Wednesday, November 7, 2012

What This Means

It is no overstatement that I am shocked at the outcome of this week’s election. I simply could not have imagined that the American people, in this country that I love and admire, could possibly have given four more years to a man who embodies the things which conservatives detest, while at the same time failing to deliver on the promises he made to his liberal constituency. In short, he has been a failed president – he has driven our country deeper into debt, division, and denial. And yet half the country wants more of the same. What does that say about the state of our national knowledge and core beliefs?

God showed us in the book of Exodus how He led His people into captivity, and placed them under an evil and oppressive king. Things got so bad that the king and his government decreed the legal killing of Israelite children, because their lives were an inconvenience to him. Does this sound familiar? It is analogous to our American society today, where we endure evil laws which have allowed the murder of 65 million innocent babies over the last 40 years. I believe that, just as He did for the Israelites in Egypt, God allows us to remain oppressed, and that He witnesses the death of innocent children by abortion in order to teach us a lesson. We need to return to Him - that is what He desires, and what He wants us to learn. Our politics and our morals are getting worse. It is time for a revival and repentance, and for us to ask for deliverance from our God, not from our politicians. I believe that God has given us today's leaders with the purpose of driving some of us to our knees. I want to be one of those people.

To that end, I am more resolved than ever to live my life in a direction that moves against the cultural current, and to unashamedly tell others about a better way - God's way. Here are three ways to get started:

1) Remember God – Politicians are not the ultimate thing to cheer for or to rely upon – remember, Jesus Christ is our Savior. Go to church, read your Bible, pray together as a family, rededicate your life to the Lord. The pundits tell us that the way to fix things is to have the “Republicans expand their demographics”. I say that this solution is wrong-headed, compared to the need for people to draw closer to God. He guides elections and He provides the blessings to nations.

2) Dump The Media – I believe that the fourth estate - the media - is now more powerful than the Democrat or Republican party. One need only look at the protection they gave to "their" candidate on Benghazi these past two months. We have seen false reporting and bias, even during the presidential debates. The media can now "make" a president if they wish to do so. How do we fight this? It's simple - stop funding them. Call your cable or satellite company and cancel your service. Get your news from sources that support godly principles and equity. Do things as a family without the need for a television. It's a big change - and it can have a huge impact.

3) Stand Up and Proclaim What Is Right – It’s time to take issues such as abortion and gay marriage out of our “blind spot” and learn to stand up and defend godly principles on these subjects. It is quite clear that racism is still a problem in this nation - 93% of black Americans voted for Barack Obama. This number is telling, because it means that many, many people in the Christian south cast their vote for a man because of the color of his skin - completely ignoring his anti-Christian policies. This is wrong - it is the very definition of racism. It is time to bring this into the light. And it is time for the rest of us to stand up for these same godly principles, to be vocal, and to make a difference.

I don't want to leave a legacy like that of the ungrateful Israelites who grumbled and complained to Moses because they didn't have their entitlement of water and food. They would rather have returned to their oppressors and lived again as slaves, as long as someone was there to fill their bellies. Instead, I want to be known for having the attitude of Moses, who stood up to Pharaoh and received God's blessing to lead His people out of captivity. It's time to grow up some more, to seek the Lord's guidance and direction, and to set out resolutely on the journey that He sets before us.


Thursday, August 2, 2012

Now Imagine A Voting Booth Instead of a Chicken Sandwich At The End of That Line

My daughter works at the local Chick-fil-A in our hometown.  Yesterday was nothing short of an amazing experience for her.

The day started with her receiving a frantic phone call early in the morning from her store manager, asking if she could come in seven hours early and work a double shift.  She ended up working thirteen hours yesterday.  People were still eating in the store an hour after closing time.

Her store typically grosses $12,000 for a Wednesday.  Before yesterday, their all-time record was $17,000.  The final tally?  The store took in $29,860 in one day - easily surpassing their old record before the dinner rush had even started.

During her shift, she noticed that people were polite, patient, and kind.  They weren't there simply to get food, as much as they were clearly in line to make a statement.  Occasionally, the entire restaurant would break out in applause in support of the employees.  One protester showed up carrying a sign, but left after a short time, being overwhelmed in numbers.  There were no violent actions taken or words spoken to this lonesome soul.  Perhaps everyone in line believed in his right to free speech!

Our family decided to support the effort by arriving at the store for an early dinner, where we found the line stretched outside, seventy-five feet beyond the front door.  That line went into the store and snaked around a 150-foot loop before approaching the order counter.  When we got there, it started to rain, but not one person standing outside decided to leave.  One manager was outside with us, and warned that it was likely that they would run out of chicken before we placed our order.  Again, not a single person stepped out of line to go elsewhere.  There was a purpose to this event.  And while we were making our way through the line (incredibly, it only took 25 minutes to complete the whole circuit, and there was a clean table waiting for us when we received our food), we chatted, joked and made new friends in line.  There was no feeling of hurry or dissatisfaction.  Instead, it felt like we were there for a reason.  We were showing our support for the right to free speech and the right to practice our own private religious beliefs.

