Monthly Archives: July 2016
I watched a short clip recently with Carl Trueman in which the scholar made the observation that one likely reason we are seeing a drop in church attendance is that parents are simply not teaching their kids that it is a priority. Trueman said:
“The church is losing its young people because the parents never taught their children that it was important. I think that applies across the board. It applies to family worship, and it also applies to whether you are in church every Sunday and what priority you demonstrate to your children church has on a Sunday. If the sun shines out and their friends are going to the beach, do you decide to skip church and go to the beach? In which case, you send signals to your children that it is not important.”
Yes, that’s an actual dialogue I had with my 4 year-old son recently. He says some of the most off the wall things. The kinds of things that stick with you and make you laugh at 11 o’clock at night when you’re brushing your teeth. But this time I was more curious about what he had to say.
I think it’s because I’ve read too many accounts of parents having similar conversations and determining that their child must be a “girl trapped in a boy’s body” and they begin buying him skirts and high-heels. Some of the stories I read are about 4 and 5 year old kids whose parents accommodate them when they declare they are the opposite gender.
Watching his speech made me wish Pence were running for president, it would be an easy choice to vote for him. He has been a strong conservative voice in Washington when he was in Congress, and, as Governor of Indiana he continued those same traditional, conservative policies.
Pence understands what it means to be a socially, fiscally conservative lawmaker. He also knows what is at stake in this election. Pence told the packed crowd:
That account is similar to the time my daughter met her soon-to-be best friend. My daughter was 5 and the little girl was Asian-American. They hit it off quickly and my daughter asked why her eyes were “shaped different.” Her parents laughed and so did we as I told my daughter that she was Asian-American and simply had eyes shaped differently than hers. The two were best friends from that moment on.
What I love about my kids is that they are free to see the differences in people without prejudice. It would be unfair to say they don’t see color, because clearly my son noted the difference between his skin and the skin of his playground friend. But it didn’t matter. His skin color wasn’t a prerequisite for playing nor was it a barrier; it was just a factual difference he noticed. And both my son and my daughter felt free to ask honest questions and make honest observations about the differences they saw in people.
Let’s take a minute to talk about alcohol and Christians and whether or not it is permissible for Christians to ever drink alcohol.
By now you may have heard that mega-church pastor Perry Noble has been fired from his church for his over-use of alcohol. The church Noble founded and pastored for more than 15 years, New Spring Church, made the decision after first walking through the steps of reconciliation as outlined in Matthew 18. A recent article reports:
“Perry’s posture towards his marriage, increased reliance on alcohol and other behaviors, were of continual concern. Due to this, the Executive Pastors confronted Perry and went through the steps of dealing with sin in the church as outlined in Matthew 18. Because Perry chose not to properly address these ongoing issues and didn’t take the necessary steps toward correcting them, he is no longer qualified, as outlined in 1 Timothy 3 and the church’s bylaws, to continue as a pastor at NewSpring Church.”
Planned Parenthood wants to keep women from seeing an ultra-sound of their baby before they make a final decision to have an abortion.
Nope, that’s not a false statement. That statement comes right out of an article reporting on events taking place in Indiana. A recent article reports:
I recently read a headline so astoundingly absurd that I almost didn’t believe it. Surely I was not seriously reading what I thought I was reading? And yet, when I looked again, there it was in all its absolute ridiculousness. The headline read:
“People Shouldn’t Say ‘Start a Family’ Because It’s Offensive.”
The author, I will keep his identity hidden to protect the silly, says that this phrase is offensive to single people and those with no children and, therefore, it should be removed from our vocabulary. He wrote:
“What this euphemism means is get pregnant—or try to get pregnant, or have a baby, or adopt…Start a family devalues any couple who doesn’t happen to have kids, for whatever reason.”
Now, if you can’t pick out the ways in which this statement is beyond ridiculous, let me help.
First, notice that he says this statement is offensive to couples that don’t have kids “for whatever reason.” He is implying that people who willingly choose not to have kids are offended by the choice of others to have kids. In other words, a couple that makes a conscience decision not to have kids – though they could – are offended, he says, by my choice to have kids and use the phrase “start a family.”
I have a confession; I love a good documentary. I know that makes me a geek. I’m okay with it. I especially love historical documentaries that show footage from our past. To glimpse into the past to see what life was like decades, or centuries ago is incredible.
One of the best historical documentary filmmakers in the world is Ken Burns. Anyone that has watched a really good historical documentary has probably watched a Ken Burns film. Recently Ken Burns did an interview in which he asked Christians planning to support Donald Trump a question. He asked:
“What part of Donald Trump reminds you of Jesus Christ?”
That’s a legitimate question that I think every Christian planning to vote for Trump needs to wrestle with. While some are quick to note that we are not voting on a “pastor in chief,” but a president. I would argue that, for Christians, the person we prefer for our nations highest political office should be one that best represents the convictions and values we cherish. Is that Trump?
I don’t know if Ken Burns is a Christian but he seems to be wrestling with the decision to vote for Trump – as a Christian – more honestly than many professing Christians. During his interview he said:
Looking around our culture it is apparent that character is not high on the list of priorities. The selfie generation that is all too willing to trade naked pictures for fame has forgotten the pricelessness of strong character. The effects on our world are more than obvious.
I came across an audio series on teaching character to children. As a father I am always looking for resources to aid my efforts to teach and train my kids. I am keenly aware of the need to teach them morals, respect, and character; so anytime I come across a resource that can help with that task I want to share it.
Let’s face it; we live in a society that does not value character. One look at the political landscape, or at the state of Hollywood and it’s quick to conclude that character and morals are not nearly as valuable as the lack thereof. The self-absorbed, entitled mentality that pervades our culture is a by-product of society that rewards laziness, dishonesty, and corruption. As a parent the task of imparting character and training our kids to think independently and be willing to stand in opposition to “the crowd” is even more critical than ever.
The series includes lessons on cultivating self-control and modesty in our kids, certainly traits that are sorely needed in today’s word of excess and indecency. As more kids become desensitized to sending nude pictures of themselves via text message, self-control and decency are clearly much-needed lessons. It also contains lessons on correction, and how to pray for our children which, I think, are valuable to any parent.
Should a Christian school be allowed to expel a student or refuse the application of a prospective student simply because that person has a gay relative? That is the position one school in Kansas is taking; and they are receiving a lot of political and social heat for it.
Trinity Academy, a small Christian school in Kansas says it is “a Christ-centered, college-preparatory education for students committed to spiritual growth and academic excellence.” The school claims test scores are far above average and most kids are involved in the music program.
Trinity also says that it reserves the right to expel any student or prospective student with a gay family member. The school’s policy states: