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Facebook and Divorce

Why does this not surprise me in the least?

Pastor Warns Staff to Give up Facebook (Note link removed)

Thou shalt not commit adultery. And thou also shalt not use Facebook.

That’s the edict from a New Jersey pastor who feels the two often go together.

The Rev. Cedric Miller said 20 couples among the 1,100 members of his Living Word Christian Fellowship Church have run into marital trouble over the last six months after a spouse connected with an ex-flame over Facebook.

Because of the problems, he is ordering about 50 married church officials to delete their accounts with the social networking site or resign from their leadership positions. He had previously asked married congregants to share their login information with their spouses and now plans to suggest that they give up Facebook altogether.

“I’ve been in extended counseling with couples with marital problems because of Facebook for the last year and a half,” he said. “What happens is someone from yesterday surfaces, it leads to conversations and there have been physical meet-ups. The temptation is just too great.” …

This isn’t necessarily something I agree with.  However, I think it is worth discussing.  It might just turn out that many, many other pastors and counselors are seeing similar results from social media.  Anyway, funny how the harm Facebook is causing keeps popping up. Remember the previous post with John MacArthur’s warnings ?

Social Media and Digital Discernment – MacArthur

Might Facebook be hindering your marriage?

Are you more social with others than your spouse?

Are you in regular contact with old flames?



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Homeschoolers Are Abusers According To the Media

I have been very busy lately and hardly had a chance to read any news.  But yesterday I did read an article about a missing young girl.  There was one sentence in that article that said “Because the girl was homeschooled, ….

So in addition to the sadness about the little girl who no one knows where she is, I was also saddened by the need to point out that she was homeschooled.  First of all she wasn’t homeschooled, she was home.  There is a big difference!  Just keeping your children out of public school is not homeschooling.  Abusers keep their children hidden away at home; homeschoolers live with and teach their children at home and in public.  The difference is like night and day.

Just yesterday my children were seen in public and private by probably a hundred people.  They had their private violin lessons.  Then we shopped at Sam’s Club.  We bought gas.  We then spent a long time at Academy Sports contemplating Bows and Arrows for my middle son.  The men working the hunting section would remember us well.  Then last night we ate at Red Lobster to celebrate our oldest son’s recent birthday.  Believe me at least the waiter there would remember bringing endless plates of shrimp to starving boys!

Over the past few days my children have been seen by no less than several hundred people.  Over a hundred have interacted enough with us to remember if they were to see our pictures or be asked about us.  (Which of course blows away the “lack of socialization” claim!)

True homeschoolers aren’t hidden away at home!  We might have a couple of days where no one outside of the family sees us but those are rare now that the children are older.  Even if we did nothing else like shopping or school activities, we are at church at least twice a week.  Accountability isn’t an issue.

My point is just because a child is home and not in public school don’t call it “homeschool”!  There is a big difference.

Terry has written about the same issue today.  Funny how often that happens!  Hers is a well reasoned argument while I just ranted. 🙁



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Youth Groups – When Will the Church Notice The Problems?

We are in a church now with no youth group, at least nothing beyond a few youth sitting together at a table for lunch. It is nice to not be having to worry about what is being pushed on the youth in order to be relevant, hip or cool. Previously we attended a church that did have a youth group, although my children were not a part of it, I was still concerned about the other youth and the effect the youth group would have on them. So often when I voiced concerns with leadership they were shrugged off as being just silly ideas from that “silly, over-protective homeschool moma.” Funny thing is the secular media has started voicing the same concerns over and over again about church youth groups.

DefCon has posted some more of the secular media articles about church youth groups. I think it is well worth reading what the world is seeing in our churches. Sometimes it takes someone else to point out the obvious to us. 🙁

The state of the youth of the church.

When we decry the current condition of the youth in our churches (and the church as a whole) we are usually met with angry resistance. Now the condition of the youth (and the church) has gotten so bad that even secular news outlets are sitting up and taking notice.

The Wall Street Journal has recently reported on the sad state of the youth in American churches in an article aptly titled The Perils of ‘Wannabe Cool’ Christianity.

