Tagged…But in a Good Way

I’ve had the privilege of being “tagged” by David Fisher…at Pilgrim Scrubbings…now entering his second year of blogging.

This game of tag is both fun and sobering. Please sure to click over to David’s website and check out his postings which are always an encouragement. David is open and transparent…and his deep abiding faith shines through. So David…thanks for the invite to play. Here are my responses:

1. What comes to mind/what is your heart’s response when you think of or hear the word…”CALVARY”?

The cross…on which my precious Savior died…shedding his blood to pay for my sins (with the hymn…The Old Rugged Cross in my head). Thank you Jesus!

2. What would you like to have inscribed on your tombstone?

She finished well….she kept the faith and brought praise and glory to her Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ. She will be greatly missing by her loving husband ______. (P.S. Yo…what are you doing here? She’s not here…she’s in heaven!) (Sorry David…I couldn’t resist a wee bit more than one sentence.)

3. Which attribute of God do you find yourself revelling in the most?

Grace, grace, God’s grace…grace that is greater than all my sins…of which I’m keenly aware and ever mindful of.

Likewise…I’m going to “tag” a few new blogger friends. I look forward to seeing your responses. The real challenge is to keep it brief…a sentence or two. For those of you who don’t have a blog…perhaps this will tempt you to start one. Or at least take a few minutes to answer these questions yourself. Feel free to leave your responses…by clicking on “comments” link below.

(And yes…I do have a name or two I wouldn’t mind seeing in that blank spot following the word husband.)

It does not become the sparrow
to mix in the dance of the cranes.

~Danish Proverb~

My morning walks are near a river bed…thus in the fall and wintertime I am able to behold these wonderful creatures flying overhead. Not sure if it’s some type of crane or pelican. They are ever so graceful. They leave sometime in the spring…but I look forward to the time they return again in the fall.

An American’s Thanksgiving

My heartfelt thanksgiving,
For the blessings bestowed by my God

Chosen by the Father,
For salvation through his Son

Placed in a nation,
To be a light to the world

Given His Word,
God’s message to share

Our liberty and freedom,
Guaranteed in the Constitution

Our nation’s independence,
Protected by those who serve

One nation united,
All differences set aside

Reflecting with thanksgiving,
This fourth Thursday in November

Bowed in gratitude,
For the blessings from above

Humbled at the responsibilities,
Entrusted us by our God

By Susan Bunts
Thanksgiving 2005 – November 24th

Proclamation of Thanksgiving

The year that is drawing toward its close has been filled with the blessings of fruitful years and healthful skies. To these bounties, which are so constantly enjoyed that we are prone to forget the Source from which they come, others have been added which are of so extraordinary a nature that they can not fail to penetrate and soften even the heart which is habitually insensible to the ever-watchful providence of Almighty God.

In the midst of a civil war of unequaled magnitude and severity, which has sometimes seemed to foreign states to invite and to provoke their aggression, peace has been preserved with all nations, order has been maintained, the laws have been respected and obeyed, and harmony has prevailed everywhere, except in the theater of military conflict, while that theater has been greatly contracted by the advancing armies and navies of the Union.

Needful diversions of wealth and of strength from the field of peaceful industry to the national defense have not arrested the plow, the shuttle, or the ship; the ax has enlarged the borders of our settlements, and the mines, as well of iron and coal as of the precious metals, have yielded even more abundantly than theretofore. Population has steadily increased notwithstanding the waste that has been made in the camp, the siege, and the battlefield, and the country, rejoicing in the consciousness of augmented strength and vigor, is permitted to expect continuance of years with large increase of freedom.

No human counsel hath devised nor hath any mortal hand worked out these great things. They are the gracious gifts of the Most High God, who, while dealing with us in anger for our sins, hath nevertheless remembered mercy.

