love again, married these new partners and just couldn't be happier. Are they adulterers as the bible states they are?
A more interesting question here is…why did the “gay” person marry straight? Aren’t people “born that way?” So it is a personal choice?
Interesting question about adultery… adultery is the intimate betrayal of a sacred, holy relationship. God uses the word “adultery” in the Old Testament to describe how the nation of Israel left Him to follow other gods, sometimes in perverse ways. You be the judge.

12. Being no one can live according to the rules of the Old Testament in 2015, most (read: All) Christians live their lives in accordance with the teachings of Jesus. Does Jesus ever mention homosexuals or homosexual activity?

FIRST: No living being can live according to the rules Christ left for us either. He raised the bar. He didn’t lower it. 

Mat 5:27-28  Ye have heard that it was said, Thou shalt not commit adultery: but I say unto you, that every one that looketh on a woman to lust after her hath committed adultery with her already in his heart. 

We are all sinners. All of us struggle with God’s standards. That is why we need redemption. Instead of changing God’s standards, we should try changing our hearts through a personal relationship with Him. It is what we were made for. It is nothing to be compared to any other human relationship but it profoundly affects every other human relationship.

SECOND: Does He mention homosexuality: Mar 7:20-23  And he said, That which proceedeth out of the man, that defileth the man. For from within, out of the heart of men, evil thoughts proceed, fornications, thefts, murders, adulteries,  covetings, wickednesses, deceit, lasciviousness, an evil eye, railing, pride, foolishness: all these evil things proceed from within, and defile the man. 

Apparently several times in the same conversation.

11. During the abomination of slavery in this country, many slave owners turned to a famous book to uphold their practice. What was this book? What were those passages? How do you feel about their picking of passages to uphold the practice of slavery?
The same Bible inspired, “We hold these truths to be self evident that all men are created equal and are endowed by their Creator with certain inalienable rights and that among these are life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness.” It was a revolutionary idea for the formation of a government at the time. So revolutionary we can hardly understand how radical it was. The same Bible stirred the hearts of others to fight to end slavery in England and here in the U.S. It inspired the formation of countless Abolitionist Societies. 

Anyone can take a passage of Scripture and miss use it to further their cause when they are trying to justify a harmful behavior in society. Hmmm…

10. Do you feel that religion is dying with younger generations? If so, why do you think that is? And furthermore, could churches stand to be more inclusive in spreading the word of God and teachings of Christ?

In the context that you mean it, we should hope that the need for a relationship with God is seen in this next generation. If our nation was founded by the Inspiration of Christianity and the Founders staked everything on the ability of the people to live by the ten commandments we should hope not.

9. When someone tries to take something away from you that you love, how do you feel?
What if I love cocaine? Does anyone love me enough to take it from me? Now that takes love because you could really get hurt trying to take my cocaine.

8. What is the "Golden Rule?"
Does the Gay agenda know this rule? Christians have been told for decades, “Don’t push your morality on me.” So we didn’t. Now who is pushing whose morality?

7. Now that you've researched the "Golden Rule," does question 9 feel different?
See also: Response to #9

6. Are you happily married? If so, how good does it feel to bask in the joy of your marriage?
Yes, and this kind of relationship is available to anyone even if you have been in a relationship with someone of the same sex before.

5. What is the Golden Rule?
It seems like you are struggling here so I’ll elaborate. The Golden Rule is both a guide for negatives as well as positives. Meaning, on the negative side, if you don’t want to be hurt, then don’t hurt anyone else. But what if you are caught in a self destructive behavior would you want anyone to intervene? Would you keep me from entangling others in my habit? That is a gutsy kind of love. And, on the positive side, if you would like for someone to help you accomplish something then look to help someone else accomplish their goals that would create, promote, protect their life, health, character, property or potential. The Golden Rule does not negate right verses wrong. 