But what sort of Christianity are they being converted to?

Truly is what you see in most youth groups Christianity? or is it World?



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Joni Eareckson Tada

I remember when I was a young teen going to see the movie about Joni Eareckson called Joni.  This was the biography of Joni Eareckson up until that time.  It covered her accident and rehabilitation.  By the end of the movie Joni had started painting with her mouth.

Most every Christian in the United States, even many countries around the world, has heard of Joni and her ministry of encouragement and practical help to the disabled and those with disabilities.  Her Joni and Friends provides wheelchairs for the needy all around the world.

On Wednesday June 22, 2010,  Joni announced that she had cancer and would be having surgery on June 28th.

You have heard me often say that our afflictions come from the hand of our all-wise and sovereign God, and although cancer is something new, I am content to receive from God whatever He deems fit for me – even if it is from His left hand (better from His left hand, than no hand at all, right?!). Yes, it’s alarming, but rest assured that Ken and I are utterly convinced that God is going to use this to stretch our faith, brighten our hope, and strengthen our witness to others…

Especially at Joni and Friends. We’ve always prized the ministry God has given Joni and Friends to people facing a variety of disabilities; everything from autism to Alzheimer’s, from spina bifida to spinal cord injury. For years I have hoped that my quadriplegia might encourage people struggling with cancer… now I have a chance to truly empathize and journey alongside, affirming that God’s grace is always sufficient for whatever the disease or disability. … more


If you aren’t familiar with her story get the book and read it:

Joni: An Unforgettable Story.


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Did You Get In?

Did you get in the water?

What was it like?

Nope, we didn’t get in not even wading.

But at first it was hard because the children wanted to and it was so tempting.

We did play in the sand, away from the water,

and we spent plenty of time swimming in pools.

But many, many people did swim,

 

 

even despite the red flags and other warnings.

By Saturday, Gulf Shores public beach was flying a double red flag

and saying it was illegal to be in the water.

However, the flags are different each day depending on the oil coming in.

 

 


Our first real clue that things were different was the boardwalk washing station.

Dawn soap dispensers and notes encouraging everyone

to wash before leaving the boardwalk.

The tar from tar balls would leave marks when someone stepped through it

and the tar was hard to get off of feet even when using Dawn.

We just tried to stay out of the tar ball area ourselves.

 


       


I had no clue what a tar ball would look like. 

But here is a shiny one which is easier to recognize. 

Some are dull and look like rusty balls of metal. 

They all squish and are oily with no real noticeable odor. 

We saw these the whole time in varying quantities.

 


But later as we walked around we began noticing many little things

 that were different than in previous years.

First there was a serious lack of birds.

We normally see flocks of seagulls

which we laugh about having meetings on the beach. 

But we only saw an occasional seagull.

Typically we see large flocks of pelicans fly over

but we only saw maybe 10 the whole time.

Pelican feathers in the beach line debris. 

I’m not talking one or two but lining some areas.



Dead Fish

 

 

Dead Crabs, lots of them!

 

 

Noticeable oil streaks in areas that weren’t cleaned daily.

Black streaks


 

 Reddish brown streaks

 


 

The last evening a strange white debris was on the beach.

My best guess is that this is fish scales. 

They had the same texture and smelled very fishy.

This was lining huge swathes of the beach the last evening

before the large amounts of oil rolled in.




We never saw a dolphin the whole time.

Typically we watch the dolphins swim up the coast in the early AM

and then watch them swim back as the morning progresses. 

 They are almost like clock work but no dolphins at all this trip.

Seems the animals were staying away from the oil.

I’m not the only one noticing the strange animal behavior.

 

 

This was the oil rolling in our last morning. 

We had never noticed any odor even when near the water the whole time. 

However, the last morning as the day was beginning to heat up

some of us noticed a slight odor.

The best I can describe it is it smelled like hot, cheap new plastic. 

That may sound strange but some plastic smells really are noticeable and bother me.



It was a note worthy field trip that the kids will remember

and be able to say “I was there when ………”.