It has seemed to me fit and proper that they should be solemnly, reverently, and gratefully acknowledged, as with one heart and one voice, by the whole American people. I do therefore invite my fellow-citizens in every part of the United States, and also those who are at sea and those who are sojourning in foreign lands, to set apart and observe the last Thursday of November next as a day of thanksgiving and praise to our beneficent Father who dwelleth in the heavens. And I recommend to them that while offering up the ascriptions justly due to Him for such singular deliverances and blessings they do also, with humble penitence for our national perverseness and disobedience, commend to His tender care all those who have become widows, orphans, mourners, or sufferers in the lamentable civil strife in which we are unavoidably engaged, and fervently implore the interposition of the Almighty Hand to heal the wounds of the nation and to restore it, as soon as may be consistent with the Divine purposes, to the full enjoyment of peace, harmony, tranquility, and union.

In testimony wherof I have herunto set my hand and caused the seal of the United States to be affixed.

President Abraham Lincoln – 1863

An American’s Thanksgiving

My heartfelt thanksgiving,
For the blessings bestowed by my God

Chosen by the Father,
For salvation through his Son

Placed in a nation,
To be a light to the world

Given His Word,
God’s message to share

Our liberty and freedom,
Guaranteed in the Constitution

Our nation’s independence,
Protected by those who serve

One nation united,
All differences set aside

Reflecting with thanksgiving,
This fourth Thursday in November

Bowed in gratitude,
For the blessings from above

Humbled at the responsibilities,
Entrusted us by our God

By Susan Bunts
Thanksgiving 2005 – November 24th

Not a Lone Voice

When posting my article on feminism…I was a little nervous that I would endure the wrath of some feminists that found my comments offensive. I’ve been pleased to find out I am not a lone voice in this battle.

Both men and women feel the far reaching effects of feminism.

Drew commented, “Great comments. Concisely written and on point. I enjoyed how you articulated the negative aspects of feminism…not too many people point them out and the second and third order effects of what appears to be a good policy, but in truth is flawed. Keep the faith!”

Janna commented, “So true, all that you said. As an educated career woman myself, I also am thankful for the opportunities I’ve had but yet am saddened by the “collateral damage” caused by the feminist movement. Your points were right on! I’m going to continue browsing your blog, but come visit mine sometime. My blog is basically a daily devotional.”

Be sure to checkout Janna’s blog at Bread Crumbs…it’s food for the hungry Christian soul.

You Go Boy!

Below is a comment I received from Bill H…team member at Standing Tall in reference to my piece on Feminism…”F” is for Failure.

All can Bill…is, “You Go Boy”! You keep being the gentleman…who does the right thing. If that means some women just don’t get it…and think you are a Neanderthal…then so be it. Some people will never get it…and that’s okay. While frustrating, annoying and sometimes down right obnoxious…it doesn’t matter.

All that counts is doing the right thing. And never more so than for godly Christian and Jewish men. I am one women that sees it…applauds it and says thank you! Be sure to check out Bill and Martin’s site at Standing Tall. My early preview of this site…is a thumbs up!

“From a mans perspective Wow, you hit the nail on the head as the saying goes!The equal ness between the sexes has indeed caused disrespect for woman from the younger generations. I see this everyday when boys do not open doors for their girlfriends any longer the list goes on.Thanks for putting it out there, makes me fell a little better after having been called a Neanderthal because I opened a door for a lady a few months back! She was so mad I was blessed with her articulate expression of the English language for about ten minutes afterwards!That very same day i was asked to move some office items because I was the only male in the office. Talk about confusing messages.Thanks again, it is good to know that chivalry can still be a good thing.”

Snowy Delight Fills My Senses

Snowy Delight Fills My Senses Posted by Picasa

One of the delights in blogging is finding the treasures and jewels on other websites.

One of my favorite places to visit is David Fisher’s Pilgrim Scribblings. Not only do I find his pieces that inspire and encourage me in my Christian walk…but I also find links to other great websites. Some how David scouts them out and shares so freely.

Tonight while visiting David’s website I found an addition to his recent postings on Attractive Drabness. It’s a series of pictures that capture you and draw you in. They are seemingly drab at first appearance…but they are lovely to behold.

The picture I discovered tonight was from Michelle’s website called Mikao’s World. I have marked this site as a favorite and will visit regularly.