And I couldn't help thinking - what if there were a voting booth at the end of this line, instead of a chicken sandwich?

Tuesday, January 3, 2012

"Sharks And The City"

It’s no secret that I don’t buy into the “theory” of evolution – except to admit that it is indeed a theory. It certainly hasn’t met the test of becoming a scientific law, even though modern science winks and tells us that…(whisper)…it really has.

Today, an article was published by AFP News Agency (that’s in France) entitled, “World-first hybrid shark found off Australia”. In this “news” story, they tell of a shark found near Australia which appears to be a breed combining two separate species of sharks. While very similar in size and appearance, the Australian black-tip shark is supposed to only tolerate warmer climates, while the common black-tip shark is found farther south and survives in cooler environments (that is, closer to Antarctica). What they found were at least 57 sharks in the warmer waters which had hybrid genetics from both breeds of shark. Put simply, at one time, some Australian sharks mated with some non-Australian sharks and they swam north, to be found in the warmer climate. In theory, these hybrid sharks might have the genetics in place to survive a wider range of temperatures (though nowhere in the article do they actually prove that this is true).

The writer of the article seems to have fallen completely for the modern evolution argument, and makes some very serious assumptions and errors. I feel compelled to point these out, because…hey…no one in the news world seems to challenge the modern “scientific method”. Here are some excerpts from the article, and my responses:

First – the title says “World-first hybrid shark”, but is that really the case? What should have been written is that these are the first to be discovered. The article actually later does say (near the bottom) that more than one generation of hybrid shark was found, and that testing could be done to determine if this phenomenon had been going on undetected for some time. But the title doesn’t really lead you to believe that, does it? It’s meant to be a little sensationalistic.

Second, the author says that this finding is “a potential sign the predators were adapting to cope with climate change”. Well, that is a real stretch. It implies that these sharks met each other at some halfway point, with knowledge of each other’s differing temperature capabilities, and struck a bargain. Something like this - “Hello, fellow Chondrichthyes! We sharks are all aware of the impending global warming crisis. You guys down south seem to be able survive at a wider variety of temps. Doesn’t it make sense that, maybe if we interbred, we might be able to transfer some of that temperature tolerance into our own genetic code? Then we sharks up north would be better prepared for what’s ahead!  Just sayin'!” Um, I’m sorry, but I just don’t think sharks are that smart. What is more likely is that some northern sharks were down south at the same time that some southern sharks were up north, and they had a little “shark party”. Remember, their brains are not supposed to be very big, right?

Third, the researcher in the article tells us that “If it (the Australian shark) hybridises with the common species it can effectively shift its range further south into cooler waters, so the effect of this hybridising is a range expansion”. But isn’t that the reverse of the desired trait? If the earth is warming, why would they want to be able to expand their range into cooler waters? The researcher didn’t think through this statement when he made the claim attaching all of this behavior to sharks responding to global warming.

Fourth, the lead researcher for the discovery said, “This is evolution in action.” Again, I have to say, “No”. There is no evolving to a higher form that occurred here. Sharks down south already had the enhanced cold-tolerance. The mating of the two species simply transferred a trait that already existed in the species to a new hybrid. That is no different than breeding a curly-haired poodle with a straight-haired Yorkshire terrier in order to get a playful dog that doesn’t shed. Dog breeders do that all the time, but no one calls it “evolution”. It is simply breeding within species to express certain desired traits. Man has been breeding animals for this purpose...since the Creation.

Fifth, they write, “It means the Australian black-tip could be adapting to ensure its survival as sea temperatures change because of global warming.” What a leap toward the author’s conclusion – global warming! But let me ask - if “survival of the fittest” were truly in play here, wouldn’t it make more sense for the more temperature-tolerant shark to just wait around for the other sharks to die out when the environment becomes warmer? If the sharks are so intelligent about this whole thing, why would the hardier shark lend his genes to the weaker breed at all? The desired trait is already in place in the southern sharks. Why not just let things be, and move into the Australian waters later when the weak breed dies out?  The researchers are attributing intelligence to the shark's behavior that is simply not possible.

Finally, I have to ask: What prevents the Australian shark from “adapting” by swimming a couple of hundred miles south (away from the equator) every hundred years or so (assuming the steady “global warming” theory is real)? Again, if they are so smart, this seems like a pretty viable solution – and much more believable than sharks having a genetics discussion and striking a bargain over some social wine and caviar.

Sigh…I read these things, and I wonder, “Does anyone else cry out for a little truth in the scientific process?” I think I was raised in a pretty rigorous classroom that taught the scientific method well. But articles like this tell me that our world is moving away from what makes sense…to a place where men seek to please their own itching ears. Hmmm…where have I heard that before?