 

But no we didn’t get in and after seeing some of the things the kids didn’t ask.



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Wonderfully Made – No Useless Parts

During college when I studied Anatomy and Physiology we had to learn the purpose of every portion of the body. It is amazing the purpose one seemingly small and insignificant body part has. Not only that but all our body’s organs are so interrelated that if one stops working its effect can be noticed in several body parts or organs.

Since that study years ago I have always believed that each body part was designed for a reason and that removal or tampering with our body should be done with the utmost caution and prayerful consideration for God’s design.

For example:

  • Tonsils are basically lymph nodes in the throat that are part of our immune system. However, doctors routinely remove tonsils in patients for a variety of reasons, such as repeated sore throats. Many doctors feel that the tonsils are not really necessary and thus the removal is of little consequence.

 

  • Gall Bladder removal is so common it is becoming harder and harder to find people who still have their gall bladder. However, gall bladder removal does have some effect on the digestive processes. Some people experience more difficulty than others do after gall bladder removal.

 

  • Appendix removal is given a little more concern and usually is reserved for serious conditions such as a rupture or appendicitis. Yet even with this organ doctors think nothing of its removal. What is more surprising is the times when a person is having surgery for some unrelated reason and the doctor suggests removing the appendix for preventive measures.

 

There are other body parts that doctors routinely remove for varying reasons, particularly the female reproductive system. Unless a woman is still desiring to bear children often any problems with the reproductive system will lead to discussing hysterectomies. Everyone is always quick to point out that removing them will decrease the chances of cancer. Yet they gloss over the other effects their removal may cause.

Here again though is the ignoring of the fact that God designed our bodies to work in harmony with each body part. There are functions of each organ that scientist have yet to discover. What may today be considered a minor organ and of no value, especially when there is some difficulty such as inflammation, may soon be discovered to have some very important significance.

While there will always be good, valid and life saving reasons to remove an organ, the casual attitude that looks at removing organs as of little consequence should be avoided. Who are we to say that God’s design included unnecessary and only troublesome parts of the body.

Just yesterday I read about how scientist are rethinking the value of the appendix. But never had I really given consideration to the effect that Darwin’s evolution has had on our actual medical fields. But now that makes sense, if Darwin taught that man was evolving then of course there would be body parts that eventually became unnecessary in our “development.” The belief in such an idea as evolution has affected us in ways we may never realize.

The Appendix: Useful and in Fact Promising

The body’s appendix has long been thought of as nothing more than a worthless evolutionary artifact, good for nothing save a potentially lethal case of inflammation.

Now researchers suggest the appendix is a lot more than a useless remnant. Not only was it recently proposed to actually possess a critical function, but scientists now find it appears in nature a lot more often than before thought. And it’s possible some of this organ’s ancient uses could be recruited by physicians to help the human body fight disease more effectively.

In a way, the idea that the appendix is an organ whose time has passed has itself become a concept whose time is over.

“Maybe it’s time to correct the textbooks,” said researcher William Parker, an immunologist at Duke University Medical Center in Durham, N.C. “Many biology texts today still refer to the appendix as a ‘vestigial organ.'”

Remember we are wonderfully made by God and not with “vestigal organs”.

Psalms 139:13-16

13 For you formed my inward parts; you knitted me together in my mother’s womb.
14 I praise you, for I am fearfully and wonderfully made. Wonderful are your works; my soul knows it very well.
15 My frame was not hidden from you, when I was being made in secret, intricately woven in the depths of the earth.
16 Your eyes saw my unformed substance; in your book were written, every one of them, the days that were formed for me, when as yet there were none of them.
ESV


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John MacArthur in the Washington Post

The Washington Post has a guest article by John MacArthur. What I find so sad is the comments, not just the ones from nonbelievers, but those who claim to be Christians. Seems they only read certain portions of Scripture.

But no matter what I am thrilled that The Washington Post would have such an article.

Read the Gospels: JC is not PC by John MacArthur

Let’s be brutally honest: most of Jesus’ teaching is completely out of sync with the mores that dominate our culture.

I’m talking, of course, about the Jesus we encounter in Scripture, not the always-gentle, never-stern, über-lenient coloring-book character who exists only in the popular imagination. The real Jesus was no domesticated clergyman with a starched collar and genteel manners; he was a bold, uncompromising Prophet who regularly challenged the canons of political correctness.

HT: Strengthened By Grace



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Is This Love?

Sometimes people just amaze me.

How about this quote from a news article about feuding sisters.

“I miss her so much, and I love her, and I don’t like what’s taken place,” Sokaitis said. “But all I want is what is rightfully mine. All I want is my share, nothing more.”

Now I can imagine hearing one of my daughters say something like this but they would get some “character development” afterwards.

Love does not demand for it’s rights.

1 Corinthians 13

1 If I speak in the tongues of men and of angels, but have not love, I am a noisy gong or a clanging cymbal.
2 And if I have prophetic powers, and understand all mysteries and all knowledge, and if I have all faith, so as to remove mountains, but have not love, I am nothing.
3 If I give away all I have, and if I deliver up my body to be burned, but have not love, I gain nothing.
4 Love is patient and kind; love does not envy or boast; it is not arrogant
5 or rude. It does not insist on its own way; it is not irritable or resentful;

6 it does not rejoice at wrongdoing, but rejoices with the truth.
7 Love bears all things, believes all things, hopes all things, endures all things.
8 Love never ends. As for prophecies, they will pass away; as for tongues, they will cease; as for knowledge, it will pass away.
9 For we know in part and we prophesy in part,
10 but when the perfect comes, the partial will pass away.
11 When I was a child, I spoke like a child, I thought like a child, I reasoned like a child. When I became a man, I gave up childish ways.
12 For now we see in a mirror dimly, but then face to face. Now I know in part; then I shall know fully, even as I have been fully known.
13 So now faith, hope, and love abide, these three; but the greatest of these is love.
ESV

The previous quote is not love according to these verses.

1 Corinthians 13:4-5

4 Love is patient and kind; love does not envy or boast; it is not arrogant
5 or rude. It does not insist on its own way; it is not irritable or resentful;
ESV

This sister is not patient or kind and she is definitely insisting on her own way.

As she said “… all I want is what is rightfully mine. All I want is my share….

Now this would be bad enough if it was a couple of teenaged sisters arguing or a couple of children, but the surprising thing is this is an 83 year old sister arguing with her 87 year old sister over lottery ticket winnings!

You would have hoped that by that age you could possibly understand love a little better.

Shows you are never to old to be a totally selfish, self-centered sinner.

I pray that the Lord will convict them of their sin and need for Him before it is to late, time is surely clicking quickly at that age.


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Can’t We All Just Get Along?

Nope, we aren’t supposed to.

Matthew 10:34-39
34 “Do not think that I have come to bring peace to the earth. I have not come to bring peace, but a sword.
35 For I have come to set a man against his father, and a daughter against her mother, and a daughter-in-law against her mother-in-law.
36 And a person’s enemies will be those of his own household.
37 Whoever loves father or mother more than me is not worthy of me, and whoever loves son or daughter more than me is not worthy of me.
38 And whoever does not take his cross and follow me is not worthy of me.
39 Whoever finds his life will lose it, and whoever loses his life for my sake will find it.
ESV

James 2:14-16
14 What good is it, my brothers, if someone says he has faith but does not have works? Can that faith save him?
15 If a brother or sister is poorly clothed and lacking in daily food,
16 and one of you says to them, “Go in peace, be warmed and filled,” without giving them the things needed for the body, what good is that?
ESV

An Open Letter to Rick Warren by Jan Markell

On July 5 the Washington Times online reported that Pastor Rick Warren told his Islamic audience, the Islamic Society of North America (ISNA,) that he envisions “a coalition of faith.” Whether Pastor Warren knows this or not, this is just another term for the coming one-world religion outlined in Revelation 13. It is further outlined in Revelation 17. I have not taken on the issue of Rick Warren all that often, but after reading what the Washington Times has to say about his message to a group of spiritually lost Muslims, I feel I must address this in an open letter to who many say is the most influential pastor in America and some would say the world.

Pastor Warren, you pleaded with 8,000 Muslim listeners on Saturday, July 4, to work together to solve the world’s greatest problems by cooperating in a series of interfaith projects. You said, “Muslims and Christians can work together for the common good without compromising my convictions or your convictions.”

Pastor Warren, you needed to compromise the convictions of the Muslims in attendance. To just say that “My deepest faith is in Jesus Christ” was not enough to a thoroughly lost crowd. The hour is too late to withhold a gospel message without which they will face a Christless eternity, and you will be held accountable. The “world’s greatest problems” will always be with us and the Bible says so in Matthew 26:11. Sin is at the root of them. I have to conclude you are more interested in ecumenical unity and solving AIDS, poverty, and other social issues. Last Saturday you were given a golden opportunity that 99.9% of American Christians could never get. ….

Rick Warren is Wrong

… Rick Warren is putting works first and faith second. According to the Bible in James 2:14-26, works should follow a person’s faith. Warren has reversed this and has put works first and faith second.

According to the book of James, true faith is believing the exclusive claims of Christ and not putting faith behind works. Jesus Christ is the only way to heaven according to the Bible. As we share this truth with the world, we should then do good works.

Speaking at interfaith meetings should not be done if a person does not tell the listeners that Jesus Christ is the only way to heaven – period. By not doing this, a person is saying that all ways lead to God by works. Sincere Christian faith is never afraid to tell others that Jesus Christ in the only way to heaven….


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“Imagine No Religion” Billboard

Can you believe that right in the “Bible belt” of Alabama we now have a billboard up promoting freedom from religion?

First freethought message appears on billboard” (link broken)

The release goes on to say “this is the first such freethought (atheist, agnostic) message ever placed in Alabama. The colorful billboard went up just in time to for the annual ‘Glorious Fourth’ celebration in rural Talladega County sponsored by the Alabama Freethought Association this year July 3 through 5. The event is held at a freethought ‘advance’ (not retreat), which includes a lake, air conditioned auditorium and facilities. (It) has attracted as many as 200 freethinkers from all over the south and all over the United States.”

The billboard, the release goes on to say, “is part of a national educational campaign sponsored by the Freedom From Religion Foundation, the nation’s largest association of freethinkers, which works to keep church and state separate…The Alabama Freethought Association is an FFRF chapter.”

Billboards have been placed in 26 different cities in 16 states.

Alabama Freethought Association claims their definition is to “form opinions about religion, independently of tradition, authority or established belief, in favor of rational inquiry.”

The problem is that if you arrive at the decision in favor of religion then you are wrong and deceived! So much for free thought!

Christians have been involved in caring for others since the death of Christ. They took to heart this verse:

Matthew 25:35-36
35 For I was hungry and you gave me food, I was thirsty and you gave me drink, I was a stranger and you welcomed me,
36 I was naked and you clothed me, I was sick and you visited me, I was in prison and you came to me.’
ESV

To read some about the Christian contribution to medicine – The Christian Contribution to Medicine

Maybe a Derecho windstorm will get it. Similar to the story of the Ark of the Covenant and Dagon.

1 Samuel 5:1-5

1 When the Philistines captured the ark of God, they brought it from Ebenezer to Ashdod.
2 Then the Philistines took the ark of God and brought it into the house of Dagon and set it up beside Dagon.
3 And when the people of Ashdod rose early the next day, behold, Dagon had fallen face downward on the ground before the ark of the Lord. So they took Dagon and put him back in his place.
4 But when they rose early on the next morning, behold, Dagon had fallen face downward on the ground before the ark of the Lord, and the head of Dagon and both his hands were lying cut off on the threshold. Only the trunk of Dagon was left to him.
5 This is why the priests of Dagon and all who enter the house of Dagon do not tread on the threshold of Dagon in Ashdod to this day.
ESV

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