Michelle is sharing pictures from the first snow fall where she lives in Canada. All I can say is, “Wow”!

You see…I’m a California girl…misplanted. I love snow and winter. Born in Colorado…and I think it’s in my blood. Today in Southern California…we had a sunny lovely day in the 80’s. You can’t ask for better. But golly…seeing the snow pictures from Canada…just fill my senses.

Thank you Michelle and David for sharing from the abundance of your wealth.

Feminism….“F” is for Failure

How Feminism Made the World a Worse Place

For some time now…I’ve wanted to tackle this subject….it’s been ruminating around my mind for quite a while. My contempt builds as I see examples each day on how feminism has not only failed…but in fact, has made the world a worse place. Worse for women, for our children and for men.

After listening to Dennis Prager’s interview of reformed feminist Phyllis Chesler my desire to write this piece was resurrected. It’s a good thing that I waited. If I hadn’t…I’m afraid it would have merely been chock full of anger and ugly words. As it is…my passion remains…but I hope to present with clarity the some of the reasons for my contempt.

I’m forty-six years old…and grew up in the 60’s and 70’s. When I think back to my first impressions of feminists…the first thing that comes to mind is equal pay for equal work. There was the idea that a girl should be allowed to choose to study whatever she wants and pursue a career in her chosen field. Now those are admirable and good goals. Goals that most folks would support whole heartedly.

I am very successful in my career…I love my job and the work that I do. In part I can thank feminists of the past, for the opportunities I’ve had to pursue the work I love. Yet, I would give it all up tomorrow…with no regrets…for the right man.

The destructive forces that were unleashed with feminism…have overwhelmed any seeming benefit. The devastation is widespread. The very people whom feminists proclaim they want to help…have been harmed the most.

Let’s start with “free love”…which bottom line means have free sex with whomever you want, whenever you want, as much you want. Hummmm….what a thought!

Like everything in life…it’s has consequences. What are the consequences of “free love” and unlimited sex? How about sexually transmitted disease? How does 19 million new cases each year sound? Half those infections are in kids ranging from 15 to 24 years old. Let’s not forget infertility as a result of STD’s and it may also result in birth defects or even death to the babies.

And then there is the mother of all STD’s…AID’s…Acquired Immune Deficiency Syndrome. Not too many years ago…it was a certain death sentence. Now thanks to modern medicine…death from this disease has been delayed. But it still remains.

Who can talk about feminism…and not broach the subject of abortion. Those good old “reproductive rights”. (Whatever happened to reproductive responsibility?) Of course the argument that’s always meant to silence the critics is, “you big bad bullies, making a poor defenseless woman have to carry and give birth to a baby, when she was raped or the victim of incest.”

With the way this argument is bandied about…you would think that 90% of all abortions are the result of some type of sexual assault or abuse. When in fact, the vast majority are nothing more than costly, after the fact, birth control. Making an innocent human being pay the death penalty…because they are an inconvenience to their prospective mother.

How do you like the sound of over 1,000,000 abortions each year in the United States?

Just for the record feminists…half those persons being killed are female. Don’t forget…it was women you were aiming to help. I guess the only woman that counts is the one outside the womb…and as long as she is wanted by her mother. After all, that is the only thing that gives that baby worth (according to you)…and keeps it from being swept down a sink.

To prove that abortion is not about rape and incest…ask yourself what would the feminists do, if tomorrow Christians were to agree to stop their battle and allow abortions for any woman who was the victim or rape or incest…but outlaw all other abortions? Do you even remotely think that feminists and leftists would not agree to that? Not in a million years…I would safely bet everything I have on that.

STD’s and abortions don’t even begin to touch the emotional and spiritual toll or consequences of these behaviors and actions run amuck.

Now we have videos of “girls gone wild”…ripping of their tops for the camera. Let’s not forget our young girls emulating our dear former President and his intern. They are performing oral sex on boys…and not even thinking its sex. Feminists…I thought you didn’t want women to be sex objects? But what you started…has lead to this.

The harm you’ve done is not limited women…it’s deeply effected our boys and men. Who in society can you bash so freely and openly, and treat with such utter contempt as men? You have license to do and say whatever you want about men, without any repercussion.

What’s ironic…is that if men turned around say the same things about women…you would be screaming bloody murder. You hypocrites!

You bash men like there’s no tomorrow. You have no respect for them and you treat them with utter contempt. Is that how you want your sons to be treated? Do you not even love them enough to want them to be loved and cherished for the precious boys and men that they are? Women…what is the matter with you? You are sick in your soul.

It’s everywhere…it is so deeply seeped into society…that you can’t turn on a TV show or pick up a paper and not see ugly consequences of feminism and it’s far reaching effects.

In something as simple as a TV commercial the “feminist effect” comes shining through. Adelphia has commercial running now advertising their new DVR system. The ad features a woman telling us that her dumb boyfriend suggested that she record the shows she wants to watch…so she won’t miss them. In the commercial…she bashes the boyfriend…of course she’s obviously superior, to this dumb inferior schmuck. Not to be missed is unspoken reference that they are living together…not married.

You know I clearly remember a time…when it was considered wrong by society to be “living in sin”. But now days…it’s a sin no longer. It’s widely and broadly accepted…and nary a word is spoken that it’s wrong.

Now maybe it’s because I’m a Christian that I still haven’t abandoned those values. My moral compass is still intact, thanks to God’s Word and the Holy Spirit within me.

I stand amazed at the intellectual dishonesty and foolishness of feminists and leftists who fail to see the flaws and failings of their own arguments. They want a woman to be paid the same as a man for the same work. But they have to dumb down and lower the standards for women to get the job.

Fire fighters, police officers and military come to mind. Am I saying that women should not pursue these careers. No…but let’s get real. Don’t lower the standard. Do you want your husband, son or brother working alongside women…their lives at greater risk…because the standard had to be lowered, so the woman could get the job?

And then one of my favorite lines of the feminists, is the argument that men and women are the same. This one is almost laughable and defies common sense and reality. There comes a point where you have to ask if you can even reason with people who are in such denial.

Now to personalize this. Daily I come in contact with men who are confused or uncertain if they should do the simple considerate act of holding a door open for me or other women. It’s not brain surgery…but it’s a simple act that shows respect and esteem for women. Men have been given such a ration of garbage for what is really a loving and caring act. No wonder they are confused, or angry…or just plain don’t respect women any longer.

But it crushes my spirit when a guy won’t extend the courtesy of this simple act. I feel less than feminine, very unworthy…and bottom line, it hurts. At the same time…I don’t necessarily blame the guy. I hold feminists accountable on this one.

My greatest wish, hope, dream and prayer is to be married. But I’m not. I can’t help but think that in our society…my chances of getting married are greatly reduced…in part because of what the feminists have done.

Why would a guy want to get married, when he can go out and have sex with as many women as he wants, as much as he wants, any time he wants…with no commitment or responsibility? Not a lot of guys would. Or to be more accurate…not enough men do commit and get married these days.

While somewhat crude…I do feel the old adage is true…why buy the cow, when you can get the milk for free?

There are men out there…that have gone against their male nature and made a choice to be committed to one woman. To sacrifice and have children…and raise them up in godly households.

But thanks to you dear feminists…I and many millions of other women are paying price of your selfish pursuits. I hold you in contempt for the harm you have done and the price too many people…both women and men…have paid.

Feminists…you failed in the most important areas of life…and the world is worse because of it!

Five questions non-Muslims would like answered

One of the most well reasoned and coherent thinkers today is Dennis Prager. Overwhelmingly…I concur with his arguments and interpretation of events. Dennis states his position eloquently and concisely…and always strives for clarity. Below is his most recent article published in Sunday’s Los Angeles Times. Also be sure to check out Dennis Prager’s website…and find out where you can listen to Dennis in your area.

