- 2015Jan 22
It’s the 42nd anniversary of the tragic Supreme Court decision that, in essence, handed down the death penalty for millions of unborn American children. In fact, to date, nearly 58 million pregnancies have been terminated since the day of the infamous Roe v Wade verdict in our country alone. Close to 63 thousand babies have died in America since New Year’s Day 2015; an estimated 2 thousand will succumb today. You can see the appalling statistics for yourself—in real time—at USAbortionClock.org online. But there’s no way to truly quantify the loss from the prenatal terrorism we’ve tolerated in our nation for over 4 decades. Oh, sure: there were abortions before Roe v Wade, many of them. But when nothing less than the US Supreme Court gave an official thumbs-up to this industry of death, the numbers multiplied exponentially, and young people came to realize that our government now officially endorses the right of an American to terminate the life of an inconvenient, albeit innocent, human being. It was unconscionable then, and--what’s worse--it’s become just a way of life in our country today. And Father, I want to pray for the safety of those who are making their way to the March for Life in Washington today, and to local Rallies for Life across the Delaware Valley. May their witness be powerful and effective, as these peaceful activists represent Your heart before our lawmakers, their fellow citizens, and the press. May this be the first day of a CULTURE of life in America, where we will--one day--bring abortion to an end, not by force or legislation…but instead, by lifting the value of life so high that’s it’s value is undeniable to all men. Your Scripture says that You have set before us life and death, the blessing and the curse. You told Your people to choose life in order that you may live, you and your descendants… how? By loving the LORD your God, by obeying His voice, and by holding fast to Him.* May that be the cry of hearts this and every day, I pray, in Jesus’ Name…Amen!
*Deuteronomy 30:19, NIV
- 2015Jan 12
The images were unprecedented: the Israeli prime minister and Palestinian president, bookending a line of world leaders--arm in arm--marching alongside Parisians in defiance of last week’s series of murderous terrorist attacks. The popular expression on social media and TV awards shows has been Je suis Charlie: “I am Charlie.” Is it too radical to proclaim that, indeed, I…am not?
Don't get me wrong. I stand united with those who oppose violence motivated by Islamic extremism. I am in solidarity with those espousing free speech and a free press. I mourn the senseless loss of life. But I can’t "become" one of those who mock others and what they believe, purely for the sport of it. Such has often the case with the French publication, Charlie Hebdo.
If there can be proved an altruistic motivation for satire, then, I espouse its use to break down walls and demonstrate the absurdity of the moment. But should Jesus-followers personally identify with a publication that regularly mocks any and every religion, including Christianity? I can (and do) respect the price paid by those who were killed and injured at the French magazine, but cannot align myself with their worldview. Why is it so easy for Americans to rally around the freedom of expression against religion overseas, but too difficult to fight for the freedom of expression of high school students that want to pray at graduation ceremonies here at home?
The Bible says to fix our thoughts on what is true, and honorable, and right, and pure, and lovely, and admirable; think about things that are excellent and worthy of praise.1 Nor should there be obscenity, foolish talk or coarse joking, which are out of place, but rather thanksgiving.2 Whether it’s an outrageous cartoon, scandalous film, or insulting TV skit, Christians should find no connection with that which tears down, rather than builds up.
In this cynical age, it’s far easier to be outrageous and provocative than respectful and uplifting. It’s much more difficult get a laugh, or make a point, without doing so at the expense of others. But it’s always well worth the effort.
1Philippians 4:8 NLT
2Ephesians 5:4 NIV
- 2015Jan 02
Are new year’s resolutions worth it? Many say they don’t work. I have to disagree! I believe that most people, if they make resolutions at all, sabotage themselves. They make those resolutions too vague…you know, “I’m going to be a better dad , or a more spiritual Christian in 2015!” How do you measure success in that scenario? Or, well-meaning people set unattainable goals: “I’m gonna drop 50 pounds by Tuesday!” The secret to successful New Year’s resolutions is to make them specific and realistic. Wanna hear mine? I’m going to spend 15 minutes in God’s Word every morning. Not JUST when I’m preparing a radio show or Sunday School lesson. I’ m going to let the Holy Spirit’s agenda supplant mine, for a change! I’m also resolving to exercise 30 minutes a day, 3 days a week. Not a full-blown Nautilus workout, but a simple, steady walking pace on my treadmill! And finally…I’m going to organize my prayer life. I’m going to keep a list of everything and everyone I’m praying for, and set specific times on my Outlook calendar to lift them before the Lord. So, keep me accountable! And let me know about YOUR resolutions. My email is firstname.lastname@example.org!