4. How do you feel about those who believed in segregation/not allowing mixed races to marry?
Equating homosexual behavior with skin color or gender is a very dangerous slope. When we grant special status to a behavior it will spell the end to our system of laws and justice. I am a thief, it is what I was born to be. You have no right to deny me that way of life.

3. Do you believe strongly in legacy? How do you want your children/grandchildren to think of you?
Yes, I want my kids to know I stood for the truth. That is what this battle is really about. 

2. How did marriage start?
A. A religious institution.
B. A man and a woman in love.
C. An arranged alliance between families to increase land and/or power.
D. An integral part of Creation. 
1. After finding the answer to Question 7, do you think marriage has evolved since its "creation?"
Evolved? Was it supposed to? Isn’t that like “pregnancy” evolving?

Wednesday, April 29, 2015

Take up your Cross(es)

When we weigh anchor, by pulling up those things that died on the "crosses" of life, we are pulling off the sea floor those things we need most for the journey. The trouble that came and the dreams that died will be the rigging on our ship that will prove invaluable on the journey of "following Him".

Saturday, May 3, 2014

I'm Back

I have had a long sabbatical. It has been wonderful. I am arriving back to find my country in much worse shape. I feel like I'm a different person now than when I left (after my last post). I see the challenges we face now and realize we are in a battle for our existence. Bravery and cunning actions will be required to right this ship now. Not just bravery and cunning but both of these under the direction of God.

Lucky for us this is the land of the Free and the home of the Brave.

My weekly dose of Ravi has me looking the full scope of the challenge in the eye and seeing the problem in proportion to God. He's bigger. Much bigger.

Endowed Freedom

A freedom, endowed by our Creator, that defined freedom for the world, cannot continue without Him superintending it.

Monday, May 6, 2013

The Fellowship of His Suffering

Sorry it has been so long...

That thing that we dreamed of for ourselves, the things we hoped for that never materialized, the life envisioned for ourselves that we were robbed of, these are the things I am talking about. The pain and suffering of watching them pass from our reach is so personal, so private that to speak of them with the chance that the hearer would mock, scoff or make light of them keeps them locked away from the sight of any other human.

Some of us, no all of us remain chained to these disappointments far longer than we should. A “self” we had hoped, planned and sacrificed for has died. This cycle repeats itself over and over in my life. It happened again this week. This morning while lamenting my case into my coffee, a very soft and sweet thought rose out of the cloudy gloom like someone whispered it to me. “Take up your cross and follow me.” Ever have that happen? A thought clear, bright and laden with hope emerge from the mess with such clarity that it captures your attention with its novelty and excellence.

“So what does that mean in this situation,” I wondered. The answer came as softly and sweetly as the statement. Take all the things that have “died” and the means by which they were killed and follow Him and in the doing of this, His purposes will supernaturally begin to materialize. Could accepting the losses as part of His plan for me and following Him while bearing them be the way to the exceptional life He planned for me? What wonders will unfold in obeying this command?

I’m no Bible scholar but I’ll tell you what my hope is: that the pain and disappointment that we find so personal and intimate is not just known by Him but understood by Him. I have reason to believe He understands not just the value of that which was lost but why it was important to me.  Pain is the canvas on which the strokes of courage and cowardice work themselves out in the light. He sees the beauty and the blemishes. Nothing is too graphic for Him to handle. His story is on the canvas too. We can take comfort in common experience, and TRUST Him.

Those persons and events that force their way into our lives and do violence to what we consider personally valuable, delicate, fragile, priceless… don’t relent despite our cries. The inevitability is at times breathtaking. They force open the door through which we enter into the fellowship of His suffering.  Philippians 3:8-10 really comes to life in this light.

Php 3:8-10 Indeed, I count everything as loss because of the surpassing worth of knowing Christ Jesus my Lord. For his sake I have suffered the loss of all things and count them as rubbish, in order that I may gain Christ and be found in him, not having a righteousness of my own that comes from the law, but that which comes through faith in Christ, the righteousness from God that depends on faith--  that I may know him and the power of his resurrection, and may share his sufferings, becoming like him in his death,

The valuable things that die don’t have to be an anchor to an abandoned, defeated life of disappointment. Christianity offers an amazing alternative to this. Instead of a life tethered to failure and disappointment requiring greater amounts of synthetic pain relief, Christ says,  "…If anyone would come after me, let him deny himself and take up his cross daily and follow me.” (Luke 9:23) Take up my cross? The things that cause those important, personal parts of me to die, I’m supposed to take them up and follow Him? Is it ok to think that our lives are sometimes crucified in small or large pieces of intimate personal matters, killed by circumstances beyond our control but certainly not His? Those events come and kill a part of what we held dear and leave us swooning with how beyond stopping they were. Sometimes the force of an event extends itself over years or decades and finally we realize this isn’t going to be what I had dreamed it would. It is a hope drawing its last breaths. Then it dies. What about these piecemeal crucifixions? Little parts of us that die. Do we need to include them on the cross of self denial? I think if we want to be free of the regret of their loss, yes. In the acceptance of the death and the cause for it, as a matter of trusting Jesus for the decision to allow it, we swing free of the restraints of grief, sorrow and loss to look expectantly toward His silhouette against a whited-out future following Him.

The phrase “take up” in Jesus’ command are a sailor’s terms for weighing anchor. What else would you weigh anchor for other than to prepare for a voyage. What grander voyage can there be than navigating eternity by the celestial references of the Maker of the Universe? “Trust Him?” you ask. After the damaging event that has changed the course of my life? Yes. This is definitely a big decision. Who will be the guide of my life, me or Christ? In my hands, my life will be held back by regrets and sorrows. Taking them up and following Him makes my life bigger than those regrets and sorrows. They are only mementos of a long and meaningful journey, a journey I still don’t know the whole significance of. Without Him they are a destination, a place I really don’t care to stay. I’m going to do everything in my power to weigh anchor.

I am often struck by the command in 1 Thes. 5:16 to “rejoice always”. Even while something important in my life is dying? It does say always. Another verse I have trouble reconciling with this one and my life is two verses past in verse 18. “give thanks in all circumstances; for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus for you.” It really is a choice. Will the disappointments (as well as the triumphs) be a destination or a simply a port of call on a much bigger, more significant journey.  These two verses make much more sense when you put with them Romans 8:28 “And we know that for those who love God all things work together for good, for those who are called according to his purpose. “ If I really believe that then I really can rejoice always and in everything give thanks. Take a deep breath of freedom. Trust His judgment. Keep your eye on His form ahead of you. Are you sick to death of grieving the loss? Weigh anchor mate. Let the voyage resume. This port is not the final destination.  

I can weigh anchor and as the winds of the sea stir the sails and fall on my face I can rejoice, always looking forward to the next leg of the journey. I can give thanks in all things knowing my final destination is not in the port of Regret, Loss or Disappointment. There are adventures I have yet to experience on this journey.

Friday, March 15, 2013

Communism Kills

It is official, Communism Kills.Hat tip to Dyspepsia Generation.

Wednesday, February 27, 2013

The Great Blessing of Moral Absolutes

There is truth. Seems kind of self-evident doesn’t it? There is truth. I have taken a lot of comfort in that in my short life and more all the time. There is truth. After reading this I hope you will take comfort in it too.

Can we know it? Really, can you know what is true and what is not? If it is true for me is it also true for you? (Is the statement, “What’s true for you may not be true for me,” true for everyone? Defeats itself doesn’t it?) Yeah, real truth is true for everyone.

There is truth. So where does it come from? Are there a lot of places to find truth? I mean are there a lot of sources you can go to for ultimate truth? Is it easily found and have many sources?  If there are many sources then what if they don’t agree? If there are 2 sources of ultimate truth and they contradict each other then (1) neither are true, (2) one is wrong or (3) truth does not exist (and we’ve already settled that one.) No, no, no there can only be one source of truth if truth exists, and it does.

Now, if truth exists and there can only be one source then that one source is the author of all truth. Seems like a big responsibility. I mean really, the definition, meaning and purpose of everything is in those hands; one-stop shopping for all understanding… wow.

We all have to agree on my first two points (1.truth exists and can only have one source.) Everyone. It’s the next point that I am going to offer that we disagree on. Christianity claims that the God of the Bible is that one source. I would like to convince everyone that this is the case but I know that is not possible. But for those who will listen, let me give you a flavor of the truth(s) from this source. Then choose for yourself whether to keep evaluating the truth(s) the Bible tells us about. Let me choose just one truth the God of the Bible has declared. Just one truth, which is the core truth, I believe, of the Christian faith. It is the theme of the Bible throughout. It is God’s main truth to man. This one truth, the main truth, if it is true sets the flavor and meaning of all other truths. It colors the meaning of our existence and establishes the defaults of life in the excellent range. That one truth is that God loves us. Really? Personally? What a sublime thought to have the privilege to lay our minds on but is it really true? Does He love me personally? John 3:16 says “whosoever believes in Him will not perish but have eternal life...” (paraphrased, emphasis mine).  That sounds like individual persons… you and me.

So we have truth. Can there be absolute truths? Well, let’s put it another way. There are no absolute truths (except this one, which means there are absolute truths. The statement defeats itself.)Yes, there are absolute truths.

Love is true. Good exists. These are absolute truths. If you have never really known them, you need to investigate the Bible as truth. It will change your life elementally.  If you have experienced them but never considered that they are absolute truths, and have to be from one source, please consider reading more about the God of the Bible as the author of this kind of truth.

From what I read in the Bible it sounds like He has gone to great toil, trouble and sacrifice to get rid of anything that would separate us from Him. First of all the things we have done that would prevent a relationship with Him. How flattering is that? God is pursuing a relationship with me. Even when I am trying to avoid Him He continues to extend the invitation.  It sounds like it is important to Him to have a relationship with you (and me), a relationship based on love as the first principle. Now that truth is worth knowing.

If there are absolute truths that deal with morality does that mean there are moral absolutes? Yes. Take comfort in this Americans rather than hide from it or fear it. Remember what our forefathers wrote, “We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are Created equal and are endowed by their Creator with certain inalienable rights that among these are life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness…” “Certain, inalienable,” rights sound like absolutes to me.  If they are not then we do not have certain and inalienable rights. That would be bad news.

Our Founders knew there was truth, that there was only one source and they were convinced that the one source was the God of the Bible. It teaches of these certain and inalienable rights. To them they were self-evident. A God that endows all men and women with certain and inalienable rights (moral absolutes) that include life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness must be a God of excellence with good as His intent for us. He would be worth giving a chance. From my personal experience, He is worth investigating. He is worth seeking a relationship with. If life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness are just a taste of what He had in mind for us, that deserves a look. As a nation we have come farther than any other country in blessings just by acting on these absolute truths or moral absolutes. What more is in store for those who seek more absolutes from Him and learn to build a life on them?

His sacrifice to know you and I started with sending His Son to die and pay for all the wrongs we have done. He, as the ultimate source of truth, knows what hurts and what we have done to hurt ourselves and others. As the Author of absolute truth he has the authority to forgive those wrongs based on His own criteria for payment. Frankly, the thought of absolute forgiveness of all my mistakes brings such peace to my mind and heart I don’t have a clue why anyone would not jump at the offer. In the acceptance of this forgiveness, you come to know Him for the first time and it is a real experience of peace, another of His character qualities. This is just the beginning. There is so much more to explore in those moral absolutes of excellence, adventure, relationship, trust, risk, sacrifice and yes above all else love. I absolutely dare you to seek a relationship with Him.