By Dennis Prager, Dennis Prager’s nationally syndicated radio show is heard daily in Los Angeles on KRLA-AM (870). He may be contacted through his website: www.dennisprager.com.

THE RIOTING IN France by primarily Muslim youths and the hotel bombings in Jordan are the latest events to prompt sincere questions that law-abiding Muslims need to answer for Islam’s sake, as well as for the sake of worried non-Muslims. Here are five of them:

1) Why are you so quiet?

Since the first Israelis were targeted for death by Muslim terrorists blowing themselves up in the name of your religion and Palestinian nationalism, I have been praying to see Muslim demonstrations against these atrocities. Last week’s protests in Jordan against the bombings, while welcome, were a rarity. What I have seen more often is mainstream Muslim spokesmen implicitly defending this terror on the grounds that Israel occupies Palestinian lands. We see torture and murder in the name of Allah, but we see no anti-torture and anti-murder demonstrations in the name of Allah.

There are a billion Muslims in the world. How is it possible that essentially none have demonstrated against evils perpetrated by Muslims in the name of Islam? This is true even of the millions of Muslims living in free Western societies. What are non-Muslims of goodwill supposed to conclude? When the Israeli government did not stop a Lebanese massacre of Palestinians in the Sabra and Chatilla refugee camps in Lebanon in 1982, great crowds of Israeli Jews gathered to protest their country’s moral failing. Why has there been no comparable public demonstration by Palestinians or other Muslims to morally condemn Palestinian or other Muslim-committed terror?

(2) Why are none of the Palestinian terrorists Christian?

If Israeli occupation is the reason for Muslim terror in Israel, why do no Christian Palestinians engage in terror? They are just as nationalistic and just as occupied as Muslim Palestinians.

(3) Why is only one of the 47 Muslim-majority countries a free country?

According to Freedom House, a Washington-based group that promotes democracy, of the world’s 47 Muslim countries, only Mali is free. Sixty percent are not free, and 38% are partly free. Muslim-majority states account for a majority of the world’s “not free” states. And of the 10 “worst of the worst,” seven are Islamic states. Why is this?

(4) Why are so many atrocities committed and threatened by Muslims in the name of Islam?

Young girls in Indonesia were recently beheaded by Muslim murderers. Last year, Muslims — in the name of Islam — murdered hundreds of schoolchildren in Russia. While reciting Muslim prayers, Islamic terrorists take foreigners working to make Iraq free and slaughter them. Muslim daughters are murdered by their own families in the thousands in “honor killings.” And the Muslim government in Iran has publicly called for the extermination of Israel.

(5) Why do countries governed by religious Muslims persecute other religions?

No church or synagogue is allowed in Saudi Arabia. The Taliban destroyed some of the greatest sculptures of the ancient world because they were Buddhist. Sudan’s Islamic regime has murdered great numbers of Christians.

Instead of confronting these problems, too many of you deny them. Muslims call my radio show to tell me that even speaking of Muslim or Islamic terrorists is wrong. After all, they argue, Timothy McVeigh is never labeled a “Christian terrorist.” As if McVeigh committed his terror as a churchgoing Christian and in the name of Christ, and as if there were Christian-based terror groups around the world.

As a member of the media for nearly 25 years, I have a long record of reaching out to Muslims. Muslim leaders have invited me to speak at major mosques. In addition, I have studied Arabic and Islam, have visited most Arab and many other Muslim countries and conducted interfaith dialogues with Muslims in the United Arab Emirates as well as in the U.S. Politically, I have supported creation of a Palestinian state and supported (mistakenly, I now believe) the Oslo accords.

Hundreds of millions of non-Muslims want honest answers to these questions, even if the only answer you offer is, “Yes, we have real problems in Islam.” Such an acknowledgment is infinitely better — for you and for the world — than dismissing us as anti-Muslim.

We await your response.

Handle with Prayer

Okay…so God is never going to accuse me of having a great unfailing memory and trust in His Word…in the midst of the battle. Well at least not yet.

I tell you there are days when God must just rest head against his hand say, “Susan, dear, when are you going to get it? When are you going to understand that you can trust me? What’s it going to take?

I admit it…I’m a slow learner. Hopefully…a wee bit better each year, month or day than the one before. But it’s a very good thing that God is patient…infinitely patient.

This last week…was another trying week. One in which I felt overwhelmed the pressing daily demands, deadlines and challenging people. I felt wholly inadequate to meet or keep up with the mounting demands. Seemingly something at every turn kept popping up and nothing much was working out smoothly. I was in need of quiet so I could concentrate and attempt to get things done. But quiet was rather elusive.

So instead of being composed and trusting God and his timing…I became quite cranky and annoyed. Yeah…a real good witness to the Christian life? Un uh, yeah. Right.

When it became very apparent…to even the slower learner that I am…I was unable to handle on my own power…I decided to call in the Cavalry. I fired off a prayer request to the faithful members of Kindred’s Prayer Team.

Shortly thereafter…while taking my morning walk…God brought to my memory reminders on who He is, His character…and why I can trust that He is faithful.

The same God who parted the Red Sea…so that the Jews could pass safely through…is the same God whom I worship and place my trust in.

He is the same God who stopped the sun it’s path…as Joshua and the Israeli’s fought the Amorites. He is the same God who sees my troubles and is there along side me.

Can I really say that my tiny, little problems are too much for the God who created the universe and all that it contains?

The same God who by His power…raised Jesus Christ from the dead…is my God.

If God…can create a whole universe and fill it with His creation…by merely speaking a word…can’t He manage my little problems? Is anything too big for my God?

You see, He has promised to never leave me, nor forsake me. He is able to do abundantly more than all I ask imagine.

Now if only…I will remember…to handle all my difficulties with prayer.

You Raise Me Up

When I am down and, oh my soul, so weary;
When troubles come and my heart burdened be;
Then, I am still and wait here in the silence,
Until you come and sit awhile with me.

You raise me up, so I can stand on mountains;
You raise me up, to walk on stormy seas;
I am strong, when I am on your shoulders;
You raise me up: To more than I can be.

You raise me up, so I can stand on mountains;
You raise me up, to walk on stormy seas;
I am strong, when I am on your shoulders;
You raise me up: To more than I can be.

There is no life – no life without its hunger;
Each restless heart beats so imperfectly;
But when you come and I am filled with wonder,
Sometimes, I think I glimpse eternity.

You raise me up, so I can stand on mountains;
You raise me up, to walk on stormy seas;
I am strong, when I am on your shoulders;
You raise me up: To more than I can be.

You raise me up, so I can stand on mountains;
You raise me up, to walk on stormy seas;
I am strong, when I am on your shoulders;
You raise me up: To more than I can be.

Lyrics by Brendan Graham
Music by Rolf Lovlandsung
Sung by Josh Groban

And God said, “Let there be lights in the expanse of the sky to separate the day from the night, and let them serve as signs to mark seasons and days and years – Genesis 1:14

In Southern California…you don’t usually find too much of anything that resembles autumn. Thus…it pays to keep your camera right handy. So when you encounter…something wonderful from God’s creation…you can preserve that memory. Snapped this photo on one of my morning walks…around my home. Autumn is one of my favorite times of year.

True Confession

They say confession is “good for the soul”…and indeed it is. So time for a little true confession on my part.

Recently…I was bubbling over…with my mind trying to work through a number things…going on with myself, family and friends. I love to write…thus, this blog. It’s the way I work through issues…put on paper what I’m thinking, work through the issues and even get a different perspective. I’m able to work through the heat of the moment…when I’m angry or sad or depressed or grieving…and have clarity and balance.

So with all sorts of “stuff” going on…I wanted to write. But I knew if I was going to use some of these very personal happenings, I couldn’t post it on my blog. After all, I have friends and family that visit here. So I got this brilliant idea to start an alternate blog…unrelated to this one. Someplace where I could be anonymous…but work through my feelings and ideas.

I was still approaching it with a Christian perspective…it contained nothing ugly, illicit, illegal or tawdry. But at the same time…it was a place where I wouldn’t feel comfortable having the people that know me read about my emotions, thoughts and opinions.

The funny thing is…I had it in my mind…I was going to be open and transparent. Yet…I was going to remain anonymous. Now that doesn’t quite jive, does it?

No…and now for those of you who are Christians…you know exactly what I mean when I say…I was feeling the pressure of the Holy Spirit. Trust me…He doesn’t let me get away with anything for long. So he reined me in…and rightfully so.

What did I learn? Well…if I’m going to say something…I need to have the courage to stand behind my convictions. Whatever I’m mulling over about someone else’s life…I need to examine it and apply the lesson to my own life…and see where I might be guilty of the same.

When writing…if I don’t want to repel my audience…I need to be diplomatic. Not politically correct or fake…but winsome and attractive. Now for those that know me…you are probably saying, “Yeah, right!” Susan, winsome and attractive…I don’t think so. She’s more likely to take whack at you than be polite…and to a certain degree you are correct.

But with writing…unless I’m intentionally trying to be provocative…I do have to aim to be well reasoned and not completely turn someone off at the start. Writing is a good discipline.

Then of course…maybe some of the stuff I want to say…needs to be private. And only shared with someone with whom I’m close and loves me.

Like I said…the Holy Spirit reined me in…and I deleted that blog.

I may approach some of those subjects here…but I’ll have to work through the issues and apply them to my own life…and use my flaws and failings as an example. Not use the examples that I see in others.

Does that mean I won’t ever take a whack…or be very pointed in my writing? Don’t even go there…that ain’t gonna happen. When you read this blog…this is pretty much the real me. I bare my heart, soul and emotions…on things personal, political, religious…and world events. That’s not going to change.

But at the same time…I am more keenly aware that as much as I think this blog is my space…it’s also God’s. It’s a place where I am responsible and accountable to Him. I’m most grateful for my ability to read and write…and express myself. But I need to be under the control of the Holy Spirit when doing so.

Now the last couple of weeks have been outrageously out of control…and busy doesn’t even come close to describing it. In about a week…things should calm down a bit…and I will be writing more. Until then I hope to squeeze in a little bit. I miss this wonderful outlet when I’m not taking pen to paper…or more accurately…fingertips to keyboard.

High View of God

In the last month…I’ve heard a new concept that I don’t recall hearing before. It seems like when God wants to reinforce a message he does so quite handily…usually through repetition. I first heard it at Bible Study Fellowship and then again with Gordon Kirk…one our guest Pastors speaking at Kindred Community Church.

This concept is one of having a high view of God and a low view of man. Contrast that, with having a high view of man and a low view of God. When you think about it…your view and understanding about God and who he is will impact every area of your life.

I’m trying to digest this concept…and incorporate it into my life and my way of thinking. Let me first state unequivocally that I can state like Paul…I am chief among sinners. In fact I think I may be able to easily unseat him in that category. So as I work through my understanding of this…know that I am keenly aware of my fallen state.

I can also look around and see how having an incorrect understanding and perspective of God, will impact what decisions I make. When I look at in my own life, and examples in the lives of friends and family I am amply warned on the importance of having a balanced and right concept about God.

Yet, I need look no further than the Bible for examples on having a low view of God. In Genesis we see Eve and Adam choosing to disobey God’s command to not eat the fruit from the “Tree of Knowledge of Good and Evil”.

Genesis 3:16 – 17 – And the LORD God commanded the man, “You are free to eat from any tree in the garden; 17 but you must not eat from the tree of the knowledge of good and evil, for when you eat of it you will surely die.”

When the serpent temped Eve, he first cast doubt on God’s Word, asking “did God really say”?

After Eve explained Gods command and the resulting consequence if they failed to obey, the serpent made God out to be a liar who wanted to withhold good and desirable things from Adam and Eve.

Genesis 3:4 – 5 – 4 “You will not surely die,” the serpent said to the woman. 5 “For God knows that when you eat of it your eyes will be opened, and you will be like God, knowing good and evil.”

Here we can see having a high view of man and low view of God in action. Eve in her desire to become like God by attaining knowledge of good and evil raises herself up, and lowers God.

It’s ironic that in her quest to become like God, Eve instead becomes less like God. At that point, her nature has been changed and she is a sinner. As a result…she will also drink of the bitter cup of death. Immediately a spiritual death or separation from God. Later a physical death…as sin takes its toll and decay, death and destruction rein.

Eve temped Adam to also eat of the fruit. Adam also demonstrates a low view of God…by listening to Eve instead of obeying God’s command.

Now it didn’t take long for sin to rein supreme in man. Cain and Able, the first generation from Adam and Eve, had the first murder. Cain sought to go to God and bring him an offering of his choosing, not what was pleasing to God. When Able’s offering was pleasing and acceptable to God…Cain was angry and downcast.

God went to Cain and encouraged him to do what was right and also warned him about going down the road of anger. But Cain chose to listen to his own feelings…and that resulted in Cain committing the first act of murder.

When God confronted Cain…he was concerned about how the consequences of his sin would effect him, rather than repenting before a holy, righteous and just God.

Not too many generations after this…God found mankind to be so sinful that he found it better to wipe out all human and animal life, except Noah, his family and the animals on the ark. Despite this relatively fresh start…man’s sinful nature has continued it’s course.

It is only by receiving a new nature, when we are born again, that we can begin to obey God. We are told that we must put on our new self and conversely put off our old nature.

Like I said earlier…I am chief among sinners. Unlike Paul…I could not say with confidence follow my example as I follow Christ.

It is not until we die and are completely transformed that we will be able sin no longer. However it is the Word of God that can change us and transform us. Paul tells that the Word of God washes and cleanses us. That is why it is so critical to be reading God’s word and putting in your heart and mind daily.

Be ye transformed: Romans 12:2 – Do not conform any longer to the pattern of this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind. Then you will be able to test and approve what God’s will is—his good, pleasing and perfect will.

Take that Darth Patterson!

Duane…I call your five yard penalty…and raise you ten.

Now that Duane Patterson, producer of the Hughbo Baggins Show (AKA Hugh Hewitt) is just plain feisty. Penalizing me for my Lord of the Rings, ever so clever usage.

The Susan Blog is taking issue with Hugh’s Get the Band Back together meme. Susan thinks she never left, although she should get a five yard penalty for illegal use of Lord of the Rings usage.”

For trying to stifle my creative streak…I raise you ten…and throw in a Star Wars reference. You will hereby be known as Darth Patterson, not quite a Sith Lord…but an underling.

So take that Darth Patterson!

We Never Left the Band

Just for record Hughbo Baggins…we never left the band!

Following Harriet Miers’ withdrawal of her nomination for Supreme Court Justice you began the mantra, “Let’s bring the band back together.”

I want it on the record Hugh…true conservatives never left the band.

Instead our Producer George W. Bush…and a few supporters (very few) found a new lead singer in an unusual place. He had a warm fuzzy feeling…and based on hearing her sing a few songs around the camp fire…and he thought she’d be swell. Rather than going with a known commodity…someone who had already written a few hit songs…and won a few Grammy Awards…he went someone with whom he had toasted a few marshmallows.

Amazingly enough…our Producer was able to convince a few others…including yourself to support his rather questionable choice.

Other band members were saying, “Slow down Mr. Producer…we don’t even know if she can hold a tune.” But he kept assuring us, “Trust me.”

Now Hugh…I’m a true conservative. That means that while I’m a registered Republican…when the party messes up, goes down the wrong road or has a double standard…I will be among the first to call it, like it is.

The fact I’m in line with some of our uglier party members like Ann Coulter…makes me a little squeamish. Nevertheless, I’m going to stick to my guns.

Hugh…glad to have you back in the band again. But truly, you were more than obnoxious for a few weeks there. Now if you need to get back on those meds to keep your obsessive compulsive tendencies in line…get that prescription filled.

Please…let’s not go down that road again! Let’s stay the course.